Manchester Over 65 League March 2018
The Manchester Over 65 League March 2018 was the second session of this newly formed league for the older walking footballer. Once again Vintage Celtic had to combine with Bury Relics to form Vintage Relics, due to both teams not having enough age eligible players.
Six fixtures of ten minute games, the same format as the February session, saw only four Celtic players available for this session. With four from the Bury side and one from Roach Dynamos, it made a squad of nine.
The first fixture against Rochdale Striders, as last month, ended in a 0-0 draw, a result which is now commonplace for this Vintage Relics team. Neither team really threatened to score but at least our defence looked solid. Second up were the other Rochdale side, the Strollers. Already topping the table after the February session, they are favourites to win this Spring Over 65’s League. Another 0-0 draw gained both teams a point, unfortunately we needed three points to try and keep pace with them.
Third opponents were Preston North End Senior Whites, lying joint second with us after the February fixtures. What a surprise, the outcome was a 0-0 draw. Derek had to depart at this point and that left us with no playmaker in midfield. The next fixture saw us pitted against neighbours and local rivals Tameside Striders. Last month saw us put three goals past them without reply but it was obvious after two or three minutes that this wouldn’t be repeated. Another 0-0 draw ensued. Some video footage HERE.
The penultimate fixture was versus Wakefield Wanderers and they looked the better side with some decent passing and movement, where we looked static at times, as we were in most of the games it has to be said. Once again it finished 0-0. Some video footage HERE. Could we break our goal duck in the final game against AFC Blackpool Senior Seasiders? Not a chance, we finished the day on our sixth 0-0 draw.
The only consolation is the fact that in twelve games we are unbeaten without conceding a goal. That statistic tells you everything, great in defence, thanks to Mike, Bob and Eric. Derek, in the games he played generally took control of the midfield but as a striking force we are not at the races.
After watching the excellent football played in the England trials last Saturday at the Burnley FC training ground and seeing the Manchester Corinthians demolish Leeds Titans 9-5 last Sunday, today was a frustrating experience and just shows the standards we need to aim for.
Thanks to the Celtic lads who turned out today, Colin Cuthbert, Derek Drabble, Mike Kieran and Eric Williams. Also to the Bury lads Bob Daniels, Pat Fitzgerald, Keith Bibby and Tony Pope, plus the other loan player from Roach Dynamos, Henry Coles. Thanks also to Alan Richards (Tameside Striders) for the video footage.