Sunday, 4 March 2012

Saints v Swifts

Saturday 3rd March 2012
Leicestershire Senior League Division 1
Platts Lane Sports Ground, Cossington

The choice of game for the Rambler today is a local one and more specifically a visit to one of the three remaining grounds left to re-complete the Leicestershire Senior League. The other two (Linwood Playing Fields and Coventry Road Recreation Ground) are new venues of Aylestone Park and Lutterworth Town respectively. 

It had been arranged to meet up with my Dad for this game - with this being the first time since January 14th. As we both live in different parts of Leicester it was agreed to meet up at the Gate Hangs Well pub on the north side of Syston - a mere five minute drive to the nearby village of Cossington. We arrived at the sports ground with around ten minutes to the kick off and it is a tidy affair. It is home not only to football but rugby and cricket as well. The football pitch is on the left hand side and it has wooden fencing around three sides of the pitch, with the other being roped off. Along the near side are some permanent dugouts and finally there is a modern looking changing room block in the left hand corner of the ground which served hot and cold drinks, filled soft cobs and snacks.

I don't know when Sileby were formed but were competing in division one of the North Leicestershire League (NLL) in 1997. The next four seasons were spent in division 1 before the Saints suffered relegation to division 2. Promotion back to division 1 came in the 2003/04 season when they were crowned division 2 champions, recording forty eight points from their twenty league games. The following season they achieved back-to-back promotions as they won the division 1 title, losing only one league game in the process. Their first season in the premier division saw them finish in the runners-up position, and just one year laters were crowned NLL champions. Last season they won the NLL again and with it achieved promotion to the Leicestershire Senior League (LSL). The LSL has been to their liking as they are on course for another promotion, with them sitting in second place behind Caterpillar (who have a 100% record) and ten points ahead of third placed Melton Mowbray. Opponents Lutterworth Town meanwhile sit at the wrong end of the table with only Asfordby Amateurs below them.

The game, especially during the first half did not go according to the script for the home side as the visitors belied their lowly position and made a game of it. In fact it was hard to tell which side was which on the basis of play and the first half ended goalless. The second half saw Sileby run out comfortable winners, helped by two goal keeping errors. The first came a minute into the second half when a free kick from Jake Rimington should have been saved easily but found its way into the net. The second goal of the afternoon came a few minutes after the hour mark when a good cross from the right was turned in at the far post by Lee Dawson. The Lutterworth team did not let their heads drop but their play in the final third of the pitch let them down all to often. The killer third goal for the Saints came with eight minutes remaining when a tame cross from the right was missed by the keeper and the clearance by a defender struck Dawson in the midriff. This resulted in the ball ending the back of the net for a somewhat comical goal. Lutterworth's best two chances came in the final five minutes - the first was a well struck shot that clattered the woodwork and the second was a tame effort in which the home keeper saved.

Admission / programme: none
Attendance: 10

A slideshow of photos taken during the game can be viewed below:
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