For a club in the Evo-Stik League Northern Premier, Frickley Athletic’s fans have their fair share of glamorous fixtures.
Athletic finished their last league season at Bury’s Gigg Lane ground in front of over 2100 people against FC United of Manchester, before winning the Sheffield & Hallam Senior Cup at Hillsborough, the home of Championship side Sheffield Wednesday.
And next Tuesday, they get another taste of English football’s second tier when they entertain last season’s League One champions Doncaster Rovers at Westfield Lane.
“It will be a fantastic occasion for the club,” manager Karl Rose.
“Last season we arrived too late to arrange a big pre-season game, but we’ve made up for it this year with games against Rovers, Scunthorpe, Sheffield Wednesday and Barnsley.
“Of course, we want to thank them for sending teams because it really helps us out, both in terms of preparation and finances.
“We’re all really looking forward to it.”
The friendly will be Paul Dickov’s first opportunity to assess his new Rovers charges in action on the field, and will also give him the chance to field any trialists he wants to assess.
“The manager will want to make an impression on the fans, and the players will want to impress the manager too,” Rose added.
“We’ve heard that Rovers are sending their first team, so it will be a good chance for our players to test themselves against seasoned professionals and see how big the jump is from tier two, and the level that we are operating at.”
Rose told the South Yorkshire Times that he has agreed deals to keep all the players he wants to remain at Frickley, and is still targeting a number of quality additions.
“We could still do with six, seven or eight faces in,” he said.
“Last season we struggled in terms of depth when we had a few missing, and we want to avoid that and have a good start.
“We had one point from the first seven games last term - I want us to really push on and get up that ladder.
“With the right players, and a bit of luck, there’s no reason why we can’t do that.”