Parkgate FC set modest aims for 2022/23 season as club re-groups

Parkgate FC set modest aims for 2022/23 season as club re-groups

By David Beddows | 29/07/2022

Parkgate FC set modest aims for 2022/23 season as club re-groups

STABILITY and survival are the watchwords for Parkgate FC after the pre-season jolt of losing their manager and all but one of their team.

After the well-publicised departure of first-team bosses Andy Dawson and Lee Whitehead to near neighbours Maltby Main, followed by a glut of players, the Steelmen have had to hastily re-group.

In a period of about two weeks they've brought in a new co-chairman in Kieran Gallagher who has helped pull together a new coaching team headed up by former Retford United chief Liam Kay after previous appointment Ryan Hall had to quickly step down due to work commitments. He is now part of the coaching team.

A new squad has been assembled from complete newcomers, many of whom turned up at an emergency open training session, and they'll join players from Gallagher's previous club, Kiveton MW.

It adds up to a daunting and challenging task for a club that finished just outside the play-offs in Northern Counties East League Division One last season.

Understandly, expectations are lower for the 2022/23 campaign, which starts away to Staveley at today (3pm).

“The fact of the matter is we have had to get a side sorted within a matter of about ten days,” Gallagher told the Advertiser.

“I'll be honest, it's just about making the club stable and steadying the ship and making sure we compete in this league and remain in it.

“I don't think we can have any high aims or anything like that. We are going to be going up against teams who have been going for years and years.

“I know Parkgate have also been around for years but we are going to have a team that is new playing against Staveley, so it's a bit of a nightmare.”

It helps that Kieran knows the local football scene well.

He has played for the likes of Worsbrough, Hallam and Dinnington Town, for whom he scored in an FA Cup tie against Maltby in front of the Sky TV cameras a few years ago.

Kieran Gallagher

He said: “I did have a part solution to the player issue because I have brought a few over from Kiveton MW and still have a bit of an interest over there at the moment because I set up that club.

“As for the manager's position, I have known Liam Kay quite a while and he is one I would have wanted to bring in anyway.

“He had a good season at Retford. They won the Notts Senior Trophy  last season and they finished only a point behind the champions, Newark, in their league.”

New co-chairman Gallagher is a businessman and wants to bring in more sponsorship to help the club.

He added: “I have got the drive to do that and I'll be talking to (co-chairman) Albert (Dudill) and (secretary) and Bruce (Bickerdike) about it

“I am quite hungry and eager to make something of my career as a chairman and try and push Parkgate up in a few years.”

Also in Division One, Swallownest start at home to Worsbrough Bridge Athletic (3pm).