UP THE TOWN! ๐Ÿ† PROMOTED TO STEP 4 AS INVINCIBLE CHAMPIONS - P38 W35 D3 L0 ๐Ÿ†

Club, First Team

09 May 2024

Farnham Town management team signs on for 2024/25

As if there was ever any doubt, Farnham Town are delighted to confirm that First Team Manager, Paul Johnson, and Assistant Manager, Jimmy Hibburt, will be back with the Club for the 2024/25 season.

In addition, First Team Coach Paul Barry, Head of Fitness and Nutrition David Givens, Goalkeeping Coach Matt Lovett and Club Physio Nathan Kimsing will continue to make up the backroom team next season.

After they arrived at the Club back in November 2022, Johno & Jimmy had to pick up the pieces of a squad that was in flux and a Club that needed stability and a firm hand in the dugout.

Over the next few weeks and months, moving into 2023, they had revived the dressing room culture and started to build the foundations of a team that was tough to beat and enjoyable to watch. Farnham Town finished the season on a 10-game unbeaten run in the league, with just one defeat in their last 15 games across all competitions, capped off by a thrilling 3-2 extra-time Southern Combination Cup Final win over Balham in front of over 1,100 fans at The Memorial Ground.

During the summer, we also welcomed experienced coaches Paul Barry and David Givens to the fold in their respective roles in the First Team setup as we continued our preparation for the season ahead. They also joined long-time Physio, Nathan Kimsing, in the home dugout at The Memorial Ground, and later in the campaign, Matt Lovett joined the group as a specialist Goalkeeping Coach.

The remit for the 2023/24 season was made clear by the Club, not just internally but also publicly – promotion to Step 4 was the target. Johno & Jimmy went out and assembled a squad that would deliver on that target, but little did we know just how emphatically they would deliver on it.

Over the course of the 2023/24 league campaign, Farnham Town would not lose a single league game, winning 35 of their 38 games, and drawing the other three. The league title and promotion to Step 4 was secured with nine games to spare, which in itself is a remarkable achievement.

Along the way, the team set a new British football record of 25 successive wins to start a league campaign, and would only find themselves trailing in one of their 38 league fixtures – the away trip to Jersey Bulls on March 23rd when the Town went 2-0 down in the first half and battled back to secure a 2-2 draw and the point we needed to be crowned champions.

Some other mind-boggling stats from our record-breaking promotion campaign:

  • Farnham Town had a points-per-game (PPG) of 2.84 this season, which sets the record for the best PPG mark in the history of the Combined Counties League, topping the record set by AFC Wimbledon in 2002/03 (2.83)
  • We scored 178 goals this season, an average of 3.3 per game, conceding just 34 – 0.64 per game. Our net goal difference was +134
  • Across our 54 games, we kept 31 clean sheets – 57% of games
  • 30 of our 47 wins this season were wins to nil – 63.83%
  • 27 of our 47 wins were won by 3+ goal margins – 57.45%
  • We equalled club-record runs in the FA Cup (Second Qualifying Round) and FA Vase (Fourth Round Proper)
  • Across all 54 games we played (4,860 minutes of football), Farnham Town were only trailing for a total of 218 minutes (4.45% of the time)
  • โ 48 league games unbeaten dating back to last season; 439 days and counting since the last league defeat
  • โ This management team still have never lost an away league game; 565 days since we last lost an away league game
  • Reached the Surrey Senior Cup Final for the first time in Club history

As we prepare for our first-ever campaign at Step 4, we’re thrilled to have Johno, Jimmy and the team still with the Club for the foreseeable future as we look to continue to push on and develop as a Club both on and off the field.

Manager Paul Johnson said: “Over the last 18 months, this Club has gone from strength to strength and is starting to realise its potential. This season we had a clear objective of getting promoted and we were able to deliver on that. Next season is going to be a step up in quality and a new challenge for a lot of the boys, but we’re looking forward to tackling it head-on and pushing forward as a Club.

“The committee and directors behind the scenes have been great in giving us the tools and resources to build the team we want, and we have big plans for next season and beyond that to build a competitive team that can make some noise at Step 4. We’re still quite early in our journey here, everyone at the Club has been so supportive, the fans have been incredible in getting behind the team home and away, and we’re looking forward to making more history next season.”

Director Harry Hugo said: “What Johno and Jimmy have delivered here at Farnham Town is nothing short of spectacular. They’ve turned the Club around and carried us to new heights, they’ve galvanised the town resulting in all-time highs in attendance, and most importantly, they’re just great blokes to spend time with and work alongside.

“And it’s not just Johno and Jimmy staying put, we’re pleased that the entire backroom staff are with us next season. The work Paul Barry does with the squad in terms of matchday preparation is superb, and Givvo [David Givens] has been invaluable in all areas relating to fitness and recovery. Physio Nathan has been with the Club for years and is a popular face in the Clubhouse after games, he’s part of the furniture here! Lastly, Matt Lovett has done great work with Pat Nash this season and has contributed to our impeccable defensive record.

“This was a special season, one that very few Clubs will ever enjoy – going unbeaten for an entire league season. This management team will go down in the history books as the team that took Farnham Town to Step 4 for the first time. The story isn’t finished yet as we look to reach new heights next season and beyond, and everyone at the Club is thrilled that Johno, Jimmy, Paul, Givvo, Matt and Nathan are here to stay.”

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