All bets are off for Holdham

STU HOLDHAM’s losing wager with player-manager Richard Walker during Watford IFC’s 4-0 win against Hey Jude FC (Brentford) provided us all with a stark reminder of the anti-gambling slogan “when the fun stops, STOP”.

Two-nil up half-way through the second 45, the towering midfielder spied his boss readying for an outfield cameo – having played the first half-hour in goal.¬†Holdham struck a bet in promising that he’d run round the pitch naked if Walker scored. Not three minutes after entering the field, the player-manager duly obliged with one of his chipped specials from just outside the box.

Mercifully, Holdham spared any in-game blushes but did keep his word when the full-time whistle blew. Video evidence is available but has been swiftly archived to spare the TV warm-up man his blushes.

A competitive HJFC used a combination of long kicks from the goalkeeper and a combative approach to recovering second balls to keep the Hornets hemmed in their own defensive third for much of the first-half, but a steely resistance led by centre-halves Dan Moss and Matt Ladell helped repelled the main Bees’ threats.

Seeing off that pressure proved key to Watford’s success since, once Charlie Wood swept home the loose change from a 42nd-minute corner, WIFC never looked back and took control of the second half at the Hounslow venue.

The game’s other notable feature was a goal apiece for dynamic Sitkowski duo ‘Gary & Phil’. John it was who notched first, bundling home from a corner just after the hour mark.

David then took centre-stage with a late piledriver from 25 yards, the goal of the game which completed the scoring for an excellent 4-0 victory.

And, just like the week before in the South-East Cup Final, youngster Tyrone Brandy was nominated as WIFC’s ‘Man of the Match’; the level of his performances increasing visibly week-on-week.

Internet ‘Orns: Walker; Maloney, Ladell, Moss, Ainsley; J Sitkowski, Holdham, Church; Murphy, Wood, T Labbett.Subs used: D Sitkowski, Maloney, Mesiano, P Labbett, T Brandy, Anderson.

Derby Day spoils for Hatters Fans

HATTERS FANS FC deservedly took the derby spoils after a somewhat attritional 2-1 victory over the Internet ‘Orns on a sunny morning in Stockwood Park, Luton.

Both the host’s goals came from set-pieces – one in each half and split by a Hornets’ penalty won and converted by striker Mark O’Connor.

Luton enjoyed the lion’s share of possession but both sides struggled to create too many clear-cut chances with the sloping and bobbly pitch not proving conducive to any attempts at good football.

Played in the good spirit that’s become the norm between these two local rivals, the Hatters took the lead on 25 minutes when an inswinging free-kick was guided home from eight yards by an unmarked attacker.

Watford were on level terms eight minutes before half-time when O’Connor was tripped near the byeline as he shaped to head towards goal. Atoning for his miss against the same opposition at the start of a Covid-abridged season, he went for power and drilled the spot-kick home low with the Hatters’ keeping guessing to dive in the other direction.

WIFC had been particularly competitive during the game’s first 30 minutes but were unable to sustain their momentum and Town gradually took a grip on territorial advantage before a corner was converted by a near-post flick – possibly lastly off a Watford head – with around 30 minutes left for play.

O’ Connor spurned a glorious chance to equalise for a second time when, having pounced on a short back-pass, he struck a post before awkwardly volleying the rebound over the bar.

Having carved out another chance, well saved, soon after through individual skill, O’Connor’s was the last real sight of the Hatters’ goal as Watford’s efforts petered out towards full-time.

Hornets: Mesiano; Ladell, Anderson, Moss, T Brandy; Sperinck, Murphy, St-Cyr, Nicholls (c), Soloway, C Bateman.Subs used: D Sitkowski, Wood, O’Connor, C Brandy, Stone.

The teams line up before kick-off

Internet ‘Orns back at the races

WATFORD IFC marked the official resumption of Internet FA action for the 2020/21 season with a 6-3 come-from-behind win at home to AFC Wimbledon.

The Wombles raced into an early two-goal advantage with the Hornets seemingly still emerging from footballing hibernation – despite a midweek Powerleague get-together.

It took 16 minutes for the arrears to be halved during the first half of the 12-a-side match on the giant playing surface inside Watford FC’s training ground inflatable dome. Ben Kelly drove down the left flank and stabbed low across the face of goal for Alex Newman – arriving at the far post – to poke home.

Kelly then levelled the scores himself, breaking free of two challenges to drill the ball low past the Dons’ keeper.

Adam Gallichan put the Golden Boys 3-2 ahead shortly before half-time, but the goal of the game – as the momentum edged back in the host’s favour – came eight minutes into the second 45 when a sweeping passing move through the thirds ended with a neat low finish by Charlie Wood.

The Wombles re-pressed their claims and found a third goal to set up the potential of a nervy finish to the game for WIFC. But two Mark O’Connor goals, separated by just two minutes, put some added gloss on the final scoreline with just over ten minutes left for play.

Hornets: Mesiano; T Brandy, J Sitkowski, D Sitkowsi, Ainsley; A Newman, T Labbett, Stone, Anderson, St-Cyr; Gallichan, Kelly. Subs used: O’Connor, C Brandy, Viney, Church, Wood, Hill.
Goals: A Newman, Kelly, Gallichan, Wood, O’Connor x 2

Newman treble seals Cup Final berth for Internet ‘Orns

Watford Internet FC reached the final of the Covid-delayed 2019/20 South East Cup with a spirited come-from-behind 3-1 victory at AFC Wimbledon.

Teenager Alex Newman will rightly take the lion’s share of the headlines with a second-half hat-trick which saw the Hornets recover from the set-back of going a goal down on the hour after a goalless and somewhat attritional first 45 minutes – albeit goalkeeper Matt Mesiano having to make two fine stops.

Newman wasn’t alone in his second-half heroics, however, with centre-half Ben Bateman turning in a particularly impressive display against a barrage of free-kicks and long throws launched into Watford’s box on an uneven Raynes Park pitch which proved tricky going for both sides.

A masterful tactical switch from manager Richard Walker saw the Hornets deploy the pace of Cleveland Brandy as sweeper as well as pushing the livewire Newman up alongside first Ally Hill and then stand-in striker Tom Anderson.

Wimbledon struck first with a fierce cross-shot, and they were ahead until the 72nd minute when Newman raced clear, rounded the goalie and coolly slotted home from a diminishing angle. This was evidence of the visitors taking the aerial route after the break, preferring to avoid the pitfalls of trying to play through the thirds. 

Cleveland Brandy – whose cousin Tyrone Brandy made an impressive debut at right-back – picked out Newman for the first and then, with eight minutes to go and penalties looming, Hill flicked on for Newman to slot home.

It was 3-1 and game over in injury-time when Newman was felled for a penalty which he eventually took himself; despite the best efforts to grab the ball of Lamar St-Cyr whose 50-yard run from the left flank sought to deny the youngster his treble.

So an evenly-matched and good-spirited contest finally went the way of the Hornets, who go through to meet long-time rivals and friends West Ham IFC in a final yet to be arranged.

Hornets: Mesiano; T Brandy, Bateman, D Sitkowski, St-Cyr; Anderson, Moss (c), T Labbett; C Brandy, Hill, A Newman.Sub used: Kelly. Sub not used: P Labbett.

Brave Hatters deflated by late winner

HAVING enjoyed more comfortable wins over this spirited opposition from Bedfordshire, it was a different story inside Watford FC training ground’s inflatable dome as Watford IFC laboured to an ill-deserved 2-1 victory over Hatters Fans FC.
This 12-a-side encounter (agreed due to dome pitch size) was by far the closest of the recent contests – played once again in true IFA spirit, and refereed well by Jez Hinds.
Luton’s containment policy had failed them on previous occasions, but this time the Hornets got frustrated with their own below-par passing game combined with indecision in the final third.
It took a mix-up between visiting goalkeeper and defender to grant the Internet ‘Orns a 1-0 interval lead with an own-goal from a Ben Kelly header moments before the half-time whistle.
Watford improved marginally after the break, but there could be no denying Town’s claim to a deserved equaliser when a long ball forward from a free-kick was meant with a firm header to restore parity.
Despite many personnel changes in the search for a magic formula, the Hornets continued to look unlikely to take the game by the scruff of the neck. It took a rare moment of quality 12 minutes from time – a turn and emphatic finish by Adam Gallichan – to finally break the stubborn opposition resistance.
WIFC: Matt Mesiano; Matt Ainsley, Ben Bateman, Michael Viney, David Sitkowski; Rob Stone, John Sitkowski, Tom Labbett; Alex Newman, Adam Gallichan, Richard Murphy, Stuart Nicholls (c).
Subs used: Lamar St-Cyr, Charlie Wood, Connor Church, Dean Maloney, Ben Kelly.

2019/20

The overall playing record for 2019/20.

The season was curtailed by the Covid-19 pandemic. The IFA league positions as at March 14th stood and Worldnet was cancelled.

Cup competitions were completed in season 2020/21.

WIFC 19/20PldWDLGSGAGD
League8710381424
Friendlies110011011
Cup Games0000000
TOTAL9810491435
Goals Per Game5.441.56
Leading Scorer
Adam Gallichan – 10
Leading Appearances
Stuart Nicholls, John Sitkowski, David Sitkowski and Charlie Wood – 8
Final League Position
8th
Final English League Position
3rd

Results and scorers

Date CompOppositionScoreScorers
20-Sep-19FRS & Co XIHW 11-0Gallichan 2,
O’Connor 2,
Mesiano 2,
Church,
Moss,
St Cyr,
Nicholls,
Anderson
28-Sep-20LGE1Shrewsbury AD 4-4Wood
Murphy
Tomlinson 2
5-Oct-19LGE2/SECQFCambridgeHW 6-4Gallichan 3
Jenkins
O’Connor
OG
2-Nov-19LGE3Shrewsbury HW 3-1Hill 3
4-Jan-20LGE4HalifaxHW 8-1Wood 2
Gallichan 2
Kelly 2
Jenkins
Anderson
25-Jan-20LGE5LutonAW 6-0Wood 3
Nicholls
Murphy
Kelly
1-Feb-20LGE6/IFACQFDunfermlineHW 3-1Gallichan 2
Wood
15-Feb-20LGE7MK DonsAW 6-2T Labbett 3
Wood 2
St Cyr
6-Mar-20LGE8LutonHW 2-1OG
Gallichan

Appearances

Name19/20 Apps
Stuart Nicholls8
John Sitkowski8
David Sitkowski8
Charlie Wood8
Adam Gallichan7
Rob Stone6
Matt Mesiano6
Richard Walker5
Richard Murphy5
Ally Hill5
Ben Kelly5
Tom Anderson5
Stuart Sperinck5
Mike Viney4
Dan Moss4
Tom Labbett4
Matt Ainsley3
James Jenkins3
Lamar St Cyr3
Connor Church3
Sol Tomlinson3
Alex Newman3
Ben Pegram2
Mark O’Connor2
Ben Bateman2
Paul Labbett2
Dean Maloney2
Kevin Newman2
Matt Ladell1
Dave Messenger1
Scott Mathers1
Sam Elvery1
Paul Carrington1
Lewis Koch1
Simon Wood1
Luke Gardner1
Owen Arnold1
Jamie Thomas1

Goalscorers

Name19/20 Goals
Adam Gallichan10
Charlie Wood9
Ally Hill3
Ben Kelly3
Tom Labbett3
Lamar St Cyr3
Mark O’Connor3
Stuart Nicholls2
Matt Mesiano2
Richard Murphy2
Tom Anderson2
James Jenkins2
Sol Tomlinson2
Dan Moss1
Connor Church1

2018/19

The overall playing record for 2018/19

WIFC 18/19 Pld W D L GS GA GD
League 10 7 0 3 38 21 17
Friendlies 1 1 0 0 4 1 3
Cup Games 5 2 1 2 10 8 2
TOTAL 16 10 1 5 52 30 22
Goals Per Game 3.25 1.88
Leading Scorer
Charlie Wood – 16
Leading Appearances
Charlie Wood – 8
Final League Position
18th
Final English League Position
9th
IFA Cup
Quarter Finals
South East Cup
Semi Finals
Worldnet
Quarter Finals
Worldnet Vets
Did Not Enter

All of the results and scorers from 2018/19

Date Comp Opposition Score Scorers
06-Oct-18 LGE1 Stevenage H L 2-6 Wood
Gallichan
13-Oct-18 LGE2/SECQF Northampton A W 4-0 Soloway 3
J Sitkowski
27-Oct-18 LGE3 Coventry H W 6-1 Nicholls (Pen)
O’Connor 2
Wood
Gallichan
Elvery
10-Nov-18 LGE4 Portsmouth A W 5-1 OG
Hopkins 2
Walker
Anderson
17-Nov-18 LGE5 Luton A W 4-2 B Bateman
Walter
Gallichan 2
19-Jan-19 LGE6 Hampton & Richmond H W 5-0 Wood 2
Church
O’Connor
C Bateman
09-Feb-19 LGE7 Luton H W 5-0 Wood 2
Gallichan 2
B Bateman
23-Feb-19 LGE8 MK Dons A W 4-2 Gallichan
Kelly 2
Wood
02-Mar-19 LGE9/SECSF Stevenage A L 2-3 Wood
Kelly
09-Mar-19 LGE10/IFACQF Rochdale A L 1-6 Church
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Manchester City N W 6-0 OG
O’Connor 3
Kelly
R Sterry
01-Jul-18 Worldnet Friendly Livingston GS N W 4-1 Viney
Nicholls
Kelly 2
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Barnsley N D 1-1 R Sterry
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Aberdeen N L 0-3
02-Jul-18 Worldnet Last 16 Hull N W 3-1 Anderson
R Sterry 2
02-Jul-18 Worldnet QF Preston N L 0-3

Appearances

Name 18/19 Apps
Charlie Wood 16
Mark O’Connor 13
Tom Anderson 12
Connor Church 11
Matt Ladell 11
Ben Kelly 10
Stuart Nicholls 10
Mike Viney 10
Lamar St Cyr 10
Ally Hill 9
Adam Gallichan 8
Rob Stone 8
Richard Murphy 8
Matt Mesiano 8
Rob Sterry 6
John Sitkowski 6
Ben Bateman 6
Sam Elvery 5
Matt Ainsley 5
David Sitkowski 5
Mat Ball 5
Ciaran Bateman 5
Richard Walker 4
Dave Soloway 3
Stuart Holdham 3
Jeremy Hinds 3
Max Walters 2
John Machin 2
Paul Shelock 2
Stuart Sperinck 2
Dan Moss 2
Harry Hopkins 1
James Jenkins 1
Dave Messenger 1
Jamie Parkins 1
Laurence Wells 1
Mark Brennan 1
Tommy Twelves 1
Dean Mitchell 1
Rob Booth 1
Reece Gohil 1
Liam Martin 1
George Pennington 1
Jake Elvery 1
David Walter 1

Goalscorers

Name 18/19 Goals
Charlie Wood 8
Adam Gallichan 7
Mark O’Connor 6
Ben Kelly 6
Rob Sterry 4
Dave Soloway 3
Tom Anderson 2
Stuart Nicholls 2
Own Goals 2
Harry Hopkins 2
Connor Church 2
Ben Bateman 2
Sam Elvery 1
Richard Walker 1
Mike Viney 1
John Sitkowski 1
David Walter 1
Ciaran Bateman 1

2017/18

The overall playing record for 2017/18

WIFC 17/18 Pld W D L GS GA GD
League 11 4 5 2 41 32 9
Friendlies 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Cup Games 4 1 1 2 0 0 0
TOTAL 15 5 6 4 41 32 9
Goals Per Game 2.73 2.13
Leading Scorer
Ally Hill – 8
Leading Appearances
Matt Ainsley/Stuart Nicholls – 12
Final League Position
23rd
Final English League Position
13th
IFA Cup
Withdrew
South East Cup
Semi-Finals
Worldnet
Last 16
Worldnet Vets
Did Not Enter

All of the results and scorers from 2017/18

Date Comp Opposition Score Scorers
05-Aug-17 LGE1 Stevenage H D 4-4 O’Connor, Hill 2, Mesiano
26-Aug-17 LGE2 Hampton & Richmond H W 7-3 Viney, O’Connor 2, Wood, Beck, Nicholls, Hill
09-Sep-17 LGE3 Portsmouth A D 0-0
16-Sep-17 LGE4 Northampton H W 8-1 Holdham, Kelly 2, O’Connor, Wood, Murphy, Gallichan, Walker
30-Sep-17 LGE5 Coventry A L 3-7 Viney, Payne, Wood
28-Oct-17 LGE6 Millwall H D 5-5 Wood 2, Mesiano, Hill, Murphy (Pen)
04-Nov-17 LGE7 MK Dons A D 1-1 Soloway
12-Feb-18 LGE8 West Ham A D 3-3 Hill 2, O’Connor (Pen)
24-Feb-18 LGE9 Leyton Orient A W 5-2 Nicholls (Pen), Smithson, Waller, Hill 2
24-Mar-18 LGE10/SECQF Gillingham H W 5-4 St Cyr, Gallichan 2, O’Connor, B Bateman
07-Apr-18 LGE11/SECSF Maidstone H L 0-1
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Bury A N W 1-0 Twelves
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Runcorn N D 1-1 Twelves
01-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s AFC Wimbledon N L 0-1
02-Jul-18 Worldnet A’s Ayr N L 0-1

Appearances

Name 17/18 Apps
Matt Ainsley 12
Stuart Nicholls 12
Adam Gallichan 11
Richard Walker 10
Ally Hill 10
Charlie Wood 10
Richard Murphy 8
Mark O’Connor 8
Lamar St Cyr 6
Ben Bateman 6
Matt Mesiano 6
Ben Kelly 5
Connor Church 5
Rob Stone 4
Dave Soloway 4
Tom Davison 4
John Sitkowski 4
Jeremy Hinds 4
Max Walters 4
John Machin 4
Dean Mitchell 4
Sol Tomlinson 4
Phil McBride 3
Stuart Holdham 3
Rob Sterry 3
Tommy Twelves 3
Vince Machin 3
Paul Shelock 3
Kye Simons 3
Mike Viney 3
Ciaran Bateman 3
Joel Moody 2
James Jenkins 2
Andy Myall 2
Cleveland Brandy 2
Derek Payne 2
Ryan Viduka 2
Kevin Affleck 2
Andrew Ibbott 1
Steve Eustice 1
Ben Pegram 1
Matt Ladell 1
Tom Beck 1
Dave Messenger 1
Paul Labbett 1
Neil Hall 1
Josh Freedman 1
Tom Smithson 1
Stuart Sperinck 1
Sam Walller 1
Reece Gohil 1
Liam Martin 1
Chris Marsh 1
Dayle Littlejoin 1
Ali Cameron 1
Thomas Payne 1
Tom Curson 1
Lewis Bentham 1

Goascorers

Name 17/18 Goals
Ally Hill 8
Mark O’Connor 6
Charlie Wood 5
Adam Gallichan 3
Ben Kelly 2
Matt Mesiano 2
Mike Viney 2
Richard Murphy 2
Stuart Nicholls 2
Tommy Twelves 2
Ben Bateman 1
Dave Soloway 1
Derek Payne 1
Lamar St Cyr 1
Richard Walker 1
Sam Walller 1
Stuart Holdham 1
Tom Beck 1
Tom Smithson 1

2020/21 in progress…

Overall Record

WIFC 20/21PldWDLGSGAGD
League22011064
Friendlies100103-3
Cup Games0000000
TOTAL42021091
Goals Per Game2.502.25

Results and scorers

Date CompOppositionScoreScorers
26-Sep-20FRLutonHL 0-3
17-Oct-20LGE1/SECSFAFC WimbledonAW 3-1A Newman 3
3-Apr-21LGE2AFC WimbledonHW 6-3A Newman
Kelly
Gallichan
Wood
O’Connor 2
17-Apr-21LGE3LutonAL 1-2O’Connor (Pen)

Appearances

Name20/21 Apps
Matt Mesiano4
Lamar St Cyr4
Cleveland Brandy4
Dan Moss3
Tom Labbett3
Charlie Wood3
Tom Anderson3
David Sitkowski3
Mark O’Connor3
Tyrone Brandy3
Matt Ainsley2
Rob Stone2
Ben Kelly2
Stuart Nicholls2
Adam Gallichan2
Stuart Sperinck2
Ally Hill2
Alex Newman2
Ben Bateman2
Mike Viney2
Matt Ladell1
Dave Soloway1
Richard Murphy1
Connor Church1
John Sitkowski1
Kevin Newman1
Dean Maloney1
Ciaran Bateman1

Goalscorers

Name20/21 Goals
Alex Newman4
Mark O’Connor3
Charlie Wood1
Ben Kelly1
Adam Gallichan1