Irving fears season is over
Irving fears season is over

Co-Chairman Steve Irving believes there is a chance that Dartford’s season may already be over due to the Coronavirus.

Dartford are one of our club’s who have seen some very dark times in their history.

But after many years of fight and battle to keep the club’s very name alive, they find themselves arguably better placed than many to see this current crisis through.

One of those involved through all of those dark times around the turn of the century was current co-Chairman Steve Irving. This week, KSN caught up with him and as usual, the co-Chairman was honestly blunt with his opinions.

“It’s a difficult time for everyone,” he admitted. “The club’s been through some tough times financially down the years and this is going to be one that’s going to be up there with the “best” of them if this carries on for much longer, but so far we’re coping with things and so we’re alright at the moment!”

“The last few months we’ve gone from strength to strength – we were looking exceptionally good on the field and I think that our last game against Chelmsford was probably our best performance of the season!”

“So, it’s very disappointing that having built to that level, we’ve come crashing down but at the end of the day, everyone’s health is more important!”

“We’ll pick up from wherever we can and under Steve King’s guidance under the players he’s brought in, I’m sure they’ll be able to pick it up again at whatever stage that is whether it be May, or a new season whenever that may start later in the year.”

“I’m not sure that I really know what will happen next! Nobody will know until this awful, awful virus has been nailed.”

“Once the authorities have given the go ahead, we’ll be ready to go from there onwards. I really couldn’t second guess, but I do fear that the season may actually now be finished.”

“I think if it goes on too long it will be almost impossible to complete but that runs all the way from the Premier League, through the EFL into the National League, it’s going to be difficult to know how it’s going to end.”

“I do seriously hope that we can come to a conclusion, but I do feel sorry for the clubs below us who have had their seasons pulled from underneath them.”

Given those comments, we asked Steve for his views on whether the FA had acted hastily in pulling the plug on those clubs.

“I think that quite possibly they (the FA) will be sorry that they made such an early decision,” Irving admitted, “but as we know the game is driven by money from the top down and the pressure is on the FA probably from the Premier League and EFL sides more than anywhere.”

“The National League are doing their best to keep us involved in that whole set of negotiations. There’s money floating round the top end of the game and I hope that over the coming weeks we’ll hear that there will be some financial assistance to the clubs at our level and below, because if that doesn’t come there will be some casualties.”

“It’s getting very messy. We’ve had a decision from above that steps three to seven will be suspended completely and made null and void, but there’s still no clarity around how (if at all) the National League can finish the season and what method they will lose as no-one knows how much longer this suspension is going to carry on for!”

“And until we know when we can start again it’s very difficult to know how we’re going to complete the season.”