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Haywards Heath College wins first league title

8 April 2022

Haywards Heath College is celebrating after its men’s football side claimed the league title in only their first season.

The team won the Under 19s Sussex Schools Mid Sussex league following a dramatic 1-1 draw with Varndean. 

The much-depleted side, missing 11 players to injury, illness or academic commitments, went 1-0 down before captain – and goalkeeper – Dylan Hughes scored with just minutes left on the clock! 

Chris Day, lead football coach for the Haywards Heath College football academy, said: “We are over the moon! It has been a really good season, especially considering it is the first ‘proper’ year of the Football Academy at the college. 

“We went into the match at Varndean knowing we needed to draw, and the team rose to the challenge. It wasn’t an easy match, but they battled through and came away with the result we needed to secure the title.” 

It means the side remained unbeaten in the league throughout the season – a phenomenal achievement for the league new boys and one Chris attributes to the commitment the team have shown in training. 

He said: “We have placed a huge emphasis on development and a value driven approach to the sport, with respect, commitment and teamwork embedded at every step. 

“The players have responded well to this, demonstrating those attributes week in, week out and demonstrating great commitment to the team. 

“We also set up a Futsal programme, which all our players take part in. This has accelerated their progress, along with taking part in small-sided tournaments and Futsal festivals which serve to help them finesse their skills, and their fitness.”

Photo: Anthony Lane