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What the Shots boys said

The fantastic scenes at Gander Green Lane were reflected after the match by players and officials who expressed their sheer delight at Aldershot Town's Ryman Championship.

The fantastic scenes at Gander Green Lane were reflected after the match by players and officials who expressed their sheer delight at Aldershot Town's Ryman Championship.

Here are just a select few words from some of the men who help to make the 2002/03 season one to remember.

"I'm ecstatic and it's been a long time coming. We have been nearly men over the last few years and there have been lots of ups and downs but finally we are there. I believe that we can really achieve something as a football club.

Assistant boss Stuart Cash

"There aren't many clubs you can say will be able to push on and go forward but we can be a massive club now. We have everything right at the club, with the fantastic support and if we can get it right for the Conference next year, we can go a long way and get back into the football league."


"I think that there was a lot of belief in our changing room this year. Belief comes from the top and I think that with the current gaffer that we have got here — and with no disrespect to anyone else — he gives the players so much confidence and that is what we build from.


"We won the title this year at Basingstoke and Kingstonian. Yes, the Canvey result was great but if you look at the Basingstoke result away that was a huge win for us and it probably made people look up and say ‘yeah, maybe they are going to win it.' Then we went to Kingstonian, and we had a tough run-in this year and that was always going to be difficult. But Basingstoke away and the trip to Kingsmeadow probably won us the league."


"It's a fantastic achievement. I am genuinely pleased for all the fans and everybody that is involved in the club.

We have all worked hard and now we are finally there. It is a big relief!

Fans' favourite Dean Hooper

"We looked very good in pre-season and the squad was generally good enough apart from a few additions like Ray Warburton and Karl Ready.


I have done this before with Kingstonian and like the Conference it is a difficult league to get out of.

We have adapted well and a lot of people have said that we haven't been particularly pretty but we have got the results and got clean sheets. If you are strong at the back, then you will get out of this division — which we have.


"It's been a long season but we were confident that if we got to Christmas and we were there or thereabouts, then we would push on from there —and we have done.

Local hero Lee Holsgrove

"There was a good feeling from the start of the season. The belief was always there in the changing room and despite not playing well all the time, we were always able to nick points here and there.


"I have grown up with the club. I was here as a district player and my older brother played whilst I would go down and train with them so I know the club inside out.

However, you must give credit to the lads that came in because it was hard for all the players to come in and gel together. But we kept going and here we are now as champions.


"Our workrate has been absolutely top-notch, when you look at all the best sides — even in the world — if you work hard, you're doing well and if we do that next season, we'll do OK.


"It has been a slog getting out of this league but that is no excuse. People do try that harder against us and sometimes you end up getting dragged down to mediocrity. It's an awful situation to be in because you know that you are better players and a better team.

Midfield work-horse Nick Roddis

"People sometimes forget that a lot of this team has only been together for six or seven months. We've not played fantastic but I am sure that there are other Aldershot sides that have played far more attractive football but who wouldn't have been as successful.



Charlotte Neal
Chief Reporter (Aldershot)
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Farnborough Reporter
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