Saturday, 5 May 2012

Thirds Win Division C

Without kicking a ball, Mellor Thirds became Champions of Division C on 5.5.12, after rivals Bedians failed to win their final game.

It was justice for Mellor who were extremely unlucky to lose 2-1 at Bedians late in the season.

Bedians had to beat Bury Amateurs away to take the crown. But they lost 2-1, enabling Bury to snatch runners-up spot.

Mellor Thirds won 13 of 20 league matches. It is Mellor FC's first Divisional trophy since we won Division E in 2005.

Congratulations to managers Adam Axford and Gary Brown and their squad.

The news came through as Mellor Thirds were playing a friendly match at Preston's Deepdale ground.

Mellor Thirds at Deepdale

Mellor's 7-1 win over Adam Axford's works side WEMS included this goal by Matt McNulty

Meanwhile, Mellor Firsts lost 4-0 at Rochdalians.

It was a lacklustre performance, with the home side scoring two in each half and Mellor rarely troubling a solid Rochdalians defence.

Maybe some players' minds were on Tuesday's Rhodes Cup Final at Trafford FC.

On five minutes Dave Whelan tested the home side's keeper from 28 yards with a free kick but it was a comfortable save.

Carl Brindley might have done better with a volley from eight yards but he did not catch the ball sweetly enough and again the keeper saved.

On 14 minutes Rochdalians went 1-0 up.

On 29 minutes referee John Molloy twisted an ankle and needed attention.

John Molloy in pain

The home side were dominant and on 34 minutes a sweeping move from the left saw a forward scoop the ball over the bar from a good position.

Matt Cotton protects the ball in Rochdalians' area

On 34 minutes right back Adam Barlow required two minutes of attention off the pitch and during that period Rochdalians scored a second.

There looked to be no danger as Paul Swann tried to shepherd the ball back to Fletcher but a home side forward nipped in to score.

On 40 minutes Dave Whelan found Chris Coram on the left and he drifted into the area to float an inviting cross that was just too high for a colleague.

Mellor's long balls forward were gobbled up by the home side's centre-half and the visitors failed to make a genuine impact on the flanks.

Chris Coram attacks

The only other excitement of the half came when a Rochdalians' clearance hit a horse in a nearby field, startling the animal.

Mellor started the second period with more purpose.

On 50 minutes Mellor almost had a stroke of good fortune when a Dave Whelan free kick from 40 yards out was caught on the wind, deceiving the keeper. But the ball hit the right hand post.

Paul Swann deflected a goalbound shot for a corner a minute later as Rochdalians piled on the pressure.

Mellor's man of the Match Swann was involved again to thwart a dangerous move on 54 minutes.

Rochdalians then spurned a chance on 55 minutes, firing wide. A minute later Matt Jamieson replaced Steve Smith.

On 58 minutes Carl Brindley's deep cross was cleverly headed back across goal by Dom Simpson but the danger was cleared.

Simpson then slashed across the ball when presented with a half chance from a cross and the ball flew wide.

Rochdalians' centre back towers over Mellor's attackers

On 65 minutes Danny Leibrick replaced Jonny Cooke.

Dom Simpson volleyed over before Rochdalians made it 3-0 on 69 minutes.

With 10 minutes left a Jamieson corner was fired in by Brindley. It cannoned off the keeper to Dom Simpson whose powerful follow up shot was cleared off the line by a defender.

Five minutes later Rochdalians made it 4-0 to round off a comfortable win.

So it's on to Trafford FC on Tuesday, kick off 7.30pm with Mellor bidding to win the Rhodes Cup for the first time since 1987.

Mellor Seconds lost their final came of the season 3-0 away at Ardwick.

Mellor finish 11th out of 12 in Division 2, with only five wins from 22 league games. But because two teams have dropped out of the Division during the season it is highly unlikely that the Seconds will be relegated as the League has promised to reconfigure the higher Divisions with 14 teams each.

Remember the End of Season Presentation Night is May 19th at the Marple Tavern, starting at 7pm because of the Champions League Final.

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