The Big Interviews – End Of Year Review (John Kelly – Glenvale AFC)

Scottish Amateur Football News Writer Tom Scott had never been able to track down a Manager and Club from the Greater Glasgow Premier AFL long enough to conduct a Big Interview for his highly-popular feature, but he managed that during mid-November.

Into the Spotlight stepped JOHN KELLY, of Glenvale Amateurs. His feature topped Readers’ Figures again for the week of publication!

You were previously at St Anthony FC as Manager.

Yeah I spent 2 seasons with The Ants. It is a terrific club with terrific people involved.

Felix and Robert & Ants and the rest of Committee were excellent with me.

“Martin and Gerry, the Media Guys, were the best I have ever seen and a lot of Semi Pro and now Pro clubs are trying to catch them up in their work.”

” I felt it was the right time for me to leave as the new West of Scotland Football League set – up was very frustrating for me personally, and with the restrictions on training and playing with the pandemic it wasn’t ideal. But it is a great club – I can’t speak highly enough of them.”

Who else is involved within the team set-up?

“My 2 assistants, Steven Colton and Mic ‘Neil. And my 2 coaches, Chris Wheatley and David Mason.”

Has the team always played in the Greater Glasgow?

“No. The team moved to The Greater Glasgow set-up when I left in my 1st stint as Glenvale manager. The club hasn’t really kicked on and when I agreed to come back the team was a bit of a shambles to be honest, and that is why I agreed to come back.”

“I was planning on taking a bit of time away from football, but when Danny McKim, the Club Chairman, approached me I felt I owed it to him and the club to come back and get us back on a strong footing within the Amateur game.”

You appear very focused on sponsors and keeping them happy via publicity. Can you outline who is involved , and some of the projects?

“Any Amateur team will tell you how vital sponsors are. We have been very lucky with bringing sponsors into the club since we came back.”

“Our two main sponsors are Gleddoch Family Butchers, who will sponsor our new home and away kits for next two season and JW Grant who will supply our training gear for next two seasons. Big Mic was instrumental on getting Gleddoch Butchers involved.”

“JW Grant are a long supporter of Glenvale and their help is always very much appreciated.”

“We have a social media initiative running called The Glenvale 100 Club. We live in uncertain times at the moment and we don’t feel comfortable asking companies for large amounts of sponsorship, so we are asking companies to donate £100 to the club, and in return we promote their business through our social media outlets each week. So far we are amazed at the response we have had, and we are very grateful of that.”

“We will also be running a player sponsorship when we eventually get underway, and if we get a good response from that we will be in a very healthy position.”

How has the player recruitment process been during the Pandemic?

“It has been hard. I am not going to lie. I have been fortunate enough to build up a pool of players who have came to a few clubs with me and that has helped. There’s a sense of loyalty between us which is always a positive.”

“We have added a few of ex- junior players, and brought back a lot of my old team from my first stint as manager. There was a few boys already at the club, and I can’t wait to see them in action as they will all have a point to prove, but so far they have been brilliant.”

What are your aims and hopes moving forward into the New Year

“To get a game haha.”

“The restrictions placed on the Amateurs from the Scottish Government have been frustrating as there is protocols in place which should allow us to play, but for some reason that has not been the case. You can see the response that the amateurs have been brilliant with contacting MSPs etc, but I think it’s the lack of communication from the Government which is the most frustrating part of it.”

“Hopefully, soon we can get going, I think it is vital we do as there are thousands of men and woman all wanting to get back playing for their Physical and Mental Health.”

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