Brodsworth Welfare have not looked back since the turn of the year.
The Central Midlands League Northern Division outfit ended 2013 with eight successive defeats but they’ve lost just the odd game during a weather-affected start to 2014.
It is a sequence of results which has delighted manager James Irwin, who exchanged roles with his number two Simon Hogg late last year,
Since taking over, James has brought in three under-19s players – defenders Andrew Abbott (son of club chairman Barrie), Theo Mowatt and the versatile Josh Dodds.
“They have all done well but my hand was forced to an extent because of injuries to captain Mark Vickerage (ankle) and Gary Mundy (broken leg),” said James, who also helps run the under-8s.
As well as running a reserve team in the Doncaster Senior League and an under-19s team in the Northern Alliance, the club also field several sides in the Doncaster Boys League.
Both their under-17s and under-14s sides won their respective competitions this season.
“It shows that we’ve got some good young players coming through,” said Barrie.
Another boost to the club’s fortunes came eight days ago when Mayor Ros Jones officially opened their new dressing room block.
Their old dressing rooms were burnt down several years ago and the club had been operating from portable buildings since then.
But as from last week the club, who have a welcoming tea room and two stands, can boast facilities better than most at their level.
Most of the money to build the dressing room block, which comprises home and away accommodation as well as an officials’ room, came from a £42,500 grant from National Lottery/Sport England.
Mindful of past problems, the club have installed security measures.
“We have a good relationship with the local police and we’ve given them a key for the ground and they check in on their rounds,” said Barrie.
He added: “Things are looking up both on and off the field but we are under no illusions that we are anywhere near where we want to be.
“Our next project is to try and get some sort of local training facilities.
“We also to try and improve average attendances.
“As a club we are always on a knife-edge financially because we don’t get as many people watching us as we’d like.
“When you consider that it costs over £100 every home game just for officials, it’s not cheap to run a club at this level.
“It cost us £60,000 last year and it takes a lot of hard work to generate enough money to keep things going.”