THERE aren’t many people from Anglesey in this day and age who can say they’ve played at the highest level of Welsh football. However, John Littlemore is one of those who can.
Having grown up with him throughout primary school in Benllech, it was clear to me from a very young age that he was destined to be a footballer – as he was streets ahead of the rest of us.
To the point where it was always an honour whenever any of us were chosen to play for his team at break/lunch time. On the opposite spectrum, I think I only ever beat his team once during those days but that memory of that particular lunchtime at Ysgol Goronwy Owen has stuck with me forever!
Now 24 like myself, Littlemore has gone on to achieve exceptional things during a glistening football career in Wales. A strong and powerful forward, he’s been a quality to addition to any every side he’s been at to date.
His journey into men’s football officially began in 2010 with Anglesey League side Llandegfan Football Club, who had a talented squad of by-now recognisable names on their books at the time (see last article I wrote for a bit of reference). After a season there, he joined local club Bro Goronwy FC, where he spent two successful seasons before going on to play for Bangor City in 2012.
At Nantporth, he progressed through the youth ranks into the first team, where he eventually made six appearances.
In 2014, a brief spell at Glantraeth was followed by a return to Bro Goronwy before he moved down South to attend Cardiff Metropolitan University in a move which would prove to be the most important one of his journey to date.
Whilst over there, he was selected to play for Cardiff Met Uni FC. During his two-and-a-half year stint at Cyncoed Campus, he helped The Archers achieved promotion to the Welsh Premier League (now Cymru Premier) and ended up playing over 20 times in Wales’ highest division. His finest moment for the club came when he netted in a 4-0 win over his former team Bangor City.
Once that dream came to an end following his graduation, John moved back up North and instantly secured a move to Huws Gray Alliance (now Cymru North) side Holyhead Hotspur. Despite re-occurring injury problems at times, he still managed to show his class at The Oval.
He became a Hotspur fans’ favourite with some determined performances and plenty of goals to his name. He also earned himself the Player of the Month award on several occasions.
The summer of 2019 bought about some new memories and new challenges for the forward.
Littlemore was, for the third time, selected to represent the Ynys Mon Men’s squad (below) who were playing on home soil in the Inter Island Games Football Tournament. He played a big role in Campbell Harrison’s team as they both entertained and surprised everyone to go on and secure the gold medals in what was a historic month for Anglesey as a whole.
Littlemore was quick to praise the standard of his Mon team-mates when speaking to AFE at the time of the tournament. He said: “I was selected to represent the squad at Jersey 2015 and Gotland 2017 but this is definitely the best one I’ve been involved with. We have a good mix of youth and experienced players who will all fight endlessly for the badge on the shirt and for one another too. The lads bounce off each other and we expect high standards at every session and going into games.”
The influence of those around him, along with Hotspur’s relegation from Cymru North, may have gone some way to persuading the striker to leave the club for Porthmadog in the summer. Once at Y Traeth, he teamed up with fellow Mon gold medallists Mel McGinness, Paul Pritchard and Jay Gibbs.
Despite a tough start to life in Cymru North (with the club sitting on eight points in their first 11 games), Littlemore has been a frequent feature under Sion Eifion Jones at Port and will be hoping to help the club push themselves further up the table as the campaign goes on.
He’s a fantastic player who can make a real difference on his day and you can never question his desire to win. He was one of the very first players I interviewed when I first started my blog and it’s been great keeping an eye on his progress ever since.
And at 24 years of age, I’m sure he has a lot more to give too!