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Sat 06 July 2019

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West Wratting

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Tue 09 July 2019

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Linton Granta

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Fri 12 July 2019

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HOME v

Brightlingsea Regent

(Pre Season Friendly, 7.45pm)

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 Fri 19 July 2019

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HOME v

Bury Town

(Pre Season Friendly, 7.45pm)

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  1. I missed the Thetford, Ipswich and Stanway matches this month so it's difficult to comment too much - but to sum up September it was a good effort to take 6 points from a tough set of fixtures.

    There were defeats to Stanway, Thetford and Felixstowe who are all in the top 5. It was unfortunate to meet them all within the space of a month, especially having already faced Stanway in August.

    The general consensus is probably that we did compete well at times in those games but in the end were beaten by the better side.

    However, the wins against Ipswich Wanderers and Swaffham made it a decent month with 6 points collected; we could have gone through September unbeaten and only picked up 5 points.

    The last minute FA Vase exit was a tough one to take after going 2-1 up but we wish Baldock well in the next round away to Biggleswade.

    On Saturday the difficult run of fixtures continues when leaders Mildenhall Town visit Melford. We're looking forward to welcoming back former manager Paul Grainger who after leaving Harwich last month has resumed his popular non-league Blog where he writes about his visits to various East Anglian football matches.

    It is well worth a read and can be found at...

    https://paulwgrainger.wordpress.com/

  2. august

    One month into the season and there's a symmetrical look to the First Team's results so far; 2 wins, 4 draws and 2 defeats. That's probably a fair reflection of how the team performed throughout August.

    It's been a tough start with as many as 7 regulars getting injured either in pre-season or the season itself. After two seasons of being generally lucky with injuries, it's fair to say our luck run out this summer!

    This has made a difficult challenge even harder but the new players who have come in to the side - either from the Reserves or the new signings - have all done well and that has helped the team make a solid start to the season with 7 points on the board.

    The Reserves have only played the one League game so far, it was a defeat to Whitton but it's basically an entire new squad this season so a bit of time and patience will be needed. They certainly seem to be heading in the right direction under the new management with a lot of experienced new signings and also some younger lads too.

    Off the pitch, it's great to have Peter Turner join the Board and he's already made a positive impression in a short space of time.

    On the fundraising side, the 50/50 raffle is going from strength to strength with some big cash prizes as well as obviously making money for the club at the same time - and we now have 14 player sponsors which is also great to see. AC

     

     

  3. The summer break has flown by and the friendlies start in less than a fortnight (at home to Ryman League club Brightlingsea Regent on Friday 15 July, 7.45pm kick off).

    The start date for the new season seems to be a bit up in the air, initial rumours said it could start in July but unsurprisingly the clubs were not happy with that. The fixtures aren't out yet but one confirmed match is Saffron Walden Town v Long Melford on Friday 7 October (part of the Thurlow Nunn League Groundhop Weekend). FA Cup and FA Vase draws are expected to be announced at the end of next week.

    The squad is back in training and as always at this time of year, supporters want to know which players have resigned (or should that be re-signed?!). As soon as it's confirmed who has signed forms for the new season, we'll let everyone know via the website.

    The main talking point at the club so far this summer is the arrival of new coach Jamie Bradbury and also a new management team for the Reserves.

    Jamie was recently at Boxted Lodgers in the Border League, his coaching CV is very impressive and everything suggests he will be an excellent addition to the club.

    Jamie replaces previous coach Glenn Eldridge who we thank for his contribution over two outstanding seasons. Glenn has joined Harwich & Parkeston as manager where he has appointed another former Melford man in Paul Grainger as his assistant manager.

    The Reserves' management team of Edd Keogh, James Janzen and Gary Watson replace Jack Durey and Myles Clark who again we thank for their efforts last season. Managing a reserve side is often said to be the toughest job in non-league so hopefully Edd, James and Gary will get plenty of support from everyone at the club. We'll update the website with player news and pre-season friendlies etc when confirmed.

    Other news this summer is that the club will not be running a Under 18 team this season, having withdrawn from the Thurlow Nunn Youth League. Hopefully there will still be opportunities for local youngsters to play for the club's reserve side.

    Off the pitch, Melford Valley have signed up as First Team Sponsor for a third consecutive season. A big thank you to the Melford Valley, it's great to have you on board for another season.

    And finally, the club is hosting the Melford Crank Up tomorrow (Sunday 3rd July), more details about the event in this link [click here]  AC

  4. Here is a photo of our president as you've never seen him before...

    lmfc blog

    On Saturday the visitors to Stoneylands are Gorleston who of course came to Melford earlier in the season, when the match was abandoned at half time due to floodlight failure.

              It was probably mixed emotions for Gorleston on the day; on the one hand relief after being 3-1 down at the time, but on the other hand the realisation they are going to end up travelling about 320 miles to play one league match!

    Saturday's match is sponsored by Mike Brent, a big thank you to Mike and we look forward to welcoming you to Stoneylands on Saturday. AC

    • Contrary to our earlier tweet/Facebook post, the Under 18s are at AFC Sudbury tomorrow in the Youth Cup
    • On Sunday (3rd April) the club is hosting the Treadfirst SSL Div.2 Cup Final...Assington -v- Royal Exchange, Entry: Adults £3, U18 Free, Food/refreshments available.
    • The club will be hosting the Suffolk Veterans Cup Final between Woodbridge Town and Bury Town on Sunday 17 April, 2.30pm ko
  5. 4 points from 4 games this month; not a great return but finishing 6th is still the realistic target, so it's status quo in terms of league position.

    The month started with a short journey to Hadleigh United and a hard fought 1-0 win. The wind made life tough for both sides and Melford had a slice of luck as the home side hit the bar when a goal looked a certainty, then Ross Waugh scored a late winner after a corner caused havoc in the Hadleigh defence.

    Next up was an uneventful home game against Branthan Athletic. On another day Melford would have picked up a point in a 0-0 draw but overall you had to be honest and say Brantham were the better side on the day, playing some nice football, while Melford didn't really fire.

    I missed the defeat in the next match at Whitton but when I read in the match report that a player of Jamie Griffiths' quality had four one on ones before half time and missed them all, I sense it was just a day to forget!

    February ended with a trip to Thetford and a very entertaining game, although not always for the right reasons!

    As always at Thetford, the "bants" from the home fans was relentless and the pitch was bobbly. The less said about the red card the better, but after being a man down and a goal down with an hour still to play, to go home with a point almost felt like a win in the circumstances. Again it spoke volumes about the team spirit to somehow get something from a game that seemed to have slipped well and truly away.

    The only complaint you could make about Melford this season is that too many soft goals and penalties have been conceded, that was again evident on Saturday. But hopefully the defence can get back to its best soon, it's only last month they conceded just one goal in 8 and a half hours so we know how good they can be.

    The controversial goal scored by Guiseley against Braintree Town at the weekend (click here) reminded Melford fans of a similar situation at Thetford several years ago. However, on that occasion Thetford showed class to allow Melford to score an equaliser. Sadly, Guiseley didn't and Braintree were robbed of 2 points. AC

     

     

  6. A slightly disappointing end to the month but overall things have gone very well lately; unbeaten in 6 league matches and up to 5th in the Thurlow Nunn Premier.

    The Boxing Day win at Haverhill Rovers seems to have been a turning point and since then the team's form has been very consistent.

    The month started with a 0-0 draw against 2nd-placed Felixstowe, an excellent performance and the players were rightly clapped off the pitch. Next up was a  3-0 win against Walsham. It was hard work in the first half and it needed a special Jamie Griffiths strike to change the match. In-form striker Scott Yearling scored twice in the second half to make it a comfortable three points.

    After that we travelled to Mildenhall and won 2-1 thanks to another brace from Scotty Yearling who scored two great goals to beat tough opposition.

    Then it was back to Stoneylands for a home match against Kirkley & Pakefield and a hard fought 1-0 win with Jamie Griffiths scoring the winner after Kirkley made a mistake at the back.

    Next came the League Cup quarter final at home to Mildenhall. I missed this one but by all accounts it was a very close game and could have gone either way. But after getting a bit of luck to win a tight match against Kirkley, it's hard to complain about a narrow defeat in the next game; when the margins are so small between winning and losing you have to take the rough with the smooth.

    January finished with a 2-2 draw with Swaffham Town. A below par performance and in the first half the players looked tired after Wednesday's cup tie, but in the second half they really dug deep and showed great spirit not to be beaten.

    Off the pitch, the raffle at home matches organised by Maureen (50% of proceeds go to the winner and the other 50% goes to the club) has been well supported so far and thanks to John Nunn's application being accepted we are now part of the Co-op's Community Token Scheme (more details on the home page of the website).

    There's been a great response to the interview with Melford Heisler. A lot of supporters had seen Melford's name in the programme this season and wondered who he is. Thanks to Melford for his support from over 3,500 miles away!

    Finally congratulations to Ipswich Wanderers who are only one match away from the quarter finals of the FA Vase after their impressive 3-1 win at Bodmin Town yesterday. To be that close to the Wembley final is a great effort and it also reflects very well on the standard of the Thurlow Nunn Premier.

    When you see how far Wanderers have gone in the Vase this season yet they can still lose 3-0 to 16th-placed Saffron Walden last week, it shows the strength of the league.

    February starts with a short trip to Hadleigh United on Saturday. AC

  7. I was shocked and saddened earlier this month to hear that Geoff Cleal had passed away after illness. Geoff was at Melford between 2008 and 2011, initially as coach and later as manager. He put a lot of time and effort into the club, not just the playing side but also bringing in sponsorship money and helping around the ground to improve the club's facilities.  Condolences to Geoff's family, which of course includes his son-in-law Dean Costello who played for Melford and Dean's brother Dechlan, who also played for the club.

    Not a lot of football was played this month because of the weather. The 1st Team played three matches, starting with a trip to Saffron Walden in the League Cup. Despite a good performance Melford found themselves 2-0 down after conceding two penalties (one soft and one blatant). Although Jamie Griffiths' dramatic equaliser came very late, a draw after 90 minutes felt like a fair outcome, as it was a very close match. All of the penalties in the shootout by both sides were well taken and in the end it took a great save by Sam Mansfield to separate the two sides.

    In the quarter finals Melford were drawn at home to King's Lynn Res or Mildenhall Town, either of those opponents will be tough to beat but it's nice to finally receive a home draw after 6 consecutive away ties this season in various cup competiions.

    After the Walden match it was back to league action and another 2-2 draw away to Walsham. After leading twice it was obviously a little disappointing not to win but it's another point on the board and every away point in the Premier has to be seen as a good one.

    This was followed by a fortnight break before finally playing at home again when FC Clacton were the visitors to Stoneylands on Saturday. It was a cold and windy day, far from ideal conditions for football but the pitch played very well, which helped both sides and stopped the game becoming scrappy. Melford were well on top in the first half and probably deserved more than a two goal lead at half time but after the break Clacton came into the match a lot more. It's true that Clacton were missing a few regulars but their front three on Saturday have scored a lot of goals at this level so it's a good effort to keep a clean sheet against them, although admittedly they did come very close to scoring on a few occasions including another fine penalty save by Sam.

    Overall it was another impressive performance by Melford with everyone performing well. This is a very entertaining side to watch and I'm sure the fans all agree we get good value for our £6! There have been days when things haven't clicked on the pitch, on other occasions the opponents have simply been too good, but when Melford are on song they play high quality football.

    The Reserves sit in mid-table after a 4-3 win against Cornard United at the beginning of the month was followed by defeats to Hadleigh United and Brightlingsea Regent. The Under 18s only played once in November because of the weather, that was a 2-1 home win against Halstead Town (scorers Robert Addison and Tom Emerick).

    On Sunday the Ladies moved off the bottom of the Eastern Region Women's League thanks to a 1-1 draw with Bury Town. Megan Partridge scored Melford's goal and the player of the match was Deben Faiers. AC

     

  8. The 1st Team have a fortnight break (next match is home to FC Clacton on Saturday 28th November) so it's a good time to take a look at their progress.

    The current league position of 5th has to be taken with a pinch of salt because most of the teams below have games in hand, it's the points tally of 22 that is more relevant and that's obviously a great start when you're playing at the highest level in the club's 147 year history!

    To sum up the season so far, when Melford have played well they look capable of beating anyone in the Premier and have achieved some outstanding results. However, if the team have a bad day then it's also possible to lose heavily, as was the case against Godmanchester and to a lesser extent Stanway, Brantham and Walden.

    Incidentally for those who like a stat; in 119 matches with Jules Mumford as manager, the defeat to Godmanchester is the only game the team have conceded more than 4 goals in.

    In general this season it's been a bit up and down but it's a difficult league and you've got to do what Melford have done well, which is to bounce back quickly from bad days.

    For all the success the side has enjoyed under Jules in the league, it's never quite happened in the cups in recent years and the club's last cup run of note ended at Portman Road back in 2012. So it's nice to be through to the quarter finals of the League Cup. The league is always the priority for every side but everyone enjoys a cup run and it's good to have the quarter finals to look forward to in early 2016.

  9. lmfc

    1st Team: 

    September was another good month, winning three Premier Division matches and also making progress in the FA Vase and League Cup. A few tough defeats as well but overall it's a great start to have 15 points on the board, especially after playing all of the teams in the top 10 except Norwich United.

    On Saturday it's a break from League action with a visit to FC Broxbourne Borough in the FA Vase. Broxbourne are 9th in the Spartan South Midlands League which is the same level as the Thurlow Nunn Premier (Step 5). Another tough match but it should be a cracking game to watch; the coach leaves the George & Dragon at 11.30am, supporters are very welcome on board (£5 per seat),please let somebody at the club know if you'd like to book a seat.

    Reserves

    Apart from the Suffolk Senior Reserve Cup defeat on Saturday, September was a good month for the Reserves who are currently 8th out of 18 teams with 10 points from 5 matches. The 10-1 win against Halstead Town was an obvious highlight but there have also been good victories against Lowestoft Town (3-1) and local rivals Cornard United (1-0).

    Under 18s

    The Under 18s also had an impressive September. There was a narrow 1-0 defeat to high-flying Wroxham in the FA Youth Cup and also a 4-0 win at Sporting 87 and a 1-1 draw at Hadleigh United.

    Ladies

    The Ladies just like the 1st Team have the tough assignment this season of playing at a higher level for the first time. The team is still looking for their first win of the season but it's very early days having only played three matches so far. Their first match in October is at home to Writtle on Sunday (4th October), 2pm kick off at Stoneylands.

  10. aug2015Overall the club's first month at Step 5 went well with 6 Premier Division points on the board and a first FA Cup victory since 2004.

    The step up from the First Division has so far looked big without being overwhelming, the players don't look out of place at a higher level and all of the matches have been close.

    The wins against Whitton Utd and Gorleston were well-deserved and the single goal defeats to high-flying Felixstowe and Stanway could easily have ended up as draws. That leaves the defeat at Clacton as the only league game where Melford couldn't make a case for deserving something.

    On Saturday we all had high hopes at Basildon in the FA Cup Preliminary Round but it was a below par performance. Unfortunately it was one of those days when only a handful of players really played even close to their best. It's probably not a game to analyse too much, as the 20 or so away fans on Saturday all know the team is a lot better than that performance.

    However it's always important to give credit to the opposition because as disappointing as the Melford display was there's no doubt Basildon played well in the first half particularly and deserved the win. Good luck to Basildon in the next round where they will host Hullbridge Sports.

    We also should give credit to the Melford squad for a) qualifying for the FA Cup in the first place (something of a rarity!) and b) winning the club's first FA Cup tie for 11 years when they beat London Bari a fortnight ago.

    Looking ahead to the next match on Saturday it should be a cracking FA Vase tie when neighbours Cornard United visit Stoneylands (3pm). Every match we've played against Cornard recently has been a close game so we can expect another tough one on Saturday. They have picked up some good results lately; new manager Chris Tracey inherited a good squad from Paul Grainger, who recently left Cornard and is now in charge of SIL side Ipswich Valley Rangers. Good luck to Lurch and Paul, both ex-Melford managers of course, at their new clubs.

    New signing Matt Hayden is an exciting addition to the squad and I'm sure the fans are looking forward to seeing his debut. And with a few players about to leave for University it's a good time to bring a player a player of that quality into the club.

    Hopefully there will be another large crowd at Stoneylands on Saturday: including the friendlies we've already had well over 700 people at 1st Team home matches this season which is a great effort considering it's still August.

    Just in case the players want to apply extra hair gel or whatever it is youngsters do these days, please note the squad photo will be taken on Saturday before kick-off. There's also an award for captain Steve Adams to receive for passing 100 senior appearances for the club earlier this month. ANDY

    FIXTURES

  11. joshdalziel

    Josh Dalziel pictured in action against AFC Sudbury last month.

    NEW SIGNING:  Good news on Saturday after the 4-2 friendly win against Bacton United [MATCH REPORT] was confirmation that Josh Dalziel has signed for the club. The former West Bergholt defender has impressed in pre-season since making his debut in the 3-1 win against Brightlingsea Regent, so manager Jules Mumford was understandably delighted to secure his signature. A warm welcome to Josh who joins Trevor Vinyard, Ashley Drew, Glen Harris, Will Finch and Reece Clarke as new arrivals this summer.

    FRIENDLIES:  Apart from picking up a few injuries the friendlies went well with 3 wins, 2 defeats and a draw against a wide variety of opposition from the Conference down to the SIL. As always with friendlies the results will be forgotten the moment the season starts on Saturday but hopefully the friendlies have given the players match fitness and the sharpness needed to start well. The new players all did well against some very good oppostion which bodes well for the big kick-off on Saturday. It's a much bigger squad than we usually have at Melford but looking at the fixture list (9 matches in September for example) everybody has their part to play and will undoubtedly get plenty of minutes on the pitch.

    SEASON OPENER: On Saturday Melford travel to Felixstowe & Walton Utd for the club's first ever Premier Division match. It's an exciting time for the club, the start of a new chapter in our long history. It will be a really tough start as Felixstowe are a very good side but Melford are unbeaten in competitive matches since November and now have a bigger and better squad than last season so there's plenty of reasons to be optimistic. If you're not making the trip to Felixstowe on Saturday then there's two home matches coming up in quick succession next week:

    Long Melford v Whitton United (Wednesday 12 August, TN Premier, 7.45pm)

    Long Melford v London Bari (Saturday 15 August, FA Cup, 3pm)

    COMMERCIAL: Off the pitch things have been going really well over the summer, bringing in the funds that every club needs to thrive. The Melford Valley have renewed their shirt sponsorship for 2015/16 and you'll notice a lot of new programme adverts and pitchside banners when the season starts. Player sponsorship has also been a great success with 14 already sponsored. 11 squad members are still available so if you'd like to sponsor someone please get in touch (this costs £30 for the season) [CLICK HERE]

    We're looking for a new away shirt sponsor and a tracksuit sponsor, for more information please contact us [CLICK HERE]

    RESERVES: In their first friendly of the summer on Saturday the Reserves won 2-0 at Bacton United, scorers were Harry Fryer and Myles Clark. The Reserves League season starts on 8th September (away to Halstead Town).

    UNDER 18s: The Under 18s start their season on Thursday 13 August, away to Halstead Town.

    LADIES FRIENDLIES:

     

     

     

  12. Another month goes by and the end of the season is now just around the corner. For the club's first team February was another good month with 7 points picked up in 3 matches. It started with a 6-0 win against a March Town team in good form at the moment. It was one of Melford's best performances of the season, 4-0 up after 20 minutes it's not an exaggeration to say there were enough chances created to score double figures. 

    Next up was a solid 3-0 win against Woodbridge Town. It was a game Melford were expected to win on paper, which will be the case in most of the remaining fixtures this season. All of the goals came in the first half before Woodbridge came into the contest more in the second half and nearly pulled a goal back late on.

    The last match of the month was a big one away to in-form Great Yarmouth Town who are pushing hard for a top three spot. The conditions were never going to allow for a great game of football but both sides battled hard, most of the game's clear-cut chances were created by Melford but up against a Yarmouth team unbeaten at home since September it has to go down as a good away point.

    It was good to see three of Melford's injured players Cobi Guyon, Dan Smith and Sam Bayliss make the long journey to Yarmouth to support their team-mates. And on the subject of support it's nice to see home attendances are up by about 60% this season compared to 2013/14. Admittedly the 200+ crowd for the Saffron Walden match has inflated the average quite a bit but even still to be 3rd in the attendance table (behind Walden and Kings Lynn) is a big improvement on last season.

    There was disappointment for the Reserves going out of the Chell Trophy at the quarter final stage, losing 2-0 to Hadleigh United with ex-Melford player Luke Simpson one of Hadleigh's scorers. The previous week there was a good 3-0 win at Stowmarket for the Reserves with goals scored by Harry Liskus (2) and Addy Roy. Yesterday the Reserves lost 3-1 at home to Diss Town, Melford's goal was scored by Addy Roy.

    The Under 18s had a mixed month with defeats to the top three teams in the league (Brightlingsea, Brantham and Clacton) but also a confidence-boosting 1-0 win at local rivals Cornard United thanks to George Day's winner.

    Last but not least the Ladies are currently 2nd in their league, 4 points behind league leaders Brantham with two games in hand. Today's match at Felixstowe & Walton was postponed. The recent match against East Bergholt United was featured on the Supporting Women's Football Blog.

    • The club is involved in two local derbies this week: the Under 18s are at home to Halstead Town on Tuesday (3rd March) then the 1st Team make the short trip to Cornard United on Saturday (7th March).
  13. With 4 consecutive matches against promotion rivals, January was always going to be a key month for the club's 1st Team. If the month had gone badly it wouldn't have ended Melford's promotion hopes, but obviously it would have been a big setback to lose points to so many rivals in such a short space of time. As it was, Melford picked up 6 points and remained unbeaten throughout the month, which keeps them right up there in the mix.

    The month was every bit as tough as it looked on paper beforehand; Swaffham Town, Saffron Walden Town, Debenham and Haverhill Borough are all good sides pushing for promotion. 6 points from those 4 matches has to go down as a decent month and it's probably what Melford's performances deserved overall. The three draws were all games of two halves really, so a point apiece was fair enough, while Melford were good value for the 5-1 win at Debenham.

    Unfortunately the last match of the month, at home to Downham Town on Saturday, was postponed by the match officials about half an hour before kick off. It was frustrating for both sides, particularly tough on Downham's players and officials who made a 100-mile round journey. Sadly that is the British weather for you, there were no problems with the pitch around 1pm but persistent snow/sleet/rain (which needless to say wasn't in the weather forecast) over the next couple of hours left the pitch waterlogged.

    Fingers crossed if the weather is a little kinder this week Melford host March Town on Saturday (7th February). That will be another tough one against a team in the promotion race, both sides are in good form so it should be another cracking match.

    Because of the weather there's not been a lot to report on from the Reserves and Under 18s lately, neither side has played since Christmas. Hopefully they will finally return to action this week: Tuesday (3rd February) the Under 18s are at home to Brantham Athletic, and on Wednesday (4th February) the Reserves travel to Wivenhoe Town.

    Whether tomorrow's U18 match against Brantham can go ahead will depend on the overnight frost and whether we get anymore snow/rain, at the moment the pitch is playable, so as always keep an eye on Facebook/Twitter tomorrow for updates.

    The Ladies' start to 2015 has also been affected by the weather, they have only played one match since Christmas, that was a 7-2 away win at Bacton United last weekend. The Ladies are currently 2nd in the table with 22 points from 9 matches.

  14. Christmas

    Just past the half-way stage (19 league games played, 17 to play), the club's First Team sit 2nd in the table with 43 points. Melford have been in the top three since the first week of the season and now the challenge is obviously to maintain that level until the end of April.

    It's been a real squad effort so far, which is reflected in the fact that 13 different players have contributed goals. Melford have played entertaining attacking football all season, 52 goals scored in 19 league matches speaks for itself. At times they've leaked a few too many goals at the other end, but overall the balance between attack and defence has been spot on.

    The positive way Melford have responded to setbacks is another reason why they've been able to maintain the good start. There have been some tough defeats, but after every disappointment Melford have bounced back quickly.

    The Reserves are also going well this season, currently mid-table in the league and also through to the knockout phase of the Chell Trophy after winning their group in style.

    The Under 18s after a slow start to the season are improving all the time, only losing once in their last five matches and that was a narrow 3-2 defeat at AFC Sudbury who have won all of their matches this season.

    Last but not least the Ladies are currently 2nd in the table with a very impressive 16 points from 7 games, scoring 35 goals in the process.

    Finally on behalf of everybody at the club Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to our sponsors, supporters and everyone else involved in the local football community. AC

  15. The 1st Team picked up 6 points from 3 matches in November to keep the momentum going and stay in the top 3. The month started with a home match against King's Lynn Reserves, a game that was ruined as a spectacle by a strong wind but Melford showed good character to defend well and grind out a 1-0 win.

    Next up was a local derby and top of the table clash at Halstead Town, which ended in a 2-0 defeat. It was one of those matches where you had to accept the better team on the day won. A lot of Melford players who have done very well this season had off days, when that happens it's best to just put it down to a bad day at the office, instead of trying to over-analyse the performance.

    The following Saturday Dereham Town Reserves visited Stoneylands. It was a match Melford were favourites to win on paper but as always after a setback everyone wants to see a positive reaction and sometimes it's easier said than done. Melford started very well, racing into a 4-0 lead early in the second half, before appearing to take the foot off the pedal a little with the points in the bag and Dereham came more into the match, scoring a consolation goal. But overall it was an impressive performance and a good reaction to the Halstead match.

    As you may have read on the website the next 1st Team match (Home v Needham Market Res. on Saturday 13th December) will be Ashley Skeggs' 200th appearance. 200 games for one club is a good achievement at any level of the game. It's fair to say Skeggo has mostly played in struggling sides at Melford but his loyalty has been rewarded over the years, winning the Supporters' Player award and captaining the team at Portman Road in 2012. I'm sure he's enjoying this season being in the top half of the table for a change!

    The Reserves are going along nicely, sitting mid-table in the league and going well in the Chell Trophy (needing one more win to guarantee a place in the knockout stage). There is also a Suffolk Senior Reserve Cup quarter final tie at Walsham-le-Willows to look forward to this Saturday (6th December, 3pm kick off).

    The Under 18s had a quiet November because of the weather but will be happy to have picked up 4 points from their 2 matches during the month. A 2-1 win at Halstead Town (scorers Sam Bayliss and Harry Fryer) was followed by an entertaining 4-4 draw with Cornard United (scorers Sam Bayliss, George Day, Harry Liskus, Bob Addison).

    The Under 18s' next match is at home to local rivals AFC Sudbury tomorrow night (Wednesday 3rd December, 7.45pm kick off at Stoneylands).

    The Ladies are up to 2nd in the table after Sunday's 5-0 win against Copleston Ladies. To read the match report from Sunday and look at their revised fixture list CLICK HERE

  16. As October draws to a close, for the 1st Team the month couldn't have gone any better in the league (9 points from a possible 9) and it couldn't have gone any worse in the cups (4 defeats out of 4). A real mixed bag of a month and it summed up the highs and lows of football.

    After the cup exits Melford quickly got back to winning ways in the league at Woodbridge Town on Saturday with a comfortable 3-0 win. Woodbridge are in the bottom four but they won at Halstead recently and they've had impressive results in the Vase and Senior Cup, so it was a good test to see how Melford would react to a disappointing week. After a goalless first half Melford secured the points in a 15-minute spell early in the second half with three goals arriving in quick succession.

    The win took Melford back to the top of the league, with 31 points from 14 matches. It's been a remarkable turnaround when you consider it was only February 2013 that manager Jules Mumford took over, when the team were at the wrong end of the table and the club was struggling to survive.

    After playing 5 matches in the last fortnight, hopefully the squad can enjoy a decent rest now over the next few weeks before another tough run of fixtures starts at home to Kings Lynn on Saturday 8th November.

    The Reserves are also going along nicely, they are currently 3rd in their league and top of the Chell Trophy West Group. Their next match is on Wednesday (29th October) at home to Halstead Town, in the Chell Trophy.

    Similarly the Ladies are flying at the moment. John Harrington's side moved up to 2nd in the table after winning both league matches in October, scoring a combined total of 21 goals in the process, as well as making good progress in the County Cup.

    It's been a tough start to the season for the Under 18s but with most of the squad playing at Thurlow Nunn Youth League level for the first time it would be unfair to criticise results. It's all useful experience for the Melford players playing against good opposition and last week's 1-1 draw at Stanway Rovers showed that they're improving and learning along the way.

    As always you can keep up to date with all the Long Melford Colts news, results and fixtures on their website www.longmelfordcolts.co.uk

    Finally a reminder that the Fireworks Night (a joint event this year with the Colts) takes place at the club on Saturday 1st November, with live music from Route 66. There is more information about the evening elsewhere on the website.

  17. September has been a mixed month for the club's 1st Team. There were good wins against Halstead Town and Leiston Reserves and a hard fought 0-0 at Saffron Walden, but also defeats to Swaffham Town and Downham Town.

    It's been a great effort to get 22 points on the board from 11 games but it's testing time at the moment due to a growing injury list and the departure of Will Wingfield and Jake Jackson to University, who we thank for their efforts over the past few months.  So hopefully the club's supporters will come out in force on Wednesday and get behind the team for another big league match against local rivals AFC Sudbury Reserves (7.45pm kick off at Melford).

    On the subject of support, it was great to see so many of the Colts players and parents at the last home match. The attendance was 110, whereas usually we'd be lucky to get a crowd of 50 for a home match against Swaffham. The players did their best to put on a good show for the Colts but, football being football, it didn't go according to plan.

    There are still a few seats available on the coach to Hitchin on Saturday in the FA Vase when Melford face Baldock Town. The coach leaves the George & Dragon at 11am. If supporters would like to book a seat (£5) please let a club official know ASAP.

    Finally a big thank you to two new programme advertisers; Ruse & Son Family Butchers in Melford and The Jewellery Studio in Sudbury.

  18. COLTS INVITED TO NEXT MATCH: A reminder that on Saturday the Colts players and their parents will be our guests at the First Team match against Swaffham Town (3pm kick off). Entry is free for everyone from the Colts, just bring along your letter, which have been distributed to Colts managers.

    It promises to be another entertaining match at Stoneylands. Melford will start the game in 1st or 2nd position in the table (depending on results of other games during midweek), while visitors Swaffham Town have also had an excellent start to the season and are well known as a good footballing side.

    TWO AWAY WINS: It was a good day all round for the club yesterday with the First Team and Reserves both winning 3-2 away from home, against Leiston Reserves and Whitton United Reserves respectively. Both Melford sides moved to the top of their table after those wins.

    GOOD AWAY SUPPORT AT LEISTON: It was nice to see a large travelling contingent of Melford supporters at Leiston. It was also good to see two players who couldn’t play in the game, Nathan Rowe (suspended) and Ashley Skeggs (injured), make the trip on the mini-bus.

    BRAINTREE RESERVES GROUNDSHARE: It was nice to receive the following comments on the Braintree forum recently about the groundshare at Melford:

    “A quick message to thank the good people of Long Melford, from the girl in the tea room, the girl behind the bar & the two girls on the turnstile plus the groundsman they have all made us very welcome.  Thanks lovely Sausage & Chips again. “

    RESERVES UPDATE: The Reserves have a game this Saturday away to Stowmarket Town in the Chell Trophy. Thanks to Tim Jackson for organising Reserves player photos which can be can seen on the website CLICK HERE.

    Reserve team players can now be sponsored in the same way as First Team players, for £25, which gets the sponsor’s name in the programme and on the website.

    LADIES WIN AWAY: Well done to the Ladies who won 2-1 in their first league match of the season, away to Copleston. Megan Partridge scored both the goals. To read the match report CLICK HERE.

    NEXT MATCH: Next up at Melford is the Under 18’s Thurlow Nunn Youth Cup tie against Stanway Rovers on Tuesday (16th September), 7.45pm kick off at Stoneylands.

    LONG MELFORD COLTS: The Colts' 2014/15 season has started. To keep an eye on their fixtures and results visit the Colts' website CLICK HERE

    MAPLE BUILDING SERVICES: Finally, thank you to a new sponsor Maple Building Services who will be appearing in the club’s matchday programme for the rest of the season.

     

     

     

  19. It's fair to say that expectations going into the new season were higher than usual at Melford, partly due to finishing last season so well (7 wins out of the last 9 matches) but also due to the calibre of new signings Jules was able to bring to the club during pre-season.

    The matches have come thick and fast in August with 6 games in the space of 21 days. In general Melford's performances have been very good, with the exception of the first half v Cornard and second half v Stowmarket which weren't up to the high standard shown in the other matches.

    The key ingredients to Melford's positive start have been a lot of hard work, good fitness levels and plenty of entertaining attacking football which has culminated in 17 goals scored. 8 players have got themselves on the scoresheet which is very encouraging as too often in the past at Melford we've relied on just one or two players to score all the goals.

    Jules has never really been close to having a full squad available but I'm sure every club in the league is saying the same thing. Injuries, suspensions, holidays, work commitments etc are part and parcel for all teams at this level so you need a big squad with strength in depth, which Melford have this season.

    It's still very early in the season though, so I'm sure nobody at the club will be getting too carried away. It looks like the division has got stronger compared to last season, so as much as Melford's squad has improved, plenty of other teams have improved as well.

    But Melford will rightly take a lot of confidence from their performances during the opening month of the season.

    Another tough match awaits on Wednesday evening, when in-form Halstead Town visit Stoneylands (7.45pm kick off). It's 2nd v 3rd in the table, so it should be another entertaining match, and midweek games at Stoneylands always have a better atmosphere under the lights in front of bigger crowds than we get on Saturdays. ANDY

  20. It was an unfortunate end to the Reserves' season last night as the match at Wivenhoe ended after 64 minutes, following the injury to 18-year-old Melford player Jordan Bailey who suffered a suspected broken ankle. A speedy recovery to Jordan.

    At Stoneylands the Under 18s' run of four consecutive 1-1 draws came to an end as Stanway Rovers ran out 4-1 winners.

    Looking back at the club's Easter, it started with mixed results on the Saturday. The first team couldn't reproduce their excellent recent form, losing to a young Dereham reserve side who knocked the ball around nicely and deservedly won 3-1. Over at Halstead the Reserves had a good day, fighting back from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 with their high-flying opponents. Melford's goals were scored by Deklyn Roy, Harry Liskus and Sam Newton.

    Next up was a trip to neighbours Cornard United on Easter Monday for the first team local derby. Melford have done well in local derbies this season and that trend continued on Monday as goals scored by Jack Durey, Sam Newton, Will Wingfield and Nathan Rowe secured a 4-1 win.

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