To see the results of the trials held on Wednesday May 24th & Wednesday June 14th click this link.
On Sunday June 18th the U11s went to the Elm Grove tournament in the hope of retaining the trophy they won last year. With just one team in this age group, but a squad of 15, the U11s decided to split into two sides for the 6-a-side tournament. The teams were placed in separate groups, so they couldn’t meet until the knockout stages. It goes without saying that they played some nice football in their respective groups, both eventually finishing top. And by winning their groups, they could only meet in the final now. The semi's were a tense affair for both sides, with each of the games going to extra time. One of the teams scored a last minute winner, while the other had to survive a penalty shoot out, but both prevailed to set up a dream all Balham final. Friendships were put aside for the next ten minutes, with the U11 players going toe to toe for the trophy. Posts were struck, crossbars were hit and fine saves were made as all the players gave everything they had and in the end a single goal was the difference. Mixed emotions followed the final whistle, but the squad came together at the finish, hands full of silverware.
As part of the club's inclusive approach, we believe that it is very important to offer help with fees in the form of partial bursaries to players selected to play for the club who would find it challenging to pay their fees in full.
To enable us to run this scheme as the club grows, we invite parents and friends of the club, in a position to do so, to support us by contributing to the Bursary Fund. The best time to contribute is at our annual registration days on Wednesday 28th June, 6pm-8pm and Wednesday 12th July, 6pm-8pm at Chestnut Grove. This is to enable us to know at the start of the season how many players the Bursary Fund can provide for.
To fund one player for the entire season would cost £375 but of course any donation would be extremely generous and much welcomed by the club and our Bursary recipients. All Bursary donations can be paid by cheque, cash or by standing order, which we can arrange at our registration days.
If you would like to apply for Bursary funding please contact Greg or myself.
Thanks very much,
Grant Goodband, Club Fees & Bursary Scheme. 07854 971564. email@example.com
The U12 Colts won the Elm Grove tournament on 18 June making it three tournament wins in a row. The Colts won all three group matches without conceding a goal. After an under par performance in the quarter-finals resulted in a narrow win, it was an all Balham semi -final against the Eagles who had cruised through their quarter final with a comfortable win. After a goalless first half with few clear changes, the Colts moved ahead with two goals from Jayden Richards. The Eagles came back but couldn’t find a way passed Arthur Fraser-Cobb in the Colts goal. In the final the Colts were up against a good Esher side, but dominated the first half and deservedly led through a goal from Jayden Richards. Esher equalised early in the second half and it looked as though the final was destined for extra time and maybe penalties. However late in the game Dawud Dino Bedry chased what looked like a lost cause and kept the ball in play. He nut-megged an opponent and then beat the keeper from a very tight angle. A goal worthy of winning any cup final.
Congratulations to our U9s who won the Play On The Pitch Tournament at Stamford Bridge on Sunday June 11th. After a tour of the changing rooms the players lined up in the tunnel for their walk out onto the pitch.
The under 9s played well in a tight group to qualify for the final, winning a crucial last group game. The final was against Chigwell Jets. Giacomo put Balham a goal up early on, with Balham dominating possession. Chigwell got a late equaliser though sending the final to penalties. Everyone volunteered to take one, but the order went Giacamo, Darren and Esah - who hit the winning penalty after a great save by Sunay.
It was an amazing day and a great team effort by Daniel, Darren, Esah, Giacamo, Humza, Jacob, Kwesharn, Shane, Sheldon, Sunay and Theo. Well played boys and thanks to all the friends and family who gave such great support from the stands.
Congratulations to the U12 Colts for their second tournament victory of the summer at Bourne End on Saturday. A consistently good set of performances, with goals spread all around the squad, saw them take the title without conceding a goal. The final was a tight one, needing a last minute extra-time thunderbolt from distance to separate the teams. Well done to Arthur, Malachi, Alfred, Charlie, Pierre, Dawud and Niccolo on a great afternoon of top quality football.
Many congratulations to our Under 8s, Under 10s and Under 12 Eagles, who together made a clean sweep of all three competitions being played at the always excellently organised 2017 Guildford City Tournament on Sunday June 4th. The 8s and 10s, playing some great football, both won their finals 1-0 in the morning. They were followed in the afternoon by the Under 12 Eagles, who, having got through the group stage and knockout, squeaked home, after a closely contested final, on penalties.
On 3 June the U11s entered the annual Guildford City tournament. After finishing as runners up last year, the team were hoping to go one better and bring the trophy home. They sailed through the group stage, winning two and drawing the other, to make it to the knock out stages. The U11s then made light work of the quarter final to progress to the last four. The team had already been playing some excellent football, but they saved their best for the semi and goals from Maxwell and Nicolo in the first half were enough to see them in to the final for the second year running. And the BBFC U11s couldn't have made a better start, with Cameron scoring after just 18 seconds. However, their opponents were committed and scored two goals before half time to lead at the break. The second half was a one sided affair, with the U11s camped in their opponents half. Chance after chance went begging until Maxwell popped up at the back post to score the all important equaliser, with a minute to spare. Unfortunately for the boys from Balham, the old adage that you're at your most vulnerable when you've just scored came true and the opposition hit the winner just seconds after the restart. Heartbreak for the BBFC U11s, but having played football in the right way from start to finish they left Guildford with their heads held high.
Congratulations to our U15 Colts, who finished impressive Runners Up in the Saturday Tournament on their May Bank Holiday Weekend tour to Holland. That was topped however, the day afterwards, when they beat a team of former Eredivisie Scholars from Ajax, Feyenoord and PSV, 4-1. Walked out to the Champions League theme music, the game was officiated by Eric Braamhaar, who has himself refereed Champions League matches. Spurred on by the occasion the boys from Balham put in a tremendous performance to out play and out score a team of the highest order, whose players are a year or two years older.
Following promotion last season, from the Surrey Elite League at Step 7, it’s been another fantastic season for the Balham First team who, having finished in 3rd place in the CCL Division One at Step 6, have been promoted to the CCL Premier Division at Step 5 for 2017-18. Forty-two players have contributed on the pitch and there’s been great work off it too from all those behind the scenes. What continues to make each promotion very special is the amount of players involved who have come through the age group system at the club. Balham is always looking to add players of quality from outside but the primary aim is to develop from within and to give opportunities to players for whom pulling on a Balham shirt means everything.
The rain couldn’t dampen the spirits at the annual end of season First team BBQ on Saturday May 28th, hosted once again by Club Chair, Jennie Molyneux. With promotion having been attained the burgers and bangers tasted extra good. Having been away captaining Surrey University, Dan David wasn’t there this year so there was a chance for someone else to win the football quiz. This year it was the turn of three First team youngsters, Ibrahim Olutade, Morgan Roberts-Watson and Arsen Ujkaj, whose knowledge of all things Premier League and Balham FC proved too much to handle for the other teams..
Congratulations to our U14 Eagles who won the "Double" adding the Tandridge League A Division title to the League Cup they won in March. They finished the season in style, beating a very good Charlwood side 3-0, in a tense game, to clinch top spot as League Champions. It was a great way to defend the title that they won last year and go one further by completing the double. In a great season they played 26 competitive matches, losing only twice. The squad hope to push on again in 2017-18 and win the London Cup. Congratulations to Coach Jaden Cameron and to the whole squad, who have acquitted themselves brilliantly from beginning to end, playing some fantastic football in the Balham way. A big thanks too, from the whole squad, to Jaden, who is retiring - only temporarily though, we hope.
Congratulations to everyone associated with the Balham Youth team, who after a poor start in the league, recovered superbly and climbed the table to finish as Southern Youth League West Division Runners Up. A stunning victory at previously unbeaten league champions, Conquest FC, was undoubtedly the highlight, but there were some other excellent performances along the way for what was a very young squad featuring a glut of Under 16s and 17s.
Many congratulations to the BBFC Under 15 Colts who were crowned Tandridge League A Division Winners and League Champions on Sunday May 21st. This is the culmination not only of talent and progression on the field of play but of commitment, dedication and hard work. The squad, superbly coached and managed by JR Burgess and Lee Cooper, have got what they deserved and everyone at the club is very proud of their achievement.
Congratulations to the Under 10s who won the London County Saturday Youth League Cup Final on Saturday May 13th. The final was a thrilling contest with the Blazers emerging as eventual winners, 2-1, after extra time, against a strong Bedhead Amber F.C. Both teams played some exciting football with Bedhead taking the lead just after half-time. The Blazers quickly responded with a Barcelonaesque move that culminated in Noah “Younger Mbappe” Ridgeon curling the ball into the net. Goalkeeper Ned Hill produced a couple of fine saves before Will Barber flicked a beautiful header against the post in the final minutes of normal time, but the ball bounced out and it was on to extra time. It was a tense final period with both teams creating chances, but with one minute to go, Fergal "ASAP Ferg” Green broke free and buried the ball into the bottom corner. The final whistle was blown soon afterwards and the celebrations began. It was a great day out for the team and the perfect way to cap a fantastic season in which each and every player has performed exceptionally. Come on you Blazers!.
Congratulations to our U12 Colts who won the Sandhurst Tournament on Sunday May 15th, beating a field of 32 teams to the title. They won a tight final against Reeves Rangers 1-0 having gone through the tournament unbeaten, scoring thirteen goals and conceding only two. Congratulations to all of the squad of seven boys, especially Arthur Fraser-Cobb (who stood in at the last minute for the injured Jack Gordon in goal) and Jayden Richards who hit the back of the net nine times.
Balham finished what has been an exceptional first season in the Combined Counties League in style by lifting the London Senior Trophy on Saturday May 6th. The game, against Southern Counties East Division One Champions, Glebe FC, was played at Corinthian Casuals FC. Buoyed on by excellent support Balham put on a fine display to win the final 3-2. Eddie Luchford got two of the goals, one in each half, with James Adebayo netting the other on twenty-nine minutes. Having twice had a two goal lead, when Glebe got one back, for the second time, very late in the game, it made for a squeaky bum time finish however, with good game management and a growing maturity, Balham didn’t give them another sniff. There were great scenes after the match as younger players from the club poured onto the pitch to join in the celebrations with their victorious elders.
The Under 8s got their hands on their first silverware of the season when they lifted the Paddington Rec Cup on Saturday May 6th. The low key event was the perfect introduction to the tournament season. The Balham squad - Jacob, Lucas, Tomasz, Sam, Oliver, George, Will and Patrick - played some great football during the morning and scored many goals to win all three of their group games. They even beat the tournament 'All Star' team by 4 goals to 2, to round off a very successful morning of football.
Many congratulations to our U16 Colts, who secured the Tandridge League B Division title on Sunday April 30th, with a resounding 5-0 away win. This squad has endured some tough times in the past however it’s great to be able to say that this season they have finally fulfilled their potential. Ben Carr, who came in to coach the squad at the start of the season, has done a brilliant job with them, adding astutely to strengthen in certain areas and getting them playing consistently good, attractive, imaginative, pass and move football in a well organised structure..
Balham completed their first league season in the Combined Counties League on Saturday April 22nd with a 3-1 home win against Cove FC. The victory, at the end of what has been a brilliant league campaign, sees the club finish in 3rd place in Division One, which is normally a promotion position. Everyone associated with Balham, along with many others, are desperately hoping that will be the case this time around. Official word from the F.A. may not arrive until mid May however. In the meantime Balham have a friendly at league runners up, Redhill FC, on Saturday April 29th, in preparation for the London Senior Trophy Cup Final on May 6th v Glebe FC. The cup final is being played at Corinthian Casuals FC, kick off 3pm.
This years' BBFC Sponsored Marathon will take place on Wednesday June 7th: 5pm-8pm on Tooting Bec Common, by Elmbourne Road, at the end of Streathbourne Road.
All players from U7-U16 squads are required to turn up and run 1km as part of a club relay that will complete the 42 km marathon course. We hope to have enough to run two relay teams at the same time.
You can turn up whenever it suits you between 5pm-8pm, register your name at the start and then wait your turn to do your bit. Players are welcome to run and go or, stay with parents, family and friends for as long as they want to for a kick around with other BBFC players. There will be individual prizes for the fastest 1km run in each age group and medals for the age group team that raises the most sponsorship money. This is a vitally important fundraiser for the club and we need everyone to raise sponsorship money for it. Download your sponsorship forms. Donations are also welcome.
It's also a social event and you are encouraged to bring a picnic. Hopefully the weather will be kind!
Former BBFC age group coach, Robin Shroot, who played for Birmingham City, Stevenage and Northern Ireland U21s in the UK, is on loan at Norwegian Premier League club, Viking Stavanger, until the end of the season. He’s been in Norway since 2014 playing for First Division clubs, Il Hodd and Sogndal..
Congratulations to our U14 Eagles who won the Tandridge League Cup Final at Chipstead FC on Saturday March 26th. The game against league title rivals, Kinetic Croydon, was an absorbing battle between two talented, very well organised sides, both of whom defended superbly. In a tight game, of very few chances, the defining moment came midway through the second half when a fine cross from the by line by Balham right back Abe Wood was unluckily deflected into the Kinetic goal by a defender attempting to clear his lines.
Congratulations to Tooting based GoldenShotz who won a tempestuous Balham Sixes fundraiser at Chestnut Grove on Friday March 17th . Having only just scraped into the semi finals the team edged past Larkhall 1-0 and came back to beat previous tournament winners, Fuzzy Wuzzies, in a keenly contested final.
Balham FC hosted a coaching event in partnership with the London FA, The FA mentor programme and Nike on 16th March at Selhurst Sports Arena. The topic for the event was ‘Session Planning and Managing Mistakes’. Balham FC also invited coaches from other local clubs to come and witness the practice and gain hours for their continuous professional development (CPD). 12 coaches from Balham attended and drafted session plans and had a great peer learning session with coach mentor and London FA staff member Daniel Gayle and the other 20 coaches in attendance. All coaches then moved onto the newly built 4G Astroturf in Selhurst where they witnessed a top class session delivered by Nike Academy coaches Jon Phillips and Dan Holloway. This practical built on the theoretical aspect delivered initially in the classroom and emphasised the importance of building rapport and using mistakes as an opportunity to learn. All coaches found their curiosity sated from the question and answer portion of the evening delivered after the session and went home with information to help them on their coaching journey.
Greg Cruttwell - Balham FC Club Secretary & Director of Football:
‘Just to say we were delighted to host this CPD event, which seemed to go very well and the peer learning and coach/mentor teachings were great.’
Jon Phillips - Nike Academy senior coach:
‘I think it was a really successful session and I felt the response from the coaches was very positive. Building these relationships with you and developing events like this is great for brand exposure and also a key part of our strategy to offer NPC an elevated brand experience.’
Congratulations to the BBFC U15 Colts who went to Motspur Park on Tuesday March 14th for a game against Fulham Academy U14s. Just as our other age group sides who’ve gone to play Fulham teams this season have done they acquitted themselves admirably drawing a high standard, hard fought game 0-0.
Congratulations to the Balham First team who are through to the County Cup Final having beaten Bridon Ropes FC 3-0 in the semi final of The London Senior Trophy on Saturday March 11th. First half goals from Aaron Lamont and Eddie Luchford, added to by skipper, Grant Goodband, in the second half, saw Balham run out comfortable winners against strong opposition. The date and venue for the final are still to be confirmed.
“Sotto Undici" were the winning team at a record breaking 2017 Balham FC/Balham Blazers FC Quiz Night on Saturday March 4th, held at our regular venue opposite Trinity Fields. The event, organised superbly, for the first time, by Under 12 Eagles mums, Victoria Murray and Sam Smith, was as usual sold out in advance. Fourteen teams went into battle with the victors pipping "Mathew’s Right Foot" to the coveted title of Quiz Night Champions. The event, which, as usual, featured the interesting dinner combination of curry, followed by home made cup cake for desert, raised a staggering, record breaking and much needed £4,000, which goes towards the general running costs of the club. In addition to Sam and Victoria many thanks go to all those who donated prizes, to those who helped on the night and last but not least to the invaluable, super star, cup cake makers.
Congratulations to our U14 Eagles, managed by Jaden Cameron, who are into the Tandridge League Cup Final following an excellent 3-0 win away to Bromley Rooks on Sunday March 5th. They followed this up with a superb 3-2 win, three days later, in a very tough game, against the Fulham Academy U13s, who they played at Motspur Park. Having led 2-0 they were pegged back to 2-2 before a last gasp worldy winner from Ryan Pickles won the night.
Balham FC, in conjunction with the London FA and Nike Academy, are delighted to host a CPD training exclusive for Charter Standard clubs and their coaches, allowing them to share best practice and ideas on coaching and developing young footballers. The session will be on Thursday 16th March
Please see link to book on here – Booking Form
Balham FC 1st team will be providing the venue for a training session that will be delivered by the Nike Academy team.
The Nike academy coaches and Daniel Gayle (Coach mentor) will be leading this event and will be concentrating on Session planning and managing mistakes with Balham FC’s senior team.
The session will be applicable to coaches of all FA qualification levels that coach at a Charter Standard club and all coaches who require CPD hours for levels 1 and 2, this equates to 2 hours CPD.
This is a chance for all Charter Standard clubs to complete this item on their Charter Standard health check forms, which to be signed off for the health check all clubs must attend at least one.
Theme – Session Planning and Managing Mistakes
Venue – Selhurst Sports Arena.
London SE25 5PH. View Directions
Time – 8.00pm to 10.00pm
Please note to access this online application, you will need a FAN (FA Number).
Long serving First team stalwart, Jake Henry, is taking a break from the heart of the Balham rearguard, in CCL Division One, to teach in India for five weeks. We miss him greatly but are delighted to see him in Balham FC attire, outside one of the seven wonders of the modern world.
Balham FC/Balham Blazers FC were honoured and delighted to be named Sports Club Of The Year, for an unprecedented third time, at the 2016 Active Wandsworth Sports Awards, held in the Civic Suite at Wandsworth Town Hall on Friday February 10th. The swanky do was hosted by David Garrido from Sky Sports with the awards being presented by Rio Olympic Rowing Gold Medalist, Phelan Hill and Rio Paralympian Table Tennis Bronze Medalist, Aaron McKibbin. Greg Cruttwell picked up the award on behalf of the club at what is always a superbly organised event that continues to serve as a reminder of the incredible talent and strength in depth across many different sports in the borough.
Many congratulations to our U16 Eagles who are through to the London Cup Final, the Champions League of Youth football. A screamer from Dominic Simpson-Last in the second half proved decisive in their 1-0 win against last year’s runners up, Erith & Belvedere, in a nail biting semi final on February 12th. Dreams of an all Balham Blazers final, with our U16 Colts having done brilliantly to reach the semi finals too, were dashed however by the reigning cup holders, Ryan FC, who put the Colts to the sword at Trinity Fields.
Our U11s gave an excellent account of themselves when they went to Motspur Park on Wednesday February 8th for a 9v9 friendly against Fulham’s Academy U10s. The boys and girl from Balham played some great football to win the game comfortably. Needless to say they thoroughly enjoyed the experience and the opportunity to test themselves against players at the highest level.
Our women’s team, Balham Panthers FC, who play in the Greater London Women’s Football League on Sundays and train on Wednesdays, are looking for new goalkeepers. If you’re over 16 and interested please contact the BPFC Coach, email Jamie Morris <firstname.lastname@example.org> or call his mob: 07889 256 910.
Download a copy of the flyer.
While visiting family in Kenya this Christmas, U16 Eagles player, Matthew McDowell, visited an orphanage with a charity donating Christmas presents, food and water to the staff and children. He took with him a Balham Blazers kit and some balls donated by the club. The Kenyans are football mad so it was no surprise that boys and girls immediately donned the white and black and a match ensued. They have very little so were delighted to receive their football presents.
The first fundraising open age Balham FC 6-a-side tournament of the year takes place at Chestnut Grove School on Friday March 17th. Please get in contact if you want to enter a team. There will be eight teams competing in two groups of four, with the top two in each progressing to the semi finals. Teams created from both inside and outside the club are welcome to enter. Download a copy of the flyer.
Why not sign up to the new exciting Balham FC Under 18 College Programme in partnership with St Francis Xavier 6th form college in Wandsworth. You will have the opportunity to take part in a full time Football programme where you will train 3 times a week, including sessions on full size 4G pitches, Indoor Futsal sessions, Strength & Conditioning and Video Analysis. You will play in weekly league fixtures, league and county cup competitions and the FA Youth Cup. In terms of your education you will take part in the Sport Science Level 3 Extended Diploma (equivalent to 3 A-Levels) and have the opportunity to do an EPQ (Extended Project qualification - worth slightly over half an additional A-Level). This programme is designed to help you develop both as a footballer and educationally, providing an ideal pathway, if wanted, to university in the UK, USA and Australia as well as into the Balham FC First team, who currently play in the Combined Counties League at Step 6 in the football league ladder. Download a copy of the flyer.
This year’s ever important annual Quiz Night will be on March 4th at our usual venue, St Mary Magdalene Church Hall, opposite Trinity Fields. Kick off at 7.30pm. As well as being a great night out it remains a vitally important fundraiser for the club. Tickets, which include a curry dinner, are £12.50. RSVP: email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org with your dietary requirements to book them. We’re delighted to announce that the star prize in this year’s raffle is a signed, framed, Pele shirt, with documented authentication. Tickets for the raffle will be sold on the night and also at training sessions and on match days beforehand. Download a copy of the Auction Items and Raffle Prizes
We are delighted to announce that Balham FC/Balham Blazers FC has been nominated as Sports Club of the Year for 2016 at the Active Wandsworth Sports Awards on Friday February 10th. The evening will be hosted by Sky Sports News presenter, David Garrido, along with special guests including Olympians and Paralympians from Wandsworth. The club has won this much coveted and highly prestigious award twice before in 2011 and 2013.
We are delighted to announce that former BBFC age group and first team player, Joe Holland, was the 10th pick of the 2017 MLS Super Draft and is signing pro terms with Houston Dynamo. As a result Balham now has it’s first professional player in the USA.
Anyone who has been watching the Premiership football on BT Sport since Christmas will probably have seen an advert for Score Hero! starring a number Balham FC and Balham Blazers FC players at half time. Look out for U12s Jack Appleton and Jack Hedges in the crowd scene, U16 Dom Simpson-Last juggling a ball in a tunnel, dribbling past U16 Fred Fordham and striking a cracking volley. Look out for the skills of U16 Ellis Griffiths-Phipps pulling out a Round-the-World for good measure. Also involved are U16 Luke Hedges and U16 Nasseem Bakare with Luke getting the glory shot at the end from a low angle. First team players Grant Goodband and Fabrice Mbola are also heavily featured, with Jake Henry, Julian Fuller and Bryce Botsoi also making an appearance. The advert was shot by London Ad Agency Hatched London through the month of December. Well done to all those involved. If you have missed it so far then you can see it by clicking the following link. Watch the advert.
It was the day of the goalkeeper at the 2nd annual Balham FC FootGolf Open held at Addington Court Golf Centre on December 28th. Defending champion, Ollie Kanner had an afternoon to forget as did last year’s runner up, Tomasz Wocial. There were still a number of contenders after the front nine but the tournament leader, Haydn Read, pictured above in green, kept the other protagonists at bay to claim the crown with a seriously impressive five under par round of 59. Jake Henry, who posted a fine two under par 62 himself, ran the young keeper closest, with Greg Cruttwell just edging out a group of others to finish third.
Thankfully it’s been another excellent first term for the senior section of the club, Balham FC and the age group section, Balham Blazers FC.
Having been promoted to the Combined Counties League the Balham First Team are currently in contention at the right end of the table. As your Christmas dinners are demolished and crackers pulled we will be sitting in 5th place out of 18. There’s a long way to go and anything can happen but it’s good to be entering the new year with plenty to play for.
The Balham Youth team are currently second in the West Division of the Southern Youth League. They are also through to the semi finals of one cup and are still in contention in two others.
The Balham Panthers women’s team have once again found the going tough in Division Two of the Greater Women’s League but the squad is looking stronger than last season and hopes are high that in the long term we can build a very successful squad.
In the age group section at Balham Blazers FC I’m pleased to say that our Under 16 Eagles, Under 15 Colts, Under 14 Eagles and Under 12 Eagles are all still in contention for the Tandridge League A Division title, whilst our Under 16 Colts are challenging for promotion in the B Division.
5 out of our 9 teams entered into the London Cup, the Champions League of Youth football, are through to the quarter finals and a number of teams are still in the Tandridge League Cup.
Our younger teams, Under 7-Under 11, who play "non competitive football”, where results and league tables aren’t published, are all progressing very well, many achieving great things and most importantly playing the Balham brand of pass and move football.
Highlights in this first term include the performances of our Under 10s and Under 16 Eagles when they went to Motspur Park to play Fulham Academy teams, the announcement of the Balham FC Academy Programme for 16-18 year olds in conjunction with SFX College and seeing Fabio Carvalho become the first BBFC player to play internationally for an England age group team.
We are also very lucky to have had some excellent new coaches join the club this season and I’d particularly like to commend Jamie Morris and Derrick Williams for the excellent work they’ve done. I’d also like to commend returning coaches, Ben Carr and James Lacey.
Finally, on behalf of the Board of Directors (Mike Allen, Del Fordham, Jennie Molyneux and me) I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all players and their families a very Happy Christmas and New Year. I look forward to seeing you all back in training and action in 2017, aiming, as ever, to bring a bit of Barcelona to Balham.
Club Secretary & Director of Football
Despite the fact that a large number of players past and present are currently injured or away for the holidays it was great, as always, to see many familiar faces back home for the annual Balham First team Christmas game, held this year on December 22nd at Selhurst Arena. A three team tournament was the order of the night with those taking part serving up a reminder of the riches of talent that we’ve been lucky enough to work with and nurture in SW12.
Why not come and see the Balham FC First team play in 2017. Home league and cup matches in the Combined Counties League Division One kick off at 3pm on Saturdays at The Wibbandune Stadium, opposite 199-213 Robin Hood Way (A3 South Bound) London, SW20 0AA. Admission is £5 with £2 concessions and match day programmes are £1. It’s a lot cheaper than going to a Premiership or Championship game.
Monday December 19th was an extremely proud an historic day for BBFC as Fabio Carvalho became the first player from our club to play internationally for England. Fabulous Fabs, who is signed on a long contract at Fulham, wore the number 8 shirt in an Under 15 age group international against Turkey, played at St George’s Park. Sadly England lost the game but, on a brighter note, Fabio had a fine debut.
Balham has a number of players at university in the USA on four year “soccer” scholarships. Please see the article below on Joe Holland, who is achieving great things at the highly rated Hofstra University. Joe has won many accolades, which has led to him being one of only 53 players nationally vying for selection in the 2017 MLS Superdraft. Joe’s equally talented younger brother, Cornell Holland, is also on a scholarship as are fellow former BBFC players, Zola Mafolo-Rodriguez, Alfie Miller and Isaac Wong.
Download Hofstra University Article
It’s great to hear that the latest batch of Balham players who started at university in September are already making a considerable impression on the green baize at their respective places of learning. Frank Charnock, at Manchester, is not only in the first team but has been selected for the North of England University team. Jack Haire is already in the first team at Bristol and Ollie Archard and Jozef Ostrowski are also tearing it up at Portsmouth and Oxford Brookes.
We are proud to say that there were three BBFC players in the Independent Schools Football Association National Under 16 squad, who played friendlies against Nottingham Forest and Chesterfield at St George’s Park in December. Current Under 16 Eagles and Youth team player, Zach Wood, was joined by former Blazers, Sam Arbuckle, currently at Fulham and Will Donkin, currently at Chelsea. All three played key roles as the ISFA squad beat Forest 4-2 and Chesterfield 3-1.
As a result of being a Nike Partner Club we were delighted to see another three of our coaches get invited to the English Football Association’s national centre at St Georges Park to do their Youth Module 3 Course on the weekend of November 19th/20th. U9s Coach, Matt Casey, U13s Coach, Derrick Williams and U16 Eagles Coach, Ebrahim Seedat, all had a great time at the fantastic facility.
Two BBFC age group teams have been in to play Fulham Academy teams at Motspur Park this term as part of our on going partnership with the Category 1 Academy Club. Our Under 10s had a fantastic game against Fulham’s Under 9s, drawing 8-8 and our Under 16 Eagles came back from 0-2 down to beat Fulham’s Under 15s 3-2. More BBFC teams will be going in to Motspur Park in the new year. Let’s hope they fare as well.
Sam Arbuckle, who played at BBFC from aged 8-15, signed this season as an Under 16 at Fulham. So far things have gone brilliantly for our very own South West London “Xavi” and on the weekend of October 16th Sam starred for Fulham in a Premier League International Tournament in Liverpool. Sam played every game for his Fulham age group team who got all the way to the final where, agonisingly, they lost on penalties to Man Utd.
Balham Blazers are delighted to still be part of the Jack Petchey Award scheme where each month a player gets chosen by their teammates to win the award and receive £250 to spend on their squad. Winners so far this season have been Ceri Black from the Panthers, Michael Enriquez from U15 Colts and Gus Colfer from the U16 Eagles. Also, previous award winner Ben Hopper attended the annual awards event in December and is seen here with former GB athlete, Donna Fraser.
Balham Blazers are delighted to be part of the Jack Petchey Foundation Gold Scheme. This means we have 9 awards to present each year to players who demonstrate good sportsmanship, leadership or commitment to training. Throughout the year we ask teams (from Under 12s upwards) to nominate one of their team members for the award. The winner will receive a certificate from the award scheme, their picture on the website and receive £250 which is then put towards their team or club (previous club winners have used it for match kit, away kit, training kit, match balls, a team haka training session, and a team outing to footgolf). At the presentation evening in July, Ben Hopper (U12), Morgan Coward (U13), Ethan Riley (U15), Lewis Mitchell (U17) all received their awards.
Former BBFC Youth team player, Alec Fiddes, who recently graduated from Bristol University, swapped pre season at Balham to sign for Amorebieta in the Spanish League in September. Having featured in a couple of friendlies for Balham whilst travelling back and forth to Spain to secure a pro contract, no sooner had he signed on the dotted line than he was in the first team playing a full 90 minutes against Real Madrid Castilla, who had Zidane’s son, Enzo, in their team. The game which was shown live on Real Madrid TV was a tight affair which Los Blancos edged 3-2.
Special Achievement Award Winner, Ollie Archard, First Team Player of the Year, Frank Charnock and Youth Team Player of the Year, Jack Haire, have all gone off to university in September and everyone at the club wishes them great success. Three universities are going to be getting three top footballers. The talented young trio played key roles for the first team and youth team last season and will be greatly missed. We look forward to seeing them back in Balham however when they return to the metropolis and following the completion of their degrees, we hope to see them all back in black and white in the First team on a regular basis.
We are delighted to welcome Daniel Gayle from the London FA to Balham FC and Balham Blazers FC. Daniel has been assigned to our club for the season as a coaching advisor and mentor. He will be working closely throughout the 2016-17 campaign with different squads and will also be putting on workshops for coaches, players and supporters.
The Balham U8 “Invincibles" who won all their games last season and are yet to lose a competitive match, have got off to a flying start again this season. They have only played two games to date but have scored 28 goals, conceding 7. Our new U7s have also started in impressive fashion scoring 20 in their two games to date. Our U9s and U10s, who also play in the LCSYFL, both have a brace of good wins under their belts too.
Former BBFC Players Fabio “Fabs” Carvalho and Sam “Xavi” Arbuckle are both doing extremely well in the Fulham Academy. Sam, who has been at BBFC since he was 8 years old and recently signed as an Under 16, bagged a hat trick against Reading, whilst Fabio, who spent three seasons at BBFC having moved here from Portugal, was invited last season to train with the Portuguese U15 National team and this summer to train with England.
As the new league and cup campaign gets underway for our age group teams in the Tandridge League and in the LCSYFL we are delighted to welcome some new faces into the club and equally delighted to welcome back some old ones. Derrick Williams, a very experienced coach and manager at age group level, who was at Carshalton Athletic last season, has come in to manage our U13s, who are very much a work in progress. At senior level, newly qualified, Jamie Morris, has been dropped in at the deep end, at his own request and will be coaching the Balham Panthers womens team. We are also delighted to welcome back two outstanding coaches, James Lacey and Ben Carr. James will be managing our new U7s and Ben will be managing our U16 Colts. All of our other teams will be coached and managed by the same personel as last season. Needless to say we wish everyone much happiness and great success for the season ahead.
We are delighted to announce that Balham FC will be moving back to the Wibbandune next season, on the A3 Southbound, ground sharing with Combined Counties League residents, Colliers Wood Utd. Both the Balham First team and Youth Team will be playing there. We would like to thank Cobham FC for their hospitality at the Reg Madgwick Stadium in 2015-16 and wish them luck with the ground developments currently taking place there and with future ground shares.
Despite the first year of dodgy weather at an annual Presentation Evening, Trinity Fields in Wandsworth was once again awash with players and supporters from all age groups on Friday July 1st, eating, drinking and making merry. Many thanks to Rachel Arbuckle for organising another very special event, the climax of the season, when everyone from the U7s to the First Team, comes together to celebrate the achievements of all in the club from August 2015 to July 2016. There were a record number of league and cup trophies and medals to present at the end of the club's most successful season ever. There were also, as always, individual club awards too. Many congratulations to the 2015-16 winners.
TRAINING TROPHY WINNERS: U7s - George Kerr U8s - Theo Walker • U9s - Jack Lorimer, Terrian Serkedzhiev • U10s - Gus Graham • U11 Colts - Isaac Jackson • U11 Eagles - Nathan Derlin • U12s - Oscar Parden • U13 Colts - Joe Bostock-Westland • U13 Eagles - Morgan Coward • U14 Colts - Amir Hafezolseheh • U14 Eagles - Joshua O'Grady, Malachi Young • U15 Colts - Jack Noctor • U15 Eagles - Matthew McDowell, Dominic Simpson-Last • U17s - Arthur Fordham • U21s - Joe Ostrowski • Youth Team - Jack Haire • Panthers - Emillie James • First Team - Jake Henry
PLAYERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR WINNERS: U7s - Seth Ridgeon U8s - Giacomo Fontana • U9s - Will Haspel • U10s - Will Rees • U11 Colts - Abdullah Javaid • U11 Eagles - Jack Hedges • U12s - Ben Hopper • U13 Colts - Paulo Gagnier • U13 Eagles - Ben Page • U14 Colts - Nathan Daniels • U14 Eagles - Ernie Asante • U15 Colts - Sebastian Fallowfield • U15 Eagles - Anthony Thompson • U17s - Aimen Cherif • U21s - Josh Clark • Youth Team - Jack Haire • Panthers - Alison Campbell • First Team - Frank Charnock
SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD WINNERS: Nick Gardner, Ellis Griffiths-Phipps, Jack Haire, Tomasz Wocial
As part of the club's inclusive approach, we believe that it is very important to offer full or part bursaries to players selected to play for the club who can't afford all or part of the fees.
To enable us to run this scheme as the club grows, we invite parents and friends of the club, in a position to do so, to support us by contributing to the Bursary Fund.
You are welcome to contribute at any time. Please contact our Bursary Scheme Secretary, Kate Jefferson email or call 07734 450 756 if you're interested in making a donation, of any amount, large or small. Any contribution would be extremely generous and much welcomed by the club and our Bursary recipients. All Bursary donations can be paid by cheque to Balham Blazers FC, by cash or by standing order, which can be arranged at our registration days or by contacting Kate.
Balham Panthers FC are looking to add committed, talented female players aged 16+ to the newest squad at Balham FC.
For further information
BBFC are delighted to have signed a unique partnership agreement with Fulham FC, who have a top level Category 1 Academy. The agreement, which is extremely beneficial for both clubs in different ways, was signed on November 2nd by BBFC General Manager, Greg Cruttwell and FFC Academy Director, Huw Jennings.