Emley AFC join forces with Thornes Juniors and announce pre-season fixtures
Two Wakefield area football clubs have announced a new partnership that they hope will benefit both for seasons to come.
Thornes Juniors have become the first official grassroots partner club to semi-professional side Emley AFC, whose senior side have been promoted into the Premier Division of the NCE League for the 2021-22 season.
The deal with give Thornes’ teams a chance to play at Emley’s Fantastic Media Welfare Stadium while in return Emley will use the Thornes facility for pre-season training. Each club will also promote the activities of the other to their players and supporters.
Emley AFC chairman Andrew Painten said: “Thornes Juniors are a very well run junior club and we’ve been working informally with them for a number of years – it was about time we made it a proper partnership between the two clubs.
“We’ve already discussed a number of ways we can help each other and I look forward to working together for many years to come.”
Thornes Juniors chairman John Hinchliffe said: “We can see Emley from our pitches at Queens Drive and many of our youngsters have visited the club over the years.
“Our link will give them many more opportunities to support Emley and, who knows, one day even pull on an Emley shirt.”
Thornes Juniors recently celebrated its 30th anniversary and run teams for ages eight up to 17 – with around 180 boys and girls currently registered.
Following two successful but Covid-hit seasons, Emley AFC have been promoted to the Northern Counties East League Premier and are preparing for life in the higher division.
The club has also started a new under 18s team that youngsters graduating from Thornes and other local junior sides are encouraged to sign up for a trial.
Emley, meanwhile, have announced their pre-season friendlies ahead of the next campaign
The Pewitts will play six warm-up games, including a match against future Football League starts that will make up a Huddersfield Town Academy side on Friday, July 30 at Emley’s ground (kick-off 7.45pm).
The first game will be played at the Fantastic Media Welfare Ground Stadium on Thursday, July 8 (kick-off 7.45pm) against Liversedge FC, who have just been promoted from the NCE to the Northern Premier League.
Further fixtures follow away to Worksop Town on Saturday, July 10 (3pm) and away to Golcar United on Saturday, July 17 (3pm). Two more home matches will see Emley take on neighbours Ossett United on Tuesday, July 20 (7.45pm) and another Northern Premier League team, Stocksbridge Park Steels, on Friday, July 23 (7.45pm).
Emley are holding an open trial for players who are interested in joining the club at first team level on Saturday, June 12, 10am-12pm at St Wilfred’s Catholic High School, Featherstone.
Anyone who wishes to attend is asked to send a brief football CV – including your name, age, preferred position and past experience – to [email protected]
Registration is also open for Emley’s Academy with trials to take place for under 18s and under 23s. To apply, fill in the form on the club’s website.