Published: 06:00, 17 September 2021
Jerome Binnom-Williams is used to taking people by surprise on the football field.
You’ll do well to find a bigger left-back in National South than Maidstone’s summer signing from Barnet.
He’s a highly effective defender - so difficult to get the better of - but it’s probably his footwork that’s got everyone talking.
The defender, whose former clubs include Crystal Palace, Southend, Peterborough and Chesterfield, has been a joy to watch with the ball at his feet down the left, showing all the class of a nippy winger.
And there’s a very good reason for that.
“It comes from back in the day, when I used to play as a winger, and I’ve never lost it,” said Binnom-Williams, 26.
“I also like to play five-a-side sometimes to keep my feet going.
“Everyone looks at me and thinks I’m going to get the ball and boot it but when they see a bit of feet, they’re shocked, but it’s good.
“When I was 16 someone got injured so I had to play left-back, and then I played there for the under-18s at Crystal Palace and did well, and ever since then I’ve played left-back.”
With Raphe Brown failing a fitness test at Oxford City, Binnom-Williams has played the last two games.
The pair are good friends and there’s a healthy rivalry for the shirt. “Me and Raphe speak all the time,” said Binnom-Williams.
“He’s a young boy and I make sure I take him under my wing.
“When he was playing I made sure he did well because I said to him, ‘Listen, the day you don’t do well, I’m coming in’ and the same with him, when I don’t do well, he’s coming back in.
“It’s a competition, we both want the shirt and we’ve both been doing well, so we’ve got to wait and see.
“I want to play, he wants to play and I couldn’t take anything away from him before he got injured because he was playing really well.
“Now I’ve come in and I feel I’ve done well in the last couple of games.”
Binnom-Williams made his professional debut for Premier League Palace in a League Cup tie against Bristol City eight years ago.
He was also with Southend when they won the League 2 play-offs at Wembley in 2015.
He missed out on the squad for the final, a day that saw future Maidstone striker Joe Pigott equalise in added time against Wycombe and score in the penalty shoot-out.
“I can’t complain with my career,” said Binnom-Williams.
“I’ve had Palace, Southend, Burton, Leyton Orient, Peterborough, Chesterfield, Halifax and last season Barnet. I’ve been everywhere.
“That was a good year with Southend, to get promoted in my first season in League 2.
“I didn’t make the squad at Wembley but it was good to be around it.”
Maidstone visit Isthmian South East Chichester in the FA Cup second qualifying round this Saturday. It’s a competition Binnom-Williams is keen to improve his record in.
He said: “I don’t keep track but I know my record isn’t the best.
“If I’ve played in the first round, I’ve lost in the second.
“But we’ve got a good bunch of boys here, we all want to do well and hopefully we can go on a good run.”