THE WITTON COLUMN – by Paul Harper

IT’S frustrating, isn’t it?

As a football club, Witton Albion wants to be pursuing our true prupose and playing football, but unfortunately due to COVID-19 and the current government restrictions, that cannot be the case.

On the pitch, the frustrations lie in the fact that Albion were in a really rich vein of form.

After a slow start to the season, Carl Macauley’s side were showing their true quality and had strung together four wins in a row before Boris Johnson called about a stop to proceedings.

After an excellent summer recruitment drive, the team looked like it was gelling together nicely. We were showing the typical Witton resilience at the back and looking a real threat in attack with the likes of Scott Bakkor, Will Jones, Steven Tames and James Hooper able to cause opposition defences no end of problems.

Frustrating as it is that the positive momentum we had earned from those results in October has been brought to a halt, hopefully the lads can pick up where they left off when we do get back round to competitive football, whenever that may be.

Easier said than done, of course, but I have every confidence that the management duo of Carl Macauley and Gary Martindale, as well as the coaching and physiotherapy side of things with Steve McNulty and Carl Rutter, will have the lads as prepared and ready as possible when things get back underway.

Off the pitch, it is also frustrating. Clubs at our level rely heavily on matchday revenue, with ticket sales, retail, catering and the social club all contributing to our income.

With that taken away, as well as the fact that the bar cannot open so no events can take place to generate revenue on that front, mean we have taken a substantial hit from this pausing of proceedings.

However, Wittoners have been incredibly generous in helping the club in difficult circumstances and we must thank everyone who has contributed to our fundraising wholeheartedly, be it from our 100 Club to the club lottery to the online Crowdfunder we have open on Justgiving.

Those monies are really helping in this period and as Media Officer, I’m looking at producing as much content as possible to give a little back and keep supporters connected with the club whilst there’s not football.

Working full time makes this tricky at times, as well as family commitments, but I’m doing my best and have recently been able to call upon the assistance of some Sports Journalism students from the University of Central Lancashire, so I’d like to thank them for their help.

We are also greatly assisted by The Non-League Nomads, who have been producing some fantastic content on our behalf, with the Virtual Cheshire Senior Cup one of the ways we’re looking to keep fans connected and entertained.

We’re not bad at video games as it turns out! Unbeaten so far! Hope that hasn’t jinxed it!

I’ll be pestering the first team squad for interviews this week, so please look out for those on our website, as well as for future columns here.

Hopefully, this hiatus won’t last too much longer and we can see the lads back out on the pitch very soon.

But to all Wittoners, please stay safe and we’ll see you all soon.