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Cureton not giving up hope of Football League return

By Sam Elliott

LEGENDARY Football League striker Jamie Cureton says he isn’t too ‘big time’ to be pulling on his well-travelled boots in the Southern League Central – but admits he doesn’t plan to stick around at Step 4 for too long.

Farnborough produced some shockwaves when they swooped to bring the veteran forward in towards the end of last week.

Cureton, who turns 41 at the end of August, has been without a club all summer but refuses to give up on another year of net-hitting in the professional game.

Relegated with Dagenham & Redbridge at the end of last season, he didn’t want to bring the curtain down on his illustrious career with that ringing in his ears.

In over 700 appearances in the Football League, Cureton scored more than 250 goals with no fewer than 13 clubs.

He wants more, and playing for Farnborough in an agreement for just over a month has only strengthened his opinion that he can still score more.

Cureton scored twice as Boro went down 3-2 to Petersfield in midweek and the forward says he is feeling fresh. “I’m still around and I have really enjoyed it so far,” he told The NLP.

“I didn’t think I would be at this level at the start of the season but for one reason or another I’ve not been able to fix myself up with a club as yet.

“I’ll still carry on trying to get back to the Football League. I’ll still hold onto that dream until it’s gone – it’s where I made my name and I’m not quite ready to give that up just yet.

“If it doesn’t happen then I’ll happily go down the Non-League route but we’ll see what the weeks ahead bring. There’s no real hurry as I have been lucky enough to been given the chance to play by Spencer Day at Farnborough. Hopefully a good situation for the club and myself too.

“I’m not too proud to play in the Southern League. It was a great feeling to get the goals on Tuesday even if we didn’t get the win.”

Cureton fears he may have become a forgotten man – and that some may have it in their head that he retired as the Daggers made their way down to the National League.

“I’m still alive!” he joked. “Perhaps because I’m nearly 41 some people thought I had called it a day but I’m not ready to hang up the old boots quite yet.

“The way I see it is that if you don’t feel you are letting yourself or your club down, what’s the point in stopping? I was fit for every game last season. I’m not an old boy who has five different injuries every season and is just picking up his wages.

“Maybe I have got a bit of a point to make and by getting back into the League somewhere I can prove a few people wrong.

“I would love to get that chance and I’ll keep working towards it but until that happens hopefully I can keep the goals coming for Farnborough.”

Cureton, the former Exeter City, Reading and Norwich man, says his last club Dagenham have “every chance” of securing an instant League Two return under John Still despite the disappointment of Tuesday night’s 3-0 defeat at Chester.

*This article was originally featured in The NLP on Sunday August 14th.

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