GMWFL Autumn 2022 – Exciting last day for Relics over 60’s whites

1st December 2022. The final day of the Greater Manchester Walking Football League over 60’s (Division 1 and 2) Autumn season came to a dramatic end today.
In Division 2 The Relics started the day in second place on goal difference behind Bolton

1Bolton Wanderers Blues12471519
2Bury Relics Whites12471319
Top of Division 2 at the start of today’s fixtures

11:00am – First game of the day, and possible title decider, was Relics v Bolton. A tough game with both teams having chances and Relics goalkeeper Gaz making some great saves. Best chance came to the Relics 10 minutes into the game and the Relics are awarded a four-foul penalty, could this be the moment that the Relics go three points clear at the top? Relics hadn’t scored against Bolton all season, could this be the deciding moment?
Graham steps forward to take the spot kick. His shot is hit hard into the Bolton keepers top right-hand corner, the keeper had guessed right but dived low to his right, with the keeper beaten, the cheers had started to form in the Relics supporter’s throat’s but the ball thudded the crossbar and went out over the top and the cheers turned to groans of dis-belief. Final score 0 – 0 and no change at the top of the table.

1Bolton Wanderers Blues13481520
2Bury Relics Whites13481320
No change at the top

11:20am – Bury v Preston, who started the day bottom of the table, and Bolton v Blackpool
Three minutes in and Graham, surrounded by Preston players, receives a ball on the edge of the area, he turns and fires a left-foot shot that beats the diving keeper to put the Relics 1 – 0 up, and that’s how it finished.
Meanwhile … Bolton v Blackpool was taking place at the same time and the news from the other pitch is that Bolton have lost 1 – 0. Relics are now top of the table with a three point advantage over Bolton.

1Bury Relics Whites14581423
2Bolton Wanderers Blues14482420
Relics move into top spot

12:00noon – Relics v Carlisle and Bolton v Preston. Relics need a win against a good Carlisle side who were having a good day so far. Gaz kept the Relics in the game with some great saves, then 12 minutes into the game and the Relics were awarded their second penalty of the day.
Graham steps up with confidence to take the kick. This time his shot is hard and low to the keepers right, but the keeper has guessed right and gets down well to his right and parries the ball which rolls slowly out of the area to Gordon who tries to keep the momentum going, but he is blocked by the Carlisle defence and the move breaks down.
Final score 0 – 0, and only one-point for the Relics.
Now … how have Bolton got on? A shock for the Relics, Bolton has beaten Preston 4 – 0 a massive win for them and a four-goal advantage. Relics lead in the table is cut to 1 point with only one game left to play.

1Bury Relics Whites15591424
2Bolton Wanderers Blues15582823
Relics lead down to one point

12:20pm Relics play Blackpool (who had beaten Bolton earlier in the day), knowing that a win will clinch the title. Pressure is on for the Relics, with the Bolton players, management, and supporters watching from the touchline ahead of their last game at 12:40pm. Relics were on top and had a few good chances, Graham hit the woodwork, and Ian had a shot just wide. With a few minutes to go the Relics are awarded their third penalty of the day. Surely this is the moment that the Relics clinch the title, third time lucky and all that.
Bravely Graham steps up again, his penalty is well struck to the keepers right, but the keeper has guessed right and saves, pushing the ball out for a corner. Groans from the Relics contingent on the touchline. The final whistle goes as the game ends 0 – 0.
The Bolton contingent are happy, they know a win against Carlisle in their last game will snatch the trophy from the Relics grasp.

1Bury Relics Whites165101425
2Bolton Wanderers Blues15582823
Relics 2 points in front, Bolton need a win

12:40 Bolton v Carlisle and within a few minutes Bolton have scored, cheers from the Bolton crowd and groans from the Relics crowd. 1 – 0 to Bolton. Bolton are on top for the next few minutes, and all looks lost for the Relics.
Out of nowhere Carlisle get an equaliser, Bolton 1 Carlisle 1. Relics are back on top, Relics fans have become Carlisle fans for one game.
A long ball out from the Carlisle defence to the striker alone up front, he turns his marker and scores!!!! Bolton 1 Carlisle 2, Surely that’s it, surely Bolton can’t come back from this. Bolton keep pressing and get the equaliser 2 – 2. Can they do it will they snatch top spot from the Relics. Bolton are trying hard to get the winner, but they run out of time, the game ends 2 – 2 and the Relics are Division 2 Champions. Wow, that was a tense day.

1Bury Relics Whites165101425
2Bolton Wanderers Blues16592824
Relics finish as Div 2 champs, what a day.

So, the Relics bounce back to Division 1 at the first attempt following relegation at the end of last season.
Congratulation to all the Relics involved on the day,: Gaz (GK), Keith S, Wayne, Gordon (Dog), Ian, Graham, Alan, Tony G

For all the Greater Manchester Walking Football League Autumn fixtures and results see the Match Centre page here …