Charnock Richard vs Penistone Church, FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round, Mossie Park
Regular readers of my blog will probably have looked at the top of this blog and noticed that I am writing about a re-visit to a ground, obviously I don’t tend to do this, as once I have visited a ground I don’t normally blog about it again, however there is a reason for this, and that reason is that this would be the first game for Charnock Richard in the FA Cup. Following their promotion to the NWCFL Premier Division, Charnock are now eligible for the FA Cup, and what kind of groundhopper would I be if I passed up the opportunity to see history in the making?
I had meant to attend the FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round last season, however car troubles meant that I was unable to do so, so this year I wasn’t going to be taking any risks, so I decided to walk to Charnock Richard from Chorley, a walk that Google Maps stated was 2.2 miles and would take me 45 minutes, however I set off from my house at 1:50pm, and arrived at Mossie Park at 2:20pm, shaving 15 minutes off of the expected time it would take me to arrive, which was good as it allowed me to have a pint of Amstel at the social club.
There was a slight doubt that I would be able to write this blog, as in June I broke the scaphoid bone in my right hand, meaning that for the last couple of weeks I’ve been in a cast, which obviously made typing difficult. Luckily the cast came off during the week, and I now have to wear a splint to support my thumb. Because my father will be reading this blog, and because he loves the story of how I broke my scaphoid, I thought I’d include it here. I was on holiday, the second day of my holiday to be exact, and my parents very kindly agreed to babysit the kids, so my wife and I headed to the bar on the holiday park, and after a pint we went into the arcade, where I challenged my wife to a go on a punching machine, my wife initially declined but soon relented, and after she went first I decided that I had to be macho and beat her score. I haven’t thrown a punch since primary school, and although I hit a score of 600 odd, I broke a bone for the first time.
Stories of poor decisions aside, I have obviously blogged about Charnock Richard before, a blog that you can find here: https://davidsadventuresingroundhopping.wordpress.com/2016/08/28/charnock-richard/. So therefore I won’t be repeating their history here, although I do want to congratulate Charnock on their promotion to the NWCFL Premier Division, Charnock are a fantastic club, and I always enjoy visiting, so I am looking forward to seeing how high this club can climb.
Today’s opponents would be Penistone Church, who are based in Penistone, near Barnsley in South Yorkshire. They currently play in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division. Church were formed in 1906 following the merger of Penistone Choirboys and Penistone Juniors, and they initially played in the Sheffield Amateur League and the Penistone League. Church were the first winners of the Sheffield Junior Cup in 1909, and they won this trophy again in 1937. Church were founder members of the Sheffield & Hallamshire County Senior League, following the merger of the Hatchard League and the Sheffield Association League. Penistone were to reach the Premier Division in 1995, and became a yo-yo club as they flitted between the Premier Division and Division One on a couple of occasions. Church were to finish as Premier Division runners-up in 2003, but spent another year in Division One following relegation in 2007. Church soon established themselves as a top side in the league, and in 2014 were promoted to the NCEL Division One. In the 2015 to 2016 season the club qualified for the inaugural Division One Play-Offs however they missed out on promotion after losing in the Semi Finals to AFC Emley. Church weren’t to make the same mistake again, and in the 2016 to 2017 season they overcame AFC Emley in the Semi Finals, before beating Grimsby Borough in the Final to win promotion to the Premier Division.
Entry into Mossie Park cost me £5, with a further £2 going to a programme. Upon buying my programme I was handed a pen, and a weird box, as the sponsors of this game, The Beardwood Hospital, were in a generous mood. Before the game I spent my time trying to work out what the box was, and I soon discovered it was an anti-bacterial hand wash, which to be fair is an odd souvenir to get from a football match.
The game burst into life from kick off, with Charnock winning a penalty in the 5th minute. Their number 10, Jonathan Hession, broke into the box and was fouled, with the ref given no choice but to signal for the penalty. Unfortunately Hession looked to have rolled his ankle as he went down, and he was replaced by number 12, Luke Barrow. There was a slight delay as Hession was helped off of the pitch, and it wasn’t until the 7th minute that number 8, Nathan Fairhurst, was able to take the penalty. The delay didn’t put him off, and he fired the penalty home nicely.
After the initial flurry of action the game calmed down, with Charnock being the more dominant side, however the game was again to burst into life, as Luke Barrow fired home to double Charnock’s lead in the 33rd minute. Barrow picked the ball up just outside of the area, and curled a beautiful finish into the back of the net.
Immediately Church sprang into action, and their number 3, Jordan Barnett, was on hand to net a header, in the 35th minute. Barnett wasn’t content with just scoring the one goal however, and two minutes later he grabbed the equaliser, although I’m not sure how much he knew of it as the ball rebounded off of his back and past the outstretched fingers of the Charnock keeper.
Church weren’t finished, and they went from 2-0 down, to 3-2 up in the 42nd minute, as their number 8, Jordan Corduri, latched onto the ball, and fired a low finish home from the edge of the area. Church had had three clear chances, all from corners, and had scored all three.
Half Time: Charnock Richard 2-3 Penistone Church (Fairhurst 7, Barrow 33 – Barnett 35, 37, Corduri 42)
Just before half time I headed around to the refreshment hut, where I bought a pie, it was lucky that I headed round to the refreshment hut, as just by being there I stopped a stray ball from flying inside the refreshment hut and causing chaos. Although I just wish the ball hadn’t hit me on my right hand, as I did have to wonder whether I had done any more damage to my hand.
Pie in hand, I decided to walk around to the opposite side of the ground, as I expected Charnock to come flying out of the half time break, desperate to get an equaliser.
Charnock did come out strong following the break, and had a couple of good chances to get back into the game, and were able to drag themselves back into the competition, as they equalised in the 67th minute, as number 7, Matthew Davison, fired a header home to keep Charnock’s FA Cup dreams alive. Following the goal, Penistone made their first change, with number 11, Ryan Smith, making way for number 12, Scott Whittington.
In the 76th minute, Church put themselves back into the lead. Church had won a free-kick in a dangerous position, and thundered the ball against the bar, the ball dropped down and seemingly bounced clear of the line. The Church players appealed which seemed to cause the Charnock defence to turn off, and Scott Whittington reacted first, nodding the ball home.
Charnock made a change in the 81st minute, with Luke Barrow leaving the field to be replaced by number 14, Oliver Evans.
Unfortunately, Charnock’s task of getting back into the game was made a lot harder, as Matthew Davison picked up his second yellow card, and therefore a red card, in the 84th minute. Honestly I’m not sure what was going though Davison’s head, as he put in a completely unnecessary challenge on Adam Rhodes, the Church keeper. I can understand the frustration that Davison may have felt, but he had been a major thorn in the side of the Penistone defence, and it was disappointing to see him get sent off.
Given that they were now a goal down, and a man down, Charnock had nothing to lose and in the 87th minute, number 2, Spencer Bibby made way for number 15, Matthew Leatham. However despite throwing people forward, and having a good number of chances, Charnock were unable to get themselves back into the game.
Final Score: Charnock Richard 3-4 Penistone Church (Fairhurst 7, Barrow 33, Davison 67 – Barnett 35, 37, Corduri 42, Whittington 76)
Following the final whistle, I made my way out of the ground and headed back down the road to Chorley. It had been a disappointing defeat for Charnock as I had hoped to see them win their first ever FA Cup match, but it wasn’t to be, and Penistone fully deserved the win. In fact this was Penistone’s first ever win in the FA Cup and they will now face Litherland REMYCA in the next round.
As I’ve said it was disappointing to see Charnock lose, Charnock have a very good side together, and I would expect them to do well in the NWCFL Premier Division this season. Penistone Church played well today and hopefully this will be the start of a very good season for them, it’ll certainly be interesting to see how far they can go in the FA Cup, although I can imagine they won’t be dreaming of Wembley just yet.
A seven goal thriller was a great way to start the season, and I am fully looking forward to the season ahead, as if every match is like this one then it will be a very entertaining season indeed.
Cost: £7 (I’ve forgotten how much the food was)
Hat-tricks seen so far: 0