Competition: MFL Premier

AFC Wulfrunians vs Tividale

Midland Football League

Premier Division
Tuesday 21st September 2021
AFC Wulfruniuns 2-2 Tividale

A Tale of Two Halves

Games against our rivals down the A4123 are always competitive and tight affairs.  As it was to prove in the FA Cup tie a month earlier played at The Beeches. But not only was this competitive and tight, the first half to the neutral’s was classic entertainment (maybe not so much for the two dug outs though).

Once again Manager Dave King had to make changes with club captain Matt Hunt, Brogan Halpin, Dan Bryson and Tyree Clarke all unavailable. But we were delighted to have Brad Welding back fit, and he went straight into the side. With 2 Centre backs out Tom Hurdman was moved from his usual right wing back position to Centre back and he also donned the captain’s arm band.

The game started at a frantic pace and after 7 minutes Curtis Cocking found Elliott Hartley and his first time shot brought off a smart save by AFC keeper Tom Hayward. On 10 minutes came AFC’s first effort on target when Robert Hanna was able to pick his way through the Tividale midfield before trying an effort from 25 yards that Tividale keeper Adam Harrison turned over the bar.

Tividale opened the scoring on 13 minutes when Darragh Bustin himself ran at the AFC defence, had a bit of fortune when his attempted one two with Dan Smith was intercepted by AFC defender Chris Knights on the edge of the penalty area but Knight only succeeded in putting the ball back into Bustin’s path and he needed no fortune in blasting the ball past Hayward and into the bottom left hand corner of the net.

Tividale were in behind the AFC defence a couple of minutes later when Hartley found Bustin, and his cross was met by Smith, but Hayward held onto the header comfortably. Hartley then had an appeal turned down for what would have been a harsh penalty decision.

On 18 minutes a Tividale defensive error let in AFC’s Dominic Dell. He unselfishly rolled the ball to Aaron Bishop, but his shot lacked power and was a routine save for Harrison. Two minutes later and obviously the away side had not learnt from their earlier mistake. This time Bishop was the benefactor. He played in Dell who in a one-on-one situation made no mistake in beating Harrison.  In keeping with the end-to-end football Tividale were right back at their host’s and on 21 minutes Bustin picked the pocket of AFC’s Hanna but his curling shot was an easy save for Hayward.

The home side then had a spell where no one knows how they did not take the lead. It started with a short back pass to Harrison where the keeper just about beat Dell to the ball, but his clearance came straight back. Hanna then failed to beat Harrison who beat away his shot. After a half clearance it landed at the feet of Bishop whose drive across goal hit teammate James Hill and back into the path of Hanna whose shot was saved again by Harrison. AFC worked the back into Jamie Meadows, but his shot cleared the Tividale bar.

A Bustin free kick was headed onto the top of the net by Hayden Reeves on the half hour mark. On 39 minutes Hartley was able to weave his way past 3 defenders lay the ball off to Milne who beat Hayward via the left-hand post to put Tividale 2-1 ahead. Hill then saw his free kick go wide of Harrison’s left-hand post on 41 minutes as they looked to equalise immediately.

On the stroke of half time Bishop was through on the end of a long ball. Harrison misjudged the bounce and took out the player just outside the area. With the home players and spectators calling for a red card and the visitors fearing the worse the referee and his assistant took their time to assess what had happened and after about 3 or 4 minutes rightly showed Harrison the yellow card. As he had cover between the Bishop and his goal. From the resulting free kick in first half stoppage time Hill saw his effort come off the crossbar but Hanna was quickest to react and stabbed the ball past Harrison to make it 2-2.

Half Time: AFC Wulfruniuns 2-2 Tividale

It was going to take some doing for the second half to match the first. But AFC were right at it from the start and on 47 minutes Harrison had to turn a Dell shot around the post for a corner. From the resulting corner Bishop headed over the Tividale bar.

As expected, the game quietened down a touch from the high octane first half and it was the 59th minute before the next decent goal threat. Bustin played a beautiful defence splitting ball to Hartley. But Knight got across to marshal him away from goal before clearing for a corner. Hartley took the corner, and it found its way to Welding on the back post. He played it into the path of Bustin and his pile driver was well saved by Hayward. The keeper parrying the ball away and Tom Poole completing the clearance. Hartley was then put through down the Tividale left but his shot went high and wide.

As the game moved into the last 15 minutes AFC were the team making the most of the running and Dell, Bishop, and substitute Panasue Madamba all had chances that were well defended and cleared. Bishop also headed over another Hill corner with time running out. In the end the final whistle went with surprisingly no addition to the half time score line. But what a game.

Full Time: AFC Wulfruniuns 2-2 Tividale

Tividale: – 1. Adam Harrison, 2. Tom Hurdman, 3. Brad Welding, 4. Luke Carter, 5. Ben Birch, 6.Hayden Reeves,  7. Darragh Bustin, 8. Curtis Cocking, 9. Dan Smith, 10. Cameron Milne (14. Lewis McPike 76), 11. Elliott Hartley

Unused Subs: – 12. Jordan Edwards, 15. TJ Munthali

Tividale

1Adam Harrison Goalkeeper
2Tom Hurdman Defender
3Bradley Welding Defender
4Luke Carter Midfielder
5Hayden Reeves Defender
7Darragh Bustin Midfielder 10'
11Elliott Hartley Midfielder
12Curtis Cocking Midfielder
14Daniel Smith Forward
15Cameron Milne 10 Midfielder 37'
18Ben Birch Defender
9Jordan Edwards Forward
10Lewis McPike 15 Forward
22TJ Munthali Defender
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Tividale vs Haughmond

Midland Football League

Premier Division
Saturday 18th September 2021
Tividale 1-0 Haughmond

Tivi have to earn the points

After two successive away defeats and conceding three goals in each of them. It was nice to get back to The Beeches, pick up a clean sheet and most importantly pick up the three points. But Tividale were made to work hard for them against a Haughmond side that certainly did not look like they were without a league win so far this season. Playing like this and that statistic will soon disappear.

With the Boss back from his short break, it was a case of a couple of changes. The first change was switching to a back four from the three centre backs that we had played all season, with Dan Bryson the man rested. Cameron Milne also came into the middle of the park and that was the only personnel change in the lineup.

It was the visitors that started the brighter as Tividale just could not get into the game in the opening exchanges but although they threatened with a string of early corners they could not find the breakthrough and it was the home side who posed the first real goal threat against the run of play on 5 minutes when Dan Smith was able to get a shot in but it was comfortably saved by away keeper Sam Jones. Haughmond should have gone ahead on 10 minutes when a free kick towards the back post was headed back into the danger zone by Calum Bennett and Josh Thomas met it on the volley, but Adam Harrison pulled off another stunning save and beat the ball away.

It had taken Tividale 15 minutes to really get into the game and Smith and Elliott Hartley were now posing a real threat up front for the men from The Beeches. Smith found some space down the Tividale right and played the ball into Hartley, but his shot was blocked and there where appeals for handball turned down by referee Bradley Tonks. Haughmond then went straight down the other end and their own appeals for a handball are also turned down.

As the game begins to liven up Milne rolled in Hartley on 20 minutes, but his shot is turned around the post by Jones. Three minutes later and a Haughmond free kick at the edge of the Tividale penalty area is played short to Scott Ryan by Bennett completely fooling the Tividale defence that were expecting the shot, but Tividale closed him down and cleared the threat.  Ryan then tried his luck from a fair way out that Harrison takes with no problem. On 34 minutes a Hartley cross is headed clear for a corner by Haughmond defender Finn Sansom. From the resulting Bustin corner to the back post Matt Hunt heads it back across the goal but Harley could only fire it over Jones’s bar.

Five minutes before the break and a poor clearance from Jones falls at the feet of Smith but Jones’s made immediate amends touching the Smith shot over the bar and that was the end of the first half action

Half Time: Tividale 0-0 Haughmond

Haughmond’s Thomas had the first sight of goal in the 48th minute but again could not hit the target sending his effort high and wide. With Tividale’s first attack of the half in the 50th minute they went ahead. Harrison again trying to turn the Haughmond back line with a punt up field that caused a mistake by the defence and Hartley was left one on one with Jones and he steered the ball past the keeper and into the net. Hartley went close to doubling the Tividale lead in the 57th minute when from a Milne cross, he hooked the ball goal wards only to see it skim the top off the crossbar and go over.

Two minutes later and it was Haughmond’s turn to hit the woodwork, when a Ryan corner evaded everyone and hit Harrison’s back post before Tividale cleared. With 61 minutes on the clock Ryan was given too much room to get his shot in but Harrison turns it away for a corner. Smith is then put through, but Jones beats away his shot and Bennett completes the clearance putting the ball out for a corner. Smith then flicked the ball on for Milne, but his strike was well saved by Jones. But the assistant blew for offside.

Thomas and Ryan again joined forces to create another chance for the visitors in the 71st minute but again Harrison was equal to Ryan’s shot. In the 82nd minute Smith again won the flick on, this time for Bustin who smacked the ball home but again the assistant’s flag was raised and offside was given. Bustin had another chance with four minutes of normal time to go but this time Jones was able to save the shot with some comfort.

Tividale then decided to batten down the hatches and take the 1-0 win as Haughmond struggled to get hold of the ball and launch any meaningful attacks on the Tividale goal.

Full Time: Tividale 1-0 Haughmond

Tividale: – 1. Adam Harrison, 2. Tom Hurdman, 3. Darragh Bustin, 4. Luke Carter, 5. Hayden Reeves, 6. Matt Hunt, 7. Lewis McPike (14.  Dan Bryson 72), 8. Curtis Cocking (15. Brogan Halpin 87), 9. Dan Smith, 10. Cameron Milne, 11. Lewis McPike

Unused Subs: – 12. Jordan Edwards

 

Click this link to see game photographs by Focus Dunn Sports Photography.

Tividale

1Adam Harrison Goalkeeper
2Tom Hurdman Defender
4Luke Carter Midfielder
5Hayden Reeves Defender
6Matthew Hunt Defender
7Darragh Bustin Midfielder
10Lewis McPike 20 Forward
11Elliott Hartley Midfielder 50'
12Curtis Cocking 27 Midfielder
14Daniel Smith Forward
15Cameron Milne Midfielder
9Jordan Edwards Forward
20Daniel Bryson 10 Defender
27Brogan Halpin 12 Midfielder
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Boldmere St Michaels vs Tividale

Midland Football League

Premier Division
Tuesday 14th September 2021
Boldmere St Michaels 3-1 Tividale

The Saints March On

After Saturday’s no show, Tividale had the chance to immediately forget about the performance and the result with an away fixture at table topping Boldmere St Michaels.

First of all we have to mention the new changing room and hospitality facilities at The Boldmere St Michaels Football & Athletic Club. We had heard a bit about it but as due to Covid we have not played there for 2 seasons. So we never really had chance to see it. Well all we can say is. It was worth the wait.

Anyway back to the football. With Manager Dave King taking a well earned break. Assistant manager Kieran Bustin was in charge for the night and he made four changes. Tom Hurdman had recoveered from the injury that kept him out of Saturday’s game. Curtis Cocking, Hayden Reeves and Lewis McPike all returned to the starting line up. All in place of the injured Brogan Halpin and Jordan Edwards and the rested Ben Birch and Cameron Milne.

The first half started at a frenetic pace with both sides on the attack. Boldmere were at Tividale’s goal in the 2nd minute but the visitors just managed to clear their lines. Then on 10 minutes a spate of Tividale pressure ended with Elliott Hartley firing wide. On 20 minutes there was a break in play after Boldmere full back Ben George was on the end of a crunching tackle. (He eventually had to go off 15 minutes later). Tividale skipper Matt Hunt then just got in the way of a Alex McSkeane effort to divert it wide as the full throttle action continued.

There was no relenting to the speed and high tempo of the game and Darragh Bustin will feel he should have done better in the 32nd minute when he put his free kick way over Dan Crane’s bar. Boldmere came the closest to opening the scoring on 38 minutes when a Danny O’Sullivan cross fell to McSkeane but his snap shot was straight at Harrison.

Tividale took the lead in the 41st minute when a Bustin long throw caused all sorts of chaos in the home defence and after a scramble Dan Smith rifled the ball into the back of the net. In the 43rd minute Boldmere’s O’Sullivan with great work again down the right but he could not match it with his cross come shot and it flew past Harrison’s far post. Tividale could have doubled their lead on the stroke of half time but Hayden Reeves headed a Hartley corner wide.

Half Time : Boldmere St Michaels 0-1 Tividale

Within nine minutes of the second half,  the game had been turned on it’s head. In the 53rd minute, the flying O’Sullivan got to the bye line and his cross was met by an unmarked McSkeane and his downward header beat Harrison to put Boldmere level. A minute later and the home side were in front. For the second game running an unforced Tividale defensive error, this time a short back pass left the alert McSkeane one on one with Harrison and he rolled the ball past the onrushing keeper.

Tividale now had to chase the game and Huint just failed to get on the end of a Bustin free kick. While the visitors were pressing for the equaliser there was always the chance that they would get punished on the counter and on 67 minutes Harrison pulled of a fine save to deny Kyle Byrne. Then a minute later O’Connor broke away again but his shot was comfortably saved by Harrison. A minute later and Smith was sent to the Sin Bin a culmination of frustration of the little if any protection he was getting from the officials and the epic battle between him and Boldmere’s centre back Pedro Lima.

The game went into a bit of a lull at that point with Boldmere seemingly happy with the 2-1 lead while the visitors with a man short could not raise the momentum to trouble the Boldmere back line. As the game went into the last 5 minutes there came a moment of brilliance.  Boldmere won a free kick, outside the box and to the right of Harrison’s goal.

Up stepped O’Sullivan and his screamer of a shot beat Harrison all ends up and into the top left hand corner. An effort I doubt 2 keepers would have saved.

Click here for that Danny O’sullivan free kick

 

Full Time : Boldmere St Michaels 3-1 Tividale

Tividale: – 1. Adam Harrison, 2. Tom Hurdman, 3. Elliott Hartley, 4. Hayden Reeves, 5. Dan Bryson, 6. Matt Hunt, 7. Curtis Cocking (12.  Cameron Milne 84), 8. Luke Carter, 9. Dan Smith, 10. Darragh Bustin (14. Corey Howe 58), 11. Lewis McPike (15. Tyree Clarke 65)

Unused Subs: – 14. Ben Birch, 16. Corey Howe

Tividale

1Adam Harrison Goalkeeper
2Tom Hurdman Defender
4Luke Carter Midfielder
5Hayden Reeves Defender
6Matthew Hunt Defender
7Darragh Bustin Midfielder
10Lewis McPike 21 Forward
11Elliott Hartley Midfielder
12Curtis Cocking 15 Midfielder
14Daniel Smith Forward
20Daniel Bryson Defender
15Cameron Milne 12 Midfielder
18Ben Birch Defender
21Tyree Clarke 10 Forward
26Private: Corey Howe Forward
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Tividale vs Lye Town

Midland Football League

Premier Division
Tuesday 7th September 2021
Tividale 2-2 Lye Town

Draw but no Bore

After a tough to take FA Cup defeat against Spalding United. Maybe a local derby clash against Lye Town 3 days later is just what the doctor ordered. No time to mope or lament on what could have been as this will be one of the toughest games of our season.

Manager Dave King made 4 changes to Saturday’s starting lineup. With Tom Hurdman out injured, Hayden Reeves returned to the centre of defence. Both Jordan Edwards and Lewis McPike had started sgainst Spalding after long term injuries and so were rested and replaced by the returning Dan Smith and the re-signing Darragh Bustin. The 4th change saw the first start for new signing Brogan Halpin who came in for the rested Cameron Milne.

As probably expected, the opening minutes were a case of the two teams cancelling each other out in the middle of the park with neither side able to create a clear-cut chance and both defences dealing with whatever little threat there was. It also did not help with the temperature touching a ridiculous 30 degrees C at 7:45pm on the 7th September

The first bit of action came on 16 minutes. A poor Lye corner was missed at the front post by Brad Welding, but it caught Lye forward Jayden Owusu Nepaul by surprise and it came off him and out for a goal kick. On 18 minutes a Tividale long throw from Bustin fell to Luke Carter, but he could not keep his shot down and he put it over the bar.

The first piece of quality produced the opening goal on 22 minutes. A quick Lye throw down their left found ex Tividale player Shaquille Whittingham who had been kept quiet up until now. He proceeded then to beat two Tividale defenders and then curled the ball past Harrison and in off his far post.

Whittingham was now causing Tividale all sorts of problems on both flanks, especially with his ability to go either side of his marker and on 25 minutes Lye should have gone 2-0 up. Whittingham now on the right flank was able to whip in a cross that Nepaul managed to head over the Tividale bar.

With the temperature still in the mid 20s. The game was halted for mid-half drinks break. Despite the break Lye were soon back into their stride and twice had Tividale scrambling to clear Joe Lawley corners. On his third corner in the 36th minute Nepaul again headed over.

With a minute of the half remaining Tividale had their first real sight of goal. Elliott Hartley broke on the counter, but young Lye keeper Alfie Brooks did well in blocking the initial shot. It fell to McPike (who had replaced the injured Welding) but he could only find the side netting from an acute angle. As the half came to a close. both sides had chances. First Brooks was again forced to save from Hartley.  Then from Brooks’s clearance Whittingham found Nepaul but again the front man failed to hit the target.

HALF TIME Tividale 0-1 Lye Town

Once again, we don’t know what was said at half time, but it made an immediate impact. From a Bustin corner from the left, Lye cleared behind for another from the other side. Hartley stepped up to take this one and he found Carter unmarked in the box on 47 minutes and his header gave Brooks no chance. On 52 minutes Smith literally mirrored Wittingham’s glide past defenders 30 minutes earlier but while the former ended his run with a sublime finish. Smith tried to tee up McPike and the Lye defence intervened and cleared.

On 59 minutes came another touch of brilliance and after thinking Lye’s opener may not be bettered at The Beeches this season Bustin proved us all wrong. He collected the ball in his own half outpaced 3 Lye players and from about 30 yards unleashed a thunderbolt that flew past Brooks into the top right-hand corner clipping the inside of the post on the way into the back of the net.

Bustin went close to extending the lead in the 65th minute. When from a free kick from a mere 25 yards he left Brooks rooted but the ball just went wide of his far post. Tividale were now in the ascendancy and really needed that third goal and it almost came in the 69th minute when a McPike shot was blocked by Brooks.

With the home side not getting that two-goal cushion. This Lye side were always capable of getting back on level terms and in the 73rd minute Whittingham found himself in about the same position as he did when he scored the opener, but this time he pushed the ball wide. But 6 minutes later the visitors were on level terms. Tividale failing to clear their lines on a couple of occasions, the ball fell to Wittingham who found Ben Billingham who lashed the ball into the back of the net.

Tividale sub Jordan Edwards was denied by the alert Brooks in the 88th minute just a couple of minutes after coming on. And in injury time a Bustin long throw had Lye’s Musa Ceesay in all sorts of trouble and somehow, he shanked the ball over his own bar and that was the last action of the game

FULL TIME Tividale 2-2 Lye Town

Tividale: – 1. Adam Harrison, 2. Hayden Reeves, 3. Brad Welding (15. Lewis McPike 27), 4. Luke Carter5. Ben Birch, 6. Matt Hunt, 7. Darragh Bustin, 8. Curtis Cocking9. Dan Smith, 10. Brogan Halpin (12. Cameron Milne 79), 11. Elliott Hartley (14. Jordan Edwards 84)

Unused Subs: – 16. TJ Munthali.

Tividale

1Adam Harrison Goalkeeper
3Bradley Welding 10 Defender
4Luke Carter Midfielder 48'
5Hayden Reeves Defender
6Matthew Hunt Defender
11Elliott Hartley 9 Midfielder
12Curtis Cocking Midfielder
14Daniel Smith Forward
18Ben Birch Defender
27Brogan Halpin 15 Midfielder
9Jordan Edwards 11 Forward
10Lewis McPike 3 Forward
15Cameron Milne 27 Midfielder
22TJ Munthali Defender
35Darragh Bustin Midfielder 59'
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