Testimony to the quality and worth of the Eastern Junior Alliance is perhaps best illustrated by the number of former and indeed current players who now regularly perform at senior level. Others have gained YTS or apprentice places with professional clubs and some late developers or who were studying for exams/university have been signed directly into the ranks of the professional game.
Several players in the Eastern Junior Alliance have been selected for England Schools under 18’s, including Greg Dalley of Collier Row who was capped five times.
Dominic Ludden signed initially for Leyton Orient before transferring to Watford for £850,000 in season 1995 and was also on the fringes of the England under 21’s squad.
Neil Harris, formerly of both Great Wakering Rovers and Maldon Town, is now a regular goalscorer for Millwall, whilst Ian Renshaw, from the all conquering Basildon United team, was signed by Stockport County.
Another ex Eastern Junior Alliance player to make the grade was Martin Grainger who is the first from the league to play in the Premiership with Birmingham City and played over 200 games for them. Martin retired from football on January 1, 2005, having spent 13 years as a player. His goal-scoring appearance against Manchester United, on April 10, 2004, proved to be his final professional fixture.
In addition, the number of former players who regularly feature in senior non-league sides but most notable is perhaps another ex-Basildon United player, Ashley Harrison who kept a clean sheet in goal when Canvey Island lifted the F.A. Trophy at Villa Park in May 2001.