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14 Jul 2019 : Top player, top lad, good luck - Ello's tribute as Danny O'Brien departs

Danny O'Brien is leaving The Millbank with thanks and all good wishes of everyone at Runcorn Linnets.

Right back Danny last season became one of a still relatively rare breed to complete a century of first-team appearances for the club.

He will always be fondly remembered as a key and extremely popular member of our title-wining Hallmark Security League squad of 2017-18.

Danny had joined the Linnets from Cammell Laird in summer 2016 as a midfield player, but successfully converted to become the regular right back.

His quality from set-piece situations - as the taker of penalties, free-kicks and corners - proved a bonus on top of his fine all-round work in general play.

2018-19, Danny's third season with the Linnets, saw regular runs in the side at more of a premium for him. But he still had 25 outings (including 18 starts), scoring seven goals and when called upon, Danny performed in the excellent manner which we had come to expect.

These appearances took his overall Linnets count to 104 (95+  nine sub). Half of his grand total of 20 Linnets goals were from spot-kicks.

Linnets manager Michael Ellison said:

"What can I say about Danny O'Brien? he's been absolutely fantastic for us since he first stepped through the door.

"He was one of the players, who stayed when I first got the job and helped stabilise the club during a difficult period. He was also a massive part of the title-winning side and he will be sorely missed at the Millbank.

"I did try to persuade Danny to stay but I do understand his reasons for leaving. I'd like to wish him all the very best where ever he decides to play his football next season and he will always be welcome back at Linnets.

"Top player, top lad. good luck Dan."

 

13 Jul 2019 : Runcorn lost to Euxton Villa 2-1

This news item has been added from the Live SMS feed powered by BulkSMS.com From close range following a great touch A Trialist gave the Linnets the advantage in the 23rd minute. Euxton Villa pulled level in the 34th minute. Euxton Villa scored in the 45th minute.

10 Jul 2019 : Free Linnets 2019-20 league passes for all Runcorn students in Years 10-11

All pupils in the top two year groups at Runcorn secondary schools are to receive free passes from Runcorn Linnets for the 2019-20 BetVictor Northern Premier League season.

Linnets are keen to further develop their already growing fan base by attracting a new generation of fans.

The initiative will see everyone in Years 10 & 11 at the town's four secondary schools being handed a pass, giving complimentary admission to all home league games in the new Division One North/West.

Passes will be issued through the schools at the start of the new academic year in September.

Linnets have seen first team crowds steadily rise in recent years and last season's average of just below 400 was second highest in their division.

Now the club is ready to invest in future growth by opening its doors to senior pupils from The Heath School, The Grange Academy, Ormiston Bollingbroke  Academy and St Chad's Catholic & Church of England School.

As part of the initiative, the club will take the chance to further support a local organisation helping to tackle knife crime.

The reverse of the pass will highlight the important community work of the Live Your Life Drop the Knife campaign in Halton.

Club chairman Mike Bignall said: "We already offer free admission to Under 16s if accompanied by an adult but wanted to take our offer that bit further.

"This will mean the young people can watch local football with their mates for free.

"We also felt it important that having promoted the #nomoreknives campaign last season with notices in our matchday programmes, we should continue to get the message across to help make our  community safer."

The chairman added: "Coming to The Millbank Linnets Stadium is a very enjoyable way to spend a Saturday afternoon and we are sure that young people using this free pass will enjoy the entertainment on offer.

"Many of our fans will have first come along to Linnets games as teenagers, or even younger, and I am sure that newcomers will soon consider themselves regular fans with these free ground passes giving the holders a real sense of belonging.

"Non-league football offers a superb package with a good standard of play, a chance to support your hometown team and even mix with and chat to players after the game.

"When we this summer approached the four schools with the idea of free passes for every pupil in the top two year groups they were all more than delighted.

"The schools thought it was as good an idea as we did and we believe that those receiving the passes will be just as enthusiastic."

05 Jul 2019 : Sky's the limit for charity fundraisers Josh and Linzi

Two intrepid officials from friendly rival football clubs want to rise to the challenge of raising funds for charity - after volunteering to jump from a plane at 11,000 feet.

Josh Christian, Trust Board member at Runcorn Linnets, and neighbouring Widnes FC's Youth Development Officer, Linzi Davies are joining forces for a proposed sky dive in support of a trailblazing young footballer's efforts to help others.

Money raised will go to Everton in the Community and specifically Widnes FC U11s goalkeeper Alfie Fitzsimmons's efforts to establish a children's area in the Blues' planned new mental health hub.

The People's Place is to be built next to the EFC's Goodison Park stadium.

But Linzi and Josh's initial task is to obtain combined sponsorship of £1,000 to be able to do the jump.

As the stunt is scheduled for Saturday, July 20th, the pair face a race against time.

They are, however, already a quarter of the way to their target with a JustGiving page having been set up for donations.

This is the second time this year that Widnes FC and Linnets have come together to help Alfie.

April's end-of-season EVO-STIK (Northern Premier) League derby match between the clubs at The Millbank Linnets Stadium saw fans pledge £336.11 for the youngster's "Alfie's Squad" charity.

Upon the death in 2017 of his father, who had suffered with mental health problems, Alfie wanted to help youngsters whose lives are or have been impacted by such illness.

Josh Christian, 26, from Halton Brook, Runcorn, said: "After meating Alfie back in April and hearing all about his story and having him as our guest of honour at the derby match, I felt I had to help Alfie and Everton - even though I am a massive Liverpool fan. I'll cheekily be wearing my LFC socks on the day!

"It will be a massive challenge but one I couldn't turn down."

The impact that a family tragedy can have on children resonates with Linzi through personal experience.

The 42-year-old mum-of-three, who lives in Widnes and is another Liverpool supporter, said: "My own children lost their dad suddenly through an undiagnosed heart complaint seven years ago.

"I believe that a safe haven for bereaved children is imperative to protect their vulnerable minds moving forward and coping with their loss. 

"Alfie is inspirational and I'm proud to be the Youth Development Officer for the Club he plays for."

Everton in the Community (charity registration number 1099366) has been offered 20 fundraising places in the exhilarating tandem skydive at The Black Knights Parachute Centre in Lancaster. 

The descent with a fully-qualified British Parachute Association instructor will see participants hit approximately 120mph.

To pledge support for Josh and Linzi's fundraising bid, please visit the JustGiving page set up by Alfie Fitzsimmons' mum, Allison Furlong at https://www.justgiving.com/alfieskydive

Photos: Josh Christian with Alfie Fitzsimmons. Right: Linzi Davies.

27 Jun 2019 : Witton's Nick Ryan is our third summer capture

Michael Ellison is delighted to unveil Witton Albion defender Nick Ryan as Runcorn Linnets' third new recruit of the summer.

The imposing 25-year-old central half is ready, and raring, to resume his career after being ruled out of football since April 2018 due to injury.

Playing for Witton in an EVO-STIK League Premier Division fixture at Marine, Nick broke a leg in three places.

This was a particularly cruel blow for the defender, who had only just returned to the starting XI after two months out with a broken jaw.

Nick had joined Albion in summer of 2017, making such a strong impression that only weeks before his devastating injury, he had secured a contract for a second season with the Wincham-based club.

This was on the back of 37 Witton appearances, which had brought him in two goals - the player also making a significant contribution to 11 clean sheets kept by the team.

With Nick suddenly being faced by an indefinite absence due to his broken leg, Witton and their fans rallied round, setting up a crowdfunding campaign to support him.

Team-mates pledged the cash set aside for an end-of-season team holiday to help with compensating Nick for loss of earnings while he recuperated.

That long recovery is now very near  completion and Nick can look forward to joining the Linnets when the first-team squad returns to training on July 2nd, starting final preparations for the pre-season campaign, which includes a home warm-up against Witton Albion.

Nick switched to Witton in July 2017 after spending the previous season with Stalybridge Celtic in National League North and scoring three goals in 19 appearances.

Before that, he had played in the EVO-STIK League for Burscough, enjoying 29 outings in 2015-16.

Linnets manager Michael Ellison said: "Nick is a top-class centre half and a great signing for us. After an awful injury, which sidelined him last season he's looking to get back playing and back to the level he was at.

"We will give him the platform to do that. He had a lot of clubs chasing his signature I'm delighted he chose us.

"I'd like to thank Witton's manager Carl Macauley for facilitating the signing. For my part, if Nick wanted to go back to Witton at any point, we would obviously not stand in his way."

Nick becomes Linnets' third newcomer, following the acquisitions of fellow centre back Louis Coyne (who arrives from Prescot Cables) and striker Jamie Rainford from Ramsbottom United.

With central defender Peter Wylie among a number of last season's regulars to have pledged their immediate futures to the Linnets, the club is already well placed to offset the defensive loss of 2018-19 Player of the Year, Aaron Morris to FC United of Manchester.

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