Former US Portsmouth captain Tom Jeffes on why he turned down Moneyfields to sign for Wessex League rivals Horndean

Tom Jeffes is targeting a second Wessex League Premier Division title after joining the influx of new faces at Horndean.

By Simon Carter
Wednesday, 22nd June 2022, 8:39 am
Updated Wednesday, 22nd June 2022, 8:39 am

The centre half turned down the chance to be reunited with a lot of his former US Portsmouth colleagues at Moneyfields in favour of an ‘exciting’ challenge at Five Heads Park.

Jeffes is among the swathe of new signings made by Deans boss Michael Birmingham as he attempts to mastermind a sustained push for Southern League football.

Among the other new faces are Baffins quintet Lee Molyneaux, Tommy Scutt, Rudi Blankson, Ethan Gee and Tommy Patterson.

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Tom Jeffes, left, has joined Horndean.

Having first won the Wessex with Poole Town in 2010/11, Jeffes is now eager for a repeat.

‘Birmy (Birmingham) has been building a really exciting project,’ he told The News.

‘I’ve always said it needed something special for me to come away from US, and this is it.

‘The aim is to have a real go at it this year - we’ll be there or thereabouts in my opinion.

‘I could have gone to a couple of places, but I felt this (Horndean) was particularly exciting.

‘I’m not shy of a challenge and I’ve always played football to win games, leagues, trophies. Part of the excitement for me is I want to win the league again. I’ve won it before and I want to win it again.

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‘Moneyfields, I wouldn’t say it was the easy option, but I know virtually everyone there. I’ve got a lot of respect for the people there - some of the experiences I had with them (at US) are among the best I’ve had in football.

‘I don’t know a lot of the Horndean lads personally, but I just felt this was the right move at the right time.’

Jeffes was one of the first names on the US team sheet when fit, but he knows that might not be the case at Horndean.

While Moneys boss Glenn Turnbull prefers to play with three centre halves, Birmingham generally deploys two. And Jeffes will have stiff competition from Lee Molyneaux - ‘he’s been there and done it’ - Chad Field and Luke Dempsey.

He will also have to bide his time, as he misses the first two games of the 2022/23 Wessex League campaign - including a mouthwatering opening day clash with Moneyfields - through suspension.

That’s a result of the ban he was given for a third dismissal in US colours at the back end of last season.

Jeffes added: ‘There’s plenty of goals in the squad, plenty of attacking flair, which is brilliant if you’re a defender.

‘But I think Birmy wanted to tighten things up at the back, which is why he’s brought in a couple of centre halves with a bit of experience.

‘He’s had a look at everything, and decided he wanted more competition for places.

You have to be excited when you look at the quality of player around you in training.’