|" If you know your history it's enough to make..............."
A history of the Old Xaverians Football Club from 1892 to 1992 booklet was produced for the Club's centenary season. A few copies are still available to those who are interested. Contact the Club secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A HISTORY OF THE OLD XAVERIANS FOOTBALL CLUB
1892 TO 1992
By Bill Formby
“In the Lancashire Amateur League and Cup Tournament, and likewise in the English Amateur Cup Competition, the Old Xaverians have made a name for themselves, and have a achieved a reputation which is second to none in point of ability.” (1903)
“Probably no club has done more for Amateur Football in Lancashire than the Old Xaverians.” (1920)
Such statements, which appeared in the Sporting Press of the time, present an image of what most Old Xaverians would like to believe their club presents. Allowing for the fact that these comments were made during a period when the Club was acquitting itself well in the Lancashire Amateur League, and allowing that sentiments are a little fulsome, there is a considerable amount of truth in the reports.
In September 1892, when the recently established Old Xaverians Cricket Club proposed a Football Club should be formed, as a winter extension to their activities, few could have imagined the impact that would be made on local Amateur football. The home games would be played at the ground jointly used by the cricketers, at Newsham Park. All the games at this time and, as it turned out, for the subsequent four years, would be on a ‘friendly’ basis. The annual subscription was set at five shillings (25p for the younger readers!).
A quote from the Xaverian Magazine of September 1892 explains,
“This is the only club in connection with the Collegians. Membership is not restricted to Old Xaverians, but is intended for Catholics of any college or institute.”
The rule concerning membership qualification appears to have been revised and re-applied, in varying forms, over the years. The cynic may well allege that these variations have occurred in direct ratio to the suitability and quality of available players, but perhaps not.
The opening game of the Club’s history, on the 7th September 1893, was somewhat unsatisfactory. Stoneyhurst provide the opposition, and comprehensively thrashed Old Xaverians by 5-0. The team captain in this game was E.A. Morton, who acted as Club secretary. More will be written of this gentleman later, but suffice it to say that he was to become a leading figure in the development of the Club, and local Amateur Football in general.
Few details were recorded in the first season due to the fact that, as previously stated, all the games were ‘friendlies’, but the results were:- played 18, won 7, drew 3, lost 8, goals for 32, against 36. At the beginning of the 1894/95 season, the Club moved to play their home games on an enclosed pitch in Balmoral Road, Fairfield. At this stage the Club was still called the Old Xaverians Football and Cricket Club. It is noticeable that at this time, and throughout the lifetime of the Club, even to present times, a significant number of Old Xaverians have involved themselves in some capacity in both the Football and Cricket sections.
The Club performances, and results, continued to fluctuate in spectacular fashion for the next couple of seasons. The reasons for some indifferent results have been recorded as “lack of interest or incentive to play in friendly games”, and even “extremes of weather conditions leading to team shortages”. The latter excuse has a topically familiar ring about it.
It is now that Arthur Morton reappears in our scenario, and makes a significantly important contribution to the future of the Club and local Amateur Football. He arranged a meeting of secretaries of a number of local football clubs in the Liverpool district, to discuss the possible formation of a league. The result of this meeting was the founding of the I. Zingari League. Mr Morton was elected Chairman, and was to hold this position for the next three years. The league would consist of ten teams, and would be played over the season 1884/1885. The Old Xaverians Football Club is now the sole survivors of the original founder members.
The Club made a successful start to its Zingari campaign, beating Birkdale by 3 goals to 2, and, at the end of the season, they finished fifth in the league. In addition to the I. Zingari League games, they continued to play ‘friendlies’.
In April 1896, an annual fixture was created, which, became the source of much pride, to say nothing of competition, between Old Xaverians and a College XI. Although the College won the inaugural game 2-1, the Old Boys were not slow to offer their excuses, as their reporter is quick to point out that they played with only ten men.
The Club finished the 1896/7 season in seventh position, gaining 11 points from 18 games, and in this season they entered the Lancashire Amateur Cup for the first time. An absence of any results in their records probability indicates an early exit from this competition. In preparation for season 1897/8, a second division of the I. Zingari was formed, and the Old Xaverians entered a Second team as members of this. They finished in a creditable fourth position at the end of the campaign. The First Eleven finished second in Division One, and were beaten finalists in the Lancashire Amateur Cup.
Prior to the start of the 1898/9 season, the Old Xaverians Athletic Association was formed, to cater for an even wider choice of sporting activities for College Old Boys. The Football and Cricket sections now became individual units in a parent body, of which Arthur Morton inevitably became one of the joint secretaries. The Club moved to play home games at a new ground in Aigburth, and a third team was entered in the Sefton Park and District League.
By this time the obvious organising abilities of Arthur Morton had been recognised elsewhere, and, following frequent requests from other clubs in Lancashire, he, in conjunction with Leek and Blackburn teams created the Lancashire Amateur League. It is not surprising therefore, that Old Xaverians withdrew the First and Second teams from the I. Zingari League and entered them in the newly formed league, Divisions One and Two, for season 1899/1900. At the conclusion of the season the First Eleven achieved its first major success by winning the Lancashire Amateur League in its inaugural season, with 21 points from a possible 24.
During the next decade, until the Club re-entered the I. Zingari League, considerable success was realised in the Lancashire Amateur League. The quality of play and consistency of good results had, by this time, attracted attention from the Continent. The Old Xaverians had been invited to visit Brussels and Compete in the International Cup, during Easter 1901. Unfortunately, arrangements had already been made to tour Yorkshire during the same period, and the invitation had to be declined. All connected with the O.X.A.A. were very conscious of the honour that had been paid to the Association.
A Continental excursion was merely delayed however, for, in May 1902, there took place what surely must have been one of the earliest, if not the earliest Continental tour by an English Amateur Football Club. An invitation was extended by the Dutch F.A., to tour Holland. Four games were played, resulting in a 7-2 win against Amsterdam F.C., 3-0 and 3-1 defeats by H.B.S. AFC and All Holland AFC respectively, and a 3-3 draw with Eastern Holland. The visitor’s play in the final game was described in the Dutch National Press as, “the finest exhibition of football seen in Holland”.
Perhaps inspired by these glowing words, the players became imbued with wanderlust once more, and a more modest excursion took place during the Easter 1903. This time they paraded their skills in Ireland. However the results of the games against Derry, Belfast and Coleraine, are not known, or at least published for examination. The next year the Club moved its home ground once more, this time to Lance Lane, Wavertree.
At this period, the Club’s playing record was most creditable, and a further invitation to tour was received in 1908. This came from the Belgium club, King’s Club, Brussels, for a four day tournament. The trophy was to be the King of the Belgians Cup. Having just completed a highly successful local campaign, in which they had won the Lancashire Amateur League and the Liverpool Amateur Cup, were joint holders of the Lancashire Amateur League Cup, the twenty players travelled to Belgium, perhaps justifiably in confident mood.
The party was very well received by the host club, and entertained ’munificently’ throughout their stay. Although the first two games were won 2-1 respectively, unfortunately they were eliminated in the semi-finals, 3-2, in what was described as, “an ill-tempered match both on and off the field”.
International recognition of a personal nature came to the Club, when J. Healy was chosen to represent England in an Amateur International against Ireland in 1908/09.
Old Xaverians renewed their association with I. Zingari League for the start of the 1911/12 season. The First Eleven re-entered division One, and the finished fourth, and in 1912/13, the Third Eleven was entered in the newly formed I. Zingari Alliance. The latter league had been created to accommodate teams formed by the Old boys of individual schools.
In May 1913, a further continental tour was embarked upon. This time the destination was Spain, and two games were played which took place before, “huge crowds”, who were charged an entrance fee. In fact, after one of the games had been ‘rained off’, the tourists agreed to extend their stay by an extra day to avoid any financial loss by the hosts. Both games were won by the Club 3-1 and 1-0 respectively.
With the outbreak of the Great War in 1914, during which sixteen Club members were tragically killed in action, the I. Zingari League was suspended. When the League recommenced its post-war activities in 1919, Old Xaverians were in Division One, the sole surviving team of those originally forming the League.
At the beginning of 1920, an invitation was received to make an Italian tour, and compete against teams from Rome, Milan and Genoa. Unhappily, it is not known whether this ever materialised, and certainly, no match results have been recorded.
The Old Xaverians’ reputation at this time was very high, and a most flattering account of its status, ability and reputation was printed in the National Sporting Press. A glowing tribute extracted from this appears at the beginning of this history. In view of this, it is surprising and disappointing to note that successes over the next few seasons were indeed scarce. The First eleven wallowed in the lower reaches of Division one, eventually suffering their inevitable relegation at the end of the 1925/26 season. They continued with their profligate style of play, and, for a couple of seasons, finished in twelfth position out of fourteen in the lower division. They rallied in later seasons, but remained in rather undistinguished positions in Division Two, until 1950. Highlights during this time were reaching the Lancashire Amateur Cup Final in 1922, where they lost to Marine, and winning the Senior Secondary Shield in May 1923.
The year 1923 saw another development in local amateur football, with the creation of the Liverpool Old Boys Amateur Football League of Old Collegians. The remarkable Arthur Morton was involved in the formation and administration of this league also. The Second and third Elevens entered Divisions One and Two of the new league, and, in 1923, the Second XI won the Old boys Junior Cup 1-0, in this competition’s first ever season. Apart from this success, there was nothing remarkable about any of the league performances of the three teams for a number of years, but an additional team, the Fourth Eleven, emerged in 1926, to play non-league games.
Easter 1925 brought an Irish tour. Five matches were played with mixed fortunes. Dundalk and St Mary's College were beaten 1-0, with a 1-1 draw versus Portadown, and defeats by Bangor 3-2 and Shelbourne 3-1. The reporter indicates that the hospitality was “very good”!
The beginning of season 1925/26 saw a further change of home venue. This time to Druid’s Cross, Woolton, where the Club would retain some playing connections until 1963. The following season saw the emergence of another influential Club character to the position of Secretary, Charles D. Connerty. Until his death, in 1954, Charles Connerty would influence, motivate, and support numerous players, and committee men, by example and his persuasive and encouraging approach.
The Club’s fortunes on the playing side wallowed in a rather quiet trough at this stage. Although now fielding four teams, having two pitches at Druid’s cross, the committee appeared to be suffering the trials and tribulations brought about by the bane of all amateur clubs – team shortages, due to players ‘crying off’ at short notice. In the days before substitutes, this could often leave a team a man short.
It was not until 1931, that the next trophy was won, the Second Eleven winning the Liverpool Old Boys Junior Cup. In the same year, Arthur Morton was elected President of the Liverpool Old Boy’s Amateur Football League.
Spring of 1931 saw the collapse of a scheme which had been floated some time earlier, for the establishment of a Sports Ground for all sections of the Old Xaverians to use. A site near Melwood had been chosen for this purpose. A sum of £5,500 had been required, and although contributions from the Football, Cricket and Tennis Sections had been sought, a shortfall of £2,000 prevented the completion of the enterprise. One of the indirect consequences of this failure was the appearance at Druid’s Cross, of the celebrated, and much-derided, Nissen hut, to replace an old bus which had served as a dressing room.
Although the Club entered the First Eleven in four cup competitions in 1932/33 season, progress was very poor, losing 2-1 to Earle in the F.A. Amateur Cup, and experiencing an early exit from each of the others. Four teams were still playing league games, in Division Two of the I. Zingari League, and in Divisions One, Two and Three in the Liverpool Old boys League.
An indifferent spell for all teams for all teams followed, and in 1934/35, the First Eleven moved to play ‘home’ games at Stanley road in Huyton. This relieved pressure on the demand for pitches at Woolton. At the need of the following season, 1935/36, the First Eleven had a close brush with even further relegation, to Division Three. They avoided this fate only by reason of a superior average.
On 23rs April 1937, Arthur Edward Morton died. This remarkable man had been instrumental not only in the creation of the Old Xaverians Football and Cricket sections, and ultimately of the now defunct Old Xaverians Athletic Association, but also the original Old Boys association in 1891. His efforts had brought about the formation of the I. Zingari League, the Lancashire Amateur League, and the Liverpool Old Boys’ Amateur League. For many years, he had served on the Board of the Lancashire Football Association.
To suggest that he could be ‘replaced’ by someone of similar qualities and attitude would be invidious to both parties concerned, let us say, rather, that in the June of that year, Charles Connerty assumed the position of Chairman of the Club. At his instigation, on the morning of the following Boxing Day, a fixture was played for the first time, which was to be a traditional feature of the season, The College First Eleven against C.D. Connerty’s XI. In this inaugural game the Old boys won 8-4. As someone who played for both teams in this annual fixture, the writer can confirm the tremendous atmosphere engendered by these games.
The 1938/39 season opened with the First Eleven playing well. Unfortunately, after promising much, they fell away and finished seventh in the league. They had now decided to play their home games at Broadgreen, preparatory to all four club teams moving there the following season. During the previous season, the teams had shared three different grounds for home fixtures, and this was thought to have led to certain loss of morale within the Club. Dependent upon a pavilion being provided, costing in excess of £110, arrangements were in hand to move operations completely to Thingwall Lane, Broadgreen for the start of the 1939/40 season.
Sadly like a similar expectation earlier, this project was destined never to come to fruition. The advent of the Second World War effectively prevented the move, and the newly erected pavilion was reduced to ashes in a totally accidental fire. So the Club was still functioning at Druid’s Cross when, once again the I. Zingari League was suspended due to hostilities.
When Club activities resumed again, in the winter of 1945/46 Charles Connerty was again Chairman, Tom Powell being Secretary. Due no doubt to the disorganised state of this immediate post-war era, there are no records available for this season.
On the 6th September 1947, three Club Elevens played their first league games for eight years. The trusty Nissen hut had been refurbished in preparation for the new season. Perhaps it was at this stage that the strange urn, from which cups of such dubious content were dispensed for so long, made its appearance.
The Club slumbered on for the next two seasons, but great events were around the corner. The reader is invited to place these in their own particular order of significance. In the 1949/50 season, after 25 years in Division Two of the I. Zingari League, the First Eleven won promotion. In addition, they won the Old Boys Senior Shield. The Third Eleven won the Old Boys’ Junior Cup and were champions of Division Two of the Old Boys’ League. Finally the name of Ossie Kelly first appeared on the Club Committee, as Assistant Secretary. If ever a title gave a false impression of the type and amount of duties assumed by this Old Xaverians, it is yet to be discovered.
The three senior teams did reasonably well in the following season, but by mid-season of 1951/52, the First Eleven were struggling to avoid being relegated, once more, barely escaping at the end of the campaign. The following year they finished eleventh out of fourteen teams but won the Old Boys’ Senior Shield once more. The Third Eleven were again Champions of Division Two of the Liverpool Old Boys’ League
The Club, together with the Cricket Section, suffered a very sad loss on 8th February 1954, when Charles Connerty died suddenly. He had been Secretary since 1928, until taking over as Chairman in 1937. In addition to his valuable work as a Committee man, and officer of the Club, he had always been a most enthusiastic player in his younger days. He was also Chairman the Old Xaverians cricket club, and of the Liverpool Old Boys Shield Committee. Another dedicated Old Xaverian Gus O’Keefe, took over as Chairman.
At the end of the 1953/54 season, after its now annual flirtation with relegation, the First Eleven finished bottom of Division One, but were not relegated, as the Division was a team short. The Third Eleven won the Old Boys’ Division two for the second year in succession, and the third time in four seasons.
In 1955/6, five teams were playing regularly and Phil Seagrave was now Chairman, and Hugh Fearon had taken over from Eric Frane, as Treasurer. A small measure of success was achieved the following year, the Fourth Eleven winning their league and the Third Eleven narrowly missing promotion. The Second Eleven had now re-joined the I. Zingari Combination, a league entirely for reserves sides of I. Zingari League teams, and were playing in Division Two.
The Third Eleven shared the Old Boys’ Junior Cup with Quarry bank Old boys in 1957/58, after a 2-2 draw. The season following, a new trophy was instituted, and presented by the Old Xaverians Football Club, for competition between local Old Boys’ Football clubs. This was the C.D. Connerty Memorial trophy. During the same season, 1958/59, the newly formed Under-21 team won the Old Boys Junior Shield. This season also saw the Second Eleven earning promotion by winning the second Division of the I. Zingari combination. Dennis Coffey had also become Secretary, a post which he held, for the next sixteen years.
In 1959/60, on the resignation of Phil Seagrave, Joe Alston took over as Chairman. The lower teams all had an indifferent season, but the First Eleven had their best for some seasons, finishing in third place in Division One. League representative honours were gained by Peter Sweeney and Brian Hathway in 1960/61, versus the Lancashire Amateur League. In the same season the Fifth Eleven and the recently formed Sixth Eleven each won their respective Old Boys’ leagues.
The Club were now most disturbed by the news that season 1961/62 was to be the last season that they could use Druids Cross. If no private ground could be found, the Club would be forced to withdraw from the I. Zingari League. Happily an extension of one further season was ultimately granted, but a search of great urgency began. The only successful team in this season was the Fourth Eleven who won the Old Boys’ Junior Cup in addition to the Second Division of the Old Boys’ League. The extreme weather conditions of 1962/63 caused the league season to be abandoned, but the First Eleven shared the Old Boys’ Senior Shield with Waterloo Grammar School Old Boys.
The inevitable departure from Druids Cross in 1963, breaking a thirty-eight year connection, when the Club moved its playing activities to Colebrooke Road, Dingle. As there were only two pitches there, one of the six teams was forced to cease operating. By this time John McGlashan had become Chairman. It was mainly due to the efforts of John, Bert Kilburn, Joe Alston and the indefatigable Ossie Kelly, that the Dingle ground had been secured. At this time, when the players were still euphoric about the acquisition of the new ground facilities, it seemed incredible that once they had been subjected to the subsequent difficulties which were experienced at the Dingle, most of them would have gladly returned to the era of the Nissen hut, urn, Tilley lamps and the solitary distant water tap, now abandoned at Woolton.
The solitary honour of this 1963/64 season was the Fifth eleven sharing the C.D. Connerty Trophy with Walton Technical School Old Boys. Poor league form continued for all the Club’s teams into the next season, but the First Eleven had Cup runs, reaching the semi-finals of the Liverpool Amateur Cup and losing in the final of the I. Zingari Cup to Liverpool University.
The 1965/66 season saw the emergence of a new Club force – the Under-21 Eleven. They shared the Old Boys Junior Shield with Old Cathinians, and won it in the following year. Peter Sweeney and Brian Hathway were again chosen to represent the I. Zingari League. All teams were poorly placed in the league, and the Second Eleven were relegated to Division two of the I. Zingari combination. The following season saw them fail, by one point, to be immediately restored to Division One again. Unhappily, the First Eleven ran out of luck, and lost their fight to avoid relegation to Division Two of the I. Zingari League.
It must be said, however, that their form was most capricious! They gained immediate promotion the next season, only to go down again at the end of the following campaign, the 1968/69 season. The original pioneers of the Club had always insisted that it was the contest, rather than the result, which was important, but even they must have looked down and wondered whether the First Eleven players at this period were interpreting this attitude rather too literally!
A noteworthy and most enjoyable event took place on the 10th January 1968, when Old Xaverians Football club celebrated its Seventy-Fifth Anniversary. A dinner was held at the Irish centre, Mount Pleasant, to mark this, under the Chairmanship of John McGlashan. Many changes had taken place since the creation of the Club, but it was still prominent in local football.
In 1968/69, the Under-21s jointly shared the Old Boys’ Junior Shield again, and the Second Eleven finally won promotion to Division One of the I. Zingari Combination the following year. Unfortunately, considerable problems were being experienced at the Dingle ground and, again, more suitable premises were being sought.
By 1972/73 the First Eleven had been restored to Division One, finishing fourth, and reaching the I. Zingari Cup-Final losing to Alsop Old Boys 0-2, losing two goals in the last two minutes. With the Second Eleven, they were now playing all their home games at a new ground in Eastway, Maghull. The sterling work of Bert Kilburn had been chiefly responsible for this move away from the problems experienced at Dingle. To mark Bert’s fifty year association with the Club, as player and committee member the well deserved presentation of a silver salver had been made to him, during this season.
The fortunes of the Club progressed very unspectacularly for a number of years, with a marked lack of success. By 1975, the First eleven had resumed its now familiar liaison with Division two, and Dave Jack had replaced Brian Hathway as Chairman.
In 1976, an ‘unofficial’ Old Xaverian team was formed, playing its fixtures on Sundays on a ground in Formby, and calling themselves Formby Xaverians. It drew most of its players from regular Saturday Old Xaverians players. It was organised mainly by Tony Mulligan with others, and achieved spectacular success in its first season, winning Division Three of the Ormskirk and District Sunday League, remaining unbeaten.
The team continued to compete in this league until 1990, winning Division three again in 1984/85 and earning promotion to Division One the next season. They also reached the Divisional Cup-Final in 1984/85 losing to Melling Vics. Eventually the travelling distances involved, early Sunday morning, caused lack of player interest and so it folded in 1990.
By 1976 all home games for all teams were being played in Maghull, and the eventful but never dull, connection with Colebrooke Road had been severed.
At Easter 1977 the Club undertook a tour to the Isle of Man. The trip was a huge playing and social success. The Old Xaverians beating Union Mills and Braddan convincingly and drawing with Laxey. It was such a success that the tour was repeated for the following nine years.
The solitary success of the following 1977/78 season was the Second Eleven’s promotion to Division One of the I. Zingari combination on goal difference after four years. All the other sides finished in mid-table. For this one and only season the Zingari sides played their home games at the Civil Service ground in Thornton.
On the 17th October 1979, Bert Kilburn died. This statement does not convey the loss experienced, not only by his family, but also by the Club. Bert had played for the Old Xaverians from 1925 until 1950, continuing after this time as an active, cheerful and hard working committee member. His association with the Club spanned three generations. He played at the same time as his own father, and his son Tom played at the same time as himself. His loss was greatly felt, and an annual eight-a-side then a five-a-side competition was inaugurated in his name.
In this season, the Under-21’s beat Old Cathinians 4-3 to win the Old Boys’ Junior Shield. A trophy of a vastly different nature, but one to be no less proud, was won by the First Eleven, the following year. This was the Hugh Latimer Award, in recognition of consistent sportsmanship, the winner being selected as a result of the marks awarded by the referee’s in I. Zingari matches.
At this time, approaches were being made to the College regarding the use of one of the pitches at High Lee. Throughout its long career, one of the consistent features of the Club’s playing activities has been its difficulty in finding suitable pitches to accommodate its various teams. There were now six teams playing regular league matches, and the problem was still evident.
As new personalities emerged to take over the running of the Club, unfortunately some of the older members were inevitably fading from the scene. On the 12th October 1981, one such character died after a period of ill-health which could not prevent his active involvement with Club affairs. Those Old Xaverians who remember Ossie Kelly will appreciate the gap which his death created. I recommend to those members who did not know him, the fine obituary by Peter Furness in the College magazine of autumn 1981. A genuine, and gentle (except to opposing forwards) Old Xaverian, who was sadly missed.
The Under-21’s again showed their expertise in the Old Boys’ Junior Shield, by beating Collegiate Old Boys 2-1 in the Final of 1980/81. The season finished with the by now regular Isle of Man tour at Easter. A fair measure of success was realised in 1981/82. After a seven year absence the First Eleven were promoted back into Division One of the I. Zingari League, whilst the Third Eleven won promotion back into the First Division of the Liverpool Old Boys’ League after eight years.
The only notable feature of the next two seasons was the move, in 1983/84, of the First Eleven to the renamed I. Zingari Premier League, where they finished 12th out of 14. The division had been renamed when the League committee had decided that promotion to the top division was conditional on the standard of the ground. The Club had now been offered, and had gratefully accepted, the use of one of the pitches at the school, by Brother Francis, the Headmaster. With this move the Club pitches at the school, by Brother Francis, the Headmaster. With this move the Club could now boast one of the best playing facilities in the I. Zingari League, and would therefore ensure their continued eligibility for the Premier Division.
It is ironic to consider that the College, by accommodating the Old Xaverians in this way, were returning a reciprocal arrangement of seventy-five years earlier, when the Club made their pitch at Lance Lane available to the College Eleven games, when they themselves were suffering from lack of a playing fields.
This season was also the last as Chairman of Dave Jack, who resigned after many years of invaluable work in this capacity, to be replaced by Vic Welsh. All six teams performed with moderate success, without any particular noteworthy detail.
Mid-way through the following season the Club heard of the death of Joe Alston on the 15th February 1985. During the difficult immediate post-war years, Joe had performed invaluable work in both Football and Cricket sections, before moving away from the area. His youthful enthusiasm inspired many a young player.
The two successes of the 1984/85 season, were the promotion of the Fourth Eleven to the Old Boys’ Division Two, and yet another win in the Final of the Old Boys’ Junior Shield by the Under-21 team. It is pleasant to record that a fixture against a College First Eleven was re-introduced during the season after several years lapse.
The First Eleven continued to struggle during this period, finishing 13th in 1984/85, but were re-elected back to the Premier Division after the resignation of a team. The end of the season saw the resignation of Tony Valerio, as First Team manager, after ten years. He continued to remain a committee member with over thirty years standing. The First Eleven’s re-election to the Premier division was only a stay of execution, and the following season, 1985/86, the team succumbed once more to the temporary indignity of relegation. The ever-consistent Under-21 Eleven, however, refused to allow the season to pass without their now anticipated victory in the Old Boys’ Junior Shield.
By 1986/87, all six teams were playing at High Lee, by the kindness of the College authorities. It is unfortunate that the stability of ground tenure did not reflect itself via results on the pitch, as only moderate playing success was realised, although the First Eleven again won the I. Zingari League Hugh Latimer Sportsmanship Award. The end of the season saw Hugh Fearon step down from the committee. He had continued to play in one of the Club’s league teams until he was fifty, and served as Treasurer for thirty-one years. He had made such an onerous task, in such a large organisation, appear easy. He was replaced by Peter Bentley.
The resilient First Eleven confounded their critics and committee, even individuals who might have been described as members of both groups, by achieving an early return to the I. Zingari Premier Division in 1987/88. The remaining five teams continued to feature in the I. Zingari Combination First Division and in their respective Old Boys’ divisions.
With the opening of the Xaverian Club on the School site in January 1988, the Football Club entered a new era. A social club where the Old Xaverians, and not necessarily footballers, both past, and present could meet, socialise and dissect the afternoon’s every move, had been a long held wish by all the players, throughout the years. What, had at times, only seemed a pipe dream, had now come to fruition, thanks to the hard-work and tenacity, of the Headmaster, Brother Francis Patterson.
The Tom Slade Shield for Fair Play in the Old Boys’ League, was won by the Fifth Eleven in 1989/90, in competition with all the seventy teams of the whole of the Old Boys’ League. They also finished second in the Old Boys’ Division Five. The Second Eleven enjoyed a successful season finishing third in Division One of the I. Zingari Combination. This season also saw the resignation of Dave Reynolds, as secretary, after sixteen years in this position, to concentrate his efforts on improving the Old Xaverians Cricket Club. He continued, though to still serve on the Football Club committee and give of his energy and experience. He was replaced by Ben Mallett.
With the use of the Xaverian Club facilities the Football Club now had some of the best facilities, if not the best for purely amateur clubs, (i.e. they have to pay to play), on Merseyside. Better players were attracted, if not lamentably, many College Old boys. Consequently the results finally started to improve over the next few seasons, after many years in the doldrums. The introduction in 1990/91 of Under-16 and Under-14 teams, proved a popular and rewarding exercise. Their games were played on Sunday mornings, at one of the Merseyside Youth Association Jeffery Humble ground in Long Lane, and the other at the M.Y.A. Heron Eccles ground at Abbotshey Avenue. What, at first started as a trickle of players coming to the Club, became a stream. After only three seasons, this youth policy saw four of these players appear in the First Team.
By the start of the 1991/92 season so many players had signed on that the Club had been able to arrange a complete programme of friendlies for a Seventh Team. This season also saw the Fourth Eleven reach the final of the Northern cup losing to Lodge F.C. from Doncaster, the Under-21’s lose in the Old Boys’ Junior Shield final and the Over-35’s lose the final of the Old Boys’ Senior Cup for Over-35 teams. Ever the bridesmaid!
1992/93, the Club’s Centenary season, saw the Seventh Eleven join the Sixth Division of the Old Boys’ League, with the Sixth Eleven being promoted to Division Five. Only three pitches were available at Beaconsfield Road, so an extra pitch was hired at the Heron Eccles ground in Abbotshey Avenue. To make full use of this pitch an extra team the Eighth Eleven, was introduced, again playing friendlies, or at least non-league games. It is interesting to compare the situation which exists in its Centenary year, with that of the early days of 1892 in Newsham Park.
The original concept of providing a team to take part in friendly fixtures on a casual basis still applies, but the successful administration of eight teams, and two junior sides, all playing regularly, ably demonstrates how much the Club has developed during its proud history.
Those gentlemen who figured prominently in the early and formative years of the Club created and maintained its structure, aims and principles. Their enthusiasm, example and determination in the face of often daunting adversity has ensured that the Club has endured with a proud tradition for one hundred years.
It might be considered a privilege of present, and future, members to ensure that the momentum continues to be maintained. If this happens, an equally long and impressive future can be auspiciously anticipated for the Old Xaverian Football Club.
THE ABOVE HISTORY WAS PARTIALLY FUNDED BY A GIFT FROM THE LIVERPOOL COUNTY FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION.
THE OLD XAVERIANS FOOTBALL CLUB WISH TO THANK THE F.A. FOR THEIR GENEROUS DONATION
THE HISTORY OF THE OLD XAVERIANS FOOTBALL CLUB FROM ITS CENTENARY SEASON UNTIL THE 2006-2007 SEASON
The First Eleven under the Managership of Brian Deakin, and in its centenary season, topped the I. Zingari Premier Division from early October until late February. Therefore, by March, they were in the unusual position, in this period of its history, of being safe from relegation. As part of the 100th season celebrations they played the full I. Zingari League representative side. In a hard fought game the Xavs narrowly lost 3-2. This game showed how far the team had come in such a short space of time. It had been many years since the club had a side capable of holding its own against such quality opposition.
In this, the club’s centenary season, two teams achieved success. Firstly the Fourth team reaching the Northern Cup Final, which was played at Burscough’s ground. Unfortunately they lost to narrowly to Crewe Corinthians. The Sixth Eleven gained promotion from Division Five of the Old Boys league by finishing runners-up.
Several Centenary celebrations took place that season, the highlight of which was the Celebration Dinner held at St Francis Xavier’s School. Representatives of the Liverpool County F.A., the I. Zingari League, the I. Zingari Combination, the Liverpool Old Boys League and 200 players past and present attended it. All enjoyed an excellent evening, of many memories.
Other Centenary representative games were held against the I. Zingari Combination and Old Boys full and Over-35s sides and a Northern Cup side. The I. Zingari League, the I. Zingari Combination and the Liverpool Old Boys League presented silver salvers to the Club after these celebration games. The Football Association also presented the club with an illuminated address to celebrate the Old Xaverians reaching its century. All these mementos are now on display in the trophy cabinet in the Xaverian Club bar.
Sadly, the 1993-1994 season saw the First Eleven relegated after seven years in the I. Zingari Premier League. The season was not all doom and gloom with the Fifth Team, under manager Eric Tocher, winning the League and Cup double. The club was now fielding eight sides in leagues, six of them in the Old Boys League and two youth teams on Sundays, at Under-18 and Under-16 level.
The next season saw some improvement in playing results with six of the sides reaching at least one semi-final, with the Fifth Eleven, now managed by Ian Milligan, doing the League and Cup double for a second season. Most of Jock’s squad of players also formed the Over-35 Eleven that had reached their final before losing on penalties. The Seventh Eleven, managed by Andy Campbell, in his last season in charge, won the Grimshaw Cup. This was a fitting reward for Andy who had run the bottom side for many seasons.
The final accolade for the season was the Third Eleven, playing in Division One of the Old Boys League, winning the Tom Slade Sportsmanship Award. This award is given to the team in the all the Old Boys divisions, nearly 80 sides, who had the best disciplinary and sportsmanship record over the whole season, a trophy to be proud of.
This season only one youth side was fielded, an Under-18 team, which did well to reach the last eight of the L.C.F.A. Youth Cup. The number of youth sides was expanded to two the following year. The Club was now fielding Under-18 and Under-17 sides in the Wavertree Youth Alliance. The under –18 team reached the cup semi-final whilst the Under-17s narrowly lost their cup final.
The First Eleven continued to languish mid table in Division One of the I. Zingari League whilst the fortunes of the Second Eleven began to prosper. Under new manager, Colin Brown, they finished runners up in the I. Zingari Combination Division One and reached the Combination Cup semi-final. Interestingly they only lost this semi-final after a replay(!) against Quarry Bank. This was the club’s highest finishing position in this league since its return to the Combination in 1955. Success was also experienced by the Sixth Eleven. With Phil Carlin, in his first season as manager, finishing second in the Old Boys Division Three and winnning the Connerty Cup 4-2 against Shorefields Old Boys. The Over-35s again reached the final before losing for the second year running, this time to Collegiate O.B.
After the trophy-less 50s, 60s and 70s, the 90s saw a change in fortunes. It culminated in 1996-97 with, for the first time ever, the Club being able to show off six trophies in its newly erected cabinet in The Xaverians Club. The Fifths, under ‘Jock’ Milligan, and the Sixths, under Chris Connor and Robbie Brennan, both achieved their league and cup doubles. The Seventh team, managed by Charlie Summer, won the Grimshaw Cup and were runners up in the league.
Meanwhile the Second Eleven, still managed by Colin Brown, again came runners up in Division One of the Combination but their real success was in reaching the final of the County F.A. Intermediate Cup. Here they narrowly lost after extra time and penalties, in the dark, at Nalgo, against BRNESC Reserves. Of the other teams, all finished mid-table in their respective division with The Fourth Eleven, under Mike White, also reaching the Old Boys Division Two Cup Final. Here they lost to Quarry Bank and only earning the Runners-Up Trophy and the Club’s sixth of the season. 1996/7 season, sadly, the Club fielded no youth team.
The next season, 1997/8, saw the Club fielding three less teams, the previously mentioned youth side and Seventh and Eighth Elevens, all due to lack of personnel to run the sides. This season also saw the sudden death of Tony Valerio. Tony had been a member of the Club for 48 years as player and Committee member. Latterly he had been Vice Chairman who took an active part in all Club activities. He managed the First, Second and Third teams at various stages. Whilst manager of the First Eleven, he had gained promotion to the I. Zingari Premier Division. His First Elevens had twice won the I. Zingari Sportsmanship Award. He himself had played in the 1962/63 Connerty Cup winning side. Tony was always cheerful, making committee meetings a pleasure with a string of jokes which were always funny despite one having heard many of them before annually. He had a word for everyone, whether a Blue like himself or a Red and all players respected his sound common sense and sound advice.
The gloom of Tony’s death was lifted with the promotion of the First Eleven from Division One of the I. Zingari League by finishing level on points with Edge Hill Boys Club Old Boys but with a worse goal difference. With Colin Brown now in his first season in charge of the First Team they also reached the semi-finals of the Zingari Cup. As it was only two days after Tony’s death the side had no stomach for the fight and lost to the bottom side of the Premier Division 2-4. The only other success that season was the Over-35s again winning their Cup Final 7-2 with Robin Lloyd scoring six of them by half time.
The next year saw the First Eleven being run by new manager Billy Birch. In a first for the Club the job had been advertised externally and he had been appointed after an interview of the candidates. This was a position he was to hold for the next nine seasons. Their status in the top division of the I. Zingari League was consolidated with a comfortable mid-table position and a good run in the Lancashire Amateur Cup to reach the quarter-final stage before elimination. The Second Eleven now under Derek O’Hara, who had replaced Charlie Summers, again after interview, finished third in the division. This season also saw the Third team finish mid-table whilst the Fourths ended in third place. The Fifth Eleven, with Paul Bennett as manager and being ably assisted by Mike White, completed the season as the league champions. This was now the fourth season out of six that Division Three of the Old Boys League had been won by the Club, remarkably by three different squads of players. The Sixth Eleven also finished second in their league, whilst the resurrected Seventh Eleven, managed by Chairman Vic Welsh, just avoided relegation from Division Five. Also resurrected, as it turns out for only one season, was an Under-15 XI playing in the South Merseyside League
By now, the straight up and down selection of players had long gone. All six teams consisted of a squad of about sixteen to eighteen players and it was only in times of emergency that players moved between teams. Although some of the older players and some committee members did not approve, it cannot be denied that there had been a drastic improvement in results. Now cups and leagues were being regularly won, particularly by the lower teams. It could be said some players were playing below their standard hence the successes. Sadly the influx of ex-S.F.X. schoolboys had greatly diminished. Rightly, the school did not allow players to turn out for the Old Boys if they had played for the school in the morning. This meant that they had difficulty breaking into the team’s squads during the holidays. After they left school they often went to Universities away from Liverpool. Unsurprisingly, despite constant appeals, few ex-S.F.X. boys came to play for us. This is a situation, which is greatly regretted by the committee. The Under-15 team and the very young Seventh Eleven were attempts to remedy the situation.
The 1999-2000 season, as well as welcoming in the new millennium, also saw a Club first. After 95 years of on and off membership of the I. Zingari Combination, the Second Eleven won the Division One title. In 1995/6 and again 1996/7 we had finished second and third in 1998/99 without threatening to win it. For a large part of the 1970s we had languished in Division Two even applying for re-election having finished in the bottom two positions. The twelve point winning margin now looks like a walk over but it was far from it. To watch the championship trophy being presented on the pitch before the final game was a proud moment for the older members of the Club and the Second Eleven management team of Derek O’Hara and his assistant Dave Knight.
This season saw a new venture for the Club when we entered a second side in the I. Zingari Combination. Previously it had been a league purely for reserve sides but because of falling numbers of clubs and teams playing football, it had now decided to open its boundaries to other teams be they first, second or third teams. It was not an auspicious start in this new league for the previous season’s Seventh Eleven, where they came next to bottom in Division Three. This was also the league position suffered by the Division One Old Boys side. Fortunately they could not be relegated as we had teams in the divisions below. The Old Boys Division Three side were the Club’s next most successful side finishing runners up in both the League and the Connerty Cup. The Seventh Eleven formed the basis of the newly appointed Veterans Cup for Over-40s to replace the Over-35s Cup. This they duly won for the second time in three years. The 1999-2000 season also saw the re-introduction of an Eighth Eleven, eventually managed by Ben Mallett after resignation in late October of the returning Andy Campbell, to play in the Old Boys Division Five. It was principally aimed at producing a squad of good young players. Despite its mid-table position it proved in later years to be a success as several of the side are still playing for the Club and many of the squad went on to play for the First Eleven for a time.
It was in the summer of 1999 a Third team player, Steve Cuddy, suffered a terrible accident whilst on holiday in Greece, which rendered him almost completely immobile. The diagnosis was that he would be wheelchair bound for the rest of his life. To assist his family in financing the necessary alterations to their home the Club set out to raise £4000. After eighteen months contributions had reached £5000, when fund raising had to stop otherwise it would affect his state benefits. Half this sum had been raised inside the Club itself in one season. All these hard efforts in raising funds enabled the committee to see the potential of increasing the Club’s income by a number of means to keep match fees down.
The 2000-2001 season is now acknowledged to have been the wettest on record. In fact the Seventh Eleven did not play for 10 consecutive Saturdays. It could just have easily been a record season for trophies. The Club featured in eight semi-finals and yet won only one cup, this being the Grimshaw Cup won by the Mike Wickham’s Eighth team. Three sides also, at various stages of the season, looked to be running away with their leagues but all fell in the final few games. Only one of these teams even came runners up, that being the Sixth Eleven run by Paul Bennett and Mike White, in Division Three of the Old Boys League. With the Third Eleven coming up on the rails then stumbling at the last fence it was a season of “if onlys”.
With the First Eleven ending mid-table in the Premier Division of the I. Zingari League for the third year, the team’s position in the division was becoming established. To improve the playing facilities, pre-season a barrier had been erected on three sides of the First team pitch together with a new dugout. This had cost the Club £1300 but it now made it one of the best arenas in the league if not the best playing surface. With constant poor weather, all the pitches became very wet and consequently badly uneven. As the season continued into mid May, pitch No. 1 dried out with so many ruts in it that it became dangerous to play on it!
Just as the previous season had been a record for weather so 2001-2002 became a record on the playing field. The First Eleven won the I. Zingari Cup for the first time in the Club’s history and the Fourth Eleven won the Old Boys Division One for the very first time.
Billy Birch was still managing the First Eleven. Mike Wickham had gone from managing the 8th XI to assisting Billy. This management team and squad of players proved to be a very successful one. They reached the semi-final of the Lancashire Amateur Cup before losing to MANWEB from the County Combination. This was played at The Lancs. F.A County ground at Leyland on a very wet February night under floodlights.
With the final three games of the season all to be played in a week, the team could still do the Cup and League double. Three wins would do this. On the Tuesday night they beat Warbreck away 3-1. On the Thursday night was the Cup Final versus arch rivals Quarry Bank at the Liverpool Soccer Centre in Walton Hall Park under floodlights. The game went to extra time without a goal and looked set for penalties when Quarry Bank were awarded a penalty, with two minutes to go, which they duly scored. All looked lost for the Xavs. Then in injury time, centre half Ben Williams; following up an attack prodded a cross into the net, for the equaliser. The first penalties from either side were both missed before Quarry Bank also missed their second. The Xavs never let this advantage slip and went on to successfully complete all their penalties. After 109 years of trying the Club had finally won the I. Zingari Cup.
On to the last game of the season versus Aigburth Peoples Hall at home, with another game to play A.P.H. needed two points to clinch the title whilst the Xavs needed a win to guarantee the championship. In close fought encounter where the Xavs took the lead honours finished even. A.P.H. went on to win their last game and so become champions. The team’s interest in the league had gone beyond the last game. They ended up Cup winners and league title runners up.
The Fourth Eleven now run by Chris Connor were involved in a four horse race for the league title. This was the squad’s first season in the division. Despite this, they proved to be the stronger in the run in. They won the last five games including the double over one of their title rivals. They had now won the Old Boys Division One title for the Club for the first time in its history.
The Sixth Eleven, again run by Paul Bennett and Mike White, went one better than the previous season and won Division Three of the Old Boys League. This season again saw the Club decide to drop two teams because of lack of personnel to run them. Before the season started, one of these teams was reinstated when Brian Deakin, assisted by retiring 3rd XI manager Jock Milligan, stepped forward to run the Seventh Eleven.
The following year the Club returned to a full complement of eight sides. It also heralded a season of success for nearly all the teams. The First Eleven finished fourth losing only four league games all season. They reached the semi-final of the I. Zingari Cup and the quarter-finals of the Lancashire Amateur Cup. The Second Eleven despite only losing two games came runners up in the Combination Division One. Meanwhile, also in the Combination, the Third Eleven, run by Vic Welsh and assisted by Ben Mallett, won Division Three to earn promotion and reached the Cup semi-final.
The Fourth Eleven, after their previous historic success, proceeded to win The Old Boys Division One title again without losing a game. Because of the previous season’s success it had also been decided to enter this side in the L.C.F.A. Junior Cup for the first time but they lost their first game after extra time and penalties. They did reach the final of the Marlborough Cup before again losing after extra time and penalties. They were successful though in the Old Boys Senior Shield, which is for all the first teams of clubs in the League. In a game of high standard football they beat Collegiate 2-1. Under the continued guidance of Chris Connor and Joey Baxter the team was also entered into the Northern Cup. Here they suffered their only 90-minute defeat in the semi-final to an Aspull side containing several ex-semi-pro players. An extremely memorable season for the side.
The Sixth Eleven also won Division Three of the Old Boys for the second consecutive season whilst the Eighth Eleven under Terry Nelligan won Division Five. The Eighth Eleven were also losing finalist in the Grimshaw Cup. The Old Boys League Veterans Cup was also won by the Club’s over-40s. With the Fifths ending up only ninth and Sevenths finishing fourth, but only missing out on the second spot by one point, the club had had an extremely successful season.
Further success was achieved the next season 2003-2004 when the First team won the I. Zingari Premier Division for the first time in the Club’s history after 105 years of trying. With Billy Birch in charge and assisted by Mike Wickham the team led the league table from the very first game. In this historic season, the only league game that was lost was the last of the season when the title had already been won. Considering the Club’s previous lack of success in this division over the years, the championship was won easily by 18 points, winning 20 out 24 games conceding only 20 goals and scoring 87.
For the second year running they reached the quarter-finals of the Lancashire Amateur Cup before losing on penalties. They also reached the quarter-finals of the Liverpool Challenge Cup losing to South Liverpool. One individual achievement stands out in this success. In only his third season playing for the Club, Paul Partington scored his 100th goal for the team, quite an achievement!
Meanwhile the Second team reached the semi-finals of both the Combination Cup and the L.C.F.A. Intermediate Cup. With Fourth Eleven’s surprise decision to play in Division Three of Combination, it was no surprise when they did the League and Cup double. Where they were tested was in the Northern Cup. Again, for the third time in two seasons, the side lost a cup-tie after extra time and penalties. This time it was the Cup Final.
The Fifth team, now run by Terry Nelligan, finished runners up in Division One of the Old Boys League and semi-finalists in the League Cup. Paul Bennett’s Seventh Eleven, after the previous title winning seasons could only finish runners-up in Division Three. The Eighth team, now under the management team of Brian Deakin and Ian Milligan, ran away with Division Four but had to come from 2-0 down in the Bushell Cup Final to complete the double. The Veterans Cup Final, the night following the Bushell Cup Final, proved too much for our Over-40s, who comprised mostly Eighth team players losing 1-0.
Further achievements earned by the Club during this successful season were the I. Zingari Premier Division Sportsmanship Award. This was added to, by Ben Mallett being presented with the I. Zingari League Secretary of the Year Award. This was really an award to the Club for the turnaround in its on-field behaviour and the efficiency of its committee. The previous season the Chairman and Secretary had had to attend a disciplinary committee of the I. Zingari League where the Club had been warned to its behaviour. The Award showed that the Club had heeded the warning. Also as the Club had expanded the duties of the secretary’s were now so large that his tasks had been shared out amongst the Fixture Secretary, Chris Connor, the Assistant Secretary, Mike White, and the other committee members. The Award was recognising the success of this delegation.
The season 2004-2005 began with an invitation to play in a charity match for the Lord Mayor of Liverpool’s Trophy at the County Ground in Walton Hall Park as I. Zingari League champions. We were to play the Liverpool County Combination champions, Waterloo Dock. In a well-attended game the Xavs lost 1-0, in a game dominated by both defences.
After a poor start to their retention of the league title, the season developed into a two horse race between East Villa and ourselves. Towards the end of the season in the return game against Villa, a win would place the championship in our own hands. In an exciting game, where the Villa keeper made three outstanding saves, the game was drawn 3-3. But the topsy-turvy season continued with East Villa losing 6-3 to Hill Athletic in their penultimate game meaning we would be champions again. Unfortunately for us, Hill Athletic were found to have played not one but two ‘ringers’. As per league rules the game was awarded to East Villa hence the I. Zingari League title was awarded to East Villa with ourselves as runners up. Interestingly enough the team gained more points this season than when they had won it the previous one.
Losing the league was the second disappointment of the week. Without too much difficulty the side had reached the Final of the I. Zingari Cup against bitter rivals ROMA. In another exciting match played at the Liverpool Soccer Centre, where the weather got progressively worse, the Xavs ended 2-0 down half way through the second half. As they pressed more and more strongly, the ROMA keeper made some outstanding saves. As our opponents tired, several went down with cramp and other injuries. This resulted in seven(!) minutes of added time. In the second minute of this time the Xavs got a goal back and had one more decent chance before the end. But it was not to be and the team finished the season runners-up in both the league and cup.
With the retirement of Derek O’Hara from management to play again, Chris Connor and Joey Baxter moved up from running the successful Fourth Eleven. With his players moving from Division Three to Division One of the Combination, their final third place could be regarded as success.
Under the new management of Tommy Murphy with assistance from Peter Walker, the Third Eleven did the I. Zingari Combination Division Two League and Cup double. In fact they only lost one game all season and that disappointingly was in the L.C.F.A. Intermediate Cup Final versus I. Zingari League, St Ambrose. For a Third Eleven to reach this prestigious final was a remarkable effort despite the squad system of selection. Incidentally the quarter-final draws for all three County Cups included Old Xaverians, which I think is a first.
The other five sides the club was running were not as successful with none in real contention for their league titles or even reaching cup semi-finals. Even the usually successful Over-40s side were eliminated early on. So the club’s few successes this season were in the higher teams as it should be. The Club still continued to run an Under-16 side on a Sunday, run by Steve Polson, with a few even playing for the adult sides on occasion.
The 2005-2006 season turned out to be a momentous one. The First Eleven won the I. Zingari League for the second time whilst the Second Eleven won both the League and the Cup. These successes in one season are unprecedented. It also saw the Sixth Eleven win the Connerty Cup and finish runners-up in Division Three of the Old Boys whilst the Over-40s were victorious in the Veterans Cup. Sadly it also saw the end of the I.Zingari League
The First Team again managed by Billy Birch, assisted by Mike Wickham and physiotherapist Eddie Howard had now finished first, second, second again and now first in the last four seasons. After four games of the season things did not look hopeful when they had lost 5-0 to Turpins and drawn another game. They did not lose another league game for the rest of the season. After this poor start the cup season started. A run through to the last sixteen of the Liverpool Challenge Cup was experienced before defeat, after extra time 1-0, to Maghull from the North West Counties League. In the Lancashire Amateur Cup the side reached the quarter-finals. Here we were drawn at home to Rochdale St Clements. After going 3-0 down and having a man sent off for two yellow cards the team fought back to 3-3 to take the game into extra time and penalties. To get this far in the game in the circumstances was fantastic but an Istanbul-like win was not to be repeated. Very tired legs and minds were unable to survive the pressure of penalties and they lost 3-1 in the shoot out.
In the I. Zingari Cup the side went one better by reaching the semi-finals against St Ambrose, who had also retained the L.C.F.A. Intermediate Cup. They should have been promoted to the Premier Division the previous season, but the League deemed their ground unsuitable. Consequently, they were still playing in Division One. The Xavs side never got into their stride and against a very physical team they lost 2-0. During their cup runs the team continued to progress in the league, winning every game they played until they were due to play East Villa. Villa had a hundred percent record at this stage, so it was vital that the side did not lose against them if they were to maintain their title challenge. In a game of high skill the Xavs took the lead after missing two one on ones. In the second half, East Villa came at the Xavs strongly and eventually equalised. So the game ended in a draw and honours even.
Whilst the Xavs continued to win all their league games, East Villa lost an important game versus Red Rum. This left the Xavs with a chance of overtaking East Villa if they beat them in the return game at the College. In an exciting game, Villa attacked hard but the Xavs defended well and were looking dangerous on the break. Two good chances fell to Adam Jones, the second of which he managed to convert. In the second half, East Villa pressed even harder bringing out good saves from the keeper Ted Hinnegan. In their desperation to equalise Villa pushed even more men forward leaving gaps at the back. On one of the Xavs breakaways Tom Faulkner was brought down in the box for a blatant penalty. Pat O’Hanlon duly slotted the ball home. The First eleven now led the league table for the first time in the season, by one point. To ensure they won the title they had to win their last two games at home. The first against ROMA was won easily 3-0. The last, against Red Rum, was postponed because at the College because of a waterlogged pitch in May(!). It was finally played on the 22nd May where the Xavs ran out narrow winners by three goals to one. So the Old Xaverians became the last ever winners of the 110-years old I. Zingari League and the League trophy is on permanent exhibition in the Old Xavs trophy cabinet in the Xaverian Club.
As I have previously stated,2005-2006 was also the last ever season of the I. Zingari League because the National F.A. wanted football nationally to be re-structured into a pyramid and also to reduce the number of referee feeder leagues. The Liverpool county F.A. were told that only one feeder league would be allowed in the Liverpool area instead of two. This meant that teams from the Liverpool County Combination and the I. Zingari League, the current feeder league, would be able to apply to the new County Premier League. With great regret the Zingari teams voted to end league’s existence and apply to join the new league to ensure its feeder league status. The new Premier Division of this County Premier League will be at step 7 of the new national football pyramid. Because of the First Eleven final league position they ensured that we would be members of this new Premier Division and so be playing at step 7 in 2006-2007.
The Second Eleven again run by Chris Connor and Joey Baxter reached the finals of the Combination Cup and the Geoff Pye Cup, the league cup. Both of these finals were against Speke. The Combination final was held at the Police ground and was won 2-1 by the Xavs in extra time with a stunning 30-yard strike from Ian McLaughlin. Speke won the second of these finals 2-0. The League title rested on the last game of the season against Speke. A draw and we would win the league whilst a win for Speke would see them be champions. In a nail biting game watched by about 100 people, the Seconds created several excellent chances in the latter stages of the game whilst missed several half chances to score. After seven minutes of added time neither side had managed to score. The Second Eleven season had gone to the very last kick and they had ended up completing the Combination double. This is a feat never before achieved the club’s history.
The Sixth Eleven again run by Paul Bennett and Mike White again reached the Connerty Cup Final. A late equaliser from substitute, Mike White, with his first touch took the game into extra time and penalties. The Xavs won the shoot out by three goals to two. Three further wins in their last three league game also ensured that they finished as runners-up in the league as well.
During the season the Club were awarded F.A. Charter Standard Adult status. A prestigious award, which few adult clubs of our size possess despite having reduced our number of teams to seven from the previous seasons eight. We have a plaque with our name on it down at the County F.A. Headquarters. This now means that we have an F.A, approved constitution, that we adhere to the F.A.’s policies on child protection and on how players, managers, coaches and spectators behave. It also means that we have one F.A. qualified coach per team and that we also have someone for each team with a current Emergency First Aid Certificate. It is hoped that it will also increase our chances of obtaining any grants that are available.
And so to season, 2006-2007, it was one in which several new ventures were embarked upon. As mentioned previously, the First Eleven were now playing in the new Premier Division of the Liverpool County Premier League. Because of move up to Step 7 level in the national pyramid, the Club had to enter the Lancashire Shield. This was done with some reluctance because it ended our 109-year participation in the Lancashire Amateur Cup. The Club were also invited to enter a team in the Liverpool Senior Cup as I. Zingari League winners. This is a floodlit competition in which the likes of Liverpool and Everton Reserves take part. We were drawn against Speke, winners of the Liverpool Challenge Cup, and the County’s representative in the National Cup competition. We were convincingly eliminated at the first round
The Second Team management, with the blessing of the committee, decided to enter the St Helens Combination a completely new venture. It was a decision taken because it was thought at the time that we would be running more teams than leagues to play in. It was hoped to run eight teams in 2006-7 and with no reserve sides allowed in the County Premier league, the I. Zingari Combination being reduced to two divisions and the distinct possibility of the Old Boys League only having four divisions, another League was the only option. As it transpired the Club only ran seven teams this season after the late resignation of a team manager to manage elsewhere. The Second Eleven, fresh from their league and cup double of the previous season, were placed in the second of four divisions. After a slow start, they again did the league and cup double, and will play in the Premier Division of the St Helens League in 2007-2008. With Chris Connor and Joey Baxter still in charge they again reached the quarter-finals of the County Junior Cup and the final of the Northern Cup. Sadly they were again lost to a team they had beaten easily the week before in the league to win the title. They had reached the final, when in unusual step the Xavs had been allowed to enter three teams in the Northern Cup. One had reached the final, another the quarter-finals and the third the last sixteen.
After the successes of recent seasons, this was a moderate one for the First Eleven.This was principally down to the loss of key players through retirement and injury. Their replacements found the going tough in the move up to Step 7 level. The team despite experiencing the unusual situation of fighting against relegation still did well in the George Mahon Cup, for all teams in the County Premier League, reaching the semi-final, losing in the last minute of extra time to Waterloo Dock.
In the Lancashire Shield a first round defeat to eventual finalists, Coppull United after extra time made the team realise the standard they were playing at. Coppull were no better than us in playing strength, in fact we had played all of extra time with nine after having two players sent off and even equalising in this period. What was different was the facilities. They had an enclosed ground with floodlights and a clubhouse and bar. On Merseyside we are twenty years behind other areas of the Country in the facilities that this level of football is played on.
The other successes this season were the Fourth Eleven run by Paul ‘Pez’ McKenzie who did the double of Division Two of the I. Zingari Combination and the Divisional Cup called the Trophy Competition. The over-40s, run by Brian Deakin, again continued to dominate their cup competition and won it for the second year running. There had been several changes in team management at the season’s start. Paul Bennett and Mike White, who had stepped up from running the Sixth Eleven with success, now ran the Third Eleven, in Division One of the I. Zingari Combination. Mickey Thomas had introduced a team of mainly 17 and 18 year olds and it was decided to enter them in the Old Boys Division Four.
REPORT ON SEASON 2007-2008
The season saw the the 1st XI under the new management of ex-captain Ben Williams, assisted by Mike Wickham & ex-manager Billy Birch with additional support from Physiotherapist Eddie Howard. Because of their successes in five Cups they ended playing half their league fixtures in just March, April & May. When their league season had been completed they played 30, won 17, drew 5, lost 8, scoring 62 goals for and conceding only 28, the lowest in the division, earning 56 points and finishing a very creditable 4th out of 16 teams.
In the cups, they were eliminated, very unluckily, in the 4th Round of the Lancashire Shield by eventual finalist Euxton Villa. In the Liverpool Challenge Cup, they were defeated 1-3 by finalists Speke at the Semi-final stage. They also lost in the Quarter-final of the George Mahon Cup to First Division and eventual winners Aigburth P.H. They lost in the first Round of the I. Zingari Cup for Premier Division teams but success was reached in the inaugural season of the North West County FA’s Challenge Cup. Here they defeated Dalton United,from Cumbia, ROMA, East Villa and South Liverpool. In the final, which was played at the Liverpool County F.A. ground in Walton Hall Park, they defeated St Aloysius 1-0 in a very tense game. So after his first season in charge, Ben Williams and his players had won a trophy.
After some discussion, the I. Zingari Combination side was nominated as the reserve team. Managed by Mike White & Paul Bennett, they played in the First Division and ended a very creditable 2nd out of 12 teams. The number of home draws (4) was their downfall. They played 22 league games, won 15, drew 4, lost 3, scoring 64 goals for and conceding only 18, again the lowest in the division, earning 49 points. Losing their first game of the season 3-0, in retrospect, proved to be crucial. They led the table for most of the season but injuries and unavailabilities in the crucial penultimate game against NELTC, the league champions, proved to be the one hurdle they could not overcome, losing 2-1.
In the L.C.F.A. Intermediate Cup they reached the Quarter-finals only losing to their nemesis, NELTC again, after extra time. In the I. Zingari Combination Cup they suffered early elimination at the hands of Polish F.C., who as their name implies consisted of all Polish nationals, most of whom only spoke Polish and so could not give their name to the referee! In the Geoff Pye Cup for First Division teams, the side were eliminated at the semi-final stage after extra time and penalties. So it ended a season of nearly but not quite.
The St Helens Combination side, after their promotion, played in the Premier Division. Again they were managed by Chris Connor, assisted by Joey Baxter with the help of George Lee. Defeat in the second game of the season against East Villa 4-2 looked as if it might be crucial as either side suffered very few defeats throughout the season. But every time the Xavs faltered so did East Villa, until the title deciding end of season game at Villa. A large crowd saw the Xavs the better side and come out winners and champions 4-2. The League and Cup double was on the cards but the final saw them again facing rivals East Villa. This time Villa proved to be the better team. They played 22, won 17, drew 3, and lost only 2, scoring 82 goals for and conceding 28, earning 54 points running out league champions. Congratulations again must go to the management team who have now won five trophies in three seasons.
They also entered the L.C.F.A. Junior Cup and had a successful run beating Alder, East Villa again, after extra time, and Ravenhead Knauf, before losing to Mossley Hill in the Quarter-final in dubious circumstances. For next season, they have been accepted into the Second Division of the Liverpool County F.A. Premier League and have resigned from the St Helens Combination.
The Fourth Eleven with Pez McKenzie in charge moved from their successful season in Division Two of the I. Zingari Combination into the Liverpool Old Boys League Division One, again another step up for the players. It also proved to be a season of nearly but not quite for this side as well. They reached the Semi-final of the three cup competitions they had entered. In the Northern Cup they lost to eventual winners Old Bootleians 1-3, having defeated them in the league the previous Saturday. In the Senior Shield they lost to Alumni and in the Marlborough Cup they were defeated by Cardinal Newman O.B. In the league, they were always in contention until their backlog of fixture caught up with them. Officially they finished 4th out of 12 teams. According to the league they have played 18 games, won 11, drew 4, and lost 3, goals for 48, goals against 25, points 37. As you may notice this leaves four games unaccounted for. Two were declared null & void (?) and two the league said could not be played as we had run out of time to play them. If we had have been able to complete the season as we wanted to, we could have finished runners-up. You may now understand why the team manager is unhappy with this League.
Under Brian Deakin, the Fifth Eleven, in Old Boys Division Two, found themselves with a very unsatisfactory season in that they spent large parts of the middle of the season idle. This was largely a consequence having so many teams having successful cup runs, being drawn at home, and only having three pitches for our six teams. The large number of home midweek games at the end of the season allowed the team to recover from a poor first half of the season to finish mid-table. They played 22 games, won 7, drew 4, lost 11, goals for 39, goals against 46, points 25 finishing 7th out of 12 teams. They were eliminated from their league cup at the second round.
Mickey Thomas continued with his young side in Old Boys Division Four with much more success than the previous one. They were no one’s whipping boys this season, even competing with Quarry Bank O.B. the runaway leaders of the division. Eventually their inability to eliminate silly errors and finish a higher percentage of chances proved crucial. They played 22 games, won 9, drew 4, lost 9, goals for 45, goals against 44, points 31 finishing 6th out of 12 teams. They also were eliminated from their league cup at the second round.
For the first time in several seasons, we able to enter a competitive side in the Old Boys Junior Shield for players under-21. We ran out winners of this cup defeating Kingsford 2-1 in the final. It was a truly representative side with players from the 1st, 4th & 6th XIs and they were managed by Ben Williams with help from Pez McKenzie, Mike Wickham & Mickey Thomas.
Sadly, the usually successful Veterans Eleven were eliminated for playing, in error, an unsigned on player, in the first round. Amazingly one of aforesaid managers had not signed an Old boys form. Also on the playing side, the I. Zingari Combination side were selected by the league to represent them in their annual game versus the Old Boys League. This was a welcome honour and the team, with the help of some NELTC players, acquitted themselves well in a very competitive and high standard game.
Off the field, regular committee meetings were held where several interesting developments took place. Firstly a regular club programme was produced for the home games which brought in some sponsorship. A new club website was set up, which has developed considerable interest outside the club. The address is http//www.oldxaveriansfc.com.
Two Sportsman Dinners were held, the second of which proved to be very financially successful. An end of season presentation night held was also held. Here, player of the season awards were presented to
First Eleven David Maloney
I. Zingari Comb. Side Colin Knox
St Helens Comb. Side Sam Siddall
Fourth Eleven Michael Billington
Fifth Eleven Steve Wareing
Sixth Eleven John Mathews
Manager of the Year Ben Williams
Club Player of the Year Tony Healy
Young player of the year (top three teams) Paddy Doolan
Young player of the year (Old Boys teams) Dean Boaks
Clubman of the Year Eric Tocher
Pictures of the presentations can be found on the photos page of the website
Another the issue the committee is trying to resolve is the fact that from February 2007 the club’s discipline has been dealt with by Lancashire F.A. and not Liverpool as it previously always had been. We have written to the National F.A. to ask them to allow us to just affiliate with Liverpool County F.A. The matter we are told is being considered by a working party. After only two meetings in twelve month, we appear to be no further advanced although I have been told privately by Senior Lancashire F.A. officials that we will eventually get our way.
For the first time in four seasons, close season work on the pitches was undertaken on all the school pitches at the Club’s expense in summer 2007. This is to be repeated again this season. After much discussion, the committee has decided that any improvement to the facilities at S.F.X. will have to be at the Football Club’s expense with some help from the Cricket section. Repairs to the barrier on the First team pitch were made in the close season but the work was of such a quality that it was easily vandalised and is now in a sorry state of disrepair. The new committee will be giving serious thought on how this can be remedied.
REPORT ON SEASON 2008-2009
With the resignation of three of the Club’s managers and another squad moving up to play in a higher standard, season 2008-2009 necessarily became one of consolidation. Despite this, two teams experienced successful league winning and promotion seasons.
With the First Eleven losing their first game of the season to East Villa, after possibly the best organised pre-season they have ever had, prospects did not look well for improving on the previous season’s success. By the end of the season the team had an outside chance of winning the league if they had have beaten champions, Waterloo Dock, twice. Still they improved on their 4th place finish of last season by one place and reached the quarter-final stage of the Lancashire Shield and Liverpool Challenge Cup losing to the eventual winners in each case. In the Lancashire Shield they played Norcross & Warbreck from Blackpool and Haslingden St Mary’s before losing to Rochdale Sacred Heart. In the Liverpool Challenge Cup they beat Mossley Hill, and Crosfield/Rylands and Sacre Coeur Former Pupils before being eliminated by Waterloo Dock. The County F.A.s Cup which we won last season was not played for this season due to fixture congestion, so we are still the current holders.
The side was, again, ably managed by Ben Williams assisted by Mike Wickham and physiotherapist Eddie Howard. Overall their league playing record was played 28, won 17, drew 8, losing only 5 games, scoring 66 goals and conceding 35 achieving 53 points finishing in third place out of 15 teams. In the end, too many draws prevented the side finishing runners up in the County F.A. Premier League, Premier Division. The side is still improving and with a little more consistency in performance, continued success is not far away.
With the resignation Chris Connor to run Collegiate Old Boys’ County F.A. Premier League side much concern was expressed by your committee. We had committed the club to resigning from the St Helens Combination and fielding our reserve side in the Second Division of the County F.A. Premier League. Fortunately Pez McKenzie, after also initially resigning, agreed to carry on and run our Reserves, a step up in standard from the Old Boys Division One, for most of the players. His squad of very young but talented players allied to some experienced one’s struggled at first losing their first two games in high scoring matches. As it turned out, these teams ended up first and second in the league. The side eventually ended comfortably 7th out of 15 teams in the division. They were sadly eliminated in early rounds of the Junior Cup and the Lord Wavertree Divisional Cup. Overall they played 28, won 15, drew 4, losing 9 games, scoring 74 goals and conceding 64 achieving 49 points. Congratulations must go to Pez for despite his own health scares and domestic difficulties he saw the season out, which many with less character would not have completed.
The Third Eleven continued to play in the I. Zingari Combination Division One under the management team of Mike White assisted by Paul Bennett. They had been willing to step up to run the Reserve side for the benefit of the Club but had preferred to continue in the Combination. The committee obviously made the right decision as they ran out the I. Zingari Combination Champions and Geoff Pye divisional Cup winners. They were prevented from a clean sweep of trophies by a shock 1-0 defeat by Collegiate Old Boys in the Semi Final of the I. Zingari Combination Cup.
Their rivals through the season had been Mossley Hill and 1-2 defeat in only the fourth league game made their title chase very difficult. A 100 percent away record ensured that victory in the last game of the season, curiously enough against Collegiate Old Boys, would give the side the league title. In a close game, the side ran out winners 3-2 coming from behind.
The season had several turning points. One of these was the return game against Mossley Hill which was won easily 5-0, possibly the team’s performance of the season. Another was against third placed club Leyfield, in a mid week game. The Xavs had been outplayed but were hanging on for a draw. The Leyfield full back played the ball back to his keeper for him to clear down field. He proceeded to let the ball go underneath his foot into the net, ensuring an undeserved victory. Despite this stroke of fortunate, the team never gave up and won quite a few games with late goals demonstrating their perseverance and determination. Their league playing record was played 20, won 16, drew 2, losing only 2 games, scoring 47 goals and conceding 20, achieving 50 points. Congratulations to Mike, Paul and the players for the successes and may it continue next season.
They team also played in the Liverpool County F.A. Intermediate Cup reaching the quarter-finals after beating Warbreck Reserves, Stapleton Rovers, Old Cathinians, Bankfield O.B. Waterloo G.S.O.B. before losing to eventual winners Mosscroft from St Helens. They also won the I. Zingari Combination Division One League Cup in a close game against a skilful but ill-disciplined Leyfield side 1-0.
With the promotion of Pez McKenzie from running the Fourth Eleven to managing the Reserves, Mick Kilkie volunteered to run the Fourth Eleven. He was given the option of playing in Division One or Two of the Liverpool Old Boys League. He opted to consolidate in Division Two in his first ever season in management. He proved to a very welcome addition to the committee. Unfortunately, Mick was nearly suicidal after his first two games ended in defeat. Results then turned around and he won the next five league games. These two early season defeats always left this side which too much to do. Then one or two disappointing results late in the season resulted in the team finishing 4th in the league out of 12 teams. After last week’s Old Boys A.G.M. the side will be playing their football in Division One next season after several resignations from that division. The moral is that the season is never over until the last ball is kicked so always try and finish as high as you can in the league.
In the Cups, the side lost heavily to a Roby College side from Division Five in the Senior Shield who eventually only lost narrowly in the final. The team also reached the Semi-final of the League Cup before losing out Heygreen, the League and Cup winners. Their league playing record was played 20, won 11, drew 2, losing 7 games, scoring 51 goals and conceding 36 achieving 35 points.
With the resignation of Brian Deakin, Joe Grant volunteered to run the Fifth Eleven in the Fourth Division of the Old Boys League. After a first game defeat, results improved so much that promotion was ensured with three games to go. This was an excellent start to Joe’s Old Xavs’ managing career. Many games were close but the side always got the vital goal at the right time in game. Their playing record was played 22, won 16, drew 3, losing 3 games, scoring 68 goals and conceding 38 achieving 51 points. Disappointingly they lost in early rounds of both the Northern Cup and in the League Cup. Congratulations must go to the manager and his team, most of whom were new to the Old Xavs set up. They fitted in really well and are now an established part of the Club.
With the resignation of Mickey Thomas from managerial responsibilities to help Mick Kilkie this left a vital gap in the Club’s structure. After much committee discussion it was finally agreed to run an Over 35s team in the I Zingari Combination Veterans Division Two. The committee were reluctant field a side of this age group because this is the age group where future Club managers and assistants come from. But overtures from the senior members of the Club persuaded the committee. Simon Ventre volunteered to give up refereeing and run this team.
A 7-0 thumping in the first mid week game made people think if the right decision had been made. Things recovered because this was followed by four consecutive victories. Results, though, continued to be inconsistent through the season. The team lost 9-2 and 8-0 in games and yet in their final game they delayed Aintree Villa winning the league by winning 2-1. In the Cups they fell at the second hurdle in the County F.A. Veterans Cup and at the first in the Combination Veterans Cup. Their league record was played 26, an inordinate amount for a veteran’s team. They won 9, drew 5, losing 12, scoring 34 and conceding 55 achieving 32 points and finishing 8th out of 14 teams.
For next season, the team will be competing in an over 40s division which I think will better suit their aging bodies. At the moment it is uncertain how many teams will be in the division but it is definitely viable and will go ahead. This season there were just too many games to play and with nothing to play for, for most of the season, their organisation started to creak. This team also represented the Club in the Old Boys over 40s Cup but fell again at the first hurdle.
The under 21s, of whom much was expected this season, also fell at the first hurdle having taken the lead against Waterloo G.S.O.B.
2009 also saw the addition of an Under 9s team play under the Old Xaverians banner. Organised by Mark Clinton and managed by John O’Boyle, they played in the Mossley Hill League on a Saturday and in the Belle Vale League on a Sunday. The season ended with success in the Valley Cup with much joy on everyone’s part. For photos of their success look at the photos page of the website. They were entirely self funded this season and will continue to do so for the future. For next season, Mark has introduced an Under 12s, team as well as an Under 10s to play under the Old Xaverians name. Attempts were also made by the committee to have a youth team playing for us next season but our efforts failed. If anyone knows of a side who is willing play under our name next season or the season after please let the committee know. Our attempts to have a young side playing for us next season who have just come out of youth football was also thwarted through no fault of the committee but because of outside forces over which we had no control.
Off the field, one very successful and one less successful Sportsman’s Dinners were held in the College canteen. These raised nearly £5000. When decorated properly this provides an excellent venue for our requirements. Our Annual Presentation Night was also held here.
The profits from these function is entirely spent on improving the playing facilities at S.F.X. Twice a year the pitches are verti-drained to improve grass growth. Essential repair and maintenance work has also been carried out on the pitches. I think most of you will agree that the pitches looked the best they have for many a season. At the start of the season they were in superb condition. Drainage work has also been done on pitch No.2 (the square pitch) to the boggy parts. Whilst talking about pitches, the barrier around pitch No.1 was in such a state of repair, after vandalism by the pupils, that it had to be removed. So during the second half of the season the pitch had to manually roped off, and dismantled, for each First Eleven game which is real pain in the neck. The committee would welcome any reasonable priced alternatives which may be viable now that pupils do not have access to the fields during the day since the new fence was erected.
As I mentioned in last year’s AGM report the committee were in dispute with the Lancashire F.A. over the Club’s parent association. They were claiming the Old Xaverians as being first affiliated to them. This meant for us, that our discipline was dealt with by Lancashire F.A. After appealing to the National F.A., Mike White and Ben Mallett attended a Board of Enquiry in Manchester. When they came out of the meeting they were quite gloomy about the outcome but further research at the Liverpool County F.A. headquarters unearthed evidence which helped us win our case. The outcome is that for season 2009-2010 we will only be affiliated with Liverpool County F.A. and therefore our discipline will be dealt with by Liverpool as it has been since March. This also means that we will not be allowed to enter the Lancashire Shield or Amateur Cups as we are not first affiliated with them. This will mean the end of the Club’s over hundred plus years association with Lancashire F.A. and it is sad that it had to end so bitterly.
Your committee continues to meet weekly and their hard work ensures that things go smoothly on a Saturday. As the Club continue to expand and be forward-looking to ensure its continued existence and playing success, more and more jobs are being created. The burden of all this is far too much for the current committee members. We need other members to help with fund-raising and ideas for fund-raising. We someone to update the website on a weekly basis, at the most an hour’s work a week. We also need someone to produce either a weekly programme, or as a minimum, a web based monthly newsletter to keep the players aware of what is happening in the club. Without volunteers to take on these tasks they will not happen.
With all the upheaval last season, proper words of appreciation were not given to the retiring managers. Firstly, thanks to Brian Deakin, for all the hard work he has done for the Club over the years. He has played and managed in the Club at all levels including the First Eleven. He has been involved with the Club for many years and he still supports the teams on a Saturday. After all his years of work for the Club he decided to have a rest all be it for one year. Thanks also goes to Mickey Thomas who stood down from the committee but who has never really stopped doing behind the scenes work for the Club, assisting Mick Kilkie with the Fourth Eleven.
Next, Ian Milligan, who has also played and managed teams in the Club, decided to stand down from the committee. In recent years, Ian, through his hard work and dedication, has raised thousands of pounds for the Club funds. Despite standing down he still does useful work behind the scenes including driving the First Eleven in a minibus to distant away games and who stood in for the last four games to manage the Reserves in the absence of Pez McKenzie due to domestic circumstances. He will replace Pez as the Reserves manager for season 2009-2010. I would like to give him heartfelt thanks for his efforts. Finally, the Club would also like to thank Chris Connor, who after 15 years with the club, as a player and a manager, decided to try pastures new. He held several positions on the committee including the onerous one of fixture secretary.
REPORT ON SEASON 2009-2010
The First Eleven continued to play in the Liverpool County F.A. Premier League, Premier Division and was again managed by Ben Williams with strong support from Mike Wickham and physio. Eddie Howard. Brian Deakin joined the team later in the season to add further support. After a good pre-season of structured training and established friendlies, the First team results started well with three consecutive victories. This was the team’s best start to a season since becoming part of the County Premier League. Results then stuttered with inconsistent performances. Two heavy defeats to champions Waterloo Dock and runners up St Aloysius appeared to put paid to hopes the team had of winning the league. This poor spell also resulted in early exit from both the LCFA Challenge Cup and the George Mahon Cup. Then, from late January the results improved dramatically. The team went twelve games without defeat, which included ten victories. Amazingly Carl Gargan scored in ten of these twelve games. Carl had a fantastic season with his 29 goals which left him runner-up in the league's Golden Boot award as top scorer.
This successful run saw the team topping the table. Then in April, two teams resigned resulting in their records being expunged and the Xavs losing twelve points. As other teams played their games in hand, the side dropped down the division to end up fifth out of fourteen. Overall, it was a frustrating season. They did win the Division’s Award for the team with best discipline.
The Reserves started the season with Ian (Jock) Milligan in charge after the resignation of Pez McKenzie, after five seasons of management. Pre-season commitment by players failed to come to fruition and poor availability resulted in inconsistent results. With the new teams coming into Division Two of the County Premier League, the division comprised of eighteen teams. It was decided to split this division into North and South divisions of nine teams each. To increase the number of games a subsidiary cup, called the John Gregson Cup, was introduced. This was played on a World Cup basis of mini leagues of six teams to produce four semi-finalists. This turned out to be unsatisfactory, with us playing several teams four times in the season.
The sudden resignation of Ian Milligan, just before Christmas, because of he was unable to commit the time required to the job, caused problems in the Club’s organization. As Ben Mallett had been helping the Jock with the team, he took over the reins whilst the job was advertised in the Echo. Disappointing no suitable candidate was found who was able to take over Ian’s role mid-season and who also knew how the Club worked. Paul Bennett, joint third team manager and Vice Chairman, then volunteered to step into the breach until the end of the season. He was helped by Ben and Colin Windever, one of the applicants for the job.
At the same time, the side lost eight players for a variety of reasons. Paul was left with a very small nucleus of players and had to find a squad from those not being selected by other teams. Gradually a committed group of player came together but not necessarily of the right standard. In the fourteen games the new squad played they only won once but they were only defeated heavily once. They gave the opposition a game in every other game. Despite their lack of results they did not end up bottom of their division in either the League South or the John Gregson League which is credit to them.
After much soul searching, Paul Bennett has decided to return to the Third Eleven for next season. He will take the better players from this squad with him to strengthen this squad with him. To reward the players who stuck with the club and worked really hard at a standard higher than their ability, it has been decided to enter another team into the Old Boys League in Division Four. Here they should achieve the success their effort’s deserved. All the other teams will move up in the Club’s hierarchy but continue to play in the same leagues.
The Third Eleven continued to play in Division One of the I. Zingari Combination Division One. It was again managed jointly by Mike White and Paul Bennett until Christmas. Alan Jackson stepped in to help Mike when Paul took on the Reserve team. After last season’s successes a poor start seriously hampered their challenge for the title. Two defeats in their first two games, one to, eventual champions, MANWEB and one to Edge Hill left a lot for them to do. Favorable results with the odd set back saw them climb up the table to half way by Christmas.
Despite the disappointing league form steady progress was made in both the I. Zingari Combination Cup and the Liverpool Intermediate Cup. Wins over Holy Name (10-1), Formby Athletic, Mosscroft, last season’s finalists, and Avon Athletic saw them reach the quarter-final of the Intermediate Cup. Sadly, in a closely fought game, they lost 1-2 to Old Cathinians, the eventual finalists. In the Combination Cup they reached the semi-final before losing to the winners Park Brow at the semi-final stage. The side also lost out at the semi-final stage in the Geoff Pye Cup, the Division Cup, to Sacre Coeur, after extra time and penalties.
Steady progress was continued to be made, when with five games to go they found that they could win the league if they won all five games. Surprisingly, in the third game against a mid-table Collegiate side they found themselves 3-0 down after 20 minutes. Despite creating chance after chance they could only draw 3-3. The next game against, now champions MANWEB also ended in a draw. Their third place, despite being so disappointing, can be regarded as a success after their poor start. Mention should be made also of James (Macca) McDonald’s 31 goals during the season, many of these being vital ones.
With Mick Kilkie in charge, assisted by Mickey Thomas, the Fourth Team had been promoted to Division One of the Old Boys League. Consolidation in the division was Mike’s main aim and after the first six games he appeared to be achieving this. They won two, drew two and lost two to be nicely middle of the table. There they remained for the rest of the season, occasionally producing some outstanding performances. They reached the quarter-finals of the Senior Shield and the semi-finals of the Marlborough Cup, the divisional cup.
The most successful team in the Club was the Fifth Eleven who won the Connerty Cup and narrowly failed to win their division, Division Three of the Old Boys League. They were managed by Joe Grant who was assisted by Tom Morris. Like both the Third Eleven and the Vets, the side played the eventual title winners in the very first game of the season. A narrow defeat to South Mersey did not augur well for the rest of the season with having just been promoted from the division below. Five consecutive wins considerably altered their prospects. A surprise defeat to Waterloo halted this progress. From then, mid October, they only suffered one more league defeat all season. By the final game versus De La Salle Old Boys, a win would ensure the title for them. Also a win for De La Salle would mean they won the league, whilst a draw would give the title to the South Mersey team watching on the line. By half time the Xavs appeared to coasting leading 3-0. In the second half De La Salle fought back well to level the scores by the end of the game. This draw gave the title to the watching South Mersey side. It also meant that we ended up third on goal difference with all three teams on the same number of points. This was the end to a really exciting season for the Fifth Eleven, with it going down to the last kick.
The side also reached the Connerty Cup final by beating South Mersey in the semi-final 3-2. In the final, the side should have won easily but failed to take their chances thus allowing Cardinal Newman to equalize with a penalty from one of their few attacks. Sean Butterworth got his second goal of the game to ensure victory for the Xavs 2-1. The side also had a good run in the Northern Cup before being eliminated at the quarter-final stage by Manor Villa, with a last minute penalty. The side’s goals came mainly from Danny Costello and Sean Butterworth with a handy contribution from Pat O’Hanlon at the end of the season.
The Veterans with Simon Ventre continuing as manager, began a new venture by playing in the newly formed Over-40s Division of the I. Zingari Combination Veterans League. As there were only nine teams in the division each team played each other three times in the season. As stated previously the Vets began their campaign at, eventual league winners, Dingle, with a 1-4 defeat. They then went on to win their next twelve games. The return game to Dingle now became a vital one. Sadly the Xavs Vets had a man sent off and lost 2-4 making their job of winning the league very difficult. Defeat to Nalgo Vets in the next game made their task virtually impossible. The third game against Dingle, a few weeks later, ended in a 1-1 draw thus giving the title to worthy winners Dingle Vets with the Xavs Vets runners up. During this incredible season Colin Knox, who scored 23 goals achieved the remarkable feat of scoring in nine consecutive games, which even at this level is a very unusual occurrence.
At the end of the season the Old Boys League hold a knock out competition for Under-21 teams. We again reached the final versus Waterloo Grammar School Old Boys. In a game worthy of the County Premier League Xavs won 3-2 after extra time coming back from 2-0 down. Some fine players for the future were on display. The game was a credit to both sides.
Another fine achievement for an individual of the Club was that of Simon Grant. He captained the Liverpool County F.A. Premier League representative side to the final of the National competition for Step Seven leagues. Sadly they lost to the Guernsey Senior League in Guernsey, who now go on to represent England in a European competition next season in Croatia. It could so nearly have been Simon and the League side. Congratulations to him and the rest of the squad.
Off the field, there were some changes in the committee with long-standing Chairman, Vic Welsh, resigning due to family commitments. Eric Tocher took on the role of Chairman and as well as Treasurer. With the resignation mid-season of Billy Birch, Ben Mallett had to take on the role of Fixture Secretary as well as Secretary. He also had to keep the successful Club’s website up to date. All this is very time consuming. On top of this, Eric Tocher who is both Chairman and Treasurer is also the principal organizer of the two successful Sportsman’s evenings the Club have held this season. The Club is in desperate need of committee to lighten the burden on its current hard working members. Together the Sportsman’s nights raised over £4000, which has been earmarked to pay for the close season pitch renovation and pitch No.1 drainage work. Unfortunately, the pitch renovation is an annual cost which is shared between the school, the cricket club and us. It still cost us thousands of pounds each year which we as a club have to find. This season drainage work was done close season on pitch No. 2, the square pitch. This seems to have helped greatly. A successful presentation night was held in May, where Neil Maquire received the prestigious Club Player of the Year Award. He was awarded it in recognition of his contribution to the 1st XI and also his contribution to the Club particularly his support of the fledgling Junior Section.
Another good feature of the season was the further development of the Junior section. With help from some of the Club’s current playing members, a very successful Summer Soccer School was held over Whit school holiday at Hope College to encourage under 7s to 9s to join the club. This is following on from the success of the Under 10s who won the League and Cup double in a very competitive Belle Vale Sunday Junior League. This season the Junior section ran teams at Under 12s, who were runners up in the Knowsley International Tournament, Under 10s and Under 7s. For season 2010-2011 the Club will have an Under-18 team playing in the South Liverpool & District County Junior League on Saturday mornings, an under 11s team playing Saturday and Sunday mornings, two under-10s teams playing on Sunday morning, two under 8s team playing Sunday mornings and an Under 7s also played Sunday morning. The Saturday mornings will be in the Mossley Hill Junior League and Sunday mornings will be in the Halewood and Merseyside Junior League.
Through much hard work by Mark Clinton, the Junior section organizer, our Charter Standard status has been renewed and there will an effort next season to try and achieve Development status. This will give us more sway when we apply for grants. Also together with the website, it will help bring more sponsorship money into the Club. Currently, our junior section is also in the process of formalizing the club’s partnership with local primary schools as well as the College. This will, among other things, allow College PE students to get involved with training sessions for junior teams, gaining valuable experience for their coaching development.
With the previously mentioned contraction of numbers on the main Club committee it meant our manpower resources were severely stretched. It resulted in costly administrative errors, with both the First Eleven and Reserves losing points during the season. I would like to appeal for anyone who has the good of the club at heart, to volunteer for the committee and take on one of the many administrative or fund raising tasks that have to be done for us to play.
As you can see a lot of hard work is being done behind the scenes on your behalf to develop the Club so that is survives on into the future. Several major clubs have folded in the last few years because they do not think beyond the current season. Even the mighty Waterloo Dock are under threat. We are three years into our five year development plan and we are well ahead of target. All this is achieved through the hard work of a few individuals but they need help and support if the club is to survive and progress. All on the committee would all be grateful for any help and support you are able to give. There are vacancies on the committee for just ordinary committee members to help out in a general capacity. The committee is desperately looking for volunteers.
As always the Club is on the lookout for talented footballers both old and new. If you would like to play for the Club see the contacts page for details.
REPORT ON SEASON
I am happy to report on another successful season for the Club with one league title and four cup final appearances in the Adult section and a championship and a cup final in the Junior section. It is in fact the Junior Section that the most progress has been made with the Club fielding one Saturday side and seven sides on a Sunday. More of this later.
The First team after a poor start to the season recovered tremendously well to finish in second place in the Liverpool County F.A. Premier League Premier Division to champions Waterloo Dock. This is our highest placed finish since the County Combination and I. Zingari League were combined five years ago. After picking up only one point to the three promoted teams in the first four games it looked like it would be a disappointing if not struggling season. This impression continued with two further wins and two draws followed by three consecutive league defeats. This left the side in the unusual position of being in the bottom half of the table by mid October.
A decent run in the Liverpool Challenge Cup saw the side reach the quarter-final stage before losing to Southport Trinity. At this stage of the season, crucial errors and were being punished severely for them as is expected at this level. They also suffered early exits from the George Mahon Cup and the I. Zingari Cup, the Divisional Cup. After Christmas, the number of these errors decreased so much so, that from mid February until mid April, the side went undefeated, a total of eleven games or a third of the season. Credit must go to the players and the management team of Ben Williams assisted by Mike Wickham Snr for this really fine achievement at this level. Overall they played 30 league games winning 15 drawing 7 and losing 8, scoring 66 and conceding 45 achieving 52 points.
The most successful team in the Club though, without doubt, was the Second Eleven who won the I. Zingari Division One title for only the third time in the Club’s history. Under the management team of Mike White and Paul Bennett they gathered together a squad of young and experienced players that challenged throughout the season and also reached two Cup finals. The second game of their season turned out to be the most crucial. Because their opponents, Park Brow, had failed to pay their County F.A. affiliation fees or even their League fees, their fixtures had been suspended by the County. Consequently, the game and points were awarded to the Old Xaverians. These three points were vital as the side won the league by only two points from Park Brow. The moral is that a successful side needs good organization as well as good players.
Despite a slow start, the team topped the table from the first games but success in the LCFA Junior Cup saw them fall behind in fixtures so much so that they had six games in hand of Park Brow and were 16 points behind by the time the midweek fixtures started at the end of the season. This meant they had to win the last 12 games of the season to win the title as Park Brow had a superior goal difference. Even one draw would have seen them lose the title. With the extremely dry weather causing rock hard pitches with the consequent possible risk of injury, the squad did fantastically well to maintain their challenge right to the end. Their last game was against Alder away, where tremendous club support was given. After a nervous first half, the Xavs eventually ran out comfortable 4-1 winners. Joyous scenes were witnessed that night in the Club Bar.
After a fantastic run in the L.C.F.A. Junior Cup, where they reached the quarter- finals, they also were very successful in the I. Zingari Combination Cup and the Geoff Pye Divisional Cup. They reached the finals of both these cup competitions where, sadly, nerves caused them to underperform, losing to Leyfield and Park Brow respectively. In the League they played 22 games winning 19, drawing 1, and losing only 2, scoring 68 and conceding 23 achieving 58 points.
The Third Eleven continued to be managed by Mick Kilkie with assistance from Mike Wickham Jnr. and Paul Formby, after he had hung up his boots mid-season. They played 18, won 9, drew 2, and lost 7 scoring goals 38, conceding 29, gaining 29 points finishing fifth out of ten teams. After starting the season with three wins, a defeat to eventual champions Roby College O.B. started a miserable run for the team. They picked up only one more league point until mid January. This period also included an early exit from the Divisional Marlborough Cup. To counter this they began a good run in the L.C.F.A. Intermediate Cup with victories over Orford, Vale Madrid and Digmoor. Having reached the quarter-final stage, they finally met their match in King Charles F.C. in a narrow 1-0 defeat.
By now, several players had transferred back to the Club from South Liverpool. The return of these good young players greatly improved the squad’s strength. Results gradually improved as these players settled into the side. Progress started to be made in both the league and the Senior Shield, a cup for all the first teams in the Old Boys League. Their season ended with an unbeaten league run of five victories and a draw. They also progressed through to the Senior Shield Final, against Old Cathinians; sadly they lost 2-1 after taking the lead. The main contributing factor was the mistaken dismissal of a Xav’s player. The opposition player involved who should have been sent off went on to score the late winning goal. Overall the finish to the season augurs well for next season if the squad start fit and prepared.
The majority of this side had also played in the Old Boys Junior Shield, the Under-21s final, the previous week. After battering the opposition, also Old Cathinians, they failed to score. With amazing opportunism, Old Caths took a 3-0 lead before the Xavs started to whittle away at their lead but eventually running out of time to see them lose 3-2.
After the previous season’s promotion into the Second Division, the Fourth Eleven were looking to consolidate and maintain their place in the division. They did more than this, finishing second out of eleven teams. Under manage,r Joe Grant, and assistant Tom Morris, this was tremendous progress. The season started inauspiciously with two wins and two draws before two defeats in three games seemed to indicate a mid table season. An early exit in the Alan Brown Trophy was compensated for with a good run in the Northern Cup where they reached the quarter final stage. A final league run in of six wins and two draws and only one defeat, where they struggled to field an eligible side midweek, saw them consolidate second place. It is interesting to note that of their three league defeats two were against mid table side, Liverpool Medics and they were only six points behind champions Quarry Bank O.B. at the end. Next season the side will be run by Tom Morris as Joe Grant is unable to be there every Saturday because of work commitments but he will still be involved.
With the restructuring of Club by changing the leagues that each team were to play in, meant that last season’s County Premier Division Two side was disbanded. The few players still with the club from this side went to form the experienced members of the Fifth Eleven squad, who were entered into Division Four of the Old Boys League. The side was managed by father and son team of Mick and Dan Thomas. With the large majority of the players under twenty-one the season was going to be a steep learning curve. This opinion continued when they only had one win and one draw out of the first five games. Their form suddenly changed with a run of four consecutive wins which took them up to Christmas. Two more wins out of the first three games after the holiday period saw them high in the league table. Sadly four consecutive defeats placed them mid-table again. An early exit from the Cup also dashed their cup hopes. The season finished on a winning note with two more wins out of the last three matches. They finished seventh out of twelve teams, a creditable performance for such a young team in their first season together. They played 22 games winning 9, drawing 2 losing 11 scoring 37 goals and conceding 43 with a points tally of 29.
The Veterans, under a new management team of John Bendon and Dave Mather, continued to play in the I. Zingari Combination Over 40s Division. With three defeats in the seven league games, their hopes of improving on last season’s second place disappeared. Early exit from their two Veterans Cups put paid their hopes of success. Injuries, unavailabilities and late cry-offs greatly contributed to these disappointing results. So much so, that next season they have decided to enter the Over 35 division to increase the number of available players. Indifferent results continued for the rest of the season so that they ended third in an eight team division. They played 21, won 10, drew 4, and lost 7 scoring 43 goals and conceding 40, gaining 34 points.
For the 2010-11 season, it was decided to take a team of Under 17s under our wing. A couple of the squad were sons of ex-players. The side was run By Jimmy Taylor and Tony Foulkes. It was decided to play them in the South Liverpool & District Junior League Under 18 Division, which was supported by the County FA by them providing linesmen free of charge, for each game. Things did not start well when they had an abandoned game in a pre-season competition after a pitch invasion. For this they were rather unfairly thrown out of the competition. When the league matches started proper, they set off rapidly winning the first three games to top the league. Sadly results started to deteriorate when players failed to turn up or became unavailable due to work commitments. So much so that having reached the quarter-finals of the LCFA Youth Cup only nine players turned up which included two goal keepers and resulting in a heavy defeat. In the league they played 14 games, winning 8, drawing 1, losing 5, with 47 goals for and 42 goals against, achieving 25 points finishing fifth out of eight teams on goal difference and only three point off winning the league.
Next season, even though all of the squad is eligible for the Under 18 division again and the league is being taken over by the Liverpool County Premier League, it was decided that an early Saturday morning kick-off would cause the same problems as this. It has been decided to strengthen the squad with older players and to enter them in Division Five of the Old Boys League.
This season the Junior Section were able to field seven sides on a Sunday morning in the Merseyside & District Junior League at ages from Under 7s through to Under 11s, fielding two sides at Under 7s and Under 9s. One side was also fielded at Under 9 in the Mossley Hill Junior League of a Saturday morning. This was an increase from three sides the previous season. The driving force behind this was Mark Clinton, through whose work we were able to achieve full Charter Standard Status this season and go on to apply for Community Status. This would require us to have to include a female team! We have nearly reached this stage but a lot more work needs to be done. Through Mark’s and the Junior Section’s committee hard efforts, and with help from the County F.A., two Soccer Skills weeks have been held and a third is planned for the Whit week. The aim of these weeks is to recruit players for a new Under 7s team, so that we are able to field sides at Under 7s through to Under 12s next season.
Some playing success was experienced by this section with the Old Xaverians Juniors winning the Under 7s Conference and reaching the final of the Under 9s Conference Cup and finishing third in the Under 9s Conference. Congratulations to the players and the managers of all the teams for keeping the whole thing going so efficiently but especially to those who experienced some success. You can see the website for more details on the Junior Section.
Off the field, the Adult committee continued to work hard. The dressing rooms were painted close season although you would not think it now. Drainage work was also done on the First Eleven pitch, a sizable junk paid for by Club. The results were plain to see mid and late season with so much grass on the pitches and fewer games being called off despite the wet winter. Training facilities were also set up at Knowsley Hey for several teams and most people agree this is a magnificent facility. For next season, it has been arranged for us to have four half pitches for an hour each spread over Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 7th June.
Several successful fund raising events were organized during the season including a Race Night, our usual Sportsman’s night and a Cheese and Wine Evening as well as our annual presentation day. The Sportsman’s Night was a huge success financially raising nearly £5000. A £1000 was also raised by our first venture at a Cheese and Wine Evening. This turned out to the most entertaining event in many years so that we are certain to organize another for next season. Money raised at these functions will go on the annual maintenance work on the pitches as well the dressing facilities. Eric Tocher and Paul Bennett have done sterling work behind the scenes so that it is highly likely that some time next season we will have portacabin dressing rooms attached to the cricket pavilion with showers and toilets.
As some of you now know, I am standing down as Club secretary after twenty seasons doing the job. I still hope to be involved as a committee member but the club has become so large now that we need more and more contributing members. I will be around to assist the new secretary but volunteers, to make a contribution to committee work are urgently needed. Currently, several committee members are doing two and three jobs when their life would be much easier if they only had to do one. If you can find the time please volunteer your services.
Report on Season 2011/12
Whilst it wasn’t our most successful year in terms of trophies and titles, season 2011/12 was our 120th year in existence, and this was a magnificent achievement in itself. We fielded 7 open age teams in the 3 main Saturday Leagues in Liverpool and had another 8 junior teams competing across the weekend in Junior Leagues and development/friendly games. Our full range of teams contributed to what the club’s about and what we all do it for, playing for enjoyment, developing the club and players, being competitive, and for the social side.
All senior teams competed well in their Leagues, some with strong starts which couldn’t be sustained, others with slow starts which improved over the season. We reached 6 semi finals, competing well but in all cases losing, mostly by the odd goal.
The admin side of the club was again strong, meeting all the regular and challenging deadlines for submission of documents, fines, reports, teamsheets, charter standard accreditations, etc. thanks very much to Ben Mallett for all his help with this, accrued over a near 50 year association with the club.
The demanding role of arranging 7 weekly fixtures and even more with midweeks in the latter stage of the season fell to Fixture Secretary Micky Thomas, his first full season in the role. Micky did a perfect job, absolutely no issues with fixtures this year despite the usual difficult opponents and demanding League Secretaries round about FA Cup Final time. He rightly picked up a thoroughly deserved Clubman of the Year last Saturday night, and I’m very relieved he’s agreed to stay on in the role next year.
So while we generally do things well, we need some more volunteers and committee members. Some examples, it’s hit and miss who locks up during games on a Saturday, who co-ordinates the clearing up, who does the fundraising tickets, who organises and works at the social do’s. It tends to be the same few faces, some of whom should be concentrating on the teams they manage, a full time job in itself. So a perennial general plea, more help please!!
Discipline and Fines
The admin side of the club is strong, but we spend far too much time (and money) on dealing with and paying for disciplinary matters. Over £1,500 paid out in fines by the Club, with only 60% (£900) recovered so far. This can’t go on, it’s a waste of all our valuable time, resource and money, when we should be devoting time (and money) to strengthening our teams, seeking sponsorship and funding to improve our changing and playing facilities, and moving the club forward.
The club has to and will take a stronger line on player indiscipline in the future, and will ensure all fines incurred so far this season are paid, or will take action in accordance with sanctioned FA guidelines.
1st Team (4th in Liverpool County FA Premier League, Premier Division)
Successfully managed as we’ve come to expect over recent years by Ben Williams and Mike Wickham, assisted by Brian Deakin, physio Mark Doyle and Barry’s willing band of supporters. Finished 4th in the top amateur division in Liverpool. What an achievement for our club this is, Ben and Mike’s team being the flagship of our multi-faceted club competing at the highest level of amateur football in Liverpool, against strong clubs who devote all their energies to their single team. Maybe a lesson for us, but also demonstrates our high level of performance and the whole point of OXFC.
7 wins in the first 11 games gave the team a solid start, and a first ever double over reigning champions Waterloo Dock gave us real hope of the League. This was supplemented by an excellent LCFA Challenge cup run which ended in a tight quarter final at Croxteth. A run of only 1 defeat in the next 8 League games moved us to the top of the table, but crucial late defeats to REMYCA , Warbreck and new champions APH left us in 4th place.
Full Record – P35 W21 D 2 L12 F79 A24. League Position 4th of 15. Top Scorer Carl Gargan – 19
Players Player of Year – Jon Steen. Managers Player of Year – Neil Maguire
2nd Team (4th in Zingari Combination, Div One)
It was never going to be easy to defend last year’s title, particularly after the loss of such experience like Neill Melia, Matty Kearney and Mark Radcliffe. But magnificent performances from youngsters, new and “old” led us to a run of 15 wins and 1 draw in the first 18 games (League and Cup), leaving us placed to chase long time league leaders Liver Academy and in 2 semi finals, Zingari Challenge Cup and the LCFA Junior Cup.
We lost both semi finals 3-2 in epic games, vs Liver Academy and Allerton respectively, both of whom went on to win those cups. A disastrous March saw us lose 3 league games on the bounce, 1 to eventual champions Liver Academy which handed them the initiative. 2 wins, 2 draws and 2 defeats in the last 6 games meant a 4th placed finish, but lots of positives with the development of excellent youngsters Jake Sedgwick, Matty Thornberry, Ben Melia and Ryan Molloy amongst others.
A big step up to LPL Div 2 next year, and the team will need strengthening. Managers Paul Bennett and Mike White remain well up for it.
Full Record – P32 W20 D3 L9 F113 A48. League Position 4th of 12.
Top Scorer James McDonald 29. Player of Year – Jamie Stewart
3rd Team (5th in Liverpool Old Boys League, Div One)
Managed again by Mick Kilkie, a slow start in the League meant they were always chasing the leaders. Stability came about through an excellent LCFA Intermediate cup run, with some big wins. They came up against a strong Rainhill Town Res in the 5th round, losing 4-2 in a great game. An unbeaten League run of 7 games saw a late season surge, but a last game defeat to Quarrybank meant a 5th placed finish in a strong division. They were also beaten Quarrybank 1-0 in the semi final of the divisional cup.
Excellent seasons from Steve Waring, Billy Jones, Mike McStein and Connor Murphy amongst others. Mick was assisted by a variety of people over the season, but without real stability. As ever, help required, please apply through Committee!
Full Record – P27 W15 D1 L11 F 81 A47 – League Position 5th of 11.
Top Scorer & Player of Year – Connor Murphy (26 goals). OXFC Club Player of Year – Steve Waring
4th Team (3rd in LOBAL Div 2)
Managed by Tommy Morris (Manager of Year) assisted by Joe Grant, the experienced team had an excellent season competing for honours until the very last game. This turned out to be a pulsating Northern Cup semi final against a strong Billinge Reserves side’ losing 2-1 to a late goal. Billinge went on to win the Northern Cup final and also ended up as champions of the Cheshire League Reserve, a high standard of football.
In the League, the team started off the season well with 2 straight wins, but then a succession of drawn games saw them playing catch-up to eventual winners Waterloo. A run of 6 successive wins from Dec to February gave them fresh hopes but late defeats to Quarrybank and St Mary’s saw them finish 3rd. A successful season, and once again an improvement in the strength of squad and results.
Full Record - P25 W15 D3 L7 F61 A38 League Position – 3rd of 11
Joint Top Scorers – Shaun Butterworth & Jay Hargreaves (12) Player of Year – Darren Partington
5th Team (4th in LOBAL Div 4)
The 2nd season in this division saw the development predicted for Danny Thomas’s young side, and their 4th place finish was only one point and one goal (difference) behind champions Sacre Coeur.
They started great with a draw and 4 wins before 2 defeats to eventual champions Sacre Coeur in October, which would prove crucial in the long run. A run of 6 consecutive victories from January rekindled their title hopes but a Cup semi final defeat by Collegiate and a reverse to CivServ ended their quest for honours in March.
A great season, massive strides forward since their inaugural year, and a move to the Zingari Combination next season, where they will represent the Club with honour.
Full Record – P21 W13 D3 L5 F73 A34 League position 4th of 11
Player of Year – John Welsh. OXFC Young Player of Year and Top Scorer – Jordan Lockett (23 goals)
6th Team (8th in LOBAL Div 5)
Jimmy Taylor’s 6th team suffered a traumatic start to their first season in open age football, experiencing defeats in their first 7 matches. A win at Rockville got them back on track and they then went on a 6 game unbeaten run, and reached the semi final of their divisional cup, losing out to eventual champions, the strong Quarrybank side. They consolidated their League position to finish 8th.
An encouraging first season for Jimmy’s lads, some of whom made guest appearances for higher teams at the end of the season and performed very well, Steve Kearney amongst others. There’s some cracking young players in this side, and hopefully they will all be with the club for a long time to come.
Full record - P20 W7 D2 L12 F39 A51 – League Position 8th of 10 – Top Scorer – Carl Doherty (7)
Player of Year – Jack Tune
Over 35s (5th in Zingari Combination Vets Div 2)
Dave Mather took over the reins from John Bendon and took the seniors into the higher age group. They started the season off great, winning 6 and drawing 1 of their first 8 games. 3 consecutive losses then affected them, including defeats in both cups, and they then remained behind the leaders, and this may have affected spirit as the reliability of certain players dropped off.
They finished 5th eventually, but all enjoyed it at the higher level and Dave and his crew certainly enjoyed the social side of the season to the full.
Full Record – P21 W9 D2 L10 F48 A51 League position – 5th of 11. top Scorer – Jon Vidamour (9)
Player of Year – Billy Ashley
The hugely successful Junior Section has been co-ordinated by Mark Clinton, who is due a huge debt of gratitude for his efforts. I believe that children are our future, and it’s essential that we maintain and develop the links between our growing and thriving Junior section, and I will be concentrating on that as Hon Sec over the next 12 months.
The Club plan to enter an Under 18 team into the County FA Premier League Saturday Youth Division next season, under the management of Billy Kay. The team played in the Halewood & District Under 17s league last season.
Charter Standard Community Status
Achieved last year, with massive help and input from Mark Clinton, and important to our future development. Recently updated, a major administrative exercise but vital to our future, and will hopefully assist with future grant applications.
A development grant to improve our facilities has been applied for and the outcome is still awaited. The plan is to upgrade the facilities on the ground floor of the “cricket” pavilion into 2 dressing rooms which meet the Step 7 standards. It is anticipated that these facilities will be used by all teams over the season, and will give us breathing space to develop other facilities on site.
A hugely successful Christmas Wine Tasting evening was held, thanks to Dave Mather’s efforts, and Norman Whiteside entertained us at the Sportsman’s Dinners in April. Both events brought in much needed funds for our plans to improve the changing facilities at SFX. Again more ideas and help needed for future events.
SFX School 1st Team
Congratulations to SFX school Under 19s team who last week won both the prestigious Liverpool Schools FA Senior Shield, and the Bill Murphy Play Off Final. Managed by Pat Kelly, and Andy Murphy, and captained by Tom O’Driscoll who’s in the 2nd Team Old Xavs squad. OXFC will make a small presentation to the team at a friendly game being staged tomorrow afternoon at SFX.
Neil Maguire and Carl Gargan had the honour of playing for the County FA Premier League Representative side, including a bizarre game in the Isle of Man. Mike and Paul managed the Zingari Combination rep side, consisting mostly of 2nd team players plus some from MANWEB. They lost 3-0 to the Old Boys League, who had Xavs Mike McStein and Billy Vaughan in their line-up, amongst others.
Thanks to all on the Committee for their help and support, in particular on the regular admin side of things done by Eric, Ben and Micky. Also to all the others, the managers, all our players, our many supporters and our sponsors.
We move towards our 125th anniversary, and will continue to keep fielding teams who play good football, and pick up some trophies along the way.
24 May 2012
Report on Season 2012/13
Another hugely successful season for Old Xaverians FC, both on and off the field, with major forward strides taken. Highlights on the field included – the Under 18s wining the County Premier League Youth Division in their 1st season; Jimmy Taylor’s 6th Team doing their League and Cup double; the Reserves finishing Runners Up in their 1st season in LCPL Div 2; the 1st Team reaching the LCFA Challenge Cup Final for the 1st time in the Club’s long history; the 5th team finishing Runners up in Div 2 OB, and reaching the Northern Cup semi final. And our Juniors section continues to thrive under the leadership of Mark Clinton.
Off the field, we applied for and received a Football Foundation Grant to refurbish dressing rooms in the “new pavilion”, which were opened in March 2013. We held a good Sportsmans Evening in November and a legendary Wine Tasting evening in March, both excellent on the social and finance fronts. Our Presentation Day took a new format this year, with the inaugural Gill Tocher Trophy being competed for in a club 7-a-side Tournament, (which was a huge success) followed by traditional award presentations. Thanks to Danny Thomas for his planning, and to the whole Thomas family, Tommy Morris (and all the other refs) for their help on the day.
Our full range of teams contributed to what the club’s about and what we all do it for, playing for enjoyment, developing the club and players, being competitive, and for the social side.
The admin side of the club remains strong, meeting all the regular and challenging deadlines for submission of documents, fines, reports, teamsheets, charter standard accreditations, etc. thanks very much to Ben Mallett for all his help with this, accrued over a near 50 year association with the club.
The demanding role of arranging all the weekly fixtures and even more with midweeks in the latter stage of the season fell to Fixture Secretary Micky Thomas, his 2nd season in the role. Micky did a perfect job, absolutely no issues with fixtures this year despite the usual difficult opponents and demanding League Secretaries. Unfortunately Micky has decided to step down for the coming season, they will be very big boots to fill.
So while we generally do things well, we need some more volunteers and committee members particularly if we want to develop the Club. Some examples, it’s hit and miss who locks up during games on a Saturday, who co-ordinates the clearing up, who does the fundraising tickets, who organises and works at the social do’s. It tends to be the same few faces, some of whom should be concentrating on the teams they manage, a full time job in itself. So a perennial general plea, more help please!!
We also lost a few games in the Committee rooms this year through player ineligibility, and while sometimes unavoidable in valiant attempts to field sides, this is an area the club will be looking to improve on in future.
Discipline and Fines
The admin side of the club is strong, but we spend far too much time (and money) on dealing with and paying for disciplinary matters. Over £1,000 paid out in fines by the Club, with only 70% (£750) recovered so far. This can’t go on, it’s a waste of all our valuable time, resource and money, when we should be devoting time (and money) to strengthening our teams, seeking sponsorship and funding to improve our changing and playing facilities, and moving the club forward.
The club has to and will take a stronger line on player indiscipline in the future, and will ensure all fines incurred so far this season are paid, or will take action in accordance with sanctioned FA guidelines. Having said that, discipline in the Club is generally very good, with most of our teams near the top of their respective Fair Play tables.
1st Team (4th in Liverpool County FA Premier League, Premier Division)
Once again, successfully managed by Ben Williams and Mike Wickham, assisted by Brian Deakin, physio Mark Doyle, MW Junior and Barry’s willing band of supporters. An impressive late run of League results saw them clinch 4th place in the last game of a very long, hard and demanding season. Successful cup runs meant we were inevitably playing catch up, so what an achievement for our club this is.
We reached the LCFA Challenge Cup Final after a hard fought semi final victory over Rylands in Warrington. On the night, we played all the football against a physical South Sefton Borough, even when reduced to 10 men after a sending off for 2 technical offences. SSB got the benefit of a highly contentious penalty decision in extra time, and capitalised on it. When we were awarded a penalty a few minutes later, their keeper saved it, so we lost 1-0, despite being the better side all night. Just proves how hard it is to win things, and the fine margins between victory and defeat. We lost 1-0 to East Villa in the quarter final of the Zingari Cup, and 2-1 to the same opponents in the semi-final of the George Mahon Cup.
Very promising for the future with young players coming through, like Bobby Evans, and Jamie Harkness, with established players like Jon Weights, Dave Speed, Ian Gargan having great seasons and Carl Gargan maintaining his phenomenal scoring record. Downsides were serious injuries to Ryan Morgan and Neil Maguire, and the news that Ryan Becks is moving away in the summer.
Full Record – P36 W22 D5 L9 F92 A48. League Position 4th of 13. Top Scorer Carl Gargan – 21
Players Player of Year – Tommy Falconer. Managers Player of Year – Tommy Falconer
OXFC Club Player of Year – Tommy Falconer. OXFC Young Player of Year – Bobby Evans
Reserves Team (Runners Up in Liverpool County Premier League, Div Two)
We took the step-up to the County Premier League and it has proved a huge success. It took us a while to find our feet, but we kept in the hunt up to Christmas and our form since then was very consistent, winning 10 and drawing 2 of our last 15 League games. This saw us finish Runners Up, 4 points behind one-time runaway leaders, Famous Grapes, and only sealed in the last minute of the last game with an Adam Edwards penalty at Eli Lilly. Our run extended to the 2 League Cups, losing one semi-final narrowly and reaching the John Gregson Cup Final, only to lose on pens to Waterloo from Div 1. Our one disappointment was the 1st round exit in the LCFA Junior Cup, a bad day all round when Phil Murphy badly broke his leg.
Some great young players coming through, Tom Beesley, Sean Keely, Jonny Cattrall and Eden Heron, and some of our other young players now established, Jamie Stewart, Max Burns, Phil Hughes, Adam Edwards, Colin Thomas, etc.
Another big step up to LPL Div 1 next year, and the team will need strengthening again. Managers Paul Bennett and Mike White remain well up for it.
Full Record – P30 W17 D4 L9 F44 A34. League Position Runners Up of 13.
Top Scorer James McDonald/Adam Edwards 7. Player of Year – Colin Thomas
3rd Team (9th in Zingari Combination Div One)
The 1st season in this League proved challenging for the 3rd Team, though Danny Thomas’s young side held their own in the Division until late season until 2 late defeats meant they finished in 9th place. This was compounded by a squad implosion which saw them barely able to field a side for a Cup semi-final, and an inevitable defeat. A disappointing end to their Zingari campaign.
Full Record – P24 W8 D2 L14 F47 A61 League position 9th of 10
Player of Year – Jordan Lockett. Top Scorer – Jordan Lockett (8 goals)
4th Team (6th in Liverpool Old Boys League, Div One)
Manager Mick Kilkie resigned a month into the new season, leaving the Club with a big gap to fill. Thankfully John Bendon agreed to step into the breach and did a fantastic job galvanising the squad into a competitive outfit, when the team were in grave danger of folding. The team achieved some notable victories against table toping sides, but were eliminated from one Cup on a technicality. But the team are lloking forward to next season under John’s management, and he is already recruiting new players.
Full Record – P22 W10 D1 L10 F 45 A39 – League Position 6th of 11.
Top Scorer – Matty Thornberry 6. Player of Year – Phil Denton.
5th Team (Runners Up in LOBAL Div 2)
Managed by Tommy Morris assisted by Joe Grant, the experienced team had another excellent season competing for honours until their very last game. They lost out in the League to their nemesis, an equally experienced Quarrybank side, who didn’t always strictly honour the League rules, and also lost to them in the League Cup. Excellent League form saw them lose only 2 all season, but the late defeat to Quarry decided the title.
The team had another excellent Northern Cup run up, losing out to the same Quarrybank side yet again! This was on penalties after a pulsating 0-0 draw. All of Tommy’s experienced lads did him proud, and they will miss the experience of Simon Grant from next season after his recent move to USA.
Full Record - P20 W13 D3 L4 F53 A27 League Position – Runners Up of 9
Top Scorers – Jay Hargreaves (16) Player of Year – Simon Grant
6th Team (Double Winners in LOBAL Div 5!!)
What a turnaround for Jimmy Taylor’s 6th team after their 1st season last year. They started like a train and never stopped, winning games by bucketloads of goals (115 in total) and not losing all season, League or Cup. Rivals Sacre Coeur matched them all the way, and it all boiled down to the last 2 League games of the season, both against Sacre Coeur, with Xavs needing at least one win. Needless to say, both were won, and the League was won by a comfortable margin of 9 points. By this time they had already won the Grimshaw Cup with a 2-0 victory over CivServ in the Final.
Great season for all the lads, but special mention to Dean Johnson who weighed in with 38 goals, an incredible feat. Ryan Milner also scored 19. The team are looking to advance up the OB League next season, and some of their players are well capable of playing higher in the Club.
Full record - P26 W24 D2 L0 F115 A29 – League Position Champions & Cup Winners.
Top Scorer – Dean Johnson (38) Player of Year – TBC
Over 35s (4th in Zingari Combination Vets Div 2)
Dave Mather led the team to another successful season of playing drinking and eating. They finished 4th in the ever competitive Div 2 of the Over 35s section. Even the advent of photo id’s didn’t put them off their stride. They started well but found the top teams of Allerton and Stoneycroft too strong, although they remained competitive in those games.
They disappointed in the Cups again though, suffering their usual early exits. But they seem to have found a reliable goalscorer in Gary Parr, who ended the season on 17 goals.
Full Record – P21 W10 D5 L6 F48 A46 League position – 4th of 11. Top Scorer – Gary Parr (17)
Player of Year – Neil Martin
Under 18s (Champions of LCPL Under 18s Sat Youth Division)
The Under 18s also had an excellent 1st season in the Club. Playing in the highly competitive Saturday Youth Division of the Liverpool County Premier League, their season went right down to the wire. In their last game they needed a win, and hope close rivals Dunlops didn’t win by 5 more goals. During play word came through that Dunlops had postponed their game. Anyway the Xavs Youth got a winner with virtually the last kick of the game to win 3-2, and await the League’s decision on Dunlop. They were eventually awarded their game, but with no goals so we won the League on goal difference!
A hugely satisfying outcome for the Under 18s and their impreesive management team of Dom Farrell, Billy Kay and Paul Stanton. Their organisation and playing style has been superb all year, and they have been a credit to the Club. We are now making plans to assimilate them into the Club next season
Full Record - P24 W16 D2 L6 F74 A 40 – League Position Champions
Top Scorer – Emerson Hunter (16) – Player of Year - TBC
The hugely successful Junior Section has been co-ordinated once again by Mark Clinton, who is due a huge debt of gratitude for his efforts. I believe that children are our future, and it’s essential that we maintain and develop the links between our growing and thriving Junior section.
Charter Standard Community Status
Achieved last year, with massive help and input from Mark Clinton, and important to our future development. Recently updated, a major administrative exercise but vital to our future, and will hopefully assist with future grant applications.
A development grant to improve our facilities was received and the resulting new facilities are very impressive, and have led to our Step 7 full status being restored, as well as the Liv County Premier League’s. This is great news. However, the old facilities are now causing a problem and need to be fixed.
Jimmy Case was the guest speaker at our Sportsman’s Evening in November 12, and in March another hugely successful Wine Tasting evening was held, which was so good no-one can remember it!. Thanks again to Dave Mather and John Bendon for their efforts in organising the night, probably one of the best social nights in our history. End of season Presentation Day included a Club 7-a-side Tournament, where the Gill Tocher Trophy was competed for for the first time – it is hoped this will become an annual event, as the whole day and evening was a huge success.
Neil Maguire and Carl Gargan had the honour of playing for the County FA Premier League Representative side. Tommy Morris managed the old Boys League Representative side, consisting mostly of Old Xavs and beat the I Zingari Combination side 4-1 in the annual fixture.
Thanks to all on the Committee for their help and support, in particular on the regular admin side of things done by Eric, Ben and Micky. A special mention this year to Dave Reynolds for all the work he puts in on the grounds, the pitches have been excellent this year, and also for his liaison work with the school. Also to all the others, the managers, all our players, our many supporters and our sponsors.
We move towards our 125th anniversary, and will continue to keep fielding teams who play good football, and pick up some trophies along the way.
Report on Season 2013/14
Another good season for Old Xaverians FC both on and off the field, as we edge towards our 125th Anniversary in 2017. We experienced all the emotions of grassroots football nowadays, inconsistent facilities, multiple postponements due to no-shows and withdrawals, abandonments due to indiscipline, poor winter weather, but we conducted ourselves well, competed to the end in all our Leagues, welcomed a successful new side into the Club, reached a couple of Cup Finals, managed the OB Representative side, and even managed to win a League! This last accolade went to John Harkin and Tom Edwards' Division 4 Old Boys side, ending up League Champions in their 1st season with the Xavs, also losing narrowly in their Cup Final, and earning John the Manager of the Season award. The 1st Team competed well in the top League in the city, finishing 4th, and reaching the semi final of the LCFA Challenge Cup. And our successful Juniors Section continues to thrive under the leadership of Colin Barratt and his Committee.
Off the field we held successful social nights with the ever popular "Wine Tasting" evening in the autumn and a successful Race Night in the spring, both raising significant funds for the Club. We departed from the Sportsman's Evenings this year, although may return to them, and we contributed funds and practical help to the refurbishment of the Xaverian Club, with footballers Steve Waring and Rob Kyle taking major parts in the project, aided by countless others from all sections of the Club. The results are there for all to see, the Club is looking tons better, and this should be supported by all taking out individual memberships where possible. Our recent presentation day continued last year's successful 7-a-side tournament, the Gill Tocher Trophy being won by the Japan team, including Andy Edmondson, Darren Partington, Steve Linder, and several others, worthy winners. Season Awards were then presented in the Club, a great night. Thanks go to Tommy Morris, Joe Grant, Eric Tocher, Ben Mallett, Micky Thomas (and lads), Jimmy Taylor (and family) and Steve Stewart and his team of referees for all their help on the day, and all who contributed by helping and participating.
Our full range of teams contributed to what the club's all about and what we do it for, playing for enjoyment, developing the club and players, being competitive, and having a great time on the social side. Our senior playing structure this year began as follows:
1st Team - Premier Division, Liverpool County Premier League - managed by Ben Williams &+
Reserves - 1st Division, LCPL (promoted from Div 2) - Paul Bennett and Mike White
3rd Team - 1st Division, Zingari Combination - taken over by John Bendon and Paul Formby
4th Team - 1st Division Liverpool Old Boys League - taken over by tommy Morris and Joe Grant (from Div 2)
5th Team - 2nd Division LOBAL - taken over by Jimmy Taylor and Tony Foulkes after their team won Div 5.
6th Team - 2nd Division LCPL - Paul Stanton after his team won the LCPL Under 18s Division
7th Team - 4th Division LOBAL - new team run by John Harkin and Tom Edwards
Over 35s - 2nd Division, Zingari Combination Vets League - Dave Mather and Phil Lundy.
The admin side of the Club remains remains strong, and this becomes increasingly important as we see longstanding opponents struggling to continue through poor administration, lack of finance, lack of players and indiscipline. Once again we met all our deadlines for fines, reports, teamsheets, accreditations etc, and once again Ben Mallett played a major part in this, keeping all the procedures in good order, and providing vital information on Registrations, eligibilities, etc. - the club would seriously struggle without Ben's attention to detail, and we are all very grateful for it.
Paul Formby took on the role of Fixture Secretary and did us proud against the usual backdrop of difficult disorganised opponents, (some of whom couldn't be bothered turning up to games they'd never confirmed), demanding League Secretaries, and late postponements for weather or whatever. Paul obviously had a difficult year with the 3rd team but we hope he can be persuaded to stay on in the role of Fixture Sec - and he was unanimously voted Clubman of the Year.
We are also well represented on the Committees of all the Leagues we compete in - Eric Tocher (Old Boys); Dave Reynolds (Zingari Combination); and Ben Mallett (County Premier League) all holding senior positions on their Committees.
But as usual we need more volunteers, or the future may be as inevitable as some of the other famous names which have gone by the wayside this year, Old Holts, Allerton, Kingsley, Pinewoods, amongst others. Never in the field of amateur football has so much been owed by so many to so few - our small committee which runs the biggest amateur club on Merseyside, sorting pitches, teams, kits, equipment, leagues, social do's, etc etc ad infinitum. More help greatly appreciated, volunteers always accepted.
Our playing administration has been much improved this year, with hardly any fines or complaints re ineligible players, poor discipline, etc. However we did fail to fulfil one fixture, which I view as a major lapse, and when we have in excess of 200 players signed on is serious and is viewed unsympathetically by the Leagues, and hopefully not a sign of things to come.
Discipline and Fines
Much improved this season, and better payment of the lower fines we did incur. However, we were involved in one of the most serious cases of indiscipline, with opponents taking things way beyond limits and incurring serious personal injury and damage to the Club's structure by way of significant resignations and the mid-season folding of one of our teams, in the Zingari Combination. A serious situation, and our only response can be to ensure we maintain our good behaviour and discipline throughout all teams in the Club.
1st Team (4th in Liverpool County FA Premier League, Premier Division)
Once again successfully managed by Ben Williams and Mike Wickham, assisted by Brian Deakin, physio Mike Kilkie, and MW Junior. Ben lost a host of players from last season, notably the Gargans, Ryan Becks, Tommy Falconer, and keeper Jon weights for most of the season. However, they remained in the top half all season and the return of Jonny Quirk and Ryan Morgan and the introduction of Anthony Lyons, James Anderson, Chris Brady and Liam Kavanagh were major positives. They finished 4th in the League for the 2nd season in a row, displaying remarkable consistency in the highest standard in the city, competing against single-team established clubs.
In the Cups, the 1sts were eliminated from the Zingari Challenge Cup early by Liverpool North Warbreck on penalties after finishing 2-2 AET, but a glorious cup run took us to the semi-final of the LCFA Challenge Cup. Another epic semi vs South Liverpool ended in undeserved defeat, 4-3 after extra time, but no disgrace. We reached the quarters of the George Mahon Cup, but lost 2-0 to an energetic Collegiate side who had just been promoted to the Premier Division,
Overall, it was a positive season of consolidation and transition, and suggesting a future of real promise if we keep this young side together. We all know the management team of Ben, Mike & Brian will be well up for it!
Full record - P34 W20 D3 L11 F81 A57, League Position 4th of 15. Top Scorer Anthony Lyons - 23
Players Player of Year (PPY) - Sean Irving. Managers Player of Year (MPY)- David Speed
OXFC Club Player of Year - Sean Irving
Reserves Team (11th in Liverpool County Premier League, Division 1)
A tough season in our first at the highest level this team could possibly play in the city. The magnificent achievement of 1st season promotion last year was brought into focus by the sharp increase in playing standard, exacerbated by the loss of some of our best players from the promotion season. These included Player of Year and Captain Colin Thomas, and the influential pair of Max Burns and Phil Hughes. However, we got plenty of new players in, and never needed numbers, just a bit more quality. We held our own in the League until a mauling by South Liverpool Res in the LCFA Junior Cup quarter final in November - this was a watershed for some players we never saw again, and we struggled through the winter. Some notable wins and draws meant we avoided the ignominy of relegation, and we reached the quarter final of the John Gregson cup but lost 2-1 to Litherland Remyca Res.
So a tough season after several successful ones for this team, having finished in the top 4 in various Leagues for each of the last 9 seasons, inc several titles. So all we can do is learn, put it right and get better next year. We'll be up for it.
Full Record - P29, W8, D4. L17, F54, A71 League Position - 11th of 14 Top Scorer - James McDonald 24
PPY - James McDonald. MPY - Jamie Stewart OXFC Young Player of the Year – Jake Sedgwick
3rd Team (Zingari Combination Div One - resigned Dec 2013)
Under the new management team of John Bendon and Paul Formby, this team started the season well and were going well in the LCFA Intermediate Cup when they suffered from a serious incident in a game against Alder in November. No need to record the details all over again, but the seriousness of the incident and injuries suffered led to the resignation of the managerial pair, and the inevitable Club decision to withdraw from the Zingari Combination, a decision made harder because of our long term association with that League. Some great players were doing well, including Jake Sedgwick, Josh Bendon, Mike McStein and Darryl Loughran (who scored 15 goals for 3 club teams), but thankfully they're all still playing within the Club.
4th Team (4th in Liverpool Old Boys League Div One)
A step up to Div One for Tommy Morris and Joe Grant's squad after finishing Runners Up in Div 2. They held their own in a tough league, were involved right until the end, and reached the Divisional Cup Final, only losing on penalties after a tight game to double Cup Winners, Bankfield. This was to be Tommy and Joe's final season running the team after several years in charge, and their meritorious service was marked at the end of season Presentation Night. It is hoped that their players will remain within the Club, we cannot afford to lose such quality.
Full Record - P24 W15 D3 L6 F66 A37. League Position 4th of 10; Cup Runners Up. Top Scorer - Danny Costello - 14
PPY- Darren Partington. MPY – Andy Edmondson
5th Team - (4th in Liverpool Old Boys League, Div Two)
Jimmy Taylor's young side took the jump to Div Two after winning the Div 5 title last year. They held their own all season and finished a very creditable 4th, and are looking to progress on this finish next season in the same division. This has been their 3rd season in the Club, and some of their good young players are starting to integrate into the Club, and we need to see more of that over the coming seasons.
Full Record - P18 W8 D1 L9 F46 A59 - League Position - 4th of 9 - Top Scorer - Ryan Milner - 17
PPY – Ryan Milner MPY – Liam Gerrard
6th Team - (11th in LCPL DIv 2)
A very difficult for Paul Stanton’s team – the idea was to bring last year’s successful Under 18s Champions and their management team into open age football, and we committed to County Prem Div 2 on that basis. Just before the season, 2 of the 3 managerial team decided they didn’t want to do it, and this had a knock-on effect on some of the players who we didn’t see again. Paul gamely took this situation on, and assisted by Ben Mallett and drafting players in from other Club teams, he made sure we fulfilled every fixture in a very competitive division. This was a challenge and they suffered some heavy defeats, although there were quite a few positives; good young players like Sean McBride and Luke Harrison developing, assisted by veteran Kevin Rowan, and a good team spirit despite heavy losses. It is important that we keep these players within the Club, whatever our structure may be next season.
Full Record - P23 W2 D3 L18 F36 A96 - League Position - 11th of 11. Top Scorer - Jay Hargreaves - 7
PPY - Kevin Rowan; MPY - Sean McBride
7th Team - (Champions in Liverpool Old Boys League Div 4, and Cup Finalists)
A fantastic season for John Harkin’s team, their first as a group within OXFC, and they ended up winning the League after a very close title run in, sealed by a 6-0 victory away at Rhein in their last game. Their attempt at the Double was thwarted by long term championship rivals ACOL in the Cup final, losing 1-0. A huge success, a great bunch of lads with a very positive attitude to football, very well disciplined and some great young players – including Mike Campbell who helped the Reserves out late in the season, Matt Morris, Sam Harris, amongst others. They look forward to competing in OB Div 3 next season.
Full Record - P24 W17 D3 L4 F84 A34 - League Position - Champions, Cup Runners Up.
Top Scorer - Matt Morris 22. PPY - Matt Morris; MPY - Shaun Cameron
Over 35s - (3rd in Zingari Combination Vets Div 2)
In with a chance of title right into April, 2 late defeats to title rivals meant Dave Mather’s side finished in 3rd place, their best season yet. Goals came from the ever reliable sources of Gary Parr and Jon Vidamour, and all the usual Xavs suspects played well, inc Tony Smith, Steve Waring, Craig Lewis Leon Hymas, Tony Healy, and others. They go again next season.
Full record - P21 W13 D1 L7 F69 A45 - League Position - 3rd of 10. Top Scorer - Gary Parr 18
PPY - Jon Vidamour MPY - Steve Waring
This season saw Mark Clinton stand down, after several years in charge and having built the Xavs Juniors from scratch to the very impressive structure it has now. Colin Barratt has taken over the reins and has a very solid committee around him. The teams are progressing very well, with success at every age group, and are progressing towards the age where there will be no gaps between the Junior and Senior sections, and the aim will be to feed into the Senior section. Well done to all involved in the Old Xavs Juniors, a credit to the Club overall
Changing Facilities & Pitches
The “new” dressing rooms are proving to be a huge success and proving a sound investment of the time and money we put into achieving them. The SFX pitches this season have been their best ever, again the investments we have made in the groundwork paying dividends, and the personal effort that Dave Reynolds puts into the pitches is also a major factor and is hugely appreciated by all. We hope to benefit over the next few years from the redevelopment of the school facilities, and while this may bring benefits, there may also be some challenges which may radically alter the structure of Old Xaverians FC.
We used a pitch at Heron Eccles again this season; this has proved to be an expensive venture which we have decided to discontinue next season. We need to be realistic about our finances, and stretching the resources of the club too far, and to me it doesn’t seem right to play home games other than at SFX. In the current climate of teams folding, and amateur football becoming so expensive to arrange, it seems sensible to rationalise our outgoings. This may also have to be reflected in the playing structure of the Club too.
In a departure from recent practice , and after discussion at last year’s AGM we decided not to hold a Sportsman’s Evening this season, although we did continue with the Wine Tasting evening, this time in early November with a Halloween theme, giving everyone just enough time to recover from the hangover just before Christmas. Thanks again to Dave Mather and John Bendon for their efforts in organising the night. We re-introduced a Race Night in March, which was a financial success, although there could have been more players attending.
The End of season Presentation Day again included a Club 7-a-side Tournament, where the Gill Tocher Trophy was competed for for the 2nd time – and we hope to continue with this as an annual event, as the whole day and evening was again a huge success. Ideas and suggestions always welcome on how we can improve our social functions.
Jonny Quirk, Anthony Lyons and David Speed represented the club in the Liverpool County Premier League Representative side in their Cup games against other Leagues. Tommy Morris had the honour of managing the Old Boys Representative side against the Zingari Combination, although the Zingari side won the fixture this season.
Thanks to all on the Committee for their help and support, in particular on the regular admin side of things done by Eric, Ben, Paul Formby and Mike Wickham. A special mention again to Dave Reynolds for all the work he puts in on the grounds, the pitches have been their best ever this year, and also for his liaison work with the school. Best wishes to Tommy Morris and Joe Grant who have managed successful teams over the years. Also to all the others, the managers, all our players, our many supporters and our sponsors.
We move towards our 125th anniversary, and will continue to keep fielding teams who play good football, and pick up some trophies along the way. Really looking forward to another season of progress next year – We Go Again!!
Report on Season 2014/15
Another good season for Old Xaverians FC, our 123rd in existence. Although we didn’t manage to win any trophies this season, we finished Runners Up in 3 of the 6 Leagues our senior sides competed in, reached one Cup final, and our flagship 1st Team finished 4th in the Liverpool County Premier League for the 3rd season in a row, consistency again in the top amateur League in the city, and reaching the semi-final of the Zingari Challenge Cup and the quarter final of the George Mahon Cup. And our successful Juniors Section continues to thrive under the leadership of Colin Barratt and his Committee.
Off the field we held successful social nights with the ever popular "Wine Tasting" evening in the autumn and a successful Race Night in the spring, both raising significant funds for the Club. Our recent Presentation Day included another successful 7-a-side tournament, the Gill Tocher Trophy being won by the Spain team, including Adam Edwards and several others, worthy winners. Season Awards were then presented in the Club, a great night. Thanks go to Danny Thomas, Tom McHale, Eric Tocher, Micky Thomas, Paul Stanton, Steve Stewart and his team of referees (Billy Birch, Tom Jackson and Jamie Stewart) for all their help on the day, and all who contributed by helping and participating.
Our full range of teams contributed to what the club's all about and what we do it for, playing for enjoyment, developing the club and players, being competitive, and having a great time on the social side. Our senior playing structure this year was as follows:
1st Team - Premier Division, Liverpool County Premier League - managed by Ben Williams & Mike Wickham
Reserves - 1st Division, LCPL - Paul Bennett, Mike White & Paul Stanton
3rd Team - 1st Division Liverpool Old Boys League-taken over by Jimmy Taylor and Tony Foulkes (from Div 2)
4th Team - 2nd Division LOBAL – taken over by John Harkin (after winning Div 4 last season)
5th Team - 4th Division LOBAL - new team run by Danny Thomas and Tom McHale
Over 35s - 2nd Division, Zingari Combination Vets League - Dave Mather and Phil Lundy.
We didn’t enter the open age Zingari Combination for the first time in many years, and the previously successful Under 18s players joined up with the Reserves side along with manager Paul Stanton. We welcomed new managers Danny Thomas and Tom McHale who successfully ran the 5th team. This reduced our teams from 8 to 6. As a result we played all our home games at SFX, deciding not to take up the expensive option of an alternative pitch at Heron Eccles like last season.
The admin side of the Club remains strong, and this becomes increasingly important as we see longstanding opponents struggling to continue through poor administration, lack of finance, lack of players and indiscipline. Once again we met all our deadlines for fines, reports, teamsheets, accreditations etc, and once again Clubman of The Year Ben Mallett played a major part in this, keeping all the procedures in good order, and providing vital information on Registrations, eligibilities, etc. - the club would seriously struggle without Ben's attention to detail, and we are all very grateful for it, and his Award is well deserved.
Paul Formby continued in the role of Fixture Secretary, a demanding role but vital to the successful running of the Club, and it is hoped he will remain in post this coming season too. Special mention to Mike Wickham too for all he does for the Club, and for the excellent weekly minutes. We were again represented on the Committees of all the Leagues we compete in - Eric Tocher (Old Boys); Dave Reynolds (Zingari Combination); and Ben Mallett (County Premier League) all holding senior positions on their Committees.
But as usual we need more volunteers, our small committee runs the biggest amateur club on Merseyside, sorting pitches, teams, kits, equipment, leagues, social do's, etc etc ad infinitum. More help greatly appreciated, volunteers always accepted.
Our playing administration has been much improved this year, with no fines or complaints re ineligible players, poor discipline, etc. However we did fail to fulfil 2 fixtures, which I view as a major lapse, and when we have in excess of 200 players signed on is serious and is viewed unsympathetically by the Leagues.
Our discipline in games was again much improved this season, with better payment of the lower fines we did incur. It is important that we maintain our good behaviour and discipline throughout all teams in the Club, and that we are recognised for our sporting ethos.
1st Team (4th in Liverpool County FA Premier League, Premier Division)
Once again successfully managed by Ben Williams and Mike Wickham, assisted by Brian Deakin. Again Ben lost several players before and during the season, to injury and emigration! This included a horrific leg break suffered by Antony Conroy early in the season, from which he is still recovering. Despite a poor start (lost 5 of first 8 games), their form since mid-November has been astonishing, being unbeaten in 17 League games (13 wins), and losing only in 2 Cup games since then. New signings Jay Hartley, Tom Williams, Tom Hackett, Calum Woods and Shaun Jones all made positive contributions, strengthening the squad and adding skill and goals. The team’s strong finish took them to a 4th place finish for the 3rd season in a row, displaying remarkable consistency in the highest standard in the city.
In the Cups, the 1sts were eliminated from the LCFA Challenge Cup early by Maghull, but enjoyed good cup runs in both the George Mahon and Zingari Challenge Cups. We lost to Div 1 Champions Waterloo GSOB in the GM Cup quarter final and went out 2-1 to eventual winners East Villa in the semi-final of the Zingari Challenge Cup.
Overall, another good season, which earned Ben and his managerial team the Club’s Manager of the Year award – a promising future ahead if we can keep this squad together
Full record - P35 W21 D4 L10 F78 A61, League Position 4th of 15. Top Scorer – Carl Gargan 12 goals.
Players Player of Year (PPY) – Calum Woods. Managers Player of Year (MPY) - David Speed (yet again) Club Young Player of Year – Calum Woods
Reserves Team (8th in Liverpool County Premier League, Division 1; John Gregson Cup Finalists)
Another tough season in a highly competitive division full of club’s 1st teams eager to get into the Premier Division. We started well with 6 points from our 1st 2 games including an away win at eventual champions Waterloo GSOB, but mid-season League form dipped and it took 4 wins in our last 5 games to confirm our status in the division, finishing a comfortable 8th in the end. We used 57 players over the season, and as a management team we felt very let down by some senior players who did not finish the season with us. But this was more than compensated for by some brilliant performances from upcoming young players like Shaun McBride, Luke Harrison, Dom Maher, Matty Colbeck and Adam Lowe, among others, plus some very good new signings Pat O’Sullivan and Rob Lamont, who scored 32 goals between them.
Our best performances probably came in the Cup, with a run to the LCFA Junior Cup quarter final where we lost 1-0 to eventual finalists Windle Labour AET. We lost in the Roy Wade Trophy quarter final to Eli Lilly after 2 legs and extra time. But we reached the final of the John Gregson Memorial Cup again, only to lose on penalties after a pulsating 4-4 draw AET.
So another tough season but one of development and with a bright future if all the young lads stay for next season and continue to improve. Best wishes to Tim Long who suffered a terrible facial injury towards the end of the season – brave, mad goalkeepers!!
Full Record – P32, W15, D0. L17, F75, A62 League Position – 8th of 12. Top Scorer – Pat O’Sullivan 18
PPY – Shaun McBride. MPY – Luke Harrison
3rd Team (8th in Liverpool Old Boys League Div One)
A step up to Div One for Jimmy Taylor’s squad after moving up from Div 2. They held their own in a tough league, but due to team dropouts, fixtures became disjointed and patchy, and due to the month gap between the final 2 fixtures we were unable to field a side for the final game. We also reached the quarter final of the Senior Shield.
Full Record - P21 W6 D3 L12 F45 A65. League Position 8th of 9. Top Scorer – Ryan Milner - 13
PPY- Ryan Milner. MPY – Ged Cooke
4th Team - (Runners Up in Liverpool Old Boys League, Div Two)
After winning Div 4 last season, John Harkin’s team jumped 2 divisions to this level. They had an excellent season but came up against one team too good in the league in Roby College, and finished Runners Up to them, despite beating them away 2-1. Roby sealed the title with a 3-1 win at SFX late in the season. This has been their 2nd season in the Club, and they have been a credit to Old Xaverians FC, and proving to be a hugely competitive team. A good Northern Cup run ended in the 3rd round to eventual winners Woodchurch OB.
Full Record – P21 W13 D3 L5 F57 A29 - League Position – 2nd of 10 - Top Scorer – Phil Jones - 21
PPY – Phil Jones MPY –Sam Harris
5th Team - (Runners Up in Liverpool Old Boys League, Div Four)
A great season for Danny Thomas and Tom McHale’s team, their first as a group within OXFC, and they ended up Runners Up after a very close title run in with Oakes Institute who remained unbeaten all season. They lost their 1st game at Waterloo, then won 12 of the next 14 drawing the other 2. However it was not enough to catch Oakes and despite a creditable 1-1 draw away, Oakes sealed it at SFX in our team’s only other League defeat all season. Excellent season for Club Top Scorer Jordan Lockett who scored more than 30 goals, helped out other teams in the club, even went in goal when needed! This was reflected in the Club End of Season Awards where he did well. The team look forward to competing in a higher OB Division next season.
Full Record - P22 W16 D2 L4 F71 A28 - League Position – 2nd of 11.
Top Scorer – Jordan Lockett 30 (plus 4 for 1st/Reserves). PPY – Jordan Lockett. MPY – Danny Starkey
Over 35s - (Runners Up in Zingari Combination Vets Div 2)
An excellent season for Dave Mather’s side, finishing Runners Up to a very strong Brittania side who maintained their 100% League record all season. We won our first 6 games until a draw at Sacre Coeur before meeting Brittania who won at SFX. Continuous improvement, and once again the team’s best season yet. Despite this, at the time of writing it seems that Dave Mather is stepping down as Manager and these will be big boots to fill. Thanks to Dave for all he has done over the years as player, manager, committee member and barman.
Special mention also to Colin Butterworth who won a clean sweep of Player’s Player, Manager’s Player and Club Player of the Year – even finding time to figure in the Reserves unbeaten end to the season . They go again next season (If we can find a Manager!).
Full record – P18 W10 D4 L4 F71 A28 - League Position – 2nd of 9. Top Scorer – Steve Waring - 11
PPY, MPY, Club Player of Year – Colin Butterworth
The Juniors continue to prosper under the guidance of Colin Barratt and a very solid committee around him. The teams are progressing very well, with success at every age group, and are approaching the age where there will soon be no gaps between the Junior and Senior sections, and the aim will be to feed into the Senior section. Well done to all involved in the Old Xavs Juniors, a continuing credit to the Club overall
Changing Facilities & Pitches
The SFX pitches this season have again been their best ever, the investments we have made in the groundwork paying dividends, and the personal effort that Dave Reynolds puts into the pitches is also a major factor and is hugely appreciated by all. We hope to benefit over the next year from the redevelopment of the school facilities, and while this may bring benefits, there may also be some further challenges which may radically alter the structure of Old Xaverians FC.
We again decided not to hold a Sportsman’s Evening this season, although we did continue with the Wine Tasting evening, this time in early November with a Halloween theme, giving everyone just enough time to recover from the hangover just before Christmas. Thanks again to Dave Mather and John Bendon for their efforts in organising the night. We held another Race Night in March with the help of Mike Wickham Junior and others, which was a financial success, although there could have been more players attending. Ideas and suggestions always welcome on how we can improve our social functions, as we believe some of our ideas are becoming a little dated and tired.
Sadly a proposed trip to Scotland was called off, but there’s always little trips to Spain going on for some innocuous reason! The End of season Presentation Day again included a Club 7-a-side Tournament, where the Gill Tocher Trophy was competed for for the 3rd time – we will continue with this as an annual event, as the whole day and evening was once again a huge success.
Thanks to all on the Committee for their help and support, in particular on the regular admin side of things done by Eric, Ben, Paul Formby and Mike Wickham. A special mention again to Dave Reynolds for all the work he puts in on the grounds, the pitches have been their best ever this year, and also for his liaison work with the school. Best wishes to Dave Mather who has been involved with the club for several years as player, committee member, manager, events organiser and barman, and we hope he remains involved in some capacity. Also to all the others, the managers, all our players, our many supporters and our sponsors.
We continue to move towards our 125th anniversary, and will continue to keep fielding teams who play good football, and pick up some trophies along the way. Really looking forward to another season of progress next year.
Hon Secretary 27 May 2015
Season Review 2016/17
The 2016/17 season was one of joy and sadness for Old Xaverians FC, with first team manager Ben Williams stepping down after nine years in the role. Ben, who was skipper of the first team before serving as manager, decided to bring the curtain down on his seventeen-year association with the club a few games into the new season. Everyone at Old Xaverians FC would like to place on record their thanks to Ben for his dedication over the years and the successes he has brought to Old Xaverians FC both as a player and a manager. We wish him the best of luck for the future.
On the field, The Xavs competed well, with several cup final appearances and competitive league campaigns. The main successes came from the reserve side, winning the JGM cup final and the Liverpool County Premier League Division One title for the second year in succession.
First Team: (Finished 7th in Liverpool FA County Premier League)
The first team were rocked early in the season when Ben Williams decided to resign from his position as first team manager. After successfully running the side for the best part of a decade, Ben’s shoes were big ones to fill. Due to the vacancy becoming available during the season and all the other Xavs managers engrossed in their own campaigns, the first team was temporarily taken over by club captains Pat O’Hanlon and David Speed. The club eventually decided to advertise the vacancy in the Liverpool Echo, with former South Liverpool reserve manager Carl Buoey becoming the successful applicant.
Carl worked hard to stamp his authority on the team, bringing in several signings to try and find an upturn in fortunes for the group. Although there were spirited performances,results stayed inconsistent and they were knocked out of the cup competitions early.
A 2-2 draw on the final day saw The Xavs finish 7th in the table, a respectable position given the upheaval. As the season came to a close, Carl offered his resignation. We would like to thank Carl for stepping in at a difficult time in the club’s history and giving his all to the cause and representing himself and the club with dignity and honour. The season also proved to be the last for Pat O’Hanlon and David Speed. The two have served the club with distinction over many years and we wish them well in their new adventures.
With the majority of the first team leaving for pastors new, our current reserve side, managed by Mike White, Paul Bennett and Paul Stanton, will be stepping up into the County Premier League next season.
Reserve Team: (Champions in Liverpool FA County Premier Division One, JG Memorial Cup Winners)
Another outstanding campaign for the management trio of Paul Bennett, Mike White and Paul Stanton, repeating their achievements of last season by winning the league and cup double. They lost only one game in the league, with the strike partnership of Rob Lamont and Mike Hutton scoring an incredible 52 goals between them. A special mention also to Owen Cassidy, who bagged 18 goals in a hugely impressive debut season. A historic treble was halted in a tense semi-final that finished 4-2 to home side British Rail after two late goals in an incredibly even game.
A brilliant season for the players and the management team, who gained the prestigious Manager of the Year trophy at the end of season awards. They look forward to competing at the highest amateur level in the city next season.
Third Team: (3rd in Liverpool Old Boys Division One – Liverpool County Football Association Intermediate Cup – Runners-up)
John Harkin’s third team enjoyed a competitive campaign in their second season in the top division of the Liverpool Old Boys league, finishing third, behind unbeaten champions Quarry Bank (who won 18 out of 18!) and a strong Roby College side. The team enjoyed good cup runs in the Bill Hughes Senior Shield and the Marlborough Trophy, being knocked out in the quarter-final stage of both in extremely tight games to Roby College and FC Salle respectively. The main highlight of an eventful season was a fairytale run to the LCFA Intermediate Cup final, where they scored a last minute winner in the quarter final, and a last minute equaliser in the semi-final (which they went on to win in extra time). Unfortunately, the Xavs luck ran-out on the big day. After being reduced to ten men with ten minutes remaining, the Xavs goalkeeper made an uncharacteristic error from the resulting free-kick that ended in a goal. John’s team also had a goal disallowed in the last minute, eventually losing 1-0 to a strong Rainhill Town Reserve side at the impeccable County FA ground at Walton Hall Park.
John was also selected to manage the Liverpool Old Boys representative side in their annual game against the I Zingari Combination. In a thrilling game played at SFX in a great spirit, the Old Boys team ran out 5-3 winners after being 2-1 down at half time.
An exciting campaign from the side, who will hope to progress even further next year.
Fourth Team: (5th in Liverpool old Boys Division Two)
The 16/17 campaign saw Dan Thomas step down as manager at the end of the season to move onto pastures new…in Dubai! The season itself was a competitive one for Dan’s team, holding their own in a tough division and being competitive in every game. An exciting Northern Cup run saw the team knocked out in the third round on penalties against Pemberton United. Unfortunately, they were knocked out in the first round of the Alan Brown trophy by Collegiate. A 5th place finish showed how competitive this side can be and they will hope to improve again next season in the same division under the guidance of new manager Jay McMillan.
Over 35’s: (7th in I Zingari Combination Veterans Division Two)
This season saw the return of the Old Xaverians over 35’s team, managed by Kenny Jones. Kenny showed a remarkable dedication and attitude towards the team, despite continually struggling for players. Highlights in the season included a 3-1 victory over NAC Vets and a 0-0 classic v eventual champions REMYCA. A challenging but thoroughly enjoyable season had by all, and Kenny can’t wait to do it all again next season!
Another hugely challenging but successful season at Old Xaverians FC. A big thanks must go to Chairman, Eric Tocher, Vice Chairman, Paul Bennett, Club Secretary, Mike White, Fixture Secretary, Paul Formby, Honorary Secretary, Ben Mallet and all-round club legend Dave Reynolds. Thanks to their enthusiasm and commitment to this football club and the amateur game in general, we are able to continue fielding sides and adding to our rich history. We look forward to celebrating our 125th anniversary next year. THANK YOU.
SATURDAY 21ST MARCH 2020 - ALL GAMES POSTPONED DUE TO COVID 19
All scheduled games today were cancelled by the appropriate leagues. It is likely that that could be the end of the season for all teams as there is not enough weeks left to complete the season with all the postponements due to weather earlier in the season.
Hopefully we will be football next season & it starts on time. To all readers, look after yourself & ensure you self isolate properly so you do not catch this disease.
SATURDAY 14TH MARCH 2020 - RESERVES PUT IN CREDITABLE PERFORMANCE AGAINST LEAGUE LEADERS
In a strange season due to weather & now the threat of Covid-19, the RESERVES were the only side who played today. The other scheduled game, the UNDER 17s was postponed due to the coronavirus threat. Will they ever finish their season not having played since before Christmas? All the other teams did not have a scheduled game! The RESERVES played table toppers EMPRESS & put in more than creditable performance but sadly went down 3-7
With the closing of professional football it will not be long before all football is cancelled, I think. We will have to wait & see.
SATURDAY 7TH MARCH 2020 - FIRST & THIRDS BOTH ELIMINATED FROM THE CUP
The FIRST ELEVEN were drawn at home to high flying EAST VILLA in the I. Zingari Cup. Despite the team playing well they found themselves 0-2 down & with only 10 men after mid-fielder Mike Potter was harshly sent off for a late challenge on the keeper. The XAVS played their best football after this but were unable to get back in the game. The THIRDS were also drawn at home to OAKES INSTITUTE OB from the First Division in the Bill Hughes Senior Shield. Both teams had 100% league records before the game. OAKES ran out comfortable winners by 1-4 with Carl Gargan scoring the XAVS goal.
Unusually, their were three home games today. The OVER 35S were also at home but they lost to ABBEY ROAD VETS by 1-7. The RESERVES also lost heavily to MARSHALLS ROBY in the league by 1-8. The UNDER 17S had no game. Overall a bad day for the XAVS teams
SATURDAY 29TH FEBRUARY 2020 - FIRST DRAW IN ONLY GAME PLAYED
With the weather continuing to be very wet, in the worst February on record, only one XAVS team played today. The FIRST TEAM who were due to play at SFX transferred their game to a3£G at the Simpson ground, which happened to be available. The game V PAGE CELTIC was drawn 0-0 in windy conditions.The RESERVES who had beaten ROMA 2-1 on Tuesday night, struggled for a side & their game V THE LUTE game was postponed.
The THIRD ELEVEN who were unable to switch their game to a 3G from SFX, had to postpone their game against LORD DERBY OB. They still remain top of the table. The UNDER 17S had their game against BLEAKHILL ROVERS PHOENIX postponed for the fourth week running. In their division CHERRYBROOK WANDERERS resigned from the league & their record was expunged. This left the UNDER 17S 4th out a division of 6 teams. The OVER 35S had no game again.
SATURDAY 22ND FEBRUARY - THIRDS THROUGH TO SENIOR SHIELD QUARTERS
The THIRD TEAM played F.C. SALLE O.B. from the 1st Division in the Bill Hughes Senior Shield & had a narrow 1-0 victory to move them into the Quarter Finals where they have a home draw against OAKES INSTITUTE OB also from the first division. Chris Brady scored the vital goal. Despite the dreadful weather midweek, all scheduled XAVS fixtures were played. The FIRST ELEVEN lost narrowly away to SEFTON ATHLETIC on a 3G pitch. Incredibly the SFX grass pitches were playable. The RESERVES played high flying RED RUM & only lost narrowly 0-1 in a good performance.
The OVER 35S, who are well advanced with their fixtures, had no game whilst the UNDER 17S had their game called off by the league.
SATURDAY 15TH FEBRUARY 2020 - THIRDS INTO THE SEMI-FINAL
The THIRD ELEVEN overcame the wind & rain caused by Storm Dennis, to go into the Alan Brown Cup semi-final by beating KCC OB by two goals to one. Goals from sub George Farrell & Chris Brady saw the XAVS through. The FIRSTS had a league game away to bottom club ALUMINI & ran out 3-0 winners to go six points clear of the relegation positions.
The RESERVES were due to play RIVER JUNIORS but their opponents have withdrawn from the league due to a lack of players, consequently their record has been expunged. The OVER 35S Vets Cup tie V NETHERLEY WOOD LANE LEGION was, as expected, postponed due to a waterlogged pitch. The UNDER 17S game was also postponed for similiar reasons.
SATURDAY 8TH FEBRUARY 2020 - A 100% RECORD TODAY WIN ALL TEAMS PLAYING WINNING
With the FIRST TEAM having no league game today, they organised a friendly against CHESTER NOMADS & ran out 4-2 winners. The RESERVES did have a game against bottom team LIVERPOOL HIBERNIA. They had a comfortable 4-1 win.
The THIRDS had a rearranged game against LORD DERBY O.B.. They also won 2-0 to record 10 wins out 10 in the league this season & remain top of their division. Scorers were Jordan Lockett & Darryl Linnell.
The VETS & the UNDER 17S had no game.
SATURDAY 1ST FEBRUARY 2020 - DESPITE A BAD DAY OF RESULTS SIGNS OF IMPROVEMENT THE XAVS TEAMS
The FIRST ELEVEN turned up to PAGE CELTIC with only 10 regular players resulting in the manager John Harkin having to start. Eventually Owen Cassidy arrived after 25 mins, from moving house, Immediately another XAVS player was injured & became a passenger for the rest of the game with no substitutes available. The game itself started went well for the FIRSTS with a free kick on the half way line, taken by Sean McBride going directly into the top corner of the net after everyone missed the ball. PAGE CELTIC then scored three times in 7 mins either side of half time. The first was goal direct from a corner, the second was a harsh penalty. The third was a defensive error. Despite the XAVS pressing hard they never looked like scoring so a disappointing day
The RESERVES play at home to KIRKBY TOWN who they had lost 10-0 to in the first game. A 1-2 defeat was overall a good result. The OVER 35S played SOUTH LIVERPOOL VETS & also lost 1-2 which was an improvement on their earlier defeat by SOUTH. Joey Windle scored the XAVS goal. The THIRD TEAM had no game.
The UNDER 17S lost 0-2 to BLACKBROOK who unbeaten in the league, so again a creditable performance.
SATURDAY 25th JANUARY 2020 - THIRDS CONTINUE THEIR UNBEATEN AGAINST SECOND PLACED MEXOC
The THIRD TEAM, wno have an unbeaten league season, continued their successful season, with win a win against 2nd placed team MEXOC. The first half was even with very few chances to either side. Eventually, the skill of the XAVS forward created a chance which Jon Steen converted. A penalty came shortly after, drawn by some more experienced play by John Gargan, from which Jon Steen comfortably slotted. The 3rd was again a superb finish from Jon Steen for his hat-trick, again after good work from Carl Gargan. An excellent display against their closest rivals.
The RESERVES were up against league winners, QUARRY BANK OB, who had recently beaten the FIRST TEAM in the Cup. In a progressively confident performance the RESERVES worked themselves into the game. They managed to hold the QUARRY to 0-1 at half time. Recently returned player Ryan Cullen was introduced at half time. Within 10 mins he had equalised from a excellently taken free kick. The XAVS then pushed forward & looked likely to get a winner.. Even more so when a QUARRY BANK player was sin-binned. Unfortunately when he returned the opposition scored three goals in 5 mins to force a 1-4 defeat of the XAVS. Despite this, it was a creditable performance by the team.
The VETS lost 1-2 against bottom team THE GRAMMAR after taking the lead. The UNDER 17S meanwhile were 3-0 down to RUNCORN TOWN before a spirited fight back enabled the team to equalise with a 3-3 draw.
SATURDAY 18TH JANUARY 2020 - FIRSTS WIN RECORD THEIR FIRST HOME WIN OF THE SEASON
The FIRST ELEVEN won for the second week running. It was also their first home win of the season. With this win the FIRSTS go 9 pts clear of their opponents WATERLOO GSOB who are next to bottom. The XAVS were much the better team for the first 30 mins but despite making several very good chance were only 1-0 up through a spectatcular volley from Ed Knox. As the half wore on WATERLOO came more into the game with keeper Chris Evans making several good saves. In the second half our opponents continued to dominate but were unable to finish their few chances. The game was settled with 10 mins to go. After good work by Mike Potter, in winning the ball back, & passing to Owen Cassidy who dribbled past several opponents before releasing Dave Sharkey for a one on one which he slotted quite comfortably. This ensured a fine 2-0 victory for the FIRSTS. The RESERVES moved further up the table with a fine win over BOTANIC by 3-2.
The THIRD TEAM maintained their unbeaten league run with a 6-2 victory over LIOBIANS, Scoers were Carl Gargan with 4 goals, a penalty from John Steen & a goal from Jordan Lockett. The OVER 35S lost 1-5 to BRNESC to move down to next to bottom in their division. The UNDER 17S game early morning was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch after the heavy overnight rain
SATURDAY 11TH JANUARY 2020 - FIRST GET THEIR SECOND WIN OF THE SEASON
the FIRST TEAM had a comfortable win against a mid-table ALDER side. Debutant, Dave Sharkey had an easy tap-in after 20 mins after good work by Mike Campbell. 10 mins later the XAVS went 2-0 up after a free-kick by Adam Newbold was fumbled by the ALDER keeper onto Ed Knox who claimed the goal. In the second half ALDER barely threatened until with 5 mins to go the ALDER left back was left free at the back post to allow him to score. The expected onslaught never came & the FIRSTS secured their second win of the season. The RESERVES after drawing with ROMA 1-1 midweek, lost 0-3 to BOTANIC at home.
The THIRDS were also at home against last week's opponents Cardinal Newman OB who they beat comfortably 6-3. This week they found themselves 2-0 down before they secured a famous late victory with 5 mins to go after two goals from Jon Steen & one from Tom Johnson. They have won every game in the League this season & top the division. The OVER 35S also won, beating bottom team THE GRAMMAR by 4-2. There was a hat-trick from Jon Vidamour & one from Colin Stewart.
The UNDER 17S drew 3-3 with ST ANNE'S ROVERS to go 2nd in the table. This was the best set of results the Club has had for some weeks
SATURDAY 4TH JANUARY 2020 - THIRDS CONTINUE THEIR UNBEATEN RUN
After the enforced winter's break through weather & pitch unavailability, the THIRD ELEVEN continued their victorious run. A 6-3 victory away to CARDINAL NEWMAN OB was their six win out of six league games. Goals from Jon Steen & Carl Gargan with two apiece & one each from Tom Johnson & George Farrell ensured a comfortable victory for the XAVS. in the County Premier League, the RESERVES lost heavily to KIRKBY TOWN by 0-10. The FIRST TEAM played QUARRY BANK OB from the Division below in the George Mahon Cup & lost to the better side by 1-3 with Jon O'Sullivan scoring the XAVS goal.
The VETS did not have a game..
SATURDAY 14TH DECEMBER 2019 - FIRST LOSE TO LEAGUE LEADERS
With the heavy rain during the week especially Friday, there was little football played on grass with weekend except on 3G pitches. The FIRST TEAM managed to switch their home game against LIVERPOOL NALGO to a 3G at the Simpson Playing Fields. Unfortunately, it did not help the XAVS who were 4-1 down to the top of the table NALGO at half time. The side play much better in the second half with no further goals being scored. The RESERVES were due to play the league leaders THE LUTE on a 3G. Due to an incident the week before, the County Premier League suspended THE :LUTE's fixtures until the matter is resolved. Consequently the RESERVES game was postponed. Whether we are awarded the points we will have to wait & see.
Both the THIRD ELEVEN & UNDER 17s games at SFX were postponed due to waterlogged pitches. The OVER 35s had no game. This was the last Saturday of fixtures before Christmas, so game the next two Saturdays. We return to normal on Saturday 4th January.
The Old Xaverians committee would like to take this oppotunity to wish all players & readers of these reports a happy Christmas & a healthy New Year.
SATURDAY 7TH DECEMBER 2019 - UNDER 17S CONSOLIDATE THIRD PLACE
The UNDER 17S side, who play their games on Saturday mornings & their home games at SFX, were away today to RUNCORN TOWN U17S. The XAVS won 3-2 to consolidate their 3rd place in the division.
Their were only two games in the afternoon. The FIRSTS lost 0-3 to 2nd placed MSB WOOLTON. Despite WOOLTON being the better side, the XAVS had no luck at all, as usually happens to side near the bottom of the division. The first goal came after a harsh free-kick & a defensive error which led to a game of heading tennis under our crossbar with ball finally crossing our line. The second was a penalty which again was harsh with Adam Newbold, in attempting kick a high ball clear, kicked the opposition players foot which was higher than Adam's. The third the referee admitted was offside, after final whistle.
The only other side to play were the OVER 35S who again lost heavily by 1-8 to BRNESC VETS with Jon Vidamour scoring our consolation goal. The RESERVES' opponents MSB WOOLTON VIKINGS could not raise a side & will forfeit the game at the next league meeting. The THIRDS had asked for a free date as a large number of the squad were unavailable this Saturday. They still remain top of their division.
SATURDAY 23RD NOVEMBER 2019 - THIRDS PROGRESS TO QUARTER-FINALS OF LEAGUE CUP
The THIRD ELEVEN had a convincing 4-0 win in the Alan Brown Cup against COLLEGIATE OB to move into the quarter-finals. Their scorers were George Farrell, Vic Luby, Jon Steen & Sean Irving.
The FIRST TEAM had a hard fought draw which could have been 4-4 but ended up only 1-1. The finishing was poor on the XAVS part, missing a penalty & two other one on ones, whilst Chris Evans had an outstanding game making a couple of tremendous saves. Calum Woods eventually slotted from 10 yds having been give the ball in the LOWER BRECK RESERVES penalty area by their centre half. Meanwhile the RESERVES returned to form beating LIVERPOOL HIBERNIA by 4 goals to 2.
The OVER 35S are currently really struggling, losing by 0-11 to league leaders BRITANNIA VETS, their second double digit defeat in two weeks They started with 10 men before eventually getting upto their full complement, for three of which it was their first game of the season. Matters are not helped with their goalkeeper have a broken his wrist & is likely to be out for the rest of the season. Consequently any injured players is usually delegated to play in goal if they are able to move. They are looking for a goalkeeper to play for them for the rest of the season.
Finally an apology. You may have noticed that the league tables are out of date. In previous seasons I have had no problem cut & pasting the league table from the old FA Fulltime website. For some reason, I cannot do it this except in new Fulltime, which several leagues do not keep up to date. I am still attempting to try & achieve this. Any advice will be gratefully received by means of the contact tab.
SATURDAY 16TH NOVEMBER 2019 - A DAY OF DISASTER FOR XAVS TEAMS
With the FIRST ELEVEN game postponed because the County Premier representative side were playing in the National Cup, there were only three adult games. After last weeks sending offs, a reduced strength RESERVE side lost heavily to BERNIE MAYS FC by 0-7. The VETS also lost heavily to LITHERLAND / REMYCA UNITED VETS by 0-10.
The THIRDS played away to Wigan side GIDLOW ATHLETic in the Northern Cup. They also suffered their heaviest defeat of the season in losing 2-5. Scorers were George Farrell & Jordan Lockett. The UNDER 17S also suffered their first league defeat of the season losing by 5 goals to nil to ST ANNES ROVERS. Overall a disastrous day for the XAVS
SATURDAY 9TH NOVEMBER 2019 - RESERVES SECURE DRAW WITH A 25 YARDER IN FINAL MINUTE
The RESERVES despite ending the game with only 9 players managed a draw 3-3 at home to EDGE HILL BCOB. The XAVS scored the first goal but ended up 3-2 down with a minute left when a 25 yard shot from flew into the net to earn a creditable draw to a team in the top half of the table. This point was achieved after two men had been sent off, Will Brash for two yellow cards & Will Goodison was given a straight red, for reasons spectators found baffling. Considering the same team had only 3 cautions all season, this is surprising.
Meanwhile FIRST TEAM played high flying NALGO on a 3G pitch at Long Lane playing fields The XAVS found themselves 2-0 down after only 15 minutes. The team had done well to keep this score line until half time against a rampant NALGO team who were fantastic in the 1st half. All of their players were strong on the ball, ran around creating space & moving around to help each other on the ball. Dave Seddon, in particular, performed well for the XAVS for the whole game after a slow start. NALGO the scored a third shortly after half time. Gradually though, the FIRSTS got a foothold in the game & started to play really well. But with so many dangerous players NALGO still continued to make chances bur could not score against an outstanding Chris Evans. Calum Woods headed in with 15 mins to go from an Adam Newbold free kick. It then looked like the XAVS might get a second & really put NALGO under pressure but it was not to be. So the game ended up 1-3 to NALGO, who the previous Saturday had beaten SOUTH LIVERPOOL, top of the West Cheshire League, in the Liverpool Challenge Cup.
All other games were postponed due waterlogged pitches.
SATURDAY 2ND NOVEMBER 2019 - THE RESERVES WIN FIRST GAME OF THE SEASON
With the merging of last season's Divisions One & Two, the RESERVES have had a difficult season so far often playing teams from the old First Division. This week they played away to a new team. RIVER JUNIORS. They went on to win their first league game of the season 5-2. Scorers were Alex Haake (3) & Sean McGurk (2)
The THIRD TEAM were drawn at home to VALLEY O.B. from the first division in the Senior Shield. The team recorded a good win by 4 goals to one to progress into the last sixteen. Two goals from Sam Harris,One from Sean Irving & an own goal were too god for VALLEY. The FIRST ELEVEN hada bad day at the office & were beat 1-4 by a MSB WOOLTON side they may have beaten on another day. Callum Woods scored their consolation goal The other game was the OVER 35S away to ABBEY VETS, They could only muster 10 men none of whom was a regular goalie. Consequently they lost 1-8 with Joey Windle scoring his first goal for the Club. The U17s game was postponed. .
SATURDAY 26TH OCTOBER 2019 - THIRDS BEAT THE WEATHER TO GO TOP
With the very heavy rain all day Friday all games on grass pitches were called off due to waterlogged pitches. The only XAVS team to play were the THIRDS. They played fellow unbeaten team MEXOC on a 3G pitch.In a hard fought game the THIRD TEAM ran out 1-0 winners to go top of their division. Jon Steen scored the vital winnerAll other games were postponed.
SATURDAY 19TH OCTOBER 2019 - FIRSTS PROGRESS IN ZINGARI CUP AFTER PENALTY SHOOT OUT
The FIRST TEAM were drawn away to BANKFIELD in the I. ZINGARI CUP & took the lead after 25 mins after sloppy defensive play allowed Mike Campbell to dispossess their centre half on the penalty spot & score an easy goal. This was about the only XAVS shot on target. BANKFIELD were equally erratic. In their one good move of the first half they equalised just before half time. Despite lots of late pressure the FIRSTS were unable find the target. The game then went straight to penalties. This time the XAVS were able to find the target with their four penalties. Chris Evans in goal nearly saved BANKFIELD's first. He did save the 2nd with an excellent diving stop & their 4th pen hit the post. So the XAVS ran out 4-2 winners in the penalty shoot out.
The RESERVES had a Roy Wade Cup tie against a lively KIRKBY TOWN team. The side struggled for players due to a concert in the Bramley Dock. Saturday afternoon. They lost 5 players in all.. The considerably weakened team lost 0-6. The THIRDS played RISHTON ROVERS from Blackburn in the Northern Cup. A vastly experienced XAVS team, 5 of whom have played first team football in the past, side ran out deserved winners by 4 goals to 1 after a scoreless first half. Their scorers were Vic Luby (2), again from the bench, & one each, from defender, Jay Thomas & Jon Steen.
The OVER 35S recorded their first win of the season over the other winless team in the division THE GRAMMAR. They recorded a 4-1 victory & cannot wait to play them again next week, away from home. Their scoring hero was Colin Stewart with a hat-trick & one from Steve Waring. The UNDER 17S had no game this week.
SATURDAY 12TH OCTOBER 2019 - VIC LUBY INSPIRES A THIRD CONSECUTIVE VICTORY FOR THIRDS
The THIRD ELEVEN won a hard fought game by 4 goals to one against SACRE COEUR F.P. away at Jeffery Humbles. The team went in at half time with a one goal lead but the team manager, Steve Linder, thoughtthat there was plenty of room for improvement. He then brought on Vic Luby at half time & he completely changed the game. He made an immediate impact scoring & bringing about a much improved 2nd half performance. The other scoers were Jon Steen (2) & Chris Brady.
The RESERVES were drawn away to COLLEGIATE OB in the LCFA Junior Cup. This was switched to SFX where the pitches were in good condition. In a poor performance the SECONDS lost 3-8 to a much better side. Scorers were Alex Haarke, Sean McGurk & Tom Owen. The OVER 35S were also involved in a County FA Cup, The Veterans Cup. They played MCL VETS at SFX. They succeeded in drawing their first game of the season 2-2 but lost on penalties 4-5. There scorers were Jon Vidamour & Paddy Melia.
The FIRST TEAM lost 2-1 to WATERLOO DOCK with a goal in the last few minutes. Colin Mee scored the XAVS goal.
SATURDAY 5TH OCTOBER 2019 - A BAD DAY AT THE OFFICE FOR THE XAVS TEAMS
The FIRST TEAM were drawn away to SEFTON ATHLETIC (a renamed CUSTYS) in the LCFA Challenge Cup. After the sides brilliant performance midweek, the XAVS were 2-0 up after 10 mins with goals from Mike Campbell & Johnny O'Sullivan. After playing really good possession football, they started to be more adventurous & kept giving the ball away. This allowed SEFTON to come into the game & eventually equalise before half time. The XAVS continued to give the ball away in the 2nd half, & consequently they conceded the vital next goal. Although they pressed, the oppossition were now playing with a lot of confidence & scored a fourth with 5 mins to go. The XAVS ended up 2-4 loser when they could & should have won.
Meanwhile the RESERVES played a physically strong QUARRY BANK OB side at home. Despite taking an early lead they were 4-1 down by half time. There naive football contributed to their defeat against an experienced QUARRY side, They eventually ran out 2-8 losers. The THIRD TEAM game V WOODSTREET RES was called off early in the week as the opposition were unable to raise a side. The OVER 35s again experienced a big defeat. This time at the hands of NETHERLEY WOOD LANE LEGION by 1-7.
TUESDAY 1ST OCTOBER 2019 - FIRSTS COME FROM BEHIND TO END UP 3-1 WINNER
The FIRST ELEVEN played a midweek league game against PILCHY FC at Walton Hall Park Under floodlights. They went a goal down before goals from Mike Campbell (2) & Colin Mee secured a 3-1 victory
SATURDAY 28TH SEPTEMBER 2019 - HEAVY RAIN CAUSES ALL GAMES TO BE POSTPONED
With the week's constant rain, forced nearly all grass pitches in Liverpool to be waterlogged. Consequently the games at SFX were all postponed. The FIRST ELEVEN did not have a game due the the LIVERPOOL COUNTY PREMIER LEAGUE Rep side having a National knock oot Cup game against YORK LEAGUE. The Rep team won 4-2 & go on to meet the WEST CHESHIRE LEAGUE in the next round. The RESERVES, THIRD ELEVEN & UNDER 17s all had home game games called off at SFX. The VETS game V BRITANNIA away was also postponed.
The FIRST TEAM's next game is on Tuesday 1st October V FC PILCHY at Walton Hall Parl 3G kick off 8.00pm .
SATURDAY 17th AUGUST - FIRSTS DRAW AGAINST LAST SEASON'S CHAMPIONS
The XAVS FIRST TEAM opened the new season in the Liverpool Premier League at home to WATERLOO DOCK, last season's Champions, . Although due to play at home, the XAVS pitch is still closed so the game was switched to Heron Eccles 3G. In a very even first half the Xavs held their own preventing the Dock any real chances to score. As the game developed the XAVS became stronger with Will Goodison not quite able to capitalise on a good chance at the back post. However an uncharacteristic defensive error soon allowed a slow lob to bounce toward the goal. As two defenders rushed to clear they both impeded each other resulting in an own goal. As the XAVS pushed hard for an equaliser, a quick break by the Dock resulted in a second goal after 78 mins. It looked like game over but with the next XAVS attack Calum Woods was brought down in the area. Owen Cassidy stepped up to calmly slot home the penalty, 1-2 with 8 minutes left. WATERLOO DOCK seemed to tire & the relentless closing down by the XAVS players started to win the ball back often. With 2mins left, an attack down the XAVS right resulted a cross from Will Goodison that eventually reached Calum Woods who scored the equaliser to the great delight of the whole squad & spectators. Final score 2-2, a well deserved draw and a cracking game to start the new season.
SATURDAY 27TH MAY 2023 - FIRSTS COMPLETE CLUBS SEASON WITH A DRAW AGAINST THE DOCK
After the midweek disappointment, the FIRSTS completed their league season with a 2-2 draw versus WATERLOO DOCK. Apparently the XAVS should have had six. The scorers were Calum Woods & Rob Lamont. This result confirmed the XAVS 4th place finish out of 13 teams. All the other teams have also completed their League seasons with the A TEAM finishing a disappointing 7th out of 10 teams. The B TEAM ended top of the division whilst the C TEAM finished 5th out of 10 teams. You will find the tables under the League Table tab.
The Club programme now completes on Satutday 10th June with the B TEAM attempt at the double in the Alan Brown Trophy vs Mersey Harps on the 2nd Finals Day for the Old Boys League. The Firsts Finals Day at Marine F.C. in Crosby was a very successful day in the Sun, where the Emrys Hughes Cup, the Marlborough Trophy & the Connerty Cup were all decided.
WEDNESDAY 24TH MAY 2023 - FIRSTS JUST FAIL TO MAKE THE CUP FINAL
After the highs of a fortnight ago, the FIRSTS were dumped back down to earth tonight. They were away to WARBRECK in the semi final of the I Zingari Cup, who are next to bottom in the table. After a poor 1st half display, the score was still 0-0. WARBRECK then scored immediately after half time. The XAVS then made their substitutions & for the last 20 mins it was one way fraffic as the XAVS sought the equaliser. They had good appeals for a penalty turned down as the Ref decided the foul was outside the box. The WARBRECK keeper made two excellent saves from point blank range. With a minute to go the XAVS had the ball in the net from yet another goalmouth scramble but the linesman decided that it was offside, a baffling decision. So WARBRECK ran out surprise winners. This means that the the FIRSTS last game of the season is a league game against WATERLOO DOCK at Anfield Sports Ground next Saturday with a 3-30pm kick off straight after the Cup final they were attempting to be in. It really is rubbing salt into the wound.
SATURDAY 20TH MAY 2023 - FIRST ENSURE FOURTH PLACE DESPITE DEFEAT
After last week's extraordinary events, more of which later, the FIRSTS played away to 2nd placed HALEWOOD APOLLO. Sadly they suffered a heavy defeat, 0-3, to the league runners up. It may have been a hangover to last week's success. Rumours have it that the last players did not leave the XAVS BAR until 3.00am. Quite a session considering they kick off time of 1.30pm! Following on from the game, the video of the 95th disallowed goal went viral with over 770,000 watches. This led to the scorer of the goal, player manager, Calum Woods being interviewed by Tony Livesey on Radio FiveLive. He performed well managing to mention all the shoot out scorers.
The the season is coming to its climax, teh FIRST TEAM have a I Zingari Cup semi-final against Warbreck at St John Bosco School Storrington Avenue K.O. 7.00pm on Wednesday 24th May. If they win this they play the Final on Satyrday 27th May at Anfield Sports Ground against HALEWOOD APOLLO with a 1.30pm K.O. They still have one league game to play versus WATERLOO DOCK on a date to be arranged.
Also a reminder thet the B TEAM play their Alan Brown Cup Final at Marine F.C with a 2.00pm Kick off. A coach will be leaving the XAVS CLUB to take players & spectators to the game Contact Jay Crowder if interested in going along.
SATURDAY 13TH MAY 2023 - FIRST WIN CUP AFTER PENALTY SHOOT OUT
With all teams except the FIRSTS having completed their league programmes, the only game today was the very important GEORGE MAHON CUP FINAL versus, already crowned league champions, MSB WOOLTON. This is the Cup played for by all teams in the whole league. It ended 2-2 after 90 mins. Scorers were Scot Dunning with a penalty & Sam Hibbert with a 50 yard free kick which sailed over the keeper's head. The teams then went straight to penalties, as per the rules, which the XAVS won 4-2. The shoot out included two saves from XAVS keeper Chris Evans with FIRSTS scoring all theirs. The XAVS scorers in the penalty shoot out were Adam Newbold, Scott Dunning, Sam Hibbert & Rob Lamont with the decisive one. The controversial issue came in the 5th minute of added time with the scores level. The XAVS were putting MSB under pressure with several corners deep into added time, two of which had Woolton players dewspately kicking the ball away off the line, which resulted in another corner. This again ended with,a goalmouth scramble resulting Calum Woods heading the ball into the net. Controversially the ref blew for time as the ball was going into the net so the goal was cancelled out. Thankfully Chris Evans' saves saw the XAVS victorious. Interestingly enough a video of the disallowed goal has been viewed by over 188000 people & rising. So the FIRST TEAM ended winning this Cup for the first time. Congratulations to Calum Woods & all the players as well as the management team without whom it would not be possible.
SATURDAY 6TH MAY 2023 - A MOLYNEUX PENALTY IS ENOUGH TO PUT THE B TEAM INTO THE CUP FINAL
A Tom Molyneux penalty was sufficient to put the B TEAM into the Alan Brown Trophy Cup Final at Marine F.C. on Saturday 27th May against MERSEY HARPS. The manager, Jay Crowder, reports that the XAVS played a strong CONVOCATION side who battled well for 90 mins & never gave up. They made the XAVS work hard for their win. A poor challenge by an opposition player saw Tom Rymer sent off, after a receiving a kick in the face & a broken nose, which led to a scuffle. This also led to a CONVOCATION player also being sent off. The XAVS then were awarded a penalty which had to be retaken & the retake was saved. In an eventful 1st half the score remained at 0-0. As the XAVS pushed hard for the win, Tom Molyneux was brought down in the box by a clumsy tackle. With the pressure on, Tom Molyneux stepped up again & slotted. The XAVS then pushed hard for a 2nd goal but the CONVOCATION keeper kept everything out that was thrown at him. Later in the game, captain Liam Evans had to come off with another broken nose after a collision. A late push by CONVOCATION saw them hit the crossbar but the B TEAM survived to stay on track for the double.
The FIRST TEAM played 2nd placed HALEWOOD APOLLO in the league. Paul Stanton reports that it was a very open game with plenty of chances for both teams.APOLLO took the lead mid way through the 1st half with an unmarked header from a corner. A bad goal! The XAVS responded immediately with Johnny O'Sullivan planting a firm header into the net from a great Neil Davies cross. Almost immediately the XAVS took the lead from a corner. Sam Hibbert hit the corner to the far post, where Calum Woods got up above everyone & buried a great header. The XAVS were now well on top at this stage but kept failing to take their chances. Then just before half time, an APOLLO player was allowed to be one on one with keeper Chris Evans. Chris pulled of a good save but the rebound fell to an opposition player, who slotted. This remained the score until half time. The 2nd half was a story of two penalties. Johnny O'Sullivan went on a good run in their box, rounded the keeper but the APOLLO centre half turned it around the post with his hand. This resulted in a red card & a penalty which Scot Dunning scored. The XAVS now looked comfortable but many substitutions & a reorganisation by APOLLO changed the game. Still not many chances were being made by either side. Then a long ball hit a XAVS defender's hand but regretably the ref failed to see a previous handball by the APOLLO attacker. They scored the subsequent penalty. It was now 3-3 which is how the game finished. According to Paul Stanton the XAVS had played a strong side & competed well but could not capitalise on the man advantage..
TUESDAY 2ND MAY - C TEAM COMPLETE THEIR FIXTURES WITH A VICTORY
The C TEAM completed their league programme witha home victory against COLLEGIATE O.B.by 3 goals to 1.Their scorers are unknown at the moment. They will finish the season comfortably mid table. The A TEAM completed their fixtures with an important away game against last Saturday's opponents ABBEY VETS. They needed to win to win the league. A much better performance saw the XAVS lose by 1-2 & made the game hard for ABBEY. The XAVS scorer was Carl Gargan.
SATURDAY 29TH APRIL 2023 - FIRSTS REACH SEMI-FINALS OF I ZINGARI CUP
The FIRST ELEVEN played ST HELENS TOWN in the quarter final of the I Zingari Cup & ran out comfortable winners by 4-0 with a double from Johnny O'Sullivan & one each from Dom Maher & Scot Dunning. Apparently it could have been double figures if the XAVS had of taken their chances. They now play NALGO in the semi final on Tuesday 16th May at Alder Road witha 6.45pm kick off.
The A TEAM were in their divisional Cup semi-final away to ABBEY ROAD VETS the league leaders. They sadly lost 1-4 after a poor performance. To be fair to the lads they were playing against at least two past semi pro players in Leighton McGivern & Franny Smith. Chris Brady scored the XAVS consolation goal. There were no games for the B & C TEAMS
SATURDAY 22ND APRIL 2023 - A MEMORABLE DAY FOR THE XAVS WITH B TEAM WINNING THE LEAGUE
The B TEAM completed 11 straight wins in the league, to win the Old Boys League Championship division today by beating 3rd placed COLLEGIATE O.B. by 2-0. The goals were scored by Mike Campbell & Joe Foy. This was Mike's 19th goal of the season, closely followed by Callum Finnan on 18 & Tom Molyneux with 17 goals. Apparently there were some extraordinary scenes on the final whistle as the team & their spectators celebrated victory & their success. The double now awaits when they play the Cup semi final on Coronation weekend. Congratulations go to management team of Jay Crowder & Colin O'Hare and all the squad of players who have all contributed to their success.
There was also succes for the FIRST TEAM as they won their George Mahon Cup semi final convincingly by 4-0 against EAST VILLA. Scorers were Scot Dunning (2), Calum Woods & Chris Johnston. Their final opponents are as yet unknown. The other semi final is being played Tuesday night at the Walton Hall Park. The side could be double finalists as they play in the I. Zingari Cup semi final next Saturday at home to bottom club ST HELENS TOWN.
There were two other game today. The A TEAM lost to ST MARGARET'S after being 4-0 down at half time but their 2nd half did not succeed finally losing by 3-4. Their scorers were Carl Gargan, Johnny Quirk & Jamie Whittle. The C TEAM also failed in their comeback after being 3-0 down losing 2-3 to RIVER F.C. The XAVS scorers were Mark Allen & Mike Heverin.
TUESDAY 18TH APRIL 2023 - C TEAM HAVE CONSOLATION WIN IN EMRYS HUGHES CUP
The C TEAM completed their mini league competition in the Emrys Hughes Cup away at BUSINESS SCHOOL but despite their win failed to qualify for the final losing 2 & winning 1. The win today was convincing by 6-3 with goals from Mike Ormesher (3), Mark Allen, Jordan Lockett & Dave Seddon. The A TEAM also played tonight drawing 1-1 versus VALLEY F.C.with Chris Brady scoring
SATURDAY 15TH APRIL 2023 - A TEAM RETURN TO WINNING WAY
There were only two games today on Grand National Saturday. The A TEAM beat bottom team LIOBIANS away by 3-1 with goals from Niall McHale, a Johnny Quirk penalty & Mike Power. The other team to play were the C TEAM who unusually only had 13 players. They were at home to 2nd placed team QG KINGFISHER who ran out 3-0 winners. The opposition scored through 2 own goals ! There are two further midweeks game for the A & C TEAMS, followed by a full programme next Saturday, with two important games for the FIRST & B TEAMS. The FIRSTS are in the George Mahon Semi Final away to EAST VILLA, The B TEAM are at home COLLEGIATE O.B. where they will win the league if they win.
TUESDAY 11TH APRIL 2023 - KEEPER EVANS 'SAVES' XAVS INTO SEMIS
There were two games tonight, with one being the Quarter final of the George Mahon Cup versus NALGO who had beaten the FIRSTS convincingly 4-1 a few weeks back. Tonight the FIRST TEAM defence did its job with keeper Chris Evans saving a penalty leaving the game scoreless after 90 mins. The game then went straight to pens. Man of the Match Evans saved two further penalties with the XAVS slotting their's to win 4-3 on penalties & go on to play EAST VILLA in the semi-final on the 22nd April. The other team to play were the C TEAM who lost at home to LARKIN 1-3. Their season seems to be ending like a damp squib.
SATURDAY 8TH APRIL 2023 - FIRSTS CHANCE OF SECOND PLACE BECOMES HARDER AFTER A DEFEAT TO ADMIRAL PARK
The FIRST TEAM lost 1-2 to 5th placed ADMIRAL PARK making it very difficult to finish runners up in the league. They still have to play 2nd placed HALEWOOD APOLLO twice but are still 4pts adrift in 4th place. Today's scorer was sub Chris Johnson. The A TEAM also played today and made up for their poor midweek performance & had a convincing 3-0 away victory to HUYTON STANLEY with a double from Jon Steen & one from Mike Keating. The C TEAM were thrashed, at home, by title chasing ACOL ACADEMY by 1-7. Danny Maginess scored the XAVS consolation goal. Despite this the C TEAM still remain 5th in their Division.
Better news though of John Harkin. He is has now been fitted with a defirillator & is out of hospital. Wishing John a speedy rehabilitation & recovery.
TUESDAY 4TH APRIL 2023 - B TEAM ONE WIN AWAY FROM TITLE
The B TEAM romped home tonight with an 8-0 victory over LIVERPOOL RAMBLERS. This now leaves them needing a win over 3rd placed COLLEGIATE O.B., in their last game of the season, to secure the Second Division title. Their scorers tonight were Tom Molyneux (3), Mike Campbell (3) & one each from Alex Haake & Calum Finnan. The A TEAM also played tonight & lost 0-3 to Old Cathinians on apparently poor pitch & produced an even worse performance.
SATURDAY 1ST APRIL 2023 - THE XAVS TEAMS ARE NO FOOLS ON APRIL 1ST
The three top teams in the Club, played in Cup today. The FIRST TEAM were drawn away in the I Zingari Cup to table topping MSB WOOLTON. They have only lost two league game all season & are odds on favorites to win the league. They are also likely to be in the NORTH WEST COUNTIES league next season if their ground is considered good enough. So a tough ask for XAVS. in a fairly shock result was not on the cards. Paul Stanton, the team assistant manager, reports that it was a fantastic result from the whole squad this week.Defensively we were much stronger than of late with Sean McBride, Eden Heron & Adam Newbold constantly first to the ball. Keeper, Chris Evans, was also commanding in goal. The 1st half was a close battle with Johnny O (O'Sullivan) making the breakthrough just before half time. The midfield had to battle hard in the 2nd half as WOOLTON looked to get back into it.
Until the last 10 mins our opposition only had a few half chances, but they began to increase the pressure as they game wore on.The XAVS made numerous blocks as MSB threatened to equalise.. In the last minute,the XAVS cleared the ball as all the MSB players pressed forward. Calum Woods fed Johnny O'Sullivan who then carried the ball the ball 40yds before laying it off into Scot Dunning's path. As their keeper advanced Scot dinked the ball over him to make it 2-0. Wild scenes ensued & a mini pitch invasion for which one of the XAVS unused subs was booked for going on the pitch
The B TEAM had a convincing win in the Alan Brown Cup against mid table NORTH HILL by 6-1. this now puts them in the semi-finals. Their scorers were Tom Rymer, Alex Haarke, Dimitri Jackson, Tom Molyneux, Raj Billing & Mike Campbell with his 15th of the season. A TEAM were away to high flying VALLEY O.B. in the Marlborough Trophy. With the score 2-2 after 90 mins the game went straight to penalties. Sadly the team lost 5-3 tin the penalty shoot out to go out of cup.. The C TEAM were already eliminated from their league cup & so had no game.
The latest news on John Harkin is good. He is now out of ICU & in an ordinary ward. I'm sure you all wish him a speedy recovery. John has been overwhelmed by the good wishes & support that has been offered by all.
SATURDAY 25TH MARCH 2023 - A DISAPPOINTING DAY FOR XAVS TEAMS
Firstly, I have to report that the footballing community has come to together to send it's support, thoughts & prayers to John Harkin after last week's medical emergency, where John had a heart attack on the pitch. yjis included a video message from Jamie Carragher to John. I happy to inform everyone that John is recovering well. He has been sitting up & talking after been put into an induced coma. He is due to be moved to the Royal Hospital from Broadgreen Hospital, soon.
Back to the football. It was not a good day for the XAVS. The FIRST TEAM lost badly to NALGO by 1-4. NALGO opened the scoring but Eden Heron quickly equalised from a corner. NALGO then scored a dubious goal just before half time, where an opposition player appeared to handle the ball before netting. This goal effected how NALGO played in the 2nd half. Now playimg with confidence they controlled the play. The XAVS had crucial players injured during the game & were under par in the second half & rarely threatened the NALGO goal.
The A TEAM drew 3-3 with lowly SEFTON PARK RANGERS with Jon Steen scoring two with one from Mike Keeling whilst the C TEAM lost narrowly in a tight game 0-1 to CARDINAL NEWMAN O.B in the Emrys Hughes Invitational Cup, which is being played on a league basis amongst four invited teams from Division Two. the B TEAM played a friendly against MSB WOOLTON from Division One winning easily scoring 8 goals.
SATURDAY 18TH MARCH 2023 - XAVS PLAYER HAS HEART ATTACK ON THE PITCH
John Harkin,the ex-1st team manager & leading goal scorer for the C TEAM, suddenly collapsed on the pitch during the C TEAM's Emrys Hughes Cup-tie away at LARKIN. It happened after about 15mins when John was standing by himself. Players rushed over immediately & it was thanks the rapid actions of a LARKIN player that CPR was commenced & shortly after a defibrillator was used. The emergency services arrived very quickly after being called. They responded with three ambulances & two air ambulances which included doctors as well as paramedics. All these rapid actions saved John's life. After an hour, he was transferred by ambulance to the Royal Hospital, after being heavily sedated. At the Hospital he was placed in ICU. All ours prayers & thoughts are with John & his family at this worrying time.
Returning to the football, the FIRST TEAM had a comfortably victory against bottom club ST HELENS TOWN, winning by 7-1 thanks to a John O'Sullivan hat-trick & two from Scot Dunning, including a penalty. The other goal were scored by Rob Lamont & Calum Woods. The A TEAM were also victorious in the Marlborough Cup beating LIVERPOOL RAMBLERS at their ground by 3-0.Carl Gargan scored two & the other goal being an own goal. They play division leaders ABBEY VETS on 29th April. The B TEAM had no game & the C TEAM game was obviously abandoned.
SATURDAY 11TH MARCH 2023 - A TEAM KNOCKED OUT OF THE COUNTY CUP IN THE ONLY GAME PLAYED
In the only game played today due to the adverse weather conditions the A TEAM lost to HUYTON STANLEY in the Quarter finals to the LCFA Junior Cup 1-2. According to the managers it was a fair result on a day when the XAVS underperformed. The XAVS scorer was Jamie Whittle The other Old Boys teams both at SFX were called off due to waterlogged pitches after the late snow on Friday. The FIRST TEAM had a blank Saturday.
SATURDAY 4TH MARCH 2023 - B TEAM CONTINUE THEIR WINNING RUN
The B TEAM continued their winning run with their 56th goal of the season, including 18 in their last 3 league games. They beat ALUMINI 6-3 but not before they fought back from 0-2 down. Goalscorers were Callum Finnan (2) & one each from Alex Haarke, Tom Molyneux, Dimitri Jackson & James O'Hare. Dimitri scored on his debut whilst it was James O'Hare's 1st goal for 3 seasons because of injury. They are now 14 points clear of 2nd placed team COLLEGIATE O.B. who have 3 games in hand. They are due to play COLLEGIATE O.B. next Saturday in a big game.
The FIRST TEAM also recorded a good win against 2nd from bottom WARBRECK running out 4-1 winners. The XAVS were leading at half time through a Johnny O'Sullivan goal. Their lead was increased with an O'Sullivan penalty. Calum Woods then scored a header from a corner. WARBRECK then pulled one back before Rob Lamont completed the scoring in the last few minutes.
The A TEAM suffered a shock defeat to lowly KCC O.B.by 1-2. The XAVS goal was an own goal. The side will have to pick up as they are in the quarter finals of the LCFA Intermediate Cup next Saturday away to Old Boys premier division side HUYTON STANLEY next week There was another defeat for the C TEAM to CARDINAL NEWMAN by 2 goals to 4. Mark Allen scored a penalty but also missed one, whilst Danny Maaginness slotted the other.
SATURDAY 25TH FEBRUARY 2023 - ANOTHER GOOD DAY FOR THE XAVS TEAMS
It was another good day for most XAVS teams with 2 Cup wins & another win for the FIRSTS. The FIRST TEAM were at home, which is Heron Eccles 3G for this season only. Work has been done to cut away the tall tree roots on the pitch No 1. Also know this as the 1st Team pitch. These roots had started to come to the surface rendering the pitch not suitable for the Premier Division of the County Premier League. Consequently the FIRSTS had to re-locate to Heron Eccles for this season only. Today they played EAST VILLA & won 1-0 with a Johnny O'Sullivan goal after 4 mins. Despite heavy late pressure from EAST VILLA, the side held on to a fortunate win, consolidating their 3rd place in the division.
The A TEAM were away to KCC in the Marlborough Cup & ran out 4-2 winner with 4 goals from Carl Gargan. The B TEAM played in the Alan Brown Trophy at home to a strong WOODSTREET team. They were soon 3-1 down but fought back to run out 5-3 winners. A tremendous result! the scorers were Callum Finnan (2), Mike Campbell (2) &Tom Molyneux. Finally, the C TEAM also played at home to COLLEGIATE O.B. in the Bushell Cup. Sadly they were unable to emulate the other teams & lost 2-3 despite a saved penalty by keeper, Colin Wakefield. The XAVS scorers were John Harkin & Jamis Lock.
SATURDAY 18TH FEBRUARY 2023 - WITH ONLY, TWO TEAMS PLAYING A SECOND 100% WEEK
The FIRST TEAM had a blank week this weekend because of the withdrawal of FRAMES FC This left an odd number of teams in the division. Consequently this was our blank week The A TEAM in the 2nd Round of the Bill Hughes Senior Shield, the Cup for all the 1st teams in all the Old Boys League. They were drawn away to SEFTON PARK RANGERS, who are struggling in the top division. The A TEAM ran out 2-0 winners with Jamie McKernan & Carl Gargan both slotting. The B TEAM contined to top the division after a 6-3 away win against NORTH HILL.Their scorers were Tom Molyneax with a hat-trick, Callum Finnan, Mike Campbell & Alex Haarke with one each. The C TEAM fixture was postponed by the league as COLLEGIATE O.B. their opponents, were playing in the Northern Cup. So the XAVS ended the day with a second consecutive 100% record.
SATURDAY 11TH FEBRUARY 2023 - BEST DAY OF THE SEASON FOR CLUB WITH ALL TEAMS SUCCESSFUL
It is not often in a season when every team wins. This was achieved this week when two teams progressed in their Cups & the other two teams won their league games. Starting with the FIRST TEAM, who who drew their George Mahon Cup tie against BRNESC 1-1. After a goalless 1st half,.BRNESC took the lead in the first minute of the 2nd half but the XAVS equalised within 3mins with an Adam Newbold penealty, after a handball in the box. This was the score after 90 mins. The cup tie then went straight to penalties. After both sides hit the cross bar with their 1st pens, BRNESC then hit the post with their 2nd. Sam Smith then scored. Chris Evans then made a brilliant diving save of BRNESC's 3rd pen. Johnny O'Sullivan slotted his. BRNESC finally scored their 1st pen at the 4th attempt, leaving Rob Lamont to score the winning penalty, to make it 3-1 to the XAVS. This puts them in the 4th Round of the George Mahon Cup.
The A TEAM continued their successful run in the LCFA Junior Cup with a 5-2 win over St Helen's Combination side NEW STREET. Scorers were Carl Gargan (2), Jon Steen (2) & one from George Whittle. This puts them into the quarter finals of this Liverpool wide competition. A great achievement.
The B TEAM held top spot in their division with a 6-4 win over KINGSTHORNE after a scoreline of 5-3 at half time. Calum Finnan scored a hat-trick with his first being after only 10 seconds. Tom Molyneax scored two whilst Tom Rymer scored the other. the C TEAM recorded their 1st win a while with a 2-0 win over LIOBIANS with John Harkin & Dave Seddon getting the side's goals.
SATURDAY 4TH FEBRUARY 2023- FIRSTS RETURN TO WINNING WAYS IN THE LEAGUE
The FIRST TEAM returned to winning ways in the league away to LIVER ACADEMY, with only the bare minimum because injuries & unavailability. The side battled really well. This was typified by first goal. The LIVER defender was trying to usher the ball out for a goal kick but Chris Johnson battled away & won the ball back only to be fouled by the defender in the box. Johnny O'Sullivan coolly put away the penalty after 60 mins. 12 mins later a ball was cleared from the LIVER box & worked to Calum Woods who let fly a brilliant 25 yarder which hit the crossbar & bounced behind the line to make it 2-0, the final score.
In the Old Boys League, the A TEAM played lowly SEFTON PARK RANGERS at home & had a comfortable win by 3-1. The players enjoyed the third goal which was an own goal ex-XAVS player, Paddy O'Hanlon. The other two were scored by Jamie McKernan & Tony Mao. The B TEAM beat LIVERPOOL RAMBLERS with a late winner from Mike Campbell in their 2-1 win. This was only RAMBLERS 2nd defeat of the season. The other goal was scorered by Tom Molyneux. This ensured that they increased their lead at the top of the division to 6pts. The C TEAM lost heavily by 1-6 to RIVER JUNIORS. The XAVS only goal was scored by super sub Kev Dillon. Manager Kenny Jones described the defeat as "a bad day at the office".
SATURDAY 28TH JANUARY 2023 - FIRSTS & A TEAM BOTH PROGRESS IN CUPS
With all four teams playing today, fixtures got back to normal. The FIRST TEAM played 2nd Division SPRINGFIELD in the George Mahon Cup. Despite having only seven players available in midweek they managered to scramble together 12 men. Also in the absence of Manager, Calum Woods, Johnny O'Sullivan deputised in the role. The XAVS defended really so SPRINGFIELD never looked like scoring. ? eventually got the winner in a more convincing win than the score line. The A TEAM also progressed in their LCFA Junior Cup tie at the third time of asking by 3-1 against GREENALLS PADGATE from the Warrington League. Scorers were Shaun Shepherd, Jamie Whittle & an own goal.
The B TEAM had a good 3-0 win versus LIOBIANS O.B. with vice-captain Callum Finnan scoring a hat-trick.They tremain top of their division. The C TEAM suffered their 2nd consecutive defeat to move them down the table. They were handicapped by Jay Thomas being sent off for preventing a goal scoring oppotunity as the last man. The score was 2-3 with Mike Ormesher & Jamie Lock getting the XAVS goals.
SATURDAY 21ST JANUARY 2023 - AGAIN WEATHER AFFECTS THE FIXTURES
The weather again hit the XAVS fixtures hard. The FIRST ELEVEN game was postponed as the team had asked the league for a postponement as several of the players were unavailable. The A TEAM & the B TEAM games were both off due to frozen pitches. The A TEAM game is a County Cup tie & it was a 2nd postponement & will have to be played next weekend. We may be able to switch the game to our pitch next Saturday.. The C TEAM did play their fixture as it was on a 3G pitch. They were away to CARDINAL NEWMAN but found themselves 0-2 down in the 1st half. In the 2nd half they eventually scored through Mike Ormesher after 82 mins. This proved too late to earn a point.
Sadly I have to announce the passing of ex-player & 1st XI manager, Colin Brown. Colin played for the Club for about 10 years, mainly at 2nd TEAM level before retiring & volunteering to the to manager the FIRST TEAM. He took the team to the semi-final of the I. Zingari Cup whilst still a division one side, quite an achievement. He will be sadly missed.
SATURDAY 14TH JANUARY 2023 - C TEAM PUT SEVEN PAST ALSOP OB
It was a poor day for the XAVS results-wise, with only the C TEAM winning. They played bottom club ALSOP O.B.& won convincingly 7-0, this brings their tally this year to 12 goals in two game to confirm their 3rd place in the table, Their scorers were John Harkin (2), Mike Potter, with a header!, Mark Allen, Graham Bergin, Jamie Lock & Kevin Dillon all with one each.
An under-strength FIRST ELEVEN lost away to SEFTON ATHLETIC in a poor game. The harsh sending off of centre back Shaun McBride, after half an hour, turned out to be crucial.. SEFTON scored within 2 mins of this as the XAVS tried to reorganise themselves. 10 mins into the 2nd half, a back pass to the keeper went striaght to their centre forward, who slotted. 0-2 remained the final score as the XAVS moved further down the table.
The A & B TEAMS were both scheduled to play in the County Cups. The A TEAM game V GREENALL PADGATE ST OSWALDS in Warrington was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch after constant rain throughout the week. This game is rescheduled for next Saturday. The B TEAM lost badly in the LCFA Intermediate Cup to Old Boys Div Two side ACOL ACADEMY. on a 3G pitch. The XAVS took the lead through Mike Campbell but ACOL replied with three goals to riun out 1-3 winners. Overall this wasa disappointing performance
SATURDAY 7TH JANUARY 2023 - B TEAM REMAIN TOP WITH NARROW VICTORY
The Club returned to football after an extended four week Christmas break due to the weather & closure of pitches.The results were mixed after such a long break. The B TEAM overall a disappointing remain top of their division after a narrow 1-0 win over 3rd place MERSEY HARPS, courtesy of a Liam Evans goal. The FIRST TEAM played BRNESC away in the Liverpool Challenge Cup & lost 1-2 despite a Scott Dunning penalty.The C TEAM recorded a fine win over BUSINESS SCHOOL by 5 goals to 1. Their scorers were Jamie Long (2), Dave Seddon, Mark Allen & Graham BERGIN. The A TEAM played 3rd placed VALLEY O.B. & had a decent draw 1-1. Their scorer was Ollie Sawle.
SATURDAY 17TH DECEMBER 2022 - ALL GAMES OFF AGAIN DUE TO WEATHER
With the weather remaining below or close to freezing all week, the snow from last week had not melted, so most grounds, even the 3G pitche,s were unplayable. Consequently all OLD XAVS scheduled games were off.
Games hopefully will continue on Saturday 7th January 2023.
The XAVS committee would like to take this oppotunity to wish all invoved with the Club & reader of these reports a happy Christmas & New Year. Let's hope the results continue to improve for all teams.
SATURDAY 10TH DECEMBER 2022 - ALL GAMES OFF DUE
With the surprise snow on Friday night, nearly all grounds on Merseyside were covered in a layer of snow. Combined with the low temperatures, most grounds, including 3G pitches, were unplayable. Consequently all the matches scheduled for the Club, were postponed. Next week the FIRST TEAM have no game so only Old Boys sides are due to play.
SATURDAY 3RD DECEMBER 2022 - FINNAN LEADS B TEAM TO TOP SPOT
In another hard fought game, Callum Finnan's goal was sufficient for the B TEAM to beat CONVOCATION 1-0 in the Old Boys Championship Division, the old Div 2. The victory took them to the top of the table. The only other team playing today was the FIRST TEAM. They were away to ORIENT F. C., the old Quarry Bank O.B. The XAVS controlled the first 10 mins until ORIENT scored on the break in the 15th min. This goal really unsettled the XAVS as they became more ragged, relying on long balls to the forwards & misplacing passes in midfield. ORIENT were looking as likely winners until against the run of play Calum Woods scored after a scramble from a corner, after 74 mins. Poor XAVS play led to ORIENT taking the lead again in the 78th min. Almost immediately the FIRSTS were awarded a penalty which Scot Dunning slotted.. Game on! With one minute of normal time to go, as ORIENT tired the XAVS got the winner through sub Matty Shore for the XAVS to run out 3-2 winners, from overall, a poor performance.
SATURDAY 29TH NOVEMBER 22- FIRSTS LOSE SECOND PLACE WITH A DEFEAT BY LEADERS MSB WOOLTON
The FIRST ELEVEN played MSB WOOLTON in a top the table clash & suffered a bad defeat by a considerably better WOOLTON side by 0-3. An excellently worked headed goal after 30 mins opened the scoring. Their 2nd came via a poor ball out of the defence, after only 1 min of the 2nd half. This knocked the stuffing out of the XAVS. They gradually worked their way into the game but were unable to really threaten WOOLTON'S goal. A late 3rd settled the result. The FIRSTS move down to 3rd in the table after this defeat.
The A TEAM had a walk over versus KINGSFORD from Div One, two divisions below, who could not raise a side. The B TEAM played LIOBIANS & ran out 3-1 winner with Mike Campbell getting two & Callum Finnan one. This win moves them up to 2nd in the table. The C TEAM travelled to MIDDLEWICH TOWN RESERVES in the Northern Cup. the conceding of two early goals unsettled the side & they eventually lost 1-8
SATURDAY 19TH NOVEMBER 2022 - WHITTLE HAT-TRICK EARN THE POINTS FOR THE A TEA
With FIRST TEAM game postponed due to the heavy rain on Friday, the Old Boys games took centre stage. The A TEAM beat KCCOB 4-1 thanks a Jamie Whittle hat-trick & one from Alex Dunn. The side now move up to 5th in the table after Jamie's 11th goal of the season. The B TEAM secured a 3-2 win against KINGSTHORNE with a hard earned win against battling opposition. Goals from manager Jay Crowder from sub & one each from Callum Finnan & Alex Haarke. Unfortunately the C TEAM lost to unbeaten ACOL ACADEMY by 1-2 after taking the lead through Mike Heverin. ACOL won witha goal in the 10 mins.
SATURDAY 12TH NOVEMBER 2022 - B TEAM THROUGH TO LAST 32 OF COUNTY CUP.
The B TEAM hosted MEXOC from the division below them in the 2nd Round of the LCFA Intermediate Cup.They were 2nd in the their division but lost comfortably to the XAVS team 2-0 with goals from Tom Molyneux & Callum Finnan. Through a mix up by the County FA the A TEAM are also through to the next round of LCFA Junior Cup they were down to play a team who were also in the LCFA Challenge Cup & a team cannot be in two cups, so the A TEAM progressed into the 3rd Round. Their Cup tie was replaced by a league fixture at home to 3rd placed COLLEGIATE O.B. but they lost 2-3 with a poor performance. Goal scorers were Carl Gargan & Niall McHale. The C TEAM also lost 2-4, their first defeat of the season, to an unbeaten COLLEGIATE O.B. The game kick off late because the referee went to the wrong ground, SFX rather than COLLEGIATE'S ground at Carr Lane East.
The FIRST TEAM lost their top spot, due to a goalless draw at home to BRNESC. The XAVS were on top for most of the game but some poor finishing & an excellent performance from their keeper rendered the XAVS unable to score. BRNESC offered little threat until the last 15 mins when their finishing also let them down. During this last period both sides just kicked the ball as far away from their goal as they could with little build up from either side. Overall a poor performance after a good start, although much improved from the 1st day of the season when we lost 5-1 to the same opponents.
SATURDAY 5TH NOVEMBER 2022 - O'SULLIVAN HAT-TRICK PUTS XAVS THROUGH ROUND THREE OF THE LCFA CHALLENGE CUP
The FIRST ELEVEN played away today to Cheshire League team BILLINGE in the Liverpool FA Challenge Cup. What looked like a comfortable win of 4-1 was more difficult than would appear. As manager Calum Woods said the team play up or down according to the opposition. The main difference between the sides was captain Johnny O'Sullivan who scored a hat-trick with Calum Woods rounding off the scoring after coing on as a 2nd half substitute.. On a grass, pitch the side struggled until a deflected O'Sullivan shot ended up in the net after 10 mins. Billinge responded immediately with a free kick somehoe finding its way in t the near post, 1-1. After a brief hiatus Jonny O'Sullivan put the Xavs back in front just before half-time after chasing down their centre half, running 30 yds to harry him & eventually dispossess him. He then ran on to slot home from a narrow angle. An outstanding goal!. After 53 mins Johnny then scored again, this time from a corner with a header. Calum Woods completed the scoring after 83 mins with a header from an Adam Newbold cross.
The A TEAM game V SEFTON PARK RANGERS was postponed as SEFTON were struggling to raise a side but the XAVS decided, rather than have the points, they would like to play them later in the season The B TEAM earned three points with a hard fought victory over MERSEY HARPS. Scorers were Danny Entwistle & Tom Molyneux in a 2-1 victory. The C TEAM had no game today but arranged a friendly against HAROLDEANS from the division above but lost 1-3.
SATURDAY 29TH OCTOBER 2022 - WHITTLE HITS 4 IN BIG WIN FOR 'A' TEAM
The A TEAM moved up to 3rd in the table witha 6-1 victory over LIOBIANS. Jamie Whittle scored 4 taking his tally for the season to 8, with 2 from Carl Gargan. The C TEAM moved temporarily to the top of the table when the league awarded the points to OLD XAVS when bottom placed ALSOP were unable to raise a side. The other Old Boys side The B TEAM lost 1-3 to unbeaten WOODSTREET with Mike Campbell getting his 5th of the season. Team manager, Jay Crowder, considered WOODSTREET to be a strong side.
The FIRST TEAM had a topsy turvy game V newly promoted WARBRECK. The game was even until Dom Maher opened the scoring after 25 mins when he headed a corner into the net. A 2nd from Chris Johnson 5 mins later seemed to demoralise the young WARBRECK. All their side, except for one, were 21 or under. Further goals from Johnny O'Suilvan, Calum Woods & an Adam Newbold penalty made the score 5-0 at half time. The XAVS seemed to think the 2nd half would be a stroll. It was far from it. WARBRECK pressed hard & missed several chances before getting their 1st goal after 84 mins. two more WARBRECK goals followed quickly making the last few minutes worrying for the XAVS. The final score of 5-3 was a more fair reflection of the play. This win saw the FIRSTS remain top by two points from MSB WOOLTON
SATURDAY 22ND OCTOBER 2022 - B TEAM GO THIRD AFTER BEATING KINGSTHORNE
In the only game of the day the B TEAM moved up to 3rd in the table after coming from behind. Despite not playing particularily well the XAVS still controlled the game but their finishing was poor, being quite rushed in front of goal. This resulted in the side being 1-2 down with 10 mins to go despite Tom Molyneux's goal . The Subs turnrd out to be crucial, with goals from Raj Birring, & the winner from the youngest squad member, Ben Bonner. Keeper Chris Evans made a crucial penalty save to help the XAVS win 3-2.
The FIRST TEAM had no game but still remain top on goal difference.. The A TEAM & the C TEAM also had no games.
SATURDAY 15TH OCTOBER 2022 - FIRSTS BEAT F.C. ORIENT TO REMAIN TOP
The FIRSTS remained top of the table with a convincing 6-1 win over F.C. ORIENT (ex Quarry Babk O.B.). The XAVS, started well as in previous games, & scored after 6 mins through Scott Dunning with a fierce drive fom the left of the box after a cross was cleared. ORIENT scored 5 mins later as their forward went through unchallenged. This goal lifted our opponents who then had a lot of the ball for the next 20 mins without threatening the XAVS goal too much. After this spell the FIRST TEAM took control of the midfield. Just as the half ended centre half, Shaun McBride, drove forward from the edge of our box before passing to the left, half way in their half. The ball then went via 3 players before reaching Shaun again from a cross before he coolly slotted home. Two minutes into the 2nd half, the ball was passed into the right hand edge of the box before Dom Maher rifled into the the far corner. This demoralised ORIENT & the XAVS midfield dominated the midfield through Man of the Match Dom Maher, Ant Stanton & Rob Lamont. Johnny O'Sullivan scored his usual goal rounding the keeper before firing into the right hand corner. Scott Dunning then got his 2nd from a brilliantly chipped pass from Ant Stanton. Sub Chris Johnson, fired home with the last kick of the match. This was a fine victory without player manager Calum Woods who was injured.
The only other team to play today were the A TEAM who had their first win of the season over ST MARGARET'S O.B. by 4-0 with goals from a Jamie Whittle double & goals from Jay McKernan & Carl Gargan. This moved them up to 5th in the table.
SATURDAY 8TH OCTOBER 2022 - FIRSTS GO TOP AGAIN WITH COMFORTABLE WIN OVER ST HELENS TOWN
The FIRST TEAM played pointless ST HELENS TOWN who were relegated from the North West Counties League last season. The XAVS went 1-0 up through a Rob Lamont goal after 7 mins but TOWN equalised 3 mins later. The XAVS then scored two quick goals half way through the half & a fourth just before half time despite not playing particularily well. Both defences were making silly mistakes but the XAVS punished St Helens better. Shortly after the commencement of the 2nd half, the home team got a second goal but the XAVS replied almost immediately witha 5th. Further goals then came later in the game for the FIRSTS to run out 7-3 winners & went top of the league again, after leaders MSB WOOLTON lost. The scorers were Rob Lamont (2), Johnny O'Sullivan (2) & Chris Johnson (2) with Owen Cassidy scoring the other. Despite not playing well the XAVS were comfortable winners also missing two penalties & hitting the crossbar twice.
The B TEAM played in the LCFA Intermediate Cup & ran out 4-0 winners against MSB WOOLTON A TEAM from the division below. Scorers were Mike Campbell (2), Tom Molyneux & Tom Donovan one each. The A TEAM played a league game having got a bye in their County Cup.They were away to COLLEGIATE O.B. & lost 1-2 to another late goal, Jamie McKernan slotting. Meanwhile the C TEAM drew with table toppers QC KINGFISHER, a new team to the league. The game ended up 1-1 with the XAVS giving their equaliser away with 8 mins to go. Danny Maginess scored for the XAVS Overall not a bad day for the Club.
SATURDAY 1ST OCTOBER - B TEAM SMASH NORTH HILL WITH EIGHT GOALS
A hat-trick from Alex Haake, two from Mike Campbell & one each from Tom Molyneux, & subs Jordan Obeng & Callum Finnan gave the B TEAM a big victory over NORTH HILL by 8 goals to 2. The C TEAM were also at home & also ran out winners against LIOBIANS. The XAVS went 2-0 up through Mike Heverin & Dave Seddon. LIOBIANS came back to make it 2-2 at half time. A Mike Ormesher free kick made it 3-2 before a Carl Johnson own goal equalised the scores with 5 mins to go. Straight from the kick off, a brilliant individual effort from Dave Seddon won the match for the XAVS by 4-3.
With no game for the A TEAM the only other team to play were the FIRST TEAM. Most teams in the Division were playing in the LIVERPOOL CHALLENGE CUP,,the XAVS played a league game away to EAST VILLA. An early injury to Callum Woods caused a serious disruption to the side's midfield, after only 5 mins. Despite this they took a 1-0 lead with a Eden Heron volley. VILLA then equalised from a free kick to make it level at half time. The XAVS could not get going & EAST VILLA took the lead & then went 3-1 up after a corner was not cleared. Then a defensive error put Jonny O'Sullivan through on goal,. which he finished confidently. This completed the scoring for the XAVS to suffer their 2nd defeat of the season by 2-3.
SATURDAY 24TH SEPTEMBER 2022 - FIRSTS REMAIN LEAGUE LEADERS AFTER BEATING NALGO
The game of the day in the Premier League it was 1st V 2nd in the Premier Division. The FIRST TEAM came out top with a 2-0 victory over NALGO to remain top of the league.It was a fine performance with the XAVS well organised throughout the game. After an initial spell of presure the XAVS were on the front foot for most of the 1st half, creating several good chances & Rob Lamont & Scott Dunning both went close. Despite this, the first half remained scoreless. NALGO came on strong in the 2nd half but it was XAVS who broke the deadlock on the break after 55 mins. The ball was fed through to Johnny O'Sullivan on the edge of the box & he drilled it 1st time into the corner of the goal..Both sides continued to play good quality, competitive football but it was the XAVS who scored their second. Again Jonny O'Sullivan who made it & scored it. When on his own, he beat two defenders beating the 2nd by tackling him to win the ball back just outside the box. Then as the keeper came out he calmly chipped him to score. NALGO contined to press hard but the XAVS were resolute in defence.. NALGO then had a man sent off for stamping on Adam Newbold whilst he was on the floor. NALGO had a couple good late chances but keeper Chris Evans produced two brilliant saves to help the FIRSTS run out 2-0 winners. Again Man of Tthe Match was Jonny O'Sullivan.
The A TEAM drew 1-1 with newly promoted team HUYTON STANLEY after conceding a late goal. Jamie Whittle scored for the XAVS. The B TEAM beat CONVOCATION away by 4-1. XAVS scorers were Luis Murphy (2), Tom Moyneux & Mike Campbell.. The C TEAM also managed a draw 2-2 with BUSINESS SCHOOL.to go 3rd in the division. Their scorers were Dave Seddon & Carl Johnson. Unfortunately One of their opponents goal was an own goal. .
SATURDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER 2022 - OLD XAVS TOP OF THE LEAGUE
The FIRSTS had a great win against WATERLOO DOCK through a double from Jonny O'Sullivan & one from Scott Dunning. The XAVS went 2-0 up early on then the THE DOCK pulled one back just before half time. Our opponents then put pressure on in the 2nd half but the XAVS defended well & then Johnny O'Sullivan made it 3-1 with a brilliant top corner finish. The DOCK pulled another goal back with 10 mins to go but the FIRSTS saw the game out. It was a great team performance which took them to the top of the table. Skipper Jonny O'Sullivan was man of the match.
The Old Boys finally started their season a week late.The A TEAM now in the OB Premier Division went down to new team ABBEY ROAD VETS 3-4 with XAVS scorers being Phil Hughes,Jamie McKernan & Jamie Whittle. The B TEAM (OB Championship Division) played away at COLLEGIATE O.B. & also lost 2-3 with Mike Campbell & Callum Finnan scoring. There was a win for the C TEAM (Divsion Two) against LARKIN with goals from John Harkin (2) & one each from Shaun Cameron & Mike Potter
SATURDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER 2022 - ALL GAMES POSTPONED
As a mark of respect all football was cancelled today due to the recent passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. It's what she would have wanted.
SATURDAY 3RD SEPTEMBER 2022 - TWO GOALS FROM JONNY O'SULLIVAN SEE THE XAVS TOP THE TABLE AT LEAST FOR 12 HOURS
With the Old Boys League moving the start of the season to next Saturday as it was Derby Day with a lunch time kick-off, only 1 Xavs game today. This left the FIRST TEAM as the only team with a game & that on a Friday night at Heron Eccles V unbeaten ADMIRAL PARK. Our manager, Calum Woods, had told the the team to try to turn their defence at every oppotunity. The team carried this out to the letter, winning 5-2 against a strong side who didn't help themselves by going down to 10 men. Goals came from Man of the Match, Johnny O'Sullivan (2), & one each from Matty Shore, Scott Dunning & Dom Maher. A further 'goal' by Peter Robinson was chalked off due to an erroneous offside decision. This put the XAVS top of the table for 12 hours. It is a long time since I have beeen able to write that. The result was due to a very good team performance.
Next week sees all the teams in action. with the B TEAM kicking off at 12.30pm at home.
SATURDAY 27TH AUGUST 2022 - A WOODS DOUBLE EARN A FIRSTS WIN
Late on Friday night, FIRST TEAM player/manager, Calum Woods, only had 10 men with only C team players available. He managed to scramble a side to together against undefeated MSB WOOLTON. According to the Assistant Manager, Paul Stanton, the XAVS were brilliant in the first half with incisive passing cutting through WOOLTON. Leading from the front, Calum Woods scored 2 goals in the 7th & 27th mins to give the FIRSTS a 2-0 first half lead. It could have been a bigger lead with Rob Lamont hitting the post & Pete Robinson having a good chance. The 2nd half was a different matter, with MSB pressing hard & it was a backs to the wall job. WOOLTON kept possession for long spells but the XAVS were creating chances on the break. Eventually WOOLTON scored through a penalty, after an initial save by keeper Chris Evans, with 5 mins to go. But we held on to win 2-1. Man of the Match was Calum Woods but Paul said it was a great overall performance.
Next week's 1st XI home game is at Heron Eccles but it is being played on FRIDAY (2nd Sept) night with a 6.30pm Kick Off vs Admiral Park.
SATURDAY 20TH AUGUST 2022 - XAVS BEAT LIVER AFTER O'SULLIVAN DOUBLE
The FIRST TEAM beat LIVER ACADEMY away, after a great first half performance which saw them four up at half time. Calum Woods, Johnny O'Sulivan (2) & Scott Dunning all scored before the.break.The 2nd half saw the XAVS against a strong wind & kicking up the slope. Despite LIVER getting two back, they went down to 10 mean and the Xavs were always in control & managed the game really well to end up 4-2 winners
SATURDAY 13TH AUGUST 2022 - FIRSTS START THE SEASON WITH A HEAVY DEFEAT
The FIRST TEAM began the season in intense heat with a difficult away game to BRNESC This proved to be so with a 5-1 defeat. Rob Lamont scored the XAVS goal. The less said the better. They are at their temporary new home for this season, Heron Eccles, versus LIVER Academy next Saturday (20th Aug) with a 1.00pm kick-off.
The OLD BOYS team's start their season on 10th September.
OLD XAVERIANS FC - Temporary move of 1st Team Home Games to Heron Eccles 3G
Old Xaverians FC have taken the difficult decision to move our 1st Team to the Heron Eccles 3G Hub for the coming season, 2022/23.
This is because our Step 7 pitch at SFX College needs serious attention, with problems relating to the pitch surface, emerging roots on the tree-lined side and some sinkholes developing. With the kind agreement of Pat Kelly at SFX College, the pitch will not be used by anyone for the next year, and we have engaged a contractor to improve the surface, and will be dealing with the roots and sinkholes ourselves (see Photos section of website). While the drainage work of recent years has worked well, the issues have been caused by the erosion of the surface material, lack of attention & resource during the Covid period, the excessively dry weather so far this year, and of course overuse of the pitch.
SFX is the longstanding home of Old Xaverians FC (for the last 40 years) and this is a major decision in our 130th year as a Club (formed 1892). Our plan is to return the 1st Team to SFX once the pitch is up to the required standard for Step 7 again, and to maintain our position in the Liverpool Premier League, Premier Division. This will require significant expense, as well as internal self-help from all OXFC members. For the coming season, our Home games will kick off at 1pm on Heron Eccles 3G and we will then be returning to the Xaverian Club at SFX after games, where all opponents and officials are welcome to join us for drinks.
This coming season Old Xavs will also have 3 senior teams in the Liverpool Old Boys League. They will continue to play their home games at SFX on Saturdays, on Pitches 2 and 3, maintaining our presence at SFX until we can get the 1st Team pitch back up to standard.
Good luck to all Old Xavs teams and all our League opponents for the coming season.
XAVS 1st TEAM TAKE PART IN ANNUAL LUNDON WILLIAMS TROPHY
On Sat 16th July Old Xavs 1st Team participated in the 2nd Lundon Williams Trophy day, the annual tournament to support the charities associated with our former manager Ben, and ex-Waterloo Dock player Michael Lundon who is sadly suffering from Motor Neurone Disease. Another great day in which we took part in raising thousands of pounds for the causes. On the pitch we went down 3-1 to a strong Waterloo Dock in the semi-final, with Jonny O'Sullivan getting our goal. It was too hot to play a 3rd/4th place game, so we watched the Final instead, in which the Follow Your Heart team drew 1-1 with Waterloo Dock, with the Dock going on to win on pens. The day was organised by lots of friends of the Xavs and the associated families, including both Mike Wickhams, Simon Grant, Gaz Hearns and Matty Williams amongst countless others. All did a fantastic job, and their efforts are very much appreciated by all.
NEW SPONSORS FOR OLD XAVS
We are very grateful to Wise One (UK) Ltd, Mortgage Advisers for their sponsorship of our 1st Team for the new season. This has been arranged by Paul Newbold, who has been a lonstanding supporter of the 1st Team and the Xavs in general. The company logo will appear on the new 1st Team kit, and please refer to Paul Newbold for your Mortgage and Insurance needs, through 1st Team Management. Thank you to Wise One (UK) and to Paul for their support and generosity.
Also thanks very much to E&ES Ltd (Electrical & Environmental Services Ltd) for their generous sponsorship of the Old Xavs B Team, for the coming season. This has been arranged by Liam Evans, an established player of the B Team. Contact Liam through the club for all your electrical & environmental needs. Thank you for your generosity E&ES and Liam and for your support.
NEW SEASON 2022/23 - PLAYING STRUCTURE
We have now finalised our playing structure for the coming season, with a couple of changes. Despite efforts we were unable to set up a formal Reserves Team, but will keep on trying for that in the future. Also, Jimmy Dunn has decided to step down from direct team management and will help out with other OB Teams. Other change is that last season's B Team (managed by Matty Long, Matty Kay) will move up to the top Division of the Old Boys League, and last season's A Team (Colin O'Hare, Jay Crowder) will move to the 2nd tier (renamed in LOBAL this season, see below).
This means we will field 4 teams as follows -
1st Team - Premier Division of Liverpool Premier League. Player Manager - Calum Woods. Assistants - Paul Bennett, Paul Stanton, MIke White
A Team - Premier Division of Liverpool Old Boys Amateur League (LOBAL) - Joint Managers - Matty Long, Matty Kay, assisted by Jimmy Dunn
B Team - Championship Division of LOBAL - Joint Managers - Colin O'Hare and Jay Crowder
C Team - Division Two of LOBAL - Joint Managers - Kenny Jones and Ian Welford
Good luck to all Xavs teams for the new season.
SATURDAY 21ST MAY 2022 - DISAPPOINTMENT FOR THE C TEAM
Jimmy Dunn's C TEAM sadly lost their CONNERTY CUP FINAL against 2nd placed COLLEGIATE O.B. by 0-2. They team put in a creditable performance. COLLEGIATE, who were the divison runners up, scored with their only real chances, a defensive error & a penalty. The XAVS had four good chances but failed to put any of them away. The players only achieved runners up medals.
The manager, Jimmy Dunn has informed the Club that he is unwillingly manage this group of players next season but is prepared to help with another side in the Club. Gladly the Club has not lost a hard working manager. Having brought the players through the ranks from a young age, Jimmy feels he is unable to guarantee being able to field a side on a regular basis. Unfortunately he feels that many of the squad have not got sufficient committment to play on a regular basis.
On a happier note, it is hoped next season to field a RESERVE team in the Liverpool Premier League. Currently the management team are on the look out for a managerto run this side.
SATURDAY 7th MAY - C TEAM REACH CONNERTY CUP FINAL
The C TEAM played League winners ALUMNI RESERVES in the semi-final of the Connerty Cup. The manager Jimmy Dunn had high hopes of victory having been the only side to beat them this season. They took the lead midway the 1st half through a penalty scored by Kieron Moore. The C TEAM extended their lead in the 2nd half though Shaun Shepherd. Through solid defending, ALUMNI could only get one goal back. The XAVS now play their final at Wyncote on Saturday 21st May 22.
The FIRST TEAM were also at home in the semi-final the George Mahon Cup against LIVER ACADEMY The conditions on a hard pitch made the ball difficult to bring under control. LIVER adapted better & olayed a long ball game which proved to be the right tactics on the day. The XAVS followed suit but it was foreign to them. LiVER scored 3 goals before Jonny O'Sullivan got one back with a cracking individual goal.. LIVER ACADEMY desevedly go through to the final. In the 3rd semi-final on the day the B TEAM were away to LIVERPOOL RAMBLERS in the Alan Brown Trophy, The RAMBLERS are a team new to the league. In a close game, the score was 2-2 after 90m mins through goals from Sean Connolly & an own goal The game then went straight to penalties. Sadly the the XAVS B TEAM who currently stand top of their division lost 5-4 on penalties which went to sudden death.
These were the last games of the season for Club but for the C TEAM. The next major event, after the final, is the Presentation Night at the Club on Saturday 21st May at 6.30 pm,
SATURDAY 30th APRIL - 1st TEAM PROGRESS TO SEMI-FINAL AS C TEAM FINISH THEIR LEAGUE SEASON
Calum's 1st Team returned to Jeffrey Humble to take on BRNESC for the 2nd week running, this time in the Quarter Final of the George Mahon Cup. Late cryoffs through injury, family do's and the imminent arrival of pups(!) meant we were down to a bare 12 with a few injuries being carried. And the 1st half didn't go well as late on we were carved open twice by BRNESC who went into a deserved 2-0 half-time lead. We were staring down a barrel now as defeat would mean the immediate end of our season, which no-one wanted. The half-time discussions reflected this and the need to push the back 4 up more.
It had the desired effect as we won a corner immediately, taken by Jonny O'Sullivan and headed in at the back stick by Eden Heron with 45 seconds of the 2nd half gone. Game on, 1-2. We maintained the momentum and although they're always dangerous, we managed to keep BRNESC at bay and mounted continuous attacks. We had several chances but couldn't convert and then with 20 minutes left, Calum Woods was bundled over in the box for a penalty. In the absence of our usual taker, Adam Newbold stepped up confidently and lashed in the equaliser, 2-2. We were hoping to finish the job in 90 minutes but a late chance for Calum was again blocked by the excellent BRNESC keeper, and so it ended 2-2 and we went straight to a penalty shootout.
In the shootout Adam Newbold scored our 1st then keeper Chris Evans saved the 1st pen from BRNESC to give us the early advantage. Successful pens from Dom Maher and Ant Stanton put us 3-2 ahead after an excellent double save from the BRNESC keeper. Then Chris made another excellent save to stop BRNESC's 4th and Calum Woods only had to score our 5th to put us through. He did emphatically, and we won the shootout 4-2. Great performances from lads all over the park, and a deserved Man of the Match award for Adam Newbold. Semi-final next Saturday (7/5) at SFX vs Liver Academy, 2pm KO.
In the other game of the day, Jimmy's C Team lost their final League game of the season, 0-2 against 3rd placed Kingsthorne. This ends a mixed League season for Jimmy and the lads with several highs. They still have a Cup semi-final to look forward to against champions Alumni, at SFX on Saturday 7th May.
TUESDAY 26th APRIL - B TEAM UNABLE TO EXTEND THEIR LEAD, AND A TEAM END SEASON WITH A DRAW
Both the Xavs A and B Teams finished their league seasons tonight with differing results and very different League positions. The A Team finished a tough season in Div 1 of the Old Boys with a 0-0 draw against Old Caths. The team have been run by Jay Crowder, Colin O'Hare and George Brash this season and they have managed well throughout a transitional period seeing several established players leave and integrating new players into the Club. They will end up in 9th place and ready to improve on that next season.
In contrast our B Team managed by Matty Kay and Matty Long sit top of Old Boys Div 2 by 4 points following the conclusion of their League season. However other teams still have games in hand and may catch them, though there are some tough games ahead for them. It was a frustrating last game of the season for the lads, going down 4-3 at Liobians, whose goalkeeper scored the winner with the last kick of the game! Couldn't make it up. Anyway, a waiting game now which won't be resolved until late May. The Xavs goals on the night came from Ollie Sawle and 2 from Carl Gargan, now on 23 for the season. The B Team have the semi-final of the Alan Brown Trophy to look forward to, away to Ramblers on Sat 7th May.
SATURDAY 23rd APRIL - 1ST TEAM AND D TEAM PLAY FINAL LEAGUE GAMES OF SEASON
Both Calum's 1st Team and Kenny & Ian's D Team played their final League games of the season and both picked up decent results. Our 1st Team went to BRNESC where we've had absolutely no joy over the last few seasons and been on the end of some hammerings to be honest. In a game spoiled by a crosswind neither team could get it down to find any fluency, and just before the break the nippy BRNESC forward capitalised on some hesitation in our box to give them the lead. We had already created a few chances and continued to do so after the break although BRNESC were always dangerous. Anyway great play by skipper Jonny O'Sullivan late on played in Josh Donnelly who coolly slotted under the keeper to make it 1-1, Josh's 11th goal of his 1st season with the Xavs. Calum Woods might have pinched it with the last kick of the game but the BRNESC keeper blocked with his feet. So it ended 1-1, a very encouraging result considering we play the same team (same time, same place) this coming Saturday in the Quarter Final of the George Mahon Cup. Quite a decent end to our League season after a shaky start under new management, but Calum has now built a squad which has lost only 1 League game since Christmas, and that was a close 0-1 defeat to the team who will probably win the League. Great progress, and looking bright for next season too.
Kenny and Ian's D Team finished on a high after a mixed 1st season back in open age, with a 3-1 away win at Cardinal Newman after having been beaten by the same opponents at home in January. Saturday's goals came from Danny Maginess and Rob Haworth (their 1st goals of the season) and another from John Harkin. Kenny was away in Florida so Ian Welford took the reins to produce a great result, maybe a sign of things to come??!!!! Well played lads, good first season lots to build on next year.....
WED 6th APRIL TO TUES 19th APRIL 2022 - SEVERAL GAMES AS SEASON NEARS CONCLUSION....
Apologies to our reader for the lack of updates over the last 2 weeks as after the blur of Aintree your correspondent was in South Wales, mainly hiking and drinking, but also exploring the massive damage wreaked upon the mining communities by Thatcher in the 80s - a visit to Big Pit Museum in Blaenafon is recommended, both heartbreaking and essential....
Anyway, games by team..... our A Team lost 0-3 to KCC (Wed 6/4), then went down narrowly to high flying St Margarets OB 0-1 (Sat 16/4). Unfortunately they were unable to raise a side last night (Tues 19/4) (mainly because of LFC v Man U) meaning that FC Salle were awarded the points as they close in on the title. 1 League game left to play.
A different story for the 2 Mattys' high flying B Team with 3 wins, a combined score of 16-1 to continue their impressive run. They won 5-0 away at Mexoc (Sat 9/4) with goals from Jon Steen, Chris Brady, Luke Brady, George Farrell, and Tom Johnson. Next up they played rivals FC Farm at home on Tues 12/4, winning 2-0 with goals from Carl Gargan and Jamie McKernan. They continued their run last night (19/4) with a comprehensive 9-1 home victory over Sacre Coeur - new signing Jamie Whittle and Carl Gargan both scored 3 each, with Carl's hattrick taking him to 21 goals for the season so far. Sean Connolly added a brace and Jonny Quirk completed the scoring. This leaves the B Team 8 points ahead at the top of the table but their challengers have games in hand. Sadly ACOL have dropped out of the League which means we only have 1 more League game to play, plus a Cup semi-final on 7th May. All to play for.
Jimmy's C Team have played twice recenty, losing 6-1 to title challengers Collegiate (Sat 9/4), with Mike Campbell getting the Xavs goal. The C Team then won their next game 2-1 away at Larkin, scorers Mike Campbell again and Kieron Moore. Kieron has now scored 19 goals, a great achievement for a young forward in his first full season. Well done Kieron. One League game left for Jimmy's team and a Cup semi-final on 7th May too.
Kenny's D Team lost 1-2 at Liobians on Sat 9/4, legend John Harkin with the goal. This leaves Kenny's team with just 1 League game to play, and he's making plans already for next season after his first year in the Old Boys League.
The 1st Team return to League action on Saturday (23rd April), a tough game away at BRNESC in the last League game of the season. The following week (Sat 30th April) we face the same opponents away again in the Quarter Final of the George Mahon Cup.
END OF SEASON PRESENTATION NIGHT IS PLANNED FOR SATURDAY 21st MAY IN THE XAVS CLUB
TUESDAY 5th APRIL 2022 - 3 GAMES, 3 DIFFERENT RESULTS
3 games tonight, 2 home, 1 away, yielding a win, a draw and a loss. Our 1st Team travelled to Nalgo (current LPL Champions) in our final group game of the Zingari Challenge Cup - we took a deserved 2-0 lead in the first half with excellent goals from Josh Donnelly and Calum Woods, and created several other chances. However Nalgo pulled one back before half-time, which set up a cracking 2nd half. Nalgo pressurised us but we stood firm with Chris Evans pulling off saves when necessary. Nalgo made 5 subs bringing on their NWC players and eventually equalised with 20 minutes remaining. But we continued to hit them on the break, with Calum, skipper Jonny O'Sullivan, Scott Dunning and Josh Donnelly all pullling the strings and in the last minute a Calum Woods volley was blocked for a corner. Jonny swung the corner in and the unmarked Shaun McBride headed it in for what we thought was a last minute winner, but unfortunately the assistant flagged as the corner had gone out of play, although it was pitch black by this stage. The final whistle went immediately. So once again we had to settle for the disappointment of settling for a draw from a game we could and should have won, against a top team. We currently head the Cup group on 8 points and that may not be enough to qualify now, but we take consolation in a great performance which bodes well for the future.
the 2 Mattys' B Team had another vital win, 1-0 at home to Liverpool Ramblers on a bobbly pitch which made pretty football impossible. But the lads defended well, and Jonny Quirk took his chance to score the winner to keep the pressure on at the top of the table, still lying 2nd with 5 to play.
Jimmy's C Team unfortunately went down 1-3 at home to bottom of the table Business School, more detail to follow.....
SATURDAY 2ND APRIL 2022 - ANOTHER UNBEATEN DAY FOR THE XAVS
3 games today, ending in 1 win and 2 draws - our 1st drew 1-1 away at Waterloo Dock, having taken a 1st-half lead through Calum Woods, but a late defensive lapse allowed the Dock to equalise. It's a sign of our progress though that we were disappointed to come away with only a point, from a venue where we've got nothing over the last few years.
The Matty's B Team got a crucial 3-2 win away at Collegiate, coming back from being 1-2 down with 8 minutes to play. Vital goals from Jon Steen, Jamie McKernan and Carl Gargan earned the win, with goalkeeper Niall McHale having a stormer, despite eye trouble and a dodgy barnet.
Jimmy's C Team earned a creditable 2-2 draw at Kingsford, despite being 0-2 down at half-time. 2nd half goals from Tony Brown and Dom Ross Heskey secured the point.
TUESDAY 29th MARCH 2022 - MIXED RESULTS AGAIN ON 1st MIDWEEK OF SEASON
2 games at SFX tonight in the first midweek of the season. Matty Long and Matty Kay's B Team won a tight and crucial game, edging out Woodstreet to win 1-0. Jamie McKernan scored the decisive goal to keep the B Team very much involved in the OB Div 2 title scrap, currently lying 2nd but with 7 games still to be played.
In the other game, Jimmy Dunn's C Team went down 3-1 to Lord Derby OB who now leapfrog them in the table.An eventful evening, with the referee unable to officiate as he was injured, so Lord Derby reffed it. Jimmy said difference was they took their chances and we missed ours. Top scorer Kieron Moore got his 18th of the season.
SATURDAY 26th MARCH 2022 - A WIN, A DRAW, A DEFEAT
1ST TEAM PROGRESS TO GEORGE MAHON CUP QUARTER-FINAL
3 games on Saturday with 3 different results - our 1st Team beat 1st Division FC Marsden 5-0 in the 3rd round of the George Mahon Cup. It was 0-0 after an indifferent first-half but a switch around soon paid dividends early in the 2nd half, with goals from Seb Linares and skipper Jonny O'Sullivan. Further goals from Chris Johnson (his first for the Xavs) and Josh Donnelly made it 4-0, before Chris Johnson got his 2nd with the last touch of the game, a 5-0 win. Quarter-final opponents to be decided.
Our A Team drew 0-0 with St Margaret's, their 2nd goalless draw on the bounce - while this may not sound too exciting they are now unbeaten in 3, and fighting to keep away from the foot of the table. Kenny's D Team shared 9 goals with Collegiate in Div 4, but unfortunately Collegiate got 8 of them, with Jamie Lock getting the Xavs goal.
Midweek games start on Tuesday (29th March) with home games for the B Team (v Woodstreet) and C Team (v Lord Derby) -both kick off at 6.15pm at SFX
SATURDAY 19TH MARCH 2022 - GOOD WIN FOR 1ST TEAM AWAY AT MSB WOOLTON;
MIXED RESULTS FOR OB TEAMS
The 1st Team hopped across to the Simpson 3G to play MSB Woolton in the League this time, after a forgettable day in the Zingari Cup against them 2 weeks ago at home. Squad and management were ravaged by injury, suspension, Covid and Cheltenham hangovers but Calum still managed to field a strong XI (including himself at last) though with not much in reserve. The game was a complete reverse of the Cup game (where we were 3-0 down at HT) with an early goal from Calum Woods (4') settling us down, followed by 2 more from Scott Dunning (30') and Josh Donnelly (38') to put the Xavs in dreamland. Defence were much tighter all round, and Chris Evans back to his best in goal, another clean-sheet for his collection. We never relaxed in the 2nd half and another early goal from Calum Woods (50') put it beyond any doubt, ann we ran out 4-0 winners. Jekyll and Hyde against Woolton this season (and no they weren't the subs). Well done Calum and all the lads.
In the Old Boys League, our A Team drew 0-0 at Alumni. May not sound too exciting, but unbeaten now in 2 games and moves the Xavs off the bottom. The B Team returned to winning ways in the Quarter Final of the Alan Brown Trophy, with a 3-1 home win vs FC Farm - goals from Jamie McKernan (2) and Carl Gargan earned the team a semi-final in April. Jimmy's C Team went down 1-2 v MSB Woolton, Michael Kane with their goal. And Kenny's D Team's glorious cup run came to an end with a 2-0 loss at Rhein OB.
SATURDAY 12TH MARCH 2022 - UNBEATEN DAY FOR ALL TEAMS
The B TEAM reached the semi-finals of the Alan Brown Trophy after a 3-1 win over JAGUAR ROVERS, at home, courtesy of goals from Alex Dunn (2) & Ollie Sawle. The FIRST ELEVEN drew with LIVER ACADEMY 3-3 with a double from Johnny O'Sullivan & one from manager Calum Woods. Colin O'Hare's A TEAM expereienced their first win in weeks beating fellow strugglers SOUTH MERSEY by 4-1. They remain bottom but are now only one point behind SOUTH MERSEY. Scorers were Danny Entwistle with a hattrick, and 1 for Callum Finnan.
The C TEAM had no game whilst the D TEAM drew with MSB WOOLTON 1-1 thanks to a Jamie Locke goal. Sadly they conceded the equaliser with only 3 mins to go. One asks is their Monday run sufficient exercise to keep them fit?
SATURDAY 5TH MARCH 2022 A TERRIBLE DAY FOR XAVS TEAMS WITH FIVE DEFEATS
On a bad day for the all the Club teams, the FIRSTS lost to MSB WOOLTON by 1-4 after a poor performance & having a man sent off & a player sinned binned in the ensuing fracas. we played poorly and presented Woolton with 3 goals before halftime. A Jonny O'Sullivan penalty made it 3-1 shortly after the interval and got us into the game before the sending off. The A TEAM lost to VALLEY OB by 2-4 whilst the B TEAM lost the VALLEY OB RESERVES, who were top before the game. After taking a 2-0 lead then a 3-2 lead the B TEAM lost to move to 3rd in the table. Again they were struck by ill fortune.4 late cry-offs on Friday night, some through illness. Then the team's leading scorer Carl Gargan was injured in the warm-up Scorers were Emerson Hunter (2) & Jamie McKernan.
Jimmy Dunn's C TEAM lost to CONVOCATION 0-2 whilst Kenny' Jones' D TEAM also lost 2-4 with a John Harkin pen & a rare Keith Marley goal.
SATURDAY 26TH FEBRUARY 2022 - FIRSTS PROGRESS TO LAST LAST SIXTEEN OF GEORGE MAHON CUP
The 1st Team played the up-and-coming Naylorsfield (Div2) in Rd 2 of the George Mahon Cup, running out 2-1 winners in a tight contest. The Xavs took control early on with leading scorer Scott Dunning converting 2 early chances to give the Xavs the lead. However, Naylorsfield encouraged by a lively line pulled one back immediately and put us under pressure for the remainder of the first half and most of the second. However, we defended strongly and Chris Evans was faultless in goal as always, and we had a few chances to increase the lead late on. But no further score mean we progress to the last 16, where we have a home tie against Marsden FC, due to be played Sat 26th March 2022.
SATURDAY 19TH FEBRUARY 2022 - D TEAM SUFFER HEAVY DEFEAT TO TOP OF TABLE
The only game today was the D TEAM V top of the table, NETHERLEY ATHLETIC. sadly they went down 5-0. They were 4-0 down at half time. The opposition were under scruteny having had a game abandoned. At one stage the game was stopped after two of our opponents started fighting on the side lines.One player was booked but two other were substituted before they were cautioned. After a poor first half performance they battled hard in the second half to only concede one goal.
The FIRST TEAM, I Zingari cup tie, versus Bernie Mays was called off as they had resigned from the league. The A TEAM Marlborough Cup game & C TEAM league game were both postponed due to storm Eunice which soaked the SFX pitches on Saturday morning. The B TEAM LCFA Intermediate Cup tie was all called off due to a waterlogged pitch. These postponements may effect next week's games.
SATURDAY 12TH FEBRUARY 2022 - ANOTHER VICTORY FOR THE FIRST TEAM
This week the FIRST TEAM had a well deserved win versus EAST VILLA in the league by 2-0. It was by all reports an excellent performance with goals either side of half time from captain Jonny O'Sullivan & Seb Linares (his 1st for the Xavs). It was a brilliant defensive show from centre halves, Eden Heron & Chris Brady with consecutive clean sheets from keeper Chris Evans. Chris made a brilliant save late on to ensure the win. Both the A TEAM & B TEAM had their games called off. The A TEAM was off because a lack pitches at SFX, which could have been resolved earlier in the week if the B TEAM,s opponents in the County FA Intermediate Cup last 16, THE FLATT HOUSE, had have let us know earlier that they were struggling to raise a side due to a COVID outbreak in their squad. Their Cup tie has been rescheduled for next Saturfday.
The C TEAM played table toppers ALUMINI THIRDS & lost 4-1 after holding them to 1-1 at half time. Three defensive errors in the 2nd half was the difference between the teams. George Reid scored the XAVS goal.. The D TEAM had a 2-2 draw with RHEIN. The talking point of the game is whether Mark Allen scored one or two goals. Officially he scored both although some of the team dispute this(!).
SATURDAY 5TH FEBRUARY 2022 - FIRSTS HAVE A GOOD WIN IN I ZINGARI CUP
The FIRST TEAM played HALEWOOOD APOLLO in the 2nd Group game of the I Zingari Cup and 2 very late goals saw us run out 2-0 winners with a double from MOTM Neil Davies. The A TEAM also had a difficult draw in the 1st Round of the Bill Hughes Senior Shield for all the first teams in the Old Boys League. They were drawn to play away at JAGUAR ROVERS strugglers in Div Two. After being 2 nil up they blew it & ended 2-2 after 90 mins. They went on to lose 3-0 on penalties.
In a poor day for the XAVS teams in the Old Boys League games, the B TEAM were beaten for the first time this season losing 1-2 at home to title rivals COLLEGIATE O.B. Chris Brady scored the XAVS goal. This moved them off top spot for the first time this season as well. The D TEAM also lost to ACOL RESERVES by 1-5 with Mark Allen scoring. The C TEAM had no game as their opponents have had their fixtures suspended after an abandoned game last weekend.
SATURDAY 29TH JANUARY 2022 - XAVS TEAMS RECORD TWO WINS, A DRAW & TWO DEFEATS TODAY
The FIRST TEAM were at home to second placed SEFTON ATHLETIC & in a tightly fought game lost by the only goal of the game. After being second best for 20 mins the XAVS fought their way into the game but neither side were creating many chances. The 2nd half went the way of the first until the 70 min when a throw followed by a header on & a difficult finish at the back post won the game for SEFTON. Sadly having created several chances prior to this, the XAVS now started playing long but to little avail. So again a good performance against a top side in the division but no result.
The A TEAM were drawing with high flying HUYTON STANLEY until the very last minute but a late goal won the game for STANLEY. The B TEAM played SEFTON PARK RANGERS & again drew 1-1 with Sean Irving scoring. The C TEAM ran out 3-1 winners at home to Old Cathinians. Kieron Moore again scored. He has now scored in 10 out the 12 league games the team have played. In the two none scoring games, the XAVS did not score a goal. A magnificent record. The other scorers were Alex Dunn & George Reid. The D TEAM also won, winning by 4-0. Their scorers were John Harkin, Graham Bergin, Eoghan Wall & Jamie Locke
SATURDAY 22ND JANUARY 2022 - B TEAM DRAW WITH JAGUAR IN A CRUCIAL CLASH
On Thursday there were five scheduled game for XAVS teams but by kick off time only three games were played. The A TEAM called their game off with the permission of the league, on Thursday, as they could not raise a side due to injuries, unavailabilities & Covid. The FIRST TEAM game was also called off on the day of the game as bottom of the league BERNIE MAYS FC could not raise a side. We should be able to claim the points if the team do not fold.
Of the games played, the B TEAM had a vital clash away to JAGUAR ROVERS. They came away with a 1-1 draw courtesy of a rare Sean Connolly goal. Their first draw of the season, but it still sees them top of the table. Meanwhile the D TEAM lost 0-1 to CARDINAL NEWMAN OB. According to manager, Kenny Jones, it was a poor XAVS performance & the result was deserved. The C TEAM lost away to MERSEY HARPS with Kieron Moore scoring his 16th goal of the season & Ben Bonner scoring for the 2nd week running. It was all to no avail, as the they lost 2-4.
SATURDAY 15TH JANUARY 2022 - ALL TEAMS RETURN TO PLAYING & RECORD FIVE DRAWS
After last weeks virtual washout after the return from the Christmas break, all teams played this weekend. Two of the games were cupties. To add extra extra fixtures after the withdrawal of so many teams during the season, the league committee decided to make the I. Zingari Cup for the FIRST TEAM a groups competitions. In the first round of our group we were drawn at home to WATERLOO DOCK. The game ended in a 1-1 draw with manager Calum Woods scoring the equaliser.. The B TEAM were involved in the Liverpool County F.A. Junior Cup away to SIDAC SPORTS & SOCIAL CLUB from the St Helens League. After a 2-2 draw after 90 draws, the game went straight to penalties. The XAVS ran winners for the 2nd time in the competition on penalties by 4-3. Their scorers were Carl Gargan & Jon Steen.
The other three Old Boys teams also drew their league games. The A TEAM drew 0-0at home to fellow strugglers COLLEGIATE O.B. but still remain bottom of the division. The C TEAM drew 2-2 away from home versus LORD DERBY O.B their scorers were Kieron Moore & Ben Bonner. The D TEAM were at home to MSB WOOLTON & also drew 2-2 (Mike Heverin & an own goal). They remain 7th in their division out of 12.
SATURDAY 8TH JANUARY 2022 - CHRIS BRADY SCORES THE WINNER VERSUS THE RAMBLERS
With all the teams looking to continue after the Christmas & New Year break, there was great disappointment with only one game being played due to the horrendous weather earlier in the week & on the day. The only game played was the B TEAM game V LIVERPOOL RAMBLERS at Moor Lane Crosby where there was sunshine & a playable pitch. In a close game the B TEAM won 1-0 with a Chris Brady goal. Chris had played for the FIRST TEAM at full back in the last game before Christmas. Next week the B TEAM are away in the Intermediate Cup. All other games were postponed due to waterlogged pitches. Unluckily none of our teams were scheduled to play on an astroturf pitch..
SATURDAY 18TH DECEMBER 2021 - FIRSTS HAVE GREAT WIN OVER 4TH PLACED F.C. ORIENT
The Old Boys League gave all teams the oppontunity to have a blank Saturday on the last weekend before Christmas. All the OLD XAVS teams took advantage of the break leaving only the FIRST ELEVEN with a fixture, Despite a few problems with COVID isolations the FIRSTS played against F.C. ORIENT for the 2nd time in three weeks, this time away from home, having drawn the previous league game 1-1. After a period of possession from ORIENT, the XAVS scored on the break,, after 11 mins, with Scott Dunning squaring for Josh Donnelly to tap in. As we gained more control of the game the XAVS scored a 2nd from Jonny O'Sullivan with an assist from Josh Donnelly. In a controversial incident, both sides had a player sent off .In the same incident F.C. ORIENT also had a player sinned binned for dissent. After 44 mins Josh Donnelly scored a third goal putting us 3-0 up at half time. Despite both sides having only 10 men each ORIENT pressed hard but excellent defending repelled them. The XAVS' forwards constantly troubled the opposition's defence missing at least 2 one on ones. Finally Scott Dunning scored a fantastic 4th goal after a headed clearance from a corner, game won. But ORIENT had other ideas & continued to attack & eventually got a goal back with 15 mins to go. They nearly scored a 2nd but for a tremendous save from keeper Chris Evans low down in his bottom left hand corner. This result has moved the FIRSTS out of the danger zone.
The season continues on Saturday 8th January 2022
SATURDAY 11th DECEMBER 2021 – TWO GAMES TODAY & TWO DEFEATS. A BAD DAY AT THE OFFICE FOR XAVS
The games at SFX College were off today because of the very wet weather during the week & even today. All grass pitches had also been called off by the council. As the FIRST TEAM game was away at NALGO on a grass pitch, it was switched, on Friday, to a 3G at the Jeffrey Humble hub at Long Lane. NALGO are top of the league, so a difficult game for the XAVS was expected & it turned out to be so. The XAVS repelled early pressure but as they started to get a toe hold in the game, NALGO scored a fine breakaway goal after 12 mins, A defensive error after 18 mins led to NALGO’s second goal. The FIRSTS looked as if they might be in for a big defeat but all credit to the side as they gradually worked their way back into the game. An excellent move after good work down the left by Jonny O'Sullivan enabled Calum Woods to get a goal back after 35 mins. The 2nd half started as the 1st with the XAVS under some heavy pressure. Again, they worked their way back into the game but missed 2 good chancesto equalise. However another good goal from NALGO after 68 mins ensured they ran out 3-1 winners. The FIRSTS created enough chances to get themselves level but unfortunately they had not brought their shooting boots.
The only other team to play were the A TEAM who were away to SOUTH MERSEY & losing 1-4. with Jordan Obeng getting the XAVS goal. The team remain firmly fixed at the bottom of the table.
SATURDAY 4th DECEMBER 2021- FIRSTS EARN CREDITABLE DRAW AGAINST THE ORIENT F.C.
With howling gales & driving heavy showers it was a surprise any games were completed today. The FIRST TEAM played ORIENT F.C., who started the game in 3rd place in the Premier Division. In a good performance, the FIRSTS drew 1-1 after an equaliser from a Scott Dunning penalty, his 11th goal of the season. Captain & keeper Chris Evans was given the Man of the Match award by manager, Calum Woods. The A TEAM lost 2-5 to COLLEGIATE O.B. to go to the bottom of the table. The XAVS scorers were Mike Campbell & Tom Rymer.
With the B TEAM game V COLLEGIATE O.B. postponed because the ground was locked & the C TEAM game abandoned, the only other game played was the D TEAM against MSB WOOLTON. Our opponents took the lead before Mark Allen equalised in the first half. The XAVS then conceded a second in a most unfortunate way. The ball bounced down from the crossbar & it then hit the keeper on the back of the head before going in, for the winner. Apparently, the XAVS should have been leading by half time but surface pools of water, one on the penalty spot prevented the D TEAM taking a first half lead according to manager Kenny Jones
SATURDAY 27TH NOVEMBER 2021 - C TEAM COME FROM TWO GOALS DOWN TO BEAT THE TABLE TOPPERS
There were some excellent results today for the XAVS teams playing league games. Jimmy Dunn’s C TEAM were two goals down to league leaders, ALUMNI, but in a spirited come back the XAVS won 3-2. Strikes from Kieron Moore (2) & Seamus Blything turned the game.The FIRST TEAM, who are developing into a good squad of players were away at FC BERNIE MAYS FC & were 4-1 up at half time & eventually ran out 7-2 winners. Josh Donnelly scored after 15mins with Scott Dunning heading in the 2nd 5 mins later. Two more Josh Donnelly goals made it 4-1 at half time. BERNIE MAYS made it 4-2 before a 4th Josh Donnelly goal restored the XAVS 3 goal lead. A late penalty by Scott Dunning & an outstanding free kick from Jonny O’Sullivan completed the score line.
The B TEAM were at home to Sefton Park Rangers & ran out 4-1 winners to go six points clear at the top of the table. Scorers were Jon Steen (2), Carl Gargan & John Quirk. The A TEAM game was postponed early in the week, whilst the D TEAM were playing in the NORTHERN CUP away to MIDDLEWICH TOWN RESERVES. They lost 1-3 with Niall Wall getting the XAVS goal.
SATURDAY 20th NOVEMBER 2021 – THREE XAVS OLD BOYS TEAMS ALL WIN TODAY
With the A, B & C TEAMS all winning today it was overall a good day for XAVS teams. Unfortunately the FIRST TEAM, who were at home to WATERLOO DOCK, were the only losers. A 0-3 defeat was disappointing after their recent good results. The A TEAM did not play today whilst the B TEAM had a hard fought game versus ACOL 1st TEAM winning by 1-0 with Jon Steen scoring the winner.
The C TEAM were away to BUSINESS SCHOOL in Division Three and came away 3-1 winners with goals from Kieron Moore, Michael Kane & George Reid. The D TEAM also won 2-0 against LIOBIANS RES with strikes from Jamie Lock & a screamer or a fluke (there have been both opinions) from Mark Allen.
SATURDAY 13th NOVEMBER 2021 - FIRSTS RETURN TO WINNINGS WAYS AFTER A JOSH LONG HAT-TRICK
On Saturday, the FIRST ELEVEN were at home to LOWER BRECK RESERVES & recorded a comfortable 4-2 victory. The highlight was a hat-trick from Josh Long in only his 2nd game for the Club. Scott Dunning scored the other, bringing his season’s total to eight. Sadly after this defeat & having another player sent off, LOWER BRECK resigned from the league. This means that their record will be expunged which takes the shine off the FIRSTS win. This is the 3rd team to resign from the division this season, leaving, just 12 teams. The XAVS are now in 9th place, the bottom one of 4 teams level on 10pts. The FIRSTS play one of these four, WATERLOO DOCK, next Saturday at home.
The A TEAM were away to F.C. SALLE OB in the LCFA Junior Cup. Earlier in the season they had lost 8-0 to them. This time, in a much tighter game, the A TEAM lost by only 1-2. Mike Campbell scored for his 4th consecutive game after his mid-season introduction. The B TEAM also had a LCFA Cup-tie, this time in the Intermediate Cup, away to St MICHAELS D.H. DEVELOPMENT. In a close game, The XAVS were held to a 1-1 draw, which then went to a penalty shootout. They won eventually by 4-2 in the shootout. Carl Gargan was the scorer in the 90 mins.
There were no games for the C & D TEAMS due to a shortage of referees which has now become a national problem after the lockdown.
SATURDAY 6th NOVEMBER 2021 - FIRSTS TWO GOALS DOWN WIN WITH LATE CALUM WOODS GOAL
The FIRST TEAM found themselves two goals down at half time against THE EMPRESS who had thrashed them earlier in the season. The introduction of manager Calum Woods changed the game. An early 2nd half goal from Josh Donnelly on his debut & 70th min goal from Pete Robinson, his 1st for the side, saw the scores level. Then up popped Calum Wood to score the winner in the last minute.
The A TEAM played top of the table HUYTON STANLEY & suffered a heavy defeat by 2-7. XAVS scorers were Mike Campbell & sub Alex Haarke. Sadly Liam Phelan broke & dislocated his ankle which needs a plate fitted. All the Xavs wish him a speedy recovery. The B TEAM had no game. but retained top place. The C TEAM lost 0-2 to MERSEY HARPS having had a player sent off. The D TEAM earned their 2nd win of the season against ALSOP OB by three goals to two. The side were a goal down at half time before Jamie Locke got an equaliser. Mike Heverin then put the side in the lead. Later the XAVS gave away a penalty which ALSOP scored. Mike Heverin's 2nd goal turned out to be the winner but not before keeper Colin Wakefield pulled out a great save at the end.
SATURDAY 30th OCTOBER 2021 – UNDER-STRENGTH FIRSTS STRUGGLE AGAINST LEAGUE LEADERS
Today the FIRST TEAM played top of the table BRNESC without several regular players & suffered a defeat by 2-5. Both XAVS goals were scored by Scott Dunning. In the Old Boys League the A TEAM curiously also lost by the same scored of 2-5 to VALLEY O.B. Again Mike Campbell was on target with Dave Crawford getting the other goal. The B TEAM continued their winning streak by beating, new club, FARM F.C. by 3 goals to nil with Jon Steen completing a hat-trick in a satisfactory score line. They remain in top place in the division by 6 points. The referee, Mike Howells, in only his 3rd game in the league, was highly complementary of both teams for their good discipline & lack of dissent at his decisions & the league wanted both sets of players to know this. Well done the B TEAM.
The C TEAM were scheduled to play OLD CATHINIANS in a Div 3 game but they could not raise a side for the 2nd time this season, so the league have awarded the points to us. They now move up to 5th in the league. Finally, the D TEAM were involved in a 6 goal thriller against new team, SEFTON PARK RANGERS RES. The XAVS were 3-2 up with a minute to go when they gave away a penalty. RANGERS scored the subsequent penalty so manager, Kenny Jones was gutted when the whistle went. The scorers were Charlie Butler & Mike Heverin (2) including a penalty. According to the manager, despite Mike’s goals he is still a bit rusty having missed three good chances. Overall though this was still a fine performance against the 2nd placed team.
SATURDAY 23rd OCTOBER 2021 – D TEAM PROGRESS IN NORTHERN CUP THROUGH NIALL WALL GOAL
The D TEAM were drawn in the 1st Round of the Northern Cup with a difficult away to GREAT SUTTON near Chester. With a great performance with lots of effort & a good work rate, the XAVS keeper, Colin Wakefield, did not have a save to make. Although Niall Wall scored the only goal, Danny Maginnis was the Man of the Match seeing off two right backs! Today’s other winners were the B TEAM with a hard fought win against LIOBIANS. Carl Gargan & Jon Steen were the goal scorers in a 2-1 victory to enable the B TEAM to remain top of the league.
The A TEAM were away to OLD CATHINIANS & came away with 2-2 draw, courtesy of two goals from Mike Campbell. The only other team to play today were the C TEAM who lost to KINGSTHORNE in a high scoring thriller by 4-6. Their scorers were George Reid (2), Kieron Moore & Patrick Craig.
The FIRST TEAM were due to play PAGE CELTIC but they have just resigned from the league through a lack of players. This made two weeks,for the FIRSTS, without a game. Hopefully all the injured players have now recovered for next Saturday’s game against 2nd placed BRNESC.
SATURDAY 16TH OCTOBER 2021 - B TEAM HIT SIX FOR THE THIRD WEEK RUNNING
With no game for the FIRST TEAM, the focus was on the top of the table B TEAM. For the third week running they scored six, this week against JAGUAR FC, in a 6-2 victory. Carl Gargan was in the goals again with 4 goals. There was also one each for Jon Steen & Owen Farrelly. With this win the team go three points clear at the top of the division.
Sadly all the other XAVS teams lost. The best result was by the D TEAM who played top the table, COLLEGIATE OB,who only lost 3-5 with two goals from sub Mike Heverin & one from Mike Ormesher. The A TEAM lost 1-3 to 3rd placed KCC with Jordan Obeng scoring, whilst the previously unbeaten C TEAM lost heavily by 1-7 to 2nd placed COLLEGIATE OB. Despite having more of the play early on, three defensive errors gifted their opponents goals. Having a man sent off only compounded the XAVS woes before a late consolation goal from Kieron Moore. Kieron has now scored 10 goals in 4 games.
SATURDAY 9TH OCTOBER 2021 - GOALS GALORE FOR XAVS TEAMS IN A DAY OF GOOD RESULTS
With two big wins & 3 draws today, the XAVS teams achieved their best set of results this season. It started with the FIRST ELEVEN playing top of the table, LIVERPOOL NALGO having lost to them 1-4 in the Cup last week. Today with three excellent goals, one of them outstanding, the XAVS earned a well deserved 3-3 draw. Scott Dunning scored two with the 2nd being a twenty yard chip into the top corner. Josh Long scored the first and his first goal for the Club too. The scores fluctuated with the XAVS 1-0 up, 1-2 down, then 3-2 up before conceding a late equaliser with a header from a corner. A good result all in all though!
In the Old Boys Div One the A TEAM beat ALUMNI 6-0 with sub Mike Campbell scoring a hat-trick within 6 mins of entering the field of play. Liam Evans, Danny Entwistle & Jordan Obeng scored the 1st three goals. The B TEAM also won 6-0 versus SACRE COEUR to go top of Div Two. Their scorers were Carl Gargan (2), Jon Steen (2), John Quirk & Sean Irving.
Another fine result from unbeaten C TEAM who were 1-4 down at half time to MSB WOOLTON. Four goals, from Man of the Match, Kieron Moore ensured they came away with a 4-4 draw. The D TEAM also drew 1-1 to new team NORTH HILL who equalised with only 10 mins to go. Jamie Lock got the vital XAVS goal.
It was nice to see so many players in the Club after today's matches. It is getting back to the old days, pre Covid & before staggered kick-offs. Can I also remind everyone that there are quite a few Bonus Ball numbers available for members to purchase by standing order of £4-33 a month. See your manager or a committee member.
SATURDAY 2ND OCTOBER 2021 - B TEAM WIN BY SIX AGAINST VALLEY OB
The B TEAM played away to VALLEY OB & had a convincing 6-0 win to move them up to 2nd place in the table. Their scorers were Carl Gargan (2) & one each from Sean Irving, Johnny Quirk, Liam Brady & George Farrell. The only team with a 100% record after four weeks of the season is the C TEAM, after two victories & two postponements for which we may be able to claim the points. Their 2nd win came against KINGSFORD by 4 goals to 3 thanks to a hat-trick from Kieron Moore & one from Joe Foy. They currently lie 5th in the table. The A TEAM suffered a heavy 0-8 defeat to a very good F.C. SALLE who are currently top with a goal difference of 26 after 3 games. The D TEAM also lost to RHEIN by 0-2. We were the better team but could not put the ball into the back of the net.
The FIRST TEAM played table toppers LIVERPOOL NALGO in the Liverpool Challenge Cup & lost 1-4. They were without their captain & suspended keeper Chris Evans after last weeks sending off. The teams were level 0-0 at halftime, but Nalgo capitalised on a couple of lapses of concentration, although we always felt we were in the game. John O'Sullivan scored the XAVS goal.
SATURDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER 2021 - D TEAM HAVE A CONVINCING WIN OVER LEAGUE LEADERS
The D TEAM had an excellent result this week in beating NETHERLEY ATHLETIC, who were the current top of the division, by 2-0 through goals from Mark Allen & Niall Wall. In the Old Boys League, the B TEAM also had a good win at home to WOODSTREET with Carl Gargan scoring a hat-trick. Sean Irving & John Quirk were also on the scoresheet. The A TEAM lost 3-4 to MHS. the scorers were Dan Entwhistle, Chris Smith & an own goal. The C TEAM again had their fixture postponed against LORD DERBY OB at the last minute.
The FIRST ELEVEN were weakened with late cry-offs & the sending off of keeper, Chris Evans sealed their fate in a 2-3 defeat to WOOLTON MSB. Manager Calum Woods scored again with Mike Potter also slotting.
SATURDAY 18TH SEPTEMBER 2021 - FIRSTS RECORD THEIR SECOND WIN OF THE SEASON
With your correspondent being absent on holiday for several weeks this weekly report is somewhat behind. The FIRST TEAM started the season with four defeats before things changed with two consecutive wins. Saturday's win was against HALEWOOD APOLLO, who they had lost to earlier in the season. After four away defeats, once games started at home, results improved. A 2-0 win V LIVER ACADEMY Scott Dunning (2) was followed by a second victory by 1-0 against HALEWOOD APOLLO with manager & sub Calum Wood's header being the difference between the teams. Their opponents offered little up front & it was only a matter time before the XAVS scored & clinched the game. The FIRSTS now move up to 10th in the division after being bottom for a couple of weeks
There were two other games today, both at home. The B TEAM played MEXOC, their first game of the season. They were leading for most of the game through a Sean Irving goal until a header from the MEXOC's keeper in the last minute of injury time earned them a point & disappointment to the XAVS' team.
The C TEAM were also playing their first game of the season against a new team to the league, LARKIN from the I. Zingari Combination. After our opposition when down to 10 men the XAVS led 1-0 & 2-1. 10-man LARKIN then managed to equalise. With 5 mins to go, the LARKIN centre half completely lost his head & who was totally out of control & tried to throw a punch at Jay Crowder, our centre forward, in the penalty area. Whilst the Referee was sorting their centre half by sin-binning their player (?), XAVS players were arguing for a penalty. Sam Harris argued so much that the ref sin-binned then dismissed him. The referee did award a penalty, which Kieron Moore scored, his 2nd goal. The 10 men XAVS held out against the 9 men LARKIN to run out 3-2 winners. Jay Crowder also scored
A NEW SEASON STARTS IN THE PREMIER LEAGUE & FOR THE FIRSTS
The new football season's starts with several changes in the Club structure. Calum Woods is now in place as the new First team manager after the resignation of John Harkin, as you will have seen earlier in tributes to John for all his hard work. Sadly, work committments on Saturdays prevent Dan Jessop continuing with the Reserves. With no candidates coming forward to replace him, the club management have had to withdraw the Reserves from the Liverpool Premier League. It is hoped that next season we will have a side in the league as the LPL committee have indicated they would be happy to have us back.
The A Team management of duo have of Colin O'Hare & George Brash will be assisted in team matters by Jay Crowder & will continue to play in the First Division of the Old Boys League. The BTeam manager, Steve Linder, informed us that he wishes to return to playing so Matty Long & Matty Kay have stepped forward to run the side together. The club management & the squad of players are grateful for them stepping into the breach. After winning the 2019-20 Divisional Cup, the team hope to continue with their success in Division Two of the Old Boys League.. The C Team's squad of young players will continue to play in Division Three of the Old Boys League under the same manager, Jimmy Dunn.
Kenny Jones' D Team squad will play in the new Fourth division of the Old Boys League this coming season instead of the I. Zingari Combination. The Club is sad to leave the Zingari having been members of the League since its inception in the 1920s. It was felt necessary as the Combination only has one division & players felt the standard was too high for them. It is hoped that the move will help them to be more competitive in the division. Kenny will be assisted in running the team this seaon by Ian Welford.
The committee wish all the managers a successful & enjoyable season.
The First Eleven started their campaign last Saturday away to SEFTON ATHLETIC. With 15 of the squad unavailable this week, the manager struggled to get a side together to compete at this standard. Despite their 0-1 defeat the team captain, Chris Evans, was quite upbeat with the result. He reported that with only a squad of 13 & two injuries before half time which required substitutions the side did well. With 20 mins to go they conceded from a corner. The side continued to battle away & could with some luck could have come away a point at least. He also stated that he was, "proud of everyone there today & we move on together". Their next game is next Saturday away to newly promoted HALEWOOD APOLLO which will be played at Halewood Leisure with a 1.00pm kick off.
The rest of the club start their season on the 11th September
STE LINDER's TEAM NARROWLY LOSE OUT IN 2021 ALAN BROWN TROPHY FINAL to BRING THE XAVS 2020/21 SEASON TO A CLOSE
In the weird way that footy works out nowadays, Ste Linder's B Team played this year's Final of the Alan Brwon Trophy a week after they won last year's Final (vs Liobians 4-0). This week's game at Wyncote was a much closer affair, and the Xavs took an early lead after Carl Gargan did what he's been doing for years and reacted first to a great cross by Jon Steen to place it into the corner. Great start. However virtually from the restart, ACOL sent a hopeful long ball down the right, but the ACOL player never gave it up and knocked it onto the middle to his unmarked mate who scored. 1-1. A few minutes later ACOL got free down their right again and an empahtic finish gave them a 2-1 lead. Xavs piled on the pressure and Jon Steen was unlucky when a brilliant run was halted on what was deemed to be the edge of the box, and his fierce free kick was blocked by the wall. Half time 1-2.
Xavs controlled most of the 2nd half and created chances but got no breaks in the box, a few corners couldn't be capitalised upon at the back post. ACOL were penned in but defended well and the equaliser never came, so the Xavs had to hand over the Cup they held for a week!!
Unlucky and disappointing for the squad, but knowing them they'll just be looking forward to getting back at it next season, trying to win League and Cups again. Well done to Ste Linder and his team though, in their 2 seasons together they've had to cope with 2 very interrupted seasons, but won the League in 19/20 and now the Cup for that season, and finished 3rd and Cup Finalists this weird season. Great achievements, well done Ste and all the lads.....
and that brings our season to a close, onw which generally the Xavs will be glad to see the back of, and move forward from here. Hopefully our remaining managers will be back again running their teams, though there may be a slight change of Leagues/Divisions here and there. Have a good break from all at Old Xavs Committee and Management. Pre-season to start soon!!
CALUM WOODS IS THE NEW 1st TEAM MANAGER AT THE XAVS!
Old Xaverians FC are delighted to announce that Calum Woods has agreed to be our new 1st Team Player/Manager with immediate effect.
Calum has played for the Old Xavs 1st Team for the last 7 years, and was voted both the 1st Team Players Player and the OXFC Club Young Player of the Year in 2015 after his first season at the age of 18. Calum, (who was a former pupil at SFX) has also had spells with AFC Liverpool and Skelmersdale Utd in the North West Counties League, and following his return to the Xavs in 2019, he scored 8 goals in his 10 games at the end of the 2018/19 season, and then ended up as 1st Team top scorer in the 2019/20 season which was curtailed due to COVID.
Calum is keen to get started in the job and is already making plans for pre-season training and games, which will be published here when confirmed. This will be a busy period prior to the 1st Team starting their season in the Premier Division of the Liverpool Premier League in mid-August. Calum is also planning to attract high quality players to the Club, (please contact us if you are interested in joining). Calum's focus will be on playing as well as coaching the 1st Team squad, and he will be assisted with all the admin/finance etc by experienced clubmen Paul Bennett, Paul Stanton and Mike White.
This is an exciting new era for the Club, in appointing such a young player/manager and we believe that Calum's experience at the higher level and his knowledge of young players at this level will be a massive benefit to the Club. He has the full support of Chairman Eric Tocher and all the Xavs Committee and we wish him all the very best in his new role. Follow developments on the 1st Team's new Twitter account @OldXavs1892
STE LINDER'S 4th (B)TEAM IN 2nd CUP FINAL ON SATURDAY
A reminder that Ste Linder's 4th (or B) Team take on ACOL in the 2020/21 version of the Alan Brown Trophy on Saturday at Wyncote 1pm KO. Ste's side won the 19/20 version of this Cup last Saturday!! (see below).
Good luck to al the squad again and as usual all support appreciated on Saturday, as well as donations to the LOBAL Charity PArtner, Fans Supporting Foodbanks.
Old Xaverians FC Celebrate Football Pitch Funding Success
£12,000.00 awarded to Old Xaverians FC to improve the quality of
grass football pitches in Liverpool
Old Xaverians FC has been awarded a grant of £12,000.00 from the Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation, to improve and maintain the grass pitches at our home base of St.Francis Xavier’s College,Woolton,Liverpool.
The £12,000.00 six-year tapered grant, part of the Foundation’s Grass Pitch Maintenance Fund, will help OXFC to improve the quality of the grass pitches at St.Francis Xavier’s College,Woolton,Liverpool.
The investment was provided following the completion of a pitch inspection using the Football Foundation’s specially developed app, PitchPower, which is a mobile tool used for assessing the quality of grass football pitches. OXFC will now be able to use the grant to complete the maintenance work identified in their PitchPower Assessment Report, which includes applying fertiliser, aeration, seeding and other maintenance practices.
These grants are key to the Foundation’s aim to help create 5,000 more quality pitches before the end of 2024, in line with the FA’s Grassroots Strategy. Alongside its PitchPower assessment tool, the Football Foundation has also created an online groundskeeping community called The Hive to provide expert support and advice to clubs. Anyone in Liverpool can find out more and sign up at https://footballfoundation.org.uk/grass-pitch-improvement
Eric Tocher, Club Chairman said:” We are grateful to the Football Foundation for this generous grant which will enable us to provide a facility which will ensure we survive and flourish as a club. All of our players are looking forward to playing on improved and well maintained pitches and owe are sure our supporters and competition look forward to ore fantastic games on a grass surface".
Robert Sullivan, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “This grant award to OXFC towards improve and maintain their pitches is vital for the local community in Woolton,Liverpool as they get back to playing football. Our Grass Pitch Maintenance Fund is supporting clubs across the country, helping them enhance and sustain their pitches to improve access to good quality facilities for grassroots players. This is part of our wider ambition to get more people involved in football, regardless of their background, age or ability. By unlocking the power of pitches, we can help transform the lives of players and strengthen communities through the nation’s favourite game.”
Tony Smith, Football Development Officer from Liverpool County FA said – “We are delighted to see Old Xaverians FC have taken advantage of this funding opportunity and have committed to improving their grass pitches over the next 10 years. Improving grass pitch quality across our region is still a big priority for Liverpool County FA and we would encourage other clubs and organisations to follow Old Xaverians tracks and take advantage of this funding opportunity”. For more information contact Anthony.Smith@liverpoolfa.com
The Grass Pitch Maintenance Fund provides eligible clubs and leagues with a tapered six-year grant to help them sustain pitches already at a 'good' level or higher and enhance pitches that are either considered 'poor' or 'basic'.
The grant comes as part of an investment of more than £16m that has been made available to help clubs prepare for the restart of grassroots football following the COVID-19 pandemic.The Football Foundation is the UK’s largest sports charity and exists to improve the experience of playing football for everyone, by championing fair access to quality facilities.
Visit footballfoundation.org.uk for more information on the Foundation.
For more information, please contact: Paul Bennett at email@example.com
SAT 12th JUNE 2021 - STE LINDER'S B TEAM WIN 19/20 ALAN BROWN TROPHY!!!
Ste Linder's B (4th) Team won the much delayed OB Alan Brown (2019/20) last Saturday with a convincing 4-0 win over Liobians at Wyncote. Brilliant goals from the deadly Carl Gargan (2), non-stop Chris Brady and midfield maestro Shaun McBride in the first-half put the team in complete control and great game management in the 2nd half meant that Liobians were never able to establish a foothold in the game and the 4ths ran out comfortable winners.
OXFC B Team before AB Cup Final vs LIOBIANS, Sat 12 June 2021
Some great performances all over the park, with captain Liam Kavanagh the standout performer in defence, the silky Tom Johnson in centre midfield and the mercurial Jon Steen providing all the ammunition out wide on the left. Great team performance, and they get the chance to defend their trophy this coming Saturday (19th June) when the 2021 Final is being played at Wyncote again, vs ACOL at 1pm. All support welcomed, and please bring any donations to Fans Supporting Foodbanks, the OB Charity Partner for their Cup Final days.
B Team celebrate Cup Win over Liobians (4-0) - 12 June 21
Special word for manager Ste Linder who led this team to a 100% League record in 2019/20 to witn the League on PPG, this Cup win makes it a much-delayed double. Add to this a creditable 3rd place League finish this campaign and reaching the Final again; great achievements in Ste's first 2 seasons - well done Ste!!
1ST TEAM MANAGER JOHN HARKIN RESIGNS AFTER END OF 1ST TEAM SEASON
John Harkin has decided to step down following last Saturday's final game of the season vs NALGO. John will be taking a well deserved break after 3 seasons as our 1st Team Manager, after the last 2 difficult & stressful seasons with all the COVID disruptions.
John returned to the Xavs as 1st Team Manager in October 2018 and managed to stabilise the team later that season with only 1 defeat in the last 10 games. The following 2 seasons proved difficult, with the pandemic making it impossible to find any consistency or stability. John has been with the Club since 2013 and over these 8 years he had a highly successful managerial period in the Old Boys League. He won the LEague in his first season, had several top 3 finishes and won the Marlborough Cup in his final OB season. These achievements led him to being voted OXFC Manager of the Year twice (2014 & 2018).
John Harkin - OXFC Manager of Year 2017/18
The OXFC Committee fully understand and accept John's reasons for stepping down, and wish him all the best for a well earned rest and in whatever he chooses to do next. He will always be welcome at the Xavs and we look forward to seeing him in the bar for a few beers!! We also recognise the stress of the role, and the impact it has upon personal life and time and we are very grateful for the effort John has put into it.
Reserve manager John Harkin and captain Davey Wilson with the Marlborough Trophy
The Chairman and Committee are grateful to John for the contribution he has made to the success of Old Xaverians FC over the last 8 years, and wish him every success in whatever he decides to do next. Chairman Eric Tocher has sent John a letter of appreciation to record his achievements at the Club, available to view by copying the following link to your browser.... http://www.oldxaveriansfc.com/files/johnharkinletter-june2021.doc
Thanks very much John, all the very best from all at Old Xaverians FC.
The Club will be looking to appoint a successor as soon as possible.
SATURDAY 5th JUNE 2021 - EVENTFUL DAY = 1ST TEAM PLAY LAST GAME, JOHN HARKIN RESIGNS, 4THS REACH CUP FINAL....
Some big news stories today as the 1st Team finished off their season against a very strong Liverpool NALGO, who are still challenging for the Premier Division title. A very spirited performance from the team and a brilliant display in goal by Chris Evans saw the Xavs level at half-time 1-1. NALGO had taken the lead midway through the first-half with a good strike but a few minutes later Rob Lamont scored the goal of the game (season?) with a curling effort from 30 yards to equalise. We had another couple of chances too, but Chris had kept NALGO out at the other end, in particular with fine saves from a free kick, and from a header from the corner just after.
2nd Half saw an increasingly desperate NALGO turn up the pressure but Chris and his back 4 continued to keep them at bay. It was like the Alamo now, and eventually a close range header from a corner beat Chris (after a blatant push) with 20 minutes to go. An unstoppable strike into the top corner sealed the win for NALGO a few minutes later, and the win left them needing 3 points to win the League next week, if Waterloo Dock drop points in their final game. Disappointing to lose final game of a tough season but an encouraging display from the Xavs.
John Harkin (1st Team Manager) confirmed his resignation after the game, and we made a small presentation. We're very grateful for all John has done for the Club over the least 8 years (3 as 1st Team manager) and we will pay further tribute in a separate article, but thanks and well done John for persevering through such difficult circumstancess over the last 2 disrupted seasons.
Also today, Ste Linder's 4th Team beat MHS 3-2 to reach the 2020/21 Final of the Alan Brown Trophy. Goals from Matty Robinson, Shaun McBride and Jon Steen saw the Xavs through in a tight game to line up 2 Cup Finals in the next 2 weeks - this coming Saturday they play Liobians in the delayed Alan Brown Trophy (ABT) 2019/20 Final at Wyncote, Mather Ave at 3.30pm. And the following Saturday (19th June) they play ACOL in the 20/21 ABT Final after today's win. That game also at Wyncote, 1pm KO. All support appreciated for both games, as well as donations to Fans Supporting Foodbanks, the OB Cup Finals Day Charity Partner.
SATURDAY 29TH MAY 2021 - FOURTHS MOVE INTO THE SEMI FINALS OF THE ALAN BROWN CUP
The FOURTH TEAM were away to ACOL in a rearranged cup-tie knowing they needed to win to qualify for the semi-finals of their league cup, the Alan Brown Trophy. A convincing 4-2 victory with a side full of changes. Goals from Carl Gargan, George Farrell, Matty Long & help from an own goal completed the win. They play their semi-final next Saturday at home to MHS. The following Saturday they then play the 2019-2020 final of the Alan Brown Trophy at the University Playing Fields, where the league intend to make a big day of it with all the Cup finals being played on the same venue, on the same day, with different kick-off times. There will be programmes & catering & collections for the Football Food Bank Scheme. The same will happen on following Saturday, 19th June, with all the 2020-21 finals at the University Ground. The FOURTHS could be involved on both days hopefully.
The SIXTH ELEVEN completed their season, playing every team home & away, in playing NAYLORSFIELD at home. Sadly, after drawing 1-1 the exhausted squad of players ran out of steam & ran out 1-6 losers. Tom Owen scored the XAVS goal.
The FIRST ELEVEN played their penultimate game of the season & narrowly lost to KNOTTY ASH by 1-2.
SATURDAY 24TH MAY 2021 - FIRST END --GOAL DROUGHT & EARN A VITAL POINT
With all the midweeks games now completed & the season completed for the RESERVES & THIRDS there were only three games today. The FIRST TEAM were away to EAST VILLA & scored their first goal in the last five games. They scored not only one goal but two to earn a point in a 2-2 draw. Scorers were Eden Heron & Dave Sharkey. The SIXTHS outdid the FIRSTS & scored three goals but ran out 3-7 losers to FRAMES who scored ten past them a couple weeks back. Overal it was better performance by the XAVS as no team has put that many goals past table toppers FRAMES this season. The scorers were Kevin Till, Alan Melia & manager Kenny Jones..
Sadly the FIFTH TEAM were unable to raise a side & so were forced to forfeit the Cup tie to Group winners WATERLOO GSOB. This now completes the FIFTH'S season. This leaves the FIRST ELEVEN with two league games left, one for the SIXTH ELEVEN & for the FOURTHS a Group game,, last season's cup final V LIOBIANS & a possible semi-final & final of this years Alan Brown Cup..
SATURDAY 15TH MAY 2021 - FIRSTS GOAL DROUGHT CONTINUES
The FIRST TEAM were away to LIVER ACADEMY & again failed to score in their 0-3 defeat. In the Old Boys Cup Group games the FOURTHS drew 2-2 with COLLEGIATE OB through goals from Carl Gargan & George Farrell. They need to get something from their last game to qualify for the semi-finals. The FIFTH ELEVEN scored four but still ran out losers to ALUMINI in the Bushell Cup, making qualification further really difficult. The final score was 4-6 with goals from Sam Shepherd, Kieron Moore & a double from George Reid. The only other team to have a game were the SIXTH TEAM who lost 0-6 to LIVERPOOL HIBERNIA.
TUESDAY 11TH MAY 2021 - FIFTHS FAIL TO HURDLE OVER THE HORSE
The FIFTHS continued their losing streak with a narrow 2-4 defeat to THE HORSE. XAVS scorers were Jon Vidamour & Chris Till. This was the last of the midweeks for the all the XAVS teams which i sure the managers will be thankful for.
SATURDAY 8TH MAY 2021 - FIFTH TEAM GIVE THEMSELVES A CHANCE OF QUALIFYING FOR THE CUP SEMI-FINALS
The FIFTH ELEVEN played at home to OLD CATHINIANS and ran out 6-3 winners to give themseves a chance of finishing in the top two in their qualifying group. The scoring hero was Billy Panagiotakis with a hat-trick & one each from Sean Shepherd, Kieron Moore & George Reid. The THIRDS needed at least a draw to qualify from their group. The XAVS went 2-0 up early on but their opponents, VALLEY OB, had comeback to make it 3-3 after 20 mins. The XAVS eventually lost 5-8 with Will Goodison getting four & Conor Fraughan one. It is not often a team score five & lose.
The other teams to play were the FIRST TEAM who played 2nd place QUARRY BANK OB & lost 0-5.It is now getting a bit concerning for the squad as they have not scored a goal for four games, In a weekend of goals, the SIXTH TEAM lost 1-10 to title challengers METALBOXONIANS. Kevin Dillon scored the XAVS goal.. It was that bad the manager lost count & was not sure of the score. That means that there were 38 goals in four games involving the XAVS teams. Can we expect big crowds next week?
TUESDAY 4TH MAY 2021 - SIXTHS LOSE ON ONLY MIDWEEK GAME
The SIXTH TEAM lose streak continued with a 0-3 defeat to LIVERPOOL HIBERNIA in the only midweek for the Club this week.
SATURDAY 1ST MAY 2021 - THIRDS & FOURTHS WIN THEIR CUP GAMES
The Club had only four games today, as the fixtures ease towards the beginning of May.. The FIRSTS had a bad 0-4 defeat to SEFTON ATHLETIC. After missing a one on one in the first minute, they then conceded a goal from a corner after 35 mins against the run of play A long range efffort on the stroke of half time left the XAVS 0-2 down at the interval. This knocked the stuffing out of the XAVS & spent long portions of the 2nd half penned in their own half. The eventual 0-4 defeat could have been a lot worse. With league losing teams for a variety of reasons, but mainly struggling to raise sides for midweek games, it has been decided that all the games left will played on Saturdays only which will take the league into 23rd June.
In the Old Boys League, The THIRDS gave themselves an outside chance of qualifying for the semis with a 3-2 victory over ALUMINI. Scorers were Will Goodison, Callum Finnan & Mike Campbell, who it nice seeing back playing again The FOURTHS played LIOBIANS in their 1st Cup tie & ran out comfortable 5-0 victors. Scorers were Tom Johnson (2), Jon Steen, Sean McBride & Mike Robinson. The FIFTHS had no game.
The SIXTH TEAM played a double header against MERSEY HARPS & lost both games 0-2 & 1-5. with Tom Owen getting the XAVS only goal.
TUESDAY 27TH APRIL 2021 - FOURTHS END LEAGUE SEASON WITH A WIN
The FOURTHS played their last game of the league season before the Cup games continue. They played bottom team MSB WOLLTON & ran out comfortable 3-1 winners with Carl Gargan scoring two & one from Jon Steen. They ended 3rd in the table. Also playing tonight, were the SIXTH ELEVEN. They were away at Clubmoor Rec. against top of the league FRAMES. With 4 of the players arriving late due to traffic, they were only one goal down at half time. Sadly they ran out of steam & finished 0-6 losers.
SATURDAY 4TH APRIL 2021 - THE OLD BOYS CUP SEASON BEGINS
The Old Boys league season, is now complete for Divisions One & Three. Each team has played each other once only in this shortened season. The THIRDS finished 7th out of 11 teams a creditable performance in a competitive league. The FIFTHS ended 6th out of 13 teams. This was fine start in adult for the lads. The Cups game now start with four cups for the three divisions. The team have been split into mini leagues of four or five teams each each playing each once. The top two in each league go forward to play a semi final & final. The Unfortunately both The THIRDS & FIFTH both lost their opening game making it difficult for either team to qualify for the semi-finals. The THIRDS lost heavily to COLLEGIATE OB by 1-5, Callum Finnan scoring. The FIFTHS lost 1-3 to LORD DERBY OB with Billy Panagiotakis scoring for the XAVS. The FOURTHS had a league match at home to 3rd placed HUYTON STANLEY & won 3-1 with goals from Pat O'Hanlon, Tom Johnson & Carl Gargan. If the Steve Linder's team win their last game, on Tuesday, against bottom team MSB Woolton, they will end up 3rd in the table. Their Cup season starts next Saturday
The only other team to play were the SIXTH TEAM, who still have 9 games to play. They were away to FC DINGLE & ended up 2-1 winners in the last minute after being a goal down & with Carl Johnson saving a penalty. Their scorers were Chris Till & Graham Bergin.
The FIRST TEAM were scheduled to play THE LUTE but our opponents have had their fixtures suspended by the league after crowd problems in their last game which involved the police being called for Covid reasons.
There are only two midweek games this week both on Tuesday night. One away & one at home.
MIDWEEK 20TH & 21ST APRIL 2021 - FIFTH TEAM WIN IN LAST GAME OF THE LEAGUE SEASON
there were two games on Tuesday with both teams losing. The THIRD TEAM played at home to ALUMINI in their last league game of the season by 1-2 with Sean McGurk scoring. This meant they ended up in 7th position out of 11 teams. A creditable performance in new league. In other game, THE SIXTHS lost 0-3 to FC DINGLE who they play again on Saturday next.
On the Wednesday, the FIRSTS suffered a very heavy defeat at the hands of WATERLOO DOCK who are currently lying 2nd in the table, by 0-7. The FIFTH TEAM played at home to ALUMINI also & ran out 2-1 winners to complete their league season & end up 6th out of 13 teams. Their scorers were Sam Shepherd & George Reid. An excellent performance considering it is their first season in adult football.
SATURDAY 17TH APRIL 2021 - THE THREE GAMES PLAYED ALL END IN DEFEAT
Considering the backlog of fixtures, there were only three games played today. The FIRST TEAM suffered a heavy defeat 0-5 at home to league leaders BRNESC. The THIRDS played COLLEGIATE OB & lost 0-3. The SIXTHS, who still have nine games to go, lost 1-3 away to KINGSTHORNE with Tom Keegan scoring the XAVS goal
MIDWEEK 13TH & 14TH APRIL 2021 - SIXTH HAVE A FINE WIN
On Tuesday the SIXTHTEAM beat a REMYCA UN OA by 3 goals to 2. XAVS scorers were Tom Keegan, Mike Ormsher & Mark Allen. On Wednesday THE THIRDS lost to MEXOC 2-3 with Will Goodison & Tom Rymer scoring. There no other game midweek.
The RESERVES, after the incident after the game last midweek, opted to withdraw from the league & re-join next season. The incident ended in Tom Williams, the keeper, having a broken nose & Dave Crawford, the captain, ending in hospital with,a bleed on the brain. As the police are investigating the incident, our opponents on the night, EDGE HILL BCOB, have been suspended by the league until the investigation has been resolved.
SATURDAY 1OTH APRIL 2021 - FIRSTS & THIRDS CONTINUE THEIR WINNING RUNS SINCE RESTART
The FIRST TEAM played away to last season's nominal champions MSB WOOLTON & ran out 1-0 winners with the vital goal coming from David McDonald again. This puts the FIRSTS 2nd in the early table but only on goal difference. The RESERVE TEAM'S game against BLUECOAT OB was postponed.
The only Old Boys side to have a fixture were the THIRD ELEVEN who scored five again, for the 3rd game running since the restart of football. They played COLLEGIATE OB at home & ran out 5-3 winners with a hat-trick from Will Goodison & one each from Callum Finnan & Tom Rymer.
The only other game today were the SIXTH TEAM away to THE HORSE.. The XAVS keeper, Lewis Bowers, was injured after 10 minutes & was replaced by the manager, Kenny Jones. he conceded one & saved a penalty in 1st half. In the Second half two players had to leave to go to work. The original goalie returned in goal but he was a passenger. On top of all this the XAVS, ended up with 10 men for the last 10 mins through injuries. A defeat 0-7 defeat was not unexpected in the circumstances.
MIDWEEK 6TH, 7TH & 8TH APRIL 2021
The results this week are extremely good. On Tuesday, the FIRST TEAM continued their victorious start to the season with a 2-1 win in a feisty game, against PILCHY FC goals from Dave Sharkey & Ryan Milner confirmed the win. The THIRD ELEVEN also had another fine win 5-3 versus VALLEY OB. The star was Sean McGurk with a hat-trick. the other scorers were Will Goodison & Callum Finnan.
On Wednesday, the RESERVES had a 2-1 win against EDGE HILL BCOB, after keeper Tom Williams was sent off after giving away a penalty. With EDGE HILL also having the a player sent off for two yellow cards, the XAVS were able get a victory, Unfortunately there was a nasty incident after game which took the edge off the victory & may have consequences for the rest of the season. The FOURTHS played away at LIOBIANS & ran out 3-1 winners through goals from Jon Steen, Sean Connolly & Tom Johnson. The FIFTHS also achieved a 1-0 victory at home to MSB WOOLTON.
The final game of the midweek was on Thursday where the SIXTH TEAM played LARKIN at home. Sadly they lost 2-4 with goals from Steve Waring & Tom Rymer.
SATURDAY 3RD APRIL - FIRST RESTART THE NEW SEASON WITH A VICTORY
With season restarted proper with four fixtures. The FIRSTS played at home to PAGE CELTIC win a 1-0 victory. the vital goal coming from David McDonald. Both the FIRST & RESERVES will restart the season playing each team once & the first half of the season being declared null & void. The RESERVES were scheduled to play JAMES GREENUP FOUNDATION but as our opponents were suspended by the league the points have been awarded to us.
There were three games in the Old Boys League. This league has decided to continue the season with every team placing each other once & previous games counting towards this. Where teams have played each other twice, only a few games, the system has been agreed where the 3pts are allocated on the results of these games. The THIRD TEAM beat SOUTH MERSEY 5-0 with Callum Finnan (2), Will Goodison, Alex Haake & Sean McGurk getting the goals. The FOURTH ELEVEN lost 2-3 to ACOL. the XAVS scorers were Matty Long & Chris Brady. The FIFTHS also lost 1-3 with Kieron Moore scoring. The SIXTH TEAM were due to MERSEY HARPS at home but there were not enough pitches at SFX. Consequently the game was postponed & will be played on 1st May as a double-header at their ground
WEDNESDAY 31ST MARCH - SEASON RESTARTS WITH DEFEAT FOR SIXTHS
The season restarted for the Club with the SIXTH TEAM playing RED RUM in a night match. As the RED RUM pitch was unavailable the game was rearrranged for the following night at SFX. Sadly after all the effort the SIXTHS lost 0-4 . The Combination have decided to continue the season & attempt for every team to play each other twice. This could be very difficult without double headers. This side may find themselves playing home games on a Thursday because the Football Club lose one of our three pitches at SFXdue to cricket on the top field..
LOCKDOWN IS DUE TO END ON MONDAY 28TH MARCH 2021
With the Government announcement of the the end of the lockdown for organised sport on the 28th March, the Leagues have worked on plans for football to continue. The Liverpool Premier League have decided to declare the season, so far, as null & void and a new competition to begin. The Premier Division & the Second Division, in which our First & Reserve Teams play in, will restart again playing each other once only. This means the First Team will have 14 games to play & the Reserves 12 games between Saturday 3rd April & the last Saturday in May. As our teams play on a private ground, St Francis Xaviers School, most of our games will be at home, using Saturdays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays.
The Old Boys League, in which the the Third, Fourth & Fifth Teams play, have decided to continue the League with each side playing each other once only. Where teams have already played each other twice, of which there is only 8 games in the whole 3 divisions, there is a complicated method of allocating the 3 points. If one side has won both games the best result will be used. If two sides draw both games then the highest scoring draw will used. In all other cases, i.e. one win & draw the game will be be replayed. This league competition should end on 24th April for all three divisions. For the rest of the season, 4 Cup competitions will be played on a champions league basis. Each Cup will split two groups of either 4 or 5 teams who will play each other once. The leagues will be allocated on the current league tables using a points per game system. These games will mostly played on Saturdays in May & should be finished by 22nd May with 29th May to be used for any problems. From the placings in these groups there will be 2 semi-finals for the winners & runners up in each group of each cup competition. These will be played a neutral hubsite pitch on the first Saturday in June. The following Saturday in June, the finals will be played of the 2019-20 season which will involve our 4th XI. The third Saturday in June will be the finals of the 2020-21 Cups.
The I Zingari Combination have decided to continue with the season meaning our Sixth Team will have 15 games to play, which a tall order. Their season will struggle to be completed unless a lot of double headers are played. After protests from clubs the double headers will only start in May when the players have gained some fitness.
The April fixtures for your team are now under the League Fixtures tab for each team.
COVID LOCKDOWN KICKS IN AGAIN AND SEASON SUSPENDED
Ah well, been good while we had it but all Xavs footy has been suspended again from 5th Jan 2021 until further notice. Hopefully a few weeks of lockdown will mean we can back get playing again in February or March and get this season finished off. Some good progress being made by our teams in new Divisions and Leagues and we hope to build on this throughout the Club.
In the meantime, keep safe and sane, keep fit and pay any outstanding monies to the Club!! Get vaccinated if you get the opportunity. Hopefully back soon and finish the season off properly. Let me know if you need anything.... Mike W
SATURDAY 2ND JANUARY 2021 - A SCRATCH THIRD ELEVEN EARN WIN AT ALUMNI
The THIRD TEAM were only team to play today. With several players having to self isolate due to Covid it was a bit of a scratch team that turned up to ALUMNI. In a high scoring game the XAVS ran out 4-3 winners with two goals from Sean McGurk, & one each from James Crowder & Will Brash. This moved the team up to 6th in the table.
There were no other fixtures scheduled for today. Whilst Merseyside remains in Tier Three then grassroots football will continue for the OLD XAVS teams
SATURDAY 19TH DECEMEBER 2020 - SECONDS THROUGH TO NEXT ROUND OF GEORGE MAHON CUP
Overall one of the better days for the XAV teams this season. The RESERVES played the 2nd leg of their preliminary round of the George Mahon Cup, which is played on a two leg basis. The XAVS were a goal down to Formby Town after the first leg two weeks ago where they lost 3-4. They came from behind, in the 2nd leg, to run out 3-1 winners & progress into the 1st round. The FIRST TEAM also had a good result drawing against 4th placed QUARRY BANK OB 1-1. The point took the side off the bottom of the table on goal difference.
In the Old Boys League, the 3RD TEAM lost 1-2 to ST MARGARETS OB with Sean McGurk scoring his 6th goal of the season. The FOURTH ELEVEN game V MSB WOOLTON was postponed because our opponents were unable to raise a side for reasons unknown. The FIFTH TEAM played away to LIOBIANS which was an absolute mud heap & ran out 5-4 winners. Finally the SIXTH ELEVEN also were away to KINGSTHORNE. With the referee failing to appear, Kenny Jones, the XAVS manager, refereed the game (Superbly he says, giving the ref maximum marks for his performance). They managed a 1-1 draw through a Steve Waring goal. This moved them up to 3rd from bottom
SATURDAY 12TH DECEMBER 2020 - FIXTURES BADLY HIT BY THE WEATHER
The poor weather this week, followed by the rain Friday night rain, caused nearly all football on grass pitches on Merseyside to be postponed this weekend. Luckily, two of the XAVS games were away on astroturf pitches. The FOURTH TEAM played the bottom side JAGUAR ROVERS. With a considerably weakened team they ran out 2-0 winners. The goals were scored by Tom Johnson & Matty Robinson. The FIRSTS were the other side to play. Sadly they lost 0-2 to FC PILCHY. With our rival sides at the bottom drawing with each other, the XAVS now move into bottom place. All other games were postponed..
SATURDAY 5TH DECEMBER 2020 - FOOTBALL RETURNS WITH FOURTHS REACHING A CUP FINAL
With the finish of lockdown 2.0, Grassroots football returned this weekend. The FOURTH ELEVEN finally completed their twice cancelled 2019-2020 Alan Brown Cup semi-final. They ran out 2-1 winners against SACRE COEUR F.P. with goals from Carl Gargan & Tom Johnson. The final will be on a Finals Day which is to arranged when hopefully there can be spectators at the game.
The only other success was the FIRST TEAM who earned their second point of the season in drawing 1-1 with EAST VILLA. The RESERVES lost narrowly 3-4 to FORMBY TOWN in the Preliminary Round of the George Mahon Cup which is being played on a two leg basis to give the teams more game in a smallish division. The - return leg, at home, is in a fortnight.
The THIRD TEAM lost 1-4 to NETHERLEY ATHLETIC, in the league, with James O'Hare getting the XAVS solitary goal. The FIFTH TEAM lost to KINGSFORD by 1-3 with Ed Oakes scoring . SIXTH TEAM also lost by 1-6 having been drawing 1-1 at half time courtesy of a Steve Waring goal but an own goal saw the team fall apart (or run out of steam!). Let's hope the results improve next week.
SATURDAY 31ST OCTOBER 20 - GARGAN NETS HIS SECOND HAT-TRICK IN TWO WEEKS
The FOURTH ELEVEN returned to winning ways against WOODSTREET courtesy of a Carl Gargan hat-trick, his second treble in two weeks !. Tom Johnson also scored in a 4-2 victory. This was the only victory for the Club in the four games to played. The FIRST TEAM game was postponed the night before due to a waterlogged pitch. The SIXTH TEAM also had a blank Saturday. Another team, FINN HARPS has joined the SIXTH'S division late, to make 12 teams in the division.
Despite the heavy showers Friday & Saturday morning, all games were played in bright sunlight. This together with the the strong wind enabled the all home games to be played. The RESERVES played EDGE HILL BCOB at home & drew 3-3. The THIRD TEAM lost heavily by 1-6 to the top of the league FC SALLE with Will Goodison scoring their solitary goal. The FIFTH ELEVEN also lost 0-3 V WATERLOO GSOB.
Uncertainty returns with announcement of a National lockdown. At the moment it it not certain whether any grassroots football for the next four weeks. Watch this space.
SATURDAY 24TH OCTOBER 20 - McGURK SLOTS FOUR IN THRASHING OF SOUTH LIVERPOOL
The highlight, of the best day of the season, for the XAVS so far, was the THIRD TEAM'S Sean McGurk's four goals in a 8-0 rout of SOUTH LIVERPOOL in Div One of the Old Boys, Will Goodison also scored two with one each from Tom Rymer & Jack Hanson. After two seasons of difficult transition into adult football of Coiln O;Hare's squad in Div One of the County Premier League, they settled well into the Old Boys League. Another hat-trick hero was Carl Gargan in the FOURTH ELEVEN, with all the XAVS goals in a 3-3 draw with MHS in Div Two of the Old Boys. In Div Three, Jimmy Dunn's squad have also made a good transition into adult football losing only one game this season. Today's 4-1 defeat of RHEIN another good result. Scorers were Sam Shephard (2) & one each from Jimmy Dunn & Kieron Moore.
The FIRST TEAM earned their first point of the season in a hard fought 0-0 draw with LIVER ACADEMY. This. was not sufficient though to get them off the bottom of the table. The RESERVES still remain 3rd after a 1-2 defeat to 2nd placed FC MARSDEN.
In the Combination Div One, The SIXTH TEAM also earned their first points of the season in beating FC LARKIN 2-1. This moved them off the bottom of the table. Steve Waring & Graham Bergin scored the vital goals.
SATURDAY 17TH OCTOBER 20 - RESERVES MAINTAIN THEIR PROMOTION SPOT
The RESERVES were at home to a team called THE JAMES GREENOP FOUNDATION, JGF for short, at SFX & ran out 2-1 winners. This places them in 2nd spot in the division. The meanwhile FIRST TEAM are really struggling with their fifth consecutive defeat. Today they lost 0-3 to PAGE CELTIC. This puts them in bottom place in the division.
The THIRDS in division one of the Old Boys League played out 4-4 draw to lie 5th in the division. their goals were scored by Sean McGruk (2), Will Brash & Will Goodison. The FOURTH TEAM lost 0-2 at home to KCCOB. In division three the FIFTH ELEVEN also lost to the league leaders COLLEGIATE OB by 2-5.
Finally in the I. Zingari League, the SIXTH TEAM also lost tom REMYCA UNITED O.A. by 3-7 with goals from Carl Johnson, Rob Haworth & Graham Bergin. this third defeat puts them at the foot of the table.
SATURDAY 3RD OCTOBER - FIFTH TEAM REMAIN UNBEATEN
Jimmy Dunn, the FIFTH TEAM manager reports that the 1st half of his game away to CARDINAL NEWMAN was tight with minimal chances to either side. The XAVS then dominated the 2nd half & went on to score two good goals. The second was after an exceptional run down the wing by Joe Bunn, beating several players before pulling the ball back for Billy Panagiotakis to slot home. Their opponents got one back back with a couple of minutes to go. Meanwhile the THIRD TEAMhad a great result against a very strong OAKES INSTITUTE side. The XAVS were 0-2 down at half time but came back to lead 4-2 before OAKES equalised. A last minute winner from Will Brash clinched all three points. The other scorers were Will Goodison (2), Callum Finnan & Sean McGurk.
The FOURTH ELEVEN were due to play SACRE COEUR FP in the semi-final of last season's Alan Brown Trophy. The referee decided that the pitch was unplayable, even though the FIRST TEAM played later on the parrallel pitch. The FIRSTSlost narrowly top side MSB WOOLTON by 1-2 with Ryan Milner scoring the XAVS goal. the RESERVES experienced their first defeat of the season to a good young WARBRECK side by 1-3. Chris Smith was the XAVS scorer. Finally played a strong title chasing NAYLOSFIELD side & succumbed by 1-9, with Phil Iveson scoring the consolation goal.
The season's start was delayed until the 12th September due the late notification from the national FA that football at grassroots level could continue again. Both County Premier League & the Old Boys leagues agreed to continue their cup competitions froml ast season as a prelude to the the season. As the FIRST TEAM had been eliminated all cups their first game was against newly promoted QUARRY BANK OB. they lost 2-3.This was to be their first of four consecutive defeats to date. As last season, the team is managed by John Harkin, with assistance from Paul Stanton, Paul Bennett & Mike White.
A new RESERVE side was entered the newly constituted second division of the County Premier. This was managed by ex-player Dan Jessop; they started the season with two 1-0 victories over ROMA & BLUECOAT OB to top the table after week three.
Last season's reserve team squad moved wholesale to form our THIRD TEAM & play as our new Old Boys Div One side managed by Colin O'Hare. This was thought best for their development of the young players as last season they had suffered heavy defeats in Division One of the County Premier League. They began the season with a 3-1 victory over VALLEY OB followed two laterwith narrow 1-2 defeat by ALUMINI.
FOURTH TEAM remained the same as last season in Div Two of the Old Boys League where they had been undefeated in the league until the lockdown started. Run by Steve Linder, they have begun the season with mixed results. winning,drawing & losing their first three games.
This season we have a new FIFTH ELEVEN who play in Div Three of the Old Boys League, run by Jimmy Dunn, who has brought his Under 18s squad from last season into adult football. They have begun well with two draws & a win in their first three games.
Finally, last season's OVER 35S squad, run by Kenny Jones, have added to their squad to form our SIXTH TEAM. It now includes some players who are under 35, so they have decided to enter the I. Zingari Combination open age division. In their first game they had a narrow defeat by 1-2 to RED RUM but they suffered a heavy defeat in their next game to NAYLOSFIELD who currentlly lie 2nd & are unbeaten.
Increasing the number of teams that we run by two, is a tall ask without actually meeting in person. the Club organisation relys mainly on text & emails for communication. There have been one or two glitches already as our large organisation tries to cope with the same infrastructure/personel as last season. More volunteers are required to keep the Club running efficiently. If you feel you help in any way then please let a committee member know.
MONDAY 29TH JUNE 2020 - LATEST UPDATE ON THE START OF SEASON 2020-2021
The Executive of the Football Club met virtually last week via ZOOM, a new experience for some of the committee. No names, but one had to get his laptop updated to Windows 10. Another is thinking of buying a camera for his PC. This is possibly the way forward for the whole committee to meet in the future
With members of the Xavs committee sitting on the committees of all the leagues we play in, the committee is up to date with the latest from the County & National FAs. The news is their is no news. No date has been given by the National FA, or even a hint, of when the season will begin. They are awaiting advice from the Government. Currently players are only able to train & be coached in groups of six. It is still uncertain how many divisions the County Premier League will have. It could be two but they are working on having three if at all possible. The Old Boys currently have three divisions but they may go to more depending when the season starts. This is to get the number games to play in each division to match the weeks available.
It is looking like the Club will have at least one extra team next season to allow the Under 18s, managed by Jimmy Dunn, to move into adult football. The committee are working on this issue & have applied to have another team in the Old Boys League. When more is known the team managers will be in contact with their players.
On a completely different matter. one of our Over 35s players, Steve Waring, has a son Alex with Duchene muscular dystophy. He plays wheelchair football & he has outgrown his current wheelchair. He is able to borrow one at the moment but to enable him to continue to play & improve as a player he needs a powered wheelchair costing £4200. You can read the full article from The Challenge, a free paper for Knowsley & North Liverpool which gives further details of the appeal to raise this money by clicking on the link. below. The appeal is being supported by Mark Lawrenson & Alan Kennedy, both ambassadors for the charity. I hope you can find the time to read it & donate.