Thursday August 13 2020



Village Features

Vital win after cup exit

Posted on September 30 2019 at 11:24:08


Alvechurch FC bounce back with unexpected league victory at faraway Leiston.

Alvechurch are dusting themselves off after being knocked out of two cup competitions in a week. The first defeat was against lower-ranked Wolverhampton Sports SC in the JW Hunt Cup, and came via the agony of a penalty shootout.

A competitive Wolverhampton side opened the scoring, but a spectacular 30-yard effort from Rahis Nabib followed by a mazy run and finish from Javia Roberts gave ‘Church the lead.

However, an equaliser from the last kick of the match ensured the tie went to penalties, which Alvechurch lost 5–4.

A few days later the team travelled to Derbyshire to face Belper in the first qualifying round of the FA Cup.

In a game of few chances, a nil-nil draw and a replay at Lye Meadow looked the most likely outcome, but a rare Belper attack in the 87th minute saw the home side take the lead and left the visitors too little time to find an equaliser.

AFC are still in the running for three other cup competitions: in the Southern League Challenge Cup, they have been drawn away to local rivals Redditch United on October 1, then they entertain AFC Wulfrunians in the Birmingham Senior Cup on October 8.

Meanwhile in the league, after a couple of losses to Hednesford and Redditch, ‘Church proved their credentials in adversity by bagging all three points in a tricky away fixture to Leiston.

The club is based on the east Suffolk coast, 178 miles and a 3.5-hour drive from Alvechurch.The coach was scheduled to leave at 9am for a 3pm kick off, but did not set off until 9.20.

On the A14 there were major road works and detours, and having got through the tailbacks the coach driver by law had to have a 30-minute break – so the coach arrived at Leiston at 3.20, for the players to get changed and have the shortest of warm-ups before the game kicked off, having been on the coach for six hours.

Such a journey made the 2–1 win even more remarkable.

*  Manager Darren Byfield is certainly prepared to give youth a chance. 

Following an injury to regular goal keeper Lloyd Ransome, he signed 17-year-old Josh Bradley-Hurst from Birmingham City Under-18s – he has played a couple of games for ‘Church and produced two fine performances with a couple of excellent saves, proving why Birmingham City rate him so highly.

Another teenager to make his first team debut is full time student George Clarke. The 16-year-old produced a man of the match performance away at Wolverhampton Sports SC in the JW Hunt Cup.

George had played for the Alvechurch U18s the previous night and proved himself ready to step up to the first team if required.

*  The management and supporters are delighted to see the return of Zack Foster to Lye Meadow.

Having played an integral part in the club’s success over the past four seasons, he followed previous manager Ian Long to Stourbridge – but has decided to return and play under new manager Darren Byfield.

Also joining the club is left-sided midfielder Rhys Mason. The sharp, pacey direct player had a spell at Solihull Moors but has more recently been playing abroad.

*  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

Pictured: Action from the 2–2 draw against Peterborough Sports (Photo/ Ian Macvie)

Fixtures (League unless stated)

Tues Oct 1  Redditch United (A) 7.45pm  Southern League Challenge Cup

Sat Oct 5  Tamworth (A) 3pm

Tues Oct 8  AFC Wulfrunians (H) 7.45pm  Birmingham Senior Cup

Sat Oct 12  Needham Market (A) 3pm

Tues Oct 15  Stourbridge (H) 7.45pm

Sat Oct 19  St Ives (H) 3pm

Sat Oct 26  FA Trophy 1st Qualifying Round

Sat Nov 2  Coalville Town (H) 3pm

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