Pub’s world-class whistleblower

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TWO new football teams played a match refereed by a very special guest in South Yorkshire.

The two teams – Sidings FC and The Sidings Brinsworth – formed this year and represent the pub of the same name in Brinsworth, Rotherham.

World Cup final referee Howard Webb, who comes from Brinsworth, Rotherham, was there to oversee their debut.

It was the teams’ first match for the Howard Webb Sidings Football Challenge cup, which the players now hope will become an annual contest.

Sidings FC won the match 1-0 in a much improved performance after losing their first match against the other team 10-0.

The match was contested at the Aurora sports ground, and all players and supporters went back to The Sidings afterwards for food, raffles, and the cup presentation by Howard.

Raffle prizes included a referee’s shirt and yellow and red cards, donated by Howard.

There were also bottles of whiskey, and food and drinks vouchers.

John Fox, owner of The Sidings pub, said around £300 was raised on the day which went towards buying kit for the teams.

He said: “The teams were in awe of Howard. Their chins were on the floor, they were gobsmacked. Terry Cawthorn, who scored the winning goal, said he couldn’t sleep that night. He said it felt like he’d won the World Cup with Howard refereeing.”