6 April 2019
Sittingbourne 1 Horsham 6
Hornets win at a canter on Grand National Day
Finally, after a long, and very hot summer, the Bostik League gets underway, in what promises to be an historic season for Horsham Football Club. Yes, the club begin the 2018/19 campaign still at Culver Road, looking forward to eventually moving into their new home later on during the campaign, but with the World Cup firmly behind everyone, the business of picking up a home win and first three points of the season begins in earnest as we entertain Sittingbourne.
The Brickies finished up one place higher than The Hornets last season, with the two clubs having to settle for mid-table mediocrity in 14th and 15th place respectively. However, Horsham supporters enter the new campaign with plenty of optimism that they can improve on last season’s finish, aiming to crack their way into the top ten and possibly push for a play-off place.
A raft of new signings over summer and a decent pre-season has emphasised that enthusiasm within the Hornets camp, with manager Dom Di Paola pleased with how his team had performed during the friendly fixtures. Speaking in his programme notes ahead of the match, he revealed “we’ve played some lovely football so far, and scored lots of goals, it’s gone well preparation-wise and we’ve had some good sessions”
Di Paola revealed the trip to Newquay was an ideal opportunity for his side to bond together before the big kick-off, with the weekend giving his side to socialise together and get to know each other more on, and off the pitch. “it was a good experience for us, they weren’t the best opposition, but weather-wise we went through four seasons in just ninety minutes so needed to adapt our game.”
The Horsham manager is preparing for his fourth full season in charge of the Yellows, and has spent the summer bringing in some familiar faces, and some new faces who will be expected to line up tomorrow, with striker Chris Smith brought in from South Park, while Lewis Hyde is expected to make his first competitive start since being ruled out a month before the end of last season with a dislocated shoulder. With injury largely decimating his squad at times last season, Di Paola will for once, be pleased to have something of a selection headache for the first time in a long time.
Saturday’s match has been sponsored by Chairman Kevin Borrett, while Denis Strudwick has kindly sponsored the match ball. The club extends its thanks to them both for their continued support.
Our match kicks off at 3pm. As usual, supporters unable to attend the game in person can keep up to date with the latest scores via our Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Supporters attending the match will find plenty to read in the matchday programme which, tomorrow, includes comment from Dom Di Paola, Kevin Borrett and HISC’s John Dalby, as well as an interview with our former goalkeeper Gareth Williams. We also round up the pre-season action including a special focus on the supporters’ trip to Newquay, take a look at the Bostik League restructuring, have full bios on all this season’s first team squad, get the latest from Horsham Youth and the U23s and there’s a new feature in which supporters share their earliest memories of watching the Hornets. All the usual facts and figures and a look at the history of our opponents Sittingbourne are included and we’ve even got a half-time quiz! Make sure you get your copy, costing just £2.