We can confirm that, due to a change in personal circumstances, veteran defender Joe Shelley has decided to leave the club.

A Horsham stalwart, ‘Biff’ ends his career at the club having made a total of 170 appearances, scoring 33 goals.

The 39-year-old recorded 34 appearances and scored three goals last season.

Joe first joined the club in July 2015, following in the path of first team manager, and close friend, Dom Di Paola.

Having previously played under Dom at Clymping, Worthing United and East Preston, the pair teamed up again in 2015 when Joe captained the Hornets to Southern Combination Premier success and immediate promotion back to the Isthmian League.

Picking up the Supporters’ Player of the Season award that year, Joe decided to remain in the Southern Combination the following season, joining Pagham, before ending up at Horsham YMCA.

In October 2017 he was coaxed back to the club where he has remained an ever-present at the heart of the defence, ever since.

Speaking on his departure, Dom said: “Personally, I’m a bit gutted because of how long he’s been with us.

“It’s a shame because I’d love to have seen him retire with us and I think, had the season started as it normally would, and the games were more padded out, it would be easier for him to commit.”

He continued:ย “He’s a legend of the football club, for what he’s done over the last five years, and he goes with our best wishes. He’s been a brilliant player for us, a brilliant player for me, and been involved with everything good.”

Thank you, and best of luck, Biff!

Main photo: Joe Shelley celebrating his match-winning header at Lewes last season


  1. John Dalby says:

    Great servant and a legend that will always be linked with two promotions. The difference he made when coming back into the team after a short spell away a couple of seasons back really showed how important a player he was. All the best, biff.

  2. clive says:

    one in a million, he could have played at any level he wanted.
    Top signing and yes I’d agree with John Dalby…… a Legend.
    best of luck Joe.

  3. Darryl Jacobs says:

    Certainly one of my favourite players. Very consistent, reliable, great positional know how and distribution from the back. And, of course , loved a tackle, which made him such a crowd pleaser. All the best Joe .

  4. Neil Richmond says:

    Very sad to hear the news – Biff is too good to retire so it will be a fortunate team that secures his services for this season. I will also miss seeing his Mum at the HFC games too.

  5. Jim and Sue Bravery says:

    Gutted to see Joe go, an outstanding, goal scoring midfielder when he joined the club he was then transformed into an even more outstanding central defender who still managed to poach goals from set pieces. Joe was a true professional with fellow club mates, he always gave 100%, his natural ability was appreciated by everyone who saw him play, his calmness on the ball stood out and his ability to dominate and generally nullify proven goal scorers was one of his major successes.
    Both you and the family will be missed on a weekly basis, wish you all the very best for the future and thanks again for your massive contribution in getting the club back to the level of football the new ground deserves.

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