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Former AFC Sudbury player Joe Grimwood completes move to Barnet from new National League rivals Braintree Town

AFC Sudbury Academy graduate and promotion winner Joe Grimwood has signed his first professional contract after sealing a move from Braintree Town to now Vanarama National League rivals Barnet.

The 22-year-old ended a six-year spell at Sudbury, including three in the academy, after winning the Pitching In Isthmian League North Division Play-Off Final last May to re-join former Yellows manager Angelo Harrop at Braintree.

And after adding back-to-back promotions to his CV, helping The Iron up through the play-offs after a fifth-placed finish in National League South, the centre-back has made the switch to the north London Bees, signing a two-year contract.

Joe Grimwood in action for AFC Sudbury during his final season with the Yellows in 2022/23 Picture: Mecha Morton
Joe Grimwood in action for AFC Sudbury during his final season with the Yellows in 2022/23 Picture: Mecha Morton

Grimwood, who came through the junior ranks at Bury Town and was raised in Bury St Edmunds, played 90 minutes in 45 of Braintree Town’s 46 league games last season and 54 in total, scoring four goals and earning the Manager’s Player of the Year award.

“It’s a big challenge stepping up but I think I’m ready to do it, I can’t wait to get started,” he said in his first interview with Barnet’s media team.

“It’s a proud moment for myself and my family.”

Barnet manager Dean Brennan told the club’s website: “Joe is a really good one-on-one defender.

“He had a fantastic season at Braintree, reads danger really well and wants to defend.

“He’s strong and aggressive; he’s a beast!”

He joins a Barnet side that finished second in the National League last season, losing out on promotion back into the Football League after a play-off semi-final defeat to Solihull Moors.

Grimwood also posted his appreciation to Braintree and Harrop on his departure, saying via his X account: “Where do I start, firstly what a club.

“As soon as I joined I was welcomed like I had been there years, @HarropAngelo took a risk with me and massive thanks to him and has improved me massively as a player.

“All the players I have played with this year, you have all been ledge.

“Massive thanks to the supporters who stuck with us all throughout the season, club’s full of great people and I’ll see you all soon.

“Enjoyed every minute of it, and to get the promotion at the end of it was the icing on the cake. Can’t thank everyone as I’m sure I’ll miss some out but I wish the club and everyone the best and I’m sure you’ll smash it this season, you’re in good hands.”