Early end to season could help our fortunes, says Wisbech St Mary boss

Wisbech St Mary vs AFC Walpole

Wisbech St Mary have not played a match since November, and first-team boss Stuart Beckett believes ending the season now is the best option. - Credit: James Richardson

Stuart Beckett says he cannot see how his Wisbech St Mary side can complete the season and hopes a longer pause can help him try to reignite his side’s fortunes. 

Saints are just one club between step three and six of the non-league pyramid awaiting a decision on whether the 2020-21 campaign will be terminated early due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The FA said a further update will be provided once Prime Minister Boris Johnson has laid out a ‘roadmap’ on February 22 on easing lockdown restrictions. 

However, Beckett’s mind has already been made up. 

“As a community club, we have to look after the community and I think for us to restart, it has to be 100 per cent safe for us to want to do that as a club,” he said. 

“I don’t know how if we were to continue, how and where you’d fit the games in. 

“Some teams will want to carry on and want to finish the season as they’ll want to go up to that next level. 

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“I think the safest thing to do is to finish the season now and go again in the summer when everyone, in theory, should be vaccinated or feel safe enough to get out and about."

Saints sit bottom of Thurlow Nunn League First Division North and have played just 14 games so far this season. 

The club, which declined to say whether it has officially voted to end the season early, could be in line to receive some of a £10 million government grant for non-league clubs below elite level. 

Like many clubs, it has already been a tough time on and off the pitch since last year, but Beckett believes his plans to lift his team’s spirits can benefit with an extended break from action. 

“I’d be confident the players would stay and I’d be confident of strengthening as well,” he said. 

“I think the most frustrating thing is nobody knows what or what not to plan for. 

“Progress was never going to be a quick fix. It’s a hard road, it’s hard work and it’s something we’re not afraid of.  

“We’re not going to start beating teams we don’t perhaps deserve to. It’s a case of working hard for what you get and, in the end, we hope to be in a position where we win more games than we lose.” 

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