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Note that this page is from our Gresley Rovers archive. It may not be related to the new Gresley Rovers (formerly Gresley FC until 2020).
Story posted: Monday, 4th January 1988

Frank blasts League
Story courtesy of Burton Mail
Hard-hitting Gresley Rovers boss Frank Northwood has launched a blistering attack on Banks’s League officials.
In a scathing salvo, Northwood has accused them of complete mismanagement, adopting double standards and of being responsible for sides quitting.

He doesn’t stop there. He also labelled as “diabolical” the fixtures system that gave Rovers only one game over the holiday period – Saturday’s postponed trip to Tividale.

Northwood claimed that the league’s management urgently need to get their house in order before more clubs drop out and others refuse to join.

“One day these people are going to wake up but I feel that by then it will be too late,” said Northwood. “The sooner we can get out of this league the better we will be. It’s just a glorified First Division. The management are going completely against what they preach at annual meetings and use one set of rules for some clubs and another set for others. They are letting some clubs do what they like. They say you have to have certain facilities to be in the league but look at Oldswinford.

“They should have been relegated at the beginning of the season when they knew their ground wasn’t going to be ready.”

Northwood believes that teams should be compensated for the cancelled fixtures brought about, he said, by clubs forced out of the league.

He is strongly of the opinion that Armitage should have been relegated last season when they finished bottom. That way, he said, they would have attracted younger players and then been able to re-group their forces instead of folding.

“I can understand them pulling out because they didn’t want to get hammered every week but that situation should never have arisen. They were forced out by bad management. It’s all very well them being fined but what about recompensing us for lost revenue.”

Northwood was equally scathing about the league’s fixture system and claimed some teams were not getting regular games.

He said that teams can sometimes go two weeks without a match, which was not fair on players or supporters.

“We are OK at Gresley, we have the revenue but other clubs don’t and the league are making them struggle,” he said. “If you have a game cancelled you are not allowed to rearrange it or fix up another game with an available club without informing the league. Let’s face it, if you have got 20 or so players and they haven’t got a game they are going to go elsewhere.”
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