The FA have given very little or no consideration to the serious implications us smaller clubs will now face, says VCD Athletic chairman Gary Rump

Saturday 28th March 2020

VCD ATHLETIC chairman Gary Rump says The Football Association has treated all non-league clubs like scrap metal and they have no consideration as to their futures.

Most chairmen contacted over the last few days are angry that the governing body have failed to consult them over their plans to declare the 2019-20 football season null and void and expunge their results.

VCD Athletic are one of the smaller clubs in the Isthmian League South East Division but they operate as a sports club with tennis and bowls also being played at the Crayford based club.

“My view, or the view of my club doesn’t matter much, it never has and never will,” said Rump.

“Non-league football was recently scrapped for the foreseeable future, weighed in, scrapped, precious metal in my opinion, thrown on the scrap heap.

“Everything we have all jointly fought, worked, planned, played, financed hard for expunged, just like that. Pull up the ladder on the lower league sides. I’m all right Jack, see you all next season!

“The FA have given very little or no consideration to the serious implications us smaller clubs will now face in trying to keep everyone connected to their clubs motivated when the need arises to prepare for another gruelling season.”

Rump added: “The safety and well-being of everyone connected to our club is, of course, paramount.  We made the decision to close our entire club down on Saturday 21 March until further notice.

“It was most people’s view some weeks ago we should commence remedial work on our pitch and surrounding areas as the season was over.

“We were unanimous in that would be the case so we are already two weeks into groundwork in readiness for the coming season.”

When asked about the financial impact ending the season will have on the Oakwood club, Rump replied:  “The decision made by The FA will have a huge financial impact on many clubs throughout the land.  Our club is no different, it will affect us. Already we are seeing the loss of revenue throughout our club in its capacity of a multi-sports club.

“Naturally members become concerned about the future viability of the club, especially during these unprecedented times.

“I have, however, assured our many members and our two full-time staff we employ, that we will see this through and then when the day comes and normality resumes we will be stronger together. We will open our gates to welcome everybody back home where it’s nice to belong, VCD.”

When asked how the coronavirus is effecting his life outside of football, Rump added: “My life outside of football is a very busy one and thus far the virus has had no or very little impact on my life, my family, friends, colleagues and their ability to stay at home in the hope they remain healthy.

“The footballing community should keep believing, keep trusting and keep positive throughout this pandemic and put your trust in God that we will come through this together and we can all look forward to the day when our lives will be restored to normal and that we can all get back to doing the things we enjoy and love.”