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© Chris Byrne 2010


There were not too many changes in personnel as the new season opened, though Richard Peirson’s ‘taking a break from the game’ was seen as quite a blow by Paul Lee. However Mickey Lewis’ period of coaching through the summer in the USA brought in two new faces at the start of the season with the arrival of two promising youngsters: goalkeeper Stuart Nelson and striker Stuart Riddle. Both had trials at league clubs in the first few weeks of the new season – Nelson at Bristol Rovers and Riddle at Darlington – and though Riddle quickly moved on to Conference football, Nelson remained at Court Place Farm to prove to be a great replacement for the departed Alan Foster, before moving into league football the following season and spending several terms at Brentford and then Leyton Orient. The arrival of striker Jon Mitchell from Thame proved to be a boost, though, and he was quickly amongst the goals, notching up 13 before the end of October.
League results were variable over the first half of the season and the team had picked up only 22 points from twenty games by the end of December.
After a 2-2 draw at Sussex League Redhill in the Preliminary Round of the FA Cup, a Mitchell hat-trick ensured a comfortable win in the replay, and he scored again as Leatherhead were beaten in the next round. City had not won so far on their travels during the season, but a fine 4-0 win at Windsor & Eton a fortnight later had the Cup hopes of supporters lifted again, though the hopes were dashed as a long trek to Devon in the Third Qualifying Round ended in a 1-3 defeat by a Tiverton Town side whose cup reputation was growing steadily, and who would reach the First Round again this season, before losing to Cardiff City.


The team fell at the first hurdle in the FA Trophy when a Bashley side, rapidly establishing themselves in senior football, won 4-2 at Court Place Farm, and there was also a quick exit from the League Cup as a young side, containing five teenagers, produced plenty of chances but lacked the finishing touch and went down 0-4 to an experienced Bishops Stortford side.
League results were good through February and March when twenty points were picked up, but form stuttered again over the final weeks of the season and the team finished in mid-table again.
Revenge for the previous year’s Senior Cup defeat was obtained as a Kelvin McIntosh goal was just sufficient to give City a win at Banbury, but they fell 0-2 to North Leigh, having an excellent season and on their way to the Hellenic Championship, at the semi-final stage in a game that saw plenty of chances at both ends.
The Reserves had struggled throughout the season with an unsettled side and suffered some hefty defeats, crashing 10-0 at Metropolitan Police, and were relegated from the Premier Division of the Suburban League at the end of the season.

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