Purps add 3 to bolster womens team

City of Liverpool FC are delighted to announce the first of many additions to the newly launched City of Liverpool FC warriors.

With the season fast approaching it has come down to manager Jay Maguire to confirm the squad he plans to take into the  Liverpool Womens Youth & Football league. 

Our first addition is Geordie Lauren Fisher, who captured the most improved player last season, and since then has gone from strength to strength and has delighted us by confirming her commitment for the forthcoming season. 

Joining Lauren is the versatile Delishia Harding, who has slotted into many positions across the pitch and brings with her power and strength. A fantastic addition to the squad after being promoted from our community sessions.

Our final addition of the day is the electric Jemma Harding who has excited everyone in pre season with her direct running and an eye for goal that has seen her bag multiple goals in pre season. 

Speaking to Warriors manger Jay Maguire earlier this week he said “I’m delighted with how we are shaping up this season. When Lauren signed she said she wasn’t experienced at all, but she went on to earn the most improved player last season. She sets the bar when it comes to fitness in training and really encourages the other players to reach her levels. “

“With Jem now confirming her commitment, we’ve got ourselves a pacy & skilful winger who isn’t afraid to be direct and take a player on. If a shot is there to be taken Jem will take advantage of the space.”

” Delishia was promoted via the community development group and has excelled and come out her shell being around the first team players. A strong and powerful player who is always happy to cover a number of positions across the pitch, I’m delighted she has signed and she will bring some reinforcement at the back for us. 

The City of Liverpool warriors take on MSB Woolton FC Development this Sunday at the purple hub in Huyton, L36 7UN, kick off is at 2PM as we look to make a good start to the 23/24 season. 


City of Liverpool fell to a 3-2 defeat at Vauxhall Motors on Bank Holiday Monday after a poor performance saw the Purps gift three goals to the newly promoted side.

Macca handed starts to Nick Ryan, Aaron Fleming, Harry Cannon-Noren and Kenny Strickland as we contested our third game in six days.

Less than a minute was on the clock when a wayward back header from Nick Ryan presented former Purp Conor Harwood with a golden opportunity to open the scoring.

The forward rounded Calvin Hare before tapping into the empty net, as City of Liverpool got off to the worst possible start at the VanEupen Arena.

If anything, the start set the tone for an opening in which The Motormen grew in confidence, forcing unnecessary errors from the Purps who squandered possession at will.

It took time for the visitors to get into the game but when they did Callum Schorah was a real thorn in the side of Mick McGraa’s men, who struggled to cope with his exquisite touch and ability to find pockets of space.

It was Schorah, both City of Liverpool’s most consistent performer and attacking threat so far this season, who levelled matters after 23 minutes.

Midfielder Kenny Strickland sent his marker to the shop down the left side before curling in a beautiful cross which Schorah nodded beyond home goalkeeper Sam Booth.

HALF TIME: Vauxhall Motors 1-1- City of Liverpool

The half began with former Purps defender Adam Hughes leaving the field with an innocuous injury early on, whilst another ex City of Liverpool player, Stephen Rigby, saw a tame header well saved by Calvin Hare.

The home side were gifted the opportunity to re-take the lead when more poor decision-making at the back saw a wayward back-pass intercepted and Nick Ryan’s attempted challenge was adjudged to have fouled Harwood as he hooked the ball clear.

Regardless of the referee’s eventual decision it was a highly avoidable penalty incident, all of the Purps’ own making.

Motors skipper Ben Holmes stepped up and squeezed his spot-kick agonisingly beyond Hare who got fingertips to it but couldn’t quite keep it out.

City of Liverpool had long spells of possession after the goal, as they attempted to get back into the match for a second time.

The home defence did well to absorb the pressure at times and made a number of telling interventions to protect Sam Booth’s goal.

It wouldn’t be long before parity was restored though and the Purps levelled matters again when a lovely lofted ball in behind from Max Allen saw Schorah racing clear and the Purps talisman fired a brilliant finish across Booth.

The Purps had a succession of corners which caused problems for the home backline and substitute Xenon Bahula also raced beyond a tired defence only for a last gasp challenge to prevent a tap-in at the back post.

Just when it seemed as though the Purps were in the ascendency it was the home side who snatched it at the death.

The Purps squandered possession in their own half and Vauxhall Motors worked the ball forward for Burkey to cut inside and fire an effort which Hare spilled for a grateful Holmes to fire home his second of the match.

There was more than a hint of offside but it wasn’t given and the home side had been handed their third gift of the match with a matter of minutes remaining.

The final whistle blew shortly afterwards and brought to an end a sorry 90 minutes for the Purps, who made life difficult for themselves all afternoon.

FULL TIME: Vauxhall Motors 3-2 City of Liverpool

City of Liverpool: Calvin Hare, Harry Cannon-Noren (Josh Quarless 62′), Jack Hont, Nick Ryan (Simon Wills 73′), Mike Grogan, Kenny Strickland, Callum Schorah, Michael Simpson, Danny Mitchley, Max Allen, Aaron Fleming (Xenon Bahula 62′)

Subs not used: Anthony Miley, Ismail Sonko.


The performance of Callum Schorah was the only real positive to take from a poor day at the office from the Purps. Schorah was absolutely everywhere and took his two goals brilliantly.

He didn’t deserve to be on the losing side – well played, Callum.


Macca gave an honest reflection on an afternoon where the Purps were poor from the off, but reserved praise for the excellent Callum Schorah.


The bank holiday weekend fiesta of football continues on Monday, as we take the trip to Vauxhall Motors fresh from Saturday’s entertaining 2-2 draw with Leek Town.

It will be a trip to familiar surroundings in Vauxhall Sports Club which was, of course, our home for the 2021-22 season.

Vauxhall Motors returned to the Northern Premier League this season after winning the 2022-23 NWCFL Premier Division and have also added further silverware to the cabinet in the form of the Champions Cup when they defeated Congleton 3-1.


Mick McGraw’s side started the League season with 2-2 draw at home to Witton Albion, in which the visitors claimed a point courtesy of an injury time penalty from Kingsley Williams.

Since the opening day, Motors have lost the following three fixtures to Nantwich Town, Prescot Cables and high-flying Chasetown respectively.

A hard-working, well organised and committed side, so Monday is sure to be another keenly contested fixture.


There are plenty of familiar faces for Purps supporters to pick out, with four former Purps amongst Mick McGraa’s squad.

Defender Adam Hughes joined The Motormen in March after leaving City of Liverpool and made 30 appearances for the Purps last season, scoring twice.

Stephen Rigby is a new signing for Vauxhall Motors after leaving Widnes over the summer.

A versatile player who is confident on either foot, Rigby made 26 appearances for the Purps between 2020 and 2021.

Forward Conor Harwood has a brief spell at City of Liverpool last season, making 5 appearances in total before joining The Motormen on dual-registration.

Purps may also remember Bobbie McDonnell who was signed by Craig Robinson following our promotion to the Northern Premier League.

The young forward scored a stunning 35 yard volley during pre-season and notched a well-taken goal against Clitheroe early in our 2019-20 campaign.


It is, of course, the first time City of Liverpool and Vauxhall Motors have met in a competitive fixture, although there have been plenty of pre-season friendly matches over the past few years.


Kick off is 3pm on Bank Holiday Monday and tickets are priced at £8 (adults), £5 (concessions) and £2 (under 16s).

The address for Vauxhall Motors is as follows:

The VanEupen Arena, Rivacre Road, Ellesmere Port, CH66 1NJ.

Our media team will be on hand from around 1pm with build up, team news from 2pm and match commentary from 2:55pm on Twitter, Fanbase and PurpsFM.

Be sure to download the Fanbase Club app, set your club to City of Liverpool FC and check out our feed as we’ll bring you all the relevant news, post match reaction and an interview with manager Paul McNally following full time.


City of Liverpool fought back from two goals down to secure a point against Leek Town on Saturday afternoon, and could have taken all three points late on at the Berry Street Garage stadium.

Skipper Danny Mitchley’s towering header six minutes from time brought the Purps back level after an excellent fight back, ensuring that Paul McNally’s side came away with the very least they deserved.

Macca handed a recall to left back Jack Hont after suspension caused him to miss Wednesday’s victory at Avro, whilst there was also a place on the bench for new signing Harry Cannon-Noren.

The Purps made a bright start to the game in an opening which saw Josh Quarless denied an excellent long range strike by a good save from Leek Town goalkeeper Joe O’Shaughnessy.

Skipper Danny Mitchley also saw a rasping effort deflected narrowly wide after a brilliant turn on the edge of the area.

Paul McNally will have been pleased with the manner in which his side worked openings on the edge of the area, which also saw the excellent Callum Schorah fire over from distance.

The visitors went ahead against the run of play after 17 minutes when Xenon Bahula was adjudged to have fouled Tom Scully as the Purps winger blocked a shot on the edge of the area.

Left back Louis Keenan fired a low free kick under the wall and beyond the reach of Calvin Hare.

They made it two when a mistake at the back saw towering forward Aaron Opoku, the scurge of the Purps in last season’s fixture at Harrison Park, with a clean route to goal.

Opoku confidently gathered the ball before firing a composed finish beyond Hare and into the net.

The Purps rallied and grabbed a goal back in spectacular fashion right on the stoke of half time, as they once again worked a nice opening on the edge of Leek Town’s box.

Xenon Bahula retained the ball high up the pitch with some tidy footwork before cutting back for Josh Quarless who curled his third worldy of the season beyond the desperate dive of O’Shaughnessy and into the net.

HALF TIME: City of Liverpool 1-2 Leek Town

The Purps made a change at the break with Simon Wills being replaced by Kenny Strickland, and it was the home side who were very much on the front foot right from the first whistle of the half.

A nice move saw a deep ball evade everyone in the Leek Town box and find Mike Grogan lurking after a set piece was half cleared, but the defender was leaning back and a good chance flew high and wide of O’Shaughnessy’s goal.

At the other end the Purps were handed a double let off when Leek Town squandered opportunities to put the game to bed.

Firstly a deep cross saw Tom Scully in acres of space at the back post, but the midfielder sliced horribly wide with the goal at his mercy.

Next up a driving run from Opoku saw the forward skip past Grogan and Miley, whilst his curling effort beat the dive of Hare it cannoned away to safety of the post.

The Purps grew in confidence after the missed chances from Leek and were firmly camped in the visitors half for long spells of the latter stages of the match.

Paul McNally’s side had a golden opportunity to equalise when firstly Louis Keenan appeared to handle a ball in the box, but the ref waved play on and it broke for Harry Cannon-Noren but his effort was blocked near to the line.

Cannon-Noren was alive to the loose ball and it found it’s way to an off-balance Ismail Sonko but his tame effort was hacked off the line.

It would be far from City of Liverpool’s last chance to restore parity, however, and the home side would be on level terms within a minute.

A glorious free kick from the left from Kenny Strickland caused all kinds of problems for the Leek Town backline and was met by a towering header from Danny Mitchley which left O’Shaughnessy with no chance.

Mitchley wheeled away in delight at his first of the season, celebrating with his delighted supporters behind the goal.

The game became a frantic, end-to-end affair in the closing moments and Leek Town’s Oliver Harrison nodded wide at the back post when it looked for all the world that he was about to put the visitors back in front.

There would still be one more massive opportunity for City of Liverpool to complete a brilliant turnaround, too.

A massive kick from the hands of Calvin Hare launched the Purps on a counterattack and Leek Town were all at sea at the back, leaving Mitchley racing one-on-one with O’Shaugnessy.

The goalkeeper raced out and flapped an unconvincing punch into the path of Quarless who could only divert an effort he had to rush onto the roof of the empty net.

Parity was the very least City of Liverpool deserved and the referee blew for full time ensuring both sides took a share of the spoils after a hugely entertaining game.

FULL TIME: City of Liverpool 2-2 Leek Town

CITY OF LIVERPOOL: Calvin Hare, Mike Simpson, Jack Hont, Anthony Miley, Mike Grogan, Simon Wills (Kenny Strickland 46′), Callum Schorah, Max Allen (Harry Cannon-Noren 75′), Danny Mitchley (c), Josh Quarless, Xenon Bahula (Ismail Sonko 64′).

Subs not used: Nick Ryan, Aaron Fleming.


Mike Simpson put in a real shift at right back to nullify the threat of Leek Town’s wingers and moved into midfield during the second half where he continued to impress.

Another excellent performance from Mike saw him pick up the supporters MOTM vote.


Macca praised the resilience of his side to come back from two goals down against a really strong opponent, and felt as though the Purps were good value for all three points.

He also praised the home support and looked ahead to another tough match as we take the trip to Vauxhall Motors on Monday afternoon.


The Purps conclude a busy bank holiday weekend as we make a return to Vauxhall Sports Club on Monday afternoon.

Kick off is 3pm and we’re hoping for a strong travelling contingent to give Macca and the lads our support.


Fresh from Wednesday night’s excellent win at Avro, Paul McNally’s side begin a busy Bank Holiday weekend by hosting Leek Town at the Berry Street Garage Stadium this afternoon.

It’s been a busy week at Purple Towers despite not having a game last weekend.

The First Team trained on Saturday and Monday ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Avro, and we announce a triple signing as we welcomed Harry Cannon-Noren, Nivaldo and Tom Fagan to the club.

Wednesday night saw a wondergoal from Callum Schorah seal a 1-0 win as Paul McNally’s men put a real shift in to secure our first three points of the campaign.

This will be the second time we have welcomed Neil Baker’s side to Bootle after our previous NPL West Division encounter in October 2022.

We’ve also hosted Leek at Vauxhall Sports Club in 2021 when a debut brace from Josh Quarless saw the Purps grab all three points.


Neil Baker’s Blues have made a solid start to their league season so far with two wins and a loss to their name from the first three fixtures.

Today’s opposition picked up a 1-0 home win against Michael Ellison’s Widnes on the opening day of the season, but felt the taste of defeat three days later with a 2-1 reverse at Chasetown.

Last time out they picked up a convincing 3-0 victory at home to Trafford and currently sit 4th in the table, whilst they have also progressed in the FA Cup.


Jake Avery is a recent signing for Leek Town having joined from Belper Town in the off-season and currently sits top of their goalscoring charts with four to his name (2 league, 2 FA Cup).

Avery represented Hanley Town last season prior to his move to Belper and featured against the Purps as we picked up a 3-2 win at Potteries Park.

Last season’s home fixture with Leek saw Town legend Tim Grice – a man with over 240 goal for the club – bag a brace and typically stand out as a dangerman, whilst former Liverpool, Crewe and England youth international forward Dan Trickett-Smith was a constant threat.

The reverse fixture at Harrison Park saw forward Aaron Opoku bag a brace in a man of the match performance as the hosts picked up all three points.

Supporters may also be familiar with Nelson Digbeu who impressed at the back for Widnes last season, whilst Liam Buckley joined from 1874 Northwich in the summer on the back of winning their Player of the Season award.

Scouse midfielder Tom Scully is also a product of Liverpool Academy and has also represented Everton, Norwich City, Accrington Stanley and Nantwich Town.


This will be the fifth time we have faced Leek Town and all previous fixtures have also been in the Northern Premier League.

Our first two encounters saw debut goals for Josh Quarless (2) in a win at Vauxhall and Zimbabwean forward Tinashe Chakwana in an entertaining draw at Harrison Park during the 2021-22 campaign.

Purps midfield maestro Max Allen also made his debut off the bench in this match.

Last season saw Leek take 6 points off the Purps starting at the Berry Street Garage Stadium.

Following this, an entertaining game at Harrison Park saw a heavy defeat which didn’t tell the full story, as we had a couple of goals disallowed and penalties denied in a fixture which was far closer than the final scoreline suggested.


Supporters can pick up their tickets via the Fanbase Club app, or via the link below.


You can also purchase a “Pay It Forward” ticket using this link for those less fortunate, and we will distribute them to local good causes and community organisations.

Please make every effort to attend and give Macca and the boys your support as we look to build upon Wednesday’s excellent result at Avro.

Our media team will be on hand from 12:30 with build up, team news from 2pm and match commentary from 2:55pm on Twitter, Fanbase and PurpsFM.

Be sure to download the Fanbase Club app, set your club to City of Liverpool FC and check out our feed as we’ll bring you all the relevant news, post match reaction and an interview with manager Paul McNally following full time.


City of Liverpool claimed a first win of the season on Wednesday night following a committed and battling display at Avro.

The hosts have made a fine start to life in the Northern Premier League after promotion from the Counties last season, and going into the match Paul McNally’s side knew they’d have to be on their mettle against a tough opponent.

Callum Schorah was the hero with a worldie of a strike early in the second half, on a night where each and every Purp wearing our new white away strip left everything on the pitch to claim an excellent three points.

There was a timely return for Max Allen in the middle of the park, with a first opportunity to see Maxi partnering midfield enforcer Simon Wills in the engine room now they are both back to full fitness.

The manager also handed recalls to Anthony Miley and Xenon Bahula, whilst Baba Conteh continued in the defence after an impressive return against Linnets last week.

The Purps were also boosted by the return of Kenny Strickland who was fit enough to take a place amongst the substitutes having stepped up his recovery from an injury sustained against Aberystwyth Town in the final pre-season game.

In an attritional first half there was little to separate the two sides, with much of the match taking place in a good old midfield battle which would be meat and drink for an enforcer the calibre of Simon Wills.

The Purple Gattuso relished the opportunity to dive into tackles and break up the home side’s play, which gave Macca’s boys a platform to build on.

When Avro did get forward, Dylan Fitzgerald headed harmlessly over Calvin Hare’s crossbar, whilst a long range effort from Jack Marrow was blocked by a committed challenge on the edge of the box as the Purps ensured they battled for everything.

City of Liverpool got the decisive goal shortly after the break when Callum Schorah further enhanced his burgeoning reputation with his new supporters by curling a screamer from 25 yards.

Schorah picked up his second goal in his first three games for the club by curling an arrowing left-footed effort into the top corner which gave home keeper Grant Shenton no chance, to the delight of the travelling Partisans.

Avro battled for an equaliser but were left frustrated by an organised defensive display and real commitment in the challenge as the Purps did everything to protect their lead.

The excellent Calvin Hare was a calming presence between the sticks and when called upon he produced an excellent stop to deny Connor Berry’s effort from distance.

Calvin also denied substitute Max McCarthy whilst he was also on his toes to make vital punches as the home side loaded the box for corners.

At the other end Josh Quarless almost put the result beyond doubt but drew an excellent stop from Shenton and the Purps held out through 8 minutes of injury time to claim an important win.

FULL TIME: Avro 0-1 City of Liverpool

CITY OF LIVERPOOL: Calvin Hare, Mike Simpson (Aaron Fleming 90′), Baba Conteh, Anthony Miley, Mike Grogan, Simon Wills, Callum Schorah, Max Allen (Kenny Strickland 90′), Danny Mitchley (c), Josh Quarless, Xenon Bahula (Ismail Sonko 89′).

Subs not used: Nick Ryan, Mike Fitzgerald.

MAN OF THE MATCH: It could really have been anyone on the night as Macca’s boys grafted their way to a win but the impressive SIMON WILLS took the nod for another destructive display in the middle of the park. Notable mentions go to the fit again Max Allen who was typically classy on his return and the excellent Callum Schorah who won it with a stunning goal.


Manager Paul McNally praised the commitment, work rate and application from his side to claim the points against a tough, in form opposition.


The Purps kick off a busy bank holiday weekend as we host Leek Town on Saturday afternoon at the Berry Street Garage Stadium.

Advance match tickets and “Pay It Forward” tickets are available on the Fanbase app and via the following link.


Cash and card entry is also available at the gatehouse.

Supporters are encouraged to get your tickets early and please attend the match to show your support to Paul McNally and his team.


City of Liverpool FC are pleased to welcome Harry Cannon-Noren, Nivaldo and Tom Fagan to the club.

The trio are the latest recruits to Paul McNally’s new-look squad and have been training with their new team mates for the past week.

Harry Cannon-Noren joins having left Prescot Cables recently and also counts Clitheroe, Colne and Runcorn Linnets as previous clubs.

A versatile operator, Harry is highly regarded at this level having impressed in both midfield and defence for his previous clubs and has considerable NPL experience to his name.

Harry featured predominantly as a right-back for Cables last season, where he was a mainstay in the Bulls backline, scoring two goals in 38 appearances.

Brazilian forward Nivaldo Rodrigues Ferreira represented Radcliffe and Bootle last season and has previously played professionally in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine respectively.

Nivaldo represented SC Chaika Petropavlivska Borshchahivka in 2021-22, a Kyiv-based side playing in the Ukrainian Second Division, before signing for NPL Premier side Radcliffe after moving to England.

35-year-old Nivaldo featured against the Purps in our derby draw with Bootle in January, and scored five goals in 22 appearances during his loan spell with the Bucks last season.

23-year old Tom Fagan is another versatile player who brings NPL experience to the club.

Tom started his Non League career with National League side Southport where he made a handful of appearances, and has also previously represented Colne and Kendal Town in the Northern Premier League.

Fagan is capable of playing in both defence and midfield, and has featured for his previous sides against the Purps in the past couple of seasons.

Speaking of his new recruits, manager Paul McNally explained, “I’m pleased to welcome Harry, Tom and Nivaldo to the Purps, who all bring experience and will add to the group we already have at the club”.

“The lads have been training with us for quite a few sessions now and are ready to hit the ground running”.

We can also confirm that goalkeeper Ben Barnes has departed the club to rejoin former side Skelmersdale United on dual registration.

Barnes featured 22 times for the Purps last season and we thank him for his contributions during his time at the club.

COLFC women Impress on debut

City of Liverpool FC emphatically marked their first foray into 11-a-side football with a convincing win over a battling Ormskirk Galaxy today at the Purple Hub.

With the purps missing captain Shannon Robinson to illness, the opening stages of the match hinted at a cagey contest, but that quickly changed as the Purps stamped their authority on the game.

Jemma Harding, displaying both pace and precision, kickstarted the onslaught with a dazzling run down the left flank. After outpacing her marker, she cooly slotted home to open the scoring. 

Soon after, Jess Maguire demonstrated her technical prowess, expertly connecting with a floated cross to dispatch a sublime half-volley into the back of the net. The duo’s strikes ensured the Purps went into the break with a reassuring 2-0 lead.

The second half began where the first left off. Debutante Laura Butters made an immediate impact. Receiving a deft pass and delicately placing the ball beyond the goalkeeper’s reach to make it 3.

The defence was marshalled expertly by Lauren Fisher and the debutant Claudia but it wasn’t all plain sailing for the purps. A foray into the box from Ormskirk saw a curling shot that was destined for the corner until Caitlin Myers tipped it superbly around the post to keep the clean sheet intact.

Down the other end, it was Jess Maguire, ever-present and looking to link up play, who then added to her tally. She masterfully controlled a pinpoint cross with her first touch and, without a moment’s hesitation, drilled it home to claim her brace.

The dynamic duo of Jemma Harding and Laura Butters combined effectively next. A blistering run from Harding down the wing culminated in a precise cutback to Butters, who’s shot found the net for her second, and the purps 5th.

But the day wasn’t over for Harding. In the dying embers of the match, she showcased what makes her such a dangerous opponent. Chasing a long ball, she outmanoeuvred her defender with a swift turn before rocketing the ball into the roof of the net, sealing the impressive 6-0 scoreline.

Midfield dynamo, Danielle Rutter, was aptly awarded Player of the Match after an all action display saw her help command the purps to a fantastic win.

Post-match, Manager Jay Maguire expressed his satisfaction: “The goals we scored today, the fluidity in play, it’s indicative of our training sessions. This was an ideal start, and we hope to carry this momentum forward.”
“I also just want to say how proud I am of every single one of the players today.To win 6-0 in our first 90 minute 11 a side game was brilliant, if we play like that every game we’ll go far”

Our warriors debut this season in the Liverpool Womens & Youth Football League and will play our games on Sundays at the Purple Hub in Huyton. Come along and give your support.   

City of Liverpool – Caitlin Myers, Emily Wright, Delishia Harding, Lauren Fisher, Jess Maguire, Amy Thorne, Claudia Caton, Kat Plumb, Danielle Rutter, Corrin Melia, Jemma Harding, Hilaal Ali, Laura Butters, Kez Mason


City of Liverpool fell to a 2-0 defeat at Clitheroe on an afternoon where fine margins went against the Purps.

Paul McNally handed a recall to goalkeeper Ben Barnes in place of the unavailable Calvin Hare, whilst Callum Schorah could finally make his debut after his international clearance came through.

Aaron Fleming was also handed a debut after a two match ban carried over from his time elapsed in the Penistone Church FA Cup fixtures, whilst there was a place on the bench for young winger Vaughn Green who has previously had spells at Preston North End, Lancaster City and Bamber Bridge.

City of Liverpool made a good start and arguably had the better of the opening to the match in which Callum Schorah was particularly impressive.

Operating in the #10 position he picked up space well behind the Clitheroe midfield and almost created an early goal with a delicate lofted ball across the box which Fleming headed wide.

Schorah went close himself with a long range effort which former Colne goalkeeper Hakan Burton saw flash a yard past his left-hand post.

The home side were largely frustrated by a well-organised defensive display from the Purps, with Mike Grogan, Anthony Miley and Nick Ryan keeping Clitheroe’s attacking trio of Gonzales, Parny and Rouse at arms length.

Clitheroe introduced Accrington Stanley loanee Alex Henderson off the bench to replace Mark Howarth and the youngster changed the pace of the game somewhat as Clitheroe grew towards the end of the half.

Forward Sefton Gonzales saw a deflected header drop onto the crossbar, before Ben Barnes was called into action to deny Domaine Rouse after a mix-up saw the winger bundle through.

Right on the stroke of half time the home side agonisingly took the lead when the lively Veron Parny somehow despatched a low overhead kick from close range, after the Purps made a mess of playing the ball down the right hand side.

It was a disappointing end to a largely positive and promising half where the visitors’ gameplan had worked to a tee.

HALF TIME: Clitheroe 1-0 City of Liverpool

Clitheroe came out after the break with far more attacking intent than they started the match, buoyed by that late first half opener from Parny.

After a couple of chances went untaken, they were given a golden opportunity to extend their advantage from the spot when Mike Grogan was adjudged to have felled Domaine Rouse in the box.

Richie Baker stepped up but was denied by a brilliant right hand from Ben Barnes, before the goalkeeper was up quickly to thwart the rebound with an excellent block and the loose ball was wastefully hammered over at the back post.

The Purps introduced Ishmail Sonko, Josh Quarless and Vaughn Green in search of an equaliser and should have had a penalty of their own when Grogan’s header was blocked by a defender’s hand, only for the referee to adjudge that Groges had fouled his man.

In truth the Purps were limited to a flurry of long range efforts from the lively Schorah and Sonko and didn’t really trouble Burton in the home goal.

At the other end Barnes denied Clitheroe with a flying stop to push a long range effort away whilst Parny also flashed a shot against the woodwork as the home side looked to take advantage of the Purps committing bodies forward.

Clitheroe wrapped up the points when Henderson cut back a neat ball for Gonzales to fire home a composed finish before wheeling away into a somersault celebration.

FULL TIME: Clitheroe 2-0 City of Liverpool

CITY OF LIVERPOOL: Ben Barnes, Mike Fitzgerald, Jack Hont, Anthony Miley (Josh Quarless 54′), Nick Ryan, Mike Grogan, Xenon Bahula (Ismail Sonko 53′), Ethan Jones, Danny Mitchley (c), Callum Schorah, Aaron Fleming (Vaughn Green 82′).

Subs not used: Jordan Wynne, Baba Conteh.

MAN OF THE MATCH: On a difficult afternoon CALLUM SCHORAH was a real bright spark on his debut, almost creating an excellent opener for Fleming and flashing long range efforts past the post and bar respectively. Schorah edges out the excellent Ben Barnes who made a fine double save from the spot.


Macca gave an honest reflection of a difficult opening day for his side and was frustrated by missed opportunities to test the goalkeeper.

The gaffer praised the travelling support and looked ahead to Tuesday’s home fixture against Runcorn Linnets.


The Purps return to action against Runcorn Linnets on Tuesday night (15th August).

Kick off is 7:45pm at the Berry Street Garage Stadium and tickets can be purchase via the link in the following post.


City of Liverpool were indebted to two stunning strikes from forward Josh Quarless on Saturday, which secured an FA Cup replay against Penistone Church.

Quarless marked his second debut for the club with a brace, just as he did on his first debut back in November 2021, as the Purps struggled to turn possession and chances into goals.

Manager Paul McNally was without seven first team regulars with Ismail Sonko, Aaron Fleming, Anthony Miley, Kenny Strickland, Simon Wills, Max Allen and Jawad Jebrin unavailable.

Allen failed a late fitness test and was replaced by debutant Ethan Jones who partnered Michael Simpson in midfield.

The Purps started strongly and looked dangerous in wide areas through the lively Xenon Bahula, but were left frustrated by an organised away backline who were committed in the tackle and had a solid structure.

On a number of occasions Bahula looked to be clean through beyond the last defender, but a last-gasp intervention proved telling.

The Purps should have had a penalty early in proceedings when a deep cross looked destined for Mike Grogan to nod in at the back post, only for the Penistone defender to intervene with an obvious push in the back.

The referee was unmoved and waved play on.

Visiting skipper Danny Howes went into the book for an ugly challenge on Bahula after the winger had skipped past him – as the game became somewhat stop/start in nature.

The visitors went ahead somewhat against the run of play, with the Purps frustrated by the referee’s involvement in the incident.

Mike Simpson ran onto a loose ball and looked set to start a counter attack for the hosts, only for the referee to obstruct him, resulting in possession being gifted to Church.

The visitors moved the play down the left hand side and saw the bright Leon Hurles-Brook skip into the box before drilling a composed finish beyond Ben Barnes.

After the goal, City of Liverpool looked to find immediate parity but were again frustrated by an excellent Church rearguard which stood in the way of pretty much every opportunity.

Tom Croughan headed wide when well-placed, before Josh Quarless drew a good save from visiting goalkeeper Harry Ambler with a swerving free kick which moved viciously in the air.

The custodian stuck up a firm hand to deflect behind for a corner.

Bahula had a golden opportunity to level matters but was denied by another brilliant challenge, this time from right-back Nathan Keightley.

The right wing back whipped the ball from Xenon’s feet with a perfectly-timed intervention as he pulled the trigger in front of goal.

Just before the interval the hosts went closest to levelling matters when defender Nick Ryan fired home a loose ball from close range after a corner was only half cleared.

Ryan’s effort beat the keeper but was agonisingly hacked off the line by the excellently-placed Keightley once again.


The Purps came out for the second period with more attacking intent and it looked only a matter of time before they’d make an impression on the scoreline.

Mike Grogan met a corner from Bahula with a powerful header only for another intervention on the goal-line from Ambler smuggled the ball to safety.

City of Liverpool’s quest continued as Mike Simpson’s left footed drive from distance was met by an important touch from Ambler who diverted it over the crossbar and into the Dodge Kop.

It was only a matter of time before the hosts had their equaliser and they did so in stunning fashion.

Xenon Bahula’s driving run into the Church half saw the winger pick out Quarless 25 yards out and the forward took the ball neatly before curling an absolute worldy into the top corner which gave Ambler absolutely no chance.

Pick. That. Out!

The Purps were given the ultimate chance to complete the turnaround when the referee pointed to the spot after a clumsy challenge in the box by the otherwise excellent Tom Brennan.

Skipper Danny Mitchley stepped up by hammered his spot-kick over the bar – a real let off for Church.

The penalty was nearly forgotten moments later when out of nothing Ethan Jones almost capped his debut with a stunning strike of his own.

Jones arrowed a rasping left footed effort from distance which cannoned back off Ambler’s crossbar but agonisingly away to safety.

As the match approached injury time the Purps were dealt a real sucker-punch when the dangerous Leon Hurles-Brook found space on the edge of the area before arrowing a low left-footed effort beyond Barnes into the corner of the net.

The forward wheeled away with delight and must’ve thought he’d finally made the Purps pay for their profligacy in front of goal.

Birthday boy Josh Quarless didn’t read the script though and had other ideas.

Deep into NINE minutes of injury time Xenon Bahula was felled 25 yards from goal and awarded a clear free kick.

There was only one man standing over the ball and Quarless showed exactly why, as his stunning effort curled beyond Ambler into the net.

The referee blew for full time shortly after the equaliser and in truth, it was no more than the Purps deserved, having created considerable opportunities despite a somewhat disjointed day in front of goal.

Church took their opportunities well through the lively Hurles-Brook and were excellent in defence courtesy of committed displays from the solid Keightley, Brennan and Stafford – who all made telling blocks.

We’ll do it all again on Wednesday night at Penistone as the FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round tie goes to a replay!


CITY OF LIVERPOOL: Ben Barnes, Mike Fitzgerald (Jordan Wynne 90′), Jack Hont, Nick Ryan, Mike Grogan, Michael Simpson, Tom Croughan (Jay Salkeld 63′), Ethan Jones, Danny Mitchley (c), Josh Quarless, Xenon Bahula.

Subs not used: Calvin Hare (GK), Max Allen, Baba Conteh.


There’s only man really isn’t there? The supporters unanimously voted for Josh Quarless for his brace of stunning strikes which bagged the Purps a replay on Wednesday.


Macca gave an honest reflection at full time and praised the stunning strikes from Quarless which bagged the Purps a replay.


It’s a quick turnaround for City of Liverpool, as we take the trip to Penistone for the FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round replay on Wednesday night.

Kick off is 7:45 at the Parker Roofing Memorial Ground.