Date:Monday August 1 2011
Rotherham United`s last pre-season friendly is this evening against Parkgate FC at their Roundwood home.
Before tonight`s game we asked a friendly PFC fan to answer a few of our questions!
How long have you been involved with The Steelmen?
Myself and my friend Rob who is also on the committee have been coming to watch Parkgate for nearly two years now. We used to follow Sheffield Wednesday (please don't judge us!) home and away for many years but when things started getting expensive we chose a team to go watch when Wednesday were away, it just happened Parkgate were closest to where we lived.
How did you get involved with Parkgate?
After a couple of weeks of coming to watch Parkgate we noticed an advert in the programme asking for volunteers for various roles. I work as a designer so thought I`d help with the programme, somehow that grew into programme designer, seller, webmaster, advertising, decorator, odd job man...
What was the first game you remember seeing involving Parkgate?
I can't remember what team we were playing because a group of us just turned up one Saturday when Wednesday were playing miles away, I do remember however that I fell in love with non-league football within ten minutes of being there. Good facilities, lovely people, great prices and the standard of football was a lot higher than I had expected, proper tackles, good exciting style of play and being close up to the action made for a good atmosphere.
What game stands out best in your memory?
The Senior Challenge cup Semi Final victory against Sheffield FC was amazing, a seven goal thriller against a team from a higher level, in front of our largest home crowd of the season. Also the home victory against eventual champions Farsley, 5 goals and some very dubious challenges.
Have you got many new players this season?
I don't really know an amount due to only being able to make a couple of games so far but we have the same basic squad from last year because there was very little wrong with it plus a few trialists and new blood.
Have you had any players who have gone on to play League Football?
Probably but I`ve only really been involved for a short time so I`m unsure, there are a few in our squad now that are better than some players I`ve seen make it in the football league!
What is your favourite and least favourite grounds you've been to?
Arnold Town is a decent new, out of town, purpose built complex and Selby is enjoyable as it's pretty old school and charming. I'm not really a fan of Long Eaton or Maltby, they're both a bit baron and sparse, Long Eaton's pitch is huge! I know I`m biased but even though Roundwood might not be the biggest it's definitely the most comfortable, clean and inviting.
You must have been gutted finishing in second place to Farsley last season - can you better that this coming season?
It was disappointing but in the end it was our most successful season ever, second place and a cup final are still a great achievement. I hope we can do one better, the team is still here from last year with a few additions so it's more than possible.
When you see the name 'Rotherham United' what are your first thoughts?
I moved to Rotherham 3 years ago and personally I`m so happy they finally got sorted out with a stadium, owners, etc. There's always local rivalry but when a local team that a lot of your mates supports is suffering like the millers did with the whole Millmoor/Booth episode you do start to rally round and offer them support. From a Parkgate point of view we are working very closely with Rotherham as they moved there training facilities into our Roundwood complex. We can't work together on the pitch but we all hope we can have a strong partnership off it.
Finally, which players should we be looking out for when we play you?
We're solid in defence but going forward you should keep and eye out for our front pairing of Nathan Forbes-Swindells and Ashley Worsfold, both were in the top 10 league goalscorers last year and they're like lightning!
Thanks for taking time out to answer our questions, I know what a busy man you are! Good luck to Parkgate for the forthcoming season!
Don`t forget, you can also catch Vital Rotherham on Facebook and Twitter!
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Date:Monday August 1 2011
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