Woodley Sports

Woodley Sports F.C.

Woodley Sports F.C. are a football club based in Woodley, Stockport, Greater Manchester, England. Their home stadium is Lambeth Grove, the pitch is synthetic and as a result of this their ties in the FA Cup are switched if they are drawn at home. They were established in 1970 as Woodley Athletic. In 1992, they managed to become champions of the Manchester League Division One. They were promoted to the Manchester League Premier Division the following year. They became a member of the Northern Premier League Division One in 2004. In 2007, they will play in the inaugural season of the Northern Premier League Division One North. The Lambeth Grove Stadium at which they play is one of the few football grounds in England to have a synthetic playing surface.

Woodley won the Manchester League Division One title in 1992. The following year saw Woodley win the Gilchrist Cup and take the Premier Division Runners-Up spot in the same season.

Work to enclose the ground began in 1996 and in 1997; Woodley’s application to join the North West Counties League was accepted. By this stage, the new management team of John Imrie and Gary Lowe had been introduced, both of whom played at the highest levels at professional and semi-pro Clubs like Manchester City, Crystal Palace, Macclesfield and Runcorn to name but a few.

In the 1997-98 season Woodley set a North West Counties League record when Peter Carty scored seven goals in a league game against Blackpool Mechanics. Carty was also Woodley’s leading scorer that season netting 35 goals. Woodley also scored a record 102 league goals that season.

At the end of that season Woodley started work on the biggest project to date, the Introduction of floodlights, during the summer.

This has given the Club a major boost and enabled them to enter the FA Vase, Cheshire Senior Cup, North Western Trans Floodlit Cup and also the FA Cup.

Season 1999/2000 saw the Club’s first ever F.A. Cup Match against reigning NCEL Champions Ossett Albion which resulted in a magnificent 2-1 victory for the Steelmen. The continued hard work at the Club was rewarded that season when the Steelmen won the Second Division Championship in thrilling style on goal difference from Curzon, winning twelve of their last thirteen matches and drawing the other, to take a deserved place in the top flight of the North West Counties League.

Season’s 2000/2001 and 2001/2002 have seen the Club consolidate itself in the top half of the NWCFL First Division, with it’s reserve team winning a notable double last season, winning the Reserve Division Title for the second consecutive year and also the Reserve Cup. The season finished with work commencing on a new 200 seater stand, due to be complete in time for the 2002/2003 season.

Season 2003/2004 proved to be Woodley’s greatest ever, winning the Cheshire FA (Unibond) Senior Cup beating Witton Albion in the infamous final now known for the “Streaker incident” rather than the magnificent achievement from the first ever North West Counties side ever to get to the final.

The FA restructuring of the Football Pyramid also gave Woodley the opportunity to gain promotion to the Northern Premier (Unibond) League by finishing 4th in the League.

Having had the Lambeth Grove stadium passed for the Unibond League, the Club announced itself as a Limited Company as of 1st August 2004.

2004 / 2005 saw Woodley Sports compete in the Unibond NPL Division 1 and finish the season a very creditable 11th as well as reaching the final of the Chairman’s Cup.

Off the pitch, the club managed to secure the support of two local businessmen who have worked with the Club to produce a £3.5 million development on the site, with phase one being the installation of the very latest synthetic surface “field turf” which will not only guarantee no future postponements but will also provide much needed income streams for the club by the hiring of the facilities. This pitch was installed in July 2005. Future projects include new floodlights, additional seating and covered standing accommodation as well as a new perimeter fencing along with new treatment rooms for use by players and spectators.

2005/2006 season saw Woodley finish in their highest Unibond League position, finishing 4th to gain an automatic play off place only to lose out against Gresley Rovers. Also during this season they sold striker Liam Dickinson, to Stockport County for £2,000.

Another youth team was introduced this season as the previous squad have moved up to take the reserve team place competing in the Lancashire Lancit League this season.

The 2006/2007 season saw a disappointing end to the League season with a 10th final placing, however the season was notable for Cup successes in all the major competitions at such places as Conference North Clubs, Leigh RMI in the FA Cup and Moor Green in the FA Trophy. Home success were gained against Marine and Whitby Town, whilst a semi-final exit in the League President’s Cup will never be forgotten after a 8-7 defeat on penalties after extra-time away at Premier League side Matlock Town, despite playing over an hour of the game with ten men.

However the season did end with Manager, Ally Pickering departing the Club and whilst he goes with thanks for the success he brought over the last 18 months, the club now look forward to the 2007 / 2008 with a new Management Team of Chris Willcock & former Woodley Sports Manager John Flanagan, as they attempt to work with the excellent youngsters at the club.

ROLL OF HONOUR Unibond Northern Premier League – Chairman’s Cup finalists 2004-2005

Cheshire FA (Unibond) Senior Cup Winners 2003/2004

Lancashire and Cheshire Amateur Football League

Div 1 Runners up 1979 Div 2 Champions 1976

Div 3 Champions 1975 Div A Champions 1980

Div B Champions 1976 Div C Champions 1975



Manchester Football League

Premier Div Runners up 1992-1993

Gilchrist Cup

Winners 1992-1993

Rhodes Cup

Winners 1977, 1978 Finalists 1986

S.E. Woolam Aggregate Trophy

Winners 1980

Wray Cup

Winners 1998, 1990



Whitehead Cup



Winners 1980

Stockport and District Football Association Senior Cup

Winners 1975, 2007 Finalists 1997

North West Counties League

Div 2 Champions 1999/2000

Reserve Division Champions 2000/2001 & 2001/2002

Reserve Division Runners up 1999/2000

Reserve Division Cup Winners 2001/2002

Cheshire FA Youth Cup

Winners 2004 / 2005

External links

Official Club Website

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