Soccer fans are rallying round a Huddersfield club fighting for its future.

They have pledged hundreds of pounds to try and save cash-strapped Marsden FC.

But the club is well short of the £4,000 target it set for survival.

The club said it faces closure unless it can raise the cash by the end of February.

The club, which has been around since at least 1900 and at Fall Lane since the 1920s, has suffered a number of critical blows in recent months.

Officials were left reeling after a raid on its clubhouse last September and since November prolonged bad weather has meant most of its matches have been called off.

Their online fundraising campaign has seen money pledged.

And now a former top professional player has backed the cause with an impassioned plea.

Keith Hanvey, who played for Town from 1978 to 1984, believes the cash-rich Premiership clubs should offer help to grassroots sport.

He said: “For over a century local youngsters have enjoyed the game of football due to hard work of stalwarts of the community. Probably some players have gone on to professional clubs with the grounding and opportunity given to them by the people who have run such community sports. It was with sadness that I hear the club is in financial jeopardy and might have to end over a century of giving pleasure and recreation to youngsters.

Keith Hanvey

“I then read about the Premier League, our English Premier League, the transfer fees well into the millions and salaries of £300,000 per week. Next year the broadcast rights will net over £8 billion, yes £8 billion. Who will benefit from this English Premier League bonanza, yes you guessed it, even more for the players, managers and agents.


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“What happens to the grassroots game in our country whilst English clubs receive this obscene sum? They struggle for money even to create a facility for English communities to nurture their young talents.

“The FA and Premier League should be made to take a fair proportion of this £8billion and make sure every, village, town and city in this country has facilities for youngsters to enjoy sport and football in particular.

“Unless we do this now we will have more closures of facilities like Marsden FC and the pyramid of this country will collapse and waste years of community hard and rewarding work.”

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