Midland Football League Newsletter
12th October 2016
Coventry United's Academy manager, Matthew Brown, will be leaving the club to start a new role with Chelsea. Brown joins Chelsea as Lead Coach for 16-18 year old Male and Female players at the Premier League club. He will also be working on international programmes travelling abroad with the first-team on their summer tours of the USA and Asia.
Formerly a footballer himself, Brown has enjoyed an exciting playing career throughout the UK, Europe and America, while gaining the relevant coaching qualifications. Terry Anderson, the current first-team manager at Coventry United, will take over Matthew's current responsibilities with the Academy.
A statement from the club said: "As you can imagine this is a massive opportunity for Matthew, and everyone connected to Coventry United Football Club would like to wish him all the very best in his new role."
Joel Ambalu has signed on non-contract terms for Torquay United. He spent a promising youth career at West Bromwich Albion before injury stalled his progression. He has spent time with Redditch United, Aylesbury, and Dudley Town and has just left Midland Division One side Heather St. John’s.
“Joel is, in effect, an extended trial. He’s come highly recommended by Courtney Richards. We spoke to the people from West Bromwich Albion where he was at as a kid and they said he was a little bit unfortunate with injury. They thought he had a very bright future ahead of him. It seems he’s a player that has slipped through the cracks and is now looking for that next opportunity.
“He’s one of those football stories that could work out great, or not. But for him I think it is fantastic and it gives us someone who we know is more than capable of taking a place on the bench, and then we’ll take it from there.”
Another player on the move is Romario Martin who moves from Division 3 Moors Academy to Northern Premier Division Barwell, a jump of 5 steps in the non-league pyramid. Good luck to Romario as he makes his way at the higher level.
Travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 8th October
Division 1 (23)
Leicester Road 4 Lichfield City 1
With both of these sides amongst the pace setters in Division 1, it was a good opportunity to guage their prospects with the season a quarter of the way through. I had visited the stadium a number of time when it was the home of Hinckley United and I was well wrapped up as I remembered how cold the main stand could be with even a breath of wind – good job too. The home side had a great chance in the 2nd minute but Alex Kent was off target with a header. Both sides settled ino the game playing crisp passing football. It was Leicester Road that took the lead in the14th minute when a wonderful cross from Kent was headed past Amrick Virdee by Joe Lyne. Greg Downes should have made it two a couple of minutes when he was teed up by the impressive Tom McGlinchey but the skipper’s shot was high over the bar. Lichfield cmae back and Chris McComiskey tested Ricky Blewitt from a free-kick. Ben Lund was gifted a chance by the Leicester Road defemce but his shot was saved by the legs of Blewitt. Lichfield had two penalty appeals waved a way by the referee as they pressed for an equaliser. There was a penalty appeal at the other end when McGlinchey’s shot was saved and Amarvir Sandhu went down under a challenge. Lichfield again had a penalty appeal turned down when Dan Griffiths went over in the box. With the first half appraoching stoppage time, Kent misseda glorious chance for Leicester Road hitting the keeper from inside the 6 yard box. Into stoppage time, Jake Holt was off target when well placed for the home side. Lichfield went close when Downes headed the ball against his own bar. In the fifth minute of injury time, Leicester Road doubled their lead, Sandhu beat 3 defenders and set up Downes who hammered the ball home.
Lichfield almost pulled a goal back 3 minutes into the second hald. Josh Haston hit a fierece shot golawards which was somehow blocked by a mixture of Blewitt and Nick Hawkins who needed treatment due to the ferocity of the shot. Luke Chapman was on target with a free-kick but it was into the midriff of Blewitt. Leicester Road looked the most likely and Virdee saved well from both Sandhu and Kent. In the 57th minute, Leicester Road were awarded a penalty when Sandhu was brought down by Richard Deavall. Nick Hawkins stepped up and made no mistake from the spot. An excellent run by Lyne wasended with a fould by Jordan Hunt earning the Lichfield midfielder the game’s first yellow card. A wonderful move by Leicester Road led to their 4th goal. McGlinchey, a constant threat all game, played the ball into the path of Lyne and he grabbed his second of the game. Ken turned provider to McGlinchey who only needed to divert the ball past Virdeee but he miss kicked and Virdee gathered. Lichfield pulled one back in the 83rd minute when substitute Lewis Bourne curled a shot from the edge of the area into the top corner. Both sides continued to look for goals but the game ended 4-1 to the home side. A wonderful advert for Division 1 between two very good sides.
Tuesday October 11th
Staffordshire Senior Cup (24)
Stafford Town 1 Walsall Wood 5
A Tuesday evening with County Cup games gives me my first chance to see the new playing surface at Evans Park, home of Stafford Town. Town have struggled in the league this season with a completely new team and have yet to register a win. Visitors Walsall Wood have had an up and down start to the season in the Premier Division but are still expected to challenge for the title. Town almost made the perfect start, skipper Ryan Pace missing the target after just 17 seconds. The impressive Queenton Mananse fired over in the 6th minute and Wood struggled to contain the youngster all evening. The visitors’ first effort came from Craig Deakin but his shot was comfortably saved by Tom Degg. Shepherd Machingauta was played in by Callum Whittaker but the Wood keeper, Charlie Price, was stronger and the ball was cleared. Walsall Wood went close in the 23rd minute when Harry Harris played a free-kick to Lewis Taylor-Boyce and his 25 yard effort skimmed the bar. Steven Hayles just failed to get the final touch on a Deakin cross and Whittaker was just off target for Town as the game remained pretty even. In the 27th minute, the visitors took the lead and it was a goal to grace any occasion. Louis Harris controlled the ball and sent a shot from some 30 yards into the top corner. Drew Aiton went close to doubling Wood’s lead before Mananse shot wide for Town. Nick Wright went close for Walsall Wood and then Machingauta had a great chance for the home side but he was shepherded (sorry!) by the Walsall Wood defence and his effort was blocked. In the 38th minute, Stafford equalised and it was another goal of great individual skill. Mananse picked up the ball on the half way line, ran straight through the middle of the Wood defence and despatched his shot underneath Price.
Into the second half and the Division 1 side were more than matching their higher ranked opponents. Shawn Boothe deflected a ball towards his own goal but price reacted well to make a save at full stretch. Jordan Fincher then had a shot deflected for a corner as Stafford asked questions of the Wood defence. From a corner, Mananse was unlucky to see the ball drift wide of the post. In the 55th minute, Walsall Wood regained the lead with another superb effort. Aiton was picked out with a pass, and picking his spot, he placed the ball in the corner of the net from some 20 yards. The visitors went close again a few minutes later when Aiton’s cross was met by Louis Harris but his shot hit Taylor-Boyce. A great move from Stafford almost produced an equaliser when a back heel from Sow Mohamed sent Mananse clear and his shot was well saved by Price. Walsall Wood grabbed their third in the 72nd minute when a cross from the right was headed goalwards by Boothe. His effort was blocked but Leon Taylor was on hand to force home the rebound. It was four six minutes later when Taylor diverted a shot from Harry Harris post Degg for his second. In stoppage time, Aiton made it 5 for Walsall Wood with another superb effort from 25 yards. 5-1 was an unfair reflection on Stafford Town who more than matched Walsall Wood for large portions of the game. The pitch? It played very well and suited the pace and trickiness of the home side.
League leaders Westfields went 2-0 down at home to Shepshed Dynamo inside the first 12 minutes. A 100% record this season indicates that they have some resilience and back they came to snatch all 3 points with a Richard Greaves goal in the 85th minute. 2nd placed Coleshill Town needed an 86th minute goal from Dean Rathbone to beat Brocton, 3-2 the final score. Two first half goals were enough to give Alvechurch all 3 points away to Coventry Sphinx. Lye Town are 4th following a 2-0 win at home to Stourport Swifts. Tividale won for the first time this season, Dan Smith scoring twice in their 3-1 victory at home to AFC Wulfrunians. Sporting Khalsa and Boldmere St Michaels shared the spoils in a 2-2 draw at The Aspray Arena. Danny Ashton scored both for Khalsa while Joel Ayettey did the same for the Mikes. Coventry United picked up a valuable three points at St Andrews, a goal in each half giving them a 2-0 victory. Sebastien Szondi scored a hat-trick for improving Rocester in a 3-2 defeat of Quorn at Hillsfield. Heanor Town raced into a 3-0 lead over Shawbury United with Elliot Reeves scoring twice. Their Shropshire visitors staged a fightback, scoring twice in the last 15 minutes despite being down to 9 men, but The Lions held on for a 3-2 win. A goal two minutes from time from Lei Brown earned Highgate United a point at 10 man Long Eaton United. Walsall Wood drew for the first time in the league this season as they shared the spoils in a 1-1 draw with Loughborough University at Oak Park.
Loughborough University climb up to 7th following a 4-2 win over bottom side Tividale. The game was evenly balanced but three goals in the last 13 minutes gave the Scholars all three points.
Bromsgrove Sporting take over as leaders of the division following a 4-2 win over Nuneaton Griff in front of a wonderful crowd of 567 at The Victoria Ground. Lichfield City drop to 2nd after they were beaten 4-1 at Leicester Road, who move 3rd, Joe Lyne scoring twice for the home side. Atherstone Town are up to 4th after they won 5-2 at Racing Club Warwick with Kyle Turner scoring 4. Joe Hartshorne scored twice for Heath Hayes in a 3-0 win over Studley at The Coppice Colliery ground. Stafford Town are still looking for their first win of the season but it looked on the cards at home to Chelmsley Town until the visitors equalised from the penalty spot late on. Bolehall Swifts took a 3-0 first half lead at home to Pershore Town and although the visitors came back, Swifts ran out 3-1 winners. Heather St Johns and Cadbury Athletic can’t be separated in the league table and they couldn’t be separated on the park either as they drew 1-1 at St Johns Park. Pelsall Villa and Uttoxeter Town couldn’t find a goal between them at The Bush.
Nuneaton Griff move back up to 3rd place after a hard fought 2-1 win at Chelmsley Town. Hinckley AFC remain in 6th with a Ryan Seal penalty gaining a point in a 2-2 draw at Coventry Copsewood.
Paget Rangers are the new leaders of Division 2 following a 3-1 win at Sutton United. Alvis Sporting Club are second after Fairfield Villa came back from 2 goals down to draw. Previous leaders, Barnt Green Spartak came unstuck at Coton Green, the home side winning 4-1 with Andrew Millan scoring twice. Knowle are up to 4th after a close fought game with Droitwich Spa, the home side running out 2-0 winners. Smithswood Firs took a 2-0 lead at home for Feckenham but the Millers fought back to take a point.
Droitwich Spa are up to 3rd after a 4-2 win at Redditch Borough.
NKF Burbage maintained their 100% start to the season with a 3-0 victory at Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons. A Stuart Hendrie goal gave Montpellier all 3 points at Alcester Town. Enville Athletic upturn in results continues with a 2-0 win over Castle Vale Town at Hall Drive, Adam Wooldridge with both goals. FC Stratford move up to 6th place following a 2-0 win at Inkberrow. Two goals from Joe Godson helped Shipston Excelsior to a 4-2 win over bottom club AFC Solihull.
Continental Star are through to the quarter final of The Presidents Cup following a 5-2 win over Earlswood Town at The Hub. Earlswood took the lead in the 13th minute but goals from Lamaar Rhule and Ronaldo Myers gave Star a half-time lead and they never looked back.
Polymac Packaging League cup
St Andrews are through to the next round after beating Coventry United 2-1 with all the goals coming in the first 25 minutes.
In the Coventry Charity Cup, Coventry Copsewood made progress with a 7-2 win at Brinklow. Copsewood goals came from David Aknull with a hat-trick and doubles from David Blenkinsopp and Craig Civzelis. It wasn’t such good news for Southam United who were knocked out by Peugeot Milpool, 2-0 the final score. Leamington Hibernian were 2-0 winners in the same competition defeating Whitnash town. In the Bedworth Nursing Cup, Coventrians made it through to the next round with a 3-1 win at home to Dunlop. Bloxwich Town were dumped out of the Staffordshire Vase going down 4-0 at Silverdale Athletic.
Ten-man Coventry Sphinx knocked AFC Wulfrunians out of the Birmingham Senior cup with a 2-1 win at Sphinx drive. In the Staffordshire Senior Cup, Brocton suffered a shock 4-1 defeat at the hands of WMRL Wolverhampton Casuals. Walsall Wood were 5-1 winners at Stafford Town with Drew Aiton and Leon Taylor both scoring twice. Rocester progressed into the second round, defeating Eccleshall 4-0 at Hillsfield. Heath Hayes came from a goal behind to beat Pelsall Villa 3-1 at The Coppice. Lichfield City and Uttoxeter Town were level at 1-1 at full time and it was Uttoxeter that progressed winning the penalty shoot out 3-2. In the JW Hunt Cup, Babucar Sauane scored a hat-trick for Alvechurch who beat Continental Star 7-0. In the Birmingham Midweek Floodlit Cup, Cadbury Athletic are safely through to the next round following a 2-0 win at Black Country Rangers.
In the Smedley Crooke Memorial Charity Cup, Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons pulled off a giantkilling winning 2-1 at Bilston Town Community
CHALLENGE TROPHY ROUND 1
BROCTON 1 v 3 ROCESTER
LICHFIELD CITY 2 v 2 GRESLEY
ROMULUS 3 v 2 CONTINENTAL STAR
CADBURY ATHLETIC 0 v 5 COTON GREEN
TIPTON TOWN 1 v 5 WALSALL WOOD
CHALLENGE BOWL ROUND 1
ALVECHURCH 1 v 3 KETTERING TOWN
COVENTRY UNITED 4 v 1 GORNAL ATHLETIC
BROCTON 1 v 0 KINGS HEATH CONCORDE
DROITWICH SPA G & B 0 v 13 TAMWORTH
AFC RUSHDEN & DIAMONDS 2 v 3 LEEK TOWN
BROMSGROVE SPORTING 1 v 2 COLESHILL TOWN
UNDER 21 DIVISION NORTH
SUTTON COLDFIELD TOWN 1 v 1 HEATH HAYES
WEST MIDLANDS ACADEMY 1 v 3 AYLESTONE PARK
UNDER 21 DIVISION SOUTH
H O W ACADEMY 1 v 4 BEDWORTH UNITED
Leading Goalscorers (all competitions)
Kieran Debrouwer Heanor Town 14
Andrew Bridge Loughborough University 13
Jamie Molyneux Westfields (now Hereford) 12
David Meese Sporting Khalsa 12
Jack Till Lye Town 12
Josh March Alvechurch 12
Alex Naughton Atherstone Town 18
Matthew Stenson Leicester Road 14
Ryan Seal Hinckley AFC 14
Kyle Turner Atherstone Town, Bolehall Swifts 10
Joe Hartshorne Heath Hayes 10
Luke Lewis Uttoxeter Town 9
Jamie Clarke Pershore Town 9
Thomas Craine Knowle 16
Daniel Carter Paget Rangers 12
Joseph Wright Leamington Hibernian 10
Stuart Hendrie Montpellier 8
Lee Hendrie Montpellier 7
Montel Okoro Moors Academy 7
Lewis Fathers Shipston Excelsior 7
Tom Smith NKF Burbage 7
Westfields are one game away from being in the hat with Football League Division 1 and 2 sides as they face Ryman Premier League leaders, Leiston in the 4th qualifying round at Allpay Park. Both sides are unbeaten in the league with Leiston two rungs higher up the non-league pyramid. For the visitors Matt Blake is the leading scorer with 13 goals but watch out for formerly Kings Lynn man Joe Francis who has 9 goals to his name. Westfields have been in tremendous form this season and have already beaten Step 3 and Step 4 opposition on their way to this round. Can they make the 1st round proper in this their 50th year? There is every chance – good luck from all at the MFL
With the league leaders in cup action, second placed Coleshill Town can close the gap to just three points if they can beat Highgate United at Pack Meadow. There is an attractive looking game at Lye Meadow as 3rd placed Alvechurch entertain in-form Loughborough University. 4th placed Lye Town welcome St Andrews to Stourbridge Road for the first time with the chance to move into the top three. Shepshed Dynamo pushed Westfields all the way last week and they are on their travels again as they face Sporting Khalsa at Aspray Arena. Quorn have lost 4 of their last 5 league games and will hope to bounce back to form when they face bottom club Tividale at Farley Way. Coventry United can continue their move up the table if they can take all three points from visitors Shawbury United. Heanor Town are unbeaten in their last 6 league games and a win at struggling AFC Wulfrunians could see them move into the top half of the table. Stourport Swifts and Boldmere St Michaels sit in 18th and 19th place respectively so a win for either would move them further away from the bottom two. Walsall Wood and Coventry Sphinx have had mixed results of late which is why neither are challenging towards the top end of the table. The game at Oak Park could go either way but expect goals. Two wins and two draws from their last four games has seen Rocester move away from the bottom. They can continue their rise should they beat Long Eaton United at Grange Park.
League leaders Bromsgrove Sporting take their unbeaten record to 14th placed Uttoxeter Town. 2nd placed Lichfield City have a tricky home derby against in-form Heath Hayes. Nuneaton Griff climbed back into 3rd place in midweek and they welcome lowly Studley to The Pingles Stadium. Leicester Road are on a long unbeaten run and they are in fine goalscoring form too as they travel to mid-table Cadbury Athletic. Atherstone Town host Chelmsley Town with the visitors looking comfortable in their first season in Division 1. Hinckley AFC have only been beaten once in the league this season and they will be favourites to beat Pelsall Villa at St Johns Park. There is a huge game at the bottom of the table as the two winless sides Southam United and Stafford Town go head to head at Banbury Road. Bolehall Swifts welcome Littleton to Rene Road with the home side in touching distance of the top four. Two sides that have shown improved form of late meet in Worcestershire with Pershore Town entertaining Heather St Johns. Racing Club Warwick welcome Coventry Copsewood to Townsend Meadow with the visitors finding form.
Only two games in Division 2 and a chance for Droitwich Spa to go top of the league as they entertain Feckenham in what is sure to be a keenly contested game. Fairfield Villa can move into the top 6 with a win at 2nd bottom Bloxwich Town.
One game in Division 3 and Montpellier can close the gap at the top with a win at home to Inkberrow
BIRMINGHAM VASE ROUND 1
AFC SOLIHULL v KNOWLE
AMBLESIDE SPORTS v LEAMINGTON HIBERNIAN
BARNT GREEN SPARTAK v WRENS NEST
BOLDMERE S & S v JET BLADES
C P A v ALCESTER TOWN
CASTLE VALE TOWN v AEI RUGBY
CHRIST THE KING v SUTTON UNITED
CONTINENTAL STAR v ALVIS SPORTING
COTON GREEN v WEST BROMWICH UNITED
CRUSADERS v PAGET RANGERS
EMERALD ATHLETIC v ENVILLE ATHLETIC
FC PREMIER v SMITHSWOOD FIRS
FOLLY LANE O.B. v COVENTRIANS
HENLEY FOREST v FC STRATFORD
JAGUAR-DAIMLER v EARLSWOOD TOWN
MOORS ACADEMY v BARTON UNITED
REDDITCH BOROUGH v OLD HILL
VILLAGE v NORTHFIELD TOWN
WAKE GREEN AMATEURS v HAMPTON
WHITNASH TOWN v SHIPSTON EXCELSIOR
CHALLENGE TROPHY ROUND 1
BROCTON v GRESLEY
CADBURY ATHLETIC v TIPTON TOWN
ROCESTER v LICHFIELD CITY
ROMULUS v COTON GREEN
CHALLENGE BOWL ROUND 1
AYLESTONE PARK v SUTTON COLDFIELD TOWN 12.30
GORNAL ATHLETIC v ALVECHURCH 10.30
KETTERING TOWN v COVENTRY UNITED 10.30
HEATH HAYES v KINGS HEATH CONCORDE 10.30
BEDWORTH UNITED v TAMWORTH 11.00
COLESHILL TOWN v WEST MIDLANDS ACADEMY 10.30
LEEK TOWN v BROMSGROVE SPORTING 10.30
UNDER 21 DIVISION SOUTH
AFC RUSHDEN & DIAMONDS v DROITWICH SPA G & B 11.00
HIGHGATE UNITED v H O W ACADEMY 10.30
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