NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Ollie Drake hopes to stay on in the Godmanchester Rovers hotseat - but they can’t plan for the future just yet

Godmanchester Rovers in action against Hadleigh United in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division i

Godmanchester Rovers in action against Hadleigh United in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division in January. Picture: DUNCAN LAMONT - Credit: Archant

Boss Ollie Drake hopes to be in the Godmanchester Rovers hotseat again next season.

Godmanchester Rovers captain Micky Hyem and manager Ollie Drake show off the Hunts Senior Cup. Pictu

Godmanchester Rovers captain Micky Hyem and manager Ollie Drake show off the Hunts Senior Cup. Picture: MARK PLUMMER - Credit: Archant

Drake considered his future at the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division club’s helm last November, but then committed to seeing out a 2019/20 campaign ultimately cut short and declared null and void.

Rovers were much improved after Christmas and Drake is now keen to remain in charge at the David Wilson Homes Ground next term although he admits no firm decisions can be made during the current Coronavirus crisis.

And, even when normality returns, he predicts an uncertain future for many involved in the non-league game. Rovers are one of many clubs attempting to raise funds through donations from the public.

Drake, who has been Rovers boss since 2017, said: “It was a struggle for us in the first half of the season, but we’ve been excellent since the turn of the year and went on a very good run.


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“The commitment and quality the players have given me in 2020 is what we need to take forward.

“But it is very difficult to plan for next season at this stage – for myself, for the club and for the players.

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“Every single club will struggle to put a good budget together next season and attracting sponsorship will be difficult with businesses attempting to balance their books.

“We’re already clubs doing crowd-funding online to try to bring money in and we’ve lost a lot of revenue ourselves from clubhouse bookings.

“I’ve had early conversations with the club and my coaching team, but we really don’t know what is going to happen at this stage.

“I’ve not been in contact with the current players regarding their futures as yet because I haven’t got anything concrete to put to them.”

Drake is likely to attempt to persuade goalkeeper Niall Conroy not to call time on his career.

The Rovers number one announced he would retire at the end of the current season, but could now possibly be tempted to play on.

Drake added: “As things stand Niall is hanging his gloves up, but I’d love to think he will change his mind for one more season.

“He’s someone I’ll be having a chat with to see how he feels about continuing once we know more about what the future holds.”

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