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Glenthorne celebrating their 2011 division three title win

One of the Maccabi Southern Football League’s biggest clubs has folded, bringing to an end 40 years of Jewish club football.

Glenthorne, who were formed in the 1970s, fielded A and B teams in last season’s first and second division, but have this week said a lack of players means they’re unable to continue running the sides. Their A team players will now join up with their former East London rivals Redbridge.

The club won nine league championships – including landing three consecutive premier division and Cyril Anekstein cup doubles in their heyday of the mid- 1980’s.

Dropping down the divisions over recent years, their last silverware saw both their A and B teams win division three titles in consecutive years, in the 2010/11 and 2011/12 seasons.

Adam Shafron, who was in charge of the A team last season, announced: “Glenthorne will not have any men’s teams in next season’s MSFL. It’s a shame, but both teams were struggling for numbers so the club have decided to withdraw both men’s teams.

“The A team players will now merge with Redbridge A. Sam Rosenthal will take charge of the side, with Eilon Kennet,who was in charge of Redbridge last season leaving the club.”

Redbridge chairman Jon Jacobs will take charge of the Redbridge B team, and announcing the change in management, said: “As a leadership team, we have decided to make a few changes to our football management.

“The A team will be managed by Samwho joins us having previously successfully managed Glenthorne A. We would like to wish him a lot of luck and success in his new role whilst also taking this opportunity to thank Eilon for his contribution to our success over the last few seasons. I would also like to thank Danny Berg for playing such a pivotal role in the A team management for the past six years. I look forward to his continued hard work and participation at RJC.”

Commenting on the loss of Glenthorne, MSFL chairman David Wolff said: “It’s all very sad. Redbridge don’t have enough players to sustain two teams and Glenthorne are in a similar position. Redbridge then swallow up Glenthorne players to boost their squads and two teams of Glenthorne disappear. There will be two Redbridge teams, and no Glenthorne team. There may be a new team in the East End, but I don’t know yet.

“It’s always sad to lose clubs like this but that’s the way it’s going right now unfortunately. As it stands, I don’t even know how many clubs we’ll have in the League next season.”