Our first article features the Sheffield Trophy Centre, based in Proctor Place, Hillsborough. Since the League became independent some years ago, we have been grateful for the continued support and sponsorship by The Sheffield Trophy Centre.
When we initially discussed our plans for the League, without hesitation Pat and Wayne Unwin kindly offered to provide us with annual medals & awards. That allows us to keep costs as low as possible for our members, and is very much appreciated by us all.
Although Pat is the owner of the shop, Wayne is the heartbeat of the shop, always arranging all the stuff for us.
SYACL’s Margaret Gregory started by asking owner Pat Unwin about Sheffield Trophy Centre’s relationship with the League.
“I am in the advantageous position of looking at SYACL and my own company and I must admit it is obvious that our respective hopes and desires – if handled correctly – could form a marriage made in heaven.”
Margaret: “Tell us a little about your company; what you do, where you are located, and a little bit of your history.”
Pat: “I purchased the business in March 1997. I soon increased the turnover and must admit we showed distinct signs of a healthy upturn in both turnover and profit. Most people especially sport minded people can relate to Sheffield Trophy Centre and we retail awards and medals as well as a fist class engraving service.
We have owned the business for 24 years now and are located in Hillsborough about 3/4 mile from SWFC ground at Leppings Lane; before this we were based in the Wicker Arches on Walker Street near the City Centre.
We put extreme emphasis on taking our responsibilities as a family business very seriously. Customer service is just one of the weapons we use, which does to a certain extent relate especially to people who still lock horns and begin sentences with ‘back in the day.’
Margaret: “Tell us how you came to be involved with the Ability Counts League?”
Pat: “I first became involved with SYACL through talks with someone who has become a lifelong friend, Mike Stylianou. We are always open to suggestions of how to increase our turnover and our keenness to get on a healthy footing in this everchanging world or ours.”
Margaret: “What form does your support and sponsorship take?”
Pat: “At present we provide medals and awards to the SYACL; those medals and awards are synonymous with our business.”
The SYACL would like to thank Pat and his team for their fantastic sponsorship of our League.
Visit www.sheffieldtrophycentre.co.uk to review the huge range of awards, trophies, and medals on offer. The Trophy Centre can be contacted at 0114 2312959, or via the contact form available on the website.
Outstanding afternoon for players, coaches, parents, and carers.
For the third consecutive week, the South Yorkshire Ability Counts League put on a fantastic afternoon of football for its players, coaches, parents and spectators. Last Sunday, it was the turn of our five-a-side teams to take centre stage at Goals Sheffield, with 8 Junior County Cup ties preceding 19 League fixtures across 4 Divisions, including the newly-formed League Two, write Margaret Gregory and Colin Muncie for http://www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com.
There was a warm welcome for the team from Barton Inclusive, and a return to competitive action for two teams from Social Eyes, with the teams from Rawmarsh engaged in two of the opening County Cup ties.
Social Eyes Green participated in a thrilling encounter with Spartans, whose coach, Darren Sharp, takes up the story. “The first match of the season for both teams were in the Junior County Cup, with Social Eyes taking a healthy lead at half-time. Spartans vastly improved in the second half, however, despite goals from Matt, Jacob and Paul and terrific saves in goal by Jake, Social Eyes clung on for the win.
“Spartans FC wish all the best to Socialeyes Green in the next round.”
In the adjoining pitch four, Social Eyes White suffered a baptism of fire despite a brave display against City Knights. The Knights were clinical in their finishing and eased into the next round.
“Sheffield FC’s new five-a-side Championship team made their debut against Bradford Diamonds in the County Cup.“ Sheffield’s Scott Gregory and fellow coaches Kevin, Liam and Morgan told us, “Bradford raced into a three goal lead in the first half given their expected early nerves. Two quick goals at the start of the second half from Adam Kitchener and Blake Williams scoring on their debuts pulled it back to 3-2. Adam Kitchener nearly made it 3-3 with a rocket of a shot that hit the crossbar. Bradford went on to score a fourth near the end to make the final score 4-2 to Bradford.”
Here’s Bradford’s Paul Jubb on the game. “In the County Cup game the Diamonds got off to a dream start going 3-0 up at half-time with goals from Harvinder, Hashim and Matty; but the Sheffield Purples scored straight from the kick off and then got another to make it 3-2 but Man of the Match Matty scored the fourth to win 4-2 and set up a next round clash against our own Premier Green team.”
A good win for Sheffield Black over Club Doncaster Titan Blue was watched by the coaching team from Sheffield FC. “Sheffield FC’s debut in the 5-a-side Premiership started life with a bang with a 3–1 victory against Club Doncaster Titans Blue in the Cup,” Scott and team told us. “There were two first-half goals from Kyle Johnson and another by Charley Docking in the second-half. Sheffield did concede in the last seconds, but with great play and a professional attitude throughout, managed to see the game out.”
Titans’ John Hibbert was philosophical about the result. “When we went into Game One, I thought we were ready – but when Sheffield Black scored their first goal, a few heads dropped; but don’t get me wrong, it was end-to-end stuff. We played really well, and we were in their half all the time. With Luke’s assist, Jamie scored his first goal, but we lost.”
“It was a good game, but we just couldn’t score again.”
Liam Taylor watched his Titans Yellow side progress at the expense of Derek Dooley Green. “It was an end-to-end game at the start of the game and Barney opened the scoring and they equalised straight from kick off; then Barney went close to make it 2-1, Barney made it a great hat trick and Titans were 3-1 up. Dooley made it 3-2 in the second-half, then 3-3. Titans made it 4-3 from Thomas and Barney made it 5-3, but Dooley made it 5-4 straight from kick off. We won 5-4 in the County Cup! What a game; I was really proud of everyone who played for Titans, and I am over the moon with their performance.”
Bradford Emeralds lost their Cup tie with Barton Inclusive. Paul Jubb told www.southyorkshireabilityleague.com, “the Emeralds Cup game was against Barton from two Leagues above us, and we were easily beaten, despite us having 7 players on the pitch. Nick got our goal even though he was wearing two left boots!!; and Darren was outstanding in goal for us.”
In the remaining tie, Derek Dooley Blue defeated Bradford Fuchsia in a cracking game of football. “The Fuchsias played Derek Dooley, who are a League below them in the County Cup and lost 7-6 in a thrilling game,” Paul Jubb told us. “Harriet scored 2 goals and Alyssa who was making her debut after moving up from League 2, scored an amazing 4 goals and was Woman of the Match – but it wasn’t enough as the Fuchsias crashed out of the Cup!”
Derek Dooley Blue’s Claire Cowlishaw told us; “The Blue team started their Cup campaign against Bradford Ladies Fuchsia team. This was an end-to-end game with both teams scoring and both goalkeepers saving goals. Believe scored a hat trick, Jordan scored and Reuben too, but that’s where the cup run ends.”
So, to the Premier Division, and Derek Dooley White team had a few new team members, and these were their first competitive matches. “They had a good first game against Sheffield Black and narrowly lost 2-1,” Dooley’s Claire reported. “There were some good performances with solid defence by Jordan B and Craig in goal, who saved it being a bigger win for Sheffield.”
Dooley White’s second game was against Bradford Green. “The team had a reshuffle,” Claire told us, “there were good performances from everyone who tried their best; well done to Luke who made his first appearance with his brother’s team. The second half saw Tom go in goal and Craig had a run out. They put on a good show against a good team.”
Club Doncaster Titans went down to Sheffield Black. “The game was end-to-end; we had a much better game. Sheffield scored butthe lads kept their heads and started to play our game, and half time was 1-0. We came out in the second half; we defended well and controlled the game. I thought that was our turning point; we still lost 1-0 but got our confidence back.”
Titans Blue went down to City Knights Red in their next game. “We started to hold our own, but Liam beat himself up – he couldn’t get his shots on target. We were not using our team mates the way we should. We were making mistakes, losing our heads; then Cam was late in a bad tackle, Liam lost his cool, so Cam was sin-binned. Luke then got injured so Cam came back on but by then our focus had gone. The guys enjoyed it; so now we need to learn to be strong on the ball, make our passes crisper and we need to show care for our team mates. We need to learn to pass and move and make space for the killer pass.”
Sheffield FC Black’s Scott Gregory told us, “our last match was a tough game against a quick and exciting Derek Dooley White, but, after a tight contest, Sheffield finished off the day 2-1 victors with goals from Charley Docking and Kyle Johnson.”
Scott thought that it had been a wonderful day for all his clubs. “All our coaches are incredibly proud of our players and the professionalism they showed,” Scott said. “We want more of the same for the next fixtures.”
City Knights Red’s Sharon Lavender described her team’s afternoon. “Our first match was against Bradford City Green,” Sharon said. “It was a tight first half and Knights pressed forward early; midway through, Liam took the ball off a Bradford defender and slotted it into the corner of the net making us 1-0 up. In the second half Bradford soon equalised; their second goal came as a lucky shot, our keeper Paul looked like he had covered it – but it bounced in front of him then bounced over his hands as he dived into the net. Bradford got another goal after that. The final score was 3-1 to Bradford.”
“Our second match was against Titans Blue,” Sharon added, ”we re-organised the layout and came out strong in the first half. The opening goal came after 5 minutes, Eddie Williams squared it to Mark Boyes and Mark slammed it in the net. Not long after Titans pulled one back leaving it 1-1, but just before half time Mark pulled one back leaving it 2-1. With heads high and focused the players were on fire. The second half brought more delight for the Knights as they communicated and gelled well to achieve more goals, Kieron with determination to get the ball back and as he did, he blasted into Titans goal, with which we removed a player. The fourth goal was assisted by Eddie Williams, who crossed to Chris Brown who shot it through the Titans keeper’s legs. The final score was 5-1.”
“Well done guys so proud of you!” Sharon added. “Thank you, Titans Blue, for giving us a good game, and also thank you to all the support that was given on the day, from the referees and Managers, committee members to our own players relatives and players.”
“Well done to all the teams on the day!”
So, after two League fixtures, Bradford City Green and Sheffield FC Red lead the way with maximum points. City Knights have three points from that one win, and both Derek Dooley White and Titans Blue will be looking to get off the mark next month.
Into the Championship, and Club Doncaster Titans played their first League match since forming in April of this year. They faced Barton Inclusive, as Martin Taylor told us, “this was end-to-end stuff and there was some brilliant football from both sides, but Barton took the lead 1 – 0. After the Titans Ladies lost the lead, they all pulled together and started working together, bonding as a team, and played brilliant football; the Ladies were unlucky not to equalise. A brilliant double save from Kaz Roberts kept it at 1-0 at this time. We were so proud of the Ladies and how they pulled together, but after a lucky break Barton make it 2 – 0 and that was the final score.”
“I was so proud of you ladies – how you played and pulled together,” was Martin’s summary.
Titans Ladies played their part in a history making match against Bradford City Ladies, the first all ladies match in the SYACL.
The game was end-to-end again, both teams played brilliant football and in the brilliant spirit of the game. It was going to be hard for someone to score because both teams were playing brilliant football, with both keepers in great form, but Bradford scored a well taken goal. After conceding the goal the Titans Ladies knuckled down and put the pressure on the Bradford Ladies, and but for some brilliant saves by Gemma in the Bradford goal the Titans would have equalised. The Titan’s ladies worked hard to get the equaliser which was scored by Zena Romain making it 1 – 1. After this the Titans Ladies were buzzing and playing brilliant football. It looked like the first all Ladies match was going to end in a draw but the Bradford Ladies just managed to score again with two minutes to go to make it 2 – 1, which was the final score.”
Here’s Martin’s final word on the day, “I was so proud to be the stand in coach today for the Titans Ladies team today whilst your normal coach Steph Hall was on holiday.”
Paul Jubb gave us the Bradford viewpoint. “The last game saw the first ever all-women’s clash in the South Yorkshire League against Club Doncaster Titans Women’s team. In another tight game the Fuchsias came out winners with another two goals from Anna to win 2 – 1 and go joint top of the Championship.“
Bradford Fuchsia came out worthy winners in another brilliant game with Bradford Diamonds. “Their last game was the much anticipated and talked about game, since the fixture came out a month ago, Ladies versus Men,“ said Paul. “It didn’t disappoint – the Diamonds men’s team took the lead twice but it was the Fuchsia Ladies who came out on top 3-2; after being down twice 1-0 & 2-1. They came back to win 3-2 with all the goals coming from hat trick hero Anna.”
Sheffield Purple began life in the Championship with a repeat fixture against Bradford City Diamonds after their earlier Cup confrontation. Bradford won 3-1 as Scott and his coaching team of Kev, Liam and Morgan explained. “It was a close game with chances at both ends, but Bradford were more clinical with their finishing. Adam Kitchener scoring the only goal for Sheffield.”
Paul Jubb gave us Bradford’s reaction. “Diamonds again had to play Sheffield Purple in their 1st League game, and it went pretty much the same way; this time the Man of the Match was hat-trick hero Hashim.”
In the last match Sheffield Purple played another team new to the League in Barton Inclusive. “It was another close game with Barton going into a one goal lead; then just before half time Steven scored to equalise on his debut for Sheffield,” Scott Gregory reports. “In the second half both teams went for the win and Barton managed to get a second goal. Just before the end, Adam Kitchener let fly with a shot that hit the upright which would have made the score 2-2, and would have been a fairer result.”
Scott was delighted. “What a heroic effort by all our players, most of them had never played a competitive game before these fixtures,” he said. “We’re really proud of all the players and they will have learnt a lot from their first experience of competitive football.”
Two games into the new season then, and the impressive Barton Inclusive and Bradford Fuchsia lead the way with two wins each. Bradford Diamonds are third, and both Titans Ladies and Sheffield Purple can consider themselves really unfortunate not to take anything from the day.
In League One, Spartan’s coach Darren Sharp described his club’s two League games, starting with another excellent game with Rawmarsh St Joseph’s Social Eyes which followed their earlier Cup thriller. “The following match between the teams was the first game of the season, which again proved to be a tight affair throughout, with Social Eyes Green grabbing two late goals to seal the win,” Darren recounted.
“Spartans were full of confidence for their last match of the day against Dooley Blue,” Darren added. “Jake played outfield scoring two sensational goals, but despite heroic defending by Dom and Sam and great saves in goal by Oliver, Dooley Blue were the better team and deservedly secured a comfortable win.”
Darren was pleased with his players and the afternoon as a whole. “Spartans FC enjoyed the start of the new season,” he added, “both on the pitch and the time spent during matches socialising together in the bar area between matches.“
Dooley Blue’s Claire takes up her side’s start to the League One campaign. “Now for League duties in the first game against Aston,” Claire told us. “The team took on board the words from Nathan their coach and played some lovely football against a physical side but went 3-0 up. Unfortunately, Aston goalkeeper received an injury and had to go off, so we took a player off to even it out. Our players then went on to two touch football and there was some lovely passing between Jordan and Rueben. There were some good saves from Ryan, but we went on to win the game.”
“The second game against the Spartans saw Believe scoring with his first touch.” Spartans then equalised; there was some solid defending by Cody and great goalkeeping from Ryan; we went on to win against the seven players of Spartans.”
Elsewhere, Rawmarsh St. Joseph’s Social Eyes Green added to that fine win over Spartans with another hard-fought win over James Scally’s Aston Swallownest, playing their first match day in the 5-a-side League.
As a result, Social Eyes share top spot in the table with Derek Dooley Blue, both with 100% records. Doncaster Deaf Trust will join the competition soon, and Aston Swallownest and Spartans will be hoping to build on their strong displays by getting some points on the board next month.
Into League Two, and a super day for Club Doncaster Titans Yellow as Liam Taylor told www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com. “We won our first match against Derek Dooley Green,” Liam told us. “Derek Dooley opened the scoring 1-0 and from a Titans kick off Derek Dooley scored to make 2-0. Barney scored to make it 2-1 at half time.”“In the second half Derek Dooley scored to make it 3-1, Paul scored to make it 3-2 and again to make it 3-3. Christian scored to make it 4-3 to the Titans for the first time in the game; Derek Dooley levelled to make it 4-4. Barney scored to make 5-4, Titans made it 6-4 and although Derek Dooley made it 6-5 from a free kick, we won 6-5 in another end-to-end game.”
“Titans edged it 6-5; what an impressive performance, and again I am really happy with each and every one of them, “ Liam told us.
Titans then again came out on top against Bradford City (Emeralds), as Liam describes. “Matt B made 1-0, Barney made it 2-0. After Bradford made 2-1, Barney made 3-1, Christian made it 4-1. Bradford got the score back to 4-3 and we won the game.”
“What a great performance – I am really happy” Liam summed up. “Meanwhile, Bradford Emeralds were on the receiving end of a defeat to City Knights White.”
We had all eight of our players on and the City Knights Whites annihilated us,” Paul Jubb told the website.
“Luckily, we still had one game left and a much more even game against Doncaster Titans Yellows,“ Paul added. “Jake even scored a couple of rare goals for him! We lost 4-3 but it was a far more enjoyable experience than the game before.“
Derek Dooley Green played their first League game with Club Doncaster Titans Yellow. Here’s Claire Cowlishaw. “Now to League action against Doncaster again. This was quite even, and Titans came out on top, with a good performance by all our players trying their best.”
“Then it was Rawmarsh to play,” Claire went on, “and a solid consistent performance by all the team saw them take another win. It was a tough first day for Social Eyes White, but there was some joy for Stuart late in the game as he scored a penalty to notch his side’s first ever goal.”
So, after five matches in League Two, two wins each for City Knights White and Doncaster Titans Yellow sees the clubs sharing theearly lead in the table. Derek Dooley Green have three points, with Bradford Emeralds and Social Eyes White ready to do battle again next month.
After the fantastic start to the season that the newly-formed Junior Leagues provided at Goals Doncaster two Sundays ago, this Sunday saw the open-age 7-a side teams return to action at Concord Sports Centre. Once again, the weather was kind; as in Doncaster, families, carers, and supporters were able to support their teams for the first time since March 2020. The passion, energy, commitment and skill of all the players was plain to see as the three 7-a-side Divisions got off to a fast start, write Margaret Gregory and Colin Muncie for www. southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com. with thanks to Howard Toll from Bradford for his excellent pictures.
The afternoon included five County Cup first round ties.
Bradford DFC Amber played Brunsmeer from the League below them in the County Cup game in a very tight game. Bradford Manager, Paul Jubb told us, “after missing a few chances in the first half, Bradford eventually got the winner in the second half thanks to a great goal from man of the match Rhys.
“Sheffield FC White (League One) lost 1-0 to Aston Swallownest Blue in the County Cup in a very close contested game,” reports Sheffield’s Scott Gregory. “It was an unfortunate error by one of our players that separated the teams in the end.”
Derek Dooley Red team started their County Cup campaign against Premiership side Sheffield FC Red; Dooley’s Claire Cowlishaw told SYACL.com. “It was a short run, and not much fun for the lads.”
Sheffield FC Red’s Scott Gregory was delighted, however, “SFC Red (Premier) played sensational football to progress in the Cup. We got off to a flying start and controlled the game with pace.”
Wheatley Wanderers exited the County Cup at the first hurdle, but only after a brave display against City Knights Black. “We came up against a top team today and did not disgrace ourselves,” admitted Wheatley’s Chris Pow. “We learned a lot from this game, and Justin did particularly well in goal.”
In the Premier League, Bradford City Amber found the going a little tougher in their first Premier League match against Sheffield Reds, Paul Jubb told us. “The Ambers have just moved up to the Premier League and had a couple of players missing, so found it hard against a very good Sheffield Reds team who won easily on the day. Our Man of the Match was Henry who defended well and never gave up.”
Reds Scott Gregory was again a happy man after the game. “We started the League game with Bradford with confidence and played with freedom with positive forward play. Clinical finishing with a solid defensive performance, was Scott’s assessment.”
In their final fixture of the day, Bradford City Amber came up against fellow-promoted side Aston Swallownest. “Both these teams got promoted from the Championship last season, Ambers going up as Champions after a close play off game,” Paul reminded us. “ Aston Swallownest took a three goal lead in the first half and were by far the better team; the Ambers did pull a couple of goals back in the second half; both from Man of the Match Jordan – but the game was already won.”
“Sheffield FC Red’s League game with City Knights was a cagey affair and with both sides cancelling each other out. Defences came out on top with chances at a premium,” Scott told us.
“Meanwhile, Sheffield FC Blue played Club Doncaster Titans twice and came out on top in both games 3-0 and 2-1. Sheffield FC controlled the first game from the whistle, going 2-0 in the first half with goals from Aaron Ambler-Bennett and Ben Wittenberg,” Scott Gregory reports. “The second half quickly saw Sheffield FC go 3-0 up with another goal from Aaron. The game was played in good spirits as always, competitive but fair.”
“The second game was a much tighter affair with Sheffield FC having one man less for the whole game.” Scott went on, “Doncaster took a deserved lead in the first half for SFC to peg them back with a breakaway goal near half time from Aaron Ambler-Bennett. The second half was also tight, but SFC pushed hard for the 3 points and were rewarded with a crackerjack of a goal from Ben Wittenberg in the last moments of the game to win 2-1. Again, game played in good spirits across both teams.”
City Knights Black played their first League fixture of the new season against Aston Swallownest Juniors Disability Red. Here’s how City Knight’s Sharon Lavender saw the game. “It was a good match, our players started well and finished great; they communicated well and produced a great match. Aston Swallownest played really well considering it was one of their first matches in this League, they gave us a good game. We started off well with Asa smashing one in to make it 1-0, well done Asa Wilson, great goal!! Not long after Ant took the ball from one end of the pitch with focus and determination and ended up smashing it in the net at the other end, well done Ant West, great goal!! Well done lads; some great defending and attacking, and Michael Moxam you did some great saves.”
“Our second game was against Sheffield FC Red,” Sharon told us. “The players pulled together and supported each other, there was some great defending and Michael Moxam made some great saves; there were some long runs, and some great effort was put in. Steven Gould supported well and did some great runs down the wing. Asa Wilson, Ant West, Chris Senior did well getting the ball up front going for goal, having so many chances their keeper did some great saves. Nice defending by Gavin Foster and Daniel Purdy, Michael Moxam kept us in the game. You all should be proud guys you played really well. We are proud of you. Thank you, Sheffield FC, for giving a great match, which finished 0-0.”
So, after two games, the early pace setters are Sheffield Disability FC Blue with a one hundred percent record. City Knights Red and Sheffield FC Red [Disability] share second place on 4 points, Aston Swallownest sit in fourth, above Bradford City Amber and Club Doncaster Titans, both of whom will be looking to get off the mark next month.
In the Championship, Bradford were represented by their Blues, and they got off to the best possible start against Derek Dooley Orange, as Manager Mark McLaren explains. “The Blues ran out deserved winners against Derek Dooley Orange with two great counter attacking goals from Luke and Dale; although we had Man of the Match Bradley to thank for a brilliant save at 1-0.”
Here’s Dooley’s perspective on the game, from Claire Cowlishaw, “Derek Dooley Orange started their game against Bradford well with a lot of pressure put on the goal keepers, some good shots and saves, Brad F had 2 good shots saved but Bradford broke, and they got a corner and scored. They battled hard in the second half, but could not get past the Bradford Goalie who kept them in the game. So, they lost the first game, but they weren’t down hearted and rallying words from Coach Nathan helped them to prepare for the second game against Barton.”
Meanwhile, in their next tight game the Bradford City Blues lost to Derek Dooley FA. Mark McLaren told us, “we missed 3 or 4 good chances to have equalised or even gone on to win the game. Luke was the Man of the Match. Our star man for the day was goalkeeper Bradley making some amazing saves to keep his team in the games.”
Manager Claire Cowlishaw set the scene ahead of the new season for Derek Dooley FA and Derek Dooley Orange.” This season the teams have had a reshuffle and so are learning to become a new team with new team mates, though they are good friends on and off the pitch.”
Claire then summarised the game with Bradford Blue. “Derek Dooley FA’s first game in the League was against Bradford City Blue,” Claire told us, “and was a good even match of football. Both goalkeepers played well to save the shots with the Bradford goalie having bit more work to do saving good shots from Aiden and Elliott. Then there was a good pass by Adam up front to Jack and he managed to beat the goalkeeper, breaking the deadlock.”
Derek Dooley Orange then took on League newcomers Barton Inclusive. “The game against new team Barton was more even and some good football, passing and talking between the team. We were without our main man up front Brad F, who sprained his ankle in the first game. Nathan F did some good saves, and we went up front and Jamie Lee scored. There was a good shot from Josh saved. Barton had a man injured who had to come off for treatment, so we took a man off to equal it up as they had no subs. Barton equalised with a lucky shot between Nathan’s legs. Both teams back to 7 players and Barton scored again. Unfortunately, we lost both our games, but not downhearted as we all had great fun.”
After the first week of fixtures, then, and with Doncaster Deaf Trust FC due to re-join the League on Matchday Two, it’s the new kids on the block, Barton Inclusive, who are making the early running with those two wins sealing an impressive start to life in the SYACL.
Derek Dooley FA and Bradford City Blue are already on their heels, and Brunsmeer will be keen to get off the mark next month at Concord.
And so, to League One, and Bradford Clarets were soon in action against Aston Swallownest, “ who took a goal lead early on,” Manager Paul Jubb explained. “Ben pulled one back in a very close game, but the Clarets forgot the golden rule “play to the whistle” and lost out to a late winner from Aston Swallownest. Stephen was amazing in goal and deserved his Man of the Match accolade.”
Meanwhile, Wheatley Wanderers got their league campaign under way with a win over Club Doncaster Titans Red. “We came out with all guns blazing for this match,” Wheatley’s Chris Pow told Syacl.com. “Paul scored his first League goal and Sean got a brace. A good result against a spirited, good natured side.”
City Knights Blue kicked off their season against Sheffield FC White. Here’s Knight’s Sharon Lavender, “first ofall I would like to say well done to Connor Nicholls, Ewan Hadfield and Sam Leary for their debut match, and welcome to your new club. Sam shone on his first match by smashing a goal in – well done Sam Leary! It was not long into the game, but not long after that Sheffield FC got one past us. It was a very tight game. Our defence tightened up and didn’t concede any more goals. Well done to Adam Wyatt for saving some great goals and Adrian Bingham for supporting in defence. There was some great runs by Kyle Hancock, Jordan Bratby and Connor Nicholls. Well done all, you played a great game. Proud of you! Thank you to Sheffield FC for giving us a good match.” The match finished level at 1-1.
Bradford Clarets took on Sheffield Whites in their next game. Paul Jubb from Bradford reports, “we were unlucky to lose against Sheffield Whites, who played some great football. A few missed chances and lapses in the defence cost us the game. Ian was Man of the Match and outstanding at the back making a number of last-ditch challenges.”
Sheffield FC White’s Scott Gregory gave Syacl.com his perspective. “Our League game with Bradford Clarets was one way traffic in the first half, with Clarets’ keeper keeping them in the game to keep the score level at half-time. The pressure finally paid off in the second half with goals from Matt Lyne and a second goal of the day for Danny Black to seal the win.”
City Knights Blue closed out their day with a narrow, thrilling defeat to Club Doncaster Titans Red. “Straight from the start our guys were on it,” Sharon reported. ”Kyle with assistance from Jordan Bratby smashed a goal in, well done Kyle Hancock! Not long after that, Titans got a goal. Connor Nicholls was doing well in midfield getting the ball down to Jordan to pass to Kyle and he ended up smashing another goal in, well done Kyle Hancock! Unfortunately seconds before the whistle, Titans got a goal.”
Well, done Sam Leary, Connor Nicholls, Ewan Hadfield with it being your first match with us, you played well. Great support too from Warren Foster. Players you all should be proud of yourself because you tried your best, proud of you!
“Thank you to the referees and all that supported on the day.”
Final word – deservedly – goes to table-toppers Wheatley Wanderers and their Manager Chris Pow after their win over Aston Swallownest. “It was another great performance from new players Sean and Asten, and Josh played really well in goal. It capped off a great day.”
“It felt good to be back playing football.”
Well said, Chris.
So, after one week it’s Wheatley Wanderers who head the table with maximum points from their two wins. Sheffield FC White are just behind on four points, Aston Swallownest on three alongside Doncaster Titans Red. City Knights Blue have that single point, with Bradford City Claret on nil points.
We would like to invite you/your team to join us on the 28th October 2021, at the New York Stadium, to watch the live draw for the Women’s EURO’ 22 on the BBC.
Rotherham is one of 9 host cities for the Women’s EURO ’22 tournament, and we would like you to come watch it with us and celebrate the teams that will make Rotherham their home for their group games.
The event will run from 4pm – 7.30pm, with talks from local football legends, a football quiz, information on how to get involved whether that be playing football, refereeing or maybe volunteering at the tournament itself, plus there will be some light refreshments with the bar open to purchase drinks.
For your FREE TICKET please book though Eventbrite using this link
Match day had arrived. Barton Athletics first game in the Sheffield League and I don’t know who was more excited, me or the players. We were trying a new formation and I was looking forward to the lads taking on this new challenge, writes Manager Richard Day.
The game kicked off against Brunsmeer Awareness and Brunsmeer started off the better team. There were a few nerves from the Barton lads and an early injury for our captain Bentinio who soldiered on. With early pressure from Brunsmeer, there was a shot deflected and brilliantly saved by our stand in keeper Zak (His first of many world class saves) Barton did produce a good chance in the first half with play between Jamie, Ben, Dave and Seb creating an opportunity for Dave which was saved by their keeper. Half time 0-0
Barton started the second half a different team, you could see they had found their confidence. The guys had found their flow and started to cause Brunsmeer problems with Barton’s own Messi – Jamie in midfield. Jamie was working so hard at winning the ball back and starting our attacks.
Then the breakthrough, 1-0 from Dave. Dave was superb holding the ball up in both games and struggling through a knee injury; turned his defender and powered it passed the keeper. Brunsmeer worked hard to get back into the game. Shaun and Ryan at the back were defending brilliantly along with another great save from Zak.
Another great goal comes this time from Seb who had found space and drilled a powerful shot into the bottom corner. It was a great reward for Seb who has been incredible with his coaching role with the Barton Inclusive Wildcats.
Final whistle 2-0 Barton.
A brilliant game played by two very honest teams, I thought Brunsmeer was superb and wish them well for their season. We will look forward to another great game when we play them again.
Our next game was against Derek Dooley FC and a bit like the first game, Barton were trying to find their feet. We found ourselves 1-0 down early on, which came from a good strike from eight yards out. After their goal, Derek Dooley FC kept their pressure on with plenty of corners and shots. It was only thanks to our brave defending and saves that we kept the score at only 1-0. Then on the break, the ball falls to Seb who is a long way out and he hits an unstoppable shot that flies into the net. 1-1
Upfront, our striker Dave succumbed to his knee injury. The game was stopped and he was helped off the pitch. Hopefully with rest, he will be ok. Because two of our players, Jay and Tim couldn’t make the game through other commitments, we were without subs and had to continue with a player less. Claire, the manager of Derek Dooley FC seeing our predicament showed incredible sportsmanship and took a player off to level the sides. Derek Dooley FC are very lucky to have a coach setting all the right standards for their players.
Another great show of team work sets up our man Seb who fires in a skilled shot from a tight angle. 2-1
Barton was unlucky not to make it 3-1 and with another class save from Zak, could have been 2-2. Barton finished strong to see in the win.
I am so proud of the players who gave everything for their team and their coach. Their behaviour on and off the pitch did everyone at Barton Inclusive proud.
A special thanks to club chairperson, Sophie Bartup, who made our first league game possible. To Zak in goal who was world class. To the captain for the day, Bentinio. To both teams we played and to Seb, the Man of the Match, for his brilliant goals and movement.
Fans were back as SYACL Junior League action kicked off in Doncaster; and the sun shone on the Under 12’s & Under 16’s as the goals and tackles flew in.
The newly-formed Under 12 and Under 16 League’s made a fantastic start to their membership of the South Yorkshire Ability Counts League last Sunday, 3rd October; and, for the first time in 19 months, the games were watched by a huge crowd of parents and carers who made their own fantastic contribution to a brilliant atmosphere.
The SYACL had managed to keep the Under 7 and Under 5 competitions running during the earlier part of 2021 by respecting the restrictions imposed by the Covid pandemic, and it was great to see the players on the field after lockdown; but having the fans there on the first day of competition made the day all the more special, writes Margaret Gregory for www.syacl.com
The only downside to the afternoon was an unfortunate and accidental injury to Kai Hall, one of our players from Club Doncaster Titans, who we all wish a speedy recovery and look forward to seeing him back in action as soon as possible.
New League, new referee, Evan took the whistle for the Under-12 fixtures on Pitch 7 at the Goals Centre, with our good friend and referee’s secretary Sean Wright as the man in the middle for the Under-16 matches on Pitch 9. The SYACL used the middle pitch,8, as the holding area for spectators and players – this configuration had proved hugely successful during last season’s matches.
So, to the action; the opening Under-12 fixture saw Club Doncaster Titans edge a tight encounter with Hillsborough Hornets. Steph from Titans takes up the story. “A very close game was played between these two teams,” she told us. “It was end to end and a very entertaining game to watch. There were many chances for both teams and it was surprising that there were not more goals in this game. When the goal did arrive, it was scored by Jacob R and assisted by Jacob B.”
Hornets were delighted by the performance of their young Orange team. Head coach Alex Whitehead told www.syacl.com. “This was the very first time that the Under 12’s playing a match against anyone – and they performed amazingly! They learned a lot and are already looking forward to their next League fixture.
Next up for Titans was a tough match with Bradford City Claret, but this time the Titans were on the wrongend of the result. “This was a fairly one-sided game,” Steph admitted. “Club Doncaster Titans played very well, battled hard and created some good chances of their own against an exceptionally good Bradford team. In the end the better team won the game.”
Titans third game of the afternoon saw them beat Sheffield FC Red in another Pitch 7 thriller. “This was another end-to-end game of football,” Steph told us. ”Club Doncaster Titans players played fantastically and really looked like a team, playing and working together. They all worked really hard and loved every minute of it. Again, it was surprising that there were not more goals in this game with the number of chances created by both teams. When the goals did arrive, they were scored by Jacob R and Jacob B and both were assisted by Kellie.”
At the end of the nine fixtures, Bradford City Claret topped the table with three wins out of three, closely followed by Bradford City Blue, who played out a tight drawn game with Sheffield Red to drop their only points of the day before wins over Hillsborough Hornets Orange and Bradford City Wildcats.
Sheffield Red took the three points with a win over Bradford Wildcats, who ended the day level with Hillsborough Hornets after just failing to pick up a win, but both sides contributed hugely to a great afternoon of Under-12 action.
After three fixtures each, standings are as follows: –
Over on Pitch 9, the longer, game-of two halves Under 16’s League kicked off with a narrow win for Club Doncaster Titans over Hillsborough Hornets Yellow. Hornets Alex Whitehead told us “Alex scored for Hornets in the first half with Coley (twice) and Lewis [one] in the second half as the Hornets just failed to snatch a point. The match finished 5-4 and the Hornets made a brilliant second half comeback. We narrowly missed out on a draw.”
Titans Coach, Martin Taylor, told us “Titans’ goals came from James Cota, with two – one a penalty – two from Devon Fordham and one from Levi Benson. Both teams played some lovely football in this, the first League match back and both teams were a bit nervous to start off with. It was a close fought game which the final score showed.”
Hornets Black got off to the best possible start with a win over Sheffield FC Blue. A penalty from Nathan saw Hornets Black lead at the break, and goals in the second half from Luke, Zack and an own goal clinched the win.
Coach Alex was delighted “A brilliant game from the Hornets, composed and calm throughout and used the boards to their advantage. Nathan stepped up to take the penalty for the team.”
Hornets Yellow got on the winning trail with a win over Bradford City Amber in their next game, with Luke and an own goal seeing Hornets ahead at half time, and Coley and Enrique doubled the score in the second period. This was no easy win, as Alex reflected. “This was a tough physical match with a few injuries on both teams. Leah took a nasty knock to the ribs but soldiered on and was a machine in defence.”
Hornets Black closed out their day with a defeat to Club Doncaster Titans, Luke scored for Hornets in the first half, but three Titans goals clinched the points. Coach Alex was philosophical in defeat. “It was a tough game against Doncaster,” he admitted, “Luke scored his second goal of the day, but we couldn’t hold them up. Alice and Nathan were sterling in defence.”
Titans’ Coach Martin Taylor told us that James Cota, with two, and Devon Fordham had scored the goals which clinched the three points.
“In the second match the U-16’s played in honour of their team mate Kai Hall who got injured in the first match,” Martin added. “There was lovely football played in this match too. In both games they all had the team spirit, and I would like to say well done and well played today to everyone involved and I am so proud of you all.”
“I would like to thank all the parents / carers for their support, too.”
After the first round of two fixtures each, it’s Titans Ability Counts who lead the way with two wins, with Bradford City Amber in joint second place with three points thanks to their win over Sheffield FC Blue. The two Hornets teams are also on three points, leaving brave Sheffield Blue hoping to take points in the next round of fixtures.
Overall though, the three Hornets teams had enjoyed a great start to life in the SYACL, as Coach Alex summed up. “An amazing day was had by all, and we are super proud of the all the players who wore their Hornets colours with pride. We had some tears from the parents who never thought this could happen for their kids. Win, lose or draw the Hornets did us ALL proud today.”
“We can’t wait for the next round of fixtures!”
All Bradford City DFC 4 junior teams at the South Yorkshire Ability Counts Junior League had a great day; with Bradford City DFC Under 16’s played 2 – won 1 – lost 1.
With a big mixture of abilities, and it being the first time playing together, the team did well on the day. losing to Hillsborough Hornets and beating Sheffield FC.
Star player on the day was Jonathan, who really struggled in the first game, but scored 2 great goals in the second.
The Bradford City DFC Under 12’s Blues played 3 games – won 2 – drew 1.
Sara, the coach for the Blues said, “great team work, great footy played and lots of empathy towards other teams and lots of great behaviour.” Star player on the day was Callum who scored a couple of goals in his first ever competitive games.
The Bradford City DFC Under 12s Clarets played 3 – won 3.
The Clarets went top of the league and played really well with some great football. Star player was Freddie who scored most of their goals for the team, with some Messi like skills.
The Bradford City DFC 12’s Wildcats played 3 – lost 3. Bev Dove, manager of the Wildcats said, “I just want to say thank you to all the girls in the Wildcats team at Doncaster. It’s tough being the only all girls team in the League, but you gave everything you had, so so proud of you all.” The highlight of the day was little Jessica scoring against the Blues at the end of the day.
Well done all the players and coaches with some great football played on a lovely sunny day for football.
And so say all of us. We’ll see our Junior teams back in action at the beginning of November; but next Sunday, attention turns to the 7-a-side League and a full afternoon of fixtures across three divisions at Concord Sports Centre, Shiregreen Lane, Sheffield.
The action starts at 1.30 pm, and you can stay in touch with the action on Twitter @SYorksACL or here at www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com. In the meantime, if you have any features or pictures, why not send them to Margaret via the contact form on the Website.
On behalf of the Leader of Leeds City Council, Councillor James Lewis, we are delighted to inform you about an exciting event – Team Yorkshire The Homecoming!
Olympic and Paralympic heroes will be given a homecoming to remember with a major event at the Leeds First Direct Arena on October 10. Olympians and Paralympians will take to the stage to talk about their exploits in an event hosted by 2016 Olympic medallist Nile Wilson and sports broadcaster Tanya Arnold.
Athletes attending include Jess Learmonth, Jonny Brownlee, Georgia Taylor-Brown, Jack Laugher MBE and Hannah Cockroft MBE among many others – with more athletes being confirmed daily.
Channel 4, who have just setup home in Leeds, are supporting the event – which will take place on Sunday October 10 from 3-5pm.
The event will include live entertainment including headline Yorkshire act, Starlights, along with Phoenix Dance, Yorkshire Prose live poetry and other fantastic acts.
Tickets are available to the public for just £5 per ticket (plus booking fee) which includes a donation to charity Sports Aid, an organisation that has supported so many of the Yorkshire athletes via www.firstdirectarena.com
Tickets are available from 9am Friday 24th September.