2019/20: An Incredible Journey. Match Day 9 – Tuesday 03 September 2019: Glossop North End v Eccleshill United

Matchday programme cover

I have a friend who loves his non-league football, he’s an Emley fan and also follows West Ham as a result of the FA Cup tie between the two sides in January 1998. Although the Hammers won through, it was Emley who stole all the headlines. Anyhow, he had mentioned that he had always wanted to go and see Glossop North End which as it turns out is only a short trip from Huddersfield.

Glossop North End hold the record for being the smallest town to have had a top flight league club, when back at the turn of the 20th Century the club were bankrolled by Sir Samuel Hill-Wood, who later became chairman of Arsenal and the Hillmen still have connections to the Gunners to this day.

They were elected to the Football League in the Second Division for the 1898/99 season eventually finishing second and gaining promotion to the top-flight. The 1899/1900 season was their only season in the First Division and unfortunately, they finished bottom of the pile.

GNE 1899/1900 Season

They remained in the Second Division through to the start of the First World War, but Glossop were perennial strugglers. Just before the war in the 1913/14 season they a had club record attendance of 10,736 for an FA Cup Second Round match against Preston North End. At the end of the war Glossop applied for re-election to the Football League but failed and had to drop into the Lancashire Combination League.

They now ply their trade in the Northern Premier League and have been relatively successful in recent years winning a North West Counties League and cup ‘double’ in 2014/15. They also have made it to two FA Vase Final’s, in 2008/09 and 2014/15, where they were beaten by Whitley Bay 2 – 0 and North Shields 2 – 1, respectively.

This visit to the AMDEC Forklift Truck Stadium on a wet and windy evening was for an FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round Replay, after the initial tie at Eccleshill United had ended 1-1. First impressions were of a hotchpotch stadium with the clubhouse behind one of the goals, with a covered terrace alongside, some covered terrace along the north side of the pitch and a seated stand on the south side.

The Hillmen kicked off into the wind and rain and Touhy hit a free-kick just over the bar in the early stages of the match which ebbed and flowed with entertainment at both ends of the pitch. The North End left back, Coulibaly looked particularly impressive with a number of strong runs down the wing but unfortunately lacked a final delivery that would count. Eccleshill hit the crossbar on the half hour but the keepers weren’t troubled throughout the first-half with Glossop looking the stronger side and the sides went in at the break 0-0.

The reality of the early FA Cup rounds

Despite looking the better side and having more of the ball the Hillmen were on the receiving end of the first goal. A free kick was swung in from the left and Irving had a free header to put it in the back of the net for the visitors. This sparked a reaction from Glossop. A long ball down the left was latched on to by the lively Mills who cut inside and sent a right foot curler into the top corner from just outside the corner of the area to level just after the hour mark. This lifted the urgency in the home team to go and search out a winner. A bit of pinball just outside the box finally saw the ball come to Limpishi who fired the ball in, a miss-hit from Maeico saw the ball roll to Tuohy who fired the ball into the roof of the net from six yards past the wrong footed keeper. Heads went down in the Eccleshill side, they had defended well for seventy-two minutes but were now on the back foot and 2-1 behind. North End upped the pressure for the final fifteen minutes, with Maeico hitting a rising shot just over the bar from twenty yards. In the dying minutes, the ball found its way to Limpishi on the right wing, he sat the defender down on his arse and sent the ball in to the near post to be flicked in by the substitute Fitto with virtually his first touch of the game.

A great competitive match in difficult conditions, but the small wet crowd were thoroughly entertained throughout the game.


Tuesday 03 September 2019

Emirates FA Cup Preliminary Round Replay

Glossop North End 3 (Mills 63’, Tuohy 72’, Fitto 89’) Eccleshill United 1 (Irving 51’)

Venue: AMDEC Forklift Truck Stadium

Attendance: 147

Glossop North End: Latham, Wilshaw, Coulibaly, Vinten, Hibbert, Holt (Limpiski 61’), Ekpolo, Tuohy, Coppin, Maeico (Mason 85’), Mills (Fitto 88’)

Unused Substitutes: Ellis, McClenaghan.

Eccleshill United: Emmerson, Marsh, Kaba, Sugden, Omolokum, Basi, Stor, Woodward Irving, Staunton Buchanan

Unused Substitutes: Stimpson, Moorhouse, Hargreaves, Kroma, Ndlovu, Lever, Taylor.


Steve Blighton


2013/14: Toolstation NCEL League Cup Final – Eccleshill United v Knaresborough Town

Last weekend saw the 2013/14 league programme in the Premier and First Division of the Toolstation Northern Counties East League (NCEL) completed. However, there was one last game before the curtain came down on the NCEL season, and that was the League Cup Final at Bradford City AFC.

The two finalists were Eccleshill United and Knaresborough Town, both from the NCEL First Division. Eccleshill’s route to the Final was as follows:

First Round v Cleethorpes Town (H) Won 2-1
Second Round v Albion Sports (A) Won 3-1
Third Round v Tadcaster Albion (H) Won 2-1
Fourth Round v Nostell Miners Welfare (A) Won 1-0
Semi-Final v Heanor Town (A) Won 4-3


Knaresborough Town reached the Final through the following games:

First Round v Rossington Main (A) Won 6-0
Second Round v Hemsworth Miners Welfare (A) Won 2-1
Third Round v Garforth Town (A) Won 2-0
Fourth Round v Bridlington Town (A) Won 1-0
Semi-Final v Long Eaton United (A) Won 1-0


In the league fixtures between the two teams, Knaresborough took four of the six points. The first meeting was in October at Eccleshill. After a goalless first-half, the game burst to life in the second period, with Colin Heath opening the scoring on fifty minutes for Borough. However, the lead lasted just two minutes as Marcus Edwards levelled for the home team. But it was the visitors who took the points with a second goal for Heath and one for Steve Bromley to seal a 3-1 win. In the return game this February at Knaresborough, it was honours even as the game finished 0-0. However, Eccleshill finished higher of the two teams in the NCEL First Division, ending the campaign in fourth, with Knaresborough in sixth.

Today was the second Cup Final of the season for Eccleshill, after they triumphed 1-0 against Harrogate Town in the West Riding County Cup (also at Bradford City) and so were hoping to secure a Cup-double. For Knaresborough, it was the opportunity to secure their first silverware since coming into the NCEL in the 2012/13 campaign.

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Prior to kick-off there was an immaculately observed minutes silence for the Leeds teacher, Ann Maguire, who was killed at Corpus Christie College last week. It was a chance to reflect on the cruelty that life can sometimes inflict, and that when people talk of ‘tragedy’ or ‘disater’ in terms of the outcome of a football match, it should be remembered that it is ultimately only a game.

* * * * * * * * *

Cup Finals can be very tense games often settled by a single goal. Thankfully this was far from it and was a tremendous advert for the NCEL and non-league football in general.

From the outset it was a fast paced and open game, with Knaresborough shading the opening few minutes. Borough made this count on ten minutes, when Eccleshill United fullback Ish Mills was beaten by Blaine Hobson and from the subsequent cross, Colin Heath clinically finished to put his team 1-0 ahead. Eccleshill responded immediately and were only denied an equaliser by good saves by Weston Murau from Connor Shefte and Doug Stevenson. However, their pressure brought its reward on twenty five minutes. From a corner, there was a melee in the box which saw the ball end up in the net and Charlie Flaherty credited with the goal. Borough keeper Murau indicated to the referee that he thought he had been impeded, but his pleas were ignored by referee Jason Knowles and the game was level at 1-1. The Eagles now had their tails up and were soon ahead. From a free-kick, the ball was delivered to fullback Tyler Tarango at the far-post, who out jumped the cover to head the ball back across the goal, where Marcus Edwards headed home at the near-post just two yards out. Knaresborough though held their nerve and didn’t panic and got a foothold back in the game, as Eustance and Heath had chances, but on each occasion their efforts were dragged wide, without troubling Ryan Smith in the Eccleshill goal. The Eagles too continued to look for more goals, with Marcus Edwards a constant threat. However, there were no further score and it remained 2-1 to Eccleshill at the break.

Borough were quickest out the blocks in the second-half and were level at 2-2 on forty eight minutes. From a cross, Colin Heath stooped to head goal-wards and Smith was only able to push the effort against the post before the ball nestled into the Eccleshill net. Now Knaresborough had the initiative, but as the game moved towards the hour there was a ten minute spell when the game became scrappy and niggly, which required referee Knowles to brandish a number of yellow cards to take the heat out of the situation. On sixty five minutes Borough made their first substitution with fullback and assistant manager Paul Stanfield being replaced by Dave Thomas. With twenty minutes remaining the game settled again and as the second-half progressed, genuine chances were at a premium. Eccleshill made a change on seventy four minutes with midfielder Reid Harbach replacing Aaron Sanchez as The Eagles went in search of a winner. And they nearly got it, when in the closing minutes they were awarded a free-kick on the edge of the box. Marcus Edwards curled it towards the top corner, but somehow Murau climbed to claw away the effort. With the game entering time added on and extra-time looming, Borough brought on ex-Brighton and Leeds United player Seb Carole for George Eustance.

With both teams now tiring, the extra thirty minutes unsurprisingly lost some of the bite and intensity of the first ninety minutes. Carole looked threatening as he ran at The Eagles defence, but was unable to create a genuine opportunity for his side. For Eccleshill, their one major chance was created by the ever willing Marcus Edwards. His run down the by-line, through a fatigued Knaresborough defence was only halted by a brave save at his feet by the outstanding Borough keeper Weston Murau. At the whistle and after 120 minutes, players from both sides sportingly shook hands and congratulated the match officials on what had been a draining, but enjoyable Cup Final. They knew though now it was down to the lottery that is penalties.

In front of an empty Kop, Borough took the first penalty and Seb Carole put them 1-0 ahead. Up first for Eccleshill was the dangerous Marcus Edwards, but his penalty was brilliantly saved by Murau as he dived to his right. Murau didn’t watch as his teammate Dave Thomas stepped up to take the next penalty, but the keeper must have heard the ball smack off the post and away as Eccleshill celebrated the miss. The Eagles tied the penalties at 1-1 as Ryan Jones scored from the spot. Jim Bradley took the score 2-1 to Borough and the pressure swung back again to Eccleshill. Charlie Flaherty had the job of levelling the scores, but his penalty was high and wide and The Eagles were now struggling. Substitute Danny Wright scored for Borough to make it 3-1, which meant that Connor Shefte had to net to keep Eccleshill in with a chance. Shefte slotted home to reduce the deficit to 3-2, but the players and fans of The Eagles knew that if Borough converted their next penalty then it was game-over. Byron Littlefair was handed the responsibility of the spot-kick and he drove it home to clinch the NCEL League Cup 4-2 for Knaresborough. With the game won, Man of the match Weston Murau was swamped by the players and rightly so, as the keeper had been outstanding.

There was to be no Cup-double for Eccleshill, but they had played their part in a stirring occasion and their efforts and those of winners Knaresborough were acknowledged by the appreciative crowd. 2013/14 has proved to be a good season for both sides. What will 2014/15 bring?


Eccleshill United: Ryan Smith, Ish Mills, Tyler Tarango, Jermaine Springer (captain), Ryan Jones, Tyson Newell, Aaron Sanchez (Reid Harbach 74), Doug Stevenson, Marcus Edwards, Connor Shefte, Charlie Flaherty. Subs unused: Brendan Roslund, Daniel Mann, Zack Le Casse.

Knaresborough Town: Weston Murau, Paul Stansfield (Dave Thomas 65), Nick Radcliffe, Matt Duerden (captain), Will Lenehan, Jim Bradley, George Eustance (Seb Carole 90), Dominic Wilson, Colin Heath (Danny Wright 80), Blaine Hobson, Byron Littlefair. Subs unused: Tom Osborne, Liam Gray.

Attendance: 390