The club would like to say a big thank you to all the parents, relatives and friends of our footballers....
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Eaton Bray Lions AFC Mid-Season Report

Posted on February 3, 2006

This article was published in February 2006. Please see Latest News for more recent information.

The club would like to say a big thank you to all the parents, relatives and friends of our footballers and to the readers of Focus magazine who so kindly collected Tesco Vouchers for us.

Eaton Bray Lions AFCWe are also grateful to the Farm Shop at Dagnall and Kafe Kalor at Edlesborough for acting as collection points. You provided the club with over 3,500 vouchers which we are using to obtain training equipment for the new Under 8 team which will be recruited for the 2006/2007 season. In addition we have ordered equipment, such as football pumps, for the existing teams. The vouchers have enabled us to order over £200 worth of equipment so I'm sure you'll agree that it was a worthwhile excercise. We would also like to thank Edlesborough School for allowing some of our teams to train and play home games on their playing field and Ben and Jan Wright for letting us use their field for winter training.

On a chilly but bright Saturday morning in December I dropped one son off at Holman's Field for football training and then proceeded to Edlesborough Green where there was an amazing sight to behold. EB Lions under 9 and girls under 12 teams were playing matches, the under 10 team was warming-up to play their match and the boys under 12 team were training. The Green was a sea of black and white striped shirts and red and black training tops! Whilst the newspapers seem full of scare stories about childhood obesity and lack of PE in schools it was a heart-warming to see so many of the village children enjoying the competitive sport of football. It was also most gratifying to see how many dog-walkers and parents taking their children to the playground had stopped to watch the matches and cheer on the home teams. We really appreciate your support and the children find it very encouraging and inspiring. If you would like to see how the teams are getting on please access our website at where you will find information about the club and weekly results and match reports.

By Christmas all the teams had reached the mid-point of their fixtures so the managers have provided a brief summary of the season so far.

The Eaton Bray Lions Under 8 squad came together over the summer of 2005, with 9 boys and 2 girls from Edlesborough, Eaton Bray, Northall, Dagnall and Ivinghoe Aston. They've come up against some good teams, who have been playing together for a longer time period than they have, but despite some difficult games the players continue to improve, work hard for each other, never give up, and most importantly really enjoy themselves!

The Under 9 team had a good opening to the season with a 6-1 win over St Joseph's Greens. Since then they've won four out of seven games, although they lost to the league leaders at the start of January. They are fifth in the table at the moment, but they do have a game in hand.

The Under 10's have continued their superb progress, after finishing second in the top division of Chiltern Junior Sevens League for the last 2 years, by qualifying for Division 1 (40 teams now compete in 4 divisions). At Christmas they were in 4th place with a game in hand and if they win that they will go into second place and try to catch Hitchin Town. They also face Barton Villa in the league Cup semi final in late January and hope to reach the final as Cup holders after last years epic final victory over Barton. There is a great team and parent spirit in the Under 10's and everyone is invited to watch this great team play on Saturday morning on the Green (in front of the tennis courts) for their home games.

This season heralded a new phase in the growth of EB Lions with the introduction of a girls Under 12 side. The first half of the season started with some big defeats against the more established sides in the League but culminated in a thrilling 5-4 victory over top of the League Leighton Utd. This was a fantastic match on the village green with plenty of local support and gives us huge encouragement to progress in the second part of the season in both the League and the Cup.

The Under 12's boys' team had a flying start to the season reaching top of the division by the start of October and were still lying in second place at the end of that month. However, a series of disappointing results has seen them drop down the table and they are determined to produce better performances in 2006. Their first match of the year was an encouraging 4-1 victory over Houghton Wanderers.

Although the Under 14 team has enjoyed the season so far, making good use of the village pitch at Holman's Field, the results have not matched the effort put in. Often the managers of opposing teams said that we were the better side even when we lost! We look forward to better luck this year which got off to a great start with a brilliant 1-0 win over Limbury Saints despite difficult circumstances.

-- Liz Coates (Press Officer)

Source: Focus, February 2006

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