The wait is over - Horsham YMCA, Broadbridge Heath, Loxwood and Alfold ready for new season

Horsham YMCAs Jack Ryder and Broadbridge Heaths George Cousins in action last season. Picture by Derek Martin Photography
Horsham YMCAs Jack Ryder and Broadbridge Heaths George Cousins in action last season. Picture by Derek Martin Photography

The SCFL Premier Division kicks off this Saturday with clubs dreaming of lifting the title and gaining promotion to the BetVictor South East come April 25 2020.

Last season saw Horsham YMCA finish runners-up to champions Chichester City, while Broadbridge Heath achieved their highest ever position and points tally as they finished sixth.

The appointment of Alex Walsh in October saw Loxwood comfortably stave off relegation despite the Magpies winning a solitary game in their opening 11 fixtures.

Alfold continued their remarkable rise through Sussex football by winning Division One at the first time of asking and sealing promotion to the highest level in the club’s history.

YM host Little Common in their season opener. Manager Peter Buckland revealed that the opening month of the season may prove tricky due to the number of first team injuries.

He said: “Our short-term objective for August is to not have a too disastrous start.

“Dave Brown has had an op for his ankle, Ash Dugdale has had an op and Luke Donaldson has a torn ligament which has been there for quite a while.

“Our goalie Aaron Jeal had his appendix removed two weeks ago, so he’s doubtful. If he was an outfield player he might stand a chance but I don’t think reaching and diving after your appendix has been ripped out is a good shout.”

READ MORE Horsham YMCA in for 'transitional season' as young guns take centre stage
Heath visit Langney Wanderers on Saturday and assistant boss Sam Chapman has predicted a stern test.

He added: “Langney improved significantly at the end of the season under Kenny McCreadie and gave us a tough game down there. “If they have continued to improve, it will need a good performance to get the win.”

READ MORE 'The possibilities are immense' for Broadbridge Heath at new home
Loxwood welcome Newhaven to Plaistow Road. Haven finished fourth in 2018/19 and Magpies manager Walsh is using their opener as a ‘gauge’ as to how far his side has come in his tenure.

He said: “I expect Newhaven to be strong and organised. Last year we got the win against them, so I’m sure they’ll want to try and turn us over.

“It’s a good opener for us. It’ll show us where we’re at because they were a top four side last year.

“It’s a good gauge of whether we’re up there with them or if we will have to improve as the season goes on.”

READ MORE Walsh vows Loxwood will 'finish as high as they can' next season
Alfold will begin life in the Premier Division with a trip to Peacehaven & Telscombe on Saturday.

On the game against Peacehaven joint manager Jack Munday said: “Normally opening games of the season are tight and low scoring although you do get the odd game that throws out silly scorelines.

“We hope to go away from home and hold a good account of ourselves”.

READ MORE Alfold joint boss Munday - 'Our aim is simply to stay in the division'