By Joel Lampkin
— Tranmere Talk (@TranmereTalk) December 17, 2017
An event that highlighted the gap between the Football and National League as a floodlight failure forced Tranmere Rovers and Solihull Moor’s first round FA Buildbase Trophy tie to be abandoned.
While no blame, or flack has pinpointed on the club by official parties, founded just 10-years ago – it only furthers the stigma that The Super Whites are a club not longed for Fifth Division mediocrity.
With broken nets, and electrical issues, few issues of any kind seem to take place at Prenton Park, with a high level of professionalism unrivalled in the league.
However, no problems are solved by complaining on Twitter, and The Rovers and The Moors have acted swiftly with the governing bodies to establish a plan of action for the replay.
According to a Tranmere press release for fans who made the trip to Damson Park on Saturday but cannot make it on Monday:
“Supporters who attended Saturday’s game and ARE UNABLE to attend Monday’s fixture can obtain a full refund which will be organised by Tranmere Rovers on presentation of their match ticket stub at the Club Shop at Prenton Park.”
Also, for fans who did attend, and are willing to take a second trip down to Solihull:
“Tranmere supporters who attended Saturday’s game and ARE ABLE to attend on Monday night can gain free entry on production of their ticket stub at the turnstile.”
Prices for those who did not attend but would like to make the trip tomorrow:
“Adults £15 | Concessions £10 | U18s £10 | U12s – Free (when accompanied by a paying adult).”
Is this the correct thing to do? Will Yellow cards be cancelled? Will Ollie Norbun’s goal stand? The sheer number of questions yet to be addressed has created a sense of embarrassment .
Yellow Card issue
The most popular question amongst the Super White Army, was whether James Norwood’s yellow card would stand, and according to the governing body of FIFA; it should not.
It happens, could have done without it though. What is unacceptable is yellow cards standing when goals etc are wiped clean from the record
— David Byrne (@davrosSWA) December 16, 2017
FIFA (2011) “If an abandoned match is to be replayed, any caution issued during that
match shall be annulled.”
A simple and clear cut case; not really. Unless a comment is made directly from the governing body or club themselves, it is fair to say no one knows the outcome as logic rarely dictates in football.
With their backs against the wall it was never likely that Solihull would fold and vanish like some fans on social media called for, with a replay of the opening match the likely and resulting outcome.
Rovers manager Micky Mellon serenaded the press with a harmony of “Dont know” during his post (can you call it a match?) press conference, when quizzed about the various outcomes.
The decision works out best for both clubs in a sense that a football match will be played, but for the fans who travelled the two hours to Damson Park, its time they cannot get back; win or not.
Tranmere were already 1-0 up in the tie thanks to a Norburn free kick on the 34′ minute mark, but with the home-side now prepared and aware of how Tranmere will play it may be a much more scrappy win if The Super Whites are to advance.
While Tranmere have struggled in recent years, the prestige of the club has not. The fans will chant and shout, the football continues to improve, but the success has sadly not followed.
Others may dip below standard in the National League but the Wembley of the Fifth Division has not; Rovers are a club built for better, but for now they remain giants amongst men.