Non league club boss Ian Whitehorne is targeting stay-away fans from both Sheffield United and Sheffield Wednesday.
The Sheffield FC manager thinks there is a significant amount of supporters who rarely go to the two big clubs, even though they regard themselves as Owls and Blades followers. Ahead of the seasonal kick off in the Evo-Stik Division One South, Whitehorne would love to pick off some of them.
“United and Wednesday probably average 20,000 but we know on a good day both clubs could get 30,000” he said on video at thestar.co.uk. “That means there are 20,000 plus football fans that are not going to games at the weekend. They are the ones we’d like to attract here. And I am sure when people start coming, they will be coming back. “People are always complaining about how much it costs to get in at Bramall Lane or Hillsborough, come down here! For £6 you can’t go wrong.”
Whitehorne’s predecessor in the manager’s chair was former Blades player Curtis Woodhouse.
And the present boss, on a personal level, is also Blades-biased.
But he says: “My allegiance is towards United but I have just as many Wednesday friends as United friends. We are a divided city, United being the slightly bigger half of it!”
Sheffield start off their campaign at Leek Town. “It’s a tough place to go but saying that it’s been a happy hunting ground for us over the last few seasons” commented Whitehorne.
“We have come away with a win in three of the last four visits. It’s never been an easy place, it’s always been close.”
Whitehorne, who claims his team has exciting players, say Belper will be big rival of their’s this term.
“They have got a lot of Sheffield players playing for them. And Scarborough Athletic will be a big team in this league this year.”
*What can non league teams do to make themselves more attractive to fans? Let us know your thoughts.