01:55PM, Monday 08 February 2021
Slough Town Supporters Trust says it supports the club’s decision to vote for the National League South campaign to be cancelled and declared null and void.
The Rebels are refusing to play matches while the outcome of a vote to determine whether the season should continue or be scrapped is unknown. Its supporters’ group has said it’s difficult to make a case for teams travelling many miles to play matches when the country is supposed to be in lockdown.
Slough Town are considered an elite football club and are therefore exempt from the lockdown restrictions, however, it’s managers and board were some of the first to express their concerns over player and staff safety and funding.
Last week the club informed the league and Chelmsford City they were unwilling to play Saturday’s home match, or any other fixture until the outcome of the league’s vote is known, and have urged the league’s board not to impose sanctions on clubs who don’t feel comfortable continuing with the season at the present time.
The National League does look like it’s taking steps to address some of those safety fears and hopes to provide free weekly COVID tests for clubs by the middle of this month, however, the Rebels still feel they’re unable to carry on without further grant support from Government.
A statement from the club’s supporters trust backed that stance this week: “Whilst we would all love to be back cheering on our clubs, we feel at this particular time there are more important steps that need to be taken to ensure that we can get back to as normal as possible as soon as possible.
“As a Trust, we consider the welfare of everyone involved in the sport whether playing, coaching, officiating, volunteering, or spectating as paramount. When we are all being asked to follow the Lockdown guidelines and restrict any journey to essential journeys only and restrict contact to close family bubbles only, it is difficult to substantiate the need for players, officials, volunteers etc to travel outside of their local areas with the added possibility of carrying the virus with them or returning home carrying the virus back.
“As per the club’s statement, we as supporters have seen the club come through some very difficult times with careful stewardship and we do not wish the burden of a long-term debt to detract from the advances we have made over the last few years.
“As a supporter’s trust we appreciate many supporters view watching football as a major leisure outlet and in some cases their only opportunity to meet friends etc. However, we have come so far now in beginning to suppress the virus and of course with the roll out of vaccinations, we agree with the club’s stance to write this season off and to, hopefully begin the next season refreshed and better equipped to tackle whatever this Virus throws up, It will also provide the players etc with some certainty and enable them to concentrate on their main source of income without having to worry about how many occasions they will have to find time to play all of the games still outstanding and give them some quality family time which was denied them last year.
“We appreciate that this view will not be shared by all supporters, but we feel this is the best option for our club, player’s, staff, volunteers etc in the longer term.”
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