Monday, 31 October 2011


The Ilford and District League has expanded this season adding a Division Three made up of eleven teams.

The Ilford and District League Division Three (Current Table)
                          P W D L GF GA GD PTS 
1. DM UNITED RES          5 5 0 0 27  7 20 15 
2. HAINAULT WANDERERS     6 4 1 1 26  7 19 13 
3. LEYTON UNITED          5 4 0 1 16  6 10 12 
4. FOREST UNTED RES       6 4 0 2 24 15  9 12 
5. MELBOURNE SPORTS RES   4 2 1 1 14  9  5  7 
6. ASCOT UNITED           4 2 0 2  9 11 -2  6 
7. NEWHAM ROYALS          4 2 0 2  9 13 -4  6  
8. LUCKY STRIKES          6 2 0 4 11 16 -5  6 
9. LEYTON GREEN           7 1 1 5  6 30 -24 4
10. CUSTOM HOUSE          5 1 0 4 14 25 -11 3
11. DYNAMO ATHLETIC       6 0 1 5  9 26 -17 1  

DM United Reserves currently top the division (their first team play in Division Two) with a 100% winning record in their five games followed by Hainault Wanderers, Leyton United and Forest United.

Dynamo Athletic are propping up the division and are the only side without a victory. Athletic, who play home games on the Wanstead flats, did gain a point in a 3-3 draw with Leyton Green on the 8th October. Green have suffered heavy defeats to the top two (0-9 v Hainault and 0-7 v DM United Res) so currently have the worst goal difference on -24.

Forthcoming Fixtures 

Saturday 5th November 
Newham Royals v Dynamo Athletic 
Forest United Res v Lucky Strikes 
Leyton Green v Melbourne Sports Res 
Leyton United v Ascot United 
DM United Res v Custom House 

Saturday 12th November 
Custom House v Hainault Wanderers 
DM United Res v Newham Royals 

The Ilford and District League have a very good website which can be found here. Several of the Division Three clubs have websites with,, standing out for the cold end.


The Ryman League will be represented in the FA Cup with Budweiser First Round by at least three teams with Division One (North) Redbridge making the national headlines at the weekend by knocking out Blue Square Premier Division Ebbsfleet United.

East Thurrock United, last season's Division One (North) Champions, have also made it through to the First Round for the first time in their history after a fantastic away with at Blue Square South Eastbourne Borough.

The trio will be made up from the winners of the all Premier Division replay between Leatherhead and Sutton United tomorrow night.

The Motormen have been drawn against Evo-Stick Southern Premier Division Oxford City, The Rocks entertain League Two Macclesfield Town and the winners of the replay at Fetcham Grove welcome Blue Square Premier Kettering Town.

With Charlton Atletic and Sheffield's Wednesday and United in the hat for the draw the Ryman League representatives unfortunately didn't hit the jackpot but will be eagerly awaiting the games to be played on the weekend of 12th November.

Redbridge's run to the First Round Proper (with Oxford City's run shown alongside)

Preliminary Round - Cockfosters        1-2   
1st QR            - Wingate & Finchley 0-3   DIDCOT TOWN   1-1   
1st QR replay     -                          Didcot Town   0-3 
2nd QR            - BURY TOWN          1-0   Thame United  1-3  
3rd QR            - DUNSTABLE TOWN     3-0   Eastleigh     1-3 
4th QR            - EBBSFLEET UNITED   2-0   Weston-S-Mare 2-3   
1st Round         - OXFORD CITY              Redbridge    

The Motormen have only conceded one goal in their run with Cockfoster's Dave Pigdon laying claim to this fame. His goal in the Preliminary Round game actually put the Spartan South Midlands Division One side ahead.

Terry Spillane will know Oxford City will be no pushovers as they have won away at two Blue Square South sides during their run and are also currently in fifth place of the Evo-Stick Southern Premier League. 

East Thurrock United appear to have left their best form for the FA Cup this season as in the league they have only won two of eleven games. They face The Silkmen of League Two who last met non-league opposition in the FA Cup in 2008 when they played Harlow Town at Barrows Farm in front of 2,149 people. Shaun Brisley and Terry Dunfield scored the goals in a 0-2 win against The Hawks who were then members of the Ryman Premier Division. Brisley is still on the books at The Moss Rose whilst Dunfield (a full Canadian International) left in January 2009 to join Shrewsbury Town for a fee of £65,000. He has since played for Vancouver Whitecaps and currently plays for Toronto FC in the MLS.

East Thurrock's run to the First Round Proper 

1st QR        - BEDFORD TOWN 1-0 
2nd QR        - ST ALBANS CITY 3-3 
2nd QR replay - St Albans City 1-3 
3rd QR replay - North Greenford United 0-3 
4th QR        - Eastbourne Borough 1-2 
1st Round     - MACCLESFIED TOWN 

With the magic of the cup maybe more glory awaits for the The Motormen and The Rocks???

Saturday, 29 October 2011


It was a largely forgettable and scrappy game this afternoon at Scraley Road with a hard working Enfield Town gaining a well deserved and important three points against a Heybridge Swifts side who were unable to get in a single shot that troubled Noel Imber in the Town goal.

Town's goal came from a Leon Osei free kick in the second half with both Jon Moore and Liam Hope unlucky not to add to this lead when they both hit the post.

Swifts were very lucky to keep eleven men on the pitch when a player, who had been booked, appeared to commit what in other games would of been two bookable offences. The home side's management acted quickly by making a tactical substitution after the second foul.

Swifts run of two wins in their least ten league and cup games was summed up by one of their fans who was overheard at half time stating that if his side got a shot on target he was going to celebrate as if they'd have scored.

Top marks to the the Town supporter who quipped 'come on ref it's nearly Sunday' when the match was in injury time!!


Friday, 28 October 2011


Sea conditions - "Choppy"

The cold end has always been a big fan of the British seaside and Great Yarmouth is certainly a town which typifies this phrase. Two piers and the golden mile seafront filled with enough arcade machines you can possibly think of along with donkey rides on the beach and just a few fish and chip shops along the way!! Junior Cold End (aged 4) and Junior Cold End mark 2 (aged 2) certainly enjoyed their time on the Norfolk coast over the last week.  

Fans of the beautiful game up and down the country may not be aware that the coastal town is also home to the oldest football grandstand still in existence and use today.  It was opened in June 1892 and as well as being visually brilliant it’s also a very important piece of history for not only the Town but football across England in my opinion.

Being what some people may describe as a sad anorak type I got quite excited when I first saw the main stand which looked amazing in the Autumn sunshine last Saturday afternoon.  Without doubt it’s instantly become one of the cold end’s favourite football stands.  

Views of the main stand at The Wellesley
The Bloaters as they are nicknamed entertained Hadleigh United with both teams struggling for form in the Premier Division of the Ridgeons Eastern Counties League. Going into the game the home side had only won one game in their sixteen league and cup games losing their last two games 2-8 and 0-5. They were in bottom place by virtue of goal difference below Wivenhoe Town.

The visitors from Suffolk were five places above with six wins in seventeen league and cup games. One of the six was an opening day victory over Great Yarmouth Town at Millfield. They had also played Ryman Division One (North) Heybridge Swifts in the FA Cup losing 1-4 at their home ground.

The game, played in front of 59 spectators was a somewhat scrappy (the wind blowing across the pitch didn't help!!) but entertaining affair with all the highlights below –

Tomorrow afternoon Great Yarmouth Town visit Wivenhoe Town for a  battle of the basement boys whilst Hadleigh United make another trip to the coast but this time play The Bloater's arch rivals from across the River Yare in Gorleston.

As well as the two league derby (Boxing day and Easter Bank Holiday) games between Gorleston and Great Yarmouth Town this season there is also an eagerly anticipated Norfolk Senior Cup tie to be played on Friday 25th November 2011. The game should hopefully attract a healthy crowd at Gorleston's Emerald Park ground.

Friday, 21 October 2011


Unfortunately The Cold End will not be updated for around a week as some essential maintenance takes place. Regular service should return from next Saturday 29th October 2011.

Enfield Town travel south of the river tomorrow to play Thamesmead Town in the FA Trophy 1st Qualifying Round and a week later travel to Scraley Road to face Heybridge Swifts in the Ryman Division One (North). Depending on the result tomorrow there could be a potential replay in midweek!!

See you all soon, stay safe and enjoy your football!!


Thursday, 20 October 2011


Two teams struggling towards the bottom of the Essex Senior League faced each other at the historic Old Spotted Dog Ground on Tuesday night. Clapton welcomed Sawbridgeworth Town to E7 with only one league win between the two sides in their combined total of 17 league games prior to this one. The Tons had scored only scored eight in ten games with Sawbo on seven goals in seven games so it's safe to say the 20 people in attendance who witnessed this game weren't expected goals..goals..goals!!  How wrong could we be?? 

Here are the match highlights of the game. Look out for Sawbo's number 17 who is George Wappett. I believe he has spent time at Bishops Stortford and looks a good player. For Enfield Town fans reading this he is in the mould of a Ben Hammond being a pacey winger/midfielder who can run with the ball, put a good cross in and has an eye for goal. The highlights are really worth watching for Clapton's second goal being a free-kick of some quality. From 5mins 45secs on the video, Lionel Messi would of been proud of this goal!!! -

Also at the game were two well known local ground hoppers in "Runwell" and "London Buck" who have kindly let the cold end copy their thoughts on the game and The Old Spotted Dog Ground from their posts on the tony's/nonleaguematters forum


Non league football is alive and well in Clapton. Entertainment and value for money are always guaranteed here. With the match kicking off three minutes early the home side were already three goals down as the last stragglers were coming through the gate!

Sawbo then went four ahead before the Ton's pulled one back. The match was played at a frenetic pace and all action stuff with Clapton back to 2-4 down was a comeback on the cards? Alas no, as two more from the away side made it 2-6 then a late third for my local team showed they hadn't given up.

One amusing moment during the match when Mr Leyton, Stephen Bellanoff went to retrieve the ball only to get tangled up in some netting left behind the goal and fell flat on his face, but he managed to wrangle free and get the ball, what a star.

With the main gate seemingly smashed to pieces I fear for the security of this ground and hope the locals do not vandalise the place as its still a location with bags of character, and always provides a real entertaining game of football.


It's been a couple of years since I went to this grand old Duke of footballing history, hidden away on a bend. The pub next to the ground, the old Tudor building, has sadly been boarded up for many years and looks a sad sight, as does most of this 123 year old ground, though it's not as bad as some people make it out to be.

Going through the gates, a small admission booth is in front of you. To the right is the clubhouse and changing rooms building, with old furniture outside to sit on. This is quite spacious, with a large area for a ping pong table, a games machine, Sky on the box on the wall, and a sofa amongst some tables and chairs, though it does feel a little 'empty'.

The Ton's bar has nothing on pump, just a few alcoholic and non-alcoholic bottles/cans in fridges. The loos are in a bad state - the men's anyway, with just one available, as strangely the urinal is half missing (the 'important' bit), leaving a hole in the wall and a clear view outside (or inside...).

Starting from the entrance clockwise, is a typical 'generic' metal stand consisting of 100 fold-up seats, with a small wooden sill in front of one small row near the front of the stand. This is where the old South stand used to be. As one goes round, the perimeter fence which is overlooked by houses is in a state, and there's quite a lot of junk lying around in the overgrown undergrowth. The remnants of the old West stand still remain behind the far goal in front of a number of tall trees shedding their leaves, with a couple of concrete steps and a metal rail. Some of the hard standing around this area appears totally overgrown by grass or non-existent. The next side has wooden and metal fabricated dugouts, and in between a small corrugated covered and back-lined terrace, with wooden planking on a couple of levels and metal rails. Pitch side fencing is a metal rail with mesh wiring underneath, some rails broken in one corner.

Enough about Spotty for now, and onto the game. This was a battle between two strugglers, as many expected. Clapton seem to be making a habit of playing to avoid the wooden spoon in recent seasons, something they ended up with last season. Prior to the game only Haringey & Waltham Development were below the Ton's in the table. Sawbridgeworth were - along with Haringey - still without a league win this season, one place further up the table. However they have played less than anyone else, and have drawn four of those seven, including a decent point at in-form Sporting Bengal last Saturday, so a win here would not have been a surprise.

Typically, upon my arrival in the ninth minute, SawbridgeworthMessi style, not realising a Sawbo forward was right beside him to nick the ball off, and he easily slipped it away. A quarter of an hour gone, and the visitors were 4-0 up!

Funnily enough though, the Clapton forwards did look lively and had a bit of pace about them, causing a few problems, though too often they shot off target or got themselves offside, although the young official did make a few wrong calls on that front. However Sawbo were always dangerous on the break against the abysmal back line, and looked like they could score every time they went forward. Indeed on 36 minutes only the legs of the Ton's keeper stopped a fifth when a player broke clear. Clapton did have their chances though, and moments later one of their guys was through, but
Sawbridgeworth's keeper stood up well and blocked the effort. On 40 minutes though they did give themselves a faintest of glimmers of hope, when a strike from the edge of the box ended up in the net. They then missed a glorious chance to halve the arrears, when a ball from the left was shot horribly wide from close range by an unmarked fella, and they also let another opportunity slip before the half time whistle, but not before a Sawbo player sprinted clear again after another defensive error, but he lifted the ball over the keeper, not keeping it down.

If the first half seemed so open, it was nothing quite like the second! The visitors started off the best with a shot just wide and a header from a corner badly over. They were then nearly gifted a fifth, when under pressure, a Clapton player slipped the ball past his own keeper from the edge of the box, but luckily for him it went wide. A great opportunity for the home side on 54 minutes when a forward turned inside the box but his close range shot was wildly off target. Shortly afterwards a Sawbo player got clear down the left, the Clapton keeper half saved the shot in the box, but it squirmed across the goaline, though a few onrushing Sawbo players were a bit slow to react at the far post to net an open goal, probably thinking it was going in, and the chance to kill the game went. They were nearly punished moments later when the ball fell to a Clapton player in the box, but he got the ball stuck under his feet and the chance went. However on 61 minutes, a Clapton free kick near the right corner of the box was fired into the top corner, and it was game on all of a sudden!

The Ton's kept pressing, and could have pulled it back to 3-4 when a player's shot on the edge of box in a good position was too weak to worry the goalie, who then did well to just beat a player to a ball forward. Another goal though for the Hertfordshire side would surely kill off any fightback, and it came on 71 minutes from about the only bit of quality all night, when a player saw the Clapton keeper off his line, and from 25 yards dinked it over him in the blink of an eye. A quality finish. Back came Clapton, and a good 25 yard shot from a player just went wide. That was a brief interruption though, as on 77 minutes a ball forward was just met by the striker before the advancing goalie, and tucked away to put the visitors a remarkable 6-2 up. The game continued to be open and full of chances, and with eight minutes left, the goalscoring wasn't over, as Clapton got another goal on the night, with a striker tucking away a ball from the right from close range. The Ton's pushed late on for at least another goal, coming close a few times, including a deflected shot just wide, but Sawbo nearly got them on the break again. In the end we just had to settle for nine goals.

An incredible game, so open, and though not great on quality, was full of entertainment. Even though his side won 6-3 I don't think the Sawbridgeworth manager seemed too happy with the quality of his side's football. At least for them they are up and running. Both sides seem to have the same problems - hopeless at the back, but going forwards they have players that will cause sides problems. Clapton could still amazingly have got something from this game, but they wasted so many chances of their own, while Sawbo often punished the many defensive mistakes of the home team. I wouldn't be surprised on this showing if Clapton finish bottom again, though they are a young side and will only get better. Some fans or friends of players were refreshingly upbeat despite the scoreline, offering encouragement to their side. Nice to see people not on their backs, though sadly there are so few spectators these days at the Old Spotted Dog.

Above - The now collectors edition of the programme which had apparently sold out by 7.30pm
Clapton's average crowd for all their home league and cup games this season is just 22. The cold end recommends that people pay a visit to The Spotty as it's well worth it. The Tons forthcoming home fixtures shows them playing Bowers and Pitsea on the 5th November and Enfield 1893 on the 26th November.

Monday, 17 October 2011


The only Ryman Division One (North) side through to the Fourth Qualifying Round have been paired with Blue Square Premier Ebbsfleet United in the draw for the FA Cup with Budweiser today. Redbridge with welcome Liam Diash's side to Oakside in what will be a highly anticipated game.

There was a little bit of cup history made just a stones throw from Enfield Town's game at Great Wakering Rovers on Saturday. Southend Manor's 5-0 demolition of Leighton Town made them only the second Essex Senior League side to get through to this stage of the competition. Canvey Island done it in 1993 and lost 1-3 at Conference side Kettering Town. In an ironic twist Manor have been drawn away to The Poppies! The game at Nene Park will be Manor's eighth game in this season's competition.

Southend Manor's Cup Run 

EXTRA PRELIMINARY ROUND     Takeley       3-3   82 
PRELIMINARY ROUND           Cheshunt      0-0  139

The Cold End salutes both Redbridge and Southend Manor and congratulates them on their cup exploits so far!!

It was also brilliant to see Ryman Premier Division Hendon hitting the jackpot by drawing Luton Town. Many Hendon fans will be making the short trip from North London to Kenilworth Road hoping to see a Cup upset???


                      HOME            AWAY              TOTAL 
                      P W D L GF GA   P W D L GF GA     P  W D L GF GA  GD PTS 
1. GRAYS ATHLETIC     5 3 1 1 12  5   5 4 1 0 10  5     10 7 2 1 22 10 +12 23  
2. WALTHAM FOREST     6 5 0 1 16  9   3 2 0 1  5  4      9 7 0 2 21 13 + 8 21  
3. TILBURY            4 4 1 1 13  8   6 2 2 2 13  4     12 6 3 3 26 22 + 4 21         
4. ENFIELD TOWN       6 3 2 1 15  9   6 2 3 1 10  9     12 5 5 2 25 18 + 7 20 
5. HARLOW TOWN        6 3 2 1 10  6   6 3 0 3  9  8     12 6 2 4 19 14 + 5 20  
6. ROMFORD            6 3 3 0 12  8   6 2 1 3 11 12     12 5 4 3 23 20 + 3 19 
7. NEEDHAM MARKET     4 3 0 1 18  4   6 2 3 1 15  9     10 5 3 2 33 13 +20 18
8. THAMESMEAD TOWN    5 2 2 1  9  6   6 3 2 1 10  6     10 5 3 2 19 12 + 7 18 
9. POTTERS BAR TOWN   6 4 1 1 15 11   6 1 2 3  6 18     12 5 3 4 21 29 - 8 18 
10. LEISTON           5 4 0 1 13  5   5 1 2 2  8  9     10 5 2 3 21 14 + 7 17 
11. BRENTWOOD TOWN    6 2 1 3  7  6   5 3 1 1  6  3     11 5 2 4 13  9 + 4 17  
12. CHATHAM TOWN      6 3 0 3  8  8   5 2 1 2  5  6     11 5 1 5 13 14 - 1 16  
13. HEYBRIDGE SWIFTS  5 1 3 1  6  8   6 3 0 3 11  8     11 4 3 4 17 16 + 1 15  
14. REDBRIDGE         5 0 2 3  9 14   5 4 0 1 10  4     10 4 2 4 19 18 + 1 14
15. WALTHAM ABBEY     5 1 1 3 16 13   6 3 0 3 12 11     11 4 1 6 28 24 + 4 13   
16. CHESHUNT          5 2 2 1  6 10   6 0 4 2  3  9     11 2 6 3  9 19 -10 12 
17. GREAT WAKERING    6 2 3 1 11  9   6 1 0 5  5 23     12 3 3 6 16 32 -16 12      
18. SOHAM TOWN RANG   6 1 1 4  7 14   6 1 4 1 13 14     12 2 5 5 20 28 - 8 11 
19. MALDON AND TIP    4 1 0 3  4  5   5 1 1 4  6 13      9 2 1 6 10 18 - 8  7 
20. AFC SUDBURY       5 1 2 2  4  6   3 0 1 2  3  8      8 1 3 4  7 14 - 7  6 
21. ILFORD            6 1 2 3  6  8   6 0 0 6  5 16     12 1 2 9 11 23 -12  5 
22. WARE              6 1 1 4  4  8   5 0 1 4  4 13     11 1 2 8  8 21 -13  5 

As October moves towards November who would of thought that last season's bottom club would be in second place. Incredibly if Waltham Forest win their game in hand over current table topper's Grays Athletic they could even go top in their own right. Looking at the bottom of the table you can see two of the teams that were fancied to do well hovering above the drop zone. There is a still long much football to be played but fans of AFC Sudbury and Maldon and Tiptree will certainly be looking for their respective clubs to climb the table now they have exited the FA Cup.

How close the league currently is illustrated by the fact only 12 points separate Grays Athletic and Soham Town Rangers in eighteenth place. It looks like any team putting together a good run of results can move up towards the top five.

          P  W D L GF GA  GD  PTS 
2009/10   12 7 4 1 24 14 +10  25
2010/11   12 6 0 6 21 15 + 6  18
2011/12   12 5 5 2 25 18 + 7  20

Enfield Town find themselves nicely placed in fourth position on twenty points which is an improvement on last season's first 12 games as shown below. Those figures don't include the two Leyton games which were expunged from the record books from 2010/11.

Grays Athletic face three difficult opponents in their next three league games with Leiston and Thamesmead Town visiting Rookery Hill followed by a trip to Maldon and Tiptree. The Stags also have a trio of tough games with Brentwood Town at home before trips to Tilbury and Heybridge Swifts.


MOST GOALS SCORED       NEEDHAM MARKET   33 (in 10 games)    
MOST WINS               WALTHAM FOREST 7 (in 9) AND GRAYS ATHLETIC 7 (in 10) 
LEAST WINS              AFC SUDBURY 1 (in 8), ILFORD 1 (in 12) AND WARE 1 (in 11) 

* Needham Market scored as many goals in their 1-8 victory at Cheshunt on Saturday than their Suffolk rivals AFC Sudbury have scored all season. 

* Only Ware (4 goals) and Cheshunt (3) have scored fewer goals away from home than 2nd placed Waltham Forest (5). ChathamNeedham Market top the goalscoring charts at present thanks to 7-0 victories against Great Wakering Rovers and Potters Bar Town along with their 8 goal victory at Theobalds Lane. The Marketmen also hit Ramsgate for seven in the FA Trophy and beat Woodbridge Town 6-0 in the Suffolk Premier Cup. 

Sunday, 16 October 2011


A visit to nearby Southend-On-Sea is highly recommended to anyone visiting Great Wakering Rovers 

Burroughs Park has to be one of the nicest grounds the Ryman League and with the Sun shinning down on Essex yesterday afternoon it made it an even nicer place to be. Prior to kick off many Town fan’s amongst the 129 in attendance had already paid the seafront in nearby Southend a visit. I was no different and thankfully I had packed some emergency clothes for my little boy as he ignored my instructions of ‘don’t jump in the sea’ on Thorpe Bay!!!

The game was all Enfield Town for the first half an hour or so as the home side were well on the back foot. They went 0-1 down through a Liam Hope goal on the fifteen minute mark with Town having a few more chances to add to their lead prior to half time. Hope had the best of these but his shot was well saved by Louis Godwin-Green. The Rover’s keeper must surely be the record holder for a player to feature in opposition against Town as he seems to have played against us every season since our formation in 2001. (Louis featured for Southend Manor in the Essex Senior League game played on Saturday 8th September 2001 against ETFC. The 2-2 draw was only Town’s seventh competitive fixture)
The sun cast some long shadows across the pitch yesterday

Town were very unlucky not to get a second goal early in the second half as a Mark Kirby’s header was deflected onto the crossbar in a heroic piece of defending. The resulting shot was blocked by the same player right on the line.

As the game went on Rovers gained some much needed confidence (their previous game had been a 1-6 loss) resulting in an equaliser being scored on 53 minutes. A long ball up field allowed their player to put a shot past Noel Imber in the Town goal who, aside from a shot which flashed past his left hand post in the first half, had been largely untroubled up to that point.

TEAM                POS  SCORE 
REDBRIDGE          14TH  L 2-3 
WARE               22ND  W 4-2 
ENFIELD TOWN        4TH  D 1-1

Town searched for an equaliser but were unable to break down a hard working Rover’s back line. What was annoying, is that despite it not being a vintage performance, Town played much better than in last weekend’s 1-2 victory at Walton and Hersham but ended up with only one point!!

Some travelling supporters were frustrated that the Town didn’t collect three points against at a team that are struggling for form and currently without a manager following Ryan Wilkinson’s recent departure. However, a quick glance at their six league games played at Burroughs Park so far this season, shows that only Redbridge have left with all three points in a narrow 2-3 win.

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS BELOW (Mark Kirby's header off the post is from 2 minutes...both goals are included) -