Due to a clash with England's last World Cup group match on Thursday 28th June 2018, the 2018 AFC AGM will now be held on Wednesday 27th June 2018 at the same venue as in 2017:- The Parker Room, The Abbey Community Centre, 34 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BU. Make a note in your smart phone diaries now please.
Marks including all games played up to 25th November are now available in the link below (or under Spirit of Football Tab). Heathrow continue to dominate the four tables with a top six position in all four. It is especially pleasing to see new club - Rob Roy Reds (Aberdeen Supporters Club) heading the SoF table and Spaniards maintaining their hugely improved on pitch marks this season, proving that it is possible to improve.
Altis FC also are rewarded for securing new and much improved home facilities at the Olympic Park, with a top five position. Clubs in the bottom 10 positions in the SoF table will be written to after the December table is published, as part of the new and agreed guidelines being adopted by that Committee this season. Currently it is the same old clubs that occupy the bottom ten positions and they must all try and get their SoF Marks higher.
It should also be noted that individual teams will be targeted to improve their marks significantly and currently there are four causing issues with very low SoF marks: -
Mickleham Old Boxhillians 1sts 6.00
Old Minchendenians 1sts 6.61
Old Tenisonians 3rds 5.53
Old Wokingians 4ths 6.08
The Amateur Football Combination is one of the biggest Leagues in Europe with around 100 clubs and 350 teams playing football from September through to May. Our football is true grass roots football. Players pay to play on local grounds. At the end of each season over 60 trophies of the League and London Old Boys' Cup Competitions are presented at the AFC Annual Dinner.
The 2018 event will once more be held at The Oval cricket ground, and will take place on Friday 25 May. To order your tickets visit the dedicated AFC Dinner website.
Tony Cottee to speak at AFC Dinner
Former England striker Tony Cottee has been named as the 2018 AFC Dinner speaker. Cottee, who played seven times for his country, played scored 226 goals in 579 games for West Ham United, Everton and Leicester City in a career which lasted fro 1982 to 2001. Named the PFA Young Player of the Year in 1985/86, Cottee was one of the most prolific scorers in English football during the 1980s and 1990s.
The AFC Representative XI defeated The Bedford County League 5-4 aet in a thrilling game of end to end football, on Saturday 25th November. They now await the QF draw made by the FA on 13th December 2017.
Bedfordshire County League 4 Amateur Football Combination 5
Chris HERITAGE 12", Charlie CAIN 95", Ryan BRIGHT 100", 110", Ellis MCLENNON 120"
The game kicked off and the first 20 minutes it was AFC in the ascendency attack after attack, playing some wonderful fluid football and passing the ball ‘Pep style’. There was only one team in it and it came as no surprise when Chris Heritage flicked a through ball past the keeper after 12 minutes. 0-1. So far so good, but two glaring open goal misses came and went in that glorious opening half hour. Would the AFC rue those two missed chances – only time would tell. Bedford gradually came more into the game and it was a very welcome half time that saw the AFC holding onto their slender lead, but only just.
The second half started much as the first had ended, with Bedford pressure and the AFC defence being tested, but not seriously threatened, marshalled by my man of the match – the towering Aiden Chapman (Meads). Manager Cross made a substitution in the 55th minute replacing a tiring Chris Holt (Meads), who had ploughed a largely one man spearhead up front, with George Proctor (Sutts). Bedford continued their dominance, changing their players with a full complement of substitutes and finally they were rewarded with the equalising goal, a header from a corner. 1-1. The game ebbed and flowed but it was obvious to all that this match was destined for the extra 30 minutes, so it proved.
Manager David Cross had to get the energy levels back into the players, Chris Heritage was struggling with cramp, but once again due to the lack of substitutes, through late and unforgiveable cry offs, the AFC were left to soldier on through the pain that such a high paced game on a big pitch would bring. Still soldier on they did. Within 5 minutes of the restart the AFC took the lead following a rare attack when Charlie Cain fired home 1-2. Euphoria amongst the supporters – short lived as within a minute Bedford had equalised. Players from both teams were getting very tired indeed.
Then suddenly picking the ball up wide on the right wing Ryan Bright (Meads) began what was the replica of the Barnes dribble against Brazil, weaving this way and that, riding tackle after tackle, before planting a screamer in the bottom corner 2-3. Two minutes to the mid ET break, could they hold on, no as yet again Bedford just wouldn’t give up and equalised with an own goal from a corner 3-3. Half time 3-3, with just 15 minutes remaining before the dreaded penalties.
Three minutes into the second half the roof came off the clubhouse, as the home crowd went ballistic, Bedford scoring their fourth, when their best forward player fired home 4-3. The AFC players were now running on empty but somehow managed to attack once again and from another mazy run, caused a rash challenge, as Ellis McLennon (Sutts) was felled in the box ‘PENALTY we screamed’, the ref no more than a few yards away pointed instantly to the spot. Up stepped Ryan Bright to send the keeper the wrong way 4-4. At this point, with just three minutes left on the clock, penalties seemed the obvious outcome.
Minutes ticked away until with just 30 seconds to go, manager Cross made his final switch bringing on sub keeper Chris Parlett (Sutts) for the excellent Henry Warne (Dorking). We supporters thought this a strange move, as Warne had played solidly throughout, deserving his moment of glory with the penalties. This stoppage and substitution must have unnerved Bedford, because out of the blue a misplaced defensive pass was seized upon by Ellis McLennon, to chip the keeper from fully 20 yards 4-5. This time it was the away end that took the roof off – even good old Geoff Lence had seen nothing like it in his 50+ years of watching AFA football. Final whistle almost instantly and amidst scenes of complete exhaustion and euphoria the team crawled back to the dressing rooms for a very, very well-deserved drink and shower.
Round 2 fixtures:
(† Cumberland County League fielded an entire team selected from Workington Athletic, in contravention of competition rules which restrict selection to seven per club in the squad, and five in the starting line-up.
Manager David Cross has finalised his squad (due to more late cry offs) for this coming Saturday's (25th Nov) FA Inter League Cup match . It goes without saying that many AFC Officers & VP's will be in attendance to cheer the team on - however please attend if you have no other pressing engagement. The squad is as follows:-
AFC Squad v Bedforshire County League (Cranfield FC, Crawley Road, Bedford, MK43 0AA) ko 3pm
Manager David Cross
The Ashes calls, so Andy Macrae is off to a land down under, departing this evening (16th November 2017) and back on Friday 8th December. He will have his laptop with him, to manage most football administration, however should any emergency arise, please contact Bealonians Chairman, Terry Barlow, email@example.com or by phone - 07802 902925.
Match update:- The SAL won 5-1 (H-T 4-0). A disappointing first half with three goals conceded from set pieces but a much stronger performance 2nd half with the AFC goal scored by Old Suttonians - George Proctor. Manager David Cross wasn't cross but hopes the team can rally for the big one on Saturday 25th v Bedford County League.
The match day programme for tomorrows nights match is attached and all support for the AFC will be very welcome indeed. The match is being played at Uxbridge FC Honeycroft, Horton Rd, Uxbridge UB7 8HX
It is with regret that I inform all that the above team have withdrawn from division Three North with immediate effect, due to continuing issues with the regular availability of players. Their playing record for 2017-18 has been expunged and Three North will now be a division of 10 teams, not 11.
Ian Andrews AFC Secretary
AFC Squad For Rep Game against SAL at Uxbridge FC in The Argonaut Trophy on Wednesday 15th November is as follows:-
Henry Warne - Old Dorkinians
Aidan Chapman - Old Meadonians
Charles Gerson -Old Hamptonians
Charlie Cain - Old Meadonians
Chris Heritage - Old Hamptonians
Ellis McLennon - Old Suttonians
George Proctor - Old Suttonians
Manny Soderu - Clapham Old Xaverians
Phil Dunnett - Old Minchendianians
Ryan Bright - Old Meadonians
Sarf Pivano - UCL Academicals
Shane Banbridge - Old Minchendianians
Stuart Holt - Old Meadonians
Timi Dorgu - Old Parmiterians
Zach Francis - Old Suttonians
Chris Partlett - Old Suttonianians (Assistant Coach )
Note to all Clubs & Referees:-
To confirm the AFC Fixtures Committee have deemed that there will be not be any AFC fixtures arranged on either Saturday 23rd or Saturday 30th December 2017. The last fixtures before the Xmas break will be on Saturday 16th December 2017 and the next fixtures will be on Saturday 6th January 2018.
Ian Andrews - AFC Secretary