sports gazette

Jorell Johnson: Kings Langley gave me the love for football back

Published: 7 Jun 2017

Former Watford academy graduate Jorell Johnson believes non-league side Kings Langley have rekindled his interest in football.

The Evo-Stik Southern Premier League side survived relegation on the final day following a dramatic 1-0 win over Cirencester Town after three successive promotions got them to where they are today.

Johnson, who joined the club in August 2016, said that he enjoyed the final day drama.

“If I’m being honest that’s the way I wanted it to happen, I’d rather it have happened that way than be safe with 10 games to go,” said the Kings Langley vice-captain.

The Hertfordshire side went unbeaten in their last six games, including winning their final two, to stay up on goal difference.

Their penultimate game of the campaign saw them come up against former managers Paul Hughes and Ritchie Hanlon, who had left Kings Langley earlier in the season to take over at Hayes & Yeading.

Johnson continued: “The excitement of it all was unbelievable.

“Even the Hayes game, that felt like another cup final - it was like two cup finals we had.”

Kings Langley announced via Twitter recently that Johnson had signed a new two-year contract with the club.

During his time at Watford, he spent time on loan at local sides Hemel Hempstead and St Albans but has admitted that staying at Kings Langley was definitely the right choice.

“It was always something I wanted to do," he said.

“The club’s given me the love for football back, it felt only right that I give them something back.”

To top off a great first year at the club, the defender received the Player of the Season award from manager Paul Hobbs.

“It’s a great, great achievement for me.

“Hobbsy came in half-way through the season and he had his ideas on players already.

"He didn’t really know me so to get that accolade from him was special.”

Surviving relegation is another chapter in the Kings Langley journey which saw them complete three successive seasons, climbing from non-league obscurity to playing against sides with almost ten times the fanbase.

What comes next for Kings Langley remains to be seen, but Johnson believes they have the ability the secure another unlikely promotion.

“It’s the start of the season, anything can happen," he said.

“Look at Leicester, they survived and then next year they won the league but I think we just have to be modest, we done well to stay up.”

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