AFC Portchester boss Dave Carter fields six new signings – including four more from former club Moneyfields
AFC Portchester handed starts to six new signings in their final Hampshire Senior Invitational Cup group 1 game at Hamble Club.
Former Moneyfields quartet Curtis Da Costa, Conor Bailey, Joe Briggs and Connor Hoare were joined by fellow new recruits Stan Bridgman and Bradey Norton in the Royals' 3-1 away victory.
Three of the debutants - Bridgman, Da Costa and Bailey - netted as the Royals maintained their 100 per cent record, topping group 1 with four wins to set up a home quarter-final meeting with Blackfield & Langley next Saturday.
But, more importantly, boss Dave Carter has used the competition to integrate a number of new additions into his squad.
Prior to the Hamble trip, Carter had already signed seven players from previous club Moneyfields - Jake Hallett, Sam Pearce, Marley Ridge, George Barker, Lamin Jatta, Tom Dinsmore and Lewis Fennemore.
Bailey, Da Costa, Hoare and Briggs have now made their debuts, and Carter confirmed Tyler Giddings, Jake Raine and Kieron Roberts have also swapped Dover Road for The Crest Finance Stadium.
With all those added to Bridgman and Norton - both featuring for the first time against Hamble - Carter is pleased with his work so far.
He said: 'It was a good win on Saturday with six debutants.
‘Everyone did well. It was quite good we got them in because we lost George Barker and Marley Ridge through injury, Lewis Fennemore was unavailable, Rambo (Steve Ramsey) and Craig Hardy were on a charity bike ride … we would have been really short otherwise.
‘We’ve signed Kieran Roberts as well but he got injured last Tuesday.
‘It’s getting a squad of 22 together for pre-season and finding our best way out of that.
‘This competition is all about finding out what we’ve got, finding out what we need, and we’ve used it as a task force.'
Norton is no stranger to Portchester, having made five appearances under Mick Catlin in 2019/20. He was previously in the Havant & Waterlooville academy, where he had a loan spell at Gosport Borough, and has also played Wessex League football for Fareham.
Mdfielder Bridgman was in the Pompey Academy set-up prior to his release last summer.
Carter, meanwhile, is hoping to have some of the players who were unable to play against Hamble back for the last-eight tie with Blackfield.
Striker Roberts could be in line to make his first Royals appearance.
Carter said: 'Things step up now, Blackfield are a good side, we’ll need to step our game up and I’m hoping to have Kieron Roberts back.
'He’s a good striker with good pedigree, played in the Southern Prem.
‘Lamin Jatta is the only striker available at the club with Lee Wort unavailable through work at the moment.'