Sportspy Reports – Sunday November 23rd 2008.

Braving the 'arctic blast' at Blackpool Road, St Annes watching the Division 3A top of the table match between Tiles FC who were in third and Foulds Metals FC who were in second.  The home side really needed a win to try and close the gap.  There are also a few pictures from Commonedge.

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Tiles FC have finished fourth then sixth in Division 3A in the previous two seasons playing as Autoweld FC so it's of little surprise that we see Tom Smith's team in third place as we head towards the end of November.  Recent history has shown that the team perform much better in the first half of the season than in the second so it's hoped that they can keep things together this time and make a real push for promotion back to Division 2 where they last played as Pearson Estate Agents FC. 

The team have won six, drawn four and lost only two of their twelve league matches this season.  One of those defeats came on the opening day against FC Gretone and the other came more recently when they suffered their worst defeat of the season in a 7-2 mauling by league leaders MA2 FC.  In this season's Gledhill Cup they beat Pulcinellas Reserves 5-2 in Round 1 but lost 2-0 away at Division 1 side the Shovels in Round 2.  Sponsored by Crescent pub manager Paul Stevens the team now have a good base to play from in St Annes Square.

This morning's opponents were Foulds Metals FC who faced a long journey from Fleetwood on not the best of morning's.  Foulds were second in the table at start of play five points ahead of Tiles and with two games in hand so it was for this reason that Tiles FC really needed a win to keep in touch with the top two.  Foulds Metals FC are new to Division 3A this season.  Last season they mainly played as the Ship, Fleetwood FC in Division 3B but they've also recruited players from elsewhere amd this season look decent bets for promotion as we head towards Christmas.

They've won nine games and lost only once in the league all season and that means that they're only three points behind league leaders MA2 FC with a game in hand.  It's days like today where promotion is won and lost.  Their only league defeat came on the road against MA2 FC and with the leaders in such good form they can't afford too many slip ups if they're to take the title.   Gledhill Cup interest ended in Round 1 with a 3-0 defeat to Layton Institute Juniors.  Rob Hughes is the man in charge and it was hoped that he'd managed to get his best team to travel this morning.

I was last at this venue a fortnight ago watching the Waterloo v Layton in the Lancashire Sunday Trophy and the weather that day was horrendous and if the forecast was anything to go by were in for even worse conditions with gale force icy winds and rain predicted.  It was good to see some ground improvements at this venue with new goals and re-alligned pitches although the blue lines made it a little confusing.

The man in charge today was Mr Benjamin Wiseman and at 11:10am with the weather forecast becoming ever more accurate Tiles FC kicked in their rusty coloured kit attacking the sea end.

Tiles FC 2008/09 before the rain came down.

Foulds Metals FC 2008/09.

The respective skippers shake hands prior to kick off.

Tyrone Melling (Left)

As I said earlier it's on days like this when titles are won and lost.  Unfortunately, Foulds could only muster ten players at kick off time and straight from the off they came under a lot of Tiles pressure.

Tiles FC take the lead.

On four minutes the home side took the lead.  A surging run from young James Butler took him past a couple of healf hearted Foulds challenges and in the above picture he (12) bent high and wide past the outstretched arm of the Fould's keeper. Great finish.  1-0.

The Fould's captain goes down under a challenge.

He's in some pain.

He has to go off.  Manager Rob Hughes is left holding his boot.  The team are temporarily down to nine men before a late arrival restores them to ten.

On seven minutes Tiles made it 2-0 as the prolific Tyrone Melling got on the end of a through ball and slid it past the onrushing keeper.  A minute later a similar throughball found Ryan Postlethwaite onside.  His shot rebounded back off the post and the grateful Tyrone Melling smashed it in.  3-0.

Melling celebrates with Butler.

On 12 minutes it was 4-0.  Following more good pressure an incisive pass into the Fould's box found Melling who took it around the keeper and hit it home into the wind from the angle for a 'five minute' hat-trick.  Three minutes later and it was four in eight minutes as he fired in another from 18 yards.  5-0 and Foulds were in disarray.  The camera once agin had to be protected from the rain.

“Give us a chance lads”

On 25 minutes it was more misery for Foulds as the outstanding Butler tormented their defence once again, took the ball to the by-line and pit it on a plate for that man Melling who gratefuly notched his fifth.  6-0.

The rain starts to fall heavily as Lee Crook shows his quality for Foulds.

Credit where it's due there was no bickering from the Foulds players who generally stuck at it and continued to play decent passing football.  Offensively, they looked good with Lee Crook catching the eye along with the hard working Dave Brookes who got some reward on 42 minutes with a thirty yard effort that flew into the top corner – brilliant goal.  1-6.  Unfortunately, for Foulds the home side went straight down the other end and scored again.  James Butler repeated his earlier spade work on the left and crossed it for Jamie King who did well to squeeze it in at the far post.  7-1.

The horizontal wind sock shows the strength of the wind.

Crook shows great spirit in battling for the ball once again.

'Commitment' – The Tiles liner (Chris 'Kid' Croall) begins to feel the cold.  “Please don't put me on!”.

Half time score :  Tiles FC 7 – 1 Foulds Metals FC.

At the half time break Foulds Metals FC jointly decided that there was little point in continuing.  Down to ten men, 7-1 down and with the dreadful conditions worsening they met with the Tiles opposition and agreed to hand them the game.  All of the players shook hands and that was that.  Despite the weather and the scoreline the match was played in great spirit with no trouble for referee Wiseman.  Hopefully, we'll have eleven a side and better conditions for the reverse fixture.

A good display from Tiles in the first half with some good performances especially from Tyrone Melling, Ryan Postlethwaite, Wes Lawrenson and James Butler.  One player who wasn't pleased to see the game end prematurely was Tiles' Tyrone Melling who fanicied increasing his first half tally of five goals.  Hopefully, Tiles can challenge for the whole of the season and not do their post Christmas disappearing act.

As for Foulds this was a day to forget.  It's a long trip but when you're second in the table there's few excuses for only having ten players.  I was impressed with their spirit and hopefully this will see them through to promotion.  Even at 7-1 down you could still see the quality if that makes sense.  Lee Crook epitomised what's required  by all the rest of them if they're to get anywhere near to winning this league.

The Teamsport90/Fyldesport Man of the Match award went to James Butler who scored one and made about five out of the other six goals through some great left wing play.  Looks like the BFSFA committee will have to rule on the outcome of this one although the three points and the 7-1 scoreline certainly look as though they'll be going the way of Tiles FC who stay in touch with the top two.

Tiles FC's James Butler wins the training ball and the 'Sporty' for his top performance.  Only 18 and yesterday he played his first game for Garstang FC in the West Lancs – Certainly one to watch.

Fylde Coast Gates player Wayne Binks injured last week is back on his feet again supporting the cause in his team's game against the Waterloo.  Two nights in the Vic resulted from his broken toes.  His poor wickle foot was getting cold under the plastic covering – ahhhh. 

Listen, last season there was this unfortunate spell of players turning up in scarves for games nattily tied in the style of the day.  Now we're seeing these stupid 'N Dubs' hats (I'm still down with the kids) and it's got to stop now.   Best be frank – you look stupid in them so pack it in now or the embarrasing pictures will be back to haunt you in years to come.  If you're going to wear 'bobbles' at least have it on the top of your hat and not hanging down the sides.

Skye FC joint manager Steve Waller has to keep clearing his specs.  No sign of that tough Scotsman Ali Martin though.

Skye FC in the red 3-2 down against FC Talbot.

Off to Commonedge for a bacon butty and a hot cup of tea.  The Quills v Crescent match had been abandoned with Quills drawing 1-1 but five other games were still underway.

The Saddle Inn FC (Green) were on their way to victory against the Farmers Arms.

The Shovels FC (Stripes) were 2-1 up against Northern Care Reserves but hanging on a bit in the closing stages.

Click it back in place and let's get on with it.

Matt Livingstone not the type of person to be put off by a little light drizzle.

FC Gretone (Blue) gutted at the final whistle after falling to a last minute FC Newton winner.

The Saddle v Farmers game ends just before the sun came back out .

Well done to all the lads who survived this morning's conditions.

Sportspy 2008/09

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