Football league could fold without new teams

PUBLISHED: 13:00 19 July 2012

Unless more players come forward the league will be suspended

Unless more players come forward the league will be suspended

Archant

A WEEKLY football league which has been running in Weston for more than 30 years is facing the final whistle unless new teams sign up.

Weston-super-Mare Sunday Football League has been run in the resort since 1976, and at its peak had up to 36 teams and 500 players.

But the number of competing teams has declined to a mere five, meaning league organisers have been forced to suspend the forthcoming season, which was due to start in September, unless new teams come forward.

League president and founding member Ken Warner has put the dwindling number of teams down to a number of different factors.

He said: “Nowadays a lot of people prefer to watch sport on the television as opposed to going out and playing it.

“It also costs more nowadays for fees and other costs – it is about £60 for the hiring of a pitch, each team has to pay fees to sign up and then there’s the hiring of referees as well.

“Also nowadays a lot more people have to work shifts on a Sunday. And even if they don’t work on Sundays some people might have to look after the children while their partners work.”

He continued: “It is a shame as there are a lot of people who will not be able to play football if we cannot have a league in September, especially younger players who are now too old for youth teams.

“We had this problem about five years ago, but we managed to get the number of teams back up after a public appeal.

“But since then the number has gone back down and we only have five teams which can definitely play.

“We would even consider waiving some fees to encourage more teams to play in the league.”

If you are interested in joining the league, contact Mr Warner on 07896 519578 or 01934 612410.

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