Hammerheads continue roster moves, drop preseason contest at Charleston

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In the organizations quest to make its 20th season a special one for their longtime supporters in the Port City, Wilmington Hammerheads FC announced another big signing as forward Matthew Barnes-Homer will suit up for the local pro soccer club heading into the 2016 USL regular season.

Matthew Barnes-Homer. Photo courtesy- Wilmington Hammerheads Fc
Matthew Barnes-Homer. Photo courtesy- Wilmington Hammerheads Fc

Barnes-Homer will join the Hammerheads with a great deal of international playing experience and impressive scoring ability.  His professional career took off with the National League’s Kidderminster Harriers, where he became a top scorer averaging around one goal per two games. During this time period, Barnes-Homer earned a position with England’s C National Team, strengthening his scoring average to include a game-winning goal that propelled his team to the 2011 International Trophy Finals. After Kidderminster Harriers, Barnes-Homer went on to join Luton Town F.C. and scored 19 goals that season to become their top scorer.

In 2012, the English striker signed with Macclesfield Town F.C, where he led his team to the fourth round of the Football Association Challenge Cup for the first time in club history. He then signed a two-year contract with the Forest Green Rovers before returning to Macclesfield on loan in 2014. Barnes-Homer will be transitioning to Wilmington after a short stint with Farnborough F.C. of the Isthmian League Premier Division of England.

“I’m excited to become a part of the Wilmington Hammerheads and take on this new challenge,” said Barnes-Homer. “I can’t wait to get going, score lots of goals, and help the team win a league title.”

Wilmington took the pitch for another preseason slate last week and dropped a 3-0 contest at Charleston Battery. Charleston hung three first-half goals in the result. Wednesday’s preseason friendly was the first of four scheduled 2016 meetings between the USL teams.

“If I’m brutally honest, the first half was below par,” said Wilmington Hammerheads FC Coach Mark Briggs. “But then again, you’ve got four trialists in the starting lineup, so it’s hard to assess where you’re at. But you know, it’s preseason, and that’s what this is for.”

As the Hammerheads continue to piece together their team for the upcoming season, Wilmington held an inter-squad game at Cape Fear Regional Soccer Park on Saturday. They continue their preseason slate with a trip to Conway, South Carolina for a date with Coastal Carolina University on March 16.

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