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Kids are alright for Verwood boss Arnold
VERWOOD manager Adie Arnold hailed the maturity of his young guns but called on his club to aid their progress with the addition of some older heads.
The Potterne Park chief was left beaming with pride as 16-year-old prospect Dan Munday rattled in two goals to secure a 3-1 victory at Horndean in the FA Vase on Saturday.
Town's success also marked the debut of 17-year-old right back Mark Elsom, who was involved with West Ham United's academy until a year ago and is currently on the fringes of Billericay Town's first team in the Ryman Premier.
But despite his delight at youthful Verwood's second success of the season, Arnold pointed out his side's need for experienced leaders to complement their fledgling footballers.
Arnold told the Daily Echo: “I am a great believer that young players will progress given the chance and I am very enthusiastic about the current crop.
“This is a very exciting time for the club because if we can keep these lads together then they will be the ones to take the club forward in the long term.
“But we haven't got as many points on the board as we would have liked and if we want to progress then the club have got to look at getting a couple of experienced players in.
“Mark Smith is the perfect example at Christchurch, but that kind of player generally costs money and the club need to decide which way they want to go.”
Meanwhile, Arnold revealed London-based Elsom will be available on a semi-regular basis with the Verwood boss excited about his new prospect.
“Billericay think very highly of him and I can see why,” said Arnold. “He is a very good defender for that age and that is unusual because many young defenders tend to be better going forward.
“I believe defenders should be there to defend first and if they can go forward then that's a bonus. He's an excellent prospect.”
Elsom is not available for tomorrow's trip to Lymington Town (7.45pm) but Dean Evans and Joe Kimber return to Arnold's squad.
Potters: (from) Fawcett, Evans, Homer, Oldring, Kelly, Gajic, Saxby N, Webb, Dan Munday, Lovell, Dar Munday, Dyer, Murray, Elysee, Kimber, Evans.
Boss Simon Browne readily admitted Hamworthy United could have done without their trip to Alresford Town tomorrow (7.45pm).
The Hammers chief said his squad were feeling the effects of their FA Cup and Vase exploits and that a few faces could be missing for their Wessex Premier clash ahead of Saturday's FA Cup derby with Poole Town.
Tom Biles, Dave Sturgess, Lee Chudy and Diane Bassiriki may miss out but Dominic Allen could play a part.
Hammers: (from) Knights, Penny, Tayler, Horlock, Legg, Lockyer, Stacey, Hester, Lanahan, Claremont, Pekun, Miles, Allen, Saunders, Head, Manuel, Bassiriki, Sturgess.
Injury-hit backmarkers Bournemouth Poppies are still six players short of a full squad as they prepare to host Fareham Town (7.45pm).
Connor Phillips, Fawzi Saadi, Gareth Batchelor and Martin Warren are all sidelined alongside keepers Kenny Vaughan Jnr and Jamie Bray as Poppies seek their first points of the season at Victoria Park.
Poppies: (from) Lillington, Ayrton, Martinez, Jackson, Austin, Crow, Corby, Robinson, Lane, Andrews, Rowley, Burgis, Cooper, Hales, Pearce, Turner.
- BOTH Hamworthy United and Verwood Town were handed home draws in yesterday’s FA Vase first round proper draw.
Hammers will face Hellenic League side Oxford City Nomads while Potters host Wessex One outfit Laverstock & Ford.
Meanwhile, Christchurch are on the road and face a tricky trip to league rivals Moneyfields.
Ties will be played on the weekend of Saturday, October 19. Winning clubs will be awarded £900 in prize money.
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