Daily Archives: April 26, 2014

Darlo beaten by Burscough

Darlo 1-2 Burscough

Darlo ended the regular season with a home defeat to Burscough after fielding a side which included fringe and youth players.

Martin Gray rested the majority of his first team ahead of the playoffs this coming week. Thompson, Dowson, Purewal, Scott, Galbraith, Hunter and Tait all were not involved and watched from the main stand.

It gave the opportunity for fringe players such as Fisher and Hopson a run out against a Burscough side who only named two substitutes.

The game had an end to season feel about it, but the first half was full of incident if not much quality. The female referee was at the centre of three key decisions, as she awarded two penalties and a red card.

Inside the opening minutes Burscough took the lead from the penalty spot when young keeper Pete Jameson brought down the away sides striker. Jameson was down for five minutes following the incident, but was able to carry on.

Burscough were then reduced to ten man after an awful tackle on young left back O’Connor who made his first start for the club.

Darlo levelled from the penalty spot following a shirt pull on striker Ian Ward. Dale Hopson stepped up and confidently levelled.

The second half in contrast was not a great watch, with neither team doing a lot going forward. The ten men though were able to give the away supporters behind the goal something to cheer about, as they scored the winner mid way through the second half.

Following a cross hitting the woodwork striker Mark Beesley scored his second at the second attempt as Burscough won the game 2-1.

They were two injury concerns for the Quakers as captain Gary Brown, in his more natural centre back role, overstretched and was down for a few minutes, but he should be ok for Wednesday. Sadly Dale Hopson was taken off near the end of the game with rumours of a potential break, which if true would rule him out of the playoffs.

Overall it was a good run out for the youngsters in front of a decent crowd, however a few of the fringe players struggled to make an impact on the game. Walker at right back had another solid game and looks a good find by manager Martin Gray. Adam Mitchell again looked good in midfield and he could play a key role in the playoffs, looked like the only player today capable of doing something out of the ordinary going forward.

Both strikers Ward and Fisher will be disappointed with their displays as neither looked like scoring today, I am guessing Gray plans to start with Dowson and Purewal on Wednesday.

Jordan Robinson got some crucial game time in his recovery from injury and he will keep his place in the starting line up in midweek.

MOTM- Mitchell – Always looked threatening no matter which flank he was operating on.

Team – Jameson, Walker, O’Connor, Robinson, White, Brown, Hopson, Cocks, Fisher, Ward, Mitchell

So onto the playoffs and after Ramsbottom drew with Bamber Bridge today the playoff line up is complete and we will host Ramsbottom on Wednesday at Heritage Park. Ticket sales are already flying and the game is likely to be a sell out. Bring it on!


Burscough Preview, Playoffs, Coming Home and the Monkeyhangers

Just thought I would stick up a post before the game today, previewing the game and some general rambling from me.

Today we host Burscough in our final game of the regular season before the playoff semi final on Wednesday night. We had a great bank holiday weekend, picking up comfortable victories over Farsley and Wakefield and hopefully we can continue this momentum today and into the playoffs.

We have an almost fully available squad for the visit of Burscough, barring Johnny Davis. Davis broke his foot during the Wakefield game and will miss the remainder of the season. Despite being in and out of the team this year, he could have started the remaining games if he had not picked up the injury and he will be a miss for the side.

It is unclear which way Martin Gray will go with his team today, he will either carry on from the Wakefield game and rest a few players or he could use the side he wants to start with in the playoffs. My preference would be to play the side he intends to play on Wednesday to make sure everyone is match fit and no one has had a long break without a competitive game. On the other side of the coin if he chooses to rest people we wont pick up any injuries and will be at full strength for the games that matter, it also will hide from the opposition which formation/players Gray intends to use.

For me as above I would go with our strongest side, which for is one of the following.



Walker Tait Hunter Galbarith

Robinson Brown Scott


Ward Dowson



Bell Walker Tait Hunter Galbraith

Mitchell Robinson Scott Thompson

Ward Dowson

For me I would start with the 4-3-2-1 formation and switch to the 4-4-2 if we were struggling as Mitchell offers a great outlet and can cause any defenders at this level problems. As much as he is a fan favourite I am not convinced by Gary Brown in midfield and haven’t been since his return to the side, but if we play 4-3-1-2 we are struggling for options for out and out central midfielders.

Up front I am happy which ever way Gray goes out of the four strikers, except Ward and Purewal together. In the two games they have started together we have struggled to create much and prefer the tall striker/small striker partnership every time.

Which ever formation we go with though, it should be a comfortable victory against a very average Burscough side who have nothing to play for. I did not attend the away game, but the score line spoke for itself, 7-0. They have sat in the middle of the table throughout the league campaign.

Prediction Darlo 4- 0 Burscough


Onto Wednesday and as I have said on the forums I think the club have handled the ticket issues as well as they possibly could. They will always be problems whenever there is sudden demand for a limited amount of tickets and those in charge were never going to be able to please every single supporter. I will be at the game for 2ish today to get a hold of a ticket and it will hopefully encourage a few extra fans to get themselves along. Not sure really which other way it could have been done, priority has been given to season ticket holders, then those at the game today then open to everyone online or in the shop. If we get to the final the ticket situation could be interesting, but I am sure the club have something in place. If I am honest i’m not 100% sure the semi final will sell out, I hope it will, but not convinced.

Which brings me onto Blackwell Meadows, hopefully such ticketing problems as this week will not be possible in a few years, back in our own town and with a higher ground capacity. Hopefully once the season has finished more will come out to the fans about progress regarding the stadium, the work that needs to be done and rough timescales. As we have seen over the years there is a huge number of people involved with our club who are prepared to give their own time to do their bit and this will happen again with Blackwell ,so as soon as people know how they can help the better.


Finally our oldest rivals up the road the Monkeyhangers from Hartlepool had a scare this last week and it was quite amusing seeing the panic on the pooliebunker. However they escaped relegation from the football league after coming from 1-0 down with ten men on Monday. It will be interesting to see how they get on next season with the IOR seemingly losing a bit of interest in the club, don’t wish what has happened to us on any club but you never know…..