Last-day thriller sees Wheatley take the League One title.
Darren Warner Fair Play trophy won by Brunsmeer Awareness.
Sheffield FC (Red) and Bradford City Amber reach County Cup Final.
A cold, rainy day at Concord Sports Centre on Sunday; but the weather couldn’t dampen the spirits of the South Yorkshire Ability Counts League 7-a side squads as the competition reached the business end of the season. Two County Cup semi-finals preceded the League action, with 18 games played in total on another thrilling day of football action, watched as always, by a good crowd. Our multi-talented team of reporters were all over the match reports and photographs for www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com.
The seven-a-side County Cup Final will be between Sheffield FC (Red), winners over Championship team Barton Inclusive and Bradford City DFC Amber, who defeated City Knights Blue, watched by Bradford’s Paul Jubb. “On a cold wet and windy day, both teams only had 6 players to start,” Paul told SYACL.com, “the Ambers, who are 2 Leagues above City Knights Blues, took an early lead through McKenzie, who then went on to score 2 more to complete his hat-trick. The difference in abilities showed this time; the City Knights had knocked out our Blue team in the last round.”
“The second half was a bit of a non-event due to the 3-goal lead,” Paul added. “The Ambers were through to the County Cup Final!”
Sharon Lavender, City Knights manager commented on the Knights defeat by Bradford City DFC Amber, “our first match was our Semi-final cup match against Bradford Amber. We started off ok but then it got hard, the guys tried their best to keep it together, if it wasn’t for Connor Nicholls in the net, and the guys being supportive of each other it would have been a higher score. The 5 players stuck together and only let 3 goals in! Final score 3 -0 to Bradford.“
Sharon continued, “our second match was against Swallownest Juniors Blue; we had 5 players in that match to their 7 but we gave them a good game. The guys started and finished the match with their heads held high. We were losing 3-0 in the first half but in the second they fought back and Connor got us our first great goal, well done to Connor Nicholls! Not long after, Jordan smashed one in the net, well done Jordan Bratby! Swallownest ended up putting another in the net near to the end. However, the guys still kept their heads up and kept battling!
The final score was 4-2 to them.”
And so, to the Premier Division, with six matches played on the day. In the early kick-off, Club Doncaster Titans (White) took the three points with a win over Aston Swallownest. “The game started end-to-end with both teams having a number of chances, which is how it stayed to half time,” Titans’ Head Coach Martin Taylor told us. “The second half started like the first until Titans picked up the ball in their half by Danny; he ran into the other half then he passed the ball to Joseph who slotted the ball in the net making it 1 – 0 to the Titans. Swallownest came back fighting and they had a chance to equalise, but they put it just wide of the post. That’s the way the game finished 1 – 0 to the Titans.”
After Sheffield Blue had taken all three points against Aston Swallownest, Bradford Amber faced City Knights Black, watched again by Paul Jubb. “In an end of season type of game, the Ambers lost 1 – 0 to Sheffield Blues; again, it was 6-a-side, the game was even all the way through, but a mistake at the back cost us. The loss means that the Ambers were relegated on the same day that they reached the County Cup Final!” “Football is a strange game!!” Paul added. “Our star man was McKenzie.”
Martin Taylor, Head Coach at Club Doncaster Titans Whites was at pitch side for their next game with title-chasing Sheffield FC (Red). “The match started with Sheffield FC (Red) on the front foot, and they dominated the play, but couldn’t score,” Martin told us. “They took the lead by an own goal making it 1 – 0 to Sheffield FC (Red). Then Titans equalised by a wonderful goal by Danny which took the teams in level at half time at 1 – 1. In the second half both teams upped the pressure to find the winner, but after a goal mouth scramble Sheffield FC (Red) managed to squeeze the ball into the net to make it 2 – 1, which was the final score.”
Sheffield FC (Red) win in the final game of the day against their closest challengers City Knights Black confirming them as deserving Premier Division Champions. Red were unbeaten during the season and won the League by eight points from Knights. Sheffield Blue was third, with four wins, just ahead of Club Doncaster Titans (White). Aston Swallownest’s eight points keeps them above the relegation zone, but Bradford Amber will be playing in the Championship next season. They do have the consolation of that County Cup Final to look forward to.
Premier 7’s – Final table
|1||Sheffield FC Red (Disability)||10||9||1||0||9||28|
|2||City Knights Black||10||6||2||2||4||20|
|3||Sheffield FC Blue (Disability)||10||4||1||5||-1||13|
|4||Club Doncaster Titans FC (Adult) White||10||3||1||6||-3||10|
|5||Aston Swallownest Juniors Disability Tea||10||2||2||6||-4||8|
|6||Bradford City FITC Disability Amber||10||2||1||7||-5||7|
In The Championship, Derek Dooley Red got the afternoon under way with an impressive win over Brunsmeer Awareness, watched by Dooley’s Claire Cowlishaw. “The team started the wet cold afternoon with a game against Brunsmeer,” Claire reported. “They started on the attack, with Lewis taking the ball up front, dribbling past a player and a shot saved by the goalkeeper. Brunsmeer set off down and with a mix up at the back they took the lead. The heads didn’t go down and they quickly drew level with a great shot by Lewis. The team played as a team, talking to each other, and passing between themselves with some good pressing from Jack, but couldn’t score. Aiden did a good run up the wing, but the defender saved them. Lewis picked the ball up at halfway and took it past 2 defenders with a good save from Lewis giving them a corner. It was level at half time with the lads doing well. Aiden passed to Nick in the middle, and he passed onto Jack and he scored. The team kept it together with some good defending from Adam and Dom until he hurt his back, coming off. Stephen was solid in the middle and Aiden on the wing. Shaun did well in the goal growing in confidence. A good win from the team, listening to coach Nathan who had wise words on the side-line.”
Next up for Derek Dooley Kicks Red was a tough encounter with Champions-elect Barton Inclusive. “The second game came against the Champions Barton,” Claire told us, “they started the game with the same pace and Lewis took the ball and shot over the bar. Barton set off down, but some good defending from Jack, passed to Lewis who had another good run up and was saved by the fantastic Barton Goalkeeper. This was a competitive game which saw another shot by Lewis over the top. From the corner the ball passed across the goal, Jack missed, but Nick was free on the right to put it in, scoring his first goal of the season. Barton came back showing their great team spirit and were level. There was a great run from Lewis to Jack who had his shot saved. Barton showed some great passing, got past our defence, and scored.”
“Barton took the lead, but the lads didn’t give up and kept playing as a team,” Claire went on. ”Aiden passed up to Lewis who shot wide. There was solid defending from Dom, who passed to Lewis who ran up and was saved again. Jack tackled in the middle of the pitch and won the ball, passed to Stephen who scored, taking it to 2 – 2. Shaun passed out to the side to Adam who passed up the field to Lewis who scored taking them into the lead again. This didn’t last long as Barton came back to draw again at 3 each. This is how it ended, so a great end to the season finishing mid-table. Well done to the lads.”
Next up, Bradford City Blue took on Derek Dooley Orange, watched by Bradford’s Danny Johnson. “Another strange scenario for our Blue team on the day – win both their games and they could have come second; lose both and they could have been relegated!!” Danny explained.
“Derek Dooley took the lead and then went ahead by 3 goals, so we brought an extra player on, and managed to get it back to 3 – 2 with goals from Luke and Bradley assisted by Ethan. ”Danny told SYACL.com. ”Derek Dooley winning 3 – 2, their only win of the season! Bradford couldn’t seem to hit the back of the net – a common theme throughout this season.”
Claire from Dooley gave her version of events. “The team of just 7 players started strongly with Clark passing up to Brad who scored taking them into the lead. Bradford came back straight away, but Nathan did a superb save to keep them in the lead. Nathan passed up to Nathan P to Jamie-Lee who scored to take them into a 2-0 lead. There was some good work by Josh in the middle to Brad, but went wide. The team were solid in helping each other and good defending by Richard and up to Brad who scored increasing their lead to 3-0. Bradford put on another man and the comeback started, they managed to break the defence and get one back. Some good work by Nathan P and Richard kept the lads on track but they got past and scored another bringing it to 3 – 2. There was good defending from Clark to keep them the winners.”
“The lads were ecstatic with their first win of the season. Well done lads!” Claire told us.
It was tense at the bottom of the table, with Bradford Blue now up against Brunsmeer Awareness, watched by an ever-more-nervous Danny Johnson. “We took an early lead with a great ball through the middle from Ethan to Luke who was through on goal and managed to slot the ball home.” Danny reported. “Brunsmeer then had all the possession and managed to get a goal to make it 1 – 1. We again had lots of shots, but again they couldn’t find the back of the net! Brunsmeer then went on attack down the wing; the ball seemed to have gone out of play, but the ref’s whistle didn’t go. With our players switched off, Brunsmeer scored the winner in a very tight end to end game 2 – 1.”
“Luckily for the Blues, Derek Dooley lost their last game, which meant we stay in the Championship next season!” Danny added. “I would like to take the chance to say good luck next season to Derek Dooley and all other teams.”
In their last game, Dooley Orange were up against the impressive Barton. “This was a harder match for the lads, but they gave it their all,” Claire said. “They worked as a team following Nathan P’s directions. He took on a lot of the work himself; and some good work up front from Josh and Brad, who scored a wonder goal into the far corner of the net, taking them into the lead 1 – 0. The team kept going with a lot of battles all over the pitch, Clark was solid in defence, Jamie-Lee running back to help out, great shots from Brad and Josh.”
“Barton showed their skills and got level with lovely passing to each other up the pitch,” Claire went on. “The team was tiring, and Nathan needed his inhaler and a rest. Nathan F couldn’t stop the shot which took Barton into the lead. Nathan came off and Barton kindly took a man off, as we didn’t have any subs. The lads kept battling, but with a man down and the lads tiring they couldn’t find the next goal.”
“It was a great performance from all the lads to finish the season on a wet windy Sunday and not too disheartened that they are relegated to League One,” Claire summed up.
“They will be back stronger next season.”
And so, with the floodlights coming on towards the end of the afternoon, it’s Barton Inclusive who take the trophy after a really impressive season. They have been a welcome addition to the SYACL, winning the Championship by a seven-point margin from the equally-excellent Brunsmeer Awareness who were a deserved second. Congratulations to both clubs.
Derek Dooley Kicks (Red) kept themselves clear of the drama at the bottom of the table, with Dooley Orange just missing out on survival by one point, but with the consolation of that first win. Bradford Blues live to fight another day in the Championship.
Brunsmeer Awareness were also awarded the Darren Warner Fair Play Shield for 7-a-side clubs in recognition of their excellent on-field conduct; a deserved award for a team which continues to make such excellent progress.
Championship 7’s-Final table
|1||Barton Inclusive Football Club Barton At||8||7||1||0||7||22|
|2||Brunsmeer Awareness Awarness||8||5||0||3||2||15|
|3||Derek Dooley Football Academy Sheffield||8||2||3||3||-1||9|
|4||Bradford City FITC Disability Blues||8||2||0||6||-4||6|
|5||Derek Dooley Football Academy Orange||8||1||2||5||-4||5|
In League One, Club Doncaster Titans (Red) got their afternoon under way with a goalless stalemate against Aston Swallownest, watched by Titans’ Daniel Hall. “Ok so here it is – the last 2 games of the season with Doncaster Titans Red facing off against Swallownest,” Daniel reported. “The game was tight end to end with chances from both sides, but our closest chance was in the 2nd half when Jordon headed it over the keeper’s hands and hit the crossbar and it bounced back out. The game was tough but ended 0 – 0.”
Aston were winners over City Knights Blue in the next fixture, before City Knights Blue took on Titans’ Reds, with Daniel watching on. “Our second game against City Knights Blue, and again, it was tough in the first half as Titans seemed to struggle getting it out of their own half. Into half time at 0 – 0; our coach had a team talk going into the 2nd half and Titans broke the deadlock when Callum took a free kick and Dan decoyed the defence to make the opponents think it was going to be passed to Dan, but no, passed to Jordan and BANG – he found the back of the net to make it 1 – 0 Titans.”
“We were trying to guard the lead and stop City Knights equalising,” Daniel added, “they came close, but in the last dragging minutes of the game Mark assisted Jordan again to hit the back of the net -GOOAAALLLL ! Titans finished the game 2 – 0!”
“Both games were played very well with no malice,” Daniel added.
Sharon Lavender added her views on the City Knights Blue match against Titans Red, “our last league game of the day and season was against Titans Red.”
“The guys once again, even though they were short of players, went on strong and played their hearts out. Adrian Bingham played well in net, and the outfield players gelled well and supported each other. Titans ended up scoring again, but our guys kept battling, we had so many chances but it didn’t seem to be our day! Final score 2-0 to them.”
“I would just like to say I was very proud of my team today despite the score, they should be proud of themselves too, they went out full throttle and kept going until the whistle, and gave it their all even though they had less players.”
“City Knights would also like to thank the teams that they played today and throughout the season, and wish them all the best! Thank you to all the referees and everyone that have been involved.”
The last two games of the day were the title deciders between Sheffield FC (White) and Wheatley Wanderers; the first game was drawn, but Wheatley took the win in the second game to clinch a well-deserved title win by just six points from Sheffield FC (White) and earn themselves a champagne soaking from their loyal supporters! (photos on the medal page at www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com
Wheatley’s Chris Pow played in both games. “In the first game, Sheffield started really strongly and scored an early goal,” Chris reported. “We rallied together, made a few changes and played a lot better. Sean scored in the second half, and Sheffield lost their composure.”
“In our second game, Asten scored in the first half of a really competitive match,” Chris added, “we defended well, with Josh in goal being hardly tested. We remain unbeaten in the League, though we’ve had a few tough games.”
So, in a hugely competitive League, Club Doncaster Titans (Red) took third place, three points clear of Aston Swallownest, with City Knights Blue enjoying that one win and two draws.
Wheatley and Sheffield received their medals at the final whistle – congratulations to both teams.
League One 7’s -Final Table
|1||Wheatley Wanderers SYACL||8||6||2||0||6||20|
|2||Sheffield FC White (Disability)||8||4||2||2||2||14|
|3||Club Doncaster Titans FC (Adult) Red||8||3||1||4||-1||10|
|4||Aston Swallownest Juniors Disability Tea||8||2||1||5||-3||7|
|5||City Knights Blue||8||1||2||5||-4||5|
With the medals and trophies wrapped up for the 7-a-side teams, next week sees the climax of the 5-a-side season at Goals Sheffield. As always, our reporters will be there to capture the action; and you can keep up with the latest news and reports at www.southyorkshireabilitycountsleague.com or our Twitter account @SYorksACL.
In the meantime, it’s congratulations to all our seven a side players, coaches, and supporters, with a massive thanks to Sean and his referees.