I, like many of our fans, are being left feeling frustrated by the behaviour of some of our players.
True discipline is a hard word to spell and indiscipline is even harder, but it would appear some of our players do not even know the meaning of the word. It is time our clubs, and their managers, got to grips with the behaviour of some of their players and stamped out the misconduct that is occurring all to often these days.
It was in evidence in the cracking Evo-Stik Premier Division I match I saw at the Look Local Stadium, where a crowd of 837 saw FC United of Manchester make it five games without defeat as they beat Stocksbridge Park 2-1.
A breakaway goal inside two minutes by Daniel Dillon gave the home side a dream start but they couldn’t build on it as United equalised. Then after previously being cautioned Dillon became the ‘devil’ after a lunging tackle saw him get a deserved red card and it left his team-mates with a mountain to climb. They went behind before half-time and despite a battling second half, the 10 men couldn’t find the net and one man’s stupidity cost them at least a point.
They’re now 16th in the table, four points ahead of the four relegation places, so in a month when they play eight games it was important they got a result on Tuesday at home to fellow strugglers Burscough. Unfortunately it was not to be as despite again taking a second minute lead through Mitch Ward and adding another via Kevin Davies in the second half, they crashed to a 4-2 defeat.
They visit Bradford Park Avenue on Saturday and travel to South Kirkby Colliery for a Sheffield and Hallamshire Senior Cup quarter-final tie next Wednesday.
Sheffield FC gave their 269 fans, committee and acting manager Ian Whitehorne the best tonic after their recent problems, when after going two goals down in 10 minutes at home to Shepshed Dynamo they fought back to win 3-2 . Gascoigne, Gregory and Lynam found the net while new signings, Starosta from Boston and Wright from Retford, both played well.
It set them up nicely for a tough trip to Romulous on Tuesday but again the players spirit shone through as Wooley gave them a seventh minute lead and late in the game Gascoigne converted a penalty to give Club a richly deserved 2-0 victory.
A 10-match March begins on Saturday when they travel to Sutton Coldfield Town and next Tuesday I will watch their Senior Cup tie at Frickley Colliery. To complete a busy week they then entertain Grantham Town 48 hours later.
Hallam’s new manager Julian Watts was frustrated by the weather yet again as their home Kool Sports North Counties East League Premier Division clash against Armthorpe Welfare was postponed due to a flooded pitch, leaving them having played just once in February and that was away. The bottom club now face a tough game at Pickering Town on Saturday and then face fellow strugglers Arnold Town at Sandygate next Tuesday.
Next to the bottom Dinnington Town played well last Saturday at Thackley, but still lost 3-1 with new signing Grant Ashby scoring on his debut. Sadly though they have not scored twice in a game since October 24 and that must have been on their minds on Tuesday when they travelled to free scoring Selby Town who collected a 7-2 victory. Arnault and Millington got Dinnington’s goals.
Town visit Long Eaton United on Saturday and then entertain fellow strugglers Liversedge next Tuesday.
Maltby Main’s excellent run looks to be going pear shaped, when they suffered a 1-0 setback at Liversedge, to make it four defeats in five league and cup games. Winterton Rangers visit Muglet Lane on Saturday.
Parkgate’s home game against Hall Road Rangers also fell victim to the weather for the second week in a row and top club Farsley took full advantage to extend their lead to 10 points, although Parkgate have four games in hand. They now face two tricky games, at Selby Town on Saturday and then entertain Staveley in what looks like a cracking Senior Cup quarter-final tie next Tuesday.
In Division One 76 seems to be the lucky number, as 10 clubs chase that number of points to have any chance of promotion and with them all facing one another in 40 games to come, it looks to be a generous figure.
Staveley though are well on course, being just 14 short after drawing 2-2 at second-placed Yorkshire Amateurs with Damns and Coy scoring their goals. They are eight and 12 points clear of the next two clubs with 10 games remaining. On Saturday they entertain Bottesford Town before travelling to Parkgate for their Cup showdown.
returning to the matter of indiscipline, I watched an extraordinary game between Handsworth and AFC Emley. Alex Torr put visiting Handsworth ahead after just six seconds but the home side drew level before half-time. Handsworth’s veteran striker Mick Godber was then sent off for stupidly saying something to the lady referee, who had an excellent game. Shortly after they trailed 2-1 and then the team simply ran out of ‘legs’ and conceded four goals in the final 14 minutes with striker Steve Kenworthy hitting all six goals.
True the poor linesman missed two glaring off-side goals but it was no excuse and manager Rus Eagle should be saying strong words to his vastly experienced side.
Handsworth had an easy 4-0 success at bottom club Brodsworth Welfare courtesy of Godber, Outram, new signing Scot Bates from Staveley and an own goal. They now face two tough must-win home games if they’re to stay in the promotion race against Askern Villa on Saturday and second-placed Yorkshire Amateurs next Wednesday.
Worsbrough Bridge travel to bottom club Appleby Frodingham on Saturday and host Rossington Main next Tuesday.