Where better to start the weekends round-up than with Northern Thunder. After securing an impressive third place finish in this year’s EPFA cup in Denmark, Thunder went into the weekend nationals high on confidence and it most definitely showed. Five impressive wins, from as many games, saw them take maximum points from tough fixtures across the weekend. In their opening match against Sevenoaks PFC, Northern Thunder capitalised on a number of mistakes to secure a 5-0 win. Ed Common registering an impressive hat-trick. Thunder’s second fixture against Brighton was one of the stand-out games of the weekend. Two early goals from the Seagulls saw them struggling as the half-time whistle was blew, but Northern Thunder maintained pressure and remained patient throughout the second half and goals from Ed Common, Jack Maxwell and Sam Smith secured an impressive 3-2 comeback. Three victories, all with a 3-0 score line, over Nottingham, West Brom Throstles and Leeds topped off an incredible weekend and means Northern Thunder jump four places in the league standings, to 2nd.

St George’s Knights were, arguably, the standout performers in this weekend’s Premiership. With a demanding schedule of five games to contend with, St George’s Knights kicked off proceedings against table toppers, Aspire PFC, on Saturday morning. Unfortunately, due to illness, only managed to field three players and as such suffered a 5-0 defeat. They did, however, create many chances and produce a commendable effort against one of the country’s leading sides. Following this, they went from strength to strength, securing three impressive wins against Sevenoaks, Sale Utd and West Bromwich Albion Throstles and a goalless draw against Nottingham, keeping clean sheets in all. This allowed them to climb three positions in the league standings, leapfrogging WBA Throstles, Sale Utd and Nottingham. Knight’s head coach Jason Christer said:

“Being one of the youngest sides in the Premiership, we believe we are doing really well in only our second season in the top league. We had a really good weekend overall, picking up ten points from a possible fifteen. Due to illness we only had 3 players against Aspire and still managed to create lots of chances and were quite happy despite a 5-0 loss. We will continue to work hard and hope to maintain this form going into weekend three.”

Despite the league table not reflecting it, Leeds PFC played brilliantly across the whole of the second weekend of the MDUK Premiership. Not only are Leeds a great team to watch, their can-do attitude towards the game and competition is admirable. The 3-0 loss to champions, West Bromwich Albion, on the Saturday, did not reflect their excellent performance. Their crowning moment of the weekend was undoubtedly their 1-0 victory over an in-form Nottingham side, with the goal from Dan Rigby. Their triumphant cheers at the final whistle were probably heard echoing around West Yorkshire. Great passion, and an overall memorable weekend for them which sees them climb from that bottom spot to 11th.

Sevenoaks PFC struggled in their opening two fixtures, suffering a 5-0 loss to an in-form Northern Thunder side and a frustrating 2-0 loss to St George’s Knights. However, the team regrouped and kept local rivals, Brighton, to a goalless draw, in a closely fought game Saturday afternoon. Buoyed by the improved performance the team didn’t shy away from current league champions West Bromwich Albion in their Sunday morning fixture and despite a 4-1 loss, there were moments of great passing play. Sevenoaks scored the only goal in the second half, which demonstrated their resilience and organisation. With all eyes firmly focused on the six-point matchup with Middlesbrough on Sunday afternoon the Oaks put on a show and prevailed, in dominating fashion, to secure a 3-0 victory. Shaye Reid-Watson, Sevenoaks keeper, shared his thoughts on the weekend’s action:

“We were frustrated after Saturday’s games, but thankfully on Sunday we really picked up and showed that we can play football to a high standard – we’re pleased, but there is so much more that we are capable of.”

A great start to the weekend for Ricky Stevenson’s Nottingham PFC side who registered two impressive 2-0 victories, against Middlesbrough PFC and Villa Rockets, to get off to a flying start. Their third and final game, of a busy Saturday, saw Notts pitted against a flying Northern Thunder side and despite a good performance they suffered a 3-0 loss. A frustrating Sunday for Nottingham saw a goalless draw to Sale Utd and a surprise loss to Leeds PFC. Adam Langley shared his comments on Nottingham’s weekend:

“We started the weekend off strongly with two 2-0 wins against Middlesbrough PFC and Villa Rockets and despite a good team effort we lost 3-0 to an impressive Northern Thunder side. However we struggled to replicate our Saturday form in our Sunday fixtures where a 0-0 draw with Sale Utd PFC and a 0-1 loss to Leeds PFC marked a disappointing day. Overall we still played some great football in parts and we'll now be focusing on our cup match next Saturday.”

Another standout weekend for West Bromwich Albion, who sent out a clear statement of intent in their pursuit of the Premiership crown. Five wins, 20 goals scored and only two goals conceded, displaying their ruthless defensive and attacking play. Impressive derby wins over Villa Rockets and West Bromwich Albion Throstles, and victories over Sevenoaks and Leeds, saw West Bromwich Albion quickly capitalise on dropped points by Aspire, to secure that number one spot. All players displayed fantastic linkup play, but Marcus Harrison had an especially good weekend, scoring six goals in four games to match team-mate Brad Bates in the golden boot race - both players currently sit on 10 goals.

A much improved Brighton & Hove Albion PFC side opened proceedings on Saturday in thrilling fashion, securing a 5-0 win against Leeds PFC. The Seagulls were desperately unlucky in their game against Northern Thunder. A great first half saw Brighton two goals to the good and comfortable, but in a game of two halves, Northern Thunder came out with serious intent in the second to win the game 3-2. Brighton’s following three fixtures against Sevenoaks, St George’s Knights and Aspire were all goalless draws. The Brighton players worked hard across the weekend, notably Gregg Baxter who had a very good weekend battling in the central role, recently vacated by Matty Francis.

Aspire PFC picked up where they left off in the Premiership, setting the standard with a 5-0 victory against a strong three-man St George’s Knights side. A tough game, in prospect, against Villa Rockets proved otherwise. The ever present Jon Bolding, high on confidence from his earlier hat-trick against St George’s Knights, was quick to capitalise on two weak balls from the back to score almost identical goals in a 2-0 win. A conservative 1-0 win over a stubborn Middlesbrough side saw Aspire take maximum points from their opening three games. Despite having most of the possession and displaying some exciting linkup play in their feisty final matchup with Brighton, Aspire failed to break the Seagulls down and it finished 0-0.

A difficult weekend for Sale Utd PFC sends them down three places in the standings, after registering only a single point from their four fixtures. After a great first weekend in the Premiership, Sale Utd will be disappointed with their failure to capitalise on missed chances in 50/50 matchups with St George’s Knights and Nottingham. Games against West Bromwich Albion and West Bromwich Albion Throstles always seemed difficult asks of the Manchester based side and they lost both 5-0 and 4-1 respectively. They will be keen to go away and prepare diligently for the third weekend in November, where matches with Villa Rockets, Northern Thunder and Aspire will be tough tests.

Villa Rockets will be frustrated with their failure to replicate the high standards set in the first week of the competition – managing to take only four points from a possible fifteen in weekend two. They started the weekend off with a closely matched fixture with West Bromwich Albion Throstles. The game reflected their close league standings and saw both take a share of the points in a 1-1 draw- Daniel Kay registered their only goal. Despite Villa’s conservative 2-0 win against Middlesbrough on Sunday morning, the rest of the weekend proved difficult with losses against Nottingham, Aspire and West Bromwich Albion.

It was a mixed weekend for West Bromwich Albion Throstles. Saturday saw the Throstles secure a good point from the 1-1 draw with Villa. An impressive hat-trick from Lizzie Tullett in Throstles second fixture helped secure a dominant 4-1 victory over Sale Utd. The Sunday didn’t prove quite as fruitful for the Throstles, with frustrating defeats against Northern Thunder, West Bromwich Albion and St George’s Knights. November’s action presents an easier weekend in prospect for the Throstles and provides them with a great opportunity to regain momentum in their pursuit of a higher placed finish. Amy Wharton commented:

“We started off well on Saturday with two decent results. We ended strongly in the Villa game and are frustrated at not taking our chances. We were very disappointed with Sunday’s results, we dominated the second half of the Northern Thunder game and were unlucky not to get on the score sheet. Despite giving it our all in the matchup with WBA, we failed to hold on in the second half – with the way they move the ball, it was inevitable that they were going to score. Tiredness took over by our final game of the day and we are disappointed with the 2-0 defeat to St George’s Knights. Some great performances at times, with some good passing football, but a very long and frustrating weekend for The Throstles”

It was also a frustrating weekend for Middlesbrough PFC who not only failed to register any points in their campaign to maintain Premiership status, but also failed to score a single goal in their four games. Games against Villa Rockets and Aspire PFC were always going to be challenging for Middlesbrough losing 2-0 and 1-0 respectively. Boro will be disappointed with their failure to secure any points from matches with Sevenoaks and Nottingham which also proved to be difficult games.

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