Mick's Football Memories

Mick’s Football Memories – Part 17

The 1965/66 season was a good one for Knebworth. The first team finished tenth in the Premier Division and the reserves won the Division Three title. Kings Langley won the Premier Division, ICT (Letchworth) Division One and Colne Valley Division Two. The Aubrey Cup was won by Marconi Instruments defeating North Mymms 2-1 in the final.

Hitchin Town were caught paying players while they were still an amateur club. This was known as “shamateurism” and the club were dealt with severely by the FA and made an example of. This led to an exodus of players from the club, with them finishing eighteenth out of twenty in the Isthmian League. Ironically Enfield widely known as the highest paid amateurs were never brought to task over the matter.

Stevenage Town had another good season in the Southern League Division One finishing eighth. Another Hertfordshire club, Barnet, who had not been invited to join the Isthmian League two years earlier and had won the Athenian League Premier Division during those two years, now became semi-professional. They had joined the Southern League Division One at the start of the season and won the title at the first attempt.

It was at about this time that I became aware that some Herts. County League Teams had competed in the Amateur Cup. Buntingford Town, Chipperfield, Harpenden Town, Kings Langley, Leavesden Hospital, Rickmansworth Town, Royston Town, Saffron Walden Town, Stansted and Welwyn Garden City, had all competed while being in membership of the league. During this season however only Buntingford Town and Saffron Walden Town participated, with Buntingford Town exiting in the Preliminary Round after a replay and Saffron Walden Town exiting at the First Qualifying Round.

1966 was the year the World Cup Finals were held in England and whilst not having a great deal of interest in international football I watched England’s matches out of nationalistic pride, just as I would the Olympic Games. I must admit to a great deal of satisfaction however, when we defeated our old rivals West Germany, in what was a very close final.

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