Aha, Kings Lynn the only national league North club who can stage board meetings in bed.  A reminder that Mr Cleeve and his young Russian wife own all the shares .. and all the bills too.  Post covid, the club’s financial position has weakened with the 2022 accounts showing a deficit of £438,000.  Those figures are for last season and part of that debt mountain stems from having to take a loan to keep going during covid.  

Maintaining a full-time squad and allegedly regular overnight stops too on average gates of 1,100, so surely the deficit will increase further?  The Linnets are another AFC Fylde.  Unless their owners are willing to heap in much more money, any promotion will most likely be followed by relegation 12 months later.  A route far more likely via the play-offs following their home defeat by the bankrolled Coasters this week.

Ah yes, Kings Lynn and playoffs…  had Lynn beaten Slough in the 2018 Step 3 play-off final, Hereford would have been promoted into National league South, rather than the North. How different life may have been for us. Clearly all their fault.

A recent home midweek game against Farsley Celtic, admittedly their third home game in 8 days, drew only 750 people.  Manager Tommy Widdrington was very unimpressed, sounding off at length to the Eastern Daily News. Here’s just a taster of his frustration:  “If you go up a division, if you ever go up a division again at this football club, 750 people through the doors would be laughed at. And we want to be in the next division. Does the town want to be in the next division? That’s my question to people.”

The same manager was very unimpressed with a spectator who heaped “vile abuse” at him after their defeat to Fylde and had to be restrained by his no 2.  Top at the tough.

As we know, all the best places are cities while Kings Lynn is a mere town of 42,000 folk.  The place is isolated, rural and with no tradition of football.  Their support at Kidderminster a few weeks back numbered 78 for a club top of the League.  By the way, the taste Police should be tipped off – Lynn’s change kit is bright pink.  Happily, they shouldn’t need it at Edgar Street.

The Lynn squad is much like everyone else’s, suffering from too many games too close together which is the real reason for some inconsistent results.  There are injuries in their ranks as tiredness takes its toll and players are turning out less than 100% per cent fit. A couple of the squad – Denton and Haircut Hargreaves’ son Cameron – have long term injuries.   Their goalkeeper Paul Jones is sidelined with a finger injury which works out well for his Manfred Mann reunion tour.  I remember making the point at Radio Hereford before the reverse game in Norfolk that key to Lynn’s success was being able to field the same keeper and back four every game. Not any longer.

The Linnets resorted to adding Tommy Hughes to their squad in January. That might sound a bit desperate to take on a 76 year old retired goalkeeper ..  but no apparently, Ipswich have released a young striker to them who clearly took the same name as some kind of tribute to the ex-United man.

Overall, Kings Lynn remain a determined, gutsy bunch with only 7 League defeats – strangely two of those were to Farsley Celtic.  Their away record is the fourth best in the division. They’ve won 6, drawn 9 and lost 4.  Going behind doesn’t faze them as we know to our cost.  Hereford took the lead at their place, played well but made crucial mistakes and lost 2-1.  Lynn also recovered from being 3-1 down at AFC Fylde and Scarborough to earn a draw both times.  Equally, they were 3-0 up at Chester and finished up 3-3 so their defence can be breached.

Top scorer is “the big bloke up front” Gold Omatayo with 14.  Gold is 29, born in Switzerland and enjoying his best ever season of finding the net. Scoring duties are shared around so the next highest are Josh Barrett and the managers son Theo with 6 goals each.

In six League and cup matches against the Linnets, Hereford FC have lost five and drawn 0-0 in the other. But don’t worry, Hereford are playing their trump card. The game is sponsored by Talking Bull and our team always rise to the occasion when the fanzine puts up the cash.  Yan can take the day off as he won’t need his motivational speech.

Really is about time we put one over Lynn – do be at the Street if you possibly can for this more interesting than usual game.   We might just catch the visitors with a form hangover.

Kings Lynn (ticketco.events)

Simon Wright

By Editor

Lifelong Hereford supporter who has endured the rise and fall of the club through progressive generations. Sports journalist, broadcaster and commentator who will never forget his Edgar Street roots.

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