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Mixed season for Cables

Richard Tigwell takes a look at Prescot Cables season

This season will be remembered with a mixture of immense pride and frustration. 

There was a strange parallel between the opening weekend defeat away to Trafford to a goal conceded in the dying seconds and the final game of the season also away to a side from Greater Manchester Cables grabbed a late winner in the dying seconds.

In order to measure the success of the season some perspective is required.

On the one hand Cables finished the season with the highest average attendance of any club in the Evo-Stik League. With regular attendances of over 400 this is a far cry from the days when the club would struggle to attract more than 100 people through the gates of Volair Park. 

This is an incredible achievement and something the club should be proud of. It is a testament to the style of football Brian Richardson’s team play that people are choosing to get their football fix in Knowsley, rather than going to Anfield or Goodison.  

Likewise, off the pitch the club is a welcoming place for families from across the area, ‘Dad n’ Lad for less than £10’ proving incredibly popular for residents.  

The club has also hosted several charity events, including the most recent Jack Riding and Adam Ellison celebrity football matches, proving that the club is a valuable asset within the local community. 

On the pitch, after much promise, the season finishes with a lot of ‘what ifs’.  Having previously reached the play-off final last May, and only missing out on promotion to a late goal from Bamber Bridge, much was expected going into this season.

Cables however finished in 7th place, outside the promotion play off places by just 3 points. 

There were several memorable performances from the boys in Amber and Black at home this season. Runcorn Linnets came to town in early October when 700 people witnessed a late Cables winner against the nine men of Linnets.  

Likewise teams like Newcastle Town and Market Drayton were comfortably dispatched when they came to Prescot. Local derbies against Widnes FC and Skelmersdale United saw victory for Cables. 

Draws against eventual League champions Atherton Collieries and fellow high flyers Radcliffe Borough were high points.  However, a run of fixtures between the end of December and mid-March saw the Pesky Bulls take just 11 points from as many games.  This run ultimately put pay to any hope Cables had of challenging for the top spots. By the time Leek Town had beaten them 1 nil in early April, the promotion chase was effectively over. 

In the cups, Cables reached their fourth Liverpool Senior Cup Final in a row and were aiming to win their 3rd on the bounce.  An incredible 1200 people crammed into Volair Park to witness a Southport side packed with star names from the Conference North taken all the way to penalties by the home side.  When Jack Lenehan saw his penalty crash against the bar, and the subsequent Southport spot kick dispatched, the trophy would not be staying on Knowsley this year.  

In the FA Cup, there was an early exit to Irlam FC while a good run in the FA Trophy, saw victories over Kendal Town and high flying Northern Premier League Side Warrington Town.  However, two late goals away to Halesowen Town in October meant that any thoughts of a trip to Wembley would be curtailed for at least twelve months.  

On an individual basis, players like Luke Griffiths became fans favourites with a number of stellar performances while captain James ‘Kirk’ McCulloch was voted the player of the season for his leadership skills on and off the pitch as well as his ability to score crucial goals at important times.  Fan favourite Lloyd Dean also finished the season strongly while striker Chris Almond won the ‘Golden Boot’ with 28 goals for the season. 

Pacey Winger Michael Monaghan was also rewarded with his excellent performances this season with a life changing opportunity to go and play football professionally in Australia. 

So as the curtain falls on the season, while it ends in some frustration, there is also much to look forward to.  Hopefully the attendance numbers will continue to go in the right direction.  The club now has more followers on social media than ever before and fans are being treated to attractive attacking football when they come through the turn styles. 

Next season will hopefully see the team push on and again challenge for honours.  The atmosphere at Hope Street will also hopefully be an attractive place to place football to players looking to move to the club.

With increased crowds comes the need for improved infrastructure and the need for volunteers and local sponsorship is greater than ever before and the club would welcome and encourage all to get involved.

 

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