The Recreation Ground, Bridge Road,
Grays, Essex, RM17 6BZ
Clubhouse: (01375) 377753
General enquiries: (01375) 391649
Directions to the ground

Matches

Season 2003-4 in focus

Grays Athletic Season 2003-4
Grays Athletic Squad - August 2003

Grays announced during the close season that a large proportion of the playing and management staff were to become full-time professionals. The Club also focussed on younger players to fill out a squad that retained just 7 members of the previous season's squad.

The move paid off, as Blues notched up convincing victories, most memorably beating St. Albans 9-1 at home in October.

Blues went on to become the only Club at senior non-league level to remain unbeaten at home in the league season - a remarkable achievement with such a young squad. Grays finished sixth in the league with 81 points - the Club's highest points tally in the Premier - easily qualifying for the newly expanded Nationwide Conference South.

Unfortunately Grays couldn't replicate league form in many of the Cup competitions, bowing out of both the FA Trophy and the Bryco Cup with uncharacteristic defeats. Meanwhile Blues fell at the first in the Essex Senior Cup against Braintree, and conceded an abandoned Essex Thameside Trophy tie in order to avoid further punishment to the players on a sub-standard pitch.

Nevertheless Blues qualified for the First Round Proper of the FA Cup for the 5th time in the Club's history, making it into the hat for the third time in 5 years after a dramatic victory against Margate on penalties.

A home tie against last season's Ryman Premier champions Aldershot saw 1500 people at the Rec watch a competitive game in which the Conference side eventually found a way to unpick the Grays defence with a 2-1 victory.

Some of the real highlights of the season came through Grays' new signings. The ability of the Blues' management team to unearth young players with bags of talent and commitment began to show with signings such as Dean Bradshaw, Daniel Lunan and Ade Olayinka. New boy Stuart Thurgood won both the Supporters' and Players' Player of the Year for his terrier-like displays in midfield, while young hot shot striker Freddie Eastwood, who signed from West Ham during the summer, won Grays' Golden Boot after netting 37 league and cup goals.

The season finished with an announcement by the Board that Grays will be staying at the Recreation Ground for the foreseeable future.

With Council and grant funding approval required for the redevelopment of the ground, Season 2004-5 promises to be another of high drama and - we hope - a further step up the non-league ladder.

Results and match reports

Jul 15 Grays Athletic 1 Leyton Orient 3 (Home - Friendly)

Jul 19 Grays Athletic 0 Colchester United 5 (Home - Friendly)

Jul 22 Grays Athletic 0 Wingate & Finchley 1 (Away - Friendly)

Jul 26 Grays Athletic 2 Weston-Super-Mare 3 (Away - Friendly)

Jul 31 Grays Athletic 2 Aveley 0 (Home - Friendly)

Aug 2 Grays Athletic 1 Fisher Athletic 1 (Home - Friendly)

Aug 5 Grays Athletic 0 Peterborough United 2 (Home - Friendly)

Aug 9 Grays Athletic 0 Bromley 0 (Away - Friendly)

Aug 16 Grays Athletic 1 Bedford Town 1 (Home)

Aug 19 Grays Athletic 5 Braintree Town 0 (Away)

Aug 23 Grays Athletic 0 Sutton United 1 (Away)

Aug 25 Grays Athletic 2 Northwood 1 (Home)

Aug 30 Grays Athletic 0 Hornchurch 2 (Away)

Sep 2 Grays Athletic 3 Bishop's Stortford 1 (Home)

Sep 6 Kingstonian 3 Grays Athletic 1 (Away)

Sep 9 Grays Athletic 0 Carshalton Athletic 0 (Home)

Sep 13 Grays Athletic 2 Hitchin Town 0 (Home)

Sep 16 Grays Athletic 1 Bognor Regis 2 (Away)

Sep 20 Grays Athletic 3 Aylesbury United 0 (Away)

Sep 23 Grays Athletic 1 Kettering Town 1 (Home)

Sep 27 Grays Athletic 4 St. Albans 2 (2nd Qualifying Round FA Cup) Away

Oct 4 Grays Athletic 4 Heybridge Swifts 0 (Home)

Oct 7 Grays Athletic 2 Basingstoke Town 0 (Away)

Oct 11 Grays Athletic 3 Hendon 0 (Home) - 3rd Qualifying Round

Oct 18 Grays Athletic 0 vs Ford 3 (Away)

Oct 21 Grays Athletic 9 St. Albans 1 (Home)

Oct 25 Grays Athletic 3 Margate 3 (Home - 4th Qualifying Round FA Cup)

Oct 28 Grays Athletic 3 Margate 3 aet - Grays win 3-1 on penalties (Away - 4th Qualifying Round FA Cup)

Nov 1 Grays Athletic 2 Fisher Athletic 2 (Home - FA Trophy 1st Round))

Nov 3 Fisher Athletic 0 Grays Athletic 3 (Away - FA Trophy 1st Round Replay)

Nov 8 Grays Athletic 1 Aldershot Town 2 (FA Cup 1st Round Proper)

Nov 11 Grays Athletic 0 Braintree Town 1 (Essex Senior Cup 3rd Round)

Nov 15 Grays Athletic 2 Harrow Borough 2 (Home)

Nov 18 Grays Athletic 2 Whyteleafe 0 (Away - League Cup)

Nov 22 Grays Athletic 1 Hayes 1 (Away)

Nov 29 Grays Athletic 2 Aylesbury United 2 (Away - FA Trophy 2nd Round)

Dec 2 Grays Athletic 0 Aylesbury United 1 (Home - FA Trophy 2nd Round Replay)

Dec 6 Grays Athletic 1 Billericay Town 1 (Home)

Dec 13 Bedford Town 0 Grays Athletic 4 (Away)

Dec 16 Grays Athletic 5 Bowers United 0 (Home - Thameside Trophy)

Dec 20 Grays Athletic 1 Braintree Town 1 (Home)

Dec 27 Thurrock 1 Grays Athletic 1 (Abandoned at half time due to floodlight failure)

Jan 1 Grays Athletic 3 Sutton United 2 (Home)

Jan 3 Grays Athletic 1 Egham 0 (Home - Bryco Cup)

Jan 10 Grays Athletic 2 Carshalton Athletic 0 (Away)

Jan 17 Grays Athletic 1 Kingstonian 0 (Home)

Jan 20 Grays Athletic 1 Hendon 0 (Home)

Jan 24 Grays Athletic 0 Hitchin Town 1(Away)

Jan 31 Grays Athletic 6 Bognor Regis Town 0

Feb 3 Dunstable Town 1 Grays Athletic 0 (Away - Bryco Cup 4th Round)

Feb 7 Grays Athletic 0 Hendon 1 (Away)

Feb 10 Grays Athletic 1 Canvey Island 1

Feb 14 Grays Athletic 2 Ford United 0 (Home)

Feb 17 Maidenhead United 1 Grays Athletic 4 (Away)

Feb 21 Grays Athletic 0 Harrow Borough 0 (Away)

Feb 26 East Thurrock United 0 Grays Athletic 0 (Abandoned due to dangerous conditions - Essex Thameside Trophy)

Mar 2 St. Albans City 0 Grays Athletic 3

Mar 6 Kettering Town 0 Grays Athletic 0

Mar 9 Canvey Island 1 Grays Athletic 1

Mar 13 Grays Athletic 2 Aylesbury United 1

Mar 16 Thurrock 2 Grays Athletic 0

Mar 20 Heybridge Swifts 3 Grays Athletic 0

Mar 27 Grays Athletic 3 Basingstoke Town 1

Apr 3 Grays Athletic 0 Hornchurch 0 (Home)

Apr 6 Grays Athletic 1 Maidenhead United 1 (Home)

Apr 10 Grays Athletic 1 Northwood 1 (Away)

Apr 12 Grays Athletic 1 Thurrock 1 (Home)

Apr 17 Bishop's Stortford 1 Grays Athletic 2 (Away)

Apr 24 Billericay 0 Grays Athletic 1

May 1 Grays Athletic 4 Hayes 0