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Southwell City crowned champions of the Notts Senior League

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Southwell City were were crowned league champions following a resounding victory at bottom-of-the-table FC Cavaliers.

Winning the Notts Senior League was City’s first league title in more than 20 years and could see them make the move to Step Six of the football ladder.

It was the already-relegated Cavaliers who took the lead on Saturday, with Blessing Adeleye putting the home side in front.

Southwell City celebrate winning the Notts Senior League title on Saturday. (56418023)
Southwell City celebrate winning the Notts Senior League title on Saturday. (56418023)

It took Southwell till the half-hour mark to level the scores when Liam Moran found the back of the net.

City went in front with a 37th-minute Ben Selby goal, from a Liam Moran assist.

And Southwell made it 3-1 three minutes later when Newton nodded in from a corner kick.

Southwell City (56423558)
Southwell City (56423558)

City made something of a stale start to the second half and so manager Jonny Upton made two changes just before the hour mark, bringing Jaine on for Bryant, and Peters for Selby.

Ten minutes later and Southwell had a fourth goal. A corner kick ball was flicked onto Calum Law who easily side-footed a defender and lofted the ball into the back of the net from a good 20-plus yards.

To add to Cavaliers’ woes, they were reduced to ten men on 83 minutes after they had a player sent off.

City were unable to add to their goal tally but did not have long left before they could start celebrating their Notts Senior League title, and with it, the chance to bring Step Six football to Brinkley.

Southwell’s final game of the season ended with a disappointing 1-1 draw at home to Dunkirk on Monday evening, but manager Upton was able to let that one slip and was just understandably proud of his boys clinching the league title.

He said: “It’s been a massive effort from everybody. We’ve obviously moved grounds which was a monumental thing for the club in the middle of the season.

“I think we’ve played 17 games at home all season and we’ve not lost any, we’ve drawn two and won the rest, so our record at home has been amazing.

“Yesterday (Monday) was more about celebration rather than performance and the send-off that the lads thoroughly deserved for winning the first league title in 21 years, and only the seventh Southwell team to ever have won a cup. We won the league cup in the last full season before covid and we’ve obviously now won the league, so the group’s good.”

Upton said there might have been one or two thick heads in the days following Saturday’s league title clincher after they celebrated in some style after the Cavaliers game.

Upton said: “We had a great Saturday night, all the lads out together, 23 of us in Nottingham straight from the game. I think some of them were still the worse for wear yesterday.”

Upton is a firm believer in Southwell’s ethos of doing things differently compared with other football clubs and thinks that is the secret to their success.

He said: “We have to trust the youth, we don’t have a budget, we don’t pay a penny, never have done at Step Seven. I know other clubs do it differently to that, which is fine, but we don’t so we’re competing against probably an imbalanced playing field really.

“It’s been absolutely the right thing to move ground and it’s been made even better and sweeter by the fact we’ve won the league.”

Although the league title is safely in the bag, Upton was keen to point out that promotion to Step Six (probably the United Counties League) was not a certainty.

He said: “It’s all to be confirmed. I know it’s us and Blidworth have gone up, it looks like Newark are going to go up as well. But I don’t think any of us are guaranteed to go up because the FA have to approve teams at Step Six, and Step Six is already too full. And they’ve got too many teams at National level, so they’ve got to do a massive reshuffle to sort it out.

“We’d rather go in the UCL from a travel perspective, but it all very much TBC.”

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