Honiton Town manager struggling to see a season conclusion

Action from the Honiton Town 6-3 defeat at Bovey Tracey. Picture: ANDREW SYMONDS

Action from the Honiton Town 6-3 defeat at Bovey Tracey. Picture: ANDREW SYMONDS - Credit: Archant

The ever-changing picture for local football amid the Covid crisis is close to reaching a breaking point for this season. 
Honiton Town manager Liam Raybould believes a cancellation of the South-West Peninsula League is very much on the cards. 
It will be a great shame for everyone; players, volunteers, supporters and the league officials, but the combination of safety and financial concerns makes it very difficult to find a positive pathway for this season. 
“There isn’t a lot what we can do because the last time we played was away to Torridgeside at the beginning of December,” said Raybould. 
“As a club, the financial benefits of Christmas football is so important because people make an event of going to the game. 
“I think that’s one of the reasons, along with the weather and Covid, that teams called off their Christmas fixtures. 
“If you can’t have people in the bar, putting money into the club, there is no point in playing. You don’t mind messing up the pitch if there are people attending and spending money for that one game. 
“I think we’re reaching the point of possibly cancelling the season and run a mini competition for local sides. 
“What do we get from the league continuing? 
“There are still so many games to be played and it will end up benefiting the clubs with the biggest squads, and the biggest budgets.  
“We will be dragging players across Devon for midweek games and it just won’t be a fair reflection on the league standings. 
“It is a very difficult situation for the league and, for our players, they have all accepted things because there is nothing anyone can do. 
“I’ve been at Honiton for a few months now and still not played a home game, which sums up the position we are in. 
“We are trying to keep the players entertained but it’s not like we can get together for a social event or training.  
“Once things become clearer in the coming weeks, the answer could be local games for Honiton against the likes of Sidmouth, Axminster, Cullompton etc. 
“It just helps to maintain that love and enthusiasm for playing football.” 

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