“We want to empower young people to understand how they can play their part to keep them and their friends safe whilst playing football”

The Sheffield FA have published a poster designed to help young people to understand how they can play their part in the strategy designed to control the Covid-19 virus and keep football safe for everyone that takes part. 

They have worked extremely hard to work closely with clubs to ensure that every club has the right policies and procedures in place for the safe return of football. This is their first piece aimed specifically at young people involved in football.

“We want to empower young people to understand how they can play their part to keep them and their friends safe whilst playing football”

“Volunteer, volunteer. It is fun and the football is excellent!”

The SYACL Website interrupts our busy Website editor, Margaret Gregory, for a chat.

After the thrilling return of South Yorkshire Ability Counts League 5-a-side football, and with the next 7-a side matchday very much in our sights, it’s a bit closer to home for www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com this week as we profile our website editor, Margaret Gregory. Margaret is very much the brains behind any number of football club, League, and organisation websites, so she kindly broke off from checking for our spelling mistakes to talk to the SYACL Website.

As usual, we started by asking Margaret a little about how she came to take on her role in the League.

SYACL: “Margaret, you’re website editor for www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com. Can you tell us about how you came to be involved with the League?

Margaret: “During the time that I was program editor at Parkgate FC I came into contact with Social Eyes Rotherham and I was so impressed with the organisation that I stayed with them through their move to affiliating with Rawmarsh St Joseph’s JFC. Many years ago, my son was a goalkeeper for St Joseph’s so I knew they would be a good fit for the Social Eyes team, as both setups are passionate about inclusive football for everyone.” 

SYACL: You’re also a committee member and website editor for Social Eyes, and a reporter for their SYACL 5- a- side team. Tell us a little about the Social Eyes organisation and their football journey – you have had a big part in. 

Margaret: “The boys and girls, both in the team and those that support them, are all passionate about football. Each one has their Premier Division team that they support, and the team have been fortunate to take up invitations to visit a number of grounds.

Social Eyes is a disability group for adults with learning difficulties and autism with a wide range of ages, which is reflected in their team. I developed a website for them as they have an open-door policy [when there is no pandemic] so that everyone could see all the activities they enjoy. Parents and carers enjoy seeing the activities and being able to discuss their loved one’s day. The group is like a huge brother and sister family and the original lockdown was very difficult for many to understand the restrictions it imposed. This time around they seem to be less anxious if they have to miss their daily visits. During the summer months their open air sessions were held at the football ground of Rawmarsh St Joseph JFC in the sun, rain and wind.

Many sports are played within the group – football, tennis, golf, bocchia, ten pin bowling – alongside their crafts and social outings. You can see what they are up to at

www. socialeyesrotherham.co.uk/daily-blog/

However, it would be fair to say that football is one of their main passions and they have been devastated that this year they could not compete in the League [after winning it last year] because of the Covid-19 outbreak and the vulnerable conditions many of them live with, that puts them at greater risk.”

 SYACL: Margaret, you have also been program editor at Parkgate FC and are website editor and acting Secretary at Swallownest FC. Tell us a little about those roles, and what the attraction is of working in Non-League football? 

Margaret: “Safe to say I keep falling into these roles! An older lady with time on my hands; a love of computers stretching back to 1963 when my computer at work filled a room; and my one and only visit to a Premier club, also in the sixties, in the snow and wind and I turned around and missed the only goal. After that football did not hold much attraction until my boys became schoolboy footballers bringing me back to the touchline.

Fast forward to a chance meeting in a library and I offered to teach a football Chairman how to use a computer with the intention of using their program as practice.

The websites I edit are not your flash Premier League all-singing-and-dancing sites; they are designed for the novice computer-user, to enjoy the game and sometimes see what goes on behind the scenes at a football club. They are easy to navigate and I always place a huge emphasis on photos of the action for those who just wish to flick through.

I have taken on the secretary role at Swallownest while the secretary is ill, as I am now unable to help in their café due to illness. Their website carries football reports and photos https://www.pitchero.com/clubs/swallownestfc2  Many of these grassroots clubs are headed up by the silver generation who have been involved for many years, but as the clubs evolve they need the younger volunteers to step up and help; and the volunteers are much appreciated.”

SYACL: What would you say about anyone who might be interested in getting involved with Disability Football? 

Margaret: “Volunteer, volunteer!! It is fun and the football is excellent. Sunday afternoons watching the South Yorkshire Ability Counts League is exhilarating. The prowess of these players is equal to any higher League players and at our matches there is always a smile on their faces. No swearing, no fighting, no spitting – just pure enjoyment of the game.

“I have been so impressed with the www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com. Mike, Darren’s and Colin’s organisation and attention to detail during this worrying time is second to none; during this pandemic they should be applauded for the management of the safety aspect of all the games.” Darren, especially with his illness continues to battle on.

www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com would like to thank Margaret for her time and wishes her continued success with all her projects.

If you have something you would like to see on our Website, you can reach Margaret via the contact form on the site. 

Covid-19 Update as we enter Tier 3.

Now that competition has safely restarted, we thought that it might be helpful if we revisit the conditions of our restart, particularly as they impact on families and carers.

To start with, thank you to everyone involved with the SYACL for your help, support and patience at our recent 7-a-side and 5-a-side afternoons at Concord and Goals Sheffield.

Now please cross over to Covid-19 updates page to read the full update.


SYACL Five-a-side action is back at last!!

Goals galore at Goals Sheffield.

After two successful 7-a-side matchdays at Concord Sports Centre, the Goals Centre in Sheffield was the venue for the eagerly-awaited restart of the 5-a-side League yesterday afternoon (18th October) writes Margaret Gregory for www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com

It turned out to be another fantastic afternoon of football. The only thing missing was the usual crowd following all the teams, with spectators not permitted and clubs restricted to two officials. Hopefully, it will not be too long before we can welcome parents and carers back to watch the action. 

Matches were played on pitches 7 and 5 with the adjacent pitch 4 used as a secure area for each team ‘bubble’.  All the participants were temperature-checked before entering the venue – everyone was fine – and all clubs submitted full ‘track and trace’ contact details.

Photos of all the match action are across in the gallery.

The 5-a-side League comprises two Divisions this season, with five clubs in each. Each club played twice yesterday, with five ten-minutes-each-way fixtures.

In the Premier Division, the early leaders are Bradford City Fuchsia, with two wins in back-to-back clashes with Club Doncaster Titans Blue. This was a closer game than the score suggests,” admitted Bradford coach Jaimie Dorward, “but we put our chances away whereas Doncaster Titans didn’t!” The team played really well together, with lots of passing; Jemma and Anna did really well in defence; Ksenija made some great saves; Katy Greenwood scored four, Elle scored 2 and Anna one.”

Titan’s Coach John Hibbert takes up the story. “Our heads weren’t in it in the first game. We made too many mistakes; we didn’t come back when we lost the ball, and we didn’t play as a team as well as we can. We didn’t spread out, so we could try to stretch the other team or give ourselves space and time on the ball – so we lost.”

“On a positive note Ash scored on his debut and Steph scored as well,” John added, “and Nakita provided the assist for Ash’s goal.”

After a more promising start to the second game, Bradford again ran out winners in a high-scoring clash. Here’s John again. “To start with we were good, and we dominated the first-half and were winning 2-0. However, in the second-half we let our guard down; we stopped passing and started to bunch up; our communication wasn’t up to its usual standard.”

“My job – when we get back to training – is more passing drills; being stronger on the ball; giving ourselves time on the ball so we can make a pass or get a shot on goal and taking a few seconds on the ball to make the right decisions.”

Bradford coach Paul was pleased with another win.  “The team was 2-0 down and the Doncaster keeper was making some great saves, but we came back to win 5-3,” he told us. “The team played really well together and Ksenija again made some great saves and there were lots of defending to do to make sure we won the game. Katy scored another four, and Ellie got the other. Our star player was Ksenija.” 

Wisewood are close behind Bradford Fuchsia after a win and a draw on Matchday One. Derek Dooley White were Wisewood’s opponents in the opening game. Claire, the City Knights coach, was pretty happy with her team’s first outing. “This was their first match after a lockdown and back playing together again and in a Division that has been condensed from three leagues to two,“ Claire told us. “The team made a good start against Wisewood and showed good passing between players.  Shaun, our goalkeeper saved us, and we earned a good draw against a very good team.”

Wisewood ran out winners in their second game of the afternoon, this time against City Knights Red. Sharon from City Knights gave us her take on the match. “Our first match of the season was against Wisewood,” Sharon told us. “I would like to say well done to Mark, Gary and Jack on their debut match. This was a tough match and my lads did their best; Gary made some great saves, and we tried several times to score, but it just didn’t seem to work on the day! The lads gave their all and that is all I can ask.”

The other game in the Division featured Derek Dooley White and City Knights Red, and it was Knights who took the three points, leaving their coach Sharon delighted with the win. “This was more of an equal game,” she reported. “The boys pulled themselves together and went full pelt out there with a passion to win. Jack assisted Chris and he smashed it in the net; then not long afterwards Chris assisted Jack who put it in the back of the net. In the second-half Mark stayed strong at the back, and Jordan, Kieron and Marcus played well too. Gary did great in goal.”

“Well done to all the players – I’m proud of you!” said Sharon, who also had a word of thanks for referee Sean Wright. “Thank you to Sean, our referee.”

Dooley coach Claire was philosophical in defeat. “This was a good match against another good team,” she admitted. “The lads started to talk to each other, and it was another good game by our goalkeeper Shaun – but they just let in the winner at the end.”

So, after the first round of 5-a-side fixtures, the Premier Division table looks like this:  

1Bradford City Fuchsia22002026
3City Knights Red21011103
4Derek Dooley White201112-11
5Club Doncaster Titans Blue200202-20

   In the First Division, Derek Dooley Blue are setting the early pace, winning both their games.  Their first match over on Pitch 5 saw them overcome City Knights White and their coach Claire enjoyed the win. “This was a great game and end to end, where we found the luck was with us this afternoon, as it seemed to be each shot went in,” she told us, “The team worked well with a couple of new players (Jordan and Paul) added to the team and both scoring goals. The man of the match was Ryan, in goal, with some great saves. Ben scored first with a lovely shot, then City Knights managed to get one past Ryan to equalise. The team didn’t let their heads go down but kept trying with good communication from the solid defender at the back, Cody. Paul and Fallon scored a hat trick…but there’s no receiving the match ball in this League!!!” 

Knight’s coach Steve felt that his team were overpowered in the game. “It was a fair result,” he admitted. “City Knights maybe deserved more, but in the end, fitness was a big factor.”

Dooley Blue also took all three points in their second match, against Spartans. “This was another good game, end to end and some lovely passing between the players,” Claire told the website. “Paul started the game, scoring again, then Jordan set him up for the second. The Spartans got back into the game with a great hat trick from Jake taking them into the lead. Dooley started to get back to the passing and talking to each other, which saw another three goals by Jordan and Paul, the Man of the Match.” 

“Great refereeing from Brian, with lovely banter from the team,” Claire concluded.

Spartans coach Darren Sharp agreed that it had been a great game. “Our match with Derek Dooley Blue was also a cracking match, “Darren told us. “Both teams traded goals late into the second-half and despite a hat trick from Jake and terrific defending by Sam, Dooley deservedly won it. The return to competitive matches was much enjoyed by all the Spartans players.”

Spartans had earlier been involved in a thrilling draw with City Knights White. Spartans coach Darren gave us his version of events. “There was much to look forward to today for Spartans who were involved in 2 closely contested matches,” he told us. “Against City Knights White and in an end to end match, our scorers included Matt and Jacob with a stunner from Oliver (his first competitive goal).  It was a terrific display by the keeper Paul to ensured they started the new season with a draw.”

Knights coach Steve agreed. “It was a good game; I thought fitness was again an issue, but I felt City Knights battled all the way and were maybe unlucky not to come away with more.”

The Division One action had started earlier with back to back clashes between Bradford City Emeralds and Club Doncaster Titans Yellow. Emeralds – with birthday girl Gemma in great form in goal – won the 1.40 kick off, watched by Titans coaches Darren Warner and John Hibbert.  “Bradford City Emerald scored two early goals in the first five minutes,” John told us, “Doncaster Titans Yellow fought back with a goal just before half-time from Paul to make it 2 – 1 to Bradford City Emerald. The second-half started like the first-half – fast and furious – and Bradford scored again, making it 3 – 1. After some lovely football from both sides, Doncaster Titans Yellow scored again to make it 3 -2 thanks to a lovely goal from Barney. It was unforgettable!  Bradford City Emerald broke away and scored to make it 4 – 2 and that was how it finished.”

“Well played to both teams in a close game.”

Bradford’s Paul Jubb watched the action unfold. “The Emeralds played really well in the first game and won 4- 2 thanks to two goals from Alyssa, one from Simon and an own goal. The Titans got a couple of goals back, but the Emeralds were in control of the game.”  

In a quick-fire rematch, the points were shared. “After that close first game between the two clubs, we had to start again, but this time Doncaster Titans Yellows started the stronger team,” coach John told www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com “Both teams played more lovely football and both keepers pulled some brilliant saves off to keep it at 0 – 0. After some lovely football by Doncaster Titans the first goal come to us and it was scored by Christian making it 1 – 0.”

“In the second-half there was more lovely football,” John went on. “Bradford City were looking for the equaliser and Doncaster Titans looking for the winner. But unfortunately, Bradford City got the equaliser to make it 1 – 1 which was the full-time score.  After the Bradford City goal there was a lovely piece of football by Doncaster Titans which started from Brad (keeper) who passed to Paul who passed to Christian who passed to Barney who shot it just wide of the post. I was so proud of each and every one of them.”

Bradford coach Paul agreed that this had been a much closer affair. “The second game was a different story – Titans scored almost from the kick off to take a 1-0 lead,” Paul reported. “Gemma Fletcher made a few saves. Katrina then scored to make it 1-1. We totally dominated the second-half, but we couldn’t get that all important second goal. We must have had 10/12 shots, but the game ended a frustrating 1-1. Our star player was Gemma Fletcher.”

After the five Division One 5-a-side matches, the table after Match Day One is as follows;

1Derek Dooley Blue22002026
2Bradford City Emerald21102114
3City Knights White201112-11
4Club Doncaster Titans Yellow201112-11
5Spartans FC201112-11

There was a special presentation during the afternoon to Sam Firth who is leaving his role as Disability Football Development Officer at Sheffield and Hallamshire County FA. Sam played a huge role in the development of the SYACL and will be greatly missed.

After Darren Warner had presented Sam with a commemorative plaque as a token of our gratitude, the teams also made their own presentations to our great friend.

Sam later tweeted “I’m honestly overwhelmed by this today; I really wasn’t expecting it. It’s been an honour to work with these amazing people for the best part of the last decade in different capacities.”

“Thank you for the memories to all the volunteers, players, parents & carers at the @SYorksACL

Matchday Two of the 5-a-side League takes place at Goals Sheffield on the afternoon of Sunday, 15th November. In the meantime, 7-a-side competition is back on the 8th November, again at Concord Sports Centre.

www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com will be there to report on all the action. You can also join our growing band of Twitter followers @SYorksACL.

Matchday Two of the 7-a-side South Yorkshire Ability Counts League

Additional report from Sheffield City Knights from games played Sunday 11th October 2020 [Matchday two] supplied by Sharon Lavender.

Our first match in 7-a-side Division 1 was against Aston Swallownest Blue.

First of all, we would like to say well done to Liam Middleton and Anthony Silvera on his debut match, well done to Warren Foster for his super goals and brilliant assists from Jordan Bratby & Stephen MacDonald. 

The game started slowly but picked up in the second-half. The opposition pulled a goal back, shortly after Stephen MacDonald took the ball down the wing doing a one two one two with Warren until finally Warren smashed it in the net, making the final score 2-1 to the Knights.

Our Second Match in 7-a-side Division 1 was against Aston Swallownest Blue.

First-half putting the pressure on resulted in several corners, but unfortunately none were executed, so it remained 0-0 at half-time.

Not long into the second-half Aston scored, but with the guys determination and team work they pulled one back with a great assist from Jordan Bratby and a brilliant goal from Warren Foster. Seconds from the final whistle we were dealt a cruel blow when Aston scored again; final score 2-1 to Aston.

Thank you to Aston Swallownest Blue for giving us 2 great games. 

Thank you to Referee Tim Savage and the Management.

Our third match in 7-a-side Division 1 was against Sheffield White. 

Putting the pressure on straight away, we were determined not to make any mistakes. Adam Wyatt made some great saves, Kyle Hancock and Jordan Bratby and Steven MacDonald worked really well together, putting the pressure on in the final third. With Liam Middleton and Anthony Silvera and David Barker keeping it solid at back. It was that solid, we held out for a 0-0 score. 

Well done guys proud of you all!

Thank you to Sheffield White for giving us a good game.

Thank you to Referee Jack Duke and the Management. 

Our first match in 7-a-side Premiership was against Derek Dooley. 

About halfway through the first-half the opposition scored. Asa Wilson and Anthony West put the pressure on and not long after Steven Gould equalised with a great goal! 

Shortly into the second-half the opposition scored; then Steven Gould pulled it back to 2-2. Then shortly after Asa Wilson assisted by Anthony West struck a fantastic goal!! Not long after Steve Gould stroked another one in. Final score 4-2 to City Knights.

Second Match in 7-a-side Premiership was against Derek Dooley.

The players were amazing they put the pressure on from the start! Their best performance yet against a good side. Well done to Asa Wilson on his hat-trick, great goals, great defending from Chris Ward and Dan Purdy, great goals from Dan Purdy. Great pressure from Chris Senior and Anthony West and Steven Gould, great saves from Michael Moxam.

Final score 5-0 to City Knights FC

Great team work, proud of you all!!  

Thank you to Derek Dooley for giving us a good game and thank you to referee Tim Savage and the Management.

“A good, enjoyable afternoon…”

First, let me point you to the new Gallery page we have added. We had so many action shots from the games, rather than leave any out, we have grouped them into little slideshows.

Another superb display of SYACL 7-a-side football.

Matchday Two [Sunday 11th October 2020] of the South Yorkshire Ability Counts League 7-a-side competition was every bit as competitive and exciting as Matchday One, featuring 18 thrilling fixtures on a cold but dry afternoon at Concord Sports Centre in Sheffield, writes Margaret Gregory for the SYACL website. It was, as SYACL Referee Co-Ordinator Sean Wright put it, “a good, enjoyable afternoon of reffing.”

All of the squads complied with the League’s Covid-19 protocols, submitting contact details, and passing a temperature check on arrival at the playing area. The players got straight into action at 1.30 on the three pitches; a busy fixture programme made prompt kick-offs essential, but Sean and his fellow referees Tim and David kept the action flowing throughout the afternoon.

In the Premiership, City Knights Black lead the way with a three-point advantage over Sheffield Black. Knights won both of their back-to-back clashes with Derek Dooley Sheffield United Kicks (Red).

Claire from Derek Dooley takes up the story. “The Red team had two matches against their arch rivals City Knights giving the team a lot of work, with no substitutes. There was good linking up between Brad, Rhys, and Elliott but the shot went wide, while strong defender Jack had a run and broke the deadlock at 6 minutes. Heads were up; City Knights had lots of shots, but fine saves by Dom and great defending by Jack and Adam kept them out until just before half time when Knights made it 1-1.”

“The second-half saw a cruel deflection, taking the ball into the net,” Claire told us. “We were behind; but credit to the team they kept going to the end, having some shots, but defending more often.”

The quick turnaround worked against Derek Dooley Red, as Claire explains. “The second game started straight away, and the team were tired and unfortunately, let a goal in. Dom saved a penalty but couldn’t get to the rebound before it went in; the lads heads went down, and they started to tire. The second half saw a change to the goalkeepers as Rhys had pulled his thigh and could not run enough; so, Dom showed his skill at running down the pitch, but no more goals came. We saw some really solid defending by Jack, Adam and Nick.”

Doncaster Titans White started their afternoon with a ‘home’ defeat to Sheffield FC Black.

“We started the match off well with a great cross from Danny Grubb to set up Liam Taylor for his first goal of the season,” Titans’ Darren Warner reported. “Sheffield FC Black didn’t give up though and were quick to equalise. This then caused us to make some rash decisions going forward which ultimately cost us a couple of goals; Sheffield FC Black went in to half-time with a 3-1 lead. We made a few changes at half-time and started to get a foothold back in the game with a goal from Asten Quinton who was unselfishly set up by Dan ‘Pharos’ Davis, but this was to be the final action of the game.”

Titans White turned things round in their second game, this time with Sheffield Red. 

“We started this match a little sluggishly and invited Sheffield FC Red to attack us, which cost us the first goal and Sheffield taking advantage with their pressure,” Darren admitted. “It took an injury and a few second-half substitutes to change the game in our favour. We controlled the play in the second-half and this pressure then went on to pay off with two goals from Asten who was superbly set up by some good football and forward thinking from Chris Flanaghan and from Archie Brook – who went on a good run, taking on a couple of challenges to fire home his first ever Titans goal to win us the game 3-1.”

City Knights stay ahead of the pack with those two wins in their back-to-back matches with Derek Dooley Sheffield United Red, and in the battle of the Sheffield clubs, it was Sheffield Black who took the honours with a win in one of the last games of the afternoon.

After the two matchdays, the Premiership standings are as follows:    

1City Knights Black431041310
2Sheffield Black42113217
3Club Doncaster Titans White41213305
4D. Dooley Sheffield United Kicks402224-22
5Sheffield Red402224-22

In the Championship, it is a tight race between Aston Swallownest Red and Bradford City Amber who met twice on Sunday, both teams taking one win each. A win and a draw for Bradford City Amber, therefore, as coach Paul reports. “It was another great day at the Concord Centre in Sheffield.”

Paul told www.southyorkshireabilitycounts.com. “The Ambers won their first game against Aston Swallownest Red, but lost the return fixture. It was already a top of the table clash, and the Ambers, with only 7 players had a hard game against a physical Aston team. It was a really close match, but George Dubej was the hero with a late winner!”

“The second game was a different story,” Paul explained. “Aston Swallownest made the most of the extra players available and won, with Rhys Shields scoring a consolation goal for the Ambers. John Bigmore in goal was the player of the day.”

For Derek Dooley Orange, a draw with Wheatley Wanderers was followed by a win over Brunsmeer Awareness. Dooley Orange Coach Carol reflected on both games, “the Orange team started against Wheatley with a new player Josh S and a few different players. Resident goalkeeper Nathan was back and he made some outstanding saves. The team were much better in communicating with each other and it was a good even match. Good work between Aiden and Josh R resulted in a good goal.  At half-time we were winning 1-0, but Wheatley started the stronger in the second-half and scored the equaliser. The game was end-to-end and Wheatley took the lead. With two minutes to go, Josh R had a shot saved and Brad was there to put it in, so the match ended in 2-2 draw. It was a good game.”

Wheatley’s Chris Pow agreed. “It was a cracking game against a team we’ve played against loads of times,” Chris told us. “We went behind, then took a well-deserved lead until near the end, but conceded late on. Good fun.”

Derek Dooley Orange were quickly back in action, this time against Brunsmeer. “There wasn’t much time to rest before the second game against Brunsmeer,” Carol told us. “Orange started strongly again, and Stephen had a shot saved – even with a broken boot! This was another even match, and just before half-time there was good work between the two Josh’s who passed to each other, going down the pitch and Josh R scored. In the second-half, we showed more lovely passing between the players and there was a great save by Nathan to save the win.”

Elsewhere, there was an excellent first win for Brunsmeer Awareness in their other match with Wheatley Wanderers. Wheatley’s Chris Pow felt his players tired in the second half of the game but gave credit to Brunsmeer. “We held off Brunsmeer until half-time but our small squad was at a big disadvantage,” Chris told www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com  “We had no substitutes today and ended up losing against a talented team.”

The Championship table looks like this after two match days:

1Aston Swallownest Red43013129
2Bradford City Amber43013129
3Derek Dooley Orange41213305
4Brunsmeer Awareness411223-14
5Wheatley Wanderers401314-31

In Division One, it was a busy afternoon with the six sides involved in eight games. When the dust had settled, Bradford City Blue enjoyed a six-point advantage at the top of the table after two wins. Here’s Paul, the Bradford coach to give his take on the two games. “In the first game, the Blues won 3-0 against Doncaster Titans,” Paul explained. “There was some really good football from the Blues, with all the goals coming in the first-half. Although the Blues played well in the second-half, they couldn’t beat their ‘keeper. The player of the game was Bradley Toll, and the goals came from Ethan McLaren, Luke Baxter and Dale Smith.”

Darren, from Doncaster Titans Red, gave the other side of the argument. “Not the start we wanted,” Darren admitted. “We got an early shot off that brought a brilliant save from Brad in the Bradford goal. Bradford broke and penalised us on the counter-attack to score the game’s first goal. We were chasing the damage from that point, but to no avail. It wasn’t to be our day.”

“Bradford played some excellent football and got us on the counter attack every time with some beautiful two/three touch football,” Darren told us. “The game ended 3-0 but, we finished the game strongly.”

In the back-to-back re-run, it was Bradford City Blues who again took the points. “Again, the Blues played some really good football,” Paul told the Website. “The players passed the ball really well which resulted in the goals being scored from open play. The player of the game goes to Ethan, and the goals came from Tim Fawthrop (2), Dale Smith and Luke Baxter.

Darren felt that his Titans Red team put in an excellent performance in that second game. “After a great start we were really unlucky once again against Bradford City Blue,” he said. “Daniel Fitzpatrick scored a brilliant goal.”

Bradford City Claret played out two hard-fought draws with Sheffield FC White, as Paul explains.  “Despite only having 7 players on the day, the Clarets took the lead through a well worked goal, with Eddie Ratcliffe crossing in for Ben Robinson to score, only for Sheffield FC to quickly equalise to make it 1-1 at half-time. We again took the lead in the second-half through a similar goal, this time from Andro Malivuk, who scored after a cross from Tyler. Then – with the last kick of the game – Andro Malivuk unfortunately scored an own goal to make it 2- 2.”

“The second game was similar,” Paul told us. “A cross from Eddie Ratcliffe and again Ben was in the right place for Clarets to take a 1-0 lead. With Clarets looking like they were going to win their first game of the season, a mix up from Steven Jowett, passing the ball to the other team, meant the game finished 1-1. Our star player on the day was captain Tyler Halstead.”

“Well done to all the teams,” Paul summarised. “The Blues have a 100% record so far.”

Elsewhere in Division One, Aston Swallownest Blue traded 1-0 wins with City Knights Blue, and Titans Red shared the points in a draw with Sheffield FC White. “It was a brilliant well-balanced game,” Darren told us. “Both teams played some lovely football – but neither team could convert their chances.” City Knights Blue shared a stalemate with Sheffield White.

The Division One table is as follows:

1Bradford City Blue440040412
2City Knights Blue51313306
3Club Doncaster Titans Red512223-15
4Sheffield White40402204
5Bradford City Claret403134-13
6Aston Swallownest Blue410313-23

The 7-a-side teams will be back in action on Sunday, 8th November, again at Concord Sports Centre. Next week, assuming there is no change to current Public Health restrictions, it will be the turn of the 5-a-side teams to get back into League action at the Goals Centre in Sheffield.

In the meantime, www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com would like to thank our guest reporters Claire, Paul and Darren.

Check the Website for the latest features on the League and the latest news on the 5-a-side restart.

7-a-side fixtures, Concord Sports Centre, Sunday 11th October 2020.

7-a-side fixtures, Concord Sports Centre, Sunday 11th October 2020.

Please be at the car park for temperature checks, hand gel and team sheet checks at the following times .

1pm – Aston Red , Bradford Amber , Bradford Blue , Bradford Claret,  Sheffield White, Titans Red.

2pm – Aston Blue, City Knights Blue, Derek Dooley Orange, Sheffield Black,  Titans White, Wheatley.

2.45pm – Brunsmeer.

3.20pm – City Knights Black, Derek Dooley SU Kicks, Sheffield Red.

Please all be punctual and ready to start at scheduled times, unlike the first set of fixtures there isn’t much time between matches.

Five-a-side fixture changes

It is with regret that Bradford City FC  Diamonds have had to withdraw from the League for next season, due to difficulties caused by the virus and other matters.

The 5-a-side League has now been reduced to two divisions, as the middle Championship Division has had to be removed.

Dooley White & Titans Blue have moved up to the Premier Division & Spartans have moved down to Division 1.  Fixtures have obviously been changed and  times will be sent out via Full Time later today.

While it may not be ideal at least we are still offering the opportunity of playing matches for most of our players and some weaker teams can look at using more than 5 players if necessary against stronger opponents.

Apologies, but throughout the season no doubt we will be forced into constantly making changes, so I would advise all the teams to remain flexible on match days for possible late changes.

Any queries please contact Mike Stylianou or Darren Warner.

Your chance to get involved and FREE midweek hour-long football sessions in Sheffield

Today, we chat with Sean Graves, Inclusion Officer Sheffield Wednesday FC

Sean Graves

Over the past few weeks while we waited for Disability Football to return the website has been talking to important local figures who have played a major part in supporting the growth of Disability Football in our area; but what about aspiring footballers, living with a disability, who want to get more involved, but don’t have the opportunity?

Today, we are chatting with Sean Graves from Sheffield Wednesday FC, who may just have an answer for those wishing to get involved in the game.

SYACL:  Sean tell us a little about yourself.

SG: “My name is Sean Graves; I am the new Inclusion Officer at Sheffield Wednesday Community programme, and Sharon Lavender at City Knights FC suggested I speak with the SYACL to help spread my message even further.”

SYACL: “Sean, we understand you are offering an opportunity for footballers with disabilities to get more involved in playing the game.”

SG: “That’s right. We are offering some free football inclusive sessions which are for participants with disabilities, learning difficulties and non-visible disabilities. The sessions are FREE OF CHARGE and the idea is to just get the players playing in an extra training session a week.”

SYACL:  “You’re not looking to start a team, are you Sean – but you can possibly help players find a club. Is that right?

SG:  “Yes. We are NOT – and I want to make this clear – trying to recruit players to enter a team in the League ourselves.  I am hoping that as more players come to my sessions, I can signpost them to teams in the Ability Counts League depending on the area of Sheffield they live in and the travel access that they have.”

 SYACL:  When are the sessions for anyone who is interested, Sean?

SG:  “The sessions are; Tuesday’s at Hillsborough Arena 5-6pm and Wednesday’s at Concord Park, 5.15-6.15pm. The sessions are open to 8-16-year-olds, but adults are welcome too.

“We currently have a lot of adults attending but are now pushing for the JUNIOR side of things too; if anyone has any questions, please feel free to email me @ sean.graves@swfc.co.uk. and I’ll be happy to answer them.”

 SYACL: Sean, tell us what precautions you are taking to protect participants from Covid-19?

SG: “Both sessions are outdoors. We provide all participants with hand sanitiser on the way in and out; however, we also encourage everyone to bring their own supply for use throughout the sessions, as required. All the equipment is checked and cleaned on a regular basis. Players SHOULD WEAR OUTDOOR AstroTurf footwear or trainers.”

SYACL: So, if you know anyone who might be interested in Sean’s sessions, why not drop him an e-mail?

SYACL.com thanks Sean for his time and wishes him every success with the sessions.

Sheffield Wednesday Football Club
S6 1SW
E: sean.graves@swfc.co.uk

Twitter: @SWFCCP

The South Yorkshire Ability Counts League is back in action!!!

After last week’s thrilling 7-a-side restart, www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com is already looking ahead to the resumption of the 5-a-side Leagues at Goals Sheffield on Sunday, October 18th 2020.

Keep checking the site for news, results, features, and reports as the players get back into action. Also why not catch up on the reports and all the photos from the 7-a-side restart at: – https://southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com/blog-2/