Middleton Wanderers FC unveil plans for a reserve team
By Stuart Laundy - Senior Reporter
IT may have been months since any of the dale’s football teams saw any action, but one club is already looking to a bright future.
Middleton Wanderers FC is planning to launch a reserve team due to the number of players looking for a game in the upper dale.
Wanderers were formed before the start of the 2019/20 season and joined the Darlington Sunday Morning Invitation League.
The team had managed just a handful of fixtures before play was called to a halt due to the further Covid-19 lockdowns.
Wanderers manager Dave Short said the club had been considering launching a reserve team for some time.
“Last season and at the start of this season we had too many players,” he said.
“A reserve team will keep everyone happy and give all the lads a chance to play. We already have a manager for the reserves.
“We have a lot of lads who turn up and commit themselves to playing.
“We have quite a few from the village and lads from Barnard Castle as well.”
Mr Short added: “Some people thought it was going to be a risk running a reserve team but I thought it was worth it.
“It’s all about keeping everyone happy and giving lads a chance with our club.”
Mr Short said the reserves would also join the Darlington Sunday Morning Invitation League, which currently runs just one division.
If that is the case come the start of next season, it will mean inter-club derbies.
“It could be two divisions next season – there seems to be more interest in the Darlington league,” he said.
“It's all looking good. I think everyone is looking for a fresh start.”
Currently, Middleton Wanderers FC and Staindrop Wheatsheaf FC play in the Darlington Sunday Morning Invitation League.
Gainford Cross Keys FC and Toft Hill Three Tuns continue to play in the Wear Valley Sunday League.
Currently, there is no senior Sunday morning football in Barnard Castle since the Bowes FC Sunday team folded a couple of seasons ago.
Anyone interested in joining Middleton Wanderers or who wants further information about the club can get in touch with the club via its Facebook page.