April 9, 2015
I have always said that if Rovers have a winning team then the crowds will come no matter what.
This view was always liable to be tested when the ‘Pirates’ made the fall into non-League football for the first time just under a year ago. But I have been proved right with the team getting fantastic support throughout what I am still hoping will be our only season in the Conference and the two games over Easter proved beyond all doubt that BS7 should be hosting a higher level of football.
I’m sure we will have another big turn-out this afternoon for our penultimate home game, (or is it?), against another former League club in the shape of Southport. Of course all the local amateur footballers will back in action for their many Bristol clubs this afternoon so they won’t be here but another budget-topping attendance is guaranteed as we get so close to the finishing line.
Another ‘biggest of the season’ on Good Friday was the Supporters Club’s 50/50 half-time draw that produced a massive total prize of £1,247. An equivalent sum of course will be going into Rovers’ Youth Academy along with all the other draw money that we raise. It was incredibly the seventh time this season that we have topped total prize money in excess of the magic £1,000 which correlates with the size of the crowds.
What it means is that we can keep supporting our up-and-coming young players and bring them on into first-team football eventually. The current under-18’s South West Academy team is now unbeaten since last September and they top Merit League 2 so we can all be proud of our achievements.
More important though than winning competitions and trophies of course is to produce players fit for the Football League and a host of former Youth Academy players now grace our current Conference squad.
On the day of penning this column, we were hoping that we would have been able to reopen the Supporters Club shop at Kingswood following major redevelopment to the building. However, whilst the structural work has been completed inside the planned ten-day shut-down over the Easter period the electrical systems are not ‘up and running’ although everything could be by the time you read this! Please therefore keep in touch with our website for the latest news or call into ‘Pirate Leisure’ or our match-day cabin today. Meantime, apologies for any inconvenience caused.
Yet another win is required today so please make lots of noise – the players need your support and we need them to get this difficult job or returning to the Football League finished at the first attempt.
Let’s hear it for Irene – ‘Up the ‘Pirates’!
(This is a limited selection of Jim’s Jottings from the Southport programme.)