an unofficial website
HIGHLIGHTS ON TVThe BBC has confirmed that it will come to Moss Lane to check the facilities this week but, all things being equal, they will record highlights of our game against Millwall on 10 November for inclusion in Match of the Day.
Meanwhile the club awaits confirmation of the policing arrangements. Millwall sources expect around 750 of their supporters to travel to Altrincham.
ALTY v MILLWALLInformation on arrangements for the Alty v Millwall game is here.
THE MAN IN CHARGEThe referee for Altrincham's game against Histon on Saturday is Mr W. Barratt from Halesowen in the West Midlands.
OLD BOYSLewis Chalmers was sent off for Aldershot last night against Crawley Town in the FA Cup.
In last night's match between our neighbours Trafford and Glossop North End, there was a host of ex-Alty players on show. Trafford, managed by Ged Kielty had as captain Simon Woodford, whilst on the left was Scott Metcalfe, an Alty Reserve last season. When Metcalfe got injured, on came Sean Smith whilst another used sub was former Alty Youth player Dion Depieaza. Glossop had Steve Lunt (right) up front, former Youth team keeper Stefan Fielding and, at left-back, Kelvin Lugsden. Trafford won the game 3-1.
GET YOUR DIRECTORY NOWCopies of the Non League Club Directory, 2008 are now available for collection or purchase at the club. The price is £19.95 of which a small commission goes to Altrincham FC. The Directory's Regional Awards for clubs who have achieved "outstanding succces" in the period 1978-2008 included, for the North West, Altrincham and, for the East Midlands, Histon who are, coincidentally, playing each other this Saturday.
AUSSIES FOLLOW ALTYFrom Down UnderABC reports that "Cricket stars back Popeye's FA Cup bid. Australian cricket stars have given their support to a tiny English football team's bid for FA Cup glory. Adam Gilchrist and Jason Gillespie have sent good luck messages to Altrincham chairman Geoffrey Goodwin, who drove the Aussie cricket team's bus around England during the 2005 Ashes series, after hearing his non-league club had reached the FA Cup first round.Mr Goodwin got on so well with the the Australian players that they nicknamed him 'Popeye' and have stayed in touch since the tour.
They did not forget their old mate after Altrincham, who play in the English National Conference, was drawn against Millwall - FA Cup runners-up in 2004. Mr Goodwin, whose club earned their tie against League One Millwall after a 1-0 win over Kendal Town in the fourth qualifying round, told The Sun newspaper: 'I've already had good luck messages from Adam Gilchrist and Jason Gillespie and I expect one from our good friend Glenn McGrath. My prayers have been answered for once and no one deserves it more than our manager Graham Heathcote. We are a family club and will welcome the Millwall fans, although the police bill will be high'".
GRAHAM "SICK OF CONTROVERSY"Brian Flynn has interviewed Alty boss Graham Heathcote on Clubcall (details, left). "I'm sick of being embroiled in controversy" said the Alty boss - to find out why, ring Clubcall. Brian writes that "There is quite a long interview on ClubCall with Graham Heathcote stating exactly what happened & what was said after the final whistle on Saturday.The second part of the interview will be on ClubCall on Thursday for those people who would prefer just to hear Graham's views on what happened on the pitch after the game or would prefer to listen to the interview in two parts. Graham doesn't pull any punches throughout!"
SAM reports that "Graham Heathcote has accused Kendal manager Lee Ashcroft of 'despicable' behaviour after the two became embroiled in an altercation following Alty's 1-0 FA Cup win. The Robins' boss had to be restrained by his own players and staff when Ashcroft appeared to taunt him after the final whistle. As a result, Heathcote and his players left Cumbria without indulging in any post-match hospitality and he said the incident soured an otherwise enjoyable day. 'Lee is claiming that he just called me a big-time Charlie but both of us know that's not true and anyway, how can I be a big-time Charlie? I wasn't the one talking about playing Leeds, Forest or Grimsby in the next round. I was the one who had to go to him to shake his hand after the game and I didn't make any comments to him. But what he said to me will live with him throughout his career in football. It was the most despicable thing you could say to another manager, although I probably shouldn't have reacted the way I did. Leaving Kendal early was the sensible thing to do and I'll be phoning their chairman to apologise for not staying to enjoy the food they'd laid on for us. The referee heard everything that was said after the game and told me if I wanted to take it any further, I could. But I'm not going to, we did what we went out there to do and I'm just going to put it behind me now'.
Although Alty's Fourth Qualifying Round victory was far from convincing, Heathcote was pleased with the application and desire shown by his players. Avoiding an upset was priority number one, meaning the Robins can now enjoy a First Round tie against 2004 finalists Millwall. 'People are saying we played badly but I don't know what they expect because I was never naïve enough to think it would be an easy game', said Heathcote. 'My logic was that if we didn't concede then we'd be in the hat for the First Round come 5.10pm, whether through a win or a draw, and that's what mattered. No matter who plays who, the FA Cup is littered with upsets and we didn't one to be on the receiving end of one. We went and did a job. They huffed and puffed and had pressure late on in the game but we handled it. We didn't go chasing the game because it was a cup tie and they needed two goals to go through. I was pleased with the players, they kept their discipline and shape, they closed down and were tenacious'".
BSP NEWSCongratulations to Burton Albion as the Burton Mail reports that "Albion have turned down a £5,000 television fee to stay loyal to a local charity. Setenta Sports wanted the Blue Square Premier clash against Forest Green Rovers at the Pirelli Stadium brought forward by 48 hours for live coverage on Thursday, December 6. But Albion are already committed to hosting a St Giles' Hospice fund-raising event on that date. Chairman Ben Robinson said: 'Setanta had our game against Forest Green on their list of live games, but we're fully committed to an event that has been booked for several months. It does mean we will lose the broadcasting fee, but we feel it is more important that the St Giles' charity and its 200 guests are not disappointed'. Forest Green will visit the Pirelli on Saturday, December 8, as planned... [Manager Nigel] Clough said last night: 'We were a bit depleted at training today because of knocks picked up against Tamworth in the FA Cup'. Skipper Darren Stride and midfielders Mark Greaves and John McGrath all limped out of the fourth qualifying round tie, while targetman Jake Edwards aggravated a persistent ankle injury".
Blue Square Football says that "Oxford United have secured the services of QPR youngster Kieron St Aimie on a two-month loan deal. The 18-year-old is described as a tough tackling, hard-working player who can operate across the midfield. St Aimie is expected to make his debut in Tuesday evening's clash against Rushden & Diamonds and he will link up with fellow QPR loanee Stefan Bailey, who joined the U's earlier this month. He has made three appearances for Rangers this season".
There is a chairman's statement on the website of Farsley Celtic which says: "As reported in earlier editions of this evening's Yorkshire Evening Post, the club confirmed today that permission had been given for Lee Sinnott to speak with Port Vale concerning their vacant managerial position, but that Port Vale were taking their interest no further. Andy Firbank, Celtic's chairman explained: 'The board of directors gave Port Vale Football Club permission to speak with Lee Sinnott in connection with their vacant manager's position, with permission expiring at 12.30pm yesterday. Port Vale have subsequently confirmed that they will be taking their interest no further and the board is delighted to confirm that Lee remains Farsley Celtic manager with the full backing and confidence of the board . With a cup replay this evening, and an important local derby on Sunday it is pleasing to now bring an end to the speculation and concentrate on these important fixtures'".
The Yorkshire Evening Post adds that "It will be business as usual for Lee Sinnott at Barrow this evening after Port Vale withdrew their interest in appointing the Farsley Celtic boss as their new manager... Celtic chairman Andy Firbank was informed later in the afternoon Vale wouldn't be pursuing their interest in the former Bradford City, Huddersfield Town and Watford player. The Yorkshire Evening Post understands Sinnott – tipped to be on a shortlist of two – was first choice for high-ranking members of the board at Vale Park but despite meetings over the weekend they couldn't come to a unanimous decision and they have now seemingly gone back to the drawing board... Firbank said: 'We have now been informed they have withdrawn their interest in our manager and this matter is now closed'"
Meanwhile This is Staffs says that "Port Vale chairman Bill Bratt has revealed financial concerns are holding up the appointment of a new manager. The board delayed a decision on their new boss after a meeting on Sunday to discuss their shortlist, which is headed by Farsley Celtic boss Lee Sinnott and Vale caretaker manager Dean Glover. And Bratt confirmed last night money will play a major part in the board's final decision. He explained: 'It is complicated because there are so many factors to take into consideration, not least the money side. There would be no use committing to something and then finding out we have to pay £250,000. That has to be discussed and gone into'. For example, should Vale opt for Sinnott - and the club have yet to confirm whether he is their preferred choice - they would have to pay compensation to Farsley Celtic and could also have to pay off their existing staff if the 42-year-old wants to bring in his own coaches. However, Vale will have to apply to Farsley to interview Sinnott again as permission to speak to him lapsed yesterday... Bratt said: 'We would have to go back and ask for another seven days, but we are working on it at the moment'. Sinnott refused to comment, but his chairman, Andy Firbank, confirmed, 'He is a contracted manager so, if he were to go, compensation would be required'".
The Cambridge Evening News states that "Histon fans have been treated to seeing their heroes slay two of the Blue Square Premier's big-hitters this season. Former League clubs Oxford and Kidderminster were both dispatched by Steve Fallon's men at the Glass World Stadium, while Torquay were fortunate to escape with a 5-4 win. But the Bridge Road faithful were made to sweat for an hour as FA Cup minnows Bamber Bridge put on a fine display before being steamrollered by the Stutes in the final 30 minutes. The visitors, who are third in the Unibond First Division North, were by far the better team in the first half as they got the ball on the deck and passed it around nicely, with the nimble-footed Tom Ince and former England under-18s striker Alex Porter, showing good awareness and plenty of skill. Histon, who were without suspended striker Cliff Akurang, looked ordinary and their direct approach was totally ineffective, with Antonio Murray and Danny Wright easily kept under wraps by Steve Williams and Adam Tong. But Murray gave the hosts the lead against the run of play just before the break when he headed home from close range following an Adrian Cambridge long throw... It was the Stutes who bossed the second half and sealed a trip to Notts County in the next round".
From the Northwich Guardian we learn that "Taxpayers' money will not pay for pitches at Northwich Victoria until they are built. Borough councillors agreed in February to award a £50,000 grant to the Blue Square Premier club for two new all weather pitches at their Wincham home. Not a penny has been handed over yet. And if work does not start soon, the club risks losing the money altogether. 'Payments are made retrospectively', said a council spokesman on Friday. Chairman Mike Connett said in August that the pitches would be ready by Christmas. That deadline has now been pushed back to next year. He originally asked for £195,000 from the public purse through the borough council's Rural Delivery Programme, the rules of which say applicants must meet strict criteria within a year of the grant being approved or their allocation will be spent on other projects in the scheme... The club had hoped for a further handout from the Football Foundation to cover a much larger part of the estimated £850,000 cost. The Guardian has learned that the sports charity did sign off a £200,000 grant in June but no visible work has been done at the Victoria Stadium despite planners granting permission for the pitches, including floodlights, changing rooms and a fitness suite, in May... Mr Connett will cease to be the chairman on Friday when Vics are due to enter administration after running up debts approaching £500,000. The council has always referred to Northwich Victoria as the applicant and not Beaconet Limited, another of Mr Connett's companies that owns the land on which the ground is built. Should a consortium of Manchester businessmen take over the club as expected then the club will become tenants of Beaconet, much in the same way it is now".
This is Staffs claims that "Stafford Rangers' FA Cup hopes have been hit hard by the injury to striker Marco Adaggio... The teenager was carried off with a suspected broken leg in Saturday's 1-1 draw... A worried manager Phil Robinson said X-rays on Adaggio had revealed no break, but said: 'It could be worse, depending on what is going on inside his knee. Marco has damaged the knee, but we won't know until later this week how bad it is'. The injury leaves the way clear for either David McNiven's return following a back complaint, or Nathan Smith's first start in more than 18 months".
From This is South Devon, we learn that "The BBC's decision to pick Torquay United's FA Cup-tie against Yeovil Town for live TV coverage will boost the Gulls' Cup windfall through the £100,000 mark. Both United and League One Yeovil will receive £75,000 as their share of BBC1 TV rights when the all-West Country First Round tie is broadcast to the nation and beyond on Sunday, November 11 (KO 3.15pm)... The Blue Square Premier leaders have already earned £10,000 as their prize for beating Bath City 2-0 in last Saturday's Fourth Qualifying Round, plus a 40 per cent share of the 2,149 gate receipts. With a big crowd expected for the Yeovil tie, United's finances will have received a timely boost to help fuel their promotion bid. And there is also a £16,000 prize at stake for reaching Round Two... Following talks with safety and police representatives, United were waiting for Yeovil's agreement before announcing ticket details".
30 October 2007
FA CUP REPLAYSFA Cup 4th Qualifying Round
GAME CONFIRMED AT MOSS LANEFollowing meetings with relevant parties this morning, Altrincham FC confirms that the FA Cup match against Millwall will take place at Moss Lane on Saturday, 10 November at 3pm. It is hoped that tickets will be available for sale at Moss Lane from this Friday but details will be confirmed later about this. If a replay is necessary, it will be on Tuesday 20 November.
YOUTH TEAMThere is now a report on the Altrincham Youth team's win over FC United of Manchester last Sunday on the Youth Page.
Alty Youth reserve goalkeeper Lee Berrill has been named in the Merseyside Schools under-16s squad. Steven Crane has been named in the Manchester & District FA side and Sam Madeley has joined Tom Bailey in the English Colleges trials.
UNFAMILIAR OPPONENTSAfter a home match two weeks ago against a team with a new name (Ebbsfleet United), and a visit last Saturday to Kendal Town for the first time since they changed their name from Netherfield, Alty face two completely new opponents on the next two Saturdays. First of all we travel to Histon this Saturday for a BSP league game. Then, we entertain League One side Millwall in the FA Cup.
A page dedicated to the forthcoming FA Cup tie with Millwall, may be found here. This will be updated as details of the match arrangements are made clear.
Before then we travel to Cambridgeshire - not apparently to Histon but to Impington as Wikipedia explains... "Histon and Impington are villages in Cambridgeshire, England, They are situated just north of Cambridge, the main bulk of the settlements being separated from the city by the A14, However Impington is contrary to popular opinion on both sides of this road. Over the years the two villages have grown and entwined together, to such an extent that many villagers today do not know where one ends and the other begins. They contain a combined total of six pubs: The Red Lion, The Barley Mow, The Boot, The Railway Vue, The King William, and the The Rose and Crown. They have a Nursery, Infants, Junior, and Secondary school. The East of England Development Agency is based in Histon and it is the location of the radio station Q103, which covers Cambridge, Ely, Newmarket, Huntingdon and Royston and is part of Gcap Media plc.
Impington is also the home of Histon Football Club and their Glassworld Stadium. In 2006-07 they played in and won the Football Conference South Division, securing promotion to the Football Conference National Division for the 2007-2008 season".
Wikipedia adds that the Chivers jam brand was founded in Impington and ultimately became part of Schweppes in 1959. "The 1980s saw an end to the old factory. In a management buy out the old factory site was sold to developers and a new five million pound factory was built at the rear of the property (now owned by Premier Foods and producing Sun-Pat peanut butter and Smash as well as jams), the vision park was built on the old site, as for the railway all rail services stopped in 1992. The track bed is now being taken up to make way for a new guided bus system which will be the largest such service in Europe, unfortunately despite a campaign to save Histon’s 160 year old station this is to be demolished this year to make way of the guided bus car park". Coinciding with Alty's visit to Histon on Saturday, the Cambridgeshire village is witnessing the start of works on the guided bus system this week.
Howard Watts's record of previous Altrincham games on this Saturday's date, 3 November, is here..
EFFECTIVE, NOT PRETTYAfter Saturday's win at Kendal, Graham Heathcote told the Manchester Evening News, "We weren't pretty but we were effective and our reward is a fantastic draw against a well-known club who, like ourselves, are having problems in the league. That said, the reputation of Altrincham FC is built on FA Cup success and this tie offers our current crop of players the chance to become part of this club's great Cup tradition". Altrincham are the current Non-League club with most League club scalps in the FA Cup, having disposed of sixteen League teams in their history, as the following record shows:
NOT ON TVAny hopes that Altrincham v Millwall might get televised seem to have disappeared as the NL Daily says that "The FA have confirmed the selected games from the First Round Proper of the FA Cup that will be screened live on television, with former Conference outfit Hereford United hosting Leeds United and Yeovil Town travelling to Blue Square Premier side Torquay United...
29 October 2007
FINALIZING ARRANGEMENTSAltrincham FC are meeting the police and other relevant parties tomorrow morning to finalize arrangements for the FA Cup match against Millwall. Once details emerge, they will appear on the website.
MILLWALL GAMEArrangements for the FA Cup 1st Round match between Altrincham and Millwall at Moss Lane will not be finalised until early this week, after discussions with the relevant authorities. Currently the game is set for Saturday 10 November at 3pm. However, the following details have been issued by Altrincham FC vice-chairman Grahame Rowley:
The game will be all ticket with no tickets available on the day of the game
It is hoped that tickets will be available from the end of this week. The offices will be open over next weekend and also probably each weekday night till 8pm (providing enough volunteers to staff the desk can be found). Times of sale to be confirmed. Postal applications can be sent to the ground (Altrincham FC, Moss Lane, Altrincham WA15 8AP) immediately and tickets will be dispatched a.s.a.p.. Please add £2 for Recorded Delivery. Those who wish to use this facility should note that their cheque must be banked and funds cleared before the tickets will be dispatched.
Season ticket holders in the stand at Moss Lane will be able to purchase their normal league-game seat for the Millwall game up to Monday 5th November. After that date, seats normally occupied by season ticketholders for league games will be sold to applicants on a first come, first served basis. Individuals will be able to purchase up to six tickets each for the game.
More information will follow as and when available.
Millwall FC has various fans' forums, including the following:
BSP NEWSThe much heralded "bIg-signing" by Crawley Town is revealed by the BBC, which says that "Milton Keynes Dons' Gambia-born winger Mustapha Carayol has joined Crawley Town on a month's loan. Crawley boss Steve Evans announced on Friday that he had signed a player, but refused to disclose his identity before Saturday's FA Cup tie with Aldershot... and [he] marked his debut with a goal in the 1-1 draw. He joined Milton Keynes from Swindon on a two-year deal in August".
Blue Square Football says that "Cambridge United manager Jimmy Quinn has moved quickly to reassure U's fans he is not interested in the managerial vacancy at Port Vale. Following newspaper reports linking him with the Vale Park hotseat, Quinn told his club's official website: ' haven't applied for it. Someone's spoken to the chairman on my behalf, but I can assure Cambridge fans that I'm not going anywhere. I live 15 minutes down the road from Port Vale, but they're down at the wrong end of the league. I don't want to go into a club that's struggling. Our chairman had a phone call from Gillingham and he turned that down. I could have pursued it, but I don't want to go to Gillingham either. When you're doing well, you always get people ringing you. I'm building something here and it's not finished yet'".
Marco Adaggio of Stafford Rangers was carried off with a suspected broken leg in Saturday's draw with Cambridge Utd in the FA Cup
More Setanta TV live BSP matches have been announced -
28 October 2007
YOUTHS BEAT FCUM
Right: Alty Youth's left winger Daniel Killilea in action against FC United.
Altrincham Youth beat FC United of Manchester Youth 2-0 in the NW Youth Alliance Open Cup today, thanks to goals from Tom Bailey and Gavin O'Connor. Report to follow. Their next match is at home to Bootle next Sunday.
ON THE ROADAltrincham pay their first ever visit to the Glassworld Stadium at Histon, near Cambridge, next Saturday. STAR is running a supporters' coach, details of which are here. Fares are set at levels which may be reduced depending on the numbers travelling. Already this season the travel coordinator, Tom Jacobs, has twice applied a fare reduction on the day of travel so please come along and help to keep prices down by using the Go Goodwins coach.
DAVID DAWSONAltrincham FC sends its condolences to Neil and Debbie Dawson and family on the death of Neil's father, David, aged 67. For 61 years of his life David was an Altrincham FC supporter and he passed on the tradition to Neil. Neil is a tireless supporter of the club and plays a maor role in hosting sponsors at all of Altrincham's home games, whilst Debbie has the Golf Road End at Moss Lane named after her, following a STAR (supporters' trust) raffle. Everyone who wishes to do so is more than welcome to attend the funeral service, which will be on Wednesday (31st) at St Hugh's RC Church, West Timperley at 12.15pm and then at Dunham Lawns crematorium. Donations in memory of David Dawson to the Renal Unit at Wythenshawe Hospital wil be very welcome.
Above: Action from a very damp Kendal.
As a result of Saturday's win at Kendal, The Observer will be following Altrincham's progress in the FA Cup. The paper has been following a team from the start of the FA Cup competition this season and Kendal were the club on which they focussed on Saturday. The paper's report on the match has three colour photos of the game, including one showing Alty fans and another depicting Warren Peyton. Its report says that Kendal "in Peter Wright and Gareth Arnison possess a decent pair of strikers worthy of a higher level... Kendal battled hard and were worth at least a draw.... The pressure ultimately proved too much for Altrincham manager Graham Heathcote who, on the final whistle, had to be physically prevented from attacking Lee Ashcroft [Kendal's manager] by several of his players. 'All I said was that he was behaving lie a big-time Charlie and had been all day' said Ashcroft. Afterwards Altrincham's players, coaching staff and directors left without staying for the post-match food that had been laid on, much to the disgust of Town's entourage. So much for the spirit of the FA Cup". This mild version of what the Kendal manager allegedly said does not tally with reports from the Altrincham side and, clearly, whatever was actually said, Graham Heathcote found it highly insulting. Ashcroft ended his interview with The Observer by saying "The better side has lost, without a doubt".
From This is the Lake District we read that "Kendal Town's FA Cup adventure ended in acrimony as the Altrincham manager Graham Heathcote had to be restrained by his own staff after apparently taking exception to something said to him by Kendal manager Lee Ashcroft at the final whistle. That apart, Kendal had played a memorable part in producing a gripping fourth qualifying round tie that was decided by a solitary goal in Altrincham's favour, scored after 32 minutes by Colin Little. Kendal had their chances... But it was Altrincham who broke the deadlock... Altrincham, struggling in the Blue Square Premier League, revealed much less enterprise in the second half as they guarded the lead with a packed defence and Kendal enjoyed lengthy periods of dominance. But it was from setpieces that the home side threatened most with free kicks from Michael Cole and Callum Warburton just failing to find the net... The Cup adventure ended with perhaps more passion and emotion than necessary after the final whistle, but it was a great game for the crowd of 641".
MILLWALL IN NEXT ROUNDAltrincham have drawn a home tie against League One side Millwall in the FA Cup First Round, to be played on the weekend of 9-11 November. The Robins will be hoping that the draw does not end up the way it did for Conference South side Havant and Waterlooville who likewise drew Millwall in the FA Cup, at home, last season. Then, the BBC reported that "Havant & Waterlooville have been left £10,000 out of pocket after their 2-1 FA Cup defeat by Millwall. The Conference South club were forced to move the first-round tie from their Westleigh Park stadium. But the switch to Portsmouth's Fratton Park meant a break-even figure of £25,000 but a £35,000 police bill. 'Just about everybody in football - even police I've spoken to - thinks it's absolutely scandalous', secretary Trevor Brock told BBC Five Live. 'We must be the first team playing in the FA Cup against a League team that has lost money'" reported BBC Sport.
Also on that game last year, The Times added that "The winners at Fratton Park last night were Millwall, who beat Havant & Waterlooville in their first-round tie at Fratton Park, and the Hampshire constabulary, which pocketed £35,000 for policing the match, after refusing to allow it to go ahead as scheduled at West Leigh Park. The losers were common sense and the Nationwide Conference South side, who battled hard but are out of the Cup and at least £10,000 out of pocket. 'That has been disappointing', Ian Baird, the Havant manager, said. 'For this to be made a Category C game, which is one level below an England international game, is astonishing'. His club needed an attendance of 7,800 at Portsmouth’s ground to break even, but drew only 5,793. Rows of empty seats in the visitors’ enclosure mocked the police’s ludicrous “intelligence” reports that 2,500 would make the trip from South Bermondsey. Millwall’s own estimate, which turned out to be highly accurate, had been that about 500 would travel. 'Thirty-five grand? You’re having a laugh', a half-empty Fratton End sang. A replay would have replenished the coffers, and it would have been richly deserved. There was little evidence of the difference of 56 places in the league pyramid between Havant and the 2004 finalists, and it took a spectacular volleyed goal from Alan Dunne to send Millwall through".
The Sale and Altrincham Messenger reports that "Altrincham were handed a bumper first round tie against 2004 finalists Millwall. The Robins were drawn at home to the League One club in Saturday evening's draw after beating Kendal Town 1-0 in the fourth qualifying round. It is the first time they have reached the first round since 2001, when they beat Lancaster City after a replay. That was the same year Alty hosted Darlington in the second round, when more than 3,000 people packed into Moss Lane as FA Cup fever gripped the fans. They eventually lost that tie 2-1, their only goal coming from Mark Maddox .And the club will be hoping for a repeat of those scenes, if not the result, this time round with the Londoners expected to bring a sizeable following to Cheshire. Millwall are currently struggling at the foot of League One and have not won a game away from home all season. Senior player Richard Shaw was recently appointed caretaker manager at the club after previous boss Willie Donachie was sacked earlier this month. But despite an initial upturn in results, Millwall lost their first game under Shaw on Saturday, falling 4-2 at Leeds United. They have a good Cup pedigree, however, having reached the final in 2004, where they lost 3-0 to Manchester United".
Three immediate Altrincham/Millwall player links that come to mind are:
MILLWALL THIS WEEKENDAs for our next cup opponents, they seem as susceptible to conceding bursts of goals as we were against Salisbury and Ebbsfleet recently. The Millwall site reports on the 4-2 defeat at Leeds. "Three goals in seven crazy second-half minutes cost Millwall dear as The Lions slipped to their first defeat in three games... Despite a barn-storming finish to the match, it was simply too much to ask for The Lions to claw back a further two goals with those seven mad minutes sadly proving so very costly. Millwall: Pidgeley, Senda, Frampton, Fuseini (Simpson, 61mins), Robinson, Shaw, Dunne, Alexander, Hoskins, O'Hara, Brkovic. Subs not used: Day, Harris, Whitbread, Barron.Bookings: O'Hara (67mins), Brkovic (78mins) Scorers: Hoskins (64mins), Brkovic (75mins)."
After Saturday's game, the Yorkshire Evening Post reported that "Trouble flared outside Elland Road before and after today's game between Leeds United and Millwall. Police officers on horseback charged at Leeds fans waiting outside Elland Road near the Billy Bremner statue as three double decker buses filled with Millwall supporters pulled up at around 2.15pm. Windows and doors on the buses were put through by yobs on board as they tried to goad watching Leeds fans into confrontation. Police managed to avoid any actual physical clashes taking place. As the trouble flared a line of police held back a mob of around 200 chanting Leeds fans a short distance down Elland Road while a police helicopter hovered overhead. There were further disturbances after the game as police tried to force Leeds fans a safe distance from the ground while Millwall supporters were held inside. Officers on horseback and others with dogs and armed with truncheons spent around 40 minutes clearing the area around Elland Road. At one point clashes between cops and United yobs trying to stand their ground could be seen breaking out in the local McDonalds car park. Once order had been restored Millwall fans were let out of the stadium onto a number of double decker buses and driven away under heavy police escort at about 5.55pm".
MILLWALL - BEHIND THE SCENESLast week, the BBC said that "Millwall have announced that their plc chairman John G Berylson has also taken over the role of chairman of the football club from Stewart Till. Berylson heads the US-based consortium Chestnut Hill Ventures, which invested in the club in March this year. Till will remain on the board and become vice-chairman. It has always been my intention to assume chairmanship of the football club once I became more knowledgeable', Berylson told the Lions' website. 'All major decisions concerning the football club require my agreement as the main investor, and it is important we have clear lines of accountability and responsibility'. The Lions are still searching for a new manager, following the recent sacking of Willie Donachie that has left Richard Shaw and Colin West in caretaker charge. League One rivals Yeovil have already turned down an approach by Millwall to speak to their manager Russell Slade, while Manchester City reserve coach Kenny Jackett has ruled himself out of the running".
OLD BOYSRod Thornley scored for the away side in a game which ended Whitby Town 1 Witton Albion 6. Worksop Town lost 4-1 at home to Prescot Cables but Steve Hawes scored the Tigers' goal. Lee Hendley scored for Woodley Sports who were thrashed 6-1 by Curzon Ashton and Peter Thomson netted for FCUM. Barry Shuttleworth has signed for Clitheroe from Padiham.
27 October 2007
KENDAL TOWN 0 ALTRINCHAM 1 - AND NOW IT'S MILLWALL
Right: Gary Scott and Colin Potts celebrate success.
In this FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round match Altrincham showed little quality but rode out Kendal's second half pressure to secure the ten thousand pound prize and a place in Round One at home to Millwall of League One. An appropriately scrappy goal settled a game which was as dismal as the drizzly weather. It came when Lawton's hook into the box led to Little scrambling the ball past goalkeeper Newnes (32 mins). Alty showed little attacking intent in the second half and were grateful to a couple of important saves by Coburn. There were unpleasant scenes at the end when Alty boss Graham Heathcote reacted angrily, apparently to jibes from his opposite number Lee Ashcroft.
Match report here.
The Sale and Altrincham Messenger concluded that the Alty performance was "Far from convincing but this is the FA Cup, so any kind of result will do as long as you get the result... They were dragged down to Kendal's level for much of the game and didn't play the kind of possession football they would have been hoping for. Alty don't do scrappy battles particularly well but they deserve credit for holding out today. Despite a finely poised game they were never really threatened. There were some slightly unsavoury scenes after the final whistle though, with Graham Heathcote having to be held back by a group of his players after an altercation with Kendal boss Lee Ashcroft".
DARREN GETS FITFrom SAM we learn that "Ryan Shotton is ready to do battle for Alty in the FA Cup after being given permission to play by his club (Stoke)... Shotton was given the go-ahead... and should continue his partnership with Darren Tinson at the heart of Alty's defence. Tinson has been undergoing intensive treatment this week in a bid to recover from a knock picked up in last week's 3-1 defeat to Ebbsfleet and is hopeful he will be ready for the trip to Cumbria. Chris Senior should also be fit to start but the Robins will be without Colin Potts and Val Owen through injury, while on-loan Bury striker James Dean has been denied permission to play in the FA Cup... Graham Heathcote said: 'I've been brutally honest with the lads this week and we will see what happens. I do know if they get themselves right, they are definitely capable of getting the job done. FA Cup days are always good, I really look forward to them. It's the history of the competition and the thoughts of what is possible that make it so special. One thing's for sure, there will be an upset somewhere tomorrow, we've just got to do our damnest to make sure it's not us on the receiving end. If Darren Tinson manages to get fit for the game, it's real credit to him. His attitude this week is exactly what I've been asking for. He's been having treatment three times a day to get him ready in time for the game and that's the kind of desire we want'".
FA Cup 4QR:
NEXT GAMEAltrincham Youth entertain FC United of Manchester at 2pm this Sunday at Wythenshawe Town in the NW Youth Alliance Open Cup.
GEORGE'S REPORTAlty Youth manager George Heslop has kindly provided a report on the 6-0 win at Leigh last weekend. It can be found in the Youth Page
BSP NEWSNL Daily confirms from Nantwich Town that "The Dabbers have added former Wrexham and Stafford Rangers winger Robin Gibson to their squad following his release from Droylsden".
The Halifax Courier says that "Town have signed former Everton striker Michael Branch on a rolling contract. The 29 year old, who has not played professionally since leaving Chester City in 2006, is expected to be included in the squad for Saturday's FA Cup clash at Evesham. Branch, who has also played for Manchester City and Birmingham City, represents an ideal replacement for Andy Campbell, who is out until Christmas with an Achilles injury".
Unconfirmed reports on the Northwich Forum say that "No administrator has been appointed today. The court has adjourned the application for 7 days in order to allow further discussions. The adjournment of an admin application is by no means unusual. Consequently the winding up petition currently listed for 31st October will also be adjourned (probably for a further 7 days)".
The FA confirms "England C manager Paul Fairclough has today named a 16-man squad for the International Challenge Trophy Group A fixture against Finland in Helsinki next month. The squad includes two players from outside the Blue Square Premier League, with Witton Albion’s promising full back Liam Brownhill [a former trialist at Altrincham] earning a shock call-up after impressing in a recent FA XI fixture. The other is Blyth Spartans' goalkeeper Adam Bartlett who retains his place after a competent performance in a friendly fixture in Finland back in June. There is also a place in the squad for Salisbury City’s Matthew Tubbs, who suffered a broken toe following an impressive debut against the Republic of Ireland in May and missed the remainder of the Four Nations Tournament. The Under-23 age limit for the side has resulted in a number of new faces being called up for this Tournament opener. in what is a tricky Group which also includes Italy and Wales. However, there are a number of familiar faces including Lance Cronin, Mitchell Cole and Shaun Harrad". The squad is Lance Cronin (Ebbsfleet U.), Adam Bartlett (Blyth Spartans), Barry Fuller (Stevenage B.), John Brayford (Burton A.), Michael Morrison (Cambridge U.), Ronnie Henry (Stevenage B.), Liam Brownhill (Witton A.), Matthew Day (Oxford U.), Louis Soares (Aldershot T.), Stuart Lewis (Stevenage B.), Russell Penn (Kidderminster H.), Lewis Chalmers (Aldershot T.), Mitchell Cole (Stevenage B.), James Constable (Kidderminster H.), Shaun Harrad (Burton A.), Matthew Tubbs (Salisbury C.). There is also a back-up contingency squad comprising, Jonathan Stewart (Weymouth), Ross Flitney (Grays A), Daniel Gleeson (Cambridge U.), Luke Oliver (Stevenage B.), Luke Foster (Oxford U.) Jamie Stevesn (Crawley T.), Daniel Bunce (Woking), Erkan Okay (Histon), Jonathan Smith (Forest Green R), Anton Robinson (Weymouth), Nathan Knight-Percival (Histon), Jonathan Dixon (Aldershot T.), Scott Rendell (Cambridge U.), Antonio Murray (Histon). Players from north of the Midlands are conspicuous by their absence.
Whoever wins at Kendal today will qualify for the First Round Proper on Saturday 10 November 2007 in which the winning clubs receive £16,000. The FA reports that "Sir Trevor Brooking on Saturday hosts The FA Cup draw for the First Round Proper. The draw gets underway at 5.10pm when ex-Chelsea and Manchester United players John Hollins and Paul Parker draw out the 80 balls, live from Soho Square... Before the draw The FA will reveal a specially-commissioned painting of the official May opening [of Wembley]. The unique triptych piece was created by leading artist Nick Botting and the 5 by 12 ft panoramic picture now takes pride of place in The FA’s reception area". Kendal or Altrincham will be no.51 in the draw.
FromStafford Rangers we learn that "Stafford Rangers have made a double signing ahead of tomorrow's home FA Cup tie against Cambridge United. Frenchman Samy-Oyame Mawene (shirt 22), a 22-year-old midfielder, had previous spells with Caen and Millwall while 18-year-old Barnsley defender Luke Potter (shirt 32) has joined on loan for one month. Former Brocton goalkeeper Michael Shelper, age 25, has also been signed as cover for Danny Alcock".
Grays Athletic report that they "have signed left-sided defender, Jack Obersteller, on short term loan from Wycombe Wanderers, Jack started out at Millwall where he made his way from the youth set-up to the reserves where he was a regular in the second string, he had a short loan spell with Crawley town last season before signing a one year contract for Wycombe Wanderers".
Crawley Town confirm that "Steve Evans and Paul Raynor have been informed by the FA that no disciplinary action will be taken following last Saturday's Stafford Rangers match. The duo was both sent to the stands for the last twenty minutes of the game by the match officials. The Football Association requested video footage of the incident earlier in the week and after carefully reviewing has decided rightfully not to pursue a case against the Reds' management team. Manager Steve Evans refused to comment, but the official website has learnt Evans have privately told friends that it was a decision he expected as the video clearly showed he was not anywhere near the incident that led to him leaving the technical area. Assistant Paul Raynor was more forthright in his views when www.crawleytownfc.net spoke with the assistant boss. Raynor said: 'I said last week the decision was laughable and the FA have now had a look themselves'. The FA have not taken any action because we had done nothing wrong. The disappointing aspect is that we were taken away from doing our job in the technical area at an important stage of the match. 'We are very passionate about our football and the better officials recognise this while others want to be the star of the show. It is now behind us and everyone is looking forward to the FA Cup on Saturday'".
"Weymouth FC's new owner Malcolm Curtis spoke openly at a fans' forum held at the Wessex Stadium last night and revealed his plans for the future. Chief executive Gary Calder, manager Jason Tindall, first-team coach Marcus Browning and stand-in skipper Ashley Vickers flanked Curtis on the top table as supporters probed the finer details about the recent takeover of the club and the expectations on the field. Curtis revealed that previous plans to extend the club bar have been shelved but admitted development of some kind will happen at the ground in the future although any deal with Asda looks unlikely. He also insisted that he has no plans to return the club to part-time status and that his ultimate aim is to build a new stadium elsewhere so he can unlock the land potential of the current Wessex Stadium site. The property developer also promised that any profits left over from such a venture would be shared between the club itself, and his company Wessex Park Ltd, whose major shareholding in the Terras tallies 84 per cent. If Curtis is able to deliver a new stadium he has not only promised that it would be a ground fit for the Football League but he also said it would include other facilities that would provide more income streams for the club. Other issues that arose at the meeting included the possible development of a family enclosure at the current ground and the easing of the no smoking policy on matchdays. A new segregated smoking area will be in place at the Wessex Stadium for tomorrow's FA Cup tie against Hitchin" reports This is Weymouth.
This is Staffs says that "Port Vale have identified their number one target to become the club's next manager. Chairman Bill Bratt yesterday revealed the shortlist of contenders has been narrowed down to just two candidates - and said the directors had now pinpointed their preferred choice. Bratt refused to name the pair involved, but said both have been invited back to Vale Park. They will each be re-interviewed early next week, when the process of agreeing terms will begin. Former Reading and Swindon manager Jimmy Quinn could be in line for one of those interviews after Bratt confirmed he had applied for the job. The former Northern Ireland international is currently in charge at Blue Square Premier outfit Cambridge United. He took over the reins at the Abbey Stadium in September 2006, and has guided United to the fringes of the play-off zone this season". However the Yorkshire Evening Post says that another BSP manager is the target. "Managerless Port Vale are set to make a move for Farsley Celtic boss Lee Sinnott. According to sources in the Potteries, the Valiants, struggling in the bottom four of League One, have targeted Midlander Sinnott – who started his playing career just down the road at Walsall – and he is the new favourite to take over. Sinnott, who has done a sterling job at Throstle Nest, is refusing to comment on the speculation and is fully focusing on the club's FA Cup qualifying round encounter with Barrow tomorrow, with rumours abounding that the Celts have granted the Potteries side permission to speak with him... 42-year-old Sinnott said: 'I've got no comment to make on the subject'... Sinnott has achieved enormous success with Farsley, most notably winning promotion three times in four seasons".
26 October 2007
TV TONIGHTGrandada TV were filming at Moss Lane today and a piece on Altrincham FC will be included in the ITV Evening News (Granada Reports) slot between 6pm and 6.30pm tonight.
FA CUP ON SATURDAY
Right: New loan signing James Dean is ineligible for Saturday's game. He is seen here in action last Saturday with Warren Peyton and Karl Munroe.
OLD BOYSNL Daily has news of old boy, Stuart Wright. "Cammell Laird moved into second place in the UniBond League Division One South following Wednesday`s 2-0 home win against Colwyn Bay. Lairds made it six wins in succession, thanks to goals from Stuart Wright with 17 minutes remaining and a debut goal for Jason Ward 5 minutes from time".
BSP NEWS"Former owner Martyn Harrison has revealed that his successor Mel Bush was 'quite entitled' to hand Weymouth Football Club over to property developer Malcolm Curtis" reveals This is Weymouth. "Curtis, who initially approached Harrison with an offer for the club in the summer, was handed the reins last week and will chair a fans' forum at the Wessex Stadium to try and put supporters' fears at rest concerning the future of the club.... Harrison said: 'When I did the deal in the summer I did try and encourage Mel Bush to include in the contract a bit of detail about what he could do with the club but nothing went in so he was quite entitled to do whatever he wanted'". Harrison departed the Blue Square Premier outfit and cleared its debts in June but he remains a keen follower of the Terras. It was also his decision to hand the role of first-team boss to Jason Tindall last January and he is delighted to see the 29-year-old making a success of the job. He said: 'When I first sat down and talked with Jason about being boss he impressed me with his drive and his ambition. He had a clear idea of how to get to where we wanted to go and he also had good contacts in the game, particularly in regards to younger players. That was the route I felt the club needed to go down instead of bringing in old stagers on top dollar. Younger players are more flexible in terms of where they live and because of that they are likely to get more involved in the club. There are also a few older players at Weymouth as well and I think the balance they have at the moment is very good. The results they had earlier in the season were a bit disappointing and they did not start too well but they have now turned it around... I have still got an interest in the club and still pick up the newspapers every Sunday to look at their results'".
On the Weymouth forum, former owner Ian Ridley says, "I remain concerned for the present and future well-being of the club and I believe the following questions should be asked of Malcolm Curtis if anyone feels able to do so:
It would be good if someone is also able to tape-record the meeting so that Mr Curtis's quotes are saved for posterity".
The BBC say that "Stafford Rangers have signed Barnsley defender Luke Potter on a month's loan. Potter, 18, came up through the Tykes' youth ranks, and made his first-team debut on the final day of last season in the 7-0 defeat at West Brom. He has not featured in Simon Davey's first team since then, but has been a regular in the reserve side".
"Cambridge United goalkeeper Danny Potter is facing up to six weeks on the sidelines after dislocating the little finger of his right hand" according to the BBC. "The U's have been on a team-building exercise at an Army barracks this week, and Potter was injured when he fell on an indoor assault course exercise. 'It's a very, very significant injury for a keeper', physio Greg Reid told the club website. The U's recently lost both Darren Quinton and Marvin Robinson to injury. Quinton is to see a specialist next week over a knee problem, while on-loan striker Robinson broke his leg in a car crash".
"Grays forward James Lawson has joined Chelmsford City on a month's loan. The 20-year-old has made nine league appearances for Grays, but is still awaiting his first goal for them. Lawson made 31 league and cup appearances for Southend before he was released during the summer, and subsequently moved to Grays... He was transfer-listed by Grays earlier this month", says the BBC.
The Argus reports that "Crawley boss Steve Evans insists he will not stop his touchline tantrums. Evans was sent to the stand for the third time this season last week for disputing one too many decisions during a 1-1 draw against Stafford Rangers... Barely a game goes by without him being embroiled in a spat with the opposition manager, referee or fourth official... But he has no intention of curbing his enthusiasm during games. He said: 'The referee had a bad day at the office last week. He said he sent me off because I appealed for every decision throughout the game. But I am the manager of Crawley Town, so of course I'm going to appeal for every decision. I told him that if he was going to take me out of the technical area because I was appealing for decisions, then are going to have problems because I will be sitting in the stands every week. I have come up against a lot of top managers who I respect like Neil Warnock, Peter Taylor and Sam Allardyce and they appeal for everything. Fergie (Alex Ferguson) does it as well. Some managers are like that and some aren't. I don't expect to get every decision but I'm going to ask the question. Sometimes I let the passion get the better of me but that is what I'm like and I'm not going to let what happened last week stop me. I will still be kicking every ball and show passion. I am like it even in five-a-side games in training and I try to instil that winning mentality into my players. I can assure people that if they think Steve Evans is ever going to be a mouse in the technical area, it is not going to happen'. Evans will be shouting the odds from the Broadfield Stadium dugout again on Saturday as Reds take on Conference premier high-flyers Aldershot in the FA Cup fourth qualifying round... Evans said: 'When I came in, my agenda was not about the glory of an FA Cup run. But we all know about the value in terms of pounds in the bank that it gives you. We will not play another game where there is £10,000 up for grabs for the winner so this is a big incentive for us. The club could do with that sort of money and you could say we need it more than Aldershot when you look at their budget. It would be nice for the Majeeds to have it after all the money they have put into this club. It is also a long time since the supporters had a run... I would say Aldershot are the best team we have played this season'".
Meanwhile, Crawley Town confirm that "Manager Steve Evans has completed the signing of an exciting player ahead of Saturday's FA Cup tie with Aldershot Town... Evans said: 'We have completed a loan signing, and we have been given permission to play the boy on Saturday. I am not going to reveal who the player is, but our supporters can rest assured he is an exciting and brings real quality to the squad. We were disappointed to see Mills return to Rotherham this week, but I was adamant that if we were able to replace the gap left by Pablo it was only going to be with real quality. I had to call in a few favours, but this player is coming from a top club and I am thankful to their manager for allowing us to take one of his players. When I hand the team sheet in at 2pm on Saturday the supporters in the stadium will be the first to know who he is. And I am convinced our fans will be over the moon once they have seen him play'".
From This is South Devon we learn that "Midfielder Scott Laird knows he's got a job on his hands to force his way into Torquay United's in-form side, but he still asked Gulls boss Paul Buckle to extend his loan spell from Plymouth Argyle. Now 19-year-old Laird says: 'I know you can't disrupt a winning team, but I'm here to get as many games as I can and I'll be ready whenever the boss needs me'. Argyle manager Ian Holloway agreed to let Laird stay at Plainmoor for a second month, after the teenager had asked Buckle to keep him... 'I'm really enjoying it here. I look forward to going in to training every day'", he said.
Oxford United "have been looking at two players to strengthen their squad this week. Six foot three stiker Carl Priso has been on trial, while boss Jim Smith has also been checking out Didcot keeper Michael Watkins. Priso, 28, was signed by Torquay United from Chemnitz in Germany. The Cameroon born forward had previously had spells in France and Italy, but his time at Torquay was marred by a foot injury which limited him to just a handful of first team games until he was released by Ian Atkins in 2006. Most recently he has been on trial at Shrewsbury and played a couple of games for Crawley Town. Watkins has been in excellent form for the Railwaymen this season after joining from Marlow, and caught the eye against United in pre-season. Boss Jim Smith has been monitoring his progress, but faces competition from other clubs. Coventry City invited Watkins for a week's training earlier in the season and Wycombe Wanderers are also believed to be interested in the former Hayes keeper".
25 October 2007
RYAN GETS O.K.Stoke City have granted permission for their on-loan defender Ryan Shotton to play for Altrincham in the FA Cup this season. Currently Ryan's loan ends on 15 December 2007.
BUT JAMES NOT RELEASEDOn loan striker James Dean has not been released for FA Cup games by Bury so will not be involved for Altrincham at Kendal Town on Saturday.
STEPHEN ROSE RELEASEDAltrincham FC manager Graham Heathcote has announced the release of defender Stephen Rose (right). Stephen, who was a junior with Manchester United, was released by Chester City in May, 2002 and joined The Robins, making his UniBond debut on 17 August 2002. He has played in all of the outfield defensive positions as well as in midfield. Stephen suffered a broken leg at Worcester on 30 October 2004 but returned to action in 2005-06 pre-season. He figured mainly as a reliable substitute in 2005-06 but took his chance back in the first team when Gary Talbot and Peter Band were injured in September 2006 and forged a good partnership with Karl Munroe at centre-back until he lost his place through injury. He returned to the side intermittently for the rest of the 2006-07 campaign and in 2007-08 started just one game and made one appearance from the bench. His career appearances for Alty totalled 151 starts and 17 substitute appearances and, although he scored just once, it was a memorable forty yarder. Stephen becomes the fourth long-serving centre-back to leave the club since last season, following Mark Maddox, Gary Talbot and Peter Band.
Everyone at Moss Lane thanks Stephen for his good service to the club and wishes him good fortune in his subsequent career. No new signing is expected as a consequence of Stephen's release as Altrincham currently have two loan players (James Dean and Ryan Shotton) to fund.
AUCTION FOR CHARITYAltrincham FC supporter and regular turnstile operator, Colin Mitchell, informs us that next Tuesday (30th) at The Moss Trooper public house in Timperley there will be an auction of an Alty shirt signed by the players. The auction is in aid of Children in Uganda. If anyone requires further information, please contact Colin on 0161 946-0016.
GRAHAM SPEAKS OUTGraham Heathcote has told SAM Sport "For a 15-minute spell against Ebbsfleet we looked like we didn't care and that really hurt. It's still hurting me now. The players have got to ask themselves some serious questions, like what do you want from your football career right now? If they're just in it for enjoyment then they can't stay here. We go into a battle on Saturday in the FA Cup when the one thing you need is desire and the ability to scrape through in tough cup ties. I've got to get myself right for the FA Cup. We have the proudest record of any non-league club in this competition and I have to get that into my players. If they don't go out there with a desire to create their own piece of FA Cup history, they should question their own reasons for being here. The FA Cup above all competitions is about who wants it most on the day and I have to say, after watching us for that 15 minutes on Saturday, I can't say who will want it most this weekend. It's about pride and character and if they don't show that they will go out of the FA Cup. At times I don't feel the desire from the players and if they don't show that I will move them on. Ability is one thing and some teams you meet will have better ability than you. But the desire and determination to win is another thing, something that any player can call on. It comes from within and if I have players who can't find that, there's only one route they can take. We've got a relatively new team and it's very difficult to get the desire that players who had been here a long time had. It's always going to be difficult to fill the void left by players who would die for the cause.
Maybe the time's come when we have to look at trying to fund a transfer angle at this football club. I think we have to look at a way that we can. But the difficulty of football at this level is the restrictions in being able to change things because of the transfer window and other regulations. I suppose there are two options - change your manager or change your players. Either way it wouldn't be easy. You can't avoid relegation with the results we've had at home. We are such a hit and miss side this season and it's gone beyond baffling, it's annoying me now. It's so frustrating for me to see the Crawley and Salisbury performances when the players showed that determination to win. Why for 15 minutes on Saturday it was completely drained from us, only the players can answer that. They shouldn't be coming to the club and taking wages if they aren't going to give their all for 90 minutes".
CONFIDENT KENDALThe BBC writes that "With the greatest respect to Grimsby Town, the League Two strugglers would not be many people's idea of a great FA Cup draw. But that is not the case for Kendal Town manager Lee Ashcroft, who is hoping he can take the Lake District club into the first-round proper for the first time in 50 years and set up a date with the Mariners. 'All the lads are talking about is Leeds United',Ashcroft told BBC Sport. 'If we did get them it could set us up for the next three years, I might be able to bring one or two better players in and it would be fantastic for the lads. But I would like to get Grimsby. I played there and I still speak to their manager Alan Buckley. That would be the dream tie for me'. Kendal and Grimsby have some previous FA Cup history. Their 1956 meeting brought a record crowd of 5,000 to Kendal, who, under their then name of Netherfield AFC, were beaten 5-1. As a leading Lancashire Combination club, successful FA Cup runs were not unusual but since the 1950s the first round has proved elusive.
Having been founder members of the Northern (Unibond) League in 1968, financial constraints forced the club, which became Netherfield Kendal in 1998 and Kendal Town two years later, to drop into the North West Counties League in 1982. They have since climbed their way back to UniBond League Premier Division level but will still be underdogs when they take on famous FA Cup fighters Altrincham at their Lakeland Radio Stadium on Saturday in pursuit of a place alongside the League One and Two clubs in the tea-time draw.
'It would be amazing. We have not been there for a long time and now we are one match away', said Ashcroft. 'The chairman is different class and all the people at the club are fantastic so it would be great for them. But first we have to get past Altrincham. They have not had the best of seasons and are at the lower end of their league. But they are playing two leagues higher than us so they should be better than us. We will respect them but I think we will give them a game. The lads have done really well to get this far. We have had some hard draws but we have got a good, young side together and we will be up for it'.
Kendal are yet to concede a goal in this season's competition in beating Worksop Town, Liversedge and Woodley Sports. Goalkeeper David Newnes has played a major part in that feat since signing from Barrow, while Ashcroft rates left-back Paul Byrne, who started out at Port Vale, as the best in their league. Peter Wright, whose career began at Newcastle United, is a prolific striker [and an ex-Alty player], while ex-Southport midfielder Lee Mulvaney is another potential threat to an Altrincham side that is struggling near the foot of the Blue Square Premier. And Ashcroft believes he has players, who have lost only two of their last 11 games, capable of bridging the gap and playing at a higher level.
'There is not a lot of difference. People need a bit of luck to play in the higher divisions and there are some players in my team who could play in the Football League', he added. And Ashcroft should know after a playing career that also included spells as a striker with Preston, twice, Wigan and West Bromwich Albion and which led to him earning an England under-21 cap... 'I have worked with some great managers. David Moyes is just one name that comes to mind. It was something I wanted to get into and I have loved every minute of it', he said. After joining Kendal as a player in 2004, Preston-based Ashcroft was given the manager's job last December and kept Town in the UniBond League top flight last season. Combining that with his job as a football coach at Myerscough College, the 35-year-old wants to lift up Town to Blue Square North level.
Alongside that target, the club is also progressing off the pitch. A link-up with Kendal College is in the pipeline, with a view to developing a national diploma footballing course that will be designed to keep the best local talent in the town. Having also adopted a local special needs school, Kendal wants to become an active community club and Saturday's shot at Cup glory gives them the perfect platform. 'We are hoping to get about 1,000 there. The Cumbrians are good, vocal people and it should be a great day', enthused Ashcroft. The FA Cup first round proper [draw] is live on BBC One and Radio 5 Live at 1710 BST on Saturday".
ALTY INJURIESBefore Saturday's game at Kendal, Altrincham have injury doubts about defenders Darren Tinson and Steve Aspinall, as well as striker Chris Senior. Definitely out will be Colin Potts and Val Owen (right, pctured by Gavin Rathbone). Altrincham hope to know later today whether on-loan centre back Ryan Shotton will be allowed to play in the FA Cup by his club, Stoke City.
OLD BOYSFC United of Manchester "are pleased to announce the signings of 22-year-old midfielder Jamie Baguley and 29-year-old forward Peter Thomson (left). Baguley, whose brother Chris also plays for the club, joins from Salford City. Manager Karl Marginson has known Jamie for a number of years since he was at Radcliffe Borough and is thrilled to have him on board. Margy said: 'He has a wonder of a left foot, is an intelligent player and works hard for the team'. Baguley, who FC United fans may remember scored a stunning freekick equaliser for Salford against the Reds last season during our 2-1 defeat at the Willows, said: 'I’m very pleased to be joining FC United,” before cheekily adding: 'I’m much better than my brother'.
Thomson who joins from Barrow [who released him recently], has played at conference level and as a professional in Holland for NAC Breda. Margy commented: 'I’m pleased to sign a very experienced striker', and described Thomson as, 'a striker very much in the Stuart Rudd mould'. A clearly delighted Thomson said: 'I’m over the moon about joining arguable the best nonleague side in the country'.
And NL Daily reports that "AFC Telford United slipped into that top five after victory at Rivacre Road against Vauxhall Motors. It was certainly an entertaining encounter that not only saw four goals, but also witnessed Motors' [ex-Alty midfielder] Mike Garrity and Indy Khela being sent-off and new manager Andy Mutch being dismissed from the dug-out". Meanwhile, "Burscough went down to a 1-0 defeat by Workington at Victoria Park... The only goal of the game came in the 56th minute, courtesy of Matty Berkeley", who was released by Alty earlier this season.
BSP NEWS"Northwich Vics' Supporters' Club will discuss the future of the club at their next meeting, at the ground on Tuesday (7.30pm)... Both the club and the Supporters’ Trust have been offered seats on the board at Vics by the consortium, but the two organisations have almost become two factions – pro and anti-Mike Connett – in recent months. Efforts to unite supporters behind one cause will need to be made by the takeover group. Meanwhile, the Trust has issued the following statement expressing relief the short-term future of the club is being resolved with hope for the long term also. ‘The experience of the club being owned and run by Mr Connett appears to have left many Trust members and many fans in general suspicion of anyone coming in from the outside. If the consortium acquires Northwich Victoria, then our club will again be in the hands of people who are, by their own admission, not currently Northwich fans. As a result, many fans wish Vics to start anew as a supporters’ trust-run club, which would truly belong to the community. However, this should be a last resort. The Trust board are having positive discussions with the consortium and offered to help a transition should the purchase go ahead. The Trust is healthy financially. We can establish a new club or, alternatively, invest in the club in the future. We need to proceed cautiously, to build up a sound working relationship. There will be no major commitments without a ballot'" reports IC Cheshire.
After yesterday's story (see below) about a young lady who made a boob in applying for a job at a nightclub run by Crawley Town owner Chas Majeed and the football club's chief scout and manager's brother, Gee Evans, the Crawley Observer now has an uplifting story about some more young people in the Sussex town who are at an earlier stage of exposure to life in an adult world. "Crawley Town manager Steve Evans spent the afternoon with children at St Francis of Assisi school last Wednesday as part of the school's reading week.The Reds' boss was joined by Crawley captain Tyrone Thompson who read a story to the children at the school in Southgate before Steve had a chat with them about the importance of being at school. Both then visited classes to talk to children individually about what they want to do when they are older".
The Blue Square Football site says that "Rotherham United defender Pablo Mills has returned to Millmoor following his loan spell with Crawley Town. The 23-year-old has been with the Blue Square Premier side for two months after his initial stay at the Broadfield Stadium was extended in September. Mills made 14 appearances for Crawley scoring one goal".
The Tameside Advertiser says that "FC United showed no mercy for a makeshift Droylsden side as they dumped the holders out of the Manchester Premier Cup at the Butcher's Arms. Bloods' boss Dave Pace carried out his threat to rest several first-team regulars, including skipper Steve Halford and strike duo Jody Banim and Chris Denham, ahead of Saturday's big FA Cup fourth qualifying-round clash at Corby. And FC, who play three divisions below Droylsden, seized on that advantage over their struggling Blue Square Premier hosts to record a famous victory. [Former Alty trialist] Cayne Hanley gave the Rebels a head-start when he rose above the Droylsden defence in the 12th minute to nod in Jerome Wright's cross. And the tie was effectively settled when the visitors struck twice in a minute just before the hour to leave the Bloods trailing 3-0. Nicky Platt was the architect on each occasion, first sending Aaron Burns [another ex-Alty trialist] clear to score and then starting the move which culminated in Burns squaring for Rory Patterson to add FC's third. Gavin Salmon [yet another ex-Alty trialist] pulled one back in the 72nd minute, firing home from Robbie Talbot's cross. Terry Fearns further reduced the arrears with a 90th-minute penalty, but it was too late". Our neighbours Trafford overcame Curzon Ashton in the same competition on Tuesday.
"Liam Daish is urging Gravesham borough residents to flock to the Fleet in full force this Saturday as their local side gear up for the FA Cup" says the Gravesend Reporter. "Ebbsfleet United entertain Exeter City this weekend, their first home fixture in the competition in Daish's 32-month managerial tenure - and he wants plenty of spectators there to make it count. 'I'm sure Exeter won't relish coming down to us. Hopefully, we'll gain an even larger home following to come and give us their support as well... It's going to be a difficult encounter, as always whenever you face Exeter, but hopefully we'll have enough to make it through to the first round proper'", said Daish. "Ebbsfleet at least head into their encounter with Paul Tisdale's Grecians on the back of some encouraging league results with last Saturday's 3-1 win at Altrincham providing their third success in four outings in the league this month. 'It was a good weekend', Daish added. 'We were nice and bright to start with, Altrincham then came at us but we weathered the storm and took our chances when they came, which is what you've got to do when you're away from home. It was a good three points and we've again beaten a team who are lower down the table which is a good sign'. The Robins game also saw teenage midfielder Michael Bostwick sent off for two yellow cards and Daish's midfield was further depleted either side of last weekend's trip north. Mark DeBolla joined AFC Wimbledon last Friday after being disappointed at his omission from the starting line-up for the 2-0 victory over Droylsden, while Danny Slatter was ruled out for the season on Tuesday. Neither is likely to be replaced in the near future".
Meanwhile, This is Exeter reports that "Joe Gallen is set to leave Exeter City less than three months after he arrived at St James's Park to take over from Paul Buckle. The former Queens Park Rangers youth boss was never officially unveiled as City's No. 2 because of an ongoing wrangle with bosses at Loftus Road. Now it appears that Gallen is poised to take up a position at Millwall. Nothing has been made official yet... 'It is 99.9% sure and we are sorry to see Joe go', said City boss Paul Tisdale. 'He has been fantastic to work with and was just beginning to settle, but we wish him well for the future'". It is also reported that "Exeter City fans have raised almost £750,000 for the club since the Supporters' Trust assumed control in 2003... Almost £500,000 has been pumped into the St James's Park accounts as a result of trust fundraising and members' subscriptions. And that figure, along with a £125,000 loan written off under the CVA and just over £135,000 raised through the 'Red or Dead?' appeal, means City fans have dug deep to the tune of just under £750,000".
The Yorkshire Evening Post says that "Farsley Celtic ace Amjad Iqbal endured a baptism of fire on his international debut for Pakistan – as they were humbled 7-0 in their Asia Zone World Cup qualifying clash with Iraq in Lahore. The 26-year-old made the starting line-up for Pakistan – ranked 179 in the FIFA rankings – with 2007 Asian Cup winners Iraq, ranked at 65, proving far too strong for the hosts. Midfielder Iqbal and his team-mates – who include QPR and former Fulham defender Zesh Rehman – travel to Syria on Sunday for the second leg".
From the Kidderminster Shuttle says that "Dwindling support and the lure of a money-spinning run in the FA Cup has sparked Kidderminster Harriers' chairman Barry Norgrove into labelling Saturday's home FA Cup fourth qualifying round tie against Vauxhall Motors as a 'must win' match. Harriers are eager for cup glory after finding it hard to make a major impact in their Blue Square Premier campaign. Their mid-table position has led to a decline in attendances at Aggborough where crowds have struggled to top the 1,300 mark on three occasions so far this season... Norgrove said: 'Saturday's match is very important. Prize-money of £10,000 is a lot of money to the club and it would make up for probably the support that we've been losing a little bit on Saturdays. £10,000 is always vital for a club of our size. Money is always tight and it always will be... A few years ago we went to the Wolves in a replay. That was tremendous for us and anything like that again would be absolutely brilliant for the club. Mark knows it's important to us'... Injury-hit Harriers, however, will again be without leading marksman James Constable who notched a hat-trick in a 4-0 FA Trophy first round replay victory at Vauxhall Motors last season. A hamstring injury is delaying his chance of adding to his haul of 10 goals in 16 appearances - a season's tally that is attracting attention from Football League clubs, including Nottingham Forest and Southend United. Norgrove said: 'There have been a few league clubs after him. We know that, but at the end of the day we are not interested in selling Constable'. Scott Bevan, Simon Russell and Jeff Kenna also remain on the casualty list, but Mark Creighton will be available again after missing Saturday 's 2-0 home defeat by Weymouth because of a one-match ban. Bevan's goalkeeping spot will again be filled by Chris MacKenzie whose loan spell from Shrewsbury Town has been extended to a second month... Admission prices for Saturday's match have been reduced to £10 for adults, £5 for concessions and £2 for under 16s".
The Oxford Mail says that "Ian Lenagan has taken over the ownership of the most famous name in rugby league - Wigan. Wigan-born Lenagan, Nick Merry's partner at Oxford United, announced at a press conference at the JJB Stadium on Wednesday morning that he has reached agreement to acquire a controlling interest in the Super League club from current owner Dave Whelan. The agreement takes effect from December 1 when Lenagan will become the new owner with an 89% stake". Oxford has a new unofficial website.
24 October 2007
FLEET IN VIEW
Gavin Rathbone's GR Photography website has many more excellent photos of Alty in action. This one shows the Ebbsfleet keeper, Lance Cronin, thwarting Alty's James Dean and Chris Senior last Saturday.
STEWARDS AT KENDALTwelve of the Altrincham FC stewards will be on duty at the Kendal Town FA Cup match this Saturday to assist the home club on matchday. As of Tuesday, Altrincham were still awaiting a decision from Stoke City about the eligibility for the game of on-loan defender Ryan Shotton.
BSP NEWSIC Surrey is keeping its readers abreast of news concerning Crawley Town's owners, the Majeeds. It states "A woman has been rejected from a job at the town's new bikini bar because her breasts were too small. Chas Majeed, owner of the Gentleman's Turf on Pegler Way, confirmed to the News that a 23-year-old woman from Maidenbower was rejected because her cleavage was not ample enough to work there. The woman, who did not want to be named, said: 'I went along to an interview two weeks ago and they were all lovely. They offered me a job with great money and great tips, so I packed in my job in a cocktail bar in Burgess Hill. I went back on Saturday because all the girls were having a fitting session for the new uniforms. Chas Majeed and Gee Evans were there checking how we looked. They saw me in the uniform and then had a little meeting between themselves. Then they told me I couldn't work there because my breasts were too small'. The woman, who said she was sized between 34A and 34B, added: 'I couldn't believe it because they'd already offered me the job and I had handed in my notice in at my old bar'. Mr Majeed was unrepentant. He said: 'Yes, we had to let her go. She wasn't truthful. She lied about her body and it was Gee that had to fire her'. Gee Evans is chief scout for Crawley Town FC and will also manage the new bar. The bar manager, who is the brother of Crawley FC boss Steve Evans, said: 'She made claims on her application form that she had the figure to fill the role but this turned out to be rubbish'. The controversial bar, which is on the former site of the Indilicious restaurant, opens this Saturday. Mr Evans added: 'We're willing to leave it up to the customer to decide if we have recruited the right kind of girls or not'". Let's hope the venture doesn't go bust.
The Manchester Evening News refers to the Manchester Senior Cup clash oin Tuesday between Droylsden and FC United. Dave Pace was planning "To rest several first-team regulars and field an experimental line-up". The Bloods' manager said, 'With all respect to both FC United and the Manchester FA, I've far bigger things to worry about than this game. FC United might want to treat it as some sort of cup final but I'm certainly not. I'll be giving a run out to all the lads who haven't featured much or at all for us this season and, while I'll be expecting them to play well and win, it's of very little consequence compared to our efforts to stay up" in the BSP.
The BBC says that "Shrewsbury Town goalkeeper Chris MacKenzie is to spend a second month on loan with Kidderminster Harriers. The two clubs have agreed an extension to the deal, and the Shrews have given MacKenzie permission to play in the FA Cup for Kidderminster. The 35-year-old... joined Kidderminster following a thigh injury to Scott Bevan and has started seven league games".
"Ebbsfleet United have been dealt a blow with the news that midfielder Danny Slatter will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. Slatter, 26, has been out of action for over a month and keyhole surgery has revealed anterior ligament damage. He will now undergo a further operation to reconstruct the ligament and will not return until next season. The ex-Wales Under-21 international has made almost 100 appearances for Fleet since signing from Welling in 2005" states the BBC.
Cambridge United report that "Darren Quinton will see a specialist about the knee injury that saw him stretchered off just before half-time of Saturday's 1-1 draw with Salisbury City. The midfielder collapsed after falling awkwardly following a challenge and could take no further part in the game. Physio Greg Reid told cambridgeunited.com, 'It was immediately apparent that it was a serious injury with what appears to be significant internal derangement within the joint. Due to the amount of swelling in the joint at present, he will wait until next Monday to be assessed by the specialist'".
At Burton Albion "Manager Nigel Clough is close to boosting his squad at the Pirelli Stadium with former goalkeeper Saul Deeney poised to return to the club on a non-contract basis as back up for current first choice Kevin Poole. The deal has not been completed at the time of writing but it hoped the paperwork will be completed in the next few days. Saul has recently been playing for Hucknall Town in the Blue Square North but is best rememebered for his save in the game against Manchester United that earned the Brewers a lucrative replay at Old Trafford".
The Cambridge Evening News confirms that "Histon will be forced to take Cliff Akurang's red card against Droylsden on the chin after admitting video evidence of the offence is inconclusive. However, Stutes' boss Steve Fallon, who watched his side beat the Bloods 1-0 with just 10 men in the Blue Square Premier on Saturday, still believes the dismissal of his striker, who will now be suspended for three games, was unwarranted. He said: 'The tape doesn't show enough to go to appeal. We have had a good look, and it is a grey area at best. If we had unlimited money we would appeal because we know there was no intent by Cliff - their player ducked down for the ball and ran in to the elbow'. Akurang is Histon's top scorer with eight of the Stutes' 27 goals so far, but he will now miss Saturday's FA Cup, fourth qualifying round clash against Bamber Bridge at the Glass World Stadium, as well as a home clash with Altrincham and a visit to Forest Green Rovers in the league. Meanwhile, keeper Mark Osborn has gone out on a 90-day loan move to Southern League, Premier Division side Halesowen Town, although the Stutes can recall him at any time.The impressive form of Danny Naisbitt in between the sticks has led to a substitute's role for the former Kettering Town stopper, who will now link with Fallon's former Cambridge United boss Ron Atkinson, Halesowen's new football consultant". The BBC adds that Osborn, "Histon have included a recall clause in the deal but also have goalkeeping coach [and ex-Alty keeper] Lance Key, 39, as back-up".
From This is Glos reports that "Shortwood United striker James Singh was handed a chance to impress for Forest Green Reserves last night. Rovers picked up their first home win in the Pontin's Holidays Combination Wales and West Division, defeating AFC Bournemouth thanks to Danny Carey-Bertram's brace - the first from the penalty spot - and a 25-yard strike from Alex Lawless. Singh, top scorer at Meadowbank this season, was a second-half substitute as boss Jim Harvey fielded a strong line-up. Defender Darren Jones, suspended for this weekend's FA Cup tie at Eastleigh, was among the starters. Meanwhile, organisers of Rovers' Give Regularly Assist Squad Sponsorship (GRASS) scheme have confirmed that £332.46 was raised from a collection at Saturday's game against Farsley Celtic. In an attempt to boost funds the reserve team, the club are aiming to recruit 200 supporters who would be willing to contribute £5 per month to GRASS via standing orders".
23 October 2007
KENDAL PRICESKendal Town have confirmed the admission prices for this Saturday's FA Cup tie will be £7 for adults and £3.50 for concessionaries/juniors. For those travelling by car, Kendal warn that there is no parking at the ground itself but there is a car park 500/600 yards along Parkside Road, before reaching the ground. The supporters' coach will, however, be able to take passengers to/from the ground itself. Details of the STAR supporters' coach times and fares are here.
WELL DONE!Alty supporter Graham Jackett has confirmed that his completion of the Macclesfield Half Marathon raised a total of £277 for the Altrincham Football Club, for which all at Moss Lane are very grateful.
BE SQUAREIan Rosendaal's Ideas4Alty has a few squares of the Moss Lane pitch available for sponsorship, with prices starting at £3.
YOUTH TRIALISTTom Bailey, striker for Altrincham Youth, is playing in the trials for the English Colleges squad next Saturday.
KENDAL PREPAREThis is the Lake District reports that "Kendal Town FC face their biggest FA Cup match in recent history when they face Altrincham in a fourth qualifying round tie at the Lakeland Radio Stadium this Saturday. The reward for the winners is a place in the first-round proper which is the stage of the competition that Football League divisions one and two feature. With Altrincham expected to have several hundred supporters following their side, Kendal Town match secretary John Wharton is urging the people of Lakeland to rally round and show their support. 'It's a massive occasion for both the club and the town we are one big win away from the first-round proper. We will be the underdogs on the afternoon,but if the people of the town make a big effort and turn out to give vocal support like they have done for recent crucial games then I am sure the players will respond and they certainly won't let anyone down. I plead with you all to make the effort and make all the difference'".
Whichever side wins on Saturday will not have long to wait for the FA Cup Round 1 draw. It is on Saturday at around 5.10pm. Whilst the 1st Riund winners pocket £10,000, those in the 2nd Round gain £16,000 in prize money.
NEXT IN LEAGUEAltrincham's next league game is away at Histon on 3 November. The FA confirms that the Stutes' Cliff Akurang will be "suspended from all football until the Club have completed 3 first team matches for a sending off in a match played on 20/10/2007". " "Adie Cambridge in a Histon shirt is like John Terry moaning at a referee or New Zealand choking in a Rugby World Cup - you do not get one without the other. The Stutes' set-piece maestro has been with Histon manager Steve Fallon since the beginning of the promotion revolution eight seasons ago. In that time, the 33-year-old midfielder has become a permanent fixture... Cambridge has also been awarded the captain's armband this season in the absence of Jamie Barker, who has struggled to pin down a regular place in the starting line-up. But he knows the honour will mean nothing if his form dips, because someone else will soon be drafted in to take his spot, such is the strength in depth of Histon's squad this term. Cambridge said: 'It's been an honour and a privilege to wear the captain's armband. In the last five or six seasons, the Histon team has more or less picked itself, but Fall (Steve Fallon) has got his work cut out for himself with the squad we've got now. As a player, you know, captain or not, if you don't play well there is someone else to come in and take your place... We've exceeded everyone's expectations apart from our own this season. With the way we've started, and the way the chairman (Gareth Baldwin), the manager and the coach (John Beck) give you that self-belief, the play-offs don't seem out of reach. But no-one is getting carried away and survival is the main aim. Everyone thinks 49 or 50 points will keep you safe in this league and we're on half of that already with only a third of the season gone. It's a big jump into this league. We've gone up before, but this is like going up three or four levels in one go'. Like all of the Histon squad, the part-timers have to fit their training in around their day jobs, but Cambridge thinks the way the Stutes have been able to juggle the two has been the main reason for their impressive adaptation to life in the non-League's top tier. He added: 'We all have jobs to go to, but that just makes you appreciate your football more. Not many teams are prepared for just how fit we actually are, and credit for that goes to manager Steve Fallon and John Beck'" reports the Cambridge Evening News.
BSP NEWS"Manchester County Court will decide whether to grant Northwich Victoria Football Club (2004) Limited an administration order this Friday, October 26. If granted, it will give the company some breathing space from any action by creditors. The court appoints the administrator, which in Vics' case is likely to be Bury corporate recovery specialists DTE. DTE will be expected to produce a report to the court on Friday. It will explain why they think the club should go into administration, such as it has costs which can't be paid and what the potential benefits are... DTE have a duty to get the best possible deal for all creditors. That is likely to be done by selling the club as a going concern to Jim Rushe's consortium... They need to get permission from the FA and the Football Conference for Vics to keep playing. Why is administration better than liquidation? It allows the club to survive, in whole or in part, as an ongoing business. It will give the consortium time to negotiate a compromise with creditors, which Rushe has indicated is likely to be a company voluntary arrangement (CVA). Those creditors are also likely to get more money as the club will be sold. Liquidation would likely leave them with nothing.
What is a CVA? It is a deal between the company and its creditors to repay them from future profits over a period of time to be agreed. The company directors draft a proposal which is sent to all creditors for consideration ahead of a creditors meeting. At that meeting creditors vote on the proposal. As the main creditor in Vics' case, HM Revenue and Customs are the ones with which Rushe needs to do the most bargaining. They are likely to hold out for at least 50p in the pound.
What punishment could await Vics? Should an administration order be granted on Friday then the club will be deducted 10 points with immediate effect...Should an administration order be granted on Friday then it is likely that HM Revenue and Customs will withdraw the petition to have NVFC (2004) Ltd liquidated" says the Northwich Guardian.
The BBC belatedly confirms that "Stafford have signed Cheltenham keeper Will Puddy, a former England schoolboys international, on a month's loan. The 20-year-old is still awaiting his Robins debut, although he signed a three-year professional contract during the summer. He joined Stafford in time to make his Rangers debut between the sticks in Saturday's 1-1 draw at Crawley. Puddy has also previously spent time on loan at non-league sides Mangotsfield United and Yate Town. Meanwhile, Stafford have released young Irish goalkeeper Robert Duggan. Also, goalkeeper Scott Loach and defender Cedric Avinel have returned to Watford after completing their loan spells with Stafford - who are likely to be without striker Seb Hamilton for five to six weeks because of an ankle injury."
Meanwhile "Watford have signed American goalkeeper Ian Joyce on a non-professional contract basis... He had a spell in the Conference last season, where he was at Grays Athletic on non-contract terms". And another keeper on the move between the BSP and the League is "Alex Cisak [who] has returned to his parent club Leicester City following the conclusion of his month-long loan spell at Oxford United. Cisak did not make a first-team appearance in his time with the U's. Meanwhile, QPR have given the U's permission for on-loan midfielder Stefan Bailey to become cup-tied in their FA Cup qualifying tie next week. But boss Jim Smith is waiting to hear whether Ipswich will allow them to field on-loan striker Jordan Rhodes".
The Cambridge Evening News says that United manager Jimmy Quinn "is sending his troops back to boot camp in a bid to inspire Cambridge United on a run in the FA Cup. The U's have lost just once in the Blue Square Premier this season as well as having enjoyed their best start to a campaign in the club's history after going the first 12 matches undefeated. And much has been made of the squad's week-long stay at Bassingbourn barracks in pre-season for giving United the impetus to launch their season in style. But United have failed to get beyond the round in which they entered the FA Cup for the last three seasons... Drawn away yet again to face a quick return to Stafford next weekend after last Saturday's 1-1 draw in the league at Marston Road, Quinn said he felt another Army camp would get United fired up for the cup. He said: 'We're going there tomorrow and coming back on Thursday morning. We used to do it at other clubs I was with and it's something different to get all the lads together and focus on the job we've got and get a bit more team spirit going'. Quinn believed it was crucial United enjoyed a decent run in the competition to whip up the fans and boost the club's coffers. He said: 'I'm fully aware that we haven't had a cup run here for a long time and having been fortunate enough to be at clubs where they've had a good run. It's exciting for everyone. It's also another way of bringing in extra revenue to the club, particularly if we're looking to strengthen the team in the January window. I'd have liked a home tie, but at least we know a bit more about them individually and collectively and there's no reason why we can't go there and beat them'".
From the Crawley Observer we learn that "Crawley Town assistant manager Paul Raynor blamed keeper Ashley Bayes for literally throwing away two points on Saturday. Raynor was sent out to face the press as Steve Evans locked the players into the changing room for half an hour after the game and was too angry to speak... Crawley were cruising until the 89th minute when Bayes fumbled the ball into his net from a shot by Nathan Smith. The management team were also both sent to the stands in a decision Paul describes as 'laughable'. Raynor said: 'It was thrown away. Ashley Bayes has thrown the ball into his own net. You can't defend that, it was very poor from Ashley. You would like to defend Ashley on that but you can't. When you're a goalkeeper and make a mistake you get punished... The players have let themselves down. It's a game we should have got three points from... They are going to have to work extremely hard and there will be changes for the cup next week... I wouldn't like to comment too much about me and Steve being sent off because it's laughable. I can't wait to see the report because when I do I will have a little laugh to myself. It's a joke, an absolute joke'".
Ex-Manchester United reserve defender, Lee Roche, who recently had an unsuccessful trial at Moss Lane, is now playing in a local cup match for Droylsden this week.
This is Glos says that "Chris Giles is keen to get his hands on the video of Forest Green's 2-2 draw with Farsley Celtic, but not to bask in the glory of getting on the scoresheet.Rovers' stand-in captain netted twice from corners, including an 85th minute equaliser, to rescue a point from a below-par display by the home side. The giant defender was also guilty of conceding a penalty for handball from a corner, and he was keener to dwell on errors at the back than his own personal glory. 'We're very good at keeping clean sheets when it comes to open play but at the moment we've got to improve on our set pieces against', said Giles. 'I wouldn't mind seeing the video of their second goal because we seemed to be defending all right but there was a mix-up'. Giles did not blame referee Adam Watts for awarding the 59th minute penalty, but insisted he had handled unintentionally. 'It hit my hand, which I'm gutted about, but I can't really argue with the decision', he said. 'It was nice to get a couple of goals to make up for it and I'm on to zero for the season now after scoring two own goals'... Rovers' boss Jim Harvey described the result as 'two points dropped,' and admitted his side needed to improve their defensive discipline. 'We conceding too many goals by far and that's disappointing because we're always capable of scoring', said Harvey. 'I don't think Farsley showed a great deal of ambition but we need to be at our best to win games and that didn't happen'".
Meanhwhile, the Oxford Mail says that"Chairman Nick Merry has rubbished a story in one of the Non-League newspapers that Oxford United were lining up a move for Cambridge United boss Jimmy Quinn. The Non-League Today claimed on Sunday that Cambridge were opening contract talks with Quinn 'in an attempt to fend off predators Oxford United and Stevenage Borough'. But Merry said the story was 'nonsense' and he said he was upset by it. 'It's just rubbish', Merry stated. 'I'm upset by it because Paul Power, the Cambridge United chairman, is a good friend of mine'. Oxford United manager Jim Smith has been under pressure from fans because of poor results this season with the team languishing in mid-table... But he has made it clear he has no intention of stepping down, and Merry has publicly backed him to turn it around. It's quite possible that Merry and Power have been in discussions recently, yet that is likely to have been over striker Marvin Robinson, who was loaned by Oxford to Cambridge for three months but was then seriously injured in a car crash. After talks between the two clubs last week, the three-month loan has been cancelled and Robinson has now returned to being an Oxford United player, with secretary and general manager Mick Brown saying that was 'morally the right thing to do'. The 27-year-old striker, who suffered a broken leg, bruised lungs and three fractured vertebrae, had an operation to repair his broken femur last Friday and he is set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Smith said: 'It's a tragedy really. As far as the accident is concerned, the car rolled over and went down a bank and that's as much as I know. Tests showed that he's got three small fractures in his back and that's quite lucky because it could've been much worse. He's going to be out for a long while and he'll probably be in hospital for at least a couple of weeks'".
The NL Daily states that "Phil Wallace, chairman of Stevenage Borough, has warned there could be 'certain legal ramifications' if Mark Stimson fills the vacant managerial post at Gillingham. The 39-year-old resigned as Boro boss last week after rejecting a new deal with the Blue Square Premier side, and has been heavily linked with a move to Priestfield. Wallace was left furious by Stimson's decision to leave the club, and he said: 'In addition to finding a long term replacement for Mark I'm also dealing with the legalities of his resignation and the media speculation that he's going to Gillingham. If that happens without our consent there will be certain legal ramifications which we will pursue with all the means at our disposal. We simply will not allow our employment contracts to be manipulated for other people's gain, unless it's on our terms'".
22 October 2007
KENDAL CUP GAMEAltrincham are away at Kendal Town next Saturday (27th) in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round. Details of the STAR supporters' coach are here. All fans intending to use the coach must book in advance; this can be done at the ground on matchdays or by ringing the Club on 928-1045. A £10,000 prize for winners and a place in Round One are at stake so please come along and support the team.
This is the Lake District reports that "Kendal Town, due to meet Altrincham in the FA Cup at home next Saturday, progressed in the FA Trophy with a 3-1 win at Grantham Town [on Saturday]. Two first-half goals in 11 minutes from from midfielder Craig Hobson gave Town the intitiative. Hobson opened the scoring after 14 minutes but them Wilkinson hit back for Grantham in the 21st minute. Hobson then struck for a second time four minutes later as Kendal turned round with the 2-1 lead. Striker Gareth Arnison added a third goal in the 75th minute to seal victory at the Meres against the Unibond first division side - the first opponents Lee Ashcroft's side played when he took charge almost a year ago". Lee Ashcroft has more than 300 league appearances to his credit but his most recent contact with Altrincham was in 2003-04 when he played against us for Southport. Before becoming the manager at Kendal, Lee was a player with the Cumbrian club.
OLD BOYSSteve Bushell conceded a penalty for handball for Halifax on Saturday, but Aldershot missed it. Kieran Lugsden and former Alty Reserve Rick Chetcuti socred for Leigh RMI on Saturday. Mario Daniel hit the post for Woodley Sports. Dave Swanick and Marc Limbert turned out for Bangor City. Lee Thompson played for Warrington Town.
YOUTHS' SUCCESSAlty Youth won 6-0 away at Leigh RMI on Sunday with goals by Tom Bailey 2, Sam Madeley 2 and Gavin O'Connor; the sixth was an own goal. Manager George Heslop's report on the Youth team's defeat on 14 October at Marine is now in the youth section of the website.
Meanwhile Cheshire FA beat East Riding 4-0 at Nantwich on Sunday. Three Alty Youth players started the game, Danny Browne, Tom Bailey and Dominic Lillie. Bailey scored twice and Lillie once. On the bench was Chris Francis but he did not get on to the pitch.
MANAGER BARGAINAt the Robins' Shop there are copies of the new Football Manager 2008 game available at the bargain price of £20 (rrp £34.99). Please ring 928-1045 to get your copy.
21 October 2007
TORQUAY BACK AT TOP
FLEET VERDICTAfter yesterday's game, Alty assistant manager Dalton Steele (right) told the NL Paper, "It was not up to standard. They were three bad goals to concede because it wasn't like they cut us apart. We should have been in front before they scored. It's about taking our chances"
This site's match report is here. From the other side, Ebbsfleet United report that "A 10-minute spell midway through the first half was enough to land Fleet the three points at Moss Lane this afternoon as Liam Daish's men recorded only their second win on the road this season, but more importantly stretched their record to just one defeat in nine games... The Fleet had the better possession and kept their heads in the second half, although skipper Sacha Opinel gave away a penalty on 64 minutes when he went in on Colin Little and the former Crewe striker made no mistake with the resulting spot kick. Michael Bostwick saw red on 72 minutes for a somehat naive second bookable offence, having received a caution in the first-half, but it barely knocked the Fleet out of their stride as this impressive away victory lifted them to eighth in the table".
TURNSTILE WORKSpectators at Moss Lane yesterday will have noticed that work is proceeding to rebuild the turnstiles on Golf Road nearest to the junction with Moss Lane. These have not been used for some years but once the rebuilding has been completed they will become the main entrance for home standing supporters. At that stage, the existing turnstiles at the bottom of Golf Road will be closed other than for matches where a high attendance is expected.
KENDAL WON'T BE A PIECE OF CAKEAltrincham's next game is away at Kendal Town in the FA Cup, 4th Qualifying Round. On Saturday, in the FA Trophy 1QR, Kendal won 3-1, away at Grantham Town. Thirty years ago, Alty and Kendal (then known as Netherfield) were regular opponents in the Northern Premier League, with Alty's last visit to the Cumbrians being in 1979. As Barry Pikesley reminded us in yesterday's Robins' Review, Alty only won once in 11 visits there between 1968 and 1979!
Kendal play at the Lakeland Radio Stadium in Parkside Road, Kendal LA9 7BL. STAR will be running a supporters' coach to the match details of which are on the Away Travel page. The excellent Pyramid Passion website run by David Bauckham, who was the webmaster of Eastbourne Borough when we met them in the promotion play-off in 2005. For those travelling by car, a map link is below: Drivers should leave J36 of the M6 northbound and travel via the A590/591 and A6 signed to Kendal South. At the first traffic lights, turn right, then left at the roundabout and then right immediately after the building site into Parkside Road. The ground lies on the right after reaching the top of the hill.
Following recent changes to the Multimap website, the map links on this site's Links & Maps Page have been updated. These take you to maps of the area around all BSP grounds, from which you can zoom out to work out a route. Of course, it is far easier just to take the STAR supporters' coach to away games and let the coach drivers take the strain!
OLD BOYSThe NW Counties League confirms that "This latest Chadderton signing comes after manager Paul Buckley further strengthened the squad with the capture of former FC United player Adie Orr and former Altrincham player Nehru McKenzie (right)". Adie, too, was at Altrincham, being a regular at one point in their Reserves.
Alty had Steve Moore on trial last summer but yesterday "Flixton recorded their 1100th league goal and was the second of Steve Moore’s four goals. Flixton 4 Runcorn Linnets 3 .
NL Daily reports that "Rossendale United kept a first clean sheet since the opening day of the campaign and were rewarded with a first three pointer in six outings with Woodley Sports the victims, thanks to Gary Williams's 67th minute effort". Whilst "Witton Albion were the biggest scorers in Saturday`s FA Trophy First Round ties as they hammered UniBond League Premier Division rivals Ashton United 6-1 at Wincham Park. Rod Thornley and Marc Peers both bagged braces for Albion".
Ex-Alty men on the move recently include Lee Hendley (from Flixton to Woodley Sports) and former Reserves' keeper Craig Ellison, from Crewe to Witton Albion
BSP NEWSDroylsden's Garry Burke has joined Curzon Ashton.
20 October 2007
ALTRINCHAM 1 EBBSFLEET UNITED 3
Above: Colin Little's penalty was the only bright spot for Alty against Ebbsfleet.
Alty's poor home form continued as calamitous defending saw them ship three goals to a far from world-beating Ebbsfleet United side in just eight minutes during the first half. The game turned on Carlos Logan's excellent shot against the Fleet cross bar in the 28th minute for the visitors went straight to the other end where Purcell was allowed too much space and hammered a shot at goal, which Coburn parried briliantly. But the striker reacted the quickest and drove home the loose ball from left of goal (29 mins). Nade was then allowed an unchallenged header from a corner to make it 2-0 after 35 minutes. Then, two minutes later, from a cross from the Ebbsfleet right, Chris Lane looped a header over Coburn from 12 yards to record an own goal (37 mins). Alty had conceded three goals in eighteen minutes at Salisbury last Saturday and had now leaked another three in less than half that time. Alty, who had lost captain Darren Tinson to injury just over a minute before conceding the first goal brought on Colin Little and Gareth Whalley at the interval and did better in the second half. They got back into the game when Little was felled inside the box and he got up to score from the spot after 66 minutes but despite the sending off of Bostwick for a second yellow card after 72 minutes, Altrincham were unable to get past a solid Ebbsfleet defence. Match report here.
BEFORE THE GAMEThe BBC says of our visitors today that "Ebbsfleet United midfielder Mark DeBolla has left Stonebridge Road to join AFC Wimbledon. DeBolla has signed for the Dons on a permanent basis and ends a 15-month stay with the Fleet. Meanwhile, Fleet boss Liam Daish has allowed on-loan striker Jon Hastings to return to MK Dons. George Purcell and Liam Coleman are back from their loan spells at Heybridge Swifts but Danny Stubbs and John Akinde move to Whitstable on loan".
From Kent Online we read that "Manager Liam Daish has called on his Ebbsfleet United players to put together another winning run in order to maintain their push for the Blue Square Premier play-offs. Fleet have lost just once in their last eight games in a run which has seen them move up to ninth in the table. Daish’s side travel to play lowly Altrincham at Moss Lane on Saturday and the former Republic of Ireland international is expecting a tough game. He said: 'It will be difficult, as we found out on Saturday against Droylsden. We have got to make sure we’re at it and that we play to our strengths. If we do that then hopefully we’ll have enough.,,, Striker Chukki Eribenne was forced off during Fleet’s 2-0 win over Droylsden on Saturday after the recurrence of a hamstring injury which previously kept him out for two weeks. Eribenne could be available for selection, while Paul McCarthy and Mark Ricketts (both sickness) are expected to be back".
The Manchester Evening News says that "A record of just one defeat in their last five games has edged fourth-bottom Altrincham nearer the teams who lie immediately above the drop zone... But that single loss was on home turf, taking Altrincham's total number of defeats at Moss Lane to six, a major concern to Graham Heathcote... 'Our away record is decent but it's at our place where we have lacked the firepower to finish teams off' said the Robins' chief. 'We've got to start getting some home wins under our belt, it's as simple as that. And the only way we're going to do it is by working harder and being more clinical'. Heathcote hopes Gareth Whalley, Steve Aspinall and Stephen Rose wild declare themselves fit... But Gary Scott (knee) [left] could join Val Owen and Colin Potts on the sidelines whilst Colin Little will again make way for loan signing James Dean [right]".
OLD BOYSSAM reports that "Alty gave fans a blast from the past on Tuesday night, as a host of familiar faces from the club's history descended on Moss Lane. Despite including such star names as Ken McKenna, Clive Freeman, Paul Cuddy, Gary Talbot, Chris Adams and Peter Band, an Alty Legends XI were beaten 9-4 by the current first team... While the game was a good chance for fans to pay respect to past players, manager Graham Heathcote said it was also a good run-out for his current squad. 'It was a gentle run out for the first team and a good chance for Gareth Whalley, Steve Aspinall and Stephen Rose to get some game time under their belts as they return from injury. There wasn't a big crowd, which was slightly disappointing because I would have hoped that more people would come along to say thank you to former players. But I'll probably look at organising another game in the summer when we can guarantee a better turnout'".
From Australia, The Age reports on James Robinson's move to Perth from Melbourne. James said, "'It's obviously disappointing to be told that your services are no longer wanted but I tried to take the positives out of it and one door shut and another one opened when Ron Smith gave me a chance here. I am playing many more games than I did in Melbourne and it's all going really well. Last year, it was hard for the coaches to change a winning team, but the chance has come here and I am grabbing it with both hands'. Perth has yet to win a match this season... But Robinson believes it is a better team than its results show and that any disappointment after the heartbreaking draw with Sydney last week - Glory let a 3-1 lead slip with Sydney equalising in the final seconds of the match - has been forgotten.'After a game like that, you are looking at each other in the dressing room wondering how and where things went wrong, but after the next training session, it gets forgotten about', he said.
BSP NEWS"Halifax Town striker Andy Campbell is facing an extended spell on the sidelines after being told he requires surgery on an Achilles tendon injury. Campbell has been out of action for almost a month and had his comeback put on hold when he broke down in training. He will now have an operation and will be sidelined until after the turn of the year. Campbell, 28, has scored five times this season and netted nine times in all since joining in August, 2006" reports the BBC.
Weymouth report that "Following an intensive period of negotiation, Mel Bush has completed a deal for the sale of Weymouth Football Club (WFC) to local company Wessex Park Ltd. Mel expanded: 'Since originally taking over the club several months ago, other business commitments have demanded increased focus and draws on my time. After much thought and discussion with key stakeholders, I felt that the club would benefit from a new leadership structure to enable more time and energy to be dedicated to achieving the goals of the club. I am delighted to say that that within Wessex Park Ltd, headed by local businessman Malcolm Curtis, we have a team that can continue to drive the club forward to reach the objectives which we have already set-out to achieve and to the ongoing success of the club'... Malcolm Curtis added: 'I am delighted to be in the position of taking over the reins from Mel and his team... The overriding objective behind the transfer of ownership is to secure the ongoing success and prosperity of the club and this will remain to be the case as we move forward'. Curtis concluded by adding: 'I am committed to ensuring that the club moves forward without distractions and would like to reassure all key parties that the clubs future is at the heart of this deal and any future decisions that are made will always have the clubs best interest at the forefront'".
19 October 2007
YOUTH GAMESThe next Youth team fixtures are:
DIRECTORY AVAILABLE SOONThe Non-League Club Directory, 2008 has now been published. Copies can be ordered via the Robins' Shop and sales through the shop bring commission to the Club so please place your orders now! The cost is £19.95, of which a £10 deposit is required on ordering. The Club hopes to receive its copies very shortly and their arrival will be noted here, on the website. For further details ring Jenny Heslop at the club (928-1045) or visit the shop on matchdays.
CSC DATEThe date for Altrincham's second round Cheshire Senior Cup match away to Runcorn Linnets has been set for Tuesday 13 November. The game will be at Witton Albion FC - kick off time is 7.45pm.
This is Altrincham's 11th away draw in cup competions out of the twelve cup matches (FA Cup, FA Trophy and CSC) played in the last three seasons. The exceptional home tie was in the FA Trophy in December last year when we drew with Tamworth at Moss Lane. At least we can claim to be unbeaten in home cup matches for three seasons (if you don't count the Chester match in the CSC last season which was an away match which was switched to Moss Lane and which we lost on penalties).
NEXT UPRegarding our next opponents, the Gravesend Reporter says that "Liam Daish insists grinding out results against struggling teams is more significant for Ebbsfleet United than toppling league leaders after last Saturday's win over Droylsden... just a week after overcoming table toppers Torquay 2-1 on home soil... 'Droylsden is a bigger win than Torquay in my eyes because they're the underdogs and we're at home and the onus is on us', the Fleet boss explained. 'It's a fixture that people - supporters, directors and the chairman - look at and think that we're going to get three points from. It's a bigger game because there's more pressure on us, whereas against Torquay - who are top of the league - whatever we get, it's happy days and we've done well. If we lose, well, they're a good side'. On Saturday's display itself, Daish added: 'It was not the greatest performance, but it's the result that matters'... But if the Fleet are to continue their resurgence in form, Daish believes a snappier showing in their next league game at Altrincham this Saturday is a must. 'They're at home and after letting a 3-0 lead slip at Salisbury last weekend, they'll be looking to get that out of their system. Altrincham always work hard and have a go, so it will be a tough game'. George Purcell stands a good chance of being involved as his return from a successful spell at Heybridge Swifts coincides with the ending of John Hastings's loan deal and Chukki Eribenne's hamstring injury. Eribenne and Paul McCarthy (Achilles) are both doubts and Danny Slatter (knee) is out. Mark Ricketts has recovered from flu".
As for Altrincham, all of the squad except Val Owen, Darren Tinson, Colin Potts (right) and Robbie Lawton played some part in Tuesday's friendly. Steve Aspinall, Stephen Rose, Stuart Coburn and Gareth Whalley, who had all been out of action recently with injuries, and Karl Munroe. who had been suspended, all played for at least half of a game, but "Asa" limped off with what looked like a hamstring injury which must make him doubtful for inclusion in the squad for Saturday.
SPONSORSAlty's Matchday Sponsors' List has been updated, here, courtesy of Barry Pond. Please contact Barry if you would like to sponsor a match or matchball.
OLD BOYFrom This is Staffs we read that for Curzon Ashton, against Alsager Town, "Ryan Moore was able to send Josh Mitten clear to score the opener".
BSP NEWSAltrincham fans needed a mass security presence to get safely out of Oxford's Kassam Stadium last season so when the Oxford Mail reports that "More U's fans have been punished for football violence than any other club outside the football league, according to Home Office figures" it comes as little surprise. "Statistics released this morning show that 24 Oxford United fans have received football banning orders from magistrates. This is the highest amount in The Blue Square Premier and more than a host of clubs in higher divisions including Premiership clubs Blackburn Rovers, Fulham and Reading. The Home Office figures also show in the 2006/07 season police arrested 21 Oxford United fans including 11 at home and 10 at away matches. The arrests were for violent and public disorder, missile throwing, alcohol offences and offences against people. It places The Us second behind Exeter City who had 31 arrests last season but more than a host of clubs further up the leagues including Fulham, Crystal Palace, Brighton and Swindon Town. Club spokesman Chris Williams said no one was currently available to comment on the statistics". The Confguide Forum has the Home Office statistics in question.
"Torquay United received a triple boost ahead of Sunday's trip to York City. Defender Chris Robertson proved his fitness in a run-out for the Gulls' reserves... Manager Paul Buckle confirmed that teenager Mark Ellis has had his Plainmoor loan stay extended by Bolton Wanderers until the end of the year. The Devon-born defender celebrated by scoring with a header from a set-piece in Tuesday's friendly win... 'It's fantastic that Chris has come through and we now have a fully fit squad, touch wood. We have got everyone fully fit, which is what you always want'" Buckle told This is Devon.
In Essex, Grays Athletic "Following further discussions have taken both Andy Sambrook and Charley Hearn off the transfer list".
The Northwich Chronicle says that "The man who may well be the next chairman of Northwich Vics is 49-year-old construction engineer Ian Campbell, who helped turn Woodley Sports into a senior non-league club. He was at Woodley for 25 years, 15 of them as chairman and was manager for a spell also. Campbell said: ‘It is a massive job. I know that. It may be we have to take a step back before we move forward again, but what we want to generate among the spectators is that we win together and we lose together. It is their club. It is our intention to speak to the supporters and see what they want. There is no financial gain for us and we will keep everything above board. I have toured the ground and realise what a crying shame it would be if the club went'. Campbell revealed the consortium had already spoken to an ex-Premiership player with experience as a manager to take over the team. This may well be [ex-Alty midfielder] Ally Pickering, the former Coventry, Stoke City and Burnley star who has managed Mossley and was at Woodley until the summer. Campbell joined Woodley (then Athletic) in 1990. As chairman he began to improve the ground ‘by going round with a begging bowl’ and initiated the development of a sports complex. ‘I did every job going as chairman, but it got so it was more of a sports centre. I was weary with it. But I miss the camar[ar]derie of football'. He is highly respected in north west non-league and revealed he had only been approached by Northwich’s prospective purchaser Jim Rushe on Tuesday last week. He is not among the major investors in the group of five. Campbell said Mike Connett had offered Vics free use of the Victoria Stadium for the remainder of this season. The Chronicle believes the rent due next year would be at least £50,000".
"Dorset Echo explains that "The news comes just two hours after Echosport was contacted by a source that claimed a takeover deal for the club was agreed last night. When questioned today owner Mel Bush refused to comment". On Wednesday the paper reported that "Bush is happy with the start his side has made to the season and believes the club is steadily moving in the right direction. The entertainments promoter took over the Terras in the summer and has since steadied the ship after the financial turmoil that surrounded former chairman Martyn Harrison's departure in July... He said: 'Things seem to be improving. We played well in the wins against Northwich Victoria and Grays Athletic and I thought we were very unfortunate to lose against Crawley Town last Friday when we had four under-20s in the starting line-up. We certainly have some good young lads coming through. Scott Doe and Gavin McCallum are both coming on very well, Anton Robinson is looking good in midfield and so is James Coutts. "I know the keeper Jon Stewart made an unfortunate mistake which led to Crawley's winner but at Grays he saved us so I do feel things are moving in the right direction'. The Terras are continuing to scour the European market for new talent and have not given up hope of bringing back Croatian Boris Pesic, who impressed during a trial in pre-season. Bush said: 'We are still looking abroad. In fact the young lad from Croatia who came over in pre-season wants to return but where he is not a full international it is difficult in terms of a work permit. However, we are looking at ways and means of bringing him back'. Off the field... he said, 'Extending the bar is working out to be expensive at the moment so we have been working hard on trying to get more money in... I am always looking to find new ways of bringing more money into the club but it is not easy finding the right people to come on board. It's all about trying to do things at the right time'".
The Cambridge Evening News claims that "Gavin Gordon could be unleashed on the Blue Square Premier by Histon boss Steve Fallon next month as the striker continues his comeback from a long-term injury. The 28-year-old forward arrived at the Glass World Stadium in the summer with a big reputation having been signed by Cardiff City for £250,000 in 2000 after a profitable spell with Lincoln City. But the 6ft 1in target man, who also featured for Notts County and Crawley, has struggled with an Achilles problem and not played for almost 12 months. And with Chris Dillon on loan at Hemel Hempstead after failing to force his way into Steve Fallon's plans and Danny Wright only being used as a substitute, the return to fitness of Gordon will provide the manager with more attacking options. Gordon is expected to begin playing for Ian Hart's reserve side in the Ridgeons League, Premier Division in a couple of weeks and the manager believes the front man will prove to be a major asset. Fallon said: 'He's done a little bit of light training and we're hoping that by the end of the month he can start playing for the reserves and we'll have another player coming into our ranks. He's tall, he works hard and he'll be a good player for us if he can get over the injury. It will be close on a year since he's played and there's a long way to go for him to get back. But he's still only 28 and if he makes a complete recovery then we'll have a very good player on our hands'".
18 October 2007
LEGENDS' GAMEA report on the Altrincham Legends' game at Moss Lane on Tuesday is here.
FLEET ON SATURDAYAltrincham entertain Ebbsfleet United on Saturday. As Gravesend & Northfleet, our visitors are, with Alty one of five founder members of the Alliance still at that level (the others are Stafford, Northwich and Weymouth), which was the forerunner of the Conference. The sides met six times before Gravesend were relegated in 1982, with Alty winning five of the matches and drawing once in an away game. Fleet returned to the Conference level in 2003 and first met Alty again in 2005-06 season when we were promoted. In the four meetings since then, Alty have registered just one draw against Fleet's three wins. This season, Ebbsfleet currently lie 9th in the league.
For last season's game at Moss Lane the sides were: ALTRINCHAM : 1. Stuart COBURN, 11. Gary SCOTT, 15. Peter BAND, 5. Gary TALBOT, 3. Chris ADAMS, 7. Colin POTTS, 37. Ged MURPHY, 2. Steve ASPINALL, 12. Warren PEYTON, 9. Colin LITTLE (capt), 10. Rod THORNLEY . Subs: 14. Lewis CHALMERS, 17. Karl MUNROE, 18. Blake NORTON, 20. Kieran LUGSDEN, 28. Pat McFADDEN.
GRAVESEND & NORTHFLEET : 1. Aaron KERR, 2. Scott GOODING, 20. Ross SMITH, 25, Peter HAWKINS, 21. Robert WATKINS, 23. Andrew DRURY, 15. Daniel SLATTER, 17. Bobby BOWRY (capt), 31. Bradley JOHNSON, 11. Jimmy JACKSON, 5. James SMITH. Subs: 12. Craig HOLLOWAY, 14. Ashley FULLER, 22. Luke MOORE, 3. Justin SKINNER, 26. Jamie DARVILLE.
CUP OPPONENTSOur FA Cup opponents, a week on Saturday, are Kendal Town and the Cumbrians were watched by Alty boss Graham Heathcote on Tuesday as they lost 3-0 at Witton. This is the Lake District says that a "3-0 defeat against Witton Albion ended Kendal Town's good run at Wincham Park on Tuesday evening. Town manager Lee Ashcroft also has injury problems to face from the match with right-back Andy Leigh stretchered off with a leg injury and goalkeeper David Newnes left hobbling with knee trouble at the final whistle... Ashcroft, watching from the stands because of a ban imposed after a previous altercation with a referee, saw his side go 2-0 down as Town gifted them a goal, Whittal-William's failed defensive header letting in Warlow for his second. Warlow completed the hat-trick in the last 10 minutes ...Town were well beaten, but the injuries picked up leave Ashcroft with thinking to do ahead of the FA Trophy match at Grantham on Saturday and the FA Cup fourth qualifying round match at home to Altrincham on Saturday week".
STAR NEWSSTAR, ALtrincham's supporters' trust reports that "There are a few STAR members who will be absolutely delighted to hear that the recent £1300 donation to the club is being used to refurbish a few of the turnstiles...work to be completed in the next few weeks we hear". Other news from STAR includes the following:
The STAR Board will go ahead and prepare the accounts for periods 2005/6 and 2006/7 and call the AGM pt2 (2005/6) and AGM 2006/7 as a combined meeting....full details to follow".
OLD BOYSSteve Lunt opened the scoring for Glossop NE on Tuesday as they won at Atherton LR. Former Alty midfielder, Ged Kielty, is doing well in his first management position as his club, Trafford, second in the Vodkat NW Counties 1, beat St Helens 3-0.
NL Daily says that "Principality Welsh Premier player Adam Docker has won his first international call-up for Pakistan's World Cup qualifiers against Iraq. The Porthmadog and former Bangor City midfielder joined the squad on Sunday ahead of the first game in Lahore next Monday. The return leg will be played in Syria on Sunday, 28th October. Formerly a member of Altrincham's reserve squad with previous experience at Bury, Docker joined Bangor in season 2005/06 and, after being released from Farrar Road at the start of 2007 joined UniBond League outfit Chorley. However, he linked-up again with ex-Bangor boss Clayton Blackmore by signing for Porthmadog in September and has made a total of nine Welsh Premier appearances to date. Docker qualifies for Pakistan through his ancestry and will use the name Adam Karim while playing international football. 'I have not been told which position I will be playing in by the Pakistani management. Although I have played as a striker, I prefer playing at centre half', says Docker, who is looking forward to the opportunity of a lifetime. 'We have some good quality players in the side and I think we've got a good chance. I think by choosing players from across the world, the Pakistan Football Association have shown they are looking to develop the team and are serious about football in the country', he added. Off the field, Docker has a full-time job running Karim's restaurant in Middleton. Zesh Rehman of QPR, Adnan Ahmed of Tranmere Rovers and Amjad Iqbal of Blue Square Premier side Farsley Celtic are other UK-based players selected for the squad".
BSP NEWS"Barnsley's Simon Heslop has joined Halifax Town on a one-month loan deal. The 20-year-old midfielder recently returned from a one-month loan spell at Northwich Victoria during which he made six first-team appearances. Heslop has also enjoyed loan spells at Tamworth and Kidderminster Harriers in recent seasons, and has played over 50 times at Conference level. But he has struggled to force his way into the Tykes side, making just one substitute appearance last season", says the BBC. Alty first came across Heslop when Barnsley faced Alty Youth in the FA Youth Cup a few seasons ago.
Stevenage Borough report that "Manager Mark Stimson presented his written resignation to the Club this morning... Chairman Phil Wallace said 'Mark has resigned today and he's told us that he took legal advice before he made that decision. We don't know where he's going but he obviously feels that this action is in the best interests of his future career and only history will show whether he was right or wrong. I think it's been clear to everyone over the past few weeks that events outside the Club have been the major contributor in his decision to resign, but we will have to wait and see what happens now. Scott hasn't resigned and will therefore take the game tomorrow night in the normal way. At this moment I don't have any further details but as soon as I have any more information I will let the fans know. We are already receiving applications for the position, as it's obviously a fantastic opportunity for the right person. The message to our fans at this moment is that the Board are just as determined to bring Football League status to the town as the day we hired Mark and, just as importantly, to continue with the style of play that we've shown this year. This squad of players have been signed because they can play in a certain way and that will be the single most important factor when we're looking at applications for the Manager's position'". The BBC adds that "Assistant manager Scott Barrett will take temporary charge of Stevenage for their game against promotion rivals Burton Albion on Thursday [on Setanta TV]. Stimson, 39, was appointed Stevenage manager at the start of last season following a successful spell in charge of Grays Athletic", whom he also left, surprisingly, when they were doing well, indicating that he hoped to be moving to a League managership..
From the Northwich Chronicle comes confirmation that "Vics succeeded in their application to go into administration yesterday. Now the Inland Revenue have asked for a fortnight’s adjournament of their own case for a winding up order against the club for an unpaid £350,000 tax bill. It all accommodates more talks between the Revenue, as the main creditor and a group led by Manchester businessman Jim Rushe who are looking to take over the club. But it also suggests the two sides were unable to reach agreement during negotiations on Monday. Northwich will be docked 10 points in the Blue Square Premier Division but Saturday’s game at Grays Athletic and the FA Cup tie at Southport the following week will be played before the club’s future is finally decided".
"Mike Connett ‘blamed everyone’ except himself for Vics' plight, said a player at Thursday’s meeting with the club’s owner. ‘He spent 45 minutes blaming the fans and the people of Northwich, Steve Burr (former manager) for leaving and Neil Redfearn (his successor) for spending £1,600 a week over budget. We pointed out he provided the budget in the first place, but he still insisted it was Neil’s fault. Connett told us the club was going out of existence and that he wasn’t putting any more money in. He claimed it was what the Supporters’ Trust wanted, that they wanted to start again at the bottom. He blamed everyone but himself. Most of us thought it was all bull****. The players voted to play in Saturday’s game against Exeter City. We wanted to fullfil our obligations to the supporters and not be the ones to send the club out of existence. Mike Connett said he would pay us some of our wages, but no-one really expected to get anything. He said it was in our hands if we played and he wasn’t bothered either way', added the player. The Chronicle understands the players are now owed one week’s wage.
The chairman had recently put three injured players – Jonny Allan, Mike Welch, who had both broken bones playing for the club, and Lee Steele – on half-wages, but the issue has been overtaken by events... [Meanwhile] Vics have borrowed goalkeeper Scott Tynan (Ebbasfleet!!) and winger Danny Williams (Rushden) for a month and they made impressive debuts against Exeter".
17 October 2007
ALTRINCHAM FC 9 ALTRINCHAM FC LEGENDS 4
Above, led by mascot Max Band (aged nearly two), his father Peter Band brings out the Legends team to start the game against the current Alty squad. The Legends, in red and white, were applauded onto the pitch by the current players. In the picture the Legends seen are Colin Little (9), Ken McKenna (10), Chris Adams (11) and, facing the camera, Shaun Constable.
Four goals for Chris Senior, three for James Dean and a brace by Joe O'Neill gave the current Altrincham squad a comfortable win over their forerunners at Moss Lane on Tuesday night. In a one-sided, but nevertheless entertaining, first half the current team ran up a 7-1 lead, the Legends' only goal being Ken McKenna's penalty just before the break. But after some changes of personnel, things were far more even in the second period, which the Legends actually "won" 3-2, thanks to two goals from Charles Heathcote and one from Colin Little. The game also gave the recently injured Steve Aspinall, Stuart Coburn, Stephen Rose and Gareth Whalley a run out. Shaun Constable was the pick of the Legends and it was also good to see the likes of Clive Freeman, Paul Cuddy, Gary Talbot, Chris Adams, Ken McKenna and Peter Band on the Moss Lane turf once again.
OLD BOYSAs well as those playing at Moss Lane last night, former players Terry Bowker, Barry Shuttleworth and Marcus Hallows were amongst those in the crowd. NL Daily says that "on Monday night, Buxton moved into ninth spot in the table following a good 3-1 win at Keys Park against inconsistent Hednesford Town. Defender Terry Bowker opened the scoring with his first goal for the Bucks".
ON REFLECTIONSAM reports that "Altrincham were denied only their second away win of the season after a sensational Salisbury fightback ensured the points were shared... The home side used their heads to comeback from a 3-0 deficit thanks to a trio of goals from crosses - two of them coming in the final two minutes... Alty had been in control since the 35th minute, when a debut goal from on-loan Bury striker James Dean put them in front... But although it was a disappointing way to end what had, at one point, been such a promising game, in the cold light of day this will be seen as an extremely welcome point in the battle for survival... Robins' boss Graham Heathcote tried to disrupt Salisbury's momentum by introducing substitute Karl Munroe, but when the hapless fourth official couldn't operate the electronic display board, the referee lost patience and ordered play to resume. Typical of Alty's luck, the home side then went straight downfield and scored again, Brown nodding in from Oliver's flick-on. It was too much for the frustrated Heathcote, who was sent to the stands for remonstrating with the fourth official. But, on reflection, this should be a point he's more than happy with".
BSP NEWSThe BBC says that "Stevenage striker Paul Hakim has returned to Broadhall Way following a month's loan at rivals Woking. Cards' boss Frank Gray was keen to keep Hakim at the Kingfield Stadium but admitted that financial constraints had ruled out an extended deal. The 25-year-old forward scored twice in seven appearances for Woking. Meanwhile, Gray hopes to have defender Tom Hutchinson back from injury for Saturday's trip to Oxford".
The Cambridge Evening News says that "Steve Fallon is calling for Histon to turn the Glass World Stadium into a fortress after watching his side see off 10-man Kidderminster 2-1... only a third home victory in eight league games so far this term. And the manager is keen for his team to build on the win over Harriers... and try to match their impressive away form on their own turf. Fallon said: "This win has got to be a platform to get our home form up and running. We're doing well away and we don't want to start winning at home then not picking up results on the road. We are just trying all-round to get our performances up. We have been playing really well lately. Crawley (a 1-0 defeat last Tuesday) was a bit of a blip, but we didn't want to dwell on that... I can't believe we didn't score more goals, because we tore them apart after they went a man short'... Histon have signed a three-year deal with Cambridgeshire computer firm Red Gate Software to sponsor the new 400-seat Cambs FA stand at the Glass World... The new Red Gate stand is expected to be officially opened when the Stutes play Exeter City in the Blue Square Premier on Saturday, November 24".
The Northwich Guardian has news of our FA Cup opponents Kendal Town, who played Witton Albion last night. "Kendal (from): Smith (GK), Henry, Leigh, Woods, Sparrow, Forbes, Hallam, Whittal-Williams, Redhead, Warburton, Hobson, Arnison, Wright, Mulvaney, Wilkes. Form guide: W W W W L D Top scorer: Peter Wright (10)". Witton boss Jim Vince said, "They will be buoyed by big FA Cup win on Saturday. I reckon they will come to try and frustrate us so I expect a difficult evening". But Kendal "have lost only once in their past 10 games in league and cup - a 4-1 thrashing at Marine. They have momentum following their weekend rout of Woodley Sports in the FA Cup, a win which earned them a plum tie at home to Altrincham. On-loan Rochdale midfielder Callum Warburton spent a spell playing for Northwich Victoria last season, while top scorer Peter Wright has only been outscored by Marine's Peter Cumiskey so far this season".
From the Salisbury Journal we learn that "Nick Holmes says he is sorry to see Luke Oliver return to Stevenage Borough before his loan-agreement ended. The defender, who can also play as a striker (he netted two goals during his stay with the Whites, including one in the 3-3 draw with Altrincham on Saturday) was today recalled by Borough... Despite his immediate return to Broadhall Way, Holmes is not ruling out a move for the player in the future. 'Now that he's been recalled he won't play for us again under this loan deal, but you never know what's around the corner do you?'", said Holmes.
16 October 2007
VICS HEAD FOR ADMINISTRATIONThe Northwich Guardian says that "Mike Connett has applied to take Northwich Victoria into administration. If successful the club will not be wound up at the High Court tomorrow, Wednesday. The Vics' owner said this afternoon it was the only way to save the struggling club, which owes more than £350,000 in unpaid taxes. 'We are working tirelessly towards saving this football club', he said in a statement. 'The club will then be sold to a consortium headed by leisure businessman Jim Rushe if the administration order is accepted. I am personally doing all I possibly can to make this possible. If we can pull this off, Northwich Victoria, although in administration, will be saved. But even if we do succeed, it should not disguise the facts. And the facts are that this club needs home attendances of 1,500 just to break even and we are well short of that. If Northwich wants a football club the local community needs to support it - and so do local businesses. I would urge the supporters' trust to stop mischief making over the coming days and months. We can save this club'. The usual penalty for a football club entering administration is an automatic 10-point deduction, which will mean almost automatic relegation from the top tier of non-league football for Vics. However the Guardian has learned that the club would not be relegated further as part of any punishment doled out by the Football Conference".
LEGENDS AT MOSS LANE TONIGHTTonight, (Tuesday 7.45pm) witnesses a match at Moss Lane between a team of former players, the Alty legends, and a team from the current squad. Amongst those expected to play for the Legends are Ken McKenna, Paul Cuddy, Shaun Constable, Paul France, Dickie Landon, Barry Shuttleworth, Peter Band, Gary Talbot and Chris Adams. And amongst those watching the game will be Marcus Hallows. Entry will be just £5 (£2 for concessionaries) so come along and see the stars of the recent past take on the current generation. Terry Rowley's profiles of many of the Legends are to be found here. Ian Senior, Mark Maddox and Kieran Lugsden had agreed to play but Ian is unable to escape work commitments, whilst Mark and Keiran have not been released to play by their current club, Leigh RMI. However, it is hoped that Ronnie Ellis may be one of those attending the game.
OLD BOYMeanwhile from Australia, Robert Dickinson informs us of another Alty 'Old Boy': "James Robinson is now playing for Perth Glory in the Australian A-League after playing for Melbourne Victory last year". Previously James had been planning to play in the NSW state league. Anyhow, James "scored on the weekend against Sydney and Perth are up against Melbourne this week". The following link takes you to match report of the Perth v Sydney game which says that the Western Australian side had "the speedy Robinson featuring prominently in most of the home side’s better attacking moments". Perth led 3-1 with 20 minutes left but drew 3-3 - sounds familiar?
YOUTH DEFEATAltrincham FC Youth lost 2-1 at Marine on Sunday. Alty captain, Jack Kimber, was taken off with a suspected broken rib. Report to follow.
SATURDAY'S MAN IN CHARGEThe referee for Saturday's game at Moss Lane against Ebbsfleet United is Mr R. Merchant who officiated at the Alty v Grays match on 25 August this season. Grays won 1-0 despite Richard Acton saving Kedwell's penalty and late on Colin Little was shown a red card for pushing Grays' Ashton in retaliation. Mr Merchant also reffed Altrincham's 4-1 win over Farsley Celtic in an FA Cup, 2nd Qualifying Round Match, played on 2 October, 2004.
KENDAL IMPRESSAlty were handed an away tie at Kendal Town in the FA Cup, a week on Saturday. This is the Lake District tells us that "Kendal Town swept into the final qualifying round of the FA Cup with a handsome 4-0 home victory over Woodley Sports on Saturday, playing some of their best football of the season along the way. After a slow start, the tie came alight in the 21st minute when Gareth Arnison stormed in to divert Peter Wright's ball to the near-post...
Wright buried the ball in the net just after referee Andy Pownall blew the half-time whistle as the Woodley keeper blocked but could not clear Arnison's shot when he intercepted a back-pass. Town's much overdue second goal came in the 52nd minute when Callum Warburton hit a wonderful volley into the top corner from 25 yards.... Paul Byrne, who moved to the left wing from full back in a reshuffle following a substitution, supplied the third in the 80th minute... Kendal then crowned an impressive display when Wright stormed clear on the right and, without breaking stride, crashed a powerful low shot past Higginbotham in the visitors' goal. The Town manager said afterwards: 'We full deserved the win having looked the better side throughout and it's another step towards our aim of getting into the FA Cup's first-round proper'".
The Observer has been following a club through the FA Cup qualifying rounds and by the time of last Saturday's 3Q Round, that club was Kendal Town, our opponents in the 4QR on 27th October. Whichever of Kendal or Altrincham wins the tie will then be followed by the newspaper in Round One Proper. The newspaper's match report on the Cumbrians' victory over Woodley Sports in the last round says that:
[Saturday], it has to be said, wasn't exactly the best time for Town to entertain Sports - and not just because Kendal is generally regarded as a rugby union hotbed. Exactly how many people chose to watch England entertain Estonia from 3pm rather than delight in the surroundings of the Lakeland Radio Stadium is open to conjecture; suffice to say there were more than a few empty seats around the place.
Rumours that Kendal's club president Sir Tom Finney had also foregone the game in order to watch England on the box were, however, greatly exaggerated. Now 85, the Preston plumber's health isn't what it was back in the Fifties, preventing him from making the trip up the M6. Anyway, give the man his due. He did make it to Colne last Tuesday night to watch Kendal's 5-0 win in the Lancashire Cup, Peter Wright weighing in with a couple of strikes. The shaven-headed [ex-Alty striker] Wright has created something of a splash at Unibond level by scoring 11 goals already this campaign. He was inches away from making it 12 during the opening exchanges in the Cumbrian drizzle".
GARETH AND COLIN ON PITCHESThe BBC reports the "England coach Steve McClaren says the artificial pitch in Russia's Luzhniki stadium is no excuse for failure in Wednesday's vital Euro 2008 qualifier. The England team trained on an exact replica in Altrincham, [used also by Altrincham FC for training] on Monday and McClaren said: 'It is a flat pitch and there is absolutely no excuse'. But players who have used the surface say it places different physical demands on the body to normal grass.
'I'm not a big fan of the pitch at all', said Altrincham's Gareth Whalley (left).'If you've got any niggles, the pitch will certainly pick them out. It does feel like it has more give but once you've trained on it, it is quite testing on the legs and joints. It's probably not too advisable to train on it for a long time'... Whalley's team-mate Colin Little (right) believes the surface will give Russia a 'slight advantage'. Whalley, formerly of Bradford City and Crewe stated: 'When you get to the latter stages of your career, let's say you start to feel the aches and pains a bit more. I've had a couple of ankle operations, so when I do train on there it really does pick out the soreness in the ankle and the next day it can get quite painful. Personally, it seems to make me a bit stiffer. If you played a full match on it you would probably feel a bit stiffer the next day than on a normal pitch'... However, Little, who like Whalley has trained on the Blessed Thomas Holford Catholic College pitch in Altrincham, is not as pessimistic.
'We did our pre-season on it, which you couldn't have done years ago', he said. 'No one picked up any injuries and we probably got more injuries the year before when we did our pre-season on the grass. There's loads of give in them. It's like a bit of suspension. Years ago they were slate based and felt like you were running on concrete. I coach at Crewe where we have got one and technical director Dario Gradi prefers to play on them rather than the grass''.
The BBC also reports that "'The new synthetic pitch does not play as quickly as the older style Astroturf' said ex-Bradford and Crewe midfielder Gareth Whalley, who trains on the replica school pitch with current club Altrincham. 'You have to hit your passes quite hard and, consequently, it can be quite bobbly. It does test your first touch a bit more than a normal pitch. The biggest thing about the pitch is that it does test your technical ability. I don't think it is conducive to passing. The ball sticks to the surface too much and it might be difficult to play the quick one-touch stuff. You have to be very sure and accurate with your passing...The pitch will suit smaller sharper players and I can see Michael Owen doing quite well on it. The ball seems to hold up more on this surface, so long balls behind the back of their defence should be good for the sharper players to get in behind their back four'.... Whalley's team-mate Colin Little says 'At the end of the day, just get on with it. There are no excuses if you get beat'.
BSP NEWSA week too late to help Altrincham, "Stevenage Borough have recalled defender Luke Oliver halfway through his three-month loan at Salisbury" reports the BBC. "The 24-year-old impressed during his stint, scoring his second goal in the 3-3 draw with Altrincham on Saturday, and boss Nick Holmes hopes he returns. 'He has been exceptionally good for a man on loan, and has shown a great desire to help us win games', the Whites' manager told the Journal".
The Halifax Courier says that former Altrincham captain, "Steve Bushell is set to make his first start since the end of August when Town face Grays in tomorrow's televised Blue Square Premier clash at the Shay. The battling midfielder is the perfect replacement for Anthony Griffith, who starts the four match ban dished out following his red card at Kidderminster last week.And Bushell, who started the first five games of the season before being hit by a hamstring injury, is determined to take his chance to team up with skipper Tom Kearney again. 'I know the results haven't been the best, but the way the lads have been playing has been good', he said. 'When you get your chance in the side you have to take it. It was good to get back on the pitch and get some minutes under my belt at Kidderminster last week, but the way I got on was not nice. Anthony Griffith and Tom Kearney have been different class in midfield, but Griff knows he has let himself and the lads down'... Bushell has good memories of games against Grays having bagged the Town opener with a free kick in the play-off semi final win in 2006.. 'Hopefully we can kick start our season tomorrow', he said. Boss Chris Wilder is delighted to have Bushell to turn to... 'I thought his performance when he came on against Kidderminster was spot on'," said Wilder. 'But you know what you get with him. I might change the shape tomorrow night because I am not fond of three centre halves at home. But it has been a case of needs must in the last couple of games'".
"Oxford striker Marvin Robinson has broken his leg in a car crash. Robinson, who is on loan at Cambridge United, also sustained bruised lungs in the accident on Sunday. According to Oxford's website, the 27-year-old former Chesterfield and Lincoln striker was due to be assessed for possible spinal damage on Monday" reports the BBC.
According to the Northwich Guardian "Jim Rushe says negotiations are no further on with HM Revenue and Customs. He told the Guardian he had been in meetings all day today, Monday. 'We are no further on from Thursday', he said. 'But there is no panic just yet as number crunching takes time. Rest assured when we have something to say we'll say it'. The Guardian has tried to contact both Ian Campbell and Jim Rushe for an update on how negotiations are going with HM Revenue and Customs, but so far the pair have not returned our calls. The group are thought to be applying for Vics to go into administration, which will then give them the power to negotiate a deal with HM Revenue and Customs. They need to persuade the taxman that they are capable of paying of a portion of the club's tax bill. The most likely outcome is that they force an adjournment to Wednesday's court hearing".
The Salisbury Journal says that "Salisbury City defender Jon Bass was hospitalised at the weekend as a result of the injury he received at Oxford United recently. Bass required three stitches to a leg wound, but has played in all four of Salisbury's matches since. Manager Nick Holmes said: 'Bassy's not one to complain, but he's been in some discomfort since the injury. It turns out there's an infection in the cut which has meant his leg has become inflamed. He took himself to hospital after the game on Saturday and was put on a drip and kept in overnight for observation. There's some poison in his wound which has got into the bloodstream. He's back home now but there'll be no training for him for a few days'. Holmes confirmed that skipper Aaron Cook, who missed Saturday's 3-3 draw with Altrincham, also remains on the injury list... Mike Fowler, handed the captain's armband in place of Cook at the weekend, is another who is struggling to be fit... 'Mike's twisted his ankle and is going to be very doubtful for Saturday', said Holmes, who is already without injured midfielders Andy Sandell and Ian Herring, plus the suspended Wayne Turk. The only plus for Holmes today is that striker Robbie Matthews, who missed Saturday's game through illness, was able to resume training".
15 October 2007
FA CUPAltrincham have been drawn away at Kendal Town in the FA Cup 4QR on Saturday 27 October. Kendal's leading scorer is former Alty striker Peter Wright. The sides previously met in an FA Cup, 2nd Qualifying Round Match, played at Moss Lane on 28 September, 2002, which Alty won 1-0 thanks to a goal from Chris Young which came when the Kendal keeper punched the ball against him. That was the match in which Jamie Phoenix was sent off on his full debut for Alty. Pictured right is Mark Maddox in action in that game. Kendal are currently lying 14th in the UniBond Premier. In the Observer newspaper, Kendal Town is the team being followed through each round of the competition so that should ensure some national coverage for this game. £10,000 is at stake for the winners of the tie, with a further incentive being entry into the First Round Proper, which is the stage at which the Football League sides join the competition.
Full draw -
Right: Peter Wright (now 25), who was at Alty in 2004-05. He started 2004-05 in the first team but picked up an injury in September before he returned to the squad in October 2004 but whilst regaining fitness in Alty's Reserves, he fractured his eye-socket in early November. However, Peter had recovered to be named as a sub on Boxing Day 2004 but asked to leave the club in late January 2005 and joined Bamber Bridge. Career appearances for Alty - 8(+6), 2 goals.
UP AGAINST ITAlty's Chris Senior had a fine game on Saturday at Salisbury City but he was up against Luke Oliver, who is 13 inches taller than him (5ft 6ins v 6ft 7ins), as this picture shows. Senior scored a goal and won a penalty whilst Oliver laid on a goal and headed one himself. The two are seen waiting to return to the pitch after a clash of heads had sidelined them both. Also seen is Alty physio, Sean Riley.
GIRLS NEEDED FOR UNDER-13sDavid Johnson, the Under-13 Girls' Manager for Altrincham FC Juniors, is looking to recruit more players for his side. He would be pleased to hear from girls who wish to play in any outfield position and is also much in need of a goalkeeper. So, if you are interested, please use the Junior Players' Enquiry Form.
OLD BOYSSteve Hawes spoke to NL Today about his manager, Peter Rincavage, at Worksop Town. "I have total respect for Peter. Things haven't gone brilliantly since he came, but he's the best manager i've ever played under". Peter Wright netted twice on Saturday for Kendal Town in the FA Cup, whilst Chris Baguley, an Alty trialist this summer, scored twice for FCUM in the league. Phil Power, now assistant manager of FCUM told the NLT, "We'd hoped to continue our run of promotions... We've had an indiffernt start and been inconsistent... so maybe we'll have to be satisfied with the play-offs... The UniBond is a much more difficult league" than NW Counties. James Glendenning was sent off for Caernarfon Town, whilst Marc Llloyd Williams netted for James's opponents, Newtown.
FA CUPThe FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round draw is scheduled for 1pm today (Monday). This site will have the draw as soon as possible afterwards. On past form, this announced time is notional rather than definite.
BSP NEWSOxford United gained "a vital win at Farsley... After seeing Torquay storm back from three goals down at the break on Thursday United went for broke from the start this time, sacrificing their usual 3-5-2 formation and starting out 4-3-3 with Stef Bailey and Jordan Rhodes making debuts and Danny Rose joining Rhodes and Yemi Odubade up front... The home side looked well organised and disciplined, with veteran Chris Billy looking much more sturdy than the Ikea bookcase named in his honour and blotting out any surges which United's midfielders made to join the attack... Farsley are a team of characters and kept going well, and on 74 minutes the lively Tuck thumped a shot against the post with Turley beaten".
RUGBY HITS FOOTBALL FOR SIXEngland's rugby union success in reaching the World Cup Final next Saturday evening means that the planned Altrincham FC New Recruits Evening on that same date has now had to be rescheduled once more. Because the rugby match would adversely affect attendance at the Recruits Evening, this event will now be deferred. If Alty secure a home tie in the FA Cup in 27 October, the Recruits event will be held then. Otherwise, it will have to be delayed further. The club apologizes for the inconvenience caused by this change but hopes that fans will realize that it is caused by events beyond its control.
14 October 2007
Above: The major talking point for manager Graham Heathcote after the game at Salisbury yesterday was the failure, in the final minute of normal time, of the fourth official to allow an extra defender, Karl Munroe, onto the pitch at the expense of striker James Dean. As is seen above, play had stopped, Munroe was ready but the fourth official, Mr Bird, is having trouble in getting the electronic board to work to show the added time and to indicate which player was being substituted. Referee Bennett grew impatient, re-started the game, and Salisbury scored their equaliser as the game went into added time. The Alty boss, seen above in shirt-sleeves apparently attempting to communicate his wishes to his team for the final minutes, was then sent off for his protests..
This site's match report is here and there is more on the game in yesterday's news, below...
Aftre the game, Graham Heathcote told NL Today, "I am aggrieved by not being able to get a centre-half on for four or five minutes, not by the fact that they got their third in that time. That was a decent enough goal". He told the NL Paper, "I complained about not being able to get my centre-half on. It took five minutes to get him on and they got an equaliser that has cost us dearly. Now I'm going to end up in front of the FA due to incompetence by someone else". As for the game, Graham added, "We didn't maintain our early pressure and, credit to them. They pushed men forward and got the momentum. Decisions change games and that is what happened. We are playing all right and our overall performance is good. We are not a bad side but we have to put points on the board".
FLEET ON THE WAYAlty's next guests at Moss Lane are a new name but old foes. Ebbsfleet United is the new name of Gravesend & Northfleet, whom we first met in the very first year of the Alliance (1979-80), the forerunners of the Conference. On Saturday "The Fleet notched their fourth successive win at Stonebridge Road this afternoon as an improved second-half performance saw them ease home to move eighth in the table. The home side got off to a slow start in a goalless first half as Droylsden's work ethic shook the Fleet out of their game and, in truth, the visitors did not look like a side with as few points as they've got. However, a much better second-half showing from the Fleet saw them take control".
OLD BOYSMatty Berkeley (right) scored the fifth goal in Workington's 5-0 FA Cup win at Stalybridge yesterday.
FA CUP DRAWThe draw for the FA Cup 4QR is on Monday, with the BSP sides entering at that stage. Ties in the 4QR earn £10 000 for the winners. The Northern and Midlands winners in the 3QR were: Harrogate Railway, Harrogate Town, Barrow, Bradford Park Avenue, Southport, Gainsborough Trinity, Workington, Kendal Town, Vauxhall Motors, Rushall Olympic, Chasetown, Tamworth, Halesowen Town, Corby Town, Solihull Moors and Nuneaton Borough. Boston United play Hinckley United today whilst West Auckland Town and Bamber Bridge replay on Tuesday.
VICS' NOW, AND IN FUTUREThe Northwich Guardian says that "Dino Maamria crowed about the crowd after what could be his last match as manager. The 33-year-old said his side were buoyed by the boistrous Danebank, helping them record their first clean sheet of the campaign in a goalless draw with Exeter City. 'I want to thank every single one of them', he told the Guardian. 'They were awesome, the noise was incredible at times. Whatever happens to this football club they'll need the fans to be like they were today'. Vics' temporary boss shrugged his shoulders when asked what he thought would happen this week. The players are expected in for training on Monday. 'Nobody knows what is going to happen', he said. 'We've been paid last week's wages today, so the boys are still one week behind in terms of payment. It's been a really difficult time for them. When you've got kids or a mortgage and you don't know whether your next pay packet will come through it's unsettling'. Maamria rated the players' performance as the best under his brief stewardship. He told the Guardian the team had trained only once this week, on Friday. Plus with debutants Scott Tynan and Danny Williams as well as Michael Welch and Lee Steele starting for the first time in more than a month, Vics had reasons to be cheeful at full time. 'I'm very pleased', he said. 'I've tried to tell the lads not to worry about things off the pitch that they can't change. Their reaction today was great and we were full value for our draw'".
The Northwich Supporters' Trust's Distant Vics Newsletter, dated 11 October, reports on a recent meeting. "To say events have been hectic over the last 2 weeks cannot convey the way things have gone! The situation was sometimes changing hour by hour. The purpose of the meeting was to update people, as far as the Trust was able, about events at the VS. In addition to say what the Trust was planning to do and give people the chance to ask questions... The current situation appears to be that the club faces a winding up petition next Wednesday over an unpaid debt of about £350,000 to the Inland Revenue. This is in addition to the judgement last week for £56,000. Overall debt is probably around the half a million mark and the club has few assets.
Howard Roberts, an expert in insolvency, and a Vics' fan answered questions about insolvency and how it might affect our situation. The Trust has been expecting this crisis for a long time although the exact time and circumstances could not be predicted. Knowing this the Trust has already been working on various scenarios and how we could respond. Going into the meeting the Trust felt it had exhausted all courses of action that could help the existing club and starting again, from scratch, was the only option. The only hope, apart from this, was that a `white knight(s) comes in at the last moment. The Trust felt it was lucky compared to other clubs in similar situations as it has money to start afresh and time to do it in an organised way as the new season is still months away.
The first step would be to set up the infrastructure, there needs to be admin, communication, procedures etc.The club will need a name and there is the possibility that the existing name can be purchased from the liquidators. A major step would be the recruitment of a manager and players... There was discussion about there being two supporters organisations and whether they should come together... At this time it is not known which league the new club would be placed in. The current ruling which would appear to cover Vics situation (a club being reformed as a direct result of the old club going out of business) states that there will be relegation of at least 2 levels – Unibond Premier. From talks we have had we are assuming this is not the league we will be placed in. For the foreseeable future, and to help short term planning, we will work on the assumption of being at NW Counties Level.
The final issue was where do fans want us to play... It was then announced that there had been contact at midday between Mr Connett and the Trust about a new team playing at the VS.. Mr Connett telephoned he Trust. There had been a brief discussion and there was room for negotiation if the new team wanted to play there. All this will swing into action IF the club is liquidated next Wednesday.
In a further surprise announcement Mr Jim Rushe was introduced to the meeting. There had been telephone contact the previous week between the Trust and Mr Rushe where he had expressed an interest in buying the football club as part of a consortium of `football people'. In the minutes before the meeting started he had informed the Trust that he had `shaken hands' on a deal, that afternoon, with Mr Connett to buy the club. Mr Rushe explained that the consortium wanted to buy the club for footballing reasons and the people involved were football people. Jim runs a team in the Mid Cheshire League. They wanted to buy into a bigger club to continue the development of the players and ideas and had been looking around for a NW Counties League Club. Their strategy was to offer creditors so much in the pound, run the club but reduce the wage bill and make the existing MCL team the reserve team. Jim and the new chairman had both been directors at Woodley Sports [a Stockport-based UniBond League side]in the past. After further questions the meeting was concluded by the Trust saying that if the Trust was still needed to set up a new team that it would be a Trust run team and, therefore, wholly owned by the fans".
On the field, the Trust confirms that "Scott Tynan, a goalkeeper, and Danny Williams have both been signed."
After Connett's statement of last Thursday (reported earlier on this site, see below...) the Trust responded "We do not share Mr Connett's views that the people of Northwich cannot support the football club further at a level it has maintained for 27 out of the last 28 years".
OTHER BSP NEWSThe Conference reports that "Rushden & Diamonds striker Lee Tomlin has gone out on loan to Brackley Town for one month, in order to get games and keep his match fitness up. Brackley Town are managed by former Diamonds manager Roger Ashby and play their football in the British Gas Business (Southern League) Premier Division... Tomlin will join a team which includes former Diamonds players Dave Savage and Justin Jackson. Tomlin has made five Blue Square Premier starts this season, and ten substitute appearances".
13 October 2007
SALISBURY CITY 3 ALTRINCHAM 3
Above: Ecstasy and agony: left, Alty celebrate their first goal by James Dean, right, Graham Heathcote paces the pitch after the final whistle.
Altrincham disastrously allowed a 3-0 lead to slip in the final 18 minutes to leave themselves four points from safety in 21st place. James Dean, making his debut, on loan from Bury fired Alty ahead with a superb shot from nearly 30 yards (35 mins). When keeper Clarke pulled down Chris Senior two minutes later, Jake Sedgemore made it 2-0 from the spot (37 mins). Senior himself made it 3-0 after 68 minutes with a well-placed shot. But Alty then allowed Salisbury to dictate play and were on the backfoot for the final 20 minutes. Brown was allowed to score with a free, downward header from a corner (72 mins). After 88 minutes another header from a corner, by Oliver, made it 3-2 before Brown scored City's third headed goal, from Oliver's flick-on (90 mins). The equalizer came when Alty wanted to get Karl Munroe on as a defensive substitute but the fourth official struggled to display the electronic board and play re-started and City scored. As a consequence, manager Heathcote was incandescent and was sent to the stands by the referee.
Match report here
Above: Jake Sedgemore, far right, nets the penalty which put Alty 2-0 ahead.
DEAN TO FACE CITY?The Sale & Altrincham Messenger confirms that "Alty have completed the signing of giant striker James Dean on a one-month loan deal. The 22-year-old Bury striker will add power and presence to a Robins side lacking a genuine targetman and goes straight into the squad for Saturday's game at Salisbury. Dean spent most of last season at Alty's bitter rivals Northwich Victoria and scored their goal in the 1-1 draw between the two sides at the Victoria Stadium in February. But he became a transfer rebel in the summer after demanding a move from the Cheshire club and eventually signed for Bury on a free transfer. The move capped a rapid rise for Dean, a former British kickboxing champion, who had started the 2006/07 season at Unibond League side Clitheroe. But 13 goals in four months at the Lancashire club earned him a transfer to Northwich, where he scored four times in 20 games". Bury confirm "James Dean has gone to Blue Square Premier side Altrincham for a month's loan and speaking this afternoon, manager Chris Casper said: "It's a perfect chance for... James to get some games in and to get some experience in... [His] progress will be closely monitored, as we have done with Ben Leonard at Tamworth and Dale Stephens at Droylsden. James joined the club during pre-season after signing from Northwich Victoria".
The BBC adds that "Altrincham goalkeeper Richard Acton looks set to his keep his place despite Stuart Coburn's return to fitness. Midfielder Gareth Whalley (ankle ligament injury) and defender Stephen Aspinall (knee) are unavailable".
Meanwhile, Saturday's opponents, Salisbury City's "manager Nick Holmes has a squad of 20 to choose from for tomorrow's match at home to Altrincham. Danny Clay is now available after serving a three-match ban, while Jon Beswetherick has now returned from a successful loan spell at Mangotsfield United, where he played in five matches... Holmes, who is again without the suspended Wayne Turk and the injured Andy Sandell and Ian Herring, said: 'Both Danny and Jon will re-join the squad along with players such as Ollie Barnes and Craig Richards and those who have been with us the past couple of games'. The manager added that Herring (groin) may undergo an operation next week, while Sandell continues to make good progress following an ankle injury. 'We think Ian's got a Gilmore's groin and will hopefully get his op in next week. Andy's on the mend but won't have a chance of being involved this weekend'. Tomorrow's game against the Cheshire side kicks off at 1pm - the early kick off arranged to avoid clashing with England's televised Euro 2008 qualifier, which will be shown in the club's Sarum Suite bar immediately after City's game finishes".
OLD BOYSFriday's Manchester Evening News reports that former Altrincham and Bury striker Wayne Entwisle has been considering a takeover of thee Gigg Lane club.
Brian Flynn reports that he "spoke with Mick Carmody last night on the phone to invite him to play in the Legends game on Tuesday.He will be there but unfortunately will not be able to play due to.........a hamstring injury!!!!!!!!!! This was sustained in a Gaelic Football match that he played in.......for eight minutes......about three weeks ago!!!! Mick must have the worst hamstrings in Football History!!!".
BSP NEWSAll may not be over yet for our Cheshire neighbours as This is Cheshire reports that "A group of Manchester businessmen have launched a last-ditch bid to save Northwich Victoria. Spokesman Jim Rushe tonight told supporters that they had reached an agreement with Mike Connett to buy the club. His revelation was met with spontaneous applause. 'We've shook hands on a deal', he said. 'As long as he, Connett, sticks to what he has said then we will go forward from here'. Rush and his four colleagues, which include former Woodley Sports chairman Ian Campbell, now need to persuade HM Revenue and Customs that they are able to pay off at least some of Vics' £350,000 tax bill. They have hired Bury business advisors DTE to negotiate with the UK's tax department from tomorrow morning, Friday. 'We are a group of football fans who each run small businesses', Rushe told fans at a public meeting at the Floatel. 'All of us have been looking to buy into a club for the past 18 months. We were going to start out at North West Counties level because we did not expect a Conference National club to be available. Obviously the figures are different and we will need more money'. Should their plan work then the club will become tenants of Connett's Beaconet company that owns the Victoria Stadium, much in the same way it is now. The Guardian understands that arrangement would be rent free until the end of the current campaign. However the most likely scenario is that Northwich Victoria Football Club (2004) Limited would have to go into administration, meaning Rush's co-operative may be able to pay less than the amount currently owed to HM Revenue and Customs. For now their immediate aim is to get an adjournment of Wednesday's planned winding-up hearing at the High Court of Justice. 'It's a dream for all of us', said Rushe, who revealed only that he owned a leisure business. 'We want to be involved in football and give this a real go'".
IC Cheshire elsewhere states that "Vics are on the verge of a dramatic rescue. A group of five Manchester businessmen are set to take over the club, before it is wound-up in court next Wednesday. The shock announcement was made at the end of Thursday’s Supporters’ Trust meeting which had discussed at length the collapse of Mike Connett’s Northwich Victoria (2004) and the launch of a new club for next season. Then leisure businessman Jim Rushe was introduced to the audience of about 60 supporters and he announced his group had shaken hands on a deal with Connett and were negotiating with the Inland Revenue, who are owed £350,000. He said: ‘We are not millionaires, just small business people who want to put something back into football. We have reached agreement with Mr Connett to save Northwich Victoria as it is now. Mr Connett will be our landlord and we are looking for a (possible) 25 year lease at the Victoria Stadium. We fully expect to put a package together and there will be a place on the board for a Trust member. The whole thing will be run transparently. We are not going to run away, if we do it will be with an expensive loss. All of us were involved in Woodley Sports and we have had the package for 18 months and looking for a club to invest in. We did not expect it to be at national level, more North West Counties'... Rushe later added: ‘It only dropped in our lap eight days ago and we are not in it to make money. Investing in football is financial suicide. We are football people and want to be involved. If Mr Connett sticks to what he has said we have a deal'. The group expect former Woodley chairman Ian Campbell to chair the club... He [Rushe] also admitted the club’s age bill of £8,000 a week would have to be cut at some point."
Curiously, given Vics' financial plight, the Northwich Guardian confirms that "Dino Maamria will have two new faces to call on for what could be Vics' last match. The temporary team boss has signed Ebbsfleet United goalkeeper Scott Tynan and former Rushden and Diamonds midfielder Dann Williams. The 26-year-old winger has been without a club since the end of last season. Meanwhile Tynan, 23, replaces Andy Murphy after he was recalled from his loan spell at the Victoria Stadium by Preston North End earlier this week. Both players have been registered in time to play tomorrow's game against promotion hopefuls Exeter City".
This is Exeter says that "Exeter City have been given assurances that tomorrow's televised Blue Square Premier match against Northwich Victoria will go ahead.Rumours had been circulating that the Cheshire club were considering the possibility of cancelling the game on safety grounds. It is understood Northwich fans are preparing to turn out in force to protest against the crisis engulfing the club. But despite the prospect of the Vics being forced to close when they appear in court next Wednesday because of an unpaid tax bill, the game is set to go ahead. Grecians' sporting director Julian Tagg said: 'We have been assured that the game is going ahead. I have had confirmation from the Conference that the game is definitely on'
The Cambridge Evening News says that "Norman Gautrey has outlined his vision for the future of Cambridge United. The club's new chief executive wants to see United return to the Coca-Cola League in a new stadium and believes he can bring in the funds needed to turn his hopes into reality. He said: 'In any business you need a strategic plan and I guess with all the turmoil of administration and the slide we've been in for the last five or six years, we haven't had that. Now we have a plan in place of where we want to go and that's quite clearly League football by increasing attendances and revenue streams and having a lot more involvement in the community. here are a lot of good things the club was already doing such as Junior U's and the South Stand Initiative, and we need to bring the fans back on board. With the ground issue, some fans have been disenchanted with the club, but we're on an upward curve and I'll be doing everything I can to help Jimmy (Quinn) and Alan (Lewer) in their job. My vision is that in a period of time I can pack up and go home when we're in a nice new 12,000 all-seater stadium with two training pitches and an all-weather surface in Cambridge or on the outskirts'. Cambridge born-and-bred and a United fan since 1971, Gautrey was previously a director with Norfolk building firm May Gurney and will be at the Abbey on a day-to-day basis.
He said finances were already improving at United and hoped there would be more cash coming into the club in the near future. 'We always welcome investment, but there's nothing on the horizon of someone just giving us £500,000', said Gautrey. 'What we'll be doing is linking in with local businesses more than we have done, get people on board and welcome them into the club and generate revenue through good practice. I'm working on it at the moment and hopefully there will things happening in the next few weeks. Nothing guarantees success and I don't have a magic wand. All you can do is implement strong business policies and procedures and not spend more than you've got. We want to look after the customer and get to the heart of the community. If we pull that into place, we've got a great chance'".
Elsewhere, "Steve Fallon has been honoured for his contribution to semi-professional football", reports the Cambridge Evening News. "The Histon boss was given the Individual Merit Award at the launch of the 2008 Non League Club Directory. The publishers of the 1,120-page edition say of the Stutes' manager: 'Apart from masterminding promotion after promotion, the team are always near the top of the sportsmanship polls, and he has had the skills and the knowledge to strengthen his squad enough to take on new opposition at a higher level without upsetting the hardcore of brilliant players who have been at the club for years." Commenting on the award, Fallon said: 'Obviously I am pleased to get the award, but I'm happy for the club too because we come together and if one does well the other does well, and long may it continue'".
In Sussex, The Argus says that "Crawley have been told to draw inspiration from Leeds in their battle to overcome a six-point deduction. Reds' boss Steve Evans wants his players to adopt a siege mentality and use Dennis Wise's side as an example of how to bounce back from off-the-field adversity... Reds were hit with their penalty on Wednesday after the Football Association turned down their appeal... He said: 'We need to do exactly what Leeds have done. They are the perfect example for us. Dennis Wise has got the concept into his players that everyone is against them and does not want them to do well. There is a siege mentality there and they have proved that they can have a successful season with a lot more points deducted than us. There will be a few people at other clubs in the Conference with a smile on their faces after what has happened. I know I would if it happened to someone else because it means there is one less team to worry about. That is what football is like, it can be a very jealous and incestuous business at times. But we have to show the people who want to kick us - and they know who they are - that they cannot keep us down. We have to mess up their plans... We are not going to get despondent, there is no chance of that... We have players who will get out of the trenches and fight. They are fighters and if anything it will put more fire in their belly. Do you think players like Tyrone Thompson, Jamie Stevens and Pablo Mills are going to let this affect them? No way, it will fire them up to win matches even more. The boys have shown how much they want to be successful and now they have another reason to do it".
"Oxford United have signed one player, but lost another" according to the Oxford Mail. "Midfielder Stefan Bailey has joined on a month's loan from Queens Park Rangers. He is 20 years old and has made 17 starts for QPR, being voted their young player of the year two seasons ago. He was previously at Willesden, where he played alongside Junior Agogo. 'He's an aggressive midfield player'," said Jim Smith. However, striker Paul Shaw has left the club and is off to Hungary! Smith said: 'It's come out of the blue. He hadn't signed a contract with ourselves and Sheffield United have bought a club out in Hungary and they wanted him to go out and play there - for quite a lot of money too'. United are now short of strikers - Gary Twigg missed last night's game with a bruised ankle, and is a doubt for Sunday's game at Farsley Celtic".
This is Staffs says that "Stafford Rangers' injury crisis has taken another turn for the worse with defenders Jimi Sangare and Cedric Avinel in the treatment room.... Sangare has picked up a groin strain in training, while Avinel limped off at York City on Tuesday. Captain Wayne Daniel is set to miss his second consecutive match, so Rangers could start without a recognised central defender in their team. In addition, midfielder Kevin Street has been ruled out with gastric flu and striker David McNiven's back strain has shown no improvement. Manager Phil Robinson said: 'Fingers crossed one or two of them might be available, but there are serious doubts. Even on paper, a game against Cambridge would be a difficult one. However, if you add in the fact that we have some of our most experienced players out, it's going to be more so. But we have a close-knit and committed bunch of players and we are determined to try to get that first home win'. Former Bury forward Tom Youngs, Robinson's latest recruit, looks certain to start the game and there could also be a place for Seb Hamilton. The game will kick-off at 3pm after Cambridge refused to agree a revised time to avoid a clash with England's match. 'We did everything we could, including complaining to the league, but they said it could be changed only with the agreement of both clubs', said secretary Mike Hughes. '"The fans will have to make a choice and I know it is going to affect our attendance'".
It is confirmed by NL Daily that "Rushden & Diamonds have signed striker Craig McAllister on a three-month loan deal from rivals Grays Athletic. The 27-year-old Scottish striker started his career at Basingstoke Town where he attracted interest from QPR, Southend, Reading and Luton in a season which saw him net twenty-two goals in just thirty-two matches. A later move to Stevenage Borough emerged with a loan spell with Gravesend & Northfleet. However, McAllister struggled for starts with the Boro, and moved to Woking in the summer of 2005.. scoring sixteen goals in the 2005/06 season and eighteen last term, which earned interest from a number of other Blue Square Premier sides, and he eventually signed for Grays last May. But McAllister became one of four players transfer-listed by the Essex outfit earlier this week, joining Andy Sambrook, Charley Hearn and James Lawson".
Regarding their impending takeover, Halifax Town say that "Following the brief update last week regarding the progress of the takeover, we apologise for not being able to provide any further information by Monday 8th, as intimated. This bulletin does not reveal much more at this pivotal stage, except that further significant progress has been made since the last announcement. By the end of this week it is hoped a very important meeting can take place which may possibly make the conclusion of the takeover or otherwise, much clearer. Everyone is desperate to get the matter completed, not least the Consortium. Again, very early next week a bulletin will be issued".
12 October 2007
ALTY SIGN STRIKERAltrincham have signed striker James Dean on a one-month loan from Bury. James spent part of last season at Northwich Victoria, after joining from Clitheroe.
DARREN IN THE THICK OF IT
Above is Gavin Rathbone's picture of Darren Tinson in action against Burton Albion last Tuesday. More of Darren's photos are on his GR Photography website.
YOUTH REPORTGeorge Heslop's report on the Youth team game at Cuirzon Ashton is now in the youth section
AARON JOINS FCAaron Burns, who was on trial at Alty recently, but could not be signed under FA rules till January, has joined FC United of Manchester as a short term measure, according ot the Manchester Evening News.
BSP NEWSGrays Athletic say that "Following a meeting between Mick Woodward, Justin Edinburgh, Jimmy Dack & Gary Philips it was decided with regret that we have relieved Jimmy Dack of his coaching role. John Yems will now take over the coaching role at Grays Athletic Football club; John is a former coach at Millwall and Fulham. Justin Edinburgh remains as first team manager and with Mick Woodward‘s input and desire all the staff will work as a group to put this club back at the top. Grays Athletic would like to take this opportunity to thank Jimmy Dack for all he has done during his time with the club and wish him all the best for the future . Also the following four players have been placed on the transfer list: Andy Sambrook, Charley Hearn, James Lawson & Craig McAllister". Yems was joint caretaker boss at Crawley Town last season.
Predictably, "Manager Steve Evans today slammed Crawley's former bosses for their role in the club's six-point deduction" reports the The Argus. "The penalty is for financial irregularities, relating to discrepancies in their annual playing budget (APB) last season. [Had the deduction been applied last season they would have been relegated]. Evans, who took charge during the summer, said: 'It was always going to be 50-50 and speaking to people involved, it was a very marginal decision. It is disappointing for the whole club and I just hope that the absolute clowns of the former managers who spent big money hang their heads in shame. It is because of their incompetency that we are in this situation. They are rubbish managers and that has been proved by the fact they have not been able to get decent jobs after they left. Everyone would love to spend big money and sign players like Daryl Clare for double his wages. But we can't do that because we know where it gets you. We have an affordable product now but we are paying the price for what others did'. Evans insists his side's encouraging start to the season will not be affected by the deduction.... Evans said: 'As far as we are concerned, that is the matter finished with and we will accept it. It will not affect the players because I won't let it. We have a great team spirit and to be honest I did not expect to get this many points at this stage of the season anyway. We are still on track to where I want us to be'".
"Crawley owner Chas Majeed insists the club still do not know the reasons for their six-point deduction. Reds are today trying to come to terms with the penalty after their appeal was turned down by the Football Association. They were handed the punishment by the Conference at the start of the season for financial irregularities. They were accused of breaching the rules related to their annual playing budget (APB) after paying payers from a bank account not registered to the club. Crawley insist they were unaware any rules were broken and were unhappy that representatives from two rival clubs, Woking and Burton Albion, were on the independent committee who dished out the punishment. They hired high-profile QC Jim Sturman to argue their case at Soho Square yesterday and have spent over £20,000 fighting the decision. Majeed said: 'We still don't know what it is we meant to have done wrong. They haven't give us reasons why, we have to wait four days to find out. But we can't do anything about it - it can't be overturned. It is so disappointing because we don't feel we have done anything wrong. The fact is we shouldn't have been trialled by Woking and Burton anyway.You can't have other teams in your league making decisions about you, it's not right'. Reds have now suffered points deductions three times in the last two years because of financial problems. They were docked three points at the end of the 2005-06 season for exceeding their APB. They started last season with a ten-point deduction after voluntarily entering into administration with debts of around £1.4 million.
Majeed said: 'One minute they were talking about the CVA and then the next it was financial irregularities. We said the CVA was a completely different matter and that we had already had points taken off for that. I don't think they knew what they punished us for, they just wanted to take more points off us'".
The other local paper, the Crawley Observer also quotes Chas Majeed:: 'We're gutted, absolutely gutted. We were confident that we would win, but now it's cost us even more money... We've just got to get back to business... We're still waiting to hear from them, but it's all just opinions if they think it's fair, I suppose it is'... A spokesman for the FA said: 'The decision of the Board of Appeal was as follows:- a) The appeal by Crawley Town F.C. against a decision of The Football Conference be dismissed (b) The appeal fee of £250 be forfeited towards the costs of the Board of Appeal, (c) In accordance with clause 3.4 of the Regulations for F.A. Appeals each party to be responsible for its own costs".
Meanwhile Bullsnews Another club owner, Mike Connett of Northwich Victoria, has issued a statement to his local paper, the Northwich Guardian .It read: "I have tried everything possible to keep this football club running over the last three years but every club needs supporters and, at present, Northwich simply does not have enough. In this division we need home attendances of 1,500 just to break even and we are well short of that. If Northwich wants a football club the local community needs to support it - and so do local businesses. It is easy for people to criticise and over the last three years some of the personal abuse I have received has been sickening. Over the past few months I have been in discussions with various parties who have expressed an interest in buying the football club. You cannot run a business on fresh air and no one, to date, has been prepared to enter into a serious negotiation. I am told that the Supporters' Trust is trying to work out a rescue package. Let me state on the record that I would be more than willing to let the Supporters' Trust run the football club. The club's finances are in a desperate state. There is no disputing that. There are not enough people coming through the turnstiles. But if the Supporters Trust - or anyone else - is serious about saving this football club the time for talking is over. It is time for action".
11 October 2007
GARY'S 250THTuesday night witnessed Gary Scott's 250th start for Altrincham. Gary is now the longest serving player at Moss Lane, having joined Altrincham from Leigh RMI in 2001. (Stuart Coburn was here before Gary but left for a period before his return to Moss Lane). Since then Gary has played in every defensive and midfield position except goalkeeper. In addition to his 250 starts he has also appeared as a used substitute in 26 games. During that time he has scored nine goals. In recent seasons his appearances have been limited by injuries, this season being no exception. But this season his return to the side in October, at left-back, has had a steadying influence on the defence.
Appearances, season by season:
Gary was born in Liverpool on 3 February, 1978 and made his debut for Altrincham on 3 October 2000 as a midfielder (v. Stalybridge). He began his career at Tranmere Rovers but moved to Rotherham United in 1997. He then played for Marine and Leigh, who released him after he had made 9 Conference appearances. After two games in Alty's midfield, his first appearance for Altrincham at right-back was at home to Leek Town (10/10/00) and he opened his scoring account with two goals at Hyde (16//10/00). Gary played for the Unibond XI against the F.A. XI (22/11/00).
Gary is one of the biggest personalities at Moss Lane and as well as his footballing skills, Gary also has singing skills of which he is very proud!
LEGENDS' LINE -UP
Right: Ken McKenna (centre foreground, blue shirt) playing at Moss Lane in April 2001 for Alty Vets against Alty Supporters.
Next Tuesday Altrincham FC's first-team squad will play a match against an Alty Legends XI at Moss Lane, kick off is at 7.45pm. Entry will be just £5 (£2 for concessionaries). Amongst those expected to appear for the Legends are Ken McKenna, whose goals almost got Alty into the League in 1991 and who is now manager of TNS in Wales. Also turning out will be defender Paul Cuddy who made more than 250 appearances for Alty between 1982 and 1989, and from the mid-1990s midfielder Shaun Constable, whose disallowed goal against Tottenham Hotspur is part of Alty folklore. Paul France, captain of the side in the late 1990s is another participant. Another team member will be Dickie Landon whose amazing record of scoring goals in the closing minutes of games as a substitute in 1999-2000 almost kept Alty in the Conference that season. Dickie is now on the backroom staff at Stockport County. From the more recent period we should be able to see defender/midfielder Barry Shuttleworth who will always be remembered for the first minute goal against Runcorn which ensured that Alty qualified for Nationwide North in 2004. Peter Band (now at Hyde), the recently retired Gary Talbot and Chris Adams (now at Ashton United) are also lining up for the Legends. Alty are also hopeful that Eddie Hussin, who captained Alty back into the Conference in 2005, will also be available, along with popular midfielder Jason Gallagher. One Legend who will be at Moss Lane but not playing will be striker Marcus Hallows, whose career was cruelly cut short by a bad injury in March 2005.
BILL BROCKLEHURSTAs announced last Saturday, longstanding Alty supporter Bill Brocklehurst died last week, aged 91. Bill's funeral, with him wearing his Altrincham FC blazer and tie,will be at St John's Church, Altrincham at 11am on Tuesday 16th October, followed by a service at Altrincham Crematorium. Donations in memory of Bill to the Gurkha Welfare Trust will be very welcome. There will then be a reception at Alttrincham FC (Noel White Suite). All those wishing to pay their respects are invited to the church, crematorium and reception. Bill will be known to many younger Altrincham fans who may not have known him by name as the tall gentleman who used to stand and watch games from in front of the Main Stand, just to the side of the home dugout. Bill was a Life Vice-President of Altrincham FC and his son, Kim, has followed in his footsteps as a dedicated Altrincham supporter. Our condolences go to Kim and Bill's other relations and friends.
RYAN EXTENDEDGraham Heathcote today confirmed that Stoke City have agreed to an extension of centre-back Ryan Shotton's loan to Altrincham until 15 December. Ryan will be subject to a recall by Stoke at 24 hours notice. SAM adds that "Ryan Shotton believes Alty's deserved 0-0 draw against high-flying Burton proved they have too much quality to be languishing in the Blue Square Premier's bottom four... An outstanding rearguard action, underpinned by Shotton and his central defensive colleague Darren Tinson, provided a solid platform for the much-improved performance. And the 19-year-old Stoke man... told SAM Sport: "'We're very happy with the result. They are a tough team who can move the ball around well but I think we did a really good job to stop them scoring. Our current league position doesn't reflect the quality we have in this squad. We've played a lot of teams, especially at home, that have not dominated or outplayed us but have still taken the points. We do have the quality to start winning games. I'm glad to be here for another couple of months and it's good for both me and Alty that I've got the chance to play more games here. Hopefully I can help them get a couple more wins at home'".
BREWERS' VIEWThe Burton Albion site states that ""After the Lord Mayor's Show does not begin to sum up the difference in performance from Saturday afternoon to a 0-0 stalemate with Altrincham at Moss Lane... Nigel Clough pulled no punches with his assessment of his team’s performance on a night made tricky by a greasy slippery pitch. 'It was a case of a lack of quality really tonight. I think that the speed of the pitch didn’t help. The quicker it gets the more you can see the players who can play a bit and those who can’t. We didn’t really cope with the conditions very well. There were only really two positives to come out of tonight, the clean sheet that got us a point and Tony James getting back on the pitch for 45 minutes. Apart from that we are scratching around a bit for anything to take from the game. The number of free kicks, corners and crosses we wasted was annoying. It was only in the last three minutes or so when we have have put a decent corner in and John Brayford has missed a chance from six yards. We had our three best chances in the last five minutes of the game'".
"No disrespect to Altrincham but if we had shown any sort of quality at all we would have won tonight but it’s a point and a clean sheet and it keeps the run going at a place that’s difficult to come to. Overall we are very disappointed with the way we played. We have lost five players tonight and I think that showed with us having to move things round a little bit but we were fortunate to have the likes of Tony James to bring on". The report adds that "Ryan Taylor was substituted with a sore Achilles and David Farrell suffered a pulled thigh muscle which could well rule both players out of Saturdays fixture".
The Brewers' site also has a match report which harshly describes the game as "a mundane goalless draw. It is rarely dull watching the Brewers at the moment but this game has to rate as one to barely get the pulses racing as both sides ground out a deserved draw at Moss Lane. As in most of Albion’s recent games they left it late to create their best chances but on tonight’s showing they lacked the final cutting edge to finish their chances and grab what would have been a slightly generous but nevertheless vital win. The Brewers dearly missed the creativity of Irishman Keith Gilroy on the wing".
BSP NEWSThe BBC says that "Stafford Rangers have completed the signing of former Cambridge and Bury forward Tom Youngs. Youngs, 28, who had spells with Leyton Orient and Northampton, has been training with the R's and played in Tuesday's 2-0 loss at York. Boss Phil Robinson said: 'He has recently been on trial at Notts County. They decided not to take him on so we have been having a look at him. With our injury situation we decided to sign him before the trip to York'".
10 October 2007
CRAWLEY HIT FOR SIX"Crawley have lost their appeal against a six-point penalty imposed by the Blue Square Premier", reports BBC SCR. "Crawley appealed to the FA in a bid to overturn the punishment handed out by the league in the summer for a breach of financial regulations. The Reds now officially drop from eighth in the Blue Square Premier table on 24 points to 16th place. Meanwhile the win over Histon was seen by Steve Coppell, with the Reading boss believed to be watching Jamie Stevens. Boss Steve Evans said: 'For someone who has just turned 18, you can see why the likes of Steve Coppell are here'".
ALTRINCHAM 0 BURTON ALBION 0
Right: the effort put in by Warren Peyton is clear to see as he leaves the pitch after the game against Burton, followed by Carlos Logan.
Alty took a deserved point against Burton who extended their unbeaten run away from home this season. Burton started well, attacking with pace against an Alty side which gave the ball away too often in the opening stages. But the home side gradually settled and enjoyed the better of the 20 minutes before half-time, whilst Burton lost two players injured in the first 45 minutes. The second half was a slightly tamer affair but Alty withstood some late pressure thanks to a hardworking team performance. Ryan Shotton was named Alty Man of the Match for the second successive game.
Match report here.
ALTY ON TVLocal TV's Channel M has its"The Great Manchester Football Show" this Friday night from 7pm to 8pm (and again from 11pm). It will include action from the Altrincham versus Ashton United friendly game last Tuesday. The programme will later be available on the Channel M website.
LEGENDS' GAMENext Tuesday (16th) is the date for the Altrincham FC Legends game when a team of former players will take on today's squad. Names announced in the Legends team include Ian Senior, Chris Adams, Gary Talbot, Peter Band, Ken McKenna, Paul Cuddy and Shaun Constable. Admission will be £5 for adults and £2 for juniors.
MAN IN CHARGEThe referee for Alty's game at Salisbury City is Mr A P Bennett, who also officiated in Alty's 3-1 defeat at Forest Green Rovers earlier this season.
BSP NEWSThe BBC confirms that "Woking boss Frank Gray has extended striker Kevin James's stay at the club. The ex-Gillingham and Nottingham Forest forward, 27, has agreed a further month's contract at Kingfield and could sign a longer deal at a later date. Gray is also hoping to keep on-loan Stevenage striker Paul Hakim after his initial month's loan expires after Saturday's game against York. However, former Chelsea youngster James Younghusband has left Woking to move with his family to the Far East".
"Oxford United have released former QPR and Burnley defender Arthur Gnohere. Gnohere, 28, started eight league games for the U's after signing for the club in August, but has not had his monthly contract renewed. Boss Jim Smith told Oxford's website: 'With Chris Willmott now fit again and Phil Gilchrist almost there, we have cover in that area. In all fairness it hasn't happened for Arthur here but he is a super lad and we wish him well for the future'" At least we will now be spared Setanta TV's mangled pronunciation of the defender's name in Oxford's almost weekly appearance on the TV.
Reporting before Tuesday's games, Yorkshire Evening Postsaid that Farsley boss Lee "Sinnott knows the Bloods will be fired up to make it back-to-back wins but after lining up a loan deal for young Oldham midfielder Michael Pearson, calling striker Lee Tuck back into the ranks and giving the rest of his players the weekend off... Sinnott said: 'We are coming across teams we have never come across before in this league, and it is a step up. Last week against Woking we started very well but we didn't have the cutting edge we needed, but nobody feels sorry for us, we have to sort our own problems out... I gave the players the weekend off specifically to relax, have a break and enjoy themselves, and I expect a positive reaction'... 19-year-old Pearson, who can play in defence as well as midfield, was recommended by Celts old boy Lee Duxberry, now reserve team coach of the Latics. Fellow teenager Tuck, who has netted five times in six outings for UniBond League outfit Ossett Town, is also thrown back into the mix to bolster a Celtic side who have scored just four goals in their last four games". Celtic won 3-0 at the Butcher's Arms.
OLD BOYSHe is not really an "old boy", but Clayton Blackmore has turned out for Alty in Staff v Supporters' games. NL Daily reports that "Former Manchester United and Wales star Clayton Blackmore has been sacked as manager of Principality Welsh Premier club Porthmadog after just four months at the helm".
NL Daily also says that "Paul Burston, chairman of UniBond League Premier Division club Leek Town, has announced that the new manager is Paul Moore... [Acting manager] Paul Ogden’s parting duty was to organise a friendly fixture against Leek CSOB so that the new boss can look at the squad and also give much needed run-outs to Mick Jeffries and James Marsden", the former Alty reserves' captain.
9 October 2007
TUESDAY GAMESAlty entertain Burton Albion tonight. The BBC says that "Altrincham could be without Steve Rose (right) after the midfielder woke up with a sore neck. Goalkeeper Stuart Coburn, who has been sidelined for three weeks with a calf injury, is poised to return. Burton defender Mark Greaves is suspended but skipper Darren Stride is back after a stomach bug. Andy Corbett will miss out again after recently suffering a gashed head. Keith Gilroy (hamstring) is doubtful so Dave Farrell is standing by". However, the FA bizarrely contradicts the news about Greaves by saying that ""Burton Albion FC Mark Greaves [is] suspended from non-first team football until the Club have completed 1 reserve team match for a Sending Off in a match played on 06/10/2007". Greaves was sent off last Saturday in the Blue Square Premier!
The Burton Mail says that "Nigel Clough has admitted to being taken aback by another miraculous fightback as Burton Albion moved to within three points of top spot in the Blue Square Premier. Albion's long unbeaten record looked doomed when they trailed Salisbury City 3-1 at the Pirelli Stadium on Saturday. But, in a stunning repeat of their early-season win over York City, the Brewers scored a trio of late goals to snatch a memorable 4-3 victory... Clough said: 'Sometimes, you get lost for words because it's quite remarkable stuff that's going on at the moment. We've had a season's worth, probably two season's worth, of comebacks and ding-dongs in the first two months. You get a 4-3 every few years, but we've had two now in seven home games - both from 3-1 down'... Albion also ended the game with 10 men after Greaves was red-carded for a professional [foul] with the score at 3-3. But Clough preferred to focus on the positives - and praised Clare for keeping his nerve to fire home the winner from the penalty spot., 'Daryl kept a very, very cool head and just slotted it in. It plays on your mind as a striker when you've missed a couple of chances, but he was the ideal person for the situation..Salisbury contributed to a magnificent afternoon. It was a very, very good game from the first minute to the last - a high quality Conference game that would not have looked out of place in the league above'... Albion will be looking to extend their unbeaten run to 12 games tomorrow when they visit strugglers Altrincham, kick-off 7.45pm."
MARATHON MONEYGraham Jackett, who recently completed a half-marathon to raise find for Altrincham FC would be pleased to relieve his sponsors of their money at tonight's game! He can be found in the club shop from 7pm tomorrow. Otherwise, please leave your money with the staff in the Robins' Shop or at the club office.
OLD BOYSMatthew Berkeley (right), released recently by Altrincham, is now playing at Workington where he was on loan last season from Gretna. Kelvin Lugsden, Kieran's twin brother, is now playing at Glossop North End along with former striker Steve Lunt. Kieran remains at Leigh RMI, with Mark Maddox.
The Manchester Evening News reports on jokers in the Manchester United dressing room in its review of 'Behind the scenes at Manchester United' by Gemma Thompson and Steve Bartram. It says "The staff join in the capers. One of the club masseurs, Rod Thornley, frightened the life out of Phil Neville... Rio Ferdinand said, 'Rod got inside Phil's locker and when he came in from training and opened it, Rod jumped out and screamed. Phil was absolutely terrified'".
"Four Witton players have been picked to play for an FA representative team" says the Northwich Guardian. "Jon Kennedy, Rob Lloyd, Mark Peers and Adam Warlow are set to star in select XI at Sheffield FC's 150th anniversary celebrations later this month... [for,er Alty man] Cavell Coo and [ex-Alty trialist] Liam Brownhill are on a stand-in list should any players have to pull out".
Last Saturday the old centre-back duo of Chris Timons and Paul Ellender were still in action, albeit now for Hucknall Town and Boston United respectively.
SALISBURY SUSPENSIONAltrincham are away at Salisbury on Saturday (1pm). From the FA comes confirmation that "Salisbury City FC's Wayne Turk [is] suspended from all football until the Club have completed 3 first team matches for a Sending Off in a match played on 06/10/2007. Daniel Clay [is] suspended from all football until the Club have completed 3 first team matches for a Sending Off in a match played on 25/09/2007."
BSP NEWSAs IC Cheshire confirms, "Northwich Vics face a winding up order from the Inland Revenue. They are due at the Royal Courts of Justice, London, on Wednesday week, where the club could plunged back into administration or wrapped up completely. Adminstration is the usual outcome for football clubs though Vics, with their unique financial set up, may be different. They have no assets to match against debts - and what they owe to the Inland Revenue is rumoured to be between £200,000 and £300,000. If owner Mike Connett pays off the debt beforehand the order will be withdrawn. An adjournment, giving Vics more time to pay, is also a possibility. But fans believe it is the beginning of the end and, if the club survives this season, it may have to start again at the bottom of the non-league pyramid... To make matters worse Vics were ordered by the Manchester County Court this week to settle immediately another debt of £56,000 to another Cheshire company. While Connett has consistently declined to comment on Vics’ finances it is believed there are other debts and the club are in the red. Northwich own virtually nothing, their nine acre site and stadium all being the property of another Connett company, Beaconet. Northwich Vics Supporters Trust chairman Peter Grimes has talked to Begbies Traynor, the firm of administrators who sold Vics to Mr Connett three years ago and are involved again, and has told members Vics need hundreds of thousands of pounds. He told the Chronicle the Trust has access to enough money to become ‘a player’ in a resurgent Vics or in a rescue package. Begbies told him the Trust’s involvement might also influence the Inland Revenue... Further legal action by other creditors is now also likely".
"Oxford United chairman Nick Merry refused to discuss Jim Smith's position as manager after Saturday's embarrassing defeat at bottom club Droylsden. But talks about the future look set to take place at boardroom level - and Smith would be part of those discussions, he insisted. Smith is under more pressure than he has ever been since he returned to take over Oxford for a second time in March 2006. Saturday evening's 3-1 defeat at Droylsden were United's second successive away shocker following their 1-0 defeat at village side Histon at the end of last month. But while the little Cambridgeshire club have shown that they are a strong team in their first season in the Blue Square Premier, Droylsden are anything but. This was their first ever win at Conference level, and they had lost their previous 11 games. The U's have now won just five of 14 games this season and have now dropped to 25-1 to win the title. Asked after the match whether there would be changes to address the poor form, Merry said Smith's position was not for discussion then. 'Tonight is not a time for discussion and if there are to be any discussions, Jim will be part of them. He's a director of the football club, he's on the board and those discussions are made as a board. We're just having a tough time and we've got to stick together'... United again looked poor as an attacking force... Merry said: 'We had the ball, played the ball around, our passing at times was immaculate, but it's in front of goal and scoring goals where it matters... We can all go home and be miserable, but that's not going to help anything... We've put an awful lot of money into the football club and we want to see it succeed... We shouldn't be coming to places like droylsden and losing, but that's what this league is like, it's a tough league to get out of'" he told the Oxford Mail
This is Staffs says that last Saturday "Striker Nathan Smith made his first appearance in over 18 months when he came on in injury-time alongside Stafford's latest signing Sebastian Hamilton, a 23-year-old winger from Birmingham-based Southern leaguers Romulus"
From This is York we read that "York City boss Billy McEwan cursed his side's 'Jekyll and Hyde' streak after a humiliating 4-1 home defeat to Histon. McEwan looked on in horror as a promising first 40 minutes gave way to a disastrous, error-riddled second-half performance. Midfielder Nicky Wroe opened his account for the Minstermen on 29 minutes, but Histon levelled on the stroke of half-time and went on to secure victory with three further goals after the interval... [McEwan] said: 'Some of our combination play between the forwards and midfielders in the first half was scintillating, but we only got one goal when our approach play deserved two or three and football matches last until the referee blows the final whistle. We did not defend well enough as a team for any of their goals and the second half was very poor. We lost our concentration and allowed balls to come into our box too easily. The ball didn't stick up front either, we were too slow in our build-up play and went sideways instead of forward.... We have got a Jekyll and Hyde side to this team and group of players... There were players who were not a patch on their normal selves against Histon. Martyn Woolford, for example, was poor by the standards he has set, although he was not the only one... A few heads went down and you can't have that. I feel sorry for the fans but not the players because they need to do better than that. In 45 minutes, I have become the worst manager in the league according to some supporters, although they probably thought I was one of the best in the first 45. The fans are entitled to moan and I have to get on with it'... The part-time village side, who have former Cambridge and Preston boss John Beck on their coaching staff, play in a direct manner and McEwan said: 'The way they play isn't pretty, but it's effective. They did really, really well in the second half and punished us. They can catch you on the break and maybe we can get some of their play into our game, but not all of it'. McEwan gave on-loan Scunthorpe striker Daniel McBreen his full debut and he lasted 76 minutes before being substituted because of cramp, with the City boss reluctant to risk the Australian pulling a muscle".
Crawley Town's appeal against their six-point deduction is due to be heard tomorrow (Wednesday). Manager Steve Evans told the NL Paper, "We expect the appeal to be very fair".
From the Cambridge Evening News is confirmation that "Lee Power hopes to start talks with Michael Morrison over a new contract with Cambridge United in the near future. The 19-year-old defender's agreement is up next summer and the United chairman wants to keep hold of Morrison, who was an ever-present last season. United were able to snub an undisclosed offer for the England C international from Southend during the summer as he was under contract. Several other League clubs are also believed to have shown interest in Morrison, including Bristol Rovers and Hartlepool".
The Halifax Courier says that "Halifax Town have signed 19-year-old striker Dean Oliver on loan from Sheffield United. The youngster will go into Town's injury and suspension-hit squad for Tuesday's trip to Kidderminster Harriers".
NL Daily confirms that "Aldershot Town boss Gary Waddock has won the Blue Square 'Manager of the Month' award for September. ... Forest Green Rovers` striker Stuart Fleetwood has been voted by fans as the Blue Square Premier 'Player of the Month'.
The latest batch of Setanta TV live BSP matches is:
LOCAL NEWSIn the next round of the FA Vase, our neighbours Trafford have a long away trip to the North East to play Seaham Red Star.
8 October 2007
ALTY ON SETANTAAltrincham have finally been assigned a match on Setanta TV. It will be away at Stevenage Borough on Monday 26th November at 7.45pm. Previously we were scheduled to go to Broadhall Way on Saturday 24th November.
YOUTH REPORTA report on yesterday's Youth team game against The Wirral is in the Youth section.
The guests of Altrincham FC at Saturday's game were the 6th Altrincham Beavers. Right, some of the visitors discuss the game after they had applauded the players off down the tunnel.
SALISBURY AL SOLOur next away opponents Salisbury City "are to play a friendly against Valencia-based Sporting de Ribarroja next month during a mid-season break in eastern Spain. Whites will play the Spanish Division Three outfit on Monday, November 12, (8pm kick off). City fly out on Sunday, November 11, returning on Wednesday 14. It is the club's second Mediterranean jaunt in recent years - they played Maltese outfit Marsaxlokk during November 2005". That same week sees Altrincham likely to be playing at Witton Albion against Runcorn Linnets in the Cheshire Senior Cup.
Salisbury City have informed Alty fans that "There is no segregation but a check point at the Hop Back Score Board. The bar is open to away supporters before & after the game only. Enter the Bar from outside the ground. You will not be able to use Bar at halftime. Please enter ground via turnstiles E & F. There is more details on the ground here.
INJURIESAs well as Stuart Coburn and Gareth Whalley, who both missed Saturday's game through injury, Stephen Rose is now sidelined with a neck problem. Stuart was able to warm up before Saturday's game so should be available for selection shortly.
7 October 2007
YOUTHS LOSE OUTAltrincham FC Youth lost 2-1 in their group stage match in the Cheshire County FA District Youth Cup today at Shawe View. After getting level in the second half through Charlie Weir's goal, Alty conceded almost immediately to lose 2-1. However, with two wins in their previous matches in the competition they may still proceed to the semi-finals as one of the top two teams in their group. However, they have another match to play, yet, in the competition of which they are the defending cup-holders.
JOIN THE FRIENDSThe Friends of Altrincham FC monthly draw scheme is an important fundraiser for the Football Club, so please consider joining. Details of the scheme are here. The September winner of the £100 draw was Moss Lane's match-day announcer, Steve Raftery, who is seen (left) receiving his cheque from Stuart Coburn. Goalkeeper Stuart was able to take part in Saturday's warm-up but is still not fit enough to start.
SUNDAY GAMEAltrincham FC represent the Altrincham & District FA in the Cheshire County FA District Youth Cup this afternoon at Shawe View, Trafford. Kick off is 2pm and the opponents are The Wirral FA. Entry is free. Alty are the holders and have won their two group stage games so far in the competition.
BILL BROCKLEHURSTAltrincham FC sends its condolences to Kim Brocklehurst and family on the death last Friday of Kim's father Bill. Bill, aged 91, was a regular supporter at Moss Lane for many decades. Bill was a Life Vice-President of Altrincham FC.
TUESDAY'S OPPONENTSAltrincham's next guests, on Tuesday, are Burton Albion who are the only side in the Blue Square Premier not yet to have lost away from home. Along with Cambridge United they are also one of only two clubs to have lost no more than a single match this campaign. They came back from 3-1 down against Salisbury on Saturday to win 4-3 thanks to a last gasp penalty by Daryl Clare. City had a man sent off after 52 minutes but went on to lead 3-1 before the Brewer's revival in the last 10 minutes. Burton had Mark Greaves sent off near the end, so he will miss the clash on Tuesday at Moss Lane.
Right: Pat McFadden keeps his eye on the ball as Val Owen and Robbie Lawton look on for Altrincham against Rushden & Diamonds.
After the game, Graham Heathcote told the NL Paper, "The second goal was amateurish and we just keep on giving poor goals away. It seems as though we are very consistent at being inconsistent. Over the 90 we were good enough to get something from this game. But to give two goals away give you a mountain to climb and Rushden didn't have to do much in the second half'". Diamonds' boss Garry Hill said, "We let Alty back into it and had to work harder than we should have".
OLD BOYSFrom the NW Counties Football League we hear that former Altrincham Youth goalkeeper Stefan Fielding of Glossop NE has won the Goalkeeper of the Month award. "Stefan is only 17 years of age and is playing in his debut season for the club. He has had to grow up very quickly and has done a splendid job so far. He has settled in well with his team mates and he has not been fazed by the challenges he has faced. He dominates his goal well and has made some fine saves, including a vital penalty save in the FA Vase against Warwick that kept North End in the game. He has a great future ahead of him at the club".
NL Daily reports that "Lincoln United and Buxton shared a 1-1 draw at Ashby Avenue, with a Terry Bowker own goal equalizing a Jason Bradley opener for the Bucks".
LOCAL NEWSThe Manchester Evening News reports that at our neighbours, Flixton FC, last week, "A referee returned to the dressing room to find his clothes soaked by an angry player. Now Flixton FC have been withdrawn from the weekend's fixture list and face an FA inquiry.... It has been denied that the liquid was urine... When referee Richard Bartlett returned to the dressing room at the end of the game he found both his and a linesman's clothes covered in what he described as a 'water-based liquid'... Chairman Phil Greenhalgh said, 'All we can say is that the perpetrator has been found out and will be dealt with by the club... It was done by a first-team member in a fit of temper and he regrets it'... The incident is the latest to hit the club. In 2005 they were docked 21 points after they played [ex-Alty reserve] Ryan Gilligan under a false name while he should have been serving a suspension". Three Flixton players were sent off in the game, two of them being ex-Alty men, Ben Deegan and Anthony Hargreaves.
6 October 2007
ALTRINCHAM 1 RUSHDEN & DIAMONDS 2
Right: Ryan Shotton received the Alty Man of the Match award today.
Altrincham went down to their sixth home defeat in seven games this season after conceding two goals through defensive lapses in the ten minutes before the interval.
The BBC confirms that "Altrincham boss Graham Heathcote will be unable to call upon keeper Stuart Coburn again as he looks to build on two successive wins, against Rushden. That means Richard Acton will continue in goal, while Gareth Whalley (ankle) and Stephen Aspinall (knee) are out. Rushden manager Garry Hill has no fresh injury worries ahead of the trip. However, he could be tempted to recall Abdou El Kholti and striker Lee Tomlin as his side look to improve on a run of six draws in their last seven games...Rushden & Diamonds defender Paul Watson has agreed a one-month loan move to rivals Crawley... Watson started 37 Conference games for Rushden last season but has made just four appearances this term".
Saturday will be Garry Hill's last appearance on the touchline for a while after the FA announced yesterday that "At a Regulatory Commission hearing today, Rushden & Diamonds manager Garry Hill was suspended from all football and football management for two weeks from Wednesday 10 October. Following this period he will serve a further five-match touchline ban, with another five matches suspended for 12 months which can be activated in part or in full in the case of a further proven misconduct charge. He was also fined £500. Hill had admitted a charge of violent conduct in relation to an incident involving Salisbury City coach Tommy Widdrington following the final whistle of the match at Salisbury on 8 September". BBC Radio Northampton adds that "Widdrington was left with a broken nose, while both clubs were also charged by the FA with failing to control the conduct of their players and/or officials... Hill said: 'Now that the hearing has taken place I wish to place on record my sincere apologies to the club and fans of Rushden & Diamonds for the distress that this has caused'" <
TWO MAESTROSPictured below by Gavin Rathbone are two sporting maestros in action in the charity game last Sunday at Moss Lane. Left is Aussie test cricketer Glenn McGrath and right is Alty boss Graham Heathcote. Gavin's GR Photography site has more excellent pictures of this and other matches at Moss Lane.
GRAHAM'S FEAT EARNS ALTY CASHAs reported yesterday, Alty fan Graham Jackett completed the Macclesfield Half-Marathon last weekend as a sponsorship effort for Altrincham FC. Those who have sponsored him can hand over their money in the Robins' Shop at Moss Lane. If possible, they are asked to bring their completed sponsorship form. Graham himself hopes to be in the shop from 2 pm on Saturday and 7 pm on Tuesday night. Graham would also like to thank Ian Rosendaal's Ideas4 Alty for their organisation of the sponsorship. Graham hopes to have raised £200 for the club, which is excellent..
ORDER YOURS NOWThe Non-League Club Directory 2008 will be published soon and orders can be placed via the Altrincham FC shop (928-1045). The price is £19.95 with the club earning a commission on each sale. A £10 deposit is required as the club has to pay the suppliers in advance.
MEET THE NEW RECRUITSOn Saturday, 20th October: there is a Meet the New Recruits event at Moss Lane. Tickets £15 (includes meal) are available from Grahame & Karen Rowley or via the Club (928-1045). Altrincham's new signings for 2007-08 will be the guests of honour and will answer any questions directed at them! NB This event has been moved from 6th to 20th October (after the Ebbsfleet United game at Moss Lane).
ALL THE BEST, GARYFrom This is Staffs comes news that "Leek Town veteran Gary Talbot is set to announce his retirement on his 37th birthday at tomorrow's home game with Marine. Talbot was signed by former manager Paul Ogden from Altrincham in the summer to bring stability to the defence, but time has caught up with him. Ogden, back in temporary charge, was forced to bring Talbot off in Tuesday's 6-3 defeat at Fleetwood where the Leek rearguard in general struggled to cope with a pacy attack. Ogden said: 'Gary is highly thought of by the lads and will be at the game. We needed him when he arrived, but he has done a lot of travelling in his career and wants to spend more time with his family'. Leek... hope to name a new manager next week Chairman Paul Burston... has confirmed former manager Paul Moore, who quit at the end of last season having saved the Blues from relegation, is among the applicants". All at Moss Lane send Gary Talbot their best wishes and thanks for his years of service at Moss Lane.
VICS IN A MESSThe Northwich Guardian says that "Northwich Victoria will have to reform as a new club in a lower division. That's the view of independent fan group Northwich Victoria Supporters' Trust after learning that the club's debt now totals hundreds of thousands of pounds. 'It appears to be the only realistic option in front of us', said trust chairman Peter Grimes tonight, Friday. 'If Northwich Victoria Football Club (2004) Limited is liquidated then the club ceases to exist in every way. The only way to keep it alive would be to restart at a lower level, much in the same way as AFC Telford United have done'. The Guardian reported earlier today that the club could go out of business in the next fortnight over an unpaid tax bill [see below]. HM Revenue and Customs have set an October 17 deadline for the struggling Blue Square Premier club to come up with the money. Mr Grimes revealed the trust had been in contact with individuals interested in investing in the club, but their optimism drained when they discovered how perilous the club's current financial status is. All enquiries to the club are now being directed to Manchester corporate recovery specialists Begbies Traynor. They are expected to issue a statement at the beginning of next week".
For more on this, see the BSP News below....
BSP NEWSThe supporters' trust at Northwich Victoria has confirmed that the club is facing a winding-up order. "Below is the notice made public yesterday concerning the winding up of the football club. The Trust has been aware of the seriousness of the situation for some time...
Publication Date: Thursday, 4 October 2007.
Petitions to Wind Up (Companies) In the High Court of Justice (Chancery Division) Companies Court No 4979 of 2007 In the Matter of NORTHWICH VICTORIA FOOTBALL CLUB (2004) LIMITED and in the Matter of the Insolvency Act 1986
A petition to wind up the above-named Company of Spring Court, Spring Road, Hale, Cheshire WA14 2UQ presented on 13 July 2007 by the Commissioners for HM Revenue and Customs of Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1LB claiming to be creditors of the Company will be heard at the Royal Courts of Justice, Strand, London WC2A 2LL on 17 October 2007 at 1030 hours (or as soon thereafter as the Petition can be heard).
The Northwich Guardian confirms that "Northwich Victoria could go out of business in less than a fortnight over an unpaid tax bill. HM Revenue and Customs have set an October 17 deadline for struggling Blue Square Premier club to come up with the money. Chairman Mike Connett is due in court that day. The tax man petitioned to wind up Northwich Victoria Football Club (2004) Limited in July, but the order was only made public in the London Gazette yesterday, Thursday. That company was formed when the old one went out of business in 2005. It is not yet known how much Vics owe.
'HM Revenue and Customs cannot discuss any individual or business accounts for confidentiality reasons', a spokesman told the Guardian. Connett this week refused to talk about his future plans for the club, although he did admit he wished to sell. They are the second Blue Square Premier club to face extinction since the summer. Yorkshire rivals Halifax Town were given a reprieve at the beginning of September... The Shaymen were given a second 28-day adjournment this week".
Meanwhile, "Dino Maamria denies he has taken on a hopeless task. The Tunisian took over temporary control of team affairs on Thursday after Paul Warhurst's surprise departure, but he was frank in an assessment of his credentials. 'I'm the right man for the job', he told the Guardian. 'And I don't believe for a second that we are already down because nothing has ever been decided in September at the top or bottom of the league'... It's been a whirlwind week for Maamria after chairman Mike Connett called him on Wednesday to warn that Warhurst's exit was imminent. The former Southport front runner took training on Thursday before donning his tracksuit for Saturday's league loss against Woking... 'It's not the beginning of the end of Dino Maamria as a player', he laughed. 'I'll need some help and I'm hoping to get Andy Farrell (ex-Morecambe and Burnley) to assist me. I know I've got to succeed with the players we have but I've seen enough already to believe I can turn things around... I've got a set of players all on contracts who will be with the club for the foreseeable future so it's up to me to get them playing with more confidence and belief. I won't settle for second best - that's the mentality the team needs to have'".
"Two young Stockport County players have joined Northwich Vics on loan" reports the Northwich Guardian. County's James Tunnicliffe and Chris Coward have both signed for Vics for a month. The two players, who are both 18, go straight into the squad for tomorrow's game against Weymouth. County manager Jim Gannon is quoted as saying: 'I'm sure James and Chris will benefit from their time at Northwich' . Tunnicliffe is a 6ft 4 inches tall central defender. Coward is a midfielder and became the youngest player to appear in a League Cup match when he came on a substitute in a match against Sheffield Wednesday as a 16 year old". Gannon told the County website, "We wll consider, over the coming months, allowing young players to go out and gain match experience to enhance their development".
Burton Albion visit Moss Lane on Tuesday night. The Burton Mail states that "Skipper Darren Stride looks set to miss Burton Albion's top-six clash with Salisbury City [today]. Stride is rated as doubtful after being struck down by a stomach bug... With versatile Andy Corbett already ruled out and striker Shaun Harrad struggling to shake off a back injury, Brewers boss Nigel Clough is ready to ring the changes... Stride's likely absence will probably result in John Brayford reverting to the central defensive role in which he excelled before he was needed at right-back. Corbett would usually fill the full-back vacancy, but he is ruled out after needing stitches in a gashed forehead, putting Danny Holmes and Dave Farrell on stand-by for a return to the starting line-up... However, the likelihood is that Marc Goodfellow will earn a recall after his goal at The Shay prompted Albion's fightback... The Brewers' boss said: 'Yet again at Halifax, Marc played his best football coming off the bench. We are at a loss and he is a loss to explain why it doesn't happen for him when he starts a game. But, whatever the reason, we need him to perform for 90 minutes, not 20 or 30 minutes as he has been doing'. Clough, meanwhile, is expected to revert to the strike partnership that began the campaign, with Jake Edwards partnering Daryl Clare... Clare has still not fully shaken off a persistent ankle problem dating back to the visit to his former club Crawley Town on September 1... Clough said: 'His ankle was sore after the game at Halifax, even though he didn't come off the bench until the second half, but it is a risk worth taking with a player of his calibre - especially at home'... Harrad and loan signing Ryan Taylor will drop to the bench, where Clough could welcome back defender Tony James... [who] has now fully recovered from the knee ligament injury suffered at Histon on the opening day of the season".
And from the Halifax Courier we learn that "A deadline for amassing 75% of shares in Halifax Town Football Club has been set by businessmen. David Bosomworth and Bobby Ham hope to finalise a deal by Monday which will allow time for administrative issues ahead of a court date. On October 31 HM Revenue is expected to push for a winding-up order at an adjourned hearing in the High Court unless a tax bill is settled... 'Depending on the success or otherwise of securing shares a statement will then be made', said club general manager Angie Firth. The potential new owners already have a majority shareholding but 75 per cent would give them more of a controlling interest in the club. But, whether that figure can be reached is debatable, according to former chairman Bob Walker. He was hopeful the businessmen would still take over the club and convert further investment into shares to give them their required stakeholding. Mr Walker said there was support from shareholders to pledge shares with the same conditions agreed with the Halifax Town Supporters' Trust which include a buy-back clause at a nominal price. 'We are there to be talked to but we are not going to be under pressure of dates', said Mr Walker".
The BBC says that "York have signed Scunthorpe striker Daniel McBreen on a month's loan, with a view to a longer stay. The 30-year-old joined the Iron from Falkirk last summer, but has made just a handful of appearances for them".
The Gravesend Reporter says that Ebbsfleet manager "Liam Daish believes Ebbsfleet United's poor preparations for last Saturday's draw at Farsley Celtic fell well short of those expected of a 'professional' football club. Daish and his players, having been denied the opportunity to stay overnight in Yorkshire the day before the match, were forced to travel up on the matchday itself on a 16-hour round trip from north Kent. The subsequent breakdown of the team bus, confusion over the pick-up alternatives and a delayed arrival at the Throstle Nest ground then all contributed to a final scoreline of 1-1 and the Fleet boss insists his own club's bean counters were responsible for two dropped points. 'I'm more annoyed than anything else', he said. 'I was just disappointed with the whole preparation and I think it has cost me and the players two points. I feel a little bit cheated and I'm sorry for the players as they have not been given the best possible chance of getting us the win and, ultimately, further up the table'... Daish's men now have not tasted defeat though in 450 minutes of football since their 2-0 reverse at Weymouth in early September".
"Oxford United boss Jim Smith admits the visit to struggling Droylsden has become a must-win game." claims the Oxford Mail. "That's because the U's have dropped crucial points at home, and with their next home match a tough one against leaders Torquay next Thursday, the trip to east Manchester represents their best opportunity for weeks to register three points. The Bloods, as Droylsden are nicknamed, have lost their last 11 games, and Smith said: 'Their confidence is bound to be a bit low. I think they will come at us very aggressively to try and upset us, but if we can get the ball down and get the lead, the confidence goes. Every game's a must-win really. But the away win has got to come, because we lost at Histon'. United have been hit hard by injuries in the past week with Rob Duffy and Eddie Anaclet ruled out for most of October and November, and Danny Rose also sidelined after he injured his hamstring in the reserves... Matt Day will take over Anaclet's right wingback position, Smith has confirmed... Gary Twigg will come in up front".
This is York says that "York City on-loan winger Nick Hegarty could be returning to Grimsby Town earlier than scheduled. The 21-year-old wide man impressed during the 2-0 defeats against Stevenage Borough and Aldershot last month. But he has been sidelined with a muscle strain since and is unlikely to be fit before his temporary stay comes to an end after next weekend'... City boss Billy McEwan said: 'He might have to go back to Grimsby earlier because there's no point in him travelling over from there for treatment. He's gutted as he feels he's let me down, but that's football. He's never been injured before but he's come to us and joined our ER ward after just a game and a half'".
NL Daily reports that "John McGinty, chairman of Aldershot Town, has reacted to reports on local BBC Southern Counties Radio that goalkeeper Nikki Bull has stated that he will definitely be leaving the club in the summer. Bull told the radio station: 'There was interest in me in the summer but my price tag eseemed to escalate. To some degree certain bridges were burnt with certain people at this club. But I'm not spitting my dummy out. If I leave in January fine, if it's the end of the season - fine. But this will definitely be my last season even if we get promoted'. McGinty issued a statement on behalf of the club: 'From within the club this is old news for myself and the management. Nikki was looking for a fresh challenge during the recent summer period and this was common knowledge. We were expecting Nikki to leave during this period but through a variety of reasons he eventually remained at Aldershot Town for the 2007/08 season for whom he was contracted. Upon announcing that he was to remain at the club Nikki did express his desire to further his football career at the end of his current contract and we fully understood that. What is certain, however, is that Nikki Bull is 100% committed to Aldershot Town Football Club for this season and that is proven by his excellent peformance rate during the current campaign. Indeed Nikki has been a truly wonderful club man and servant for Aldershot Town Football Club since he arrived in 2002 and that is a main factor as to why he has such a tremendous rapport with the supporters. When Nikki Bull does leave he will go with our blessing and we will assist him in whatever way we can. I hope that he is able to depart on the back of a successful season for the club... I can also confirm that I have received an apology from Tim Durrans at BBC Southern Counties Radio for the way this information was relaid and the timing of it too. I have also asked Tim to apologise to our manager Gary Waddock too which he has done'".
Blue Square announce that "Aldershot Town boss Gary Waddock has won the Blue Square 'Manager of the Month' award for September. The Shots completed an unbeaten run for the month with a 1-1 draw at Cambridge United, after six successive victories. In a fabulous few weeks for the division, which saw an unprecedented number of goals, Aldershot contributed to the excitement with their own tally of twenty in seven games. The highlight of that period was a 5-0 home thrashing of Northwich Victoria. The award is judged by a panel of experts including Setanta Blue Square Premier pundit Paul Parker... Liam Watson the Burscough manager scooped the award in the Blue Square North".
5 October 2007
DIAMONDS LOOK BACKRushden & Diamonds report that they "make the trip to Cheshire on Saturday to face Altrincham at Moss Lane. With the unbeaten run in the league now stretched to eight games with the run of four successive draws, it will be a chance to also continue the record of scoring in every away game this season. With a strong Diamonds' XI putting five past Corby Town on Wednesday night the excellent away results have continued. Altrincham are struggling in 21st place in the table, but their two wins this season have come in their two most recent games...Rushden will wear their Yellow strip this weekend.
Perhaps the player best known to R& DFC fans is Val Owen, who played against us for Northwich in our previous spell in the Conference, and was sent off in the league game at Nene Park last season. Another player some fans will recognise is Jake Sedgemore, who played against the Diamonds during his time at Shrewsbury... The three previous games at Moss Lane have resulted in a 3-4 defeat in the first game of the 1996-97 season... a 2-1 win in 1999-2000, and a 2-1 defeat last season... Last season the Diamonds had already beaten Alty twice at Nene Park - in the league under Paul Hart, and in the Cup under Tony Godden, when Graham Westley took his side to Moss Lane, but on another damp Cheshire afternoon the game ended in a 2-1 defeat.... That was also the occasion the travelling fans had a ride on the team bus after their coach broke down just after getting off the M6, with other Diamonds' fans stopping to offer assistance.The team that day was Scott Tynan, Glenn Wilson, Jon Ashton, Chris Hope (c), Wayne Hatswell, Dave Savage (Lee Tomlin 86), Michael Rankine (Tyrone Berry 60), Simeon Jackson, Tom Shaw (Jimmy Ghaichem 66), Daniel Webb, Jamie Cook".
For the record the Alty team for the last Diamonds' visit to Alty was : 1. Stuart COBURN; 2. Steve ASPINALL, 4. Peter BAND, 17. Karl MUNROE, 11. Warren PEYTON; 7. Robbie LAWTON, 8. Val OWEN, 14. Lewis CHALMERS, 10. Rod THORNLEY; 16. Peter THOMSON, 12. Joe O'NEILL . Subs: 3. Gary SCOTT, 5. Gary TALBOT, 15. Justin BOWLER, 18. Pat McFADDEN, 20. Stephen ROSE.
Of the starters in that game only three players Owen, Lawton and Peyton started Alty's game last Saturday at Crawley.
The Northants Evening Telegraph says that "Rushden & Diamonds found their goal touch and brought Corby Town's run to a shuddering halt with a 5-0 win in the first round of the NFA Hillier Senior Cup... What the home side did not expect was the strength of the visitors who fielded some first-team players – Diamonds evidently feeling they needed a good workout ahead of Saturday's trip to Altrincham".
TUESDAY'S VISITORSAlty play at home to Burton Albion next Tuesday and the Burton Mail says that in the Brewers' last game "Andy Corbett, who had returned to a midfield role after shaking off a knee injury, was hurt in an accidental clash of heads early in the second half of The Shay encounter. He had to be treated by the Halifax club doctor for a gashed forehead that needed seven stitches. Corbett has already been ruled out of Saturday's Pirelli Stadium clash with newly-promoted Salisbury City, and is doubtful for Tuesday's visit to Altrincham. Manager Nigel Clough said: 'Andy has a nasty cut in the middle of his forehead. The nature and extent of the injury means he's going to be very reluctant to head a football for a while. A lot will depend on how quickly the wound heals, but we don't expect him to be available for the next 10 days'. Albion have other injury problems as they prepare for the Salisbury game. Shaun Harrad is also doubtful after injuring his back in a collision with Halifax goalkeeper Adam Legzdins, while fellow striker Jake Edwards also picked up a facial injury. The summer signing from Tamworth, on as a substitute, was caught by a flying boot... The Brewers' boss said: 'It was a very high challenge, so much so that Jake was kicked in the eye, and we will have to monitor him over the next couple of days'. Aaron Webster and Keith Gilroy will also need treatment for injuries picked up in the game. Albion are also sweating on the fitness of top scorer Daryl Clare, who is again nursing an ankle injury after coming off the bench to salvage a point at Halifax".
OLD BOYSFrom the Yorkshire Evening Post comes news that "Battling Harrogate Railway came from behind to defeat Rossendale United 3-2 in UniBond League Division One North last night, thanks to a last minute winner... The visitors took the lead through Mark Drew's 11th minute penalty". And "Cammell Laird moved into second place in the UniBond League Division One South after hammering Warrington Town... Once Alex Hay equalised for Laird... there was only going to be one outcome. Gary Cooke made it 2-1... after that Hay added his second from the penalty spot. Hay then completed his hat trick 5 minutes before half time".
MATCH SPONSORSBarry Pond's updated list of Altrincham FC matchday sponsors is here.
CSCFrom This is Staffs we read that "Congleton Town recovered from a sticky start to win 4-1 away to Cheadle Town in the first round of the Cheshire Senior Cup"
The full CSC draw for Round Two is now:
BSP NEWSAs ever, there is a news story involving Crawley Town and IC Surrey has details of the latest episode. "A new 'gentleman's club' featuring scantily-clad women in hot pants and bikini tops has sparked a war between council bosses and its owner. Millionaire Chas Majeed will open his new Gentleman's Turf sports bar on Pegler Way next month. A recruitment poster for the bar features a topless woman and appeals for 'gorgeous team-mates to join our sexy squad'. Tory councillor Claire Denman ripped into Mr Majeed over his latest business venture - prompting the businessman to furiously slam the council and defend his record as a provider of jobs and entertainment in the town. Mrs Denman said: 'I'm very,very surprised to hear about this bar but nothing surprises me with the Majeeds. Crawley has long been tarnished with a certain image. We are trying to change that image and this won't exactly help'. She added: 'There has been a lot of hard work put in by the council to attract respectable businesses to the High Street area and take it more upmarket - I'd hate to see that work destroyed. A place like this could scare off other businesses and damage the High Street's economy.The Majeeds clearly have what we could call a cosmopolitan outlook - perhaps it's better suited to Brighton'.
But Mr Majeed has hit back, telling the News: 'I'm sick of this. What the hell have the council done for the town centre? Have they brought money in and provided jobs and entertainment like I have? No. Have they worked to keep it safe at night? No. How dare this woman say this.I pay more council rates than anyone else. I pump money into this town and I pump money into Crawley Town FC, keeping them going'". However, Crawley Town is reported not to have paid the rent to the Council on their Broadfield Way ground for at least two years. Majeed added, "Gentleman's Turf will be no different to hundreds of bars in London and across the country. It's a sports bar - there is absolutely no nudity and no dancing, nothing like that. It's a sports bar. All we're doing is getting some good-looking girls in and paying them well. Richard Branson gets attractive women in to work on his planes, it's natural".
Burton chairman "Ben Robinson has hit out at rivals Aldershot Town and Cambridge United for declining Albion requests to re-schedule matches. Burton wanted to bring forward the kick-off time of the Shots' visit to the Pirelli Stadium on Saturday week to 1pm to avoid clashing with live television coverage of England's Euro 2008 qualifier against Estonia. However, Aldershot said they would only agree to the game being brought forward by two hours if the Brewers footed the bill for an overnight stay in the area the previous evening. The game will now kick-off as planned at 3pm. Meanwhile, Cambridge have rebuffed Albion's efforts to switch the November 24 fixture at the Pirelli Stadium to the Friday evening because of a clash with Derby County's Premier League game at home to Chelsea. Burton have been advised by Staffordshire Police that the game needs to be moved from the original date because of the club's shared stewarding arrangement with the Rams. A police letter warning of 'potential issues' created by the expected large contingent of away fans has now been forwarded to the Football Conference board in support of Albion's efforts to bring the game forward. Robinson said: 'I'm disappointed with the response of both clubs. Television coverage of games in our league this season means, more than ever, clubs are having to fit in re-arranged dates and kick-off times. The changes we hoped to make to both these games fall into a similar pattern, and I think clubs should work together and try to be more accommodating'. It seems extraordinary that BSP clubs are not required to provide their own stewards to avoid this sort of situation. If hard-up part-time clubs like Altrincham can do this, why can't well-off full time clubs do so? It is the supporters who suffer with these enforced changes of kick-off time.
The Tameside Advertiser says that "Dave Pace remains optimistic his Droylsden side can make an impression on this season’s Blue Square Premier campaign despite the Bloods’ 11th consecutive defeat... He said: 'I’d be a liar if I didn’t say it (Blue Square Premier) was more difficult, but what people have got to realise is that I’ve stuck by most of the team who won the league last year. A few of them will be let go now but I’ll say now that there’s no crisis at Droylsden Football Club. 'We know where we’re going and we’re going to work damned hard to get out of the situation we’re in. It’s not a fluke when you go to Torquay and take them to the 92nd minute before they get a winner. That’s how far we’ve come and we’re going to go from strength to strength. With one or two additions to the squad, we’ll be OK... It’s unbelievable to be playing Torquay and Oxford anyway, but it’s fantastic for the town and Tameside that it’s been chosen for television. Last weekend, they had Manchester United on at the same time, this week it’s Droylsden!'".
The The Cambridge Evening News says that "Jimmy Quinn has been targeted by Gillingham to be their boss following Cambridge United's whirlwind start to the season. The News understands United have been approached by the League One outfit for permission to speak to Quinn over the vacant manager's job at Priestfield... Quinn recently told the News he wanted to stay with United beyond the end of his contract, which runs out next summer, but admitted he aimed to get back into League management... Former England assistant boss John Gorman, Graham Rix and Brian Kidd have also been linked with the job while Stevenage refused permission for Mark Stimson to be interviewed last week. United chairman Lee Power would not comment when asked if the club had been approached by Gillingham... Power said: 'There was a time last year when we went on a seven-match run without winning a game and there were supporters screaming for his head. I came in for a bit of stick backing him and although we're only a quarter of the way through the season, hopefully people can understand why I stood by him. He'd inherited someone else's team and everyone will agree there's a huge improvement. We don't want him going anywhere'".
The Cambridge United site adds that "Jimmy Quinn has played down speculation linking him with the vacant managerial post at Gillingham... However Quinn said, 'I've not had any contact from anyone. It's just speculation and I'm not really too concerned with that, I'm just concentrating on these next two home games... When you are doing well you know it's going to be mentioned, but I'm here at Cambridge to do a job. We've got a good bunch of lads here and I wouldn't want to leave at the moment anyway. It's up to the club how they see the future and want they want to do with me. My contract to up at the end of the season but I'm not even thinking about that; I'm just concentrating on getting some results to keep us in a good position in the league... It was very difficult last year - I took over and the transfer window was shut - and obviously there are still budget restrictions but I always knew that we'd have a better team this year. We had one or two players here last year who didn't care whether we won or lost, but I know that the lads I've brought here want to do well for the club and, win or lose, I'll stick by them'".
Halifax Town report that "Following a second hearing in the Royal Courts of Justice in London today, the Football Club has been granted a further 28 day adjournment, in respect of a Winding-up Petition, relating to an unpaid tax bill. This is likely to be the last possible adjournment relating to this matter. The consortium chose the shorter period of 28 days rather than the possible 56 at the initial hearing, in order to focus attention and help conclude the potential takeover as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, whilst progress has been made, the appropriate level of shareholding to allow the transaction to proceed, has still not been achieved.In view of the very definitive timescale, we know the consortium is very keen to finalise the position regarding shares by the 8th October (to allow enough time for the necessary administration and relevant issues to be completed). Dependent on the success or otherwise of securing shares, a statement will then be made"
On the field, the Halifax Courier says that "Town boss Chris Wilder faces a striker crisis ahead of Saturday's trip to high flyers Cambridge United. Having been without Andy Campbell, Darryn Stamp and Lewis Killeen for Tuesday's 2-2 home draw with Burton, Wilder is resigned to losing Danny Forrest after he suffered an ankle ligament injury. And with Jon Shaw playing through the pain barrier after suffering a dead leg at York last week, the Shay chief is running out of options in attack... Campbell faces a further three weeks on the sidelines with an Achilles problem and it is still unclear when Killeen will return from the groin injury he suffered... Stamp missed Tuesday's game with a tight hamstring while it is a matter of waiting for Forrest's injury to settle before making a decision on how long he will be out. Wilder revealed... 'There were a couple of loan signings we tried to make before the Burton game, but they didn't materialise', he said."
"Kidderminster Harriers will be hoping to muscle their way into the promotion reckoning in the Blue Square Premier by winning two crucial clashes at Aggborough. Victories over Crawley Town on Saturday and Halifax on Tuesday evening could be enough to power Harriers into a play-off position... Harriers' boss Mark Yates said, 'I'm not saying they're easy games, because we will have to work very hard to win them, but we must go into both looking to get all three points... We're very inconsistent at the moment'... Experienced defender Jeff Kenna could be out for up to a month because of a stomach strain... Goalkeeper Scott Bevan is not expected to have recovered from the tear in his thigh that has kept him out of the last five games, so on-loan Shrewsbury Town stopper Chris MacKenzie is expected to keep his place in the side. Striker Iyseden Christie is still carrying an ankle problem but winger Simon Russell will have a test to see if he is fit enough to be included in the squad... Yates said: 'Those four were important players for us last season. The squad is big enough to cope without them, but I would rather they're fit because they are all important'" reports the Kidderminster Shuttle
The Blue Square Premier Player of the Month for September can be voted for here. The shortlist comprises John Brayford (Burton Albion), James Constable (Kidderminster Harriers), Stuart Fleetwood (Forest Green Rovers), Alan Julian (Stevenage Borough) and Chris Zebroski (Torquay United).
4 October 2007
WELCOME FROM SALISBURYSalisbury City have informed Altrincham FC that our match there a week on Saturday (13th), which is a 1pm kick-off, will not be segregated. Altrincham fans will be welcome to join their hosts in the stadium bar before/after the game. Details of the STAR supporters' coach to Salisbury are here.
GRAHAM COMPLETES RUNCongratulations are due to Altrincham FC supporter Graham Jackett has undertaken a sponsored half-Marathon race for Altrincham FC. He reports that "I managed to get round on the very hilly course in 1hour 41 minutes and 28 seconds. Now I need to get the money in. Many people have paid me by donation and I will collect from those I have on my forms.Looks like being more than £200". Graham is hoping to arrange a collection point for the remaining sponsorship money at Moss Lane and will be discussing that with the club.
RYAN TO STAY?Altrincham FC are hopeful of agreeing an extension of centre-back Ryan Shotton's loan from Stoke City.
PLUSES & MINUSES"Robins' boss Graham Heathcote believes the collective effort and team spirit shown in Saturday's 1-0 win at Crawley will be the key to their survival hopes" says SAM. "'It's all about building on the performances from the last two weeks, especially the Crawley performance. If we can do that, I'm confident we can move on and do well in this league', he told SAM Sport. 'We have to become a tight, competitive side that is able to win the battle on the pitch whatever the opposition. The Crawley win was away from home so we can't come back home and just sit in like we did there, but we have to be expansive while remaining tight and compact and let other teams try to break us down. It was our best sustained performance this season, although not necessarily the best footballing performance. For the first time for the whole 90 minutes, we stayed compact as a side. You also have to have a bit about yourself when the opportunity does arise and Warren [Peyton, right] took his goal really well. That will do him the world of good. It was the collectiveness of the performance that most pleased me. Good sides don't just attack, they know how to defend as well, but defend as a unit. Everyone contributed to the clean sheet'".
But "A hastily-organised friendly on Tuesday night saw Alty lose 3-2 to Unibond Premier side Ashton United, Chris Senior scoring both goals. It was a chance for Heathcote to run the rule over three trialists, former Manchester United pair Lee Roche and Aaron Burns and ex-Stoke midfielder Jeff McGaw, while also giving existing squad members a run-out... Heathcote added: 'It was an opportunity to look at a couple of players and make a few decisions. We have a game on Saturday and Tuesday and it was just a chance to get a run out and keep everyone ticking over. We have played two games against league sides when our application was good and one against Unibond opposition when it wasn't so good. But that can happen with these games, players can relax a little too much. I can't see me taking any of the trialists. I'll just keep looking but people really don't understand how difficult it is to get players of the right ability in'".
The Ashton United Forum says that "The hardy few who chose to forsake Manchester United on the telly got treated to a good game of footy on Altrincham's bowling green of a Moss Lane pitch. Ashton started brightly and took the lead through Billy McCartney, popping up to return a half-clearance with interest from the edge of the box. Alty, despite fielding 7 or 8 first teamers, were getting sliced open by the rampant Robins and a triallist left back (currently with a local club from further down the pyramid) followed up an earlier 70 yard run with a sizzling shot for 2-0 and Alty were a touch lucky to go in only 2 down as Ashton continued to cause problems for the Blue Square Outfit" Team; Rooney, Triallist, Triallist, Knight, McCartney, Forde, Bennett, Smith, Richards, Barker, Edgington. Subs; Taylor, Murray, Furnival, 2x Triallists".
This site's match report is here.
ATTENDANCESTerry Rowley's Blue Square Premier attendance statistics for this season are here.
TUESDAY'S OPPONENTSAlty meet Burton Albion next Tuesday. On Tuesday "Daryl Clare came off the substitutes bench at Halifax Town to slam home a superb volleyed equaliser in the seventh minute of stoppage time to extend Albion’s unbeaten run to ten games – a club record in the Football Conference. Some people may say that after late goals at Histon and against Halifax and at home against York that maybe this is Albion’s season for league success again but manager Nigel Clough is more inclined to believe that his team's ability to keep going to ninety minutes and beyond is much more fundamental than that. 'I think we have got a lot of spirit and a lot of honesty and that is why you get late goals, when you just keep plugging away and keep going and other teams are aware that we are capable of scoring late in games and having let slip a 2-0 lead last week there was always the chance of something for us tonight. We are a bit disappointed with the performance but more than happy with a point. It was a great escape... Both of their goals were poor from a defensive perspective... It was a superb goal but that is just the sort of impact that Daryl can have. He wasn’t quite fit enough to start the game but he comes on and gets a fantastic equaliser... That was the strongest bench we have ever put out and that is where you get your dividends as well... Andy Corbett has got no chance for Saturday. He has had seven stitches in a head wound. Shaun Harrad has got a whack in the back, both Keith and Aaron have got knocks and so has Daryl. Jake Edwards got a kick in the eye. We’ll have a look at them later in the week and hopefully we will have some fresh legs available by then'. Defenders Tony James and Ryan Austin will get another chance to improve their fitness when the reserves take on Bromsgrove Rovers at the Pirelli Stadium on Wednesday". Meanwhile, Halifax Town said that "A disappointed Chris Wilder blamed naïve defending and individual errors as Burton Albion came from 2 goals down". During the game one ex0ALty man came on for another as Steve Bushell replaced Steve Torpey" w.
The BBC says that "Halifax Town boss Chris Wilder rued conceding more late goals as his side surrendered a lead for the second game running to draw 2-2 with Burton Albion. 'Two goals should be enough to win a game but it doesn't seem to be for us at the moment', said Wilder. 'We were naive to let them back into the game. By rights we should be sitting on another seven points. Two points from the last three games is a paltry return for the way we have played in those matches'. Wilder gave a debut from the bench to full-back Alex Bailey, 24, who has joined Halifax on non-contract terms".
Burton boss Nigel Clough responded, 'We are a bit disappointed with the performance but more than happy with a point. It was a great escape', Clough told Burton's website. 'We've a lot of spirit and honesty and that's why you get late goals'"
GLENN & GEOFF HAPPYFrom SAM says "Lords, Old Trafford, The Gabba, The MCG. Now cricket legend Glenn McGrath can add Moss Lane to the list of sporting arenas he has graced during a glittering career. The former Australian paceman graced the hallowed turf at Altrincham FC's home ground alongside an all-star supporting cast at a charity football match on Sunday. A McGrath XI, which included footballing legends Bryan Robson and Peter Reid, took on the All Stars, a team of TV soapstars, to raise money for Altrincham FC and the McGrath Foundation, a breast cancer charity set up by Glenn's wife Jane. McGrath's bizarre connection with the Blue Square Premier club came about after the club's chairman Geoff Goodwin chauffeured the Aussie team around England during their 2005 Ashes tour.... 'I had to come over because we've had a connection with Altrincham for a while now, with Geoff being our coach driver when we were over here for the Ashes', McGrath told SAM Sport. 'Geoff's a great guy, friendly, down to earth and he loves a good time. The boys in the Australian cricket team are relaxed and we just got on really well... It was an awesome afternoon. It was my first game of football ever so I wasn't as bad as I thought I would be... It was just an awesome day, the turnout today and the way the boys played. For all the guys to give their time up to play is great, it couldn't have been a better day'...
'It was a great day," said Goodwin. 'I'm lost for words really. It was a good turnout and I'm really pleased that all the celebrities got involved to help such a good cause. Hopefully it will put this club back on the map. My wife Suzanne did a great job of organising the event and there's so many people to thank, Julie Badrick and Mike Oakes putting so much work into it, and Yorkshire Bank and Virgin for sponsoring it. A lot of people did a lot of good things on Sunday and that's what this club is all about'.
BSP NEWS"Vics' Chairman Mike Connett yesterday, Tuesday, refused to discuss the club's future. The Northwich Guardian contacted him after fans raised concerns about Northwich Victoria's situation. 'It's my business, why should I say anything?' he said. He is understood to have contacted Manchester-based financial firm Begbies-Traynor for advice on his next move. The company looked after Vics when they were in administration in 20042. Caretaker boss Dino Maamria claimed, "I know this league inside out. think it's vital to know what you are up against. I know the players, the teams and the managers. That has to help us". Northwich Victoria's home gate on Tuesday against Kidderminster Hariers was just 481.
But Mr Connett was more talkative to The Mid-Cheshire Chronicle to whom he "admitted yesterday he wants to sell the club. But he stopped short of saying he was putting Vics into administration, as is widely anticipated by fans. He said: 'I might be looking for a buyer for the football club but that doesn't mean administration. You sell a company because you've had enough. If I want to sell a business it's because I'm not happy with it'. On Monday Vics were hit with a £56,000 Manchester County Court judgement. The club has been sued by Hodgkinsons, of Holmes Chapel, and were ordered by Judge Steiger to pay £48,602 ‘forthwith’ including interest and £8,000 in costs.The club did not contest the case and were dealt with in their absence.
Rumours were rife after Saturday’s home game against Woking that Mr Connett intended taking the club into administration. That would not only intensify the search for a buyer but also negotiations with creditors and mean the deduction of 10 points from their playing record... Vics have recently been fined £2,000 by the FA for the misbehaviour of their players at the opening game of the season at Ebbsfleet... The club is believed to heavily in debt, but their grounds and the nine-acres of land at Wincham is owned by Beaconnet, which also belongs to Mr Connett. Helped by a £50,000 Vale Royal Council grant he plans to lay an all-weather pitch and also aims to create a marina at the canalside site, though work has yet to begin. Mr Connett, who lives at High Legh, bought the club and land for £250,000 after Vics sold the Drill Field, but could not afford to complete their new ground. He built one of the best grounds in non-league football for the newly named Northwich Victoria (2004). If a crisis is looming then the Supporters Trust would be willing to help. A spokesman said: ‘We are concerned and are trying to discover what the situation is. We would do what we could do help. We are open to an approach'".
The BBC says that "Football fans are being urged to contact police after a footballer was arrested on suspicion of breaking an opponent's jaw during a match in Essex. The allegation involves a Blue Square Premier League game between Grays Athletic and York City on 22 September. Former Charlton Athletic and England Under-21 defender Jamie Stuart was questioned after York forward Chris Beardsley's jaw was broken. Essex Police want to hear from anyone who was at the game at Grays. A police spokesman said a 30-year-old man from Sidcup, Kent, had been arrested and released on bail until 7 December. Mike Woodward, chairman of Grays, said Mr Stuart had been sent off early in the game for an alleged 'off-the-ball incident'. He said: 'He went to the police station voluntarily and was bailed. He has been fined for being given a red card, but that's it'. A York City spokeswoman said 23-year-old Mr Beardsley 'had had metal pins inserted into his jaw, which was broken in two places. He is likely to be out of the game for some time. He has given a statement to police'".
This is York confirms that "Grays Athletic centre-back Jamie Stuart has been held in custody by Essex Police after being arrested on suspicion of assault. The former England Under-21 international was questioned by police in relation to the incident that left York City striker Chris Beardsley with a broken jaw in two places. Beardsley, 23, suffered the injury during an off-the-ball clash with Stuart during the Minstermen's 2-0 victory at Grays on Saturday, September 22. Defender Stuart conceded a penalty and was sent off for violent conduct after his offence was spotted by one of referee David Phillips' assistants. Beardsley reported the assault two days later after a one-hour operation at Derby Hospital, which saw three plates inserted into his jaw. The former Mansfield and Kidderminster forward now faces three months on the sidelines. An Essex Police spokesman said: 'A 30-year-old Sidcup man has been arrested in connection with the assault and is in custody'.
City, meanwhile, have taken Liverpool youth-team goalkeeper Josh Mimms on work experience. Mimms, who is the 18-year-old son of former City, Everton and Tottenham stopper Bobby... is currently vying with two other teenage 'keepers for the Anfield juniors' number one shirt".
"Giuseppe Sole has been assured he is a big part of Woking’s future plans — despite having been left on the bench for the past five matches. The forgotten Cards’ youngster, who was axed against Altrincham on September 15 and hasn’t started since, has spoken to boss Frank Gray about his position .... 'It’s frustrating but I’m not going to whine about it or anything like that', said the likeable Sole. 'I must admit it came as a shock to be dropped but that’s the manager’s decision. I’ve spoken to him this week and asked him why I’ve been left out and he told me he didn’t think I’d been looking as sharp as I had done. He said I was a big part of his plans, so I’m still happy, and I just need to take my chance when I get it... I think there is that element of not knowing where I fit in to the system but the manager knows I want to play as the second striker and he believes I’m good enough to play in a variety of positions'.,, Adam Green remains sidelined with a broken hand. Carl Gibbs has been released".
3 October 2007
ALTY LOSE FRIENDLY
Above: McGaw, Burns, Logan and Roche warm up before the game.
A lacklustre performance from Altrincham led to their defeat on Tuesday tonight, 2-3, at home to Ashton United in a friendly at Moss Lane. Alty started with three trialists. Up front was Aaron Burns (19), a former Manchester United reserve, who learnt today that he had got international clearance but would not be allowed to sign for Altrincham till January as the FA had deemed him to be of amateur status and therefore ineligible to join a BSP Premier side till the transfer window reopens. At right-back was another former Manchester United player in Lee Roche (26), whose last league club was Wrexham. On the left of midfield was Jeff McGaw, recently released by Stoke City.
Ashton led 2-0 at the break when Alty brought on seven replacement players from the first-team. Although Chris Senior rounded the keeper to make it 2-1, Ashton's former Trafford centre-back Billy McCartney netted his second of the night to restore Ashton's two-goal lead. Senior pulled another goal back in the dying minutes but Ashton were deserved winners. United included former Alty man Lee Hendley as a substitute. Report to follow
ALTRINCHAM: 13. Richard ACTON; 2. Lee ROCHE, 4. Karl MUNROE, 16. Ryan SHOTTON, 3. Gary SCOTT; 22. Carlos LOGAN, 6. Jake SEDGEMORE, 7. Colin POTTS (capt), 20. Jeff McGAW; 12. Joe O'NEILL, 24. Aaron BURNS. Subs: 15. Chris LANE, 5. Darren TINSON, 14. Stephen ROSE, 11. Warren PEYTON, 18. Pat McFADDEN, 9. Colin LITTLE, 19. Chris SENIOR, 13. Steve DOWNES (gk).
CHRISTMAS DINNERIdeas4Alty confirms that "This year's Christmas dinner will take place at the Cresta Court Hotel in Altrincham on Saturday 15th December 2007. Tickets are £50 per person, but a 10% discount applies for tickets purchased before 31st October, so until then you can buy tickets for just £45 each!! Don't miss this incredible offer as demand is sure to be very high. As always, the team and management will be present so you can celebrate the festive period in style with all your favourite players. For tickets, please contact the club by e-mail or alternatively ring the office on 0161 928 1045. You can also speak to Grahame Rowley on match days and he wil be delighted to help".
AWAY DAYThe Sale & Altrincham Messnger judges that "Away-days don't get much better than this. Alty left Crawley on Saturday with a clean sheet, a victory - their first on the road this season - and a real sense of justice after their best performance of the season. All that would have been dismissed as pure fantasy earlier in the afternoon. When the referee ludicrously handed Crawley a penalty midway through the first half, it seemed the Robins' rotten luck had struck once more. Skipper Darren Tinson made a perfectly timed tackle on Guy Madjo inside the box but the clueless official, stationed a good 20 yards away, pointed to the spot. But Alty got exactly what they deserved - Madjo pulled his spot kick wide of the post and the rest is history.
Warren Peyton's winner eight minutes from time brought the feelgood factor back to Moss Lane and made it two straight wins in the Blue Square Premier. Graham Heathcote had his tactics right from the start. Some were left puzzled by the Alty manager's decision to hand Pat McFadden his first start of the season at left midfield, moving Peyton inside, but the wisdom of his decision soon became clear. Alty's midfield worked their socks off, closing down space, stifling their opponents and ensuring their side remained competitive throughout. But the defence also shouldered more than their fair share of the burden. Gary Scott was outstanding on his return from injury but it was young loan star Ryan Shotton who was truly head and shoulders above everyone else on the pitch - literally. The towering defender marked Madjo out of the game and, as Crawley increasingly opted for long balls up to their forwards, he was king of the skies.
True, Crawley had much more of the ball than the visitors but they rarely had much chance to do anything with it. The penalty aside, Richard Acton didn't even have cause for concern. And Alty even had their own penalty shout on the stroke of half time after Chris Senior received a shove in the back. It seemed glaringly obvious but this time the referee was unmoved... Belief is back at Moss Lane."
OLD BOYS"Matty Berkeley could be given a chance to get his career back on track with Blue Square North club Workington. The 20-year-old former Gretna striker, who spent three months on loan with the west Cumbrians in 2006, has just been released by Blue Square Premier side Altrincham, and has been invited to train with the Reds on Wednesday and chat to caretaker manager Darren Edmondson. Assistant boss Viv Busby already knows the potential of the Saints Kitts & Nevis under-20 international from his own time at Gretna. League rivals Barrow are also interested in recruiting Berkeley and are believed to have spoken to him. Barrow train at Accrington and hope that will appeal to Manchester-based Berkeley... Berkeley played nine games for the Reds and scored four goals, which included a hat trick against eventual champions Northwich Victoria" says NL Daily.
ALTY ON TVChannel M's "Greater Manchester Football Show" will screen highlights of the Glenn McGrath charity match played at Moss Lane last Sunday afternoon and the following week Channel M will be showing highlights of the friendly against Ashton United
FAMILIAR FACESThe referee for Altrincham v Rushden and Diamonds this Saturday is Mr M Brown and next Tuesday against Burton it is Mr J. Collin. Mr Brown reffed the Halifax Town v Alty 2-2 draw earlier this season as well as Alty's 0-4 pasting by York City on 10 February, 2007. There are better omens from Mr Collin who officiated at Alty's 4-1 home win over Worksop Town on Saturday, 18 September, 2004 and our 3-0 away win against Runcorn FC Halton in the UniBond League Premier Division on Tuesday, 16 March, 2004.
BSP NEWSNL Daily reports that "Ambitious UniBond League Division One South club Cammell Laird have pulled off a transfer scoop with the signing of tough defender Greg Stones from Blue Square Premier side Stafford Rangers. Wirral-based Stones, 25, has been the subject of interest from several Football League clubs and trialled with Crewe Alexandra prior to the start of the season. Lairds` assistant-manager Neil Young said: 'We are delighted to welcome Greg on board. He recognises the ambition we have here at Kirklands and I'm sure he will be a great asset to the club'. Stones (started his career at West Cheshire League outfit Poulton Victoria and has been an impressive and versatile performer on the Welsh scene, first with Rhyl, then The New Saints, with whom he played in Champions League qualifiers last summer. In the past, he has attracted interest from Wrexham and Tranmere and was close to sealing a move to the Racecourse Ground before Denis Smith was sacked last January. He signed full-time terms with Stafford Rangers at the start of the season". Stones had been offered terms at Moss Lane but opted to join the Wirral-based side.
The BBC says that "York City winger Martyn Woolford has signed a new deal. The 21-year-old has agreed a 12-month extension to his current contract to remain at City until June 2009. The former Frickley Athletic player has become a key part of the side since signing just over a year ago and has scored 11 times in 39 league starts. However, York have lost the services of keeper Stephen Henderson, 19, who has not had his loan extended by Bristol City after an injury to Chris Weale".
From the Northwich Guardian we learn that "Michael Coulson will not stay at the Victoria Stadium after all, according to his club. The 19-year-old Barnsley striker had impressed in his seven appearances, racking up four goals along the way. Last week Vics told the Guardian that Paul Warhurst had persuaded the forward to stay another month, but yesterday an announcement on the Championshp club's website suggested otherwise.'Michael is back at Oakwell after his loan spell at Northwich Victoria ended last weekend', it said".
The Comet reports that "Stevenage Boro boss Mark Stimson has confirmed he was denied permission to speak to two Football League clubs. League One strugglers Gillingham and Port Vale were both interested in interviewing Stimson for their vacant managerial positions. But Stimson will be staying at Broadhall Way after Boro chairman Phil Wallace refused him permission to speak to other clubs. Stimson said: 'I'm flattered by the interest and it's an ambition of mine to manage in the Football League. Phil (Wallace) refused me permission and that's that'".
This is Staffs confirms that "Port Vale have been denied permission to speak to Stevenage Borough boss Mark Stimson... However, Vale are understood to still be hopeful of securing permission from the Blue Square Premier club to open talks. Vale have targeted the 39-year-old former Newcastle and Portsmouth defender after being hugely impressed by his work in non-league... But Stimson is under contract with Stevenage until 2010, so Vale face a compensation claim if they press on with their interest".
"Weymouth player-physio Stuart Douglas is hoping to be available for selection on Saturday for the visit of basement boys Northwich Victoria. The former Luton Town striker has not played since August 23 when he was sent-off in a 2-1 defeat against Burton Albion. Speaking during a training visit to Portland Spa, Douglas said: 'I have got a slight groin strain at the moment but I have done a lot of work today and hopefully I will be available for Saturday'... Skipper Simon Weatherstone, full-backs Trevor Challis and Narada Bernard, midfielders Nick Crittenden, Sido Jombarti and Marcus Browning, and striker Stuart Beavon all missed Saturday's 2-2 draw at Histon, which ended a run of three successive defeats. Douglas added: 'Most of those players are not too far away. The only exception is perhaps Sido who sustained an injury at Droylsden, which is a combination of both knee and ankle. The rest should be back in the next couple of weeks. If we were getting thumped week-in week-out I would be worried but that has not been the case, with the exception of the game against Stafford Rangers when the performance was not good enough... We have just got to cut out the errors we have been making'" says This is Weymouth.
Exeter City say that "Our very own mascot pride and joy, Grecian the Lion, makes the journey to Huntingdon on Sunday 7 October to compete in the Mascot Grand National. The bundle of fur will compete against fellow mascots and attempt to clamber over six hurdles! Grecian has been warned not to eat any of the other mascots but, frankly, it's a fine line to tread. If we feed him prior to race, he'll go all sleepy and nod off under a tree in the paddock. If we don't, any slow or weak mascots that get separated from the main pack face a mauling.There's fair bit of responsibility resting on young Grecian's shoulders as he's raising money for the Centre of Excellence, helping the club develop the talents of our youngsters. So, if you spot him around the place, sponsor him or give him a donation as the cause is an exceedingly worthy (if underfunded) one!"
2 October 2007
Right: Geoff Goodwin being interviewed before the match by Peter Marshall of BBC's "NW Tonight".
The Manchester Evening News reports that "Legends from the world of sport joined soap stars to raise £40,000...and it was all because of a friendship between Aussie cricketers and a coach driver they call Popeye. Geoff Goodwin, who is chairman of Altrincham football club, runs a coach company and had the contract to drive the Australian cricket team around Britain during the last Ashes tour. It was during those drives he befriended members of the team and that led to yesterday's charity football match to raise money for the Australian breast cancer charity the McGrath Foundation, founded by Jane McGrath, wife of the legendary bowler Glenn.
Almost 700 turned up for the game at Altrincham's Moss Lane ground and, together with the proceeds of a fundraising dinner, organisers predict £40,000 will have been raised for the foundation and Altrincham FC's work in the community. The game went to penalties after ending 4-4. The Glenn McGrath 11 won despite Glenn hitting the bar with his spot-kick.
Ex-United and England star Bryan Robson, who scored the winning penalty, said: 'The All Stars were excellent players and I was surprised how the cricketers performed. Glenn himself has a bit of pace and it was a wonderful turnout'.
Michael Le Vell, who plays Kevin Webster in Coronation Street, said: '"Robson is a big hero of mine and it was brilliant in a game like that. You couldn't relax when you're up against a team with Robson and Peter Reid'.
Glenn said: 'We all got to know Geoff on our Ashes tour. We call him Popeye because of his strong muscular arms, not because of how much spinach he eats. I didn't want to make a fool of myself playing my first game of football and, to be honest, I enjoyed it. My wife was diagnosed 10 years ago but she's getting better now and hopefully it will stay that way. I want to thank everyone who helped make this a special day'.
Also in action were former City boss and England midfielder Peter Reid, Century radio pundit Alan Kennedy and former Neighbours star Blair McDonagh", whilst the referee was the MEN's own sports editor.
Such events don't just happen so many thanks are due to the organizers, particularly Suzanne and Geoff Goodwin, as well as all those who gave their time on the day.
ABOVE L. to R: Bryan Robson; Glenn McGrath gives his team talk; Dave Gardner. BELOW L. to R: Michael LeVell and Glenn McGrath lead out their teams; Peter Reid, Bryan Robson and Chris Adams (the Sussex cricket captain).
YOUTH TEAM WINSLast Sunday, Altrincham Youth beat Curzon Ashton Youth 2-0, away, in a NW Youth Alliance match. Next Sunday they represent the Cheshire County FA against Wirral & District FA in the Cheshire County FA District Youth Cup at Trafford FC, k.o. 2pm.
OLD BOYSNL Daily reports that "Liam Watson, manager of Blue Square North club Burscough, has announced the signing of 20-year-old left back Sean Clancy. Clancy spent a successful period on loan with Burscough last season and made a positive impression on everybody. He joins from Blue Square Premier side Altrincham, who he joined having been released during the summer by neighbours Southport. Prior to signing for Southport he made one appearance for Blackpool in the Football League".
Former Alty Youth player Stuart Cook opened his goal scoring account for Connah's Quay Nomads last Friday night with a 25 yard free kick to help earn them a point in 3-3 draw against Welshpool in the Welsh Premier League. Former Alty Youth captain Paul Glynn also turned out on trial for the Nomads recently in a league cup game. Still in Wales, Kieran Kilackey, the former Alty reserves' player is still playing at Bangor City.
FRIENDS' DRAWThe Friends of Altrincham FC (FOAFC) monthly draw for September was won by the following numbers:
The FOAFC members' list has been updated at the above link; why not join them and have a chance of winning the monthly prize whilst supporting the Football Club?
BSP NEWS"Lee Sinnott spent all his playing days in the full-time game and since his arrival at Blue Square Premier club Farsley Celtic he has always insisted that football is a squad game" says NL Daily. "As the Celts have climbed the leagues under Sinnott`s stewardship - they have been promoted three times in four seasons - his oft-repeated quote has certainly been borne out... Farsley are now the top dogs of the local semi-professional clubs... They are reaping the rewards for that with vastly-improved gate receipts and television money.. and will make their live television debut for a league match next Thursday when they visit Woking. However, there is a down side. It comes with a price and that was staggeringly obvious to anyone who was at Throstle Nest for the visit of Exeter City... The expense of being at the top table of non-league soccer is huge. When Exeter visited, the pitch was hardly visible during the warm-up. The visitors' half was not quite as populated as the Celts', who had their eleven players, five substitutes and nine other squad members going through their paces. The visitors, who had made the long hop from Devon, merely had twenty players preparing, just in case. Farsley's twenty-five bodies did not include Scott McNiven, who was jogging lightly around the perimeter... nor the handful of players not fit enough to jog. They were seated in the stand... Before [if] anyone says Farsley have money pouring in, they had better consider the crippling cost of running a club at that level. Whilst envious glances may be made towards Throstle Nest, it may be pertinent for potential rivals to ensure they have the infrastructure in place before coveting what Farsley have" remarks the Telegraph & Argus.
Blue Square Football reports that "Mark Stimson, manager of Stevenage Borough, has confirmed that he is on the shortlist for the vacant post at Gillingham... Chairman Paul Scally has whittled down the list of interested parties to three names and has identified his prime target, who was out of the country over the weekend... 'I have been made aware by my chairman Phil Wallace that Gillingham want to speak to me, but their request has been refused', said Stimson in The Sun. 'I'm flattered by Gillingham's interest and one day I want to manage in the Football League, but for the moment I cannot comment any further'" .
From the BBC comes a report that "Oxford have been dealt a further injury blow with the news that Eddie Anaclet will be out of action for six weeks. Anaclet, who can play on the wing or at full back, damaged knee ligaments in Sunday's 1-1 draw with York. He was able to complete the match but scans subsequently revealed the extent of the injury. The 22-year-old joins Rob Duffy on the sidelines after the striker broke his left arm in the same game". Elsewher the BBc reports that "Duffy will be out for up to eight weeks".
"Halifax Town have signed Birmingham City keeper Adam Legzdins on a three-month loan deal. The youngster previously spent two months at the Shay on loan during the 2005-06 campaign, making 10 league appearances. His arrival will create competition between the posts for Craig Mawson who has been the undisputed Halifax number one for the past 14 months since arriving from Hereford. Legzdins, who has also had loans with Oldham Athletic, Macclesfield Town and Alfreton, signed a one-year deal with the Blues earlier this summer" states the Halifax Courier.
And from the Northwich Guardian we learn that "Micahel Coulson has extended his loan stay at the Victoria Stadium. The 19-year-old Barnsley striker has impressed in his seven appearances so far, racking up four goals along the way. He has now agreed to stay another month with struggling Vics, who have failed to win any of their opening 12 matches".
1 October 2007
QUIZ NIGHTIt is STAR Quiz Night at Moss Lane tonight, starting at 8pm. Everyone is welcome for this test of general knowledge.
GLENN'S TEAM WINS
Glenn McGrath hits the post in the penalty shoot out.
A good time was had by all at Moss Lane on Sunday afternoon, when Australian cricketer Glenn McGrath's XI beat an All Stars team led by Coronation Street's Michael LeVell after a penalty shoot out, following a 4-4 draw over 90 minutes. The team sheet for the game, organised by Suzanne and Geoff Goodwin, was as follows, but other players also appeared and not all of the numbers were necessarily accurate.
Right: Glenn McGrath holds the trophy aloft as Jack Crompton applauds..
Those also playing in a game of many substitutions included (for Glenn) Charles Heathcote and (for the All Stars), former Liverpool star Alan Kennedy and Dave Gardner the ex-Alty midfielder and the Beckhams' best-man. The McGrath XI started with the fast bowler himself up front, with Alty chairman Geoff Goodwin who, with his wife Suzanne, had arranged the game and the fundraising dinner which followed it. Bryan Robson, the former Man. Utd and England captain operated at centre-back with Peter Reid in midfield. Alty manager Graham Heathcote had a player-manager role for the McGrath XI. Former Alty striker Rod Thornley was the most impressive of the McGrath team in the early stages. But it was the All Stars' midfielder Dave Gardner who put his side ahead from a freekick from 20 yards after 42 minutes. Not on the team sheet, but playing for the All Stars was former Liverpool defender Alan Kennedy, whilst likewise playing for the McGrath team was Sussex cricket captain Chris Adams, who was watched by his namesake, the Ashton United and former Alty left-back.
At half time three teams from the the Altrincham FC Juniors entertained the crowd of 667. The All Stars went 2-0 up after 48 minutes through their burly no.40, and former Oldham and Everton keeper Paul Gerrard had then to produce a good save to keep the score down. But Australian cricketer Michael Bevan made it 2-1 after 62 minutes before Jeff Brazier put the All Stars 3-1 ahead after 67 minutes. Ashley Taylor made it 4-1 after 70 minutes. Then Rod Thornley scored two well-taken goals in three minutes to make it 4-3 (73 and 76 mins). Rugby star Brad Drew slotted home an equaliser in injury time to make it 4-4.
A penalty shoot out followed in which bowler Glenn McGrath could not resist aiming for the stumps (or rather the post) which he hit firmly, before the All Stars saw a penalty saved. Wakefield put the McGrath side ahead but Gerrard next saved again, with his feet, before Drew made it 2-0 to the McGrath team. Each side then scored all its kicks with Bryan Robson netting the final spot kick to make it 4-2. The trophy and medals were presented by former Manchester United goalkeeper, Jack Crompton.
The game was an entertaining spectacle and gave a chance to fans to see "big names" from the world of sport and entertainment whilst raising money for an excellent cause. Thanks are due to all who supported the event whether as players or spectators.
NEXT UPAlty's next visitors are Rushden and Diamonds and their
BALANCED REPORTThe Crawley Town Site has pictures from the Crawley game last Saturday.
Meanwhile, the local paper, the Argus has a more balanced match report than some (even if the names are mixed up) which says that "Evans was furious with the referee for missing a blatant penalty at Ebbsfleet but the old adage that these things even themselves out over the season came true midway through the first half. Altrincham skipper Darren Shotton (i.e. Darren Tinson not Ryan Shotton or even Ray as he is called in the NL Paper!) clearly got the ball as Madjo cut into the box after racing on to Jamie Cook's long ball the referee Ian Cooper stunned everyone by pointing to the spot. Madjo obviously felt sorry for the visitors as he pulled his shot from 12 yards wide of the left hand post. Altrincham had a shout for a penalty themselves on the brink of half-time when Senior was sent sprawling in the area by Glenn Wilson but this time Cooper was unimpressed. Senior was furious and carried on his protest during the interval when he confronted the referee on the pitch. Evans had spent the majority of the first-half berating the officials and Cooper's patience finally broke two minutes after the restart and he sent the Reds boss to the stands for arguing about a throw-in".
The Argus also reports that "Crawley have been told to cut out the complacency if they are to avoid a season of mediocrity. Assistant manager Paul Raynor accused his players of failing to perform against the Conference premier's lesser sides as they went down to a second 1-0 defeat in four days. Warren Peyton's 82nd-minute winner was hard to take coming hot on the heels of a carbon copy defeat at Ebbsfleet last Tuesday... They have beaten three of the five teams they have played who are above them in the table - Forest Green, Aldershot and Stevenage - but are guilty of slipping up against also-rans like Altrincham. Raynor said: 'We probably turned up thinking it was only Altrincham and if you go into games thinking like that you get turned over. If it had been Stevenage or Aldershot I think the boys' attitude would have been spot on. Subconsciously they probably thought we'll win today but you have to make it happen. Nobody is going to roll over and let us win. They came here with a game plan to frustrate us and nick a goal and that is exactly what they did. We just didn't play'... Altrincham skipper Darren Tinson looked to have got the ball when he halted Madjo's run into the area but justice was done when Crawley's top scorer failed to convert his fourth spot kick of the season... The usually forthright Evans chose to give the post-match press conference a miss so it was left to Raynor to voice his concern about a lack of creativity. He added: 'When you dominate possession you have got to do something with it. It is okay passing the ball sideways and putting long balls into the box but you have got to have some quality if you are going to penetrate. They sat in deep and we played to their strengths. The easy option is to put high balls into the box, it is a lot harder to put your foot on the ball and play a measured pass that may go wrong. If we had created a lot of chances and their goalkeeper had turned in a brilliant performance then you can accept it a little easier but we didn't create anything. Managers up and down the country will tell you the time to start worrying is when you are not creating chances so we're worried'".
YOUTH GAMESAltrincham FC Youth's fixture up to early December have now been released and can be found in the Youth section.
NEIL'S DEPARTUREAs reported recently, former Altrincham reserves' manager Neil Brown has resigned from his caretaker role at UniBond club Leek Town. Folowing the illness of manager Paul Ogden, Neil had been in charge for recent games for the Stafordshire club, during which time he has had to make use of the existing squad as his caretaker capacity made it difficult to bring in new players. Leek opted to advertise the manager's post and, having had it confirmed by club officials that, given he had not been at the club long, he would have "faced an uphill battle" to win the selection process for the new manager's position, Neil has opted to try his hand elsewhere.
OLD BOYSFormer Alty winger Blake Norton has joined Wakefield after a brief spell at Droylsden. Meanwhile the UniBond League announces that it has "appointed Mark Ogley to its list of Divisional Representatives. Ogley has a vast experience of the UniBond League having played with Stalybridge Celtic, Altrincham, Emley, Gainsborough Trinity, Leek Town and Frickley Athletic following a Football League career that took in Barnsley, Aldershot, York City and Carlisle United. He has also served in managerial or coaching positions with Belper Town, Frickley, Grantham Town and Stocksbridge"
BSP NEWSThe Salisbury Journal says that "Salisbury City have signed former Bristol Rovers and Torquay United goalkeeper Martin Horsell (20)... With James Bittner sidelined, Salisbury boss Nick Holmes has moved to secure cover between the sticks... Horsell has initially been signed on a one-month contract".
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