Tag: Blyth Spartans

Non-League Videos Of The Week

We have got four matches for you as our non-league videos of the week selection tonight. First up is a match between two teams chasing play-off places in the Blue Square South, Woking and Farnborough FC. Farnborough started the day in third place, but knew that anything other than a win could see Welling United leapfrog them on goal difference. Woking, meanwhile much improved under new manager Garry Hill and are now up to eighth place in the table. Our second match comes from the Blue Square North, and is a match between another two clubs around or about the play-off places, Blyth Spartans and Solihull Moors. Solihull are in fifth place – the last play-off spot, with Blyth just below them. Blyth, however, go into this match four points behind Solihull and desperately need three points to close the gap on their opponents in the league. We have mentioned before on this site how tight the top half of the Ryman League Premier Division is this season, and the next match up is between two teams at either end of that particular rat run. Tonbridge Angels are in fourth place in the league. They’re eleven points behind the leaders Sutton United, but only eight points ahead of Canvey Island, down in tenth place in the table. They met each other in a league match last Tuesday night. Finally,...

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Generous George And Other Acts Of Random Football Kindness

It sounds like a plotline one of those football films – the non-league minnows, who are playing for free, have their coach trip for a huge away trip to the other side of the country paid for by a generous stranger. But that is just what happened to Redditch United this week. Generous stranger, and massive Blyth Spartans fan, George Robson was the one behind the gesture. Rooted to the bottom of the Blue Square North and with no playing budget whatsoever Redditch are fighting very hard to keep their heads above water, watchful of the likes of Ilkeston and Farsley Celtic who have both been lost from that league in the past two seasons. They aren’t winning too many matches, their first team manager left and the average of the squad is 19 (just), it’s not a great time for anyone at the club right now. But George’s gesture, to pay for the first team coach to make the 11hr round trip to Blyth last Tuesday left Reds secretary Tim Delaney, and most of the fans on the Redditch forum, speechless. “For a supporter of one club who pledges his support and money to them on a regular basis to even consider another’s plight is truly humbling and restores ones faith in human kind,” he said. Before adding that the first team and travelling directors, supporters and staff...

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Videos Of The Week: Non-League Special

It’s time for a bit of a non-league round-up (as is our wont at this time of the week), with highlights of three matches from the last couple of weekend’s worth of matches. First up, we’re taking the opportunity to catch up with one of the matches from the weekend of the 15th of January, with the FA Trophy Second Round match between Blyth Spartans. To people of a certain edge, hearing these two names together will send a shiver down the spine. Blyth Spartans, of course, made the Fifth Round of the FA Cup in 1978 and the Quarter-Finals of the FA Trophy in 1980 and 1983 (beating Altrincham on the way). Altrincham, meanwhile, were setting records of their own at the same time. They missed out on a place in the FA Trophy final in 1977 after a marathon four match long semi-final against Scarborough, but won the competition two years later and were runners-up again in 1982. Anyway, it was a cracking match at Croft Park last weekend. Our second match comes from the Blue Square South, and is a local derby from the south-east between Ebbsfleet United and Bromley. Bromley, the visitors, started the season with seven successive league wins and remained unbeaten until the middle of October. The chasing pack has since caught them up and they recently suffered the ignominy of a 7-0...

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Videos Of The Week: FA Cup Special

This weekend sees us reach the First Round Proper stage of the FA Cup. Over 40,000 people turned out to watch the Fourth Qualifying Round matches, and there will be plenty of stories waiting to be written over the next few days. For our part, we’ll be reporting on the matches between Rochdale and FC United of Manchester, Brighton & Hove Albion and Woking, and Southport and Sheffield Wednesday. For now, though, just to get you in the mood we’ve had a bit of a rummage around in the YouTube archives and found three terrific matches from the tournament’s past. First up, from January 1992, comes the match between Wrexham and Arsenal. Wrexham had finished the previous season in bottom place in the Football League and had only avoided relegation thanks to the Football League’s decision to expand by one club and were struggling near the bottom of the table again, whilst Arsenal had won the Football League championship for the second time in three years. This match comes in three segments and even features the short-lived “revamped” Match Of The Day theme tune into the bargain. Commentary comes from a long-time idol of this site, the one and only Tony Gubba. Next up, we’re going all the way back to 1978 and the Fifth Round of the FA Cup and a second match from The Racecourse Ground, this...

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Blyth Spirit

Even though the FA Cup has regained some of its sheen over the last couple of years, the new financial realism of the modern game tends to take its toll on any pretensions of “the romance of the cup”. There is a tendency to look at everything through the eyes of an accountant these days – how much will we get if we get through? What is today’s result worth to us? It wasn’t however, always like this. It’s the FA Cup First Round Proper this weekend, so we’ll be running stories from the history of the competition on here all week, starting with Blyth Spartans’ extraordinary run to the Fifth Round of the competition in 1978. When the draw for the First Round Proper of the FA Cup was made last Monday, you may have heard a faint gasp coming from the general direction of Shropshire. For younger Shrewsbury town supporters, the name of the team that Shrewsbury drew, Blyth Spartans, probably doesn’t mean very much but, for supporters over the age of thirty-five or so, a certain unease in their parts at the task ahead could probably be forgiven. In the late 1970s, Blyth Spartans were the FA Cup giant killers – the team who came within a hair’s breadth of becoming the only non-league club in living memory to reach the quarter-finals of the competition. Spartans,...

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