Midfielder Harvey signs up to boost Stoneylands club

Long Melford add fourth addition while Hadleigh United complete transfers
Long Melford add fourth addition while Hadleigh United complete transfers

Long Melford manager Jules Mumford believes he has pulled off a transfer coup by adding former Haverhill Rovers midfielder Joe Harvey.

The Villagers’ boss has described the 25-year-old box-to-box midfielder as a ‘very good player’.

He becomes Melford’s fourth signing of the summer, with Pete Whitwell, Chris McMahon and youngster Ross Waugh already confirmed.

Harvey was a member of the Haverhill side that came within one round of the FA Cup first round proper in 2006 and brings a wealth of Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division experience to a relatively young First Division squad.

The Stoneylands outfit suffered a 3-0 home defeat to FC Clacton on Tuesday night, meaning they have won just one of their last four friendlies, having also lost to Brightlingsea Regent 3-2 and drew 0-0 with Holland FC in their previous two fixtures ahead of travelling to West Wratting in their final warm-up match on Saturday (2pm).

Hadleigh United manager Stuart Crawford has completed his transfer dealings by making 22-year-old right-back Ryan Stafford, from Woodbridge Town, his fifth addition.

The son of former Sudbury Town and Colchester United defender Clive Stafford impressed in a trial and will fill the void left by the departed Ollie Brown.

“It is a good signing for us and he has settled in perfectly from where Ollie was, as an attacking right-back,” said Crawford, who has been delighted with his side’s pre-season form, concluding their friendlies with an impressive 3-1 victory over AFC Sudbury in the annual Hadleigh Charity Cup on Tuesday, which raised £195.50 for Diabetes UK and came after a 1-0 home win over a youthful Leyton Orient on Saturday thanks to Duane Wright’s penalty.

James Baker had given AFC the lead on Tuesday before two goals from Wright, one a penalty, and a volley from Mark Goldfinch.

Twenty-year-old forward Tom Cook grabbed a hat-trick for Halstead Town as they signed off their friendlies with a 6-1 success over Clapton FC on Tuesday — with Scott Kemp, Tom Barry and Jordan Palmer also on target — to make it seven consecutive victories in pre-season.

Manager Mark Benterman said: “Tom has been in and out of the team, but has proved he has a natural finishing ability.”

Cornard United recorded a 2-0 victory over Earls Colne and will take on Bures United tonight before a home friendly with Wivenhoe Town on Tuesday (7.45pm).

n The first-round draw for the Suffolk Premier Cup sees Hadleigh at home to Mildenhall Town on Tuesday, October 8 (7.45pm), while in the Suffolk Senior Cup, Cornard host Beccles Town, Long Melford travel to Achilles and AFC Sudbury Reserves host Leiston St Margaret’s, with all ties being played on Saturday, September 8 (2.15pm).