Seaham Red Star boss hopes for financial boost from Sunderland Under-23 cup clash
Seaham Red Star manager Mark Collingwood is hoping for a financial boost from his side’s Durham Challenge Cup semi-final against Sunderland Under-23s.
The Black Cats youngsters will visit the Ferguson Motor Repairs Stadium on Tuesday, February 18 as they look to win the Challenge Cup for the first time since 2008.
The game could provide a much-needed source of income for the Northern League Division One club, who have been hit by a spate of postponements over the last two months.
Home league games against the likes of Hebburn Town, Whickham and Billingham Town all fell victim to the weather inside the space of eight days.
The financial implications of the postponements and the two away fixtures that followed left Red Star facing a “hard slog” and Collingwood revealed that a big crowd against the Black Cats would “keep the wolves from the door”.
He told The Echo: “Earlier on in the Durham Challenge Cup, it really wasn’t important to us and it felt like it was costing us more to put a tie on than what we got through the gates.
“And we have had three big home league games called off recently and that has hit us hard financially because that is where your revenue is made.
“To get Sunderland, with where we are based, is ideal and lot of people in Seaham are Sunderland through and through and they follow the club week-in, week-out.
“Sunderland aren’t playing in the week when the game is scheduled, and I am hoping that we get some decent weather and we get a few hundred through the gates to support us.
“If we can get a good crowd in, it would keep the wolves from the door and see us through to a run of home games that we have coming up against clubs that tend to bring a big travelling support.
“As we are at right now, it’s a tough slog and it’s expensive, we are week-by-week financially and it’s tough running a Northern League club at the moment.”
Red Star visit in-form Newton Aycliffe on Saturday as they look to secure a third consecutive league win.