It wasn’t the scoreline they would have wanted, but Barnstaple Town’s captain and manager were given a warm send-off as they left the pitch at Mill Road for the final time.
Barnstaple Town manager Barry Yeo was not concerned with the final score on Easter Monday as he and captain Aaron Harper-Penman waved goodbye to the Mill Road faithful.
Barum were well-beaten in their final home game of the season, losing 4-0 to promotion chasers Tiverton Town.
For Yeo and his captain, it was their final game at Mill Road, with both deciding to step down at the end of the season.
For Yeo, his side’s heroics against Hereford on Saturday had taken their toll going into Monday’s game.
“It was a damp squib,” he said.
“I thought we looked tired. The effort the guys put in on Saturday was second to none.
“I’m not going to be critical of them today. In front of all these supporters today, we wanted to do it for them, but we were just running on empty.
“We were outdone by a very good side who I thought were quality today in every aspect.
“The result is immaterial. We’ve come into this league and we’ve not just survived but we’ve survived well.
“We’ve played well, played some good football and made some good friends and we’ve tried to do the right things.
“We played Hereford and then Tiverton today and it’s a lot to ask our lads.
“It’s just tough. They’ve run a marathon twice over and I’ve got to give them credit. I’m proud of every single one of them.
“Our season wasn’t about today. I’m proud of everyone that’s here, everyone that’s turned up and whoever takes over I hope the boys stay and I wish them every success.
“They’ve got a fantastic club in healthy hands and I hope that in the future they can carry on and bring success to this football club, because this town deserves it.
“It’s been a great journey and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.”
Harper-Penman was sent off with 20 minutes to go, but received an ovation from supporters as he was given his marching orders.
Speaking to the crowd after the game, he said: “I want to apologise for that red card.
“I just want to say a big thank you to Barry and Baggs. They’ve done the club wonders over the last few years and without them we wouldn’t be where we are now.
“Obviously to all the players, they are top boys and are great to be around, and to all you guys, you’ve been brilliant over the years and I can’t thank you all enough.”
Writing in the match programme, Harper-Penman said: “I have loved being a Barnstaple Town player.
“To be captain of my home town club is something I was very proud to be and I will look forward to supporting from the sidelines with all you amazing supporters next season.”