Match Of The Week 1: Hastings United 0-2 Carshalton Athletic

It is impossible to walk through the centre of Hastings in East Sussex without thinking of the 1996 Animals That Swim song, “Faded Glamour”. From certain angles, the town, overlooked by the remains of its eleventh century castle, retains the handsome ruggedness which drew day-trippers and holiday-makers towards it from the Victorian era on. From others, though, paint is peeling and concrete is starting to crumble. As it is with Hastings town centre, so it is with The Pilot Field, the home of Hastings United Football Club. A mile and a half from the town centre, this is a football ground that time forgot, with a large seated stand of the type that used to be commonplace at British football grounds the length and breadth of the country and a large covered terrace at one end of the ground. The club is, apparently, keen to leave its home and build a new one which isn’t as ruinously expensive to maintain. Sad though it would be to lose such an idiosyncratic venue, the thinking behind such wanderlust is understandable. Hastings have won one and drawn one of their four matches so far this season and go into the match above the relegation places, though not by much. A sense of understated gloom extends to the match-day programme, which notes that “Clubs are becoming concerned at the dramatic drop in attendances so...

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