Thurlow Nunn League preview: Gorleston boss Butler feels for his fellow part-time managers
PUBLISHED: 07:45 10 October 2015
Gorleston boss Ricci Butler believes the pressures of modern life is making it even harder to manage a non-league side.
The Greens’ chief is enjoying the challenge of running his beloved club – who compete in the fifth tier of the semi-professional system. But he admits football’s changing landscape is working against his desire to get a settled side.
The Thurlow Nunn Premier Division club’s manager said: “I’ve had comments about us using 38 players already so far but there’s more to it than that.
“We’ve suffered with unavailability and we’ve also had under-18s on the bench to give them a bit of experience about what they’re trying to achieve, namely getting in the first team. It’s good to get them involved and I’m not afraid to put them in either if they deserve it.
“Our club is very tight. The managers get together every Tuesday and Thursday and we sit down to discuss what boys are doing well and who should be rewarded – which the boys can see is happening.
“To be fair we’re blessed with a strong squad of 25 first-team players. But I have got sympathy for every non-league manager from Ryman League down to our level and below. It’s not as easy to get players to commit each week these days with what else happens in life. Hopefully it’ll settle down.
“It’s not easy if you’ve got a player who can earn £250 on a Saturday fitting boilers when we’re asking them to travel from Gorleston to Godmanchester and really only getting their travel covered. It’s not easy but you can’t blame players. It’s just how football is now and you you have to deal with it.
Butler, who swapped Great Yarmouth Town for their higher-level east coast neighbours this summer, will be missing seven players for a variety of reasons this afternoon when Gorleston welcome second-placed Felixstowe & Walton United.
“Hopefully we can start to get more of a settled squad now and given what’s happened with family and work commitments, holidays and injuries we’ve got to be pleased in some ways with where we are,” said the manager who was a well respected non-league player himself.
“We lost to Stanway in the 95th minute and conceded against Swaffham in the 94th so we’ve dropped points which has made our start look worse than it actually has been.”
Top-flight leaders Norwich United travel to Whitton United while Swaffham Town (Saffron Walden Town), Kirkley & Pakefield (Newmarket Town), Thetford Town (Long Melford) and Fakenham Town (FC Clacton) are also on the road.
In the First Division, second-placed Yarmouth travel to Cornard United, Downham Town are at Wivenhoe Town, Dereham Town Reserves visit Woodbridge Town while Diss Town make the trip to King’s Lynn Town Reserves.
In the United Counties League’s Knockout Cup, out-of-sorts Wisbech Town visit lower-level Northampton ON Chenecks.
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