Emley 0-1 Barton Town – Yorkshire League Division 1

February 3, 1973

Emley first met today’s visitors Barton Town in the 1972-73 in the Yorkshire League.  Emley had finished the previous season mid-table in Division One whereas Barton had gained promotion from Division Two as champions.  They had carried that form through to the top division and were flying high as league leaders, with Emley chasing them in second spot.

The game at Barton back in September 1972 had ended with a narrow victory for the hosts, a late goal against the run of play giving them victory. So, when Barton came to the Welfare Ground not only league position but revenge was on Emley’s mind.  Emley were missing their influential midfielder Stuart Greaves, who was put on the bench, but were otherwise were full strength and an exciting game was anticipated in front of a good crowd.

But, after only two minutes the visitors took the lead.  Kettlewell lost position in midfield, and Barton quickly capitalized, the ball was played through to the inside-right position (the right-hand channel in today’s terms!) to give Coupe a run at goal, where he made no mistake to finish past Alex Brook.  It could have been 2 soon after but Brook bravely dived fearlessly at Coupe’s feet to deny the forward a second.

Emley now got into the game, and hit the post with a fine shot, the ball running along the goal line to be scrambled away.  S.B Greaves followed up with another fierce shot which pole axed the blocking defender.  Barton were happy to soak up the pressure and hit long balls to try to catch Emley on the break.

In the second half Stuart Greaves came on for Atkinson and soon started to work well with McHale and S.B. Greaves, but Barton also continued to threaten through their pacy left winger. Emley’s best chance came through a breakaway by S.B Greaves, he drew the defence and unleashed a fierce shot which hit the top of the post and away from danger.  Barton also had further chances and Smith had to clear a shot off the line.

In the end Barton’s solid defence, with D. Couch the stand out man, was enough for them to hold out for the win and a valuable 2 points in the title chase.

The win was not enough to help Barton secure the title at the end of the season as both clubs were overhauled by Mexborough Town.  Emley did get some measure of revenge in the end finishing just above Barton to get the runners-up award:

Team: Brook, Smith, Steele, A. Wood, Burke, R Wood, McHale, Barnard, Atkinson, Kettlewell, S.B. Greaves.  Sub: S. Greaves

Headlines and photographs courtesy of Huddersfield Examiner and the Huddersfield and District Chronicle

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