Royce Franklin takes a nostalgic look back at how football has changed in the 67 years since he watched his first live match.
MOST FOOTBALL followers will know FC United of Manchester were formed by a group of disgruntled followers of Manchester United supporters when the Glazers took over the ownership of the club in 2005.
They move to a newly-built ground for next season. The team is community-based and its supporters have raised £2.8millon towards the cost of the £6.5 million ground project.
An achievement in itself and for certain a reflection of the single-mindedness of the club’s supporters. The new ground is situated in Moston and has a terraced area in front of the main stand; a stipulation made by supporters when the new ground was being planned.
Football League aspirations may be realistic in the long term but the new ground has a capacity of 5,000 which is just below any of the 72 clubs in the Football League.
The group showed many initiatives to raise money, including a recent game against Benfica ‘B’ to mark the official opening of the new ground.
Without doubt, however, their greatest achievement has been their recent promotion to Vanarama Conference North when 3,588 spectators saw them beat Stourbridge 1-0 to clinch the Evo Stik League, premier division title.
Next season they will play in what amounts to the sixth division of the Football League. They will be In the same division as Stockport County, a team that played in the Football League themselves as recently as 2011.
Only one promotion off the Vanarama National League, who knows what they accomplish over the next few years? Football League must be the obvious ambition.