The Non-League Bug
Many on here focus primarily on Premier League and international football. While this in itself is not wrong, with the vast majority of fans going to football league matches, it does mean that lower levels tend to pass under the radar.
Non-league really does feel so different to league football. Typically you are able to have a beer with the opposition in the social club or have a natter with the players. The grounds might be run down and the terraces decaying, but there is a strange glamour about it.
Many fans from my main club WBA will moan about a midweek trip to Newcastle. It is however, slightly easier to get to, has a better atmosphere and better facilities than say Kidderminster taking a trip to Southport (with the worst coffee I’ve ever had) or Worcester heading to Blyth Spartans. Typically to Newcastle there’ll be circa 1000 fans, a bit of atmosphere and a decent level of football under cover. To Southport or Blyth likelihood is you will be one of less than 20 on an expansive uncovered terrace in the freezing cold and wet. On the pitch during the winter months the pitch is so bad free-flowing football simply does not happen.
There is a dedication to non-league football that is hard to explain. It’s not pretty but it is addictive. Seeing primarily part-timers battling it out says a lot about how football began and how football should be. Football has moved on from its origins as a casual amateur sport but in non-league the spirit remains.
Whilst this may not convince you, we would still urge everyone to aim to visit a non-league match next season. You never know – you might just catch the bug.