20 Days Remaining

Monday 20th
posted by Morning Star in Sport

0 Altrincham 0 Stalybridge

by Jacque Talbot at Moss Lane

ALTRINCHAM manager Matt Doughty said that he has “nothing against” the protesters who walked out of Saturday’s goalless draw with relegation-rivals Stalybridge Celtic.

The two struggling Manchester sides faced-off on a slippery pitch at Moss Lane, as around 30 Altrincham fans protested against chairman Grahame Rowley, by walking out on 15 minutes.

Rowley has come under fire from some supporters after a series of poor managerial appointments and ill-judged quotes to the press regarding the Altrincham fans.

His side were relegated from the National League last season and are now facing the prospect of a second consecutive drop, leaving sections of supporters at breaking point with the chairman.

Organisers of the protest, a group named GoodbyeRowley, released a post-match statement hailing the walkout as a “success.”

And despite only 30 participants leaving the stadium, applause could be heard in response by pockets of the surrounding terraces, including the visiting Stalybridge fans.

“They pay money to watch the club so they have a right to an opinion. If they want to show that by walking out, that’s up to them. I have nothing against them,” said Doughty.

Altrincham had numerous chances to grab all three points throughout the game, with 19-year-old Elliot Newby coming close on several occasions.

The winger, on loan from Barrow until April, displayed why Doughty wants to retain his services at the club for next year, with an exemplary performance against the Celts.

“Newby could have had four or five goals today. He’s a very good player who can use both feet,” said the Warringtonborn manager.

“I’m very happy with the teams’ performance. We’ll continue to progress as a club as that’s all we can do. Remember, this [job] isn’t a chance for me, it’s me clearing up someone else’s mess.”