Cranbrook boss suggests a September start for football may not be possible

PUBLISHED: 12:30 30 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:30 30 March 2020

Cranbrook at home to Colyton. Ref mhsp 07 20TI 8124. Picture: Terry Ife

Cranbrook at home to Colyton. Ref mhsp 07 20TI 8124. Picture: Terry Ife

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The football season for Cranbrook was ended last week following then news from the Football Association that all grassroots football was to end with immediate affect owing to the on-going Covid-29 crisis.

Cranbrook at home to Colyton. Ref mhsp 07 20TI 8112. Picture: Terry IfeCranbrook at home to Colyton. Ref mhsp 07 20TI 8112. Picture: Terry Ife

Cranbrook boss Jon Martin says: “On a personal note I am happy that they have made the decision to bring things to a halt now.

“I can’t see that the powers that be had any other alternative. They certainly were not helped in their decision making with the fact that this season had already been so fragmented with the wet weather which left most of the teams in the Macron League having almost half a season still to play!”

He continued: “The flip side of that is that I am also disappointed as I honestly believe that, looking at the run-in we faced, then Cranbrook would have had a great chance of winning the Division Four title.

“It’s taken its time to come to fruition, but I genuinely feel that this current team is the best squad of players that Cranbrook has ever had.

“That’s not meant to be in any way disrespectful to any of the many players who have been with me over the years, but this time round we have strength in every position.”

Such is the strength of the current squad that Martin adds: “The tough thing from here is going to be keeping this set of lads together.

“We have a current front three / four who could all play at a much higher level. I am under no illusions as to how tough it is going to be to keep them all with us, but a number have already indicated they are going to be back with us when the new season does get the green light. That said, with the way things are at the moment, football leagues being terminated is the least of our worries!”

With regard to his view on how the final league tables might be presented leads the Cranbrook boss to say: “Maybe one solution would be for the league to approach teams with a view to going up or coming down?

“I am sure there are teams, like us, who would relish the opportunity to start next season at a higher level and don’t doubt there are teams who might prefer to start a level down.

“However, I do worry that we will, unfortunately, lose some teams when this coronavirus pandemic eases. Finance – or a lack of it – will no doubt play a part and, for teams who budget well, losing half a season of planned income will hit hard!”

So, when does the Cranbrook boss think the new season will begin?

He says: “I’ll be very surprised if football is up and running by September! I hope I’m wrong, but if we can believe the experts, this pandemic sounds like it’ll be around for several months to come.”


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