Gary Nicholson is determined to make further progress on and off the park with Pentland Athletic, writes Tom Scott. The LEAFA club, founded in 2019, finished third-top in the Sunday League Division 2 once points were adjusted for games that weren’t completed due to Covid-19 (as the placings indicate).
Gary told me “We dropped a couple of silly points which could have helped our final position.”
“We completed 16 games. The average for others was 14. Niddrie Star deserved to be declared champions.”
“When I was appointed Manager it was a case of pulling guys in just to get a base. At one stage we had around 30 at training. We started getting noticed, better players were approaching us, and now we have 5 or 6 still here in a 21-man squad. “
Gary is a registered player with Newtongrange Star in the East of Scotland Premier League, which has been shut-down in a new 3-week measure until the end of January. He was training and playing competive games.
He admitted “I really feel for our boys who can’t train or play at all.”
“When it was possible to do so, we managed some sessions and played a couple of friendlies, but in terms of starting the league – nothing!”
“Off the park, I have tried to implement a more professional approach. New Tracksuits, Polo Shirts, and better-quality Mitre Footballs for training. These things are important when you are trying to attract a potential signing for the club. We also hope to use a decent playing surface at Bilston School, near Loanhead, when we are allowed to resume playing competive games again.”
“The venue is very handy for our sponsor, The Pentland Inn, who have been really generous with support for the club, and means we can offer up after-match hospitality, and give them a turn, too.”