Bexhill College’s Football Academy, which is in partnership with Eastbourne Borough, has concluded its first ever season in the National Alliance Football league due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Following a tough first season, Eastbourne were pleased to finish in the top half of an extremely competitive and high-level league. The season saw no less than 38 players represent the team, showing the depth and strength of the squad that had been assembled. Academy Coach, Sean Noble, commented “I am extremely proud of how the players performed throughout the season, competing and overcoming some very good footballing teams. Whenever the players’ character was questioned, they answered very well and showed that some of them are ready for the next step into full-time senior football”.
At Christmas, Eastbourne found themselves joint second in the league, just 4 points behind the leaders. However, the team had a poor run of 5 consecutive defeats immediately after which curtailed any hopes of securing an unlikely league title. This disappointment was softened, however, by the team qualifying for the County Cup final; whether the final will go-ahead is still to be determined.
This was a fantastic achievement as the team overcame tough opposition in every round. It is shame that the players will not be able to play the final however, given the current climate, it is completely understandable.
Throughout the season, various players delivered excellent performances. Senior players, Leone Gravata and Daniel Blackmore, have both finished in the top 16 performing players in the league, which is a fantastic achievement. Captain Matthew Astle continued to impress with a high return of assists and goals at important times. First year students, Sonny Chambers, Luke Fisher and Louis Elliot, have shown great promise for next season and will be likely to form the spine of the side. Special praise was reserved for Harley Ransom, who, in his first year, has played all but one game of the season and has developed into an excellent defender, showing great leadership qualities.
Noble commented “I could not be prouder of the players; the senior players have led the first years well and this bodes well for next season. I am confident that with the first years learning from this year’s experiences and, with some new players starting this September, we will be able to compete on all fronts again.”
The Football Academy is also in association with the Chelsea Football Club Foundation. For more information about the opportunities this provides, or for further information about other Sports Academies at the College, please visit: https://www.bexhillcollege.ac.uk/docs2/about/sports_academy.shtml
If you wish to apply for 2020-2021 academic year, please complete the online application form.