Just a week ago the FA announced the introduction of a licensing system for non-league clubs. Starting with the 2016/17 season clubs will only be able to participate at Steps 1-4 if they hold a licence from the league concerned. They'll be assessed on things like ownership, stadia, finance and integrity and, if the FA are really serious about this, 2016 could be a bumper year for reprieves from relegation.
Whether Farnborough (where we had a good night out just over 3 years ago) are in the running for a licence remains to be seen. Relegation from the Conference to the Isthmian Prem has given their highly regarded owners the opportunity to seek an amendment to their Creditors Voluntary Arrangement (CVA). Two years into a 3 year CVA that should have seen them pay creditors 100p per pound owed they've so far managed the princely sum of, er, a little under 20 quid. And the revised proposal is 1.59 pence in the pound. Don't be surprised if the club goes to the wall (again) in a few days time.
Pre-season fixtures have been announced and there could be plenty of empty seats for the visit of Glebe FC of the Kent Invicta League on Friday 31st July. There'll be slightly fewer the following day when Billericay of the Isthmian Prem pay another visit to the ARS. OK, there's the Island Games as well but they'll be over and done by the beginning of July so, on paper, the pre-season programme doesn't look like ideal preparation.
That's a very easy thing to say though and, without a big pile of cash to spend, it's hard to imagine any club with a similar geographical challenge having an 'ideal' pre-season programme. Hopefully the club will be a bit creative with admission prices as a decent turnout and atmosphere will not only be a good way of saying thanks to Glebe and Billericay for going to the trouble but could encourage others to do the same in years to come.
Whilst we're playing Billericay the Crapauds will be away at Thamesmead Town of the Isthmian North. In their announcement of the match Thamesmead made mention that the Crapauds are currently looking into playing in the non-league pyramid. Strange as it may seem but the Crapauds themselves still have a habit of waffling on about making Gibraltar and San Marino look good. Either way they ain't going anywhere with Springfield as it is.
Where will Mr Boyle be on August 1st?
Finally a reminder re donations in memory of Mike Thomas (see last week's post below). If you'd like to contribute to a pooled donation on behalf of GFC fans (and save yourself the price of a stamp or two in the process) please get your cheques to Debs by Thursday as she's off to the rock on Friday. Email us via the contact form on this page if you'd rather send a payment online and we'll let you have her bank details.
Keep it Green
Allez les Verts!!
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