Author Archives: Emmy Louise

Bradshaw’s Rollercoaster Season Has Set The Building Blocks, However, Strengthening in One Key Area Could Be The Key For Next Season

It’s been a rollercoaster season to support Curzon. From staring down the barrel of relegation to looking at one stage like they might have a chance of reaching the playoffs and landing the Frank Hannah Manchester Premier Cup.

Mark Bradshaw has made great strides with this team despite a slightly rocky start over Christmas. He hasn’t been afraid to make changes, getting rid of players, and making some clever signings, making the squad a bit less dependent on young players on loans from league team academies. Curzon’s dream run did come to an end, but the building blocks have been built for a really good season.

If I was in the boardroom at Curzon, and there is probably a good reason that I am not, I would be looking to improve the back line. Curzon seemed to be holding on for draws until late defensive errors saw them come away with nothing, it also saw them come away with draws in games they should have won.

They never seem to have an issue finding the back of the net but keeping more clean sheets should be a real priority, having only kept 3 in 17 games in 2019. If this can be tightened up it would make an enormous difference to their season, as I truly believe they should be aiming for the playoffs this season, but they really need to stop dropping points.

The other point I would make, is probably out of Bradshaw’s hands, but I would really be encouraging more people to go to the ground! Getting FC United crowds week in week out is unrealistic, but Tameside stadium is a really smart set up for this level of football, with a bar and seats and toilets that aren’t in a shed, oh Curzon how you spoil us.

While Curzon aim for the playoffs next season it would be great to see the club find a way to pull big crowds, a lift for the lads on the pitch and makes it a more intimidating place to go for away teams, and who doesn’t like atmosphere at a game.

I’m feeling very optimistic about next season and hopefully tightening up defences could see The Nash as a real force to be reckoned with.

Advertisements

Man City Will Hope ‘Not To Do a Liverpool’ at Crystal Palace Today

It feels to me like it was the reverse leg of this fixture was the match that really opened the door to Liverpool’s league challenge, when Roy’s men saw off the boys in blue in a thriller with a somewhat shock result of 3-2.

Crystal Palace, like most Roy Hodgson sides, are incredibly well organised and they are comfortably mid-table this season, and have been playing well pretty consistently this season, including against some of the bigger teams.

Manchester City looked sluggish against Tottenham, and remaining in all competitions, with some of the star players blighted by injury will have started to take its toll. Manchester City head to Selhurst Park, (possibly my favourite ground in the Premier League) this weekend and with Liverpool looking to take this right to the wire City can’t afford to let things slide here.

It’s stating the obvious to say a squad of Man City’s calibre should see off Crystal Palace with the minimum of fuss, however, playing Hodgson’s disciplined sides can frustrate teams, and Manchester City have found this season that plenty of opposition haven’t really played against them, more sat back and aimed for damage limitation.

Hopefully this won’t be the case for this game, as it was not the case in the reverse fixture, which saw Crystal Palace capitalise on good fortune and was an excellent game for the neutral, less so the City fan.

Manchester City are two points behind Liverpool with a game in hand, and 14 points clear of third placed Chelsea, who Liverpool are taking on this weekend. Champions League football is signed, sealed and delivered for next season, but I’m sure like many fans of, well, nineteen of the twenty premier league teams, I really want to see City keep well clear of Liverpool.

It’s been a fantastic race between the top two since Christmas, and I’m hoping this will be another exciting, as well as completely crucial game.

Curzon Looking to Win the Manchester Premier Cup For the First Time Since 1990

Curzon Ashton, as part of a rollercoaster season, have a real chance of getting their day in the sun, or more accurately, evening in Hyde, by winning the Manchester Premier cup for the first time since 1990.

The final will be played at Hyde United’s Ewen Fields, a short hop from the middle of Hyde, which features some impressive floodlights and is located next to a leisure centre, in case you wanted to pop for a quick swim beforehand. In an all Tameside final they will be playing Mossley, who were gifted a spot after FC United, who seemed to be specialists at this competition had insult added to injury to a difficult season when being disqualified for fielding an ineligible player.

Mossley are currently seventh in the Northern Premier League Division One West (trips off the tongue), and should be no match for Curzon, who are National League North opposition. Curzon may have hit a bit of a flat spot in their season in the league after a remarkable few months, but the gulf in class between the players at Mossley and those at Curzon, several of whom are on loan from the academies of bigger clubs could prove a straightforward win for Curzon.

This is a good competition to get behind as a neutral, it is good to see a successful initiative relating to local clubs running. They are also two clubs that contribute to their communities with the Nash having their own charitable foundation and their support of Follo FC that was recently mentioned on this site. Mossley AFC are linked to a local all ability, and increasingly popular running group.

The competition itself is inexpensive to watch and easy to get to, Ewen Fields is minutes from the ring road and walkable from Newton For Hyde, Hyde Central and Godley stations.

I’m a big believer in supporting local teams, so if you’re at a loose end on a Monday night, I’d implore you to get down there and get behind them.

Curzon Will Look To Bounce Back Against Boston Today

Guiseley hadn’t won at home since October until they managed to put one past Curzon on Tuesday night.

The Nash had a shaky first 20 minutes, and despite being fairly dominant for the following 70 they weren’t able to take any points away from this fixture. In beating FC United and losing to Guiseley, Curzon have inadvertently had a massive say in the relegation battle in the last few days.

The Nash head to York Street, or the Jakemans Stadium, as it is currently known, tucked just outside the centre of Boston, which if you’ve never heard of it, is in the middle of absolutely nowhere in Lincolnshire. It’s one for people who long for the good old days, they’ve been there since the 1930s and it’s anything but a concrete bowl.

patternsofplay

Football Art, Design & Culture

Curzon are currently toe to toe with Boston in the league, and fairly comfortably saw off Curzon 3-1 at the start of the season. They’ve had some good results putting four past Blyth and holding high flyers Chorley and Bradford to draws earlier in the season. As is the story for so many teams at this level, they haven’t looked as sharp of late, and have failed to keep a clean sheet since the beginning of December when beating York. However, their games tend to be quite high scoring so Curzon will need to be mindful of this, and make sure to sharpen up their defence, which again lacked decisiveness on Tuesday night. Fatigue is undoubtedly setting in, but the Nash need to make sure they make their run of brilliant form this year count.

However, Boston have their own defensive struggles and hopefully some of the pace Curzon do have up front in the form of Olly Crankshaw and Luke Wall could well prove problematic for Boston.

The Nash need to put a defeat that maybe came slightly against the run of play behind them. They have a great chance of their highest ever league finish, and can’t blow the opportunity now!

PHOTO CREDIT: https://www.flickr.com/photos/biddleofnowhere/

Two Key Fixtures That Could Halt Curzon’s Push To Their Highest League Finish

With only seven fixtures left, we are really getting into the business end of the season for the Nash.

There is still a great chance of Curzon Ashton beating their previous highest league finish of 11th in the 2105/16 season, but if they are going to they really can’t afford to be dropping points.

There are a few difficult games in this run in and the stand out one’s for me are both away fixtures.

The first of these is against AFC Telford, who like a lot of teams in this division started strongly, and then have started to wobble a bit. However, their home form is good, and while their defence can be a bit questionable, they are more than capable of finding the back of the net, only failing to score in two games all season.

This could prove problematic for Curzon, who have struggled with their defence at points this season. It could be a high scoring game, which is good for the neutral! However, the Nash will need to make sure they keep things tight, and not make the mistakes they were making earlier in the season where they were scoring and playing well up front, but letting in a few too many easy goals at the back.

artoffootball

The penultimate game of the season for Curzon is likely to be one of the toughest of the season, against the once mighty Stockport. They have been in flying form this season, and playing them away so close to the end of the season while they are pushing hard for automatic promotion will not be an easy fixture. They have looked dominant in several of their games this season, and comfortably put two past Curzon back in November, Curzon need to be at their absolute best to try and stop this freight train and this looks like the one fans most need to worry about.

This fixture, I imagine is local for many Curzon fans, so if you can get down, do! It’s a huge important fixture and it’s so important to get behind the team!

Newly Formed Football Club Follo FC Looking to Help Dads Through The Power of Football

I’m sure for the vast majority, when someone mentions amateur teams, the first thing to spring to mind is pub teams and people who work in airports pulling 11 bedraggled and hungover souls together on a Sunday morning.

However, Follo FC are a little different.

Follo FC, Follo standing for, For Our Lost Little Ones, are a new team founded in Tameside to support fathers who have lost children. Despite admirable work of many charities and heath organisations, men talking about and suffering with grief mental and health issues remains a massive stigma for many, and the importance of groups like this are immeasurable.

The loss of a child is a, mercifully, unusual situation. However, this can leave people who have experienced this isolated. The introduction of teams like this which give their members a chance to step away from their situation for the length of a training session, as well as meet people who have been in the same position and maybe have a better idea of their experience and a better idea of how to support them.

The match is a game supported by the Curzon Ashton FC foundation, and is against another local team, Infinity Initiatives FC who work to support and raise awareness of mental health issues in the local area. The game is at Curzon’s own Tameside stadium, and hopefully gains a lot of support from local football fans, especially as it falls on an international break!

Setting up a team of this ilk is as brave as it is important and being hosted at such a brilliant local ground. Supporting Follo FC is supporting the growing movement around removing the stigma around grief especially in men, and hopefully this is a movement that can grow well beyond Tameside.

The very best of luck to them all.

Find the details of tomorrow’s 1pm charity match here on Follo FC’s Twitter page

Thumping Win Shows Man City’s Champions League Credentials

I imagine many City fans were fairly optimistic of a win in Tuesday nights Champions League fixture, Schalke are in freefall, having conceded more than three goals in every game since the 16th of February, and now facing a potential relegation battle. However, I don’t think anyone was expecting the scoreline they ended up with.

After an initially frustrating half an hour, City finally got the breakthrough they needed with a confident and composed penalty from Aguero. The floodgates then opened, with Sane fantastic against his old club, Sterling continuing his fantastic run of form, Jesus benefitting from both a sharp strike and a bit of poor goalkeeping and City darling, Phil Foden showing composure well beyond his years to become one of the youngest ever English players to score in a Champions League game.

Overall putting seven past the West German side, equalling the record for the knockout stages in the Champions League.

Schalke looked like lower league opposition, not a Champions League side at all.

Schalke are probably not the side everyone is worried about at the moment, but this was a real statement from City. Showing that the old guard are good as ever, the younger players are improving at a rapid rate and they are doing this without the likes Kevin De Bruyne, who, I feel City in previous seasons have been slightly overly dependent on. The starting line up with him back in the squad is probably even more a troubling prospect for opposition teams.

A few of the bigger teams have dropped out at an unexpectedly early stage this year, which perhaps means the freight train which is Manchester City in full flow will be harder to stop. This is Manchester City’s best chance in reaching the final, well, ever, they are looking sharp, ruthless and utterly intimidating. If the sort of sharp shooting, robust defending and assured goalkeeping we saw last night can become the norm, City could well be going all the way.

« Older Entries