Di Paola busy preparing as EP look to defend title

East Preston manager Dom Di Paola
East Preston manager Dom Di Paola

DOMINIC Di Paola is already busy planning for next season when his East Preston Football Club side will look to defend their County League title.

EP won the County League title for the first time in their history last season but the club were unable to go up into the Ryman League as their Lashmar ground failed its ground grading inspection.

Manager Di Paola has committed his future to the club and said: “I’m staying and we should retain all of the squad as well, apart from maybe Joel Harding (goalkeeper), who might be retiring.

“There’s a couple I haven’t spoken to yet either but the lads are all up for it and everyone is up for staying and that gives us a good base.

“We might need a new keeper and potentially one more midfielder but we should have a strong squad again.”

On hopes of moving up into the Ryman League in the future, Di Paola said: “We’re reliant on the club to get all of the work done and then we’ll see what happens. On the football side, we’ll just go out and try to do as well as we can.

“It’s going to be a tough division as Eastbourne Town are coming down from the Ryman League, and Horsham YMCA and Littlehampton will be up there again as well.

“Pagham could also be strong and Loxwood and Broadbridge Heath might come up from Division 2 and surprise people.”