Day: September 3, 2010

Non-League Week: Bromsgrove Get A Sporting Chance

As we get ready to enter Non-League Day, we are nearing the beginning of the end of a farcical ten month period in the history of football in the Worcestershire town of Bromsgrove. Recent years have seen a number of long standing clubs cease to exist, and in most cases a new club has been formed to keep the interest of the fans, and the spirit of the club alive in the respective town or city. Most of these clubs have experienced teething troubles of one sort or another and a lot of these clubs haven’t been able to return immediately to their spiritual home (if they were able to return there at all). There have been a few exceptions to that rule, as clubs such as AFC Telford United and FC Halifax Town have been able to continue playing where their previous team “left off”, so to speak. Another one of those clubs, who appeared to have “retained” their ground were Bromsgrove Sporting. Bromsgrove Sporting were formed out of what would become the ashes out of Bromsgrove Rovers, who were expelled from the Southern League earlier this month. Rovers have spent the last ten years with problems emanating from various owners, including the unpopular proposal to “merge” the club with Redditch United (which would have seen the merged side take Redditch’s place in the Conference North, wear Rovers’...

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Non-League Week: A Cautionary Tale – Kingstonian, Adminsitration Trend-Setters

It was the blind leading the blind when a local radio station called on me one autumn Friday in 2001 to comment on my club Kingstonian’s descent into “administration.” Much of the interview through which I semi-bluffed my way centred on how administration did not equate to liquidation. If only I knew then what I know now. What little I did know came from reading journalist David Conn’s already regular delving into the murkier aspects of football financing, then appearing in the Independent newspaper. Three years later, he called on me to comment on my club’s descent into administration and subsequent, scarcely less nightmarish events. I knew more then, but still not enough. Ryman (Isthmian) League Ks went into administration before ITV Digital’s collapse made it de rigueur for Football League clubs. And the end for Ks, when it came, was quick. In January 2001, Ks were one-up at Bristol City in the fourth round of the FA Cup. Referee Graham Poll added on three minutes’ stoppage time. In the fourth of those three minutes (Poll’s problems with the number “three” pre-dated the World Cup) Bristol City equalised. City won the replay. And six months later Ks lost their next FA Cup match, 2-1 at Wessex League Brockenhurst in the second qualifying round. The following Friday, local radio was on the phone. But if administration came six months after...

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Non-League Week: Scottish Junior Football

The first round draw for the Scottish Cup, made this week, threw up one intriguing though rather unfortunate tie: Beith Juniors v Linlithgow Rose. The significance might not be obvious to ther casual observer, but these are two of the four Junior sides – and the best two at that – to be allowed into the Cup this year. It’s only the fourth season in which any Junior sides have been allowed into the Cup at all, and both of these two will have fancied their chances to show the some of the senior sides what they can do. Only one will now get the chance.

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