BARNET v LEIGH RMI
SATURDAY 13TH OCTOBER 3.00pm
By Phil Snow
Leigh RMI's history goes back to 1896 when a team named Horwich RMI was formed, having strong links with the Railway Mechanics Institute.
The early part of the 20th century saw them playing in the West Lancashire League and on promotion in 1915, the Lancashire Combination.
They were fairly
successful in the 1950's, winning the combination cup
twice and the league once.
After a bad start to the 70's they won the League and Challenge Shield in the 78/79 season, going on to qualify for the North West Counties League in 81/82.
Two seasons later, after finishing third, they were accepted into the Northern Premier League.
1994/95 saw them leave their Grundy Hill home, which sloped from corner to corner and moved to the 8,000 capacity Hilton Park. Unfortunately they finished bottom of the league and the Football Association agreed a name change to Leigh RMI.
After a season in Division One they were promoted after finishing second. This was the start of their rise to glory. They reached the First Round Proper of the FA Cup, holding Fulham to a 0-0 draw at Craven Cottage, losing the sold out replay back at home.
The Northern Premier League was finally conquered in the 99/00 season with 92 points and gained promotion to the Conference.
Against the odds they finished fifth, after many had tipped them to return back to the Unibond.
The Season so Far
Leigh are currently 15th in the league. They have won three times away from home so far, but incredibly two of those were against two of the most successful teams so far. Back in August they went to Margate winning 2-1. Dagenham & Redbridge went down to the only goal of the game. Hopefully they won't keep this up on Saturday and they will have the same kind of result they have had against Doncaster (0-2), Telford (1-3), Nuneaton (1-2) and Yeovil (1-2). Their last away game was a 3-1 drubbing of Morecambe.
At home they didn't have the best of starts. On the opening day of the season the drew 1-1 with Hayes. That was followed by three defeats on the trot, all of them by two goals to one, against Northwich, Southport and Stevenage. The Dagenham game spurred them on to two consecutive home wins by three goals to nil against Chester and Farnborough.
Last Saturday they were hosts to Hereford but lost 1-0 and Tuesday night's result again saw them lose, this time to Forest Green Rovers by two goals to one.
The results show they are fairly inconsistent, but so are Barnet and Saturdays game should be anything but predictable. After Barnet's exciting 3-2 win at Doncaster on Tuesday, this would be an ideal game to bring along a friend to see the Bees in action!!
Below is the current league details of both teams. Barnet's home details are shown, so they can be compared with Leigh RMI's away details. The Positions shown are the home/away league positions, respectively.