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Kinloss Sappers v The Vikings

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Rothie Rovers v Newmachar United

7.30pm  21 July 2021 SJFA North Region, Division Two Rothie Rovers 1 Newmachar United 1 (att 92) Rothie Rovers have had to be patient to begin life as a junior club. They stepped up from the Aberdeenshire Amateur League last summer, but then Covid intervened and the junior game ceased. I'm not sure if Rothie managed any fixtures before last season was abandoned, but if they did they would have been behind closed doors. This then was their first competitive home game, with supporters, as a junior team. They got their first point, and their first goal (they lost 1-0 at Forres Thistle at the weekend) after a hard-fought local derby against Newmachar United. The home side made a bright start, but were then undone by a penalty for handball. The spot kick was converted to give Newmachar a lead against the run of play. A deflected shot, which may or may not count officially as an own goal, leveled the score before half time. That was it for goals, although Newmachar felt hard done by in t

Conon Bridge v Tomatin United

7pm  19 July 2021 Inverness and District League, Division Two Conon Bridge 3 Tomatin United 2 (att 56) Most games in the Inverness and District League are played on the many pitches at Bught Park , but a handful of village clubs have their own grounds, and Conon Bridge is one of them. The club has made a recent and welcome return to local football. There was a Conon Bridge in the Ross-shire Amateur League in the mid 1990s, when I first travelled far enough north to take an interest, but the club disappeared and football in the village remained dormant for many years. The Ross-shire Amateur League is no more, but clubs who were once in that have gravitated to the Inverness and District League. As newcomers Conon Bridge are in the third and lowest tier, but that hasn't dampened local enthusiasm. Due to Covid, spectators are officially discouraged from Inverness League games at present, and neither the local newspaper nor the league's social media account list fixtures. There was

Livingston United v Whitburn Juniors

2.30pm  17 July 2021 East of Scotland League, Conference X Livingston United 0 Whitburn Juniors 2 (att 102) A little piece of football history as these two clubs, like all but one of their divisional rivals, played their first match in senior football after switching from the Scottish Junior FA. Junior football limps on, with leagues in Tayside and north east Scotland, but last season's West Lothian junior clubs have followed other ex-juniors into the expanding East of Scotland League. They been placed in a league of their own, Conference X, with other new team Edinburgh College. As last season wasn't completed the established senior clubs, in parallel Conferences A and B, will vie for places in the 2022/23 structure. Only the top clubs from the X division will escape next season's bottom tier. It's complicated, and play-offs will be involved, but Whitburn (who have retained their Junior suffix) will be among the Conference X favourites. They opened the scoring at Livin

Brymbo Victoria v Overton Recreational

6.30pm  13 July 2021 North East Wales League, Premier Division Brymbo Victoria 2 Overton Recreational 1 (att 55) After going 630 days without watching any football in Wales I headed over the border for the second time in a week. There's been an early start to the competitive season in Wales, not surprising as virtually no football at all was played below the top level last season. This was Brymbo Victoria's first game though, after Covid put paid to their opening fixtures. The long lay off might be the reason they looked so rusty in front of goal. A saved penalty was just one of a series of chances they failed to take in the first half, while Overton opened the scoring after a rare attack. The home side were fast out of the blocks for the second half though, scoring about a minute after the restart. Their winner came about 15 minutes from the end, and followed another restart, this one after a belated drinks break. I think, although I'm not certain, that Brymbo Victoria pre

Ruabon Rovers v Saltney Town

2pm  10 July 2021 Welsh Cup, First Qualifying Round Ruabon Rovers 2 Saltney Town 7 There's lot of talk of football 'coming home' at the moment. But whatever the outcome of the Euro 2020 final this was perhaps the moment football did come home. Welsh football at least. The FA of Wales was formed in 1876 at the Wynnstay Arms pub in Ruabon. The pub still exists, and behind it is a recreation ground that, after a gap of fair few years, is once again home to a football club with the Ruabon name. Ruabon Rovers, reviving a name that played in the Victorian era, were formed last summer. Covid, and the resulting season-long shutdown of Welsh football below the top level, meant a frustratingly long wait for competitive action. The club kicked off their North East Wales League season last weekend, allowing at least some preparation for the visit of Saltney, two levels higher in Welsh football's new-look pyramid. If football, and more specifically the Welsh Cup (on display pitch si

Kingussie v RBL Aviemore - ten years on

7pm  6 July 2011 Strathspey and Badenoch Welfare League Kingussie 4 RBL Aviemore 1 (att 20) Ten years ago tonight Kingussie beat RBL Aviemore. It was the first game of my 2011/12 season, and the first game to be featured on this blog . The blog began life as a season-long experiment. I enjoyed reading a few other groundhopping blogs, but at that time most focused on fixtures in the higher tiers of the non-League pyramid. Most games I went to were much lower, so I thought I could offer something a little different. Kingussie was my 3,611th football ground. Last night's game at Plungington was number 4,980. The blog continued beyond that first season, and every new ground, or pitch, I've been to since has been covered in a post. Regular readers might spot that sometimes match reports are short. Not every game or ground is memorable, and it can be a challenge to write more than couple of paragraphs. That said, I rarely read long reports on other blogs, preferring instead to skim