Rivals raise money for Poppies during match

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A small but dedicated band of Kettering Town fans who travelled to Wales on Saturday have added their voices to the growing call for chairman Imraan Ladak to quit.

Around 20 dedicated supporters made the trip to Blue Square Premier leaders Wrexham to see the Poppies go down 4-1 despite a battling performance.

Earlier in the week it was suggested this could be Kettering’s last ever game and the message to the chairman was clear – if you want to save the club, you have to go.

But the day had heart-warming moments, as the Wrexham Supporters Trust organised a bucket collection which raised £670 for the troubled Poppies.

The Dragons made the gesture following the financial problems they have suffered in recent years.

Trust member Paul Matthias, who took part in the collection, said: “When we were in trouble Brighton, Huddersfield and Liverpool did collections – loads of clubs helped us.

“The goodwill is there for struggling clubs.”

Wrexham Supporters Trust chairman Peter Jones said: “The supporters’ trust’s ethos is a number of clubs could become trust owned. The biggest asset is being a fan because they can never take that away from you.”

Poppies supporters had mixed views on whether it would be the final match.

Barry Althorpe, 73, of Willow Road, Kettering, a fan since 1946, said: “It’s a mystery to me how we can go from so much enthusiasm in August to where we are now. The chairman is lax in giving information to people. Unless he goes, we go.”

Ian Wade, 70, of St Ann’s Road, Kettering, has watched the Poppies for 60 years and said: “I’m hanging on to every hope. I refuse to join in with the name calling. I don’t think it’ll be the last game, I hope and pray it won’t. You can’t fault the players’ commitment.”

Roy Briggs, 75, of Woodford, said: “We’ve got to get rid of Ladak.”

Charlie Meechan, 53, travelled from Scotland to watch his son Steve play for the Poppies.

He said he hadn’t been paid properly for months and there was no proper treatment for him when he was recovering from his recent injury.

He said: “The chairman doesn’t care about the club, the fans, or the community. I’ve never come across anything like this before.”