As you will hopefully have noticed, during the last month we’ve been publishing supporter previews of the forthcoming season. Every preview has included a predicted top five- but we haven’t only been asking the supporters involved to predict who will win the title and finish in the playoff positions, we’ve been asking them to forecast the entire division. The results of those predictions have been worked into a league table- so eyes down, look in, and here are the results of the South East Division jury!
First and foremost, you were absolutely clear who you expected to win the title. Overwhelmingly, the people’s choice to lift the trophy was Cray Wanderers. Perhaps they may even have a home of their own before long, too- permission for which, if it is forthcoming, will perhaps ease the pain of last season’s play off semi final defeat a little. Promotion and no longer homeless- what a season that would be!
The rest of the top five was far closer. The excellent form of Hastings United and Hythe Town in the second half of last season sees them placed second and third, whilst you expect Greenwich Borough to bounce back from two years of play off semi-final heartache at the hands of Corinthian-Casuals by qualifying to do it all again (although, of course, without Casuals lying in wait). The final play off spot goes to Ashford United, so you’ve undoubtedly been impressed by manager Gary Alexander’s summer squad building.
Bostik South East Predicted Table 2018-19
Just outside the top five you’ve placed Sittingbourne and Whyteleafe. The Brickies ended the last campaign strongly, and Whyteleafe spent much of last season being thoroughly entertaining whilst falling just short of success, and you’ve predicted the same again.
You haven’t predicted big things for any of our newly promoted clubs, although you haven’t suggested that any of them will go straight back down again. Of the quartet Sevenoaks Town are placed in the highest position, twelfth, although that is skewed somewhat by the fact that the supporter who represented them predicted they’d win the league! The highest they got in anyone else’s predictions was ninth. The other three clubs, Whitstable Town, Haywards Heath Town and Three Bridges, you put together in 16th, 17th and 18th.
So it’s two of our established clubs you’ve predicted will go down, and if you’re correct we will say goodbye not only to the Wasps of East Grinstead Town but to our trips to the Channel Islands. You were overwhelmingly convinced that Guernsey would finish in bottom place, but undoubtedly Guernsey themselves will be overwhelmingly convinced that they’ll do no such thing! Grinstead also seem to have strengthened impressively over the summer, and Matt Longhurst’s side will be looking to surprise a few people. Perhaps this prediction might help motivate them to do just that.
Thanks again to all those supporters who took part in the predictions this year. Approximately 70% of our clubs were represented, which is superb, and a substantial increase on last year. But remember, this is just for fun. Please don’t hold grudges against those who felt your side would struggle, and please don’t go out and bet your house on any of the predicted outcomes actually coming true!
Main image- Carshalton Athletic fans celebrate winning promotion from the South Division last season.