Eastleigh farce puts NL stance in con­text

The Non-League Football Paper - - NEWS - NATHAN AUTY, Mold

LAST season, the National League wouldn’t al­low the likes of Dar­ling­ton, Poole Town and Hunger­ford Town to com­pete in the North and South play­offs be­cause they deemed their grounds not up to stan­dards, yet it’s not even the end of Septem­ber yet and my club Ch­ester have al­ready had two games post­poned be­cause of prob­lems with other clubs’ fa­cil­i­ties! First, Soli­hull Moors on the open­ing day, and now Eastleigh, pic­tured, both re­port­ing prob­lems with their grounds that had been known about for some time. What kind of im­pres­sion does this league want to give of it­self ? You’ve got clubs like For­est Green run­ning up £3m losses ev­ery season in a ham­fisted (or Quorn-fisted, if you pre­fer) at­tempt to get into the Foot­ball League, and now they’re fi­nally pro­moted they seem to be the whip­ping boys. You’ve then got clubs like Eastleigh of­fer­ing play­ers wages that Foot­ball League clubs can’t com­pete with, yet they can’t be both­ered spend­ing to fix a drainage is­sue they’ve known about since at least the sum­mer. Does the National League want to be the un­of­fi­cial Foot­ball League 3 or the Premier League of Non-League? At the mo­ment, it’s nei­ther. It’s too un­pro­fes­sional to be thought of as any­thing but Non-League, yet there’s also a wide­spread at­ti­tude of buy­ing suc­cess and win­ning at any costs that’s out of keep­ing with the grass­roots game. It’s just an aw­ful limbo be­tween pro­fes­sional and semi-pro­fes­sional foot­ball that em­braces all the worst as­pects of both. It’s time for this league to up its game. In­tro­duce Fi­nan­cial Fair Play and se­ri­ously push for three up, three down from League 2. I strongly be­lieve in sup­porter own­er­ship, but this is a mis­er­able league to play in for a club like ours.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.