Two of Golcar United’s senior players have reflected on a great first season for the club in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division.
The Weavers finished ninth in their first season in Step 5 football and also reached the final of the League Cup, losing 2-1 to promotion-winning Winterton Rangers.
Player-coach Joe Skarz, part of the club’s management team with Gav and Ash Connor, said: “I am so proud of the team and the club for the season as a whole.
“People wrote us off at the end of October and I’m sure everyone at that point, other than the management team and the players, thought we would go down.
“However, to come through the other side of that and finish ninth and reach a cup final is a credit to everyone involved at the club.
“I am happy to have a little break, I can’t deny that. It’s more mentally tiring than physically. The work Ash and Gav do with input from myself nobody sees.
“It’s relentless every single day and managing a club at this level is so much more difficult than when you’re at a professional club with loads of staff in different departments around you.
“The work and hours they both put in is incredible and they have both become the two people I speak to the most on my phone.”
Defender Skarz, 33, who had a spell at Huddersfield Town, is still going strong on the field.
“Personally I’ve played every game this season – 48 games out of 48 – but I absolutely love it more than I’ve ever done,” he said.
“Hopefully next season it will be another season of progression for the football club. This year we have had 1,320 people at our stadium for a cup semi-final. Golcar United are now on the football map.”
Attacking midfielder Dan Naidole echoed Skarz’s thoughts and said: “I am really proud of the squad and the staff. It was only a few months ago we were floating around relegation but we stuck together and ended up ninth in the league and got to a cup final.
“We did all that in Golcar’s first ever season in the NCEL Prem which we should be proud of even with the outcome of the final.
“I also want to say that the support from the fans from the start of the season until the end has been tremendous. Home and away they really have been our 12th man, even more so through the tough times. Myself and the players really appreciate the support we get.
“It’s been a long season and I’m ready for a break. But having said that in two weeks’ time I’ll be wanting to get back out playing again!
“Looking back on the season overall I think the start we had was poor. Even if we performed well, we didn’t come out with the points. Then half way through the campaign until the end of the season we finished really strong and went on a good run.
“We need to learn from this going into next season and aim higher. We’ve had a season at this level now and we can see the standards it takes to get near the top of the table and that is where we want to be.”
Images by Huddersfield Hub photographer: SEAN DOYLE