Priestley’s footballers bid to retain title

PRIESTLEY College’s bid to retain the North West Colleges Premier Division remains on track at the mid-season point.

Despite missing some of 2017’s star second years Priestley are third thanks to wins over Winstanley, Sir John Deane’s and Oldham colleges.

They are currently on 12 points, six behind the league leaders but with three matches in hand.

Captains Joe Salter and Mick Mitchell said the great results were down to team spirit and increased discipline.

“Last year it was more about some key individuals whereas this year we are more of a team,” said Joe.

“We were concerned that we might not perform as well, but we’ve gelled as a team and we want to win for each other.”

Mick added: “We’ve not conceded many goals, but when we have we’ve struck back straight away, which is down to the team spirit.

“Even when the scoreline is not looking good the whole team is still there working hard and if someone is having a bad game we all keep encouraging them.”

Sports Tutor and Team Manager Dan Jordan appointed three captains this year to ensure there was always someone to take charge.

When all three are on the pitch they marshal defence, midfield and forwards between them.

If one can’t play, there is always a leader in the ranks to take charge.

“It has worked really well because we all train together and don’t disagree on how to play,” said Joe.

“Also, because we train with the second team when we have to pull up a player we already know their strengths and weaknesses, which means they can fit into the team well.”

Although the focus has been on ‘the team’ this season the captains agreed a standout player so far has been midfielder Jamie Smith.

As they approach the second half of the season they will be hoping for more goals from Jamie and a continuation of the team spirit that has gotten them this far.