The pitch is bearing up
Since my last article over 2 months ago, We have seen a great deal of use being put on the pitch at the Stadium. Six games in five February, the pitch had been used the same amount of times that Maine Road was used in total for the whole of the previous season, which is due to home draws in the FA Cup and the early rounds of the UEFA Cup.
January was our busiest month, coupled with it being our wettest for over a year.
Following the heavy use period, the pitch was opened up with the Toro Multicore, this was the first time it has been opened up since the pitch was constructed. Obviously we are not alone in this situation, other clubs I know have had up to fifty uses while certain others have had as little as 14 or 15, in a way you have what your given and get on with it.
The purchase of the lighting rig following a successful trial period will only help us, particularly with the forthcoming three nations tournament in June involving England, Japan and Iceland and also a 60,000 sell out concert by the Red Hot Chilli Peppers in mid June. Renovation work will be tightly scheduled but given a decent summer we should be ok.
The capabilities of the light rig were further emphasised in December, when as well as further strengthening both goalmouths, it has shown that it can be used whatever the conditions…fog, darkness or snow!
With the run-in consisting of a minimum of 18 uses before the England tournament starts, we are now just getting our first rays of real sunlight for the first time since October so the pitch should start to get better everyday. The feedback from the players has been positive with one stating that it is better than Maine Road last season-which isn't bad as it was voted best in the Premiership. So in the meantime, back to work for me-I would hate to think people thought I was saying too much!