Liversedge FC close in on promotion and Northern Premier League East title glory after magic weekend

Liversedge FC all but wrapped up the Northern Premier League East Division title with a magic Easter weekend.

By Tony Harber
Tuesday, 19th April 2022, 12:37 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th April 2022, 12:38 pm
Liversedge FC players, management and supporters celebrate after a draw with Brighouse clinched them promotion barring a footballing miracle. Picture: Paul Butterfield
Liversedge FC players, management and supporters celebrate after a draw with Brighouse clinched them promotion barring a footballing miracle. Picture: Paul Butterfield

It started with a 2-0 away victory at title rivals Marske United in front of a bumper 1,474 crowd to give Sedge a three-point gap at the top of the table, writes Kieran Archer.

Sedge faced a quick turnaround into Easter Monday where they could only manage a 1-1 draw at home against local rivals Brighouse in front of another big crowd of 1,235.

With Marske United also being held by local rivals Stockton Town, it means that Liversedge take the three-point lead with a 14 better goal difference into the final day.

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The clash with Marske had long been talked about as a potential title decider and there was a real sense of occasion about the game.

Both teams looked to step up to the occasion and it was the hosts who had the better chances early on.

The best of these was Jason Kennedy’s close-range flick after Matty Tymon headed a deep corner back across goal which forced an excellent reaction save from Jordan Porter.

It took an excellent strike from Gav Allott to break the deadlock in the 21st minute.

Alfie Raw found space on the right and pulled the back to Allott who somehow fired inside the near post with his first-time strike on the turn.

Sedge started to take control after finding the lead and could have had a second minutes later when Ben Atkinson weighted a through ball to Nicky Walker perfectly who uncharacteristically scuffed his one-on-one.

The Seasiders still possessed a threat, notably through Liam O’Sullivan’s long throws causing chaos in the Liversedge box.

Marske’s 45-goal man Adam Boyes had the chance he will have been waiting for in the second half. He broke onto the end of a ball over the top to go one-on-one with Porter but could only shoot wide.

With both sides having good chances, the game was still in the balance until Nicky Walker scored a goal to ease the nerves of the Liversedge faithful 10 minutes from time.

Marske misjudged Porter’s kick, allowing substitute Ollie Fearon to go clear through and he took the unselfish option to square the ball to Nicky Walker who made no mistake this time in putting away the bobbling ball.

The hosts’ captain Adam Wheatley was given his marching orders in the 88th minute when he flew in on Alfie Raw as frustration perhaps took hold.

After the mighty effort in a top of the table clash, it was a big ask to go again in a local derby two days later.

Jonathan Rimmington named an unchanged side against a Brighouse side who were well rested, having had the Saturday off.

Liversedge looked leggy early on with neither side producing much of note in the opening 20 minutes.

Allott should have given Sedge the lead midway through the half when he tapped wide from close range on the end of a low cross.

The visitors went down the other end and delivered a gut punch through Darius Smith.

Jack Boyle played Javelle Clarke down the left and he put the ball across goal for Smith to smash in from close range at the back post.

Nicky Walker had an opening in the 29th minute when Souter beat Walton to the ball but could only manage to clear to the winger who put it wide of the open goal from distance.

It started to look like a frustrating afternoon when the ball went over the bar in a goalmouth scramble which Jack Stockdill, Spencer Harris, and Allott all had a go at.

Kevy Tarangadzo had a shot blocked from a Nicky Walker free-kick which looked like it may have hit a Brighouse hand but referee Jack Hall waved away the Sedge penalty claims.

Fearon again made a big impact off the bench, this time scoring an important equaliser.

It looked like another goalmouth scramble might ensue on the hour mark before it fell to Fearon who smashed past the keeper from inside the area.

Liversedge had the better of the chances in the final half hour, but could not find a winner that would have wrapped up the title.