Saturday May 30 2020



Village Features

New faces at ’Church

Posted on June 30 2019 at 1:02:26


Alvechurch FC appoints new manager and signs extra players.

It’s all change at Alvechurch FC as they look ahead to next season, with a new management team and some exciting new signings.

Having won back-to-back promotions and narrowly missed out on a third in 2019, manager Ian Long decided to seek a new challenge at Stourbridge FC, along with assistant Richie Colwell and goalkeeping coach Chris Walwyn – plus players Ashley Carter, Tom Turton, Dave Bellis, Zac Foster, Charlie Price and Kieran Cook.

However, new manager Darren Byfield immediately set about rebuilding the team, bringing several players with him from Walsall Wood: experienced goalkeeper Lloyd Ransome, pacey winger John Atherton, striker Danico Johnson, central midfielder Stuart McNaught, young defender Kyle Rowley, and former ’Church player Javia Roberts.

Darren also signed 6’4’’ striker Anthony Smith, who joins from Midland Football League side Continental Star. Anthony scored a staggering 54 goals last season and won the Total Midland League top scorer award.

Darren himself started his professional career at Aston Villa before moving on to Walsall, scoring the winning goal in the 2001 play-off final.

Spells at Rotherham, Sunderland, Gillingham, Millwall, Bristol City and a return to Walsall followed before joining Tamworth, Solihull Moors and Redditch in the non-league arena.

In a career spanning 476 matches and 107 goals, Darren has also been capped six times by Jamaica, scoring once. After retiring from playing, Darren has managed Redditch United, Stratford Town and Walsall Wood, who missed out on promotion on goal difference to Ilkeston Town last season.

The Alvechurch management team will be completed with assistant manager Ade Luxton, Peter Till and goalkeeping coach Reevesy.

Meanwhile, fans are delighted that right back Josh Ezewele, captain and centre back Jamie Willets, sibling defenders Kyle and Taylor Morrison, and central midfielder Mitch Botfield have all committed for next season.

However, more departures include keeper Danny Crane, who becomes assistant manager at Gresley; Golden Boot winner Josh March, who moves up a level to National League side Leamington; Lee Chilton, who joins Evesham after an injury-plagued season; and forward Joe Phillips, who returns to Aberystwyth Town.

* Congratulations to all the winners of the Player of the Year awards for 2018/19:
Supporters’ Player – Jamie Willetts
Chairman’s Player – Josh March and Jamie Willetts
Players’ Player – Dave Bellis
Young Player – Kieran Cook
Golden Boot – Josh March
Goal of the Season –  Kieran Cook vs Bromsgrove 4/9/18

* AFC have frozen their season ticket prices for the coming season. Prices are: Adults £150; Seniors (65+) £100; Juniors (13-17) £75.

Pay online using the PAYMENTS form (5% charge to cover payment provider fees), or via BACS Transfer to Lloyds Bank (sort code 30-96-97, account 01860704). Please reference payment with your ticket type: ADULT, SENIOR or JUNIOR and appropriate payment.

*  On Friday September 6, Lye Meadow hosts a luncheon with former Arsenal, Middlesbrough and England footballer Ray Parlour as guest speaker.

Tickets £65 per head or £600 for a table of 10 (to include a three-course Indian meal), available via the chairman and directors.

*  For more info or sponsorship enquiries, please contact Trevor Ball at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or visit
Follow the club on Twitter @Alvechurch1st

Pre-season fixtures
Tues July 9  Littleton (A) 7.30pm

Sat July 13  West Brom Albion (H) 3pm

Tues July 16  AFC Wulfrunians (A) 7.45pm

Sat July 20  Leamington (H) 3pm

Tues July 23  Westfields (A) 7.45pm

Tues July 30  Halesowen Town (A) 7.45pm

Sat Aug 3  Evesham Utd (H)  3pm

Season begins Sat Aug 10

Top: Faithful supporters at the play-off final (Photo/ Ian Macvie)

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