Great Britain

Ilford manager Fowell feels sorry for teams battling for promotion as season is void

Ilford manager Jon Fowell during Redbridge vs Ilford, Essex Senior League Football at Oakside Stadium on 10th January 2020

Ilford manager Jon Fowell during Redbridge vs Ilford, Essex Senior League Football at Oakside Stadium on 10th January 2020

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Ilford manager Jonny Fowell feels sorry for the clubs battling for promotion who will have to try again next season after the 2019/20 season was expunged.

The Foxes were comfortably in 13th place in the Essex Senior League but the boss knows how hard other teams have worked to get to where they were across step three to six during the season.

“I feel sorry for the likes of Maldon & Tiptree, who have had a great cup run, and should have got promoted and would have got promoted without a doubt as they were the best team in that league,” Fowell said.

“You’ve got to feel sorry for teams like that as well as Hashtag United, Saffron Walden, Walthamstow and Hadley who were all in the mix in our league and it was probably going to be one of the most exciting finishes in the last three seasons.

“You’ve also got teams like White Ensign who have been absolutely brilliant this year, I’ve got a lot of time for Brett Munyard, and also Wayne Seal at Leigh Ramblers – these teams have lost out now.

“Then you’ve got teams like Sawbridgeworth Town who were basically relegated and I couldn’t see them getting out of trouble.

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“We don’t know how long this is all going to last, that’s the problem, as we’re in no man’s land at the moment. We don’t even know if the new season is going to start in August.”

Former Clapton manager Fowell says it was probably the easiest decision for the leagues to make, although it makes them seem out of touch with the higher leagues in the country.

“I don’t think it was the FA’s decision, I think it was down to the league, I suppose for me the league has probably taken the easy way out,” he added.

“There is two ways to look at it, we’re in unprecedented times so I’ve always been a believer where players have worked hard all season, and I know it’s going to sound unfair to other teams, but whoever is bottom and whoever is top just leave it as that.

“Voiding a season makes me think we just seem to be out of touch with the rest of the leagues, step three to six, it’s like we don’t matter if that makes sense.”

Fowell, who is a black cab driver, also revealed he has been applying for work at supermarkets due to currently having no work.

“I’ve had no response from the supermarkets because I’m out of work, like a lot of cab drivers, I’ve stopped the insurance on my vehicle for the next three months as I’m not going to pay £500 out when I’m not going to be using it.”

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