Winsford Wolves’ manager Craig Acton, believes his new side will be capable of challenging for promotion in Division Two of the Partially Sighted Football League when the season starts in September.
The Winsford manager and his friend Josh Downing, recently established the club after it became unclear whether their previous team Hampshire Bats, would be entering the league next season.
The pair have had help setting up the club from Acton’s sister Clare Acton, and Natasha Jenkins.
Acton highlighted what his role is, the progress they have made in establishing the new club and what his expectations are for their first season.
“My role officially is club manager but as a foursome with Josh, Clare and Natasha we sort everything out. I’ve set up a few of the friendlies and fundraisers. I’m club captain as well.
“We were chatting about it after we found out it may be difficult with Hampshire possibly not entering the league and we just thought we would look into setting up our own club to see whether it was possible.
“Things snowballed from there. We thought of a name and before we knew it we were looking at entering the league this season,” said Acton.
“Realistically myself and Josh are looking to use the first season to see the players gel and become comfortable with each other but looking at the players we’ve got, there is no reason why we can’t challenge for the league and push for promotion.”
The 28-year-old is very experienced in the game and revealed how he started playing partially sighted football from an early age.
He said: “I’ve always played football. I use to play in the schools tournament until I was 16 and then from the age of 16 I was in the Partially Sighted Football League playing for Loughborough Lions.
“After I had my knee operation two years ago I was with Loughborough for a couple of tournaments and then went to Hampshire Bats where I played the remainder of last season. I’ve been playing in the visually impaired league for 12 years now.”
Acton explained his new club have had some help from Cheshire FA and have already received some funding but have some events lined up to raise more money.
“We’ve had funding for kit and we’ve got a bit of funding in the bank which is enough for league registration, insurance and affiliation so we will be sorted for this season.
“We’ve got a few more fundraisers set up and anything raised from that will go towards transport for the players and we’re looking at getting tracksuits for the team.
“We’re also hoping to make sure we’re ready for future seasons and not just this one,” said Acton.
“Our local FA have been quite helpful. They’ve been in talks with Josh about affiliation. They’ve supplied us with bibs and some futsals and they are there to help us if we need anything.
“They’ve also offered to pay towards an FA Level One coaching qualification because we are looking at putting my sister through as our sighted coach.”
The Wolves have also had some support from North West Counties League Premier Division side Winsford United.
Acton said: “Winsford United have offered us help with friendlies and things to help us improve.
“We’ve got a friendly against Winsford United on 11th July and we’re looking to arrange a few more.”
The Wolves currently have a squad of 10 players and will play their first competitive match at the Partially Sighted Football League Open Cup in Swindon on Saturday 19th September.