Category: 2017-2018 Club News

Game Today Plus Fixture News

There is just one week to go before the 2018-19 season starts with an FA Cup fixture at Deal Town. Today, Saturday 4th August at 3 pm, we welcome Bostik North Division club Grays Athletic to the Belmont Ground for a pre-season friendly.

In other news, the Velocity Trophy First Round tie at Ramsgate has been scheduled for Tuesday 11th Spetember at 7.45 pm.

The Velocity Trophy Draw

The draw for the first two rounds of the Velocity Trophy was made yesterday. This is the cup competition for Bostik League clubs and Whitstable have not been drawn to play in the Preliminary Round and so will enter the competition in the First Round with an away tie at Ramsgate. The match is to be played by September 20.

The full draw is available on the Bostik League website under the link below.

Velocity Trophy

Folkestone Friendly Off

Unfortunately the next scheduled pre-season friendly at Folkestone on Tuesday 31st July has been cancelled, as Whitstable are now unable to field a competitive team due to player injuries and unavailability. We would like to apologise for the short notice, but fortunately Folkestone have been able to find alternative opponents, as Herne Bay will now provide the opposition.

The next Whitstable first team fixture will be at the Belmont on Saturday against Grays Athletic. There is also an academy friendly at the Belmont tomorrow (Tuesday) evening.

Smith Double In Away Win

Pre-season friendly
Saturday July 28 2018 15.00

Whitstable revisited the scene of their final Southern Counties East League match in May and returned with the same result. Charlie Smith scored both goals in the first half, when the team played some good football at times and might have added further goals. Lordswood improved after the break, although the home goalkeeper had to make a good save to deny Smith a hat trick. Michael Freiter did pull a goal back from a free kick, but there were few other chances at either end as the strong wind made conditions quite testing.

With several players and the manager unavailable, Whitstable had to make a few changes to their line-up on a blustery afternoon, which was in great contrast to the hot and humid weather of recent days. Lordswood have added a few players to their squad in the summer and will be hopeful of improving on their eighth place finish of last season.

Whitstable started well with Ricky Freeman, Jordan Wright and Smith causing problems for the home defence. One Freeman cross from the right was just beyond the reach of Smith, but on 14 minutes Smith rose at the back post to meet another Freeman cross and head Whitstable in front. Wright was fouled on 21 minutes and after the Brett Ince free kick came back off the wall, Freeman lifted the ball back into the box and Josh Burchell saw his header tipped over the bar by the goalkeeper, who also saved a Stuart West header from the resulting corner. Whitstable added a second in the 34th minute when Wright slipped a clever ball through for Smith, who calmly chipped the goalkeeper and found the net. Lordswood created little in the first half, although Jordan Wells did threaten with a few good runs, but their best chances were a couple of free kicks that missed the target.

Charlie Smith heads the ball in at the far post
Whitstable are 1-0 up
Josh Burchell’s header is saved
Charlie Smith beats the goalkeeper
It’s 2-0

Whitstable almost scored again early in the second half, when Kyran Connolly just failed to reach a good ball across goal and then he turned provider, sending over a cross for Smith, whose header down brought a good save at the far post. Both teams made substitutions and Lordswood started having more meaningful possession in midfield. On 68 minutes, Freiter struck a free kick through the Whitstable wall and past Dan Eason to score from what was the first Lordswood shot on target. In the 80th minute, Freiter curled in another dangerous free kick, which was cleared to the edge of the box, where one of the home substitutes fired in a good low shot, but Eason got across to save. At the other end, Tom Bryant almost got on the end of a good free kick by Chris Elliott, but there were to be no further goals and Whitstable finished 2-1 winners.

Kyran Connolly almost gets on the scoresheet
Michael Freiter (8) scores from a free kick
Tom Bryant goes close

Whitstable next play on Tuesday evening at Bostik Premier League team Folkestone Invicta.

Lordswood Whitstable
8 Attempts 10
2 On Target 7
5 Corners 2
0 Offside 1
18 Free Kicks Won 13

Team not provided
Goal: Michael Freiter 68

Whitstable Town
Dan Eason, Kyran Connolly (Rhys Brain 77), Josh Burchell (James Webb 81), Stuart West, Rob Gillman, Tom Bryant (c), Brett Ince (Chris Elliott 64), Jai McKinlay, Ricky Freeman, Charlie Smith (Trialist 70), Jordan Wright.
Goals: Charlie Smith 14, 34.

Attendance: Not available

Lydd Fightback Not Enough

Pre-season friendly
Tuesday July 24 2018 19.45

First half goals from Jordan Wright and Nathan Hardwick proved enough to beat Lydd Town in this latest pre-season game at the Belmont. In very warm and humid conditions, Whitstable created some good chances in the first hour and might have added to their score, although Dan Eason saved well from Ryan Philpott. After a number of substitutions, Lydd finished quite strongly and eventually grabbed a consolation goal when Tom Draper scored.

Southern Counties East League Division One Lydd Town were the visitors to the Belmont in the fourth home pre-season friendly for Whitstable, who will play their first away game next when they make the trip to Lordswood. Player unavailability left Whitstable with a squad of fourteen for the evening.

The returning Charlie Smith made a good run before his well struck 25 yard shot was saved by James Atkins, then he headed a good left wing cross just wide of the goal. Wright, who looked a threat for the home side throughout, created a couple of early chances, but Lydd almost took the lead on 15 minutes when Philpott got on the end of a good through ball and Eason had to be alert to block his shot. Whitstable opened the scoring after 20 minutes, when a nice pass by skipper James Morrish released Wright and he finished well past Atkins. Smith tried another shot from outside the box that went just over. As half time approached, Hardwick finished off another Whitstable move by nodding the ball home to send his team in 2-0 ahead.

Dan Eason prevents Ryan Philpott from putting Lydd ahead
Jordan Wright opens the scoring
Whitstable are 1-0 ahead
Nathan Hardwick heads the second

After the break, a Smith cross was headed wide by Hardwick, before Morrish collected the first yellow card of this pre-season after committing a few early second half fouls. Hardwick broke through again, but was unable to beat Atkins. The usual series of substitutions began and Lydd had two attempts at beating Eason from distance, but failed to hit the target. There were few chances as the warm evening seemed to be affecting everyone, but as the game entered the final few minutes Reece Mortimer had one shot easily saved and then had a great chance to score when the ball was headed down for him in the box, but he shot over the bar. Morrish picked up a Lydd clearance in midfield and tried to send the ball back into the net, but his shot was too high. Just after Eason had been replaced in the home goal, Lydd scored, when a ball out of the Whitstable defence was collected by Philpott, who ran down the right and crossed for Draper and although the substitute goalkeeper got a hand to his shot, the ball ended in the net. Just before the final whistle, Josh Burchell made an interception and found Rhys Brain, but his shot was well saved by Atkins and the game ended 2-1.

Tom Draper scores for Lydd
James Atkins saves from Rhys Brain

Whitstable now have two away games, at Lordswood on Saturday and then Folkestone Invicta on Tuesday evening.

Whitstable Lydd
11 Attempts 7
6 On Target 3
5 Corners 2
6 Offside 0
7 Free Kicks Won 12

Whitstable Town
Dan Eason (Mark Sibton 81), Kyran Connolly, Josh Burchell, Stuart West, Rob Gillman, Tom Bryant, Chris Saunders, James Morrish (c), Nathan Hardwick (Rhys Brain 75), Charlie Smith (James Webb 76), Jordan Wright.
Subs (unused): none
Goals: Jordan Wright 20, Nathan Hardwick 39.
Yellow card: James Morrish 51

Lydd Town
James Atkins, Jordan Tomsett (c), Kieran Shrimpton, Jamie Hurst, Alex Coyne, Owen Kessack, Harry Carr, Craig Calvert, Ryan Philpott, Dale Horton, Reece Mortimer.
Subs: Dan Wanstall, Tom Draper, Luke Stanley, Piers Futcher, Guy Connolly.
Goal: Tom Draper 82

Attendance: 88
Referee: Alex Emery
Assistants: Daniel D’Urso & Ryan Chantril-Smith

Second Half Goals Secure Big Win

Pre-season friendly
Saturday July 21 2018 15.00

Whitstable completed a comfortable win against Kent County League opposition, scoring five second half goals as their spirited opponents tired in the heat. Ashford did take an early lead with a spectacular long range effort, but goals by Ricky Freeman and Stuart West gave the home team a 2-1 lead at half time. James Morrish had an early second half penalty saved by Danny Regan, but substitutes Nathan Hardwick and Kyran Connolly both scored to put Whitstable in control by the hour mark. Morrish, Chris Saunders and West added further goals and there were a few other opportunities missed. Ashford never gave up though and created a few chances of their own, with one late header bringing an incredible save by Whitstable goalkeeper Dan Eason.

Whitstable made a few changes to their team from the previous game, with player availability always a challenge during the pre-season summer holiday period. Ashford FC finished last season in mid table in the Kent County League Division Two Central and East and play at the Pound Leas Sports Field in Hamstreet.

Whitstable had a couple of early half chances, but were then stunned on 7 minutes, when Jordan Griffin sent the ball in from the right hand side of the pitch and it sailed over the head of Eason and into the net. Brett Ince almost levelled a few minutes later when his powerful shot crashed on to the bar and out, but shortly afterwards a Dan Stubbs cross was headed home by an unmarked Freeman at the far post. Robbie Dolan shot over from just inside the box for the visitors just before a much needed drinks break. When play resumed, it was Whitstable who went ahead on 30 minutes, when a long throw by Chris Elliott was forced in at the back post by West. The home team were beginning to create a number of chances and after a good run by Jordan Wright, Morrish shot just over, then a poor back pass left Freeman clear, but after going past the keeper his shot was blocked by a covering defender. Connolly lifted an effort over the bar and Elliott curled a free kick wide before the teams went in at half time with the score 2-1.

Ashford take an early lead
Ricky Freeman heads the equaliser
Stuart West puts Whitstable 2-1 up
Kyran Connolly goes close

An early glancing header was pushed behind for a corner and Matt Burdon tried his luck from distance as Ashford began the second period brightly. Whitstable were soon in control however and Ince was fouled in the box, only for Morrish to see Regan get down to his right to save his penalty. Both teams made changes and on 55 minutes it was one Whitstable substitute Hardwick who finished a good move involving Wright and Freeman. It was soon 4-1 when a James Webb cross found Freeman and although his shot was blocked, the ball came out to Connolly and he produced a lovely finish into the top corner from the edge of the box. Whitstable scored again on 67 minutes when Hardwick won a corner on the left from which West had a shot cleared off the line and Morrish fired the rebound into the roof of the net.

Dan Eason in action in the second half
Danny Regan saves a James Morrish penalty
James Morrish makes no mistake this time with the fifth

After a final pause for drinks, Freeman tried an acrobatic effort whilst lying on the ground, but Regan kept it out. On 74 minutes though, Hardwick played the ball in low from the right and Saunders cleverly flicked it in at the near post for the sixth goal. He nearly got another when his shot was saved after a pull back by Webb. Saunders and Webb both had further opportunities, before a tiring Ashford managed to carve out a couple of late chances for themselves, with their number seventeen going close of both occasions. Firstly he shot over after a free kick fell nicely to him in the box, but then Eason had to pull off one of the best saves seen at the Belmont to deny him. A good move saw a cross from the left wing met by a firm header back towards the top corner, but somehow the Whitstable goalkeeper managed to change direction and push the ball away from under the bar. It was to be the home team that had the final say though, when a corner was cleared as far as Wright, who rolled the ball to West and he curled it neatly into the far corner to complete the scoring.

Next up for the two teams are home Tuesday night fixtures, with Whitstable entertaining Lydd Town and Ashford hosting New Romney, as pre-season continues.

Whitstable Ashford
25 Attempts 8
16 On Target 2
5 Corners 4
3 Offside 2
10 Free Kicks Won 5

Whitstable Town
Dan Eason, Dan Stubbs (Kyran Connolly 24), Josh Burchell (Josh Spencer 68), Rob Gillman, Teddy Nelson (James Webb 52), Stuart West, Chris Elliott (Chris Saunders 52), James Morrish (c), Ricky Freeman (Rhys Brain 80), Brett Ince (Nathan Hardwick 52), Jordan Wright.
Subs (unused): None
Goals: Ricky Freeman 15, Stuart West 30, 88, Nathan Hardwick 55, Kyran Connolly 59, James Morrish 67, Chris Saunders 74.

Danny Regan, George Argar, Matt Burdon, Craig Norman, Liam Sheldon Smith, Stephen Cowell, Craig Haynes, Robbie Dolan, Ryan Norman, Jordan Griffin, Casper Floyd.
Subs: Names not provided.
Goal: Jordan Griffin 7

Attendance: 76
Referee: Ollie Butcher
Assistants: Luke Sidaway & Lou Saunders