Aylsham 0 Mulbarton 1.
Ruben – James Clark – Louis.
            Jack – Bryn
Cole – George – Adam – Ibs.
Subs Henry and James Barr.
Man of the match by a long way George Betts who was amongst everything that we did well today and also cleared of our line , George was a deserved winner.
This was apart from Ollie our strongest eleven and the same eleven got to the semi final of the cup and for the majority of the season sitting a proud second in the league.
What has happened for such a dip in form , well we were beaten by Harling 0 – 3 and in the first 10 minutes could have been out of site, we then came up against a very good Norman side who gave us a lesson in finishing in the end, no reason to approach ourselves on this on.
However today was a shocking performance by the boys turning into trouble big punts over the top when they were told to get down the flanks getting behind the defence, when we did and it was limited we tried shooting from the tightest of angles.
High lights from our side , a goal line clearance from George which had goal written all over it and a 50/50 save from Josh who was really brave with his perfect time snuffing out a one on one opportunity.
At the other end we didn’t really carve out any real opportunities and found that we were second to the ball, no communication , need to get the ball wide and quickly.
Another thing that has crept into the game of late is criticism and playing our own game which is obviously effecting our overall performance.
Apologies to James Barr for the limited playing time today, next week we are at home to Costessy and training Saturday morning.

Aylsham 0 Norman 8.
Todays – Line up.
Ruben – James Clark – Louis.
            Jack – Bryn.
 Cole – George – Adam – Ibs.
Subs – James Barr – Henry ( Injured during the warm up )
Man of the Match – Adam Smith.
Although todays result was disappointing it has been a great achievement in reaching the last 4 of the North Norfolk Leagues . the final is Norman versus Firside the two top sides in the Premier League. It was always going to be a big ask today to reach the final and yet the boys over the last 3 years have achieved so much in winning 2 League Championships , I Cup and this season still has still has challenges ahead and the possibility of silverware being third in the league and still in another cup.
Our opponents in the next cup is Mulbarton who are currently sitting 3rd in Division One and beat Swanton Morley 3 – 2 today.
Unfortunately not all the boys had the belief today, however in the first half we did give a good account of ourselves even though we went into the half time break 0 – 3 down, the first goal coming in 12 mins then 26 mins and 31minutes all three goals coming down there left our right.
The main and biggest problem today was that we kept diving into the tackle making it so easy at times for todays visitors and didn’t learn from our mistakes, the back 3 were very quiet and were sitting flat and not supporting each other.
The second half we came out fighting and were unlucky not to get on the scoresheet with Ibs forcing the visitors keeper to push the ball onto the bar from distance and another couple of half chances one that went just over the bar and another a right foot effort – Ibs has a right foot and in the dying minutes had to be withdrawn due to injury.
Injury List now includes – Ollie – Henry & Ibs.
Sonny had a  couple of half chances putting one wide and another over the bar and finally a fine effort by Adam.
Josh conceded 8 goals today and although todays visitors weren’t 8 goals better than Aylsham it could have been worst if it hadn’t been for some terrific saves by Josh , good performance today Josh. Matt has done a great job with these boys over the years and varies training on a week to week basis but I think its back to basics in readiness to push until the end of the season.
  • Defence need to be more dominant in there decision making and be much more vocal.
  • Midfield battled well and the majority of the boys continued to press.
  • Sonny – Unfortunately did get the services he requires and believe he is still struggling with injuries
We now know whats expected from us if we are to progress into the Premiership next year.
Adam stuck to the task throughout spreading the ball about and standing his ground well deserved Man of the Match, other contenders for man of the match Bryn – George – Ibs .
Disappointed with the 8 goals conceded but Matt and I are really proud of the boys achievements and efforts today

Mark Wallinger’s latest work arrives in Aylsham

One World, a new work by internationally-acclaimed artist Mark Wallinger, has arrived in Aylsham as a football!

The work was commissioned by Liverpool Biennial and 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary and was inspired by the famous Christmas truce of 1914, when soldiers from both sides emerged from the trenches and met in No Man’s Land to exchange gifts and play football.

Wallinger has taken the football itself as his canvas. He has transformed it into a globe of the world using photography courtesy of NASA. He also takes inspiration from the celebrated image of earth taken during the Apollo 8 lunar orbit on December 24 1968. Captured at the moment of earthrise, it is an image of enduring beauty, depicting a peaceful planet floating in the vastness of space. 

The Football Foundation, which has thousands of grant recipients across the country, selected Aylsham Community Sports which runs Youngs Park, home of Aylsham FC at random, to receive two of the balls. They will be on display at Youngs Park for a period before a decision is made about what to do with them.

Mark Wallinger said: “It is just over 100 years since the Armistice was agreed in 1918, and 50 years since the earthrise photograph was taken on Christmas Eve 1968. One World is my contribution to the legacy of those precious moments – spreading a message of peace for the world. Time to stop fighting and start playing; playing the beautiful game. Let’s take that image of a precious and fragile world into the future and celebrate the joy of playing together.”

Stephen French, Chairman of Aylsham Community Sports (Youngs Park), said: “We are delighted to have been chosen to receive two of these specially-commissioned footballs.

Youngs Park is open every weekend and anyone is welcome to come and see them”


Italian job for young AFC players

Three young Aylsham footballers will head to Italy next summer to represent their country at the home of Juventus, whose star player is sports legend Cristiano Ronaldo.

The trio, 13-year-olds Oli Bates, Tyler Blyth and Adam Waller, have been chosen to represent England in the Juventus World Cup, the world’s largest and most prestigious youth football tournament.

The boys, who all play for Aylsham Football Club’s under-13s’ team, as well as being part of the Future Football Elite squad, were picked for the 15-strong England squad from scores of hopefuls who took part in a Juventus Academy training camp, in London over the autumn half-term break.

The tournament’s opening ceremony, which will be held in the Juventus stadium, is expected to attract more than 50,000 spectators.

“They are all super-excited! It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Gus Bates, chairman of Aylsham FC Youth who also manages the under-13s’ team and is Oli’s dad.

“The boys are over-the-moon. For us as a football club it’s massive to have three of our lads going to this. It’s just one of the things we are trying to do to help children get the best opportunities possible through the club.

“It will be a great experience for them and could lead to even bigger and better things.”

England will be among more than 30 other national teams from all over the world heading to Turin for the tournament next June. The Aylsham trio will be attending training camps in the run-up to the event and, as well as playing in the world cup, they’re also looking forward to a Juventus stadium tour. Juventus has been tipped to win the UEFA Champions League this year.

Last season the boys’ own under-13s’ team won both the Norfolk Youth Football league and cup, and it’s currently top of the premier league.

Aylsham FC’s youth section includes 25 teams. Former players include Sam Blair who is now signed to Norwich City FC under 16s as goalkeeper and has also represented the under-18s’ and under-23s’ teams.

Words courtesy of Just Regional.

The young trio who will be heading to Italy next summer.


Young Norwich goalkeeper on hand at Youngs Park

Young Norwich City goalkeeper Aston Oxborough visited Youngs Park to help the under-12s celebrate a successful season, and to watch a new Aylsham FC goalkeeping group.

Oxborough, 20, who has recently celebrated a new contract with Norwich City tying him to the club until 2020, said: “I played my youth football for Hemsby Hornets, a time I will always remember. It’s great to see youngsters today here at Aylsham celebrating their season.

“I didn’t have facilities like these at Youngs Park when I was playing at this age so the boys and girls are very lucky.”

Reflecting on the coming season Oxborough said: “My plan is to get close to the first-team squad, play well in the under-23s, and maybe a loan spell somewhere will help me achieve this.”

And commenting on Angus Gunn, Norwich City’s first-choice goalkeeper last season, he added: “I have been at Norwich since I was 11 and Angus followed the same route as me. He gave me some technical advice and I hope to follow his path into the first team at Norwich”.

Also joining in the goalkeeping training session was Aylsham’s own Sam Blair. Sam, who is the goalkeeper for Norwich City under-16s, broke into the under-18 squad last season and played in the Hospital Cup win over their Ipswich Town counterparts.

Sam said: “Aylsham will always be my club and it was great to join in with all the young goalkeepers this evening. It is good to see that the club hold training sessions for goalkeepers. Big thanks to Aston for supporting them this evening.”


Aston Oxborough and Sam Blair with some of the Aylsham FC goalkeepers

Aston Oxborough passing on tips to six year old Erin-Rose Craynor.

Aston Oxborough with some of the players and coaches of Aylsham FC Under 12s.



Aylsham FC bags £2000 from Tesco’s community grant scheme

Aylsham FC is delighted to announce it has bagged £2000 from Tesco’s Bags of Help community grant scheme.

Bags of Help is run in partnership with environmental charity Groundwork, and sees grants raised from the sale of carrier bags awarded to thousands of local community projects every year. Since launching in 2015, it’s provided more than £43 million to over 10,000 local community projects.

Millions of shoppers have voted in Tesco stores up and down the country and it can now be revealed Aylsham FC has been awarded £2000.

Work will now begin on bringing the project to life.

Club chairman Ian Potter said: “Many thanks to all of the Aylsham folk who used their blue tokens to help our project.

“We have worked hard since Youngs Park opened to ensure that it is a safe environment for all of the young children who use it. Now thanks to this grant we can finally fence off the final part of the facility to keep our children safe from any traffic”.

Alec Brown, Tesco’s Head of Community, said:

“Bags of Help has been a fantastic success and we’ve been overwhelmed by the response from customers. It’s such a special scheme because it’s local people who decide how the money will be spent in their community. We can’t wait to see the projects come to life.”

Voting ran in stores throughout November and December with customers choosing which local project they would like to get the top award using a token given to them at the checkout.

Tesco customers get the chance to vote for three different groups each time they shop. Every other month, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions are awarded funding.

Groundwork’s National Chief Executive, Graham Duxbury, said:

“Bags of Help continues to enable local communities up and down the UK to improve the local spaces and places that matter to them. The diversity of projects that are being funded shows that local communities have a passion to create something great in their area. We are pleased to be able to be a part of the journey and provide support and encouragement to help local communities thrive.”

Funding is available to community groups and charities looking to fund local projects that bring benefits to communities. Anyone can nominate a project and organisations can apply online. To find out more visit

Ian Potter – who expressed his thanks to all who voted for the project.


Aylsham FC calls out for votes to bag a share of Tesco fund

Aylsham FC is bidding to bag a massive cash boost from the Tesco Bags of Help initiative.

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its community funding scheme, which sees grants of £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – raised from carrier bag sales in Tesco stores – being awarded to local community projects.

Three groups in every Tesco region have been shortlisted to receive the cash award and shoppers are being invited to head along to Tesco stores to vote for who they think should take away the top grant.

Our football club is one of the groups on the shortlist.

We are looking to receive a grant to help towards fencing off the part of Youngs Park which is adjacent to the road. This is a big project and we are a pleased that we now have the chance to make it a reality and make the field a more enclosed and safer environment for children.

Ian Potter, chairman of Aylsham FC said: “We are delighted and extremely grateful to Tesco for this opportunity. We have achieved much since opening Youngs Park but desperately want to enclose the park to make it safer and more secure for our youngsters.”

Voting is open in the Tesco store throughout November and December. Customers will cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out in store each time they shop.

Tesco’s Bags of Help project has already delivered over £36 million to nearly 8,000 projects up and down the UK. Tesco customers get the chance to vote for three different groups every time they shop. Every other month, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions will be awarded funding.

Alec Brown, Head of Community at Tesco, said: “We are absolutely delighted to open the voting for November and December. There are some fantastic projects on the shortlists and we can’t wait to see these come to life in hundreds of communities.”

Groundwork’s National Chief Executive, Graham Duxbury, said: “We’ve been thrilled to see the diversity of projects that have applied for funding, ranging from outdoor classrooms, sports facilities, community gardens, play areas and everything in between.

“We’re looking forward to learning the results of the customer vote and then supporting each group to bring their project to life.”


AFC Youth to become smoke free club

Aylsham Football Club is to become a smoke free site thanks to a tie up with a county wide project which discourages smoking outdoors.

The Norfolk Smokefree Sidelines project aims to get people to keep their cigarettes away from football clubs, both inside and outside.

The theory is that children and young people who see adults using tobacco think that smoking is more common than it actually is. In addition smoking in front of children and young people can make them think that it is normal, acceptable or OK to smoke.

There is also the well known documented issue with second hand smoke.

Smokefree Sidelines is a voluntary scheme and has come about as a result of a collaboration between Norfolk County FA, Active Norfolk, Smoke Free Norfolk, Healthy Norwich at Norwich CCG, Norfolk County Council Public Health and Broadland District Council.

Gus Bates, youth section chairman at Aylsham, said: “The youth sides practice hard and are well coached and looked after at Aylsham.

“But we also want to make sure these young boys and girls can play their football in the healthiest environment possible – so having no smoking on our sidelines during training and games

or indeed anywhere else on the site, has clear and obvious benefits.

“We’re really pleased to be part of this scheme and I know other clubs in the county are doing the same.

“I’d encourage as many clubs as possible to find out more from the team at Norfolk FA.”

Aylsham will be a Broadland District Champion of the Smokefree Sidelines project and will advertise the scheme at its games using promotional flags and branded tee shirts.

The Chair of NHS Norwich CCG, Tracy Williams, said: “Children are influenced by what they see, they copy what adults do and young people are most at risk of becoming smokers themselves if they grow up in communities where smoking is the norm.

“The most effective way to prevent young people from becoming smokers is to encourage adult smokers to quit and to remove young people’s exposure to smoking.”

Words courtesy of Just Regional. 

FA praise AFC summer tournament

At the annual Aylsham Football Club summer tournament FA representatives were on hand to assess the event and to see that it was in line with FA guidelines.

The report the club has received makes for excellent reading with the FA official saying: “I thought the running of the event was brilliant all – club members were very welcoming to not just me but to all of the teams involved. I heard lots of positive chat about the tournament and didn’t see any issues while I was present.

“I can’t express enough how well run this was, so massive congratulations to Aylsham Football Club!”

Youth section chairman, Gus Bates,  was delighted with the feedback saying: “Many months of planning goes into this tournament by the committee along with all of the volunteers that come together in the days prior, during the weekend and the days after. Everyone deserves a huge pat on the back.”


Gallery: Aylsham FC welcomes thousands

The sun shone on the 30th anniversary of the Aylsham Football Club annual tournament last weekend.

The tournament, which has become one of the biggest youth football events in the county, saw more than 170 teams descend on Youngs Park for the two days, along with many thousands of spectators.

It is the main fundraiser for the club and it was clear to see that this was a record year, something that Juliet Waller, speaking on behalf of the tournament committee was delighted about. She said: “All of the revenue will be ploughed back into equipment and improving provisions for our players and managers but it’s not all about that, our event is also about bringing our local community together.”

As it was the 30th anniversary, there was a commemorative medal given to all Aylsham youngsters who took part in the event, a gesture funded by the adult section of the club. There was also a new winners stand which provided a fantastic backdrop for photographs kindly donated, supplied and built by David Ashworth along with MR & Mrs Hepworth.

The large-scale event took months of planning with one of the biggest tasks being keeping traffic flowing and cars parked quickly. This was possible thanks to a field being handed over for the day by William Youngs.

Volunteers play a big part in making the event a success and that was something Juliet was keen to acknowledge. “Thank you to our club volunteers and those who kindly gave up their time from the local community to help. We had in excess of 60 volunteers each day.”

She continued: “We would like to thank all our players, managers and referees who made both days really enjoyable and produced some high quality football games. There are too many sponsors to thank individually but I would like to place my sincere thanks to each and every one of them.”

Chairman of the youth football section Gus Bates echoed that, saying: “The atmosphere at Young’s Park was amazing with the noise of children having fun and enjoying themselves with many smiles on display. None of this would have been possible without the army of volunteers from all across our community who gave up so much of their time to make sure the tournament ran so smoothly. A special thanks goes to the tournament committee who worked tirelessly to make the weekend such a huge success.”

Next year’s tournament will be on June 2 and 3.

Tournament winners:

Aylsham player of the tournament (Hazel Newstead Memorial Trophy):

Saturday – Abbie Durrand
Sunday – Jasmin Parkin

Age Group Winners:

U9s Gorleston Rangers
U10s Costessy
U11s Aylsham Albion
U12s Firside Flames
U13s Norwich United
U14s Taverham
U15s Firside Blues

U11 Girls Bure Valley Kittens
U12s Girls Sprowston
U14s Girls North Walsham Angels
U15s Girls Kirkley & Pakefield