The Match – Report

27th April 2024.  A date that will stick long in the memory of the players, coaches, supporters and committee of Steyning Town Community FC. After a long hard season, and an almighty battle with a number of other sides, skipper Jack Barnes finally got his hand on the SCFL Premier league trophy after being presented it by league president Paul Beard after Saturdays game. And it didn’t matter a jot to any of the 667 supporters in the ground that the heavens opened. Young and old celebrated side by side; perhaps the young with slightly more exuberance. Many of the young players parents were not even born last time Steyning got their hands on this trophy back in the mid eighties. A moment of high excitement and great reflection for those involved at the club and a great reward for a huge amount of effort on and off the pitch in recent years. Isthmian football awaits, another big challenge ahead, but a challenge the club is ready to tackle head on; or at least they will be ready in a few months! Once the hangovers subside the hard work continues.
As the match itself on Saturday afternoon before the presentation it was a quirk of the fixtures that the champions had to face already relegated AFC Uckfield. The visitors had had a bit of a torrid season and  even in the week were struggling to raise a side but full credit to the management team and young players who came across and put on a show of spirit in incredibly hard circumstances. Thankyou all.
Town pretty much had the game wrapped up in the first ten minutes and two headers from Meehan and one from Shooman suggested a cricket score might be incoming. It was 7-1 by half time as further goals from Meehan, completing a hattrick, Remfry, and two from Radley-Martin. Uckfields response came form a rather bizarre own goal from Nathan Cooper after a misunderstanding with Lucas, but such was the situation I think everyone afforded themselves a small chuckle.
Double figures seemed inevitable as the second half got underway, and so it came with further goals from Shooman (27 for the season), Ryan Hallett with a neat left foot strike, but perhaps the goal of the afternoon was the tenth and final league goal of the season as a neat move set Shooman away on the left and he delivered a sublime ball in to the centre for Chalaye to finish off in style. A great finish to the league campaign.
Shortly after came the presentation, a few fireworks and party that carried on long in to the night in the clubhouse. What an achievement form the team. 20 players all playing their part. What has been very impressive has been the togetherness and spirit in the squad.  A sprit that saw Town go unbeaten in their final 20 league games of the season after a sticky patch over Christmas. They overhauled a 9 point deficit on both Newhaven and Crowborough, beating both sides on the way, and ended up winning the league by 6 points. Absolutely incredible, and all playing a brand and style of football that saw then score a staggering 119 goals and goals coming from so many different players. The coaching team have been first class and Kev has got them all running things as professionally as possible. Then there’s the hard working committee and the other wonderful volunteers, including all those in the bar and kitchen. A real team effort behind the scenes all topped up with some great sponsors and fun loving vocal supporters has made it a real magical season. And the season is not over yet as a possible league and cup double is one the cards are Town travel to Wick Fc next Tuesday at 7:45pm to take on Midhurst & Easebourne in the Peter Bentley Cup semi final. Now a league and cup double would really be dreamland.
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