Fans are set to return to the J Davidson Stadium tomorrow for the first time in 14 months as Altrincham FC prepare to take on Yeovil Town at 3pm in the National League.
Spectators have been barred from all sporting events in the North West of England since the advent of the first national lockdown.
According to the new rules only home fans will be permitted to enter sports stadia in non-league. All of Altrincham’s three remaining fixtures fall at home, which will be music to the ears for lifelong fans.
The club has been allocated a maximum capacity of 1,231 supporters, but for this weekend’s fixture they have decided to cap the number to 600.
Tickets for tomorrow’s fixture can be purchased on the club’s website here.
Without a win since late March, the re-introduction of fans will hopefully provide a much-needed boost for both the players and management.
“We’ve got to produce a good performance to get them on our side,” said Neil Sorvel, Altrincham’s assistant manager.
Sorvel added: “It’s really important, particularly with the fans back in, that we give them something…and we play to the level we’re capable of.”
Altrincham FC sit 13 points above the relegation zone with three games left to play.
Relegation from the National League was suspended back in February, but Altrincham remain well above the bottom three and would not have fallen into a relegation scrap.
The current aim for the management is to finish above the other three promoted sides, which the Robins are on course to achieve.
“We’ve been competitive all season. But from February onwards the results haven’t been good enough,” said Sorvel.
Sorvel added: “It’s an achievement to finish top of the promoted sides.
“So, it’s really important we pick up as many points as we can and put in some positive performances in the next three games.”
In team news, Yusifu Ceesay and Joe Piggott are set to leave the J Davidson Stadium at the end of the season, while Nyan Bell and Yoan Zouma have also returned to their parent clubs – Stockport and Barrow respectively.
This weekend’s opponents, Yeovil Town, are facing difficulties of their own. With only one win in five, Yeovil boss Darren Sarll is also concerned that his side is ‘looking bare’ ahead of tomorrow’s fixture.
The initial April fixture between the two sides was postponed, and rescheduled for tomorrow, after the tragic death of former Yeovil captain Lee Collins.