The night football was the winner

Prestatyn Town players line up with some of the club’s academy stars before the game

No game of football is ever truly a waste of time.

No matter what the difference in standard between the sides, the chance to get some miles in the legs, test your attacking and defending, and try out a few new moves can benefit everyone involved.

More than anything, a game brings people together, creates an opportunity to make new friends with a common bond.

Prestatyn Town were criticised in some circles for accepting a friendly with Wrexham’s Bellevue on Thursday night.

While Town operate in Tier 2 Cymru North, Bellevue play in Tier 5 and are bottom of the North East Wales Championship Division.

Although the Wrexham side have won just two of their 77 league matches since entering the North East Wales League in 2017-18, results have always been of secondary importance to this great club of multi-nationals.

The team was established with a goal to provide league football opportunities to those from perceived adverse backgrounds or those from backgrounds of social poverty.

Along the way it has made many friends and won numerous awards, local, regional and national. Bellevue are true flagship bearers for our beautiful game. Success is not always measured in silverware, certainly not as grassroots level.

Prestatyn were initially without a friendly on Thursday evening after original opponents Brickfield Rangers pulled out.

Enter Bellevue at the 11th hour to save the day.

As a result of the game, Town got some practice in ahead of their return to Cymru North action at Conwy Borough on Saturday, and Bellevue further enhanced their reputation as community stars.

Andrew Ruscoe

Andrew Ruscoe, joint-manager of Prestatyn Town, takes up the story: “This evening was a great way to end our ‘Covid pre-season’ with a decent runout against Bellevue Football Club.

“Tonight was all about getting vital minutes in the tank ready for our league match against Conwy Borough.

“20 days ago the club ended the year with 6 senior players, 2 senior managers and a minimal amount of volunteers who had fallen out of love with the game.

“Fast forward that 20 days later and we now have 25 senior players hungry to play football, a full new management team of past, present and future, and a team of dedicated volunteers who are all smiling once again. The rebuild is now complete but the focus on getting results is now our main objective.

“Yesterday, unfortunately, Brickfield Rangers had to pull out of the fixture and it was looking likely we would have no game, but at 12 pm on the day of the match Bellevue Football Club stepped up to the mark and asked if they could play us. How could we say no !

“The evening before the game I felt so awful knowing that every volunteer who cut the grass, stocked up the products for the game and who booked time off work to watch us was not going to get chance to watch their club before Saturday. I felt so guilty but fair play to Bellevue they really saved the day.”

Andrew added: “Before the game the lads were reminded of the importance of what this club means to this community, what it means to the volunteers and to every 7-19 year old who plays for our academy and the lads responded in fine fashion.

“In regards to the game the lads executed everything we asked of them, they attacked in packs, they got back in units and they hit perfect diagonal balls. We couldn’t have asked for much more from our lads.

“Unfortunately, new signing Charley López got stuck in Crewe and didn’t get to Bastion Gardens, but new signings Ben, Mamz, Tom and Jacob all did tremendous.

“Before the game the club got criticised for playing Bellevue, but the sport of football is about creating opportunities, giving back to the community and creating memories.

“Tonight we made more friends than enemies and that makes Barney, myself and the players feel proud to be at the helm of this fantastic club.

“Tonight, football was the winner.”

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