Monday 18 March 2024

TLFG: 18-24 March 2024

Greetings one and all and welcome to TLFG's Non-League Day Special.

I can't quite believe it's that time of year again, the weeks fly by so fast but here we are with just five days to go.

Every year I wonder how much further myself and the team can take the event but something new keeps cropping up to move things to another level.

Last year it was La Liga giants Athletic Bilbao getting involved, something which is very much continuing this weekend too.

This time round it has been my employer South Western Railway committing to do more or less whatever they can to help raise awareness.

The last few days have seen signs promoting NLD on screens at London's Waterloo station and many others around their network. 

Yesterday I started receiving reports of posters appearing too - both things we could have only dreamed about in the early years.

This year's Non-League Day is on Saturday

Then there's all the work that's being done around the 10-year anniversary celebrations of our partnership with Prostate Cancer UK.

There will be 10 showpiece games around the country and many more smaller events at other clubs.

In fact, at the end of last week, the National League came out and said every one of its clubs would be getting involved to give the partnership some publicity on the day so the overall number is now much higher.

The sale of our merchandise will also be generating funds for the charity too.

The t-shirt below is just one of a range of many designs that are available so have a look, there are hoodies and badges too.

Get NLD merchandise in your club's colours now!

Apart from all the prep, I managed to squeeze two games in this week and both required lengthy trips up to north London.

On Saturday I took my youngest daughter and TLFG readers Christoph and Liam up to Donkey Lane to watch the Isthmian League match between Enfield Town and Horsham who had travelled up from Sussex.

An important fixture in the battle for a play-off spot, the hosts won a tight game 2-1.

Everyone had a good time and my five-year-old accumulated a fantastic collection of sticks which kept her well entertained.

What impresses many people is the way the club have adapted superbly to having a running track around the pitch.

Instead of the stands being miles away from the action, they've built terraces within the track right behind each goal and gates swing across the track forming a neat fence around the pitch - we were stood right next to a corner flag within touching distance of the players for most of it.

Fun for all at Enfield Town

On Sunday I then made my way up to Wood Green to watch Haringey Borough host Actonians in the semi-finals of the Capital Senior Cup.

Despite falling behind after only 18 seconds, the Boro fought back well and eventually won the game 3-2 bringing the A's cup run to a disappointing end.

So back to this week's NLD Special - the format is different.

All the matches are on the maps as normal but rather than have a weekend map, there's now one for Saturday (NLD) and one for Sunday.

The other significant difference is that there is no 'Daily Digest', it's all about what you can see on NLD and this will probably get added to as clubs announce their plans once their midweek games are out of the way.

It's also quite possible I could miss a deal or event here or there so please let me know.

Anyway, I'm all set to go to Eastleigh v Hartlepool United on the day as there is a lot going on there that I really should be present for.

I really hope you can make it to a game - I look forward to catching up again next week.


This week we've got international friendlies, a game in League Two and some Women's Super League but for me the focus is Non-League Day on Saturday. 

As always, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or the venue or kick-off time has changed - this is highly possible for some of the lower non-league clubs. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found on the following match maps. If you've never used them before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the drop down menu at the top of the map page to make sure you get all the information. Games are listed from top to bottom in date order so Monday's games (yellow pin) will appear first and Sunday's (orange pin) last. Games are also ranked in terms of status so the higher the division, the higher up the list they will appear on each day.
Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top.

Monday fixtures - yellow pin
Tuesday fixtures - green pin
Wednesday fixtures - turquoise pin
Thursday fixtures - purple pin
Friday fixtures - black pin




In the following section, I list what are in my opinion the most notable games of the day and give some brief reasons for my choice. Updates will follow as the week progresses. Check the maps above for kick-off times, club info and directions.

Saturday 23 March

National League
Barnet v Dorking Wanderers @3pm - the Bees are second in the fifth tier and currently London's highest ranked non-league club. On Saturday, we'll almost certainly see leaders Chesterfield clinch the title as they're 24 points ahead. This means that for Barnet it's now all about making sure they finish second or third as these positions get a bye through the first round of the play-offs. This is by no means certain as the chasing pack are all closing in. The battle to avoid relegation is still wide open with only seven points separating the clubs in 12th to 23rd. Dorking are currently second bottom but they thrashed Chesterfield recently and took a point off Solihull Moors, another top side, on Saturday. Tickets

Bromley v York City @3pm - it's a very similar story at Hayes Lane where the Ravens sit just behind Barnet in third. Only two points ahead of Solihull Moors they need to keep winning to stay in the top three. York, like Dorking, are in the relegation zone but could get out of it with a win here. Tickets

Dagenham & Redbridge v Oldham Athletic @3pm - the Daggers thrashed Maidenhead 4-1 on Saturday to pull themselves into the top half but they're still only six points above the relegation zone. The Latics blew a two-goal lead in their big match with leaders Chesterfield but still earned a creditable 2-2 draw which leaves them one point adrift of the play-off places. Apparently, the hosts have never beaten Oldham - could it be an historic NLD for them? Tickets

Wealdstone v Kidderminster Harriers @3pm - seven points from their last three games has made things look a lot more promising for the Stones. Still only three points above the relegation zone, it will be absolutely massive for them if they can beat Kiddy who are in the bottom three. Wealdstone were the first ever club to offer an NLD Special Deal back in 2010 and they've come up trumps again slashing prices for everyone and offering a concessionary rate of £5 to fans heading to Wembley for England v Brazil and all Premier League and EFL season-ticket holders - however these prices only apply if booked online in advance so don't miss out

National League South
Aveley v St Albans City @3pm - the game of the day in the sixth tier takes place at Parkside where two of the top eight continue their quest for a play-off place. Non-League Day is celebrating 10 years of its partnership with Prostate Cancer UK and this is one of 10 feature games taking place around the country. The Millers have lots of fun stuff planned including local stalls, a raffle, face painting and a penalty shoot-out. I've even heard rumour of a race between the two clubs' mascots but I can't confirm that just yet. Tickets 

Dartford v Hemel Hempstead Town @3pm - the other game in the division doesn't have a huge amount going for it as it features the two teams at the foot of the form table. With the Darts losing five of their last six and Hemel eight of their last nine, it's hard to know who will win here. Dartford are in the relegation zone so have a more immediate need for a win. Starting on Saturday, admission prices have been reduced to £10 for adults for the remainder of the season. Tickets

Southern League Premier South
In a quirk of the fixtures there are no Isthmian Premier games in London on Saturday so all the action in the seventh tier is in the Southern League where every club is offering a great deal to get you in

Harrow Borough v Hungerford Town @3pm - after being reprieved from relegation last season, the Boro were always likely to struggle in this campaign. With a tiny budget (leaders Chesham are reportedly paying one player as much as the whole Harrow squad), it's no surprise to find them second from bottom. However, Jordan Berry's side have battled hard and have often only lost games by narrow margins and to very late goals. They're eight points adrift of safety with eight games to go so the task is not impossible. The visitors are eighth and still have an outside chance of the play-offs. NLD Special Deal - free entry to NHS & Emergency Services, half price for Premier League and EFL season-ticket holders and those going to England v Brazil. Again, these discounts only apply if booked online in advance

Hayes & Yeading United v Swindon Supermarine @3pm - there's a relegation six-pointer at the SkyEx which looks well worth your time if you're in west London. I spent the initial NLD in 2010 at Hayes & Yeading's old ground watching them play Histon in a National League game - things have changed quite radically for those clubs since then. NLD Special Deal - "Pay What You Want", simply turn up and make a donation. The usual rate is £12 for adults and I'd encourage you to get as close to that as possible

Hendon v Winchester City @3pm - eleventh at the time of writing, the Greens are coasting along nicely in midtable with promotion and relegation both looking unlikely. Hampshire club Winchester are a couple of places above them but have the games in hand which could put them back in play-off contention. Hendon won the reverse fixture 2-0 so they should be capable of getting something here. NLD Special Deal - it's "Pay What You Want" here too and again the usual adult price is £12

Southern League Division 1 Central
Hadley v Hertford Town @3pm - things were looking pretty worrying for the hosts as their early-season form was poor. However, they're now seven points clear of the relegation zone and have games in hand on most of those below them. Hertford are in midtable but it's tight and a play-off spot is well within their grasp. NLD Special Deal - £5 for Premier League and EFL season-ticket holders and also England v Brazil ticket holders

Isthmian League South Central
Corinthian Casuals v Badshot Lea @3pm - CCs have played a big part in this year's NLD campaign. Not only were they kind enough to host myself and the media team from SWR to film our promotional video, they're also teaming up with Athletic Bilbao to promote the day here and in the Basque Country. The La Liga giants have also sent them some goodies to raffle off on the day. The club who gave rise to Corinthians in Brazil, have had a disappointing season and will hope for a bit of NLD magic against midtable opposition. Adult tickets are £12 on the gate

Sutton Common Rovers v Chipstead @3pm - there's a Surrey derby to be enjoyed at Whyteleafe's ground. Although both sides are in the bottom six, they have decent gaps between themselves and the two at the foot of the table who will go down. NLD Special Deal  - £5 for Premier League or EFL season-ticket holders. There will also be lots of extra activities for kids

Uxbridge v Guernsey @130pm -  if you need an early kick-off then head to the far west where the recently overhauled Honeycroft could be an ideal place to spend the afternoon and it's always fun to watch a bit of 'international' football. NLD Special Deal - free entry for Premier League and EFL season-ticket holders. It's also worth noting that there's a second game here in the evening as Hilltop take on Bedfont Sports in the Combined Counties League at 745pm so you will definitely be able to see two games in London on NLD

Isthmian League South East
Cray Valley PM v Hythe Town @3pm - if you're in south-east London then think about a visit to the Artic Stadium. CVPM made headlines earlier in the season when they took local EFL club Charlton Athletic to a replay in the FA Cup. Since then, their good form has continued and they're locked in an exciting title battle with Ramsgate. The visitors are ninth but have the games in hand to put them up among the frontrunners so there's plenty to play for for both. NLD Special Deal - £6 for Premier League, EFL or National League season-ticket holders or a Greenwich One Card holder. It's also 'Pie & A Pint' for £5 and there's 20% off on all merchandise

Erith & Belvedere v Horndean @3pm - five points adrift of safety, the Deres badly need a win here against midtable opposition from Hampshire. The Deans had a massive impact on the title race earlier in the week when they beat then leaders Ramsgate 1-0, allowing Cray Valley to replace them. NLD Special Deal - bring a tin for the foodbank collection and get in for £5

CCL Premier North
Rayners Lane v North Greenford United @3pm - in the ninth tier there's an enticing looking derby between the leaders and a side who made the FA Vase quarter-finals. The hosts had a commanding lead but are now only top on goal difference and, with only one going up automatically, badly need to win. As a result of their great cup run, NGU have games in hand on all of those above them so their current fifth place could conceivably become third. Tickets will be available on the gate

Hilltop v Bedfont Sports @745pm - as mentioned above, this game is worth a second mention because of its late start time. This means you can see a match pretty much anywhere else in London and have the best part of three hours to make your way to Uxbridge's ground (nearest station West Drayton) for this. As for the sides - Hilltop are notable for having their roots in the capital's Somali community and although in the bottom three, they've got lots of games in hand after also enjoying a good run in the FA Vase. Bedfont Sports are third which is as high as they're likely to get given how far ahead the leading pair are. Tickets will be available on the gate, £7 adults

CCL Premier South
AFC Croydon Athletic v Tadley Calleva @3pm - neck-and-neck in the table and sitting just outside the top five, this is a huge game in the race for a play-off place. The Rams made headlines in the summer when a consortium including Wilfried Zaha and Stormzy took over. In recent weeks, former Crystal Palace, Fulham and QPR striker Andrew Johnson has become director of football. NLD Special Deal - all adult tickets reduced to £5 and kids for free

SCEFL Premier
Erith Town v Whitstable Town @3pm - the Dockers are having a fine season. Currently fifth in the league and through to two cup finals, it's a great time to be watching the south-east London club. With only five points separating the sides in fifth and tenth, the battle for the last play-off place is intense. Whitstable are also in that group so there's a lot riding on this match. NLD Special Deal - in an effort to get a crowd of 300+, the club are offering £5 admission to Premier League and EFL season-ticket holders

CCL Division 1
British Airways v Amersham Town @3pm - there's a mouthwatering game in the 10th tier where the top two meet at Bedfont. The visitors have been out in front for ages and with a 17-point lead over BA, this could effectively be a title decider. If the hosts somehow win, then they'll have nine games left to close a 14-point gap. Tickets will be available on the gate

FC Deportivo Galicia v Oxhey Jets @3pm - just over the fence at Bedfont Sports, a club with connections to northern Spain would like to welcome you through the door. FCDG play a good brand of football and they're always one of the highest scoring teams in the division. On Saturday they take on Oxhey who sit just below them in the table. I'm assured pin badges and limited edition wristbands will be available. Tickets are usually £5 on the gate

SCEFL Division 1
Lewisham Borough v Meridian VP @3pm - the hosts ended their losing run with a fine draw against promotion rivals Staplehurst Monarchs. Still fifth, it's all to play for for the south-east London club and they'll start as favourites against a side in the bottom three. NLD Special Deal - free alcoholic or soft drink if you arrive before 230pm

MCFL Premier
Shepherds Bush v Pitshanger Dynamo @3pm - in the 11th tier there's a top-of-the-table clash at Harefield United's ground which is home to the Bushmen this season. Although the hosts are three points clear at the top, Pitshanger have three games in hand. When you look a bit further down the table, you realise there's only three points between the top four! 

KCFL Premier
Peckham Town v Cuxton 1991 @245pm - there's nothing particularly remarkable about this midtable game but as 11th-tier clubs go, Peckham are well run and you could believe you were watching at a higher level. They are also well known for having former England Lioness Mary Phillip as manager. With neighbouring Dulwich Hamlet playing away at Bognor there's a reasonable chance a few of their fans could head here. This match also provides you with an opportunity to check out the World's Smallest Stand

Surrey South Eastern Combination
Wanderers FC v Sutton High @12pm - although well down the pyramid, I'm not even certain what level this is (possibly 14th or 15th), the hosts are one of the most historic clubs in the world. Established in 1859, they were founder members of the FA and won the first two FA Cup Finals. They play very close to Peckham Town so you can definitely combine this match with theirs and then go on to Hilltop in the evening to complete a hat-trick of games

AFA Senior Cup Semi-Final
Civil Service v Old Carthusians @1pm - in the amateur game, two more of the world's most historic clubs meet in a big cup match at Kings House Sports Ground in Chiswick. The hosts have been another one of Athletic Bilbao's featured clubs this week having played them in the past. The winners will play Actonians in the final

If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've  been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground in the London area for this blog then get in touch. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries. I do not charge for this advice like some other sites so don't hold back!

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below, via X/Twitter or even by good old email.

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