Longridge Town manager's tribute as keeper hangs up his gloves

It is the end of an era at Longridge Town after long-serving keeper Lee Dovey announced his retirement from football.

Monday, 18th October 2021, 4:45 pm

The 34-year-old joined Longridge almost six years ago and played a key role during the club’s rise into the North West Counties Football League’s top flight.

He won three trophies, including two championships, and a pair of promotions in his time at the Mike Riding Ground.

Town boss Lee Ashcroft told the club website: “Doves has been brilliant for us, a great lad and probably the best keeper in the league at his peak.

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Longridge Town keeper Lee Dovey has announced his retirement

“The club couldn’t have progressed as we have without him, that’s how important he has been for us.”

“We had a chat a couple of weeks ago but I fully understand his reasoning. He has a young family, a full-time job, and I am quite demanding, I suppose, in the commitment I expect from the players.

“He couldn’t have done any more for us. Hopefully he’ll be around on matchdays now and again, with his mum and dad who are season ticket holders.

“His photo adorns the clubhouse and dressing room walls, so he’ll be remembered very fondly by everyone here.”

Dovey added: “It’s been strange over the last couple of seasons, obviously, but I’ve loved it here.

“I’ve played with some great players – Tom Ince, George Melling, Richie Allen, Jay Hart, George Thomason and Matty Edgar to name just a few – but I’ve also made some great friends at Longridge both on and off the pitch.

“This club has given me some brilliant memories and I’ve really really enjoyed it, but time goes on and I’ve got to be fair to my family, and enjoy more time with them.

“Both Ashey and Kieran (Walmsley, assistant manager) know and understand how I feel, and how difficult a decision it was to make but I won’t be a stranger.

“I’ll be up here cheering the lads on when I can. It’s been like a second home to me but I’ve done my bit now and I’m looking forward to relaxing a bit more at weekends!”

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