AUGUST 2019 

With the new season looming, vice-captain of Tooting & Mitcham Daryl Coleman shared his views on how pre-season has gone, the new look first team and his expectations for the new season.

 

Pre-season has been successful with 7 wins out of 9 games, how excited are you now to get into the new season?

 

We are excited and we are just ready to go now. When you have a long pre-season, it makes you just want to get into the season rather than playing and winning pre-season games, so yeah we feel ready.

 

It will be a new look squad this season, with some big names leaving such as Isaiah Jones and Lexus Beeden just recently. How confident are you in the new boys that have come in?

 

Yeah we have lost some good player such as Isaiah (Jones), Ibby (Abraham Odoh) and Simo (Antonio Simone) but I think we have done well with the replacements as results have shown we haven’t struggled. We are really just buying into what the manager wants, which is what we were doing last season which we want to carry on this season.

 

Off the pitch, the club have sold more season tickets and the crowds have been decent for home pre-season games. How big is that for you guys on the pitch to see more people at the games and supporting?

 

That’s what we are here tonight (referring to the players’ team that attended a club fundraising quiz) as we know the more we come, the more they come to the games and of course meaning we can interact with the fans. We do really appreciate and we want them to keep coming to the games as we do need them there!

 

Around the league a lot of club’s fans have been making their predictions, and Tooting & Mitcham has been popping up a lot  a for high finish. Can we hear your predictions for the season, how do you think it will go?

 

I will be blunt and honest, from what I have seen and from my experience being in this league (and winning it!), I think if we don’t finish in the top 3 we will be upset, well I certainly would be as vice -captain.

 

Out of all the young players that are coming into the first team, who do you think we should keep a special eye out for?

 

Dom (Morgan-Griffiths) is the same every year, he has got the potential to be the best player at the club I think, just really mean if he keeps his head. Pinpointing just one young player, I would say Shamal (Edwards), who has done really well this pre-season. Nebay (Halie) has done well and is still very young and has scored goals this pre-season. Razzaq (Coleman De Graft) is always up there, but I think my pick out of all of them is Hady (Ghandour), who has had a really good season and is doing exactly what the manager is asking of him, he listens and he is my tip for the top goal scorer.

Q & A with Vice captain Daryl Coleman

Full Q&A with new chair Caroline McRoyall  

Lexus Beeden signs professional contract with Reading FC after successful trial 

Can you give us a brief overview of your career to date?

 

After university I worked at a Sports Centre, then for Merton Council as a Leisure Development Officer. I looked after the council’s holiday playschemes, teams for the London Youth Games and the community football programme. It was around the time that Wimbledon moved to Milton Keynes so the borough was keen to ensure community activity continued to be delivered by a local club so I worked with AFC Wimbledon and Tooting & Mitcham to agree boundaries and a programme of activity. After this I worked for London FA as a Football Development Officer, before moving to Surrey FA in 2007.

 

What was your previous role with the Surrey FA?

 

I started at Surrey FA as their County Development Manager. I was responsible for overseeing the football development department whose aim was to grow participation and improve standards. I also managed the County FA’s Facility Strategy, advising Local Authorities, schools and clubs of funding available and worked with them to progress projects, one of these included Tooting & Mitcham’s development of the back 3G artificial pitch and resurface of the front artificial pitch.

 

In Dec 2013 Ray Ward left Surrey FA and I was made Interim CEO before getting the position on a permanent basis in May 2014. During this time, I managed the day to day operations of the organisation as well as ensuring the business achieved its strategic goals. I project managed the relocation of the organisation to the new purpose-built office and 3G artificial football pitch at Meadowbank Football Ground, securing a long-term lease from Mole Valley District Council. As well as steering the organisation to become a registered charity and be the first County FA to achieve the Intermediate Level of the Equality Standard for Sport.

 

What was your impression of Tooting & Mitcham United FC, before you joined the club?

 

I have had quite a long association with the club and have always been impressed by the scale of activities that go on, however I feel because there is so much going on sometimes the club can appear disorganised and due to response times they can miss out on opportunities.  

 

Why did you agree to come to the club?

 

I feel the club has a great ethos and ambitions for the future, which will result in a great community facility, so its an exciting time to join the club with which I have a history and hopefully help with improving the structures and the organisation of the club to ensure its as efficient as possible but continues its welcoming and community feel.

 

Is this a voluntary or paid appointment?

 

The Chair role is voluntary, but I will be undertaking some paid work on a consultancy basis for the club to develop Farm Road Playing Fields, creating extra pitches.

 

Do you have any previous association with T&MUFC – other than through your previous role at the Surrey FA?

 

I used to live in Mitcham and went to Gorringe Park School so walked past the Sandy Lane ground daily and attended a few matches with my mum and brother.

 

Having attended the Charlton and Reading game, what are your first impressions of the club?

 

I was struck immediately by how welcoming everyone was and just how many volunteers are involved in match days. It was great to talk to many members and hear about there association with the club many of whom have been involved since their childhood. In terms of the actual team performance I felt we did well although lacked any clinical finishing (although the strength of the wind didn’t help against Reading). The team looked organised and able to pass the ball well and considering the number of changes for both games everyone seemed to have a good understanding of the system and the way the managers wanted the team to play, showing good strength in depth.

 

What do you see as your main strengths & what attributes are you hoping to bring to this new role?

 

My main strengths are my knowledge of strategy, football development, funding, governance, and inclusion. I also have a few contacts within the game that may be useful. I am an organised and driven person with strong management skills.

 

What do you see as the key functions of your role?

 

I see my key functions to ultimately be an ambassador of the club and to try and raise the profile of the club, through various means such as fan engagement, social media and marketing. I will work closely with the members club to ensure the smooth running of match days, sponsorship and membership and with the Chair of the youth section to ensure there is a pathway for players.

I also hope to support the growth and development of the club and increase the opportunities for women & girls.

  

What will be your immediate priorities?

 

To fully understand the structures and the personnel (both staff and volunteers) currently in place

 

Will your role overlap with Steve Adkins or are there clear demarcation lines agreed?

 

Steve will be concentrating on the strategic plans for developing Imperial Fields and is obviously still the major shareholder of Tooting & Mitcham Sports & Leisure Ltd, who control the budgets for the club but we will be in regular communication to ensure the club is developing as intended.  

 

 

What would success look like for you this season?

 

That the club is well organised and run smoothly in all areas. There is more engagement from fans/ supporters and that the first team perform well, improving on their results of last season.

 

Can we expect you to take an active role in supporting the Members Club?

 

Yes, I am looking to work closely with the Members club and support them where I can.

 

Can we expect to see you on match days supporting the club?

 

I hope to attend quite a few home games.  

 

What is your thoughts on our promotion chances this year?

 

It’s probably too early to for me to tell but I would hope we can get into the playoff places.

 

If you could change one thing about football or the club what would it be?

 

I would like to see more funding for grassroots football clubs. It has increased significantly over the years but when you see the amount of money at the top of the game it’s crazy that more isn’t distributed to grassroots football to support the next generation of players, coaches and referees.

 

Is there anything else we should know about you?

 

I support Tottenham Hotspur and my favourite player growing up was Gary Lineker. I started playing football at the age of 14 and played for Sutton United Ladies and Worcester Park as either left back or central defence. I gained my FA Coaching Certificate in 1998 and qualified as a referee (although I never actually refereed a game as I was still playing).

The club have announced that Lexus Beeden has signed a professional contract at Championship side Reading FC after a successful trial this summer. Lexus, 19 was a regular in the first team last season and put in some impressive performances, catching the eye of Reading where he went on trial for a few weeks in June and July. We spoke with Lexus about his move after he passed the medical on Friday 8th August,

Congratulations on your move to Reading Lexus, how excited are you to get started? 

I am very excited, it has been a long journey, and now I am really ready to get started to be honest.

You have been at Tooting for a few years now, how much of an impact has it had on you playing here and how has it aided your progression?

From developing from under 23s Football, I didn't play their for long but played there long enough to learn little things. I have got to thank Ashley and Cornelius for giving me the chance to play in the first team. You don't really get too many 18 year olds playing first team Football at this level, and it was a bit of a big jump which made me a bit scared at the start. I then learnt little things, developed and the experience really helped me.

You join Abraham, Sam and Isaiah in signing pro deals this year. How was it for you playing with those guys?

I am hoping to at least make my debut with the under 23s and regularly train, and then make a great impression and go out on loan for even more experience.

Lexus will be at attendance at Saturdays game against Ramsgate to say goodbye to the club before moving to Reading. We would like to wish Lexus all the best and we will no doubt be hearing more about the talented youngster. 

Caroline McRoyall to replace Steve Adkins as Chair at the club 

Steve Adkins is stepping down as Chair of TMUFC and will be replaced by Caroline McRoyall, formerly CEO of the Surrey FA at the start of the 2019/20 season

After many years as Chair Steve intends to concentrate on the strategic plans for Imperial Fields which will ensure the long-term security of TMUFC and the TM UNITED Hub.  The Organisation is the centre of the local community creating opportunities for everyone in sport, health, education and leisure.  He remains as the major shareholder of Tooting and Mitcham Sports and Leisure Ltd who own the Club

In a statement Steve said:

My time as Chair of the Club has been a roller-coaster, with the highs of promotion and lows of relegation!  My proudest moments have to include creating opportunities for the young people of South London.  During my chairmanship young players have gone on to professional football clubs and many others have been given opportunities to find their place in the community.  The last couple of seasons have been my proudest and the potential of the Club has never been greater.  To be able to pass on the stewardship to Caroline is fantastic.  She has been involved with football throughout her career.  Her knowledge and experience will create even more opportunities for the Club and its community

Caroline responded

 

I am honoured to be joining Tooting and Mitcham FC as Chair and relish the opportunity to support the club in its pivotal role of developing players and providing a wide range of activities for the local community. 

7th August 2019

 

Steve Adkins is stepping down as Chair of TMUFC and will be replaced by Caroline McRoyall, formerly CEO of the Surrey FA at the start of the 2019/20 season

After many years as Chair Steve intends to concentrate on the strategic plans for Imperial Fields which will ensure the long-term security of TMUFC and the TM UNITED Hub.  The Organisation is the centre of the local community creating opportunities for everyone in sport, health, education and leisure.  He remains as the major shareholder of Tooting and Mitcham Sports and Leisure Ltd who own the Club

In a statement Steve said:

 

My time as Chair of the Club has been a roller-coaster, with the highs of promotion and lows of relegation!  My proudest moments have to include creating opportunities for the young people of South London.  During my chairmanship young players have gone on to professional football clubs and many others have been given opportunities to find their place in the community.  The last couple of seasons have been my proudest and the potential of the Club has never been greater.  To be able to pass on the stewardship to Caroline is fantastic.  She has been involved with football throughout her career.  Her knowledge and experience will create even more opportunities for the Club and its community

Caroline responded

 

I am honoured to be joining Tooting and Mitcham FC as Chair and relish the opportunity to support the club in its pivotal role of developing players and providing a wide range of activities for the local community.