Southam’s season in danger of becoming a complete washout

Mike Harvey has joined the player exodus to Hinckley AFC from Southam United.
Mike Harvey has joined the player exodus to Hinckley AFC from Southam United.

There was a total washout in the top two divisions of the Midland Football League last Saturday, including Southam United’s match against Pilkington XXX, writes David Hucker.

Saints have played at home just twice since the beginning of November and will be hoping the Banbury Road pitch has dried out from last weekend’s deluge to be passed fit for the visit of Cadbury Athletic tomorrow.

Cadbury sit in 13th position but have played fewer matches than the rest of the division in what has become a disrupted season.

They beat Saints 4-0 at the TSA Sports Ground back in August and were last seen in action two weeks ago when overcoming Racing Club Warwick.

Caretaker-manager Terry Davidson will be keen to get his side back in action to build on the momentum of the 1-1 home draw against Pershore Town, a result that brought an end to a depressing run of 13 league and cup defeats.

They still remain rooted in the bottom two, but have matches in hand on the teams immediately above them.

Saints will be without central defender Mike Harvey, who has followed goalkeeper Tom Cross and full-back Lee Thomas to rivals Hinckley AFC.

“Regretfully, we cannot compete with the financial muscle of a team like Hinckley and have lost our third player to them this season,” said chairman Charles Hill.

“Mike Harvey had been our best and most consistent player since September.”

Despite losing two managers this season, Hill has received plenty of interest in the vacant post although, with Davidson happy to oversee the side in the interim, he is no rush to make a new appointment.

“We have received a substantial number of very credible applications for the permanent manager position and it will take some time to assess them all,” said Hill.

“I am interviewing applicants in the order their applications were received and would expect the process to take another one or two weeks. Terry has done, and continues to do, a great job in his caretaker capacity.”

Whoever comes in will have to develop local talent, a move decided on by Hill after the departure in mid-September of Quentin Townsend, who signed many of his squad from Worcestershire.

Townsend is now back at his old club Pershore and included six of his Southam signings in the side that he fielded for the match two weeks ago.

With no reserve or youth teams, the step up from academy level to the first team can be a big one and Saints need to bridge the gap with players from other local clubs who want to test themselves in the Midland Football League.