Altrincham & District Amateur League, Challenge Trophy Semi Final at Sale United FC
Broadheath Central 1 Old Altrinchamians 'A' 2 (att 18)
Not a great Saturday from a groundhopping perspective. Very short on time due to other commitments I headed for an Altrincham and District League game at Railway Hale FC, only to find visitors Sale United had given their hosts a walkover.
Ironically, plan B was a hasty diversion to Sale United's own Crossford Bridge base, where the club's many junior sides are based (Sale United's seniors are at Partington this season, when they actually turn up to play that is).
Crossford Bridge was hosting both semi finals of the league's main knock out cup, on adjacent pitches. I chose the game on the nearest pitch, which featured the league's top two, with Broadheath having already been crowned champions.
Broadheath are unbeaten in the league, with three games to play, but they came out second best of a very competitive battle against Old Alts (whose first team where at home on their railed off pitch in a distant corner of the complex).
Old Alts went ahead, but Broadheath levelled before half time. A very well taken free kick restored Old Alts' advantage with about half-an-hour remaining, and they just about withstood an onslaught from Broadheath in the closing minutes.
The league champions had a player red carded in the closing moments, and at times towards the end tempers flared and threatened to boil over with both sides guilty. That said, although it wasn't what I'd set out to watch it was a decent game, and a better standard than I'd expected for the Altrincham League.