The Imps promotion rivals Tranmere Rovers have benefitted from some generous fixture news today, much to the ire of their opponents Boreham Wood.
The two were due to meet the weekend of the FA Trophy quarter finals, and with both teams involved a fixture change was needed. Despite having free Tuesday nights in March, the game has been switched to Tuesday 21st of this month, giving Boreham Wood just a week notice.
The decision seems unfairly weighted against Boreham who are a part time side, and therefore have players who may not be available to travel due to work commitments. It’s caused Boreham Wood chairman Danny Hunter to lash out.
“We of course respect the decision and the fact Tranmere wanted the game played ASAP. However, to have it forced on us by the league before the original match date had passed, at the behest of a big club, is alarming for a part time club like ours.”
Boreham Wood claim they offered several suitable alternative dates, thought to be in March, but the National League stepped in and ordered the game to be played this coming Tuesday instead.
“Managers at the other title challenging clubs I’m sure will not be happy when they learn that many of our players have other jobs and seven days notice for those player may mean they are unavailable.”
The two teams had 42 days to reschedule the game according to National League rules, and to order it to be played within seven days is incredibly harsh. Indeed I’m sure Danny Cowley, along with Mark Cooper and John Still, will not be happy at the apparent advantage this gives Tranmere.
Danny Hunter claims that Boreham Wood might only have eight outfield senior professionals, and may have to field academy players to fill the gaps. Their assistant manager might not be able to make it either!
Whether this is the case or not come next Tuesday is a different matter, but why the clubs could not play later is a question I’m sure fans of the clubs in the title race will be asking. If Tranmere fear a fixture congestion ,they should try being in three competitions at once!