Kartel go ‘Wild’ for the double and Moston Brook add the Hellawell Shield

THE L & C playing season ended with the last two cup finals both hosted superbly by former L & C club West Didsbury and Chorlton, who are now flying high in the North West Counties League..

The first final was for the Whitehead Cup for clubs in Divisions A and B and featured the top two in Division A.

Kartel, who are based at the Jim Evison playing fields in Wilmslow, clinched the league title in their final game overtaking North Walkden reserves and went into the game looking for a league and cup double.

They came flying out of the blocks with a Sam Beckett tap-in opening the scoring on nine minutes.

They kept up the momentum as their outstanding striker Ben Wild doubled the lead on 13 minutes and added another clinical finish on 18 minutes to put Kartel in cruise control.

He completed his hat-trick after being fouled for a spot-kick which he coolly converted to take his total to 44 for the season, and Kartel were 4-0 up at the break.

But all credit to North Walkden as they showed great spirit in the second half with a superb volley from Steven Binns upping their ante.

North kept up the pressure as Binns converted a spot-kick on 78 minutes but Kartel regained control in the last ten minutes to ease their nerves for a 4-2 in an excellent game which was a great advert for the league at this level.

Kartel team is featured image.

Two days later West Didsbury and Chorlton were again superb hosts for the Hellawell Shield final, for teams in Divisions C and D.

It featured Moston Brook fourths and Govan Athletic Development to complete the season’s fixtures.

Moston Brook fielded a mix of very experienced and young players and it proved to be a winning combination as they controlled the game for long periods.

They opened their account with the opening goal on 27 minutes with captain Mark Terris converting a spot kick awarded for handball.

Brook went into the break with a 1-0 lead and got what proved to a decisive second goal on 55 minutes with a powerful strike from Lee Scanlon.

They continued to dominate the play for the rest of the game creating several more chances, which they failed to convert and restricted Govan to a few half-chances to run out as comfortable winners and take the trophy for the third time in the club’s long history.

The game was again a great advert for football at this level played in great spirit and excellently controlled by the match officials.

Brook end their long wait in dramatic Rhodes Cup Final

THE climax of the busy L & C season is ending with the completion of vital league fixtures and five cup finals.

The top cup competition is the Rhodes Cup for teams in the Premier and Division one and Hyde United were excellent hosts for the final featuring De La Salle Reds and Moston Brook, the top two teams in the Premier division.

Moston Brook joined the L & C in 1969 and after finishing the season as runners-up by a point to De La Salle Reds they made it through to their first-ever Rhodes Cup final.

A fine audience of nearly 400 enjoyed a close game between the top two teams in the League which showed the talent and great organisation enjoyed by both of them.

The first half saw De La Salle have a slight edge but there were few chances created with the best one seeing Brook hit the woodwork.

Moston Brook came out with greater purpose after the break and they created several good chances before breaking the deadlock on 65 minutes when the outstanding Jack Ward saw a powerful shot deflected in to open their account.

De La Salle responded well and pressed hard for the rest of the game but were denied by some determined defending to see Brook across the line and set up suitable celebrations as they ended their 53-year wait to win the league’s premier Knock Out Trophy which has been played for over 110 years.

The first final was for the Wray Cup for teams in Divisions two and three and Wythenshawe Amateurs were great hosts for a gripping contest between Baguley Athletic and Hattersley.

An even first half saw defences dominate and few chances were created.

There was much more goalmouth action after the break and both keepers Dan Green (Baguley) and the outstanding Tyler Devlin (Hattersley) produced some fine saves to take the tie goalless into extra time.

The decisive moment came just before the break in extra time when a handball on the line prevented a Hattersley goal to result in a red card and a penalty.

Rob Swallow is a regular scorer for Hattersley and the speedy winger made no mistake from the spot.

Baguley showed great spirit in the dying minutes as they launched plenty of attacks, despite being a man short, but Hattersley held on to win the trophy and celebrate in typical style and they gave due thanks to the match officials and their opponents for making this a dramatic final which was a credit to the league.

Two days later at Wright Robinson Sports College was the final of the Harry Jack Cup – brought in during the season to fill a fixture gap in a depleted Division one.

In action were Division one champions Chadderton Cott and Signol Athletic who last season had played a marathon Wray Cup final that went to over 30 penalties to decide the winners.

Another close encounter saw Cott lead 1-0 at the break before a penalty saw Signol level and taking the tie into extra time.

Signol went into the lead but Cott were not to be denied as they drew level to force the penalty shoot-out but Signol had the last word as they won the shoot-out 5-3.

The final league fixtures were completed to end a stressful season for fixture secretary Malc Kershaw with the main focus on division A where the title was still up for grabs.

Kartel FC went into their final two games with a slight advantage over North Walkden reserves and a mid-week 3-3 deadlock with Salford Storm seeing them needed to win their final game after North had won their midweek game by 7-3 at Stretford Paddock Development. Kartel kept their nerve to beat Salford Vics reserves 2-0 and claim the title by two points.

The other game in the division saw Moston Brook reserves win 3-1 at Salford Storm.

There were three games in Division two and champions Irlam Tiger Rangers lost 3-0 in their local derby with Eccles United and two close games saw Mellor beat Baguley Athletic 4-3 and Bedians were 3-2 winners at Newton.

Just one game in Division B with Flixton JFC beating Greater Manchester reserves 2-1 to move into fourth spot.

Mellor reserves are Division C champions after finishing their programme in the previous week and produced comfortable wins for Salford Storm reserves by 7-2 over Stoconians reserves and Altrincham Hale by 4-0 over Govan Development.

The other game ended in a 2-2 deadlock between Eccles United reserves and Bury Ams reserves.

Just two cup finals remain to compete the season with West Didsbury and Chorlton FC hosting the Whitehead Cup for teams in Divisions A and B between Kartel and North Walkden reserves and the Hellawell Shield for teams in Divisions C and D between Moston Brook fourths and Govan Athetic development.Pics – Celebration for Moston Brook

Brook end their long wait

(with pics)

THE climax of the busy L & C season is ending with the completion of vital league fixtures and five cup finals.

The top cup competition is the Rhodes Cup for teams in the Premier and Division one and Hyde United were excellent hosts for the final featuring De La Salle Reds and Moston Brook, the top two teams in the Premier division.

Moston Brook joined the L & C in 1969 and after finishing the season as runners-up by a point to De La Salle Reds they made it through to their first-ever Rhodes Cup final.

A fine audience of nearly 400 enjoyed a close game between the top two teams in the League which showed the talent and great organisation enjoyed by both of them.

The first half saw De La Salle have a slight edge but there were few chances created with the best one seeing Brook hit the woodwork.

Moston Brook came out with greater purpose after the break and they created several good chances before breaking the deadlock on 65 minutes when the outstanding Jack Ward saw a powerful shot deflected in to open their account.

De La Salle responded well and pressed hard for the rest of the game but were denied by some determined defending to see Brook across the line and set up suitable celebrations as they ended their 53-year wait to win the league’s premier Knock Out Trophy which has been played for over 110 years.

The first final was for the Wray Cup for teams in Divisions two and three and Wythenshawe Amateurs were great hosts for a gripping contest between Baguley Athletic and Hattersley.

An even first half saw defences dominate and few chances were created.

There was much more goalmouth action after the break and both keepers Dan Green (Baguley) and the outstanding Tyler Devlin (Hattersley) produced some fine saves to take the tie goalless into extra time.

The decisive moment came just before the break in extra time when a handball on the line prevented a Hattersley goal to result in a red card and a penalty.

Rob Swallow is a regular scorer for Hattersley and the speedy winger made no mistake from the spot.

Baguley showed great spirit in the dying minutes as they launched plenty of attacks, despite being a man short, but Hattersley held on to win the trophy and celebrate in typical style and they gave due thanks to the match officials and their opponents for making this a dramatic final which was a credit to the league.

Two days later at Wright Robinson Sports College was the final of the Harry Jack Cup – brought in during the season to fill a fixture gap in a depleted Division one.

In action were Division one champions Chadderton Cott and Signol Athletic who last season had played a marathon Wray Cup final that went to over 30 penalties to decide the winners.

Another close encounter saw Cott lead 1-0 at the break before a penalty saw Signol level and taking the tie into extra time.

Signol went into the lead but Cott were not to be denied as they drew level to force the penalty shoot-out but Signol had the last word as they won the shoot-out 5-3.

The final league fixtures were completed to end a stressful season for fixture secretary Malc Kershaw with the main focus on division A where the title was still up for grabs.

Kartel FC went into their final two games with a slight advantage over North Walkden reserves and a mid-week 3-3 deadlock with Salford Storm seeing them needed to win their final game after North had won their midweek game by 7-3 at Stretford Paddock Development. Kartel kept their nerve to beat Salford Vics reserves 2-0 and claim the title by two points.

The other game in the division saw Moston Brook reserves win 3-1 at Salford Storm.

There were three games in Division two and champions Irlam Tiger Rangers lost 3-0 in their local derby with Eccles United and two close games saw Mellor beat Baguley Athletic 4-3 and Bedians were 3-2 winners at Newton.

Just one game in Division B with Flixton JFC beating Greater Manchester reserves 2-1 to move into fourth spot.

Mellor reserves are Division C champions after finishing their programme in the previous week and produced comfortable wins for Salford Storm reserves by 7-2 over Stoconians reserves and Altrincham Hale by 4-0 over Govan Development.

The other game ended in a 2-2 deadlock between Eccles United reserves and Bury Ams reserves.

Just two cup finals remain to compete the season with West Didsbury and Chorlton FC hosting the Whitehead Cup for teams in Divisions A and B between Kartel and North Walkden reserves and the Hellawell Shield for teams in Divisions C and D between Moston Brook fourths and Govan Athetic development.Pics – Celebration for Moston Brook

Brian Stringer RIP

The League is sad to announce the death of former President and League Treasurer Brian Stringer. Brian first appeared for Bradford Parish (now Denton Town) in 1950 and was a permanent member of their very successful first team throughout the fifties, including the winning of the Lancashire Amateur Cup in 1952-53. He became the club secretary for fourteen years from 1963-77 and continued to serve on the club committee thereafter. He was elected League President for the 1988-89 season and then accepted the invitation to manage the League’s finances for the next few years. He was a mainstay of his club for several decades and our thoughts are with his family and friends.

Shaw up for the Cup

DESPITE some awful weather prior to and during the games the league were delighted to see the bulk of the first round of domestic Cup fixtures being completed.

Innovative and forward-thinking moves by clubs in changing venues helped on the day.

In the Rhodes Cup for Premier and Division one sides the big upset of the day was provided by Division one mid-table team Shaw Athletic who pulled off a great 6-3 win over Premier division side North Walkden.

Irlam Tiger, from Division one, also beat Premier division side AFC Oldham in a 6-4 thriller.

Premier division leaders Stretford Paddock were taken all the way by lowly Division one side Trafford United before getting a late winner for a 3-2 victory.

There were few problems for the other top Premier teams with De La Salle winning 6-0 at Bury Amateur and Moston Brook won another exciting encounter at Salford Vics by 5-3.

Also going through were Division one champions Chadderton Cott, who were taken all the way before emerging with a 2-1 win over Didsbury and Rochdalians and Old Stretfordians with walkovers.

There were some thrilling contests in the Wray Cup for teams in Divisions 2 and 3 led by a 5-3 win for Eccles United over Wythenshawe Wanderers, who are both flying high in Division two.

It was end-to- end throughout the game with Eccles taking an early lead but Wanderers hit back with Joe Shaw equalising then forcing an own goal to take the lead which they extended before the break.

But Eccles upped the ante in the second half to storm though to win 5-3.

Baguley Athletic also came from behind hosting Radclyffe in another fine game.

Radclyffe led 1-0 at the break, through Adam Grogrow but Baguley levelled with a deflected goal on 50 minutes and went on to win 3-2.

Sale Amateurs had a relatively comfortable passage at Abacus Media reserves winning 6-2, a score matched by Salford Albion at Milltown.

Newton kept up their recent run of form as they despatched AFC Stockport 5-3 and Elton Lib Hargreaves won a tense match at Hooley Bridge Celtic with the only goal of the game.

Division two leaders Hattersley are through with a walkover.

The Whitehead Cup for teams in Divisions A and B produced plenty of goals led by Division B leaders Aldermere reserves who won 10-0 at Greater Manchester FC and North Walkden reserves were not far behind beating Oldham Saints 9-0.

There were plenty of goals at Flixton JFC as they shared ten with Salford Vics reserves and won the penalty shoot out by 4-1.

A penalty shoot-out was also needed at Milnrow Firgrovia as they drew 2-2 with Trafford United reserves and won a nerve-jangling shootout 7-6.

The game at Spurley Hey against Salford Storm ended goalless with Hey winning the shoot out by 5-4.

Close too at AFC Oldham reserves who lost out 2-1 to Milton reserves.

Moston Brook reserves kept an immaculate clean sheet in a 3-0 win at Santos.

The final Cup competition for the Hellawell Shield featured teams in Divisions C and D.

Eccles United reserves made it a good day for the club as they cruised to a 6-3 win at Chadderton Park reserves.

Mellor reserves provided one of the day’s big shocks as the runaway Division C leaders Dukinfield Athletic were held 1-1 in normal time and went out 3-1 on penalties.

Salford Storm reserves were the big hitters by 10-3 in their local derby with Salford Vics Development.

Whalley Range went down by 5-3 hosting AFC Stockport Warriors and Altrincham Hale reserves pulled off a great 3-2 win over Staly Lions.

Close games at Govan Athletic Development who scored the only goal of their game with Irlam Tiger A. Didsbury reserves have only won one league game this season as they lie at the bottom of Division D but have shown plenty of substance with excellent efforts in recent fixtures. A typically gutsy performance saw them pull off a much celebrated win by 3-2 against Stoconians  reserves from Division C to leap into round two with great anticipation.

There were also league games played and in the Premier division Manchester Challenge Cup finalists Abacus Media shared the points in a 1-1 deadlock at Manchester Polonia. Abacus will play their cup final at Hyde United on February 25 against Cheshire League high-fliers Egerton.

In Division two Mellor shared six goals with South Manchester and the game between Irlam Tiger Rangers and Bedians was abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch.

No joy for Moston Brook thirds as they were well beaten 7-1 by a resurgent Heaton Mersey in division B and Hillgate went down 5-2 hosting Old Stretfordians reserves.

Pic – action from Wythenshawe Wanderers v Eccles United (Eccles in yellow and black)

De La Salle defeat Stretford Paddock to close gap at the top

The Premier Division’s top two collided in the standout L & C fixture this weekend, and De La Salle prevailed by defeating leaders Stretford Paddock in a statement performance that strengthened their title credentials.

Paddock went into the weekend with a healthy eight-point cushion, and had the chance to pile the pressure on their rivals, who need to convert their games in hand into points to overhaul their opponents.

But, in the clash at Salford Sports, De La Salle underlined their intentions by outclassing the visitors by registering a comfortable 3-1 victory – the exact result of the last game between the two.

De La Salle scored two in the space of seven first-half minutes to go 2-0 up in the 26th minute and a sublime through-ball set up a third in the 73rd minute. Paddock netted a late consolation penalty but were deservedly beaten and De La Salle are now five points from the summit, but with three games in hand.

The other game played in the division saw Rochdalians continue their uplift in form as they cruised to a 7-1 win at AFC Oldham to head for the comfort of mid-table.

Division One was reduced to one game and it was another top-of-the-table clash as second-placed Signol Athletic took on leaders Chadderton Cott.

This time though, the leaders had no such problems, as Cott eventually ground down a spirited Signol, clinically dispatching them in a 5-1 victory to leave them within touching distance of the title already after stretching their lead to 11 points at the summit.

Division Two teams had plenty of action in what has been an exciting season.

Leaders Hattersley turned on the style in the first half as they entertained Baguley Athletic and ruthlessly raced into a 3-0 lead.

A more even second half saw the teams share four goals but the 5-2 win keeps Hattersley a healthy six points clear of the chasing pack.

The other top game featured the second and third placed teams in a superb encounter that was a great advert for their clubs and the league as Eccles United switched their game to Wythenshawe Wanderers.

It was a thriller from start to finish enjoyed by both teams, their supporters and referee John Melia which was decided with a thundering header from a corner by United’s outstanding Callum Collins on 70 minutes.

Wanderers did their best to get back on terms and were made to regret missing a last-minute chance from close range and they are now three points behind United.

Sale Amateurs have had a restricted programme so far this season with a variety of problems and they were delighted to secure an emphatic 6-2 win at Mellor to go into the New Year on a high.

The quality of the division was also on display at South Manchester who hosted Stretford Paddock reserves in another end-to-end thriller that ended in a breathless 3-3 result.

Division Three is also very competitive with the top score being posted by Abacus Media reserves who cruised to a 6-1 win over Aldermere.

The other games were all close contests with the chasing pack trying to hunt down non-playing leaders AFC Stockport.

Second-placed Chadderton Park missed their chance to close the gap as they were held 1-1 at Village Manchester.

Park are three points behind the leaders but still have a game in hand.

The other two games ended at 3-2 in favour of Hooley Bridge Celtic at Elton Lib Hargreaves and Woodhouses who were delighted to secure their second win of the season hosting Salford Albion.

There was an upset in Division A as leaders North Walkden reserves lost out 4-2 to local rivals Salford Vics reserves.

It leaves them two points ahead of non-playing Woodsend Athletic who have two games in hand.

Santos and Moston Brook Reserves shared the spoils in an eight-goal thriller.

The Santos goals were scored by Liam Churchill, Tim Gallagher, Ben Marshall and Ryan McConkie (penalty) in another exciting game.

There were 3-0 victories for Milton reserves at Salford Storm and Greater Manchester at home to Milnrow Firgrovia to complete another lively day of action in the division.

There was just one game in Division B and in a local derby, AFC Oldham thirds emerged with a 3-1 win over Oldham Saints in a mid-table contest.

Plenty of action and a flood of goals in Division C with runaway leaders Dukinfield Athletic on fire with a crushing 9-1 win over Chadderton Park reserves.

Second-placed Mellor reserves were not far behind Athletic as they won 8-3 at Govan Athletic Development to leave them 12 points behind with four games in hand.

Plenty of goals at AFC Stockport Warriors who lost out 5-3 to Staly Lions which was in contrast to Deans Youth who scored the only goal of their game with Village Manchester reserves.

Division D has new leaders in Bury Ams thirds who cruised to a 4-0 win against AFC Oldham fourths to overtake non-playing leaders Moston Brook fourths.

Lowly Didsbury reserves pulled off one of their best results of the season as they held high-flying Whalley Range to a 1-1 draw and Milltown reserves moved into the top half of the table with a 4-2 win over Irlam TigerA.

The other game typified an exciting day in the league as Salford Vics Development and Altrincham Hale Reserves battled out a stunning 5-5 draw.

In the Manchester Amateur Cup, Irlam Tiger Rangers lost out 4-3 to West Didsbury FC.

The weekend brought a welcome return to decent weather that allowed more games than have taken place in the preceding two weekends. Covid, however, continues to disrupt and resulted in a number of postponements. Our Fixtures Secretary, Malc Kershaw, is working diligently to rearrange these games in the New Year.

Finally, we’d like to wish all our clubs and representatives a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. The league is set to resume on January 8, but any changes at national level will be communicated in good time to all clubs and committees.

Salford Vics donate kit to Africa

Salford Victoria are getting ready to ship kits to Africa if anymore clubs would like to donate old kits (still useable) can they either ring or email me. Chris Carney chrisdcarney@hotmail.com or phone 07956 106564

Chris would like to thank Newton FC,  Irlam Tiger and Radclyffe FC for their donations of kits for Africa.

Picture – Kits from Newton & Salford last year

League Diversity and Inclusion

The Lancashire and Cheshire AFL, a football league with a diverse membership condemns and abhors any form of discrimination, typified by the racism England footballers have been subjected to, especially after the way our England team have lifted and galvanised this country in the face of a life stealing pandemic.

We all need to do more to eradicate this type of behaviour from a small minority who hide behind a computer screen or deface a mural late at night.

We call upon the authorities and social media companies to do more, and as individuals we will do more ourselves to enjoy our national sport and treat it for what it is “a game”.

Footballers are human and like us all they fail and lose, but let’s lose and win together.

The league Diversity & Inclusion group will debate this and other issues at a date to be announced, so please look out for the invitation to join us.

The L & C Committee

League Closes New Applications for the 21-22 season

The popularity of the league hit new heights during the 20-21 season and in the last few weeks new enquiries have continued to come.

A record 25 enquiries have been received. Four new clubs have been elected to the membership at the AGM in early June, Baguley Athletic, Eccles United, Milltown FC and Milnrow Firgrovia.

There could be other clubs who will be co-opted in the coming weeks if their applications which are in progress are successful.

Kits for Africa – Salford Victoria Kit Collection/donation

Please see Chris Carney’s message and get in touch if you can help with this worthy cause.

As we come out of lockdown we are getting kits together again to donate to sub Saharan African teams if any L & C teams have any old kits they would like to donate they would be much appreciated. If they get in touch with me I will sort out details of getting them.

Chris Carney

Salford Victoria

Email chrisdcarney@hotmail.com