MIDDLESEX FA INTRODUCE THREE MORE YOUTH CUPS
It was decided for this season, following consultation with our clubs, to divide each of the Middlesex Under 12, Under 13 and Under 14 Boys’ Competitions into 2 separate sections, a Cup section for teams in the top division of their respective leagues and a Trophy section for those teams in the lower divisions.
This was implemented and proved to be a success. One of the benefits was that the score-lines across the separate formats were generally much closer than in previous seasons.
The Youth Cups Sub Committee decided to follow tradition and name each of the three Trophy Competitions after current and past supporters of Youth football in Middlesex. The following names were proposed and unanimously agreed:-
Under 12 – The Jim Taylor Trophy
Under 13 – The Richard Stiles Trophy
Under 14 – The Ron Plunkett Trophy
Jim Taylor is a Past President of the Association, who continues to actively support all aspects of youth football. He was Middlesex FA President for 6 years up to 2017 and Chairman for the 6 years before that. He previously held the post of Vice Chairman and chaired many other committees. He was also the Association’s Treasurer and Press Officer.
Jim is a former Class 1 referee and is a holder of the FA 50 Year Service Award. He held positions on various leagues and in refereeing before joining Middlesex FA as Competitions Director (Saturday and Midweek) in 1989.
Richard Stiles is a former Vice President of the Youth Association/Division. After a varied playing career, Richard got involved in football administration when his son, aged 8, joined a team. He became a founder member of the Hayes & District Minor League in 1969 and became Secretary in 1971, when he was appointed to the Middlesex County Youth FA. He served on a number of committees, became Registration Secretary and ultimately County Secretary for 4 years.
Richard joined Viking Sports FC, where he ran the Youth section for 18 years. He moved on to Yeading FC and then to Wealdstone FC, where he was groundsman for 4 years. His final position involved a 4 year stint with the Chelsea FC Academy at Chobham.
The late Ron Plunkett started his playing career as a goalkeeper with West Drayton Boys Club. Although he did not achieve too much success as a player, he enjoyed the friendships that developed amongst his peers. He too became involved in administration, when his son became interested in playing the game and he eventually formed Stanford Youth FC, for boys who found it difficult to establish themselves in more successful clubs. Playing success eluded his team but he developed his boys into a unit where friendship and enjoyment were more important than winning trophies.
Ron became a referee, initially from necessity and his love of football continued with him becoming a league official, fulfilling various roles, before rising to the post of General Secretary. His philosophy was that football should be available for everyone to enjoy, to make friendships and develop skills, with the players being rewarded by their continued participation and endeavour, with success being a bonus rather than a requirement. Therefore, it is fitting that this trophy for lower division teams, should be played in his name.
The complete list of Middlesex FA Youth Cups/Trophies currently being competed for is:-
Dudley G Harper Under 12 Cup
Jim Taylor Under 12 Trophy
Sam R Dunn Under 13 Cup
Richard Stiles Under 13 Trophy
John N Smith Under 14 Cup
Ron Plunkett Under 14 Trophy
Jimmy Dyson Under 15 Cup
Harold Whiddon Under 16 Cup
Eddie PL Greig Under 18 Cup
Jeff Ritson Senior Youth Cup