Friday, October 30, 2009

Marginson has Wembley in mind

Source: Manchester Evening News

Sam Williams

October 30, 2009
FC United can get their season back on track with a win at Lancaster in the FA Trophy second qualifying round, according to manager Karl Marginson.

The Rebels travel to the Giant Axe on Saturday following successive defeats to Northwich and North Ferriby, but Marginson believes his side can progress despite their recent blip.

“We conceded a poor goal early on at North Ferriby but then controlled the game,” said Marginson.

“That defeat is a kick up the backside for the players and I’m confident that we can go through,” he added.

FC go into the tie against the Unibond First Division North outfit as favourites, and Marginson thinks that will benefit his players.

“It suits us because we’ve learned to live with that tag in most of our games over the last four years,” he said.

Despite the divisional difference between the sides, Marginson expects Lancaster to provide a tough test for the Rebels as they have lost just one of their last 11 games in all competitions.

“They’re a very good team who are averaging about three goals a game at the moment, so we’ll need to work very hard and try to put them under pressure early,” said the FC boss.

Marginson, won the Trophy as a player with Macclesfield and admits he would relish the chance to lead out his FC side at Wembley next May.

“Anyone would love to go all the way,” he said, “it’s probably bigger than the FA Cup for non-league clubs because we have a realistic chance of getting to Wembley,” he said.

FC will welcome Danny Warrender back to their squad for the game after the defender came through training on Wednesday.

"Having Danny back is a big boost for us," said Marginson.

Hornets' fans run for fun and charity

Source: Rochdale Online

Date published: 30/10/2009

Fans of Rochdale Hornets put their best foot forward with a family fun run in aid of children’s charity, MedEquip4Kids.

The rugby club took part in a 5.8k sponsored fun run around Chorlton Meadows, organised by community-run club, FC United.

The money raised by Rochdale Hornets supporters will be split between MedEquip4Kids and the rugby club.

Prizes were awarded for fastest adult and fastest junior along with best fancy dress and other fun categories.

The first ‘minithon’ took place last year when FC United raised £20,000 with 100 supporters taking part. This minithon was an even bigger event as the club opened the event to fans of Rochdale Hornets and members of Trafford Athletics Club to raise money for MedEquip4Kids and their own clubs.

MedEquip4Kids provides specialist paediatric medical equipment for use in hospitals and community health teams across the region. The equipment is specifically for use in children’s wards and neo-natal units to ensure children and babies are receiving the best possible care when sick or injured.

Non-league preview

Edited from: Manchester Evening News


FC United travel to Lancaster's Giant Axe in the FA Trophy second round on the back of consecutive defeats against Northwich and North Ferriby.

From The Bolton News

Edited from: The Bolton News


FC United will have to overcome the disappointment of back-to-back defeats when they travel to Lancaster in the FA Trophy.

The Rebel Reds’ dreams of FA Cup glory were dashed when strikes Mark Danks, an Adam Tong own goal and Wayne Riley condemned them to a 3-0 defeat at Northwich Victoria.

“We’ve had a great run,” said FC manager Karl Marginson. “Credit to the lads for getting so far.”

There will be extra spice for the Vodkat League Cup second round clash at the weekend when Daisy Hill host Atherton LR.

Daisy, who have had an encouraging start to their season in the Vodkat North West Counties First Division, will be after upsetting their neighbours who play in a higher division.

Atherton Colls are in league action where they will be after precious league points at Oldham Boro, a side also desperate to haul themselves away from the bottom of the First Division.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Rebels must bounce back

Source: Bury Times

12:10pm Wednesday 28th October 2009
By Marc Higginson

FC United will have to overcome the disappointment of back-to-back defeats when they travel to Lancaster in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

The Rebel Reds’ dreams of FA Cup glory were dashed on Saturday when strikes by Mark Danks, an Adam Tong own goal and Wayne Riley condemned them to a 3-0 defeat at Northwich Victoria.

“We’ve had a great run,” said FC manager Karl Marginson. “Credit to the lads for getting so far.”

A miserable week continued on Tuesday night when the breakaway club were beaten 1-0 at North Ferriby in the UniBond Premier Division, with Carlos Roca missing a penalty and Dave Neville being sent-off.

Meanwhile, Marginson has strengthened his ranks with the signing of Guadeloup international midfielder Ludovic Quistin from Zamaretto League Premier Division side Hednesford Town.

Quistin, who is reputedly the cousin of Arsenal and France defender William Gallas, has played for several non-League clubs in England but most notably Weston-super-Mare, King’s Lynn, Boston United and Tamworth.

Foot steers Ferriby to victory


Wednesday, October 28, 2009, 06:00

NORTH Ferriby skipper Paul Foot led his side to a third successive win as his first-minute goal helped secure a 1-0 win over FC United of Manchester.

Foot may have broken the deadlock early on, but it proved to be enough for his UniBond Premier Division play-off hopefuls.

However, it could have been a different story if former Oldham midfielder Carlos Roca had put away a second-half penalty.

But after the referee harshly awarded the spot-kick against Liam Chapman, the tricky right winger blasted it against the post.

The Villagers should already have been 2-0 ahead, but striker Alex Davidson wasted a shooting opportunity when he broke through just before half-time.

And the 20-year-old's luck did not improve after the break when he fired wide after earning a one-on-one chance.

After coming on as a late sub, Mark Whitehouse should also have done better when put through for his first chance but he saw goalkeeper Sam Ashton close him down quickly and snuffed the shot out.

That meant the Villagers had to endure an anxious spell of pressure towards the end of a match which they should have won more easily.

But the three points have taken Neil Allison's side up to eighth in the table, with games in hand on some of their rivals.

North Ferriby 1 FC United 0

Source: Manchester Evening News

Sam Williams

October 27, 2009

FC United slumped to defeat at North Ferriby in the Unibond Premier League on Tuesday night.

The Rebels never recovered after falling behind in the first minute when North Ferriby captain Paul Foot rose unchallenged to head home from a corner.

The home side should have doubled their lead soon after but striker Alex Davidson blazed over with only Sam Ashton to beat.

Ben Deegan spurned FC’s best chance of the first half five minutes before the break as his effort was tipped over the bar.

FC were handed a golden opportunity to equalise just after half time as Phil Marsh was brought down in the area, but Carlos Roca hit the post with the penalty.

The below-par Rebels failed to create any other clear cut chances throughout the second half and were reduced to ten men in injury time after Dave Neville was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Danny Moran on a mini-riot at Northwich Vic with FC United and the fan who got away with the cuffs

Source: Manchester Confidential

Few reasonable football fans would dispute that FC United - the club formed by disaffected Manchester United fans in the wake of the Malcolm Glazer takeover - have been a breath of fresh air in the football world. Owned by the fans and committed to the finest ideals, they play football the way it should be played, backed by an army of joyously full-throated supporters.

Having progressed rapidly from their inception in the North West Counties Second Division (the tenth tier of England’s ‘football pyramid’) to the Unibond Premier League (the seventh) the current season has seen the club embark on an unprecedented FA cup run, defeating Sheffield FC, North Ferriby United and Stalybridge Celtic of the Conference North en route to a place in the fourth qualifying round and the chance of a first round draw against Football League opposition.

Saturday’s tie at Northwich Victoria saw the Rebels up against Northwich Victoria of the Conference North, but on a day of mixed weather everything seemed to go wrong. On a greasy pitch, both teams struggled to keep the ball on the ground, and FC found themselves caught between their footballing ideals and the need to grind out a result, typified by winger Carlos Roca’s constant struggles to keep his footing. The Vics meanwhile (managed by former Bury boss Andy Preece) stuck to a more prosaic game plan, muscling in from the start and feeding the ball through to forwards Mark Danks and Lee Elam as quickly as possible. FC held out until the fifty-seventh minute when FC captain Dave Chadwick conceded a penalty, bringing down Lee Elam as he broke into the box. Danks converted from the spot. Eight minutes from time, Adam Tong turned a Danks cross into his own net. The FC fans, in typical fashion, responded by singing the unfortunate centre half’s name.

It was when the third goal went in that things went awry. As FC pushed up, Northwich caught them on the break, Elam setting up substitute Wayne Riley to tap in from close range. As the Vics striker sallied by the FC fans he raised his finger to his lips to quell the away supporters, who had been dominant all afternoon. In response, two or three fans ran onto the pitch. One was led away. The other fought with the steward who intercepted him, then with the police who attempted to restrain him, first with handcuffs and then finally with leg restraints.

What happened next should serve as a warning to the excesses of self-righteousness in the stands. Emboldened by the lack of policing a crowd of fifty to a hundred FC supporters gathered round the fracas in a bid to defend ‘one of their own’ - succeeding finally in freeing the miscreant, who eventually was able to flee, albeit with a handcuff intact.

Shushing, ear-cupping and celebrating in front of opposition supporters have been all the rage this season. In August Southampton’s Ricky Lambert celebrated a penalty conversion against former club Stockport County with no little comedy (he stuck is bum out and it was funny) In September Emmanuel Adebayor ran the length of the pitch to acclaim the Arsenal fans who had rejected him, so revealing the extent of his professional insecurities.

The current popularity of the gesture might be traced back to Jose Mourinho’s reaction to the Liverpool crowd in the 2005 Carling Cup Final. Mourinho, of course, always loved to ham it up. And there’s the thing - it’s part of the pantomime. The bad guys score and then they leer. Under circumstances such as Saturday’s the authorities are understandably trying to stamp it out, but in some ways it will be a shame to see it go. When it does it will be the fault of the fans and no one else. The appropriate response – loosely speaking - is to boo and hiss.

On Sunday it came almost as a rebuke to the Murdoch-trashing grassroots to watch the beach balls rain down comically on Sky TV - as ‘Big United’ took on Liverpool at Anfield. Rafa Benitez’s superbly orchestrated victory over the man who so successfully got under his skin last term may put a temporary end to questions regarding his tenure, but the gulf between last season’s top two cannot have been more heavily underlined this past week.

Benitez’s side now lie a mere four points behind United, who also sport a depleted and unfinished team (we could argue as to the extent). But while in Manchester Fergie can afford to sit and wait until a new team comes together – possibly until the season after this – Benitez will feel the pinch whenever results go against him. A further bad run could see the wheels come off completely.

Monday, October 26, 2009

FC United are on their way up

Source: The Sun

From NEIL CUSTIS at Marston Arena

FA CUP dreams may be over but FC United claim their meteoric rise up the pyramid will continue.

The club, born out of frustration with the Glazers' takeover of Old Trafford, played the biggest game of their four-year history on Saturday.

A 3-0 defeat at Northwich robbed them of a place in the first round proper.

But roared on by 2,000 visiting fans in a crowd of 2,615, they will now turn their attention to another promotion with League football their ultimate aim.

FC United currently inhabit the seventh tier of English football in the UniBond League Premier Division.

This after three straight promotions was halted by a sixth-place last season.

They are guided by manager Karl Marginson, or "Margentina" as the FC faithful chant.

An ex-player with Macclesfield, he, like the rest of the club's founding members, was a Stretford End stalwart who was disaffected by the Glazers plunging United into £700million debt.

FC United is not anti-United - it is simply anti-Glazer.

The fans still sing United songs and Marginson said: "We all have feelings for the club.

"It was a tough and emotional decision for a lot of people not to go to Old Trafford any more.

"I couldn't stand seeing my club, that won the European Cup in 1999 and was worth £1billion, go into massive debt.

"They make profits of £80million a year, yet half of that goes straight out the window, not to pay off that debt, just to service the interest. It's ridiculous."

Their top attendance has been an incredible 6,023 for a match with Great Harwood Town in April 2006.

The club groundshares with Bury FC but is in talks with Manchester council to get a ground of their own.

Northwich, a league above in Blue Square North, blew away FC United in the second half with a Mark Danks penalty, Adam Tong own-goal and Wayne Riley stoppage-time strike.

Read more:

Sunday, October 25, 2009

FC United of Manchester's FA Cup dream ended by Northwich Victoria

Source: The Guardian

Northwich Victoria 3-0 FC United of Manchester

* David Hopps at the Victoria Ground
*, Saturday 24 October 2009 19.58 BST

At the Victoria Ground, tucked behind Northwich Asphalt, a little piece of football history stubbornly failed to materialise. This was the day that Football Club of Manchester, the grassroots club formed by disaffected Manchester United supporters, imagined that they might reach the FA Cup first round for the first time. Instead, the game turned against them on a disputed penalty, a tough reminder that it is one thing to begin to lay the asphalt, quite another to extend the road to its final destination.

Eric Cantona even expressed the hope last year that the club might win the European Cup in 50 years' time, but upward momentum was halted, temporarily at least, by Mark Danks, a former England U15 international and FA Trophy winner with Hednesford, who rolled in a 57th-minute penalty after Adam Tong had brought down Lee Elam. Tong's misery was complete eight minutes from time when he clumped an own goal past his goalkeeper.

Among FCUM's vociferous supporters, there was dismay. "I thought he got the ball," bemoaned one regular. "He normally gets the ball." There were chances to equalise, Jerome Wright bringing a fine save from Curtis Aspden, but as a rainbow briefly appeared above the asphalt plant, it was Northwich who retained hopes of an FA Cup pot of gold.

Three back-to-back promotions have taken FCUM to the Unibond League Premier Division. But it is getting harder. They lie only in mid-table this season and it had been their progress to the FA Cup fourth qualifying round that had brought the greatest cause for optimism this term. Their heroics against Stalybridge Celtic in the previous round are on YouTube. "Jerome Wright smacks the shit out of the ball to put FCUM into the fourth qualifying round,'' it says.

"We've had a great run,'' said FCUM's manager Karl Marginson. "Credit to the lads for getting so far.''

Since the club were formed in protest at the Malcolm Glazer takeover, with a commitment to one-member-one-vote and community involvement, it is amazing that others have not followed. Considering the Tom and Jerry routine of Tom Hicks and George Gillett, you would have thought that FC Liverpool would have been a gimme.

But it is not just Premier League clubs who can live a crazed existence. Northwich Victoria have 130 years of history, but they too are an example of what happens to a town's football club when they lose touch with the community, and with reality.

Northwich need the money more than FCUM do. The club is in administration, the Inland Revenue remain unhappy and creditors are being offered 25 per cent. The owner, Jim Rush, talks of having invested £350,000 since assuming control two years ago and promises that a consortium is on the verge of buying the Victoria Stadium for £1.5m.

The arrival of FCUM swelled the crowd to 2.615, the largest since Rush assumed control, and Northwich played enough decent football maybe to tempt back a few casual fans. The decision to segregate the supporters, though, caused a few problems with the half-time raffle. "Come and see me in the main stand for the winning ticket,'' said the PA announcer. "But maybe you can't get to me because of segregation. Bring a steward.''

FCUM's principles have rightly brought political approval. Earlier this year, Andy Burnham, in his time as minister for culture, media and sport, praised them for "defying the odds'' in setting up "a genuine democratic, community-based club".

There again, it is best not to get too carried away with political approval for the grassroots in a week when another former sports minister, Richard Caborn, the head of the 2018 World Cup bid committee, has spent a week overseeing the wooing of wives of the Fifa voting committee with Mulberry designer handbags.

Northwich, one tier above FCUM in the Conference North, fully merited this victory. As defeat became inevitable, behind the goal one banner proclaimed "FCUM – MUFC – I Got Love Enough For Two.'' But for how much longer?

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Northwich Victoria manager Andy Preece praises defenders' contribution

Source: Northwich Guardian

6:52pm Saturday 24th October 2009

By Andrew Simpson

NORTHWICH Victoria’s resilience was the key to their victory over FC United of Manchester, according to Andy Preece.

The Vics boss told the Guardian that the hosts’ backline had proved to big a barrier to breach for their spirited guests.

“They were immense – a real rock for us,” he said of Vics’ defence.

“I felt there were times when we came under pressure but they stood firm.”

He paid special tribut to shot-stopper Curtis Aspden who, soon after Vics had taken the lead, stopped Jerome Wright’s goalbound effort.

The Rebels ran out of momentum afterwards, eventually losing 3-0.

“It was a massive moment when Curt makes the save to stop the shot,” admitted Preece.

“We switched off once and they had the quality to make a great opportunity. It’s a better save when you consider he’s had nothing to do for an hour before that.”

Indeed, the hosts fluffed three one-on-one chances with the visitors’ custodian Sam Ashton, two of those in the opening quarter hour.

Preece said: “We had a number of chances early on to get our noses in front.

“Their keeper did well and perhaps we did not finish as ruthlessly as we did. That meant we had to keep working hard to make chances.

“We got there in the end and I don’t think anybody can argue that we deserved our win, which is a big one.

“They came here in great form but all in all we restricted them to only one real chance – a great chance – but just the one.”

Vics’ extra quality told after the break following a turgid opening half.

Adam Tong put through is own goal trying to intercept Mark Danks’ clever cross to settle the outcome after Vics’ leading scorer had broke the deadlock from the penalty spot.

Sub Wayne Riley converted fellow replacement Jon Newby’s assist in stoppage time.

“I think we are very good when we have little bit more time on the ball,” said Preece.

“To be fair they didn’t give us any room to play in the first half but after the break we got hold of the ball more and were able to take control.

“That just opened them up a touch and in the end our extra quality told because we were able to get in front of goal more easier then they did.”

The game turned on referee David Coote’s choice to punish David Chadwick’s tackle on Lee Elam inside the penalty area on the hour.

The Rebels’ captain did not argue with the decision. Before that Elam had swapped passes with Jonny Allan to cut open the visitors’ fragile backline.

Danks scored his ninth goal in this season’s competition from the spot.

“The move to make the chance was great,” said Preece.

“If you slide in like that inside the box then you have to get the ball. It’s such a big decision as it could cost your team a place in the cup.

“Their guy put his hands on his head instead of protesting. I think that says everything.

“Mark Danks showed strength of character to step up though.

“He set up the second goal as well with a great ball across the penalty area and their defender could do nothing but turn it in.”

Vics’ reward is a place in tomorrow afternoon’s first round proper draw, due to be broadcast live on ITV 1.

Northwich Victoria prove too strong for FC United of Manchester in FA Cup

Source: Northwich Guardian

6:00pm Saturday 24th October 2009

By Andrew Simpson

NORTHWICH Victoria booked their place in the first round proper with a convincing win over FC United of Manchester.

Andy Preece’s men deserved their victory, eventually making their class tell against spirited opponents who play one level below.

More than 2,500 supporters were there to see it.

Vics broke through shortly before the hour, Mark Danks keeping up his record of scoring in every round when he coolly converted a penalty after Lee Elam had been fouled by Dave Chadwick.

The visitors’ best chance came soon afterwards, but Curtis Aspden’s superb reaction save stopped Jerome Wright restoring parity.

Vics, through sub Jon Newby and Danks, fluffed glorious chances to settle the outcome before Adam Tong diverted Danks’ clever cross into his own goal four minutes from time.

The home team added gloss in stoppage time when another sub, Wayne Riley, gleefully applied the finishing touch after Newby had skipped past Chadwick close to the touchline.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Now Quistin Joins Fc United

Source: Non-league Daily

UniBond League Premier Division club FC United of Manchester have signed well-travelled 25-year-old Guadeloup international midfielder Ludovic Quistin from Zamaretto League Premier Division side Hednesford Town.

Quistin, who is reputedly the cousin of Arsenal and France defender William Gallas, has played for several non-League clubs in England but most notably Weston-super-Mare, King’s Lynn, Boston United and Tamworth.

Quistin has recently relocated to the north-west and was recommended to FC United’s assistant-manager Roy Soule by a contact at Hednesford.

He will not feature in Saturday’s match at Northwich Victoria as he is cup-tied.

Northwich Victoria will be ball number 60 should they beat FC United of Manchester

Source: Northwich Guardian

2:45pm Friday 23rd October 2009

THE draw for the first round of this season’s FA Cup takes place on Sunday.

Should they succeed in beating FC United of Manchester at the Victoria Stadium 24 hours earlier, then Northwich Victoria will be allocated ball number 60.

It will be broadcast live on ITV 1 from 1pm.

England test cricketer James Anderson and former England and Charlton Athletic defender Chris Powell will make the pairings for next month’s 40 first round matches.

Former FA Cup finalists Southampton and Millwall enter the fray at that stage, plus former Premier League clubs such as Leeds United and Norwich City.

The first round takes place on the weekend of November 7 and 8, when winning clubs will pocket £18,000 in prize money.

A full list of draw numbers appears on the Football Association’s official website here

FC United of Manchester manager Karl Marginson is confident ahead of Vics trip

Source: Northwich Guardian

2:31pm Friday 23rd October 2009

FC UNITED of Manchester have billed their FA Cup clash with Northwich Victoria as their biggest to date.

Rebels’ boss Karl Marginson has guided his team to within one win of a first round place, which could secure them a trip to the likes of Leeds United.

“It’s the biggest game in the club’s short history,” he told the Bury Times.

“For any team who has only been going for just over four years to reach the first round proper would be a fantastic achievement.”

Before this season FC United had won only one FA Cup match, a 5-2 win against Trafford back in September 2007.

This term they have seen off Sheffield, North Ferriby United and, in the last round, Stalybridge Celtic following a replay.

It’s earned them £15,000 in prize money.

But Marginson knows that his men, unbeaten in six league and cup matches, face their toughest test yet against opponents in a richer vein of form than that.

“They are going well,” he said of Vics.

“But we showed in beating Stalybridge we have the players who can compete at the level above and it’s up to us to show we can do that consistently.”

Skipper Dave Chadwick, who must pass a late fitness test on a calf injury to face Andy Preece’s men, agrees with his manager.

He said: “If we can beat one team from the level above we can beat another, but we can’t just expect to go there and win.

“We’ve got to work hard but it’s a one-off game and anything can happen. Northwich are a good side but we’re playing well at the moment.”

Newcomer Ludovic Quistin is cup-tied, as is former Witton Albion midfielder David Neville, while Danny Warrender (pelvis) is still short of match fitness.

Vics followers will be familiar with the faces of Carlos Roca and Phil Marsh, both of whom left the Victoria Stadium after underwhelming spells.

They top FC United’s scoring charts this term.

Should tomorrow’s encounter end in a draw then Northwich will head to Bury’s Gigg Lane next Wednesday, October 28, kick off 7.45pm.

First round place is reward for winner of clubs' maiden meeting

Source: Northwich Guardian

11:12am Friday 23rd October 2009

Northwich Victoria v FC United of Manchester (Kick off 3pm)
FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round
Venue Victoria Stadium
Admission Adults £14 (£12 stand), Concessions £12 (£10 stand), U16s £5, U12s £2
Prize Money £12,500
Odds (Blue Square) Vics 4/7, Draw 13/5, FC United 4/1
Previous Meeting n/a

Vics (from) Aspden (GK), Spencer (GK), Aspin, Kerr, Bailey, Grand, Ryan Brown, Horrocks, Elam, D’Laryea, Herring, Connor, Vaughan, Winter, Taylforth, Riley, Allan, Danks, Edwards, Newby
Doubtful Edwards (ankle)
Injured Junior Brown (broken ankle), Meadowcroft (fractured leg)
Suspended none
Top scorer Mark Danks (14)
Route to this round 3QR bt Chorley (h) 4-1; 2QR bt Bardon Hill Sports (h) 8-0
Last season in FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round
Form (Home) P6 W4 D1 L1 F11 A7 Pts13
Form (Overall) P13 W7 D3 L3 F21 A17 Pts14

FCUM (from) Ashton (GK), Shenton (GK), Stott, Chadwick, Morris, Nugent, Garner, Tong, Warrender, Adam Carden, Cottrell, Ibrahim, Moses, Quistin, Roca, Wright, Deegan, Mack, Marsh, Williams, Yoffe
Doubtful Chadwick (calf)
Injured none
Suspended none
Cup tied Neville
Top scorer Phil Marsh, Carlos Roca (both six)
Route to this round 3QR bt Stalybridge Celtic (a) 1-0 in replay; 2QR North Ferriby United (a) 1-0; 1QR bt Sheffield (a) 3-1
Last season in FA Cup First Qualifying Round
Form (Away) P5 W1 D3 L3 F6 A9 Pts4
Form (Overall) P12 W5 D2 L5 F22 A17 Pts17

Match Pointers
NORTHWICH Victoria take on UniBond Premier Division promotion hopefuls FC United of Manchester for a place in the first round proper.

It is the first meeting between the two clubs.

Andy Preece’s men, unbeaten in their past seven league and cup encounters, start as favourites against a team that did dump out Blue Square North opposition in the previous round.

The Vics boss gave a clue as to his starting line-up for tomorrow’s game when he rested every player that started at Ilkeston Town last weekend during the Mid-Cheshire FA Senior Cup win over neighbours Middlewich Town in midweek.

Declan Edwards (ankle) limped off in that game is a doubt to face the Rebels.

Long-term absentees Junior Brown (ankle) and Danny Meadowcroft (leg) are absent once more, but everybody else is available for the hosts.

Vics have scored 12 goals in their two FA Cup ties to date, Mark Danks claiming eight of those, in victories over Bardon Hill Sports and Chorley.

Opponents FC United of Manchester are also enjoying their best run of form this season, last weekend’s FA Trophy success at Ashton United extending their unbeaten stretch to six matches.

Skipper Dave Chadwick (calf) is their only fitness worry, but he is expected to pass a late fitness test to face Vics.

Midfielder Dave Neville is cup-tied after appearing for Vics’ neighbours Witton Albion in this season’s preliminary round.

Newcomer Joseph Yoffe is available though.

FC United’s victory over Steve Burr’s Stalybridge Celtic after a replay in the previous round proves they can beat higher-ranked opposition.

Phil Marsh and Carlos Roca, both former Northwich players, are the Bury-based outfit’s leading scorers this season. Ben Deegan and Jerome Wright, who scored the winner against Bridge, have five goals each.

FC United have played at the Victoria Stadium before, drawing 2-2 with Winsford United back in August 2005 on their inaugural season in the North West Counties League’s Division Two. They beat Ashton Town 4-0 there the following week.

Football youngsters go solo

Source: This is Staffordshire

FOLLOWING in the footsteps of newly-born sides such as FC United of Manchester and AFC Wimbledon, a group of teenagers in Werrington have kick-started their own football club.

AFC Werrington made its inaugural bow in the North Staffs Junior Youth League under-15s division earlier this season after a group of school friends worked hard during the summer months to create the brand new side.

All 14 members of the squad attend Moorside High School on Cellarhead Road and came up with the idea to start their own football club during the summer break.

Joe Ratcliffe, aged 15, who was elected as captain by his team-mates, said: "It's good being in a team with all your mates.

"We used to watch football on television and were a bit fed up as we wanted to play.

"We have all played in teams before but this is better and we can play with our mates now."

Central midfielder Dylan Peers, aged 14, said: "For a while we were all talking about what it would be like to get a team together with your mates and start playing.

"It's really enjoyable because we know each other really well and you don't mind when your mates tell you what mistakes you are making."

The team's manager Craig Ratcliffe agreed to help run the side after being approached by son Joe.

Craig, aged 33, of Ash Bank Road, said: "It was during the summer holidays and Joe came in and asked me if I would manage a football team if him and his mates set one up.

"I told him I would, but he needed to do things like find a sponsor, get some kit, and find somewhere to play. Thirty minutes later he came back to me and said the sponsor was sorted."

The side haven't enjoyed the best of starts losing all of their first four games – 4-1, 14-1, 4-0 and 6-0.

Craig, a former trainee goalkeeper with both Crewe Alex and Stoke City, added: "I'm enjoying managing them and the lads seem to enjoy playing."

Joint owner of Bucknall-based coach firm Scragg's, Wayne Scragg, shelled out £500 to purchase full kits for the players.

Wayne, aged 40, whose 14-year-old son Thomas plays for the side, said: "I knew they wanted to get a side going so I told them if they could get it all sorted I would pay for it.

"The lads have done well to get it all sorted. It helps they are all from the same community and are friends anyway."

Mark Peers, aged 46, of Ash Bank, has assisted with the running of the side.

Mark, whose son Dylan plays for the team, said: "I think it's been good for the lads as it gives them something to do. All the parents are pitching in to help."

Werrington Parish Council member Nigel Meakin found the side a pitch on Meir Road in the village, along with securing a set of goalposts and organising lines to be painted on the plot.

He said: "We just want the youngsters round here to be enjoying themselves."

UniBond League preview

Source: Chorley Citizen

9:15am Friday 23rd October 2009

CLITHEROE are still smarting after dominating their UniBond Division One (North) match against Leigh Genesis in midweek, only to go down to two hotly disputed penalties in the dying moments of the game.

But there were some plus points for the Blues with left winger Danny Williams, formerly of FC United, and striker Nathan Taylor ex-Gretna catching the eye.

Manager Peter Smith will hope to build on that for tomorrow’s game at Radcliffe Borough and will have striker Jerrome Matthews in the squad for the last time before a four match ban for a red card kicks in.

Centre-back Ian Flannery has re-signed for the club from Lancaster City, while Danny Toronczak has signed forms as cover but striker Marcus Calvert has gone on loan to Nelson.

After their recent cup excursions, Chorley manager Steve Waywell is now looking forward to his side consolidating their place in the league.

And they made great strides towards that with a midweek win over AFC Fylde in a match that Waywell described as one of the club’s biggest of the season.

“We have had our run in the FA Cup and FA Trophy but it was important we got back towards achieving our major aim this season, which is trying to get into the play-off places. And to do that it was important we did well against Fylde,” he explained.

“It really was important for us to do well and now we want to carry on that good work against Prescot Cables tomorrow.”

Rossendale, sitting next to bottom of the table, welcome Warrington Town at Dark Lane tomorrow hoping to end a run of five games without a league win.

Their latest defeat came in a midweek 2-0 defeat at the hands of Ossett Albion but manager John Hughes will want his side to get the better of a Warrington outfit that lie just six places ahead of them.

From The Bolton News

Edited from: The Bolton News

FC United are dreaming of a glamour tie in the first round proper of the FA Cup if they can overcome Northwich Victoria.

The likes of Leeds, Southampton, Charlton and landlords Bury all await the breakaway club if they can beat their Blue Square North opponents. And, having already upset Stalybridge Celtic from the same division in the last round, the Gigg Lane tenants will be confident of keeping their Wembley dream alive at Victoria Stadium.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Cheshire Police issue warning ahead of Saturday's FA Cup match at Northwich

Source: Northwich Guardian

4:08pm Thursday 22nd October 2009

POLICE in Cheshire have repeated Northwich Victoria’s warning that supporters should buy tickets for Saturday’s crunch FA Cup clash against FC United of Manchester before match day.

They say they expect the fourth qualifying round fixture to be a sell out.

“We advise fans to buy their tickets for Saturday’s match in advance as a large crowd is expected,” read a statement issued today, Thursday.

“The match is all-ticket and a capacity crowd is expected.

“Supporters are being asked to arrive in plenty of time to avoid unnecessary delays at the gate.”

Vics owner Jim Rushe has told the Guardian that all the turnstiles at the Victoria Stadium will be open, while extra staff will be working in the ticket office.

It opens on Saturday at 10am.

The club has also advised that extra parking spaces will be available at the New Cheshire Salt Works business park off Wincham Avenue.

The record crowd at the Victoria Stadium is the 3,154 that watched the hosts beat Stafford Rangers to win the Conference North title in April 2006.

FA Cup Betting: Fans who are worth a goal a game

(image text) Frank Stapleton in his Manchester United days. Adam Tong of FC United has a long way to go to reach the dizzy heights of top-flight English football and captaining your country but there's something about him that is reminiscent of the Irish ace.


FA Cup / Gary Boswell / 22 October 2009

Gary Boswell tells us about FC United, who have something of the Manchester United of old about them and some of the most vocal supporters in the land. This weekend they're outsiders against Northwich Victoria in the FA Cup and can book their place in the third round draw.

Betfair traders will no doubt already be forming their opinions on the FA Cup outright market. What price United for the silverware is a thorny conundrum causing many a sleepless night every year. Favourite for sure. But what is a correct price? Will Ferguson have his mind focussed on the domestic trophy with all the other superior distractions around him? Are United a back or a lay?

The fascinating possibility is that this year they could be faced with a game against the inimitable FC United supporters team as Karl Marginson has the Rebels just one game away from the first round proper.

The Boz ain't joking. Prepare yourself now for the sight of Trevor Brooking plucking ball number 34 out of the black bag in Soho Square and breathlessly whispering 'Manchester United' whilst Sir Bobby Charlton is poised over the corresponding opposition sphere and anticipates the global gasp as he announces.......

Alright so it's a few games away yet and the non-league phenomenon - which I have forecast as the future of football - have three more games to win starting with a tricky visit away to Northwich Victoria on Saturday.

The Vics are 1.68 to back but are my idea of a prime lay as the Rebels come on a mission and have the on pitch ammunition to bring the shock about.

Marginson has them in prime current form - unbeaten in their last five - including a pulsating 3-3 draw against Stalybridge Celtic last round that was turned into a 1-0 win in the replay. That form alone reads well enough to give them a realistic chance on Saturday against a Northwich side also in good form but vulnerable to the awesome power that is the FC United support. It must not be underestimated as a factor at non- league level. AFC Wimbledon are benefitting from it too in BSP and in Unibond Premier, the travelling Rebels army are worth a goal a game at least.

On the pitch, United will look to ex-Vics starlet Carlos Roca who has a touch of the Lou Macari about him and who has scored four in the last four games. Adam Tong is the non league version of Frank Stapleton and most crucially, the Rebels have their very own Peter Schmeichel in Sam Ashton who is to be seen regularly whipping up the crowd and joining in with the singing that makes their games such a pleasure to attend.

Not fair really to compare FC United to the Manchester Uniteds of the past. They are a team in their own right. You have to forgive old romantics like me who just can't help themselves! Make no mistake though, The Boz also has a hard-nosed business brain which has done its sums and will be backing FC United on Saturday at the blinding Betfair price of 5.2.

It's my main forecast FA Cup shock of the day but I do have a couple of other possibles. Chris Wilder's Oxford United come into the competition as non-league's premier force but it will be no surprise to see them consider the FA Cup an unwanted distraction from their league ambition. They have in any case a potential banana skin in Thurrock for whom Fola Orinolishe looks an exciting acquisition. The BSS title contenders are in exquisite form scoring nine in their last two and remain unbeaten on the road in the league. Sure to present a stiff test for the Us who are a Boz Lay at 1.5.

Keep an eye also on the Ducks of Aylesbury who languish at the foot of the Zamaretto Midlands and are a big price at 4.5 to upset Ryman Premier title contenders Wealdstone. Word is the Ducks landed a touch last round against Chesham by recalling old players for the day who managed to squeak through 4-3! Bookmakers were reputedly a-blushing and a similar coup is planned for this weekend.


BACK FC UNITED to beat NORTHWICH VICTORIA at 5.2 or longer
BACK AYLESBURY to beat WEALDSTONE at 4.5 or longer
LAY OXFORD UNITED (5 points) against THURROCK at 1.5 or shorter

Northwich Victoria top scorer Mark Danks believes he can get better

Source: Northwich Guardian

1:30pm Thursday 22nd October 2009

NORTHWICH Victoria’s leading scorer says his teammates will not be daunted by facing FC United of Manchester for a place in the first round of the FA Cup.

Mark Danks, who has hit the net eight times in Vics’ two cup clashes to date, told the Guardian the hosts would do nothing different in preparing to face Karl Marginson’s men.

“It’s just another game we want to win,” he said.

“The lads haven’t talked any more about this one then other matches we’ve played this season, but that’s because we want to beat whoever play against.

“But we know we can’t afford to take them lightly. They’ve got attacking players who are more than useful as they have proven in the last round when they put out Stalybridge.”

Danks’ FA Cup form has been more than useful too.

The 25-year-old scored a treble against Chorley at the previous stage, earning him a second successive nomination for the FA Cup E.ON Player of the Round prize.

He missed out to Hinckley United front runner Mark Webster in the final reckoning.

But Danks stressed there are more important matters on his mind.

He said: “It would have been nice to win the award twice in a row because it gives you recognition as a player, but I won’t be getting carried away.

“People are talking about me at the moment and that’s great, but I know how quickly things can change.

“I’m really grateful for the fans’ support that helped me win the award after we beat Bardon Hill.”

A second half penalty in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Ilkeston Town took his season tally to 14 goals in league and cup.

He has scored in each of Vics’ past seven matches.

“I can’t think of a team I would rather be playing in at the moment,” added Danks.

“I’m enjoying every minute.

“The manager knows how to get the best out of me from our time together at Worcester City and it’s working well again at the moment.

“He says I can get better and he’s right. I’ve been working hard on my strength, plus my decision-making in the final third can be better.

“I know that though know I need to carry on producing the goods to stay in the team.

“It’s difficult for anybody to get back in at the moment but with people like Junior Brown to come back and now that Jon Newby is fully fit then the gaffer knows he has lots of options.”

The draw with the Robins’ last weekend stopped Vics’ winning streak at six, equalling their feat during the run-in at the end of last season.

Danks admits it’s one that got away after Ilkeston played more than an hour with ten men following Charlie O’Loughlin’s dismissal.

“We were disappointed with each other [after the game] because we knew we should have won,” he said.

“I think we had 20 shots on target or something daft like that, then their keeper has the best game I’ve probably ever seen by anybody!

“It was annoying for me on a personal level though because I missed two or three chances I would have put my house on me taking.

“Still, it was nice to get the penalty to keep my run going.”

Rebels eye up cup success

Source: Bury Times

12:30pm Thursday 22nd October 2009

FC United are dreaming of a glamour tie in the first round proper of the FA Cup if they can overcome Northwich Victoria.

The likes of Leeds, Southampton, Charlton and landlords Bury all await the breakaway club if they can beat the Blue Square North opponents on Saturday.

And, having already upset Staylbridge Celtic from the same division in the last round, the Gigg Lane tenants will be confident of keeping their Wembley dream alive at Victoria Stadium.

“It’s the biggest game in the club’s short history,” said Rebels boss Karl Marginson ahead of the fourth qualifying round tie.

“It’s a really exciting game for us and and prize awaiting is absolutely huge.

“For any team who has only been going for just over four years to reach the first round proper would be a fantastic achievement.

But Marginson knows his side face a tough test against the Cheshire club.

He added: “They are going well and would be second in the table but for a 10-point deduction at the start of the season.

“But we showed in beating Stalybridge we have the players who can compete at the level above and it’s up to us to show we can do that consistently.”

Captain Dave Chadwick hopes to recover from injury in time for the weekend, while new signings Joseph Yoffe, a former Stockport County trainee who has been playing in America, and Frenchman Ludovic Quistin, from Hednesford Town, will be involved.

The Rebels enjoyed their fifth win in six games when they beat Ashton United 3-1 in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

Northwich Victoria owner Jim Rushe says FA Cup clash is an opportunity

Source: Northwich Guardian

12:00pm Thursday 22nd October 2009

JIM Rushe reckons Northwich Victoria have a chance to tempt back their stay-at-home supporters this weekend.

The club’s owner has promised to pull out all the stops to make Saturday’s FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round clash with FC United of Manchester one to remember both on and off the pitch.

“We’re in the spotlight,” he said.

“But we’ll use it as an opportunity to show our fans what we are capable of in terms of creating an experience they will want to try again.

“There are a lot of people – most of them volunteers – working hard behind the scenes to make that happen.”

The biggest crowd to watch a match at the Victoria Stadium since Rushe bought the club off previous owner Mike Connett in December 2007 was the 1,700 that saw Wrexham win there last season.

So far this season Vics’ highest gate is the 724 that watched a 1-1 draw against Southport on August Bank Holiday Monday.

Rushe hopes that figure will be doubled, at least, on Saturday.

“If we get it right off the field in terms of our hospitality and the way in which we organise things, then I hope people will be persuaded to come back again,” he said.

“The team has been playing well and winning matches this season but so far that hasn’t been enough to improve our attendances too much.

“The past couple of gates have been encouraging though, so I think the message is getting through.”

Vics are unbeaten in seven league and cup matches while FC United of Manchester put out another of the Blue Square North’s form teams, Stalybridge Celtic, in the previous round.

They have already gone further in this season’s competition than any other in their short history.

The legacy from Saturday’s match, whatever the result, is foremost in Rushe’s mind.

“I want everything to run smoothly,” he added.

“We’ve put a lot of effort and work in this week to make sure nothing is left to chance. There’s not much more we can do now.

“Everybody around the club is excited, both on and off the pitch.

“I just hope it’s an occasion we all remember.”

Northwich Victoria urge fans to buy their tickets before matchday

Source: Northwich Guardian

11:39am Thursday 22nd October 2009

NORTHWICH Victoria have warned supporters that do not buy their ticket in advance of Saturday’s FA Cup clash with FC United of Manchester that they may miss out.

Owner Jim Rushe told the Guardian that the first two days’ sales had been better than he expected.

“We’re really pleased,” he said.

“The response from both sets of fans has been fantastic and we’re excited at the prospect of such a big crowd watching the match at the weekend.

“However I would urge anybody who has the chance to buy their ticket before Saturday.”

Rushe met representatives from Cheshire Police yesterday, Wednesday, to discuss arrangements for the visit of the Rebels.

Talk turned to the possibility of a sell out at Victoria Stadium.

“There is every chance,” admitted Rushe.

“I would hate people who count themselves among our hardcore support and who have followed the team’s fortunes week in, week out to not be able to watch the game.

“I can’t stress enough how important it is for fans to buy their tickets as soon as possible.”

In April 2006 more than 3,000 people watched the hosts beat Stafford Rangers to clinch the Conference North title.

Since then the gate at the Victoria Stadium has swelled above 2,000 only once, for the visit of Kidderminster Harriers for an FA Trophy semi final second leg clash in March 2007.

Vics won 3-2, but missed out on a trip to Wembley on aggregate.

Tickets will be on sale at the Victoria Stadium today, Thursday, and tomorrow until 7pm.

The office opens at 10am on match day.

Kick off is 3pm.

Northwich firm Level One, based on Witton Street in the town centre, is selling tickets during retail hours too.

For further details, call Dave Thomas on 01606 815227.

Ashton United 1 FC United of Manchester 3

Source: Tameside Advertiser

Bryan Marshall
October 22, 2009

BOTH managers were in agreement that the difference between the two sides was in the ability to convert chances into goals.

The early stages were evenly contested, although Sam Ashton produced a superb save to tip over a header from Ashton’s Matty O’Neill in only the third minute.

Both sides looked dangerous; the home side came close on several occasions, as Gareth Richards and Pat McFadden both managed to get in behind the visitors’ defence, but failed to capitalise on some good situations.

It was perhaps against the run of play that Phil Marsh put the visitors ahead, mid-way through the first half. Jerome Wright’s cross fell invitingly at Marsh’s feet and he placed a low shot into the corner.

From that point on the away side looked the more threatening, but it took until two minutes before the interval for a further goal to arrive.

It was well worth the wait, as defender, Adam Tong, struck a piledriver from fully 40 yards out, over bemused Ashton keeper, Terry Smith, and in to the top corner.

Within a minute, the Robins were back in it, when O’Neill cut inside, before striking a left-footed shot beyond Sam Ashton to almost stunned silence from the visiting supporters.

In the second half, both sides had good chances throughout. Former Ashton striker, Ben Deegan, was denied by Smith and struck another shot just wide.

Ashton then had a good spell of possession, but seemed unable to find the right pass in the danger areas.

They were made to pay 20 minutes from time when Carlos Roca fired home a rasping shot from just outside the penalty area, following good play from Marsh.

Ashton boss Danny Johnson lamented: "We can’t miss chances like we did if we want to be a top side.

"I felt the players played the occasion in the first half, rather than the opposition. However, in the second half they gave their all and deserved better than they got."

Attendance: 729

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Incrível: sobe à bancada para aplaudir o próprio golo (vídeo)

Source: Mais Futebol

Matthew Russell é o mais egocêntrico jogador de semprePor Redacção com PJC

Matthew Russell pode não ser o mais famoso futebolista do mundo, mas é, por certo, o mais egocêntrico. O modesto avançado dos Castleton Gabriels, equipa dos escalões regionais de Inglaterra, fez questão de subir para uma bancada e aplaudir o golo que ele próprio marcara segundos antes.

É um momento hilariante e, muito provavelmente, inédito. No terreno do FC United (uma equipa formada por dissidentes do ManUtd) , o Castleton perdia já por 3-0 e era completamente dominado. Mas nem assim Matthew Russell se conteve. O FC United acabou por vencer 10-2!!

Spieler applaudiert sich selbst


In England sorgt Matthew Russell für Furore. Zuerst mit einem Traumtor, dann mit einem verrückten Jubel.

Aktualisiert um 16:05 | 19.10.2009

Die grosse Stunde von Matthew Russell. Im Fallen bringt er den Ball in Richtung Tor. (Screenshot

Der Rochdale Town F.C., ein Klub aus der englischen First Division (dritthöchste Liga), liegt beim FC United 3:0 im Rückstand. Dann gelingt Matthew Russell ein Traumtor zum 3:1.

Den wahren Höhepunkt lässt Russell aber erst jetzt folgen: Statt den Ball aus dem Netz zu holen und möglichst schnell auf den Anspielpunkt zu setzen, sprintet Russell nämlich jubelnd in Richtung Haupttribüne und überspringt die Bande. Dann setzt er sich auf einen leeren Sitz und beklatscht sein eigenes Tor!

Sehen Sie den irren Jubel im Video. (ds/sme)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Insólito: Jugador “ególatra” se aplaude desde la tribuna al hacer un gol

Source: Terra Chile

El hecho ocurrió en un partido en Inglaterra, cuando un futbolista anotó, se sentó en las gradas y simulando ser un hincha celebró su accionar. (

LONDRES, octubre 19.- El egocentrismo de un jugador en Inglaterra tomó ribetes insospechados durante un partido que se disputó en ese país.

Se trata de Matthew Russell, hombre del modesto Castleton Gabriels, quien tuvo una peculiar manera de festejar el gol que convirtió.

El atacante, tras anotar con un disparo casi al ángulo, corrió hasta las tribunas que se encontraban vacías, se sentó y se aplaudió a sí mismo por la definición de la jugada.

Pese a esto, su escuadra cayó inapelablemente ante en F.C. United por 3-1.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Ashton United 1 FC United 3

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 18, 2009

FC UNITED are through to the FA Trophy second qualifying round after a 3-1 win over Ashton.

Goals from Phil Marsh, Adam Tong and Carlos Roca were enough to see the Rebels through a tricky tie against the Unibond Premier League leaders at Hurst Cross.

“It was scrappy but to come out 3-1 winners at a tough place like Ashton is a great testament to the players,” said FC boss Karl Marginson.

The visitors broke the deadlock in the 23rd minute after an evenly-matched opening to the game.

Ben Deegan flicked on Jerome Wright’s cross to Marsh, and the striker had time to take a touch before coolly slotting home from 12 yards.

Tong then increased FC’s advantage in spectacular fashion in the 43rd minute with a dipping half-volley from 35 yards that left Ashton ‘keeper Terry Smith helpless.

The Rebels seemed to be in complete control, but Ashton hit back straight from the restart with Matty O’Neill taking advantage of some careless defending to make it 2-1 to the visitors at the break.

The home side came out strongly in the second half in search of the equaliser, but the Rebels remained dangerous on the counter-attack. Winger Carlos Roca finally sealed the victory with a brilliant strike from the edge of the area with 20 minutes to go.

The win extends FC’s unbeaten run in all competitions to six games.

“Winning breeds confidence and we’re going in the right direction,” said Marginson.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

FC United gets its kicks with This Creative

Source: How Do

Thursday, 15 October 2009
This Creative, the Manchester-based branding, design and advertising agency has been brought in to promote FC United.

FC United gets its kicks with This Creative
The team, formed following the controversial Glazer takeover of Manchester United, currently plays at Bury’s Gigg Lane ground.

Part of This Creative’s task will be to promote the club’s development fund, so that they can afford to move to their own premises.

"This is an extremely exciting development in our business, not only does it give us a great new client to work with on truly inspirational, creative, rule-free projects, it also adds to our growing portfolio of diverse clients in this our second year," said This Creative co-founder Warren Lomax.

"We are really pleased to be working with Andy Walsh (General Manager) and FC United and are hoping to be stood side by side with them as the club progresses further up the football ladder.”

The agency will also be promoting FC United’s FA Cup run and a Christmas campaign.

Lomax admitted he’s been “researching” his new client since its inception:

“We believe 100% in what FC are all about and on the plus side - it gives me a work-based legitimate excuse to continue the fantastic Saturday days out at FC!"

FC United is owned by its members and the team is 1 game away from playing professional clubs in the next round of the FA Cup.

Stalybridge Celtic 0 FC United 1, FA Cup third qualifying round

Source: Bury Times

9:37am Thursday 15th October 2009
By Liam Chronnell »

FC United are now just one game away from the FA Cup first round proper after pulling off a shock against Stalybridge Celtic at the second attempt.

The breakaway club had never been as far as the third qualifying before and, after twice throwing away two-goal leads at Gigg Lane on Saturday, looked to have blown their chance of going any further in the famous old competition.

But Jerome Wright’s first-half piledriver ensured the Rebels kept alive their Wembley dreams with a 1-0 replay victory over the Blue Square North outfit in front of 1,923 fans on Tuesday night — netting a £15,000 payday in the process.

FC now face a trip to Northwich Victoria who, like Stalybridge, are from the league above, in the next round, knowing they are just one game away from a possible showdown with a club from the Football League.

Karl Marginson’s team had led 2-0 and 3-1 at the weekend, only for Celtic to hit back twice to earn a 3-3 draw.

And United were forced to hold on again in the replay after Wright had spectacularly fired the UniBond Premier League side into a 35th-minute lead.

They were indebted to several superb saves from goalkeeper Sam Ashton, including a particularly memorable effort in during the five minutes of injury time.

But it was not all one-way traffic. Reds’ Adam Tong had already had a shot cleared off the line before winger Wright grabbed the game’s only goal.

FC’s hopes were not helped when captain David Chadwick limped off before half time and the hosts surged forward after the break in search of the equaliser.

Simon Garner twice hacked off his own line before Ashton produced another acrobatic stop to keep Bridge out.

The keeper made an even better save deep into injury time when he denied Michael Carr to send the Rebels through to the fourth qualifying — and sparked an ugly brawl at the final whistle as frustrations boiled over.

On Saturday at Gigg Lane, former Celtic forward Carlos Roca and Phil Marsh put the Rebels in control after 35 minutes but Matty Barlow pulled one back before half-time.

Chadwick restored FC’s advantage on 50 minutes only for Joe O’Neill to make it 3-2 five minutes later. And the same player silenced the majority of the 2,819 crowd when he levelled from the penalty spot on 69 minutes.

The Reds return to action at Ashton United on Saturday in the FA Trophy, looking to stretch their five-game unbeaten run.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

FC United looks to push on with This Creative


FC United of Manchester, the member-owned football club founded by fans, is working with This Creative as it looks to raise money to build its own stadium.

Established by disillusioned Manchester United supporters in 2005 following Malcolm Glazer's takeover of their club, FC United is now in the seventh teir of English football and currently plays at Bury FC's ground, Gigg Lane.

The not-for-profit club said it needs to save for its own ground to progress further and enlisted This Creative to create posters - plastered around town - and a brochure - handed out at matches - to raise awarness of its 'development fund'.

The Manchester agency is also promoting the team's FA Cup fixtures - the side is one game away from potentially facing professional league clubs in the next round - and it will handle a Christmas campaign.

Warren Lomax, This Creative's co-founder, said: "We are really pleased to be working with Andy Walsh (general manager) and FC United and are hoping to be stood side by side with them as the club progresses further up the football ladder.

"We believe 100 percent in what FC are all about and on the plus side, it gives me a work-based legitimate excuse to continue the fantastic Saturday days out at FC!"

Stalybridge Celtic 0 FC United 1

Source: The Bolton News

10:38am Wednesday 14th October 2009
By Dale Haslam »

FC UNITED face a mouthwatering FA Cup clash at Northwich Victoria after claiming the biggest scalp in their short history.

In the third qualifying round, the reds slugged out a 3-3 stalemate with Blue Square North side Stalybridge Celtic at Gigg Lane on Sunday, forcing a replay at Bower Fold on Tuesday night.

Before a crowd of 1,923, a solitary goal from left winger Jerome Wright put the Unibond Premier Division side ahead 11 minutes before the break.

Wright momentarily ventured out onto the right and was given enough space to smash a 25-yard strike into the top corner of the net.

And despite five tense minutes of stoppage time, United held out for the win.

But questions could be raised in the referee's report after punches were thrown among players at the final whistle.

It is the furthest the Rebels have ever reached in the FA Cup since being founded in 2005.

They must now beat Vics, another Blue Square North outfit, on Saturday week (Oct 24) to earn a place in the first round proper.

FC United continue Cup run

Source: The FA

By Chris Hatherall - Wednesday, 14 October, 2009

Jerome Wright scores winning goal against Stalybridge.
The FA Cup sponsored by E.ON
Third Round Qualifying replays
7.45pm, Tuesday 13 October 2009
Winning clubs will receive £7,500 from The FA prize fund

Jerome Wright scored the goal that has sent FC United of Manchester into the Fourth Round Qualifying of The FA Cup, where they will play away to Northwich Victoria.

Karl Marginson’s side won 1-0 away at Stalybridge Celtic, a team who play 29 places above them in the league pyramid, after drawing the original tie 3-3 at Gigg Lane.

Wright sent a scorching shot past Stalybridge keeper Paul Phillips in the 33rd minute after Carlos Roca’s free-kick had fallen to him on the edge of the area.

Keith Briggs had the home side’s best chance to equalise when he shot straight at Sam Ashton late on and there was controversy after the final whistle when United’s Adam Carden was sent off for confronting an opponent as he left the field. But United boss Marginson was delighted with the result.

He said: “This has to be one of our finest hours and all credit to the boys for performing so magnificently on the night.

"Few people would have expected us to come here and win after Bridge held us at our place on Sunday, but I always had faith in our players and I don't think many of the 1,923 fans inside Bower Fold would argue we weren't worthy winners."

Elsewhere in The FA Cup, Kendal beat Guiseley 1-0, Southport saw off Alfreton Town 2-1 and Stourbridge enjoyed a crushing 6-1 victeory away to Hucknall Town.

Lincoln United needed a penalty shoot-out to win at Frickley following a 1-1 draw while Ilkeston Town won 3-1 at Eastwood and Bury Town just edged a seven-goal thriller at Bedford Town.

Ashford Town (Middlesex) lost 9-8 on penalties to Hendon while Mangotsfield also won on penalties, 4-3, following a 1-1 draw at Truro City.

Salford City produced an excellent performance to hold FA Cup legends Blyth Spartans 2-2 at Moor Lane and earn a replay in the North-East.The Unibond North underdogs trailed twice goals from Steve Harrison and Mark Doninger but hit back on both occasions, through Ian Fitzpatrick and then Rhodri Giggs.

Supporters Direct keeps the faith in fan ownership despite setbacks

Source: The Guardian (David Conn)

Football economics make running a club via a supporters' trust a tough proposition but the ideal is being championed at a conference this week


AFC Wimbledon supporters founded the club from scratch following a relocation to Milton Keynes, and the Conference Premier club is now a leading example of trust ownership. Photograph: Oliver Greenwood/Action Images

This has not, on the face of it, been the best 12 months for the enlightened idea that football clubs should belong to their supporters, rather than be prizes in a global tombola for millionaires. True, Barcelona, the most inspirational of member-owned clubs, won the Champions League in Rome with Unicef on their shirts, beating the Glazer family's AIG-sponsored, debt-leveraged Manchester United. But closer to home there have been sundry struggles.

Supporters' trusts, some of them newly formed, became the saviours of last resort for several stricken clubs around the 2002 collapse of ITV Digital, but the battle to compete financially, against clubs subsidised by wealthy backers, has seen several cede ownership back to single businessmen.

Notts County's supporters' trust voted by 93% in July to give away its majority stake in the world's oldest professional club to the Qadbak investment fund, whose backers have still not been identified. Stockport County, supporter-owned since 2005, overspent either side of their 2008 promotion to League One and went into administration in April. Brentford, whose trust took over a club owing around £2m in loans to the previous owner, old-school Ron Noades, did a deal with Matthew Benham, a Bees fan and professional gambler, which will see Benham invest £5m over five years then have the right to own the club outright.

Chesterfield and York City were also previously owned by supporters' trusts, which saved their clubs from extinction in hideous crises, but then found they lacked the wherewithal to enable the clubs to flourish, and passed them on to local businessmen.

Brentford aside, just one supporter-owned Football League club now remains: the defiantly cheerful Exeter City. Six years and two promotions since financial convulsions led to the club entering administration and being relegated to the Conference, and to the conviction of two former directors for fraudulent trading, the current period is close to the best the Grecians have ever had, according to the trust board member David Treharne. "There is a real feeling among our fans that as the club was nearly driven to the wall before, they are not willing to let that happen again," he affirms.

In the Premier League, where even a club such as Birmingham City has just been bought for £81.5m, owning the clubs has been beyond the reach of fans' mutuals; yet with eyes cast enviously on the Camp Nou, and the Bundesliga, where most clubs are more than 50% owned by fans, the idea has taken stubborn root among a corps of supporters. ShareLiverpoolfc registered nearly 10,000 members prepared to subscribe for a scheme to buy a stake of the Anfield club from the debt-laden Tom Hicks and George Gillett.

The Manchester United Supporters' Trust, fierce opponents of the Glazers' leveraged buyout which has saddled the club with £700m of debt, has amassed a staggering 36,500 members, committed to what MUST describes as: "The added affinity between the supporter and the club that only comes with supporter ownership."

The Arsenal Supporters' Trust, smaller, with 900 members, has accepted that owning the club is realistically beyond its potential, and like many trusts seeks to be a conduit for fans' views. Arsenal's trust lobbied influentially throughout their club's boardroom turmoil, for "custodianship" at Arsenal and against ownership by a single person, whether Stan Kroenke or Alisher Usmanov.

Supporters Direct, the initiative set up in 2000 by the government to promote fan involvement in clubs, is not trudging sheepishly to its annual conference on Friday, but pledging to learn the lessons of a difficult period. Despite recent difficulties, the organisation can point to trusts having formed at more than 150 clubs at all levels in England, Wales and Scotland, with 120,000 members in total, and £20m raised and invested across the clubs. That stands as a remarkable record of progress for an idea which, 10 years ago, was still obscure, the brainchild of Brian Lomax, founder member of a supporters' trust at Northampton Town, who steps down this year as Supporters Direct's chairman.

"We are not reacting to recent events at Notts County or Stockport believing they have delivered a blow to the trust idea," Dave Boyle, the organisation's chief executive, emphasises. "We believe very firmly that football clubs are community, sporting institutions, not private businesses, and that principle has gained tremendous support over the last decade."

It has also been backed by Uefa, which has enshrined in its strategic documents the conviction that supporter ownership is the ideal model for football clubs, and funded Supporters Direct to extend its work to fans in other countries. "Uefa recognises the growth of supporters' trusts in Great Britain as very progressive," says Gianni Infantino, Uefa's new general secretary. "It is a good model for football clubs – membership clubs which exist for their supporters – and we believe they can also help achieve the objective of financial fair play, where clubs do not make repeated losses every year."

That has been the difficulty in practice here for the mutual model, that whatever the money accumulated by the fundraising commitment of fans, it is swamped by the millions made available from wealthy backers, at all levels.

"The supporters' trust is a great model for a football club because its members are committed to the club being there for the long term, and they attract volunteers prepared to give their time for free," explains David Merritt, chairman of the Bees United supporters' trust and a Brentford director. "However, they cannot change the fundamental economics of football, in which so many clubs operate at an unsustainable level, increasing their levels of debt every year. That has to be reformed, to protect all clubs."

It is significant that three standard bearers of the trust "movement" which have flourished, FC United of Manchester, and AFCs Wimbledon and Telford, were started as collective endeavours by the supporters from scratch, not, like most of the league clubs, saddled with the debts of a failed previous regime.

Telford, previously in the Conference, were one of the few financially stricken clubs to go into liquidation, and fans set up their own to take its place. AFC Wimbledon, promoted to the Conference Premier last season, were founded at the base of football's pyramid by the vast majority of dons who refused to go to Milton Keynes with the husk of the old Wimbledon. FC United of Manchester, the do-it-yourself club formed by fans finally alienated from Old Trafford by the Glazer takeover, are regularly attracting around 2,000 supporters, huge in the UniBond Premier League.

"We look at what those clubs have achieved, and Exeter, and it shows what trust-owned clubs can do," Boyle says. "The last six months have reminded us how difficult it is for supporter-owned clubs financially in the Football League, so while we keep pressing for wider reforms to football, we need to consider the further help we can give to trusts, which are all run by volunteers."

From small beginnings, supporter involvement in clubs has struck a major chord, and been endorsed at the highest level of European football. It has just been fiendishly difficult for mutual ownership to work in professional football's mucky reality and murderous economics.

Supporters Direct's annual conference takes place at the NEC, Birmingham, this Friday.
Supporter Ownership

British professional football clubs mostly began as mutual, membership clubs, then converted to limited companies, with shares to buy and sell, in the late 19th century. Supporters Direct was launched to promote democratic representation of supporters in clubs in January 2000, backed by the government, with cross-party support.

German Bundesliga clubs have to be more than 50% owned by their supporters, with the exceptions of Wolfsburg and Bayer Leverkusen, which are companies. Fans of German clubs have campaigned hard to keep that rule, to prevent the over-commercialisation of their clubs, against some club directors who want it abolished.

In Spain, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Athletic Bilbao and Osasuna are owned by fans and hold elections for their president and board.

Cup joy for Rebel Reds

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 13, 2009
JUBILANT FC United boss Karl Marginson saluted his red-hot Rebels after they'd booked an FA Cup trip to Northwich a week on Saturday with a stunning 1-0 third qualifying-round replay victory at Stalybridge last night.

Marginson's men made light of the fact they lie 29 places below Bridge in the non-League pyramid to deservedly advance to the Cup's fourth and final qualification stage for the first time in the club's brief but colourful history.

Jerome Wright was FC's match-winner, firing high past Celts' keeper Paul Phillips in the 33rd minute after Carlos Roca's free-kick had fallen invitingly to him on the edge of the box.

Stalybridge struggled to respond, although they might have had an equaliser late on when skipper Keith Briggs somehow contrived to shoot straight at Sam Ashton.

The only blot on FC's copy-book was a red card shown to Adam Carden seconds after the game had finished after he appeared to confront a crestfallen opponent.

Said Marginson: "This has to be one of our finest hours and all credit to the boys for performing so magnificently on the night.

"Few people would have expected us to come here and win after Bridge held us at our place on Sunday, but I always had faith in our players and I don't think many of the 1,923 fans inside Bower Fold would argue we weren't worthy winners."

Meanwhile, Cup minnows Salford City themselves now face a replay at Blyth Spartans next Tuesday after holding the Geordies 2-2 at Moor Lane.

The UniBond North side twice trailed to goals by Steve Harrison (10 mins) and Mark Doninger (25), but hit back on each occasion, first through Ian Fitzpatrick (12) and then Rhodri Giggs (42).

The winners will entertain AFC Telford.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Edited from: The Bolton News

8:00am Tuesday 13th October 2009
By Gordon Sharrock »

FC United will attempt to overcome Staylbridge Celtic at the second attempt when the pair clash in the FA Cup third qualifying round replay at Bower Fold.

The Rebels led 2-0 and 3-1 before letting the Blue Square North side twice fight back to draw 3-3 at Gigg Lane.

Tonight’s winner will travel to Northwich Victoria, also from Blue Square North, in the next round. Ties will be played on the weekend of Saturday, October 24.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Celtic and FC United to go again

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 12, 2009
FC UNITED and Stalybridge Celtic must do it all again at Bower Fold on Tuesday (7.45pm) after sharing in a six-goal FA Cup third qualifying-round thriller in front of a Gigg Lane crowd of 2,819.

The rebel Reds twice led by two goals but still couldn't get the better of a never-say-die Bridge side who have now gone 10 games unbeaten in league and Cup. United's goals came from ex-Stalybridge player Carlos Roca, Phil Marsh and Dave Chadwick with Matt Barlow and Joe O'Neill (2, one pen) on the mark for Celtic.

Both sides had chances to win it and it was FC who were perhaps happiest to settle for a replay with boss Karl Marginson saying: "We'll go to Stalybridge still believing we can win it."

Football focus 12/09/2009

Edited from: Manchester Confidential

It was out with the new and in with the old on Sunday as FC United took on Stalybridge Celtic in an FA Cup third round qualifier at Gigg Lane. “Get out your old Oxford bags and your loon platform shoes,” screamed the posters. Wear your scarf on your wrist and bring banners and flags of all shapes and sizes…because it’s 70s day!”

FC lie twelfth in the Unibond Premier league, with Celtic fifth in the Conference North, two tiers ahead of them in the pyramid. You wouldn’t have known that, of course, as the two teams fought out a blistering three three draw in front of three thousand paying, baying, singing-themselves-hoarse fans. There may have been a dearth of takers for the fancy dress – Confidential noted a couple of rattles and an old fella with a vinyl baseball cap, the latter looking like evidence from a long unsolved crime - but having reclaimed their brand essence from the Glazers, the FC supporters are singing it loud and proud: Walking On The Beaches, Cum On Feel The Noize, We’re On The March With Margy’s Army.

It’s 70s day every week at FC United.

On this evidence they’re particularly good value for their £7.50 admission price this season, matching the fans’ commitment ball for ball. They played a traditional 4-4-2 on Sunday with Phil Marsh and Ben Deegan up front and the mercurial Jerome Wright pushing up on the left. On the other flank, the tricksy Carlos Roca caused problems all afternoon. And in Dave Chadwick they have their very own Gary Pallister (though the self-confessed City fan probably wouldn’t enjoy the comparison). Signed from Prescot Cables in close season, the new captain – clearly playing his heart out for the crowd - was immense.

Pick of the goals was United’s second, Marsh cutting inside to slot home after a blinding run from full back Adam Carden. The former MUFC striker ran halfway across the pitch to jump into manager Karl Marginson’s arms as the Main Stand went extra bananas.

Celtic weren’t to be outdone, though, and experience began to shine through as United tired on the hour mark, most likely victims of their own supercharged atmosphere. Joe O’Neill netted twice as the visitors fought back to earn a draw from three one down. The replay is on Tuesday night at Bower Fold.

FC United 3 Staylbridge Celtic 3

Source: The Bolton News

8:21pm Sunday 11th October 2009
By Liam Chronnell »

FC United wasted a great opportunity to pull off a cup shock and reach the fourth qualifying round for the first time in their history after twice throwing away a two-goal lead at Gigg Lane.

Carlos Roca and Phil Marsh put the Rebels in control after 35 minutes but Matty Barlow hit back for the Blue Suare North outfit before half-time.

David Chadwick restored FC’s advantage on 50 minutes only for Joe O’Neill to make it 3-2 five minutes later.

And the same player sent the tie to a replay on Tuesday night when he struck from the penalty spot on 69 minutes to silence the majority of the 2,819 crowd.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Entertainment on and off the pitch

Source: The FA

By Julian Bennetts - Sunday, 11 October, 2009

3-3 thriller at Gigg Lane on Sunday.
FC United 3-3 Stalybridge Celtic
The FA Cup, sponsored by E.ON
Third Round Qualifying
Sunday 11 October 2009
Gigg Lane, Bury FC
Winning clubs receive £7500

When over 2,800 supporters turned up in fancy dress to watch FC United of Manchester face Stalybridge Celtic in their FA Cup Third Round Qualifying tie, the last thing they would have wanted was for all the entertainment to be in the stands rather than on the pitch. So it was fortunate, then, that the game was an absolute cracker which ended in a 3-3 draw.

FC United will feel aggrieved that they did not settle the matter at the first time of asking though. Leading 3-1 thanks to goals from Carlos Roca, Phil Marsh and David Chadwick, they eased off and paid the price as Stalybridge came back into the game with two quick-fire goals to ensure the sides will meet again in a replay on Tuesday.

So a bumper crowd kitted out in 70’s clothes, six goals, and entertainment all round – except, that is, if you are on the coaching staff of either of the sides involved.

“That was cracking entertainment for the neutrals, but it was horribly nerve-wracking for us,” said Ray Soule, FC United’s assistant manager.

“It really was a great game, with end-to-end football and lots of chances apart from the six goals.

“There was a really good crowd in, in part because of the international break, which meant we got a lot of Manchester United fans coming to support us.

“And I thought they should have seen an FC United victory. We had a lot of joy going forward and our fitness levels were really good, which meant we hassled them a lot.

“At 3-1 up, we should have put the game to bed, but Joe O’Neil scored two goals in quick succession – although we thought that his second, Stalybridge’s third, was for a penalty that should never have been given.”

So FC United may be cursing themselves for not having already sealed their place in the next round, but Soule believes his side will have taken a lot of belief from their enterprising performance.

“We’ll be very confident going into the replay,” he insisted. “We still think we can cause an upset and we are very confident in our own abilities.

“I never worry about any other side, as I know that if my team turns up then we can achieve something. But I’m sure that whatever happens, the replay on Tuesday is going to be very entertaining!”

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Back in time for United

Source: The FA

By Stefan Pape - Saturday, 10 October, 2009

It's a 70's themed day at Gigg Lane on Sunday.
FC United v Stalybridge Celtic
The FA Cup sponsored by E.ON
Third Round Qualifying
3pm, Sunday 11 October
Gigg Lane, Bury FC
Winning clubs receive £7500

There will be blood, sweat, and platform shoes this weekend as FC United of Manchester host Stalybridge Celtic on a 70's themed day at Gigg Lane in their vital FA Cup clash.

On a day when flares and punk hairstyles come back into fashion, FC United, currently competing in the Northern Premier League, are hoping for a win that could take them one step closer to qualifying for The FA Cup for the first time in their history.

"It would be fantastic for the players and fans to qualify for such a prestigious cup," said United's manager Karl Marginson.

"The fans have been a great inspiration to the players and it would be a great chance for the players to pitch themselves against professional footballers."

Marginson also believes that the fun atmosphere generated by the club's fans, will only help the players succeed on the pitch. "It adds a little bit of spice to the fixture, it gives the game a carnival atmosphere," he added.

The fans' favourite, who has been in charge of United since they were formed back in 2005, experienced his own success in a cup competition, when he won The FA Trophy as a player with Macclesfield Town back in 1996, and he believes his own experiences can only help the players.

"That's why I'm here, to pass on information and to help the lads, letting them know there is no pressure," said Marginson.

Despite being touted as the underdogs in the tie, Marginson still believes his side have a good chance of progressing to the Fourth Round Qualifying of The Cup,

"Anything is possible. That's the romance of The FA Cup," he concluded.

Money buys love in English football

Edited from: Times of India

In 2005, American tycoon Malcolm Glazer paid £790 million for Manchester United. The club had been the target of Rupert Murdoch, until an anti-monopoly commission decreed that ownership of Sky, the broadcasting rights holders, would present an unfair advantage at the time of negotiating further broadcasting deals. Glazer's takeover was successful, but the Murdoch attempt proved unpopular with a faction of fans who created FC United, a separatist Manchester-based club owned and managed entirely by fans. FC is growing in popularity, but Manchester United's leading position in world commerce is unrivalled.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Striker exit to give Ramsbottom United headache

Souce: Lancashire Telegraph

4:08pm Friday 9th October 2009

By Aban Quaynor »

RAMSBOTTOM United go into tomorrow’s Vodkat League Premier Division tie against Bootle suffering a striker crisis after Carl Lomax defected to Bamber Bridge and Anthony Johnson was ruled out with ligament damage.

Lomax left the club last weekend for a more lucrative deal at the UniBond League club after news broke out that the forward was registered to both the Rams and FC United, and United no longer wanted him.

Joint player manager Johnson said: “I can understand the comments being made behind Carl’s decision to leave the club, having only just re-signed for us from FC United.

“I know that Carl is not working at the moment so every penny counts for him and Bridge were able to offer him considerably more than we could.”

FC United out to turn on Celtic charm

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 09, 2009

FC UNITED boss Karl Marginson insists his rebel Reds are ready to rise to the challenge of being underdogs in Sunday's eagerly- anticipated FA Cup third qualifying-round derby with Stalybridge Celtic at Gigg Lane.

Steve Burr's slick Celts will start as favourites, having thrashed FC's UniBond premier rivals Stocksbridge 7-2 in the last round and having climbed to fifth in Blue Square North.

But Marginson's men, too, are cock-a-hoop in the wake of Wednesday's crushing 4-0 victory over Nantwich.

Marginson, himself a former Stalybridge star, said: "Bridge are a quality side with some quality players. If we're to win, we know we're going to have to be at the top of our game and hope they're not quite at theirs."

FC cup hopes

FC, who have never before reached the Cup's penultimate qualifying stage, are expecting a crowd in excess of 3,000 for a tie which has been put back by 24 hours due to Bury being in action at Gigg Lane.

Meanwhile, in tomorrow's ties involving other North West sides, Andy Preece's Northwich are expected to ease past visiting Chorley, while Radcliffe travel to Workington confident of earning a replay.

Having drawn 2-2 at Hyde in midweek, minnows Salford City will attempt to finish the job at Moor Lane in what promises to be a fascinating second qualifying-round replay.

Elsewhere, on-song Altrincham, unbeaten in their last seven Blue Square Premier starts, take on fourth-placed Mansfield at Moss Lane.

In the day's only Blue Square North fixture, table-topping Droylsden visit lowly Harrogate.

UniBond premier pacesetters Ashton United go to Boston, while, in division one north, promotion hopefuls Curzon Ashton visit Ossett and Trafford entertain Garforth.

Midfielder Dave Neville returns to FC United of Manchester

Source: Northwich Guardian

9:54am Friday 9th October 2009

By Andrew Simpson

DAVE Neville has left Witton Albion to return to former club FC United of Manchester.

The 23-year-old midfielder left Wincham Park at the start of the week, appearing as a second half substitute for the Rebels in their midweek UniBond Premier Division win over Nantwich Town.

He made eight appearances for Witton, but had not featured from the start since September 5.

“Dave never really did it for us,” said Albion boss Gary Finley.

“He had a good pre-season and deserved his place in the team at the start of the season. He took it well when he was left out at first and wanted to work hard to get back into the team.

“When that didn’t happen straight away he was disappointed, but for me he didn’t perform at the level we thought he could.”

Neville was left out of Witton’s matchday squad completely in recent weeks following the arrival of former Tranmere Rovers schemer Paul Henry.

But brother Lee, who has established himself as first pick at full back since the departure of Phil Doran to Welsh Premier Division leaders Rhyl, will stay at Wincham Park.

Finley added: “There’s no point keeping players who don’t want to stay.”

Rebel Reds ready for FA Cup test

Source: The Bolton News

7:00am Friday 9th October 2009

FC United are set for the biggest game in their history when they take on Staylbridge Celtic for a place in the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup.

This is the furthest the breakaway club have ever been in the famous old competition since their formation four years ago as they prepare for Sunday’s clash with the Blue Square North outfit at Gigg Lane (3pm kick off).

Buoyed by Wednesday night’s 4-0 thrashing of UniBond Premier League rivals Nantwich, and with Rebels fans planning a 1970s-inspired theme day, Karl Marginson’s side will fancy their chances of causing an upset to keep their Wembley dream alive.

“It’ll be a tough game as Stalybridge are in the division above us, but we’ve got the players to have a good go at them and with the crowd behind us we’ve got every chance of causing a minor upset,” said boss Marginson.

FC general manager Andy Walsh added: “The FA Cup has always been special to United fans and with each game we’ve won excitement for the next one has gone up another notch.

“Supporters are planning to bring flags, banners, scarves and wear all sorts of 1970s attire to help create an atmosphere reminiscent of days gone by. ”

Thursday, October 08, 2009

FC United hammer Nantwich

Source: Manchester Evening News

October 08, 2009

PHIL Marsh was FC United's hat-trick hero as they crushed high-flying Nantwich 4-0 to climb eight places into ninth spot in the UniBond premier division.

Substitute Jamie Mack added a fourth late on to round off FC's biggest win of the season so far.

Dabbers slump to defeat

Source: This is Staffordshire

Thursday, October 08, 2009, 08:40

FC United 4

Nantwich Town 0

NANTWICH Town missed a penalty for the second game running in crashing to a 4-0 defeat at FC United of Manchester last night.

Play was fast and furious from the start and Nantwich had the opportunity to strike the first blow after 15 minutes.

Dave Whittaker found Michael Lennon, who was brought down in the box. United keeper Ashton parried the spot-kick by Lennon, who clipped the bar with his second attempt.

Nantwich were to rue the miss as United took a two-goal lead into the interval.

A long clearance by Ashton led to Simon Carden racing into the area where he crossed to the far post for Phil Marsh to head past Lee Jones on 25 minutes.

Eight minutes later Marsh added his second when Nantwich again failed to deal with another downfield ball.

Jerome Wright went close to adding a third, but that honour went to Marsh, who completed his hat-trick on 63 minutes.

Nantwich's misery was completed six minutes from time when Jamie Mack scored United's fourth in front of a crowd of 1,650 for a game that was transferred from Bury to the Hyde United ground.