From Wolverhampton to Whitby; Blyth and Buxton; Rugby and Rushall; and Nantwich to North Ferriby – I was there throughout. Season 2012/13 at Stafford Rangers FC will be a memorable one for me. It is one the season I witnessed every league and cup game of the campaign – home & away. Fifty eight games in total – Every ball kicked; Every goal; Every booking; All the excitement – and of course some disappointments.
Journeys totalling up to over 6,000 miles whether it was via car, people carrier or coach – I made it to each and every game and ground this season. Some achievement and something I am very proud of. It was something that I nearly achieved last season – however due to other work commitments that could not be changed, I missed the trip to Matlock Town in the 2011/12 season. Still another great achievement meaning that this is the only game over two season that I haven’t seen.
I certainly am part of an elite club, especially in non league football, where many people (including myself) have other major commitments and work away from their supported clubs. What might be even more of an impressive fact is that as many know my journey to ‘home’ games actually consists of a 100 mile round trip from Nuneaton! The season 2012/13 did provide me with somewhat of a more local and definitely welcomed ‘home tie’ – with a cup match against Rugby – about 15 minutes from my home!
Well, I am already looking forward to next season – and looking forward to mid July when the fixtures are released. To me though, it doesn’t matter where , when or who we play – I just know that my commitment from mid August to the end of April – I can pretty much guarantee I have a plan for every Tuesday Night, Every Saturday Afternoon, and every Bank Holiday! The joys of football. Next season we will have an additional four league games to look forward to!
A thoroughly enjoyable 9 months though. I have met some great away supports, some very hospitable away club Directors, and spent some great quality time with my friends, my colleagues and the SRFC Team at Stafford Rangers. Who’d have thought that the first game I attended, when I was ball boy at Marston Road in 1986/7 season, would lead to this…..
Long may it continue.