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Rothwell Town FC
Club History

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About Town

Rothwell Town began life as Rothwell Labour Club back in the late 1970's. Very little is known about the early years as nothing was officially recorded and the people old enough to remember it like Thorpy, Penny and Andy Leigh pretend they can't, and that the people in the pictures on the Labour Club wall sporting the dodgy barnets are not really them! Anyway the best i can gather is that the early team was your standard Saturday side run from a pub/club, however a decent side came together. In 1985/86 a team containing Arthur Oldroyd, Andy Leigh, Tony Clarkson, Gary Pennington and Steve Thorp won the league and cup double. Hence the Labour Club picture. Rothwell Labour Club bacame Rothwell Town in the early 1990's and the club entered the West Yorkshire League in Division Two. Whilst the Rothwell Town junior and youth set up began to thrive in a very competitive Rothwell area that already contained the successful Rothwell Juniors and Oulton Owls, the open age side seemed happy to tread water in mid table of Division Two.
 
 In 1998/99 with former striker Andy Leigh in charge Town finished fourth in Division Two narrowly missing promotion.In the pre season of 1999 several new players joined and after a very good pre season there was a youthful buzz about the place that had been missing previously. Town spanked Howden Clough 6-0 on the opening day of the season sparking a 10 game winning run. Town had 30 points on the board by mid November and were streets ahead at the top. Town lost just 4 games post Christmas. The club were crowned champions after a convincing 3-0 away win at 5th place Pontefract Town, however the league cup final was still to come. After scraping past Pontefract Town in the semi final on penalties (after a 0-0 bore draw) Town travelled to Wakefield City's ground to meet third placed Methley Rangers in the Final. Town had thumped Methley 4-0 and 5-1 home and away respectively and so the psychological advantage was with the red and blue. In an explosive first 5 minutes Kris Parker put Town 1-0 up and then keeper Mark Paul was sent off for handling outside the area. No-one gave Town much hope but the unbelievable spirit in the camp all season shone through when needed the most. Methley went 2-1 up but Matty Lloyd equalised late on to take the tie to extra time. With no further score the hero of the day Lee 'Popeye' Poppleton the centre half turned sub keeper saved a spot kick and stepped up to stroke home the winning kick. Skipper Ben Parker sent Town legend Steve Thorp up to collect the cup in honour of his service to the club and as a mark of respect. The epitomy of the 1999/00 campaign throughout was this spirit and togetherness.
 
 

The photogenic Mr Steve Thorp
thorpy.jpg
Lifts the Cup in 2000

Popeyes penalty goes in.
pitchinvasion.jpg
Sparking 'wild' scenes and a pitch invasion.

Town have stalled in their progress since that glorious May day. Andy Leigh quit as manager midway through our first season back in Division 1 as Town finished in mid table respectability. Tony Clarkson took over for a season in 2001/02 and led Town to 6th. However only 32 goals were scored all season which tells the story of the lack of invention we had. Good job the defence was by far the best in the league, conceding only 29. Paul Pennington took over a somewhat demoralised squad in 2002/03 and saw a poor season off with an escape from relegation. Lets hope a few new players and better organisation will see us pushing on this time around. 

Division Two Table 1999/00
 

 

Pos

Team

Pld

W

D

L

F-A

+/-

Pts

1

Rothwell Town

20

16

0

4

66-26

+40

48

2

Upper Armley O.B

20

14

3

3

58-28

+30

45

3

Methley Rangers

20

13

2

5

57-34

+23

41

4

Howden Clough

20

10

2

8

56-52

+4

32

5

Pontefract Town

20

9

3

8

40-34

+6

30

6

Hartshead Senior

20

9

3

8

43-46

-3

30

7

Great Preston

20

9

1

10

58-56

+2

28

8

Dewsbury Moor

20

7

0

13

41-51

-10

21

9

Camerons

20

5

3

12

37-60

-23

18

10

Vickers D.S

20

5

3

12

40-60

-20

18

11

Monk Fryston

20

4

0

16

31-78

-47

12

The Cup Final Side 2000
 
1) Mark Paul
2) Steve Payne
3) Paul Newbould
4) Jody Thirkell
5) Ben Parker (c)
6) Tony Clarkson
7) Stuart Myers
8) Jake Bennett
9) Kris Parker
10) Matthew Lloyd
11) Neil Kellett
 
12) Lee Poppleton
13) Jonathan Ford
14) Steve Thorp
 

The triumphant Rothwell Town FC 2000
2000team.jpg
The famous 'Double Winning Side'

Back Row: K,Parker, Bennett, Ford, Lloyd, Poppleton, Thirkell, M.Paul, Clarkson, Leigh (Manager).
Front Row: Payne, B Parker, Kellett, Thorp (c), Newbould, Myers.
 

Hugs were the order of the day.
celebrations.jpg
Methleys players were gracious in defeat.

Jozza enjoys his moment with the Cup
jozzascup.jpg
I design the website so i can cover myself in glory!!

Who knows what 2003/04 will bring?