Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Non-league player of the season

4/ 6/2008

IT was a campaign of widely contrasting fortunes for the region's semi-professional clubs, with FC United's completion of a promotion hat-trick among the highlights and a third successive relegation reprieve for Altrincham one of several major talking points.

STAR MAN: COLIN LITTLE (Altrincham): A vintage year for the veteran striker, whose 20 goals made him the third- highest scorer in the Blue Square Premier League, helping the Robins maintain their top-flight status thanks to the demise of Halifax Town. 9

RORY PATTERSON (FC United): Still the jewel in the Rebels' crown. His league and cup goals were crucial to FC continuing their remarkable rise. 8.

ASHLEY WINN (Stalybridge Celtic): His livewire displays in midfield and double-figure goals tally were a major contribution to Bridge coming within a whisker of promotion. 8

MICHAEL CARR (Northwich Victoria): The England non-league international midfielder will be Vics' loss and Morecambe's gain following his end-of-season switch to Sammy McIlroy's Shrimps. 7

RYAN SHOTTON (Altrincham): Showed maturity beyond his years during nearly a full season on loan from Stoke to scoop the fans' player-of-the- year award. 8

LIAM BROWNHILL (Witton Albion): The consistency of this highly-promising young defender earned him an unexpected England non-league international call-up. 7

JEROME WRIGHT (FC United): With a sweet left foot and bundles of energy, this flying young winger is one of the brightest prospects in North West non-league. 7

ANDY LUNDY (Trafford): Vodkat League First Division's 28-goal top scorer did as much as anyone to help win promotion back to the UniBond League. 8

PAUL PHILLIPS (Droylsden): Powe
rless to prevent the club sliding straight back down to Blue Square North, but his brave efforts in goal were enough to persuade Stalybridge to sign him. 7

MIKE NORTON (Curzon Ashton): The former scourge of North West Counties League defences was just as prolific in the UniBond League, scoring 39 times. 8

PADDY GAMBLE (Stalybridge Celtic): Enjoyed a hugely successful season on loan from Nottingham Forest, keeping 15 clean sheets. 8

GREG YOUNG (Altrincham): Cultured centre-half who proved to be an inspired signing following his switch from Halifax. 7

GARETH SEDDON (Hyde United): Not quite as outstanding as in his first season with the Tigers, but still a class act up front. 7

SCOTT TYNAN (Northwich Victoria): England non-league keeper's safe hands were crucial in successful fight against relegation. 8

ADAM WARLOW (Witton Albion): Topped the UniBond Premier Division scoring charts with 25 goals to make himself one of non-league's hottest properties. 8

CARLOS MEAKIN (New Mills): His 29 league goals were vital to the Millers clinching the Vodkat Division Two championship. 7

CHRIS BAGULEY (FC United): Makes the game look easy and chipped in with more than his fair share of goals from central midfield. 8

JODY BANIM (Droylsden): Impressed while so many of his team-mates struggled, earning a permanent switch to Nigel Clough's Burton Albion. 7

DARREN TINSON (Altrincham): Still a commanding figure at 38 and was particularly eye-catching away from home when the Robins needed him most. 7

LEE STEELE (Northwich Victoria): His goals at the business end of the season were the difference between staying up and going down. 7

STEVE HOWSON (Radcliffe Borough): Bagged 36 goals in all competitions - no mean feat in a struggling side. Was rewarded with a Manchester Premier Cup winners' medal. 8

LEE SOUTHWOOD (Trafford): Doubles up as manager Ged Kielty's assistant, and a real tower of strength at centre-half. 7

STEVE PAYNE (Stalybridge Celtic): A rock at the heart of the defence, where his leadership qualities really came to the fore. 7.

DAVE CHADWICK (FC United): The Rebels' very own Captain Courageous. 7

Who is your player of the season? Send your verdict - in no more than 100 words - to for your chance to win.