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The Season So Far: Division Two (Part 1)

  • 25/03/20
  • By Rory Petre
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The first of a series of articles reviewing how the teams of the CS got on in 2019/20

A freshened up and new looking S&H County Senior Division Two kicked off in mid-August which included a host of new teams entering or re-entering the league structure with lofty ambitions.

Incredibly the season started with 11 new or returning sides to the league. The new sides included Bank End AFC, Burngreave Reserves, Frecheville Community Association (CA), Jubilee Sports Reserves, South Elmsall United Services FC and Worksop St. Joseph’s. Unfortunately, the later mentioned Worksop St. Joseph’s pulled out of the league structure. The remainder of the new sides were returning from a host of different leagues such as the Doncaster Senior League and were as follows; Athersley Recreation Reserves, Houghton Main Reserves, Kinsley Boys, Sheffield Reserves and Silkstone United. As a result, this only left a handful of sides who remained from the previous season being AFC Dronfield Reserves, Swinton Athletic Reserves and Thurcroft Miners Institute. Unfortunately, the well-established AFC Dronfield Reserves also pulled out from the league to leave a 12-team division. There was still plenty of new grounds and rivalries to uncover across the coming months.

Here is a summary of each team’s season so far, as we hope this is not the end of the 2019/20 season whilst we enter uncertain times. In this week’s piece we will cover the second half of the division according to league placings at present and next week the six remaining sides.

Houghton Main Reserves (7th Position, P15 W6 D1 L8 PT19) – Returning to the league since leaving in 2017, Houghton have done a sound job of adjusting to life back in the County Senior nestling themselves in midtable safety. An early run of decent form came for Main winning four of their first seven games, only losing twice. This run included three wins on the bounce. This run of form, however, did not continue as the Barnsley based side have won just two more games up to this point. They will need top goalscorer Joel Hickling to add to his tally of nine goals to help propel them up the league. With seven games remaining Houghton will be looking to find some level of consistency and hope that their away form (P12 W3 L9) improves to a similar level of their home form (P6 W3 D1 L2) as they move forward in the league.

Bank End AFC (8th Position, P19 W6 D0 L13 PT18) – The side that play their home games at Barnsley Academy have similarly done a good job of settling into this standard of football as they sit eighth of the twelve sides. After winning their first ever game in the league the Barnsley side struggled for form as they lost their next six games. They then went onto earning some impressive wins in November and December winning 6-1 and 7-0 respectively. The team certainly seem to be all or nothing as they have suffered some large defeats along the journey albeit to very strong sides. As a side they seem to be learning as they have won three of their last five games to move into midtable. Can they sure up a leaky back line (conceding 76 goals in 19 games) so that they thrive for the remainder of the season?

Burngreave FC Reserves (9th Position, P19 W5 D1 L13 PT16) – Another new side to the County Senior League, Burngreave Reserves had to wait until match day six to bag their first CS league win, beating Thurcroft 5-3. Since then the side enjoyed their best run of form winning three of their next four league games from mid-November. This doesn’t include another win in the Memorial Cup. Since this run the side that play their games at Firvale Academy have had patchy form but will be aiming for a strong final three games should they be played out. Like Bank End, one goal will be to tighten up defensively having shipped 80 league goals, a high for the division.

Jubilee Sports Development (10th Position, P13 W4 D2 L7 PT14) – The lads from Jubilee enjoyed a solid start to the season which included three wins and two draws in their first eight competitive league games. The club from the North of Sheffield have since only picked up one win. However, in comparison to those around them they have only played 13 games, so have a huge amount to gain should they pick up some more wins along the way. Jubilee will be looking to Matthew Turner to earn those points with his vital goals, having bagged seven goals in eight starts this season. Will they be able to hit the ground running with the large amount of games still to be played in presumably a short space of time once the season recommences?

Thurcroft Miners Institute (11th Position, P16 W3 D1 L12 PT10) – Seasoned league regulars Thurcroft would have had high ambitions this season With so many new sides entering the division and after collecting four points from their first three games they would have been aiming for a midtable finish at least. That so far has not come to pass. After losing seven games in a row midway through the season they have been left scrambling at the wrong end of the table. It must be said Thurcroft have been on the wrong side of some thrilling ties losing 5-3 twice and losing other games 4-3 and 5-4. Had those scores gone the other way then Thurcroft would be midtable at least.

Silkstone United (12th Position, P16 W2 D0 L14 PT6) – Returning to the County Senior after just a small-time away Silkstone have had a challenging season so far but have not lacked in competitiveness. After struggling initially with the level of football on show, the Barnsley based club bagged an important 3-2 win in their eighth league game. Since the win they have been very competitive in many of their games and narrowly missed out on points. The highlight of their season being an impressive 5-1 win against Burngreave Reserves thanks to a Ben Secker hat-trick in his only start in the league this season. With their acclimatisation now seemingly increasing Silkstone will be aiming to chase down those above them and press on next season.

Authored by Rory Petre. You can find this and and other articles by Rory at https://thevillagefootballer.wordpress.com/