Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Frickley Athletic 2 v Scarborough Athletic 0 - Friendly

Tuesday 12th July 2011 - Friendly
At Westfield Lane AKA the Tech5 Stadium
Frickley Athletic (1) 2 (Danny Walsh 9, Ben Leonard 62)
Scarborough Athletic (0) 0
Admission £5, Programme 50p, Attendance 177
Team sheet courtesy of Steve Pennock
The Tech5 Stadium, Westfield Lane, South Elmsall, picture taken from the
re-landscaped and windswept ex Colliery spoil heap that now goes by the
name of Frickley Country Park.

A night at the Athletics.
A pre season friendly deep in the austere Scargillite hinterlands, pitching Frickley Athletic of the Evo-Stik Premier against Scarborough Athletic of the NCEL Premier.
Scarborough Athletic have only been in existence since June 2007, following the demise of Scarborough FC, their supporters trust formed the new club through their desire to keep a local club representing the town at the highest level possible.
The 'Seadogs' have been ground-sharing with neighbours Bridlington Town since their formation but are campaigning relentlessly to get back into Scarborough itself.
Having read about the ridiculous amount of money they would have to raise to return to their Seamer Road ground, it would appear that that best option would be to find new premises instead, but as we all know that is easier said than done.
So while the Seamer Road ground (or McCain Stadium if you must) stands decaying on the main road into the town, SAFC battle on in exile. But don't take my limited knowledge of Scarborough Athletic's brief history as gospel, the Seadog Blog on the index to the right hand side of this page is where you want to be for the real facts.
One thing I will say about Scarborough Athletic, is that unlike certain other 'reborn' clubs I could mention (but won't), their supporters are steeped in humility without that unpleasant edge of arrogance and entitlement I've experienced first hand elsewhere in Yorkshire (I'm sure a lot of you will know exactly where I mean).
The Seadogs fans who were sat near us, were knowledgeable, pleasant and mixed well.
They turned up in good numbers too, which is to their credit to say this was a pre season friendly 80 miles away from Scarborough.
It was also evident, that the guys who spoke to us think the world of Rudi Funk, the manager who took over at the club towards the end of last season, who is synonymous with Nottinghamshire non league football.
Frickley Country Park a re-landscaped and windswept ex Colliery spoil heap,
picture taken from Westfield Lane, South Elmsall that now goes by the
name of the Tech5 Stadium

Frickley's manager Peter Rinkcavage, a great bloke and good friend of mine, has signed 9 new players so far this summer for the Blues as he strives to rebuild the team he inherited last season, who were perilously close to the relegation zone at that time. They survived by the skin of their teeth in the end. Frickley Athletic aren't likely to be amongst the promotion contenders in the Evo-Stik Premier this season, there are a few really big hitters who'll be going for that honour this season, but looking at the squad Rinky's put together, on and off the pitch, they'll certainly not be struggling down near the drop zone either.
Jordan Bradshaw, the Frickley keeper was forced into making a fine fingertip save down by his post in just the second minute as the visitors started with intent.
But having survived the early scare the Blues found their feet and took the game to Scarborough.
There was a goalmouth scramble in the Reds box following a left wing corner and Danny Walsh was on hand to stab the ball home in the 9th minute.
A great save from Scarborough's Ed Eley.
That wall's looking good John!

The chances continued to flow at both ends, but in spite of a few close calls, the final touch evaded both sides and there were no further goals before half time, though there could've been save for a few pre season stiff limbs and cobwebs.
A case in point being when Ant Lyman, Scarborough's big powerful front man, surged into the box with intent, but completely fluffed his final effort having done all of the hard work.
Rinky's half time de-briefing

Frickley had a first half and second half team for this game, one played in the usual blue and white home strip, the other in the white and black change kit. James Colliver, Frickley's player coach made a fleeting appearance at the end of each half.
On the hour, Scarborough Athletic's manager Rudi Funk made a few changes

It was still an open and attacking game after the restart, I've enjoyed some good pre season games this year in that respect, with both defences probably getting away with a bit more than they usually would've done in a competitive match in the height of the season, but it was Frickley who scored the only goal of the second half and once again it was from a corner, this time from the right wing.
Ben Leonard charged into the box and thumped his header home in the 62nd second minute, he was so fast he was a mere blur on my photograph of the incident.
See what I mean?
BTW, that wall is in a shocking state compared with the one at the far end.
Get your paint brushes out and get some work done John Utley!

The airborne guy in the lime green boots twisting to get out of the way of Leonard's goal bound effort, is none other than Gavin Smith, who appears in the sidebar of this blog with my son in a decade old photograph from a Worksop Town v Whitby Town fixture when our Sam was mascot at Sandy Lane.
Time flies by n' all that.
Frickley needed that two goal cushion, because Rudi Funk teams don't know how to play anything but attacking football ... and within a minute of the second goal, Billy Law had a effort to half the deficit cleared off the line at the other end.
At least I think it was Billy Law, Scarborough had made a lot of substitutions by then and I couldn't actually recognise all of them.
Towards the end of the game, Andy Catton, one of Frickley's second half subs, did a carbon copy manoeuvre of the one Any Lynam had made in the first half, from almost the same spot, when he left two Scarborough defenders in his wake but didn't connect properly with his final effort.
Both teams were applauded off at the end by both sets of supporters ... and the small but happy throng of neutrals present ... an enjoyable game in good company. I figured I better get my other third (I being two thirds of the equation) out n' about tonight, so where better than sunny South Elmsall on the picturesque south/west Yorkshire borderline?
Elsewhere ...
Worksop Town returned to their old stomping ground tonight on Babbage Way, off Sandy Lane in Worksop.
A momentous occasion for the club and it's loyal fans who've stood by the club in it's exile at Hucknall, Ilkeston and Retford.
Which might offer more than a glimmer of hope for tonight's visitors who want to play in their home town too.
The lease to the ground on Sandy Lane, now called the Windsor Food Services Stadium, is owned by Worksop Parramore FC (previously Parramore Sports and Sheffield Parramore) and the Tigers are back as their tenants, because of an agreement between the Worksop Town owner Jason Clark and Peter Whitehead, Parramore's chairman.
Whitehead is a real 'football man' with a great calibre and reputation, so here's hoping it all works out for both sides.

Peter Rinkcavage, now Frickley Athletic's manager, steered Worksop Town's team through the most difficult and perilous exiled years of their 150 year history ... and in my book the bloke deserves a medal for what he did, under the pressure he must have endured and given the lack of resources at his disposal.
Last season he left the Tigers 'by mutual consent' after 10 games, with the club sat second in the table, because they were bringing in Martin McIntosh to further the clubs ambitions.
I'm sure Macca will make a great job of taking the Tigers onwards and upwards towards a brighter future ... it must've been a bitter pill for Pete to swallow when the time came for him to move on. But he handled the situation with remarkable dignity and a stiff upper lip and never bad mouthed anybody, not even those who had been calling him behind his back.
Though he's diminutive in stature, it took a big man to take that on the chin, respect where it's due Pete.
A most engrossing game.
The crowd couldn't take their eyes of off it.

This coming season, if you visit Frickley Athletic, take note of the Players Kit Sponsorship page in the programme, THE66POW is sponsoring Rinky ... just like my son did when he was the Tigers manager during that season of uncertainty when they played in Ilkeston.
Tonight, when the team that survived all the trauma of being forced into exile by people driven by self greed, pettiness, dishonesty and massive ego complexes (you know who you are) returned to play in their home town it seemed like a fitting time to give some kind of recognition to one of the unsung heroes who kept the club going.
In time, history will be rewritten and some good men and women will be all but forgotten about by many.
Jason Clark is an absolute Godsend to Worksop Town and I won't hear a bad word said about him, but I'll always remember those who fell by the wayside in the pursuit of keeping Worksop Town alive and playing at the highest level possible too. Thanks.
Left click to enlarge