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)
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