Alan Biggs at Large: Diamonds to be unearthed on non-league scene

Hallam FC manager Ryan Hindley
Hallam FC manager Ryan Hindley
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Don’t let national Non-League Day pass you by this weekend...and its relevance certainly won’t escape Sheffield United.

The success of Che Adams and Kieran Wallace after being plucked from Ilkeston Town suggests there is much raw ability to be mined outside the 92.

So does the Blades summer signing of prolific striker Jake Wright from Hallam FC, who have also groomed young midfielder Callum Greaves for Chesterfield where chief scout Paul Mitchell is a much respected talent spotter.

Aside from Adams and Wallace, you’ll find non-league connections sprinkled around the Blades squad.

Chris Basham had a loan at Stafford early in his career, John Brayford started at Burton, young keeper George Willis spent a spell with Alfreton.

At levels below the elite, the professional game should be paying more than lip service to Non-League Saturday and be increasingly alive to it at a time when reserve team football has practically disappeared.

You’ll find a more competitive and meaningful game of football at Sandygate Road or Sheffield FC’s Coach and Horses ground than you will at any league club academy.

It’s tough stuff and played entertainingly because, as managers Andy Kiwomya and Ryan Hindley told me recently, they don’t have the time or resources to make exhaustive checks on the opposition and just play to their strengths.

I strongly urge you to check it out as a spectator. Or as a scout.