Village defy the odds to reach the Wray final
The first L and C semi-final of a domestic cup competition produced a game of real drama in the Whitehead Cup at the excellent venue of Astley Sports Village in Dukinfield.
It featured Village Manchester, looking to reach a cup final for the second successive year, and Chadderton Park.
Due to a shortage of players Village had to play the entire game with ten men and it looked ominous for them as they fell a goal down netted by Wilson for Park.
But then Village showed their intent and determination as they levelled through Munetsi Mbano.
Then they lifted their game and took the lead with a powerful header from Mbano and after that they had to defend for the last 20 minutes as Park threw everything at them.
Some terrific and courageous defending denied Park with the Village keeper pulling off some outstanding saves to keep Park at bay and book their final slot where they await the winners of the other semi which will be between Radclyffe and the winners of the Dukinfield Athletic and Urmston Town quarter final.
Premier Division action saw the top three teams all post wins with current leaders High Lane staying two points clear of Whalley Range with a 4-2 home win over Trafford United as Range won a thriller by the odd goal in nine at Old Ashtonians.
But Rochdalians still have the title in their own hands with two games in hand on the top two and they kept firmly in the hunt with a 3-0 win at Milton.
There were also comfortable wins for Salford Victoria by 5-1 at Abacus Media and South Manchester who had Milo Edwards, Zain Shabir, Paul Sunderland and Badou Drameh netting in a 4-1 win at Old Stretfordians.
In Division One leaders Dom Doyle bounced back after last week’s shock first league defeat of the season to post a comfortable 6-1 win over Bury Amateurs with Will Hustler, Mike Murray and Jordan O’Neill on target for Dom Doyle.
Manchester Amateur Cup finalists Parrs Wood Celtic stay four points behind Dom Doyle with two games in hand after an emphatic 7-0 derby win over Didsbury.
Chorltonians are on the heels of the top two with a fine 3-1 win at Swinton, last week’s victors over Dom Doyle.
AFC Oldham also kept an immaculate clean sheet as they won 4-0 at Stoconians.
Newton were celebrating hard and long as they clinched the Division Two title in the game of the day at Manchester Polonia. In a really good game Newton had Kake Hatton (two) and Ben Pollard netting in a 3-1 win and with Hollingworth losing out 5-0 at Urmston Town Newton pick up the season’s first silverware.
There was another good game at South Manchester Reserves with visiting Mellor Reserves winning by the odd goal in seven as they topped the South strikes from M Chadwick (two) and Chris McMahon.
No problems for Bedians as they cruised to a 4-0 win at Chorltonians Reserves.
With Division Three leaders Dukinfield Athletic without a game their main title challengers Radclyffe took the chance to close the gap to ten points with a hard-working 2-0 win over Milton Reserves and they still have five games in hand over Athletic.
Stoconians Reserves are in third spot with a close 2-1 win at Salford Victoria Reserves and the other game saw Aldermere win 4-2 at Heaton Mersey, the outstanding strike of the match for Aldermere was their third goal, as a long cross from Bradley Ball was bullet-headed into the top corner by Robin Stapley.
In Division A there were wins for all of the top three teams with leaders Elton Lib Hargreaves enjoying a 4-0 win at AFC Oldham Reserves.
Moston Brook Reserves stay in second spot after an entertaining 4-3 win over Rochdale Galaxy but Chadderton Cott are their main threat for the title as they won 3-1 at Chorltonians Villa after taking an early lead with an own goal. Cott remain the only unbeaten team in the league and they have plenty of games in hand over their rivals.
Spurley Hey Reserves had their best win of the season beating Flixton 6-0.
AFC Stockport will take some stopping as they breeze towards the Division B title with an efficient 3-1 win at AFC Oldham 3rds moving them eight points clear of Old Stretfordians Reserves who lost 3-2 at Hooley Bridge Celtic Reserves.
The other challengers Chadderton Cott Reserves could only draw 1-1 with Hillgate and Parrs Wood Celtic also dropped back as they lost to the only goal of their game at Staly Lions.
This score-line was matched by Stoconians 3rds at Didsbury Reserves but there were goals galore at Chorltonians Athletic who went down 7-3 to Bury Amateurs Reserves.
Division C leaders Deans put some recent indifferent results firmly behind them as they hit top form at Hollingworth Reserves with a 9-0 romp while second-placed Old Strets 3rds had a bad day as they went down 7-2 hosting Bury Amateurs 3rds.
Whalley Range A moved into mid-table with an efficient 2-0 win at Chadderton Park Reserves and Stoconians 4ths and Govan Athletic shared four goals.
Pics – action from 1) Dom Doyle v Bury Ams (Dom Doyle in red and white, 2) Village Manchester v Chadderton Park (Park in yellow), 3) Chorltonians Reserves v Bedians (Chorltonians in green and black), 4) Chorltonians Villa v Chadderton Cott (Cott in blue)