The Verdict: Lewis Preston picks his top 5 2019 moments

Hey guys – Merry Christmas and welcome back to the site!

In this week’s The Verdict, LP chooses his ultimate moments from 2019 – and there have been so many! Check out his standout choices below:

5. Halstead away

“So Halstead away – I believe this was the highest attendance at our level, at the time. It’s in my top five moments because of not only the sheer scale of fans that were there, but the fact they came to a game which was probably the most important of the season. I think it was that game that essentially won us the league.

“We had Tom Williams, who was our most experienced player on the pitch, somehow do a bicycle scissor-kick off the line. One of our original Hashtag United players, Jacko – one of the older players in the squad – had an unbelievable game. And then we had players like Tashan Richmond, who is part of the second chapter, amongst many others who came on, and was doing things like holding the ball up in the corner for 20 minutes.

“It was a nice to see a mixture of the originals and the new chapter players coming together to achieve something that almost seemed fairytale-like at the start of the season.”

4. Winning the Sunday League Division

“So the Hackney Wick game was on the Saturday and on the Sunday we had to win or draw to win the Sunday League Division as well, so there was a lot of pressure on that game.

“Me being the idiot I am, I went out for the celebrations the night of the Hackney Wick game and I got so drunk that I couldn’t play in the final game of the season for the Sunday League team – a team that I’ve actually been playing in all season!

“We did go on to win that game and chapter one player James Lovett – who was actually playing in my position, so I take full responsibility of the game being won – actually scored the winning goal; an absolute screamer from outside of the centre circle to the top left hand corner.

“That was an amazing day as well because not only was everyone smashed the night before, but we’d won the league the day before and we had basically half the squad, maybe a little more, come and watch the Sunday boys do it as well. Two trophies in two days is an incredible achievement.

“To me, winning the Sunday league was as important as winning with the first team, because I’d committed both Saturdays and Sundays to Hashtag United.”

3. Playing at Old Trafford

“We had the opportunity to go and train at Carrington and play at Old Trafford against Tango FC, courtesy of Adidas and our partnership with them.

“Again, I wasn’t playing but to be able to, you know, spend a lot of time at Manchester United training ground and Old Trafford was very reminiscent of a lot of the chapter one things that we used to do; we used to play at all of these massive grounds and travel around different football stadiums.

“Not only did it make me feel very privileged to have that opportunity, but again, another chance to, you know, tell a story of how we get to do these cool things and bring smiles to people’s faces through football content.

“I knew that Old Trafford was going to be something that people were going to like – not only the audience, but you know, it was a reward for winning the league, so that was really enjoyable, beside the result.

“But it’s not always about the result. It’s about the experience and the journey.”

2. Academy Season Two

“The next one for me is Academy Season Two. I was part of the original Academy where we found the one and only Scotty P, but we also found more than Scotty; we found players that are still a part of the club now, players that help behind the scenes like Stampy, who is now working with us.

“I knew that the Academy season two was going to be the same again, I knew that we were going to find not only sort of players that, even if they didn’t win, they were still going to be around the club, so I knew that it was exciting. Plus, it’s nice to have another project to work on.

“Working on something at that scale and being in control of the edit was a nice creative change for me, so yeah, the Academy was yet again another huge success and something that I really enjoyed.”

1. Winning the league at Hackney Wick

“Number one is obviously Hackney Wick and winning the league – it was pretty amazing, to be honest.

“At the beginning of the day, me and a few of the other the Hashtag boys were on Adidas shoot, so we’d spent a lot of time together and the anticipation was building all day, as it had been all week. We got there and – even though we knew that it was a big game and if we come away with draw, we won the league – everything still felt normal. It just felt like another day at the office.

“Little did we know that it was going to be an absolute grind. We knew that they had a quite a few good players, but we just did our jobs and everybody stepped up that day. Harry Honesty got the goal and I remember being in the same boat as Spencer and Seb, because obviously I had to film the reactions of the pair when when the whistle goes. We all had the same mentality just to get this done, so we can all run on the pitch and celebrate.

“I think for the first time in my life, being a part of something – even though I’m not theoretically on the pitch – telling the story of the journey every single week, game-in, game-out, I felt so proud of everybody and what we had achieved as a club.

“I was getting messages for weeks saying congratulations and I think it was a fairytale ending to our incredible season, especially after the first losing the first four games.”

Here’s to even more success for the club in 2020!

READ MORE: Can you guess these Hashtag United players disguised as Santa?

Article title: The Verdict: Lewis Preston picks his top 5 2019 moments

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