Midland Football League Newsletter
29th October 2015
Coleshill Town striker, Danico Johnson, has made a three league jump to sign for National North Hednesford Town. The lad can’t stop scoring and managed to find the net on his debut at home to Nuneaton Town. Paget Rangers Football Club was originally formed in 1938 and currently plays in the Midland Football League 2nd Division. They are at the heart of the local community, based in Erdington, Birmingham and play home games from Church Road in Boldmere. Due to the withdrawal of a major sponsor they need to raise essential funds to ensure that the football club can continue, become self-sustainable and then go on to grow and prosper in the future. Already members of Glasgow Rangers Supporters Trust have rallied to the cause with donations. Coton Green are delighted to announce that Rob Masefield has been appointed as the new 1st team manager. Rob brings a wealth of managerial experience and football knowledge. Local to the Tamworth area, Rob has managed several teams bringing success and stability to Bolehall Swifts, Walsall Wood, Castle Vale and Heather St Johns. His enthusiasm, professionalism and desire to help the club move to the next level along with his excellent football CV made him the first choice candidate for the position. Final word on the Sporting Khalsa FA Cup run has to go to the press release released by them on Sunday, and included her in full.
“Although we weren’t quite able to bridge the gap of three leagues yesterday, there are a few important reflections to be made now the smoke (ahem) has cleared.
First, to the visitors. A more fantastic, passionate and all-round brilliant bunch you really couldn’t wish to meet, from the playing and coaching staff to the fans and committee. We’d all heard the rumours and everything was true. That was our first defeat at home in any competition in more than a year and we imagine FCUM will know they’ve been in a game. It was a superb contest, played in the right spirit (just the one booking in a pretty competitive match) and we hope organisationally we did the visitors proud. As a club, Sporting Khalsa genuinely hope our paths cross again in the future and we wish you the very, very best in the next round of the competition and for the rest of the season. Please, please, don’t ever change.
Second, on behalf of the club, a huge thank you to our players and the coaching staff. The work that Rowey and his coaching staff do with his players, proudly wearing the badge of Sporting Khalsa, never ceases to amaze and inspire everybody involved at the club. Once again, the players went and battled against a really, really good side, lifted themselves when others might have given up and did themselves and the name Sporting Khalsa proud. There is so, so much more to come from these and we know Rowey will be picking them back up to go again as there’s everything still to play for this season.
Thirdly, to everyone who helped to prepare for the big occasion. At Sporting Khalsa our view is that what goes on on the pitch is down to players and staff, but what’s most important are the thing that keep the game alive, the supporters. That a lot of work went into organising the big day is no secret and there were many, many hours of volunteering graft that went into making the day the success it was. There are too many to mention, but a massive debt of gratitude to everyone who went above and beyond to make the occasion so successful.
Fourthly, if you’re local and came to see the match and enjoyed yourself, don’t be a stranger! The food and drink is a standard and on a normal day the 442 Bar and Lounge is open, so keep an eye on our twitter and website. We’re actually at home on Tuesday night in another cup game. Go and have a look at our fixtures.
Fifth, we received so many good luck messages from around the world and it seems our story and history has captured the imagination. Thanks to everyone who took the time to wish us well. Make sure you follow our story, it’s only just begun!
But – and, in life there’s always a but, isn’t there? – we’re conscious of the fact that a small number of local troublemakers seemed determined to spoil the day for everyone. We’re pretty confident these people had to look up ‘Noose Lane’ on the school computer during the week in order to find us. Let’s be absolutely crystal clear, these people are nothing to do with Sporting Khalsa, they’re nothing to do with non-league football and are sadly just something society has to tolerate, whether we like it or not. You would also think that if you go looking for fights, the pre-requisite is that you’re good at fighting. It seems not. We’ve co-operated with our friends at the police, they’re happy with the arrangements we put in place and will continue to co-operate. We desperately hope the actions of a few idiots didn’t take any enjoyment from FC United or any of the neutrals.
All in all, however, everyone at the club is delighted. So, to everybody who played a part in making yesterday such a success, we thank you.
P.S. Did we mention we have MORE games coming up?
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday October 24th
Sporting Khalsa 1 FC United of Manchester 3
The 4th and final Qualifying round for this season’s FA Cup and the biggest game in their history for Sporting Khalsa. Facing side 3 leagues above them and being the last remaining step 5 club left in the competition, meant the media spotlight would b e well and truly on a little corner of the Black Country. I arrived at the ground just after 1pm and it was clear that we were going to see a big crowd. To cater for the expected gate, Khalsa had created two fan zones with marquees at either side of the ground with the famous Sporting Khalsa curry on sale. With BBC and ITV cameras present, live radio commentary too, the officials must have been pinching themselves as to how far they had come. When the game started, FC United flooded the midfield to give themselves a numerical advantage. Marvin Nisbett was a thorn in the side of the FCUM defence and keeper David Carnell had to react quickly, racing off his line to nick the ball away from the striker. FCUM took the lead in the 27th minute. A corner from their left taken by Liam Brownhill was headed home unmarked by Luke Ashworth. Greg Daniels could have added a second but his shot was well stopped by James Pemberton. Nisbett went close for Khalsa, his flick headed clear by Carnell, outside of his area with Craig Bannister’s follow up blocked. An excellent passing move by Khalsa ended with Nisbett’s creating space and seeing his shot blocked. FCUM cleared their lines and a mistake by
Mensah Kinch saw the ball reach Daniels and he lobbed it over Pemberton to double the FCUM lead. Just before the break a shot from Bannister was fumbled by Carnell but he grabbed it at the second attempt.
Khalsa continued to ask questions after the break and deservedly pulled a goal back through Tesfa Robinson who slid home from Bannister’s cross. It was now all Khalsa and Nisbett just failed to get on the end of a header back across goal from Robinson. With 11 minutes left, Khalsa felt they should have been awarded a penalty as the ball clearly hit the hand of an FCUM defender in the area. With Khalsa piling forward, there were gaps at the back and FCUM increased their lead with 4 minutes left through Craig Lindfield following a quick break. Greaves could have added a fourth for FC United of Manchester but that would have been very harsh on Khalsa. Both sides were applauded off the park after what was an excellent FA Cup tie. On another day, this would have gone to a replay. Hat off to Sporting Khalsa on what has been achieved both on and off the pitch.
Tuesday October 27th
Brocton 1 Port Vale 3
First round of the Staffordshire Senior Cup and a chance for Brocton to face up to a young full-time professional outfit. After teaming rain, the pitch had a zip about it and the league side shocked Brocton by taking the lead after 27 seconds. A mistake by Ed Booth gave Tom Ashton a glorious chance and he gave Callum Barrett no chance. To their credit, Brocton didn’t let the goal affect them and they took the game to Port Vale, out passing their full-time opponents. Craig Holland made an excellent run in the middle of the park and saw his shot flash just wide of the post. At the other end, Barrett had to be alert to save well from Alex Morris. A quick free-kick from player-boss David Berks was handled in the area with the referee pointing to the spot. Dave Ablewhite despatched the penalty bring the Badgers level in the 24th minute. Brad Ede went close to re-establishing Vale’s lead but his shot rattled the upright. Brocton should have taken the lead in the 51st minute. Vale keeper Ryan Boot went walkabout and with the goal at his mercy, leading scorer Gary Fife saw his shot rebound off the bar. The ball fell to Ablewhite and with the goal at his mercy, he shot into the side-netting. Jonny Kapend had a good effort for Vale with Booth being forced to block his goalbound effort. Brocton again hit the woodwork when Kinsella’s shot cannoned off the bar. Vale went straight down the other end and Barrett did well to foil Kapend. Unfortunately for the Badgers, Kapend was not to be denied and he tapped in at the far post in the 71st minute. Ten minutes later, the game was all over when Brain Barton finished well after excellent approach play by Port Vale. Ben Farrell should have reduced the deficit but shot straight at Boot as Port Vale progressed to the second round. An excellent game of football between two well matched sides. Vale were constantly in the ear of the officials and the referee did lose his patience in the second half. I worry for the professional game if academy players have this attitude.
Sporting Khalsa’s cup run is over after bowing out of the competition at the hands of National North FC United of Manchester. Over 2,200 spectators packed into the Aspray Arena and saw the visitors take a 2 goal lead in the first half. Khalsa responded through Tesfa Robinson after half-time and at 2-1 a shock was on the cards. A controversial decision not to award Khalsa a penalty was compounded in the dying minutes by a third goal for FC United. When the final whistle went, both sides were applauded off the park and FC United know they have been in a battle.
The top four in the Premier Division all chalked up victories as the race for promotion hotted up. Leaders Hereford needed two second half goals from Adam Page to see of the challenge of Quorn at Edgar Street. 2nd placed Heanor Town had to come from behind to beat Stourport Swifts at Walshes Meadow, Jay Cooper with the decisive goal. Third placed Alvechurch went goal crazy against basement boys Continental Star scoring eight without reply. Jordan Nadat helped himself to a first half hat-trick while Karl Edwards and Connor Deards helped themselves to a couple apiece. Highgate United were 1 down at the break at Bardon Hill but four second half goals including a double for Lei Brown sealed the points. Shepshed Dynamo capped an excellent week with a 6 goal battering of Coventry Sphinx at Sphinx Drive. Liam Read grabbed his second hat-trick in 4 days as Dynamo move up to 6th. Another side to have a good week are AFC Wulfrunians who won 4-1 at Brocton with Jamie King scoring a brace. At the bottom Boldmere St Michaels moved up two places with a 3-2 win over second bottom Dunkirk. The Mikes took a 3-0 first half lead but were made to sweat as Dunkirk came back at them. Loughborough University made it 4 wins out of 5 with a 4-1 win over visitors Lye Town, Cameron Gordon with two. An equaliser two minutes from time from skipper Jamie Cuss gave Westfields a point at Long Eaton United. Coleshill Town left it even later against Walsall Wood, a goal from Luke Chapman two minutes into stoppage time enough to seal the points.
We have new leaders of Division 1 as Nuneaton Griff now sit top of the pile. They climbed to the summit courtesy of a 4-0 win over Coventry Copsewood taking their remarkable scoring record to 61 in 14 league games. Leicester Road move up to the top 3 following a 4-1 win at basement side Bolehall Swifts. Pilkington XXX are up to 5th leapfrogging their hosts Littleton after a 1-0 win. Game of the day was undoubtedly at St Johns Park as Hinckley AFC raced into a 3-0 half time lead over Heath Hayes. The visitors responded in emphatic style with four goals from Daniel Scragg to win it late on. At the bottom two struggling sides met at Evans Park and it was visitors Pershore Town that took the points with a 1-0 win courtesy of Simeon Smith leaving Stafford Town one off the bottom. Heather St Johns took a 2-0 lead at Racing Club Warwick only to see the home side win it with a goal from Junior Bennett. Spencer Blackham scored the only goal of the game for Pelsall Villa at Southam United. Studley held Lichfield City to a 2-2 draw at the Beehive while Cadbury Athletic edged past Atherstone Town by 2 goals to 1.
Alvis Sporting Club dropped their first league points of the season being held to a goalless draw at Fairfield Villa. This result enabled Chelmsley Town to open up a 6 point gap at the top of the table after they beat Feckenham 4-1 at The Pavilion, the prolific Chris Lloyd with a hat-trick. Rostance Edwards are flying high in 3rd place, a 4-0 win at Austrey Rangers with Johnny Griffiths on the mark with 2. A Macauley Finch double kept Droitwich Spa in the mix as they beat Paget Rangers 2-0. Bottom club Earlswood Town couldn’t add to their points tally as they lost 4-1 at home to Sutton United. Hampton won the local bragging rights with a 2-1 victory at neighbours Knowle.
A Matt Layton penalty gave Alcester Town all 3 points against visitors Redditch Borough who missed the chance to go top of the table. Northfield Town are just a point off top spot after a 4-1 win at AFC Solihull, Elliott Nash with a hat-trick. Leamington Hibernian are the division’s leading scorers and a point further back after a 6-1 win over Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons with doubles for Jack keeling and Sam Smith. Inkberrow are up to 6th after a 5-2 win over FC Stratford, Sean Parish with 2. Burntwood Town moved up the table after a 2-0 win over Enville Athletic while Shipston Excelsior move up 2 after a 3-1 win at Perrywood.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Hereford won the local derby against Westfields despite going a goal down inside 10 minutes. The Bulls came back and Pablo Heysham sealed the 4-1 win with an injury time double. The game was watched by a league cup record crowd of 1,797. Lye Town edged past AFC Wulfrunians at Castlecroft courtesy of a solitary goal from Matt Johnson. Division 1 leaders Nuneaton Griff took the Premier Division scalp of Bardon Hill thanks to an Alex Naughton goal.
Barnt Green Spartak progressed to a home tie with Droitwich Spa after beating Coton Green 2-1
A comfortable win in the Vase for Smithswood Firs who beat Coventrians 5-0 at Mackadown Stadium.
Port Vale beat Brocton 3-1 at Silkmore Lane to progress in the Staffordshire Senior Cup. Alvechurch eased past Dudley Sports in the Worcestershire Senior Urn. The game between Highgate United and Stourport Swifts in the same competition went to penalties with victory ultimately to the Gate. In the Leicestershire Senior Cup, Division1 sides Leicester Road and Heather St Johns made progress, the latter needing penalties to beat Melton Mowbray. Paget Rangers hosted Pelsall Villa in the Fazeley Charity Cup and it was the visitors who got through winning by the odd goal in five. In the Walsall Senior Cup, Continental Star bowed out at Evostik South Romulus. Sporting Khalsa took 58 minutes to break the deadlock but eventually beat Bolehall Swifts 4-0 at Aspray Arena. Lichfield City were giantkillers beating Evostik South Chasetown thanks to a goal from Jonathan Huckfield. In the JW Hunt Cup, there was an excellent win under the lights for Rostance Edwards as they beat Wellington Amateurs 2-1 at The Red Lion.
League leaders Coleshill Town were held to a draw away at Sutton United. This allowed Solihull Moors to close the gap with a 4-0 win at Continental Star. Gresley moved off the bottom with a 4-1 win over Brocton. Romulus are now the basement club losing 4-2 away at Lichfield City. Coventry United are in 3rd position following a 3-1 home win over Cadbury Athletic. In the Trophy, Rocester are through to the semi final beating Evesham United 5-1, Oliver Roome scoring four.
Under 21 Divisions
One league game in the North division where Newcastle Town went top after beating Heath Hayes 2-0 away from home. In the Challenge Bowl, there were wins for Stourport Swifts, Kings Heath Concorde, Bedworth United and Walsall Wood.
This weekend sees the first round proper of the FA Vase with our sides just 8 games from a Wembley final. How about an all Midland Football League final and a day out for all? There are some interesting all MFL ties. Boldmere St Michaels welcome Division 1 pace setters Coventry United to the Trevor Brown Memorial Ground and the visitors will fancy their chances of an upset. Division 1 Bromsgrove Sporting travel to Premier Division struggles Dunkirk and it wouldn’t be a shock to see them progress. Hinckley AFC have had a good season in the FA Cup and it will be interesting to see whether they can upset Long Eaton United. There is an all Premier Division tie at Hillsfield and if the league encounter between the two sides is anything to go by, this could be a cracker. On that occasion Hereford came back from 3-0 down to beat Rocester and I’m sure the Romans will be after revenge. Westfields have an arduous journey to face Cleethorpes Town, who sit 5th in the Northern
Counties Eastern League (NCEL). Alvechurch also face a long trip to Wisbech Town of the United
Counties league. Plenty of our sides have winnable home ties. AFC Wulfrunians welcome Harrowby United (UCL) to Castlecroft and should progress. Coleshill Town face a side from Step 7 in the form of Hucknall Town. Coventry Sphinx are one step above their visitors Black Country Rangers but the WMRL side have already accounted for Stourport Swifts in the competition. In form Highgate United should be too strong for Radcliffe Olympic at The Coppice. Likewise, Loughborough University are in great form and this looks a step too far for their visitors, Uttoxeter Town. Quorn have an intriguing tie at home to Clipstone Welfare and this could go either way. FA Cup heroes Sporting
Khalsa travel to Mansfield to face Shirebrook Town and expect Ian Rowe’s men to progress. Division 1 leaders Nuneaton Griff welcome Anstey Nomads to the Pingles Stadium, with recent results favouring a home win. A well balanced tie will take place at Townsend Meadow where Racing Club Warwick entertain WMRL Ellesmere Rangers.
Just two games in the Premier Division this weekend. Shepshed Dynamo have won four on the trot and could go 5th with a win at home to Stourport Swifts. Basement side Continental Star with only one win this season are going for a league double at Bardon Hill.
Leicester Road can close the gap on the top two if they can beat Southam United. Pilkington XXX could move into the top three if they can win at a Heath Hayes side, themselves looking to move up the table. Littleton will move into the top 5 if they can win at Coventry Copsewood. Bottom side Bolehall Swifts will be encouraged by their performance at Sporting Khalsa in midweek but will need to be on form to take anything from Lichfield City. Atherstone Town will be looking to move into the top half of the table if they can beat Studley at Sheepy Road.
Alvis Sporting Club will want to get back to winning ways when they travel to Feckenham. Third placed Rostance Edwards are still very much in the hunt and will expect to beat inconsistent Paget Rangers at The Red Lion. Bottom club Earlswood Town have been involved in some tight matches of late and will be looking to add to their solitary point away to Coton Green. Sutton United had a good win on the road last week and they will want to back that up at home to Austrey Rangers. Fairfield Villa became the first side to take points of Alvis Sporting Club last week and they travel to Knowle looking to build on that result.
League leaders Smithswood Firs have a one point advantage at the top of the table and travel to Enville Athletic who have a decent record at Hall Drive. Redditch Borough were surprisingly beaten last week and face a difficult game at home to 5th placed Barton United. There promises to be an excellent game at Shenley Lane when 3rd placed Northfield Town host 4th placed Leamington Hibernian. AFC Solihull are still searching for their first point of the season. They travel to 14th placed Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons who have lost their last 4 league games. Alcester Town beat 2nd placed Redditch Borough last week and travel to Coventrians knowing that a win will lift them over their hosts. Shipston Excelsior and Burntwood Town have been going quietly about their business in the middle of the table and there could be a tight encounter when they meet at London Road.
Cadbury Athletic vs Solihull Moors (Trophy)
Coventry United vs Sutton United
Romulus vs Gresley
Brocton vs Coleshill Town
Under 21 Divisions
Bromsgrove Sporting vs H.O.W. Academy (U21S)
Kings Heath Concorde vs Heath Hayes (Bowl)
Leamington vs Basford United (Bowl)
Stourport Swifts vs West Midlands Football Academy (U21S)
Bedworth United vs Gornal Athletic (U21S)
Sutton Coldfield Town vs Walsall Wood (U21N)
Tipton Town vs Newcastle Town 9Bowl)
Midland Football League Newsletter
22nd October 2015
This week’s news has been dominated by the forthcoming FA Cup tie between Sporting Khalsa and FC United of Manchester. I have included below one of the best press releases ever released by a non-league club from FCUM.
The FC United Board thought fans would like to share our frustration and bemusement at the request we received on Friday 16 Oct 2015 from the BBC, via the FA, to move the kick off time of our FA Cup game against Sporting Khalsa to enable a “brand new BBC Mobile Match of The Day Live experience”. This latest idea included disruption to the pre-match preparations of club volunteers and the competing teams, interruptions to substitutes warming up and interference with the team managers’ match management. The FC United Board gave a resounding ‘no’ to this request. Match-going supporters should not have to be inconvenienced for the benefit of those who rarely, if at all, attend matches. FC United is not intrinsically opposed to the re-arrangement of a fixture time, provided that it meets with the approval of and benefits the respective clubs and their supporters. In 2007, members of FC United voted in favour of entering the FA Cup and acknowledged the competitions rules and TV contracts.
That aside the whole “Mobile Match of The Day Live experience” should have been canned at inception by any BBC Sports manager with an understanding of the game. As a public service broadcaster the BBC should be taking a lead by promoting the game without causing additional disruption to match going supporters instead of trying to ape or outdo some of the worst excesses of their competitors. If BBC viewers would like to understand the fans’ experience at a football game there are numerous real life games at every level throughout the country and the easiest way for TV viewers to access the real fans’ experience is to go along to a match. For a more in depth experience they could volunteer like many non-league fans do week in and week out. The FA, as the governing body of football in this country, appear to be encouraging ways to cash in on the fans’ experience whilst treating the supporters as the least important commodity in the game. We call upon the FA to remember that football is a sporting competition and the associated drama comes from the highs and lows of the game itself. It does not reflect well on the custodians of our game that they would devalue the sporting integrity of their flagship competition by encouraging TV presenters to interfere with those in the dugouts or changing rooms when they are working to produce the best competitive elements of the game. Nor should TV have access to substitutes when warming up, because those players are athletes preparing properly to be able to compete at their best.
TV exposure and the revenue it generates are important to football. However, we believe that the balance has swung way too far in favour of the TV companies - and too far away from the match-going, admission paying, regularly attending football supporter. FC United seeks to change the way that football is owned and run, putting supporters at the heart of everything. This includes a better and more balanced relationship with TV.
Travels of the Press Officer
Friday October 16th
Worcester Warriors 13 Northampton Saints 12
The start of the Aviva Premiership rugby season and a chance to watch the Warriors make their top level return at Sixways against formidable opponents in Northampton Saints. Any trip to a rugby game requires getting to the ground in plenty of time to sample the excellent food on offer (Sixways is worth it for the food alone). With seats at the bag of the impressive East Stand with a healthy mix of Worcester and Northampton fans sitting together, the talk pre match was whether Warriors would cope with the Premiership intensity provided by Saints. With a number of players having points to prove after World Cup omission (Dylan Hartley, Luther Burrell, Stephen Myler) and with players returning from the World Cup (Ken & George Pisi, Kieran Brookes, Kahn Fotuali’i) on paper, Saints had the edge. Thankfully, rugby is played on grass and a titanic battle ensued between the ball playing Warriors and the boot of Myler. Saints took an early lead through two Myler penalties but Warriors responded with a penalty of their own from Tom Heathcote before scoring the only try of the game from skipper GJ Van Velze. Warriors dominated the physical battles but missed kicks from Heathcote and Ryan Mills were costing the home side. When Myler slotted over another penalty to give Saints the lead with less than 2 minutes left, it seemed that all the hard work would be for nothing and the press would already be condemning the Warriors to relegation. Thankfully, this side is made of stern stuff. Saints lost the ball in a tackle, warriors drove forward and with the clock ticking down to zero, the ball was passed back to Heathcote to drop a goal (the kick barely skimmed the bar) to give the Warriors victory by 1 point. The reaction from everyone in the crowd was a mixture of despair and elation but it was the sport that was the winner. A great night out (albeit expensive) and well worth going if you have never experienced professional rugby.
Saturday October 17th
Loughborough University 2 Alvechurch 1
My first visit to Loughborough University and I had been encouraged to visit by a number of groundhopping colleagues. As soon as I enter the ground, it is clear to see why they are impressed, a fantastic facility and what a pitch. Looking at the ground from the hospitality suite you get a great view of the ground. The grandstand has one of the best views in the Midland Football League and today’s game promised to be an intriguing one. Alvechurch had won 9 league games on the bounce after losing on the opening day of the season. The students hadn’t started well but had been making steady progress in recent weeks. Alvechurch started the game on the front foot but found the students difficult to break down. A decision by referee Ian Croston Infuriated Alvechurch in the 19th minute. An excellent through ball found Jordan Nadat in the penalty area but the official had already awarded a free kick to Church instead of playing on. Richard Huckfield should have hit the target for Church but he out a free header over the bar. Loughborough stunned the visitors with a goal in the 32nd minute, an excellent move finished with a deflected Max Herbert shot past Paul Evans. The Students should have doubled their lead just before the break but Alun Webb fired over. Alvechurch were back on level terms in the 56th minute, Josh March shooting on the turn after a good ball from Sam Williams. At this point, the feeling was that Alvechurch would perhaps take the game by the scruff of the neck and go on to win but the home side were having none of it. They were awarded a free-kick on the edge of the area, Ben Ward-Cochrane picked his spot and Evans could do nothing about it as it curled into the corner. The nearest Church came to an equaliser was when Jordan Nadat forced a fine save from Connor O’Keefe but it was the home side that should have added to their tally but Ward-Cochrane was off target. An excellent victory for the students who play a brand of football that is good on the eye. Alvechurch will no doubt bounce back from the defeat and will be there or thereabouts at the end of the season. A great stadium to visit and as usual in the Midland Football League a very warm welcome from everyone associated with both clubs
Monday October 19th
Stafford Rangers Reserves 2 Football CV 2
A business meeting in Yorkshire meant staying nearer to home and a Central Conference fixture at Marston Road. Stafford included first teamers Sam Smith, Jazz Luckie and Fabrice Kasiama as they continue their recovery from injury against a very young Corby academy side. Luckie gave Rangers the lead in the 13th minute when his free-kick struck the bar and went in off keeper Daniel Perry. The visitors looked lively with Thatang Maponia volleying just wide. Maponia equalised 5 minutes before the break with a stunning effort from 30 yards – a goal of real quality. Rangers were indebted to keeper Connor Alderman after the break making excellent saves to thwart Jerome Lopez and Modou Jarjou (I’m glad I wasn’t commentating!). Kasiama gave rangers the lead in the 65th minute when his free-kick flew through a crowded penalty area into the net. Alex Lalor equalised from the penalty spot for Football CV which was richly deserved for their efforts. The impressive part about the game was the physicality shown by both players handled brilliantly by former top level referee Terry Holbrook. £2 well spent.
Tuesday October 20th
AFC Wulfrunians 3 Westfields 2
Another excellent premier division game which could have gone either way. The visitors took the lead in the 8th minute when skipper Jamie Cuss gave Danny Tipton no chance with an excellent finish. Westfields almost doubled their lead in the 20th minute when Craig Jones’ superb free-kick rattled the bar with Tipton beaten. Jake Sedgemore tried his luck from distance for Wulfs only to be thwarted by a flying save from Jon Pugh. Wulfs were back on level terms in the 29th minute with another goal from leading scorer Ricky Anslow, firing low into the bottom corner. The visitors were fast out of the blocks at the start of the second half with Cuss and Jones going close. Wulfs took the lead in the 65th minute with Jamie king finding the net after a through ball from Anslow. Westfields came back and equalised through Jones with a shot that took a wicked deflection to wrong foot Tipton. Parity lasted less than a minute as the home side regained the lead following a howler by keeper Pugh. He let the ball slip out of his hands and sub Kyle Brady was the grateful recipient and a simple finish. Brady could have had a second after another defensive mistake by Westfields but the ball was cleared off the line. An entertaining evening with two well matched sides.
Hereford retained top spot with a 4-0 win at Brocton. John Mills put away two second half penalties for the Bulls who have now won their last 8 league games. Heanor Town are hot on their heels following a 2-1 win at Long Eaton United. Alvechurch’s long winning run came to an end at Loughborough University as they went down 2-1 win, Ben Ward-Cochrane with the winning goal. Highgate United continued their upward momentum with a 3-0 win at AFC Wulfrunians, Lei Brown with a hat-trick taking him to 11 for the season. Sporting Khalsa had to come from behind to beat Boldmere St Michaels at the Aspray Arena. Shepshed Dynamo got back to winning ways with a 3-1 victory over basement side, Continental Star. Walsall Wood were also 3-1 victors over Quorn at Oak Park, Drew Aiton with a couple. Lye Town are 10th following a 3-1 win over Coleshill Town who took the lead in the opening minute. Dunkirk and Stourport Swifts shared the spoils with a goalless draw in Nottingham while Westfields and Bardon Hill drew 1-1.
On Monday evening, Heanor Town returned to the top of the league following a 4-2 win at Coventry Sphinx. The visitors raced into a 3-0 lead at the break but despite 2 Richard Blythe goals, it was Heanor that sealed the points with a late Danny Claridge goal. Hereford regained the lead on Tuesday night with a 6-0 victory over Continental Star. Pablo Heysham was the hat-trick man for the Bulls on this occasion as they recorded their 12th successive win in all competitions. A stoppage time equaliser from Callum Rudd meant Alvechurch dropped two more points in a 2-2 draw with Boldmere St Michaels. Sporting Khalsa warmed up for their big FA Cup tie with a 4-1 win at Brocton, Craig Bannister with a couple. AFC Wulfrunians moved up the table winning by the odd goal in five over Westfields. At the bottom of the table, Dunkirk continue to struggle losing 2-0 at home to an upwardly mobile Loughborough University. Rocester climbed up the table with a 1-0 win at Lye Town. On Wednesday, Shepshed Dynamo picked up their second win in the week courtesy of a Liam Read hat-trick as they beat Bardon Hill 3-0. Long Eaton United and Quorn shared the points in a 2-2 draw.
League leaders Coventry United stay top after edging past Cadbury Athletic courtesy of a Josh O’Grady double. Hotshots Nuneaton Griff were at it again with a 3-0 victory over Studley, Luke Shorthouse with his 19th of the season. Bromsgrove Sporting are up to 3rd after a narrow away win at Heath Hayes. Leicester Road beat Littleton 4-2 with Tom McGlinchey scoring a brace. Southam United have conceded 12 goals in 4 days after a 5-0 defeat at Pilkington XXX. Dayle Kenny scored two for Pilks. Lichfield City are still on the promotion fringes after a 2-1 away win at Atherstone Town while Hinckley AFC have three games in hand on the league leaders and they are very much in the mix with a 4-1 win at Pershore Town. Bolehall Swifts remain anchored to the bottom after a 3-2 defeat at Racing Club Warwick. Heather St Johns had a morale boosting victory over Stafford Town to leapfrog the visitors in the league table, Josh Buchanan with the all important goal. Pelsall Villa are hovering above the bottom two after a 4-2 defeat at Coventry Copsewood, Ryan Harkin with a double for the home side.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Just one game in the league cup and a narrow win for Stourport Swifts at Southam United.
Chelmsley Town stay top following a 3-0 win over Paget Rangers, Chris Lloyd again on the mark with 2. Alvis Sporting Club maintained their 100% record with a 3-0 victory at Hampton, Dildale Linton with another couple. Rostance Edwards are 3rd following a 2-0 win at Earlswood Town. Droitwich Spa drop to 4th after being held 2-2 at Coton Green. Austrey Rangers move up to 5th after a 2-1 win at Barnt Green Spartak. Fairfield Villa were big movers this week with a 4-1 win over Feckenham, James Ward with a couple. Knowle move up a place after a 2-2 draw at Sutton United.
Redditch Borough have closed the gap at the top to just 1 point after they beat Coventrians 2-0. FC Stratford lost for the first time this season going down 4-3 at Northfield Town. Leamington Hibernian were in goal scoring form with a 4-0 win over visiting Inkberrow. At the bottom Perrywood moved 5 points away from AFC Solihull after a 1-0 win at Badsey Rangers. Enville Athletic and Burntwood Town moved up the table after wins over Shipston Excelsior and Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons respectively.
Les James Challenge Cup
One tie this week saw Fairfield Villa progress after a 3-1 victory away to Barnt Green Spartak.
Barton United made progress with a comfortable 3-0 win over AFC Solihull.
In the Birmingham Saturday Vase, Division 3 league leaders Smithswood Firs went through with a 3-0 win over Henley Forest. Highgate United held Solihull Moors to a goalless draw in the Birmingham Senior Cup only for the moors to progress on penalties. In the Birmingham Midweek Floodlit Cup there were wins for Coventry Copsewood and Gornal Athletic over Cadbury Athletic and Pilkington XXX respectively. Atherstone Town knocked Nuneaton Griff out of the Coventry Evening Telegraph Cup and there were wins in the JW Hunt cup for Stafford Town and Lichfield City. Paget Rangers and Pelsall Villa bowed out of the same competition.
League leaders Coleshill Town put nine goals past bottom club Gresley, Chris Gumery with four and Joseph Wykes with three. 2nd placed Solihull Moors were held by Brocton but only Evesham United of the chasing pack took advantage with a 2-1 win at Cadbury Athletic. Lichfield City were the only other side to win, 4-0 over Continental Star. Elsewhere there were draws between Rocester and Coventry United and Romulus and Sutton United.
Under 21 Divisions
In the Southern division there were good wins for Bromsgrove Sporting and Stourport Swifts as they both move level with leaders Bedworth United. In the North Sutton Coldfield Town moved up 3 places with a 3-1 win at Newcastle Town. In the Bowl, there were away wins for Tamworth and Anstey Nomads while South league leaders Bedworth United had a single goal victory over Basford United.
Sporting Khalsa face the biggest game in their relatively short history when they welcome FC United of Manchester to the Aspray Arena in the 4th qualifying round of the FA Cup. The opportunity to play in the first round proper faces the winners of what looks an intriguing tie on paper. Khalsa are in great form and can cause a shock. FC United will be backed in big numbers by their fantastic following and a 2000+ crowd is likely to descend on Willenhall. If you are going, get there early.
Hereford went back to the top of the table in midweek and will be hopeful of a 13th straight win when they entertain Quorn at Edgar Street. 2nd placed Heanor Town travel to Stourport Swifts in what promises to be a close encounter. Heanor are in fine goal scoring form and may need the win to keep up with the leaders. Alvechurch have had a disappointing week but will expect to bounce back to winning ways at home to bottom side Continental Star. Highgate United are hot on their heels and will be looking for all 3 points at Bardon Hill. At the bottom, Boldmere St Michaels have the chance to open up a gap when they entertain struggling Dunkirk. Brocton are anxiously looking over their shoulder and they have an attractive looking game against inconsistent AFC Wulfrunians. Shepshed Dynamo seem to have steadied the ship and they travel to Coventry Sphinx who are on a poor run. Loughborough University had an excellent week and they will be looking for a third win on the spin at home to Lye Town. Long Eaton United have slipped up of late and they will want to get their season going again at home to Westfields. Two mid table sides meet at Pack Meadow where
Coleshill Town welcome Walsall Wood
Nuneaton Griff could go top of the table this week if they beat Coventry Copsewood at the Pingles Stadium. Littleton can go 3rd if they can beat Pilkington XXX at home. Leicester Road will move into the top 4 with a win at bottom side Bolehall Swifts. Hinckley AFC have games in hand on the leaders and a home win over Heath Hayes closes the gap. At the bottom of the table, Stafford Town have bought in 5 new faces this week and they will be hoping for a change of fortunes at Evans Park against fellow strugglers, Pershore Town. Heather St Johns had a morale boosting victory last week and travel to Racing Club Warwick with fresh impetus. Southam United have been conceding far too many goals recently and they will want to stop the rot at home to Pelsall Villa. Atherstone Town travel to Cadbury Athletic and a win will see them leapfrog their hosts. Lichfield City will still believe that they can challenge for honours this season and a win at Studley will keep them in the leading pack.
Leaders Chelmsley Town entertain Feckenham as they look to maintain the gap at the top. Alvis Sporting Club have the last remaining 100% record across the league and they travel to Fairfield Villa. Rostance Edwards have a tricky looking away game at the placed Austrey Rangers. Droitwich Spa welcome Paget Rangers with a chance to move into the top 3. Bottom club Earlswood Town are at home to mid table Sutton United hoping to add to their solitary league point. Two sides in need of points to move away from the lower echelons meet at The Robins Nest as Knowle entertain Hampton.
Redditch Borough can go top of the pile with a victory at Alcester Town. Barton United will move into the top two if they can beat Badsey Rangers at home. Could this be the week that AFC Solihull get off the mark as they entertain Northfield Town. Perrywood can move further away from the bottom with victory over Shipston Excelsior. Leamington Hibernian can put pressure on the sides above them with a win over Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons. Elsewhere Burntwood Town host Enville Athletic and Inkberrow host FC Stratford in evenly matched games.
One tie in the Presidents Cup where Barnt Green Spartak entertain Coton Green
Division 3 leaders, Smithswood Firs will expect to progress at home to Coventrians.
Continental Star vs Solihull Moors
Coventry United vs Cadbury Athletic
Gresley vs Brocton
Lichfield City vs Romulus
Sutton United vs Coleshill Town
Rocester vs Evesham United (Trophy)
Under 21 Divisions
Bromsgrove Sporting vs Stourport Swifts (Bowl)
Kings Heath Concorde vs Gornal Athletic (Bowl)
Sutton Coldfield Town vs Bedworth United (Bowl)
Walsall Wood vs West Midlands Football Academy (Bowl)
Heath Hayes vs Newcastle Town (u21N)
Tamworth vs Tipton Town (U21N)
Basford United vs Paget Rangers (U21N)
Midland Football League Newsletter
15th October 2015
Following a number of underachieving performances Jeff Stocking has decided to step down as Joint Manager of Shepshed Dynamo. Chairman Mick Sloan said "I'd like to take this opportunity to personally thank Jeff for all he's done at the club since joining us and I hope to see him stay on in some capacity." John Folwell will remain at the club and will now be in sole charge. Coton Green are seeking applications for their vacant First Team Managers position. Please send all applications to:
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday October 10th
Bromsgrove Sporting 3 Pershore Town 0
Non League Day and one of the four chosen games highlighting Fans for Diversity is at The Victoria Ground. With a gate in excess of 550, Sporting definitely embraced the day and it was great to see so many youngsters at the game. The visitors were determined to be the party poopers and they started brightly with Joe Walsh prominent early on. Against the run of play, Bromsgrove took the lead in the 15th minute with Simon Fitter curling a direct free-kick past the despairing dive of Andrew Yarnold. The goal settled the home side but the game remained an even contest. The home side should have doubled their lead in the 30th minute when Yarnold completely missed a corner but somehow Ricardo Richards blazed over the bar when it was easier to score. The Rouslers grabbed their second just before half time. Richards’ was blocked by Yarnold and Ryan Spink made no mistake from the rebound. At the start of the second half, Bromsgrove were indebted to keeper Josh Moreton who made a fine save from a Dan Carter effort. Bromsgrove were not going to allow a Pershore comeback and it was only the efforts of Yarnold which kept the visitors in it, pulling off superb saves to thwart Fitter and Spink. Substitute Josh McKenzie was guilty of another glaring miss for the home side in the 78 the minute, given a free-header in front of goal and missing the ball completely. Deep into stoppage time, Bromsgrove finally got their 3rd with Sean Brain making no mistake with a crisp finish. A great afternoon to celebrate Non League Day and hats off to both sides for the entertainment provided.
Tuesday October 13th
Rocester 4 Lichfield City 2
Winter is a coming folks as the temperature dropped at Hillsfield for a pulsating league Cup tie. Both sides set out with the intention of playing attacking football and this did not let up for 90 minutes. After a poor miss from City’s Tom Evans, the Romans took the lead from the penalty spot. Karl Demidh making no mistake after he was tripped in the area. Lichfield were level in the 16th minute with a well crafted goal. A cross from the right was headed down by Evans into the path of Martin Crawford who made no mistake. Parity lasted barely 6 minutes as Rocester regained the lead, Nick Ward finishing at the second attempt. Rocester increased their lead 7 minutes before the break, a superb header by the impressive Rob Ritchie-Smith. Lichfield were not done yet and they pulled a goal back just after the break with the equally impressive Evans supplying the finish. Back came the home side and they restored the 2 goal cushion when Dan Brown tapped home after Andrew Mottershead had done well to reach the ball at the far post. Both sides continued to threaten but it was Rocester that progressed to the next round. An excellent game on yet another enjoyable visit to Hillsfield.
Wednesday October 14th
Nuneaton Griff 7 Southam United 0
My first visit to the Pingles Stadium and another goal filled evening for the league’s leading scorers. Griff took the lead inside 2 minutes when Callum Regan put the ball into his own net. Griff kept on pressing and doubled their lead in the 7th minute with a simple finish from Danny Edmond. Despite being up against it, The Saints responded in positive mode without causing the Griff defence too many problems. The third goal came in the 35th minute with a superb finish from leading scorer Luke Shorthouse, firing home a shot on the turn. The visitors continued to work hard to keep Griff out and it took the home side until the 64th minute to score number 4. Kieron Brehon went on a direct run through the Southam defence and his shot went in off the keeper. We were then treated to a rare hat-trick for a substitute inside 7 minutes. An excellent cross from Dave Barnett was tapped in by Aden Moore with his first touch of the game. The second came courtesy of a mistake by Southam keeper Nathan Carro who dropped the ball at the feet of the waiting Moore. Goal number three for Moore and seven for Griff was from yet another Barnett cross and a simple tap-in. Nuneaton could and should perhaps have had more but that would have been hard on a hard working Southam side who battled to the end. A cracking night’s entertainment at a really welcoming club I will be back. Review
The end of a marvellous cup run for Coleshill Town who found the three league difference too hot to handle against National North favourites AFC Fylde. The Coasters ran out 9-0 winners with hat-tricks for Matty Hughes and Danny Rowe. After seeing off the challenge of 3 higher ranked sides, Coleshill can be proud of their FA Cup achievements this season. Sporting Khalsa live to fight another day after drawing with Spalding United in front of a bumper Aspray Arena crowd of 425. David Meese was Khalsa’s hero slotting home a stoppage time penalty to send the game to a replay. A trip to Spalding was never going to be easy in midweek but Khalsa continue to fly the flag for the Midland Football League after a 2-1 victory. Craig Bannister drew Khalsa level just before half time but it was Simeon Townsend who was the hero with a winner 12 minutes from time. Khalsa now entertain FC United of Manchester in the final qualifying round. In front of what promises to be a bumper crowd.
Hereford are back on top of the table courtesy of a single goal victory over Long Eaton United at Edgar Street. John Mills took his season goals tally to 21 with the only goal of the game in the 9th minute. Nine wins on the trot has catapulted Alvechurch into second place. New signing Jordan Nadat scored a second half hat-trick as the Church beat visitors Dunkirk 4-0. Previous leaders Heanor Town were surprisingly beaten 3-1 at home by Westfields despite taking an early lead through Nick Hall. New signing for Westfields, Sam Gwynne scored the third. Highgate United are 4th following a 2-0 win over Continental Star, Lei Brown again on target. Stourport Swifts poor run of form continued with a 2-0 home defeat at the hands of Loughborough University. Lowly Brocton travelled to Leicestershire and shocked Shepshed Dynamo, coming home with a 4-1 win courtesy of a Gary Fife hat-trick. AFC Wulfrunians kept themselves in the chasing pack with a dramatic late winner against Boldmere St Michaels at Castlecroft. A topsy turvy game was settled by a Jake Sedgemore penalty three minutes from time. A Dan Griffiths double helped Walsall Wood to a 3-2 victory at Lye Town. Rocester lifted themselves above Coventry Sphinx in the league table with a Rob Ritchie-Smith penalty the only goal of the game. Bardon Hill moved above Quorn with a 2-1 home victory Rich Hanslow with the winner. In midweek Shepshed Dynamo moved up to 9th with a single goal victory over Loughborough University, Michael Reeve with the all important goal.
With the top two not in action, Littleton closed the gap with a 1-0 win over Racing Club Warwick, Jamie Clarke on target. Bromsgrove Sporting are 4th and within touching distance after a 3-0 win over Pershore Town in front of a bumper 551 gate. Down at the bottom, Bolehall Swifts lost their 9th game in 10, going down 3-0 at home to Studley. Heather St Johns continue to struggle. Pilkington XXX going home with all the points after a comfortable 5-0 win, Craig Oldfield with 2. In midweek, Hinckley AFC went nap with a 5 goal win over Bolehall Swifts. The game was a feisty affair with three red cards. Nuneaton Griff are breathing down the necks of leaders Coventry United after another goal filled evening at Pingles Stadium. Griff beat Southam United 7-0 with Aden Moore scoring a 7 minute hat-trick.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Plenty of excitement in the league cup in midweek with no shocks but plenty of goals. Heanor Town raced into a 3 goal lead at Dunkirk within the first 5 minutes and eventually ran out 6-1 winners, Andre Johnson with a hat-trick. Littleton were 5-1 winners at Racing Club Warwick with a couple for Luke Rowlands. Rocester beat Lichfield City 4-2 at Hillsfield and Walsall Wood saw off the challenge of Continental Star with a 4-1 victory. Cadbury Athletic eased past Pilkington XXX while Quorn needed penalties to progress over Leicester Road.
Chelmsley Town maintained their 4 point lead at the top of the table courtesy of a 3-1 win over Fairfield Villa, Chris Lloyd scoring his 14th of the season. Alvis Sporting Club remain second with a 100% record but they were pushed all the way by Barnt Green Spartak, Aaron Cooke with the only goal of the game in the 20th minute. Earlswood Town gained their first point of the season with a draw at Austrey Rangers. There was a 7 goal thriller at the Entaco as Feckenham beat Coton Green 4-3 with Jack Brimmell (Feckenham) and Clint Andrews (Coton Green) scoring 2 apiece. A big non league day crowd at Paget Rangers as 80 witnessed visitors Knowle take the points with a 3-1 win. Sutton United are moving up the table as they beat Hampton 2-1
The top three in Division 3 went goal crazy away from home this week. Leaders Smithswood Firs were the highest scores beating Alcester Town 8-1, Lee Sayer with two late goals. Second placed Barton United won 6-1 at Perrywood with a hat-trick from Peter Martin taking him to 15 for the season. Third placed Redditch Borough inflicted further misery on league new boys AFC Solihull with a 7-1 victory, both Jak Albutt and Jason Cowley with hat-tricks. Badsey Rangers are 4th after a 3-1 away win at Inkberrow. Coventrians are thriving in the Midland Football League and a 2-1 victory over Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons sees them occupy 10th place. Burntwood Town and Northfield Town fought out a 2-02 draw at Ravenhill Park.
Les James Challenge Cup
No shock in the Les James Shield this week as Division 2 Droitwich Spa eased past Division 3 Shipston Excelsior 2-1.
In the Staffordshire Vase, Stafford Town and Pelsall Villa were dumped out of the competition by Leek CSOB and Wolstanton United respectively. Heath Hayes and Rostance Edwards made progress beating Shenstone Pathfinder and Redgate Clayton respectively. In the Coventry Charity Cup, All three MFL clubs were knocked out with defeats for FC Stratford, Southam United and Leamington Hibernian at the hands of Folly Lane, Triumph Athletic and Hawksmill Sports. Coleshill Town bounced back from their FA Cup exit by knocking National North Hednesford Town out of the Birmingham Senior Cup. Danico Johnson scored 4 in a 5-2 victory. In the Walsall senior Cup, two late goals put a gloss on a Walsall victory over Boldmere St Michaels. A superb crowd of 563 saw the Herefordshire Challenge Cup game at Edgar Street between Hereford and Hinton. The Bulls had seven different scorers in a 7-0 victory. AFC Wulfrunians went one better in the JW Hunt Cup with an 8-0 victory over Hawkins Sports. Jamie King scored 4 and Kyle Brady two as Wulfs progressed. Alvechurch needed penalties to beat WMRL Wednesfield in the JW Hunt after being held 2-2 at full time. In the Worcestershire Senior Urn, Bromsgrove Sporting gained bragging rights over premier Division Lye Town with a 3-1 victory.
Biggest winners in the reserve division were Cadbury Athletic, 6-1 away to Brocton. Solihull Moors are up to 2nd after a 4-3 victory over now 3rd placed Rocester. Coventry United are 4th but they were held 2-2 at Lichfield City. Continental Star are in mid table after a 2-1 win over Sutton United while in the Trophy, Romulus were 3-2 winners at Gresley.
Under 21 Divisions
Bedworth United are top of U21S following a 6-2 win at Kings Heath Concorde, Nathan McGarrity helping himself to 4 goals. Bromsgrove Sporting move up to 3rd with a 2-1 win at West Midlands Football Academy. H.O.W. Academy leapfrog visitors Leamington after a 4-1 victory. In the Bowl, 2nd placed U21S Stourport Swifts lost 3-1 at U21N bottom side Anstey Nomads with U21S Gornal
Athletic losing 3-1 at U21N Heath Hayes. In the only U21N league game, Tipton Town picked up their first points of the season with a 3-1 win over Paget Rangers
League leaders Hereford travel to Brocton who will be buoyed by last week’s victory at Shepshed Dynamo. The Bulls will be looking for their eight consecutive league win to maintain the pressure at the top of the table. 2nd placed Alvechurch are after their 10th consecutive league win when they travel to Loughborough University. A big game in Derbyshire sees 5th placed Long Eaton United host 3rd placed Heanor Town with both sides eager to regain the winning habit. Highgate United have quietly gone about their business to sit in 4th place but they have what looks like a difficult game away to AFC Wulfrunians. Sporting Khalsa are in a strong position in the league and they can begin to challenge the leaders should they beat Boldmere St Michaels at the Aspray Arena. Continental Star remain rooted to the bottom of the table and they travel to Leicestershire to face inconsistent Shepshed Dynamo. Two sides with poor recent form meet at the Ron Steel Sports ground as Dunkirk host Stourport Swifts. After their FA cup exploits Coleshill Town are back in league action with a tough assignment away to Lye Town. Westfields shocked the league leaders at Heanor last week and will hope to build on that when they host Bardon Hill. Walsall Wood and Quorn have similar scoring records and are separated by only 3 points. A difficult one to call as they meet at Oak Park.
League leaders Coventry United welcome Cadbury Athletic to Sphinx Drive eager to continue their superb start to the season. Nuneaton Griff are hot on their heels and the league’s leading scorers are at home to Studley. There is a top of the table clash at Leicester Road with 3rd placed Littleton in town in what is the match of the day. Bromsgrove Sporting have only suffered defeat once in the league this season and they take that record to Heath Hayes. Bolehall Swifts remain at the bottom of the table but their improved recent form gives them a good chance of adding to their tally when they host Racing Club Warwick at Rene Road. Likewise, Heather St Johns have had a torrid time of late but they have the opportunity to climb above visitors Stafford Town with a win. Pershore Town have slipped down the table of late and they face a difficult task at home to Hinckley AFC. Atherstone Town have started to climb the table and a win over Lichfield City will put them level of points with the visitors. Pilkington XXX bagged 5 last week and will cement their top 6 place with a home win over Southam United while Coventry Copsewood can move into the top half of the table with victory over Pelsall Villa.
League leaders Chelmsley Town travel to Paget Rangers intent on maintaining their four point lead at the top of the table. 2nd placed Alvis Sporting Club take their 100% record to Hampton who have lost their last three. Droitwich Spa and Rostance Edwards fill the next two places with solitary defeats this season. They are both on the road to Coton Green and Earlswood Town respectively. Knowle had a good away win last week and they are on the road again at Sutton united. Feckenham edged a 7 goal thriller last weekend and they travel to Fairfield Villa looking to move into the middle of the pack. Mid table is where Barnt Green Spartak and Austrey Rangers reside and they meet at The Coppice.
With the top two in cup action, Redditch Borough can go second with a win at The Valley against Coventrians. Badsey Rangers will expect to close the gap at the top with a win over lowly Perrywood. FC Stratford are still unbeaten but that record will be tested at Northfield Town. There are three games when the sides are equally matched on paper and as per the league table. Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons host Burntwood Town, Enville Athletic host Shipston Excelsior and Leamington Hibernian welcome Inkberrow.
It’s top v bottom at Packmeadow as unbeaten Coleshill Town entertain Gresley. 2nd placed Solihull Moors will be expecting to stay close to the leaders when 10th placed Brocton visit The Beehive. 3rd meets 4th at Hillsfield as Coventry United travel to Rocester. If its goals you want, there has been average of over 4 goals per game involving Romulus and Sutton United and they meet at Lindridge Road. Elsewhere Cadbury Athletic play Evesham and Lichfield City play Continental Star.
Under 21 Divisions
In the Challenge Bowl, early season pacesetters Bedworth United from the South entertain Basford United from the North. Northern league leaders Tamworth travel to Garden Walk Stadium to tackle Gornal Athletic. In the league, game of the week is in the South division where Stourport Swifts face H.O.W. Academy at Walshes Meadow. There are also games at Bromsgrove Sporting, Paget Rangers and Newcastle Town. A reminder that all games kick off at 10.30
It was great to see so many clubs have improved attendances on Non-League Day. Hopefully, those supporters that visited one of our grounds for the first time, will want to come back and sample the hospitality that our clubs have to offer. There have been a number of positive comments coming out of Non-League Day about the experience that football at this level offers. People have been pleasantly surprised by the quality of football, overwhelmed by the welcome they have received from supporters and officials alike, and, the big one, cannot believe how much you get for your money. This is the message that we have been putting out there for some time but it appears that this is finally hitting home. The challenge for us all, is to build on this and not just to wait for another Non League Day to capitalise on the increased interest. If 1 in 5 of our supporters, players and officials could bring a friend / colleague /neighbour / family member to a game, just think what a difference that would make to attendances? An increase in people through the door means increased programme sales, more burgers purchased, increased bar takings, a snowball effect for all of us. Every club should look at their fixtures and the fixtures of their local football league clubs and designate a match of their choice as their own Non League Day. Get the press onside, get the league clubs onside and let’s make this work, all year round. After all, we know how good the Midland Football League is, why keep it a secret?
Midland Football League Newsletter
8th October 2015
Long Eaton United manager Charlie Palmer has left the club to take over the reins at Evostik South Belper Town. Shaun Rickford has been put in temporary charge while the club plan for the long term future. Following on from Saturday's 4 - 2 victory, Alcester Town announced that James Robbins' assistant, Dave Poulson, has decided to leave the club. Poulson, who has previously managed Alcester Town for many years before stepping down following last season's disappointing finish, has decided that his time at Stratford Road should come to an end. Dave had guided the club through the Stratford Alliance and then into the Midland League. Alcester have reacted quickly and Tom Millward has been appointed assistant manager. On Non League Day, Paget Rangers are hoping to
break their attendance record when they host Knowle at The Trevor Brown Memorial Ground. To celebrate Non League Day, Sporting Khalsa have reduced admission prices for their big FA Cup tie against Spalding United hoping for a big following.
The draw has been made for the 1st round proper of the FA Vase. Ties are due to be played on Saturday 31st October
Highgate United vs Radcliffe Olympic (EMCL)
Loughborough University vs Uttoxeter Town (SCL)
Dunkirk vs Bromsgrove Sporting
Rocester vs Hereford
Coventry Sphinx vs Black Country Rangers (WMRL)
Wisbech Town (UCL) vs Alvechurch
Cleethorpes Town (NCEL) vs Westfields
Shirebrook Town (NCEL1) vs Sporting Khalsa
Coleshill Town vs Hucknall Town AFC (CML)
AFC Wulfrunians vs Harrowby United (UCL)
Racing Club Warwick vs Ellesmere Rangers (WMRL)
Nuneaton Griff vs Anstey Nomads (EMCL)
Quorn vs Clipstone Welfare (NCEL)
Boldmere St Michaels vs Coventry United
Long Eaton United vs Hinckley AFC
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday October 3rd
Bilston Town Community 1 AFC Wulfrunians 3
It’s the 2nd Qualifying Round of the FA Vase and there are a host of matches to choose from. One that stands out for me is the chance to visit Queen Street for the visit of AFC Wulfrunians. I was born and bred in Bilston and my first foray into non-league football was to watch the Steelmen. Since moving away, I had not visited Queen Street for some years, the last time in Stafford Rangers promotion winning season in 1999 – Rangers won the Boxing Day fixture 5-1 in front of a crowd of 675. Much has happened to Bilston in recent years since the club reformed in 2007. Originally playing at Bantock Park in Wolverhampton, they have now returned to their spiritual home which has been transformed thanks to the hard core of volunteers who are Bilston through and through. On entering the ground, you are immediately hit by one colour – Orange, wall to wall orange. Many groundhoppers love the appearance and the feel of Queen Street and it was clear to understand why. I took my position in the old main stand and was treated to an excellent game of football. Wulfs, being the higher ranked side, were firm favourites and could have taken the lead in the 2nd minute when a Ben Jevons effort rattled the crossbar. Wulfs dominated the early exchanges and took the lead in the 10th minute when Ricky Anslow headed home a Jake Sedgemore cross. Very little had been seen of the Steelmen as an attacking force but they grabbed an equaliser in the 33rd minute. Lewis Archer raced clear of the Wulfs defence and slotted home pas the onrushing Danny Tipton. Wulfs were back in front 5 minutes before the break when Sedgemore planted a free-kick into the net. Anslow had the time for three further chances before the break without adding to his tally. Archer forced a save from Tipton but Ricky Nicholls blazed the rebound over the bar in what was to be the Steelmen’s best opportunity. Wulfs’ third came on the hour mark, a whipped cross from Cameron Bridgen, controlled and finished by Jevons. From thereon it was a case of how many and a mixture of poor finishing and the woodwork, to deny Anslow and Jake Webb, kept the score to 3-1. A cracking afternoon, a good natured crowd of 146 and Wulfs through to the next round.
Tuesday October 6th
Wolverhampton Casuals 3 Brocton 2
A 5 minute journey from home makes Wolverhampton Casuals my ‘local’ team. Tonight’s game against Brocton is a 1st round tie in the Walsall Senior Cup. Both sides are at the wrong end of their respective league tables and were looking for a morale boosting victory. On a greasy surface both sides were intent on attack in a very open game. Brocton dominated the early stages without breaking through allowing Casuals to gain a foothold. Brocton keeper, Callum Barrett was forced into a fine save to thwart Daryl Westwood before Jay Holdcroft crashed the ball against the outside of the post for the home side. Brocton took the lead on the stroke of half-time when Sean Kinsella played the ball into the path of Matt Hardiman who ran on and struck a cracking 25 yard shot into the roof of the net. Liam Hughes should have equalised for Casuals early in the second half but his shot beat Barrett and the post. Casuals were now on top and were awarded a penalty in the 55th minute when Matt Dockerty was adjudged to have brought down Holdcroft in the area – from my viewpoint the linesman got it wrong as the tackle was made outside the area. Hughes took the penalty but Barrett pulled off a fine save. Ben Farrell had the ball in the net for Brocton but it was ruled out for offside. Casuals were level on the hour when Lewis Cooper’s cross was turned home by Brad Lewis. Things got worse for Brocton when Ben Farrell was shown a straight red for something he said to the referee. The 10 men were back in front in the 68th minute. Paul McMahon was pulled back in the area and Kinsella made no mistake from the spot. Casuals were not to be denied and they were back on terms 13 minutes from time when Cooper’s cross from the left evaded everyone and went in off the far post. With extra time looming, Liam Hughes gave Casuals the victory finishing off a cross from Cooper. A cracking cup-tie and another WMRL club worth a visit.
2nd Qualifying round of the FA Vase and a round of few shocks. There were three involving MFL sides and all were in favour of the opposition. Lye Town went down 4-2 at home to WMRL league leaders Cradley Town with Lye pulling two goals back in the final 10 minutes. Premier Division high flyers Stourport Swifts crashed to defeat at Walshes Meadow against WMRL Black Country Rangers, going down by 3 goals to 1. Division 1 basement side, Bolehall Swifts, were also subjected to a giantkilling as they lost a titanic battle at Step 7 Uttoxeter Town, the game going the way of the home side 4-3 after extra time. One other game went to extra time where Step5 Harrowby United edged past Leicester Road. Biggest scorers of the day were Nuneaton Griff who won 8-1 at Division 2 Coton Green, making their debut in the competition. Leading scorer Luke Shorthouse bagging 4 more for Griff. Hinckley AFC bounced back from their FA Cup defeat by putting 6 past Bromyard Town, Marco Adaggio with a hat-trick. Highgate United beat Wolverhampton Casuals 5-2 at The Coppice with Shane Benjamin helping himself to another double. Rocester also scored 5, as they knocked out Kirby Muxloe, Dan Brown with a brace. There was a remarkable game at Sphinx drive where Coventry Sphinx beat Ellistown and Ibstock United 4-3 despite missing two penalties. Craig Bannister scored another hat-trick for Sporting Khalsa as they eased past Wellington at the Aspray Arena. Alvechurch can’t stop winning and their latest victory saw them defeat Pilkington XXX 4-0. Hereford made their bow in the FA Vase and progressed at Bardon Hill courtesy of a John Mills penalty 15 minutes from time. Quorn, AFC Wulfrunians and Loughborough University all picked up good away wins at Barrow Town, Bilston Town Community and Retford United respectively. Dunkirk eased past Holwell Sports for whom former Premier League striker, Julian Joachim was on target. Four second half goals put Boldmere St Michaels into the 1st round proper as they defeated Stafford Town. Westfields needed an 88th minute winner from Phil Glover to beat Littleton, who had levelled from 2-0 down. Bromsgrove Sporting beat Dudley Sports in front of the highest FA Vase crowd involving MFL clubs, 261 at The Victoria ground. Racing Club Warwick put their disappointing league form behind them to beat WMRL Stone Old Alleynians 4-0. On Sunday, Division1 high flyers Coventry United beat Studley 2-0, Josh O’Grady again on the scoresheet, despite playing for 80 minutes with 10 men
Heanor Town have taken over top spot in the league following a 2-2 draw at home to Walsall Wood. Wood scored first and last through Dan Griffiths but Heanor now lead the table by a solitary point. Coleshill Town warmed up for their big FA Cup tie with a 3-0 win at Brocton, Demetrius Smikle with a couple. Sporting Khalsa are up to 6th following a midweek win at Quorn. Two Liam Turner goals helped Quorn back from a 2 goal deficit but Craig Bannister, with his 2nd of the game, gave Khalsa the points.
Atherstone Town climbed up to 10th in the table with a 3-0 win over Pelsall Villa, Kyle Turner with a brace. Cadbury Athletic are 9th after a solitary goal settled the game at Heath Hayes.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Coventry Copsewood followed up a 5-0 midweek victory with a comfortable 3-0 win over visiting Heather St Johns, Ryan Harkin with a double. Coleshill warmed up for their FA Cup trip to AFC Fylde by putting 9 goals past Bolehall Swifts at Pack Meadow with Dean Rathbone helping himself to a hat-trick.
Chelmsley Town are 4 points clear at the top following a 4-1 win at Knowle, Chris Lloyd with a hattrick taking him to 13 for the season. Droitwich Spa remain 3rd but had to settle for a point at home to Austrey Rangers. Rostance Edwards are level on points with Droitwich after a 2-1 win at Feckenham. Earlswood Town are still searching for their first point after going down 3-2 at home to Barnt Green Spartak, who move up to 7th .
Smithswood Firs have a 2 point lead at the top of the table following a 4-0 victory at bottom side, AFC Solihull. Barton United are 2nd after a 2-1 victory at Enville Athletic. Northfield Town are up to 5 th with a 4-2 home over Perrywood. Alcester Town were another team to score 4, Matthew Layton’s double taking him to 8 for the season, as they won at Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons. FC Stratford remain unbeaten although they could only pick up a point at Badsey Rangers, themselves with only one defeat. Shipston Excelsior beat former leaders Inkberrow 2-1 at London Road to move within 2 points of the top 6.
Division 2 high flyers Alvis Sporting Club were too strong for Fairfield Villa as they progressed 3-0, Thomas Maguire’s double taking him to 9 for the season. There was a good win for Hampton who defeated Sutton United 3-1.
Two of the top sides in Division 3 met at the Valley Stadium and it was home side, Redditch Borough who progressed with a 3-1 victory over Leamington Hibernian.
Plenty of County Cup action this week in the Birmingham Senior Cup, Walsall Senior Cup and the Coventry Charity Cup. Hinckley AFC scored 9 at Coventry Copsewood with skipper Luke Richards bagging 4. Walsall Wood and Pelsall Villa made progress in the Walsall Senior Cup with victories over Shifnal Town and Heath Hayes respectively. In the Birmingham Senior Cup Coventry Sphinx and Boldmere St Michaels bowed out in home defeats to Banbury United and Burton Albion respectively. Lye Town beat Alvechurch on penalties after the sides drew 2-2.
A huge weekend for two of our clubs as they face ties in the 3rd qualifying round of the FA Cup. Sporting Khalsa welcome Spalding United from the Evostik Division 1 South to the Aspray Arena and will fancy their chances of an upset. Spalding are unbeaten away from home in the league with 1 win and 4 draws but they got knocked out of the FA Trophy last weekend losing 5-4 at Newcastle Town. Khalsa are in great form and with Craig Bannister scoring goals for fun, a National league club could beckon for Ian Rowe’s men. Coleshill Town after knocking out three Step 4 clubs have a major task as they take on Step2 National North favourites AFC Fylde at Kellamergh Park. The Coasters lie second in the National North table and have won 4 of their last 5 league games. Home form has been a little patchy and should give Coleshill hope. Both sides have potent forward lines and this promises to be full of goals.
League leaders Heanor Town entertain Westfields hoping to maintain their position at the top of the table. Undoubted game of the day is at Edgar Street as 2nd placed Hereford face 4th placed Long Eaton United. Hereford have been in terrific form of late but the visitors have only lost once this season so will provide a stern test of the Bulls promotion credentials. 3rd placed Alvechurch have won their last 8 league games following the opening day defeat to AFC Wulfrunians and will expect to beat Dunkirk who have slipped to 21st place. Highgate United have found goalscoring easy of late and will be favourites to add to their tally against bottom club Continental Star. Stourport Swifts had a bad week last week and will hope to get back to winning ways against an improved Loughborough University. AFC Wulfrunians have slipped down the table and they face Boldmere St Michaels at Castlecroft with the visitors determined to move up the table. Bardon Hill and Quorn are firmly in the middle of the pack and a tight affair is expected in a Leicestershire derby. Inconsistency has been the name of the game for both Lye Town and Walsall Wood and it would be a brave man to predict the result. Rocester and Coventry Sphinx have been involved in some high scoring games of late and more goals are expected at Hillsfield. Shepshed Dynamo have four games in hand on the leaders and will expect to close the gap as they entertain struggling Brocton.
3rd placed Littleton can close the gap on the leaders with a home win over lowly Racing Club Warwick. Bromsgrove Sporting are hoping for a crowd in excess of 500 for their game against Pershore Town and a victory could see them in 3rd. Bottom club Bolehall Swifts will be hoping for a win at home to Studley to lift them off the bottom of the table. 2nd bottom Heather St Johns host Pilkington XXX desperate to halt a run of eight successive defeats. Pilks can move into the top 6 with a victory.
Paget Rangers are hoping for a record attendance when they welcome Knowle to the Trevor Brown Memorial ground. Leaders Chelmsley Town are at home to Fairfield Villa and will be expecting to maintain their 4 point lead. 2nd placed Alvis Sporting Club still have a 100% record and will face a tough battle with Barnt Green Spartak. Earlswood Town are still after their first point and they have a difficult task away to Austrey Rangers. Coton Green are back in league action after their excursion into the FA Vase and they travel to 2nd bottom Feckenham. Sutton United meet Hampton in the reverse of last weekend’s President’s Cup fixture which went Hampton’s way.
Leaders Smithswood Firs travel to Alcester Town whose confidence should be high after last week’s victory. Barton United will be hoping to take advantage of any slip from the leaders when they travel to Perrywood. AFC Solihull, after facing the league leaders last week have to tackle third placed Redditch Borough as they strive to get off the mark in the Midland Football League. Burntwood Town have games in hand on everyone else in the division and they host Northfield Town at Ravenhill Park. 7th meet 8th as Inkberrow host Badsey Rangers in a local derby while 13th paced Coventrians take on 11th placed Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons at Holbrooks Park.
Les James Challenge Cup
Division 3 Shipston Excelsior welcome Division2 Droitwich Spa to London Road hoping to upset the form book.
I am a 28 year old football supporter from Darlington who attends around 60
football matches per season.
Earlier this year I completed visiting the 92 Football League clubs and have
also visited a number of non league grounds since attending football matches
from a young age. I am currently a volunteer for Prostate Cancer UK writing
football articles for the charity and fundraising through my football
To engage fans in Non League Day next weekend I am teaming up with Non
League Day and Prostate Cancer UK to organise a fundraising fans Twitter
quiz to celebrate non league day and raise funds for Prostate Cancer UK.
Please would you be so kind to advertise my event through your website and
social media channels to engage as many non league football fans as
possible. I have written a basic advert including details of how fans can
get involved below which you may be able to use in its current form on your
'Friday 9 October 6-8pm - Tweet Trivia
To celebrate Prostate Cancer UK's involvement in Non League Day I am
arranging the ultimate fundraising quiz to raise funds for the charity.
On Friday 9 October 2015 I am asking football fans across the UK to Tweet me
a football trivia question and make a donation to Prostate Cancer UK and
double their donation should I answer the question correctly.
I will be inviting and answering the questions between 6-8pm on Friday
evening. All you need to do to take part is:
1) Follow me on twitter @DanPentlandpcuk
2) Make a donation to the charity by either texting YCFC87 with a space then
the donation amount (eg YCFC87 £1) to 70070 or by donating via the just
giving page at https://www.justgiving.com/Daniel-Pentland/
3) Tweet me a football trivia question
4) Double the donation should I answer the question correctly
Please get involved and support a great cause to celebrate this year's Non
Football supporters act as the cornerstone for the professional and non-league game in England. Fans of all clubs, regardless of age, disability, gender, race, faith, sexual orientation or any other identifying feature, should feel safe and welcome attending matches.
Kick It Out and the Football Supporters’ Federation (FSF) jointly launched the ‘Fans for Diversity’ campaign in March 2014, supported by the Premier League’s fans fund, to help target a number of fan initiatives to promote diversity and inclusion across the professional and non-league game.
Anwar Uddin was appointed as the FSF’s Diversity and Campaigns Manager in March 2014. Here, he gives an overview as to the delivery of the ‘Fans for Diversity’ campaign, and how Kick It Out and the FSF are looking to further engage with supporters across all levels of the game nationwide.
“I grew up in East London and supported West Ham United FC, visiting Upton Park since I was eight-years old. I was fortunate enough to play for the club over a six-year period as we won the FA Youth Cup in 1999. I went on to proudly represent a number of clubs including Sheffield Wednesday, Bristol Rovers, Dagenham & Redbridge, Hereford, Barnet and Eastbourne Borough.
“When I was at Dagenham & Redbridge, I became the first British Asian to captain a side in the top four divisions of English football. After my playing career drew to a close, I began working for Show Racism the Red Card delivering anti-racism education to young people across the country. I also provided equality and diversity training to current senior players for the Professional Footballers’ Association and to Scholars with Kick It Out.
“For me, one of the great things about football is that it brings people together, thousands of people embracing the game and the team they love everywhere. We follow football in a country where everyone is different and we want to ensure that there are no barriers to anyone supporting their team. Fans are the heart and soul of our game and the biggest thing I miss about playing is the atmosphere that we as supporters bring to the stadium on a match-day.
“As Diversity and Campaigns Manager, I work on all forms of diversity from a supporters’ perspective. ‘Fans For Diversity’ is about bringing together fans to highlight diversity and to create an environment where fans feel safe and comfortable in supporting their team.
“It’s vital everybody across football is aware of all the different types of discrimination and the effects they can have. We work closely with all fans and relevant organisations to help challenge these issues as we aim to make football as inclusive as possible.
“The FSF’s 500,000 individual members and affiliated groups support a proactive stance on these issues, ensuring the FSF is both accessible to all groups and representative of football’s wide fan-base.
We empower fans, helping them to raise awareness of the importance of diversity and inclusion in the game. We encourage and support events and activities that highlight fans working together to promote diversity. We’d love to hear from anyone who would like to support the work of Kick It Out and the FSF.
The September Team of the Month is:
Overall - Hereford
Division One - Leicester Road
Division Two - Chelmsley Town
Division Three - Inkberrow
Reserve Division - Coleshill Town
Under 21s - Heath Hayes
Congratulations to those Clubs
Romulus were charged under League Rule 8 (O) of playing unregistered players in their Reserve Division fixture against Cadbury Athletic on Saturday 15th August 2015. The Club were found guilty of the charge and were fined as per rule and deducted the points gained from the fixture. As they drew the fixture 1-1 they have had one point deducted from their playing record.
Midland Football League Newsletter
1st October 2015
Heather St John's FC are looking for a Chairperson to join their Executive Committee. With a senior mens team playing in the Midland Football League (step 6 of the national league system), a senior Ladies Team and a juniors section comprising of 15 teams, the club seeks to continue its development. The facilities at St John's Park include 3 floodlit pitches, junior pitches and a clubhouse with dressing room facilities that are regarding amongst the best in non league football.
The successful candidate will help to bring direction and vision to an established and stable community club. Applications or enquiries should be made to the club secretary via email at email@example.com or phone 07952633331.
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday September 26th
Chasetown 5 Hinckley AFC 2
A visit to the Scholars is a good insight into the benefit of an FA Cup run. Back in 2008, Chasetown reached the 3rd round proper of the FA Cup where they entertained Cardiff City in front of live TC cameras. The money that Chasetown made in that cup run helped transform the Scholars ground to what we see today. Hinckley were the lowest ranked team left in the competition and were backed by a large following, substantially more than the home fans. The game started at a frantic place with
Hinckley on top and seeing a shot from Luke Richards cleared off the line. Against the run of play, Chasetown took the lead, Paul Sullivan’s shot deflected past Sam Arnold. Hinckley continued to create chances but were denied by a mixture of poor finishing and excellent goalkeeping.
Immediately after the break, the visitors were level, Kris Ramsey-Dickson turning the ball home from a corner. With both sets of supporters sensing a cup shock, Chasetown had other ideas and they retook the lead 5 minutes later – Stan Mugisha tapping in following an excellent run and cross from Michael Williams. The third goal for Chasetown proved to be the decider and that came from the penalty spot. James Dance was dragged down in the area – a clear penalty for some, a harsh decision for others, and Dance himself converted the spot kick. The goal knocked the stuffing out of the visitors and Chasetown’s greater physical presence took its toll. Ryan Wynter added a 4th for
Chasetown with a free header from a Dance flick. To Hinckley’s credit, back they came and Luke Richards gave them a glimmer of hope with an excellent finish. Alas, the comeback was not to be and Danny Edwards completed the scoring with a fine header. An excellent cup run for Hinckley ends but they can hold their heads up high after a job well done.
Tuesday September 29th
Sporting Khalsa 2 Long Eaton United 1
Work commitments meant a local game for me and with the Aspray Arena being 15 minutes from home, a no brainer for the game between FA Cup heroes and the joint table toppers. I wasn’t to be disappointed. Khalsa, fresh from their win at Basford United, started brightly and took the lead inside two minutes – goalscoring centre-back Tesfa Robinson at it again hammering home a loose ball. The visitors were not behind for long, Aaron Cole equalising from the penalty spot after Brad Wells was brought down. Both sides pressed for more goals and it was the home side that regained the lead in the 25th minutes when David Meese flicked home a Tim Jackson free-kick. Khalsa were reduced to ten men in the 32nd minute, Joe Rogers being shown a straight red adjudged to be the last man. From my position in the stand, I thought the referee got it right. Wells had the ball in the net for Long Eaton but the linesman’s flag was raised for offside. In the 43rd minute, Khalsa were reduced to 9 men, Carlo Franco being shown a second yellow card, another good decision by the referee. Surely it was only a matter of time that Long Eaton would make their numerical superiority county. If so, no-one told the home side, and with a stunning effort the Khalsa defence held firm, Keeper James Pemberton not having a save of note to make. Khalsa’s excellent week was confirmed at the final whistle as they condemned Long Eaton to their first defeat of the season.
Two in, two out was the story of the FA Cup 2nd Qualifying round. Pride of place on Saturday went to Sporting Khalsa who travelled to last year’s MFL champions, Basford United, Two goals from Craig
Bannister and one from Tesfa Robinson saw Khalsa through to a home tine against Evostik South Spalding United. On Sunday Coleshill Town were giant killers for the third round running, this time defeating Evostik Premier Division Stamford at The Lamb. Rob Evans opened the scoring early on and Simeon Cobourne made sure with a goal at the death. Coleshill’s reward is a trip to the seaside to face National North favourites AFC Fylde. Hinckley’s excellent cup run came to an end in a thriller at Chasetown, the home side running out 5-2 winners, a scoreline which did not reflect on the performance on the day. Dunkirk pushed Evostik Premier Stourbridge all the way at Amblecote before finally losing 3-1
It’s been a good week for Hereford who are top of the table on goal difference following two excellent away wins. Leading scorer John Mills bagged a brace as Hereford beat Boldmere St Michaels 3-0 and followed that up with 3 of the Bulls 6 at Walsall Wood. Heanor Town are second with two solid wins of their own. Kieran Debrouwer was on the scoresheet again with 2 in the 3-1 win over Highgate United and another in the 3-0 win at Continental Star, Andre Johnson with 2 in that game. Alvechurch are 3rd with 8 consecutive league victories. Karl Edwards scored 2 in a 3-0 win at Shepshed Dynamo while new boy Jordan Nadat opened the scoring on Tuesday as they beat
Coventry Sphinx 3-1. Long Eaton United slip back to 4th, a win over Loughborough University maintaining their momentum until they were beaten by 9-man Sporting Khalsa at the Aspray Arena. Highgate United bounce back from their defeat at Heanor Town with a 6-1 win at managerless Dunkirk, Shane Benjamin with a hat-trick. Stourport Swifts have slipped up this week – two late goals earned them a point against Rocester but they suffered a 3-2 defeat at Brocton on Tuesday, for whom Dominic Dell scored twice. AFC Wulfrunians slip down the table following a dramatic game with Walsall Wood at Castlecroft. Wulfs equalising in the 90th minute before Drew Aiton grabbed a winner for the Wood in the 5th minute of stoppage time. Continental Star remain bottom despite picking up their first win of the season with a 1-0 win over Bardon Hill. Bardon Hill bounced back from that defeat with a 2-0 win at inconsistent Rocester. Lye Town are slowly moving up the table, a 3-0 win over Brocton their latest result. A mixed week for Quorn with a 2-1 win over Westfields and a 2-1 defeat at Boldmere St Michaels. FA Cup heroes Coleshill Town and Westfields shared stories and goals on Tuesday, a 1-1 draw the outcome.
Coventry United have a 5 point lead at the top, after a Josh O’Grady inspired win at Heather St Johns. Heather remain one off the bottom but saw basement side Bolehall Swifts close the gap when the two sides met at Rene Road, Swifts picking up their first points of the season with a 3-1 win. Nuneaton Griff remain second, a 3-0 win at Lichfield City keeping up their terrific goalscoring form. Littleton and Leicester Road are in close attendance with wins over Pershore Town and
Cadbury Athletic respectively. Bromsgrove Sporting sit 10 points off the top, a narrow win at Atherstone Town on Saturday maintaining their position. The Adders responded well to that defeat picking up all three points with a midweek win at Pershore Town. At the bottom, Stafford Town suffered a heavy home defeat, going down 5-0 to Coventry Copsewood. Studley remain perilously close to the basement with a 2-0 defeat at Heath Hayes. Pelsall Villa are also in the lower reaches, a 3-1 home defeat at the hands of Southam United on Saturday with two goals for the Saints from Dan Purser. Two goals from Jamie Smith weren’t enough from Racing Club Warwick who lost 3-2 at Lichfield City.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Shepshed Dynamo progressed to the next round with a comfortable 6-1 win over Loughborough University, Michael Reeve with a hat-trick
Chelmsley Town top the table after a 4-1 win at Barnt Green Spartak, Tom Ellis with a brace. Another to grab two goals was Rhys Brade for Austrey Rangers in their 4-0 win over Hampton, the result moving Austrey up to 6th
Redditch Borough are up to second following a 5-1 win at Northfield Town. Barton United are 4th after a 3-1 local derby win over Burntwood Town. AFC Solihull are still waiting for their first MFL point, Shipston Excelsior proving too strong in a 4-0 defeat.
Les James Challenge Cup
Two acts of giant killing in the Challenge Cup this week. Coventrians beat Division Two high flyers
Rostance Edwards 3-2, while Division 3 leaders Smithswood Firs needed extra time to knock out Division 2 Coton Green. Elsewhere there were wins for Sutton United at Alcester Town, Paget Rangers at Earlswood Town, Knowle at Leamington Hibernian and for Chelmsley Town at FC Stratford.
One tie in the Challenge Vase saw Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons edge past Enville Athletic on penalties.
Only two games in the Premier Division this week and Heanor Town can go three points clear with a win over Walsall Wood. Brocton can move up to 13th place if they can beat Coleshill Town at Silkmore Lane
Only two games in Division 1 this weekend and Heath Hayes can move into the top 6 with a win over Cadbury Athletic. Atherstone Town and Pelsall Villa meet at Sheepy Road win a win for either moving them into the top half of the table.
Lots of ties in the FA Vase this weekend including the first appearance of Hereford in the competition as they travel to Bardon Hill. The draw has given us plenty of local derbies and the opportunities for MFL sides to progress. A couple of tasty all MFL games see Pilkington XXX host Alvechurch and Westfields entertain Littleton. Quorn, AFC Wulfrunians and Dunkirk face awkward looking away ties at Barrow Town, Bilston Town Community and Holwell Sports respectively. A big game for Coton Green as they entertain Division 1 big scorers Nuneaton Griff at New Mill Lane. Bolehall Swifts and Racing Club Warwick have difficult away games at Uttoxeter Town and Stone Old Alleynians respectively. Elsewhere, the other ties this weekend are Boldmere St Michaels vs.Stafford Town, Coventry Sphinx vs. Ellistown & Ibstock United, Highgate United vs Wolverhampton Casuals, Lye Town vs Cradley Town, Retford United vs Loughborough University, Rocester vs Kirby Muxloe, Sporting Khalsa vs Wellington, Stourport Swifts vs Black County Rangers, Bromsgrove Sporting vs Dudley Sports, Harrowby United vs Leicester Road, Hinckley AFC vs Bromyard Town and, on Sunday, Coventry United vs Studley.
League leaders Chelmsley Town travel to Knowle looking to extend their lead at the top of the table. 3rd placed Droitwich Spa host Austrey Rangers while 4th placed Rostance Edwards travel to 2nd bottom Feckenham. Earlswood Town will be striving for their first points of the season with a home game against Barnt Green Spartak.
Bottom versus top this week as AFC Solihull host Smithswood Firs at Tudor Grange. Barton United can go second with a win at Enville Athletic while its 7th versus 6th as Badsey Rangers host unbeaten
FC Stratford. In form Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons entertain Alcester Town, Northfield Town host Perrywood and Inkberrow travel to Shipston Excelsior.
Alvis Sporting Club take their perfect record for this season to Fairfield Villa while Hampton welcome Sutton United.
The sides in 2nd and 3rd in Division 3 meet at The Valley with Redditch Borough at home to Leamington Hibernian in what promises to be a close tie.
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