Groundhopper: Kelty Hearts 5 Hill Of Beath 1 (13/5/17) (Malcolm Stephenson)

Kelty Hearts 5 Hill Of Beath 1



Games in England maybe be running out but you can always guarantee a few matches still going on in Scotland. I took the train to this one and it was pleasant journey up to Edinburgh with a connecting train North to Cowdenbeath. From there it was a connecting bus to Kelty just a few miles outside of Cowdenbeath.  (more…)

Groundhopper: Maine Road 1 West Didsbury and Chorlton 0 (31/3/17) (Malcolm Stephenson

Maine Road 1 West Didsbury and Chorlton 0 (31/3/17)

(match abandoned on 55 minutes).



I was going to Blackpool to see a friend and taking in two games in one weekend was an opportunity not to be missed. Maine road were playing on the Friday night with a 7.45 kick off. I told the wife I was away for the weekend and thankfully she never put on the sour puss face or moaned at any point. After 23 years together now and I think she understands where she comes in relation to the football. I am so pleased she does not read this article as i would guess she would introduce me to ‘Madame Rolling pin’ across me nut!  (more…)

East Thurrock United 5 Weston Super-Mare 1. (15/10/2016). (Malcolm Stephenson)

East Thurrock United 5 Weston Super-Mare 1. (15/10/2016).

Today’s trip completes yet again a visit to every ground in the Conference South. It was only a few years ago when I went to Thurrock FC who play about 10.5 miles away. That club used to be called Purfleet and play in the Town of Aveley. East Thurrock play in the Town of Corringham. There is no such place as Thurrock as it’s the name of the Borough. The clubs have traded spaces over the last few years in terms of football non league status. While East Thurrock are now in the Conference South, Thurrock used to be in that league but are now in the Isthmian league North division. (more…)

Groundhopper: Sunderland West End 2 Hordon CW 1  (1/10/16). (Malcolm Stephenson)

Sunderland West End 2 Hordon CW 1  (1/10/16).

VLUU L200  / Samsung L200

I had a free Saturday as Blyth had been knocked out the FA cup and they had no game re-arranged. I am still gutted by that defeat by Morpeth Town but that’s it now for another year. Despite Blyth not playing I was certainly not going to the shops with the wife today and it was football as usual.
There are not many grounds in the North East I have not been to but at least there are some left for me to go to. I had in fact tried to get to Sunderland West End previously this year but the ‘bloomin’ Sat Nav took me all over the shop and i missed the game. I do not really know Sunderland so I had to rely on it again to get me to the Ford Quarry complex. I could not believe it but the Sat Nav took me to a side street somewhere in Sunderland. I was cursing to myself that the same thing had happened again and I was trying to find somewhere to ask directions. Then lo and behold out the corner of my eye I spotted a pitch getting ready for a game on my right hand side. I had found it at last and my going home in a man grump was aborted. I got there just in time for kick off. (more…)

Groundhopper: Lossiemouth 2 Turriff United 0. (Malcolm Stephenson)

Lossiemouth 2 Turriff United 0. 


It was a 6 o’clock in the morning start for this one as I got a taxi down to Newcastle central railway station. I took the 6.30am train to Edinburgh and then a change for the train to Inverness. Then it was another one to Elgin where I would have to get a local bus the 3 miles or so to Lossiemouth. I managed to get a first class advance ticket in both directions for this amounting to £93. Then it was an extra £12.50 for the Inverness to Elgin train, £4.50 return for the local bus and then £50 for bed and breakfast in Inverness. Add the entrance to the ground of £8 and that comes to £168 plus sundries. I even think at times it is madness but this ‘bug’ gets a hold of you and it’s very difficult to shake off. There’s no cure for this ground hopping business.  (more…)

Groundhopper: St Cuthbert Wanderers 4 Nithsdale Wanderers 2 Malcolm Stephenson

St Cuthbert Wanderers 4 Nithsdale Wanderers 2 (30/7/2016)


It’s only about eight weeks from last season since I watched my last competitive game. The time between each season seems to become shorter and shorter as time goes on.
I was only holiday in Dumfries and Galloway and was due to leave for home the day of the match. I managed to persuade the wife to stay a bit longer as i took in this match in Kirkcudbright, a pleasant and picturesque harbour Town on the Solway Coast. (more…)

Something Different: Our Groundhopper Malcolm Stephenson at Marseilles

England away (Marseilles).




I decided to take the train to the south of France for England’s first game in the Finals and set off at 6am two days before the match.  Even at that time in the morning you could hear one or two ring pulls on cans of beer being opened at this unearthly hour. Three hours later I arrived in London Kings Cross. Then across London on the  underground tube to Waterloo station.. The Police monitoring the Eurostar to Paris were taking beer from fans getting on the train but this seemed bizarre as they were selling alcohol on board anyway. I personally had my four pack confiscated but my mood changed to joy when I found the bar open and serving. (more…)

Groundhopper: AFC Darwen V Cammell Laird 1907 FC (7/5/16) (Malcolm Stephenson)

AFC Darwen V Cammell Laird 1907 FC (7/5/16)



I actually set off at 8.30am for this 3pm kick off game. Its only Lancashire but the reason being was to take two fellow Blyth fans to see the 12.30 kick off Blackburn Rovers v Reading game They were then coming with me for the match at AFC Darwen. I have been to Blackburn Rovers before but that was way back in 1984. I saw Carlisle that day who were beaten 4-0 in the old second division (now the Championship) in front of a crowd of only 5,141. I later found out there were 13,140 at today’s game and I cannot work out why the difference. (more…)