Windy here at Hyde Hall, with, according to my weather app, no prospect of it getting any better for a couple of days which leads me to suspect that, we will get a few postponements next weekend.......do I have to remind you, maybe not, but I will.....please bear in mind the league rules regarding postponements.
Having got that out of the way, congratulations are due, first to East Manchester who won the Manchester Saturday Cup at Hyde the other week, next to Elton Vale who have secured their place in the final of the Lancashire Amateur Shield on 8th May at LFA County Ground, and finally to Middleton Colts, one of our new teams, who stand on the brink of winning Division 2 next weekend.
I always enjoy this time of the season, the business end if you like, and this season seems like being no exception, the Prem is boiling up to a close finish, Hindsford, slipped up against Royton in a good game that I watched, but pulled it round the following week against a strong Heyside team, to remain in pole position but looking anxiously back to Manchester Central who are making a strong run on the rails......it'll be close.
Division 1 also looks close, Pennington currently lead the way with Altrincham Hale (but only got 1 game to play) and Heywood St James breathing down their necks, again its going to be close.
The Cup Final dates are all out there and we're just waiting now to see who is going to contest them but looking at some of the teams left in we could be looking to read to some cracking games at Hyde and Trafford.
You will probably have also seen that we have set the dates for the Terry Wood and Norman Noden Trophies, mainly because we are aware that soon you will be looking for pre-season games, well maybe not "soon" but you know what I mean so if you are involved in either of these games, you can avoid the date when fixing your pre-season stuff.
In previous Presidents Pages, I have made mention of promotion and relegation.
YES........AND.........Sorry but I still can't tell you!
We are still waiting to hear from NWCFL about what they are going to do, but this seems to be further complicated by the fact that the FA are getting involved, maybe making teams move "laterally" so that leagues can be evened up and lengthy travel avoided.
So WTF has this got to do with the Manchester League I hear you ask, well until the decision about relegation from the Counties is decided, we don't know if we will be getting any teams from there which has the knock on effect of us not being able to formulate our Prem, which as you will appreciate, feeds on down to the other divisions.
AS SOON AS WE KNOW, YOULL KNOW!
You will also have seen that we have appointed Lee McAllister from Springhead as manager of the League team, which will compete in the National League Systems Cup and the Jeff Walton Cup. We haven't got definite dates for any of these yet but I know Lee is looking to arrange some friendlies and so if he approaches you for any of your players, PLEASE give him as much assistance as you can.
Finally a couple of reminders
Registration of players closes 31st March.
Some years ago, in conjunction with the FA and the British Heart Foundation, we were instrumental in assisting some of you to get DeFib machines. I am told by committee member Michelle Simpson, who is a nurse, that these things should be checked every week, which I'm sure you all do, but also by Tony Lee one of the club reps, that the batteries in these machines need changing every 3 years, so I think that a lot of the ones we helped with, will now be due for new batteries.
Can I ask you please to check, the last thing I'm sure any of us want is for one to be needed only to find it doesn't work.
Storm Gareth continues to batter the windows so I think Ill have another coffee and think about what to do next, In the meanwhile stay safe and take care, enjoy your football, see you soon,