12 November 2019 03:05

A.F.C. Fylde Harrogate Town A.F.C. FA Cup

Altrincham FC: Non-league team tackles homophobia in rainbow kit

Alty made headlines on a global scale when they became the first football club in the world to wear a kit based on the LGBT flag for their Vanarama National League North match against Bradford (Park Avenue) at The J.Davidson Stadium. It was a pioneering stance in support of Football v Homophobia month, and the club felt it entirely fitting that proceeds from the sale of shirts worn by Altrincham's history-making players should go towards improvement work on the hugely-popular LGBT centre in Sidney Street. Campaign bosses are edging ever-nearer their target, and they took another step towards it when Alty chairman Grahame Rowley handed over a cheque for £2,500, the amount generated by an auction of the players' shirts in the Community Sports Hall after the Bradford game. The ceremony took place prior to kick-off at Saturday's 5-3 home win over Chorley, with Mr.Rowley presenting the cheque to Sally Carr MBE from the Proud Trust, who manage the centre. 'It was a wonderful occasion when the Altrincham players wore their special shirts, and I was delighted to return to the stadium to receive this valuable contribution to our work,' she said.

Stockport County manager Jim Gannon wants his side to show they are worthy of lifting the National League North title with victory at Chester FC tomorrow night. The Blues host the Hatters at the Swansway Chester Stadium (7.45pm kick off, all-ticket) in what is a must-win game for both sides, with Stockport looking to go top of the table while the Blues are looking to go level on points with the play-off places, should other results also go their way. It is a massive game for both sides and the all-ticket clash is expected to draw the biggest crowd of the season for the Blues. And while Chester managed to pick up a big three points late on at Nuneaton Borough on Saturday, Stockport were frustrated in their 2-2 draw at Hereford, throwing away a 2-0 lead and conceding a late leveller at the death. Gannon now wants his side to respond in the correct manner but knows that it is a game that won't be easy and one that Chester will be well up for.

"Chester's not going to be an easy game from our perspective," said Gannon. "What a great game, Chester away. Chester will have a keen interest in other games around the National League North tomorrow night. AFC Telford United host fellow play-off contenders Altrincham, 7-0 winners at Alfreton Town on Saturday, while Blyth Spartans are still in the top-seven hunt and entertain Nuneaton Borough, beaten 3-2 by Chester on Saturday. A topsy turvy game throughout should have really ended with more than the two goals, and Telford will think they should have won it at the death.

Andy White was sent off for a second booking 15 minutes from time, but despite the man advantage Telford still couldn't unlock the north west side's door. It took until the 90th minute for them to do so, as Andre Brown came off the bench to win and penalty and convert it. The game began at a high tempo and despite Altrincham putting seven past sorry Alfreton on Saturday, it was the home side who almost raced into a two goal advantage. Captain Shane Sutton glanced a corner wide after just three minutes, before a cross fell to Barnett whose rasping shot was saved. Then a deep cross to the back post was volleyed against a defender by the on loan winger, but strong hand ball shouts were waved away.

free battle

The Bucks could have been three up inside ten minutes, but Alty had already showed how sharp they were going forward. A couple of crosses were blocked, before former Buck Yusifu Ceesay had bags of time to lay it off to Hulme, who smashed the ball high into the net from six yards. After such a dominant first ten minutes the Bucks were shell shocked, and couldn't live with Alty at times. After some hairy moments the Bucks did manage to get back settled, and threatened with a few set pieces. Bursik got down well to keep out a dipping effort from ex-Buck Sean Williams, before palming away a free header from James Jones. A leveller almost came from Theo Streete on the hour mark, with the central defender inches away from turning in a Morley free kick. Telford received a boost when Andy White saw red for a second yellow as he hacked down Barnett 15 minutes from time, but Sutton's header from the resulting set piece was saved. Set pieces were continuing to come and go for Telford without the Bucks taking advantage. After the dismissal it was all the hosts, as Cowan threw on Adam Dawson and Brown on in a bid to save the game. Streete powered a header wide, then Sutton had one deflected behind and as the corner count increased it felt as if Telford had to score at some point. Then they came again, and with literally the last kick of the game Barnett hung the cross up and Brown, unmarked, headed inches over the bar. 3 - HEADER WIDE - Just three minutes in and the skipper Sutton meets a Morley corner, but his glancing header goes inches wide of the mark. A cross finds Ceesay with his back to goal, and he lays it off for Hulme to fire high into the net. 38 - BURSIK SAVE - Former Bucks Williams cuts inside but his dipping effort is palmed away by Bursik. Moments later the keeper denies Jones' free header. 63 - STREETE CLOSE - Morley swings a free kick to the back post and Streete is inches away from connecting. 90 - PENALTY - Brown goes down and its a spot kick. 94 - CHANCE AT THE DEATH - Barnett hangs a cross up, and Brown is there, but he can only head over. AFC Telford United (3-5-2) - Bursik, White, Morley (Dawson 75), Deeney, Sutton, Streete, Barnett, McQuilkin (Dinanga 82), Morgan-Smith (Brown 60), Udoh, Knights Altrincham (4-3-3) - Thompson, Densmore, White, J Jones, Hannigan, Moult, Johnston (Sass-Davis 64), Williams, Hulme (Harrop 75), Hancock (Richman 64), Ceesay Non-league Altrincham showed their support for football's fight against homophobia by wearing a kit based on the LGBT rainbow flag. The National League North side - who normally play in red and white stripes - say they are the first club to wear a shirt inspired by the flag's colours. Saturday's home match against Bradford (Park Avenue) ended in a 1-1 draw. Media playback is not supported on this device 'It's not subtle, it's loud' - Altrincham chairman on LGBT+ rainbow shirts For one game, the team's regular sponsor logo was replaced by the logo of Football V Homophobia, an initiative set up a decade ago to challenge discrimination. Mr Waterson said the Greater Manchester club wanted to show its support for Football V Homophobia Month of Action and LGBT History Month. The Purps also know what it takes to win this competition after beating Barnoldswick Town on penalties in the final two years ago. A team managed jointly by Paul Bowyer and Wayne Goodison has also yet to beat their opponents this weekend in four previous meetings. "We have respect for City of Liverpool, and know their strengths in attacking areas, and I don't think them winning the title in the circumstances that they did last weekend changes how we approach this game." Jack Irlam (ankle) hasn't recovered from an injury in time to play, while Jake Parker is ineligible after appearing for previous club Wythenshawe Town in an earlier round.