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To many people, non-league is an abyss, a wasteland of over the hill cloggers and youngsters who didn’t quite make the grade higher up the food chain. And whilst (Macc aside!) there weren’t any outstanding teams in the National League this season, there are some fine players who could certainly make it at a higher level.
Here are five of the players that stood out for me when I saw them play against Macc this season:
New Ground number 139
First visit = 19/11/16 Aldershot 1-2 Macclesfield (National League)
A ground I have had somehow managed to miss over the last few years, but I finally managed to make the trip to do commentary on this league game, with both sides fighting for a play-off place.
A strange season, which saw us within touching distance of the play-offs for much of the season, without ever looking likely to break into the top 5. A ninth place finish was not a disaster by any means though.
The FA Trophy run was a bright spark, with a battling victory over Tranmere in the semi-final the high point. The Wembley showpiece was a step too far, as a Jon Parkin inspired York took home the trophy after a 3-2 win.
These are my thoughts on how each player performed in 2016/17 – all players started the season as a 5/10.
An excellent book and one that might not be imitated in future. This is the story of growing up in the time before the transformation of Manchester City, in the 50s and early 60s with a dominant United –
It is a tale that reveals what it is like to be on the outside looking in, with his nose pressed up against the sweet shop window watching the United supporters take all the wine gums.
It has a snazzy new cover now it has been re-published, well worth a read though, even if you happen to have an affiliation with the red side of Manchester.
Ground number 141
First visit – 25/2/17 (Dulwich Hamlet 2-2 Macclesfield – FA Trophy Quarter Final)
FA Trophy final quarter final day and the draw had thrown up a tricky encounter at Dulwich Hamlet. Another in the category of may not get chance to watch Macc here again – so best go just in case.