Sunday, 31 August 2014

TLFG: 1-7 September 2014

Hello there and welcome to this special edition of TLFG.

After 11 months of preparation we're almost there - Saturday is Non-League Day 2014.

When I tentatively set up the event back in the summer of 2010 as a bit of fun on Facebook, I never dreamed I'd be here getting ready for a fifth edition.

The 'chatter' on the interweb is certainly starting to hot up with lots of clubs coming out of the woodwork at the last moment with some great deals to tempt new fans through the gates.

If you didn't know, Non-League Day (NLD) always takes place on an international weekend when there's a break in the Premier League and Championship fixtures. This means there's a good chance to elevate the semi-professional and grassroots game into the limelight.

It's the final countdown!
There are League One and Two games on as well but in London there is only one at Dagenham & Redbridge so the clash is minimal.

Unsurprisingly, I'm going to devote the rest of this week's offering entirely to NLD and some of the offers and events that are taking place. There are a few matches happening before Saturday in various cups and leagues and they're all on the match map as usual but I won't be highlighting them.

Personally I'll be off to the Isthmian League match between Dulwich Hamlet and Hampton & Richmond Borough. More details of this can be found in the round-up towards the bottom of this piece but I think it's fair to say that this is effectively NLD's showpiece game in London for a whole host of reasons. Apart from anything else, it's the most centrally located match in the capital on Saturday and is really easy to get to with East Dulwich station just a couple of minutes walk from the ground.

It's all going on at Dulwich Hamlet
                                                       
Don't forget, we (at NLD) still want to receive fan photos so if you're going to a game, heading off on holiday or just relaxing at home we'd love to get a picture of you in either one of our t-shirts or holding up one of these.

There's still plenty to do over the final few days but ultimately it's all about gaining publicity so make sure you tell your friends or if you've got your own website or blog and would like to support us by displaying one of our banners then I'd really appreciate it.

Anyway, that's enough about me. Remember to let me know what you've been up to and if you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. Also keep the general correspondence coming, I enjoy answering your questions and offering advice if I can.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via Facebook, Twitter or even by good old email.

There are over 70 matches in the London area this week, with over 40 on NLD itself so there's every opportunity to take part.

As always, check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 1-7 September 2014 in a larger map


Next up is a list of clubs, in alphabetical order, where I know of special deals or events that are being offered on Non-League Day. This is not an exhaustive compilation as I know some clubs have plans but have yet to declare them so I will add more as the week goes along, make sure you check back for updates.

AVELEY/ROMFORD
Over on the far east side of our catchment area, Aveley have brought forward their Isthmian League match against Heybridge Swifts to 1245pm meaning you will then just have enough time to make it down the road to Thurrock's ground where Romford host Tilbury in the same division. I'm unaware of any special deals on admission but it's a great chance to see two games in a day. AVELEY INFO / ROMFORD INFO

BROMLEY
Conference South club Bromley have enjoyed big crowds on NLD before and have a home match against Chelmsford City this year. This time they're laying on a Family Fun Day with bouncy castles, the chance to meet Disney characters, beat the goalie competitions and there's even a pre-match carvery for only £8. Apparently there's still more to be revealed so watch this space. CLUB INFO

CARSHALTON ATHLETIC
The Robins take on Hythe in the Isthmian League Division 1 South and are hoping their special deal will appeal to fans more used to being at Premier League or Football League grounds. If you are a season-ticket holder at any of 'the 92' then you'll get in FOR FREE. Not only that but the Carshalton U11s will be put in charge of the club for the day as they take on roles including press officer, match day secretary and physio! DEAL INFO

CHIPSTEAD
The Chips are going one better by offering FREE ENTRY to season-ticket holders of any other club whether they play in the professional leagues or not. Three Bridges are the visitors for this Isthmian League Division 1 South game. It's worth checking out Chipstead because they're currently top of the league with five wins out of five. DEAL INFO

CRAY VALLEY PAPER MILLS
In the Southern Counties East League, Cray Valley are offering a reduced admission price of £5 for season-ticket holders of other clubs and anyone presenting a copy of SEnine magazine. All U16s accompanied by a paying adult will also get in for free. There will also be a half-time penalty competition and a collection for MNDA and Macmillan. I'm told details of this will appear on their website later this week. CLUB INFO

DULWICH HAMLET
As far as I'm concerned this is the showpiece NLD game in London and it's where I intend to spend my afternoon. Dulwich have never had a home game on NLD and have always said they'd throw everything at it when they finally did. This year they've been given a match against Hampton & Richmond Borough and they haven't let us down. First and foremost they're running a Pay What You Want scheme so you could potentially get in for free but we know you're not that tight (£10 is the going rate for adults). Kick It Out are holding special events at four featured games across the country on NLD and this is one of them, giving the fixture further prestige. Dulwich also have one of the most multicultural bunch of supporters and consequently everyone is being encouraged to bring a flag of their country, wear fancy dress, put on face paint, bring banners or whatever else to brighten up the ground as they try to create a carnival atmosphere. After the match, the whole first-team squad will be subjected to the dreaded ice-bucket challenge on the pitch with supporters donating to charity for the chance to douse them. They're hoping all this will prove so tempting to so many that they'll break the club's attendance record of 1,835 - help them do it.  DEAL INFO

EDGWARE TOWN
History is being made on Non-League Day as Edgware Town play their first home game since folding in 2008. They reformed in March with a new home at Silver Jubilee Park (former home of Kingsbury Town). It's not quite fit for duty yet so their first game is being held Underhill, Barnet's old ground. If you missed out on visiting this ground while the Bees called it home, now you've got another chance. Saturday's game is also a derby against London Lions in the Spartan South Midlands League. Prices have been reduced to £3 with various deals for kids. DEAL INFO

HARROW BOROUGH
Harrow are my favourite non-league team so I feel guilty that I won't be heading to Earlsmead this year but as MR NLD I have to spread myself around. After enjoying a very successful day last year, Boro have landed a game against Grays Athletic and are repeating their offer of half-price admission (£5) to Premier and Football League season-ticket holders and members. It's also £1 for unaccompanied U16s and free season tickets for U12s. I hope a lot of my fellow QPR fans will take them up on this offer. CLUB INFO

KINGSTONIAN
Another Isthmian League club hoping to tempt new fans through their turnstiles are the K's. Kingstonian among the favourites for promotion this season and they host Hendon who are also in the early hunt for the play-off places. There's a half price (£5) for season-ticket holders deal in place here too but it's open to fans of any team from any sport at any level! It's also free for U16s. To top it all, Phil Parry will be hosting BBC London 94.9's main Saturday afternoon football show live from Kingsmeadow as the station gets fully behind NLD. DEAL INFO

SUTTON UNITED
The U's have always been big supporters of NLD and are backing us again as they host Concord Rangers in the Conference South. One of the biggest non-league clubs in south London, they are among the bookies' favourites to challenge for the title this season and you can get in for only £5 if you're a season-ticket holder at any Premier League or Football League club. DEAL INFO

THAMESMEAD TOWN
Another Isthmian League club to be getting in on the act are the Mead. They suffered relegation from the Premier Division last season but are among the early frontrunners in Division 1 North as they look to bounce back at the first attempt. On Saturday they host current leaders Needham Market who have won all of their first six fixtures. Throughout the season, Thamesmead are offering half-price admission (£4) to season-ticket holders at all 'local professional and semi-professional clubs'. Which clubs are covered and which ones aren't might need clarification before you travel but I'm sure they won't turn you away. CLUB INFO

WHYTELEAFE
Down on the far south of town there's another good deal to be had in the Isthmian League Division 1 South where the Leafe are offering FREE ENTRY to all season-ticket holders from Premier League and Football League clubs and also all U16s. Promotion chasing Kent club Whitstable Town are the opponents. This is another easy ground to get to with Whyteleafe South station a short walk away, although it is uphill. DEAL INFO

PLEASE NOTE - there are many other teams playing at home on Non-League Day who are competing in the FA Vase. Rules in this competition make it very hard for clubs to offer discounts on admission so please don't think that your local club isn't making an effort as they may be constrained in what they can do. It is also worth noting that lots of clubs who play in the FA Vase charge around £5 to get in anyway, whoever you are, so make sure you have a good look through the match map before you make your final decision. If you're not a season-ticket holder or member at another club and don't qualify for many of the discounts above, such a match could be your best option.

A special mention should be given to Fisher. They are playing in the FA Vase but will offer reduced admission of £5 to anyone who brings along a donation to the locally based Pecan Foodbank. This deal is happening because opponents Woodstock Sports have kindly agreed to allow Fisher to do this - gate receipts are shared between the sides in FA competitions so hats off to them. The match will be played on Sunday (because they groundshare with Dulwich) so hopefully they'll get a great attendance.

Well I think that's it, for now. I'm pretty confident one or two more clubs will come forward with something before Saturday so do check back as I said before. 

Finally, please do try and get to a non-league game this Saturday. Every individual who attends matches at this level makes a real difference and our game needs to be strong from top to bottom to survive and thrive. Thanks.

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 24 August 2014

TLFG: 25-31 August 2014

It's been a busy old week so I'm afraid to say that something has had to give and this week's entry will not include a Top 10 - it would probably be inadequate anyway as there as so many great games on.

Given the Bank Holiday tomorrow, the schedule is absolutely packed with most games being local derbies. The Combined Counties League powers have once again moved all their Monday games forward to late morning/early afternoon allowing groundhoppers to see at least two matches.

Not only that but we've also got the next round of the FA Cup to look forward to on Saturday (although there are also ties on Friday and Sunday).

Away from the blog, a lot of my time has been spent building up to Non-League Day (NLD) which is now less than two weeks away.

Information about special events and deals are starting to come through with the offering from Dulwich Hamlet one of the most eye-catching in the country.

If you want to help make the NLD campaign a success, we really need help with publicity so if you run a website or blog and can put one of our banners on it then I'd greatly appreciate it.

We also need people to download our posters and signs and put them up in prominent places - your window, common room, staff room, local shops etc.

At the end of the day we have no budget for a big advertising campaign so NLD's success is purely down to individuals, clubs and leagues doing their bit and helping us out. We are nothing without you so please help in some way if you can. 

Anyway, that's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are over 100 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Purple in - Thursday fixtures
Magenta pin - Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 25-31 August 2014 in a larger map


If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

TLFG: 18-24 August 2014

Hello there one and all and welcome to the latest edition of TLFG.

The Premier League season begun on Saturday which means we're now fully under way for another year.

I strolled round to Loftus Road for QPR's first game back in the top flight and although we lost 1-0 to Hull City, it was a vast improvement on what we've seen on opening days the last two times we were at this level.

Here we go again...
Rangers should have had at least a point but that's football. Aside from Rio Ferdinand's error for the goal, striker Charlie Austin (the only player in QPR's side without top-flight experience) had a tough afternoon which culminated in his late penalty failure. Having seen replays, it clearly shouldn't have been given so I don't feel as bad about it as I could.

With that out of the way, I spent part of my Saturday night at BBC Broadcasting House in central London appearing on this week's edition of the Non-League Football Show on BBC Radio 5 Live promoting Non-League Day (NLD).

The highlight for me was finally getting to meet Dave Anderson, manager of Harrow Borough, who regularly appears on the programme.

So, with less than three weeks to go, the work to get word of NLD out there really begins in earnest.

If you want to help make the NLD campaign a success, we really need help with publicity so if you run a website or blog and can put one of our banners on it then I'd greatly appreciate it.

We also need people to download our posters and signs and put them up in prominent places - your window, common room, staff room, local shops etc.

At the end of the day we have no budget for a big advertising campaign so NLD's success is purely down to individuals, clubs and leagues doing their bit and helping us out. We are nothing without you so please help in some way if you can. 

Anyway, that's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are over 90 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Purple in - Thursday fixtures
Magenta pin - Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 18-24 August 2014 in a larger map

Next up is this week's TLFG match recommendations where I list a few games which I think could be worth a watch. If I miss one that you think should get a mention then add your own in the comments section below.

TLFG TOP 10

1. Tottenham Hotspur v Queens Park Rangers - Spurs opened their Premier League campaign with a derby win over West Ham. They next face another derby against west London opposition. The links between the current squads are strong with QPR full of ex-Tottenham staff from boss Harry Redknapp to summer signing Steven Caulker to name just two. While Spurs won 1-0 win at the Hammers, QPR slumped to a disappointing loss by the same score at home to Hull. I went to the last meeting between these two at White Hart Lane which Rangers somehow lost 2-1 despite putting on one of their best performances of that season. (Sunday 24 August, 130pm. Ticket info)

2. Crystal Palace v West Ham United - two other sides elsewhere in the capital are playing in their second consecutive derby too. As already mentioned, West Ham lost their first game and so did Palace by 2-1 at Arsenal. Whether Palace have a new manager in place, to replace the departed Tony Pulis, by Saturday could have a large bearing on the outcome of this game. The omens don't look too good for the visitors though - they are winless in six against the Eagles. (Saturday 23 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

3. Charlton Athletic v Derby County - the Addicks have got off to a solid start with two wins and a draw. Their win over promotion contenders Wigan on Saturday was particularly noteworthy and they'll need to be at the top of their game when title favourites Derby come to the Valley for this one. The Rams have enjoyed a similar start and only goals scored separates the clubs at this stage. Derby won both games against Charlton last season and didn't concede a goal but they should face a tougher challenge this time. (Tuesday 19 August, 745pm. Ticket info)

4. Fulham v Wolverhampton Wanderers - despite both clubs having been in the Premier League in recent seasons neither are fancied to do that much this time. The Cottagers have just dropped down and are already finding the going tough. After losing at Ipswich in their opening game, they lost the derby against Millwall on Saturday. Wolves suffered back-to-back relegations to plummet down to League One before coming back up as champions in May. They've managed one win so far so are better off. Another defeat for Fulham could be an indication of them possibly becoming the next Wolves, even at this early stage. (Wednesday 20 August, 8pm. Ticket info)

5. Boreham Wood v Bromley - the rest of the Football League games taking place in the capital aren't really doing it for me so next up I'm going for this top-seven clash in the Conference South. The Wood got off to a flyer winning their first two and scoring eight goals in the process. Sadly for them they lost at Staines on Saturday to stop them going top. This weekend they welcome Bromley to Meadow Park. The Lilywhites missed out in the play-offs last year and are currently second favourites for the title. They've matched Boreham Wood's results so far meaning there's little to choose between them. (Saturday 23 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

6. Chipstead v Faversham Town - the Chips had a very average season last time round so it's quite a turn up to see them topping the Isthmian League Division 1 South as the only team with a 100% record after three games. Faversham have made a decent start too with two wins leaving them in seventh. They got the better of Chipstead at home and away last season meaning they should be a real threat to that unblemished record if it's still intact come Saturday. (Saturday 23 August, 3pm. Club info)

7. Hanwell Town v Bedworth United - Hanwell stormed to the Spartan South Midlands League title last season and have started this campaign in the Southern League where they left off. With two wins and a draw they are nestled in second place behind Kettering Town, the giants of the division. To be in with a chance of toppling them they'll need to win against Bedworth who are fourth with two wins under their belt. After a few seasons in the doldrums, could this be the start of a golden period for the Reynolds Field club? (Saturday 23 August, 3pm. Club info)

8. Mole Valley SCR v Spelthorne Sports - this is the match of the week in the Combined Counties League as third host first. Like Hanwell, Spelthorne enjoyed promotion last season and have begun even more impressively winning all of their first four games. MVSCR are also unbeaten but have drawn a game. Looks like a bit of a cracker. (Saturday 23 August, 3pm. Club info)

9. Wembley v Cogenhoe United - after drawing on Saturday these two must replay their FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round tie on Tuesday. Both sides lie third in their respective divisions having won all their league games so far so it's easy to see why they cancelled each other out. Apart from anything else it's a great chance to watch an FA Cup tie within sight of the Wembley arch where the final will ultimately be played.  (Tuesday 19 August, 745pm. Club info)

10. Phoenix Sports v Deal Town - last up this week we have another FA Cup replay between two rivals from the Southern Counties East League. Phoenix Sports will start as favourites even though this is their first ever FA Cup tie having only recently made it to this level. (Wednesday 20 August, 745pm. Club info)

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

TLFG: 11-17 August 2014

It's been another busy old week at TLFG Towers.

Apart from the usual crafting of this piece there's also been the continued preparations ahead of Non-League Day (NLD).

We named our first NLD t-shirt competition winner. I hope to do the same this Friday so send in your pictures of support.

Colin from Southport sent in a picture of Tilly the TIY mascot
If you want to help make the NLD campaign a success, we really need help with publicity so if you run a website or blog and can put one of our banners on it then I'd greatly appreciate it.

FA CUP GETS UNDER WAY

Aside from all this, it's a big week on the pitch with the Premier League season finally getting under way and the FA Cup beginning its long journey to Wembley.

If you're in London for the whole weekend then this great cup competition has fixtures taking place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday so you can gorge yourself on Extra Preliminary Round football and begin your very own 'Road to Wembley'. One TLFG reader famously did this a couple of years ago and wrote this fine book

That's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are almost 90 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Magenta pin - Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 11-17 August 2014 in a larger map

Next up is this week's TLFG match recommendations where I list a few games which I think could be worth a watch. If I miss one that you think should get a mention then add your own in the comments section below.

TLFG TOP 10

1. Arsenal v Crystal Palace - after three months of waiting, the Premier League makes its return on Saturday. The Gunners are currently seen by the bookies as the second best team in London and should have a decent season having recruited well over the summer. Palace did really well on their return to the top flight last year, finishing 11th. Tony Pulis will ensure a well organised side travel to the Emirates for this televised game but they'll do well to get a point. (Saturday 16 August, 530pm. Ticket info)

2. West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur - a little earlier in the day we have this London derby. These two clubs' fans don't get on well and neither do their executives after the recent fight for the Olympic Stadium which the Hammers eventually won. Spurs are predicted to have a better year than their hosts but lost all three meetings against Sam Allardyce's side last season so will have to be on their guard. (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

3. Fulham v Millwall - we have another London derby in the Championship. After suffering relegation from the Premier League, the Cottagers are expected to do well with a play-off place their minimum target. They didn't begin well on Saturday though, losing 2-1 at Ipswich. They're unlikely to find this one easy either as Millwall recorded a solid 2-0 win over Leeds and have sold out their allocation of tickets meaning almost 4,000 excitable Lions fans will be heading their way. It's the first time these clubs have played since 1999 - on that occasion Fulham won 4-1. (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

4. Barnet v Bristol Rovers - there's not much going on elsewhere in the Football League so next up we have a Conference Premier match between two promotion contenders. Barnet begun their campaign with a stunning 5-0 away win at Chester which propelled them to the top of the table. On Tuesday they welcome Rovers who are spending their first season in non-league football since the 1920s after being relegated from League Two. Following the promotion of Luton last season, they are the biggest club in the division by some way and are seen by many as the team to beat. On Saturday they were held to a goalless draw by Grimsby, another of the big boys. (Tuesday 12 August, 745pm. Ticket info)

5. Staines Town v Boreham Wood - in the division below we've got a game between two TLFG clubs who got off to positive starts on Saturday and consequently both sit in the Conference South's top five. The Swans missed the play-offs by six points last year and are fancied to have a similar season this time round. Their win at Whitehawk on Saturday, who probably should challenge for a play-off spot, will give them hope of doing well. They also beat Boreham Wood home and away last season. (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

6. Kingstonian v Dulwich Hamlet - the K's lived up to their billing as Isthmian League title contenders on Saturday as they notched an impressive 5-2 win at Enfield Town. The week ahead will really test their credentials as they play back-to-back home games against Dulwich and AFC Hornchurch who are also well fancied for promotion. I've gone for the Dulwich game as they also won on Saturday, have a much larger travelling support and are located much closer to Kingston than Hornchurch so there's a bit of derby feel to it. If you're looking for something to do with the kids, U16s get in free so it could make for a decent holiday treat. (Monday 11 August, 745pm. Ticket info)

7. Thurrock v Needham Market - in the Isthmian League Division 1 North we've got another early-season clash between two sides who are expected to challenge for honours. Thurrock and Needham Market both got off to winning ways on Saturday to the delight of their supporters. The hosts should be playing at a higher level after losing their Premier Division place to an administrative error the season before last while Needham Market have been close to going up several times in recent years.  (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

8. Egham Town v Kettering Town - in the parallel Southern League Division 1 Central, Egham claimed three points as they edged an opening day nine-goal thriller by 5-4 at Barton Rovers. Title favourites Kettering, the giants of the division, beat Aylesbury United 2-1 in front of a crowd of 689 so will provide formidable opposition on Saturday. (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Club info)

9. Holmesdale v Tunbridge Wells - there are lots of great FA Cup ties this weekend so it's been hard to pick which ones to highlight. First up I've gone for this all Southern Counties East League game. Holmesdale got of to a flying start on Saturday thrashing Lingfield 8-1. Tunbridge Wells enjoyed a more sedate 3-0 win at Cray Valley as they too started well. The visitors are one of the bigger clubs in the division and know how to get to Wembley having made the final of the FA Vase in 2012/13.  (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Club info)

10. Ashford Town (Middlesex) v Berkhamsted - in the other game we've got a match between sides who have made decent starts in the Combined Counties and Spartan South Midlands Leagues. Ashford were a Southern League side until last season so are one of the bigger clubs taking part at this stage. As a TLFG team we wish them all the best. (Saturday 16 August, 3pm. Club info)

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 3 August 2014

TLFG: 4-10 August 2014

After all the weeks of pre-season, the real action is almost upon us.

On Saturday we saw the Combined Counties League get under way while this weekend everything bar the Premier League kicks-off. Exciting times.

There are still a few last-minute friendlies but it's mainly all about Saturday and those crucial opening fixtures.

NORTH LONDON DOUBLEHEADER

As some TLFG readers have pointed out, if you're in London that day and you want to do a 'groundhop double' it can be done in north London thanks to the two White Hart Lane clubs hosting games with staggered kick offs.

"The two White Hart Lane clubs?" I hear you ask. "Surely there's only one?" Technically you'd be right but guess what, it's not Spurs. In fact the main club on White Hart Lane are actually non-league side Haringey Borough. Spurs' stadium is located off Tottenham High Road at the junction with White Hart Lane but they chose that name for some reason.

Anyway I digress. At 3pm Haringey open their Essex Senior League campaign against Clapton in what should be an entertaining fixture. Over the last year or so, Clapton's fan base has grown massively thanks largely to their raucous bunch of ultras who create quite an atmosphere at games.

When this finishes you should have time to stroll down White Hart Lane to watch Spurs play German club Schalke in a friendly which kicks off at 530pm. If you've got tickets for this already and didn't know about this other earlier game please seriously consider giving it a go - it can't be easy running a non-league club in the shadow of such illustrious neighbours and a few extra people through the turnstiles could make a massive difference. In fact, if only 1% of the crowd going to Spurs went to this, it would probably provide them with their biggest crowd of the season.

NON-LEAGUE DAY LATEST

On the point of boosting non-league crowds, it's time to mention Non-League Day again. We're now less than five weeks away and there still seems so much to do.

The main event this week was the launch of our refreshed website. Its most important feature is the match finder which is almost complete - we're just waiting on the Sussex County League to announce their fixtures.

We've also got a new range of t-shirts. A percentage of sales of these will go to our official charity Prostate Cancer UK. Most of them are colour customisable so get buying or enter the competition to win one.

The other thing we really need help with is publicity so if you run a website or blog and can put one of our banners on it then I'd greatly appreciate it.

That's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are over 70 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 4-10 August 2014 in a larger map


Next up is this week's TLFG match recommendations where I list a few games which I think could be worth a watch. If I miss one that you think should get a mention then add your own in the comments section below.

TLFG TOP 10

1. FA Community Shield - the biggest game of the week sees the FA Cup and Premier League winners go head-to-head in the annual season curtainraiser at Wembley. That means this year's fixture will be between Arsenal and Manchester City which isn't a bad match-up by anyone's standards. Although this is technically little more than a friendly, the combatants always seem to take it pretty seriously and we've seen some decent games and goals in recent years. Such is the popularity and prestige of this game that it's already sold out so you're probably best to try and find a TV if you want to watch this one. (Sunday 10 August, 3pm. SOLD OUT)

2. Tottenham Hotspur v Schalke 04 - Spurs have made a very solid start to life under new boss Mauricio Pochettino winning three and drawing one of their pre-season games. Their latest outing on Saturday saw them crush Celtic 6-1 in Helsinki. German giants Schalke provide the opposition for their only home friendly. They came third in the Bundesliga last season and have been concentrating on playing English opponents so far this summer having beaten Stoke and drawn with West Ham. Today (Sunday) they play Newcastle too. Tickets are £20 for adults. (Saturday 9 August, 530pm. Ticket info)

3. Queens Park Rangers v PAOK - the build-up to QPR's return to the Premier League culminates in this friendly against one of the biggest teams in Greece. Rangers have been a bit underwhelming in pre-season but showed a few touches of class as they beat Shamrock Rovers 4-0 in Dublin on Saturday. After a slow start to the summer, it seems a number of transfers could be on the cards this week so hopefully a few will get a run out in this. PAOK have been even more ordinary over the last few weeks winning just one of their six friendlies. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

4. West Ham United v Sampdoria - it's Premier League versus Serie A in our last friendly of the week. I know they are only friendlies but the Hammers results over the last few weeks have been pretty poor. The only win they've had came on Saturday when they beat Schalke on penalties - a fine result given the game was in Germany too. Their Genoese opponents have been far more impressive, winning six of their eight games including a 16-0 victory against Bardonecchia who I presume must be an Italian non-league side or equivalent. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

5. Brentford v Charlton Athletic - there's a strong argument to say that this should be match of the week as it's an actual live, fully competitive fixture and a London derby. After over 20 years away, Brentford are finally back in England's second tier so this is a massive day for the club. They've had a good pre-season and will fancy their chances against the Addicks who struggled last season and are among the favourites for relegation. Tickets are almost gone with the remaining ones only available to people with a purchasing history so it could be tough to get one. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

6. Millwall v Leeds United - elsewhere in the Championship we've got a game that's already being seen by many as a relegation six-pointer. The Lions were poor on the pitch last season, while Leeds were rubbish off it and what goes on in the boardroom could undermine them again. However, what most people think when they see this fixture come up is who will win the battle of the fans. In the 2012/13 football arrests league table (the most recent one I've found) both finished in the top eight. When it came to banning orders they were both in the top five. When you consider most clubs at the top of the list are the biggest ones with the most fans, then it puts into context how significant the problem is at Millwall who average gates of just over 10,000. Definitely go if you want a match with a bit of atmosphere. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

7. Leyton Orient v Chesterfield - the O's kick-off their League One campaign against last season's League Two champions Chesterfield. Having lost in last season's play-off final, the east London club will want to get off to a good start and justify the bookies' faith in them as being one of the main contenders for promotion. Expect this match to be tight - four of the last six meetings between the two have ended in draws. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

8. AFC Wimbledon v Shrewsbury Town - much has been made of the Dons' small budget so their continued survival in League Two is impressive. They came mighty close to dropping out of the Football League last season but stayed up and open this campaign against the Shrews who got relegated from League One. Rather than being predicted to struggle again, they are seen as being one of the most likely sides to mount a title challenge so should be worth a watch. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

9. Dartford v Wrexham - it's not looking too good for London's Conference Premier clubs with Dartford and Welling seen by the bookmakers as the two worst sides in the division. The Darts got relegated last season but financial problems at other clubs saw them reprieved. Welling didn't do too badly but their budget is tiny compared to the likes of new giants of the division Bristol Rovers and the many other full-time clubs they compete against. Wrexham are another big club and are unsurprisingly fancied to do well. Get down to Princes Park to see if Dartford can prove the doubters wrong. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

10. Wealdstone v Eastbourne Borough - after a pretty traumatic couple of decades, the Stones are back in the sixth tier of English football for the first time since 1992. After two years of failure in the Isthmian League play-offs, they won the title with relative ease last season to get back to a level which their fans will probably they feel they deserve to be at. As I've mentioned many times before, Wealdstone were the best team in non-league football nationwide for part of the '80s and although the landscape has changed massively since, they'll look to acquit themselves well at this level. They're not expected to be pushing for promotion this time round but I'm sure they'll make things difficult for several clubs. (Saturday 9 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 27 July 2014

TLFG: 28 July-3 August 2014

Greetings sports fans and welcome to TLFG.

Pre-season is now well under way and this week sees three of our local top-flight sides return to the capital to play a varying quality of opposition.

It's also the opening weekend of the Combined Counties League as competitive football also makes its return.

I'm not sure I'm going to get to see a game until the opening day of the Premier League in about three weeks time when I've managed to get a ticket for QPR's season opener against Hull City.

Having decided to forego a season ticket this year, I only went for membership and feared I might miss out in the scramble for tickets as the Premier League brings loads more fans to games.

Luckily my friends and I were on the ball and got in quick for game one and got some fairly easily for a very decent price of £30 (including a members' discount of £5). Given the negative ticket pricing stories emanating from QPR in recent years, I was pleasantly surprised by this.

Not long now!

Here's hoping the game is a lot better than our last two first-day matches in the Premier League - both ended in heavy home defeats to Bolton and Swansea, sides like Hull, who we would've thought we'd have had a chance against.

The rest of my week has been spent continuing to work towards Non-League Day on 6 September.

My main task has been putting the match map together. If you consider that compiling the weekly one I do for this blog takes about four hours, then doing one which covers the whole country is a mammoth task but one I find ultimately very satisfying. It is afterall, the key feature of NLD's website.

Said website will hopefully launch in the next few days and then we'll be into the final phase when things start to get really interesting...

That's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are over 90 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Yellow pin - Monday fixtures
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Purple pin - Thursday fixtures
Magenta pin - Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 28 July-3 August 2014 in a larger map

Next up is this week's TLFG match recommendations where I list a few games which I think could be worth a watch. If I miss one that you think should get a mention then add your own in the comments section below.

TLFG TOP 10

1. The Emirates Cup - Arsenal have been hosting four team pre-season tournaments on and off since the Makita International Tournament in 1991. In 2007 the popular Emirates Cup we have today got under way and has been contested every year since (bar 2012 because of the Olympics). This year's challengers to the Gunners are Benfica, Monaco and Valencia. There are two games a day over the weekend. As it stands, the Sunday has sold out and only a few are left for Saturday when it's Valencia v Monaco and Arsenal v Benfica.  (Saturday & Sunday 2-3 August from 2pm. Ticket info)

2. Brentford v Crystal Palace - the Bees have made a cracking start to pre-season with three consecutive wins over increasingly tougher opposition, scoring 11 goals in the process. On Tuesday they welcome Spanish club Osasuna before this London derby against the Eagles on Saturday. Tony Pulis guided Palace to a solid midtable finish in the Premier League last season and should be hard to beat again. I expect this to be quite a decent game and tickets are available from just £8. (Saturday 2 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

3. Leyton Orient v Queens Park Rangers - this really should also have been a Championship v Premier League London derby but the O's blew a 2-0 half-time lead in the League One play-off final in May to miss out on promotion. Instead we've still got an attractive battle of east versus west on Tuesday night. Russel Slade's side are unbeaten in their three games so far while QPR have enjoyed one win and one defeat from a trip to Germany. This is a first-team game for the Premier League side but given they're also playing at Southend 24 hours later, there's likely to be a fair amount of squad rotation going on. (Tuesday 29 July, 745pm. Ticket info)

4. Watford v Udinese - the fact that both clubs are owned by the Pozzo family is probably the main reason why this fixture has been arranged. It pits the Championship Hornets against the team from Italy's Serie A. Watford have crammed in seven games since the start of the month and are unbeaten but the Bianconeri are the highest calibre opponents they will have faced. The most notable thing about this match is that it's only £3 to get in with all profits going to charity. (Saturday 2 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

5. Millwall v Real Mallorca - I can't think of many better ways to begin a weekend of football watching than a night in balmy Bermondsey watching the Lions take on former Copa del Rey winners Real Mallorca. Ian Holloway's side finished only four points above the relegation zone last season whilst the Los Bermellones avoided the drop into Spain's third tier by just one point as they also had a season to forget. Tickets are available at a flat price of £10. (Friday 1 August, 745pm. Ticket info)

6. Barnet v Wycombe Wanderers - these two looked almost certain to be playing each other in the Conference this season. Wycombe began the final day of the League Two campaign in the relegation zone, three points adrift of safety.However, they pulled off a 3-0 win at bottom club Torquay while Bristol Rovers lost 1-0 at Mansfield to go down in their place on goal difference. Although Barnet didn't struggle to stay up last season, they did miss out on promotion by a comfortable margin. They've also suffered some bruising defeats in pre-season, most recently a 5-1 drubbing by Brentford at home on Tuesday. This game could be quite tight. (Saturday 2 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

7. Sutton United v Cambridge United - the hosts' pre-season campaign comes to a close with this game against League Two club Cambridge United. Paul Doswell's side have experienced a mixed bag of results over the last few weeks with three wins, a draw and two defeats. On Saturday they recorded a tidy 1-0 win at Isthmian League title contenders Maidstone United and next face Conference club Aldershot in another testing game. Cambridge have packed in seven games over the last two weeks suffering only one defeat to Ukrainian giants Shakhtar Donetsk so they should prove to be challenging opponents. (Saturday 2 August, 3pm. Club info)

8. Kingstonian v Dover Athletic - the K's had a fine season last time out, finishing second in the Isthmian League. Sadly they came unstuck in the play-offs, a result which saw long-serving manager Alan Dowson resign. Despite this disappointment, Kingstonian are fancied to do well again this year and are seen as London's best hope of winning the title. Dover are back in the Conference Premier after some fine late-season form guided them through the Conference South play-offs. The Whites should provide a good yardstick for the K's to measure themselves against as they also won the Isthmian League five years ago. (Saturday 2 August, 3pm. Ticket info)

9. Thurrock v Ebbsfleet United - in the division below Kingstonian, Thurrock are seen as being the best that the Greater London area has to offer. Ebbsfleet who play just across the Thames in Kent have been installed as Conference South title favourites so in essence we have two teams who should be in positive spirits preparing for what I think is fair to call a derby. Although two divisions currently separate them, they were both Conference South clubs in 2010/11. Both games that season ended in a draw. (Tuesday 29 July, 745pm. Club info)

10. Greenwich Borough v Dartford - last up this week we have this groundshare derby. Southern Counties East League side Greenwich play four divisions below Dartford but began an eye-catching groundshare at the Conference Premier club's fine Princes Park last season. This was primarily due to some wealthy new owners taking over at Borough. This summer they have made further headlines by signing former Brentford and Millwall striker Gary Alexander whilst they also failed in an attempt to bring in former Dutch star Edgar Davids. The Darts only avoided relegation last season courtesy of a reprieve so perhaps they'll have to watch their backs!  (Sunday 3 August, 1pm. Club info)

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

TLFG: 21-27 July 2014

Hi there and welcome to the latest edition of TLFG.

It's been a hot and steamy old week in London with hot days and thundery nights, very tropical.

There were also lots of games on, some of which drew capacity crowds.

The much anticipated friendly between AFC Wimbledon and Chelsea didn't disappoint as the League Two side raced into a 2-0 lead before three late goals (two from John Terry) proved to be their undoing.

A strong Arsenal side also drew a large attendance at Boreham Wood who were opening their new West Stand.

Did you go to a game? This week's schedule is absolutely packed with games but all our Premier League sides are off on foreign tours so it will be lower league clubs that take centre stage and the top clubs' reserve and youth sides.

The Non-League Day preparations have also continued this week with the main event being the release of the Isthmian, Northern Premier and Southern League fixtures.

Personally, this level of non-league football is the one I most identify with and enjoy. The clubs are a good size and admission remains at £10 or under which to me is crucial.

I've also done my first press interview of the new campaign for the Non League Paper and we've had a number of discussions with some other potential partners.

The hard work of getting all the matches on to the match map is the next challenge - it's simple enough but very time consuming with several hundred having to be added.

This afternoon we've got our biggest planning meeting yet as we move into the final six weeks of the campaign.

On the day itself I'm pretty certain I'll be off to Dulwich Hamlet v Hampton & Richmond Borough - a great host club, decent opponents and it's easy to get to.

Over the previous four years I've been to Hayes & Yeading United, Tooting & Mitcham United, Wealdstone and Harrow Borough so it will be good to visit another club and see how they do it.

That's it from me. Don't forget, you can get all the latest ticket information for our local clubs and other big games taking place in the capital on the 'Match Ticket Info' page .

GET INVOLVED
If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.


LATEST TICKET NEWS
Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.


THE WEEK AHEAD
There are over 90 matches in the London area over the next seven days so there's plenty to choose from whatever your budget.

However, please make sure you check with clubs before you travel just in case a game has been called off or venue has been changed. Also, please let me know if anything is wrong or missing.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

MATCH MAP
Green pin - Tuesday fixtures
Turquoise pin - Wednesday fixtures
Purple pin - Thursday fixtures
Magenta pin - Friday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures
Red pin - Sunday fixtures


View London match map 21-27 July 2014 in a larger map


Next up is this week's TLFG match recommendations where I list a few games which I think could be worth a watch. If I miss one that you think should get a mention then add your own in the comments section below.

TLFG TOP 10

1. Brentford v OGC Nice -  the friendly of the week sees Championship newcomers Brentford host Ligue 1 outfit Nice. After finishing runners-up to Wolves in League One last season, the Bees find themselves back in the second tier for the first time since 1993. Their pre-season began with a solid 3-1 win at Boreham Wood and they will travel to Barnet before hosting their first home game against Les Aiglons. The club from the Cote d'Azur narrowly avoided relegation from the French top flight last season so should provide interesting opposition. (Saturday 26 July, 4pm. Ticket info)

2. Dagenham & Redbridge v Colchester United - the Daggers have two home games this week but I've gone for this one over the match against MK Dons as it's an Essex derby. As usual, the League Two club have a packed pre-season schedule and will have played six times by the time of this match. They've made a disappointing start so far with four defeats from five against primarily non-league opposition. This week's games are against League One sides so hopefully they'll up their game. (Saturday 26 July, 3pm. Ticket info)

3. Barnet v Brentford - as recently as 2009 these two were rivals in League Two. The last five years have seen Barnet slide back into the Conference while Brentford have risen to the heady heights of the Championship meaning three divisions now separate them. Since Barnet's move to The Hive, only eight miles now lies between them so I think it's fair to call this a derby. Recent games have been tight with Brentford usually sneaking home by a one-goal margin. (Tuesday 22 July, 745pm. Ticket info)

4. Dartford v Gillingham - the Gills' tour of south-east London continues with a trip to Princes Park on Tuesday. Having been held to a 1-1 draw by Welling on Saturday, they face a similar challenge from fellow Conference outfit Dartford here. The Darts have lost twice against Football League opponents in recent days but only by narrow margins. This game against Peter Taylor's League One side will be their last home game before the new season so will hope to get a decent result. (Tuesday 22 July, 745pm. Ticket info)

5. Boreham Wood v Cambridge United - after hosting a strong Arsenal side on Saturday, this match is going to seem like a bit of comedown. The Wood opened their new stand against the Gunners and put on a good show in front of a big crowd as they lost 2-0. It will be great if a few people who turned up to watch that game are tempted to return to Meadow Park for the visit of League Two Cambridge who are the lowest ranked side they've played in pre-season so far. United, however, have been banging in goals for fun recently and held La Liga club Espanyol to a 2-2 draw on Saturday. (Tuesday 22 July, 730pm. Club info)

6. Thurrock v Portsmouth - one of the more unusual match-ups of the summer sees Isthmian League Division 1 North club Thurrock host League Two Pompey. Four divisions currently separate the clubs but it should be many more when you consider Portsmouth were a Premier League side as recently as 2010. Terrible financial mismanagement robbed them of that status and they plunged down the pyramid, even flirting with relegation to the Conference last season. Thurrock have also had a traumatic time of late, suffering back-to-back relegations in 2011/12 and 2012/13. They steadied the ship last season and almost went back up and will hope for better this time. (Tuesday 22 July, 745pm. Ticket info)

7. Sutton United v West Ham United XI - the U's have enjoyed successful run-outs against youthful sides from Chelsea and Reading so far so it will be interesting to see how they fare against a development side from West Ham. With the first team on tour in New Zealand, don't expect to see any household names on show but you could see a star of the future as they look to emerge from the Hammers' famous academy system. (Wednesday 23 July, 745pm. Club info)

8. Wealdstone v Watford U21 - the Stones romped to a 4-0 win over local rivals Harrow Borough on Saturday suggesting they could give this Hornets side a tough evening. Wealdstone have struck up a good relationship with Watford, a club they used to groundshare with, in recent seasons so a reasonable turnout should be expected. One or two first-team players could even make the visitors' squad as they don't have any other games on around then. (Wednesday 23 July, 745pm. Ticket info)

9. Harrow Borough v Arsenal XI - after their dreadful start against Wealdstone, Boro will have to really up their game as they face back-to-back matches against a good St Albans City side and this development squad from Arsenal. Glamour friendlies like these often don't prove much on the field but provide a vital source of income to the host clubs. It was a game like this that inspired me to set up Non-League Day originally. If you're an Arsenal fan who can't make it over to New York for the first team game, please give this one a try instead. (Saturday 26 July, 3pm. Club info)

10. Millers Challenge Invitational - pre-season mini tournaments are becoming ever more popular and over in Essex we've got this fine looking event this weekend. Aveley play host as four neighbouring clubs from the Isthmian League go head-to-head over two days. Rather than being a knockout competition with semi-finals, this takes on an Emirates Cup format with points awarded for wins, draws and goals scored. East Thurrock United, Grays Athletic and Romford provide the opposition with games kicking off at 1pm and 330pm on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are available game-by-game, by the day or all weekend. (Saturday & Sunday 26-27 July from 1pm. Match info)

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.