We asked supporters of our Pitching In Isthmian League clubs to preview the new season, reflect on the old and predict the final outcome. Their predicted 1-20 (or 22) will be worked into a final table which you will see just before the big kick off. Robert Barker brings you Bowers bravado and Pitsea positivity.
1. Thinking about last season- what there was of it- were there any highlights for you?
We started off pretty well in the league to be honest. The standout result and performance would definitely be the 7-0 drubbing of Leatherhead.
2. Moving on to your current squad- which players do you think will make a big impact during the 2021-22 campaign?
I think Brad’s Sach and Warner, when he's available, will get goals. Quentin Monville is always an exciting player to watch. Luca Albon can play a big part, class player. Ben Sartain at CM, always a 7/10+ performer. Also, Dan Trendall, he's improving all the time and can absolutely cause opposition teams problems with his direct style.
3. Realistically, how do you think you’ll do this season?
For me, every year, I want a good FA Cup run. We came so close to reaching the 1st Round a couple of seasons ago and what would have been an away trip to Tranmere Rovers. If we can achieve getting to the First round this year I would be buzzing, obviously. FA Trophy, yep, hopefully we can have a decent run in that too and who knows get an away game against one of the big National League sides (*cough* Southend). League wise, I'm really not sure, we have kept a core group of players together for a number of seasons now which can only be a good thing. We have a strong squad, I have no doubt about that. We haven't brought in many new players (to my knowledge), but, did we need to? Maybe not. I think we can realistically challenge for a playoff spot. I would be happy with a top half finish though and to see us constantly improving and progressing. We are a small fish in a big pond and whatever we achieve I will be happy and proud.
4. Which matches are you most looking forward to going to- and why?
I'm a sucker for an away game. Absolutely love them. Weeknights under floodlights, even better. So based on that I have a keen eye on Carshalton on the 13th September and Brightlingsea in October. Also, really looking forward to Bognor, Margate and Bishops Stortford away.
5. What is your favourite away ground?
100% it was Thurrock's Ship Lane ground. Went there a number of times and was always a good atmosphere. Smart ground.
Over the years I've enjoyed going to... Wroxham, Potters Bar, Coggeshall and Maldon, off the top of my head. Generally if we get a good result and we create a good atmosphere, I like the ground haha.
6. Who do you consider your biggest rivals- and why?
Basildon United and Canvey. Derby games. Pitsea is in the Basildon district, their ground is a 5 minute drive from ours. We don't like them and they don't like us. Local rivals, how it should be. Canvey simply because of the playoffs a few seasons ago, for me anyway.
7. What advice would you give to any away supporter visiting you for the first time?
Err, if you're getting the train, wear comfortable shoes because it's a fair old walk to the LSS from the station. Enjoy the day, enjoy the game.
8. Who is your favourite player of all time (for your club)- and why?
I’d say Vinny Durrant or Ben Sartain. Vinny was with us when we were still in the ESL and he was just absolutely brilliant, I think he scored close to 20 goals from LWB in our promotion season, had an engine on him and was consistently outstanding. Sarts, been with us for years, oozes class and composure in the centre of the park. Gets stuck in, a strong tackler, passer and chips in with a few goals.
9. Who will be in the top five at the end of the season?
Horsham, Margate, Folkestone Invicta, Hornchurch, Worthing
Look out for the final predicted tables on Saturday!
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