CANVEY Island have been dealt a huge blow after George Purcell announced his premature exit from the club.

Purcell joined the Gulls from Isthmian Premier League outfit Hornchurch during the summer and went onto score six goals in 12 appearances.

But, just a matter of hours after completing the full 90 minutes in Canvey’s 1-1 FA Cup third qualifying round draw with Bowers & Pitsea, Purcell took to social media to confirm he has left Park Lane.

The striker tweeted: “Made a tough decision that today was my last game for Canvey Island.

“I would like to thank Mark Bentley, Danny Heale and Brad Wellmen for their continued support in my short time at the club and not forgetting the fantastic support week in, week out from the fans.”

The Gulls will be in the hat for Monday's fourth qualifying round draw after their derby stalemate with neighbours Bowers.

Although Isthmian Premier League new-boys Bowers took the lead thanks to Brad Warner beating goalkeeper Lamar Johnson at his near post, Canvey manufactured an instant response.

Josh Hutchinson’s cutback found captain James White, who fired into the back of the net from the edge of the penalty area.

And boss Bentley was pleased to see his side hit back immediately.

“After going a goal behind, our heads might have dropped last season,” said Bentley.

“We have a young, inexperienced group. Although some people and players question that, I believe in these boys.

“I know we have an inexperienced bench, so it was important the 11 that started got through as much of the game as they could.

“I’m buzzing that we’re still in the hat. On another day we could have nicked it but, then again, they could have as well.”

Bentley was keen to praise goalscorer White and central midfield partner Albert Levett.

“I got in Whitey’s head on Thursday,” added Bentley.

“I asked if there was any danger of him actually contributing a goal because I need my midfielders to get some more goals.

“If my forwards aren’t scoring, I need the back-up.

“Albert comes under a bit of criticism.

“We put a bit of pressure on Albs but I thought he was immense breaking things up and crunching into tackles.”