Sean Pemberton - a lion hearted leader!

Feeling the aches and pains!Sean Pemberton has been an inspirational skipper of Haverfordwest County for several seasons whose battling qualities in defence and aerial threat in attacking set-pieces has made him a very firm favourite with supporters at the Bridge Meadow Stadium.
Sean PembertonNow 34 years old, ‘Pembs’ admitted at the early end of the latest season that he was finding it hard going if he had to play two games a week and was considering the prospect of stepping down but good news for The Bluebirds’ faithful is that he has agreed to stay on for at least their next campaign and then review matters after a season in the Welsh Premier League.
“I know that my heart is still willing but my head tells me that time isn’t very much on my side – and my legs are definitely not OK!

Convinced that The Bluebirds deserved their promotion

“I know there are people who will say that we won promotion by default but whilst they are welcome to that opinion I believe we had done enough to go up and are already beginning to strengthen our squad in readiness for 2020/21.
“After all, we were just a point behind Swansea University and still had to play them at home, and it was obvious for a while that their facilities weren’t up to scratch – and we couldn’t help the season ending prematurely.”
Sean is nothing if not a realist but typifies the optimistic attitude currently at Haverfordwest County. – and provides ample proof that if local players are able and committed enough they can make the grade at this level.

A few games for Emlyn but mainly a Carmarthenshire League regular until the Haverfordwest call came

“Apart from a few games for Newcastle Emlyn in Division Two of the old Welsh League I played local football in Carmarthenshire, happy to play in Division One with my mates at Llanstephan.
He later played for Carmarthen United in their local league, with Wayne Jones as a team mate and Sean Cresser as assistant manager and it was this pair who brought him to The Bridge Meadow eight years ago when they got involved there.

Goal-scoring debut, with highs and lows since

“I made my debut against Porth Welfare with a header (naturally!) and gradually settled in and got used to the travel, especially a couple of evenings a week to training.
“I travelled down with ‘Wolvesy’ and was regarded as a bit of a ‘teacher’s pet’ because he was the boss.
“I had one season before in the premier but we had a small squad and came straight back down as they reduced the number of clubs – but we didn’t play badly and lost quite a few games by the odd goal as we lacked experience.
Getting to the top echelon that time provided ‘Pembs’ with one of the highlights of his career because in the final game of the previous campaign they travelled to Aberdare with a weakened squad in the knowledge they had to win by five clear goals to shade out Cardiff Met – and they won 50-0! A couple of teachers in our squad that night were unable to travel – “They must have had too much marking” said Sean, with a typical twinkle in his eyes!

Delighted to be recognised with loads of awards

Pembs receiving one of his Player of the Season awards from manager Wayne JonesHe has also appreciated the deserved recognition he has received from the club since he has three times won the ‘Supporters’ Player of the Year’ award and picked up the ‘Manager’s Player’ twice alongside the ‘Players’ Player’.
So now it’s onwards and upwards for Sean and his squad under the management of Wayne Jones and Mark Murison as football waits for a green light to start again in Wales.
Wayne told us,
“Sean Pemberton is the type of player that every manager wants as captain because he is a born leader and real battler who never gives less than 100% and can haul his team out of the depths as they follow his lead.
“He is a real warrior and we hope those tired old legs can give us at least one more season where his experience will be invaluable in the Welsh Premier League.”
We at could pay ‘Pembs’ no greater compliment and we are already looking forward to watching one of our favourite players again next season!
Since this article was written the JD South League has issued its ‘Select XI’ for the recent season and Sean Pemberton is the only Bluebirds’ player to be selected in the starting line-up – so well done ‘Pembs’!
Skipper Sean Pemberton