A COACH from Worcester City’s finest hour has called on councillors to stop bringing politics into the club’s push for a homecoming or “resign”.

Alan Wood, part of Nobby Clark’s backroom staff when City won the Southern League – then the pinnacle of non-league football – in 1978-79, insists “scaremongering” over plans at Perdiswell “is total rubbish”.

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Wood was flanked by two other City greats, Worcester-born-and-bred Graham Selby and former manager George Rooney, in passionately making the case for the homeless club’s exile to be ended after more than six years of groundsharing.

The debate remains as lively as ever on the back of city councillor Louis Stephen, leader of the Green Party in Worcester, listing his reasons for objecting to Perdiswell.

“The scaremongering about things like traffic is quite apparent,” said Wood, who works as scout for a Premier League club.

“Let’s face the facts, Perdiswell was the mecca of Worcester football years ago. Just after the war people played there on Saturdays and Sundays.

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“There was a youth league that produced some great players, the late Bobby McEwan, Paddy Mullen and others who went on to play for the club.

“When you weigh it up Worcester would play once a fortnight dependent on fixtures with people around from approximately 2 o’clock until 5.30.

“The scaremongering is total rubbish. When they were at St George’s Lane the streets had emptied within half an hour of the game finishing, people respected residents and did not park across gateways.

“I just cannot see them problem with Perdiswell. It is the ideal place and politics should never come into sport, if it does it is disgraceful.

“People looking for brownie points should look at the themselves, if they don’t consider this in a fair and level way they should resign.”

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Liverpudlian Rooney had two spells in charge of the club and settled in city with his family, remaining involved in the game to this day as a scout at Football League level.

He even oversaw the final City team to play at St George’s Lane, a legends XI that brought the curtain down on 108 years at the ground against Liverpool legends in June 2013.

“It has been a big part of my life, even though I am a Johnny-come-lately when you look at Alan and Graham,” said Rooney.

“I moved my family to Worcester because of my connection to the club and to this day I still take part in the pools (Gold Bond).

“It was always a stand-out place in non-league football and I would love to see it return to its former glory within the city boundary. Being where it is breaks my heart.

“I made a massive decision to move here in 1988 after commuting for two years, the club is certainly always in my thoughts and my heart. That’s why I came here.

“I don’t think people fully realise it will not be a football stadium like the ones you see on Match of the Day, it is going to be something small that will host senior matches maybe 30 days out of 365.

“I think there has been a lot of scaremongering from the people who are against it.

“It is not going to be filled to maximum capacity, I think people are afraid of something massive but the leisure centre will dwarf the ground they intend to try to build.

“I can’t see what the fear is. It is not going to be used every Saturday, I think people are afraid of something that is not going to happen.

“While it has to meet with certain requirements it is going to be quite small. We are talking about an average of 6-800 people per game.”

Selby, a full-back signed to replace Everton-bound John Barton who became a veteran of more than 300 appearances, added: “My birthday present as a kid was always a City season ticket. That was in the days of Deeley, Ward, McParland and Clamp.

“What I don’t understand is why the club was not allowed to purchase somewhere in or around the city when it had the money from St George’s Lane.

“The club needs to get back to Worcester because it has been such a big part of people’s lives.

“Perdiswell used to be the centre of football in Worcester, even going back to when I was at Rainbow Hill School and the kids would come down to get changed.

“There were loads of pitches and everyone seemed to be there on a Saturday afternoon so it has always been a place for football but I think the biggest thing is just to get the club back within the city boundary.”