Borough make history with first major trophy win

TODMORDEN Borough made history winning the club’s first major trophy.

To do so they had to deny the league champions a double and dclight more than 80 travelling supporters.

It was a great effort from the team in the final played at Squires Gate, Blackpool, and virtually a home game for their opponents.

It rounded off a fantastic cup run in which Borough have played every round away from home.

It also brought the first major trophy in the club’s 10-year history.

Delighted manager John Gilford said: “We’ll have to build a trophy cabinet - we’ve never needed one before.”

He was full of praise for his side, who in beating the league champions showed they can live with the top teams at a high level.

“All our men must take great credit from this effort by bringing home the first senior trophy in the history of upper Calder Valley football,” he said.

There’s no doubt Borough played exceptionally well in the final against a team who are already worthy West Lancashire League Division Two champions.

It was never going to be easy for Borough and after after 15 minutes of pounding by Lytham and conceding a goal, Gilford feared the worst.

They had gone with a game plan with Elliott Gilford and Nathan Adams playing up front in the absence of striker Oliver Wood.

But they could not put it into operation early on as they were penned in their own half by a skillful Lytham side.

Goalkeeper Lee McGrath was called upon to make strong saves as Lytham pushed for the opener.

But he had no chance with the goal as the seasiders opened up the Todmorden defence and had a simple tap-in at the back post when the ball was crossed.

Borough continued to defend but then broke away and Elliott Gilford put in a fine shot from just outside the box which forced a fine save from the Lytham keeper.

That effort seemed to spur them on and the belief returned, so much so that they looked the dominant side for most of the rest of the game.

After 35 minutes they were right back in it.

James Pevoy put a ball up the line to Adams. He sent in the cross and Chris Kay was on hand to side-foot the ball home for a deserved equaliser.

For the rest of the half, it was all Borough as they pounded the Lytham goal, but were unable to add to their score, meaning that the sides went into the half-time break level 1 - 1.

The Todmorden men started the second half the way they had finished the first.

They had to be wary of Lytham though, and stayed strong at the back with Oliver Gilford and skipper Daniel Skwarek oustanding in defence.

Eventually though Borough’s pressure brought the reward they were striving for.

After a good break down the right they won a free kick on the edge of the area.

Kay flighted it perfectly and Adams nipped in at the near post to steer a header low into the Lytham goal.

Borough then had to defend as Lytham threw everything at them, but they coped well and were not really troubled again for the remainder of the match as Gilford and Skwarek mopped up everything at the back.

They might have made the game safe 10 minutes from the end with an excellent move.

It was started in his own half by Karl Stanley. He pushed the ball up to Adams who linked with his striker partner Elliott Gilford with a clever one-two, but then shot just over the bar.

Borough held on comfortably until the end without McGrath being troubled.

There was hardly time for celebrations however before Borough started on the long journey home.

Borough still have three league games left in eight days to move up the table - and all of them are at home against teams who are placed fourth, fifth and sixth in the West Lancashire League Division Two.

On Saturday they place fourth placed Kendal County before turning out again on Monday night against fifth-placed Whinney Hill.

On Saturday May 7, they complete their fixtures with a home game against sixth-placed Bolton County.

Borough’s cup winning team: Lee McGrath, James Pevoy, Daniel Skwarek (captain), Oliver Gilford, Stevie Barker, Chris Kay, Andy Cooper, Danny Welsh, Karl Stanley, Elliott Gilford, Nathan Adams. Subs: Dean Farry, Dave Patrick, Terry Lowe, Jamie Shackleton.