Tonight I headed for Barton Town Old Boys' Euronics Ground. I tried three times to get here last season but was thwarted by a waterlogged pitch each time, but tonight was a clear night and no likelihood of a postponement. 27 miles and thirty five minutes later I've arrived.
Barton's opponents tonight are Leeds Carnegie, the team of Leeds Metropolitan University, originally formed in 1970 and currently play their home matches at Farley Celtic's Throstles Nest Ground. Barton were formed from two sides, Barton Town and Barton Old Boys in 1995 and joined the NCEL in 2007/08.
The ground is well lit by the state of the art floodlights and you enter through the turnstiles in one corner of the ground. The whole ground is to your left, the impressive Clubhouse to your immediate left with the changing rooms attached. Opposite the Clubhouse side is the impressive JVC stand with 240 seats.
The other cover in the ground are two identical stands behind the right hand goal.
There is hard standing around the whole ground, and overall it is an impressive small ground with plenty of effort obviously having gone into reaching this standard. All the Club officials I spoke to were extremely friendly and helpful even though I did get grief for being both a City fan and living in Cleethorpes! It was also interesting to note that Barton are sponsored by "The South Bank Tigers", the local Hull City Supporters Club, and I saw plenty of Hull fans attending tonight's game. Well done to them.
As the game kicks off I'm still working my way round to the seated stand, stopping behind the goal as Leeds threaten the Barton goal. Leeds have quickly gained control of the game with their neat passing style and on 7 minutes they take the lead through Leaver firing home through a ruck of players. Barton could have had a penalty when Day was caught by the Leeds defender but to the dismay of the Barton fans behind the goal he kept his feet and the Referee did not feel a penalty was warranted. On 29 minutes Leeds took a 2-0 lead when Nicholson in the Barton goal made a mistake leading to Lawson scoring an easy goal. From the kick off Barton got themselves straight back into the game with Barlow, a good old fashioned centre forward chipping the goalkeeper from about 20 yards. This was just what Barton needed. The game was end to end for the rest of the half but there were no further goals.
The second half started with Barton taking control of the game The pressure told and on 65 minutes Barton were level when Snowden latched on to a quick throw in, showed both strength and composure to slot it past the Leeds goalkeeper. Barton now were pressing hard for a winner and the impressive Barlow creating and having chances. The Leeds defence could not cope with the physical strength of Barton but to their credit fashioned a couple of chances themselves. The winner came from Barlow on 77 minutes and what a goal. He picked the ball up a good distance from goal, beat two or three men, got into the box and calmly slotted past the goalkeeper. The final drama came as a mistake by the Barton keeper let Lester through on goal only for Barton's McKay tug him back leaving the Referee with no option but to send him off. The resulting free kick came to nothing and Barton were able to see out the rest of the game with no further threat to their goal.
An excellent game in the end and an enjoyable night. Home by 10.15.
Barton Town Old Boys 3-2 Leeds Carnegie
NCEL League Cup 2nd Round
More photos of The Euronics Ground here.