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  1. At the start of the year everything looked rosy at the club; 5th in the Premier, scoring plenty of goals and hardly conceding any at the other end.

                 However, 2016/17 has so far been the "difficult second season" that so many clubs experience after they exceed all expectations the previous season. 

                The injury to Jamie Griffiths in pre-season was obviously a big turning point. People will say one man shouldn't make that much difference in a team sport. However, can you imagine Wales without Gareth Bale or the England cricket team without Joe Root?

                 Sometimes a player is so influential to a team that they are simply irreplaceable. In Griff's case we are talking about arguably the best player ever to represent the club, so he is obviously sorely missed.

                At times this season we've just had to admit we've been beaten by the better side. In other matches we've played good football but haven't always got what we deserved.

                The consistency has been lacking which means it's felt like one step forward, two steps backwards at times, but it's not through lack of effort.

                From a supporter's point of view, we've been pretty spoilt over the last couple of seasons (43 league wins in 14/15 and 15/16 combined). However, football is all about ups and downs and we are fortunate to have a loyal group of supporters who are always there through the tough times as well.

                Over the coming months it's clearly going to be a scrap to stay in the Premier. The home matches against sides around us in the bottom half (Hadleigh, Swaffham, Clacton, Walsham etc) look likely to be the key fixtures and will probably decide our fate.

    The Reserves' difficulties in 2016 have been well documented. Hopefully given time the recently appointed managers Ray Manser and Stuart Malseed can turn things around. It is a difficult job but if you look at the Reserves setup at other similar sized clubs it is not impossible to get things right. 

                Off the pitch in 2016, we welcomed a new director, Peter Turner, who has been an excellent addition behind the scenes since joining the club in August.

                Thank you as always to First Team kit sponsor the Melford Valley. New sponsors like Nethergate Brewery and Nicholas King Homes and others have also come forward in 2016 for which we are very grateful.  Player sponsorship has been well supported again this year with 17 players sponsored.

                 Groundsman Ivan Whitehart is in his fourth season with the club and we continue to regularly receive praise for the excellent job he does looking after the pitch. Well done to Ivan.  

    All that remains to be said is to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. AC

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