Midland Football League Newsletter
2nd November 2016
The team of the month for September has been announced
Overall – Westfields
Division 1 – Hinckley AFC
Division 2 – Alvis Sporting Club
Division 3 – NKF Burbage
Congratulations to all of the winners
The team of the month for October has been announced
Overall – Paget Rangers
Premier Division – Alvechurch
Division 1 – Bromsgrove Sporting
Division 3 – NKF Burbage
Reserve Division – Romulus
Under 21 - Tamworth
Congratulations to all of the winners
The Annual Dinner will be held at The Banks Stadium, Walsall on Saturday 10th June 2017. Ticket prices will remain at £37.50.
Premier Division and Division 1 club to take a minimum of 4 tickets, all other clubs to take a minimum of 2 tickets each
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 29th October
MFL Division 3 (28)
NKF Burbage 5 Barton United 0
Division 3 new boys, NKF Burbage, have taken the MFL by storm winning their first 10 league games top open up a 12 point lead at the top of Division 3. My previous visit to Kirkby Road was to see Barwell In the Northern Premier League and the ground is well appointed for Step 3. It has rather a genteel feel as you drive past the cricket pitch on the left with the pavilion directly ahead. The main stand at Kirkby Road offers a great view and I took my customary place near the back, ostensibly to get a better view. I was impressed with Barton united last season and expected them to provide the league leaders with a stern challenge. NKF had their first attempt on goal inside the first 30 seconds, Kieron Iliffe's volley being easily dealt with. Tom Smith saw a fierce shot blocked in the 4th minute but the home side weren't to be denied and they took the lead in the 6th minute. A low ball from the left from Alex Coultas was tapped in by Smith inside the 6-yard box. Coultas had a shot deflected goalwards which Michael Graves did well to hold. The first chance for the visitors came in the 13th minute but Peter Martin’s effort was well off target. Coultas was causing problems down the left and another low cross was gathered at the second attempt by Graves. The second goal for the leaders came in the 21st minute. Smith created an opening on the left, whipped the ball into the box and Iliffe reacted quickest forcing home from close range. In the 25th minute, Martin forced a save from Jordan Pickering his well-directed header easily held. It should have been three in the 32nd minute when a mistake by Andy Lee, let in Iliffe but he decided to pass to Jess Adcock when a shot would have been a better option. Adcock looked likely to score but a fine challenge from Will Capper took the ball away. Tom Green missed a decent chance for Barton, heading over when he should have hit the target. In the 40th minute, Smith beat Graces to the ball but Capper was on hand to clear his lines. A minute later, a fine save from Pickering maintained NKF's 2 goal lead, as a deflected effort from Green was saved one-handed.
The second half continued the theme with the home side well on top. Adcock was unlucky in the 52nd minute, his shot fractionally off target. A piece of sublime skill in the 53rd minute deserved a goal. Smith watched the ball as it dropped over his shoulder, hit a perfect first-time volley which beat Graves and rattled the crossbar. Smith was a real thorn in Barton's side and another decent effort was just off target. In the 64th minute, Smith was on target with his shot but Graves did well to tip the shot round the post. A minute later, Adam Zia got in on the act, hitting the crossbar with a header from a corner for the home side. There was no stopping the home side and Smith teed up Coultas who forced another good save from Pickering. In the 69th minute, Barton's goal led a charmed life as three efforts were somehow cleared off the line. In the 72nd minute, Coultas set up Smith but his shot was deflected just past the post. Goal number three arrived in the 73rd minute to cheers of relief from the home support. An excellent cross from Coultas found the head of Smith who headed it across the keeper and into the corner. Some fantastic passing football from NKF created goal number 4 in the 80th minute with Coultas supplying the finish. NKF made it 5 two minutes from time when Coultas supplied the finish after Smith’s shot had been blocked. In stoppage time, barton went close to a goal when George Stack was just off target. A fantastic advert for Division 3 football and what a performance from the league leaders. A cracking day out and one I would recommend to anyone.
Tuesday 1st November
Polymac Packaging League Cup 2nd Round (29)
Rocester 2 Heanor Town 1
On the 1st night of November, real football weather arrived with plummeting temperatures and a feeling that the season starts here. The choice of game tonight is a League Cup tie between Rocester and Heanor Town, two mid table premier Division sides, at Hillsfield in the shadow of the JCB Academy. Both sides made changes from the previous weekend’s league fixtures with a mixture of unavailability and rotation (!). Heanor had a great chance inside the first 20 seconds when Matt Brian’s shot was deflected for a corner. In the 7th minute, Elliott Reeves went close for Heanor, his header cleared off the line and then Gary Conway fizzed a shot just wide of the target. In the 12th minute, Callum Riddell had a chance for The Romans but he headed over the bar when he should have tested Joe McCormack. Heanor were given a gilt-edged chance in the 27th minute when Reeves was brought down in the area by Jake Hudson with the referee awarding the penalty. Chris Smith took the spot kick but it was at a good height for keeper Callum Noon who made a fine save. Most of the chances were falling to the visitors and Greg Marriott was off target with another effort when he should have done better. Noon again rescued Rocester in the 32nd minute, acrobatically tipping over a free-kick from Jay Cooper. Heanor took the lead 5 minutes before half-time and it was a scrappy goal befitting a scrappy match. A goalmouth scramble in the Rocester box had four Heanor players waiting to strike the final blow and it was reeves that forced the ball home. Reeves could have doubled his and Heanor’s tally on the stroke of half-time when a well-worked free-kick saw Reeves hit the target but Noon was on hand to save.
Rocester were close to a leveller in the 49th minute but Riddell’s header was cleared off the line. Rocester had the ball in the net two minutes later. A superb free-kick from Joe Brockley hit the underside of the bar, bounced down where Riddell tapped it into the empty net. Unfortunately for Rocester, he was in an offside position when the kick was taken and the ‘goal’ was chalked off. The hoped for improvement in the game failed to materialise as both sides struggled to string any passes together. Out of the blue, Rocester equalised in the 66th minute and it was a goal of some quality. Riddell picked up the ball to the left of the are and hit a shot which swerved viciously as it flew past McCormack. The goal lifted Rocester who were now looking the most likely. In the 78th minute, Oliver Roome failed to get enough of his head on the ball and McCormack gathered. Riddell was offered a great chance with 10 minutes left but, in front of goal, he delayed his shot, and the chance went begging. A minute later, Brockley attempted a long-range chip but it was over the bar. With two minutes remaining, Rocester scored the winner. An excellent run down the right from James Frost saw him whip a cross into the box where Liam Shaw headed powerfully home. From my position, there was more than a hint of offside about the goal but no-one appealed and it is Rocester that go into round 3. Not a great game of football on a cold night but credit to Rocester for the way they took control once they had equalised.
Alvechurch extended their lead at the top of the Premier Division to three points as a last-minute goal from new signing, Jamie Willetts gave them all three points at home to Coventry United, who had two players red carded. Lye Town are in 2nd place after they picked up three points in an excellent 3-1 win away to faltering Walsall Wood. Westfields suffered their first home defeat of the season, going down 4-0 at the hands of 4th place Coleshill Town which puts the two sides level on points in the table. Sporting Khalsa remain in 5th place after they beat Rocester 5-3 at The Aspray Arena. The game was held up for 30 minutes in the second half as Danny Ashton from Khalsa suffered a serious leg injury. In the game, David Meese added to his impressive season's tally with a first-half hat-trick while Karl Ashton scored twice for the Romans. Quorn stay in 6th place following a 2-0 win at AFC Wulfrunians. Loughborough University are a place further back, Hafeez Sunusi with the only goal of the game against Stourport Swifts. St Andrews are level on points with the Scholars, a goal two minutes from time giving them all three points against bottom of the table Brocton. Heanor Town are up to 9th after they beat struggling Highgate United 2-0 at The Town Ground. Boldmere St Michaels remain in the bottom three following a goalless draw at Coventry Sphinx. Shepshed Dynamo and Long Eaton United shared 4 goals at The Dovecote with both sides in the bottom half of the league table.
Coventry United are up to 8th following a 2-0 win at home to Quorn on Tuesday evening. Goals from Kevin Thornton and Dylan Otshudy gave United the points and they are 13 points behind leaders Alvechurch with 6 games in hand. The only downside was another red card, a second in a week for Jean Dakouri in an altercation with Quorn’s Jimmy Brooks who also saw red.
An 18th-minute goal from Jason Cowley settled the game between the top two in Bromsgrove Sporting’s favour at Lichfield City. Leicester Road gained ample revenge on Uttoxeter Town for their FA Vase defeat with a resounding 5-1 win at Oldfields, Jake Holt with a brace. Managerless Studley upset 4th placed Atherstone Town at Sheepy Road coming back from a goal down to win 2-1. The result of the day was at St Johns Park as Hinckley AFC scored 12 without reply against bottom club Southam United. Ryan Seal scored 4, Paul Sullivan 3 and there were doubles for Javia Roberts and Peter Williams in the rout. A Joe Obi hat-trick helped Bolehall Swifts beat Stafford Town 4-2 at Rene Road, Queenton Mananse scoring twice for The Reds. Coventry Copsewood move up to 18th following a 3-3 draw at home with Pelsall Villa. Racing Club Warwick beat Littleton 3-1 at Townsend Meadow to remain 8th. Cadbury Athletic shared 4 goals at home to Heather St Johns while there was a similar scoreline in the game between Pershore Town and Heath Hayes
Paget Rangers are new leaders of Division 2 after they won 6-0 at Hampton. Daniel Carter grabbed a hat-trick for Paget who are now the division’s leading scorers. Fairfield Villa are joint second after coming back from a goal down at home to Smithswood Firs to eventually win 4-1. Earlswood Town are off the bottom after they drew 3-3 at Barnt Green Spartak with James Giblin scoring twice. A goal from Liam Fullerton gave Redditch Borough all three points at Coton Green. Three games ended all square – Leamington Hibernian and Bloxwich Town couldn’t find a goal between them, while Continental Star and Feckenham and Sutton United and Knowle both ended 1-1
NKF Burbage continued on their merry way with a superb 5-0 victory over Barton United at Kirkby Road. Tom Smith and Alex Coultas both scored twice as NKF remain 12 points clear. Northfield Town are up to 2nd place after they beat Shipston Excelsior 3-1 at Shenley Lane. A hat-trick for Montel Okoro saw Moors Academy beat Enville Athletic 3-1 at The Beehive. The sides in 12th and 13th place, Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons and Castle Vale Town, shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw.
Alcester Town are into the semi-finals of the Challenge Vase after a strange game against Coventrians. The visitors raced into a 3-0 lead with Lewis Chester scoring twice. Back came Alcester to drew level and send the game into extra time. That proved goalless and it was Alcester that won the penalty shoot out 3-2.
Polymac Packaging League Cup
Lichfield City had the result of the round with a comprehensive 4-0 win over Premier Division Long Eaton United at The McDonalds Community Stadium. Ben Lund continued his fine form with a hat-trick. Hinckley AFC were also giant killers, beating high-flying Coleshill Town 4-2 after extra –time at Pack Meadow. Andy Westwood and Javia Roberts clinched the game for Hinckley in the second period of extra-time. Leicester Road also made it through to round three with a 2-1 victory over local rivals Heather St Johns at St Johns Park. Pershore Town made it four Division 1 sides through on the night as they beat Cadbury Athletic 4-3 on penalties after the sides had finished 3-3 after extra-time. A goal two minutes from time from Liam Shaw saw Rocester through to the next round as they beat Heanor Town 2-1 at Hillsfield. Two goals in the first 15 minutes from Marco Adaggio saw Highgate United on their way to Round 3 with a 2-1 win at Stourport Swifts. Last year’s losing finalists, Walsall Wood were the night’s other winners, a comfortable 3-0 victory at the Beeches to knock out league rivals Tividale. Jack Edwards scored a hat-trick as Brocton managed a morale boosting win at Nuneaton Griff, 5-2 the final score.
In the Coventry Evening telegraph Cup, two goals from Kieron Fitzgerald helped Chelmsley Town to a 4-0 win at AFC Woods. Nuneaton Griff showed their class with an 8-1 win at Ambleside Sports- Tom Bates with a hat-trick and a double from Matty Brennan amongst the goals. Two MFL sides bowed out of the competition, Alvis Sporting Club lost 2-0 at Stockton while FC Stratford lost 1-0 at Whitnash Town. In the Worcestershire Junior Cup, Droitwich Spa progressed winning 2-1 at Welland. Montpellier also made it through beating Bromsgrove Sporting U21 4-1 at Badsey. It wasn’t all success though as Inkberrow were knocked out of the competition being beaten 3-0 by Worcester Raiders. A first half goal from Marvin Nisbett gave Sporting Khalsa victory at Bolehall Swifts in the Walsall Senior Cup. In the JW Hunt Cup, Paget Rangers racked up 8 goals as they beat Old Wulfrunians 8-1 at Castlecroft. David Franklin, Mark Bellingham and Daniel carter all scored twice for in-form Paget. In the Smedley Crooke Memorial Charity Cup, a solitary goal from Chris Conway gave Bromsgrove Sporting the victory at home to Knowle. Redditch Borough were in fine goalscoring form beating AFC Solihull 8-1 at The Valley with a hat-trick for Billy Garvey and a double for Jak Albutt. In the Coventry Charity Cup, FC Stratford bowed out losing 1-0 at home to Woodlands WMC. Littleton went out of the Smedley Crooke Memorial Charity Cup, losing 5-4 on penalties to Bewdley Town
CHALLENGE TROPHY ROUND 1
GRESLEY 3 v 1 WALSALL WOOD
ROCESTER 3 v 2 LICHFIELD CITY
CADBURY ATHLETIC 2 v 3 CONTINENTAL STAR
ROMULUS 2 v 3 TIPTON TOWN
BROCTON 1 v 2 COTON GREEN
CHALLENGE BOWL ROUND 1
AYLESTONE PARK 4 v 6 KETTERING TOWN
COVENTRY UNITED 7 v 0 HIGHGATE UNITED
GORNAL ATHLETIC 3 v 2 SUTTON COLDFIELD TOWN
BROCTON 5 v 1 DROITWICH SPA G & B
TAMWORTH 8 v 0 KINGS HEATH CONCORDE
WEST MIDLANDS ACADEMY 3 v 2 LEEK TOWN
UNDER 21 DIVISION NORTH
HEATH HAYES 2 v 2 COLESHILL TOWN
UNDER 21 DIVISION SOUTH
BEDWORTH UNITED 3 v 1 AFC RUSHDEN & DIAMONDS
Leading Goalscorers (all competitions)
Josh March Alvechurch 16
David Meese Sporting Khalsa 15
Kieran Debrouwer Heanor Town 15
Andrew Bridge Loughborough University 14
Richard Greaves Westfields 13
Jamie Molyneux Westfields (now Hereford) 12
Jack Till Lye Town 12
Alex Naughton Atherstone Town 23
Ryan Seal Hinckley AFC 21
Matthew Stenson Leicester Road 16
Sam Agar Hinckley AFC 13
Tom Bates Nuneaton Griff 12
Kyle Turner Atherstone Town, Bolehall Swifts 12
Luke Lewis Uttoxeter Town 12
Ben Lund Lichfield City 12
Daniel Carter Paget Rangers 19
Thomas Craine Knowle 18
Jak Albutt Redditch Borough 12
Joseph Wright Leamington Hibernian 10
Pedro Douglas Continental Star 10
Montel Okoro Moors Academy 11
Tom Smith NKF Burbage 10
Stuart Hendrie Montpellier 8
Saturday promises to be a red-letter day for Westfields as they play in the 1st Round proper of the FA Cup for the first time in their 50 year history. Curzon Ashton from National League North are the visitors to Allpay Park. Westfields have already beaten two sides from Step3 and one from Step 4 in this season’s competition and will not be unduly concerned about facing a side from Step 2, albeit 5 places higher in the pyramid than Leiston who they beat in the previous round. Westfields slipped up in the league last week but with National Coverage beyond all expectations, they will be hoping to put on a show this weekend. The Nash (as the visitors are known) have a far better away record this season having failed to win at The Tameside Stadium. They have a team full of experience at Football League and Conference level and will provide Westfields with a real challenge. Whatever happens, it promises to be a great day – BBC filming Football Focus from the ground, extended highlights on Match of the Day! Good luck to Westfields from all at the Midland football League.
It’s a bottom versus top clash in the Premier Division as leaders Alvechurch travel to basement side Brocton. Church have won 7 out of their last 8 league games which has seen them take over the top spot. The Badgers have only two wins all season so it would be quite an upset should they make it win number three. 2nd placed Lye Town are on an excellent run of form and they travel to Shropshire hoping to keep the run going at lowly Shawbury United. Coleshill Town had an excellent win last week at Westfields and they can go third with a win at 7th placed Loughborough University. Sporting Khalsa are unbeaten in 10 league games and they travel to The Coppice to face Highgate United who are surprisingly just outside the relegation zone. Three wins in the last four has lifted Tividale off the bottom and they travel to Hillsfield to face a Rocester side in decent form. Two sides locked together in the lower reaches of the table meet at Grange Park with AFC Wulfrunians travelling to Long Eaton United. Boldmere St Michaels have drawn their last four and face their 14th game on the road as they travel to 6th placed Quorn. Shepshed Dynamo welcome Walsall Wood to The Dovecote with both sides struggling to string results together. St Andrews arrested a run of four straight defeats last week and will be hoping for another win as they welcome Heanor Town to Canal Street. Stourport Swifts welcome Coventry Sphinx to Walshes Meadow and with both sides having mixed results of late, this could go either way.
A full programme of fixtures in Division 1 and a big game at the top of the table as leaders Bromsgrove Sporting entertain 4th placed Atherstone Town at The Victoria Ground. The Adders were surprisingly beaten at home by Studley last week after an excellent run of results while the Rouslers beat Lichfield City in a top of the table clash. There is an attractive looking local derby at 2nd placed Leicester Road as they entertain Heather St Johns. The home side have won 5 on the trot in the league while Heather are unbeaten in 5. Lichfield City aim to bounce back following last week’s defeat but it couldn’t be more difficult as they travel to The Pingles Stadium to face 6th placed Nuneaton Griff. Hinckley AFC are in wonderful goal scoring form and they face the league’s draw specialists, Cadbury Athletic at St Johns Park. Southam United are still searching for their first victory of the season and they welcome Uttoxeter Town to Banbury Road. 2nd bottom Stafford Town travel to Littleton, where a win could lift them out of the bottom three. Studley had a superb win last week at Atherstone Town which moved them above this week’s visitors Coventry Copsewood. Pelsall Villa and Pershore Town are both nearer to the relegation zone than they would want to be and the two of them meet at the Old Bush Ground. Bolehall Swifts could move into the top 6 if they can take all 3 points from their clash with Chelmsley Town at Pack Meadow. Racing Club Warwick are level on points with Bolehall and with only two defeats this season, they will be hoping to climb the table as they travel to Heath Hayes.
Each week, we seem to have a new leader of Division 2 and the pattern could well follow this week. With leaders Paget Rangers in cup action. Alvis Sporting Club can take over at the summit should they beat Barnt Green Spartak at Green Lane. Droitwich Spa can move into the top three with a win at home to Leamington Hibernian. Redditch Borough can also climb into the top three should they pick up all 3 points at Smithswood Firs. At the bottom, Hampton face 7th placed Knowle where a win for the home side could see them rise 4 places in the table. 2nd bottom Earlswood Town welcome Bloxwich Town to the Pavilions – a win for the home side would see them leap over their visitors in the table,
Moors Academy, in 4th, travel to 5th placed Shipston Excelsior where a win for either would move them into the top three. The bottom two meet at Tudor Grange with bottom club AFC Solihull still pointless while visitors Castle Vale Town have won 1 and drawn two. Two of last season’s leading sides are finding it much tougher this season. Barton United will look to put last week’s heavy defeat at the hands of leaders NKF Burbage behind them as they welcome Alcester Town to Holland Sports Club. A win for Enville Athletic over Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons at Hall Drive would see them in the top half of the table for the first time this season. 11th meets tenth at Holbrooks Park as Coventrians entertain Inkberrow.
Les James Challenge Cup
3rd Division FC Stratford will be hoping for a cup upset as they entertain 2nd Division Coton Green with a quarter-final at home to Knowle the prize for the winners. Division 2 rivals Feckenham and Continental Star meet at The Entaco with a quarter-final at home to Redditch Borough on offer.
Two in-form sides meet at Church Lane with the winners at home to Continental Star in the quarter-final. Paget Rangers have won 8 games on the spin in all competitions while Fairfield Villa have won their last three. With goalscorers from both sides in good form, this should be a great game.
2nd and 3rd in Division 3 meet in the quarter final of the Vase at Shenley Lane. Northfield Town have won their last 4 games in all competitions scoring 19 goals in the process. Montpellier are the only side to have beaten runaway leaders NKF Burbage this season (in the Les James Challenge Cup). When the two sides met in the league earlier this season, Montpellier ran out 5-1 winners. Expect this one to be much closer.
CHALLENGE TROPHY ROUND 1, Group "B"
COTON GREEN v ROMULUS 3.00
WALSALL WOOD v GRESLEY 3.00
CHALLENGE BOWL ROUND 1
KETTERING TOWN v HIGHGATE UNITED 10.30
BEDWORTH UNITED v KINGS HEATH CONCORDE 11.00
UNDER 21 DIVISION NORTH
AYLESTONE PARK v COLESHILL TOWN 12.30
WEST MIDLANDS ACADEMY v SUTTON COLDFIELD TOWN 10.30
UNDER 21 DIVISION SOUTH
ALVECHURCH v DROITWICH SPA G & B 10.30
H O W ACADEMY v BROMSGROVE SPORTING 10.30
BIRMINGHAM SATURDAY AMATEUR CUP ROUND 2
BULKINGTON S & S v COVENTRY UNITED u21 1.30
TRIUMPH ATHLETIC v CADBURY ATHLETIC RES. 1.30
TWO GATES v TAMWORTH u21 2.00
LEICESTERSHIRE INTERMEDIATE CUP ROUND 2
HIGHFIELD RANGERS v N K F BURBAGE 1.30
STAFFORDSHIRE CHALLENGE CUP ROUND 2
BRERETON SOCIAL v LEEK TOWN u21 1.30
HDFC SENIORS v BROCTON RES. 1.30
LICHFIELD CITY RES. v STONE OLD ALLEYNIANS RES. 3.00
NORTON CANES v ROCESTER RES. 1.30
ST MATTHEWS WALSALL v BROCTON u21 1.30
WHITTINGTON RES. v HEATH HAYES u21 1.30
NORTHAMPTONSHIRE LOWER JUNIOR CUP ROUND 2
AFC RUSHDEN & DIAMONDS U21 v CORBY EAGLES 1.30
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