Clough cry foul on ‘over-use’ of pitch

Clough Rangers FC have expressed concern about what they claim is 'over-use' of the Cloughwater Road pitch.
Clough Rangers FC have expressed concern about what they claim is 'over-use' of the Cloughwater Road pitch.

A local football club has cried foul over what it claims is ‘over-use’ of its pitch.

Clough Rangers have teams in both the Ballymena Saturday Morning League and Ballymena & Provincial League, who use the village pitch on alternate Saturdays.

But the club believes that the playing surface is beginning to suffer as a result of additional matches taking place on the pitch.

The state-of-the-art facility at Cloughwater Road was officially opened in 2013 and has also hosted matches in the Northern Ireland Milk Cup for each of the past two years.

A club spokesman told Times Sport: “There are sometimes youth matches take place on Saturday mornings when the morning team are away, and that is followed by the afternoon team playing.

“We know that a youth match followed by an adult match on the same pitch is allowed under Council rules but we had one occasion where the afternoon match had to be abandoned because the pitch flooded and another game almost went the same way.

“We’re not trying to stop anyone playing football - we just want Council to ensure that if there isn’t provision for these matches in Ballymena, that they consider alternating them around other Council pitches in the borough, to prevent over-use of any one pitch.”

Times Sport contacted Ballymena Borough Council for a response but had received no reply at the time of going to press.