Coronavirus Causes Rhyl Football Club Closure

Another club bites the dust it seems as Rhyl football club supporters were left devastated after the news that the 141-year-old Welsh coast side was forced into liquidation after the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Board of Directors at Rhyl had to make the tough decision as they said they would have needed £175,000 of investment to have financial stability after this difficult period.

The news of Rhyl’s closure will no doubt be hard to hear for many football supporters as many have experienced similar financial difficulty, with most recently Bury F.C. being expelled from the English Football League and still at risk of liquidation.

But for Rhyl and their fans, this is an especially bitter pill to swallow as no one could have predicted the impact coronavirus would have had on their team, and the fact that they won’t be able to support them once football returns.

The club has struggled not only off the pitch as since winning the Welsh Premier League in the 2008/09 season, the club has filtered between the first and second division of Welsh football and had currently sat in 9th place in the Cymru North.

Many issues have prevented the club from keeping up their past successes, with local rivals Prestatyn Town having also experienced money troubles as the club had a £53,000 tax bill that needed a last-minute attempt to save the club from folding.

But the coronavirus situation has been all too much for Rhyl and unfortunately the club had no other choice but for the four-time Welsh Cup winners to shut down.

I spoke with lifelong Rhyl supporter Connor Hughes about how this decision will impact the town and community.

It is clear to see then that the impact will not just be felt by those directly linked with the first team as the youth sides and their coaches no longer have a team also, and it could be a long process before new teams can be set up leaving many youngsters without an opportunity to play for their local side and potentially having to play for teams further away from their home.

A question will also remain over what will be done with their current ground Belle Vue as the 3000 capacity stadium which has hosted the club since 1900, often holds matches for North Welsh clubs who qualify for European competitions as the ground meets the category 2 UEFA requirements, meaning that clubs will have to make a trip to the south of the country in order to play these games.

No fixtures anytime soon for football fans

However, there is hope on the horizon for their devoted supporters, as managing director Adam Roche and board member Tom Jamieson are looking to create a phoenix side that is hoping to compete again for the 2020/21 season.

So whilst everyone connected with the club is experiencing particular sadness during this time, the Lilywhites can only look to the future in the hope that Rhyl F.C. gets back to playing once again.

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