I'm sticking with the kids, says Bentwood

By James Masters, September 16, 2011

Steve Bentwood is ready to prove you can win something with kids as his Manchester Maccabi 3rd starlets blasted their way to the top of the MJSL league table.

Bentwood’s young guns have won three out of three so far this term and will be gunning for another victory in this Sunday’s clash with Republic of Mancunia 2nd.

Last weekend’s 7-0 thrashing of Crumpsall showed the reigning champions mean business once again – despite only two members of last year’s team remaining.

Bentwood has brought through the latest generation of Maccabi starlets having coached them since their days in the under-14 division.

And with the likes of Louis Basso and Josh Hayes having both moved on, boss Bentwood is backing the current crop of 16-year-olds to take the MJSL by storm.

“I’ve coached these kids for three years now and they’re a smashing bunch,” he said.

“We’ve played three games and won them all so it’s a great start for a team who don’t really know what to expect.

“Most of these lads have never played Jewish football so each game we go into we’re something of an unknown quantity.

“But we’ve got some very talented players and I’m sure we can do well in the MJSL."

Jake Rubens announced his arrival with a stunning hat-trick against Crumpsall, while Jake Bentwood, Jake Berger, Ben Johnson and Avi Libbert also hit the target to leave Bentwood smiling.

“For us at Maccabi, it’s all about bringing players through and for them to have the chance of playing for the first team in the Tameside League,” he added.

“The success we’ve had in the MJSL has really helped and we’re hoping we can do that again.”

Bentwood is also grateful to the evergreen trio of Marc Magid, Mark Sheldon and Sheldon Lee, who add an extra dose of experience to the side.

“The older guys really give us something invaluable and we wouldn’t be half as effective without them.

“Sheldon Lee is 51 and he’s so fit and so important to us and both Marc and Mark are the same. They make a real difference to us.”

Meanwhile, Haroldeans boss Ivan Gee is backing his boys to make it three wins out of three when they take on Broughton on Sunday.

Haroldeans, who thumped Leeds Maccabi 3rd 8-0 last week, have scored 12 goals in their opening two games and look back to their best following an indifferent past year.

Josh Silverberg and Bobby Abrams both scored twice for the Merseysiders while further goals from Alistair Goldsmith, Zach Goodman, James Harris and Josh Roberts sealed the win.

“I think we’ll have a much better season this time around,” said Haroldeans boss Gee.

“We trained throughout the summer and the lads look much fitter so we’re very hopeful of doing something special.

“We’re very pleased with our first two games and now we’re hoping to get another three points against Broughton.”

Basement boys Broughton face a tough test to get anything out of their clash with Haroldeans having lost all three of their league games so far.

Daniel Klapisch hit four goals as Republic of Mancunia 2nd cruised to an 8-0 win over the MJSL new boys.

Andrew Shaffer netted a classy hat-trick and Shlome Friedman also got on the scoresheet as Broughton crashed to third consecutive defeat.

Elsewhere, Sporting JLGB fought back from two goals down to salvage a point in a tightly contested 2-2 draw against South Manchester 2nd.

Oli Black and Jack Lee were on target for South before a Jarrod Cohen double gave Sporting a share of the spoils.

Last updated: 11:01am, September 16 2011