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The Season So Far: Division One (Part 3)

  • 10/04/20
  • By Rory Petre
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A summary of how the teams in the second half of the league got on in the 2019/20 season.

Like Division Two of the County Senior League, Division One this season had a renewed look to it in terms of the teams making up the league structure. The season commenced in mid-August and would prove to be a very exiting division with drama at both ends of the table.

Extraordinarily this campaign started with 6 newly promoted teams which made up almost half of the teams in the division. The newly promoted sides included Ardsley Athletico, New Bohemians FC, Sheffield Union, Stocksbridge Park Steels Development and Wombwell Town.There were two sides that had come down a division from the Premier Division that were Handsworth Reserves and South Kirkby Colliery. The remainder of the returning sides were as follows Caribbean Sports, Denaby Main JFC, AFC Dronfield, Hemsworth Miners Welfare Reserves, Kiveton Park, Sheffield Medics and Wombwell Main Reserves. Unfortunately, there were three clubs who withdrew from the league before kicking a ball as Caribbean, Hemsworth and Stocksbridge all withdrew and as a result United Worksop were promoted alongside the five other newcomers to produce a 12-team division. Again, the curse of withdrawing sides struck as Ardsley resigned from the competition and all points were expunged from their 10 games played.

Here is a summary of each team’s season, after confirmation from the FA that the 2019/20 season would be declared null and void. In this week’s piece we will cover the second half of the division according to league placings and next week the six remaining sides.

Denaby Main JFC (7th Position, P13 W6 D1 L6 PT19) – The South Yorkshire side were looking to build on the fifth-place finish of last season and would have had their sights set on promotion. After a disappointing return of one point from their first two games things started to click for Denaby as they went onto win their next five games, which included three clean sheets as well. This run of form would, however, be their highlight of the season. In the new year, they only won one of their next six games dropping them down to midtable in the league, an end to any prospect of promotion to the Premier Division. One thing the management team will be striving for in the future seasons to come, is the same consistency of performance they showed at home compared to their results when on the road.

Wombwell Main Development FC (8th Position, P13 W5 D0 L8 PT15) –The Barnsley side started the season with a local derby losing narrowly 4-3 to newly promoted Wombwell Town. Main went on to lose their next two games in what was a difficult start to the season. They did, however, turn things around with back to back wins in mid-September against Sheffield Medics and Sheffield Union. Due to cup commitments Main had a long spell away from league action which created inconsistent results as they lost four of their next five league games. Once a bit more regularity returned, their form started to take an upward curve as they won two of their last three league games before the season was prematurely ended. They will hope this form continues next season or whenever we might get football back.

Sheffield Union (9th Position, P17 W5 D1 L11 PT15*) – Union came up last season after finishing third in Division Two and would have hoped to settle into Division One life quicker than they managed. After a positive 1-1 draw in their first game, Union then went on to lose their next seven league games as they found Division One life hard to adjust to. The second half of the season, however, was in stark contrast to the first. Suddenly the young squad found form starting with their first league win over United Worksop (4-0 – Fountain x2, Okunrinboye & Attwater). After this confidence boosting win Union went on to win another four league games. This included a crucial 1-0 win over bottom half rivals New Bohemians that moved them up into ninth place. As the season went on the side managed to acclimatise significantly and so there can be justified belief for next season and a goal to finish higher up the league table.

New Bohemians FC (10th Position, P13 W3 D0 L10 PT9) – The club playing their home games from Hillsborough Arena were also Division One newcomers. Bohemians were looking to beat the drop and retain their status in the league structure. After two rather unimpressive games Bohemians bounced back to beat South Kirkby 4-2 (Becks, Lewis, Fox & Priest) for their first ever Division One win. What followed was inconsistent form with scratch squads put together which stalled any progress made by the club. After losing three points because of the Ardsley’s withdrawal the green and whites quickly picked up a win against Sheffield Medics (3-1 – Phillips x3) to retrieve them. One other highlight will be the 1-0 (Lavington) win over Handsworth Reserves in a season of few highs and too many missed opportunities. What the club will cite is the remaining seven games scheduled looked more favourable for them but will be looking forward to pushing on next season whatever the league structure may look like.

United Worksop (11th Position, P14 W0 D2 L12 PT2) – The season was always going to be a tough ask for the side from Derbyshire, having finished midtable in Division Two last campaign. The club accepted an offer to take promotion to the higher division despite it being only their second season in the County Senior League and they made a commendable effort all season long. Their campaign in fact started brightly as United Worksop picked up two solid draws in their first three fixtures of Division One football against Sheffield Union and Denaby Main respectively. After this point the side struggled against high quality opposition and did not manage to pick up that elusive win which they no doubt deserved. They certainly gave many top sides a run for their money losing closely to Wombwell Town 3-2 and by the same score line to AFC Dronfield. Unfortunately, since the season has been marked as over the side have withdrawn from the league. We will hopefully see them back in some shape or form in the future.

* = 1 Point deduction for fielding an ineligible player

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