Menu Close

Tempers fray at Wolves All Stars game which raises £7,400 for charity

A football team who played younger players against Wolves All Stars have been branded ‘cheats’ after a charity game briefly got heated.
Hundreds of people watched Wolves All Stars play Pattingham Old Boys at Pattingham Village Bowl on Sunday.
The game ended in a 2-0 win for the All Stars, but only after a few heavy tackles flew in which were not in keeping with the spirit of a charity match.
Wolves All Stars player-manager Mel Eves accused Pattingham of fielding younger players and remonstrated with their management at one stage during the first half. Opposition teams have to sign a contract to say all of their players are over 35 when playing Wolves All Stars.
“We have a charter which says no one can play who is under 35,” said Eves, 62, who played in the game. “None of our players play on a Saturday or play for a living now. We do it specifically to raise money for good causes.
“This is why I threw my toys out of the pram: We come to play to raise money for good causes, not for kids to come round and kick ex-players.”
Eves added: “They are cheating. They had five or six players in their mid-20s. They treated it like a Sunday morning cup final between two pub teams with a bit of niggle between them.”
Organiser Dave Woolley, who helped assemble the Pattingham team with manager Sam Cooper, admitted they fielded under-age players and said he had to warn a couple of players about their conduct before half-time.
“There were a few under age players – probably four or five – but we needed to get a few younger ones in so we had some ‘legs’ in the team,” said Woolley, 30, a plasterer from Pattingham.
“It was 0-0 at half-time and I had to calm things down a bit. I wanted us to start strongly because they’re a good side. But I wanted to keep it fair. I understand why they were annoyed. I had to calm a few players down.
“It’s in the contract about not playing anyone under 35 but I had to drag a few people in from the village. We also had some players who hadn’t played for 20 years.
“We played some under-age players but I wanted to make it an interesting game for the fans who turned up. I’m a Wolves fan myself and we didn’t want to lose.
“It was a competitive game – if you go on the pitch, you want to win, no matter who is playing.”
Wolves All Stars featured several Molineux favourites, including four who have played in the top flight either in gold and black and/or for other clubs – Eves, who won the League Cup, captain Jody Craddock and midfielders Seyi Olofinjana and Nigel Quashie, while another, Tony Dinning, once cost £600,000. Quashie and Tom Daniels scored the goals.
Eves said: “Our lads don’t want to get injured – they’ve all got to go to work on Monday morning.”
The match was held to raise money for Compton Care and honour Sally James, a mother of six who lived in Pattingham and lost her life to cervical cancer. A sum of £7,400 has been raised already.
Wolves All Stars have helped raise over £500,000 for charities and good causes in the 20 years since Eves has been player-manager.