Statistics – Season 2002-03
Games without defeat-11, March 15th –April 28th
Games without a draw-9, November 2nd – January 18th
Games without a win -4, December 28th - February 15th
Consecutive wins-6, April 5th – April 24th
Consecutive draws-2, August 17th-August 19th & April 26th – April 28th
Consecutive defeats-3, December 7th – December 18th
Highest home win-5-1 v Cheadle Town
Highest home defeat-2-7 v Bacup Borough
Highest away win-4-2 v Darwen (Division Two trophy)
Highest away defeat-0-5 v Holker Old Boys
Highest home attendance-138 v Oldham Town (Friday night)
Lowest home attendance-54 v Blackpool Mechanics (Easter Monday afternoon)
Highest away attendance-342 v Harrogate Town (FA Cup)
Lowest away attendance-40 v Oldham Town (Division Two Trophy)
EASTHAM 20, Fogarty 12, Heslop 10, Derbyshire 8, Mashiter 6, Denning 5 Bursnell 4, McKenna 3, Hinchcliffe 2, Parr 2, Baron, Green, Kennedy, Khan, Lightbown, Walker, Own Goal, all 1.
HOME LEAGUE GAMES
HIGHEST – 138 v Oldham Town
LOWEST – 54 v Blackpool Mechanics
AVERAGE – 94
HOME CUP GAMES
GAMES -4-Aggregate 316
HIGHEST – 103 v Crook Town
LOWEST – 55 v Nelson
AVERAGE – 79
OVERALL AVERAGE – 91
My, My, My, how times have changed!
Remember last season and how we began with our top ten chants from the Pop-Side in our relegation season? (2001-02)
Here’s a reminder and how they changed.
2001-02 to 2002-03
1) Bloody rubbish Harwood!
1)Well played Harwood!
2)Get ‘t sub on!
3)Geddit up ‘t field!
3)One John Eastham, there’s only one John Eastham!
4) Offside! Open yer bloody eyes liner!
4)Offside! Open yer bloody eyes liner!
5)Push up midfield!
6)Hughesy, Hughesy, Hughesy!
7)You dirty bugger number three!
7)You dirty bugger number two!
8)We’re never gonna score!
8)Come on ‘Arrud, lets ‘ave another!
9)Where’s yer guide dog ref?
9)Well done ref. good decision (only joking) Penalty ref. everyone could see that, where’s yer white stick?
10)I’m goin’ shoppin’ next week!
10)Who do we play last week?
Season 2002-03 awards
BEST PLAYER- John Eastham. I’ve spoken to many supporters over the last few weeks of the season and although there were some great performances by Parr, Harris and co., I think that it’s fair to say that John Eastham just shaded it. He’s a real class act who’s scored 20 goals this season and many of those have been tremendous efforts. His control, heading and magical left foot have given the Robins a new dimension up front. John was also the player of the year in the Blackburn Sunday league last term.
BEST GOAL-We’ve seen some fantastic goals this season and if you asked ten supporters, then you’d probably get ten different answers. Kennedy’s blockbuster at Cheadle, Fogarty’s volley at Castleton, Matt’s magnificent solo efforts against Holker and Ashton. I’ve gone for Eastie’s 2nd header against Nelson at Victory Park. A great run down the left wing by Andy Taylor, when, after tying up young Steve Pickup in knots, crossed for John, who had to stoop down to get a head on the ball and loop it over the keeper into the far corner of the net. This stunning strike put us 3-2 up after trailing 2-0 at the interval.
BEST HARWOOD FOLLOWING-Darwen (2nd Division Trophy)
BEST VISITORS FOLLOWING-Nelson (N.W.C.F.L.)
BEST OPPONENTS-Stone Dominoes
BEST GROUND-Harrogate Town
WORST GROUND-Oldham Town
BEST PITCH-Harrogate Town
WORST PITCH-Oldham town
BEST PIES-Ashton Town
BEST PINT-Cheadle Town (Lees Bitter)
WORST PINT-Blackpool Mechanics
Steve Pickup’s deciding penalty in the FA Cup replay at Winterton which gave us victory after over 120 minutes of deadlock and the point gained in the final game against an excellent Leek side which saw us finish in 6th position.
|Holker Old Boys
||Holker Old Boys
Month by month
This season started with much optimism after a fine finish to the previous campaign despite relegation from the NWCFL Division One. Several new players arrived adding some real quality to the squad. Heslop, Parr and Booth amongst them. Harwood had also taken over the Darwen Youth team who instantly provided the first team with much needed cover. Several members of the youth team soon made it into the first team. Two draws were followed by a defeat against a strong Stone side but the Robins bounced back with a great win at Maine Road.
John Eastham signed and would soon start to score the goals which would see him become Harwood’s leading striker. An early exit came in the FA Vase when we were well beaten at Winsford. The FA Cup proved far more successful as we defeated Winterton and Crook away from home, both after replays and both after penalty shoot-outs. Our run came to an end on the 28th of the month with an unlucky 2-0 defeat at Unibond Premier club Harrogate Town.
Eastham scored his first gaol in Harwood colours, but a great chip was not enough to prevent our second defeat of the season. Despite playing as many as five games less than our rivals, we were still handily placed. Further cup wins, this time in the Worthington Trophy against Ashton Town and the 2nd Division Trophy against Darwen, ensured that we still had many league games to re-arrange. The last few days of the month proved to be a major turning point in our season as we were thrashed 4-1 at Norton and then suffered a humiliating 4-3 defeat the following Tuesday at bottom side Cheadle. Until then the defence had seemed quite solid. Stand Athletic sadly resigned from the league which was especially disappointing as they had won the 2nd Division last season.
The month started and ended with wins in the 2nd Division Trophy, away at Abbey Hey and at home to Nelson. The defensive performances in the league continued to hit rock bottom with Bacup whacking us 7-2 and Nelson winning 3-0, both games at the Showground. Two local managers were surprisingly shown the door. John Lister at Colne ‘jumped ship’ before he was pushed and John Bailey had earlier been sacked by his impatient chairman at Nelson.
Same old story as we began with a 4-0 reverse at Stone, exit from the Worthington Trophy at Ramsbottom and Marsden Trophy defeat at Southport, again conceding four goals. With Eastham now scoring regularly despite the poor results, we followed up an easy 4-0 win over a poor Daisy Hill side with our best result and performance of the season, 3-1 against leaders Padiham only to lose 5-0 in our next game at Holker. Ex-Harwood boss Dennis Underwood was appointed the new manager of Nelson.
A 3-0 home defeat against neighbours Darwen was followed by another shocker, 4-0 at bottom club Leek. They were replaced in that position by Oldham who promptly beat us in our next game, in the Division Two Trophy.
Thankfully this was a slow as it got and a win at Nelson after being two down once again saw our fortunes change, this time for the better. Only two games were played this month as it chucked it down every time we were due to play at home.
John Hughes’ pen ran out of ink several times during the next few weeks as players left in droves and were soon replaced by some quality signings. Thompson, Kay. Mashiter, Winstanley in, Lightbown, Kenndey, Booth, Denning plus many more out. Two more unlucky defeats at high-flying Bacup and Padiham failed to stop the new found enthusiasm, typified by Matt Derbyshire who although rarely starting, caused havoc to opposing defences whenever he appeared. Hughesy even signed himself on! The bad weather continued to cause problems and a run of ten games saw just one of them at the Showground. A 3-0 win at Darwen began a record-breaking run of eleven games without defeat.
During the final month of the season, Harwood had to cram in nine games, five of the last six at home. The Robins at last produced consistently good performances and sides who had thrashed us earlier in the season were given a taste of their own medicine. The run produced a period where we won six games in a row, scoring 16 goals and conceding just 4. Matt Derbyshire was on fire scoring 7 goals in 4 games. Amazingly the attendances fell until the final game when we recorded our first three-figure crowd since Christmas. The game was also our first evening kick-off of the year so we really need to re-arrange more games if we are to see our ‘gates increase. Two draws in our final two games saw us pip Nelson to 6th place so overall it’s not been a bad season. The football for the most part has been good; we’ve got a fine blend of youth and experience, a good management team and a loyal group of fans who stuck by the team even when we were getting hammered on a regular basis. All in all the future looks bright at the Showground.