It’s been another thrilling season of local non-league football action and The Gazette are now looking to shine the spotlight on our stars of 2018/19.
With the help of Gazette readers, they want to assemble their very own dream team featuring the cream of north Essex talent.
Their non-league team of the year will feature players from any of the senior sides they cover, from National League Braintree Town through to the Thurlow Nunn and Essex Senior Leagues.
Iron players could get the nod or will their headline-grabbers come from Bostik League quartet Brightlingsea Regent, Heybridge Swifts, Maldon and Tiptree or Coggeshall Town?
There have also been some eye-catching performances from step five players, from Thurlow Nunn League premier division pair FC Clacton and Brantham Athletic and our very own Stanway Rovers, of the Essex Senior League.
Voting for players from Thurlow Nunn League first division south – talismen from Halstead Town, Wivenhoe Town, Harwich and Parkeston, Little Oakley, Holland FC, Coggeshall United, Brightlingsea Regent Reserves or Braintree Town Reserves is also allowed.
First they need your nominations, which can be sent to their sports team via their individual Twitter handles – Matt Plummer (@MattPlummer4), Simon Spurgeon (@SimonSpurgeon) and Jonathan Waldron (@JonWaldron1). Alternatively, drop them an email via firstname.lastname@example.org
Make it clear whether you’re nominating a manager, goalkeeper, full-back, centre-back, winger, midfielder or striker.
When all the names are in, they’ll narrow it down to a shortlist of five for each category and readers will have the chance to back their favourites by voting on the Gazette website (gazette-news.co.uk/sport).
Then they’ll be close to reaching their all-star non-league XI.
“It’s been another very exciting season,” said sports reporter Matt Plummer.
“Non-league football has a strong following in this part of the world, players give everything for the cause and supporters are just as passionate as those of big professional clubs.
“As a newspaper, it’s something we feel very strongly about and in terms of talent, excitement and raw emotion, it’s a breath of fresh air. A real spectacle.
“That’s why we want to honour and reward this year’s star players – those who have shone for their respective teams – and we can’t wait to see some of the names put forward by our readers.”