Archive for Spartan South Midlands Football League

SSMFLD2; Grendon front man feels his side have hit a Wall of late

Saturday 2nd February 2019

Clean Slate v Grendon Rangers

Spartan South Midlands Division Two

Downs Barn Pavilion

K.O. 2.00pm

Grendon Rangers travel to Milton Keynes on Saturday to face Spartan South Midlands Football League Division Two bottom side Clean Slate, a team that have won just one of their sixteen league games so far this season and were beaten convincingly back in early December by four goals without reply in the reverse fixture at Grendon. After three wins from four games before Christmas, Rangers are looking to get back to winning ways after suffering five defeats in six since that run, and are currently on the back of four straight defeats but still find themselves with games in hand that could lift them to mid-table safety, this trip will be seen as the ideal opportunity to get back to winning ways as Slate have lost their last seven games in all competition, their solitary win came back in November and every other game they’ve played this season they have lost, and in each of their last six games they have conceded a minimum of three goals. Grendon will need to gain some confidence this weekend as their next two games sees them travel to third place and then second place respectively in the league!

Joe Walls

This week Sports Shots caught up with front man Joe Walls to ask how he ended up at Grendon and how he’s found it since joining:

I first joined Grendon four seasons ago, I knew a couple of the lads who were here at the time so found it easy to settle in, there are some great lads in the changing room and the volunteers and committee are always very supportive of the team

How has his season been so far and what are the targets?

I re-joined Grendon in November after starting the season at Risborough, but since then I’ve played almost every game and on the whole I’m happy with how I’ve been playing. Personally I’d like to get into double figures for goals scored before the end of the season and I think for the team we should definitely be aiming for the clubs best ever finish in the division

How good is the squad this season, and have any players stood out?

I’d say this is definitely the strongest squad I’ve been a part of at Grendon. This season we’re more of a threat going forward and definitely more solid in defence, our results against Pitstone show that on our day we’re good enough to beat anyone in the division. Everyone has impressed me since I got back involved, the new lads especially have definitely added quality to the team all over the pitch

What is Joe’s favoured position in the side, and what formation best suits?

My preferred position would be either up front or just behind the striker in a four-two-three-one or four-three-three. Blocky (Steven Jackman) encourages us to always play forward which is obviously benefits me as an attacking player

What has been Joe’s history in the game prior to reaching men’s football and Grendon?

I played for Haddenham in junior football up until I joined Aylesbury FC under eighteens and then to Grendon, with a few brief spells elsewhere

The last four games have seen defeats to Old Bradwell, Unite MK, Bovingdon & MK Gallacticos, how have these games been in Joe’s view and what’s caused the recent slump in form:

We only seem to be able to play for forty-five minutes at the moment. Bradwell and Bovingdon are both good sides but we were nil-nil at half time against both of them, we arguably had the better chances against Bovingdon until they got their third which killed the game really. In both games against Unite MK we’ve let ourselves down massively, we’ve been two-one up in both games at half time, stopped doing the basics and then ended up losing both games. I myself missed the Gallacticos game and I’d say player availability in general is costing us at the moment

Onto Clean Slate this weekend, Rangers beat them convincingly not so long ago, what does Joe recall of that day, and can they repeat that feat?

I don’t remember much of that game to be honest apart from we’d pretty much won the game by half time. Clean Slate sides are usually physical and work hard, but as long as we do the basics well and play in the right areas I don’t see why we can’t beat them again this weekend

Finally, we asked Joe to pick a team mate to go on any television programme and explain his decision:

Any show with Will Young would definitely be interesting, hopefully his own show that he’s been working on ‘Lambing Live’ makes it onto TV one day!

Sports Shots would like to thank Joe for his time this week

SSMFL; INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF 30.01.2019 – South Midlands League update #47

THE INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF
 ‘NOWT SO QUEER AS YORKSHIRE FOLK’
BY KAREN BROWNE

 

The Views Expressed Are Solely My Own, Are Written Tongue In Cheek

And Should Be Taken With A Pinch Of Salt

 

MONDAY 28th JANUARY / TUESDAY 29th JANUARY

 

MIDWEEK HEADLINES

Baldock Town reach their first SSML Challenge Trophy Final. Harefield United and Enfield Borough join Rayners Lane in the semi-finals of the Middlesex Premier Cup.

 

28/29 January Stats: 5 games played of which 2 were home wins, 2 were away wins and one game abandoned.

 

Highest Midweek Attendances: 95 Colney Heath v Baldock Town, 47 Kensington Borough v Harefield United and 31 Broadfields United v Wodson Park.

 

LEAGUE CHALLENGE TROPHY Semi Final

Baldock Town reached their second domestic cup final this season as they edged out Colney Heath in the League Challenge Trophy. Having already secured a place in the final of the Dudley Latham (Premier Division) Cup last month Baldock recorded a 3-2 success at Colney Heath to complete the double. Barker and Forsythe gave them a two goal lead before Shaw pulled one back before the break. The two sides exchanged goals within minutes in the second period before Heath were reduced to ten men. Full result and goalscorers are listed below.

2-3 Colney Heath v Baldock Town (Shaw, Murphy) / (Barker, Forsythe, Coppin) Attendance: 95

 

PREMIER DIVISION

The snow was the winner at Edgware Town where their game with Harpenden Town was abandoned by the referee shortly after the restart with the scores level at 2-2..

A-A Edgware Town v Harpenden Town (Abandoned after 52 minutes due to Snow)

 

DIVISION ONE

Broadfields United moved to within nine points of leaders Harefield United with a 3-0 home success over lowly Wodson Park. United led 2-0 at the break and secured the three points with a second half penalty. Full result and goalscorers listed below.

3-0 Broadfields United v Wodson Park (Gardner, Cruickshank, Henley [pen]) Attendance: 31

 

MIDDLESEX PREMIER CUP Quarter Finals

Monday night saw Harefield United book their semi-final place with a convincing 6-0 win over Combined Counties League side Kensington Borough. Twenty four hours later Enfield Borough completed a SSML double over the Combined Counties League when in front of a disappointing crowd of 12 they ran out 4-1 winners over Bedfont & Feltham. Full results and goalscorers listed below.

0-6 Kensington Borough v Harefield United (Farhall [2], Pacquette [2], Shaw, Clifton) Attendance: 47

4-1 Enfield Borough v Bedfont & Feltham (Bangura, Jackson, Kennedy, Samuels) / (Hitchinson) Attendance: 12

 

U25 DEVELOPMENT DIVISION

Full Time has now updated the league table following the resignation of AFC Dunstable U21.

 

AND FINALLY

Not only was the game at Edgware Town abandoned but also the game between Enfield FC and Saffron Walden Town was abandoned as it too fell victim to the conditions. Ironically both these games were on 3G pitches, and they say these pitches are the way forward.

SSMFL D1; Milton Keynes Robins explain all on BBC 3CR

Milton Keynes Robins manager Terry Shrieves spent some time on BBC 3 Counties non-league show on Monday evening to explain the story behind the clubs demise, move to MK and subsequent mid-season name change.

Click on this link and then scroll forward to 49 mins 10 seconds to listen in: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p06xhnbn

SSMFL; INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF 28.01.2019 – South Midlands League update #46

THE INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF
 ‘NOWT SO QUEER AS YORKSHIRE FOLK’
BY KAREN BROWNE

 

The Views Expressed Are Solely My Own, Are Written Tongue In Cheek

And Should Be Taken With A Pinch Of Salt

 

SATURDAY’S HEADLINES

Biggleswade FC registered their record league win whilst for opponents Cockfosters it was their heaviest league defeat in the SSML (as far as my records show). Rayners Lane, Old Bradwell United and Unite MK all hit six. No changes at the top of the tables as Hadley, Harefield United and Bovingdon continue to lead the way. Saturday’s 27 games seeing 105 goals (an average of 3.88 per game). Lee Northfield (Biggleswade FC) and Darryl Smith (Old Bradwell United) both netted hat-tricks.

 

26 January Stats: 27 games played of which 12 were home wins, 9 were away wins and 6 draws.

 

(Most League Wins – all Divisions): 21 Harefield United, 18 Hadley 17 Biggleswade FC, Tring Athletic, Broadfields United.

(Most League Draws – all Divisions): 10 Edgware Town, 9 Leighton Town, 8 Wembley.

(Most League Defeats – all Divisions): 21 Hatfield Town, 17 Stotfold, 16 Cockfosters, Amersham Town, Brimsdown.

Average Saturday Goals: 4.02 (3083 goals from 767 games).

Unbeaten:

(Division One League): Harefield United.

Most Goals Scored:

(Premier Division League): 71 Biggleswade FC.

(Division One League): 77 Harefield United.

(Division Two League): 57 Bovingdon.

(U25 Development Division League): 41 Kempston Rovers Development.

Most Goals Conceded:

(Premier Division League): 66 Stotfold.

(Division One League): 81 Hatfield Town.

(Division Two League): 68 Clean Slate.

(U25 Development Division League): 39 Stotfold U25.

Fewest Goals Conceded:

(Premier Division League): 23 Biggleswade FC.

(Division One League): 21 Harefield United.

(Division Two League): 13 Old Bradwell United.

(U25 Development Division League): 10 Buckingham Athletic Development.

Fewest Goals Scored:

(Premier Division League): 24 Stotfold.

(Division One League): 22 Hatfield Town.

(Division Two League): 13 Clean Slate.

(U25 Development Division League): 9 Holmer Green Development U25.

 

Saturday’s Highest Attendances: 116 Potton United v Baldock Town, 85 Biggleswade FC v Cockfosters and 83 v Winslow United v Ampthill Town.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Premier Division Clubs): 527 Biggleswade FC v Stowmarket Town (FA Vase), 323 Biggeswade United v Biggleswade FC and 318 Potton United v Biggleswade United.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Division One Clubs): 351 Winslow United v Easington Sports (FA Cup), 318 Harefield United v Broadfields United and 257 Harefield United v Winslow United.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Division Two Clubs): 121 Bovingdon v Biggleswade United (League Challenge Trophy), 101 Aston Clinton v Pitstone & Ivinghoe, 92 Bovingdon v Old Bradwell United.

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Premier Division Clubs): 23 Alex Marsh (Biggleswade FC) 21 Aaron McLeish (North Greenford United FC), Ashton Campbell (Tring Athletic) 18 Kieran Turner (Tring Athletic), Nicholas Kerley (Oxhey Jets), Lorrell Smith (Arlesey Town), Danny Webb (Potton United).

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Division One Clubs): 25 Tage Kennedy (Enfield Borough) 24 Sean Peter (Hillingdon Borough) 23 Leonard Farhall (Harefield United).

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Division Two Clubs): 30 Joshua Smith (MK Gallacticos) 25 Nathan Skelton (Mursley United) 20 Stephen Dodd (Bovingdon).

 

 

Saturday 26th January

 

PREMIER DIVISION

Biggleswade FC moved to within one point of table toppers Hadley with an emphatic 9-0 win over Cockfosters, the win a club record was their best result since beating Arlesey Town Reserves 9-2 back in January 2017. For the Fosters the last time they had shipped so many goals was back in September 2013 when they lost 0-8 in the FA Cup at Rushden & Diamonds. League leaders Hadley were held to a 1-1 draw at Arlesey Town while third place Tring Athletic won 3-1 at bottom club Stotfold. Biggleswade United were beaten 1-0 at Edgware Town. At the bottom end of the table North Greenford United FC picked up three useful points on the road with a 2-1 win at Leverstock Green while both London Tigers and Harpenden Town earned a valuable point from their games, Tigers drawing 1-1 at Colney Heath and Harpenden fighting back to draw 3-3 at home with Crawley Green. Elsewhere Oxhey Jets went down by a solitary goal at home to Leighton Town while a hard fought local derby between Potton United and Baldock Town finished all square. Full results and goalscorers (where known) are listed below.

1-1 Arlesey Town v Hadley (Smith [pen]) / (Hammond) Attendance: 75

9-0 Biggleswade FC v Cockfosters (Northfield [3], Eze [2], A Marsh, L Marsh, R Inskip, Opponent Own Goal) Attendance: 85

1-1 Colney Heath v London Tigers (Murphy) / (Unknown) Attendance: Unknown

1-0 Edgware Town v Biggleswade United (Onabolu) Attendance: 63

3-3 Harpenden Town v Crawley Green (A McClelland [2], Yeates) / (P Draycott, Ingham, Keating) Attendance: 53

1-2 Leverstock Green v North Greenford United FC (Kossifos) / (Turner, Adams) Attendance: Unknown

0-1 Oxhey Jets v Leighton Town (Murphy) Attendance: 61

2-2 Potton United v Baldock Town (Danobrega, Ansell-Carter) / (Forsythe, Barnes [pen]) Attendance: 116

1-3 Stotfold v Tring Athletic (Miles) / (Campbell, Verney, Stobbs) Attendance: 82

 

Winslow Utd v Ampthill Town 26.01.2019

DIVISION ONE

Broadfields United and Winslow United took full advantage with the league leaders not playing to record home wins and close the gap at the top, Broadfields defeating Milton Keynes Robins FC by the odd goal in three while Winslow overcame a half time deficit to defeat Ampthill Town 3-1. Bedford made it six wins on the trot by defeating bottom club Hatfield Town 3-2 and as a result now sit in fourth place. Fellow relegation clubs Brimsdown and Codicote both suffered home losses which would have pleased the non-playing Amersham Town, Brimsdown were beaten by the odd goal in three against Hillingdon Borough while the ‘Cod’ suffered a solitary goal defeat at the hands of Buckingham Athletic. FC Broxbourne Borough’s fourth win on the bounce saw them see off visiting Wodson Park 3-0. Rayners Lane, having lost 1-8 last weekend, were once again involved in a 9 goal game, this time winning 6-3 against visiting Enfield Borough. The days other action saw London Lions winning 4-1 at Park View. Full results and goalscorers (where known) are listed below.

3-2 Bedford v Hatfield Town (Smith [2], Holland) / (Beck [2] [1 pen]) Attendance: 30

1-2 Brimsdown v Hillingdon Borough (Rowe) / (Unknown) Attendance: 5

2-1 Broadfields United v Milton Keynes Robins FC (Henley [pen], Spinks) / (Judickas) Attendance: 29

0-1 Codicote v Buckingham Athletic (Owusu) Attendance: 55

3-0 FC Broxbourne Borough v Wodson Park (Harrison [2], Clarke) Attendance: 30

1-4 Park View v London Lions (Price) / (Austin Lipman [2], Arnold, Bolle) Attendance: 20

6-3 Rayners Lane v Enfield Borough (Blagden [2], R Hastings, Maher, Pegrum, Jardim) / (Kennedy [2], Ennin) Attendance: 36

3-1 Winslow United v Ampthill Town (Freshwater [pen], Desmond, Coles) / (Cerminara) Attendance: 83

 

BEDS SENIOR TROPHY Semi Final

Langford’s hopes of reaching the Final of the Beds Senior Trophy ended in heartbreak on Saturday when they were cruelly beaten in a penalty shoot-out after their 1-1 draw at Beds County League Premier Division side Wilstead. Full result and goalscorers listed below.

1-1 [5-4 pens] Wilstead v Langford (Jones) / (Rome [pen]) Attendance: Unknown

 

DIVISION TWO CUP Quarter Final

A Darryl Smith hat-trick led the way as Old Bradwell United comfortably progressed into the last four of the Division Two Cup following their 6-0 success at The 61FC (Luton), Smith also had a penalty saved. Full result and goalscorers listed below.

0-6 The 61FC (Luton) v Old Bradwell United (Darryl Smith [3], Cribb, Maxey, Pursey) Attendance: 18

 

DIVISION TWO

Bovingdon remain at the top of the table following their sizzling second half display which saw them score all four in a 4-0 home success against Grendon Rangers. MK Gallacticos took full advantage of Old Bradwell United’s cup fixture to leapfrog them into third place as they saw off the challenge of visiting Mursley United by three goals to one. Sarratt went down 1-3 at Totternhoe while fellow strugglers New Bradwell St Peter FC were thumped 0-6 in their local derby at Unite MK, for the hosts it was their second 6-0 win of the season. The day’s other action saw Aston Clinton record a 4-1 win in their local derby game at Pitstone & Ivinghoe and swop places with them in the table, Aston are now 5th while Pitstone drop to 6th. Full results and goalscorers (where known) listed below.

4-0 Bovingdon v Grendon Rangers (Deadman, Eames [pen], Thurgood, Davey) Attendance: 65

3-1 MK Gallacticos v Mursley United (J Smith [2], Jallow) / (Unknown) Attendance: 30

1-4 Pitstone & Ivinghoe v Aston Clinton (Hall) / (Harper [2], Mason-Williams [2]) Attendance: 35

3-1 Totternhoe v Sarratt (Cartwright [2], Wright) / (Thomas) Attendance: 35

6-0 Unite MK FC v New Bradwell St Peter (Braham, Cloke, Little, Parker, Rawson, Doherty) Attendance: 36

 

DEVELOPMENT DIVISION CHALLENGE TROPHY Quarter Final First Leg

Buckingham Athletic Development will take a slender one goal lead into the second leg tie of their quarter final at Kempston Rovers Development. Full result and goalscorer listed below.

1-0 Buckingham Athletic Development v Kempston Rovers Development (Parr) Attendance: Unknown

 

DEVELOPMENT DIVISION CHALLENGE TROPHY Quarter Finals Second Leg

Berkhamsted Development squeezed out Biggleswade United U23 with a 4-3 aggregate win following the 2-2 second leg draw in Bedfordshire. Leighton Town Development also made it into the semi-finals when their 3-1 success at Ampthill Town Development brought about a 4-2 aggregate win. Full results and goalscorers (where known) listed below.

1-3 [2-4 agg] Ampthill Town Development v Leighton Town Development (Porter) / (Devine [2], Gadsden) Attendance: 42

2-2 [3-4 agg] Biggleswade United U23 v Berkhamsted Development (Unknown) / (Unknown, March) Attendance: Unknown

 

AND FINALLY

Gone With The Wind – You know it’s going to be a long afternoon when kicking off the wind blows the ball backwards and the opposition then score from 50 yards from the resulting penalty kick as happened in the Rugby League game between Red Star Belgrade and Millom. https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/av/rugby-league/47021656

 

Remember to tune into Three Counties Radio (Herts, Beds & Bucks) and a show all about local non-league football- The show is live every Monday evening from 7.00pm – 8.00pm and is the perfect opportunity to catch up with our local non-league scene at all levels. Both presenters of the show are on twitter, and to follow what’s coming up in the next show make sure you give them a follow, Ollie Bayliss is @Ollie_Bayliss and Luke Ashmead is @Ashmead72.

 

SPARTAN SOUTH MIDLANDS LEAGUE GOLDEN BOOT UPDATE (League Goals Only)

22 Leonard Farhall (Harefield United)

21 Joshua Smith (MK Gallacticos)

20 Nathan Skelton (Mursley United)

Nathan Skelton

19 Sean Peter (Hillingdon Borough)

17 Alex Marsh (Biggleswade FC), Shawn Steven (Berkhamsted Development)

SSMFL D1; Winslow United 3-1 Ampthill Town

Winslow United – 3
Ampthill Town – 1

26.01.2019

Winslow United maintained their push for second place in the Spartan South Midlands Football League Division One table, but for an hour or so looked like they were going to rue a hatful of missed chances; behind to a rare Ampthill attack moments before the break when Jamie Cerminara swivelled to fire home they then started the second half against a rejuvenated Town side who, following a first half where they had defended for their lives, started on the front foot. However, once United won a penalty after Aaron King was felled inside the box, Ryan Freshwater levelled the game and from that point the home side dominated but left it late before scoring twice more, the third being controversial which caused such debate amongst the Ants back line and the referee that full back Glenn Cooksley was shown two yellow card in quick succession leaving his side to face the final few minutes down to ten men, but on the balance of play both managers agreed that the hosts had fully deserved the three points.

Ampthill were first to threaten when a ball downfield for Cerminara to chase after had Winslow keeper Sam Ashmead having to advance from his area to head away, but on four minutes the home side had their visitor’s defence throwing themselves in front of a succession of shots when Aaron King got ahead of his marker only for Town custodian Josh Thompson to come sliding out at his feet, from the acutest of angles King managed to recover and aim for goal which saw Cooksley sliding in to block on the line but his clearance only found King again whose second attempt found the defender still on the post to clear again, despite the best efforts of Dan Parsons & Sean Coles trying to keep the ball in play the away side somehow got it out to safety.

A cross from the Winslow right found the head of Coles in the middle however he could only loop the ball up in the air where Thompson had to follow its flight until it landed safely on top of the netting, Aaron King then played a one-two with Parsons being aiming for the back post but his effort was never on target. Moments later a corner to the home side curled in saw Thompson come out to punch but the ball eluded his outstretched arm to find Aaron King at the back post but at full stretch he could only help the ball out wide, ahead of a ball played through the middle of the Town backline which saw Parsons in on goal, rounding Thompson who dived at his feet he advanced a yard too far which allowed the keeper to stick out a hand and push out for a corner.

Jamie Cerminara celebrates Ampthill opener

A throw then saw Parsons released down the left wing and he delivered a pinpoint cross into Alex Kedzierski at the back of the box, he volleyed back across goal forcing Thompson to readjust and somehow got fingertips to it to divert past his post, before Simon King powered a free kick over the top from twenty-five yards. It took until the twenty-fourth minute for Ampthill to have an attempt on target when Cerminara drifting away from goal fired low from twenty yards out but Ashmead was behind it all the way, at the other end a free kick to Winslow saw Simon King cross into the box and despite bodies tussling to get a touch it bounced harmlessly off for a goal kick. Then on the stroke of half time Ampthill took the lead, a corner swung in wasn’t cleared and the ball fell perfectly to Cerminara on the six yard line who pounced to fire low past Ashmead. H/T: 0-1

An early Winslow cross after the break found Kieron Schmidt at the near post but he could only screw wide, Parsons attacked down the channel before driving across goal and wide of the upright, and Aaron King saw a shot from the edge of the box comfortably saved by Thompson. King was then fed again twenty yards from goal, holding the ball up well he turned his marker before shooting straight into the gloves of the Town keeper, then on sixty-seven minutes the hosts won a penalty.

Aaron King was away down the left and as he powered into the area Ash Mead came across and slid in to challenge; the United striker going over the defenders outstretched leg and with a clear view behind the referee pointed immediately to the spot, Freshwater tucking home to level matters. The home side were now ruthless with their attacks and Parsons got down the left but his cross lifted over the crossbar before Simon King drove forward from midfield before unleashing a stinging drive that flew inches wide of the Town keeper’s right hand post.

Luke Desmond puts Winslow ahead

As time ticked away any hopes the Town side had of holding on for a point were dashed with six minutes remaining, a cross from the right by substitute Shiblu Miah eluded the Ampthill defence and keeper & at the back post fellow sub Luke Desmond side footed into the unguarded net. Desmond then did really well working hard down the left wing, battling it out shoulder to shoulder with his marker but getting the better of him to get to the byline and pull back across the eighteen yard box to Simon King who fired straight at Thompson, then with a minute to go the home side put the game to bed with some controversy.

Ampthill conceded possession high up the pitch and the ball was knocked long down field to Aaron King out on the left wing, with Coles galloping through midfield unmarked the striker passed to his team mate but the ball hit a divot and bounced up striking the midfielder high up his body, as the Ampthill defence screamed for handball play was waved on and Coles drove into the box before slotting past Thompson. As the home players celebrated the goal the Town defence surrounded the official, the protests were long and too strong from Cooksley who was shown two yellow cards within seconds of each other meaning he was first to the showers. F/T: 3-1

Attendance: 83

Please Note: If you use any of our material or images, please ensure you credit sportsshots.org.uk

After the game Sports Shots caught up with Winslow manager Paul Alleyne: 
And also with Ampthill boss Paul Toms: 

For match photography (127 images over two pages) please click here: https://flic.kr/s/aHskR7LPwu

BREAKING NEWS: Ampthill Town manager steps down

Paul Toms

Ampthill Town FC have tonight announced that first team manager Paul Toms has stepped down to pursue his career elsewhere:

Club News – After a conversation with this evening he has left the club to pursue his Managerial career at another club in a higher division. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Paul for all he has done at the club and wish him the very best in the future.

Ampthill Town FC

SSMFL; INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF 25.01.2019 – South Midlands League update #45

THE INANE RAMBLINGS FROM UP NORFF
 ‘NOWT SO QUEER AS YORKSHIRE FOLK’
BY KAREN BROWNE

 

 The Views Expressed Are Solely My Own, Are Written Tongue In Cheek

And Should Be Taken With A Pinch Of Salt

 

SATURDAY’S HEADLINES

Risborough Rangers hit eight at home against Rayners Lane, Hadley win 3-0 again, Bovingdon win the top of the table Division Two clash and Buckingham Athletic Development reach the semi-finals of the County Cup. Saturday’s 29 games seeing 101 goals (an average of 3.48 per game). Darryl Smith (Old Bradwell United) four goals, James Yates (Haependen Town), Ben Cullen (Risborough Rangers), Charisma Agyemang (Biggleswade United U23) hat trick

 

19 January Stats: 29 games played of which 15 were home wins, 13 were away wins and 1 drawn game.

 

(Most League Wins – all Divisions): 21 Harefield United, 18 Hadley 16 Biggleswade FC, Tring Athletic, Broadfields United.

(Most League Draws – all Divisions): 10 Edgware Town, 9 Leighton Town, 8 Wembley.

(Most League Defeats – all Divisions): 20 Hatfield Town, 16 Stotfold, Amersham Town, 15 Cockfosters, Clean Slate, Brimsdown.

Average Saturday Goals: 4.02 (2978 goals from 740 games).

Unbeaten:

(Division One League): Harefield United.

Most Goals Scored:

(Premier Division League): 62 Biggleswade FC.

(Division One League): 77 Harefield United.

(Division Two League): 53 Bovingdon.

(U25 Development Division League): 41 Kempston Rovers Development.

Most Goals Conceded:

(Premier Division League): 63 North Greenford United FC, Stotfold.

(Division One League): 78 Hatfield Town.

(Division Two League): 68 Clean Slate.

(U25 Development Division League): 39 Stotfold U25.

Fewest Goals Conceded:

(Premier Division League): 23 Biggleswade FC.

(Division One League): 21 Harefield United.

(Division Two League): 13 Old Bradwell United.

(U25 Development Division League): 10 Buckingham Athletic Development.

Fewest Goals Scored:

(Premier Division League): 23 Stotfold.

(Division One League): 20 Hatfield Town.

(Division Two League): 13 Clean Slate.

(U25 Development Division League): 9 Holmer Green Development U25.

 

Saturday’s Highest Attendances: 135 Tring Athletic v Biggleswade FC, 126 Biggleswade United v Stotfold and 121 Baldock Town v Colney Heath.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Premier Division Clubs): 527 Biggleswade FC v Stowmarket Town (FA Vase), 323 Biggeswade United v Biggleswade FC and 318 Potton United v Biggleswade United.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Division One Clubs): 351 Winslow United v Easington Sports (FA Cup), 318 Harefield United v Broadfields United and 257 Harefield United v Winslow United.

 

Season’s Highest Attendances to date (Division Two Clubs): 121 Bovingdon v Biggleswade United (League Challenge Trophy), 101 Aston Clinton v Pitstone & Ivinghoe, 92 Bovingdon v Old Bradwell United.

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Premier Division Clubs): 22 Alex Marsh (Biggleswade FC) 21 Aaron McLeish (North Greenford United FC) 20 Ashton Campbell (Tring Athletic).

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Division One Clubs): 24 Sean Peter (Hillingdon Borough) 23 Leonard Farhall (Harefield United), Tage Kennedy (Enfield Borough) 19 Harry Dalton (Winslow United).

 

Season’s Leading Goalscorers to date (Division Two Clubs): 28 Joshua Smith (MK Gallacticos) 25 Nathan Skelton (Mursley United) 20 Stephen Dodd (Bovingdon).

 

 

Saturday 19th January

PREMIER DIVISION

The day’s main attraction in the Premier Division saw second place Tring Athletic host third place Biggleswade FC, with the two clubs needing extra time to settle their earlier FA Vase meeting this one was set to be another close affair. Like the FA Vase fixture it was Biggleswade FC who took the honours and their 2-0 success lifted them above their hosts in the table. On this cold Saturday afternoon I ventured down to Brickfield Lane to watch league leaders Hadley against London Colney. In the end it was a mere stroll for Hadley winning by three goals to nil, their fourth successive home scoreline (is this a record?). Biggleswade United continue to make a bid for the title, this time a 3-1 home success over neighbouring Stotfold who remain bottom of the table. Above them there were wins for both Cockfosters (3-2 at Crawley Green) and London Tigers who defeated Leverstock Green 2-0. Harpenden Town ended a run of two defeats with a 4-1 home success against league newcomers North Greenford United FC while Oxhey Jets made it three games without defeat with a solitary goal success at home to fifth placed Potton United. Wembley returned home from their trip to Leighton Town with a point following a scoreless game while Colney Heath were beaten on their travels, hosts Baldock Town winning by the odd goal in three. Full results and goalscorers are listed below.

2-1 Baldock Town v Colney Heath (L Barker [2]) / (Woods) Attendance: 121

3-1 Biggleswade United v Stotfold (Spavins [2], Cooper) / (Da Silva [pen]) Attendance: 126

2-3 Crawley Green v Cockfosters (P Draycott, Morgan) / (Beattie [2], Mosanya) Attendance: 50

3-0 Hadley v London Colney (Buraimoh, Hammond, Bartram [pen]) Attendance: 64

4-1 Harpenden Town v North Greenford United FC (Yates [3], A McClelland) / (William) Attendance: 47

0-0 Leighton Town v Wembley Attendance: 103

2-0 London Tigers v Leverstock Green (Ghamuar, O’Donnell) Attendance: 35

1-0 Oxhey Jets v Potton United (Kerley) Attendance: 57

0-2 Tring Athletic v Biggleswade FC (Northfield, A Marsh) Attendance: 135

 

DIVISION ONE

No changes at the top as the top three sides all won, leaders Harefield United defeating struggling Codicote 3-1 at Preston Park, Broadfields United winning 3-0 at second from bottom Amersham Town and third placed Winslow United triumphed 2-0 at Ampthill Town. Hatfield Town remain fourteen points adrift of the rest as they went down to a solitary goal home defeat against FC Broxbourne Borough. A change of name failed to stop the former Buckingham Town from ending their winless run, it’s now six matches for the newly named Milton Keynes Robins FC as they lost 1-3 at Wodson Park. Plenty of goals at ‘Windsors’ as hosts Risborough Rangers overcame conceding an early goal to defeat Rayners Lane 8-1, the club’s best result since scoring ten back in November 2017. Elsewhere London Lions defeated Brimsdown 4-2, Langford overcame Buckingham Athletic 2-0 and Bedford won by a solitary goal at Park View. Full results and goalscorers are listed below.

0-3 Amersham Town v Broadfields United (Gardiner, Spinks, Opposition Own Goal) Attendance: 25

0-2 Ampthill Town v Winslow United (Coles, Dalton) Attendance: 96

3-1 Harefield United v Codicote (Pacquette [2], Shaw) / (Massey) Attendance: 72

0-1 Hatfield Town v FC Broxbourne Borough (Williams) Attendance: 30

2-0 Langford v Buckingham Athletic (Croucher, Worbey) Attendance: 39

4-2 London Lions v Brimsdown (Arnold, Bolle, Furman, Mannie) / (Rowe, Uare) Attendance: 26

0-1 Park View v Bedford (Fisher) Attendance: 10

8-1 Risborough Rangers v Rayners Lane (Cullen [3], Clarke [2], Woodfine [2], Pykett) / (Blagden [pen]) Attendance: 66

3-1 Wodson Park v Milton Keynes Robins FC (Todd [2], Halls) / (Osei- Addo [pen]) Attendance: 11

 

DIVISION TWO

The big top of the table clash saw Bovingdon regain top spot following their 4-2 home success over their title challengers Berkhamsted Raiders. Old Bradwell United are in third place after a 5-1 home win over The 61FC (Luton) while MK Gallacticos are hot on their heels after a 2-1 win at Grendon Rangers. At the bottom Sarratt won the big ‘six-pointer’ against Clean Slate 3-1 to leave the Milton Keynes based club eleven points adrift. Unite MK picked up all three points from their home clash with Totternhoe, the hosts winning 3-1. Elsewhere it was a case of solitary goal wins for both Aston Clinton and Pitstone & Ivinghoe against New Bradwell St Peter FC and Mursley United respectively. Full results and goalscorers listed below.

4-2 Bovingdon v Berkhamsted Raiders (Dodd [2], Thurgood [2]) / (McMahon, Toiny-Pendred) Attendance: 87

1-3 Clean Slate v Sarratt (Summerlin) / (Loakes, White, Woodcock) Attendance: 20

1-2 Grendon Rangers v MK Gallacticos (Janecki) / (J Smith, Dahie) Attendance: 19

0-1 New Bradwell St Peter FC v Aston Clinton (Mason-Williams) Attendance: 20

5-1 Old Bradwell United v The 61FC (Luton) (Smith [4], Green) / (Currington) Attendance: 30

1-0 Pitstone & Ivinghoe v Mursley United (Mellor) Attendance: 30

3-1 Unite MK FC v Totternhoe (Little [2] [1 pen], Rawson) / (Horgan) Attendance: 18

 

BERKS & BUCKS INTERMEDIATE CUP Quarter Final

Buckingham Athletic Development progressed into the last four of the Berks & Bucks Intermediate Cup with a 4-2 success at Bletchley Park. Full result and goalscorers (where known) listed below.

2-4 Bletchley Park v Buckingham Athletic Development (Unknown) / (Summers [2], Parr, Wright) Attendance: Unknown

 

U25 DEVELOPMENT DIVISION

Kempston Rovers Development increased their lead at the top of the table to five points with a 2-1 success away at Holmer Green Development U25 while second placed Berkhamsted Development suffered a 0-3 home defeat by Biggleswade United U23. The day’s other league action saw Harpenden Town Development return home from Stotfold U25 with all three points following a 4-3 win. Full results and goalscorers listed below.

0-3 Berkhamsted Development v Biggleswade United U23 (Agyemang [3]) Attendance: Unknown

1-2 Holmer Green Development U25 v Kempston Rovers Development (Todd) / (McGuinness [2]) Attendance: Unknown

3-4 Stotfold U25 v Harpenden Town Development (Billy, Ishowo, McEvoy) / (Branch, David, Marshall [pen], Opponent Own Goal) Attendance: Unknown

 

STOP PRESS

PREMIER DIVISION

A goal from goalkeeper Oliver Leslie earned Biggleswade United a share of the points in their home game with Colney Heath. Full result and goalscorers listed below.

3-3 Biggleswade United v Colney Heath (Farrell, Leslie, Parkinson) / (Shaw [2], Blunden) Attendance: 71

 

MIDDLESEX PREMIER CUP Quarter Final

League positions counted for nothing as Rayners Lane upset the form book to progress into the last four of the Middlesex Premier Cup with a 4-3 win over Broadfields United. Full result and goalscorers listed below.

4-3 Rayners Lane v Broadfields United (De La Salle [3]), R Hastings [pen]) / (Spinks [2], Smith) Attendance: 40

 

Remember to tune into Three Counties Radio (Herts, Beds & Bucks) and a show all about local non-league football- The show is live every Monday evening from 7.00pm – 8.00pm and is the perfect opportunity to catch up with our local non-league scene at all levels. Both presenters of the show are on twitter, and to follow what’s coming up in the next show make sure you give them a follow, Ollie Bayliss is @Ollie_Bayliss and Luke Ashmead is @Ashmead72.

SSMFL D1; Winslow strike force gunning for team mate & second place

Saturday 26th January 2019

Winslow United v Ampthill Town

Spartan South Midlands League Division One

Elmfield Gate

K.O. 3.00pm

Winslow United host Ampthill Town on Saturday at Elmfield Gate and come up against the side that they beat by two goals from Sean Coles & Harry Dalton without reply last weekend, and know they need the three points to keep the pressure on second place Broadfields United who they currently trail by six points albeit with a game in hand. With top spot seemingly sorted out in the Spartan South Midlands Football League Division One table, Harefield appear to be champions elect with a fifteen point lead over Broadfields with fifteen league games to go, the race for second spot is still alive. United have won just three of their last nine games in all competition, but Town are in a worse vein of form that sees them with just two victories in their previous ten games in all competition, so Winslow will see this as an ideal opportunity to pick up back to back wins over the Bedfordshire side and begin their assault on that second place spot.

Harry Dalton

This week Sports Shots caught up with front men Simon King and firstly Harry Dalton to ask when & how he joined the club:

I’ve been at Winslow for about eighteen months now, I came here as I moved to the area after previously playing in the Oxfordshire area. I had a couple of mates playing here already so it made it easier to sign on, and it’s been pretty easy to settle in. I had an injury to start with but managed to help the team out last season

Simon has been involved a little longer:

I think this is now my third season here, I re-joined as we have a great team and a great manager, and I enjoying playing with and for both of them

How does Simon feel his season has been so far this time around?

I missed a few games at the start of the season, but came back and felt I was doing well again, scoring goals also but then I got injured and I’ve been struggling to find that form again since

Harry’s season has gone well, recently confirmed by Southern League Berkhamsted signing him on dual registration:

I think personally the season so far has been great, my fitness can definitely improve that’s for sure. I’ve always tried to be available for selection and to be committed, performance wise I think everyone always says they should have done this or done that but it’s important to try and put it right in the next game. I had a few conversations with the guys at Berko and decided I should take that chance and hopefully do well

What does Harry feel his best position is on the field?

My favourite position is up top but I just want to play football so will play where ever I am needed. Formation wise I don’t really have a preference

Simon King

Simon is also versatile of late:

I prefer to play in the number ten role, but of late I have been playing in a much deeper role

With that run of three wins in nine, what does Simon put that down to?

We just haven’t been able to see games out, of the games we’ve lost we are nine times out of ten the better team, but we just seem to lose concentration and that ends up costing us

Harry also blames discipline for the loss of recent form:

I think we’ve just lacked a bit of game management, we know how & what we should do but we just haven’t done it in some of our games, in other games we have let a lack of discipline or killing the game off affect us

We asked Harry how the game at Ampthill was last week, and if they had any players that had impressed on the day?

I thought in terms of game management, that was one of our best performances, I think they only had one shot on target and that was in the final minute or so. Defensively we were very good and going forward we created some very good chances. They had a couple of decent players going forward

Simon thought the best Town player went off:

It was a very comfortable game for us, we played some really good football and we never looked like losing the game, their best player had to go off through injury……hopefully he’ll be back in time for Saturday

Does Simon still think second place in the league is achievable?

I feel we can catch Broadfields if we can concentrate for the whole ninety minutes of every game for the rest of the season. Both sides above us are good teams, Harefield are the complete outfit and no one will catch them now, but we feel we will catch Broadfields

Harry doesn’t think it’s all over just yet:

This is football, anything can happen. Six points is only two defeats and we have yet to play Broadfields at home et, lets just wait and see what happens

Winslow have had a number of players booked & sent off lately, does Harry think they are targeted?

I think we’re a team full of character, I believe some referee’s and other teams know this and play off it, but at the same time we have to be wiser. It’s down to us to let our football do the talking

Simon believes tackling is part of the game:

I believe that we are a physical team with passion, and sometimes that goes against us. Unfortunately these days referees are very poor and we can’t even tackle, a foul was given the other night for a “tackle with too much force”, to me that’s just crazy

Finally, we asked Simon is he could be someone else for a day to see what it’s like, one from the squad and then anyone, who would he choose?

From Winslow I’d be AK (Alex Kedzierski), just so I could know what its like to love yourself! Anyone famous? I’d choose to be the Queen so I could sort this country out!

Harry also chose the Winslow midfielder:

Ha ha that is a great question. From the squad I’d be AK, from a footballing perspective the guy doesn’t stop running, he’s like the Duracell rabbit advert, and he also has some tekkers! His barnet ain’t too bad either. Anyone in the world? I’d have to say David Beckham, a great player, a model and a businessman!!

Sports Shots would like to thank both Harry & Simon for their time this week

SSMFL D1; Town duo insist their squad can climb the Hill of Division One table

Saturday 26th January 2019

Winslow United v Ampthill Town

Spartan South Midlands League Division One

Elmfield Gate

K.O. 3.00pm

Ampthill Town travel to Winslow United on Saturday to face they side they lost by two goals without reply to last weekend, and face the daunting task of taking on the team that have only lost two league games at home all season, although both of those defeats have been in their last three home games and the Spartan South Midlands Football League Division One third placed side have won just three of their last nine games in all competition, so if there is a right time to visit this could be it. However Ampthill themselves are not enjoying a rich vein of form, just two wins in their last ten games in all competition and their last away league victory at Codicote in September would suggest a home win, but Town have proven this season they can compete with the higher placed sides in the league and are just a couple of wins away from pushing into the top half of the table.

Jack Mordecai

This week Sports Shots caught up with Town duo Mark Smith and firstly Jack Mordecai to ask when & why he joined the club, and how it’s gone since:

I was at Ampthill a couple of years ago back in 2016 before joining Baldock Town last year in the promotion winning season. The main motivation for coming back here was to play first team football, which I didn’t envisage much of at Baldock. I also knew a few of the boys down here like Brad Clarke, Jack Leek & Glenn Cooksley too

Mark has also previously played for Ampthill:

I was at the club about ten years ago for a season, but on this occasion I been there since November, I knew a few of the lads at the club already & the management and club have some great ideas with some high expectations. I have settled back in really quickly, I was fortunate enough that there were a few injuries at the time so I started straight away, which as a player you want to get as much game time as possible

How good a season does Mark feel he’s had so far?

Luckily enough for me I have not yet missed a game through injury, so I feel really fit at the moment. I think collectively as a defence we have done relatively well and it helps when you have the same personnel alongside you at the back. I am a basic footballer, my strengths are winning the ball and giving it simple to the technicians in front of me, which I feel I have achieved this season so far, but then there is always room for improvement. The season for me & the team has not really gone well, we’ve been so inconsistent and like any other club we miss too many players through injuries or unavailability, but we still have a good enough squad to be dealing with this type of situation

Jack feels he has improved of late:

Before Christmas I would say my season wasn’t that great if I’m honest, I was in and out of the side due to being away a lot, and there were question marks over my commitment as I missed a few training sessions. Since then I’ve had a good run in the side and have played ninety minutes in the last three games where we’ve lost, won & drawn. I feel as though my performances in those games have really shown the manager what I’m about and I’m looking to keep that going

How good is the squad this year, and have any players impressed Jack?

When we have our full squad out, I believe we are up there with the top five or six clubs in the league, but due to various reasons we haven’t been able to have that a great deal. In terms of individuals, Jamie Cerminara has really impressed me, technically he offers a lot more than people think, and I also think that Josh (Thompson) our keeper has been superb

Mark Smith

Mark believes the squad has much potential:

I think our squad is good but nowhere near achieving what we should be, we work hard as a team but as the stats show we don’t convert enough chances when going forward, we are working on rectifying this so then our league position will improve. Also we have a very young squad, so it just needs time to come together and gel, they are learning all the time

What position & formation does Mark prefer to play?

I prefer playing defensive midfield, I have always liked to break up the play, up for the battle and to lay the ball off simply, I have always played there up until the last couple of seasons. I think the team is trying to say something to me by putting me at the back out of the way! I am old school and do prefer to play four-four-one-one as a system with one defensive midfielder and one box to box central midfielder, the wingers and the other central advanced midfielder then to support the striker

Jack likes to play in a similar role:

I’d say my best position is as a deep lying midfielder, I like to break up play and get us playing, and I feel I’ve done that well in the last couple of games. I have always been used to playing a four-three-three but as the season has gone on I’m becoming more accustomed to playing with a back three

We asked Jack how the run of one win in six has been from an Ampthill point of view:

When you put it like that it doesn’t sound too pretty, we have been very up and down and it’s really held us back, we have never really found any real consistency and put together a good string of results. But I do feel as though there has been a shift in the last couple of weeks & we are all pulling in the right direction now, our aim is to finish in the top ten but to do that we really need to start picking up some more points, I believe we are more than capable so let’s see what happens

Mark expressed how hard the squad is working to put this all right:

The run of games has been tough on the lads but we all remain focused and are showing good attitude in training, we just need that rub of the green sometimes to go our way. Again we have been disappointing, football is a simple game and I think we over complicate it sometimes with the way we play, we don’t play the simple ball to the players in good positions so our decision making has let us down a bit. But I assure you that with this team, and everybody working hard we will be a lot higher up the league table come the end of the season

Facing Winslow for the second time in a week, what does Mark think his side need to do different this time to get a result?

Winslow to me just worked a lot harder than us, they seemed more up for the battle but we were still in the game after conceding an early goal and had some good possession in some key areas, but could not convert any of our chances. We need to match their physicality and play our own game, as we all know in football anything can happen. Their defensive midfielder pulled too many strings for me and was allowed too much time on the ball, so he will need to be stopped and not given so much time on the ball

Jack thinks Ampthill need to concentrate on themselves rather than any particular Winslow player:

To be honest, I don’t really focus on individuals and I don’t think that is too important in this league, they are a good side who work very hard out of possession and are clever in terms of game management. But in order to win this game we will have to focus on what we are good at and be more positive going forward, we have to bring Jamie (Cerminara) into the game more as well, I feel he has to be a vocal point and we’ve got to get him involved in every attack

Does Jack have any targets for the remainder of the campaign?

Personally I just want to carry on playing & to help the team get up into the top ten for FA Cup football next season

Mark also targets those top spots:

It is well within our grasp to climb up the league table, I am sure as soon as we pick up a victory then we will kick on and move up that ladder. For me the realistic targets should start at getting into the top ten and then push on from there, for me playing in defence I just want to be solid as a unit and to make Josh Thompson’s job behind me a lot easier

Finally, we asked Mark if he could spend a day in the life of someone else who he would pick:

I would like to spend the day as our manager Paul Toms, just to see what goes through his mind when picking a team & playing a particular system to try & benefit the team. As a manager you are never going to keep everybody happy, and football is full of opinions!

Jack chose a Town player and also a celebrity:

From the club I’d choose Brad Clarke as his missus is quite fit, celebrity would be Joe Rogan, a very cool man

Sports Shots would like to thank both Jack & Mark for their time this week

SSMFL D2; Clinton chairman admits he’s often caught in the Middle of two teams

Saturday 26th January 2019

Pitstone & Ivinghoe v Aston Clinton

Spartan South Midlands League Division Two

Pitstone Pavilion

K.O. 2.00pm

Aston Clinton travel to Pitstone & Ivinghoe on Saturday knowing three points will see them leap frog their hosts as they are level on points, with the added bonus that also have a game in hand on their opponents, and more importantly the win could potentially lift them up into joint third place in the Spartan South Midlands Football League Division Two table depending on other results on the day. With three league victories on the bounce Clinton go into the game high in confidence, although they did lose to their hosts by the odd goal in five back in August in the reverse fixture at Aston Park, Pitstone themselves beat Mursley last weekend by a solitary goal to end a three game losing streak and will be looking to build upon that, with a better goal difference of plus eight they will be hoping to avoid defeat to keep their guests below them come the final whistle.

Ian Middleton

This week Sports Shots caught up with Aston Clinton chairman Ian Middleton to ask when and how he got involved at Aston, and how it’s been since he took over:

I’m now in my second season at Aston having previously been involved at Hale Leys United. I was approached by Mike Dedman (vice chairman) the day after Hale Leys folded and asked to come down to have a look, it didn’t take long for me to realise that this was a well-run club, doing well with a great committee, with two good teams and it seemed to be a friendly place to be. The first season was about getting to know people & them getting to know me, this season is about starting to plan for the future but it’s early days to talk about that yet. I’m loving every minute of it so far!

How much stress is involved in being chairman and what does the job entail?

I don’t think it’s too stressful because of all the hard work that everyone else put’s in, it makes the chairman’s job easy if there is a good committee at the club. I do enjoy a bit of stress, whether it’s needing a goal with five minutes of a game left, or if there is a problem to sort out, it makes you feel alive. There is never a set amount of time each week that is set aside for the club, it just all depends on what’s happening, a great tool is WhatsApp as it keeps the management and the committee talking & dealing with things. So many problems occur in life through a lack of communication

How good is the current squad at the club and which players have stood out?

Wow there’s a question, we were fortunate to keep the majority of players from last season and have strengthened in certain areas with some class signings. Do I want to start naming individual players, no not really, we do have players that really impress me but it’s a team game and I believe in every single one of them. If you want names, then I’d have to pick all the players in both squads

Has Ian got a playing history & how did he end up getting involved behind the scenes?

Unfortunately my own playing days were really quite boring, I was in the army as a physical training instructor at a tank regiment, so with postings & deployments I didn’t get the chance to play week in week out. When I left I played a bit of ADL football but was getting to the age where five-a-side became more appealing and had a lot of success with cups and leagues. Told you it was boring! Getting involved in the running of a club was down to the current Winslow manager Paul Alleyne, he got me back into it when he was at Hale Leys, I started as a sponsor and it went from there

We asked Ian how he feels the season has gone considering the upheaval when Jordan King left as manager?

It was a difficult start to this season with Jordan deciding to leave so early on, most players and managers were settling down back at existing or new clubs which left us in a difficult position. I can’t believe how lucky we were to get Neil Roberts, Rob Goldney and Jack Seaton as our new management team, all three of them having great pedigree’s as players playing at a much higher level. These guys have been there, seen it & done it and command fantastic respect from the squad, they are real football people that love the game and that shows every week. With regard to the season so far, we are doing well and only three points off third place, and with a big match against Pitstone this weekend things are looking good

How good does the chairman believe this division is?

I think in most leagues you can always see a difference between the top & bottom, but generally our Division Two gives a good standard of enjoyable, entertaining football for both players & spectators

Clinton also have a development side in the Hellenic League, how difficult is it to see both teams, and how are they progressing?

When you have two teams at a club it is difficult to be at two matches at once & I always feel guilty that I have missed one game every week, but as soon as everyone is in the clubhouse the first question is always how did the other team do? Lee Harrison is the manager of the development side and has vast experience of local football with both his sons playing for Aston, he has done a great job with the team and doesn’t get enough credit for what he has achieved. I think it’s fair to say that when he took over we were struggling, now we are moving from strength to strength and I put that down to Lee

Finally, we asked Ian for a final message to his squad ahead of the trip to Pitstone:

What a great game this should be, we’re both on the same number of points and both fighting for a good finish to the season. They are a good team and it certainly won’t be an easy match, but I have full faith in our management and the players and I predict a two-one win for us. Up the Aston!

Sports Shots would like to thank Ian for his time this week