Ground restrictions put cloud over future of Maltby Main FC

HOME: Muglet Lane.HOME: Muglet Lane.
HOME: Muglet Lane.
ROTHERHAM’S leading semi-professional football club has warned it faces an uncertain future if the status quo remains at its home ground.

Maltby Main FC is a tenant at Muglet Lane, which is home to other teams, including Maltby MW Cricket Club.

It is owned by Ciswo, a coal mining charity, and leased to Maltby Town Council, but as tenants the football club cannot apply for grants to fund improvements to the facility which could bring in vital revenue.

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Main chairman Kieran Gallagher, who succeeded Wilf Race in the post earlier this year, says the situation cannot continue if the club is to survive in an already ultra competitive Northern Counties East League.

Lee Thompson.Lee Thompson.
Lee Thompson.

He said: “At some point the league will have to ground grade us. Every other ground in the league has updated facilities, disabled access and properly surfaced car parks yet Maltby is still stuck in a situation where we can’t access the necessary funds.

"The future of the club is very limited, as things stand.

"Obviously coming in as a chairman, I can’t see a future at the current ground.

"We can’t continue to run in the league if we are in not being allowed to be sustainable. We just can’t. It’s not possible.”

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MP Alexander Stafford and local Conservatives have started a campaign to secure the site’s future and save it from any future sale for housing.

In the meantime Maltby are facing a struggle on the pitch.

“We are working on a minimum budget which is probably the lowest in the league, I would suspect,” added Kieran. "Hopefully we can avoid relegation. I’ll be honest, if we do that it will have been a successful season.”

Maltby went down 8-3 away to Campion on Wednesday night in a match that turned out to be manager Lee Thompson’s last in charge.

His resignation was announced yesterday, the former pro having taken up the post in May.

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Thanking the outgoing boss for his efforts, the club said in a statement: “Lee has worked tirelessly throughout pre-season and the effort and structure he has put back into the team has been second to none. His attitude to football is class, and he will be missed at Main.”

Main, second bottom of the Premier Division, are at home to Goole AFC tomorrow (3pm).