The Extra Preliminary Round of The FA Cup saw 16 of our sides through to the next round to be held on Saturday 29th August. Pride of place, as far as goals scored, goes to Coleshill Town with an impressive 11-0 win over Ellesmere Rangers. It could have been even better for Coleshill as they hit the woodwork twice in the first half and missed three sitters in the second. Ellesmere played the last 17 minutes with only 10 men and no recognised keeper but there was no additional score in the game. There were plenty of goals last weekend in the various divisions. Studley and Nuneaton Griff shared 6 goals at the Pingles Stadium in Division 1; Alvis Sporting Club scored 10 at Coton Green while Droitwich Spa got underway with a 6-1 home win over Hampton in Division 2; in Division 3, Barton United edged an 8 goal thriller with Shipston Excelsior while Smithswood Firs also went nap against Perrywood. Our reserve division also got under way and there were no shortage of goals there too. Most attention on The MFL has been focussed on Hereford FC which wall come as no surprise to anyone involved in the league. Their opening away game at Stourport Swifts was brilliantly handled by everyone at Walshes Meadow and will have silenced the doubters as to whether the league can cope. The answer was a resounding yes both on and off the park and it was fantastic to see the Bulls supporters enjoying the hospitality both inside the ground and in the town beforehand. Above all, the Midland Football League was the winner on the evening – let’s continue to tell everyone just how good we are!
QUORN FC JOINS BHF's NATION OF LIFESAVERS WITH A LIFE SAVING DEFIBRILLATOR
Quorn FC and its Local Community have been equipped with a lifesaving defibrillator, through a partnership between the Football Association (FA) and the British Heart Foundation (BHF).
Through the partnership, the BHF and the FA have made more than 900 defibrillators available to clubs at Steps 1 to 7 of the National League System and in the Women’s Super League to help prevent lives being needlessly lost following a cardiac arrest.
Over 30,000 cardiac arrests happen out of hospital in the UK every year but currently less than one in ten people survive. The BHF say many more lives can be saved through creating a Nation of Lifesavers by equipping people with the skills and confidence to perform CPR and use a defibrillator, The BHF is also putting systems in place to ensure defibrillators are available in the places they are needed most.
Quorn FC is the latest club to install a defibrillator, giving players, staff and fans access to the equipment needed to help save lives in their community. The club was also given information about the BHF's Call Push Rescue training kit which includes everything needed to learn CPR in less than half an hour.
Two thirds of the cost of the defibrillator was provided to the club by The FA and BHF. Quorn FC Secretary Reg Molloy said: "This vital piece of equipment could prove to be the difference between life and death and it's a welcome addition to this club and its community”
"The FA and BHF have made it possible for Quorn FC to become part of the Nation of Lifesavers which aims to improve the UK's poor cardiac arrest survival rates. Along with performing CPR, a defibrillator is a vital step that can increase a person's chance of survival and we're lucky that we now have the skills and equipment at the club to help save a Life”
The Club proudly wear the JHMT (Joe Humphries Memorial Trust) Logo on their away strip and have been promoting awareness of SADS (Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome), since learning of the tragic loss of Joe at the tender age of 14. The addition of this Defibrillator is another step to help reduce the number of premature deaths.
Awareness around sudden cardiac arrests was heightened when former England Under-21 star Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch at White Hart Lane in March 2012' Muamba lent his support to the BHF's Nation of Lifesavers campaign earlier this year, which calls for all young people to be taught lifesaving CPR skills and defibrillator awareness at secondary schools.
When someone suffers a cardiac arrest their heart stops pumping blood around the body. They stop breathing or do not breath normally, lose consciousness and there are no signs of life. lf you see this happen, you must call 999 and start CPR immediately. A defibrillator also known as a Public Access Defibrillator or PAD, gives the heart a controlled electrical shock during cardiac arrest. This can, in some circumstances, shock the heart back into a normal rhythm.
For every minute that passes without CPR and defibrillation, chances of survival decrease by around ten per cent. So it's really important supporters and staff at Quorn FC know these vital steps to help someone in an emergency.
The travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 8th August
Walsall Wood 1 Bardon Hill Sports 1
The opening league game of the season for newcomers Bardon Hill ended in honours even after a 1- 1 draw with Walsall Wood. The Wood started the better and took the lead in the 7th minute with a super volley from Drew Aiton. Excellent goalkeeping from josh O’Brien kept the score at 1-0 into the break. Bardon hill were much improved after the break and grabbed a deserved equaliser through Richard Hanslow. Both goalkeepers were in fine form which augurs well for the season. Best moment in the game came from the Bardon hill bench. Frustrated at a perceived lack of defensive communication, the question was asked “Do you want a mobile so that you can text each other?” Classic
Monday 10th August
Coventry Sphinx 2 Quorn 0
A glorious summer’s evening in Coventry as Quorn visited Sphinx Drive. After opening day defeats both sides wanted that first win and it was the home side that took the spoils with a comfortable 2-0 win. Ash Jackson curled a superb free-kick for the opener in the 9th minute but it took until the 57th for Mitch Piggon to settle things. Quorn had their chance but the finishing was well short of what was required on the night.
Tuesday 11th August
Stourport Swifts 2 Hereford FC 0
A chance to take in Hereford’s first away game in the MFL. Parking on the Riverside car park, I wandered into Stourport and it was heaving with shirted Bulls supporters. The fish and chips seemed to be going down well as was the liquid refreshment in any number of Stourport hostelries. Inside the ground, there was a carnival atmosphere with added catering, beer tents etc – Stourport put on an excellent show. The vast majority of the 1321 crowd were to go home unhappy as Swifts came out on top with a 2-0 victory. Ben Maund got the opener from the penalty spot, Nathan Summers being red carded for a professional foul. The 10 men pushed forward but Dominic Richards in goal for Stourport was in blistering form. Joe Phillips ensured the victory with a solo goal in the 83rd minute but football and the MFL was the real winner on the evening.
Wednesday 12th August
Continental Star 1 Alvechurch 2
Both sides suffered disappointing home defeats on the opening day. Alvechurch, fancied by many to win the title this year, took the lead in the 6th minute, Leigh Downing supplying an excellent finish. There was some controversy surrounding the goal, the linesman raising a flag, lowering a flag, and then not being consulted by the referee. No idea what that was about! Alvechurch doubled their lead after half an hour when Jordan McIntosh headed into his own net. The visitors had all of the play but conceded a penalty with 20 minutes left – James Reid hammering home the spot kick. Things looked nervy for the visitors but they held on for a valuable three I will be taking in a couple of FA Cup ties as well as league games this week. Definitely scheduled are Coleshill Town vs Ellesmere Rangers
What a start with 7 clubs making a perfect start. Top of the pile are Lye Town with two thumping away wins and 9 goals in the bank. Close on their heels are Long Eaton United, no goals conceded and 5 different scorers. AFC Wulfrunians followed up their excellent win at Alvechurch with a narrow win over Brocton in midweek. Highgate United, Stourport Swifts, Shepshed Dynamo and Heanor Town are also 6 out of 6 with plenty of goals being scored. New boys Sporting Khalsa started with a bang, bagging 5 goals against Coleshill Town but slipped up in midweek at Dunkirk, who bounced back from an opening defeat in front of 4.060 at Hereford. 6 sides are looking for their first points of the season. Loughborough University prop up the table on goal difference conceding 6 and not scoring while Brocton are also on -6 but did at least score at Castlecroft. Quorn, Rocester, Continental Star and Boldmere St Michaels will be hoping to get their season’s under way next weekend.
Two new boys sit proudly at the top of Division 1. Leicester Road and Coventry United have the only 100% records and both have put down significant markers for promotion. Leicester Road followed up a 5-0 win over Pershore with a last gasp winner at Stafford Town. Coventry United opened up with a 2-0 win at Littleton before a 4-0 demolition of Hinckley at St John’s Park. Only Bolehall Swifts and Stafford Town remain pointless after the opening two games. Bolehall suffered a 5-0 defeat at home to Cadbury Athletic in midweek and already have a minus 7 goal difference.
Weekend Preview Premier Division
One solitary Premier Division game with Highgate United entertaining Hereford FC. Highgate have started well on their return to the top flight and will be looking to take an early lead at the top of the table. The Bulls will want to bounce back from their midweek defeat at Stourport and could join the frontrunners with a victory.
Game of the day sees Coventry United host Lichfield City at Sphinx drive. Both sides have started the season well and this will be a stern test of their promotion credential. League leaders Leicester Road travel to unbeaten Pilkington XXX who had a good win in midweek. Atherstone Town will be hoping to get their first win of the season at home to Racing Club Warwick while Pershore Town will be looking to build on their midweek victory when they entertain Heather St John’s. In the games, Pelsall Villa host Coventry Copsewood, Stafford Town take on Littleton at Evans Park while Nuneaton Griff travel to Studley.
With a solitary game in Division 2 last week, the season gets properly underway with a full fixture list. Coton Green are sitting pretty after last week’s win at Austrey Rangers and they entertain Alvis Sporting Club. Chelmsley Town host Barnt Green Spartak after a decent pre-season while Droitwich Spa take on Hampton. Paget Rangers travel to Earlswood Town with Fairfield Villa at home to Sutton United. Austrey Rangers will be looking to respond to last week’s defeat when they travel to Knowle while Rostance Edwards, who had a good end to pre-season welcome Feckenham to The Red Lion.
League new boys AFC Solihull have a home game to start the new era with Enville Athletic being the visitors. Fellow newcomers Shipston Excelsior are on their travels to face Barton United. Alcester Town and Burntwood Town meet at Old Stratford Road with some good pre-season performances behind them. Badsey Rangers welcome Northfield Town; Boldmere Sports & Social Falcons face FC Stratford while Redditch Borough welcome Leamington Hibernian to the valley. Smithswood Firs have recruited well and they meet Perrywood at Mackadown.
On Friday Coleshill Town have a home tie against Ellesmere Rangers at Tamworth FC. Coleshill should be expected to progress against an Ellesmere side that has won one lost one in the league this season. Premier Division meets Division 1 at Alvechurch as the Churchmen face Heath Hayes, who made a good start to the season. Three all Premier Division ties sees Bardon Hill at home to Dunkirk, Brocton at home to Stourport Swifts and Boldmere St Michaels at home to Rocester. Big game at St John’s Park with Hinckley AFC’s first FA Cup tie at home to Premier Division Walsall Wood. Heanor Town travel to former MFL side Kirby Muxloe while in form Long Eaton United will be expected to beat Harrowby Town. Loughborough University have a third successive home game entertaining Barrow Town. Lye Town versus Coventry Sphinx has been moved to Bromsgrove Sporting and could be a cracking cup tie. Sporting Khalsa travel to West Midlands Malvern town who have lost their two opening games of the season. Quorn will want to get their season started at home to Oadby Town. Shepshed Dynamo should be too strong for Retford United at The Dovecote while Southam United will fancy a giant killing at home to AFC Wulfrunians. There is a Herefordshire derby at Allpay Park as Westfields take on Pegasus Juniors. Bromsgrove Sporting have a tricky looking tie away at Gornal Athletic while Cadbury Athletic will be optimistic when they take on a troubled Tipton Town at Tipton Sports Academy. On Sunday. Continental Star will expect to get past Division 1 Bolehall Swifts at Dales Lane. Both sides are pointless after two league games but home advantage could make the difference
Premier Division Preview
Monday night’s game sees a meeting of two sides who suffered defeat on the opening day with Coventry Sphinx hosting Quorn at Sphinx Drive. On Tuesday, two sides who had contrasting fortunes on Saturday meet at Castlecroft. AFC Wulfrunians will be buoyant after an opening day with at Alvechurch while visitors Brocton will want to bounce back from a 5 goal hammering at the hands of Lye Town. Bardon Hill picked up a deserved point at Walsall Wood on Saturday while visitors Coleshill suffered a heavy defeat against fellow new boys Sporting Khalsa. Over in Nottingham, Dunkirk entertain Sporting Khalsa with both sides involved in high scoring affairs at the weekend, Dunkirk at Hereford while Khalsa started with a -2 victory over last season’s runners up, Coleshill. League new boys Heanor Town picked up all three points at Boldmere despite being reduced to 10 men and they entertain a Rocester side beaten at home by Stourport Swifts. Highgate United started life back in the Premier Division with an emphatic win at Quorn while Walsall Wood were held by Bardon Hill. Loughborough University will be hoping not to lose their opening two home league games when they entertain Long Eaton United who started with a good home win over Coventry Sphinx. Shepshed Dynamo started with an excellent away win at Continental Star and will be looking to get back to back wins when Boldmere St Michaels visit the Dovecote. The Mikes slipped up at home to 10 man Heanor and will want to get off the mark. At Walshes Meadow, something has to give as Stourport Swifts host Hereford with both sides picking up 3 points on Saturday. At Allpay Park, another two sides with good away wins under their belt meet with Westfields hosting Lye Town. The solitary game on Wednesday evening sees Continental Star host Alvechurch at Dales Lane with both sides looking for their first points of the season after disappointing opening home defeats.
Division 1 Preview
Atherstone Town picked up a good point away to Lichfield on Saturday and will be looking for more as they entertain a Heath Hayes that started with a win over Coventry Copsewood. Two sides looking for their first points of the season meet at Rene Road with Bolehall Swifts at home to Cadbury Athletic. A meeting of two of the early season favourites at St John’s Park with Hinckley AFC hosting Coventry United. Both sides started with wins to get their seasons up and running. Two more fancied sides meet at The City Ground with Lichfield City welcoming visitors Heather St Johns. Pelsall Villa host Bromsgrove Sporting at The Bush Ground with both teams searching for their first win of the season. Pershore Town were on the end of a 5 goal defeat at Leicester Road on Saturday and will want to bounce back against Studley who picked up all 3 points at home to Bolehall Swifts. Pilkington XXX featured in the only goalless draw on the opening day and they face Nuneaton Griff who had a good win over Stafford Town. Two sides who failed to score meet at Townsend Meadow when Racing Club Warwick welcome Coventry Copsewood. Southam United picked up a good point away at Bromsgrove Sporting on Saturday and they welcome Littleton, who lost at home to Coventry United, to Banbury Road. The final game on Tuesday sees Stafford Town entertain early pace setters Leicester Road at Evans Park. Promoted Leicester Road will be delighted with their 5 goal start at home to Pershore while Stafford slipped up at Nuneaton Griff.
The Extra Preliminary Round of The FA Cup features 26 Midland Football League Clubs, all hoping of a big payday further down the line. There are eight all MFL ties so that we are at least guaranteed 8 sides through to the Preliminary Round which will be held on August 29th. In the past the FA have made draws through to the First Qualifying Round at the same time as the Preliminary Round draws. This year, those sides lucky to make it through to the next stage will have to wait to find out who they will play. The First Qualifying Round sees the inclusion of sides from Step 3 so a chance for our teams to compete with the likes of Barwell, Halesowen Town, Ilkeston, Mickleover Sports, Rushall Olympic, Stourbridge, Sutton Coldfield Town, Bedworth United, Kettering Town or Redditch United. The early stages of the FA Cup may not excite a lot of people but imagine Lye Town at home to Stourbridge, Hinckley AFC vs Barwell, Walsall Wood vs Rushall Olympic, Boldmere St Michaels v Sutton Coldfield Town, Bromsgrove Sporting vs Redditch United, Heanor Town vs Ilkeston FC, Rocester vs Mickleover Sports or Coventry Sphinx vs Bedworth United. All of these games would pull in the locals and give our teams a chance to compete with those from 2 or three steps higher. If those games came to pass, I would be favouring the MFL sides in a number of them. This weekend sees the start of full fixtures in Division 2, Division 3 and our Reserve Divisions. Please give all of these clubs your support - they will appreciate it and you will be highly entertained in the process.
Midland Football League Newsletter
7th August 2015
Unfortunately, Kenilworth Town Kings Heath have resigned from the league with immediate effect. This means that Division 2 will run with 14 clubs this season. Westfields have broken the 800 ticket barrier after a few days of sales for their Bank Holiday Monday local derby with Hereford.
The travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 1st August
Stafford Rangers 4 Mickleover Sports 1
As a Stafford Rangers supporter, it was only right that I should see the first game played on the re-laid Marston Road pitch before the season begins. Rangers entertained last season’s Evostik Div 1 South champions Mickleover who were expected to provide a stern test. It never materialised as Rangers flew into a 4-0 lead in the first half. Sports were marginally better after the break but it was the home side that can look forward to the season with more confidence based on this encounter.
Tuesday 4th August
Heath Hayes 3 Ellesmere Rangers 1
My first visit to Heath Hayes in the dry and I wasn’t disappointed. A game of four goals, missed chances galore, tasty tackles, handbags at dawn and a brawl. What more could the neutral want? Most of the tackles were just on the right side of legal but the Ellesmere right back seemed intent on a running battle with a number of the home side. On the park, Heath Hayes look in a good position to bounce back after last year’s relegation.
I am taking in a number of league games over the next week. They are as follows:-
Walsall Wood vs Bardon Hill
Coventry Sphinx vs Quorn
Stourport Swifts vs Hereford FC
Continental Star vs Alvechurch
Weekend Preview Premier Division
Alvechurch have had an excellent pre-season taking some notable scalps and remaining unbeaten. They entertain AFC Wulfrunians which is always a tight affair. Boldmere St Michaels have gone under the radar a little in pre-season and they entertain Heanor Town, for their first game in the Midland Football League. Both sides are full of goals so expect an entertaining game. Brocton face Lye Town at Silkmore Lane. The Badgers came out on top in both matches last season but there is unpredictability about both sides which make this a very watchable game. Continental Star face a Shepshed Dynamo side well fancied to do well this season. Dales Lane is never an easy place to visit and both sides will be hopeful of getting something out of the game. The biggest crowd of the day will undoubtedly be at Edgar Street for the first official fixture for Hereford FC at home to Dunkirk. Both sides have had a good pre-season with Dunkirk scoring heavily. Should be a cracker. One of a last season’s title challengers, Long Eaton United take on Coventry Sphinx at Grange Park. Both sides have had mixed results in pre-season but both are expected to challenge for honours. Another side that have gone under the radar during pre-season is Quorn who face promoted Highgate United at Farley Way. Stourport Swifts make the journey north to Staffordshire to tackle Rocester at Hillsfield. The Romans finished pre-season on high with a win over Step 4 Loughborough Dynamo but may find Swifts tougher opposition. A first MFL game for Sporting Khalsa following their promotion from the West Midlands Regional League as they host last season front runners Coleshill Town at the Aspray Arena. Both sides have looked good in pre-season and will want to set down a marker from the outset. Newly promoted Bardon Hill make their debut in the MFL with a trip to Walsall Wood, who are hoping to build on last season’s fourth placed finish.
Bromsgrove Sporting begin with a home game against Southam United after an excellent pre-season. The Saints have had mixed friendly results but they will count for nothing at The Victoria ground. Two sides that have impressed in pre-season are Cadbury Athletic and Hinckley AFC and they meet at the TSA Sports Ground. Pelsall Villa had a difficult 2014/15 and will be looking for significant improvement this campaign. They start with a tough game at much changed Heather St Johns who are looking good for a promotion push. Relegated Heath Hayes start their campaign at home to Coventry Copsewood hoping to bounce back to the Premier Division at the first attempt. Promoted Leicester Road make their Division 1 bow at home to Pershore Town. Both clubs have a fair amount of forward momentum and will have their eyes set towards the top half of the table.
Two sides in fine form in pre-season are Lichfield City and Atherstone Town and they meet at The City Ground. Coventry United are many people’s favourites to gain back to back promotions but they face a tough opening day with a trip to Worcestershire to face Littleton. Pre season has gone well for Nuneaton Griff who entertain Stafford Town at the Pingles Stadium. Town will be keen to start this season better than last. Racing Club Warwick host Pilkington XXX in a game which is very hard to call. The Pilks ended pre-season with a 6-0 victory so are likely to go into the game with more confidence. A new look Bolehall Swifts travel to Studley for their opener. With most of last season’s squad moving to pastures new, Swifts will be an unknown quantity however a trip to a strong Studley would not have been their first choice for a season debut.
Only one fixture in Division 2 but it is a tasty one between promoted Austrey Rangers and Coton Green at Austrey Fields. Coton Green finished bottom of the pile in Division 2 last season in contrast to Austrey who were Division 3 champions. Should be an excellent start to what will be a very competitive division.
Pre- season results
Saturday 1st August
AFC Bridgnorth 3 Pelsall Villa 0
AFC Solihull 4 Studley United 1
Alvechurch 2 Sutton Coldfield Town 1
Alvis Sporting Club 2 RC Warwick 0
Atherstone Town 0 Halesowen Town 1
Austrey Rangers 4 (Stroud, Minshull, Ocean, Heaton) Ashby Ivanhoe 0
Aylestone Park 2 Coleshill Town 3
Barton United 6 (Roberts 2, Williams, Jackson, Martin, Warrington) Norton Canes 2
Boldmere St Michaels 3 (OG, Clarke, Birch) Leicester Nirvana 2
Brocton 3 (Fife, McMahon, Farrell) Wolverhampton Casuals 3
Bromsgrove Sporting 1 (Williams) Runcorn Town 0
Burntwood Town 1 Rostance Edwards 5 (Plimmer 2, Baxter, Evans, Ball)
Coton green 5 Enville Athletic 1 (Boden)
Coventry Copsewood 2 (Farrell 2) Coventry Sphinx 2 (Cain, Jeys)
Dudley Town 4 Heath Hayes 1
Dunkirk 1 (Hemagou) Witton Albion 4
Ellesmere Rangers 0 Walsall Wood 6 (Butlin 3, Harris, Adams, Holgate)
FC Stratford 1 (Tilbury) Wake Green 1
Feckenham 3 (Higgins 3) Tipton Town 0
Folly Lane OB 1 Heather St Johns 2
Graham Street Prims 3 Long Eaton United 2
Hanley Castle 0 Perrywood 4 (Martin 2, T.Corbett, J.Corbett)
Hereford FC 2 (Page, Mills) Hull City U21 3
Highgate United 3 Barnt Green Spartak 1
Holbrook Sports 2 Rocester 3
Lichfield City 2 (Richards, Evans) Bardon Hill 2 (Moore 2)
Littleton 0 AFC Wulfrunians 1
Loughborough University 0 Coventry United 0
Mickleover Royals 7 Hampton 3 (Craine 3)
Nuneaton Griff 3 (Moore 2, Ruff) Anstey Nomads 4
Pilkington XXX 2 Alcester Town 2 (Mumford, Brown)
Quorn 1 Real United 1
Rainworth MW 0 Heanor Town 2 (Debrouwer, Hawkins)
Shepshed Dynamo 2 Brackley Town 0
Southam United 0 Daventry Town 1
Sporting Khalsa 4 (Westwood 2, Bannister 2) Thornaby 2
Stafford Town 1 (Hulme) Shifnal Town 0
Stourport Swifts 1 (Maund) Bewdley Town 3
Studley 1 Cradley Town 3
Sutton United 0 Cadbury Athletic 3
Westfields 4 (Cuss 2, Birch, Jones) Brislington 1
Tuesday 4th August
Bolehall Swifts 0 Sutton united 1 (McGivern)
Chasetown 2 Hinckley AFC 2 (Adaggio, Richards)
Continental Star 4 Wolves Sporting 1
Coton Green 4 Burntwood 2
Cradley Town 5 Paget Rangers 2
Dudley Sports 0 Bromsgrove Sporting 1 (Corbett)
Evesham United 4 Westfields 0
FC Stratford 1 Highgate United 5
Feckenham 1 (Bennett) Inkberrow 1
Halesowen Town 0 Alvechurch 2 (Penney, Priest)
Heanor Town 3 (Debrouwer, Cooper 2) Mansfield Town 2
Heath Hayes 3 Ellesmere Rangers 1
Long Eaton United 0 Nottingham Forest U18 1
Loughborough University 3 Oadby Town 2
Pelsall Villa 0 Rushall Olympic 3
Quorn 2 South Normanton Athletic 1
Rocester 4 Loughborough Dynamo 1
Stourbridge 1 Lye Town 0
Wednesday 5th August
Barnt Green Spartak 0 Pilkington XXX 6
Hampton 4 (Craine 2, Hinsley, Richardson) FC Dunlop 0
Rostance Edwards 9 Homeserve 0
Saturday 8th August
AFC Solihull vs Feckenham
Alcester Town vs Moreton Rangers
Burntwood Town vs Newhall United @ Four Ashes
Chelmsley Town vs CT Shush
Daventry Town vs Barnt Green Spartak
Folly Lane vs Paget Rangers
Hawksmill Sports vs FC Stratford (1400)
Rostance Edwards vs Enville Athletic
Smithswood Firs vs Alvechurch reserves
Sutton united vs Walsall Phoenix
Tuesday 11th August
Smithswood Firs vs Birmingham Elite
The start of the new football season is finally upon us after months of waiting, talking, speculating etc. A new season sees us full of hope, anticipation, expectation, excitement, nervousness and, to a lot of people, relief in that we can let the football do the talking. This is an exciting time for the Midland Football League with new clubs to welcome and new challenges to face but with an optimism that we offer a brand of football to be enjoyed by supporters across the Midlands. We offer a heartfelt welcome to all newcomers to the MFL and hope you will embrace the warmth and hospitality offered across all of our divisions, from the Premier to our Under 21s. The future of football in the Midlands is on an upward curve and we can all play our part in shouting from the rooftops just how good life in the Midland Football League is. A number of our sides will be making their first appearance in the FA competitions this season and let’s hope for some significant success in both the FA Cup and FA Vase. A good cup run not only generates significant income for the clubs concerned but also raises the profile of the clubs and the league they play in. FA Cup wins over higher ranked opposition and a trip to Wembley in the FA Vase are attainable – who knows what the season will bring. Whatever happens, we are in for a rollercoaster ride and wherever you are, enjoy the game.
Midland Football League Newsletter 31st July 2015
Pershore Town FC has negotiated a new stadium sponsor, hence with immediate effect, the ground is now known as the 2020SolarPV King George 5th Stadium. Heanor Town FC wish to announce that on Saturday 25th July Keith Costello, former Club Secretary of over 40 years, sadly passed away. Words can not express the loss Keith will be to Heanor Town FC. Keith was an encourager and a fountain of knowledge for all involved since he retired from the role of Secretary just two years ago. The opening two league games of the season for Hereford FC, at home to Dunkirk and away to Stourport Swifts, have been made all ticket. Unfortunately both Aston (Division 2) and North Birmingham Celtic (U21 Division North) have resigned their membership with immediate effect
The travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 25th July
Brocton 0 Coventry United 3
One of my regular haunts but my first visit to Silkmore Lane as the Press Officer. The Badgers entertained Division 1 Coventry United who are looking to push on following their promotion last season. The game was played on the second pitch at Silkmore Lane and it was clear from the start that Coventry United will provide stern opposition in Division 1 this season. Both sides were guilty of missing chances but the visitors ran out comfortable 3-0 winners. Highlight of the day was the performance of former Premier League match referee Terry Holbrook. If you have never witnessed Terry you have missed a treat – everyone is well aware of the decision he has made and why!
Monday 27th July
Coventry Sphinx 2 Cadbury Athletic 3
My third visit to Sphinx Drive and yet again it was raining. The opening game of last season was played in a deluge and at least, on this occasion, it wasn’t that bad. A decent crowd had turned up to witness an excellent game between two good sides. Sphinx shaded the first half but missed too many chances to hold a slender lead at the break. They were to rue those opportunities as the visitors upped their game in the second half, clinching the game with an absolute screamer before the final whistle. Yet again, I had witnessed a Division 1 side beat higher ranked opposition – it’s going to be some league!
Tuesday 28th July
AFC Wulfrunians 0 Hinckley AFC 2
A short journey for me, avoiding the crowds around Molineux with Wolves at home to Aston Villa in a friendly. Castlecroft is a great place to watch football with trees surrounding the ground and an excellent main stand for viewing. Visitors Hinckley were backed by a good number of travelling supporters and they were very complimentary about the set-up. Their biggest compliments were reserved for their own side as they took a 2-0 lead into the break. Speed down the flanks, experience in midfield and up-top in the form of Marco Adaggio, gave Hinckley a real cutting edge. Wulfs were better after the break without ever troubling the visitors, in fact it was Hinckley who had the better chances. The third consecutive game of away wins for Division 1 sides – an excellent week of pre- season friendlies.
Pre- season results
Friday 24th July
Coventry Sphinx 0 Barwell 4
Saturday 25th July
AFC Bridgnorth 1 Boldmere St Michaels 0
AFC Solihull 4 Shipston Excelsior 3
Monday 27th July
Coventry Sphinx 2 (Downes, Piggon) Cadbury Athletic 3 (Westwood, Walton, Butcher) Pelsall Villa 2 Tamworth U21 1
Tuesday 28th July
AFC Wulfrunians 0 Hinckley AFC 2 (Walker, Adaggio) Arnold Town 2 Heanor Town 1 (Debrouwer)
Atherstone Town 2 (Smith, McEnroe) Bedworth United 2 Bardon Hill 1 (Hanslow) Coalville Town 1
Brimscombe & Thrupp 2 Hereford FC 4 (Haysham 2, Wheatley, Mills) Brocton 3 (Farrell, McMahon, Dockerty) Heath Hayes 1
Hanley Town 2 Sporting Khalsa 1 (Townsend) Jaguar Daimler 0 Alvis Sporting Club 6 Knowle 0 Pilkington XXX 2 (McCalla, Adjei) Lichfield City 2 Black Country Rangers 3 Oadby Town 0 Dunkirk 1 (Webb)
Paget Rangers 2 (Evans, Bellingham) Coleshill Town 2 Pershore Town 0 Malvern Town 0
Walsall Wood 2 (Butlin, Adams) Kidderminster Harriers 1 Westfields 5 Slimbridge 3
Wednesday 29th July
AFC Bridgnorth 4 Enville Athletic 1
Thursday 30th July
Highgate United Reserves 7 FC Stratford 4 Leicester Road 2 (Hicks, Munton) Barwell 2 Wolverhampton Casuals 2 Lichfield City 0
Sutton Coldfield Town Under 21's have been let down by two teams pulling out of Friendlies we have the 3G pitch at Coles Lane on Saturday 15th August and Saturday 29th August already both would be 10-30am kick off.
Dave Harrison on 07836519003 or
24th July 2015
Hereford FC are delighted to announce that we will welcome the family and friends of Adam Stansfield as special guests at Edgar Street on August 1st when The Bulls entertain Hull City U21s. Adam’s mother, Gig, sent the following message “I just wanted to thank you and all at Hereford FC for the invite and for the amazing support you continue to give to our Foundation.
“As we approach the 5th anniversary of losing Ads, the charity we set up in his name is continuing to grow and help so many young children to participate in ‘kicking a ball around’.
The Adam Stansfield Foundation will be collecting around the ground before the game, and Gig says that the donations they receive will make a real difference. “We are working very hard to get the message out there that bowel cancer isn’t a disease that only attacks older people. Your very generous offer of a collection at the ground will enable us to continue in doing this. We are very proud and happy to be able to see so many young people enjoying the game that our Adam was so passionate about.”
The foundation will sponsor one of the United In The Community sides for the coming season.
Gig ends by saying “Hereford will always be a very special place for us because Adam & Marie loved living there and being part of what is a wonderful community
Paget Rangers have pulled off a major coup by signing non-league goal scoring legend Mark Bellingham from WMRL Cradley Town. Bellingham has 662 career goals to date and adds significant firepower to the Bears, who have also signed Jem Mills from Aston United. Enville Athletic new signing, Kieran Miller from Sporting Khalsa, hit a second half hat-trick as they came from 3-0 down to beat WMRL Div1 Wyrley 4-3 at Four Ashes. Plenty of higher league scalps being taken in pre-season by teams from all 4 divisions of the Midland Football League – see the results for more details. The travels of the Press Officer
Friday 17th July
Sporting Khalsa 1 Halesowen Town 1
Sporting Khalsa hosted Evostik Northern Premier Division Halesowen at the Aspray Arena. I hadn’t visited Noose Lane for many years and on my last visit it was the home of Willenhall Town. What was a rundown stadium with one of the worst pitches imaginable has been transformed into an excellent set-up. On the park, Ian Rowe’s side were more than a match for the Yeltz who are two steps higher in the pyramid. Khalsa were unlucky to go behind to a scrambled goal but deservedly levelled with a cracking goal from Ben Hadley. Khalsa missed a glorious opportunity
to win the game but their pace and approach play will be welcome addition to the Premier Division. As an aside, how many other clubs will be serving delicious samosas at Half-time?
Tuesday 21st July
Bromsgrove Sporting Stratford Town 3
Another ground that I last visited over a decade ago as my team, Stafford Rangers clinched promotion at the Victoria ground despite losing 3-2 to Bromsgrove Rovers. Rovers are now no more and the Rouslers, as Bromsgrove Sporting are known, have been building a strong foundation for the last 5 seasons. Visitors Stratford Town were promoted to the Evostik Southern Premier Division last season and with 3 leagues separating the sides, a tough evening was anticipated for Bromsgrove. How wrong we were. Easily the best game I have seen this pre-season with Stratford holding a 1-0 lead at half-time through a penalty from Richard Gregory. The home-side were in the lead within 15 minutes of the second half with Josh McKenzie and Sean Brain on the score sheet. Stratford equalised through Aaron Stringfellow following an excellent move but the Rouslers weren’t deterred and a wonderful run and finish from Ollie Gibson gave them the lead again. The goal of the game from 17 year old Charlie Faulkner, who controlled and shot on the turn, gave Stratford a last minute equaliser. The crowd of around 150 was thoroughly entertained and if this is what is going to be served up at The Victoria ground this season, it will be well worth a visit.
Plenty of games for me over the next week with Brocton, Coventry Sphinx and AFC Wulfrunians likely to be on my list.
Pre- season results
Friday 17th July
Malvern town 0 Westfields 2 (Jones, Febery)
Sporting Khalsa 1 (Hadley) Halesowen Town 1
Saturday 18th July AFC Solihull 0 Alcester Town 5
AFC Wulfrunians 0 AFC Telford 3
Austrey Rangers 5 Jaguar Daimler 1
Bardon Hill 2 (Tozer, Disney) Gresley 1
Barton United 2 (Grant, Roberts) Walsall Phoenix 3
Bilston Town 1 Stafford Town 1 (McAnespie)
Brocton 1 (Jones) Cadbury Athletic 0
Chelmsley Town 1 (Lloyd) Pilkington XXX 0
Coventry Sphinx 4 (Thomson 3, Piggon) Worcester City 0
Coventry United 2 Dudley Town 0
Cradley Town 1 Bromsgrove Sporting 0
Droitwich Spa 1 Stourport Swifts 3
Dunkirk 1 (Bopp) Derby County XI 1
Enville Athletic 4 (Miller 3, Brown)Wyrley 3
FC Stratford 1 Wrens Nest 4
Feckenham 2 (Ager, Bennett) Redditch United Reserves 2
Heath Hayes 0 Tividale 2
Heather St Johns 3 Chasetown 5
Highgate United 2 (Brown 2) Black Country Rangers 0
Jet Blades 8 Kenilworth Town 0
Lichfield City 1 (Clarke) Walsall Wood 1
Merthyr Town 2 Hereford FC 2 (Summers, Wheatley)
Northampton Spencer 3 Southam United 0
Oadby Town 0 Alvechurch 3 (March, Foster, Bellis)
Paget Rangers 2 (Morris 2) Boldmere St Michaels 2 (Capaldi, Clarke)
Pelsall Villa 2 Dudley Sports 1
Pershore Town 4 (Griffiths, Walsh, Gifford, Hall) Badsey Rangers 1
Powick Rangers 2 Perrywood 1
Quorn 1 (Thompson) Swaffham Town 3
Racing Club Warwick 1 Coleshill Town 2
Radford 1 Shepshed Dynamo 3 (Porter, Miveld, Langham)
Redgate Clayton 1 Rocester 3 (Mottershead 2, Williams)
Romulus 2 Hinckley AFC 1 (Adaggio)
Rostance Edwards 3 Wolverhampton Casuals 1
Shifnal Town 1 Lye Town 3
Smithswood Firs 0 Hampton 3 (Crane, Joynes, Richardson)
South Normanton 0 Long Eaton United 0
Stapenhill 1 Atherstone Town 5 (Ball 2, Smith, Miller, Thorpe)
Teversal 0 Heanor Town 5 (Debrouwer, Cooper 2, Benger, OG)
Wednesfield 2 Coton Green 2
Wolverhampton Sporting 2 Walsall Wood 0
Monday 20th July
Pinxton 3 Heanor Town 2 (Naylor, Clarke)
Sutton United 1 Pilkington XXX 2
Leicester Road 2 (Lyne, OG) Blaby & Whetstone 0
Tuesday 21st July
Alcester Town 3 Feckenham 0
Arnold Town 2 Dunkirk 3 (Hastie 2, Hemagou)
Atherstone Town 2 (White, Tyler) Alvis Sporting Club 2
Bewdley Town 1 Stourport Swifts 3
Bilston Town 1 Sporting Khalsa 2 (Reid, West)
Boldmere St Michaels 2 (Palmer, Clarke) Sutton Coldfield Town 3
Bolehall Swifts 0 Coleshill Town 6
Bromsgrove Sporting 3 (McKenzie, Brain, Gibson) Stratford Town 3
Continental Star 0 Rushall Olympic 0
Coventry United 5 (Nduna 2, Briscoe, Dakouri 2) Barnt Green Spartak 0
Heath Hayes 1 (Watkins) Chasetown 1
Hinckley AFC 1 (Richards) Barwell 3
Ingles FC 2 Shepshed Dynamo 2
Lichfield City 2 (Clarke, OG) AFC Wulfrunians 1 (Henslow)
Lydney Town 2 Westfields 1 (Cuss)
Paget Rangers 7 Burntwood 1
Pelsall Villa 1 (Williams) Walsall Wood 0
Quorn 2 (Staniland 2) Gresley 3
Racing Club Warwick 2 (McKenzie, Junior) Long Buckby 1
Rocester 0 Hanley Town 3
Stafford Town 3 Market Drayton Town 7
Stapenhill 3 Barton United 0
Wellington 2 Hereford FC 4
Wednesday 22nd July
AFC Solihull 0 Leamington Hibernian 4
Chelmsley Town 2 Coleshill Town 2
Darlaston Town 2 Rostance Edwards 2
Droitwich Spa 1 Worcester City 3
Littleton 3 Malvern Town 2
Shawbury United 4 Brocton 2
Tipton Town 0 Tividale 2
Willenhall Town 0 Walsall Wood 2
Wolverhampton Sporting 1 Alvechurch 5 (Ashton, Ambula, Turton, Priest, Edwards)
Thursday 23rd July
Aylestone Park 1 Shepshed Dynamo 3 (Porter, Meade, Whymark)
Dunkirk 1 (Green) Coalville Town 1
Folly Lane 5 Barnt Green Spartak 2
Highgate United 3 Paget Rangers 2
Leicester Road 1 (Hicks) St Andrews 0
Loughborough University 2 Stratford Town 3
Nuneaton Town 2 Nuneaton Griff 2 (Millerchip, Brennan)
Pelsall Villa 0 Sikh Hunters 2
Worcester City Academy 3 Perrywood 3
Wyrley Juniors 0 Heath Hayes 1
Midland Football League Newsletter
17th July 2015
The fixtures for the opening month of the season have been released and generated a lot of excitement across the league. Hereford at home to free-scoring Dunkirk is a mouthwatering proposition as is Sporting Khalsa at home to Coleshill. Coventry United begin their first season in Division 1 with a trip to Littleton whilst Lichfield City vs Atherstone Town features two clubs enjoying a good pre-season.
The pre-season friendlies are well under way and thank you to all the clubs that have furnished me with details of both fixtures and results.
The travels of the Press Officer
Saturday 11th July
Hereford FC 1 FC United of Manchester 0
What a day! A crowd of 4,257 welcomed football back to Edgar Street
There was a real buzz about the place before the game with everyone genuinely excited to see football again at Edgar Street. Great to hear Chairman John Hale before the game thanking everyone in getting the Bulls to this stage. Chatting to supporters before kick off, there is optimism for the season ahead tinged with a sense of realism that it will be a battle.
The atmosphere inside the ground was superb and as pre-season friendlies go, it was a decent game. Difference between the two sides for me were the respective keepers. Rivers, for the Bulls was outstanding while Culkin for FCUM has had better afternoons. I left the ground genuinely excited for the MFL season. On first showing, the Bulls will be competitive in what is a very tough division. A visit to Edgar Street will be high on everyone's agenda even though the away support will be nothing like that supplied by FC United (328).
Tuesday 14th July
Lichfield City 2 Stafford Rangers 1
Another excellent pre-season friendly with Division 1 Lichfield getting the better of Evostik South Stafford Rangers. The game was played in fine drizzle but it didn’t deter a decent crowd from turning out. Tony Clarke gave City the lead in the first half with Rangers equalising after the break. The winner came close on full time when Adam Wood beat the Rangers keeper to the ball and nodded home. An impressive performance from Lichfield who have recruited well over the summer.
Don’t be surprised to see them in the mix at the end of the season.
Thursday 16th July
Stafford Town 2 Stafford Rangers 3
Two games following my own team this week and a hard fought win for Rangers at Division 1 Stafford Town. A healthy crowd of 220 witnessed the local derby at Evans Park with Town twice coming from behind to equalise through Tom Green. Rangers superiority finally told late on in a no holds-barred ‘friendly’.
I am off to Sporting Khalsa this evening for their friendly against Halesowen but am having a day off from football tomorrow as the fast jets of The Royal International Air Tattoo beckon. I will be at a game on Tuesday, keep checking Twitter to see where I end up.
Pre- season results
Holbrook St Michaels 1 Long Eaton United 3
Boldmere St Michaels 1 Aston Villa XI 3
Sutton Coldfield Town 2 Lichfield City 0
AFC Solihull 0 Barnt Green Spartak 4 (Ellis 2, Dunkley, Milan)
Anstey Nomads 1 Atherstone Town 6 (Gray 2, Smith, Storey, White, McEnroe)
Aston United 1 Long Eaton United 2
Austrey Rangers 1 (Keeley) Uttoxeter Town 3
Aylestone Park 4 Coton Green 0
Barton United 2 Cannock United 2 (Hall, Thompson)
Basford United 0 Coleshill Town 3
Brocton 0 Romulus 2
Coventry Sphinx 1 Folly Lane 2
Coventry United 5 Brinklow 1
Eastwood 2 Sporting Khalsa 7 (Westwood 2, Reid 2, Hadley, Townsend, Hanley)
Ellesmere 2 Lye Town 0
Enville Athletic 2 Willenhall Town 2
Fairfield Villa 1 Highgate United 8 (Benjamin 2, Smith 2, Lennin 2, Curtis, Daly)
FC Stratford 4 Bromsgrove Sporting 7 (Corbett 2, Hewitt, Eminoglu, OG, Dugmore, Wills)
Gedling Miners Welfare 0 Dunkirk 5 (Bradshaw, Osborne, Green, Bopp, Ogedi-Uzokwe)
Graham Street Prims 2 Bardon Hill 4
Harrowby United 1 Shepshed Dynamo 1
Heath Hayes 1 Rushall olympic 3
Hereford FC 1 (Hughes) FC United of Manchester 0
Hucknall Town 3 Heanor Town 2 (Hawkins, Shaw)
Jaguar Daimler 0 Knowle 1 (Torryn)
Kenilworth Town 1 Nuneaton Griff 10 (Baxter, Harris 2, Slinn 2, Moore 3, Willow, OG)
Littleton 0 Alvechurch 1 (Edwards)
Paget Rangers 5 Continental Star 0
Pershore Town 1 (Hall) Redditch United 1
Quorn 3 Hinckley AFC 4 (Ebanks 3, Roberts)
Racing Club Warwick 3 (Langmead, McKenzie, Deenin) Gornal Athletic 3
Rocester 0 Port Vale XI 1
Rostance Edwards 1 Warstone Wanderers 2
Shenstone Pathfinders 3 Burntwood Town 2
Smithswood Firs 1 Alvis Sporting 4
Stourport Swifts 1 Kidderminster Harriers 0
Studley 1 Chasetown 6
Walsall Wood 1 Hednesford Town 1
Droitwich Spa 2 Southam United 0
Eastwood 2 Heanor Town 1
AFC Wulfrunians 3 (Anslow, Sedgemore, King) Hednesford Town 3
Bardon Hill 2 (Papparozzi) Grantham Town 2
Broadwell United 1 Westfields 5 (Bendall 2, Cuss, Jones, Tambling)
Coventry Sphinx 1 Chasetown 2
Coventry United 7 (Mussa, Moyo, OG 2, Galdins, Kelly 2) Paget Rangers 0
Cradley Town 2 Alvechurch 3 (Priest, Huckfield)
Darlaston Town 1874 1 Sporting Khalsa 6
Hereford FC 0 West Bromwich Albion XI 6
Hinckley AFC 0 Tamworth 3
Kimberley Miners Walfare 0 Dunkirk 7 (Green 2, Westcarr 2, Lang, Wilcox, Ogedi-Uzokwe)
Lichfield City 2 (Clarke, Wood) Stafford Rangers 1
Newport Town 2 Stafford Town 0
Quorn 4 Holbrook Sports 2
Racing Club Warwick 1 (MacKenzie) Leamington 4
Rocester 0 Leek Town 4
Romulus 4 Studley 1
Rugby Town 8 Continental Star 2
Walsall Wood 1 Rushall Olympic 4
Smithswood Firs 4 Barnt Green Spartak 0
Wolverhampton Casuals 1 Sporting Khalsa 3 (Bannister 2,
Atherstone Town 4 (Smith 2, Gray, Latham) Tamworth XI 2
Droitwich Spa 2 Redditch United 7
Shawbury Town 4 AFC Wulfrunians 2
Stafford Town 2 (Green 2) Stafford Rangers 3
Kimberley MW 1 Heanor 3 (Debrouwer 2, Clarke)
Heather St Johns 1 (Yonwin) Aylestone Park 2
Received an enquiry from STM Sports AFC
I was wondering if you knew of any of your teams that needed a game on the 8th August 2015.
We are willing to travel or if anybody fancied a trip to sunny Cardiff we could entertain them.
We play in our Welsh League Division 3, which is a very good standard and I am sure would be similar to yours.
Secretary & Vice Chairman
STM Sports AFC
11 Clos Cwm Creunant
Home - 02920 540973 Mobile - 07813 170556 www.stmsportsafc.co.uk
Request from Hereford FC
Hereford FC have a blank date for a MFL Premier fixture on Saturday August 29th and, that due to having four away matches already in the month, we would be looking for a home fixture for that date if any clubs found themselves at a loose end after the first round of FA Cup fixtures.
Enville Athletic require a friendly 1st August away or neutral venue will split costs 50/50.
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