St Francis Rangers Football Club folds: 'We hoped we could see the season out, but it was not to be'

John Goss
John Goss

St Francis Rangers have pulled out of the Southern Combination Football League.

The news came in a statement from the club chairman Rob Ward and secretary John Goss, It's been a rollercoaster ride for the Colwell Road Club in the last three years where they have seen managers come and go.

And on Friday, the latest manager Jack Stevens resigned.

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And that appears to be the straw that broke the camel's back regarding whether they continue to run as a football club.

The statement said: "It's a sad day for St Francis Rangers 1st Team. We hang up our boots for good.

"Almost three years to the day we were dubbed 'The Worst Football Team in England' and contemplated pulling out then, but we could not afford the fine. This time we have no option.

"It's been a rocky five years since local players left the club. We've limped through with no manager, new managers and coaches, and on Friday, our current manager, who stepped up in September, Jack Stevens resigned.

"We cannot attract local players when teams around us are paying players.

"We have a small committee of which five active members run things behind the scenes.

"The players we have travel from a distance and get no expenses so training sessions never have more than 5-6 players there. You cannot play a good standard of football without training. Player commitment in general, is not what it was. They don't want to travel around the County to play and other commitments take priority over training and matches.

"The Under 18 team are a young side and have potential but at this stage, not ready for adult men's football.

"We would like to thank our President David Richardson for his continued support, our past and present volunteers, our few loyal supporters and sponsors, without these we would not have survived this long.

"This has not been an easy decision. We hoped we could see the season out, but it was not to be."