Huddersfield Town pull reserve side out of Central League
May 31 2010 by Dougie Thomson, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
TOWN are pulling their reserve team out of the totesport.Com League, ending an association which goes back to 1913.
Boss Lee Clark instead plans to fix up a series of friendlies, some of which will be staged behind closed doors.
“Reserve football should bridge the gap between youth and first-team level, but with all due respect to other clubs, we have faced a lot of very young sides this season,” explained Clark.
“This does not provide our own young professionals with the test they need, and our Under 18 side already plays against a high standard of opposition in the FA Premier Academy League.
“To make the next step our players need to go up against teams with a mixture of players with first team experience and talent, as well as other high-quality young players.
“The coaching staff and I have used our contacts to arrange friendlies against high-calibre opposition in the past and we plan to do that throughout the 2010-11 season.
“Not having a dictated programme of fixtures we must adhere to will also be a help. It will give us more flexibility to arrange games around the first team’s schedule.”
The Central League, in its heyday the top competition for the reserve sides of Midlands and Northern clubs, was formed in 1911.
Town were elected at the expense of Glossop North End two years later and won the first of their four titles in 1914-15.
When the first team were clinching their celebrated hat trick of Football League titles between 1924-26, the reserves were also a major force in this country.
They finished runners-up to West Brom in 1924 and were champions the following two seasons, winning the title again in 1930-31.
The creation of an FA Premier Reserve League in the early nineties weakened the Central League, which has changed format several times recently.
Town, who were Division II champions in 1987, won Division I East in 2005, and were fourth this season.