NCEL: Armthorpe Welfare and Maltby Main bow out of FA Vase

Striker Liam Radford has re-joined Armthorpe Welfare.
Striker Liam Radford has re-joined Armthorpe Welfare.

Michael Carmody’s tenure at Armthorpe Welfare got off to a losing start with a 3-2 home defeat to Congleton Town in the first qualifying round of the FA Vase.

There were some positives for the new manager to take from the game with Welfare showing plenty of fighting spirit.

However, slack defending and a lack of goals will need to be addressed quickly.

Carmody was unveiled as Brian Johnston’s successor only last Wednesday after quitting his post at NCEL Division One side Selby Town where he was first team coach working alongside manager Nigel Emery.

Carmody has previously held a management position at York Premier League side Riccall United. He was introduced to the players at last Thursday’s training session.

The new manager has brought in Gary Collier as his assistant, while Steve Lyon and Brent Lester join as first team coaches.

Carmody was in the dugout for the FA Vase tie although will miss this weekend’s trip to Staveley Miners Welfare due to a pre-planned holiday.

Liam Copley made a string of excellent saves to keep Armthorpe in the tie but he could do nothing to prevent the visitors taking a 53rd minute lead. Ten minutes later Congleton doubled their advantage and that seemed to be that with time running out.

However, in the 90th minute a poor clearance was seized upon by Gary Collier who ran on to round the hapless keeper.

With Welfare pushing forward they were caught on the counter attack as Congleton re-established their two-goal cushion.

But Armthorpe pulled another one back again in the fourth minute of stoppage time, Jack Bonser getting the final touch following a scramble.

Meanwhile, Carmody has made his first move in the transfer market after bringing back striker Liam Radford to Church Street from Pontefract Collieries.

Armthorpe will go to Staveley this Saturday looking for their first win in six games at Inkersall Road since the Trojans won promotion to the Premier Division at the end of the 2010/11 campaign.

The goals have dried up for Maltby Main who were also knocked out of the FA Vase at the first hurdle, beaten 2-0 at Muglet Lane by Widnes where both goals came in the last 13 minutes of the tie.

Spencer Fearn’s side have now failed to score in the last three matches, since a 3-1 home win against AFC Mansfield last month in which Steve Hopewell scored all three goals to become the club’s current top scorer.

This weekend Maltby face a tough-looking trip to the Premier Division’s new leaders Cleethorpes Town.

The hosts were held to a 1-1 draw at Clipstone last Saturday, nevertheless it extended their unbeaten league start to seven games and in doing so put Town a point clear at the top of the table. Maltby will not need reminding that Cleethorpes put ten goals past them last season.