Gs looking forward to playing in front of a crowd

By The Editor

21st Aug 2020 | Local Sport

The club is looking forward to welcoming fans back to Wey Court.
The club is looking forward to welcoming fans back to Wey Court.

As Godalming Town FC prepare for their first match in front of a crowd since March, the sense of anticipation is building at Wey Court.

The turnstiles will be open and the matchday atmosphere will be back as the squad take on Amesbury Town in a friendly tomorrow (Saturday).

Club communications director Glenn Lye says the team is geared up for the game, and looking forward to playing in front of a crowd again.

The last-minute FA announcement that clubs in tiers three and below could allow a limited number of spectators in from today prompted a flurry of activity at the Godalming club.

"We found out on Tuesday," Glenn says of the change in the rules. "That gave us three days' notice.

"It caught us on the hop a little bit, so we've been rushing about, but we have all the measures in place and we're looking forward to welcoming supporters back."

A gradual reopening

There are two steps to the reopening process, but essentially they mean that the Gs can open up to 15% of the ground capacity to supporters this week: that's around 150 fans.

From August 31st the figure is higher - up to 30% of the minimum ground grading capacity. Sadly that relaxation of the rules won't come in time for the big trophy game against Guildford City, which traditionally draws a large crowd, next week.

But the team are looking forward to tomorrow and relishing the opportunity the game will afford for a warm-up before the season begins in earnest.

And the preparations have been going on off the pitch all week.

"We've been busy making sure that we are Covid compliant down at the ground," Glenn says.

"We have been discussing how we are going to manage getting people through the door and how we make sure that people can enjoy the game without too many restrictions. The ground is big enough that people can spread themselves around."

The clubhouse bar won't be open tomorrow, although drinks will be served out of the kitchen hatch. "The bar and refreshments will still be available, albeit a bit limited," he adds.

Spectators tend to stand in large groups,so policing that will be important, but Glenn says that the club trusts its fans to behave appropriately.

"Generally speaking our crowd are pretty sensible people. They are aware that if the rules are broken we could have to go back to playing behnd closed doors, and no-one wants that."

The Amesbury team will be bringing some supporters with them, and Glenn says the reaction to the news that fans can watch the game has been very positive, so they are hoping for a good turnout.

"People are looking forward to it," he says. "We are hoping we will get north of 100; that would be very nice."

Godalming Town v Amesbury Town kicks off at 3pm at Wey Court, Meadrow.


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