MATCH PREVIEW: JOEL RICHARDS MEMORIAL CUP
The third of three midweek County Cup Finals takes place on Friday 13 May at the home of Walsall FC, The Banks’s Stadium with kick off set for 7.45pm. The Joel Richards Memorial Cup Final is dedicated in memory of Joel who tragically lost his life in the 2015 Tunisia attacks, along with his Grandad Patrick and Uncle Adrian. This year, it’s Boldmere St Michaels U19 and Solihull Moors U18 who will meet on the pitch for glory on the night.
When reflecting on Joel and the competition before the match, Kevin Shoemake (CEO at Birmingham County Football Association) reiterated his words from previous years saying “Our Youth Council and Birmingham County FA had no hesitation in proudly naming our prestigious Midweek Youth Cup in honour of Joel’s memory. The naming of a County-wide competition is not only a fitting tribute to Joel, but also a lasting memory for everyone who competes and officiates in the cup in years to come, with it also being a lasting legacy to the wider football community.” In addition, Kevin beamed when he described Joel as “a fabulous young man, a talented Referee and an inspirational first Chair of Birmingham County Football Association’s Youth Council.”
Further, there is a special connection in Friday evening’s game with the man in the middle, Callum Johnson stating “I feel very proud to receive my first County Cup Final appointment, and it feels even more special to be appointed to the Joel Richards Memorial Cup. I knew Joel and he was an amazing Referee and a lovely person. It will be a special moment for me to walk out and Referee this Cup Final in his honour at his beloved Walsall FC.”
Looking ahead to the game, both teams have appeared in this final before and both have been successful so they will be looking to add the 2022 honours to their history. This will be the third time the Mikes have appeared in the final since it’s inaugural season in 1993 and they have got an equal record, winning once and receiving runners-up medals once. They will be hoping this third appearance, the first for 16 years, will be a successful one where they lift the trophy. Meanwhile, the Moors have had a single appearance and that came back in 2017 when they thumped 5 past Romulus to take the trophy home. The team, playing in their away sky blue kit for this final, will be hoping for a second success this time out.
The route to the final for both sides hasn’t been short of action and goals with a total of 35 goals between them over the four rounds. In the 1st round, Boldmere received a bye, whereas Solihull Moors had to battle through a 2-2 draw with Nuneaton Borough U18 before coming out on the right side of a 4-2 penalty shootout win. 11 goals were scored in the 2nd round with Moors edging past Stratford Town U18 2-1, whilst Boldmere were involved in an eight goal thriller with Rugby Borough U18 but ultimately came out on top, winning 5-3. Into the quarter final, Leamington U18 stood in the way of the Mikes but yet again they showed how capable they are of scoring goals as they put another 5 into the net to book their place in the semi-final. Moors also scored 5 in their third game of the competition as they brushed Kenilworth Sporting U18 aside. In the semi-final, Moors came up against a competitive Bedworth United U18 side but showed their classy edge as they secured a 4-1 victory and set up their second appearance in the final. For the Mikes, it was a slightly tighter affair against Coventry United U18 with the score finishing 2-0 as they managed to edge past for their place in the final.
Admission - £5 Adults | £2 Concessions (Over 60s, Students with NUS, U18s)
Pay on the gate is available (Card/Phone Payments ONLY)
Purchase e-Tickets in advance here, right up until kick-off
Turnstiles open 7pm
All supporters are to enter through Turnstile 17
Kiosk will be open from 7pm until 9.30pm and the Priory Bar will be open before kick-off from 7pm for all spectators.
Please note: The Banks’s Stadium is cashless. Payments will only be accepted via card or phone.
Joel Richards Memorial Cup Final
You can also access the programme on the day when visiting Walsall FC by scanning a QR code.
Referee: Callum Johnson
Assistant Referee: Luke Scale
Assistant Referee: Owen Moreton
Fourth Official: Liam Perkins
The trophy will be presented by Suzie and Owen Richards.