Tag Archives: football

The West Ham Way – show 95 (with Mark Phillips)

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham online fanzine Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from serial ITK blogger @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

This week’s show was recorded late on Monday evening as we’re all possibly doing something else at 7pm on Wednesday this week.

Dave and Ex chat to West Ham coach Mark Phillips, discuss England’s recent matches at the World Cup, talk about the players West Ham have signed in the transfer window and the ones the club might sign, and answer questions from listeners.

Warning: this show didn’t go out on FM and you may hear a little bit of swearing in it, especially when discussing a former player ….

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 68 (with Jackson Wray)

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave and Ex discuss West Ham’s unfortunate match against Bournemouth, rumours from inside the club and questions from listeners.

The podcast also includes bonus material – more answers to questions which weren’t originally broadcast on the live show, and a chat on the phone with Saracens rugby player and West Ham fan Jackson Wray.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 57

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave, Kev and Ex discuss West Ham’s recent match against Tottenham, Ex talks about rumours from inside the club and the team answer questions from listeners.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 55

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave, Kev and Ex discuss West Ham’s first win of the season against Huddersfield, analysing the performances of both players and manager, and answer questions from listeners.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 53 (featuring Tony Cottee)

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave, Kev and Ex discuss West Ham’s recent performances – from both players and manager – on the field, the latest transfer rumours and questions from listeners.

PODCAST BONUS! Dave and Ex chatted to West Ham legend Tony Cottee immediately before the show and you can hear the interview at the 1 hour mark.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 49

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave, Kev and Ex discuss West Ham’s new signings, talk about a host of possible targets and also answer questions from listeners.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

The West Ham Way – show 46 (with Kenny Brown)

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave and Ex are joined by ex-Hammers defender Kenny Brown. Kenny chats about his time at the club and Ex delivers his weekly transfer rumour round-up.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

Football – Done Deals This Week – January Transfer Window (w.e 6.1.17)

(Focus on EFL Championship, League 1 & League 2)

Phoenix Sport’s Scott W reports on some of the latest deals that transpired this week (w.e Jan 6th ’17), the first full week of the January Transfer Window. Who have your club signed?

Luke Murphy   [Leeds – Burton]  Loan

Midfielder Murphy has joined Nigel Clough’s Brewers on loan unil the end of the season, having struggled for games this season under Garry Monk. Murphy, 27, has already made more than 100 appearances for the Elland Road side since his move from Crewe three-and-a-half years ago.

Reece Brown   [Sheffield Utd – Bury] Free Transfer

Defender Brown has re-joined Bury until the end of the current season, having recently left high-flyers Sheffield Utd. Brown, 25,  also spent last season at the JD Stadium.

The Shakers have also signed defender Australian youth international Cameron Burgess on loan from Fulham until the end of the season. England youth international Taylor Moore has also joined the Shakers , on loan from Bristol City until the end of the current campaign.

Lawson D’Ath    [Northampton – Luton]   Undisclosed

Midfielder D’Ath joins the Hatters on an 18-month contract, having struggled for playing time so far this season at Sixfields under Rob Page. D’Ath also began his career at Reading, whilst also having productive loan spells at Dagenham & Redbridge and Yeovil earlier in his career.

Kevin Foley   [Charlton – Coventry]  Free Transfer

Experienced defender Foley, 32 joins Russell Slade’s men from Slade’s former club Charlton on a deal until the end of the current season. Foley, who also used to play for Wolves & Luton, joins the Sky Blues’ dogfight to avoid the drop into League 2.

Greg Halford   [Rotherham – Cardiff]  Undisclosed

Utility man Halford, 32,  joins Cardiff on an 18-month contract, once again playing for a side managed by Neil Warnock, after having played for him at Rotherham last season.

In other news at Cardiff, forward Lex Immers has been let go by the club, just seven months after he joined the club, and has returned to the Netherlands. Also, non-league striker Ibrahim Meite, 20,  has joined the club from Ryman Premier Division club Harrow Borough.

Shaun Harrad    [Wrexham   –   Torquay]   Free Transfer

Striker Harrad has re-joined Torquay after a spell at rivals Wrexham earlier this season. Torquay, who at this moment are six points clear of the bottom four in the National League, will hope to utilise Harrad’s considerable experience to lift them up the table. In other news at Torquay, Exeter forward Jamie Reid has extended his loan spell at Plainmoor until the end of the season.

Nathan Blissett  [Torquay  –  Plymouth]  £15,000

Striker Blissett joins the Pilgrims’ chase for promotion from League Two on a undisclosed-length contract. Blissett, whose uncle Luther famously played for Watford, Bournemouth and AC Milan, will certainly hope to assist his new side in reaching League One.

Jake Forster-Caskey [Brighton – Charlton]   Undisclosed

Midfielder Forster-Caskey joins the Addicks on two-and-half year deal. Forster-Caskey played for current Addicks boss Karl Robinson when he was at MK Dons during two loan spells there last season. Forster-Caskey, who made his debut at Brighton at just 16, will surely look to push on with regular football at the Valley.

Gavin Gunning   [Greenock Morton (Scotland) – Grimsby Town] Free Transfer

Defender Gunning joins Marcus Bignot’s League Two side after a short spell at SPFL Championship side Greenock Morton earlier this season. Gunning, 25, who has turned out for Blackburn, Rotherham and Dundee Utd earlier in his career, will be looking to keep the Mariners in mid-table.

Freddie Ladapo   [Crystal Palace  –  Shewsbury]  Loan

Nomadic striker Ladapo also joins the Shrews’ dogfight against relegation, after signing on loan for the remainder of the season. Ladapo, who arguably had his best spells at Margate and Grays Athletic in Non-League earlier in his career, will perhaps try to settle at New Meadow. He had a loan spell at Shrewbury’s rivals Oldham earlier this season.

Alex Rodman    [Notts County – Shrewsbury]   Undisclosed

Winger Rodman joins League One Shewsbury from League Two strugglers Notts County on an 18-month contract. Rodman, who counts Tamworth, Grimsby & Gateshead among his former clubs, will look to assist Shewsbury’s own fight against the drop into League Two this season.

Ademola Lookman      [Charlton  –  Everton]   £11m

Ronald Koeman’s side have also spent big on promising talent, signing Lookman from League One Charlton Athletic. He joins on a contract until the summer of 2021. He becomes the most expensive signing from a EFL League One club.

Wilfred Ndidi    [Genk (Belgium) – Leicester City]    Reportedly £15m

Claudio Ranieri’s Foxes have invested heavily in this promising anchor midfielder, who has signed a deal until the summer of 2022. Foxes fans will not want reminding that since losing N’Golo Kante to Chelsea in the summer, their midfield probably hasn’t been the same.

Rudy Gestede  [Aston Villa –  Middlesbrough]  – Undisclosed

Benin international striker Gestede joins Aitor Karanka’s men on a three-and-a-half-year contract for a fee of at least £6 million. Ex-Blackburn forward Gestede has largely been over-looked by current Villa boss Steve Bruce, though ‘Boro will hope he can assist loan star Alvaro Negredo up front.

Lee Grant     [Derby  – Stoke ]   £1.3m

Goalkeeper Grant has signed for the Potters on a permanent basis, after a successful loan spell which saw him deputise for the injured Jack Butland. Grant, 33,  has signed a deal until the summer of 2019. With Butland thought to be out for a considerable period, Grant may continue to have a run in the team.

Jens Hegeler     [Hertha Berlin (Germany)  –   Bristol City]  Undisclosed

Midfielder Hegeler has also been added to the Robins’ squad as they also seek to survive in the EFL Championship this season. Hegeler, who also counts Bayer Leverkusen among his former clubs and played in the Champions’ League during his six-year tenure there. His has signed a two-and-a-half-year deal at Ashton Gate.

Milan Djuric      [Cesena (Italy)  –  Bristol City]    Undisclosed

Bosnia striker Djuric joins from Serie B side Cesena on a contract until the summer of 2019. He has represented his country 14 times, scoring seven goals. This is his first taste of English football.

Alex Reid       [Rushall Olympic    –  Fleetwood Town]   Undisclosed

Ex-Aston Villa trainee Reid has joined League One Fleetwood Town for an undisclosed fee. Reid, who has been blasting home the goals for Evo-Stik Premier Division leaders Rushall, will now be hoping to make the most of his chance to make it in the EFL.

Luke Varney    [Ipswich Town – Burton]   Free Transfer

Experienced striker Varney has joined Nigel Clough’s Brewers on a deal until summer 2018, after having the remaining days of his Ipswich contract cancelled. Varney, who previously played Charlton, Leeds and Blackburn, will look to add to Burton’s striking options as they attempt to survive in the Championship this season.

Samir Carruthers   [MK Dons  – Sheffield Utd]  Undisclosed

Promotion-chasing Sheffield Utd boosted their ranks with the signing of attacking midfielder Carruthers on a deal which takes him through until the summer of 2020. Samir, 23, who began his career at Aston Villa, made nearly 100 league appearances for the Dons.

Keith Keane      [Cambridge  – Rochdale]   Free Transfer

Midfielder Keane left League Two side Cambridge Utd by ‘mutual consent’ which allowed him to sign for Rochdale on an 18-month deal, following a loan spell with Keith Hill’s men.

Joey Barton     [Unattached – Burnley]  Free Transfer

Despite the lingering possibility of a FA ban relating to betting, Barton, now 34 has re-signed for Sean Dyche’s side until the end of the current campaign. It seems a while ago now though ex-Newcastle & QPR midfielder was a member of Burnley’s Championship-winning side last season.



The West Ham Way – show 23

Click here to listen to the show again:

Welcome to the latest edition of The West Ham Way, Phoenix FM’s weekly round up of all things West Ham!

The show is presented every week by Dave Walker and Kev Slade from West Ham website Sex Drugs & Carlton Cole with help from the mysterious @exwhuemployee, founder of The West Ham Way website.

On this week’s show Dave, Kev and Ex discuss West Ham’s recent 4-1 victory at Swansea, Ex goes through the current transfer rumours and Dave, Kev and Ex look back at some of their highlights of the year.

The West Ham Way will be back next week on Wednesday at 7pm. #COYI

Carshalton Athletic v Billericay Town – LIVE

Carshalton Athletic  1-0  Billericay Town

East Thurrock United  3-0  Cray Wanderers

Ware  5-5  Brentwood Town

Bury  1-1  Southend United

Morecambe  2-2  Dagenham & Redbridge


FULL TIME:  So Billericay’s recent run of victories has come to a grinding halt in the most unlikeliest of places.  Full credit to Carshalton Athletic, though, they fully deserved their win, by far the better side in the first half, and rarely troubled in the second.  Craig Edwards will spend a long time having to re-evaluate some of his squad.  Yet again.

5 – Carshalton 1-0 Billericay – Full Time

Never mind, another day, another dollar.  Unitl the next time, enjoy yourselves, and your football


90th min  + 4 – And ‘Ricay’s misery is complete with Ricky Sappleton sent off for a crude tackle as Carshalton counted down the clock.

90th min – And as injury time drifts towards us, play is less and less around the Carshalton box and further upfield.  Except for a throw in on the left which comes to nothing.  Four minutes to go.

85th min – And from there, play switches downfield.  Another Town corner on the right, for a split second panic in the home six yard box, but it is eventually cleared.  Bah.

84th min – Alex Addai, talking of frustration, runs at the Billericay goal, has defenders in front of him, and Tommy Bradford free to his left.  What does he do?  Yes.  Chortle.  Richard Halle sees to him easily enough.

80th min – Another corner for ‘Ricay, this time on the left.  A bit of pinball inside the box, but Richard Halle’s awful effort just clears the corner flag.

76th min – Billericay substitution:  Final throw of the dice for Craig Edwards as Junior Luke has been replaced by Evans Kouassi.

75th min – Another ‘Ricay corner on the right.  Another set piece easily defended.  Gaaaahhhhh.  So frustrating.  Still, at least Scouse Butterworth has been subbed by the Robins after a subdued second half, so a Brucey Bonus there.  Not that it means Sweet Fanny Adams at this stage.

70th min – Billericay are pressing, forced a corner, but nothing clear cut.  Carshalton are reduced to the odd break but, bah, are looking comfortable.

4 – Carshalton 1-0 Billericay Mid 2nd Half

Plenty of time left though.

64th min – Billericay subsitiutions – Max Lette Jallow and Joe Benjamin have been replaced by James Robinson and Glen Poole.

62nd min – Now we know why Alex Addai was released by Blackpool youths.  No left foot.  Sent clear on the right, he cuts inside the last defender, but instead of shooting with his left, tries to get into a shooting position with his right foot.  In the end, he has to lay it off to Luke Pigden, who shoots it into Kent.

59th min – Oh, so close!  Billericay have slowly gained a foothold in this game.  On the right, Joe Benjamin sends in a low curling cross.  It evades absolutely everyone and looks a certain equaliser but rebounds off the far post.  The nerves – and bowels – are well and truly jangling for the Robins now.

55th min – Now pretty evenly matched, with a lot of play in the middle third of the pitch.  Just a very soft Ricky Sappleton shot, easily collected, until …. ooh, Alex Addai gets clear of the ‘Ricay defence on the left and his curling shot goes just wide of the far post.  Yet another warning.

49th min – Much brighter from Billericay, keeping possession, and forcing a couple of  corners on the right, which ends in a Ricky Sappleton shot from about 10 yards being saved comfortably.  But much better already.

4.02pm – KICK OFF!  It simply has to get better this time round.  Hasn’t it?


HALF TIME:  And a real bolt from the blue from the reds right on half time.  Thoroughly deserved, too.  Quite frankly, there’s only one team in it.  Craig Edwards will be tearing bricks off the changing room, let alone strips of paint.  A half where Billericay have been outplayed.  They have to do better.  They could hardly be any worse.

3 – Carshalton 1-0 Billericay

Right, off for a Bovril and a prayer mat.  Laters.


45th min – GOAL! ….. CARSHALTON ATHLETIC 1, Billericay Town 0  It has been coming.  This time KIERAN WOODLEY was given the freedom of Surrey on the right to run into the area and shoot home on the edge of the six yard box.  Billericay are in big trouble here.

42nd min – The pressure is incessant on the Billericay goal now, and is almost becoming a deule between Butterworth and Lumley.  This time, Lumley is beaten, but the shot on the right goes agonisingly past the post for the hosts, much to our relief.  The corner from it is defended easily enough too.

40th min – And again Carshalton come.  A lovely dink over the defence on the right and that man Butterworth whacks it goalwards from about 8 yards.  Billy Lumley does brilliantly to parry it onto the bar and away.

35th min – Butterworth is being a real handful this afternoon and a run and shot on the left forces another corner.  From that, defender Bruce Hogg hits a powerful volley on the edge of the area that Billy Lumley did so well to get to and hold.  A good game for ‘Ricay it certainly hasn’t been so far (trying to tempt fate here, y’know).

32nd min – Nice work again from Addai and Bradford on the left for Carshalton, there’s a centre into the six yard box, but thankfully Scouse Butterworth’s header is tame and causes Billy Lumley less problem than a sloth on mogadon.

30th min – Max Lette-Jallow is fouled wide on the right.  It wasn’t particularly nasty but that was enough for one Billericay fan to continue his abuse of the referee.  Quite vitriolic.  And obviously henpecked at home.  Chortle.  From the free kick, a soft shot on the left is easily saved.

25th min – Huge shouts for a Billericay penalty after Ricky Sappleton is upended in the left hand side of the box are rightly waved away by the ref.  The Billericay players and supporters throw a tantrum.  I shouldn’t but chortle.

2 – Carhalton 0-0 Billericay Mid 1st Half

And overall, very much the home team the better side.

21st min – A real let off for Billericay.  Alex Addai gets clear of the Billericay back line and just inside the area rounds the keeper.  Lumley, however, superbly reaches back to get a vital hand to the ball, when it seems certain Carshalton will take the lead.

19th min – More possession and territory from ‘Ricay, at last.  Nothing clear cut but at least they seem to have weathered the early Carshalton storm.  Elsewhere, lively starts at the East Thurrock and Brentwood games.  I said it might turn out to be full of japery after all.

14th min – Back come the hosts though.  Ex Brentwood Town playmaker Steve Butterworth runs superbly down the right, and inside the area on the bye-line centres low.  It takes a desperate intervention by Callum Dunne to clear for a corner inside the six yard box, although it was perilously close to an own goal.  The subsequent corner is cleared easily enough though.

11th min – At last a Billericay attack worthy of the name.  Junior Luke runs clear down the left, and his low shot on the edge of the area is parried excellently by Dean Snedker.  From that, another shot goes in from Ricky Sappleton which is easily dealt with.  But much better from ‘Ricay.

7th min – And another Robins shot across the bow.  Corner on the right, a Bradford flick on, and ex Blackppol youth player Alex Addai’s bicycle kick goes just wide of the far post.  Have to say it, all Carshalton so far.

5th min – But then a real warning for ‘Ricay.  Harry Adanetey gets free on the right, goes wide of Lumley, but his angle is too tight and his shot hits the side netting.  Phew.  This ain’t gonna be a walk in the park, this.

4th min – First corner of the day goes to the hosts after a nice little Tommy Bradford run to the left bye-line.  Easily defended though, Billy Lumley punching clear.

2.59pm – KICKOFF!  Oh yes!  If a little premature


2.57pm – The teams come out to mild applause in mild, overcast conditions, ‘Ricay in light blue, Carshalton all red.  Let’s see who finishes in the pink.  Chortle.

2.55pm – I like it here at Colston Avenue.  My Carshalton counterpart is as welcoming as a struggling club can be, my other half is here occupying herself with fixing her phone and look at the pictures in the Sun, and there’s been a very sweet and innocent display for some under 7’s cheerleaders.  Just lovely.

2.50pm – Team News:  Billericay Town go with:

1. – Billy Lumley

2. – Jeff Imudia

3. – George Beavon

4. – Callum Dunne

5. – Richard Halle (c)

6. – Paul Rodgers

7. – Junior Luke

8. – Max Lette-Jallow

9. – Ricky Sappleton

10. – Sean Bonnet-Johnson

11. – Joe Benjamin


12. – Ryan Scott

14. – James Robinson

15. – Evans Kouassi

17. – Chris Webber

18. – Glenn Poole

You see?  A few wins and all of a sudden the squad is settled and happy.  Happy days for Ming on the touchline, too, his job being made that much easier.

2.40pm – Looking elsewhere, it could be an afternoon of hard graft at Rookery Hill.  East Thurrock United, with just one home win so far, take on bottom side Cray Wanderers.  With Kye Ruel back in the ranks, though, it could just provide the Rocks with a bit of a spark.

Brentwood Town, meanwhile, already have a basement battle on their hands.  Just four points to their name, the Ryman One North strugglers travel to Ware, just one place above them in 22nd place.  Les Whitton’s boys desperately need something positive after their FA Cup humiliation at Clacton midweek.

And in League Two, out of form Southend United face a tough trip to the environs of Manchester, and Dagenham & Redbridge, who are rarely in form, head northwards, though in sunnier climes, as they take on Morecambe.

Frankly, it really looks like an unappetising and unappealing afternoon.  But it’s weekends like this that often throw up tons of drama and japery galore.  We will have to see.


2.35pm – A very good afternoon from the War Memorial Ground in leafy Surrey.  A nice ground, good chaps and cheapesses, but Billericay Town won’t care a jot.  Three points at the expense of hosts Carshalton Athletic is all that matters for Craig Edwards and the ‘Ricay supporters.

After a shaky start, three straight league and cup wins have boosted the mood and confidence at New Lodge.  Comfortable mid-table is an awful lot better than it was 11 days ago.

It could get better still.  After the Robins’ fortuitous survival last season, ending in the relegation zone before Thurrock’s points deduction kept them up, Carshalton are again at the wrong of the Ryman Premier, having lost all home games in the process.

If you’re like me, however, you always feel that runs and records come to an end as soon as you mention it.  Having already tempted fate by doing just that, we may have a game on our hands.

Oh, by the way, the reason why the cover pic is are rugby posts, with a football net in the background?  I just think it’s a pretty picture I took and wanted to share pretty things with you.  What a lovely chap I am.

1- Carshalton v Billericay Preview

As ever, refresh this page every few minutes, and a jolly jape of an afternoon following ‘Ricay will be my gift to you.  I’m nice like that, see.


Local Sports Summary – And Dan Sarginson Talks To Phoenix FM Sport

It was a busy weekend of local sport.  Here’s how it panned out:

Essex Cricket League

Premier Division

Brentwood beat Colchester & East Essex by 40 runs



Division Two

Billericay beat Leigh-on-Sea by 9 wickets

Billericay move up to 3rd


Ryman League

Premier Division

Billericay Town  3-2  Thamesmead Town  (after trailing 0-2 at half time)

Kingstonian  3-0  East Thurrock United


Division One North

Brentwood Town  2-4  Dereham Town


The featured live game on Between The Lines came from the Twickenham Stoop, where local Super League side the London Broncos completed their home campaign – and their worst one ever – with yet another defeat after succumbing to leaders Huddersfield Giants 12-26.

12 - Throwing It About

It was a very brave performance from the rock bottom Broncos, though, who were well in contention right up until inside the last five minutes.  It was also the last home appearance by England Knights internationalist Dan Sarginson, on his way to title contenders Wigan Warriors.

At pitch side after the game, Dan was kind enough to give Phoenix FM Sport a little take on the game and his spell with the capital club.

Audio – Dan Sarginson Interview

We do, of course, wish Dan every success, and with Wigan Warriors he has every chance of succeeding.  A decent lad like Sarge deserves to.

And that’s what you call a busy weekend of sport!



Brentwood Town v Erith & Belvedere – LIVE

Brentwood Town  2-0  Erith & Belvedere

Billericay Town  0-1  East Thurrock United


FULL TIME:  And in the end, an entertaing, desrerved home win.  An outstanding perforannce by Lindiipho Mtyanda was the decisive factor, at times almost unstoppable on the right.  Steve Cavell took his goal well – thank you lino – and Martyn Stokes, leading goalscorer, who’d have thunk it!

5 – Brentwood 2-0 Erith FT

Right, that’s it for a while.  London Broncos and then the Challenge Cup Final in the world of rugby league is taking up my time for a while.  Until the next game, enjoy yourselves, and your football.


90th min – This time Mtyanda, James Love and Jake Cass combine, the latter’s low shot just inside the area going about 3 inches past the near post.  Great stuff.  Three minutes of injury time.

88th min – Yet another Mtyanda run, and this time he has a go himself inside the area.  It’s deflected and almost goes in but is saved.  From that another Brentwood sustutition, Jonathan Adebayo replacing opening scorer Steve Cavell.

84th min – Well under control.  The heads on top of those red and white quartered shirts you can see are dropping.  The full back Mtyanda is causing mayhem down the right, and links up well with the forward line.  Jake Cass was the latest to have a pop at goal from the right flank supply line but it was easily saved.

79th min – All Brentwood now and Steve Cavell marauds forward in the right hand edge of the box, his strong and accurate shot parried away superbly.  The hosts now totally bossing this.  Coach Les WHitton looking and sounding a lot happier.  Which means he’s merely grumpy.  Chortle.

73rd min – GOALLLLL! ….. BRENTWOOD TOWN 2,  Erith & Belvedere 0.  A corner on the right, a bullet header from MARTYN STOKES, wallop, back of the net!  Oh yes!

4 – Brentwood 2-0 Erith

Liquid football, Stokesy!

70th min – All Brentwood now.  E&B keeper Jack Bradshaw has made a couple of outstanding saves from Robbie Rees and Petrit Elbi and Steve Cavell should have wrapped it up in a one-on-one.

65th min –  GOALLLL!!! ….. BRENTWOOD TOWN 1,  Erith & Belvedere 0  At last something!  Lindiipho Mtyanda has been making rampaging runs down the right from full back all this half, and from there, STEVE CAVELL, looking suspiciously offside, slotted a low curler home just inside the box

3 – Brentwood 1-0 Erith

They count, so long as that flag doesn’t go up!


59th min – John Bradley tries an audacious back heel to find a colleague.  It always makes you look stupid if it doesn’t come off.  It makes the defender look worse, though, when they too immediately give the ball away.  Steve Cavell gets a hold of  it and from 25 yards shoots just over the bar.  Hardly liquid football but a good Brentwood effort in the end.

56th min – And that is Anthony Ryan’s last action of the evening, being replaced by Robbie Ryan.

54th min – The closest yet to a goal.  Ryan goes wide on the right himself, turns his defender inside out, and shoots low inside the area.  Bradshaw makes an excellent reflex save but is parried out.  Agonisingly, there’s nobody there to follow it up.  Gaaaaah.

51st min – Much better from Brentwood.  Ball played out wide to James Love, and from the touchline, his cross finds the head of Anthony Ryan.  His effort on goal is looping, however, and comfortably taken by Jack Bradshaw, but still, some danger at last.

48th min – Well, we’ve got some, but again from the visitors.  Good chasing down ends in Rhys Madden and Gbenga Sonuka combining to put the ball out of play on the left.  From that a shot comes in and Madden atones for the situation with an excellent save, the subsequent corner being well defended.

8.47pm – KICK OFF!  Please let it be with a bit more goal chance frolics and fun please.


HALF TIME:  And, well, it’s been okay to watch, without being particularly memorable.  The frustration towards the end of the half and not keeping possession, giving the ball away a bit too easily, could be felt among the Brentwood supporters as well as coach next to me.  As for Erith & Belvedere, nice going forward at times, no cutting edge.  0-0 is probably about right.  But only just.

2 – Brentwood 0-0 Erith HT

Right off for an Irn Bru.  Which I’ll not be giving away.  Laters.


41st min – Rather picture skew now, with dusk, darkening clouds and that.  The coach’s vocabulary has become bluer and darker, too, with Brentwood struggling to hold and keep possession.

36th min – At last the hosts surge forward.  Steve Cavell is in a central position about 30 yards out.  “Wide”, comes the shout from the crowd.  He instead hits a low, rasping volley, destined for the left hand corner of the net until Jack Bradshaw gets a hand to it.  Great stuff.

33rd min – And still the visitors move forward, this time a wicked shot, wide on the left near the bye-line, whistles just over the bar across the face of goal.

31st min – And well might he be.  More visiting pressure, including a free kick, then a goalbound header scrambled away for a corner.  Neither I or my Kentish counterpart could see who made the header, although we both agreed the wooden post obscuring the view looked pretty.  Chortle.

29th min – Must be something about my after-shave.  Yet again, a member of the host club coaching staff sits – or stands – next to me during the game.  Maybe it’s my pearls of wisdom.  Anyway, he shouts at John Bradley for giving the ball away and letting E&B have another pop at goal.  Silent though when Charlie Rolls, at the other end sends in a super little cross from the left, which ends in a Jake Cass shot going just over.  Hard taskmaster, this ‘un.  And not a happy bunny.

24th min – No doubt about it, E&B have taken control after a bright home start.  More joy on the right, the ball is quickly switched, and then a low centre across the six yard box causes panic before it’s cleared – just.

22nd min – And a bit of visiting pressure down the right ends in a cross-cum-shot from over 25 yards that Rhys Madden has to parry out for a corner.  Which is easily defended.  Phew.

19th min – Indeed, Erith & Belvedere are already forced to make a substitution, Kevin Lott coming off and replaced by Danny Willis.  Hurrah, the sun has gone down, and the tunnel folded in.  Just the wire mesh gate and wooden posts in the way now.  Chortle.

16th min – Meanwhile, at New Lodge, I suspected this might happen.  Nathan Korteng has given East Thurrock United the lead at Billericay Town.  Covo’s got his young, young side playing beautifully and sets up that game perfectly.  Missing nothing here, though, with players being treated for a knock.

12th min – The first remote sign of threat from the visitors.  A free kick wide on the left about 35 yards out, hoisted into the area, then a tame header well wide of the far post.  At least I could see it though.

8thh min – As Brentwood are doing most of the attacking, at the end that can’t be seen from the press box, I can summarise that they’ve started well enough without scoring.  In the meantime, I like the E&B kit of red and white quarters.  Almost as much as I liked seeing the women doing some outdoor training walking towards the ground.  And a sausage dog keeps wandering by.  One way or another an interesing start.

3rd min – An early Brentwood Town foray forward.  A shot and a parry away at the Doddinghurst Road End goal, and a shout from the goalie at his defenders.  Who done what I have no idea because of the sun and the tunnel in the way.  I’m sure it was very good though.

7.46pm – KICK OFF!  Oh yes!


7.43pm – The teams come out to waves of healthy apathy.  The tunnel obscures one half of the pitch.  As well as the sun.  The people around me are shielding their eyes with their programme and glaring at club officials.  Chortle.

7.35pm – TEAM NEWS:  Brentwood Town go with:

1. – Ryhs Madden

2. – Lindiipho Mtyanda

3. – Charlie Rolls

4. – Martyn Stokes

5. – Gbenga Sonuga

6. – James Love

7. – Petrit Elbi

8. – John Bradley

9. – Anthony Ryan

10. – Jake Cass

11. – Stephen Cavell


12 – Jonathan Adebayo

14. – Jay Simmons

15. – Jack Gardner

16. –  Robbie Rees

17. – Tim Pitman

A few changes in the summer, inevtably, with a new manager, Les Whitton.  Let’s have three new points.



7.30pm – Elsewhere, big derby at New Lodge tonight in the Ryman Premier.  Billericay Town started Saturday with a solid point at Harrow Borough.  Meanwhile, East Thurrock United had Saturday’s live treatment, and their 2-2 draw with Bury Town, as you know, was an absolute cracker.

Tomorrow, though, is something else.  England v Scotland.  Who do my loyalties lie with?  Well, what do you expect from a Hearts supporter?  Yep, that’s right, couldn’t care less one way or the other.  I’ll be watching Gold and I’m Alan Partridge.  Ah ha,


7.25pm – A very good afternoon from a very cool summer’s evening here at the Arena.  Brrrr, I should’ve known shorts wouldn’t be much cop for football.

Early days, of course, and predictable though it was, Brentwood Town’s opening day defeat at Maldon & Tiptree was disappointing, especially as Martyn Stokes had given the boys an early lead.

Never mind, that cannot be changed.  What they can do now is brush themselves off and get some points at the expense of their Kentish visitors.  With that extra eagerness of wanting to put on a show for their first home game, this could be a spiffing evening.

1 – Brentwood v Erith Preview

As ever, just keep refreashing the pages every few minutes, and the delights and splendour of a cold Tuesday night next to the A12 will be yours.



East Thurrock United v Bury Town – LIVE

East Thurrock United  2-2  Bury Town

Harrow Borough  1-1  Billericay Town

Maldon & Tiptree  3-1  Brentwood Town

Dagenham & Redbridge  2-0  York City

Hartlepool United  0-1  Southend United


FULL TIME:  And the curtain comes down on an absolute cracker of a game.  A youthful Rocks side, slung together at the last minute, put up a superb effort, against one of the genuine title favourites, and could easily have won it at the death.  Liquid football.

7 – ETU 2-2 Bury FT

Next up is the Rocks derby game at Billericay Town on Tuesday.  Until then, enjoy the weekend, and your football.


Injury time – 5th minute – Ohhhhhh!  After the earlier corner was only half cleared, a shot comes in, resulting in another Rocks corner at the Bus Stops End goal on the left.  From that, Menga has a free header at the far post, but it goes agonisingly wide.

Injury time – 3rd minute – Everyone falls asleep at a visiting substitution.  Except for that man Bryant.  A stinging shot is parried away for a corner.

Injury time – 1st minute – And a Bury Town free kick, from 22 yards, goes just wide of the left hand post.  Five minutes of it here.

90th min – David Bryant has, in managerial parlance, worked his socks off, running, hassling, cajoling, and scoring, but that was one punt too long to go for.  The mind was willing, but the legs just couldn’t do it.  Tremendous effort.

87th min – Bury’s Nathan Taylor also goes into the book for a crude hack on the left on the impressive Tom Stephen.

85th min – Now Steve Sheehan sees yellow for separating Seb Dunbar from the path of the ball.  He tries to protest his innocence but laughing has he does so makes it less than effective.  Chortle.

80th min – A long delay while a bit of handbags breaks out after David Bryant is flattened on the edge of the area.  Bury Town’s Seb Dunbar gets a sneaky punch in on Bryant in the aftermath, too, which isn’t seen by either ref or lino, so both get a yellow.  The free kick, inevitably, comes to nothing.


73rd min  – GOALLL!!! ….. East Thurrock United 2,  BURY TOWN 2  It’s been coming, I guess.  A corner on the right, scramble inside the six yard box, and ADAM BAILEY-DENNIS bundles home.

6 – ETU 2-2 Bury

Only one winner here now.  Meanwhile Lheureux Menga replaces Mitchell Gilbey for East Thurrock United.

71st min – A bit of respite.   Some lovely build-up play down the right flank, Mitchell Gilbey beats the offside trap, but he is tackled just as he’s about to pull the trigger.  The Rocks are running themselves into the ground here, giving their all.  Whatever happens, a superb home effort.

66th min – Pretty much one way traffic – as we feared it might be from the start.  Seb Dunbar has put over the bar a glorious chance to equalise, in a central position, unmarked, from about 10 yards out.  Squeaky bottom time.

61st min – This is the part of the game I like.  Players and supporters getting tense so shouting angrily and the ref and lino about any perceived slight for their team.  Lots of chortles from me which obviously doesn’t go down to well, as the visitors press.  Still, chortle.

56th min – GOALLL!!! ….. East Thurrock United 2,  BURY TOWN 1  The warning wasn’t heeded, and from the edge of the area on the right, BILLY CLARK smashes in a tremendous low volley into the left hand corner of the net.

5 – ETU 2-1 Bury

Game on!

54th min – Bury Town try to get things going.  A surging David Bridges run is put out for a corner, which is taken by Darren Bechet.  But then Bridges and Seb Dunbar cause chaos in the six yard box.  Again, the corner comes to nothing, after a visiting shove doesn’t go unnoticed.

48th min – That man David Bryant is making a nuisance of himself yet again, brushing aside the taller Bury defender on the edge of the area.  He lays the ball to Luke Wanadio on the left, and his shot is parried for a corner, which is easily cleared.  More encouraging signs though,

16.02pm – KICK OFF!  Super stuff.


HALF TIME:  And not quite so live.  Apologies for the loss of coverage but I’ve now put the shilling into the leccy meter and the dongle shows that Everything Everywhere means you can’t get anything anywhere.  Stupid Kevin Bacon

Anyway, five minutes before the break, great work from Luke Wanadio on the left, his cross is blocked, Tom Stephen does the honours at the second attempt, and DAVID BRYANT buries it at the far post.  Oh yes.

4 – East Thurrock United 2-0 Bury Town HT

Right, off for a decent dongle and a pie.  Laters.


37th min – Emboldened by the goal, Tom Stephen gets in on the act, and his low shot just inside the left hand edge of the area goes narrowly wide.  The Suffolk visitors have tried to get some pressure going of their own, but frustration has told, with Billy Clark being booked for a late tackle.

31st min – GOALLLLL! ….. EAST THURROCK UNITED 1,  Bury Town 0  What a marvellous example of chasing a lost cause.  Nathan Korateng, faces his own goal on the half way, wide on the left, somehow dispossesses his opponent, and runs menacing to the left hand edge of the area.  He low centre across the six yard box is perfect, beyond both keeper and back line, and DAVID BRYANT taps in at the far post.

3 – ETU 1-0 Bury Town

Liquid football!


29th min – The hosts are getting joy from wide crosses into the area.  Covo, sitting in the press box, is encouraged, and comments “They don’t like it there.”  Not quite Corporal Jones, but close enough.

25th min – Ooh, Nathan Koranteng is set free on the right, but his shot on the edge of the area swerves just wide of the left hand post.

2 – ETU v Bury Town – Mid 1st Half

Decent game this.

22nd min – Elsewhere, early goals in Ryman One North, as a 17th minute Martyn Stokes opener for Brentwood – hurrah! – is wiped out by Ben Bredbury – hurroo.

19th min – Back come Bury Town, though, but their free kick and corner from the training ground don’t go to plan.  Unless they’re lulling the Rocks  into a false sense of security with a couple of soft attempts at goal.

16th min – And the Rocks respond in kind.  A Ross Parmenter free kick, wide on the right, causes panic in the Manorway End goal before being scrambled clear.  Good competitive stuff.

13th min – First moment of real danger, and it’s from the visitors.  Simon Peddie fails to clear wide on the right, the ball is fed to Billy Clark on the edge of the area, and his lob grazes the top of the bar and over.  Phew.

10th min – Rocks keeper Darren Bechet punches a Bury Town corner clear.  Behind his goal is a Bury director.  I’m not saying he stands out but his Elton John tribute act must be coming along a treat, as he’s seemingly dressed for a gig straight after the game.

 5th min – Nowt much to report, other than a lino missing a handball about three yards in front of him, much to the ire of the aforesaid Neil.  Chortle.

3.01pm – KICK OFF!  Oh yes!


2.58pm – The teams come out to polite, lukewarm applause.  An improvement on last season then.

2.55pm – The crowd here is low on numbers but high on anticipation.  Nice weather and a convivial atnosphere.  Helped by the obvious sprucing up of Rookery Hill.  Plenty of paint afresh.

2.50pm – Looking through the rather splendid programme, my eye was drawn not only to secretary Neil’s realism, but also today’s ref.  Neil West was the guy that was given dog’s abuse a couple of weeks ago at Concord.  This could be fun.

2.45pm – TEAM NEWS:  East Thurrock United go with:

1. – Darren Bechet

2. – Connor Witherspoon

3. – Tom Stephen

4. – Simon Peddie

5. – Steve Sheehan (c)

6. – Ross Parmenter

7. – Luke Wanadio

8. – Mitchell Gilbey

9. – Craig Hughes

10. – David Bryant

11. – Nathan Koranteng


12. – L’hereux Menga

14. – Lee Scott

15. – Tom Anderson

16. – Ryan Sammons

17. – David Hughes

So pretty much a brand new squad for Covo, who had seven of his side that took to the play-offs at Lowestoft leaving in the summer, along with some in the past week.  In the circumstances, it’s almost an achievement to have a squad.  Blimey O’Reilly.


2.35pm – Looking around the grounds,  Billericay Town have a nice little tester at Harrow Borough, and ooh, proper needle match for Brentwood Town, a bit of bad feeling emanated last season when they played Maldon.  Chortle.

In League Two Southend United have a long trek to Peter Mandelson country, which is lovely, and the Daggers kick off their home campaign against York.  All exciting stuff.  So much so I’m nearly roused from my afternoon nap.

2.30pm – Hello, how the devil are you?

My, it’s been such a long time – far too long.  But still, it matters not a jot, we’re all here now, and jolly good show.

I must admit to being slow on the comings and goings of non-league football locally in the summer months.  While my netbook broke down I’ve taken a break from the beautiful game as well.

What I do know is that John Coventry will have his boys raring to go against impressive Suffolk visitors.  A spiffing first day encounter looks a cert.

1 – East Thurrock United v Bury Town Preview

As ever, just refresh the page every few minutes, and all the drama, fun and frolic of 90 minutes in Corringham will be yours.


Broncos Shock Saints To Kickstart Season As Football Sides Ends Theirs

With all of our local non-league football teams issues definitely sorted, and Football League sides almost definitely sorted as well, the Phoenix FM Sport roving reporters turned up at the Twickenham Stoop to follow the fortunes of our local Super League side the London Broncos.


With their season approaching the halfway stage, things were looking grim.  Just two wins all season, with no home wins to speak of, it looked as if a painful afternoon was in store as title contenders St. Helens visited, having never lost in the capital for a decade.

It was even worse for Joe and I.  We mistakenly thought it was a 3pm kick-off.  Wrong!  It was 1pm.  By the time we got there, the game was well underway.  Our summary was short on detail but big on enthusiasm:

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/1-Broncos-12-10-HT-and-early-2nd-half.mp3|titles=1 – Broncos 12-10 HT and early 2nd half]

The Broncos staff, however, went beyond the call of duty, and kindly opened a side gate so we could watch the second half.  And what a half it was as the Broncos lead crept up and time ticked away.


A late St, Helens try had the match on a knife-edge, with the Broncos holding just an 18-14 advantage going into the last 10 minutes.  But in the heat of the battle, Michael Witt kept his cool.  A penalty, a drop goal, and the Broncos were incredibly home, handing out a sensational defeat on the title hunters.

Joe and I were delighted:

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/2-Broncos-21-14-St.-Helens-FT.mp3|titles=2 – Broncos 21-14 St. Helens FT]

That wasn’t all though!  As we made our way pitch side, hero of the hour Michael Witt strolled across to us.  He was more than happy to give Phoenix FM Sport his take on things.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/3-Michael-Witt-Interview.mp3|titles=3 – Michael Witt Interview]

So, perhaps we may have only seen 40 minutes, but we were lucky enough to see the most remarkable 40 minutes in the entire Super League so far this season, with lowly London making life Hell for the Saints!


Local Football / Super League Results


Billericay Town  1-0  Maidenhead United  (Billericay relegated from Conference South)

Brentwood Town  1-3  Romford  (Brentwood finish 10th in Ryman One North)

Whitehawk  1-0  East Thurrock United  (East Thurrock play Lowestoft away in Ryman Premier play-offs)

Dagenham & Redbridge  0-1  York City (Dagenham avoid relegation from League Two – just!)

Southend United  0-1  Morecambe  (Southend finish mid-table in League Two

London Broncos  21-14  St. Helens


Last Gasp Heartbreak For ‘Ricay – Again

A frenzied, helter skelter 90 minutes at New Lodge ended yet again in injury time disaster for Billericay Town, who now look almost certain to be relegated from the Conference South after their 3-2 defeat by Staines Town.

A summary of the evening’s proceedings is here.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Billericay-2-3-Staines-56-secs-.mp3|titles=Billericay 2-3 Staines ( 56 secs )]

Other results:

Thamesmead Town  1-2 Brentwood Town (Steve Butterworth and Neil Cousins with the goals)

Cray Wanderers  2-2  East Thurrock United (A Sam Higgins double rescues a point for the Rocks)


The 83 Year Itch – Southend United At Wembley

Their supporters have waited.   And waited.  And waited.  And then some.

Never appeared in a cup final there.  And just one re-arranged league game in 1930 their solitary visit.  Wembley Stadium has never been kind to one  of our local League Two sides, Southend United.

But after a frenetic, tumultuous, epic night at Roots Hall in February, the Shrimpers, along with over 30,000 fans, were going to their first ever cup final at the home of football.

The result, frankly, was immaterial.  Their opponents for the Johnstones Paint Trophy, Crewe Alexandra, are a division above Southend, and beat them home and away in the play-offs last season.

We hoped for a win, but fully expected defeat.  Just being there, however, was enough.  Joe and I were determined, along with a huge part of South Essex, to make the most of it.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/1-Southend-v-Crewe-Preview.mp3|titles=1 – Southend v Crewe Preview]

They came in fancy dress.  Smurfs were popular.  Human beer bottles and super heroes were also in evidence.  Almost ever Southend supporter, though, had made the effort to at least wear something in their side’s navy colours.  Off the pitch, they were painting Wembley blue.

Which was just as well.  As expected, the heavily outnumbered Crewe fans were celebrating soon enough.  A goal up after just five minutes.  We feared the worst.  We needn’t have though.  Only the wrong refereeing decision had cost Southend the chance of a first half equaliser.  We reached the break in good spirits.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/2-Southend-0-1-Crewe-HT.mp3|titles=2 – Southend 0-1 Crewe HT]

Being a league above Southend United, though, Crewe Alexandra soon exerted their superiority again.  Within a few minutes of the second half Max Clayton had made it 2-0 to the Cheshire club.  There really was no way back.

No matter.  Southend United had waited 83 years just to make it there.  The fans, if not the team, had certainly made the most of it.  Crewe were worthy winners but certainly hadn’t spoiled the party.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/3-Southend-0-2-Crewe-FT.mp3|titles=3 – Southend 0-2 Crewe FT]

And so off went the 30,000+ Shrimper Armyfoot soldiers, back to South Essex or the metropolis to carouse the evening away.  Joe and I chose Carnaby Street to finish off our day.  It somehow seemed right, on a day Southend United made history, to have a wander down one of London’s most liveliest and historic roads.

Should it take a similar time for Southend United to return to Wembley, we’ll all be long since departed.  It’s perhaps why we really made the most of it!


A Bizarrely Good Friday In Yorkshire

With all the incessant bad weather around, wiping out so much local sport, my fears were great.  Ever since the fixtures were announced, myself and a few others had planned and looked forward so much to Good Friday.

A chance to cover one of our local League Two clubs, Southend United, followed by an opportunity take in an evening game of my first love, rugby league, is rarer than a Spurs title challenge.

I feared the worst with all the snow and rain these past few months  but lo and behold, when Good Friday came, the good weather came with it!  Luck was on our side.

First up was a Northern Counties East League Premier Division game between Glasshoughton Welfare, near Castleford, and Nostell Miners Welfare.  A big local derby and massively important in their relegation battle.

It’s the equivalent of the Essex Senior League, so just a fiver secured entry.  Just over 300 crammed into the tiny ground to see a host player miss from less than a foot out, a bizarre own goal, a great penalty save, and an injury time winner as Glasshoughton, having played five more games than their opponents secured a priceless 2-0 win.

Onwards to Valley Parade.  A new Shrimpers boss at the helm, the perma-tanned Phil Brown, as they took on this season’s League Cup finalists, Bradford City.

An excellent crowd of over 10,000 were silenced by this early salvo.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/1-Southend-Early-Goals.mp3|titles=(1) – Southend Early Goals]

It was comfortable throughout the first half for Southend, within even the ref giving them a helping hand, not seeing the ball clearly cross the line from a Bradford free kick.  Not that either one of the Southend United media correspondents or I minded.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/2-Bradford-0-2-Southend-HT.mp3|titles=(2) – Bradford 0-2 Southend HT]

It all changed in the second half, though, as Bradford threw the kitchen sink at Southend.  In the end, the Shrimpers were grateful to pick up a point.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/3-Bradford-2-2-Southend-FT.mp3|titles=(3) – Bradford 2-2 Southend FT]

After that little Easter treat, we travelled, via the old Bradford Park Avenue stadium, to the Jungle, home of Super League side Castleford Tigers.  A local derby with bitter rivals Wakefield Trinity Wildcats awaited us.

I was particularly pleased, having supported our local SL side the London Broncos, that their scoreboard was broken and that it still showed the Broncos winning score from a fortnight ago!

Soon enough the big crowd was packed in and the game, as well as atmosphere, was ferocious.  Local pride is a massive motivator.  At least for one side.  Wakefield totally outplayed Castleford from the first minute of the opening half to last.  25-0 flattered Castleford, who went off to a crescendo of boos.  At least the cheerleaders were nice!

The riot act had clearly been read to them, though, and by mid-way through the second half, an astonishing comeback was on as the Tigers pulled it back to 16-25.  The home fans were gradually going delirious!

It was not to be, though.  Two quick tries for Wakefiled made it 37-16 to them inside the last 10 minutes.  Until the bizarre kicked in.  An explosion on the roof above us, the outbreak of a fire, and the match was quickly abandoned, with the score at the time counting as the result.

As I made my way back to the car, and home, to say I was breathless was an understatement, as I ran to avoid the stadium fire, and some warring factions of supporters outside.  It was almost like being back in the 80’s.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/4-Good-Friday-Summary.mp3|titles=(4) – Good Friday Summary]

So to sum up, a home win, a decent point, a derby battle and a roof on fire.  What a Good Friday it really was!  Please, Football League chappies, make sure either Dagenham or Southend are away in Yorkshire on Good Friday 2014.  It’ll make my year!

Over The Sticks, Under The Bar – The Weekend Preview

As time runs out for some teams, with others having plenty to spare, the weekend preview is here so you have enough to pick and choose what local team you can and support.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Local-Sports-Weekend-Preview-23-24-March-2013.mp3|titles=Local Sports Weekend Preview 23-24 March 2013]

Spring Is Here (Antarctic Version) – The Weekend Review

For those that weren’t rained or frozen off, it was overall a pretty good weekend for our sides.  Find out just how well here.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Local-Sport-Weekend-Review-9-10-Mar-2013.mp3|titles=Local Sport Weekend Review 9-10 Mar 2013]




Home Comforts – The Weekend Preview

Lots of lovely local sport for you to go and see.  To find out when and where, the weekend preview is here.

[audio:https://www.phoenixfm.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Local-Sport-Weekend-Preview-9-10-Mar-2013.mp3|titles=Local Sport Weekend Preview 9-10 Mar 2013]