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South East Region (492)

Fixture: Dunbar United Colts v Blackburn United U14
Competition: South East Region Cup
Venue: Hallhill, Dumbar
Date: 4th October 2015

Dunbar faced West Lothian opposition for the second week running.  Having visited Armadale last Saturday in the Scottish Cup, it was Dunbar’s turn to host with Blackburn Utd the visitors in the regions second biggest cup competition.

The game kicked off at noon to allow the travelling support time to shake off any Saturday night effects. 

It didn’t take long for the home side to kick into life, and from a couple of Cooper runs up the right, Dunbar won a corner.  Unfortunately, Cooper seemed to tweak a hamstring and he could not continue.  A reshuffle seen Renton switch from left to right and Kinghorn take his spot down the left.

With only 5 minutes played, a corner swung in from the left by Renton seen Smillie rattle a volley home from about 8 yards out.  It was a very composed finish and the players enjoyed celebrating and acknowledging his first goal of the season. 

A minute later and it was 2-0.  It came from what is now becoming a trademark Ben Knox run into the box, where he collected the ball and fired a low shot into the bottom corner for his 8th goal of the campaign.  He looks sure to beat his 11 goals from last season and is in a rich vein of form at present.

Dunbar laboured slightly from here, and their attacking threat came from the right hand side with Twist pushing high up the park, linking with Foggo and Renton and saturating the Blackburn left.  This did expose the Dunbar defence on a few occasions but Brunton, Hall and Hood looked relaxed and able to deal with anything thrown their way.

The third goal was not long in coming and it came from goal machine Renton.  He received a ball out on the right and spied the keeper off his line.  The execution in chipping the ball over the Blackburn No. 1 and into the roof of the net was perfect.

Blackburn then lost their busy number 10 Ben Jamieson to a serious looking injury.  It looked like a fairly innocuous challenge between Jamieson and Knox, with the Blackburn player landing awkwardly.  There was concern from both sets of supporters as the young lad appeared unconscious for a few minutes and on coming to, was clearly confused and dizzy.  An ambulance was called and play was stopped for approx. 20 minutes.  Dunbar Utd Colts wish the player all the best with his recovery. 

When play resumed, it was Blackburn who looked like they had adapted better to the stoppage.  From a long ball, Purves came off his line.  The striker nicked the ball past Purves but Twist was alert to the danger and sped back to make a goal-saving tackle. 

However, Dunbar were outdone with a very similar move moments later when a long ball evaded Brunton and Hall.  The Blackburn player was again quickly through and he rounded the Dunbar keeper and knocked the ball into the empty net.

With half time closing, Dunbar came back into the game and scored their 4th of the match through Dixon.  Renton was the creator as he surged down the right – his ball in saw Dixon hit it first time.  The goal keeper saved brilliantly but Dixon was calm and he curled it over the despairing keeper with his left foot.

Half Time: Dunbar United Colts 4-1 Blackburn United.

The second half showed how much strength in depth is on offer in the current Dunbar squad with Mclean, Kielty, Pickles and Sutherland all able to come on.  The game looked won but the match was disjointed with regular niggly fouls and stoppages breaking up any periods of play.

Knox was pushed further up the park in recognition of his goal scoring form, but he seemed to change his shooting boots for two left feet at the break.

He was sent through 1 on 1 on goal – he looked certain to score, opened his body and pushed his effort well wide of the target.  Kielty fell victim to the niggly passage of play when he was booked for speaking out of turn.

Knox recovered from his misfortune in front of goal and sent Renton through who showed him how it was done.  His clinical finish making it 5-1 to the home side.  It looked like 6 was right behind it when again Knox was in on goal – this time he saw the keeper make a great stop. 

Goal number 6 did arrive soon after.  Kielty’s persistence down the right and clever play on the touchline saw him charge into the box – his cutback was slotted home by Dixon who met the cutback just as Mclean was lining up his shot.  This takes Dixon into double figures for the season and still a long way short of his 51 from last. 

The Blackburn number 11 Stewart was the next player to be booked – again, for use of his tongue when the energy would have been put to better use playing football.

The second half continued in a fairly disjointed manner – Blackburn did threaten with the same long ball but on each occasion the added pace of Pickles in the home defence ensured Purves had little to do.

Knox had one more effort at goal but for some reason he seemed destined not to add to his tally.  He again pulled his effort wide when he looked like scoring. 

Kinghorn did score and he seems to regularly find himself in the right place at the right time – this time a Sutherland ball saw Mclean flick it on to Kinghorn, and he showed great composure to fire in his 9th of the season.

Dunbar rounded things off with a hat-trick for Renton – his pace took him clear, and when his effort was saved, he was clever enough to respond to the rebound and lift the ball over the keeper for his 30th goal of the campaign.

Full Time: Dunbar United Colts 8-1 Blackburn United

Dunbar are much closer to home this time in the next round, as we make the short trip down the A1 to North Berwick
Monday, 05 October 2015 15:38

Musselburgh Windsor look for new coaches

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Club Coaching/Committee Requirements
Musselburgh Windsor FC is one of the oldest Youth clubs in Scotland and maintains an impeccable history in the game, widely known and respected for it “honest” brand of football.
In recent years the club as undergone significant restructuring to provide a coach centred approach to running youth football teams for boys, girls and adults. Based at Pinkie Playing Fields, Musselburgh, the Windsor has access to grass and synthetic pitches for training and matches.
To continue to provide both coaches and players with the best experience, we are looking to attract volunteers to several of our teams to support the coaching and committee already in place.
As a coach within the club you will be given a Player Protection Input and we will assist you in gaining your PVG (Protecting Vulnerable Groups) certification. First Aid courses are available as are the extensive coaching courses that Scottish FA provide. These courses will be provided by the club at no cost to the individual. All kit and equipment is provided by the club and each coach will be provided suitable apparel.
The positions currently available are as shown below, but however we are also keen to welcome coaches that can make significant input into other areas. This is an opportunity to become involved in the community, providing youngsters with an invaluable experience. Coaches take a great deal of enjoyment from being part of our club. Younger applicants find volunteering a fantastic opportunity to improve their personal statement and CV’s or enhance their inter-personal skills, whilst maturing applicants simply wish to share their knowledge and experience of football as well as life!
On Wednesday (29/09) I had the privilege of speaking to Scottish FA and McDonalds Grassroots Winner for “Best Volunteer in Youth Football 2015”, Peter Frame. Now you could say that’s a bit of a mouthful, but given the tremendous achievements of the man in question perhaps rather than being too long, the title doesn’t do Peter justice!
Peter’s involvement in grassroots football goes back more than 40 years. “I was actually involved with the forerunner to Loanhead, Eskdale" he said. "Once Eskdale was disbanded and Loanhead came about I continued to work with them, and I haven’t stopped since!”
You might expect, and indeed understand, that after such a long time the level of enthusiasm may have diminished. With Peter however nothing could be further from the truth. Now responsible for the coordination of a plethora of youth leagues across the region as well the running and coaching of his own girls teams for Loanhead this is truly a man who lives and breathes grassroots football. 
I asked Peter how he felt upon hearing he had received the award. “I felt ecstatic, but for me the most rewarding thing is seeing the smiles on the kid’s faces” he said.
This answer alone tells its own story about what has motivated Peter to be involved with grassroots football for so long. Although he himself acknowledged that winning and competition are part of the game, for Peter the motive appears to be clearly to make sure that the players for whom he is responsible, is coaching or has coached, are enjoying what they are doing and some would argue that this is the true ethos of grassroots football.
Such an outstanding level of commitment may warrant the award on its own. However as Peter himself was keen to point out, the age bracket he looks after in terms of his activities falls somewhat out of the conventional. 
“In one of my teams, the two wingers are both aged 84” he said. No, you read that correctly it does say eighty four. You see outside of coaching and coordinating youth football teams and players, Peter is also responsible for Loanhead’s 'Walking Football' team. This form of football, in which running results in a free kick being given to the opposition, has become an increasingly popular way for the older generations to keep playing the sport we all love. “The team are going to be representing Scotland at a competition in Portugal” he added. 
As you can see from the above it is perhaps unsurprising that Peter has claimed the award, it is a fantastic and in my opinion fully deserved recognition of a man who has devoted his life to the beautiful game. I’d once again like to extend my warmest congratulations to Peter and I hope that his passion for doing what he does continues for many years to come.
Thursday, 01 October 2015 20:34

Livingston FCBC U16's get off to ideal league start

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Five games into the season, four wins and a draw sounds like an ideal start. That is exactly the case for Livingston Boys Club U16s, who sit at the peak of the SERYFL Division Two table, four points clear of second.
Speaking exclusively to Youth Football Scotland, coach Stephen Jamieson pointed to the hard work put in before the season began. “We had a very good pre-season" he said. "We got the team back early and the programme we had in place went very well, we also arranged a lot of pre-season games to get the match sharpness up in time for the season starting.”
We lost five players from our squad so this meant we had to bring in a number of new faces and by playing as many friendlies as we did enabled the team to gel before we went into our first league game.”
For Jamieson, there is not any standout players in the squad. He insists that it is a group of team players, not individuals. “It would be unfair and very hard to single out one or two players" he said. "Our new players have settled in very well.”
His side have averaged just over four goals a game, with only three conceded so far. However, the Livi coach insists that is not the point of focus, saying “The most pleasing aspect though for myself and the other coaches is that every single member of our squad has contributed. This is something we have always focused on.”
After finishing the previous campaign with three successive defeats it may come as a surprise to see this emphatic start, something that has pleased Jamieson. “It was important to make sure we were ready for our opening fixtures and to open up the season a lot more positively than we did last year" he said. "I think the main thing for us was getting off to a good start, so all fixtures and results have been key.”
Our aim for the rest of the season is to try and finish the season higher up the table than we did last year and ensure everyone in the squad enjoys playing football!”
Good luck to Livingston Boys Club under 16s for the rest of the 2015/16 season!

Musselburgh Windsor U13s Girls created club history in winning the Hayley Lauder League Championship. The first Girls team at the club to win any major honour.

After a shaky start to the campaign with just 2 points from their first 3 games they went on an 11 game winning run to clinch the League Title by 7 points. The season had its ups and downs with their Captain Ceri Thomas suffering a serious knee injury in a freak accident in a friendly midway through the season putting her out of action for the remainder but the girls didn’t let that affect their performances on the pitch. With a strong squad of determined Girls who all but one player were playing their first year at U13s and four players who could still have been playing U11s, they continued to surprise both coaches and parent each week as they went from strength to strength and grew in confidence with every game they played .

The turning point in the season was when they came up against a strong Hutchie Vale side who had been leading the League for a few weeks in the last game before the summer break. A win for Windsor would put them 2 point ahead of Hutchie and top of the league at the break. Windsor sensed the chance was there for them and grabbed it with both hands with a convincing win and after that never looked back. Ironically they clinched the League in a midweek fixture that they weren’t playing in when Leith Athletic won against Broxburn who were the only team that could catch Windsor.

The Windsor U13s Girls have achieved the title by applying themselves and a great deal of hard work and the support from their parents and very proud coaches Robert Taylor and Michael Windram

Congratulations again Musselburgh Windsor U13s Girls

League winning squad:  Jade Sinclair, Brooke Robertson, Ceri Thomas, Hannah Jack , Jennifer Gallagher , Sarah Knox , Cleo Paris , Sasha Hewett-Marshall , Freyja Bjarnason , Megan Wood , Amy Forbes , Mia Brotherston & Rosie Livingston.

Wednesday, 30 September 2015 12:59

Watch: YFS visits Penicuik Athletic

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YFS TV visits Penicuik Athletic YFS, to see the recent developments taking place throughout the club.
Wednesday, 30 September 2015 12:56

Watch: Scottish FA South East - Coaching Conference 2015

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Video highlights from the Scottish FA South East - Coaching Conference 2015.
YFS takes a look at the Scottish FA's transitional festivals, helping players bridge the gap between Soccer Sevens and 11-a-side football.

Fixture: Armadale Falcons v Dunbar Utd Colts U14s
Competition: Scottish Cup
Venue: Armadale
Date: 26/09/2015

Dunbar Utd Colts were in blistering form as they saw off Armadale Falcons 9-0 in Round 2 of the Scottish Cup.

It was a journey to pastures new for Dunbar Utd Colts U14s as they continued their adventure in the Scottish Cup. Having overcome an away tie at Fernieside FC in Round 1, Dunbar were again asked to travel for Round 2; this time to West Lothian where they would experience Saturday football for the first time in 11-a-sides and against unknown opposition.

With the game played on a Saturday, Dunbar left Readman, Pickles and Sutherland to the school rugby team, with the sports mad and hugely enthusiastic Pickles willing to make the transformation from oval to round ball and arrive in time for the second half. A late call-off from Kielty with a recurring back pain meant that the Seasiders started with only two players on the bench.

The Dunbar team arrived for their warm-up with the pitch slightly uneven but conditions absolutely perfect. Dunbar are traditionally slow starters but they were quicker into their stride today. Smillie was in the holding midfield role he adopted for the second half of last week’s game and he was instrumental in everything good about Dunbar’s play in the early stages.

He took only 5 minutes to find his passing range and with the home team defending very high up the park, his ball over the top sent Renton on his way. Renton showed good acceleration, stretched away from the defender and netted with a fine finish.

Seconds later, the pace of Dixon exploited the home defence – this time, the home keeper produced a great stop to deny the striker. The second goal did quickly follow with only ten minutes played and although it didn’t quite match Manchester United’s 45 pass move before netting against Southampton, it was a fantastic team goal, and their best of the season so far.

From the right hand side, Mclean took a throw to Smillie, who returned it for Mclean to feed in Twist. Twist then played Dixon in down the right who took one touch before playing in an inch perfect ball to the edge of the six-yard box where a grateful Renton was running – his first time hit was clinically dispatched past the keeper leaving the Dunbar coaches purring in delight at a flowing team passing goal.

The home side adjusted their formation to cope with the striking pace of Kinghorn, Renton and Dixon and came into the game more. Knox likes a midfield battle and he was certainly involved in a physical duel with the imposing home side number five.

At the back, Purves in the visiting goal was calmness personified with Mclean, Hall, Brunton and Hood up for a battle and holding steady. Hall donned the captain’s armband for the first time in recognition of his performances the last two games.

The third goal did not look too far away, with Knox bursting into the box and smashing an effort against the bar. With only 17 minutes played, Dunbar went three up. The goal came from an unlikely source in the shape of one of the smallest men on the pitch. Renton delivered an inswinging corner and Twist evaded his marker and headed past the keeper for his first of the season.

Dunbar continued to work hard in the half without threatening too much, although their passing and possession play was as good as at any time this season.

Just before half time, there was some excitement with the home side hotly disputing a refereeing decision. The young lad was yellow carded for using foul and abusive language.

Half Time: Armadale Falcons 0-3 Dunbar Utd Colts

The interval saw Pickles arrive sans rugby gear but transformed instantly into the Dunbar Utd Colts home kit. He brought sad news regarding Dunbar Grammar Schools rugby match scoreline, but was delighted to see the Seasiders three goals to the good.

Pickles, Foggo and Cooper were all introduced to the team for the second half. Dunbar kicked off and had to weather a storm of attacking football from the home side. The Falcons team certainly came out fighting and were determined to score early.

The Dunbar defence were solid with Smillie, Hall, Brunton and Hood all in top form. They were ably protected by Pickles, Knox and Foggo with Dunbar’s front three feeding off scraps as the home side looked motivated by a half time team talk. Dunbar were outstanding in defence throughout this opening period and even managed a couple of breakaway chances with Knox denied a goal, as well as Renton.

With ten minutes of the second period played, Dunbar scored the decisive goal that killed the contest. Cooper was influencing the game now, and he was denied a goal after a run into the box. He was then fouled as he took the ball past one player and towards the byline. Renton took the free kick with Hood rising highest and crashing home a header for his fourth goal in his last three games.

This setback effectively knocked the stuffing out of the home side and Dunbar began to boss the game once more and dominate possession. They duly added to the Falcons’ misery with Foggo, Hood and Cooper combining in a well-worked move before Foggo sent Renton through to net his third of the game.

The sixth was similar and was again from a move down the left hand side. Great work from Hood in the left back position saw him feed Renton who was out on the left – he turned provider and his cross was superbly finished off by Dixon, who is so lethal inside the 18-yard box.

Dunbar were now playing their best football of the season with the home defence tiring.  Foggo won the ball in midfield and his through-ball saw Renton reach the ball before the keeper, skip round the unlucky number one and fire home.

The good football on display was halted briefly when Hall tracked the home side number five across the pitch, timed a sliding tackle to perfection, which the Falcons player took exception to. Hall shrugged the player aside as they both rose from the ground and the referee booked the Seasiders’ centre half for being overly aggressive.

This appeared to motivate the visitor’s for the final period of play, with Renton netting his fifth of the game before unselfishly turning provider for Knox to smash into the roof of the net from 12 yards for Dunbar’s ninth goal and the midfielder’s sixth of the campaign.

There was still time for Kinghorn to spurn a golden opportunity while Purves, Brunton and Pickles did well to clear a goal-line stramash and keep a clean sheet.

The referee blew for full time with the Falcons kindly providing a well-earned buffet lunch for the travelling Dunbar side.

Full Time: Armadale Falcons 0-9 Dunbar Utd Colts

Dunbar progress to Round 3 of the Scottish Cup which sees the draw go from regional to national. Cup action continues for Dunbar when they host another West Lothian side, Blackburn Utd, in the second round of the SE Region cup on Sunday, 4 October.


Monday, 28 September 2015 13:35

Classy KSQ keen to inspire kids with kits

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In a world that can be unfair and miserable at times, acts of kindheartedness and empathy often provide a silver lining. Teaching our children the importance of such values should be of particular interest to all of us.

It is refreshing and fantastic to see, then, that Kirkliston & South Queensferry Football Club are doing exactly that by sending old match kits to Vietnam to help poor and disadvantaged children.

James Mackay, club secretary of KSQ, told Youth Football Scotland how it came to pass:

"Over the years, we have built up quite a stock of old kit which we have always thought about what to do with it instead of keeping it lying in storage. The opportunity to send the kit to Vietnam came through a work colleague of one of our Parent Helpers. His colleague Malcolm Osborne spends a month every year teaching English in schools in Vietnam. There is no welfare state in Vietnam, so all education has to be paid for. Most of the children love football and dream of being the next Ronaldo or Wayne Rooney, so the volunteering teams out there like to get old Football strips to support the dreams and aspirations of the kids.”

While acknowledging KSQ are not known around the world as a high-profile club, Mackay still believes they can make a difference: "KSQ may not be Man Utd, but we as a club, from the committee, coaches, volunteers and kids love the idea of helping to create dreams for the kids and build on their love of football. There is also something very cool about inspiring kids on the other side of the world to play for Kirkliston & South Queensferry."

Upon being asked what KSQ want to achieve with their charitable act, Mackay explained: "Inspiration. It may be a grand ambition, but as KSQ we want to foster a lifelong love of football for everyone who is part of the club and beyond. Through sending out some of our old kit, we hope that it sends a message to kids elsewhere that football is a great sport for fostering good health, wellbeing and teamwork. We want to inspire kids anywhere to play football, enjoy it and dream big about what they can achieve in life."

He went on to detail KSQ’s social responsibility and is convinced that the club can act as a role model for both other clubs and its members, especially the children playing for it: "For the 300 kids, their parents or guardians and 50 volunteers across the club, we also want to inspire them to think big and feel part of a club that can and does help others. We are based in the heart of the Kirkliston and South Queensferry community and want to show the power we all have to make a difference, no matter how small, to the lives of others. It is also good for our kids to understand the wider world and how life is for others while inspiring them that they themselves can help and make things better for others.”