12:17pm Monday 2nd July 2012
By James Colasanti
ASHLEY Miller says Canvey Island should be aiming to win the Ryman Premier title after joining the club from island rivals Concord Rangers.
The highly-rated 22-year-old right-back signed for the Gulls at the weekend after nearly three seasons with the Beachboys.
He said he considered quitting the game last season, but has now decided he wants a new challenge with the Gulls.
“I spoke to Concord at the end of last season and made them aware I wanted to leave,” he said.
“At the time I was thinking about giving up football altogether. But I spoke to friends both in and out of the game, and they said that would be a mistake.
“Canvey showed interest in me last season but I said I wanted to stay at Concord, at least to the end of the season.
“But we fell away at the end after we had been on a good run, so I felt I needed a new challenge.
“I don’t view this as a move to a rival club. I would not disrespect Concord like that.
“I made this move for footballing reasons and I hope the people at Concord will see that I did a good job there.”
Miller said he now expects some “banter” from Concord supporters when they face Canvey in the league, but that he hopes it is good natured.
He said one of the things that attracted him to Park Lane was the thought of lining up alongside centre backs John Easterford and Steve Sheehan, and left back Ashley Dumas, in what has the makings of a fine defence.
“When I spoke to Canvey they said they needed a right back like myself,” he explained.
“And with the players we’ve got, I hope we can do well.
“It’s a new challenge for me and I just can’t wait for the season to get started now.
“And given how Canvey finished last year, I think if we get a good pre-season and a good start then we can hopefully win the league.
“I think if we are going for the league then the worst we’ll end up is in the play-offs. And that is the best way to approach it.”
Miller, a former West Ham academy player, is a replacement at right back for Michael Alaile, who left Canvey to join fellow Ryman Premier side Margate last month.
Alaile himself joined Canvey after a spell with Concord, as did striker Danny Heale.
Those to go the other way in recent seasons include young striker Ellis Skidmore and winger Antonio Gonnella, who both had brief spells at the Aspect Arena.
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