Daventry Town have become victims of their own success as a direct result of the sudden departures of both club captain Liam Dolman and influential midfield dynamo Ross Oulton.
Player-of-the-year Dolman who clocked up almost half a century of appearances for the Cobblers as a teenager, has thrown in his lot with the United Counties League’s big spenders AFC Rushden and Diamonds.
Oulton will line up with Kettering Town in the 2014-15 campaign after playing in the losing side against the Poppies in the Southern League play-offs only two months ago.
Town manager Darran Foster put a brave face on things but admitted: “It is obviously a massive disappointment to lose players of the quality of Liam and Ross but we have to face facts.
“A club like Daventry just cannot match the finances available to former Football League and Conference clubs such as Rushden and Diamonds, Kettering and Rugby Town.”
There is only so much depth to the pockets of Communications Park chairman Iain Humphrey and even the extended FA Cup run to the first round proper last season was not enough to see the Town break even financially.
Rushden meanwhile have bounced back from bankruptcy as a new club whilst the Poppies narrowly avoided going under themselves when demoted three divisions a year so.
By contrast Rugby are on a sound footing financially so there can be no complaints at central defender Marcel Simpson’s decision to play his football nearer to his Birmingham home at Butlin Road.
Dolman meanwhile was far too good to ply his trade in the SL Division One Central so, despite an obvious hefty pay rise, it was hard to come to terms with his decision to drop down to the UCL next season.
Not the quickest of central defenders because of his huge frame, Dolman more than makes up for this because of his tactical awareness, aerial ability and willingness to use either foot.
Oulton was Daventry’s best attacking midfield player and was a big influence on the team’s blistering start to the 2013-14 season before finding life more difficult once the rains come down.
With Adam Confue having already defected to Rushden the Diamonds will have almost a full team of ex-Daventry men with which to go to war in what should be a successful step five campaign. What odds they also win the FA Vase?
Only a handful of players remain with Daventry from the team which served the Purple Army so well last season.
Step forward Richard Morris, Josh Blake, Ollie Wilkinson, Ryan Howell and Josh O’Grady
Sadly history has repeated itself.
The departure of manager Ady Fuller led to a mass exodus from the Daventry ranks two years ago.
Now the same thing has happened because of financial constraints. That’s football I’m afraid!
More on Daventry Town in this week’s Gusher - which is out now