The Under 14 Boys take on Shropshire tonight, 23rd of April at Brocton FC KO 7-00pm.
Admission is £3 for adults and £1 concessions.
The Under 16 Girls will take on current national champions Nottinghamshire in the semi finaks of the MCF competition on Tuesday 28th of April at Stafford Town FC with a 7-00pm KO.
Admission charges of £3 for adults and £1 concessions will apply as will the usual dress code. Players should meet as near to six as possible.
Manager Kieran Newey has named the following squad for the game:
The Under 18 boys game against Nottinghamshire scheduled for 16th of April at Stafford Town FC has been cancelled as Nottinghamshire are unable to raise a side. They have conceded the game to Staffordshire which means that the Under 18 boys will play in the Midland Counties Federation final against Worcestershire or national champions Humberside.
The boys will attempting to retain the trophy that they won last year and Staffordshire will be appering in their fourth final in six years, testament to the skills of their team managers.
The under 14 Boys will play West Midlands on Tuesday 14th of April at Stafford Town FC with a 7-00pm KO.
Manager David Ebberson has informed the squad and they should report for 6-00pm. Usual dress code applies.
There will be an admission charge of £3 for adults and £1 for concessions.
The final MCF game against Shropshire has been confirmed for 23rd of April at Brocton FC with a 7-00pm KO.
The Under 18 Boys squad for the Midland Counties Federation semi final game against Nottinghamshire will take place on Thursday 16th of April and the squad named below should report to Manager Mark Culverhouse at 6-00pm at Stafford Town FC. The usual dress code applies and availability should also be confirmed in the usual way.
1 Brandon McEleny
2 Cameron Bliss
3 Alex Russon
4 George Dixon
5 Kalum Betts
6 Ben Douglas
7 Joe Minton
8 Albie Jones
9 Callum Street
10 Malaki Norford
11 Oliver Ritchie
12 Jack Alexander
13 Fletcher Rushton
14 Keenan Powell
15 Macauley Rowe
16 Will Carney
17 Ryan Nesbitt
18 Joe Burke
Admission will be £3 for adults and £1 concessions.
The Under 18 game against Nottinghamshire which was postponed because of the weather has been provisionally arranged for the 16th of April at Stafford Town FC.
The squad selected for that game should acknowledge their availability in the usual way. More details will be provided once events recieve final confirmation from Nottinghamshire.
The postponed Under 15 and Under 16 girls Schools Finals will take place on Tuesday 28th April at Stafford Town FC with the Under 15 game starting at 5-15 and the under 16 game starting at 6-45pm.
The Under 15 final pits Kingsmead from Cannock against Thomas Alleynes from Uttoxeter, whilst the Under 16 game will see De Ferrers Academy take on Blythe Bridge HS. These two teams will also meet in the Under 13 Girls final taking place on the 20th of April and on the same night the under 13 boys of Wilnecote will meet St Edwards from Leek.
The Under 16 girls MCF semi final has been provisionally arranged for the 27th but confirmation from opponents Nottinghamshire is still awaited.
The Under 14 boys wrap up their programme with home matches against West Midlands on the 14th of April at Stafford Town and provisionally against Shropshire at Brocton FC on the 23rd of April.
That just leaves the Under 18 semi final against Nottinghamshire which has provisionally been booked for the 16th of April at Staffford Town FC
The Under 12 Cup Final between de Ferrers Academy from Burton on Trent and Blythe Bridge School was history in the making, as it was the first time that the game was 9v9. The new rule brought in by the FA without any forethought on where pitches would be available, or where the goalposts would be correct size, meant that the final was played at Oldfields Hall School in Uttoxeter instead of a stadium pitch which all other finals take place.
The early kick off also meant that it was very difficult for parents and friends to attend the game and the brilliant atmosphere of Monday could never be repeated for this final. However the blustery conditions with frequent squally showers did not detract from an excellent game involving two sides who did their level best to play attractive football.
There was very little to choose between the sides and chances were at a premium as defences dominated the game.
0-0 at half time and it looked as though extra time would be called upon when a great through ball was clinically finished by the outstanding Blythe Bridge player. Despite De Ferrers desperate attempts to bring back parity Blythe Bridge hung on for the victory and were able to lift the trophy at the end of what proved to be an enthralling encounter.
On Monday night Stafford Town FC hosted the finals of the Under 14 and Under 16 County Cup Finals in what proved to be one of the best night's school cup finals for many a long year. All that were involved in such a momentous evening deserve a huge amount of credit as the conditions were more suited to water polo than football.
The club had worked tirelessly to get the games on after the weekend deluge and the pitch was in near perfect condition when the first game began in what could be described as light rainfall.The game was contested between Trentham High School and John Taylor Academy and contest is an apt description as two heavyweights slugged it out in a match full of high quality football and drama.
Trentham started better and pushed John Taylor back as Trentham skipper Jack Bromfield pulled the strings in midfield. They took the lead with a stunning strike from 25 yards which left the John Taylor keeper clawing at fresh air as the ball rocketed into the net. As the conditions continued to deteriorate John Taylor esablished a foothold in the game as possession ebbed and flowed. 1-0 at half time.
John Taylor started the second period much better and equalised midway through the half. Their superior physical strength began to tell and it was Max Bird from John Taylor who was the dominant force controlling play and making surging runs from deep which was a constant threat to the Trentham back line. Trentham held firm and fulltime saw the sides tied at 1-1.
Extra time was a slog for both sides and as both teams began to feel the effects of the energy sapping ground it was John Taylor who found a solution to break the deadlock. It always felt as though it would take something special and so it proved to be when a free kick by Robson of John Taylor just had too much pace and power for the Trentham keeper and with minutes to go John Taylor led 2-1.
2-1 proved to be the final score and John Taylor claimed the trophy but every person who played, coached or watched the match was a winner. Everything that is good about schools football was displayed during that game, skill, resiliance, courage, sportsmanship of the highest order and respect for teamates and opponents. It was a privelage to have witnessed such a great game. The match officials, Cashel O'Neil, Jack Prescott and Josh Lindsey also deserve the highest praise for keeping a game going in such challenging conditions.
Unbelievably the second match on the night Trentham v Rawlett was an even higher class encounter than the first game. The conditions had deteriorated during the evening and the rain was falling horizontally driven on by an ever increasingly strong north westerly wind. The temperature was dropping and the referee, Jak Machin had doubts about starting the game.
Both matches due to be staged at Stafford Town FC on Tuesday 31st March
have been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch
As the season reaches its climax games are coming thick and fast. The Under 18 boys played Shropshire on Monday night at Thomas Telford and again suffering from late withdrawls, they drew 3-3 being pegged back in injury time having fought back to lead 3-2 from a two goal defecit. They will be attempting to match last seasons group on Monday 30th at Brocton FC when they are involved in a MCF semi final when they will host Nottinghamshire SFA with a 7-00pm KO. Admission will be £3 for adults and £1 concessions.
On the same night at Stafford Town the Under 14 and 16 boys Individual Schools Cup Finals will be taking place with Trentham School being involved in both games. The Under 14 game kicking off at 5-15pm against John Taylor Acdemy from Burton and District and then the Under 16's play Rawlett Academy from Tamworth kicking off at 6-45pm.
Admission to the games is £2 for adults and £1 concessions.
On Tuesday night the girls take centre stage when the Under 15 and 16 finals take place, again at Stafford Town FC. TheUnder 15 final, starting at 5-15pm will feature Kingsmead School fom Cannock who will play Alleynes High School from Uttoxeter whilst the Under 16 final will feature Blythe Bridge HS and De Ferrers Academy, this tie kicking off at 6-45pm. Admission charges are as for the boys finals.
Wednesday sees the Under 12 final being played at Oldfields Hall School in Uttoxeter where de Ferrers Academy will play Blythe Bridge with a 4-15 KO.
In a game of two contrasting halves Staffordshire took the three points on offer for their Midland Counties Federation fixture winning by 4-2. Freya Sammon manged the Staffordshire side in the absence of coach David Ebberson, aided by Kieran Newey and did an excellent job of leading the girls to their victory.
From the kick off Worcestershire attacked and almost scored, Staffordshire conceding a corner. After clearing the corner Staffordshire mustered their first attack and only good defending prevented an early breakthrough. The first goal was scored by Staffordshire in a breakaway and Shev Watson showed the Worcestershire defence a clean pair of heels and cooly slotted the ball past the keeper.Within five minutes the lead was doubled when a delightful cross was met by Lois Brindley at the back post who volleyed past a helpless guardian.
Not to be outdone, Worcestershire who always posed a threat going forward replied with a goal of their own but Staffordshire's two goal advantage was restablished when Emma Birch stabbed the ball home from close range. A Hannah Hampton goal added to the Staffordshire lead and at the break they looked like comfortable winners.
The second half was a complete contrast and Worcestershire set about Staffordshire by playing some good football and this linked to their superior strength and size caused the Staffs back line major problems. Worcestershire hit both posts and the Staffordshire keeper pulled off two fantastic close range saves before Worcestershire reduced the deficit. Staffordshire clung on and now lead the MCF table with an unbeaten record.The game was a credit to both sides and the crowd were treated to a feast of excellent football.
It was with a great sense of pride that I travelled to Dublin to watch three Staffordshire girls play for England in an Under 15 Invitation International against the Republic of Ireland at Home Farm FC, close to the centre of Dublin. On arrival at the ground it was great news to hear that all three girls were in the starting line up, Hannah Hampton in goal, Anna King at right back and Phoebe Warner in midfield. The girls attend Kingsmead School, Wolgarston School and Ounsdale respectively.
The game started in glorious sunshine, on a pitch showing signs of wear making ball control and passing difficult. England dominated possession from the off and the Irish were content to put bodies behind the ball, no doubt remembering the hiding from the match at Maidstone last season. Neither side provided a threat in the early stages with possession changing hands all too frequently, much to the frustrtion of management and spectators alike.
England gained an early corner which the Irish cleared without too many problems and England were becoming frustrated at their lack of penetration due to the massed Irish defence. The first real incident ocurred after 20 minutes when England skipper Niamh Cashin was injured in a tackle and was unable to continue. Anna King was handed the captains armband , another piece of history in the annals of Staffordshire Schools football.
Miri Taylor the substitute had an immediate impact playing a delightful throughball to Maddy Brant but she was unable to fashion a cross and the ball went out for a goal kick. Keeper Hannah Hampton was called into action to deal with several hopeful crosses as the Irish at last ventured out of their shells. The first half drew to a close without either goal ever being seriously threatened and the teams headed in at the break to listen to words of wisdom from the management team.
England made several changes at half time and they started very brightly with Molly Pike adding pace and power down the right flank which allowed the midfield craft of Phoebe Warner and Miri Taylor to come into play. England began to ask the Irish backline some serious questions and it seemed that it would only be a matter of time before England crafted a good enough opening to open the scoring. However the Irish girls were resolute in defence and despite constant probing they held fast until a piece of magic from Miri Tayloe allowed her to find space and she found the bottom corner of the net, beating the despairing dive of the Irish guardian in the 51st minute. England a goal to the good.
The Irish responded well and had a goal chalked off in the 60th minute when the assistant referee signalled that the ball had gone out of play from a corner before being bundled into the England net. Replacement keeper Jenny Myler made a fingertip save in what proved to be the Irish girls final effort and Phoebe Warner was denied by the crossbar in the dying seconds which would have given a scoreline more in keeping with the possession stats.
Full England Internationals Rachel Finnis Brown (Goalkeeping Coach ) and Ambassador Rachel Yankee, who have almost two hundred England caps between them, were extremely impressed with the overall performance of the girls and are looking forward to being involved and helping the girls in their quest to retain the Bob Doherty trophy, a British Isles Tournament, which takes place after Easter in Glasgow.
The photographs below show Anna and Phoebe with England Legends Racel Yankee and Rachel Finnis Brown,Hannah and Anna in action and the England squad singing the national anthem
Staffordshire Under 14 Girls entertain Worcestershire on Monday 23rd of March at Stafford town FC kick off at 7-00pm.
There will be an admission charge of £3 for adults and £1 concessions.
Players named below are asked to report at 6-00pm and the usual dress code applies.
The first individual schools'cup finals took place at Stafford Town FC last night. First up was St Margaret Ward from Stoke on Trent against Repton representing Burton and District Schools FA in the final of the Under 15 cup.
Repton started brightly and put SMW under early pressure but it was the Stoke team who led when a cross was clipped home leaving the Repton keeper helpless. SMW doubled their lead midway through the half and struck for a third time within minutes of the whistle which would signal the end of the first half. 3-0 was not a scoreline that refelected the possession stats but Repton were in danger of a mauling.
Repton came out in the second half of the game and produced a display full of grit and determination. They pulled a goal back and despite creating several half chances resolute defensive work from the SMW back four ensured that the trophy was heading to the Potteries.
Three Staffordshire girls will be on the plane to Dublin as members of ESFA England Under 15's squad on Friday.
Anna King from Wolgarston, Hannah Hampton from Kingsmead and Phoebe Warner from Ounsdale will be playing against the Republic of Ireland on Saturday at Home Farm FC. We wish them all well.
The Under 16 Boys and Under 15 Boys have finished their programmes in the Midland Counties leagues. The Under 18 boys topped the West section and play Nottinghamshire in the semi final at Brocton FC on the 30th of March 7-00pm KO. They will take on Shropshire at Thomas Telford the week before as preparation for the game, again with a 7-00pm KO.
The Under 16 girls still have to play Shropshire in the group stages of the competition but currently lie level on points and goal difference with Worcestershire so a draw will see them top the group for the third year in a row.They will in all probability have a home game against Derbyshire in the semi finals of the MCF with the winners taking on Worcestershire or Notts in the final.
The Under 14 Boys still have the West Midlands and Shropshire to play, both home games and the Under 14 Girls already have Worcestershire at home and away arranged leaving a home fixture against Shropshire to organise.
The Individual school cups.
All games at Stafford Town FC
U15 Boys Repton v St Margaret Ward or Westwood HS
U 18 Boys Repton v Codsall
Under 16 Boys Trentham HS v Painsley or Rawlett
Under 14 Boys Trentham HS v John Taylor Academy
Under 15 Girls Kingsmead v Thomas Alleyne's Uttoxeter
Under 16 Girls De Ferrers or Painsley v Wolgarston or Blyth Bridge
Under 13 Girls Blythe Bridge or Landau Forte Amington v Painsley/DeFerrers or Perton Middle/Graham Balfour
Under 13 Boys St Edwards Middle v Wilnecote or King Edward VI Stafford
Under 12 Boys De Ferrers v Blythe Bridge at a venue to be decided
The first games will kick off at 5-15pm and the second games at 6-45/7-00pm
There will be an entrance charge of £2 for Adults and £1 concessions.