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Former O’s defender Stimson is backing Edinburgh’s men to win double for his old club

PUBLISHED: 15:00 28 March 2019

Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson is all smiles (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Hornchurch manager Mark Stimson is all smiles (pic Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Former Leyton Orient defender Mark Stimson is backing his old club to secure the double by winning the National League and FA Trophy this term.

O's Marvin Ekpiteta and Telford's Daniel Udoh (pic Simon O'Connor)O's Marvin Ekpiteta and Telford's Daniel Udoh (pic Simon O'Connor)

The O’s have already bagged a spot in the FA Trophy final where they will face AFC Fylde at Wembley Stadium on May 19.

The Brisbane Road outfit are also in control of their own destiny in the league as they have games in hand on all of their title rivals heading into the final stretch of games.

Current Hornchurch manager Stimson, who had two stints at Orient, is confident they can achieve success in both.

“It’s a fantastic position they’ve put themselves in, knowing Justin as well,” he said.

O's Josh Coulson scores the winning goal and celebrates (pic Simon O'Connor)O's Josh Coulson scores the winning goal and celebrates (pic Simon O'Connor)

“The squad he has got this year has got great experience, they’ve got a couple of young players up front that are flying, and they’ve done well to keep them to be honest. It’s in their hands now as they say and fingers crossed they can do both.

“I’m sure if you asked him which one he wants it’s to get back into the Football League and I’d be the same, but the Trophy final, especially being at Wembley as well is great.”

The 51-year-old won the FA Trophy in three consecutive seasons in 2005, 2006 and 2007 with Grays Athletic and Stevenage Borough.

“In non-league, it’s the biggest competition. I’ve done it three times – twice with Grays and once with Stevenage,” added Stimson.

“They were at different venues, Villa Park, Upton Park and then the first-ever game at the new Wembley with Stevenage.

“For me they were great experiences and you never forget those times.

“Playing at different venues was quite special as well rather than going back to the same place.

“Then again you could never get bored of the new Wembley as it is an amazing facility and being a winner there is something you’d never forget.”

Stimson made his last league appearance for Orient in 1999 when they lost 1-0 to Scunthorpe United in the third division play-off final.

“My last-ever league game of football was for Orient and it was a play-off final, we actually lost unfortunately and it was at the old Wembley,” he said.

“I’ve got fond memories of Orient, it’s a fantastic football club, and I’m sure they’ll take a good support and I wish them all the best.

“I wish Justin and all the players, staff and supporters well, everything crossed for them.”

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