Football club to play on despite entering ‘twilight’ years

Marsden CW Juniors football team.
Marsden CW Juniors football team.

They are a team with a proud past, but Marsden CW football team are “entering the closing chapter” of their existence – so says the club’s main man.

Having featured the club in recent weeks, and in particular Marsden CW stalwart, Jim Calvert, Bob Tomlin (who wears many hats as chairman, secretary and manager to name but a few) got in touch to bring the story bang up to date.

When the team players died their hair red after a title win.

When the team players died their hair red after a title win.

And having successfully established themselves in the Sunday Russell Foster League a quarter of a century ago, Bob says the club is now in its “twilight” years – though they are going to “give it another go next season”.

As Bob explains, back in 1992-93 Sunday morning football was becoming increasingly popular so Marsden CW Juniors, who had been playing on a Saturday, introduced a number of junior sides, one of which, the under-13s, he was jointly responsible for.

They played in the Russell Foster League for six years, switching to the South Shields Sunday Morning League in 1999 when Bob became solely responsible for running the side.

“We went into the bottom division,” explains Bob, who says he is closer to his 70s than his 60s, “working our way up through the leagues to the Premier Division where we stayed for 10 years before working our way back down to the B Division”.

Many of the team members have been together for 25 years.

Many of the team members have been together for 25 years.

Last year, however, the club’ fortunes improved when they won the B Division and were runners-up in the cup. This year, back in the A Division, they were again runners-up in the cup.

“From 1999 to now, we have won a few divisional titles and a few cups.”

And though the form may have fluctuated, the team, says Bob, has remained constant, with many of the players having been there for 25 years.

“We have seven or eight players who have been there all the way, while others have been here for 10 or so years.

“My youngest lad was 12 or 13 when he started and he’s 37, and played for nobody else. A few have left, but they’ve come back.

“A lot of people think that when the Saturday teams went, that was the end of it but we are still here: we are the genuine Marsden CW.

And although we are in our twilight we have decided to give it another go next season.”

l As a footnote, Bob’s team is completely separate from the Marsden Juniors Football Club.