apbs SPARTAN SOUTH MIDLANDS FOOTBALL LEAGUE
NEWSLETTTER NO 11
SAT 21st OCTOBER
ARSON AT THE 61 FC
The 61 FC (Luton) are appealing for donations after an arson attack badly damaged their clubhouse. Sadly, on Tuesday night (October 17), their clubhouse on Kingsway Recreation Ground, Beverley Rd, Luton, was the victim of an arson attack and the club are now in need of donations to repair the damage. Although the blaze was brought under control before it could completely rip through the building, there has been extensive damage caused to the roofing (internal and external) as well as much of the internal electrical supply. The damage is estimated to cost thousands of pounds to repair to the required standards – money the club simply does not have. The club are appealing for donations of any amount to help reach their target to fund the urgent repairs needed. Chairman of The 61 FC, Richard Everett, would like to express his grateful thanks those who have already donated, particularly a number of Division Two clubs. If you would like to join them in donating, please visit their crowdfunding page at :. https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/61fc-luton.
BUILDBASE F.A. VASE – First Round Proper
\The first of the SSMFL clubs to move into the 2nd Round was Crawley Green who beat Harpenden Town 3-0 on Friday night. Goalscorers for Crawley were Charlie Clayton with a brace and Terry Billy. Bob Flight and Baldock Town both made the trip to Peterborough Northern Star in the first round proper of the FA Vase and the Div One side narrowly lost out to their UCL Premier Division opponents by 1-0. On a windy day, the only goal of the game came early in just 7 minutes. Baldock left Jamar Dobson unmarked at a corner kick and whilst his shot was blocked by keeper Jack Farmer, the ball fell to Zak Munton who scored. Baldock bounced back and Lewis Barker saw a header saved and Louis Lee shot wide from a good position. The remainder of the half saw Baldock mainly in control but without creating a clear cut chance and Farmer remained untroubled in goal. The second half saw the home team have a couple of early chances but they failed to trouble Farmer. With the wind at their backs now, Baldock began to dominate the match and Harry Holland shot the ball wide of the home goal. The visiting spectators thought that Baldock had equalised on 61 minutes, but it was ruled out for offside. It was all Baldock now and a Josh Coley shot hit the home crossbar and bounced over and they wasted a couple of free kicks which failed to hit the target. Following a corner, Baldock had a shot kicked of the Star goal line and the follow up shot from Mitchell Foley was well saved by Ross Ingram in the home goal. The home team had the occasional breakaway and from one of these David Kilby shot wide when well placed. In the closing minutes, Baldock pressed hard and Josh Coley shot wide from a good position and substitute Alfie Barker shot the ball over the bar. In the dying seconds of the game Baldock were denied the equalising goal as a shot hit the far post and bounced clear. Thus the game ended in frustration for Baldock who should really have won this game in some comfort.
Dave Henman along with League president, Brian Smith, went to watch Enfield Borough vs Newmarket Town at Donkey Lane, not surprisingly in Enfield. The game got off to a flier with the hosts taking a 7th minute lead, although from where we were sitting in the stand, it did have more than an element of luck about it. From the left wing Tage Kennedy crossed the ball, but with the assistance of the wind it drifted into the top right hand corner of the net. Enfield continued to create the more clear cut chances but continued to miss the target, and they were made to pay in the 23rd minute when Steve Spriggs finished off a well worked move, by shooting low past Nicholas Kyricou’s stretched right hand. Half time, and it was 1 – 1 which I think was just about right. It was nip and tuck, and again Enfield’s fast fluent football created the better opportunities, but they continued to waste them, and somewhat against the run of play The Jockeys took the lead after 68 minutes when the centre back headed home from a corner. As time moved nearer and nearer the 90 minute mark it looked like Enfield would lose the game, something they didn’t deserve. With just a minute to go they were correctly awarded a penalty when one of their speedy forwards burst into the box, and was fouled. Up stepped Hederson Browne who comfortably dispatched the spot kick. To be fair in my opinion a draw at that stage seemed fair. However the hosts seemed to up the ante in extra time and took the lead after 94 minutes. Substitute Bruno Tavares chased a loose ball into the box, got there first before the onrushing keeper, only to see the ball hit the inside of the post. He reacted quicker than a covering defender, and did just enough to nudge the ball over the line. The tide was now beginning to turn very much in Enfield’s favour. They really had their tails up, whilst Newmarket’s players heads began to drop, and at times they didn’t even chase a lost ball. The icing on the cake arrived in 107th minute when Kennedy ran from the halfway line before planting the ball past the stranded keeper. It was a close call during 90 minutes, but Enfield definitely deserved to win in extra time. There wasn’t one bad foul in the game. Both sides tried to play good football, and in 120 minutes there was only 2 bookings – one from each side. An enjoyable game to watch. Leighton Town recorded with a narrow 1-0 win away over Burnham Ramblers from the Essex Senior league. In an entertaining and well contested game Town were probably worth a bigger margin of victory but had to settle for a single goal by Lorrel Smith to earn their place in the next round. The only goal came In the 67th minute when Carl Tappin won the ball in midfield and played a pass through to Lorrel Smith who left his marker for dead and cleverly took the ball round the keeper before stroking the ball home. Also through to the next round are ( heavens, I’m beginning to sound a bit like Tess Daly ) London Lions, whose Adam Burchell’s brace helped to silence Clapton’s noisy fans on their way to a 3-2 victory. Without ever being individually at their best, it was another excellent team performance that deservedly saw Lions into the hat for the second round ,the scoreline implying a closer game than it really was. Lions other scorer was Charlie Kasler. Welwyn Garden City had a comfortable 3-0 home win over Essex Senior league side Takeley, substitute Charlie Rome scoring twice with Josh Bronti the other. There was another 3-0 scoreline at Vale Farm where hosts Wembley had the better of Div One Broadfields Utd in all SSMFL tie. There were 8 goals scored in two of the ties. London Colney slugged it out with UCL side Cogenhoe Utd at Cotslandwick Park, both sides scoring 4 apiece and having to meet again on Tuesday night. On the mark for the home side were Manny Hammond with 2, and Laurence Vaughan and Wilson Ferreira with one apiece. There were also 8 goals on view at Bracknell Town – unfortunately the home side who are flying high in the Hellenic Premier, scored 6 of them as they proved a bit too strong for the youthful Buckingham Athletic. The very strong gusty winds obviously affected all the games, but Walton & Hersham took full advantage as they ran up a 3-0 lead by half time at Edgware Town and defended stoutly to run out 3-1 winners – Mikkel James getting a late consolation for the Wares. Colney Heath came back from Hullbridge Sports with a 1-1 draw ( courtesy of a Jack Woods goal ) and must fancy their chances at home in the replay. Biggleswade Utd and Yaxley both sit roughly midtable in their respective Premier Divisions, but it was the UCL side who just took the spoils , winning 1-0, and it was by the same narrow margin that Oxhey Jets lost out to Norwich CBS. There was no joy either for Cockfosters as they lost 2-0 away at Framlingham Town, who are riding high in the Eastern Counties Div One. Despite leading by a Sam Holmes goal at half time, Ampthill Town’s long trip to Wiltshire to play Royal Wootton Bassett Town ended in disappointment as they conceded two goals in the second half to lose 2-1.
STOP PRESS: Unfortunately both our clubs involved in Replays on Tuesday night suffered narrow losses.. Colney Heath went down 1-0 to Hulbridge Sports whilst London Colney lost by the same scoreline away at Cogenhoe Utd.
DRAW FOR 2nd ROUND PROPER: The draw has not been overly kind to our clubs who were in the hat for the draw on Monday. There are 3 definite all SSMFL ties .However on the plus side 6 of our clubs have been drawn at home.
Biggleswade FC v Crawley Green
Enfield Borough v Berkhamsted
Leighton Town v London Lions
Southall v Lordswood
Tring Athletic v Ely City
Welwyn Garden City v Newport Pagnell Town
Hullbridge Sports v Wembley
Berkhamsted extended their lead at the top of the table to four points after they won 4-3 at Hadley. The hosts parted company with manager Mickey Hazard in the week, but it was Berkhamsted who started started well and were rewarded as early as the 5th minute when Stacey Field fired home before Adam Mead scores to double his sides advantage. Harry Sedgley pulled one back for Hadley but Mead’s second, an exquisite free kick, restored the visitors two goal lead. After the break, Hadley did themselves proud but in the end Sean Coughlin’s excellent goal meant the points were safe for the visitors. Hoddesdon Town moved into the top six after they beat London Tigers, 4-0 thanks to goals from Fraser John, Leigh Rose with Two and Louis Rose. For Tigers, it’s a fourth consecutive away defeat. St Margaretsbury are out of the bottom three after a 3-1 win at home to Stotfold, Jon Stevenson and Mason Todd among the scorers.
Southall won 3 0 at a now struggling Langford, who apart from losing the very likable Chairman, Ian Chessum, have also lost their manager. Southall meanwhile go 8 points clear at the top, and look favourites, even at this early stage to win the league. Risborough Rangers continue the chase by winning 4- 2 at 5th from bottom Hatfield Town. Brimsdown continue to blow hot and cold – presumably depending who is available – and lost 3-1 at Bedford in what now looks like a mid table clash. Winslow Utd thrashed poor Codicote 6 nil, leaving them rooted to the bottom, and having played more games than the 3 sides above them, all on the same number of points. And finally Wodson Park scored the only goal of the game against visitors Harefield United – another inconsistent side.
There was a goal fest at Spratleys Meadow where Amersham Town and Pitstone & Ivinghoe shared 10 goals between them. Amersham supporters do not get to grow old gracefully: Most have developed severe tics and twitches by the age of fifty , and one was almost certainly on the verge of a nervous breakdown. This game was the perfect example as to why that should be. Four one up at the break Amersham then self destructed in conceding two penalties. They have now given away four penalties in the last two games, costing them six points. Amersham took the lead after only six minutes when Leonardo Pedro broke down the left and lofted a perfect pass onto the head of the onrushing Jamie Aldred who had no difficulty beating Pitstone keeper Jamie Gibson. Pitstone, however, equalised immediately when, from a free kick just outside the area, Kieran Doughty drove the ball past the wall and into the net. Town re-took the lead on twenty four minutes when a cut-back found Raymond Koomson in the area. He was fouled as he turned and Sheldon Washington unerringly put the spot kick into the corner of the net. Town then scored two further goals in quick succession. In a lovely move Anouar Zeroual won the ball in midfield and quickly passed it forward to Pedro whose low cross presented Aldred with a simple tap in. Two minutes later a through ball found Aldred who rounded the keeper to knock home for his hat trick. A basic law of soccer is that, leading four one, you do not perform a clumsy challenge in the penalty area within two minutes of the restart. The Amersham midfielder, however, had not read that part of the rules and Doughty converted the penalty. It was now Pitstone who were playing all the football as Amersham completely lost their composure. Pitstone deservedly scored again on sixty three minutes when Callum Crossley hooked home a cross from the left, Then Doughty gratefully accepted the gift of another penalty for the equaliser and, on seventy six minutes, a poor clearance out of defence allowed Pitstone substitute Joshua Webster to drive the ball home as Pitstone went in front for the first time in the match. Unbelievably the tenth goal of the game arrived in the second minute of added on time, Amersham’s Bertie Squires-Adams beat his man on the right and pulled the ball back for Tom Parry to smash home the equaliser. On a fine Spring day in April, watching a game from the Mike Gahagan stand with the Chilterns in the background is almost as good as it gets – on a mid October day in the middle of Storm Brian and a freezing rain downpour, not so idyllic. Full marks to Referee Andy Stevens, ably assisted by Kevin Rogers and Luke Mulcahy, for allowing the game to flow, but clamping down where necessary. It was young Luke’s debut game on the League – rather than a baptism of fire , more of a baptism of frost, but he said he enjoyed it and was still smiling at the end! Of the top four, only Park View were in league action and they extended their lead at the top to three points after coming away from Mursley Utd with a 2-1 victory. Both of Park Views goals were scored by Javier Sanchez with Adam Bone getting on the scoresheet for Mursley. Berkhamsted Raiders gained their second victory of the campaign with a 2-1 win at home against Grendon Rangers. On the mark for the Raiders were Emmanuel Boffah and Jeffrey Mentah whilst Nathan Perna replied for the visitors. MK Galacticos beat Tring Corinthians 4-0 at home whilst the match between Clean Slate and Unite MK was postponed as the former were unable to raise a side.
DIVISION TWO CUP – QUARTER FINAL DRAW
AFC Southgate v Unite MK
Amersham Town v Aston Clinton / The 61 FC
Park View v Old Bradwell Utd
Pitstone & Ivinghoe v MK Galacticos
UNDER 25 DEVELOPMENT LEAGUE
Leading the way at the top of the table are AFC Dunstable with 23 points from 10 games, but hot on their heels are Harpenden Town and Hertford Town, both with 21 points. However both have played a couple of games less than the leaders. The latter are the only side yet to be beaten. Another side with two games in hand are Hoddesdon Town, hovering in fourth place.
BERKS & BUCKS SENIOR TROPHY- 2nd ROUND
Both of the ties in this Round went to extra time and in one case penalties. It was 1-1 aet at Loughton Manor and Old Bradwell but the latter won the penalty shoot out 4-2, whilst Aston Clinton narrowly edged out Westwood Utd 4-3.
|3rd ROUND DRAW ( Bucks clubs)
|Old Bradwell Utd v Newport Pagnell Res
|Penn & Tylers Green v Buckingham Athletic
|MK Galacticos v Winslow Utd
|Marlow Utd v Aston Clinton
ANAGRAM RECORDS TROPHY – First Round
No luck for our three teams involved on Saturday. Totternhoe went down 3-1 away at Galleywood, The 61 FC lost 4-2 at home to St. Panteleimon and Tring Town AFC lost 8-0 at home to Letchworth Garden City Eagles.
HATFIELD TOWN would like to notify all visiting clubs and match officials that have just been informed today (Tuesday) by the owners of the The Gosling Stadium that they have closed the main upstairs bar, as it does not make them any money. Hatfield will still be able to use the room, but without the bar facilities and they will be providing ( importing) soft drinks and refreshments/ sandwiches. Discussions are ongoing as to the way forward but in the meantime, Hatfield would like to apologize for any inconvenience caused, but the situation is out of their control.
Tommy Carroll Langford Stotfold
Niall Williams MK Galacticos Winslow
Josh Thompson Pitstone & Ivinghoe Berkhamsted
Alfie Osbourne Berkhamsted Colney Heath
Bruno Tavares Rayners Lane Enfield Boro
Chris Blunden Tring Athletic Berkhamsted
Lewis Davis Leverstock Green Oxhey Jets
FA YOUTH CUP – BUCKINGHAM ATHLETIC 7 HAMPTON & RICHMOND 1
Congratulations to Buckingham Athletic who have reached the first round proper of the FA Youth Cup for the first time in the club’s history. A performance that highlighted the fantastic commitment to improving on every week by all the players involved, with some outstanding performances all over the pitch! The game started well for the home side from the off, with a well marshalled defensive line mopping up the long balls from Hampton and Richmond, coupled with some early pressure in the opposition half by Buckingham. Once the game settled, Buckingham really came into their own with some great football, playing combination passes and utilising the pace and power of individuals to really threaten the away side. Carter opened the scoring with a good finish to polish off a brilliantly worked Acquaye move, after he brushed off the defenders to drive in a low cross for a clear opportunity at goal! Around 10 minutes later Carter returned the favour as Acquaye doubled the Buckingham lead with more dominating attacking play that the away side were not able to deal with all night! Buckingham weren’t finished there though as Carter bagged a first half brace with another quality finish, after a great pass from Atkinson found Acquaye, who’s eventual shot was blocked and fell nicely into the path of Carter the recipient. Moments later another assist for Acquaye as his well struck corner was headed home by McElroy, with a brilliant leap and bullet header to affirm Buckingham’s lead. Hampton did however have a chance that they did not capitalise on as a set piece scramble in the box was well defended eventually by young 16 year old right back Pike at the back post. Half time: 4-0. The second half started against the run of play as Hampton nabbed a goal back shortly after kick off, as a lapse in concentration led to a well taken finish by the big striker for the away side, seconds after Buckingham had the opportunity to score their fifth! Nevertheless it didn’t take long for the 4-goal advantage to be restored as Acquaye worked another ball into the area for Minney to finish well. Great play again by Buckingham. At this point changes were beginning to be made and as his replacement was being readied on the sideline, Carter managed to complete a quality strikers performance with his well taken hat trick, after McElroy played a scintillating pass through the defensive line of Hampton and Richmond, for Carter to finish calmly. The away side to their credit continued to try and attack spiritedly but in doing so left gaps for the brilliant ‘Ath’ side to convert one final goal, thanks to a brilliant through ball from sub Olawale, into the path of Minney who made it 7-1 on the night. The crowd of well over a hundred saw the Athletic run out seven one winners on the night, what is brilliant for the club is that six of these boys had been in the first team starting eleven on the previous Saturday.
STOP PRESS: We have just found out we will be at home to Northampton Town youth team in the first round proper on THURSDAY 2nd NOVEMBER K.O. 7.45 It would be nice to see as many SSMFL people and fans as possible support us – put the date in your diary now.
AMPTHILL TOWN FEATURE IN THE PREMIERLEAGUE.COM WEBSITE
Ampthll Town are looking up boosted by their new clubhouse and facilities paid for by Premier League’s Football Stadia Improvement Fund They have teams spanning a wide range of ages and a senior side with aspirations of promotion from the Spartan South Midlands League Division One; level 10 in the English football pyramid. But the Bedfordshire club were being held back by their failing facilities. The clubhouse had been built in the early 1960s and constant repairs were draining resources. “The showers were pretty grim and it was hard to keep them maintained,” says chairman Gary Maidment. “We run about 20 teams from Under-8s up to veterans but struggled to get younger members to watch the senior teams. “It wasn’t a nice day out. Nobody wanted to stay. They’d grab a sandwich and get out as quickly as they could. “We couldn’t raise money so spending it was an issue. It was all a knock-on effect and it couldn’t carry on that way forever.”
A £93,000 grant from the Premier League-funded Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF), delivered by the Football Foundation, has allowed Ampthill to make significant upgrades, including a new pavilion that was recently opened. “Now it’s a much better environment,” says Maidment. “It’s helped to attract and keep players. It’s great for the town and the club. “On rainy days you can watch the whole match from indoors so our elderly guests are over the moon. “We’ve got whole families coming along now. We’ve pretty much doubled our average attendance and when we had an FA Vase match here recently we had around 120 people, with 10 to 15 families.”It’s a clean, airy facility and we’ve got a paved area behind the goal, which is an ideal place to watch the match from. “It’s really lifted the club. Whether it’s played a part in the fact that we’re in the top two in the league and have won our FA Vase matches, I don’t know!”
Ampthill Town FC’s new clubhouse helps the club to generate more revenue At their level every penny Ampthill can make is welcome and the new facilities are helping the club’s finances as well as the wider community. “We’ve got a new kitchen so we can offer hot food and cater for bigger occasions,” says Maidment. “In the past we had to get a caterer in but now we can produce it ourselves, so it saves us money. “We hosted a 70th birthday party recently and a sit-down meal for 50 people, who had a dance afterwards. “We’ve got two or three birthday parties booked too. We’ve got people asking to see wine lists rather than scraping chewing gum off the floor. “We’re a non-profit organisation so the money goes straight back into the club. We’re now trying to get our veterans team a kit of their own.”
GROUND GRADING QUESTIONNAIRES
Please note that all Premier and Division One clubs should complete and return their Grading questionnaires by 31 October at the latest. Clubs in a ground share with a club currently at a higher level of the National League System need not respond.
A reminder to all clubs, particularly those in Division Two , that the use of Substitute Boards in a match is a League requirement. The home side are responsible for providing the Boards, and they are normally placed on the half way line, so that they can be used by both sides as required.
Grateful thanks to Chris Mitchell, Bob Flight, Dave Henman and Colin Howkins for their reports .
Still looking for someone to do a write up / summary of either Division One or Division Two. I’m sure there are some budding scribes out there – hand up and two paces forward. It is of course a good way to ensure that your club always gets a write up!
All news, views items of interest, tittle tattle etc are welcome, particularly from our refereeing fraternity.
.Enjoy your football this season and remember MIND YOUR LANGUAGE