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9th tier club withdraw from league after alleged death threats, secret filming and abuse

9th tier club Norwich United have decided to withdraw from their league after alleged death threats, secret filming and verbal abuse.

It comes off the back of ill feeling between players and coaches and a series of disastrous results on the pitch with Norwich United sitting bottom of the Eastern Counties Football League Premier Division, winning one game and losing the other nine, leaving them bottom.

Norwich Evening News recently reported the claims from team manager Darryl Tate, who said he had been punched twice in the head.

The team’s players went on strike with a number of those from the first team saying they were on the lookout for a new club, leading to Norwich United fielding a team of youngsters for the last few games.

They subsequently lost 5-1 to Brantham, 4-0 against Heacham, and 12-0 against Thetford, with their league goal difference -28 before withdrawing.

As per the report, the club are under investigation by the Norfolk FA, however police haven’t been made aware of any incidents.

A row first took place with striker Matt Blake revealing that death threats were aimed at him in front of his teammates with a secret camera filming them in the dressing room.

The team’s manager Darryl Tate, who only joined the club this season, issued his statement on Twitter saying he had been “undermined at every opportunity” during his stint there.

In the statement made public on the 8th of September 2023, Norwich United wrote: “As a club, we consider this matter closed and will wish to comment no further. We will now move forwards united, as we seek to build both on and off the pitch.

“As always, we are incredibly grateful for the support and commitment of our volunteers and fans, their hard work and dedication to the football club is at the heart of everything we do.”

Tate claimed he was struck in the head twice by a member of the club adding that “a punch in the wrong area would kill me”.

His statement read: “I’ve sat with my family and club and watched for long enough.

“I’m going to cover everything to you now. These are my words and they are the truth.

“Someone was sharing private management group messages about players to the players themselves in an attempt to undermine my position and get me out of the club.

“We all knew what was happening here weeks ago and sat silently just waiting to see it unfold.

“Some of the verbal abuse I received about myself, my family and my ability in football was nothing short of thuggery, something no manager should have to put up with.”

Tate goes on to say he wasn’t the one who signed a number of players, “believing the chairman loved them” and believed rumours done the rounds in the dressing room that players were being released and replaced were false.

He added: “All in all these people have attempted to shut down the club, something we would never allow to happen.

“It’s all about money and opportunity, nothing more, nothing less.

“In time we will find out why and what has happened and justice will be done.”

Tate said he held secret meetings within his house with him and those still playing for Norwich United’s first team in preparation for matches and updated each other on news around a spat on social media.

He said: “Players not brought into the club by me have been rough and rude to youngsters playing in the team.

“Certainly individuals have had official complaints made about their behaviour to spectators and young players during games.

“My job here is to protect the club, the chairman and the future. If standing up to underhand thugs costs me a job in football it’s worth it to get these types out of the game.”

Norwich United keeper and captain Ross Bilham backed striker Matt Blake, who received the death threats, revealing that striking players made themselves available to the reserves in order to avoid harm to the club.

Bilham said: “Players positions at the club became untenable on Thursday of last week when several threats on the life of one of my teammates were made.

“This is why myself and the other players have taken a step back in hope the club would take action.

“I have also received a message stating the changing room has been recorded, there are 16 and 17-year-olds in that changing room.

“Since people have been made aware of this incident we have been contacted by other clubs confirming that they too have been subject to similar abuse.

“The club are refusing to take action and in turn are threatening not to pay players.

“We have to stand up for what’s right here before it’s to late the club falls apart.”

This is what fans said as the 9th tier club withdraw from the league after alleged death threats, secret filming and abuse…

@normbygrave: Very sad news, can’t say I’m surprised after the last few months. Oh what could have been! 😢

@cfinch_10: That Norwich utd gaffa must have some dirt on the chairman to keep him as the gaffa and then to pull them out of the league.

@JohnBacon636582: As someone who attended their last match on Saturday, it was clear that they couldn’t carry on with the playing resource that they had left… a real shame that it should come to this for a club that I’ve always held in high regard when visiting as a spectator..

@DarrenGRSmith: Assume therefore, no one gets relegated this season as only one was going down….🤔

@stevegedge: Having been to their game against Thetford it was only a matter of time, frankly.

@orbitalforest: That’s a shame , hope they can bounce back from this. Were always a tough team to play against back in the day.

@NorfolkBallers: What a shambles. Shame on those in power to let this club and history dissolve over certain events which have occurred recently. “No one is bigger than the club”….. doesn’t seem to have been the case in this situation and it’s had a detrimental affect.

@linnet1976: Surely sacking manager and backing the players would have been easier????

@LeeJ02ncfc: Just get rid of the manager and players would have stayed. Mental

@rowlandsgw: There should be regulations around doing what Norwich United have done. Shocking

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