New year return most likely for Greens, says assistant boss

Erkan Okay (pictured) believes it is most likely Soham Town Rangers will return to Isthmian League North action in the new...

Erkan Okay (pictured) believes it is most likely Soham Town Rangers will return to Isthmian League North action in the new year because of Covid-19 restrictions. Picture: DANIEL MASON - Credit: Archant

Soham Town Rangers are finally back in action, but despite an ever-changing situation, they are confident to face whatever comes their way.

The Greens marked their first game since the second Covid-19 lockdown on Saturday with a 4-1 friendly win over step three side Royston Town at Julius Martin Lane.

Goals from Toby Andrews, Declan Rogers and a brace for Joe Carden sealed victory, but it is unknown when Soham will resume their Isthmian League North campaign before the new year.

“We knew the lockdown was coming, and we thought we’d be back before Christmas so we tried to prepare, but it’s been delayed and all we can do is hope there’s a date and prepare for it,” Erkan Okay, player-assistant boss, said.

“I know certain people have been upset about it, but we’ve just got to deal with it. It’s a pandemic that’s going on, so we have to be mindful of that.

“It was good to get out on the pitch. It was evident that we were very rusty and we didn’t play great in the first-half, but in the second-half, we made better choices and did things right.”

Soham will look to welcome back two of their key players following injury lay-offs in striker Sam Mulready and defender Sam Kelly, who is returning to training.

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The Trident Leagues, which includes the Isthmian League, will decide whether to lift the suspension on fixtures following a government review tomorrow (Wednesday) after the FA confirmed Tier 3 clubs can allow home spectators up to 15 per cent of its capacity.

Okay said he doesn’t see his team continuing their solid start to the league season until the new year and believes other matters must come first.

“I think once all clubs agree, as we’ve got a lot of regions in different tiers, I can’t give a time of when we’ll restart. I’d think it would be the new year, I can’t see us resuming this week, but who knows,” he said.

“We’ve always said to the lads if there is anything we’re concerned about as a club or as players, we’ll discuss it.

“At the end of the day, people’s lives are at risk so if people don’t feel safe, we’ll respect that. We will always be in talks with the club and make sure it’s safe for everyone to play again.”

Soham are in friendly action at Wisbech Town tonight (Tuesday).