April 29th


Forum Admin
Staff member
Dec 7, 2019
Cheltenham Town
People married on April 29th 2011 will celebrate their ninth anniversary today. This will only be mentioned in the papers if one half of the couple is the Queen's grandson.

More sensible people, including myself had forgotten about this, but can remember some football matches seen on this date - lets here yours

Stoodley Pike

Youth Team Star
Dec 9, 2019
Friday 29th April 2011
Wakefield FC 0 Curzon Ashton 1 (HT 0-1)
Northern Premier League, Division One, North (3.0)
Attendance 208
Programme (£1.50) 28pp

Another entry in the ‘Final Game at…’ ledger. Not a chance I was going to watch Wills and Waity wed, so I took myself off to College Grove for Wakefield FC’s last bow before relocating to Ingfield, Ossett.

Everybody will know how ambitious village club Emley, keen to spread their wings beyond the Northern Premier League, quit the three-sided Welfare Ground for an ill-fated groundshare at Belle Vue with Wakefield Trinity Rugby League Club then a spell at College Grove, former home of defunct Wakefield Rugby Union Club. It didn’t work out at Belle Vue and, after five seasons, it hadn’t worked out at College Grove. No surprise: Wakefield prefers rugby league to football and those who like football gravitate towards Barnsley, Huddersfield Town or Leeds United. College Grove’s turf was ripped up by the landlord, Wakefield Sports Club, and a synthetic surface laid for the benefit of Wakefield Hockey Club.

It transpired Ossett didn’t want Wakefield FC, either. Loved and lamented by a mere handful, they were wound up in June 2014. In the meantime, the refuseniks who insisted on staying behind in the hilltop village of Emley soldier on, at the Welfare Ground, running AFC Emley, seemingly perennial members of the Northern Counties East League. Was any of the upheaval and unpleasantness really worth it?

In the programme’s View from the Terraces programme column, one Graham the Flag reflected on a campaign that produced a mid-table finish. He described it as the “usual rollercoaster ride”. Mr Flag remarked: “No one can argue that it’s [the season] not been eventful. Hardly a week has passed by since August without some kind of incident either on or off the field. Did we get our money’s worth? I think so. Is it worth coming again next season? Without a doubt.” Optimistically, the writer concluded: “Next year should be much steadier, even if it’s not at College Grove.”

Prior to this Curzon Ashton fixture, Wakefield FC’s most recent home games had attracted gatherings of 70, 54 and 86. The lowest at the ground for Bears match was 50, in April 2008, when Newcastle Blue Star visited. The presence of hoppers from far and wide boosted the crowd to 208, the second highest of the season (born again Chester’s visit the previous September drew 517). Unfortunately, this administering of the last rites was duller than watching the Royal couple exchange marriage vows. A granite hard, dust bowl of a pitch didn’t help. What occurred was barely recognisable as football. Curzon Ashton needed to win, and hope Chorley didn’t at Salford City, to secure a home tie in the end-of-season play-offs. But they fielded a ‘shadow’ side, opting to give a run-out to a number of players returning from injury.

The match concluded almost without incident. The visitors won thanks to a crisp finish in the 40th minute from Daniel Broadbent, though the free kick which led to the goal was taken from the wrong place. Demi Kyriacou squandered Wakefield FC's best chance, volleying against David Carnell in the 62nd minute with only the Curzon keeper to beat. Right on time, a quick throw left Chris McDonagh through on the right side of the penalty area but he couldn’t double Curzon’s tally, shooting across goal and wide. It was that sort of day. One Curzon player summed it up during the second half when he tried to rally his team-mates by shouting: “C’mon lads, don’t let it get any flatter than it is.”

So dire and depressing was all this, I abandoned half-formed plans for a football double-header, opting to give a miss to the evening kick-off West Riding Challenge Cup Final at Fleet Lane, Woodlesford. The thought of suffering afresh whilst Otley Town and Bay Athletic scratched about had me dashing, Le Mans-style, for my car, with the aim of getting home as quickly as possible.

Farewell, then, College Grove. Not a bad ground for this level of football (or for the standard of rugby union it once staged). The main stand, despite being modern, had a bit of character, and still contained the amber and black seats put in by the rugby club. The terracing either side had traditional crush barriers. The rest didn’t amount to much: portable buildings and temporary cover fashioned from scaffolding and heavy-duty plastic. At least, for a while, Wakefield FC could call it home.

Other football worth a mention:

York City 1 Luton Town 0 (2010, Conference National, Play-Off Semi-Final, First Leg). For reasons I cannot remember, Hilary, one of my solicitor wife's colleagues, had a complimentary main stand ticket. ‘Hils’ wasn’t bothered about going and the ticket somehow found its way into my hands. Biggest Bootham Crescent crowd - 6,204 - of which I’ve been part since relocating to York. An uncommonly rousing atmosphere, too. After Minstermen keeper Michael Ingham had made several fine saves, team-mate and England ‘C’ international Richard Brodie popped up with an 89th-minute winner, outwitting Luton’s Mark Tyler in a one-on-one. It was Brodie’s 37th goal of the season. York won the second leg at Kenilworth Road by the same score but lost 1-3 to Oxford United in the Wembley final.

Halifax Town 1 Kidderminster Harriers 2 (1995, The Football Conference). Yet another game billed ‘The Last Home Match’ for cash-strapped Halifax. 1,754 turned up for this wake. The club produced a match video, We will Fight Until the End. Thanks to the fundraising of fans, the Shaymen lived to fight another day (another decade, it turned out). Town led 1-0 at the break courtesy of an own goal, right on half-time, Paul Bancroft turning a Steve Prindiville cross past his own keeper. But the hosts were undone, deservedly so, after a tame surrender, by simple efforts from two Marks, Dearlove (72) and Yates (85). Halifax finished eighth, Kidderminster 11th. Macclesfield Town, then sharing Moss Rose with Chester City, topped the table but grading zealots denied them a Football League place.

Halifax Town 0 Dagenham & Redbridge 1 (1994, The Football Conference). Town’s first season outside the Football League was going from bad worse. Come April, most of the better players had been sold. On the whole, their cut-price replacements weren’t up to the standard required. Many supporters had chucked in the towel. On a balmy evening, just 643 diehards at The Shay witnessed another depressing defeat. Town full-back Billy Barr, a local lad who graduated from the youth team and was shortly to join the exodus by signing for Crewe Alexandra, hit the crossbar after Daggers’ Chris Payne, set up by David Crown, netted in the 77th minute. Halifax, on their second manager of the season (John Bird having succeeded Peter Wragg), trailed in 13th. Daggers were sixth. Kidderminster Harriers pipped Kettering Town to the championship by three points.

Other sports:

Rylands Sharks 64 Waterhead Warriors 18 (2017, rugby league, National Conference League, Division Three). 2017 was Rylands’ last season as NCL members. Having failed to get across the Pennines to watch them the year before, I was keen to make amends. I try to catch NCL newcomers ASAP. Several haven’t stuck around long! Sharks’ set-up, dressing rooms next to an enclosed pitch of limited dimensions, with a shared mock Tudor pavilion nearby, is part of the former wire manufacturer’s works ground occupied also by Rylands FC. Waterhead have struggled in recent seasons. Despite taking an early 6-0 lead, the visitors from Oldham were no match for their lively hosts. Rylands, committed to keeping the ball alive, used to good effect strong forwards and elusive backs, running in 11 tries, all but one converted. At full-time, I bumped into fellow poster Seagull and his daughter, who had watched the game in the company of Blackpool hopper Paul Baker, an amiable fella I encounter, by chance, every year or so. As of 2020, Rylands appear to have packed up. They don’t feature in any of the North West League’s six divisions.

Beverley 21 Winnington Park 16 (2006, rugby union, North Two Play-Off). Beverley, a sort of mini-York, is a lovely little East Riding town in which, rugby-wise, league is much more popular than union. The featureless (well, pitch and clubhouse) union ground, a mile from the clogged centre, is off the Hornsea road. Bev, 21-3 up early in the second half, secured promotion to North One with some comfort, outscoring their Northwich-based visitors two tries to one.

Saracens 17 Bristol Shoguns 16 (2003, rugby union, Premiership). Nerve-jangling win for Sarries (do you think, in some way, they were cheating back then, too?) after trailing 0-5 inside eight minutes. It lifted them out of the relegation zone. Two second-half Shane Drahm penalties, adding to one earlier, saw Bristol close to within a point from 10-17 down at the break. But the hosts clung on. It cannot have been much of a spectacle because even premiershiprugby.com describes this as “not a particularly auspicious affair, as you’d expect from a bargain basement encounter”. England Sevens speedster Richard Haughton and wing Peter O’Mahoney crossed for Sarries. Twenty-stone prop Andrew Sheridan’s try enabled Brizzle to draw first blood. This was my second visit to Vicarage Road in a matter of weeks. Pretty sure I called in on the way back from somewhere else. The first visit, in March of the same year, had been for a Watford game, against Forest. Saracens, now a club in disgrace, have since returned to their north London roots.

Bradford Dukes 61 Edinburgh Monarchs 35 (1995, speedway, Premier League). The Premier League, a combination of former British and National league clubs, seemed like a good idea. In reality, the ex-British League clubs were much stronger than their smaller, skinter cousins. This meeting, a runaway home win, typified much of what went on in 1995. Bradford’s Gary Havelock (14+1, paid max), Joe Screen (14+1, paid max), Sean Wilson (13+1) and Garry Stead (9+3) were paid for double figures. Edinburgh, well off the pace, relied heavily on Dane Jan Anderson (11), Les Collins (8+1) and Californian Mike Faria (6).



Junior Team Regular
Dec 7, 2019
North West non-league
Mon 29 April 1996 - Europe 7 USA 6 - Roller Hockey International European Tour
This was my 7th visit to Manchester Arena - Attendance approx 3000

3 different sports in 3 days, having been to Wembley for Rugby League on the Sat, Old Trafford for football on the Sun, and then this odd event. I was just getting into ice hockey at the time, and this was played 1 month after the end of the Manchester Storm season. But roller hockey? There was talk at the time of setting up a European spin-off Division for RHI with Manchester an option potentially starting Summer 1997, at the end of the first Ice Hockey Superleague that was getting underway later in the year. So this was a European Tour for the USA/Canada-based Roller Hockey International.

I wrote this short report for my web site at the time: "This was effectively a promotional challenge match for Roller Hockey International and was little more than a friendly. The action was not as fast and furious as ice hockey but it passed as entertainment and for my first roller hockey game it was pretty good. It did have the feel of being "fixed" though as USA almost took the game to penalties in the last seconds. The 7-6 win for Team Europe levelled the series at 1-1 in front of over 3000 fans. Montreal Roadrunner Alain Savage led Team Europe, scoring four of the seven goals."

There is a Los Angeles Times article from summer 1996 mentioning the tour games as follows: "Expanding to Europe is a question mark, particularly after this spring’s roller hockey tour there. League officials hail the tour as successful, but players who participated complained about small crowds, poor pay and bad organization." Unsurprisingly, no such expansion was done.

Sat 29 April 2006 - Kidderminster Harriers 2 Accrington Stanley 0 - Nationwide Conference
This was my 1st and only visit to Aggborough - Attendance 1934

End of season nothing game, as Accrington were already promoted to the Football League. I had been regularly reporting on Stanley for Radio Lancs but as soon as it became big news as the Football League loomed, the big gun commentators were sent out to report on them, and I was assigned back to lower league games (which I actually preferred, though I couldn't help but want to be part of Stanley's rise, as I had reported on them on and off for 6 years by then). 5 weeks after my last game with them at York City, I was sent to Aggborough for this nothing game, when I really wanted to be at Fleetwood's game with Kendal Town, and I was gutted when it was an amazing dramatic game that saw them do a great comeback to claim promotion on the final day. As for this game, it was 2-0 to Kidderminster - can't remember any more than that.

Fri 29 April 2011 - Skelmersdale United 7 Ossett Albion 2 (HT 3-1) - Evo-Stik League Division 1 North
This was my 1st and only visit to Stormy Corner - Attendance 264

Another dramatic end of season on a bank holiday Friday afternoon, which I think was something royal family-related. The drama was pending as for Skelmersdale to win the league, they needed a massive win by 7 goals at least, and also for Chester to lose at mid-table Garforth. So this went exactly as you'd expect...

- 18 mins and already 2-0 to Skem, with Chester drawing 0-0
- 22 mins and looking bad as Ossett (with only Leigh Genesis below them) pulled one back
- HT and it was 3-1 to Skem and Chester were winning 1-0 at Garforth
- 65 mins and Garforth scored twice to make it 2-1 just as Skem made it 5-1
- 72 mins and it was 7-1 to Skem! Just 1 more Skem goal needed!
- But then Ossett pulled another back and Skem needed to make it 9
- 15 mins left for Skem to score twice and they were going for it - shots from all angles - it looked odds on that they would get the 2 more they needed.
- 10 mins left and the game suddenly went flat. The crowd were begging them to push forward - it was like they thought Chester were 8-0 up, but they were losing still! But despite 6 mins of stoppage time - and still 3 left when Chester had been confirmed as beaten, the game just petered out and finished 7-2.

That was one of the most anti-climatic endings I think I've seen. They came out to collect runners-up things afterwards - I'm sure the league trophy was with Chester. I managed to speak to the Skelmersdale manager after the game and asked him why the team couldn't push for just 10 mins more "it was high tempo all game and ossett keeper slowed it down at end" - hmmm well anyway, it wasn't to be. Skem went to the PlayOffs and lost to AFC Fylde, who in turn lost to Chorley in the Final.


Junior Team Starter
Dec 25, 2019
Thursday 29th April 1993

Dolgellau 8 Barmouth & Dyffryn United 1
Aberystwyth & District League Div 1
Admit 50p when the bag comes round.

Then, as now, Thursday evening games on new grounds are a precious resource, this one came from the sport pages of 'The Cambrian News'. The league is a feeder to the Mid Wales League, and most of the first teams in the Aber League have played at the higher level at some time.

These were the two most northernly teams in the league, and close enough geographically to be counted as a derby game.

Halifat and I arrived in the van to find much discussion about the state of the pitch. Hard as marriage, and with deep ruts down one wing that suggested joy-riding in tractors. Basically Barmouth were aghast at the prospect, Dolgellau said it's what they had. Ref said do it,Barmouth agreed in the end but their hearts weren't in it. Dolgellau knew every bit and bobble of the pitch and made the visitors look clumsy carthorses.

Unusually, for these threads from me both teams are still extant playing at the same grounds. The league too, although a division lighter. Dolgellau added some cover to get into the Mid Wales League, and initials after their name to become Dolgellau A. A. but have now reverted to plain Dolgellau. Barmouth opted to join the North Wales pyramid and are now in the second division of the Welsh Alliance.

After the game the van wouldn't start and had to be bump started round the , fortuitously large, car park. Thanks to all the locals who helped! Got back ( without stopping) but it cost me a new starter motor in the morning.


Youth Team Star
Dec 7, 2019
Only five for me on 29th April...

Saturday 29th April 1989 ~ Swansea City 0-0 Port Vale
Saturday 29th April 1995 ~ Swindon Town 0-2 Portsmouth
Saturday 29th April 2000 ~ Havant & Waterlooville 1-0 Grantham Town
Thursday 29th April 2010 ~ Abingdon Town 1-2 Binfield
Friday 29th April 2016 ~ Fleet Spurs 0-3 Downton

...the pick of them being...

Saturday 29th April 1995 ~
Division One
Swindon Town 0-2 Portsmouth

...with TheWavendonian and me making a weekend of it. We met up at Bath Spa station, quickly booking into cheap digs above some dodgy nightclub which had the one positive of being close to both The Bell and The Star for some decent pints later on - we also met some Macclesfield Town fans who had a similar idea, and were in town before their match v. Bath City. Then it was a quick train journey up to Swindon, where the massed thousands of Pompey fans were already trawling the streets looking of pubs that seemed not to exist - like many of them, we ended up in the increasingly noisy lounge bar of the sixties slab block that is the Thistle Hotel.

I think that this was the win that meant Pompey were mathematically safe from relegation, though most of the hard work had been done the previous Saturday with a win away at Turf Moor which sent Burnley down, a stunt we'd repeat here at the County Ground as we inflicted Swindon's second successive relegation. Here are the highlights, with a particularly enjoyable moan from Swindon manager Steve McMahon at the end...

A large number of the 9,220 attendance were packed onto the Stratton Bank away end, including many who seemed to be up from Portsmouth on some sort of day release - I can remember TheWav and I struggling to avoid eye-contact with one huge bloke with an enormous stitched scar running diagonally across the whole diameter of his skull. Fortunately, the positive result meant we all left in a happy mood.


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Youth Team Star
Dec 7, 2019
A few photographs from...

Saturday 29th April 2000 ~
Southern League Premier Division
Havant & Waterlooville 1-0 Grantham Town

This was a very important relegation battle, with the result just about keeping Havant safe at the end of a strong late run. Grantham, meanwhile were pushed well into the deep-end, and would be relegated a week later on goal difference.




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Reserve Team Regular
Dec 7, 2019
Tranmere, South Liverpool
1991, South Liverpool's penultimate match in semi-pro football
HFS Loans (i.e. Northern Premier) League, Premier Div
Hyde United 9-1 South

"A total humiliation at Tameside Park for what was once a decent club which still contains many good players. 3-0 down in eight minutes, 6-1 down at half time. Our goal came from Andy Green. We showed no spirit, character or commitment. The opposition were the second worst form team in the league, they had won once in twelve games (3-2 here at Bucks Park) and only scored twice in the previous seven games!!!
This was our worst NPL defeat in our history, those who went to Hyde gave little stick to the players, seemingly appreciating where the true problem lies. All we seem to be left today with is a damage limitation exercise to avoid further shame."

The above report is taken from the programme for South's final match, a 'home' game v Bishop Auckland on the following Saturday. I recall Hyde had got the score up to nine with 20-30 minutes still to play against a South team so short on numbers we had to name the physio as one of two subs...and he came on! Also recall one of our officials (who lives and breathes South and is still with the club today) pleading quietly for most of those 20-30 minutes that they wouldn't get double figures!

The "true problem" referred to above was the chairman at the time (who's long since shuffled off this mortal coil), who'd admittedly delivered some good times in his eight years at the helm but ultimately oversaw the loss of our beloved Holly Park home a year earlier and now our cherished league status.

At least we did avoid "further shame" in the sombre final hurrah against Bishop, Ian Baker bagging a brace for us in a 2-2 draw at Bootle's old ground at Bucks Park, where we played out our final season.
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Reserve Team Starter
Dec 7, 2019
Crewe Alexandra.
Wednesday @ 19-30.

At Old Trafford.
FA Cup Final Replay.
Chelsea 2 v 1 Leeds. (AET)

Chelsea - Peter Bonetti , Ron Harris , Eddie McCreadie , John Hollins , John Dempsey , David Webb (1) , Tommy Baldwin , Charlie Cooke , Peter Osgood (1) , Ian Hutchinson , Peter Houseman.
Sub - Marvin Hinton for Osgood.
Manager - Dave Sexton.

Leeds United - David Harvey , Paul Madeley , Terry Cooper , Billy Bremner , Jack Charlton , Norman Hunter , Peter Lorimer , Allan Clarke , Mick Jones (1) , Johnny Giles , Eddie Gray.
Sub Mick Bates.
Manager - Don Revie.

Referee - Eric Jennings (Stourbridge).


I was so glad I chose to go to Hampden on April 11 for the Aberdeen v Celtic Scottish Cup Final , not just because it was a cracker but the English equivalent between Chelsea and Leeds at the same time ended in a dour draw meaning this replay. Lucky me.

So it enabled me to go to the first ever replay of a Wembley Final and the first since 1912.
Now I've seen Celtic v Rangers / Everton v Liverpool / derbies throughout the world but this was up there with the most brutal. By todays standards there may have been up to 10 sendings off.
Forget the 'Dirty Leeds' nickname , in this game Chelsea were as bad and the fouls were nasty / vicious , this resulted in just the one yellow card late in the game to Hutchinson , I actually think the referee was enjoying his last game at this level.

This BBC report by Phil Dawkes sums it up better than I ever could - https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/52416192

I believe this game followed the pattern of the first game with Leeds having more of the play with Chelsea sitting back , despite being a neutral I'm so glad Chelsea won the day because they played vicious football like this occasionally, Leeds were like it every game.

Jones opened the scoring after 35 mins firing past an already injured Bonetti , Jones having already bundled into Bonetti a few minutes earlier.
Osgood equalised on 79 with a diving header from a Cooke cross , Osgood was unmarked with his marker Jack Charlton after the blood of Hutchinson who'd fouled him a minute earlier.

So to extra time and this was settled by the unlikely figure of David Webb heading in at the far post following a long Huthinson throw which was headed backwards by Charlton straight to Webb.

So just missing the quartet I was also at the Welsh Cup Final Ist leg Chester 0 v 1 Cardiff.
Close to a full house but no cigar this season.

40 x games , 2 x doubles , 2 x 0-0's .
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Youth Team Sub
Dec 9, 2019
Melksham Town, Bath Rugby, Lancashire CCC, Wigan Warriors
1989 Walsall 2 Swindon T 2 Barclays League Two Att: 5,288
Played at the old Fellowes Park, this was a bad-tempered affair between players and fans. We were good enough to get to the play-offs (where we were beaten by Palace) in Macari's last season; greater things were to come. The one thing he did do was to splash the cash on Duncan Shearer; a fab striker (as he would prove). He and Colin Calderwood scored for us here but the sour atmosphere at the ground spoiled a good day out; heavy police presence after the game meant getting back to my car wasn't easy.

2017 Melksham T 5 Wells C 1 Toolstation Western Prem Att: 380
Hot day, plenty of goals but I didn't note down who scored. We usually put plenty past Wells although we surpassed ourselves the following season putting 18 past them home and way.
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Kirby Knitters

Reserve Team Star
Dec 7, 2019
The Knitters.
Leics County Cup Final.
Leicester City 3 Leicester United 0.(302) @ Filbert Street.

Leics Senior League 1.
Kirby Muxloe 2 Fosse Imps 1.(21)

Primeira Liga.
Sporting Lisbon 3 Benfica 0.
Adm $1,500
Prog. None.
Att 27,000.

Conference North.
Nuneaton Borough 2 Hinckley United 0.

Tipton Town 3 Kirby Muxloe 1.(42)

UCL Premier.
Kirby Muxloe 0 Peterborough NS 2.(25)


Reserve Team Hopeful
Dec 7, 2019
Fife clubs
Saturday April 29th 1978
Scottish League Premier Division
Hibernian v Aberdeen. 1-1, H.T. 0-0, Att 11350, Admission 80p
At Easter Road

Having been at Meadowbank the night before, it was a return to east Edinburgh for this Premier Division game on the Saturday. It was a game with huge implications for both teams. Their final match of the season had a great deal hanging on it – if Aberdeen won and Rangers slipped up at home to Motherwell then the Dons would be crowned Champions. I was just too young to recall Killie winning the League in 1965 and since then every single Scottish title had been won by either Celtic or Rangers. The chance to witness someone else doing it was too good to miss. However, the game was important for Hibs as well. A draw would secure a place in the UEFA Cup. A school friend and I had decided that if Hibs qualified we would go and see their First Round tie the following season before we started at University.

The day probably began with a few pints in the Conan Doyle at the top of Leith Walk. It was a soft touch for under-agers with never a question asked nor an ID requested. From there it’s a 15 minute walk down to Easter Road and we took up a spot in the North Enclosure. That was home to some of the more die-hard Hibbies – the paddock area in front of the main stand towards the Leith end of the ground.

Dons fans filled the Dunbar End and the crowd was well up on the usual attendances of the time.

Cabbage: Mike McDonald, John “Onion” Brownlie, Ally “Benny” Brazil, Jackie McNamara, George “Dode” Stewart, Des Bremner, Willie Murray, Ally MacLeod, Gordon Rae, Arthur “Nijinsky” Duncan and Tony Higgins. Subs Pat “Christmas” Carroll and Alex McGhee
Dandies: Bobby Clark, Stuart Kennedy, Steve Ritchie, John McMaster, Willie Garner, Willie Miller, Dom Sullivan, Ian Fleming, Joe Harper, Drew Jarvie and Duncan Davidson. Sub Ian Scanlon and Chic McLelland

Hibs Manager at the time was still Eddie Turnbull, a former Dons boss who had taken the Pittodrie side close to the title in 1971. In charge of Aberdeen for the last time in a League game was Billy McNeill, the Celtic legend who spent a year with the Dons before returning to his spiritual home at Parkhead. Aberdeen may have been bossed by a former European Cup winner but it was Hibs who had a future winner in their side – Des Bremner.

The game was played at a high tempo with Aberdeen pushing forward at every opportunity. They found Hibs difficult to break down. News filtered through from Glasgow that Rangers were 2-0 up after 20 minutes so even an Aberdeen win wasn’t going to be enough for them. Brother Thomas of Lodge Muirhead Stenhousemuir would have bene well warned by the powers that be to ensure a Rangers win.

Joe Harper was playing up front for Aberdeen, the club where he could do no wrong. His time at Hibs had been disappointing and his spell at Everton embarrassing. With them he couldn’t hit a barn door with a banjo yet with Aberdeen he scored for fun.

Aberdeen really began to look threatening when they introduced subbie Ian Scanlon making a delayed debut after his transfer from Notts County in March. He put the Dons ahead in the 79th minute, finishing off a good move. The dejection in the Hibs ranks was lifted five minutes later when Arthur Duncan headed in a Des Bremner cross to equalise and secure the UEFA Cup spot for the Easter Road side.

In later years Hibs v Aberdeen would always be a volatile clash. On this occasion there was a solidarity amongst the fans – both sets joining in a rousing chorus of “We Feckin Hate Rangers” or words to that effect as they headed up Easter Road after the game. Easter Road (the street) probably has the best sound quality and acoustics of any thoroughfare close to a ground in Scotland.

Later in the Summer as the draw for the UEFA Cup came round we pored over the list of potential opponents. We fancied Ajax for a few days in Amsterdam. Hertha Berlin looked good. Maybe somewhere hot? Benfica, or Napoli? Save us from Bulgaria or Albania. In the end we got IFK Norrkoping. That’s a whole other story which I may relate if we are still stuck in lockdown come September!!



Junior Team Hopeful
Dec 31, 2019
29th April 2017
Southern Combination
Arundel 1 Shoreham 0

A strange afternoon.
The last game of the season and the fixtures superbly worked out with every Club playing their final game on the same day. Haywards Heath led the table by one point from Shoreham with the latter having an advantage of one in the goal difference stakes, but the leaders were playing in the shadow of a woefully prolonged enquiry by the FA in to the possibility of ineligible players being fielded earlier in the season. With Arundel four points from the bottom of the table Shoreham were clear favourites on a lovely sunny afternoon under the backdrop of the famous Castle. But it did not work out in accordance with the script as in a poor game - and that is probably being kind - Arundel scored the only goal late in the second half to take the points. It was a strange listless performance from the visitors considering what was at stake and was compounded by a total lack of support despite the two Towns being only nineteen miles apart.
Haywards Heath duly won their final game to effectively move four points clear at the top but when in late May the FA finally extracted their finger and deducted nine points for the early season misdemeanours, Shoreham were Champions and promoted to the Isthmian League. Everything about the day seemed to suggest that they did not want promotion and the following season they finished 22 points adrift and returned, presumably happily, to whence they came.
A slightly bizarre afternoon - the FA's usual lack of concern for football at this level playing its part.


Junior Team Starter
Dec 7, 2019
Dessel Sport, Oxford Utd and all North Devon Clubs
Worksop Tn v Bangor City 0-5
HFS Loans League

Maltby MW v Spennymoor Utd 1-0
Weekly Winner Premier

Bardon Hill v Narborough and Littlethorpe 2-0
Leicestershire Senior, Div 1

Wickersley Old Boys v Oughtibridge 4-1
County Senior League Div 1

Connahs Quay Nomads v Barry Tn 2-0
League Of Wales

Durham Ox v Pinxton North End 4-0
Notts Div 2

Crag Road Utd v Meltham Ath. 4-4
West Riding Co. Amateur Div 2

Shepley v Cumberworth 3-1
Huddersfield Lge

Northam Lions v Putford 3-2
Nort Devon Snr

Totnes and Dartington v Appledore 2-4
SWPL (played @ Crediton Utd)

Appledore v St. Martins 1-0

Bideford Community v Boca Seniors 3-4
North Devon Prem.


Junior Team Sub
Dec 10, 2019
Tuesday 29 April 1980
Ashington 4-2 Heaton Stannington AET (2-2 90 mins)
Northumberland Senior Cup Final Replay @ North Shields
Admission charged, no prog

A superb game with a favourable outcome from my point of view. After a disappointing goal-less encounter at St James’ Park two weeks earlier, the teams met again at North Shields’ Appleby Park on Hawkey’s Lane. Ashington were favourites after finishing fourth in the Northern League but it was the Wearside Leaguers that led for much of the game despite Ashington throwing everything at them in the second half. A late equaliser took the game into extra-time and, as often happens, this momentum saw their opponents brushed aside in the concluding 30 minutes.

This was Ashington’s first NSC success since 1967 which, at the time, I thought was a ridiculously long period given that the trophy almost always went to one of the county’s four Northern League clubs, the others being Blyth Spartans, North Shields and Whitley Bay, so I was certain they wouldn’t need to wait as long again. Ashington next won the NSC in 2013, 33 years later! As for Heaton, they’ve never been as close to winning the trophy. They left the Wearside League a couple of years later, due to ground issues I think, but were admitted to the Northern Alliance in 1986, with potentially a brief spell in either the Northern Combination or Northern Amateur League in between.

I‘m sure many people are aware that the Northern League was a source of some great grounds in the 80s and 90s, but quite a few of the larger ones had their roots in the semi-professional North-Eastern League rather than the old amateur days of the Northern League whose footprint was largely limited to south Durham & Teesside for many years. For several decades the NEL was a very strong league typically stretching from Ashington in the north to Workington in the west to Scarborough in the south and whose clubs attracted consistently large crowds. However, the writing was on the wall when the reserve sides of the local Football League clubs resigned in the late fifties and the region simply didn‘t have enough suitable clubs to replace them.

Appleby Park was built for the North-Eastern League and its layout was quite similar to Bromsgrove‘s current ground. Two sides had a Football League feel about them - a large stand with wooden seats stretched almost the length of the far side and the end to the right was filled with a huge covered terrace with a tiny club shop at the back. Opposite were half a dozen steps of open terracing, while the main road side was a mix of open & covered terracing but was dominated by Shields‘ large social club.

North Shields remained at Appleby Park until being forced out in 1992. The club had mounting debts, which couldn‘t have been helped by three years in the Northern Counties East League while they chased progression to the NPL, but I think it was actually subsidence at the ground that proved to be the straw that broke the camel‘s back.


Junior Team Regular
Dec 7, 2019
Warrington Town are #1, Leeds Utd, Stranraer, Matlock Town, Warrington Wolves RLFC
One of the busier dates in my calendar it seems – Premiership Replays in Rugby League – those were the days

1991 Bass North West Counties League Division Two Westhoughton Town v Bradford Park Avenue 0-3

1992 Stones Bitter Premiership First Round Replay Leeds v Warrington Lost 22-8

1993 HFS loans League Division One Warrington Town v Bridlington Town Lost 0-1

1994 Cheshire Building Society Cheshire Amateur Cup Final (@ Chester City FC)

Cammell Laird v Vauxhall Motors 3-2

1995 Sealink Stenna Welsh Alliance Nefyn United v Glantraeth 1-2

1997 Mid Cheshire Senior Cup Final Northwich Victoria v Congleton Town Won 2-0

1998 Welsh National League Premier Division Cup Semi Final Second Leg

Gresford Athletic v Penley 2-0 (Aggregate 3-2)

1999 Manchester League Division One Whalley Range v Tintwistle Villa 7-1

2000 Northern Counties East League Premier Division Staveley Miners Welfare v Hallam 3-1

2002 Springbank Vending Midland League Wolstanton United v Audley 0-3

2003 Talbot Insurance Westmorland League Division One Wetheriggs United v Staveley United 3-0

2004 Air Miles Manchester League Division One Manchester Titans v AFC Blackley 1-3

2006 Northern Counties East League Division One Gedling Town v Carlton Town (T60) 0-3

2008 Frank Armitt Liverpool County Premier League Premier Division East Villa v Lucas Sports 4-3

2010 Llandyrnog & District Village Clubs Summer League Henllan v Ysceifiog (T205) Won 8-4

2011 Evo-Stik League Division One North Radcliffe Borough v Warrington Town Lost 1-0

2014 Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Division One North Play-off Semi-final

Warrington Town v Bamber Bridge Lost 0-1

2017 TWR Bi-fold Wearside League Prudhoe Town v Silksworth Colliery Welfare 1-6


Youth Team Hopeful
Dec 7, 2019
nine on this day, again some crucial games, including....

1978 - Division 3 - Preston NE 2 Shrewsbury T 2 - the point was enough for North End to finish in the third promotion spot, on goal difference from Peterborough. On paper this was an easy win against mid-table opponents, but it often doesn't work out that way, and the Shrews, with Graham Turner the driving force, were 2-1 up at half time. A late Alex Bruce goal tied it up here and proved crucial as Posh lost today, and could only draw their game in hand at champions Wrexham a few days later.
A few memories here:

1979 - another Verbandsliga Suedbaden Sunday double:
1030 - DJK Freiburg 2 SV Weil 3 - decent attacking game in front of 376 saw the hosts initially hold the advantage but the third-place visitors won it late on thanks to a goal from sub Jungk.
1500 - SV Kirchzarten 2 VfB Villingen 0 - the second-place team kept hot on the heels of leaders VfB Gaggenau but were made to work hard by mid-table opponents in a niggly game, with a red for the visitors.

1989 - Southern League Premier - Wealdstone 0 Merthyr T 3 - vital win for the Martyrs, with a good second-half performance in a tough game, as they came through to win the league as others failed.

1992 - Friendly - Republic of Ireland 4 USA 1 - only visit to Lansdowne Road to see a reasonable game, easily won by the hosts. Quite a few famous names on show.

1995 - Southern League South - Waterlooville 0 Salisbury C 2 - important win for the eventual champions against fourth place opposition. A goal in each half, both down to poor marking. I was invited into the board room at Jubilee Park as one of my mates was sponsoring the match.

Games reported on in old WDYG:
2014 - Hants Intermediate Cup Final @Totton: Richmond Park Conservative Club 1 Cadnam U 1 aet, 7-6 on pens. Bournemouth v Southampton league champs, a decent game in which RPCC were mainly in charge, but Cadnam stuck in there and took it to penalties. The shootout was also close, RPCC winning in the end.

2016 - another Hants Intermediate Cup Final @Totton: Bournemouth Manor 1 Otterbourne 3 - Hants Prem runners-up beat Bournemouth champs with a good performance, the deciding goal from Sands (50+ for the season) after 75 mins. Quite feisty at times, both on and off the pitch - two reds, crowd trouble at the end, and four police cars to cover some drunken Bournemouth fans.


Youth Team Starter
Dec 7, 2019
England, Leicester City, Bedfont & Feltham
Leics County Cup Final.
Leicester City 3 Leicester United 0.(302) @ Filbert Street.

Leics Senior League 1.
Kirby Muxloe 2 Fosse Imps 1.(21)

Primeira Liga.
Sporting Lisbon 3 Benfica 0.
Adm $1,500
Prog. None.
Att 27,000.

Conference North.
Nuneaton Borough 2 Hinckley United 0.

Tipton Town 3 Kirby Muxloe 1.(42)

UCL Premier.
Kirby Muxloe 0 Peterborough NS 2.(25)
$1,500 for Sporting v Benfica o_O

Mark Hardy

Junior Team Starter
Dec 7, 2019
Basingstoke TownFarnborough Town29.04.860-2Hampshire Cup
Farnborough TownWokingham Town29.04.893-4Vaux-Opel League
Farnborough TownSouthport29.04.951-4GMVC
Bath CityFarnborough Town29.04.971-1GMVC
Farnborough TownCheltenham Town29.04.981-2Nationwide Conference
Farnborough TownFarnborough Town29.04.000-2Ryman League
Farnborough TownCambridge City29.04.060-3Conf South
Farnborough North EndDownton29.04.091-1Wess Lge 1
Badshot LeaRaynes Park Vale29.04.102-2CCP
Bridgend TownBarry Town29.04.112-0Welsh League 1
Liphook UnitedColden Common29.04.132-2Hampshire League
CoveWembley29.04.144-1Comb Count Prem
AttenboroughAwsworth Villa29.04.165-1NSL Prem
LittletonBolehall Swifts29.04.173-2Midland Div 1

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