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Boss Sammy Moore wants his squad assembled by the end of May as Faversham Town target swift return to the Isthmian League

Sammy Moore is out to have Faversham’s squad assembled by the end of May as they target a swift Isthmian League return.

There is a big summer ahead at Salters Lane, with Town looking to bounce back from suffering 2022/23 Isthmian South East relegation which ended their 13-year stay at that level.

Faversham Town manager Sammy Moore. Picture: Ian Scammell
Faversham Town manager Sammy Moore. Picture: Ian Scammell

But experienced defender Matt Newman is already on board for the next campaign - someone Town manager Moore had tried to sign earlier this year.

“We tried to sign Matt Newman three months ago,” said Moore.

“He stayed loyal to Folkestone but he wants to help us kick on.

“We want our squad pretty much sorted by the end of May. That will give us time to get ready for the season ahead.”

The 35-year-old is most at home at the heart of defence, although he can also play in midfield, which - with centre-backs Darren Phillips and Jacques Kpohomouh the first of last season’s squad to commit to stay - may ultimately be where he ends up playing.

“He can play holding midfield,” Moore noted. “He played there for Folkestone this year.

“But we will need a squad. With the FA Cup, Vase and Challenge Cup, as well as the league, if we do well in all of them, we will probably play more than 50 games.

“I would like three or four good centre-halves, really.

“Matt can play in multiple positions and he’s quality.

“If we’d had his quality in three months ago, it might have been a different outcome. But we’ve got him now.

“He’s a real leader. He will run that dressing room and demand off others.

“It’s a signing Faversham fans can look at and say ‘Right, who’s next?’.

“We have already started rebuilding so we’re maybe a step ahead of others.”

On Phillips and Kpohomouh, Moore added: “They have been great. They have been two positive lights.

“I would like to get Phillips a little bit fitter and he knows that. But he can be a machine.

“He’s such a threat from set-pieces, he can get 15 or 20 goals next season.

“It was key that we kept the ones that we believe will take us on this journey.

“We had more chats on Tuesday with those who want to stay, but most boys want to stay and help us try to get back up.

“We have got a list of players that we want.

“The next five weeks, it will probably be full-on talking to players and signing new players.”

With their fate sealed ahead of their final three matches, Moore used their season run-in to look at some of the club’s successful under-23 players.

He wants two or three of those to come back for pre-season with his first-team - including forward Harry Codd.

The manager, himself a former Football League midfielder, said: “I have been through a youth set-up which I came through to make my debut.

“It doesn’t matter how old you are. If you are good enough, you deserve a chance.

“A few of them have been in our environment for the last couple of months. They know what we want.”

Second-bottom Faversham finished their season with a 4-0 home win over Three Bridges on Saturday.

Frontman Shola Ayoola bagged a brace while defenders Oliver Gray and Matt Parsons also were on the scoresheet for Town.

Midfielder Bode Anidugbe, defender Frazer Shaw and wideman Michael Ademiluyi have left the club.

Faversham under-23s, second in Isthmian League Development South, will host leaders Hastings tomorrow (7.45pm kick-off) with victory seeing them crowned league champions.

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