Ridgeons League: Daniels criticises ‘unfair’ decision after Gorleston visit Wisbech Town in midweek

Joint-manager Richard Daniels has hit out at the Ridgeons League for making his Gorleston side travel to Wisbech Town on Tuesday night.

The Greens, who visit Felixstowe & Walton United today, had nine players missing for the rearranged fixture and lost 3-1. Although Daniels admits Gorleston deserved to lose on the night, he insists any side would have struggled with such depleted numbers.

'Fixtures are there to be fulfilled but it's hard enough as it is for midweek games because players have jobs so you need a bit of help,' said Daniels.

'We thought it was very harsh and unfair to make us travel to Wisbech in midweek. Sometimes this season you've had to sit down and pinch yourself about some decisions the league have made. We've got Felixstowe today so surely the league could have moved that fixture and others about to prevent us from travelling so far on Tuesday.

'Step Five changes are coming whether we like it or not and you would have thought the Ridgeons League would have wanted to keep their members on side. This incident means they've lost a lot of respect from us.'

Daniels said he felt 'let down' by some players who made themselves unavailable for the trip to Wisbech and insists he will keep faith with those who travelled or missed the game with 'valid excuses.'

Thomas Daniels, Jack Marsden, Mitch Forbes, Elliott Pride and Christy Finch will all return for the Greens, who host Norwich United on Tuesday, this afternoon.

Most Read

'There is a gulf between the First Division and the Premier Division but we've done ok so far,' said the joint-manager.

'We're not looking over our shoulders and we need to make sure we consolidate. If you said in our first season in the Premier we could finish 10th, 11th, 12th or 13th and reach the Norfolk Senior Cup final we'd have bitten somebody's hand off.

'The only good thing about Tuesday is it made us realise who is committed and who is not. Some had to work and that comes first at this level. But we felt let down by a few others who had we have been at home we're sure they'd have been available. We'll see how hard those players want to get back into the side over the next few weeks.'

Elsewhere in the Premier Division, title-chasing Wroxham travel to FC Clacton, struggling Great Yarmouth Town are at Haverhill Rovers, Dereham Town are away to Mildenhall Town while Kirkley & Pakefield visit Walsham-le-Willows. Rejuvinated Diss Town welcome Wivenhoe Town and Wisbech host Woodbridge Town.

In the First Division, table-topping Thetford Town travel to Debenham LC, with boss Mark Scott admitting 'irreplaceable' Matt Dixon, the league's top scorer with 21 goals, could be the difference between his side winning the league or finishing runners-up.

Elsewhere, Downham Town are at Long Melford while Swaffham Town welcome Godmanchester Rovers who thumped them 7-1 earlier this season.

Boss Paul Hunt, who has agreed to manage Swaffham next season, said: 'We were jarred that we didn't have a game last weekend and we look forward to testing ourselves against a very good Godmanchester side.'