It’s here, it’s finally here. Our first home game of the season is finally upon us and Chris and the players, indeed all of us connected with the club are really looking forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the Bowl tonight.
As you will have read in these pages, the season has been one long road trip so far. In fact Tuesday night’s game at Cheadle Town was our 16th successive away match. Tuesday’s result was obviously very disappointing considering the run we were on prior to that, but while it is a small setback in our promotion push, the beauty of this league is that we have an opportunity to put the season back on track tomorrow, in front of our home fans.
Our Opponents this Week
Our first ever opponents at the Bowl for an NWCFL game will be Brocton FC. Based in Staffordshire, ‘The Badgers’, Brocton F.C was founded in 1937
When football resumed after the war in 1946-47 the club joined the Rugeley & District League and were League Champions in the first two seasons. At the start of the 1949-50 a move was made into the Cannock Chase League, where the Badgers would compete (apart from a six-year spell in the Lichfield League) for the next 30 years, and with the legendary Secretary, Charlie Holt, as the driving force the club flourished winning six League Championships.
The formative years of the club were spent in local leagues before Brocton moved to the Staffordshire County League (South) in 1979-80 where they were twice Runners Up in Division 1, and in also placed second in the Premier Division.
In 1990, the Badgers moved to Staffordshire Senior League and over the next decade they won the League Challenge Cup and the prestigious Staffordshire FA Vase on two occasions.
Brocton were admitted to the Midland Combination Premier Division for the start of 2003-04 season, and ten years later they won the Midland Combination league title.
Following the FA’s restructure of the National League System (NLS), Brocton were placed in the North West Counties League and now compete alongside the Ravens in Division One (South).
After losing their opening four games of this season, the Badgers finally hit form in winning three of their next four games. However, the team have been on a bad run recently, losing five games in a row before an impressive draw last time out at home to Cheadle Town. They sit 17th in the league on 14 points.
FC Isle of Man Team News
The chance to play at home doesn’t rule out the long injury list that manager, Chris Bass is having to deal with.
Centre back is a particularly troublesome position at present as Alex Maitland and Cam Avery continue to be unavailable. However, some good news this week is that Chris Cannell has been back in training and should be available for selection in the back line.
Also returning to training this week has been veteran winger, Chris Bass jr and he will be hoping he gets ‘the nod’ for his first league appearance since August 21.
Ryan Burns, Luke Murray and Ste Whitley were all unavailable for the mid-week trip to Cheadle Town but are back in contention for tomorrow’s clash at the Bowl which will bolster all three units of the team.
So, the time has come. Our first league game at home.
Once again, we really look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the Bowl tonight. This is your chance to play your part in this extraordinary first season for FC Isle of Man.
The kick off is 6.30pm so, as the show once said, “come on down”, and play your part in unleashing your Ravens.