Stocksbridge Park Steels manager looks ahead to 'vital' Sheffield Wednesday clash
The manager of Stocksbridge Park Steels has described how vital days like tomorrow’s fixture with Sheffield Wednesday are for a club of their size.
Chris Hilton, who is entering his sixth season managing the Northern Premier Division side, told The Star the windfall the club will receive as up to 2,000 fans come through the turnstiles goes “a long way to setting the club up for the year”.
“It’s very important for a club like us,” said the 43-year-old, “we’ve played against Wednesday u18s before and we’ve done this sort of thing with Sheffield United, and that extra revenue means the world to non-league clubs. It’s not cheap to run a club these days.
Stocksbridge, who famously set Jamie Vardy on his way to Premier League stardom in a three-year spell nine years ago, will send out a strong side to take on the Championship outfit, who have promised to send several first team players. Half the first team squad will travel to take on Lincoln City.
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Wednesday manager Steve Bruce, who is the subject of compensation negotiations to join Newcastle, was set to travel to Lincoln.
“It’s a great experience for all the players we’ve got here,” Hilton said, “there’s so much you can gain from sharing a pitch with professional players and I know everyone is looking forward to it.
“We’re a non-league side so the fact is that we’re missing a few players – some of the guys are away on holiday. But we’ll be putting out as strong a side as we can and we’ll be using some of the players we’ve got in a very strong youth section at the club.
“We’ll juggle them around and see if we can get a few guys at least 20 minutes where we can.”