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Hornchurch manager Stimson says Saunders is ‘irreplaceable’ as they plan for new season

PUBLISHED: 17:00 06 August 2020

George Saunders of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019

George Saunders of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019

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Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson insists winger George Saunders is ‘irreplaceable’ as they start plans for the upcoming season.

Mark Stimson manager of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019Mark Stimson manager of Hornchurch during Hornchurch vs Bishop's Stortford, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 28th September 2019

The Urchins returned to pre-season training this week with the Isthmian League Premier Division season expected to start on Saturday, September 19.

But they did lose 22-year-old Saunders last week to National League outfit Dagenham & Redbridge as they prepare to battle for promotion once again this term.

“You don’t replace George Saunders, you can’t, when I’ve had these other players before you can’t replace them,” said Stimson.

“They’re irreplaceable as such. That might sound daft, but it’s not. These players are at this level or got to this level where Hornchurch are, for whatever reason.

“George unfortunately wasn’t really seen, maybe because of his size, but thankfully the game is now not all about power and brute strength, it’s about technical ability and athleticism.

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“We’ll try our best to find someone and if they do half the job George done I’ll be happy – that’s how good he was really.

“It’s great for the club, it’s another notch that a player has moved on to a National League side, and we now look forward.

“We’ll look to build on the squad we had last year and try to compete once again.”

The Urchins boss is hoping he can keep hold of majority of his squad from last season, although Saunders has already departed, George Winn has left to join Aveley and experienced striker Jamie Cureton has also joined Enfield.

“That is the main aim, but with everything that is going on in the world, the finances, we may have to juggle things around and put a squad together,” he added. “If we can keep most of the squad, I will be really pleased and we want to try achieving what we did last year.

“We were amongst it and we want to try doing that again this year, so if we can keep the squad, and add one or two, then we have a good chance of that.”

Hornchurch are set to play some behind closed doors friendlies in the coming weeks.


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