Co­duri is proud to lay claim to his­toric goal

Yorkshire Post - Sports Monday - - FOOTBALL -

JOR­DAN CO­DURI, a 25-year-old mid­fielder with non-league Peni­s­tone Church, wrote him­self into White Rose folk­lore yes­ter­day by scor­ing York­shire’s first goal on their in­ter­na­tional foot­ball de­but, against the Isle of Man.

The match, watched by a crowd of around 500 at the home of Hemsworth Min­ers’ Wel­fare FC, and recog­nised by CONIFA, a fed­er­a­tion for teams from “na­tions, de-facto na­tions, re­gions, mi­nor­ity peo­ples and sports-iso­lated ter­ri­to­ries”, ended 1-1 af­ter Furo Davies had scored ear­lier for the vis­i­tors.

While some had mocked the am­bi­tions of York­shire to en­ter the in­ter­na­tional stage, there was no doubt­ing the en­thu­si­asm of the bois­ter­ous crowd or the un­paid play­ers, plucked en­tirely from lo­cal non-league out­fits, in­clud­ing Co­duri, who said the chance to claim the his­tory-mak­ing opener had played on his mind.

Co­duri said: “When the op­por­tu­nity to play for York­shire came up I jumped at the chance. The lads had all been talk­ing about who might get that first goal, and noth­ing has made me prouder than to take that op­por­tu­nity.”

White Rose flags and a cou­ple of desul­tory light-blue flares blended with the bil­low­ing smoke from a burn-up on an ad­ja­cent al­lot­ment as York­shire’s un­likely odyssey be­gan, al­beit with­out the promised pre-match an­them of ‘Ilk­ley Moor Bah’t Tat’, the an­thems can­celled due to a dou­ble-book­ing of the ex­pected brass band.

Pie and peas did a roar­ing trade in the club­house and a tight-fisted raf­fle prize that seemed oddly suited to the oc­ca­sion – “10 Stella, four John Smith’s and a box of York­shire tea” – was hawked by en­thu­si­as­tic club of­fi­cials around the touch­lines.

Col­lec­tors clam­oured for the his­toric match pro­gramme, of which only 200 were printed, and in which York­shire chair­man Phil He­garty wrote: “I al­ways knew we’d reach the des­ti­na­tion – York­shire has a pow­er­ful brand – but just never dreamed it would hap­pen so soon.”

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