Home Promotion Moneyfields chairman Seiden: We want to give Wessex League promotion challenge ‘a good shot’ next season

Moneyfields chairman Seiden: We want to give Wessex League promotion challenge ‘a good shot’ next season

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The former US Portsmouth boss led Moneys to ninth place in his first season in charge in 2021/22 – the club’s first season back in Stage 5 after four years in the Southern League.

Moneys finished 26 points behind the top two but was handicapped by injuries to top scorers Steve Hutchings and James Franklyn.

Now chairman Pete Seiden is planning a better finish next season with the club set up at their brand new John Jenkins Stadium.

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James Franklyn only appeared in 65% of Moneyfields’ Wessex League games in 2021/22 but still finished as their second top scorer with 18 goals. Photo: Keith Woodland

“Coming back to Wessex it was what we thought it would be – good, exciting, big crowds, lots of derbies,” Seiden said. The news.

“If it hadn’t been for Hutchings and Franklyn’s injuries, we would have been a lot higher. Each team would miss its top two scorers.

Skipper Hutchings has only appeared in 22 of 40 league matches – 55% of matches – but still scored 21 times. Only nine players have scored more Wessex Premier goals than in 2021/22, with Stoneham’s Callum Laycock making the fewest subsequent appearances (28 appearances, 25 goals).

An attacking midfielder, meanwhile, Franklyn made 26 appearances (65%) and scored 18 goals – without penalties – in his maiden Wessex Premier campaign.

“It was a good season, but we will be looking to start,” Seiden said.

When asked if a return to the Southern League was the ultimate ambition, he replied: “One hundred per cent. This is Glenn’s long-term mandate, but we want to take on the challenge next year.

“With the new ground, we will be more secure financially to return to the Southern League.

“We want to give him a good shot (next season). If we can sign the players we are looking for and keep the squad fit, I would look at the top four – and anything can happen then. Bashley (runner-up in 2021/22) came out of nowhere.

Seiden expects an interesting season of squad building for the six clubs in the Portsmouth area of ​​the Wessex Premier.

“I think Portchester will be the team to beat next season, but I know everyone was saying that last year as well,” he remarked.

“I call it ‘Wild Wessex’ right now. There are six clubs all battling for the top 50 players in the region.

“Glenn will have a very similar budget, and he has to go out and find the players he wants.”

Seiden was delighted with Turnbull’s recent appointment of AFC Portchester stalwart Joe Noakes as his new assistant following the resignation of Fraser Quirke.

“Joe knows a different group of players and he will have different points of view and new ideas. We are excited to see what he will bring.

Currently, Moneys expects to move into John Jenkins Stadium in early October. Before that, they will either try to switch matches or play home games at US Portsmouth’s Victory Stadium.

Due to redevelopment work at their Copnor base, Moneys have played their last two home league games of 2021/22 at USP. The reserves have completed their home program in Petersfield.