St Andrews United boss fears players may be lost from the game

Charlie King has a lifetime of experience in football but believes the current hiatus risks losing young players from the game completely.
St Andrews United manager Charlie King. Pic by Blair SmithSt Andrews United manager Charlie King. Pic by Blair Smith
St Andrews United manager Charlie King. Pic by Blair Smith

The former St Johnstone, Livingston and Brechin City striker is player/manager at East of Scotland League club St Andrews United where he was able to guide them through just nine games of the current campaign.

The introduction of an enforced break across all levels below the Championship in January still sees United wait for a return.

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There’s still no clear pathway back for lower league sides to resume their campaigns and King admits that it’s a tough spell for players. He said: “I can say for sure that every one of my players gets teed off when one game is postponed due to bad weather, so I hate to think how they are feeling when the season gets suspended for so long.

"Me personally, I need football and would be lost without it, though I fully understand the situation.

"I miss kicking a ball, speaking to players, the camaraderie and I miss the emotion, which is hard.

"However, I have a genuine fear that players will quit the game due to the way this season has unfolded and that could make life ever more difficult when it comes to putting a team together next season.” Clubs at all levels introduced a raft of safety measures before they were allowed to start the season, and King hopes all that work doesn’t go to waste.

"I know that a lot of people worked extremely hard behind the scenes to get this season up and running so it would be very disappointing if that was all for nothing,” he added.