Sunday, 24 July 2016

THE66POW updated fixtures 2016-17

All fixtures are subject to change, sometimes at short notice; such is the flexible and tenuous nature of pre-season planning and my own OTT impetuousness nature. 
Updated Sunday 24th  July 2016 at 18.45PM
Mon 25 July - Gainsborough Trinity v Handsworth Parramore - PSF - 7.30pm
Tue 26 July - Retford United v Rossington Main - PSF - 7.45pm
Wed 27 July - Maltby Main v Ollerton - PSF - 7.45pm
Thu 28 July - AFC Emley v Frickley Athletic - PSF - 7.45pm
Fri 29 July - Handsworth Parramore v Sheffield United - 7.45pm
Sat 30 July - Worksop Town v Mansfield Town - PSF - 3pm
Sat 30 July - Doncaster Belles v Birmingham City Ladies - FAWSL - 6.30pm
Mon 1 Aug - Handsworth Parramore v Ossett Town - PSF - 7.45pm
Tue 2 Aug - Kiveton Park v Rossington Main - PSF - 6.30pm
Wed 3 Aug - Selby Town v FC Halifax Town - PSF - 7.45pm
Fri 5 Aug - Rossington Main v Ilkeston - PSF - 7.30pm
Sat 6 Aug - Mansfield Town v Oldham Athletic - FLYA - Venue & KO TBC
Sat 6 Aug - Maltby Main v Squires Gate - FA Cup EPR - 3pm
Sun 7 Aug - AFC Emley v Athersley Recreation - FA Cup EPR - 3pm
Tue 9 Aug - Teversal v Athersley Recreation - NCEL LC2
Wed 10 Aug - Mansfield Town v Blackburn Rovers - EFL Cup - 7.45pm
Sat 13 Aug - Leeds United v Birmingham City - EFL Championship - 3pm
Tue 16 Aug - Mansfield Town v Yeovil Town - EFL Div 2 - 7.45pm
Sat 20 Aug - In London and open to suggestions - 3pm
Tue 23 Aug - Handsworth Parramore v Liversedge - NCEL Prem - 7.45pm
Wed 24 Aug - Athersley Recreation v Harrogate Railway Athletic - 7.45pm
Sat 27 Aug - Morning game - Awaiting FLYA Cup draw
Sat 27 Aug  - Maltby Main v AFC Mansfield 0 - NCEL Prem - 3pm
Tue 30 Aug - Rainworth MW v Cleethorpes Town - NCEL Prem
Wed 31 Aug - AFC Mansfield v Albion Sports - NCEL Prem
Sat 3 Sep - Burton Albion v Mansfield Town - FLYA - Venue KO TBC
Sat 3 Sep - Armthorpe Welfare v AFC Mansfield - NCEL Prem - 3pm
Tue 6 Sep - Nostell MW v Grimsby Borough - NCEL Div 1 - 7.45pm
WEd 7 Sep - Ollerton Town v Rossington Main - NCEL Div 1 - 7.45pm
Sat 10 Sep - Morning game - Awaiting FLYA Cup draw
Sat 10 Sep - Ollerton Town v Retford United - FA Vase 1QR - 3pm
Tue 12 Sep - Retford United v AFC Mansfield - NCEL Prem
Sat 17 Sep - Mansfield Town v Grimsby Town - FLYA - Venue & KO TBC
Sat 24 Sep - Penistone Church v Hall Road Rangers - NCEL Div 1 -3pm
Sat 1 Oct - Mansfield Town v Doncaster Rovers - FLYA - Venue & KO TBC
To be continued, several more midweek games pending.
And: Several NMU19L, Evo-Stik League, CMFL, EMCL, West Yorkshire League, Humber League, FA Vase, FA Cup, FAWSL and EFL fixtures will be added in due course.

Hibernian 1 v Birmingham City 0 - PSF

Sunday 24th July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at Easter Road
Hibernian (0) 1
James Keatings 63
Birmingham City (0) 0
Admission £10.
A police escort and a really refreshing downpour of rain joined us, as we quietly and respectfully ventured up Leith Walk and along London Road, before milling around on Easter Road.
The game was fairly dull and uninspiring, with the visitors showing very little in the way of creativity, while Hibs, though showing the odd flash of endeavour, failed to take advantage of a lacklustre Blues performance.
I've seen some damn good pre-season games to date this year, but this wasn't one of them.
On sixty three minutes James Keatings netted the only goal of the game with a well taken shot on the turn from a difficult angle.
Blues Andy Shinnie couldn't believe it when he wasn't awarded a penalty after Alex Harris chopped him down inside the home side's area and... oh bugger it!
I'm sure you've got better things to do on a Sunday evening than read about a Hibees win.
The free wi-fi on Waverley Station is good and I'm stocked up with provisions for the journey home.
My car is parked in York, which means I'll have a hours drive home when I get there, but it slashed the cost of travel by around two thirds doing it that way.
Please feel free to come down to the railway station in York around 8.30pm and point at me and mock my lifestyle choices saying : "Look there, that sad bastard is doing a 500+ mile round trip just to watch a friendly"
For the record, I'm here because I wanted to be here... and yes, I'm beyond help! What's your excuse?
I'm not even sure that the bus spotters I just passed on Princes Street before dropping down onto the station would understand my plight.
Right, nobody text me or call until I get home, because my phone battery is virtually kaput.
Away days, it's a way of life.
THE66POW. Waverley Station, Edinburgh 17:51PM Sunday 24.7.16
FT: Hibernian 1 v Birmingham City 0

Saturday, 23 July 2016

Maltby Main 2 v Frickley Athletic 3 - PSF

Saturday 23rd July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at Muglet Lane, Maltby
Maltby Main (2) 2
Jack Binney 38, Jordan Poole 40
Frickley Ahletic (0) 3
Luke Hinsley 57, Nathan Curtis 67, Tom Guest 90
Admission £5
For Flickr photo group from this game click HERE
Our John
Maltby and South Elmsall (Frickley) are two of my favourite places in the whole universe.
In fact, if I ever win the lottery, I'm going to buy a luxurious retirement home in Maltby, but if I get four numbers up, I'll buy two in South Elmsall instead.
There are those who say that both these clubs were punching well above their weight to finish in the higher echelons of their respective leagues last season, but their detractors would do well to keep their guard up this time around too.
Wilf Race - Maltby chairman and ex manager
The host side originally formed as Maltby Main as long ago as 1916, but sadly the club folded for a short while during the 1950's, but reformed as Maltby Miners Welfare and played under that moniker until they reverted to the Maltby Main name again in 1996.
Current club chairman Wilf Race, has had two spells managing the team in: 2001-02 and again in 2005-06.
I'll spare you the complete league history of 'the Miners', but they having been promoted back into the NCEL Premier Division in 2004, they have maintained their status at that level ever since.
Signing on the dotted line and the
 boundary for Frickley Athletic
Frickley were officially founded in 1910, though there is evidence of a club called Frickley Colliery Athletic being in existenceas long ago as 1908. Formerly known as Frickley Colliery, before settling on Frickley Athletic in 1974.
The club finished as runners up in the Alliance Premier League in 1985-86, later to be known as the Football Conference and currently called the National League. In those heady days of 1985-86 'the Blues' also reached the third round of the FA Cup, before going out of the competition against Rotherham United at Westfield Lane, who they also lost against in a replayed first round game back in the 1971-72 season.
I possibly (though not probably) shed several pounds today (not that you'd have noticed, before somebody else says it), just watching this game, on such a stifling and warm afternoon in the people's republic of south Yorkshire; so it must have been very trying and tiring for the players, even though they were afforded the luxury of water breaks midway through both halves.
The two managers very kindly took the time out prior to the game to write down their respective team line ups for me, which was greatly appreciated. Ta very much Spencer and Karl.
Chatting to Spencer Fearn before the game, he assured me that today's run out was all about preparation and building up match fitness for the season ahead and that the result was immaterial.
Phwoar! A mystery blonde Yorkshire strumpet
modelling the line ups for this afternoon's game
The heat must have been getting to the Maltby fans today, because they were so subdued that the game was nearly two minutes old,  before the assistant referee in front of them started copping for some creative usage of the post watershed end of the English language.
"It's f***ing character building liner, get used to it!"
He hadn't actually got anything wrong, it was merely a friendly warning shot across the bows, just in case!
Steve Hopewell and Ryan Carroll both tried to force a couple of  early openings for the home side, but Frickley's Under 19 keeper Josh Diggles was out quickly to clear the danger both times.
The visitors left back Josh Grant and Maltby's Jordan Poole seemed to be relishing getting stuck into each other out on the touchline, in one of the more competitive sub plots that was unfolding around the main event.
John Lufudu almost opened the scoring for 'the Blues' (well, the Yellows, if you must) with a low, stinging shot from around twenty yards out, but Danny Rusling got down to his left and got his body behind the ball and held onto it at the second, or possibly even third attempt.
Royale Johnson exchanged passes with Lufudu before delivering a cross towards Tyler Williams, but Reece Wesley was well placed to clear things up for Maltby with a towering header.
Sam Akeroyd took responsibility for taking a free kick from just outside the Miners goal area, but must've wished he hadn't when he scuffed his shot and Rusling gathered the ball with ease down by his left stick.
During a lively spell of pressure from the visitors, the workaholic Lufudu threaded a pass into the path of Williams, who ought to have done better as he nudged the ball wide of the target from close range.
Dan Reilly was a tower of strength for Maltby today, combining his defensive duties with a box to box eagerness to get involved in the home side's forward play too... and it was he who almost broke the deadlock when his knock down fell awkwardly for Diggles and Rhys Meynell had to clear the ball off the goal-line.
The Miners advanced into Frickley Territory again with Jack Binney motoring forward before linking up with Eagle who slipped the ball forward to Hopewell, but Bailey Gooda denied the Maltby frontman with a last ditch interception.
Spencer Fearn's side were enjoying a spell of pressure against their Evo-Stik Leagur opponents and Carroll saw his shot on the run turned behind for a corner by Meynell as the visitors closed ranks.
At the other end, Nathan Curtis failed to connect properly with Johnson's right wing cross and nodded the ball harmlessly wide.
Reilly, renowned for his prowess in the air, had a crack at goal from twelve yards, but the destination of the ball proved to be more problem-some for the linesman than the visitors goalkeeper, but the big number 5 atoned for his error a few minutes later, when Corey Eagle floated a free kick into the Frickley goalmouth from the halfway line and Reilly picked out Binney with a downward header and he gratefully thumped it past Diggles from close range on 38 minutes.
Almost from the restart Maltby scored again, when Eagle played a sideways pass to his right to Poole, who nicked the ball past Grant's attempted challenge and sprinted forward for forty yards,before planting the ball past Diggles. There was very little that the young keeper could've done to stop that one.
Williams worked himself a yard of space on the edge of Maltby's area, but when he got his shot away, he was narrowly off target and the visitors were lucky not to concede a third goal just before the break, when Reilly knocked down Eagle's right wing corner to Ryan Poole whose first shot was charged down and second attempt from the rebound ended up somewhere near the allotments on Outgang Lane.
HT: Maltby 2 v Frickley 0
Although this was only a friendly, Karl Rose's side had obviously had their pride dented towards the end of the first half and they came out after the interval, looking determined to impose themselves on the game more than they had done thus far.
Grant hit a shot from outside the area that deflected over the bar... and he took the resulting corner himself, picking out Meynell who headed the ball also cleared the crossbar.
Frickley were pushing forward with predatory intentions and a goal looked inevitable as Maltby were forced to implement an all hands to the pumps rearguard action.
Lufudu found the Miners defence to be in a determined mood as he looked to work a way through their crowded ranks and Gary Hibbert blocked his path and knocked the ball away, but unfortunately for the robust defender, his clearance fell to Luke Hinsley 25 yards from goal, who, without hesitation, shot first time and halved the deficit with a quality strike.
Hopewell was close to regaining a two goal cushion for the home side, but saw his shot turned away round the right hand post.
From their next attack, Frickley were on level terms, with the simplest of goals as Curtis arrived unnoticed on the edge of Maltby's penalty area to head home Williams' free kick.
John Ballington came to Maltby's rescue, hoofing the ball away to safety after Hartshorn had nodded a looping header over Rusling.
Hinsley charged down an attempted clearance from Hibbert but couldn't keep his shot down.
Hibbert was in action again soon afterwards, intercepting Sigworth's break down the right flank. The Frickley substitute has a more famous sister, Jess,who plays for Doncaster Belles.
Reilly does what he does best, clearing Williams' cross deep into the Maltby box.
Tom Guest delivered a pinpoint corner kick to the back post, where the unlikely figure of his manager popped up to head the ball wide.
Having had the better of the first half, Maltby were now coming under the cosh a bit and Ballington was forced into whacking the ball away to safety, when Jake Ellam carved out an opening with a measured through ball towards Sigworth from out on the right flank.
Frickley manger Karl Rose in action
Ellam was soon up in support of his attack again, but his route to goal was blocked by Jordan Poole, who along with Eagle had a great game for the Miners day, in my humble estimation.
Williams was flattened by Reilly as he tried to break into the Maltby area from the left flank and after dusting himself down and having a quick count to see if all of his limbs were still intact, he took the resulting free kick himself, but Rusling rose to collect the ball unchallenged and the danger was gone.
But in stoppage time, Williams was back and showed some neat touches, dancing through the Maltby defence on the byline, before rolling a precision pass across the face of the goal that only needed a touch and Guest provided it and snatched a late, late win for Frickley in the 90 somethingth minute.
It was too late for Maltby to go looking for a draw now, but as their manager had said, results at this time of the year aren't important.
It was a tough workout for both teams and an enjoyable spectacle for the spectators who'd turned out to bask in the un-British climate.
Neither Maltby nor Frickley ever tackle as if football is a non contact sport, even in these sort of games, so there will be a few sore legs about in the morning no doubt.
FT: Maltby Main 2 v Frickley Athletic 3
Steady girls!
Maltby club secretary John Mills in action

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Worksop Town 0 v Gainsborough Trinity 0 - PSF

Thursday 21st July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at the Windsor Foodservice Stadium
Worksop Town  (0) 0
Gainsborough Trinity (0) 0
Admission £5. Programme (inc. a THE66POW centre spread) £1
Attendance 215
Dubious programme content herein. Mind those staples!
I would imagine that Worksop would've been happy with the draw and a clean sheet, given how they spent much of the game absorbing a lot of pressure, as Trinity dominated for long spells of the game.
And that balance of play swung even more in favour of the visitors, when they introduced the former Tigers crowd favourite Jake Scott from the bench during the second half.
Following on from a great shift filling in at right back against Lincoln City on Monday night, Scott was on top of his game again, giving the home crowd a painful reminder of the bite their midfield has been missing since he moved on last season. Mark Shaw's side recovered from a number of high profile departures from the club and adapted well, but never really got over the untimely loss of Jake to Bradford Park Avenue, who by way of the coincidences of football fates, face Gainsborough on the opening day of the 'Conference North' season.
Back in the days when Jesus was still a lad, Worksop Town took the fateful decision to move out of their three sided Central Avenue ground, that was attached to the adjacent cricket club, in a prime location right in the middle of the town centre, and they actually moved into the Northolme for a while and Gainsborough Trinity became their landlords.
I'll skip over what happened to the travelling Tigers in the interim, given that I have imposed a 55,000 per post word count limit for this season.
This fixture illustrated just how much of a rapid tumble Worksop have taken in recent times, given that Trinity, who were the Tigers local rivals when the two clubs competed against each at the upper end of the non league scale, are a forward looking and innovative National League North club these days, while the home side ply their trade in the NCEL, three levels further down the pyramid, at a ground they are currently renting, that used to be their own.
And had it not been for their goalkeeper Alan Graves, they could have been on the wrong end of a good going over tonight too.
I liked the look of Loftus at right back for Worksop, he marked out his territory and his movement on the right flank and distribution were good too.
But it was Trinity who ruled the roost for the majority of the game, compressing the game into the oppositions half, stifling any attacking intentions and effectively silencing the Tigers roar.
But alas, they couldn't turn that territorial advantage into goals and although much of that was down to the tenacity of Mark Shaw's sides no nonsense defending, with Alex Pugh sitting in front of the two centre halves to great effect, proving to be a successful aspect of the night for the home side, if the visitors had upped the ante just a notch more and shown the same kind of clinical finishing touches they had done against their county rivals Lincoln City just two nights ago, then the final outcome could've been much different.
That said, Ashley Worsfold wasn't very far away when he rose to nod Matt Thornhill's free kick wide of the mark in the opening exchanges.
Adam Scott, did however almost knock the wind out of Trinity's sails, when he received the ball from a Loftus throw in out on the right flank, turned quickly, cut inside and darted off towards the visitors goal, only to see his effort from 18 yards fizz millimetres (not even inches) wide of the right hand post with Jake Eastwood in the visitors goal, beaten all ends up.
But it was only one of very few chances that Worksop created, as James Reid and Matt Thornhill dictated the game at the other end of the pitch, while Jake Picton bombarded the right channel with a succession of quality balls in behind the Tigers back line. If Jacob Hazel and/or Laim Davis had been on from the start for Dominic Roma's side, this game would've over by half time.
Trinity were sparring with their Nottinghamshire neighbours, but stopped short of delivery a knock out punch, although just before the interval, the ever lively and very busy Graves pulled off a worldly when he tipped Thornhill's long range thumping shot over the bar.
HT: Worksop Town 0 v Gainsborough Trinity 0
The vast majority of the second half was played out in one half of the pitch, but it gave the Tigers of defence plenty of practice time together and when all is said and done, that is one area of their game that was often their undoing last season.
The next page of scribbled notes, are all about Graves, keeping the visitors at bay with a string of saves, some of them at the second attempt, but keeping them out none the less, which bodes well for the season ahead and gives 'Showie' options, when the club captain and first choice keeper isn't available.
Mark Fereday forced a save out of Eastwood with a cross cum shot, when he might have benefitted from having a team mate alongside him offering support.
Graves was withdrawn with three minutes to go, probably so the ever faithful Tigers support could show him their appreciation for the heroic shift he'd put in.
I was hoping to see Josh Dacre, Worksop's recent young signing, get a decent run out tonight, but he only made a cameo role at full back for the last few minutes. Having seen Josh in action endless times in the colours of Handsworth Parramore and Sheffield FC at development team level, I can vouch for the fact that he is more than ready to make the step up to first team football, but he needn't think that I'm the forgiving kind or that I'll ever forget the goal he netted against Mansfield Town's youngsters.
Anyway, game over, Gainsborough had by far the better of it but couldn't quite put the finishing touches to a decent performance, while Ryan Graves was probably man of the match overall, which speaks volumes about which goalmouth the ball spent the majority of it's time in.
FT: Tigers 0 v Holy Blues 0

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Ollerton Town 2 v Kimberley MW 3 - PSF

Wednesday 20th July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at the Lane, Ollerton
Ollerton Town (1) 2
Bingham 8, Munson 86
Kimberley Miners Welfare (1) 3
Grigg 29
Westcarr 57, 73
Admission £2
On the whole, probably a fair result all told, as a slightly out of sorts Ollerton side came up against Kimberley, who were obviously well up for this encounter... particularly in the second half, when they were actually the better side.
But from the outset it looked as if the home side would cruise to a comfortable win and when Lewis Bingham paced forward twenty yards before chipping the ball over the advancing visiting keeper's head and secured the opening goal via the right hand upright, the home crowd were buoyant in anticipation of a first home win of the season for the NCEL's new boys.
Bingham opened up the visitors defence again via the same route, but instead of going for goal, he unselfishly opted to knock the ball to his right for Danny Wiltshire, but Stevenson cut out the pass and Kimberley cleared their lines.
Both teams had somewhat optimistic penalty appeals waved away, while Chris Hewitt, in the process of trying to get the ball forward for the home side, was getting kicked from pillar to post in the middle of the park as receiving no small amount of close attention.
Westcarr & Grigg, Kimberley's goalscorers
get the ball rolling at the Lane
He was withdrawn at half time by the home side's management, who wisely decided the last thing he needed on the verge of the new season, was an overly physical game.
Kimberley couldn't be faulted for their effort and just before the half hour mark, Griggs hit a low angled shot towards Ollerton's goal and the bounced deceived the trialist goalkeeper Hankey as the ball evaded him and ended up in the back of the net.
The effect of the goal was that Kimberley's spirits were lifted and they raised their game another notch and were unlucky not to be in front at the break when Hankey pulled off a vital save from Slade. Not all of them you understand, just the shouty singer with the big top hat festooned in mirrors.
HT: Ollerrton Town 1 v Kimberley MW 1
8 minutes, Lewis Bingham, 1-0.
What could possibly go wrong?
Bingham threatened the visitors goal right from the off, but as he rounded Bodders with the ball, his touch was too heavy and as a consequence he had to shoot from a tight angle and Webster had got back to cover his keeper and cleared the ball off the line.
But it was the visitors who were looking like the most likely team to add goals and in the 57th minute, Westcarr ran onto a well measured long pass from Lench, took the ball down with one touch and planted it firmly past Hankey with the second. A quality strike, that even the Ollerton supporters applauded.
Kimberley were riding on the crest of a wave as Ollerton were forced to defend deeply and Westcarr claimed another goal to put the visitors three one ahead after 73 minutes, when Lewis threaded a through ball to the live-wire striker.
The game should have been over as a contest when Dockwray upended Lewis inside the penalty area. But Hankey did well to keep Lewis' firmly struck spot kick out.
It's a free country and if he chooses to
go out wearing a nappy, that's his choice
Inside the final five minutes, Munson pulled a goal back for Ollerton, when he beat Bodders from six yards, but having done the difficult bit, the visitors were in no mood to let 'Town' get back on level terms now and they held on, for what in my unbiased opinion, was a hard fought and well deserved win.
Ollerton shouldn't be overly concerned about having lost three pre-season games in a row, especially with a depleted side, because it's still only effectively dress rehearsal time, but Dave Winter will have seen a few creases that need ironing out, while on the Kimberley bench, Ian Deakin looked very pleased with his teams efforts... and so he should be.
FT: Ollerton Town 2 v KImberley MW 2
EMCL side Kimberley looked very impressive at times and quite physical too, I haven't visited the Stag Ground for a while, so we'll have to organize an expedition over that way again soon.
And it goes without saying, I'll be at the Lane fairly often over the course of the season seeing as it's only a ten minute drive from my swanky penthouse suite in the sprawling metropolis of East Retford.

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Gainsborough Trinity 3 v Lincoln City 3 - PSF

Tuesday 19th July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at the Martin & Co. Arena, Northolme
Gainsborough Trinity (3) 3
Jacob Hazel 10, Liam Davis 22, 27
Lincoln City (2) 3 Johnny Margetts 5, 8, Matt Rhead 57
Amission £8. Programme £.2.50 - covering four home PSF games
If teams produce end to end action like we witnessed tonight on the Northolme, games like this are in serious danger of getting friendly matches a good name.
Resplendent in their pre-season kit, which is being sold to raise funds for 'Pancreatic Cancer UK', Trinity allowed their visitors to race into a two goal lead early on, but turned things around to such a degree that when Matt Rhead netted the Imps third goal, it was in the form of a well taken equalising strike, to pull his side level at three apiece.
Ironically it was a former Trinity loan signing, Johnny Margetts who set the ball rolling for the Imps with both early goals, his first with a neatly executed lob from just outside the goal area and three minutes later, straight after the Imps keeper Richard Walton had denied an immediate equaliser for the 'Holy Blues', Margetts netted again, when his shot came back off Johnathon Hedge and he drilled the ball into the back of the net from the rebound.
Having inadvertently grabbed an assist for a goal at one end, Hedge claimed on at the other, when his long pass forward picked out Jacob Hazel, who took the ball down well and headed straight for goal, before placing the ball past Watson on ten minutes.
Wow! If the goal scoring carried on at this rate, those lovable Retford Imps (see bottom picture), would need all of their six toes on both feet to keep count.
Hazel had another attempt from wide right, but his shot was blocked, however the loose ball fell to Liam Davis. who cracked in a great strike from just outside the box, to level things up after twenty two minutes and silence the: "Your so shit it's unbelievable!" chants, emanating from a clutch of young Imps fans congregated behind the goal that Lincoln were attacking.
Five minutes later, Davis struck again, pouncing to take advantage of some woeful defending from the visitors and the turnaround was complete, as Trinity soared from two goals behind to three-two up inside the space of just nineteen minutes.
City finished the first half pushing forward in pursuit of a third goal of their own, but Johnathon Hedge stood up well to their efforts and laughed at Matt Rhead as he tried to intimidate him, by blocking his path at set pieces, as the home side held on to their half time lead.
HT: Gainsborough Trinity 3 v Lincoln City 2
Tonight's game was originally billed as a Lincolnshire Senior Cup tie, but Gainsborough lost at Lincoln United and were eliminated from the competition, so tonight's encounter still went ahead, but as a friendly.
Jake Scott, playing out of position at right back, did very well for Trinity tonight. they've made some very astute signings and will be looking to improve on last year's final league position.
With local bragging rights at stake, City looked to get back into the game with a strong start to the second half, with Hedge being kept on his toes as Trinity threatened to buckle.
That man Margetts was involved again. when he headed a corner down into the path of Matt Rhead, who crashed an unstoppable volley through the crowded goalmouth and into the bottom corner of the net.
Despite the heat and humidity, the tempo of the game was barely letting up, but no further goals were forthcoming, despite Hazel finishing well from a great through ball from Matt Thornhill that must've been a very close call.
Of course this being a practice game, the rhythm was disrupted somewhat late on as a lengthy queue of substitutes entered the fray at sporadic intervals, but you couldn't blame anyone for wanting a breather and a sit down with a cold drink on such a muggy night.
FT: Gainsborough Trinity 3 v Lincoln City 3
Retford Imps Rouges Galley. Banjo out of shot.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Mansfield Town 2 v Bolton Wanderers 1 - PSF

Saturday 16th July 2016
Pre-Season Friendly
at the One Call Stadium, Field Mill
Mansfield Town (2) 2
Danny Rose 11, Krystian Pearce 23
Bolton Wanderers (0) 1
Zach Clough 54
Admission £10
Programme £1 - Covering today's game and Tuesday night's visit of Hull City... and it also folds out into a 2016-17 fixtures poster. All good stuff, eh!?
Attendance - 1481 (216 in the away end)
Aerial panoramic view of the Stags innovative poster/programme
Mansfield Town:
Scott Shearer (Brian Jensen 66), Rhys Bennett (Adi Yussuf 80), Krystian Pearce (Corbin Shires 73), George Taft (Louis Danquah 79), Mal Benning (Adam Chapman 43), Lee Collins, Kevan Hurst (Mitch Rose 67), Chris Clements (Jamie McGuire 75), Ashley Hemmings (CJ Hamilton 57), Danny Rose (James Baxendale 59), Matt Green (Pat Hoban 59).
Bolton Wanderers:
Amos (Howard 46), Moxey (Honeyball 73), Dervite (Wheater 64), Beevers (Finney 64), Vela (Pratley 64), Taylor (Clayton 46), Clough (Woolery 64), Davies (Walker 70), Trotter (Spearing 64), Proctor (Madine 64), Wilson (Spooner 78).
Unused subs - Twardzik, Newell
As we passed through Clipstone, just by the old colliery site, mien spouse let out an urgent cry of: "Stop here, you need to pull over!"
I diligently complied and came to an abrupt halt, while asking 'er indoors 'whatever is the problem!?'
"Oh, there isn't one" she retorted and alighted from my motor conveyance brandishing her mobile phone in her hand exclaiming gleefully, "The old pit is awash with Pokemon, I need to catch them all!"
Err... no she doesn't!
There is a time and a place for her juvenile excesses, but disrupting my trip to Field Mill on a Saturday afternoon isn't one of them, so I coerced her back into the car by promising her faithfully, cross my heart and hope to die n' all that, that the Major Oak, the former home of the man of the people that was Robin Hood, was swarming with fictitious Japanese cartoon figures, including some really rare ones and that we would stop off there on the way home.
Truth be told, I'd actually no intention whatsoever of cutting back through Edwinstowe really, but my little white lie did buy me some time and offer a temporary solution to her increasingly odd behaviour.
I despair at what is happening to this country and the vicarious escapist pursuits that adults are indulging in, while turning a blind eye to potential powder keg of lies, spin, political extortion and deceit.
Maybe I am morphing into a Victor Meldrew type character and accelerating downhill quite fast in that general direction, but FFS!
What is the world coming to?
Pokemon is for kids, end of!
And though it is great that children are latching onto a new craze app called 'Pokemon Go', that gets them out and about in the fresh air, instead of vegging out in front of their game consoles and hogging the big telly in the front room... as regards the participation of so called grown ups in the children's game that is sweeping the nation: "I don't beleve it!"
Get a bleedin' life suckers!
Out on the actual field of play, where a grown up game was taking place, 'twas a performance full of promise from the Stags this afternoon, most definitely their best outing so far this pre-season by some way, going on the evidence of the games I've seen thus far.
Of course it would be unwise to get carried away by a good showing against a League 1 club in a friendly match, but Adam Murray's preparations do seem to be taking shape at the correct pace for his team to peak at just the right time.
Hope springs eternal all around. Well, at least I'm cautiously optimistic that a play off place is a realistic target this season. even if you're not.
Mansfield Town certainly have a better team/squad than they did have twelve months ago at the outset of the 2015-16 term, when I predicted (correctly for once) a mid table finish, or thereabouts, even the the Stags surpassed expectations and nuzzled in among the front runners for a while and almost had us believing that they were serious contenders.
With the current team, I would be genuinely disappointed if they don't stay the course and secure a top eight finish this time around.
After making a lively opening to the game, Mansfield went ahead on 11 minutes when Clements knocked the ball forward to Matt Green, who took the ball down on his chest, before seeing off a clumsy and mistimed challenge and nudging a sideways pass to Danny Rose, who only needed the slightest of touches to open the scoring from close range.
(D) Rose was involved again on 23 minutes, when he was fouled out on the right flank and from the resulting free kick Mal Benning picked Krystian Pearce out and he directed the ball into the back of the net and beyond the reach of Ben Amos, from the edge of the six yard box.
Mark Beevers, the Bolton skipper came off second best when he tried to lunge into Green with an unnecessary foul near the halfway line, but stayed on the ground requiring treatment himself, while the Mansfield striker rode the challenge and amused himself replacing divots in the pitch, while his would be assailant writhed and winced in pain.
Just before the break, Scott Shearer did well to keep Mark Davies at bay with a fine save, when it had looked odds on that the Trotters were about to half the deficit.
It was refreshing to hear the home crowd making a fair amount of appreciative noise as the teams left the pitch for their half time oranges and vapor rub.
HT: Stags 2 v Wanderers 0
After having by far the better of things in the first half, the Stags found the visitors to be a much more lively and dangerous proposition during the second half, but having demonstrated no small amount of attacking prowess thus far, they showed their collective defensive mettle in the second half, where the visitors, who were relegated from the Championship at the end of last term and currently rebuilding under the leadership of their new management team of Phil Parkinson and Steve Parkin (the former Mansfield player and manager), only breached the home side's back line when they took advantage of
an individual error from Adam Chapman, when he gave the ball away cheaply to Max Clayton, who in a flash teed a precision ball into the path of Zach Clough who planted the ball into the very corner of the net.
It was good to see Louis Danquah and Corbin Shires getting some more first team minutes under their belts late in the game, with even more of the Under 18 side penciled in to be involved on Tuesday night v Hull City too, even though the Stags veteran keeper Brian Jensen had to save the latter players blushes, when he bravely blocked a shot but very nearly deflected the ball past the veteran keeper.
All in all, a very encouraging run out for the Stags. with several noteworthy stand out performances combining greatly to the overall team effort.
I'll pick out Rhys Bennett, Mal Benning and Krystian Pearce as the stars of the show, from what was a very pleasing afternoon's entertainment.
More of the same please.
FT: Mansfield Town 2 v Bolton Wanderers 1