At THIS time of year, getting together with those you know very well is pretty natural.
That extends to the football pitch, too, where the fixtures computer always puts local rivals up against each other, so that fans and players do not have to travel too far. For Bognor, it tends to throw them together with Havant and Waterlooville – a side who may be only 17 miles away in terms of distance, but in some aspects are many moons apart.
For instance, the Hampshire side, nicknamed the Hawks, do not think twice about spending big in a bid to take them back to National League level. It is that financial backing which means they are currently second in National South.
Bognor, meanwhile, are second-bottom – despite getting promoted from the Isthmian Premier along with their near neighbours last term. But Rocks boss Jack Pearce says this familiarity, which includes playing them twice in less than seven days, ‘doesn’t change anything’. He said: “We’ve got to play them twice a season. We’ll prepare as we always do.
“They have the best away record in the league. It will be a tremendous test for us. We will have to be careful about how and when we attack as they are very good at the counter.”