So competitive football is back at The Aspect Arena and the 2020/21 season is already well under way, it’s just absolutely gutting that we can’t be there in the new stands or on the new terrace to enjoy it at the moment.

There’s been many a word written and said about the current restrictions, the #letfansin movement and the apparent lack of sense when it comes to having fans at games at our level, so I’ll not go into that, but you just have to look at our chairman’s twitter feed to see how he and many of us all feel about the whole situation right now.

Of course, with no fans at games, that has left me with a bit of a gap in my roles and responsibilities. I’ve been a volunteer at the club for some time now, putting together the matchday programme being my main task, and without people there to read the regular ramblings I put together, I’ve felt at a bit of a loss at times.

Some clubs have been producing online programmes, and fair play to them. But I’ll be completely honest, I’ve been learning as I go along with the matchday programme, and I’d have no clue where to start in getting them online for public consumption with any sort of ease (thanks to the Wealdstone programme editor Mark Hyde though who has offered some help & support in that area.)

For now though, I’ll stick to my other jobs, putting together our monthly newsletter (sign up on the “contact us” page of the website, do it now!) and updating the website with various articles such as this set of would-be programme notes.

So in the spirit of programme notes, lets have a quick look towards this weekends fixture, a home tie in the 4th Qualifying Round of the FA Cup against Chippenham Town. To get this far we’ve faced Potters Bar Town and Whyteleafe, both were difficult ties in their own way, but now we face a side at our level league-wise, and a side that we actually managed to play twice last season (sadly losing both encounters). It’s always a tough game against the Bluebirds, and this time round will surely be no different, they’ve won two of their three league games already this season, and of course there’s the prize of a place in the first round proper of the FA Cup up for grabs.

Although, getting to the first round may not have the same energy for non league supporters this season, as while the prospect of a big name league opponent still awaits, the supporters will be left watching the game on a live stream from what could be a soulless empty arena such as Stadium MK. Bit different to being there eh…..

The magic of the cup is still there though, getting to the first round is still a massive achievement for any non league side, and I know that our lads will be doing all they can to make that goal a reality come Saturday afternoon.

Before I wrap things up, a quick note. Non-league football runs on volunteers, volunteers who have an incredible attitude and dedication, and who give up their time and energy for the love of their club with very little recognition or reward, and that’s the same up and down the non league pyramid. As a club climbs that pyramid though, more hands are needed to help carry out tasks such as recording games, posting twitter updates, editing matchday programmes and countless other things.

No matter how many people get involved though, the attitude needs to remain the same, we do it for the love of the club, hell I remember when I first started coming to watch the side and matchday twitter updates were being sent from the subs bench (much love Miki Hood), and that love shines through in what we produce.

I remember Danny Cowley said something back when he was in charge here, he’d only ever bring players in that had the right attitude to play for him and the club, if the attitude wasn’t there he wouldn’t sign them, no matter how good. The same goes for those helping out at the club, for the club to succeed, everyone must have the right attitude, the same team-orientated goal, and after some comings and goings recently, the guys & gals we have on board in our little media team right now, Raffers, Chris, Jack, Andy, Euan, Millie and even the new lad Kian, all have bought in. We’ve now got the right mix of people without any bad attitudes, although we’re always on the lookout for like-minded fellows to help us along the way (if you’re interested, get in touch)!

Thanks for reading, and hopefully someday soon we can all see each other at The Aspect Arena and cheer on the lads in person!

You Are My Concord!

Alan Jessup-Peacock – Concord Rangers Programme Editor