an unofficial website

October, 2009

31 October 2009


Altrincham named six players, including all five subs, who had not started a game for the club this season, such was their depleted squad today. And the Robins were, as expected, under pressure for much of the game - the BBC gave Oxford 69% of the possession. Nevertheless, they put in a creditable performance with their very weakened team. In fact, it took a 25 yard shot from Oxford defender Batt to take the points. Alty also had a few chances - notably through Little and Densmore and left Oxford with a nervous closing few minutes. Early on in the game Stuart Coburn was judged to have conceded a penalty but he saved Green's spot-kick expertly.

  • Match report here.

  • League table
  • Alty player stats
  • Alty line-ups


  • Through the Years by Howard Watts
  • Cambridge United 2 Kidderminster Harriers 0
  • Chester City 3 AFC Wimbledon 1
  • Crawley Town 3 York City 1
  • Ebbsfleet United 0 Wrexham 1
  • Forest Green 1 Eastbourne Borough 1
  • Grays Athletic 3 Barrow 3
  • Kettering Town 1 Stevenage Borough 1
  • Luton Town 0 Rushden & Diamonds 2
  • Mansfield Town 1 Histon 1
  • Oxford United 1 Altrincham 0
  • Salisbury City 0 Gateshead 1
  • Tamworth 0 Hayes & Yeading Utd 2


  • Alty lose 1-0 despite giving Oxford some late worries
  • Added time - still 1-0
  • 86 mins Perry on for Oxford
  • 85 mins: Densmore has chance, from Williams pass, cleared off line after errors by Creighton and Kinniburgh
  • 81 mins: Young booked for foul on Constable
  • 80 mins: Welch on for Lawton
  • 76 mins: Cook comes on for Oxford's Green
  • 72 mins: Oxford well on top since Deering came on
  • 65 mins: Batt fires home from 25 yards 1-0 to give Oxford lead after a lot of pressure from the home side.
  • 60 mins: Deering on for Midson for Oxford; still 0-0
  • 54 mins: Pearson comes on to replace Bryan for Altrincham
  • 50 mins - still 0-0
  • HT 0-0
  • 45+2 mins: Midson given offside after putting ball in net
  • 45 mins: In added time, Constable of Oxford booked
  • 44 mins: Lawton booked before Midson heads over a but is given offside
  • 43 mins: Alty freekick for foul on Densmore is cleared as visitors holding their own : 0-0
  • 31 mins: Still 0-0 as Burns shoots over from 25 yards
  • 23 mins: Little misses good chance from six yards from cross by Clee
  • 12 mins: Coburn saves Green's penalty - 0-0
  • 11 mins: Coburn conceded penalty for bringing down Clist after Oxford broke away following a poor freekick by Densmore. Coburn booked.
  • 5 mins: 0-0


    From the Oxford Mail we read that "The boot is on the other foot for Oxford United against Altrincham on Saturday. Last weekend the U’s had to manage without their two main strikers through suspension. But while they welcome back James Constable and Matt Green, who seem certain to come straight back into the side, Altrincham themselves have two key players out. Striker Chris Senior is serving the third of his three-match ban for violent conduct after getting sent off against Mansfield a fortnight ago. And he is joined by midfield playmaker Tom Kearney, who was shown a straight red card in their 3-0 FA Cup defeat by the Stags at Field Mill last Saturday...

    There are more options for Chris Wilder, following Sam Deering’s fine showing when coming on as a sub in the 2-0 Cup win over Thurrock. Said assistant manager Mickey Lewis: 'Sam’s a really big part of our plans, I really like him as a player, and I think he’s got a big future with the club'".

    Oxford United report that they "welcome Altrincham tomorrow with manager Chris Wilder well aware that... United are now entering an important stage of the season: 'We have started well and are in a great position but that means we are there to be shot at by every club in the division. There are still a bunch of clubs in or around the play-offs who will fancy their chances of getting in... I saw the local paper today and could hardly believe my eyes when I was misquoted as saying only the top six right now have a chance. Nothing could be further from the truth. Crawley are in 14th and they are only 10 points off the playoffs, and ten points is nothing in this league this early. You go way down the division and find teams that are well capable of a challenge and there are some dangerous clubs who could easily get on a run and get everyone looking over their shoulders.

    Altrincham will come on Saturday and I am sure want to be the first club to win at Oxford, and make people even more aware of the threat they pose. I have the ultimate respect for what Graham Heathcote has built there. They are a very good side and I know all about the quality they possess. I have worked with six or seven of their players at Halifax and know they will come and give it a real go. Having said that we are in good shape ourselves, have just about a full squad to choose from, and will have another great crowd behind us. It's a game we are looking forward to and we will look to be positive".

    United add that "Sam Deering is likely to retain his place on the bench after impressing last week while Marcus Kelly is fully fit after a toe problem. Alfie Potter is closer to full fitness after a virus but may be a week away from a return while youngster Aaron Woodley is unavailable".


    In the light of the James Smith ban, based on video evidence which was not made available by the FA to the defendant and which he was not allowed to contest, it is interesting to note that there are two versions of the incident published on YouTube. One at here shows the Mansfield player in question apparently raising his hand before Smith acts, whilst the other version omits the hand-raising.


    Mike Ainsworth announces that "Copies of the new Football Manager 2010 PC game are now available from Altrincham FC for a bargain £20. Call at the club during office hours. It will also available on Saturday in the bar when the Manchester United v Blackburn match is televised at 5.30pm!"


    According to NL Daily "Fleetwood Town have secured the services of midfielder Steve Torpey from rivals AFC Telford United. Town have paid an undisclosed fee for the versatile right-sided player, who has scored four goals this term".

    Congleton Town have signed both Jonathan Mitten and Steven Tobin, whilst Tejai-Ross Thaker has signed forms with Winsford United.


    "Kidderminster Harriers have completed the signing of highly-rated defender Danny Andrew on loan from Peterborough United" reports the Football Conference. "Andrew comes on board at Aggborough for the next month and goes straight into the squad... He has yet to appear for the Posh in the Championship but has been a regular in their reserve outfit. He also featured five times whilst on loan at league rivals Tamworth earlier this season".

    Meanwhile "Kettering Town have signed midfielder Simon Heslop on a month's loan from Barnsley" and "AFC Wimbledon have signed former England Youth international midfielder Nathan Ashton from Wycombe Wanderers". The Football Conference also states that "Forest Green Rovers have swooped to make the New Lawn the latest stop in much-travelled Craig Rocastle's playing career. Rocastle had only joined Dover Athletic in September after leaving Welling United, making three appearances for the Whites".

    "Luton Town have announced... the double appointment of Richard Money from Newcastle United as the new first-team manager and Gary Brabin, Conference Manager of the Season just last year, as Chief Scout. Alan Neilsen, undefeated in his reign as caretaker-manager, stays on as assistant-manager...

    Managing director Gary Sweet told the club`s official website: 'We're delighted. We fully stand behind our vision for the Club, and to have the knowledge, experience and achievements of these two men, here today, is fantastic for Luton Town, Luton, and Bedfordshire. The fact that these guys have agreed to come and be part of that vision shows what we can have if we get behind them. Along with Alan, we have combined experiences of the league we are in, the league above and all the way to the top. We already know what the players are capable of and the brilliant run they are on - an excellent legacy for the new management. Everyone has their part to play so now we have to push on and focus on that top spot. We have the team to do that in all departments now, and we have two thirds of the season left. There's a lot of football to be played yet and we know what we want'.

    Money leaves his lucrative role at Newcastle to join the Bedfordshire club to the disappointment of Geordie fans. Many say he has done excellent things in his tenure heading the Academy and he leaves behind a legacy of excellent players and a great set up. 'Well, I like to develop people around me', said Money. 'I've seen the squad here and there is a huge amount of ability... They have been very unlucky with injuries to be fair... There's no doubt this team is capable of finishing top at the end of the season. That's my focus'...

    Brabin currently reigns as the Conference Manager of the Season after narrowly missing out in the play-off final with Cambridge United last season. He said 'We have everything to play for – Oxford United have got to come to us next Spring and that's not going to be easy for them... This place is going to be rocking come the end of season!'...

    Sweet detailed: 'The hard part was the final shortlist as the competition was fierce. With the full support of the investors, we decided to make offers to two candidates. We thank Newcastle United for their help in allowing Richard to join us and lead the attack on that top spot - that was a magnanimous decision by their chairman, Mike Ashley. And Gary's experience in this league is huge'".

    "Beleaguered Liam Daish, manager of Ebbsfleet United, has been given the backing of chairman Duncan Holt" reports NL Daily. "Holt took over in charge at Stonebridge Road three months ago on a trial basis but this weekend he will write to MyFootballClub members asking them whether they would like him to continue...

    Holt said: 'At many other football clubs, Liam would have been under a lot of pressure but not at this club. We have asked him to sell his best players and release players who we could not offer terms to. Liam has one of the smallest budgets in the league. We can hardly turn around after two months and say ‘you’re rubbish'. He built a squad up over four years and we have had to ask him to dismantle it and start again. The club is facing problems, but Liam Daish is not one of them'" he told Kent Online.

    "York City will not pursue their interest in Montserrat international Junior Mendes. The 33-year-old, who is unattached after being released by Aldershot in the summer, played for the Minstermen as part of a York City XI which lost 1-0 to Harrogate Town on Tuesday night. But manager Martin Foyle... 'He came into training and he’s worked hard but he was always chasing his fitness levels', said the City boss. 'I need players now'" reports York Press.

    "Lanre Oyebanjo could be the first of several stars to leave Histon as they attempt to generate much-needed extra funds" claims NL24. "The Stutes’ boss Steve Fallon reveals the club are in need of a cash injection and he could be forced to sell his best players during the January transfer window... Fallon tells 'Once Lanre’s completed his trial, Peterborough will say yes or no and then it’s up to the two clubs to agree terms... There’s a lot of pressure to get money into the football club at the moment. Like a lot of clubs, we’re struggling a little bit financially and we’ve got to do all we can to balance the books. We’ve got players that could leave for nothing at the end of the season, so January’s a big time for us to cash in on their abilities'... Defender Craig Pope will be absent after being ruled out for up to three months with an infected grass burn... Fallon says: 'Craig’s wound is quite serious at the moment and it could take anything from two to 12 weeks to heal, and he might have to have a little bit of plastic surgery on it'".

    "Forest Green Rovers' manager Dave Hockaday is remaining confident that a lack of experience in his squad will not prove fatal to their survival hopes" according to Non-League 24. "hockaday is giving Rovers’ youth policy a ringing endorsement, the Gloucester Citizen is reporting. He says: 'The link with Hartpury College is working very well and I can only see it going from strength to strength, hopefully with a conveyor belt of players pushing for the first team. The defeats we’ve suffered since I’ve been here have been down to mistakes and lapses in concentration, and not always from the younger boys. It’s too easy and too convenient to say inexperience is to blame'”.

    "Gateshead will allow a number of players to go out on loan after tomorrow’s trip to Salisbury City" states Chronicle Live. "The Tynesiders boast a squad of 25 – slightly top heavy for a part-time outfit – following the recent recruitment of loan pair Peter Winn and Daryl Clare. And after midfielder Jamie Harwood returned from a temporary spell with Harrogate Town, manager Ian Bogie is considering farming out a couple more of his players”.

    30 October 2009


    With Chris Senior, Tom Kearney and James Smith all suspended this Saturday and Chris Denham and Dale Johnson both sidelined by injury, Altrincham manager Graham Heathcote has moved to strengthen his squad. He has signed Altrincham FC Youth team defender James Smart (right) on Conference forms. James, (d.o.b. 1.10.1992) is the regular left-back for the Robins' youth team and he joins team-mate John Bennett in the first-team squad. John made his first-team debut at Mansfield last Saturday. James's squad number is 28.


    Altrincham FC joint press officer, John Edwards, writes

    Altrincham have been left reeling from another disciplinary setback after James Smith was banned for three games, despite misgivings over the filmed evidence of an alleged off-the-ball incident in last Saturday's FA Cup tie at Mansfield.

    An FA disciplinary panel emailed Moss Lane this afternoon (Thursday) to inform Alty that Smith had been found guilty of violent conduct, following a clash with Mansfield's Jake Speight near the end of their fourth qualifying round defeat at Field Mill.

    There is an understandable sense of dismay within the club at a chain of events that has left Graham Heathcote's playing resources at breaking point for Saturday's trip to Blue Square Conference leaders Oxford United. Doubts have been raised over the validity and clarity of the video submitted by Mansfield, after it appeared on the YouTube internet site, while Alty officials were further frustrated by a ruling preventing any personal appearance at the hearing.

    Smith's defence hinged on a written submission from the club, but the panel ruled against him and imposed a three-match suspension with immediate effect. He will miss the Conference games against Oxford, Forest Green Rovers and Chester and, adding insult to injury, will also have to sit out Alty's opening defence of the Cheshire Senior Cup, against Witton Albion at Moss Lane a week on Tuesday.

    Under the wording of the FA's sanction, the in-form defender is banned from all football until the completion of three first-team matches. Gallingly for Smith and Alty, the county cup is not recognised by Soho Square chiefs as a first-team competition, despite the Cheshire FA threatening fines for any club failing to field their strongest possible line-up.

    Alty boss Heathcote outlined his concerns over the verdict and its ramifications, as he said: 'We didn't even get to see a copy of the tape, but it has been running on YouTube, apparently, and I just feel it sets a dangerous precedent. You can imagine what will happen now. You'll get thousands of people up and down the country getting their mobile phones out at non-League games and claiming they've got evidence of some supposed misdemeanour. They'll be taken from all sorts of angles, and each one will create a different impression.

    Just look at what happens in cricket, when they show you so many different camera shots of an incident. You can get a completely different perspective, depending on the angle it is viewed from. It can be very misleading, and I just wonder what we've let ourselves in for with this. The immediate consequence for us is that we are going to be really stretched over the next month, with Tom Kearney also out for three games. The squad isn't big enough to cope with so many suspensions, and it is a concern'.

    Heathcote insisted he had addressed the issue of discipline with his players and admitted he had mixed feelings about the number of former Football League clubs currently scrambling for promotion from the Conference. 'The players were reminded about maintaining levels of discipline after the League game with Mansfield, and again on Saturday,' he said. 'You can only do so much, though. You can't string them up on a piece of rope, and you have to allow for the fact that emotions sometimes take over.

    At the same time, it's strange how our disciplinary record was excellent before these two Mansfield games. We were up near the top of the Fair Play League, yet, for whatever reason, we have ended up being castigated as the big bad wolf while they [Mansfield] have emerged, in their eyes at least, as holier than thou. Maybe the truth of the matter is that, while we showed naivety in allowing ourselves to be suckered into situations, they were smarter and cuter. More professional, they would probably say.

    [Right: Action from the Mansfield v Altrincham league game this month, which demonstrates the point made by Graham Heathcote about making judgements based on photographic images.]

    On Saturday, the whole afternoon was stoked up by comments from their chairman in his programme notes, and I can't recall, in all my 39 years in football, ever going to a game and receiving so much abuse before a ball had even been kicked. To a degree, you expect people to give you stick, but they are usually male and adult. At Mansfield, there were women and even an 11-year old kid screaming abuse at me, and it's fair to say it wasn't the most pleasant of days. I believe in taking things on the chin, though, and I don't intend saying any more about it.

    Discipline applies to managers, as well as players, and since appearing before an FA commission 18 months ago, I have tried very hard to make sure they have had no cause to summon me again. I've had fourth officials standing a couple of yards away week-in, week-out, but I've never been reported. Even on Saturday, when feelings were running high, I was never spoken to by any of the officials, unlike some people.

    What I have come to realise is that non-League football will never be the same again. It has been infiltrated by relegated sides who are desperate to get back to the Football League before the parachute payments run out. That is the crux of the matter, and I have to say I was far more comfortable with the way non-League football used to be.

    There has been a change of attitude. They would call it professionalism, but it has taken away a lot of the enjoyment. You used to get a bunch of lads who would work at their full-time jobs during the week, then approach their football with absolute honesty and endeavour. There is a new philosophy now, and a lot of the enjoyment at this level has gone.

    The socialising that used to take place after games is non-existent now, and it can be an unpleasant experience at times. You see things now that you would not expect to see on a non-League pitch, and it always seems to be explained away by the word professionalism. That's not what I joined non-League football for. There is a desperation about trying to win now. You have to try and achieve the highest status you can, but the game at non-League level will never be the game I knew, and I would question whether the change is for the better'".

    Alluding to the incident which got James Smith banned, This is Nottingham reported yesterday that "Mansfield Town chairman Andy Perry today confirmed the FA are taking up a case of an alleged use of the elbow on Jake Speight. The striker was pole-axed off the ball after a clash with Altrincham defender James Smith in last weekend's FA Cup tie. Speight suffered no ill-effects and was able to continue in the game".


    Ray Armstrong, who has for many years done a great job in overseeing the ballboys and ballgirls at Moss Lane, is seeking a an Assistant Coordinator to help him ensure that the team continues to operate as efficiently as ever. If you would like to help, please contact Ray in person on matchdays or via the Club offices on other days. You can ring the club for further details (0161 928-1045).


    NL Daily says that "Colwyn Bay manager Neil Young has mutually agreed to release Alex Hay from his registration at the club. A former Tranmere Rovers player where he made over fifty League appearances, he has also had spells at Rushden & Diamonds, Altrincham, Rhyl and Bangor City. An experienced player, Hay was previously top scorer for Cammell Lairds during their promotion-winning season. Young said: '“Unfortunately, Alex has not had as many star'".


    According to the Oxford Mail "Oxford United are leaving the opposition gasping this season – with their exceptional fitness levels. And it’s one reason why FA Cup opponents Yeovil could be in for a testing afternoon when they visit the Kassam Stadium on Saturday, November 7. Part-timers Thurrock were run ragged in the second half last Saturday when the U’s stepped on the gas – their superior fitness, as well as creativity, told.

    But it’s not just against the part-timers that this has happened. Even in United’s last league game, when they came from behind to earn a valuable 1-1 draw at promotion rivals York thanks to a late equaliser from Simon Clist, they finished the stronger team".

    The Oxford Mail also says that "Chris Wilder... says it’s hard to see anyone outside the current top six challenging for the title. Cambridge are one of the ones outside that top group who could come strong... The top six of Oxford, Stevenage, Kettering, Mansfield, Luton and York look to be the most formidable, partly because they are near-invincible in front of their own fans. Between them, those six have lost only three games at home, and on each occasion it was to a top-eight team... Interestingly, all four of Stevenage’s games against their promotion rivals have been away, so every one of those clubs still have to visit Broadhall Way Stadium.

    A warning to the U’s ahead of tomorrow’s game at the Kassam Stadium, is that visitors Altrincham have already managed a draw at Stevenage. Only once has a top-eight side lost to a bottom-eight team – when York were controversially beaten 1-0 at Salisbury who, in any case, are in a slightly false position after having ten points deducted".


    The FA announces that "England C manager Paul Fairclough has named a 16-man squad to travel to Poland to face what will undoubtedly be a strong Polish U23 side next month. The game will be played on Tuesday 17 November at the Inter Groclin Auto S.A.Stadium in Grodzisk Wielkopolski, which is around 35 miles from Poznan.

    Fairclough has retained nine players from the squad that made the trip to Hungary last month and has recalled six players from previous England C squads... FC Halifax Town’s 21-year-old goalkeeper Jonathan Hedge is the only newcomer and is the only non Football Conference player in the squad.

    Right: Shaun Densmore is seen in action at Mansfield by Gavin Rathbone. More photos from Gavin are on the GR Photography website.

    Squad in full:

  • Dale Roberts, Rushden & Diamonds
  • Jonathan Hedge, FC Halifax Town
  • Kyle McFadzean, Alfreton Town
  • Jake Howells, Luton Town
  • Scott Laird, Stevenage Borough
  • Shaun Densmore, Altrincham
  • Josh Simpson, Histon
  • Michael Bostwick, Stevenage Borough
  • Rossi Jarvis, Luton Town
  • Kyle Nix, Mansfield Town
  • Scott Garner, Mansfield Town
  • Lee Tomlin, Rushden & Diamonds
  • Nick Wright, Tamworth
  • Chris Holroyd, Cambridge United
  • Matt Green, Oxford United
  • Richard Brodie, York City
    29 October 2009


    The FA has confirmed that after viewing video evidence sent to them by Mansfield Town, Alty defender James Smith has been found guilty of "violent conduct" and suspended for three games. In effect the ban is for four games as the Cheshire Senior Cup tie in November is considered a first-team game for the purposes of the ban but missing that game does not count towards the three-match penalty. MANSFIELD AFTERMATH In today's Sale & Altrincham Messenger "Graham Heathcote sent a heartfelt apology to travelling Altrincham fans after seeing his side crash out of the FA Cup". The full text that John Edwards (Altrincham FC joint press oficer) sent to SAM is as follows...

    Graham Heathcote sent a heartfelt apology to travelling Altrincham fans after seeing his side crash out of the FA Cup in another contentious meeting with Mansfield. Soundly beaten 3-0, Alty's fortunes took a further turn for the worse when key midfielder Tom Kearney was shown a straight red card for a foul and in-form defender James Smith (right) was cited for an off-the-ball incident.

    An FA disciplinary panel will decide Smith's fate today (Thursday), and Alty are bracing themselves for a three-game ban to match Kearney's despite the dubious merits of trial by You Tube footage.Alty have not been sent a copy of the film that has been submitted, and are not allowed to attend the hearing, though they have submitted a written response in defence of Smith.

    Heathcote cannot comment until after the verdict, but he had plenty to say about the manner of his team's fourth qualifying round demise. 'I would like to apologise to every Alty fan who paid good money to be there,' he said. 'I told the players at half-time that it was the most feeble performance I could remember from an Altrincham side in the FA Cup for a long, long time, and I'm bitterly disappointed.

    We can all make mistakes, but what happened over the 90 minutes was so out of character with what we have done this season. We were really poor in areas where previously we have done really well. That can only lead to one outcome, and we were deservedly beaten. We are out of the Cup, and I am still seething now, four days later, at the way it happened. I also said at half-time: "Don't make the day any worse with any sendings off," yet what happens? Tom Kearney gets a straight red and James Smith faces an FA charge'.

    Heathcote had to run the gauntlet after an outspoken attack on him by Mansfield chairman Andrew Perry in the match programme. 'The whole day was stoked up by comments from their chairman in his programme notes, and I can't recall, in all my 39 years in football, ever going to a game and receiving so much abuse before a ball had even been kicked,' he said. 'To a degree, you expect people to give you stick, but they are usually male and adult. At Mansfield, there were women and even an 11-year old kid screaming abuse at me, and it's fair to say it wasn't the most pleasant of days.

    I believe in taking things on the chin, though, and won't be saying any more about it. It's just strange how our disciplinary record was excellent before these two Mansfield games. We were up near the top of the Fair Play League, yet, for whatever reason, we have ended up being castigated as the big bad wolf and they have come through, in their eyes at least, as holier than thou. Maybe the truth of the matter is that, while we showed naivety in allowing ourselves to be suckered into situations, they were smarter and cuter. More professional, they would probably say'.

    Chris Denham is again missing at Oxford on Saturday, while Nicky Clee faces a late test".


    Gavin Rathbone's photo shows Colin Little in action in our last game, against Mansfield Town. More photos are on the GR Photography website.

    The BBC reports that "Oxford winger Sam Deering says he is eager to put his injury problems behind him and force his way into the plans of manager Chris Wilder. Deering was United's star player in the first half of last season, but broke his leg in Wilder's first game and made his U's comeback on Saturday.

    The 18-year-old told BBC Oxford: 'I've just got to try and get back into this team now,'... The teenager, who had a loan spell at Newport recently, admits the task of earning a start at the Kassam Stadium is harder now after Wilder strengthened his squad in the summer"...

    And "Oxford United's Milk Cup winner Les Phillips has praised the U's winning mentality, and says, 'They probably have the best ability of all the teams in the Conference. I think they will stay the distance. The whole club is geared towards success'. Phillips is also joining supporters and club chairman Kelvin Thomas in a sponsored walk from Kidlington to the Kassam Stadium on Saturday in aid of the fans' "12th man fund'". This fund has enabled Oxford to sign Jamie Cook.


    Altrincham FC Joint press officer, John Edwards, writes: Graham Heathcote has moved to scotch growing rumours that Matty Crowell (right) could be making an early return to England and, more to the point, Moss Lane. The skilful midfielder made an immediate impression on Alty fans, after joining the club in July, and it came as a blow when he announced he was heading Down Under to play for Australian 'A League' side Central Coast Mariners barely a month later.

    Suggestions he may be having second thoughts and could be on his way back have been circulating in recent weeks but are evidently without foundation. 'I have heard the rumours, but there's nothing in it, as far as I know,' said Alty manager Heathcote. 'I have heard nothing from Matty or anyone who knows him to say he might be returning. If he was thinking along those lines, he would surely have been in touch'".


    This is Glos states that "Trevor Horsley has overseen the transformation of Forest Green Rovers from a village club with crippling debts to a professional outfit with one of the finest stadiums in non-league football.. he spoke to Peter Orchard... [He said], 'We have been struggling financially since we came to the New Lawn due to expenses incurred during the build and we need to get back on an even keel. Then we can move forward by looking at investment for the club, including possible foreign investment... If a consortium from at home or abroad wants to come in and run the club then so be it, provided it is for the benefit of the club. I'm speaking to an investor in Dubai at the moment...

    I'm very proud of what the rest of the directors and myself have built here, but I personally can't put any more money in. If I were to analyse it, the club has cost me in excess of £2 million and my family has suffered because of it. That can't go on any longer".

    The interviewer pointed out that "The club still has around £650,000 to pay off on the New Lawn mortgage" and Mr Horsley agreed "Like most football clubs we are very, very tight for cash... Financially we are struggling, and the directors have gone as far as they can in terms of putting money in. We have five or six directors here with investments in excess of £800,000 or £900,000... We still haven't recovered from problems with the stadium build... I've been involved in the club for nearly 20 years and we're now a £1.5 million business. We've got to make it even more profitable".

    Asked, "How far can [manager] Hockaday take the club?", Mr Horsley added "It's a two or three-year plan, and I know he is looking at the Football League further down the line. We all are".

    As for Jim Harvey's dismissal concerning his interest in a post elsewhere, he said, "I gave Jim three opportunities to give me the correct answer and he declined to do so. I knew the answer but I wanted him to tell me, then there would have been a different scenario. I don't have an issue with anyone wanting to leave the club if they are open an honest with me. If he wishes to pursue it through an employment tribunal then that's Jim's prerogative. All I will say on behalf of the club is we've got a very strong case... He has gone to Chester and I wish him all the best. I'm very friendly with their chairman Stephen Vaughan".

    According to Luton Today "Luton Town are 'beyond the shortlist' stage in their hunt for a new manager – but the appointment could still take some time. Hatters managing director Gary Sweet confirmed they had been refused permission by Torquay United to speak to their highly-rated manager Paul Buckle and admitted he could still be in with a shout. But Sweet said the Hatters would not be rushed into making an appointment... Sweet said: 'We are in a position where we feel very lucky to have some candidates that are making our choice very difficult'".

    NL Daily says that "Steve Fallon is hoping to bring Tottenham youngster Sam Cox to Histon on loan and play him in Wednesday night's friendly against a Peterborough United XI... Stutes' boss Fallonis planning to pit his first-choice team against Darren Ferguson's men as they attempt to get over Saturday's disappointing FA Cup defeat at Hinckley United. And 19-year-old midfielder Cox, who has recently been on loan at Cheltenham, could feature...

    Fallon said: 'We're hoping we can get Sam to come along and play for us for a month. He's more of a holding midfielder and we need a bit more steel and ability in the middle of the field'... Histon defender Lanre Oyebanjo is on trial at Peterborough this week and will play against his current employers as he attempts to impress Posh boss Darren Ferguson. And the Stutes' manager, who thinks the friendly will be excellent preparation for Saturday's trip to Mansfield" reports the Cambridge News.

    "Gateshead has unveiled the site and impressive plans for their eagerly awaited new stadium development in the centre of town. To build on its goal to take the Club back into the Football League Gateshead FC will build a new state-of-the-art stadium on a derelict site opposite Gateshead Civic Centre. The Prince Consort Road stadium will have a capacity of around 9,000, with a 2,000 seater main stand, and all four sides of the ground will be covered.

    The proposed stadium is planned to a high specification which will enhance the surrounding area and easily satisfy the criteria required for Football League status. On non-match days the stadium will be available for exhibitions and conferences, and there will be free parking for 600 cars at the adjacent Civic Centre.

    The standing areas on three sides of the stadium will be capable of conversion to seating, in which event the capacity would be reduced to 6,000. The unveiling of a new stadium follows the recent announcement that Gateshead will switch to full-time status from next season.

    Chairman Graham Wood, the driving force behind the exciting developments at his hometown club, is confident Gateshead FC can rekindle former glories... Said Wood, 'We have achieved an awful lot over the last few years... Having our own stadium will also enable us to further develop our income streams... The club are hoping to move into their new Prince Consort Road stadium for the start of the 2011/12 campaign" reports NL Daily.

    28 October 2009


    The referee for Altrincham's game at Oxford United this Saturday is Mr I J Cooper. He oversaw Alty's 1-0 away win at Crawley on 29 September, 2007, as well as our 1-0 defeat at Eastbourne Borough on 30 August 2008.


    The Chad reports that "Mansfield Town have asked the FA to have a look at a video clip that shows Altrincham defender James Smith appear to hit Stags' striker Jake Speight off the ball during Saturday's 3-0 home FA Cup victory. It continues the bitterness between the clubs which saw two Alty players sent off three weeks ago in the BSP clash and another near the end of Saturday's convincing Stags win which booked them a First Round tie at BSP strugglers Forest Green Rovers on Saturday week.

    The video clip was shown to senior referees' administrator Peter Elsworth, who has agreed it should be seen by the FA disciplinary department. Chairman Andy Perry said: 'We do not want to make a song and dance of it but we are supporting our player, which is the correct and professional thing to do. This sort of thing has no place in football and we don't want it happening again. I was shocked to see it on the video. We knew Jake wasn't the sort of player to feign injury. Having seen what happened I was suprised how he recovered and carried on again. It looked horrendous on the clip and it was pre-meditated challenge too'.

    Boss David Holdsworth added: 'I don't want to make too much of the incident though I will always stand up for my players and this football club. Things have been brought to light by a video clip and the chairman has now got involved. I have left it down to him. The incident being on a web site has seen it gain momentum. Now you can view incidents like that through technology. I did ask the fourth official if he had seen anything at the time but I didn't put him under severe pressure like happened to a fourth official in a game we were involved in recently. But he just said he could barely see anything beacuse of the sun.

    I do not condone it, having been on the receiving end of a few and dished out a few tackles too in the past. It is a physical game. The hardest part is that I do like James Smith and what he seemed to do was uncharacteristic but maybe part of the emotion of the day. I though he was one of their best players but the incident was a poor one on his behalf. But I have seen much worse and, to be fair, Jake dusted himself down and got on with it'".

    This is Nottingham adds that "A video posted on YouTube appears to show the Robins' central defender connect with the face of the Mansfield forward in an off-the-ball-incident. Chairman Andy Perry feels disciplinary action against Smith should be forthcoming for what he calls a 'disgraceful' incident. 'The video evidence has been sent to the FA and is being passed on to their disciplinary department', said Perry... 'It was a disgrace. It is not nice seeing someone do that to a fellow-professional. There are strong challenges in games, that is part of it, but that was malicious. If that was out on the streets then it would be seen as ABH. If Jake wants to pursue any action himself, then the club would back him in that. We are certainly expecting that Smith will get a ban. Things like that don't do football any credit at all'. Mansfield boss David Holdsworth said he saw the incident at the time and was incensed no action was taken. But he says he is moving on and if the matter is taking any further it will be from board level".


    The latest committee meeting minutes (for 10 October) from The Altrincham Supporters' Club are now on the TASC page.


    In the FA Cup Round One, NL Daily reports that "Paulton Rovers have not only pulled a plumb FA Cup First Round tie in Coca-Cola League One Norwich City, but have been chosen as one of ITV`s two live ties, meaning they will be £67,500 better off. Cash-strapped Northwich Victoria have also come up trumps, being paired with Charlton Athletic and also being picked as a live game on ITV on Sunday, November 8th".

    FA CUP

    FA Cup Fourth Round Qualifying replays are:


  • AFC Telford United 4 Blyth Spartans AFC 0
  • Redditch United 0 Kettering Town 1 aet
  • Chester City 0 Barrow 4
  • Fleetwood Town 3 Kidderminster Harriers 1
  • Lowestoft Town 4 Gloucester City 2
  • Salisbury City 4 Farnborough 2
  • AFC Wimbledon 3 Crawley Town 1
  • Eastbourne Borough 3 Tooting & Mitcham United 4 aet


    Non-League News 24 announces that it is launching a "glossy magazine devoted exclusively to Non-League and grassroots game, [which] hits the shelves of retailers and clubs nationwide on November 19. Support your team by picking up a copy from your club shop and [a sum] from the cover price of every sale goes to directly to your club. Packed full of features, interviews, pictures, analysis, statistics and comment, the 132 page glossy magazine is modelled on leading football titles with one major difference - its pure Non-League!

    Updated 24 hours a day, the state-of-the-art website is a rolling news service bringing supporters match reports, pictures, tables, fixtures, news, blogs, club guides and much, much more. New features led by text commentary, audio and video go live throughout October and November... The NonLeague24 brand, both online and in print, is targeted at the 3.5 million people the Football Association estimate are involved in Non-League and grassroots football every week".

    According to NL Daily "Striker Lee Novak has completed fifteen games for Huddersfield Town this season following his move from Gateshead which will invoke the second instalment of the 21-year-old's transfer fee. Gateshead received an initial £50,000 down payment from Huddersfield for Novak who scored twenty-eight goals in thirty-eight games in his one season at the International Stadium. The total fee was £150,000 - comfortably the biggest transfer in North East non-League football - with the two extra £50,000 instalments dependent on fifteen and thirty appearances for the Terriers".

    "York City winger Craig Nelthorpe has asked for a loan move away from Bootham Crescent" reports The York Press. "Nelthorpe, 22, has yet to make a senior start for the Minstermen having arrived in the summer following his release by rivals Oxford. His City career got off to a difficult start when he was sent off in the club’s final pre-season friendly at Halifax and, just hours later, was arrested along with team-mates Michael Gash, Michael Ingham and Michael Rankine following an incident outside Clifford Street’s Subway outlet. City chief Martin Foyle, though, had intended to field Nelthorpe against FA Cup fourth qualifying round opponents Bedworth United before he was surprised by the ex-Doncaster Rovers midfielder’s transfer request.

    Foyle said: 'I had planned to play Craig Nelthorpe in the Bedworth match, but he asked for a move before the game so that’s why he didn’t start. I gave the players who want to be at the club a go instead... A couple of Blue Square North clubs have shown an interest, so we will see what happens'. Nelthorpe’s midfield team-mate Simon Russell has extended his loan stay with Tamworth until the opening of the transfer window in January... Foyle also revealed that skipper Daniel Parslow would have faced Bedworth on Saturday but was left on the bench due to illness".

    27 October 2009


    Oxford United announce that "The possibility of a postal strike this week means a change to our usual ticketing arrangements ahead of Saturday's home game against Altrincham. Tickets ordered in advance are usually delivered by First Class post and are sent out provided they are ordered before Wednesday evening. However, proposed industrial action later this week means that for this week only we advise all supporters... [that all tickets ordered after Monday 26th] will be reserved and available for collection at the main club reception on matchday. To order tickets call 01865 337533 or click here.

    Details of TASC supporters' travel to Oxford are here.


    This is Nottingham reports that "David Holdsworth was delighted his Mansfield Town players let their football do the taking in the 3-0 FA Cup victory over Altrincham. Fireworks were expected at Field Mill after a fiery encounter when the sides had met at Moss Lane two weeks previously. But the Stags kept their heads to power to a comfortable victory and keep their recent momentum going...

    'It's not just about being in the first round that pleases me, it's about how we managed the game', said Holdsworth. 'Our discipline was outstanding. We worked hard, didn't go to ground in our challenges and showed the right kind of composure. People perhaps thought that we would try to intimidate people, but we don't need to do that as professionals. You are only as good as you are allowed to play and we played very well, which made it difficult for Altrincham. The players deserve the credit because they did very well against a team that, up until a couple of weeks ago, had gone eight games unbeaten and I have a lot of respect for. A clean sheet was imperative. I can't really remember Alan Marriott having any real shots to save...

    Holdsworth felt Mansfield were rewarded for the way they pressured the Altrincham players in possession... Holdsworth said: 'I felt we played with a high level of energy and certainly closed down and put them under extreme pressure'".


    The inaugural issue of the The Altrincham Supporters' Club newsletter is now on the website in the TASC section.


    Altrincham FC Youth's opponents in the NWYA Open Cup 2nd Round in November will be New Mills, who beat Fleetwood Town 4-2 on Sunday.


    Altrincham currently have no fixture on November 7th, which is FA Cup 1st Round day. Other local matches that day include:
  • Ashton U. v Stocksbridge PS
  • Curzon Ashton v Rossendale
  • Leigh Genesis v Trafford
  • Radcliffe v Warrington
  • Salford City v Clitheroe
  • Woodley Sports v Chorley
  • Flixton v Colne
  • New Mills v Ramsbottom
  • Stalybridge v Fleetwood (if Fleetwood are beaten in their FA4QR replay)
  • Vauxhall M. v Droylsden


    "Northwich Victoria’s bid to sign former AFC Telford United midfielder Jamie Vermiglio has been put on hold while the Blue Square North club fights another transfer ban" reports NL Daily. "The Football Conference has confirmed that the Blue Square North club are barred from making any signings, but stopped short of saying why. “'An embargo is in place'”, said Dennis Strudwick, the league’s general manager. 'But due to the nature of the business it is not prudent for me to comment further'. Vics claim not to know what rule, if any, they have broken. It leaves Vermiglio, 26, still playing for Chorley following his departure from Vics’ league rivals. The Bucks were sure his destination was Northwich. Indeed, the primary school teacher trained with Andy Preece’s men in the run-up to their league date with Ilkeston Town last weekend. It is understood that the ban is linked to Vics’ failure so far to agree a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) to exit administration...

    Owner Jim Rushe has submitted an improved offer to HM Revenue and Customs to pay off a larger proportion of the club’s six-figure tax bill. He expects a reply this week... Vics, will be buoyed by a bumper pay day from Saturday’s FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round victory over FC United of Manchester... However the victors can not claim the £12,500 prize money as reward for their third success in this year’s competition. That’s £24,500 on hold until creditors all agree. A bigger prize – a First Round proper date with Coca-Cola League One title-hopefuls Charlton Athletic – should attract a record crowd to the Victoria Stadium on Saturday week" reports the Sports Echo.

    "The Football Conference has issued the following statement on the current situation at Chester City FC...

    Following a notice issued to Chester City FC by the Football Conference on Monday, 19th October 2009 relating to the Club’s failure to comply with a compromise agreement containing the Club’s conditions of membership, and a subsequent statement referring to the non-payment of football creditors, a further statement is issued as follows:-

    Discussions between the Football Conference, the Football League, the Professional Footballers Association and Chester City FC have taken place during the past seven days, and are on-going.

    In the light of the wish of all parties to seek a satisfactory resolution the Football Conference has agreed to defer any decision on the Club’s future membership until Monday, 16th November 2009, enabling the Football League to discuss certain issues which have been referred to its Board of Directors.

    All parties are working together in an attempt to preserve the future of Chester City FC. The club has, however, been duly informed that unless it complies in full with the conditions of membership it agreed with the Football Conference, the Competition will move to consider the club’s expulsion, in accordance with the said agreement with the Football Conference."

    Chester City play Altrincham at the Deva Stadium on Saturday November 21st.

    26 October 2009


    Altrincham FC Youth progressed to the second round of the NWYA Open Cup on Sunday with a narrow win over AFC Liverpool. The scores were level at 1-1 after extra time before Altrincham won a penalty shoot-out. George Heslop's match report is in the Youth section.

    FA CUP

    FAC4QR, Sunday 25th October:
  • Lincoln United 1 Cambridge United 3

    The draw for the FA Cup Round One was made on Sunday. Those ties involving non-League clubs are:

  • Grimsby v Bath City
  • Gateshead v Brentford
  • Blyth S. or AFC Telford v Lincoln C.
  • Stockport C. v Tooting & Mitcham or Eastbourne
  • Burton A. v Oxford City
  • Barrow or Chester C. v Eastleigh
  • Cambridge Utd v Ilkeston
  • York C. v Crewe
  • Hereford U. v Sutton U.
  • Nuneaton Town v Exeter
  • Forest Green R. v Mansfield T.
  • Oxford Utd v Yeovil
  • Paulton Rovers v Norwich
  • Swindon v Woking
  • Port Vale v Stevenage
  • Bromley v Colchester
  • Accrington v Farnborough or Salisbury
  • Millwall v Crawley or AFC Wimbledon
  • Stourbridge v Walsall
  • Shrewsbury v Staines
  • Wealdstone v Rotherham
  • Rushden & D v Hinckley Utd
  • Northwich V/ v Charlton A.
  • Wrexham v Gloucester or Lowestoft
  • Hartlepool v Kettering or Redditch
  • Northampton v Kidderminster or Fleetwood
    25 October 2009


    TASC is running supporters' transport to Oxford United this Saturday (31st). This could be our last visit to the Kassam Stadium if Oxford maintain their lead in the BSP, so don't miss the game! Details of fares and times are here. As usual, book in advance on 928-1045 during normal office hours. Remember to book your tickets in advance via United's website, as it is cheaper that way.

    News of our next opponents comes from the BBC which says that "Oxford United clinched their place in the FA Cup first round proper with a deserved win over Thurrock. After a frustrating first half, centre-back Mark Creighton scored the opener at the Kassam Stadium with a thumping left-footed volley from 16 yards out. Thurrock's Lee Flynn then deflected Simon Clist's effort past his own keeper to seal the win. United trio Adam Murray, Jamie Cook and Sam Deering all hit the post. The game was Deering's first for Oxford since he broke his leg on Boxing Day".


    This site's match report on the Mansfield game is here. Right, Greg Young and Robbie Williams await an Alty corner as Aaron Burns stands in the goalmouth.

    The opposition view comes from Mansfield Town, written "after beating Altrincham convincingly 3-0... In a game where the home side rarely looked troubled, animosity and bad tempers flared towards the end earning the visitors a third sending off against the Stags following the two they received in our visit to Moss Lane a fortnight ago. The Stags and Altrincham may well be separated by seven places and eight points in the league but, as we know, all teams must start equal in the World's most famous knock out competition...

    Before proceedings could get underway there was some excitement as Field Mill's new scoreboard was officially launched 10 minutes prior to kickoff. The Club also paid tribute to the late John Jarman, who passed away recently aged 78, with a minute's silence...

    Mansfield's growing confidence was made to count in the nineteenth minute as they finally took the lead in great fashion. Alty's defence was caught napping when a good move down the left led to a Perry cross toward the back post. Duffy was able to rise unchallenged six yards out to nod the ball past a helpless Stuart Coburn for his 10th goal of the season. As the ball nestled in the bottom corner, the striker ran half the length of the pitch to celebrate in front of the visiting dug-out in response to the unfair treatment metered [i.e. meted] out by Robinns' manager Graham Heathcote to the striker when we faced them in the league at Moss Lane a fortnight ago...

    In the 27th minute the Stags doubled their lead following another catastrophic defensive error involving the Alty back four. As Coburn failed to deal with an under-hit back pass, Kyle Perry snuck in to whisk the ball away from his grasp. Although Perry's shot was blocked by the keeper, the deflection fell to Duffy who calmly rolled the ball into an empty net...

    Three minutes injury time were played out before the Stags trooped off the field to much applause in stark comparison to visiting manager Graham Heathcote who received a frosty reception from home fans around the tunnel as he also left the field...

    There was no room for complacency however as Altrincham were quickest out the traps following the half time break with Colin Little looking lively down the left hand side. Only two minutes after the restart, the Alty forward ran with impunity through the Stags' defence and was allowed to get a cross in. The ball fell to a rapidly advancing Shaun Densmore whose first touch was poor and the ball rolled out harmlessly for a goal kick...

    The game was put completely beyond Altrincham's reach on 60 minutes when Perry made it three. Williams found Perry in acres of space on the edge of the 18 yard box where the striker, who looked curiously like a pirate with his head covered by a bandage as a result the head collision he was involved in during the first half, hit the ball first time hard and low past a helpless Coburn to put the Stags in a commanding 3-0 lead...

    The game took an ugly turn in the 85th minute when Tom Kearney made a shockingly mistimed challenge on captain Gary Mills. His wild lunge earned him a straight red amidst boos from the home crowd. Temperatures rose again minutes later when Colin Little [i.e. Aaron Burns] was booked for a late challenge on Gary Silk.

    Five minutes injury time were signalled by the fourth official due to the many stoppages caused through ill-discipline and rash tackles from mainly the away side".

    Another report on Alty's FA Cup exit comes from This is Nottingham which says that the Stags "eased through...with a comfortable victory over Altrincham... Altrincham were disappointing and failed to show the same kind of fight they had when Mansfield won 2-1 at Moss Lane two weeks ago... The Stags were two goals to the good just before the half hour mark after a glaring error by keeper Stuart Coburn. He dallied on the ball after collecting a back pass and was quickly closed down by Perry. Although he did manage to clear the ball, it went only as far as Duffy, who dribbled around the keeper to tap into an empty net". With the score 3-0 Alty's "Burns was ignored by the referee when he appealed for a penalty as Paul Heckingbottom leant on him... Altrincham were reduced to ten men with three minutes to go when Tom Kearney was shown a straight red card for a late tackle that pole-axed Mills".

    From The Chad we read that "Duffy's two-goal salvo was his perfect answer to Altrincham on today's 3-0 FA Cup win after the stick he took in the 'Battle of Moss Lane' two weeks back. Duffy, who looked like he may miss the game with injury all week, hadn't forgotten the verbal abuse he took from Alty boss Graham Heathcote in the BSP win earlier this month and Stags' chairman Andy Perry described Heathcote as 'unprofessional' in the programme...

    After scoring twice... Duffy said: ' I took a bit of stick at Altrincham but it wasn't about that today. The lads knew that if we played the football we can today then there would only be one outcome. For the quick free kick, the ball was in my hands and I just put it down and found 'Pezzer' and I managed to get on the end of his cross. Then the ball was played back to their keeper and I closed him down with 'Pezzer' closing him down on the blind side and I think we panicked him and the ball dropped to me, thank God.... That was the first physical activity I had done all week... It is irrelevant who it's against but it was a nice feeling because of the stick that, not just me, but the rest of the players took away from home. That's the answer and now we will move on into the next round'...

    Boss David Holdsworth added: 'It's not just about getting through, it's about how you deal with games. Our discipline was outstanding, we worked very hard and we didn't go to ground in challenges. We showed the right type of competitiveness. Altrincham were only as good as they were allowed to be so all credit to my players. They deserve all the credit for doing so well against an Altrincham side who hadn't lost for eight games a couple of weeks ago... I thought we were very dominant today and we played with a high energy level. We closed Altrincham down and put them under extreme pressure. We got in their faces today from the first minute to the end and dominated them'".


    Ryan Shotton was sent off for professional foul whilst playing on loan from Stoke City for Barnsley.

    As the Football Conference reports, "Stalybridge Celtic head the Blue Square North on goal difference from Corby Town... [Against Gainsborough] Warren Peyton equalised right on the stroke of half time and then Joe O`Neill bagged a second half brace on 56 and 86 minutes".


    News Shopper reports that "Liam Daish admitted Ebbsfleet are at rock bottom after today’s humiliating 3-0 FA Cup defeat at Bromley... The manager was furious with his side afterwards and was the first to concede the Fleet have hit a new low. Daish said: 'I’m very disappointed and we’ve hit the bottom at the moment. In reality we are effectively bottom of the league because of Chester’s points deduction. I’m a realist and I will not fudge things. We are bottom of the league, we’ve gone out of the FA Cup to a side lower down the pyramid and we’ve hit bottom... I can’t turn around and say to you it is a bad day at the office because we’ve had too many of them... It is just not good enough for professional players... While we were never going to win the FA Cup, we could have done with some money... but our main objective this year is to stay in this league'”.
    24 October 2009


    Above: Tom Kearney sees red at Field Mill.

    Altrincham crashed out of the FA Cup after a disappointing display at a windy Field Mill.

    Right - Alty's squad was again stretched to the limit. Right we see three players in the squad today who had yet to start a game for the Robins. The three are in the middle row - John Bennett, Antonio Bryan and Tejal-Ross Thaker. In front are Nicky Clee and Michael Welch, whilst Aaron Burns is at the back.

    Match report here.

    After the match Mansfield Town manager David Holdsworth told BBC Radio Nottingham: "You earn your own luck. Duffy earned [his second] because he closed down. He's not trained all week because he's had two injuries. It was a gamble that paid off for me today. I thought we were very dominant and another contribution today was our discipline, it was outstanding. We worked very hard, we didn't go to ground in challenges and I felt that we showed the right sort of composure".

  • Alty Player Stats.

    The full FA Cup results in the 4th Qualifying Round were:

    Saturday 24th

  • Hinckley United 2 Histon 1
  • Nuneaton Town 1 Kendal Town 0
  • FC Halifax Town 0 Wrexham 1
  • Gateshead 3 Southport 0
  • Workington 0 Rushden & Diamonds 3
  • Mansfield Town 3 ALTRINCHAM 0
  • Buxton 0 Stourbridge 4
  • Blyth Spartans 0 AFC Telford United 0
  • Ilkeston Town 2 Tamworth 0
  • Kettering Town 1 Redditch United 1
  • Northwich Victoria 3 FC United of Manchester 0
  • Barrow 1 Chester City 1
  • Kidderminster Harriers 0 Fleetwood Town 0
  • York City 2 Bedworth United 0
  • Hendon 0 Woking 5
  • Gloucester City 1 Lowestoft Town 1
  • Farnborough 0 Salisbury City 0
  • Mangotsfield United 1 Forest Green Rovers 2
  • Crawley Town 1 AFC Wimbledon 1
  • Oxford City 2 Bury Town 1
  • Bromley 3 Ebbsfleet United 0
  • Chelmsford City 1 Stevenage Borough 2
  • Aylesbury 2 Wealdstone 4
  • Dover Athletic 3 Eastleigh 5
  • Hayes & Yeading United 0 Staines Town 1
  • Luton Town 3 Grays Athletic 0
  • Oxford United 2 Thurrock 0
  • Bath City 3 AFC Totton 2
  • Paulton Rovers 3 Chippenham Town 0
  • Tooting & Mitcham United 3 Eastbourne Borough 3
  • Hampton & Richmond Borough 1 Sutton United 3


    In Friday's Manchester Evening News, Graham Heathcote is quoted as saying "I'll be telling the lads to try and maintain the performance levels from those matches [against Mansfield and Luton] as, if they do, I'd be surprised if we don't get a result. The chance of meeting a League club in the next round is a massive incentive for every non-League club and so this is one game where a manager should have no need to motivate his players". The MEN confirms that Dale Johnson is out, Chris Denham "is an injury doubt and defender Andrew Pearson is cup-tied... while Senior remains suspended".

    From This is Nottingham we read that "Mansfield Town are dreaming of an FA Cup tie with big guns Manchester United, Liverpool or Chelsea, according to boss David Holdsworth. The Stags' boss takes charge of his first cup game since taking over at Field Mill when Altrincham visit Field Mill tomorrow...

    'I want to win the Cup, but realistically, getting to the Third Round is an achievement we can make', said Holdsworth. 'I have got every faith in the players, who have got a lot of motivation... If we can maintain our fine form which I belive we can, then we can have a good run'... The Stags go into the fourth round qualifying tie in excellent shape, having won their last three games, including a 2-1 win over Altrincham at Moss Lane a fortnight ago.

    Holdsworth knows that fiery meeting – when Alty had two players sent off – will add spice to this tie but insists his team must keep their heads. He said: 'We have to manage the occasion but play the game. I'm not interested in what happened a couple of weeks ago (at Altrincham). We must show discipline. I respect their players and their manager and I don't want to see any needless reaction from our players'".

    However, a slightly different approach is reported on the Mansfield Town website as "Chairman Andrew Perry has turned up the heat in his programme notes prior to tomorrow's much-anticipated FA Cup tie at home to Altrincham by launching an attack on the visitors' conduct when we last met.

    The Robins were reduced to nine men at Moss Lane two weeks ago when we met in the Blue Square Premier. It was revealed afterwards that Alty's manager Graham Heathcote had exchanged words with our leading scorer Rob Duffy during the contest. In his programme notes tomorrow, Mr Perry writes, in response to a comment of an Altrincham fan following a video on earlier this week: 'I feel that some of the Altrincham fans need to look at their own manager before commenting on our great football club. His unprofessional behaviour displayed at Moss Lane was what I expected. He has no right to constantly verbally abuse our players throughout the game'.

    To read the whole article be sure to buy tomorrow's match programme, costing just £2 at this week's reduced version of 32 pages".

    Meanwhile "We are hold are holding a minute's silence tomorrow afternoon in respect for the life of former assistant manager John Jarman. It will take place prior to our kick off in our FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round at home to Altrincham... He was 78".

    David Holdsworth has also spoken to the FA. He said "'It's a special trophy and always a big day for the fans. I was lucky enough to lead out Sheffield United at Old Trafford as captain against Newcastle in 1998 after scoring the winner in the quarter final, so I know from personal experience that there is no better competition in the world and it's so unpredictable'...

    Despite dropping out of the Football League in 2008 after a 77-year stay, the Stags have still enjoyed some fantastic Cup runs in recent years, most notably in reaching the Fourth Round in 2007-08 where they eventually lost to Middlesbrough. 'There is a lot of FA Cup tradition here and we're looking to carry that on against Altrincham', said Holdsworth. 'The club is going in the right direction and we're a professional and disciplined outfit at the moment'".

    The referee at Mansfield for the FA Cup tie with Altrincham is Mr J Collin. Amongst the previous Alty games he has officated is last season's Altrincham 2 FGR 5. Other Robins' games that he has reffed include:

  • 9 Oct 2007, Altrincham 0 Burton Albion 0
  • 1 Dec 2007, Altrincham 1 Histon 2
  • 8 Mar 2008, Altrincham 1 FGR 0

    FA CUP 4QR

  • Through the Years.


    On the Alty <"" target="_blank">Fans' Forum Altrincham FC Security Officer, Darren Gregory, is auctioning Alty mascot, Rocky Robin's old replica shirt! "It will even fit some of Alty biggest fans" jokes Darren. "The auction starts now and finishes on Sunday, 25th october at 6pm... You even get the option of having it washed before ownership. I will start the bidding at £10".


    The Northwich Guardian concludes that "Northwich Victoria have indicated that Aaron Burns's future may be away from the Victoria Stadium after giving him permission to play in the FA Cup for Altrincham. The former FC United of Manchester front runner has extended his loan stay with the Blue Square Premier outfit.

    'I’m grateful to Northwich for letting Aaron stay', Robins’ manager Graham Heathcote told the Moss Lane club’s official website. 'We've had a horrendous run of injuries and can't seem to get over it'. Burns, 21, has made four appearances – three from the start – for Alty since switching there last month, scoring one goal. Before that he had failed to find the net in nine games for Vics, three of which he started".


    Former Everton defender "Terry Darracott has quit as assistant-manager of Wrexham due to his long-standing hip problem" reports the Football Conference. "The 59-year-old has been Dean Saunders's right-hand-man since the former Wales international striker took over at the Racecourse Ground last October. 'Because of a hip problem I've got I just felt I couldn't do the job', Darracott told his club`s official website. Former Wrexham boss Brian Carey will step up from his role as first-team coach to become Saunders's number two".

    Ebbsfleet United "have signed former Gillingham midfielder Clint Easton. The 32-year-old Essex-born player began his career in the mid-nineties at Watford where he played more than 80 times and moved to Norwich City in 2001 for £200,000. He enjoyed three seasons at Carrow Road... before signing for Wycombe Wanderers in 2004. He moved to Gillingham in 2006 and then spent two years at Hereford United before his release in April this year. The left-sided player can also play at full back... The Fleet have also registered ex-Tottenham Hotspur defender Chris Riley, a right back who appeared in the England Under 16 side before going on to feature in a number of games for Spurs' reserve side".

    According to the Liverpool Daily Post "Chester City chairman Ian Anderson is confident that the club will have cleared all their outstanding financial issues by next Monday’s deadline. The Football Conference issued a statement on their website on Wednesday, stating that City may be expelled from the League if a number of football related debts weren’t cleared by 5pm on Monday. Anderson said last night: 'We have had further discussions with the Conference. Following those talks we are now confident that the outstanding issues will be cleared satisfactorily by Monday. The discussions centred around how the monies that we are owed from the Football League and the Conference will be distributed and discharged to our creditors'...

    Monies are owed to the PFA and Conference clubs Wrexham and Vauxhall Motors. Anderson also revealed that City’s directors would be meeting representatives of the PFA next week. Meanwhile, City’s new supporters’ group Fans United officially launched themselves last night... Chester will renew the loan spell of Rochdale midfielder Clark Keltie, today. The month’s extension means he will be eligible for tomorrow’s trip to Barrow".

    23 October 2009


    Altrincham FC welcome two signings ahead of tomorrow's clash with Mansfield. They are:

  • John Bennett (d.o.b. 26/9/91): John is a hard working midfielder in the Altrincham FC Youth team. He is seen (right) playing for Alty Youth as no.6 in a recent match. John, who is in his second season with George Heslop's team, will have first-team squad number 20.
  • Antonio Bryan (d.o.b. 4.10.89): Antonio is a former Manchester United striker/ wide player. Known as "Anton", he joined United at the age of 12 and reached United's Reserve side. He was signed professional forms in summer 2008 but was released last summer. Number 27 will be Antonio's squad number at Moss Lane. Antonio, a very pacy player, is potentially eligible to represent three countries - England, Jamaica and the Republic of Ireland.


    Blue Square Football has an audio interview with Graham Heathcote before Saturday's match. In addition to Dale Johnson, out for the rest of the season, and the suspended Chris Senior, Alty cannot include Andrew Pearson as he is cup-tied.

    Earlier this week Mansfield declared their leading scorer was 90% likely to miss Saturday's game. But on Thursday, The Stags reported that "Top scorer Rob Duffy looks like he is winning the fitness battle and is almost certain to start against Altrincham on Saturday. This will come as a relief to boss David Holdsworth who had feared that an ankle and calf injury, sustained by the striker at Eastbourne last weekend, would keep the nine goal man sidelined...

    The gaffer said: 'Duffy is fit and he wants to play and I hope on Saturday, if I pick him, he will be successful... We want him to play because he is certainly an integral part of the team'. Craig Dobson will be pushing for his first home start after impressing Holdsworth when he came off the bench to face Eastbourne a week ago. 'Their (Altrincham's) full backs are very good so our wingers will be key on Saturday. I want Dobson to get to their full backs'. We cannot boast a full bill of health though with Louis Briscoe and Kyle Nix all being ruled out for Saturday's game through injury".

    Whoever wins on Saturday will win £12,500. Thereafter the prizes are reduced from last year's figures, as follows:

  • First Round Winner : £18,000 (was £20,000 last season)
  • Second Round Winner : £27,000 (was £30,000)
  • Third Round Winner : £67,500 (was £75,000)


    The PFA has a profile of former Alty defender Mark McGregor which, though dated 5th october, still claims he is Alty's centre-back! The article concerns Mark's training to become a driving instructor.

    30 YEARS AGO

    Barry Pikesley is currently producing a series of fascinating articles in the Robins' Review which covers Alty's title winning season of 1979-80, when they were robbed of a Football League place by the iniquitous re-election system manipulated by the old Division Four clubs. Parts One and Two of the story are now here. The full series will gradually be added and will be permanently available in the historic section of the website.


    The BBC says that "Chester City owner Stephen Vaughan insists that the financially-threatened club will clear their debts once they have been paid money owed to them. City have been warned that they may be expelled from the Football Conference if they do not repay debts to Wrexham and Vauxhall Motors by Monday. But Vaughan points out that City are still denied money due to them from the Football League and the Conference.

    'I want to know when our debtors are going to pay us', he said. 'The Football League owe us £99,965 from our parachute payments, as part of the parachute payment of £225,000. The Conference owe us £35,000, £5,000 being part of the central funding and £30,000 being from the Premier League gift. The Football Conference are saying that we owe those two clubs, which we do', Vaughan told BBC Radio Merseyside. 'The Football Conference owe us £35,000. I want to know when I'm being paid that before I pay our footballing creditors. We will pay our footballing creditors. But we want to know when we are being paid by

    The Liverpool Daily Post adds that "Chester City could be on the verge of being thrown out of the Blue Square Premier League, after the league issued an ultimatum... City, who have lurched from crisis to crisis over the past 18 months, are alleged to have failed to inform the Conference of all their football creditors and meet agreed payment dates of those debts... A source from the Conference said: 'We are totally frustrated by the attitude and lack of mature responses from Chester, and hopefully this statement will bring matters to a head'.

    Chester owner Stephen Vaughan said: 'We are owed £134,000 by the Football League and Conference and this money will be utilised to pay our footballing creditors'. When asked about financial guarantees that had been put in place, should football creditors not be paid, by October 14, Vaughan retorted: 'Let them call them in'”.

    "Histon have revealed that promising defender Lanre Oyebanjo has joined Championship outfit Peterborough United on trial" states Blue Square Football "The Republic of Ireland under-19 international joined the Stutes from Brentford in July 2008... The 19-year-old links up with the Posh as part of a deal which has seen Histon extend the loan spell of midfielder Billy Crook for another month".

    Meanwhile, Cambridge News says that "Pierre Joseph-Dubois has been sent packing by Histon after failing to impress manager Steve Fallon. The Stutes' boss signed the striker on non-contract terms in September, but he only made it on to the bench three times, playing just 28 minutes. And Fallon has told forward Bradley Hudson-Odoi to get himself fit quickly or face the prospect of following Joseph-Dubois out of the Glass World Stadium exit door... The manager has warned him time is running out if he wants to earn an extended stay.

    Fallon said: "We told Pierre we didn't have the money to keep him and told him to try to find himself another club... Bradley's been fit and then not fit, and he's got a month or two to prove that he's worth keeping on'... Members of Histon's under-18 squad will be hoping they could soon be part of Fallon's first-team plans after catching his eye in their 6-1 victory over Needham Market in the FA Youth Cup on Tuesday".

    Kent Online says that "Ebbsfleet and MyFootballClub hierachy have discussed the possibility of selling the club amid new financial projections, which look 'very depressing', according to the club accountant. New figures from Graeme Swift – which he stresses are 'worst case scenario' – show the Fleet face a deficit of more than £130,000 this season and is set to slip into the red by the end of the year.

    Mr Swift says he doesn’t believe the current membership structure is working and added: 'We do not have enough funds to see the season out... It is obvious to me that the membership is not working for whatever reason'... Fleet vice-chairman Roly Edwards said: 'We need donations, new members, we definitely need to increase annual subscriptions. A proposal will be released in a week or two. The potential for raising the money is definitely there. We were pledged £290,000 by members when we were asking about buying the ground. I can’t deny that the possibility of selling the club has been discussed... We need to either raise the money or sell it. It is that simple... I think we will raise the money. I am positive the future lies with MyFootballClub'".

    Kent Online adds that "Will Brooks came up with the idea of MyFootballClub and managed to attract around 30,000 members when they bought a majority share in Ebbsfleet in February 2008. But Mr Brooks is now willing to let the Society buy the MyFootballClub website in a deal which would cost them £15,000, and would include the members having full control of the full fee received from each members and any additional income that the website generates from sponsorship and advertising. As a result, the Society Board have told members that they need to decide by the start of December whether to buy the website and what the membership fee should be. If members do no wish to own the website, Mr Brooks will continue in his role as operator and continue to collect the operator fees... There was a massive reduction in subscriptions in February 2009 when annual £35 membership fees were due to be renewed. MyFootballClub currently has 9,574 members"

    According to the Northants Evening Telegraph "Rushden & Diamonds have signed striker Danny Mills on loan from Peterborough United, initially for one month. The 18-year-old started his career with Crawley Town... making two appearances for the Red Devils' first team. The highly-rated youngster was bought by Peterborough for an undisclosed fee this summer with The Posh fighting off competition from Glasgow Rangers and Crystal Palace for his signature. Mills has since been on loan at Torquay United where he made two substitute appearances against Macclesfield and Morecambe. Diamonds manager Justin Edinburgh said: 'He's a big lad – 6 foot 4, a different dimension to what we've got'".

    22 October 2009


    The Professional Footballers' Association website, Give Me Football features Alty's Chris Senior (left) in its "Careers after football" section. In the article it says that "Chris Senior believes he has got the best of both worlds now after landing a job on the backroom staff at Sheffield United - and also playing part time, semi-professional with Altrincham. With the help of the PFA, Chris has been on training in the art of sports massage, and tells Givemefootball’s Lawrie Madden how it came about and how he has put it to good use".

    Chris says "I am 27 now but I started thinking about education and thinking that it was about time to get some sort of career under my belt and when I went part time that appeared to be a good time. I joined Altrincham and I got talking to a colleague of mine Rod Thornley who is the brother of Ben... Rod recommended I get a qualification so I enrolled for a sports massage diploma. I went to Cardiff and also Crawley to do the course which took nine months to complete. It was very hands on with written exams and practical tasks...

    Without the PFA it would have been near enough impossible to go on the course... As I was getting qualified I was offered a job at Sheffield United. Two of us work together and we work it so that he does match days on a Saturday while I play football and he gets time off during the week... I try to encourage the lads to look into the education options available".


    The updated Matchday Sponsors list is now on the website. If you would like to sponsor a game or a match ball, or a player's shirt, please contact the club on 928-1045.

    FA CUP

    The draw for the First Round Proper of the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON is going to be made live on Sunday 25 on ITV 1 between 1 and 1.30pm. The draw will be made by Lancashire & England cricketer James Anderson and Leicester City's Chris Powell who are '2018 Ambassadors'. The draw is not regionalised, so long trips could result for some clubs.

    Hopefully Altrincham will be involved in the draw - if so, their number will be 54. Amongst other numbers to look for are "big" league clubs such as 12 Charlton Athletic, 25 Leeds United, 29 Millwall, 33 Norwich City, 40 Southampton and local teams like 1 Accrington Stanley, 10 Bury, 16 Crewe Alexandra, 28 Macclesfield Town, 35 Oldham Athletic, 37 Rochdale, 42 Stockport County.


    Whilst existing BSP clubs aspire to Football League status, a salutary tale comes from one of last season's promoted sides as This is South Devon tells us that "New chairman Simon Baker is predicting that Torquay United will report 'a thumping loss' on last season, and he reveals that it was the Gulls' lottery-winning director Paul Bristow who 'bankrolled' the club's drive to promotion at Wembley.

    United fan Bristow has never enjoyed or sought the limelight, either when he and his wife Thea won £15 million on the lottery in 2004 or when he became a member of the consortium which bought the club from the ruins of relegation in 2007. But it's now clear that he played a key role in backing manager Paul Buckle's promotion push over the second half of last season.

    'The club will report a thumping loss on the year to June 30', said Baker. 'We invested heavily in the playing budget at a time when attendances were down. Even the Play-Offs and going to Wembley produced nothing like enough to make up the extra money which had been pumped in. The credit has to be given to Paul Bristow for helping to cover those losses... We invested to get out of the Conference, and it was Paul who largely bankrolled that extra investment. It was very good of him to come up with a loan, and at some stage it will be paid back'.

    With nearly £400,000 coming from the Football League pool this year, Baker added: 'So far, the current season is not too bad financially'... Baker's predecessor Alex Rowe had previously reported that it was extra cash from the board which supported United's promotion bid... The Bristows — he is a long-serving Torquay scout leader — are popular figures at Plainmoor, but they prefer to keep a low profile around the club... After a stunning £470,000 loss on the 'Chris Roberts Relegation' season in 2006-2007, the new board managed to pay off a series of inherited debts and turn it around in their first season... [to]make a small but refreshing £10,400 profit".

    The Football Conference says that "Forest Green Rovers have learned that they are part of England`s 2018 World Cup bid, allied to the Bristol bid to be one of the host cities... Each of the existing sixteen applicant cities are required within their bids to put together a number of 'cluster groups'... Five such clusters are being sdubmitted by the Bristol Bid team and Forest Green Rovers are included as a potential venue for the public training and media centre...

    Colin Peake the spokesman for Forest Green Rovers, said: 'We met on Tuesday 20th to finalise what the club could offer one of the competing national teams in relation to staging public training sessions and the attendant media involvement... Even if at the end of the day we do not finish up hosting one of the finalists in 2018, it will not be for want of trying'".

    "The following press statement has been issued by the Football Conference regarding Chester City.

    In accordance with Membership Rule 11 - for the non-payment of football creditors - Chester City FC have been placed under an immediate player embargo, in as much that:

    1. Chester City FC has not complied with the terms of the compromise agreement set by the Football Conference to allow the club to participate in the competition at the commencement of the current season; and further to that fact, the club has been given 7 days, operative up to 5.30pm, 26th October 2009, in which to meet the said payment terms of that agreement, otherwise they face the threat of expulsion from the Football Conference.

    2. Chester City FC has failed to pay monies owing to Wrexham FC for away ticket sales relating to their fixture played on 27th September 2009 and further to that fact, the club has failed to meet a 7-day payment deadline imposed by the Football Conference.

    3. Chester City has failed to pay Vauxhall Motors FC monies owed in relation to the loan of Paul Taylor, which should have been met no later than 14th October 2009.

    The Football Conference will not be making any further statement on this matter at this time".

    On the field, comes news from the Liverpol Daily Post of Chester's ex-Alty loan player. "The facial injury sustained by Chester City midfielder Ben Wilkinson isn’t as bad as first thought and the player returned to training with the rest of the squad yesterday. It had been feared that the former York City player may have broken his nose following an accidental kick in the face during the weekend win at Gateshead. However, City manager Jim Harvey revealed last night that the injury wasn’t serious. Ben has just suffered a bad graze on the side of his face and on the bridge of his nose, thankfully nothing is broken', he said...

    Meanwhile, a delegation from the Football Association visited the Deva Stadium yesterday to ensure that the preparations for next month’s England under-16 Victory Shield international were progressing satisfactorily. England’s youngsters will be facing Northern Ireland and the match will be televised live on Sky Sports".

    According to NL Daily "Ebbsfleet United striker James Lindie has left the club after his contract was cancelled by mutual consent. The 19-year-old former Southend United centre forward has been limited to just six appearances for the Fleet this season after a succession of ankle and back injuries... Lindie was on the scoresheet in the club's first game of the season against Altrincham, but has failed to score in the other five games... Fleet manager Liam Daish has made no secret of the fact he wants to ship some players out of his squad so as he can bring new players in".

    It sounds as if there was an interesting behind the scenes conversation at Cambridge as the BBC reports that "Cambridge United director Jez George has moved to clarify comments made by manager Martin Ling following Saturday's defeat by Hayes and Yeading. Ling appeared to play down the club's chances of winning promotion this year. George told BBC Radio Cambridgeshire: 'We all want the club to move forward as quickly as possible, but we need to ensure our success is sustainable. We still believe we can reach the play-offs this season and we still believe we can be promoted."

    George said, "'It doesn't mean we're going to wait three years before trying to get promoted, but we have to be realistic and build something that will last'. It is an uncertain period for the U's with the club still yet to appoint a new chairman following the departure of George Rolls".

    The Stroud News & Journal quotes FGR manager David Hockaday as saying... "Really bad news to start the week, with Jeffrey Imudia told he will be out for a year with a serious knee injury. We all wish him well for his upcoming operation and a speedy recovery. Lee Ayres will see a specialist this coming week. Mike Fowler, Andy Taylor, Tom Pass, Curtis McDonald, Tomi Ameobi and Conal Platt are all injured, Paul Lloyd is ill and Steve Davies is recovering from a virus so it is all hands on deck!

    Another loanee arrived from MK Dons, Dan Powell. Training went well through the week as we prepared for the trip to Histon. We prepared for their direct game and focused on winning the match... We dominated with shots on target, corners, territory and possession, but were punished for sloppy defending and individual errors and somehow conspired to lose the game 5-2...again! We cannot and will not allow this to continue happening... When we cut out these mistakes I have absolutely no doubt that we will be a very competitive outfit in this league... With such a young squad, concentration will be of paramount importance if we are to win our FA Cup tie at Mangotsfield on Saturday. Keep believing because we will get back to winning ways and go on another unbeaten run".

    21 October 2009


    Altrincham FC joint Press officer, John Edwards, writes...

    "Altrincham hope to benefit from a neighbourly act by local rivals Northwich after being allowed to keep striker Aaron Burns for another month and use him in Saturday's FA Cup fourth qualifying round tie at Mansfield.

    Manager Graham Heathcote was reeling from yet more injuries, with Dale Johnson ruled out for the rest of the season, when Northwich gave the go-ahead for Burns's loan to be extended. Chris Denham faces another week on the sidelines after jarring his knee in the Blue Square Conference game against Mansfield, but Heathcote at least has two fit strikers to choose from, in Burns and Colin Little, as he bids to build on more encouraging signs in Saturday's unlucky 1-0 defeat by Luton.

    'We've had a horrendous run of injuries and can't seem to get over it, so I'm grateful to Northwich for letting Aaron stay and be available for the Cup', he said. 'It helps to have some sort of choice up front, but the fact remains we currently have only two fit outfield players for the bench and may have to draft in one or two from the youth team to fill it. It's not ideal, but the most important thing for me is how well we played again on Saturday. The football in the first half-hour or so was the best we have produced all season, and you've got to remember it was against a team with far greater resources and who are intent on getting back into the Football League at the first attempt.

    We have produced that level two weeks running now, against play-off teams, but it's hardly rocket science, when you look at the players out, that we need more attacking options to take the next step. Whether we can do that is down to finance, but for now, it is important not to lose sight of how we have come this far and continued to raise the bar. It has been through good football and hard work, and I trust both will be evident at Mansfield, along with the usual vociferous support. We are all looking forward to it, because, though it can bring you heartache as well as elation, the Cup is special'".


    Altrincham FC physio, Sean Riley (right), has kindly sent the website the following update:

    "Following the injury to Dale Johnson, my initial thoughts that he had ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee was confirmed, following a scan on the 10th October. We are due back to see the specialist on 3rd November to explain to him the surgical procedure, which is scheduled to take place in Preston on 10th November. Unfortunately, Dale will miss the rest of the season due to the length of rehabilitation needed following ACL reconstructive surgery.

    Chris Denham injured his left knee during the Mansfield game and suffered lateral ligament damage. However, he continues to make good progress throughout his rehabilitation".


    Altrincham FC lost Tuesday night's FA Youth Cup tie at Stalybridge Celtic, 3-2. Trailing to an early goal, Alty got themselves 2-1 ahead with just eleven minutes left, thanks to goals from Brownhill (69 mins) and Linney (79 mins). But Stalybridge equalised almost immediately, before clinching the game with a third goal four minutes from the end of normal time. It was Alty's first defeat of the season. Best wishes go to Celtic in the next round, away at Oldham Athletic. Match report in youth section.


    This morning is the last opportunity to book on the TASC away transport to Mansfield this Saturday. Please ring the club on 928-1045. Details are on the Away Travel page.


    The Chad says that "Mansfield Town are set for another landmark day when they unveil their new scoreboard to their supporters shortly ahead of kick off in Saturday's FA Cup match at home to Altrincham. As the promotion bandwagon rolls on off the pitch, huge strides are behind made off it, with this the latest improvement at Field Mill in recent months... The official 'switch on' will be made at 2.50pm on Saturday... Team news, birthday wishes and other announcements will now be written in lights both before and during home matches".


    The NW Evening Mail asserts that "Neil Wainwright will not play for Barrow AFC in Saturday’s highly-anticipated FA Cup tie against Chester City. The 31-year-old on-loan winger has been recalled by parent club Morecambe... Wainwright has started the last five games since joining Barrow on a one-month loan deal in September. The former Darlington ace has played a huge role in helping turn round the fortunes of a team who have now taken 10 points from the last available 12...

    AFC joint-manager Dave Bayliss said last night: 'We’d love to keep him and he’s loved it here, but Neil still wants to play League football. Morecambe say he’ll be in their first team squad'... The departure of Wainwright could open the door for Carlos Logan to return to the starting XI on the left wing. Bayliss added: '“Carlos was untouchable in training this morning. He was like (Cristiano) Ronaldo. Perhaps two/three weeks of not playing have done him the world of good. It’s frustrating because we know the kid has that in his locker'".

    Blue Square Football reports that Cambridge boss Martin Ling "told Cambridge News: 'We were poor all round on Saturday - there are no two ways of looking at it. I said it was a three-year plan when I came here, and performances like we had at the weekend makes me sure three years are going to be needed'. Hayes & Yeading - who have struggled for results this season - managed to put three goals past goalkeeper Danny Potter, much to the disappointment of Ling. Ling added: 'I thought the keeper could have done better with the first and third goals... We've got to take Saturday's result on the chin as a unit'"

    From Newshopper we learn that "Ebbsfleet United’s training ground has been closed for health and safety reasons. On Monday the training ground at AEI Sports Club in Dunkirk Close, Gravesend, was closed due to ongoing building works which were causing health and safety issues. A statement on the Fleet’s website said: 'This completely unexpected move has come as a shock and will undoubtedly cause additional problems for the squad at a very difficult time. Until this can be resolved properly the team will be training on an ad hoc basis, sometimes at Stonebridge Road, at local sporting facilities and perhaps at Fleet Leisure'... It is not known how long the training ground will be closed for...

    Fleet’s chairman Duncan Holt says 'Over the last six to eight weeks there’s been a lot of disruption up there... What we need is a quality pitch that’s being worked on by a full-time groundsman. When you have 25 to 30 lads training five days a week you need a good surface'. A Gravesham Council spokesman denied reports the council ordered the ground's closure. He said: 'Gravesham Borough Council can categorically state that it did not order, or request, the closure of AEI Sports Ground... The council does not own the ground and did not suggest that to the owners'".

    Meanwhile "Ebbsfleet United have revealed that Gillingham striker Luis Cumbers has decided not to extend his loan spell at Stonebridge Road... [He] has decided to return to his parent club as he does not wish to become FA Cup tied. Manager Liam Daish told the club's official website: 'We need all players to be committed'... Gillingham manager Mark Stimson added, 'Luis risked getting cup-tied if he extended his stay at Ebbsfleet and he doesn't want to get involved in that, so he's coming back to us'" reports Blue Square Football.

    According to the Liverpool Daily Post "Chester City manager Jim Harvey is trying to sign another player on a temporary loan basis prior to next Saturday’s FA Cup trip to Barrow... He said: 'The player is a forward, but until things are completed I will not be naming him'. The Chester manager also revealed that central defender Shaun Kelly would be returning to training on Thursday following his recent knee injury".


  • Luton T. 1 York C. 1
  • Stevenage B. 0 Wrexham 0
  • League Table
    20 October 2009


    More than £900 was raised at the successful New Recruits evening last Saturday at which Ken McKenna, Robbie Williams and Michael Welch were the guests for an event compered by Graham Heathcote. The Club would like to thank everyone who supported the event and the guests for donating their time to provide a thoroughly entertaining event.

    Altrincham FC would like to thank all those who organised and donated to the bucket collection at half time against Luton Town last Saturday. £62.56 was raised which, if emulated at every home game, would raise getting on for £1,500.


    Altrincham FC Youth take on Stalybridge Celtic tonight (Tuesday) at 7.30pm in the FA Youth Cup at the Bower Fold. All support will be welcome.

    The Youth team's NWYA Premier Division fixtures for November are now on the Youth page as well as dates for the Open Cup and Neil Thomason Memorial Cup ties.


    Saturday's opponents, Mansfield Town, announce that "Leading goalscorer Rob Duffy may miss Saturday's Cup match at home to Altrincham due to a calf and ankle injury" after he "picked up injuries in both legs". The Stags website also has a video interview with manager Dave Holdsworth as well as video highlights of the league match at Moss Lane against Altrincham on October 10th.

    Holdsworth says in the interview that Duffy is "90%" likely to miss the game. Holdsworth adds that he has an "extensive" list of injuries which is "worrying". The Stags' website states that "Kyle Nix will also remain out of the squad. The midfielder is awaiting an MRI scan on his left ankle... Louis Briscoe (knee) is also a huge doubt following his accident on his home stairs late last week. Scott Gardner (calf), Lee Gregory (knee) , Tim Sandercombe(quadricep), Jason Bradley (ankle) and Grant Ryan (ankle) are all on the treatment table too".

    Meanwhile "Mansfield Town winger Craig Dobson believes he has found the right club to resurrect his career. The 25-year-old suffered two serious injuries during a 14-month spell with MK Dons and he ended last season with Brentford, where he did not play. Dobson, who has signed for three months at Field Mill, told BBC Radio Nottingham: 'I've found the right place to get my football back on track. I moved up north, left the London lights behind to get back to football... [at MK Dons] I was signed by Paul Ince and on the first day I ruptured my tendon, Roberto Di Matteo came in and they found a hairline fracture in my left shin... This is a club [Mansfield] that should be challenging... The team's got a lot of big lads and it can be a bit direct, so maybe I can be a different kind of outlet and change a game'".

    From This is Nottingham comes a reiteration that "Kyle Nix (ankle) and Louis Briscoe (knee) are both almost certainly out of the clash with the Robins too. But, though Scott Gardner will not train today after picking up a bang, he hopes to be in contention for the weekend. He added: 'It is frustrating as a manager and for our physio that we can't always afford to have scans done. But if we can't in the cases of Kyle and Louis, then we have to respect that because we are not a club rolling in money. They could be out for two or three weeks of even longer, but we are not really sure without the scans'".

    And The Chad quotes David Holdsworth as saying that Rob Duffy "has aggravated his ankle and also injured the calf on his other leg. But he is desperate to play if at all possible after taking a lot of stick at Altrincham from their bench two weeks ago. It would be a big blow to lose him. I think Rob and Kyle Perry deserve to be picked out for special praise for the way they are playing right now...

    Kyle Nix and Louis Briscoe will both miss the tie. Nix turned an ankle in a pothole while training while Briscoe slipped down his stairs at home and hurt his knee... Both could be out for at least month or longer. Scott Gardner and Lee Gregory are also having treatment for minor knocks. But loan signing Ollie Hotchkiss will be in the squad for the first time".

    Altrincham will be without the suspended Chris Senior and also Dale Johnson, whose scan last week revealed a ruptured cruciate ligament, which has ended his season.


    TASC chairman Brian Flynn writes...

    "The winners of the TASC Members' draw made at half time during Saturday's match against Luton Town were:-

  • Jenny Allan
  • Andy Redford

    Jenny and Andy will each be able to bring along a guest to enjoy matchday hospitality for two people at the game against Forest Green Rovers on November 14th.

    Remember you've got to be in it to win if you haven't yet joined TASC (The Altrincham Supporters' Club), become a member this month and you will be included in next month's draw!!"


    Right: Gavin Rathbone of GR Photography here captures Nicky Clee in action against Luton Town. James Smith (left) and Anthony Danylyk are the other Alty players seen.

    Luton Today says that "Luton had a Tom Craddock penalty to thank as they ousted Altrincham 1-0 at Moss Lane and one of the standout factors of their victory was the players' fitness, a factor Watson attributes to a slight change in the training schedule. He commented: 'We give the boys a long day. They train, have a little bit of running then we're up the gym for a weights session. We feel from our experience of playing before, Tuesday's always a hard day if you're going to have a Wednesday off. You can see that it's bearing fruit'".


    The Football Conference issued a statement on Monday:

    "In light of an article published today in the Daily Mail, the Football Conference and our Title sponsor Blue Square, wish to distance ourselves from the report suggesting that Blue Square are to terminate their sponsorship at the end of this current season.

    Contrary to that statement, Blue Square indicate, only as recently as last Wednesday, that they are keen to renew their sponsorship for another three year period. To this end, both Blue Square and the Football Conference are currently engaged in talks, with each being complimentary in respect of how the partnership has worked and will hopefully continue to blossom.

    The Daily Mail have been duly advised that their article is misleading and potentially damaging, especially in the current financial climate, and has duly acceded to a request to publish a correction in their editions for Tuesday 20th October".

    From NL Daily we learn that "Forest Green Rovers FC Ltd is pleased to announce they have now received formal approval from the Football Association, Football Conference and Gloucestershire FA, to change how the club is currently structured and operates.

    In 1982, the club became a Limited Company by Guarantee of Members and over the years it has traded effectively under this structure. However, with the building of the new stadium and the excellent facilities it now boasts and with the move of becoming a full time professional club, there is a need to spread the financial load more evenly. Such will enable the club not only to retain its position in the top echelons of the game at our level; but still allow potential to improve both on and off the field.

    To this end, as of 1st November 2009 the club and all its attendant activities will come under the auspices of being a new Limited Company by shareholding - Forest Green Rovers Football Club Limited. The formal meeting to take this move will be effected on Thursday 22nd October when full details will be explained to the thirty-eight existing members, who have control of club affairs through an internally elected Board of Directors.

    Club spokesman Colin Peake stated: 'We have a first class stadium and undoubtedly without argument, facilities for the community around us, which are second to none. This latest change is part of the whole process of the club being in the best financial position it can be for the future... we need new investment to keep us on an even keel at this time, as well as being in a position to tackle future challenges... Through our restructure and the issuing of shares, the club seek to bring in £100k of new money and investment possibilities. The club will therefore be pursuing all avenues open to it at this time, in an attempt to raise these funds with a minimum of delay'".

    At Gateshead "Furious Ian Bogie slammed his side for a woeful performance in the 1-0 defeat at home to Chester City - and promised heads will roll... after their side had been outplayed by the rock-bottom Blues. The players were given both barrels before Bogie emerged to give his damning verdict... He said: 'We were outplayed, out-thought and were second best all over the park. There was no desire, heart or quality and the manner of the defeat was unacceptable... Paul Farman in goal made some great saves and did not deserve to be on the losing side. That apart, we were inept and embarrassing. Some players have shown they are not good enough to play in the Blue Square Premier and they will be moved on'... Bogie added: 'Daryl Clare showed glimpses of the good player he is'... In a week in which Gateshead announced plans to go full-time from next season, Chester showed that such a move will be beneficial".

    "Kettering Town FC chairman Imraan Ladak has accused Kettering Council of sabotaging the club's efforts to find a new home. Mr Ladak says the local authority has met with Asda, who had negotiated a deal with the club to build a new stadium and a store on the Kettering Business Park on the A43/A6003, and the chain has since gone off the idea" reports the Northants Evening Telegraph.

    The Poppies had called on the council for support as they search for a new site before the lease runs out on the Elgood's Arena in three-and-a-half years' time. If the club fails to secure a new lease or put plans in place for a new ground it cannot be promoted to the Football League, regardless of where they finish in the league table. On Friday the Evening Telegraph reported that the club had been told it should work with other sports clubs in the town to try to find a new home because it wouldn't get planning permission for a joint scheme to build a new stadium and supermarket.

    And Mr Ladak spoke about the matter at Kettering Town Supporters Trust's annual meeting...'If the council was interested in the football club they would be trying to assist us. What they have done is destroy what was the only solution to us staying in the borough of Kettering... It leaves us in a difficult position. A lot of people feel the council had abused its position."


    The draw for the FA Trophy 2nd Qualifying Round, (to be played on Saturday, October 31st 2009), includes the following ties involving northern clubs...
  • Salford City v Clitheroe
  • Frickley Athletic v Guiseley AFC
  • Boston United v Radcliffe Borough or Quorn
  • Willenhall Town v Nuneaton Town or Hucknall Town
  • AFC Fylde v Glapwell
  • Whitby Town v King`s Lynn
  • Carlton Town v North Ferriby United or Worksop Town
  • Witton Albion or Sutton United v Brigg Town
  • Nantwich Town v Leek Town
  • Cambridge City v Matlock Town
  • Shepshed Dynamo v FC Halifax Town
  • Lancaster City or Chasetown v FC United Of Manchester
  • Leigh Genesis v Skelmersdale United
  • Brackley Town v Mossley
  • Buxton v Stourbridge
    19 October 2009


    Altrincham FC Youth again provided all of the players for the Altrincham & District FA as they beat The Wirral & District FA, 1-0, in the Cheshire County FA District Youth Cup, at Shawe View, Trafford FC on Sunday. Altrincham need a draw in the final group stage match against Chester FA next month to secure a place in the final for the fourth time in five years. The winner on Sunday was scored by Joel Brownhill in injury time. Match report in Youth section .


    This site's match report is here.

    Left: Altrincham defend a Luton cross.

    After Saturday's win at Altrincham, the Luton & Dunstable Express concludes that "The case for caretaker boss Alan Neilson to get the Luton manager's job full time grows ever stronger as the rookie gaffer made it three wins out of three since temporarily taking over. After last season's FA Cup tie between these two sides had to be decided by a penalty shoot out, perhaps it was no surprise that this game balanced on two spot kicks.

    Altrincham missed theirs, Mark Tyler saving from Colin Little after Kevin Nicholls was harshly adjudged to have mis-judged a tackle, and Luton scored theirs just three minutes later... Altrincham started the stronger of the two teams... The home side also racked up the corners early on, intensifying the pressure on the Hatters who were struggling to impose their passing game on the hosts... Altrincham's veteran striker Colin Little tested Tyler with a low shot that required a decent save from the Luton keeper on the hour mark. Then three minutes later the home side were given the softest of penalties when captain Nicholls was adjudged to have brought down Burns.

    It certainly appeared that Nicholls had played the ball as Burns ran into his path but the referee was in no doubt and pointed straight to the spot. Little took the responsibility but his effort was superbly saved by Tyler diving to his left hand side... Luton caught Altrincham cold on the counter attack and when Charles bundled over by Nicky Clee the referee pointed to the spot again. Craddock stepped up to take the kick and he held his nerve sending Coburn the wrong way".

    And Luton Today adds that "A pair of penalties in a matter of a few second half minutes changed the course of the game at Moss Lane today. Super Town stopper Mark Tyler produced a flying stop to deny Colin Little from the spot after Altrincham had been awarded a hotly-disputed penalty midway through the second half. Tyler's fantastic save seemed to revitalise Luton who had struggled against their Cheshire hosts until that point. And, from the moment substitute Ryan Charles was hauled down in the box seconds later and Tom Craddock had calmly stroked home the penalty, Town dominated and richly deserved their third straight win and third consecutive away victory... Altrincham put the Hatters under plenty of pressure from the off... The Robins enjoyed all of the early chances and bossed possession...

    First the hosts were rewarded for their pressure when they were handed a dubious penalty on 63 minutes. Burns tumbled under Nicholls' seemingly fair challenge, but referee R West thought differently and pointed to the spot. His decision was hotly disputed by the Hatters and this could have put off penalty taker Little who had to wait for a whole minute to take his kick. And, when he did, Tyler flung himself to his right to superbly push his effort over the bar...

    Again Mr West pointed to the spot and Craddock kept his cool to send Coburn the wrong way... The goal seemed to boost Town's confidence and they looked far more dangerous every time they went forward... Town were well worth the three points thanks to another fabulous second half performance".

    "Caretaker manager Alan Neilson said, 'I thought they (Altrincham) played really well for the first 20 minutes and we weathered the storm. Second half we came out under the cosh a little bit and Tyles saved a penalty and we've gone up the other end and scored and from then on we've played some superb football... The lads say it wasn't a penalty but Tyles has done superbly'".


    Right: One of the notices displayed in the Altrincham FC dressing room (right) underlines the most important aspect of football.

    Altrincham are away at Mansfield Town in the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round on Saturday. TASC has arranged away travel, details of which are here. Come along and support the team as they look to reach Round One at which stage the League clubs enter.


    Tuesday 20 Oct.
  • Stevenage Borough V Wrexham
  • Luton Town v York City


    The Altrincham FC Christmas Dinner will be on Saturday, November 28th at the Cresta Court after our home game with Kettering Town. Most of the players and management will be there. Tickets are just 35 pounds each or 60 per couple for what is always a very enjoyable occasion.


    The new Sky Sports TV facility in the bar at Moss Lane will be showing the following games. Come along and enjoy
  • Sun. 25 Oct: Liverpool v Manchester Utd (k.o. 2pm), bar open 1pm
  • Sun. 25 Oct: West Ham v Arsenal (k.o. 4.15pm), bar opening time t.b.c.
  • Sat. 31 Oct: Manchester Utd v Blackburn R. (k.o. 5.30pm,), bar open 5pm


    Darren Gregory, Altrincham FC Safety officer announces that "On Tuesday, 13 October, twenty-two stewards and staff took part and completed a fire awareness course held in the Manchester Glass Ltd Sponsors' Lounge at Moss Lane. This was part of their annual training. Thanks go to Tony Dunkerley of Telford College for his excellent training and continued support".

    Though thankfully not because of a fire, the efficiency of Altrincham's volunteer stewards was again shown last Saturday when they contained two incursions onto the pitch by away supporters during the match with Luton Town and promptly summoned the police to ensure that the unruliness did not escalate.

    If you would like to join Darren and his team, please contact the club on 928-1045 or Darren.


    Last Saturday's game against Luton was Colin Little's 250th appearance for the club. In 231(+19) games he has scored a phenomenal 112 goals for Alty. The same game was Robbie Lawton's 150th appearance (145+5) for Altrincham. The away game at Rushden on 3 October was Stuart Coburn's 450th match for the club. The game at Stevenage last month was Shaun Densmore's 50th for Altrincham. The next significant landmark is likely to be Greg Young's 100th appearance; to date, he has accumulated 91 games for the Robins. Congratulations and thanks go to all concerned from Altrincham FC.

    Right: Colin Little is seen with his latest strike partner, Aaron Burns, against Luton. In the background is Greg Young.


    Brian Flynn's latest Flynnzine article appeared in Saturday's Robins' Review and is reproduced below...


    The title of this week's missive is a quote from Mark Eckersall on the Altrincham Fans' Forum. "Ecky" is one of the eminent Alty fans who wisely allocate hours each week to consideration of all things Alty via the medium of the internet. His view is widely shared by most Alty fans, with the majority of comments on the draw being unsuitable for such a civilised publication as The Robins' Review. Most supporters were still dealing with the trauma of last week's infamous encounter with The Stags when news came through that we would be travelling to Field Mill next Saturday for the right to enter the FA Cup 1st Round.

    Reactions, of course, are linked intrinsically to the moment the event happens and I am sure that just a couple of years ago, the Fans' Forum would have been teeming with a set of different responses. It would have had to have been the draw for the 1st Round, as Mansfield were still a Football League Club, but I am sure that comment like "Great.....a trip to a struggling league club....I've been waiting for a draw like this for years!" would have been typical. The view may have been similar to last season's cup draw against today's opponents, Luton Town, with most Alty diehards delighted to get the opportunity to go to Kenilworth Road, where of course we performed admirably before bowing out on penalties in the replay at Moss Lane.....surely the latest ever finish for a game here after the kick off was delayed by power generation issues!

    The Hatters may be trying to adjust to life outside The Football League but, clearly, they have grandiose longer term ambitions as the artist's impression (right) of their proposed new stadium indicate.

    The Club are looking to relocate to this 20,000 seat stadium, possibly to be built somewhere near to Junction 12 of the M1. However, the scheme is facing opposition from local residents as well as some supporters who feel that the Club should stay within Luton itself. Whatever the outcome is, you certainly get the feeling that life could be quite interesting for this famous club for the next few years!

    A testament to our own development on the field is provided by a cursory glance at October's fixture list, with each game being against a team who has played in the Football League within the last five years!

    Finally, it has been great to welcome a number of former Altrincham playing heroes in recent times and four more will be here today.....Mike Farrelly, Andy Reid, Harry Wiggins and Paul Rowlands. Mike will forever hold a place in Altrincham supporters' hearts for his superb goal that won the 1986 FA Trophy at Wembley, whilst Andy, Harry and Paul were part of that fantastic 1990/91 side that went so close to gaining promotion to The Football League. 'Rollo' has also managed the Robins & 'Reidy' was part of the team that played at White Hart Lane in 1995 against Klinsmann & Co. Harry is the nephew of another Alty great....Gerry Casey.

    I am sure that they will leave Moss Lane today with a sense that Altrincham Football Club is making excellent progress.

    Bring on the 1988 Littlewoods Cup Winners & let's try & hit the jackpot!!



    Former Alty Youth striker, Sam Madeley has moved from Woodley Sports to Nantwich Town. The League Paper on Sunday had an interview with Lewis Chalmers in the wake of his manager, Gary waddock, leaving Aldershot Town. Lewis, was Waddock's first signing when appointed at the Rec.


    Blue Square Football says that "Mansfield Town have completed the signing of midfielder Craig Dobson. The 25-year-old arrives at the club on a free transfer following his exit from league rivals Stevenage Borough".

    The same source adds that "Gateshead have completed their second loan signing of the week with attacking Scunthorpe United left sided player Peter Winn added to the squad on Friday. The 20 year old came off the bench for the last three games of Scunthorpe's Championship campaign in 2007/8, but did not feature for the Iron last season. Winn, born in Grimsby, instead learnt his trade in the reserves while playing nine games on loan at Northwich Victoria and another three at Barrow".

    The NL paper quotes Gateshead chairman Graham Wood on his decision to make the club full-timers. He said, "We actually made this decision quite some time ago. Years ago we said that if and when we got into the Conference, we would go full-time. We were going to do it this season but, for one reason or another, we didn't get around to it... if we had to rely on income through the turnstiles, we wouldn't be in this league anyway. We always required an outside source to put money in and that outside source is me! This is my fourth season here and I want to try and get us back in the Football League. it will need quite a big investment... We will become full-time even if we get relegated but I can't see that happening... We should be OK once the new players bed in. The new stadium is a must. Our current ground is not a football venue".

    Bad news from Sussex where "Eastbourne Borough's Nathan Crabb has been barred from playing football after a scan revealed the striker has a problem with his heart" states Blue Square Football. "The 24-year-old frontman admitted himself to hospital last week after experiencing breathing problems whilst at home. An ECG scan revealed a problem with a valve in his heart and doctors have ordered him to refrain from any physical exercise until more tests are carried out. Crabb told Herald Sport: 'They said I've got a thickening of the heart. I've been playing football since the age of six and over those 18 years I've played a lot of sport so that might have had an effect'... Head coach Nick Greenwood added: 'Hopefully it is nothing too serious and he will be back in a Boro shirt as soon as possible'".

    18 October 2009


    Courtesy of Altrincham FC Safety Officer, Darren Gregory, above is a photo of four former Altrincham players who were very welcome guests at Moss Lane on Saturday. They are, left to right Paul Rowlands (played 1989-94), Andy Reid (1989-97), Mick Farrelly (1985-90) and Harry Wiggins (1990-92). You can read about these great former players in both Terry Rowley's Legends profiles and in the Past Players section of the website.


  • Match report here.

    Right: Colin Little sees his penalty saved.

  • Alty Player Stats
  • Alty Line-Ups


    In Sunday's NL Paper, Alty captain Robbie Lawton speaks after the Luton game. "Luton are the sort of side who will look to win every game. It's a measure of how far we have come for us also to think about winning games rather than just scrapping for points. I thought we did really well and were pushing them back just before our penalty. Colin Little is absolutely gutted [for missing the penalty] but he has no reason to be. He has pulled us out of the mire more than once".

    However, Luton's captain Kevin Nicholls, has a different gloss on proceedings, claiming "What a fantastic performance! We dug in and got the points after Tyler's great save. [Caretaker boss] Neilson should definitely be our manager... If nine points out of nine is not good enough, I don't know what is".


    At last night's Meet the New Recruits evening (see below), Graham Heathcote and physio Sean Riley sadly confirmed what had already appeared on the Fans' Forum that striker Dale Johnson is out for the entire season after a scan confirmed a ruptured cruciate ligament. He should be fit again by May 2010, said Sean, who will send the website further informations about Dale's situation. All at the club wish Dale as full and speedy a recovery as possible.

    There is better news of Chris Denham, who may be fit in one or two weeks.

    Graham also confirmed that Sam Sheridan has returned to Bolton Wanderers after his loan spell and Aaron Burns has also completed his month's loan, though Graham has still to speak to Northwich about his position.


    Last night witnessed the latest in the excellent series of Meet the New Recruits evenings at Moss Lane. This time the guests were assistant manager Ken McKenna, and players Robbie Williams (left) and Michael Welch (right), all of whom joined the club for this season.

    As ever, Graham Heathcote compered the event in very entertaining fashion, with plenty of light-hearded jibes at all the guests, not least at his old friend, Ken, for "only" having managed in the Welsh Premier and being a "legend" at Moss Lane.

    Graham paid tribute to Robbie, who has himself graduated from Welsh Premier football, and has "not looked at all out of place", according to the manager. Robbie revealed that outside football his full-time work is as a salesman of computer network security, so for midweek away games he has to rely on being able to take annual leave from his employer. Robbie, whose favourite player is Real Madrid's Ramos, rates Cambridge's Chris Holroyd as the best player he has come up against this season so far.

    Michael Welch, who was naturally questioned about his 70-yard goal last season, also had some fascinating things to say about life at the other clubs for whom he has played. Suffice it to say that he appreciates getting a regular pay packet and having his tax affairs handled properly at Moss Lane! Having recently recovered from a long injury lay off - Michael had an operation which he had really needed before joining Altrincham - he is currently unemployed outside football, but is open to offers! Michael's favourite player is Barcelona's Xavi, with Iniesta a close second.

    Ken, who revealed his favourite player is Mikel Arteta of Everton, would like to see us recruit one and ideally two strikers to help the club get to the next level. Ken currently has no job other than his work at Altrincham, which is a new situation to be in for him. Graham confirmed that, though 49, Ken was keen to get himself registered again as a Conference player, but Graham had resisted this so far!

    As well as much discussion about the current team - with all agreeing that a top half finish was attainable barring further injuries - the 1990-91 season was revisited. In that season Ken (left) had spear-headed Alty's 28-game unbeaten run which so nearly brought them League status. Ken missed the last five games of that campaign through suspension but revealed that he had been playing with injections in his ankle for several weeks before that, so felt he would have been limited in his performances anyway, had he not been banned.

    Whilst the current players did not think that being part-time was too much of a handicap, Ken had interesting views on full-time football, being of the opinion that it was a great help to be able to address tactical and other issues throughout the week rather than on just one or two evenings a week, as is the case at Altrincham. He also said that one of the biggest differences facing Robbie had been that you had to concentrate much more as a defender in the Conference than in Welsh football. But Robbie had risen well to the challenge.

    Ken and Graham (right) gave us many amusing stories of the now departed culture of non-League; days when, after a Saturday game, Ken would not get home till 7.30am on a Sunday after spending the evening in pubs and night clubs. We will draw a veil over an incident in The Griffin car park after one particular game! Indeed, as ever, some of the comments from the panel were for the audience's ears only, so make sure you don't miss the next event for some great insights into what goes on behind the scenes in football. The accompanying meal, prepared by Richie Bentley and colleagues (and efficiently served by volunteers Mike Ford, Sarah Rowley, Karen Rowley and Dan Jones) was excellent and many thanks also go to Jenny Heslop for running the bar.

    All the new recruits have proved great assets to the club and the audience was very appreciative of their giving their time to attend this lively event.

    17 October 2009


    Saturday 17 Oct: - Through the Years from Howard Watts.
  • AFC Wimbledon 1 Kettering Town 2
  • Altrincham 0 Luton Town 1
  • Barrow 2 Ebbsfleet United 0
  • Eastbourne Borough 1 Mansfield Town 2
  • Gateshead 0 Chester City 1
  • Hayes & Yeading Utd 3 Cambridge United 0
  • Histon 5 Forest Green R. 2
  • Kidderminster Harriers 1 Crawley Town 0
  • Rushden & Diamonds 3 Tamworth 2
  • Stevenage Borough 3 Salisbury City 1
  • Wrexham 2 Grays Athletic 1
  • York City 1 Oxford United 1


    Altrincham take on Luton Town for the third time this afternoon (Saturday) following two goalless draws in last year's FA Cup 1st Round. On that occasion the Hatters won a penalty shoot out in the Moss Lane replay after Warren Peyton had missed a penalty for Altrincham and Luton had played much of the second half with ten men.

    Friday's Manchester Evening News carried a piece stating that "Altrincham boss Graham Heathcote believes his revenge-seeking Robins can benefit from Luton's 'win or bust' approach, to triumph when the pair collide at Moss Lane... The Hatters's refusal to settle for second best is something Heathcote says 10th-placed Alty could cash in on.

    'Luton's decision to sack Harford tells you they'll accept nothing less than winning the league this season and I can't imagine they'll be satisfied with a point at our place' said the Altrincham chief". Alty are without suspended duo, Matt Doughty and Chris Senior whilst "Winger Chris Denham is also a doubt as he faces a scan on his knee".

    Meanwhile, Luton Town report that "Midfielder Andy Burgess is back in the Hatters' squad for tomorrow's clash with Altrincham. The 28-year-old returns following a hamstring injury sustained... on August 29... Kevin Gallen (shoulder), Keith Keane (knee) and Liam Hatch (ankle) remain sidelined. Caretaker Manager Alan Neilson also revealed that they will assess Freddie Murray Saturday morning to see if the the Irishman is fit to feature at Moss Lane.

    A number of the Hatters squad are also suffering from a bout of flu and Neilson will also be without the services of the suspended Rossi Jarvis following his red card at Kidderminster last Saturday".

    The Luton caretaker manager "Alan Neilson believes if his side can continue from where they left off at Kidderminster last Saturday then the Hatters stand a good chance of maintaining his 100% record in temporary charge. With two consecutive victories already in the bag since Mick Harford's departure Neilson hopes to make it three wins in succession at Altrincham... Speaking [on Friday] before the team set-off for Cheshire, Neilson said: 'Three wins on the bounce would be absolutely superb. We will go there with a positive attitude after the last two games and if we perform to the best of our ability then there's no reason why we can't get the three points... Last Saturday we started well, got the stuffing knocked out of us by going behind but came back to play really well second half by being positive and attacking them and it resulted in us picking up the three points'...

    Alty have continued to defy the critics and following a midtable finish last season they've started well again. But Neilson... said: 'We've had reports on them and they are likely to change around the team a bit from last week as they had two men sent-off. Although we'll plan around where we think their danger lies, all I'm concentrating on is how we play and how positive we are'...

    Town [are] almost down to the bare bones as injuries continue to rule out members of the squad. Neilson said: 'We're down to 16 fit players... We're struggling with a few players with a virus but we'll see what the situation is tomorrow morning and take it from there'".

    Luton Today adds that "They may have had to rely on a penalty shoot-out to get the better of Altrincham last season, but caretaker boss Alan Neilson believes that will have no bearing on Saturday's Blue Square Premier encounter.... He said: 'This season we start differently. It's a non-league side against a non-league side, but we go up there with a team just as strong as last season and hopefully we can go up there and get the three points. We're going to approach the game to get the three points and go out and be positive... We've got 16 fully-fit players, two young lads who are going to travel in the squad and I'll just approach it with the players that we've got and work with them...

    We've got match reports about them, but last week they went down to nine men... They play 4-4-2, they might change it, but the main thing is how we play. We've got to be positive'... There is some good news in the return to the fray of midfielder Andy Burgess... 'He's a natural left-footer and he gives us balance if we want to go 4-4-2 and his delivery is superb'" said Neilson.


    The winners of next Tuesday's FA Youth Cup qualifying match between Stalybridge Celtic and Altrincham FC Youth will be away in the the First Round Proper to Oldham Athletic. That tie will be played by Saturday, 7 November 2009. Latics state that "In a tie to be played before the 7th of November, Athletic will face either Stalybridge Celtic or Altrincham FC at home. will confirm the specific date and location of the tie once the winner of the final qualifying round tie has been determined".


    At half-time of Saturday's match against Luton Town, TASC will hold its monthly draw for matchday hospitality for two people. There will be two winners and each winner will be able to bring a guest along to the home game with Forest Green Rovers on Saturday, November 14th. The winner of the last draw was Caroline Wragg.

    And TASC's Anthony Wright says:

    "Looking for a unique Christmas Present? Want to beat the rush? Well TASC can help.

    By clicking on the affiliate link-up between TASC and Cult Zeros, for a limited period you can gain 15% off all orders placed with cultzeros, before November 10th 2009. In order to qualify for the offer, please visit and on the order form, enter the promotional code 555111 in the voucher code section of the check-out page.

    As always, ordering t-shirts through this link will be helping Altrincham FC, as the club will earn 20% of every sale made through the affiliate link, regardless of what shirt you wish to order for family or friends. If you can't find the player you wish to have on your t-shirt, please contact Anthony Wright or Brian Flynn.


    Altrincham FC's club physician, Dr Richard Parris, was the latest contributor to the Robins Review series on "A Day in the Life" of people connected with the club. Richard wrote:

    "When Grahame [Rowley] ‘volunteered’ me to write a ‘Day in the Life of…’ a Club Doctor, I had no idea how I was going to put down 10 words let alone 600, as fortunately, most of the time, I do very little. In fact I spend most of my time at games fobbing off comments from the Directors' Box querying my actual role! Even after recently stitching a head wound I was at a loss as to what to write – 3 stitches, 600 words, hmm! That is 200 words per stitch, not exactly an attention grabber. So why I am there? Why do Conference matches require a doctor to be present, especially when the vast majority of football injuries are managed so well by Sean [Riley, the Alty physio] and his team?

    My most important role is one that, fortunately, I carry out on an infrequent basis, is the management of serious illness or injury, be it for the players or for the attending crowd. Serious problems do suddenly occur even in fit active footballers – whilst this is very rare, the player stands the best chance of recovery if immediate treatment is carried out on the football pitch. My role is to provide that treatment with the help of Sean and the bits and pieces I carry in my orange bag.

    Whilst serious illness is unusual, injuries are more common and more of a potential problem. A broken leg or blows to the head are examples when early on-field management by the medical and physiotherapy teams help to prevent later complications. The most common injuries I am called on to manage are head wounds that need to be stitched. This needs to be speedily done to try and return the player to the game as soon as possible.

    Whilst it is not a legal requirement for the crowds we normally get at Altrincham, I am also responsible for any of the crowd who need medical help. Problems may range from a blow to a supporter’s face from a ball too enthusiastically kicked into touch to assessing chest pains in supporters who are over stressed or over excited by on-field events.

    On top of my Saturday afternoon role, there are also medical problems to be dealt with that are not related to an on-field injury. There have been various lumps and rashes that I have looked at over the years that have concerned players and various illnesses that I can quickly see and treat. Advice is also sometimes needed as to when a player is fit to return to the club or to play after a viral illness or from injuries such as concussion. Medical forms need to be filled in, advice given about medications that may be on the ‘banned list’ and, on occasion, Sean may come across an injury that has a more medical side to it.

    In conclusion, although it may appear that I do little, I am there for a good reason! If you see me moving from my seat, it usually means there is a potential problem. I prefer to remain seated watching the game and doing nothing! It means all is well".


    Former Alty left back Cavell Coo, and former Youth team goalkeeper Stefan Fielding have both joined Abbey Hey.

    NL Daily reports that former Alty Youth "Central defender Danny Jarrett has now returned to league rivals Woodley Sports where he appeared last season before signing for Colwyn Bay".

    News of three Alty old boys comes from Welsh Premier, which tells us that for Friday's game Gap Connah's Quay "player-manager Mark McGregor welcomes back two key players. Striker Andy Olsen... along with midfielder Stuart Cook [ex-Alty youth], back from his involvement with England's Futsal internationals against Israel. Midfielder Stuart Scheuber is also in the squad as he completes his recovery from a long-term injury".


    "Mansfield Town striker Daryl Clare has been allowed to join Blue Square Premier rivals Gateshead on a three-month loan" confirms This is Nottingham. "But boss David Holdsworth insists it is not the end of the line at Field Mill for the proven goal-getter.. He has struggled to break into the side on a regular basis this term because of the form of Kyle Perry and Rob Duffy... Clare's only two goals this season have come from the penalty spot in August's 4-1 home win over Barrow. Heed will pay the 'majority' of the player's wages during his stay on Tyneside...

    'We have had a lot of approaches for Daryl and it was no secret that King's Lynn were interested', said Holdsworth... 'He has come to me and said he feels he needs a good strong run of games and I can't guarantee him that... I feel he has been unlucky with things here on and off the pitch... I still rate him highly. We will certainly welcome him back when he returns, and hopefully that will be for a promotion push... With or without Daryl Clare, I think we will continue to score goals'", he claimed.

    NL Daily adds that "Gateshead have signed much-travelled Mansfield Town striker Daryl Clare on an emergency loan... 'Clare is a proven striker at Conference level and his goalscoring exploits are second to none', said Gateshead manager Ian Bogie.

    The Football Conference reports that "Following the return of Lewis Spence to Wycombe Wanderers, 18-year-old Danny Powell has signed on a one-month emergency loan at Forest Green Rovers from MK Dons".

    Chester City say that "City travel to Gateshead tomorrow... This will be the club's first-ever visit to the International Stadium. Featuring for the home side will be former City favourite Daryl Clare... Clare scored 48 goals in just 62 appearances during his time at Chester which helped them win the Conference championship... Out are Glenn Rule and Nick Chadwick through suspension, while young defender Kristian Platt is out for several weeks after breaking a leg in an accident at home... Jim Harvey has dipped into the loan market to sign Barnsley striker Michael Coulson on a month's contract...Chester chairman Ian Anderson said: 'We will complete the loan transfers of Jonathan Flynn and Andy Hayworth from Blackburn Rovers on Friday'".

    "Ebbsfleet United manager Liam Daish fears he will not be able to bring the good times back to Stonebridge Road... 'We've had some great nights here and some great seasons. What happened in the summer has really rocked this club', Daish told BBC Radio Kent. He added: 'We've upped our profile and became a side that was respected throughout the league. I want that back as soon as possible'. Kent's second biggest club [after Gillingham] became known worldwide when they were taken over by fans' website MyFootballClub... But membership numbers have plummeted... Daish has managed to add a new striker to his squad for Saturday's game at Barrow. Elliott Charles, 19, has agreed an initial one month loan deal from Barnet. The 6' 2" striker made his Bees debut against Brentford in August 2008, and has had previous loan spells at Farnborough, Lewes and Hemel Hempstead Town".

    At Tamworth manager "Gary Mills has brought in two players ahead of the game against Rushden and Diamonds this Saturday... Taking squad no. 27 is Wayne Looker a 24 year old midfield player who last season was on the books of Histon FC but was not with a club this season... And taking squad no. 28 is Samuel Gaughran, a 19 year old defender signed on a month's loan from Peterborough United. Mills has had is hand 'forced' after losing Chris Smith, Michael Wylde, Neil MacKenzie and Dominic Langdon through injury while Gavin Hurren's loan at AFC Telford United has been extended by another month".

    16 October 2009


    The date has now been set for Altrincham FC Youth to play their FA Youth Cup 3rd Qualifying Round match away to Stalybridge Celtic. The game will be at Celtic's Bower Fold ground on Tuesday, 20th October, kicking off at 7.30pm. Please come along and lend your support.

    This Sunday (18th), Alty Youth provide the squad to represent the Altrincham & District FA against The Wirral at Trafford FC (k.o. 2pm). This is a group-stage match in the Cheshire County FA District Youth Cup.

    Pictured right, Alty's Blaine Whiteside sees the Vauxhall Motors keeper make a save in last Sunday's FA Youth Cup win for George Heslop's team.


    TASC has updated its My Square grid. The My Square is an important fundraising scheme allows you to "buy" a square of the Moss Lane pitch, the price of each square varying depending on its historic importance. You can find full details of the scheme in the Fundraising and Social section of this website.


    In the Sale and Altrincham Messenger, Alty joint press officer John Edwards quotes Graham Heathcote in the wake of the Mansfield game last Saturday. Graham said, "Even though we lost, there was a real buzz around the ground and in the bar afterwards. People knew they had seen a proper non-League encounter, an old-fashioned tough-tackling game full of honest endeavour and good football. When you look at the card count, you would think it had been an afternoon of thuggery but it was nothing of the sort. It was a strong, committed approach from both sides and it is just unfortunate that the game has gone as far as it has in eradicating any sort of physical contact. But the effort and spirit we showed, especially when we were down to nine men, tells you we have a group of players who are prepared to give their all for this football club.

    The atmosphere generated by our supporters was fabulous as well. There were so many good ingredients to the day that I went home feeling anything but disappointed. Mansfield were probably a bit cuter than us in many ways and we have to learn to be more disciplined. But I was elated with the effort we put in".

    John adds that "Chris Denham (above left), who jarred his knee, and Dale Johnson, both miss the Luton game but Stuart Coburn is fit after stubbing his toe". Both Matt Doughty and Chris Senior are suspended for the match.


    A recent subject of the Robins' Review's "Day in the Life" series was Altrincham FC director, Andrew Shaw (pictured below), who writes:

    A Day (Or More) in the Life Of…….....Andrew Shaw

    When the editor first asked me to describe my typical day at AFC, I was a little perturbed as a normal matchday for me involves arriving at the ground at around 2 o’clock, checking with Dave Johnson on the main door as to who’s on the guest list for the Boardroom, welcoming our guests, popping over to hear the manager speak in the Sponsors Lounge, returning to act as “tie monitor” to ensure all are following the Club’s dress code, and arranging who sits where in the Home Director’s Box prior to kick off. At half time, ensuring all guests have had food and at full time offering a drink to our guests prior to departing at around 5 o’clock! Not exactly six hundred words in that!

    To save the embarrassment of a large area of empty space in the programme, I thought I would expand the “day” to give an insight to my other football jobs; being a Football Conference Board member, and since the summer, an FA Council member. With these 2 roles, and a monthly AFC board meeting, I would estimate I spend 4 to 5 days a month on Football business. As an Altrincham FC Board member, I was invited by the then Chairman, now President, Bill King to join the Conference Board in 2005. As well as monthly Board meetings, I am now the Director responsible for the office and staff in Birmingham and try to spend at least one day a month at the office. I have sat on numerous panels reviewing clubs and individual players activities and serve on the commercial committee.

    The Burns report on the future of the Football Association expanded the Council membership in 207 to include, amongst others, two representatives of the Conference. With Burton Albion’s promotion to the Football League, I replaced Ben Robinson and was admitted in June at the FA Summer meeting in Manchester. The FA split the organisation between the professional and national game, and though some might say that as a predominantly professional Premier League, we should fall under the former banner, we are at the moment within the National Game group. My involvement currently includes 6 council meetings a year plus serving on the Alliance and Leagues committees, which as the names suggest, regulate and supervise all aspects from step 1 (Blue Square Premier), down to levels 5 and 6 (North West Counties) and beyond. Following the move from Soho Square in central London, all meetings now take place at Wembley. I also have an interest in the England C team and have visited Italy and Hungary (and Exeter & Oxford!) with them in the past two years.

    In my seven years' involvement with Altrincham, the highlight was being at the game at Stoke against Eastbourne with my dad and the two boys, although I would give mentions to Graham Heathcote’s first game in charge at Burscough, winning at Weymouth in the Trophy, and last season’s home win at Cambridge as games to remember. Off-field memories would include turning up at various tax offices with Graham to plea for stays of execution over debts, and many away games with the Rowley clan, being told by Karen who was man of the match!

    I have been privileged to work alongside some great people on the Altrincham FC Board. Special mention to Geoff [Goodwin] and Grahame [Rowley], who I met for the first time when we formed the new Board back in May 2002, but also Barry Pond, Derek Wilshaw, George Heslop and my friend, [the late] David Burns. Wouldn’t have missed a minute of it!


    Oxford United have announced as usual that for our game at their ground (31st October) "Tickets are cheaper if brought before the day. The prices in the North stand (along the side of the pitch) where your fans will sit are as follows:
  • Adults: £15 (£17 on the day)
  • Students with NUS Card: £11.50 (£13 on the day)
  • Over 65: £9.00 (£10 on the day)
  • Under 16: £9.00 (£10 on the day)
  • Under 7: FREE (FREE on the day)

    Tickets can be bought in advance from Oxford by ringing 01865 337533 or from the website but a booking fee of £2.00 for posting and £1.50 collection is added per booking. As Oxford's website says "Tickets purchased in advance for home games save people both time and money. The ticket office number is open from 9.30am to 5.30pm on weekdays, and 6pm on Fridays before a home Saturday match... Tickets purchased in advance will be posted out if ordered at least three days in advance of games [but don't forget though that there may be a postal strike soon], but tickets ordered after that time will be for collection only as we cannot guarantee delivery. We accept Visa, Mastercard, Delta, Solo and Switch. This facility is subject to a booking fee. Our online ticket service is fast and secure and available 24/7, although the same rules apply for ticket posting and collection."


    Our opponents in the FA Cup, Mansfield Town, announce that "Season Ticket holders are entitled to a priority ticket for our much-anticipated home match against Altrincham in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round on Saturday 24th October 2009. Tickets are priced at £16 for adults and £8 for all concessions* and can be purchased by using Voucher C from your season ticket book.... In addition to the usual opening hours in our ticket office (9am-5pm), we will be open this Saturday (17th October) from 9am to 3pm. In agreement with Altrincham Football Club, we can confirm that our under 13s' Season Ticket holders can be admitted into the ground for FREE, when accompanied by a paying adult.

    Under 13s who are non-season ticket holders fall into the concessions category, priced at £8. Due to anticipated high demand, the West Stand Upper will be classed as all ticket for both Season Ticket holders and non-season ticket holders... All other sections of the ground can be entered by paying on the day of the match... Non season ticket holders can also pay on the day of the game either in the West Stand Lower, Quarry Lane Stand, or North Stand (for visiting supporters only). All proceeds from gate receipts are halved between both clubs in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round...

    *Concessions are classed as:

  • U13s without a season ticket (must be accompanied by a paying adult)
  • 13 years old -15 years old
  • Ladies aged 60
  • Gentlemen aged 65
  • Students (must produced NUS card)".


    "Skilful midfielder Oliver Hotchkiss has today returned to Field Mill on a three month loan deal from Leeds United" report Mansfield Town. "The 20 year old played six times for us in midfield towards the end of last season... Manager David Holdsworth told 'He is a cracking young man with a smile on his face - I love people like that'. It has been agreed between both clubs for Hotchkiss to play in all cup competitions for us".

    Meanwhile there has been a departure from Field Mill as "North Ferriby United have signed our young defender Ben Turner on a month's loan" but "Experienced midfielder Richard Langley has joined us on trial... Langley spent seven years at Queens Park Rangers before moving on to play for Cardiff, Luton and Bristol Rovers. Sandwiched in between those moves was a return to Rangers in 2006. He has also capped by Jamaica and trained at Blackpool in the summer. The 29 year old joins fellow midfielder Kevin Thornton on trial along with ex Stevenage winger Craig Dobson".

    News of our next league opponents comes from the Stroud News & Journal which states that "Chester City have turned down an approach from Luton Town for ex-Forest Green boss Jim Harvey. Managerless Luton made an approach for his services 24 hours after he took over at the Deva Stadium. City chairman Ian Anderson said: 'I’ve spoken to Jim and set out the position of the football club. We rejected an approach and we felt it was only right to do that. Jim will be with us until the end of the season and then we will review his position, hopefully to the benefit of all parties'. Harvey’s name continues to be linked with the vacant manager’s job at former club Tranmere Rovers. Harvey said: 'I have spoken to Stephen Vaughan and Ian Anderson about their decision to refuse Luton to talk to me, but I am not prepared to comment further on the matter'”.

    Meanwhile, The Liverpool Daily Post says that "Chester City are hoping to bolster their wafer-thin squad by completing the loan signings of a trio of players... Northern Ireland under-21 international central defender Jonathan Flynn and 20-year-old midfielder Andy Hayworth, are expected to join from Blackburn Rovers, while the Barnsley striker Michael Coulson completes the trio. Scarborough-born Coulson has experienced Championship football with the Oakwell club during the last three seasons, but his progress has been hampered by a string of injuries. Nineteen-year-old Ballymena born Flynn is highly thought of at Ewood Park, and if his temporary transfer is sanctioned, he will fill one of manager Jim Harvey’s problem positions. Lancaster-born Hayworth is a left-sided player, and has been a regular in Rovers’ reserve side, this season...

    Anderson reiterated, despite reports to the contrary, that Chester would not be appealing against the 15 points deduction... He said: 'I can categorically confirm that we will not be appealing the 15 points. It could cost us anything up to £100,000 to appeal, and that money will be better utilised to strengthen the squad, not risked on appeal'. City were due to confirm to the Football Conference yesterday that all football creditors had been paid in full, and the Anderson spelt out how the club were dealing with the matter. He said: 'I’ve sent e-mails to the relevant people on Tuesday, setting out our proposals for the payment of football creditors. Hopefully these proposals will be accepted, and the matter will be amicably dealt with'".

    According to the Chester Chronicle "A new group, formed by Chester City fans, hopes to safeguard the future of the troubled Blue Square Premier side. City Fans United (CFU) is a merger of Chester City Supporters Trust and the Independent Supporters Association. CFU chairman Michael Poole says they want to work with club owner Stephen Vaughan and do not plan a takeover bid".

    But he told BBC Sport: "'The club almost went bust in August and we weren't ready to step in. If it happens again, we hope to have the money to buy it'... CFU will be formally launched on 22 October and Poole added: 'Our Plan A is for the owner, the board and the whole club to get its act together and start to work with fans, the local community and the council... The problem before now is that there was never a Plan B. We were hoping a white knight would appear but that was not a plan - it was a prayer. CFU hopes to produce a proper Plan B, and build up a war chest so that, if it is needed and the club is close to going to the wall again, then we are ready and we have got fighting funds in place. We don't want to go head to head with anybody at the club. There have been mistakes made in the past but we cannot change that - we want to look to the future, and Plan A can still work if Stephen Vaughan wants it to'".

    "Grays Athletic have signed goalkeeper, Lloyd Anderson, Lloyd is an ex Brentford youth keeper who was promoted to their first team in November 2009 [?2008?] following an injury to Seb Brown". The Football Conference adds that "Grays Athletic have added former Chelmsford City defender Danny Bunce and ex-Woking striker Fola Onibuje to their squad. Bunce is a former West Ham United trainee who was released by the Hammers in 2005. Following his release from Upton Park he joined Cambridge United following an unsuccessful trial with Oxford United. In July 2006 he joined Woking and then signed for Chelmsford City in the summer. Onibuje was released by Blue Square South side Woking earlier this month". He was formerly with Cambridge United and has scored against Altrincham in the past.


    Two clubs whom we played in the Conference in recent seasons are back in financial difficulty...

    Farsley Today says that "Farsley Celtic's future has been thrown into fresh doubt - just weeks after the troubled football club appeared to have won its fight for survival... Celtic president John Palmer then seemed to have saved the day with a last-minute rescue package that was provisionally accepted by the Blue Square North side's administrator, accountancy firm Mazars. But now it has emerged that HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) - Farsley's principal creditor - is unhappy with the proposal that would formally bring the 101-year-old club out of administration.

    Under the terms of the proposed deal - a type of insolvency procedure known as a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) - HMRC would receive only a proportion of the money it is owed. So-called 'football creditors' - such as players and other clubs - would, however, be paid in full. As a result, HMRC is refusing to support the CVA - and its status as principal creditor means the deal cannot go through without its backing. That in turn leaves Celtic at risk of breaking a league rule which stipulates clubs leaving administration must do so via a CVA. Mazars is now due to discuss Celtic's future with the Football Conference, which runs Blue Square North".

    Meanwhile, the BBC reports that "Weymouth could be forced to withdraw from Blue Square South because Barclays Bank and Carlsberg have demanded the repayment of outstanding debts. The news emerged after former Terras chairman Malcolm Curtis, who guaranteed the debts, wrote to the club to ask for a loan of £221,000 to be repaid. But current Weymouth director Ian Winsor said the club would be unable to make the payments. The Dorset side now have until 26 October to respond to the claims. Player-manager Matt Hale and directors David Higson and Ian Ridley, who is battling cancer, have all stepped down in the past week".

    15 October 2009


    Right: Aaron Burns, in full flight against Mansfield, as seen by Gavin Rathbone of GR Photography.

    Altrincham FC vice-chairman Grahame Rowley writes:

    "After the successful Pontoon Competition which was run recently and won by Terry Surridge the club are planning on holding another one starting on December 1st. Each of the 116 teams in the Premiership, Football League and Blue Square Premier is randomly allocated a number. For just £10 you nominate a number and that is your team. The first team to reach 21 goals (in league games only) wins the first prize of £100. The second team to achieve this target wins £50 and the third team £10.

    You can have as many teams as you want at £10 for each entry.

    Please see Karen, Sarah or Grahame Rowley to nominate your number and get your team allocated. Or you can contact them by telephone at the club 9281-1045 or by e-mail.

    Thank you for your support".


    Luton Today has news of the next visitors to Moss Lane. "Liam set to see a specialist after being forced to sit out Saturday's trip to Kidderminster. But caretaker boss Alan Neilson said: 'He has had an MRI scan on his ankle and Harry Scott-Stackman will take him to see a specialist and we will see what the action plan is from there. 'Hopefully he just needs a little jab because he has a lot of swelling and hopefully it will be just a week or two, but we won't know until he sees the specialist'. Keith Keane and Kevin Gallen, meanwhile, are both nearing a return while Lewis Emanuel is still sidelined by his nasty toe injury. Speaking on Monday, Neilson continued: 'Keith Keane trained today and Kevin Gallen trained fully, but not full contact. Lewis is just totally resting and can't do anything yet and won't train for another two or three weeks'. And Luton were set to name a strong team for last night's Combination East Division reserve game at Wycombe Wanderers, with Shane Gore, Shane Blackett, Jake Howells, Andy Burgess, Claude Gnakpa and Ryan Charles all set to start...

    Winger Adam Newton... is confident the Hatters are headed in the right direction... 'No team dominates for 90 minutes. You have to pay the other team respect'" he said.

    The York Press reports that "York City fan Simon Hood will be cycling to Kenilworth Road to see the Minstermen take on Luton Town on Tuesday, October 20. Hood is cycling to every game this season, home and away, to raise money for The Alzheimer's Society. You can find out more by visiting his website.

    Blue Square Football reports that "AFC Wimbledon left-back Chris Hussey looks set to join Coventry City on loan. The 20-year-old has reportedly been watched by Sky Blues' manager Chris Coleman and chief scout Andy Thorn. The Surrey Comet has it on good authority that a loan deal could be struck on Wednesday with a view to a permanent move in January. Reading are also believed to be tracking the former Woking defender".

    Stevenage Borough report that "The club are pleased to announce that its Raise the Roof Campaign is up and running after a successful meeting with nine volunteers prior to last Saturday’s match against Hayes & Yeading. The meeting which lasted around 45 minutes in the Boardroom brought together supporters' who want to help improve the atmosphere at The Lamex Stadium on match days. The volunteers made up of a wide range of ages presented their ideas to the clubs Head of Community & Supporter Services Alex Tunbridge, alongside discussing numerous ideas from supporters sent in by email. The key suggestions from the meeting included:

  • Addressing the acoustics within the East Terrace.
  • Increasing the number of drums played during games.
  • Encouraging people to arrive at matches early to generate a pre match atmosphere.
  • Exploring the possibility of using float microphones to relay noise around the stadium.
  • A change in player entry and goal celebration music – possibly by a supporters vote.
  • Addressing the PA system and volume of music played during goal celebrations.
  • Pre match and half time entertainment.
  • More flags hung up inside the stadium.

    Following the meeting the committee provided three volunteers to wave giant flags as the teams entered the field of play and also held a collection throughout the stadium to collect for giant flags and drums which raised a total of £259.12. Club Chairman Phil Wallace also made a personal donation of £150.00, providing supporters with £409.12 to spend. The club and the committee would like to thank everyone who made a donation and it is hoped that everything will be ordered in time for our match against Gateshead on Saturday 14th November.

    The committee plan to meet prior to next Saturday’s match to discuss flag designs and will then meet on a monthly basis with a club representative to help develop the project further.

    From the BBC we learn that "Ebbsfleet United midfielder Jamie Forshaw and defender Steven Springett have joined Ryman South side Ashford Town on one month loans. Forshaw has started just two games for the Blue Square Premier side this term and Springett is yet to make his debut".

    14 October 2009


    Altrincham host Luton Town this Saturday. From the Blue Square Football site we learn that "Luton Town skipper Kevin Nicholls believes the Hatters can close the gap on league leaders Oxford United under the guidance of caretaker manager Alan Neilson... He told the club's official website: 'In my opinion there's only one man for the job and that man is Alan Neilson. The lads have taken to him, training has been fantastic and all of the lads are right behind him and his staff. I'm over the moon for him... We've won back-to-back matches for the first time in two months and Alan's record speaks for itself: two wins from two games and six points out six... The board have a lot CVs to get through. I believe Alan doesn't need to send his in because his record of played two, won two, speaks for itself'".

    And "Luton striker Liam Hatch faces another spell out with an ankle injury. The 27-year-old missed the start of the season and, after only four games back, sat out the win at Kidderminster and will be out for some time... The [ankle] problem initially surfaced during the club's pre-season programme and the forward, on loan from Peterborough, did not make his debut until mid-September" reports NL Daily.


  • Stalybridge Celtic 0 FC United of Manchester 1 - Gate 1,923. FCUM now play Northwich.
  • Kendal T. 1 Guiseley 0


    Surprising news comes from the Football Conference which reports that "Gateshead have announced that it will switch to being full-time with a professional squad from the beginning of the 2010/11 campaign. It is another ambitious move from a club determined to build on back-to-back promotions and eventually reclaim it's place in the Football League. Turning professional next year will also be poignant as it will mark the 50th anniversary since Gateshead were unjustly demoted from the Football League in 1960.

    Gateshead will now stand proudly alongside the regions other professional clubs Newcastle United, Sunderland, Middlesbrough, Darlington and Hartlepool United as they strive to regain League status. Chairman Graham Wood said: 'There are a lot of benefits from becoming a full time club, not least being able to attract players who are already in, and want to stay in, the professional game. If we want to take the club to the next level and achieve our goal of taking Gateshead back into the Football League it is a natural progression to become a professional club. A handful of places will be kept for part-time players who will train on a night, but the vast majority of the squad will be employed on a full time basis'.

    'If we do go down it will not affect our plans', added Wood. Manager Ian Bogie has also backed the idea... 'We need to go full-time to progress otherwise we will stand still... Being able to train every day instead of after a day's work is obviously beneficial in terms of fitness, skill acquisition and preparation. It will enable us to compete on a level playing field and it shows how ambitious Gateshead are to switch from a part-time club to a full-time outfit'".

    And even more ambitious ideas from Gateshead are reported by the BBC which says that "Plans are also in place for a purpose-built 9,000-seat stadium for the club who play in the council-owned International Stadium. Ian Bogie's side will also enter a reserve team in the Central League for the first time next season". The gate for Gateshead's last home game was 537.

    Blue Square Football reports that "Mansfield Town chairman Andy Perry has moved to assure the club's supporters that plans to renew the lease on Field Mill are currently ahead of schedule. Former owner and landlord Keith Haslam is said to be willing to negotiate a new 10-year lease on the home of the Stags and Perry expects to have the new agreement signed within the next month. He told Mansfield Chad: 'It is just about sorted already and will be signed sometime next month... It doesn't even need to be sorted before March, but should be sorted by November'."

    "Salisbury City manager Tommy Widdrington has agreed to extend the loan spells of Lee Brown and Joe Oastler from QPR" states NL Daily, "for another month. Defender Brown and midfielder Oastler have played their part in helping the Whites go on a five-match unbeaten run. The 19-year-olds are both professionals at Loftus Road".


    NL Daily reports that "GAP Connah's Quay's midfielder Stuart Cook was selected for the England Futsal squad that played double header friendly internationals against Israel at Hereford's Point 4 over the weekend. The 23-year-old, who began his career with Stockport County and Sheffield United and is a product of the Altrincham youth set-up, joined the Nomads originally in season 2004/05 and then played for New Mills, before joining Bangor City".

    And "The FA Cup replay between Bradford Park Avenue and Buxton was settled in the very last minute... And it will be the Buxton who will play either Hucknall Town or Stourbridge in the next round after Tommy Agus struck home an 89th minute late penalty following a clumsy challenge by Avenue 'keeper Steve Dickinson on Kieran Lugsden".

    On Monday night Danny Heffernan scored for New Mills in a Derbyshire Senior Cup match which they won 7-4 against Parkhouse.

    Bulls News reports that "Rotherham have appointed Andy Dibble as their new goalkeeping coach".

    The BBC confirms that "Wycombe have appointed Aldershot manager Gary Waddock as their new boss", leaving Alty's Lewis Chalmers awaiting a new boss.

    13 October 2009


    Right: Shaun Densmore provokes a Mansfield opponent in Saturday's game. This and many other of Gavin Rathbone's excellent photos are on his GR Photography website.

    The Chad's reporter John Lomas writes that "After Saturday's ill-tempered affair, Mansfield Town can't wait to face Altrincham at Field Mill for their FA Cup fourth qualifying round tie a week on Saturday. Certain aspects of the way the home club and sections of their fans conducted themselves in Saturday's 2-1 Stags success left a bitter taste in the mouth as Ripon referee Andy Halliday was given a torrid time, forced to red-card two home players and show a further nine yellow cards. So when the sides were paired together for a quick re-match at Field Mill in today's draw, Mansfield were delighted and Altrincham can expect a hostile atmosphere after Saturday's battle.

    'There is not better place than home to hold a game against recent opposition when you've had a feisty encounter', said Stags boss David Holdsworth. 'I am sure our players will be up for taking us through to the next round if possible. And I am sure our fans will have a great day. They know that it's the FA Cup and that their support can generate our extra man here. They will realise that Altrincham's fans made a big contribution towards the game on Saturday and I am sure our fans will give them a very warm reception and support our team to the hilt in a fortnight. I don't think my players will need any motivation'.

    For once the officials' decisions went against Stags' opponents but, despite the flak they took from the home side and fans, it is hard to see how they could have done anything else with the challenges and actions of the Altrincham players on the day. 'I felt during the game the referee was asked a large amount of questions and conducted himself in the correct fashion and used his fourth official and assistants', said Holdsworth. 'Their players lashed out at Kyle Perry and Gary Silk and they were sent off. Apart from Gary Mills I don't believe our players made a bad challenge [amongst the 22 Mansfield fouls recorded by the NL Paper] on Saturday though they competed to the upmost and held strong under firm provocation.

    I don't know if it was due to all the hype before the game or came from the new belief they have at Altrincham, but I was pleased with the way we conducted ourselves. The fourth official and linesman were under extreme provocation being on the nearside, but you have to be respectful if things are not going your way and try to conduct yourself in the correct fashion... The abuse you sometimes have to take in football sometimes goes with the territory, but I felt some of the stuff directed at myself and my team on Saturday was rather unnecessary.

    But I felt on the main the Altrincham fans deserved a pat on the back for their support to their club during the game which gave their players an extra yard in their step... I didn't think Altrincham played football. The only ball they had was into high areas and they had very willing runners. Our fans might have had a few anxious moments, but Alan Marriott did not a save to make and the lad was five yards offside at the end for the disallowed goal so it was good defending and not even a chance. I felt we defended well but didn't make their keeper work hard enough from about 15 shots we had and I was critical of my forwards and wide players. But we played very well in the first half in the back yard of a team that were seven games unbeaten. We were able to bully them and show them what we are about. It's not a phrase I like as someone used it on me once but we 'footballed' them to death'".

    FA CUP

    Altrincham are away at Mansfield Town on saturday 24th October. TASC Travel Coordinator Tom Jacobs is organising a coach to the match. Tom writes, "Book your place now by calling the club or in the club shop on Saturday. Please only book if you sure of going, we managed four no shows for the Rushden game, you may stop someone else travelling". Details of the times and fares are on the Away Travel page.

    The full FA Cup draw for the 4th Qualifying Round is:

  • Hinckley United v Histon
  • Nuneaton Town v Guiseley or Kendal Town
  • FC Halifax Town v Wrexham
  • Gateshead v Alfreton Town or Southport
  • Workington v Rushden & Diamonds
  • Mansfield Town v Altrincham
  • Buxton or Bradford Park Avenue v Stourbridge or Hucknall Town
  • Salford City or Blyth Spartans v AFC Telford United or Worcester City
  • Ilkeston Town or Eastwood Town v Tamworth
  • Lincoln United or Frickley Athletic v Cambridge United
  • Kettering Town v Redditch United
  • Northwich Victoria v FC United of Manchester or Stalybridge Celtic
  • Barrow v Chester City
  • Kidderminster Harriers v Fleetwood Town
  • York City v Bedworth United
  • Hendon or Ashford Town (Middx) v Woking
  • Gloucester City v Lowestoft Town or Sutton Coldfield Town
  • Heybridge Swifts or Farnborough v Salisbury City
  • Truro City or Mangotsfield United v Forest Green Rovers
  • Crawley Town v AFC Wimbledon
  • Oxford City v Bury Town or Bedford Town
  • Bromley v Ebbsfleet United
  • Chelmsford City v Stevenage Borough
  • Aylesbury v Wealdstone
  • Dover Athletic v Eastleigh
  • Hayes & Yeading United v Staines Town
  • Luton Town v Grays Athletic
  • Oxford United v Thurrock
  • Bath City v AFC Totton
  • Paulton Rovers v Chippenham Town
  • Tooting & Mitcham United v Eastbourne Borough


    The referee for Altrincham v Luton Town this Saturday is Mr R. J. West. His previous Alty games include:
  • Kendal Town v Altrincham, 27 Oct 2007
  • Altrincham 3 Halifax Town 3, Blue Square Premier, 4 March 2008
  • Altrincham v Cambridge United, 22 Nov. 2008
  • Kettering Town v Altrincham, 3 March, 2009


    NL Daily reports that "Marine have announced that it has received notification from the Football Association that it has decided to charge four players with contravention of the FA’s rules on betting. Three of the players Paul Woolcott, Adam Farley and Freddie Potter, left Marine in the summer of 2009. Lee Parle had suffered a severe injury in October 2008 and had not played for a period of seven months before the Matlock Town game being investigated and has only returned to playing football at the start of the current season.

    This follows an investigation by the FA Compliance Unit into unusual betting patterns on the Matlock Town v Marine league game played on Saturday, 4th April 2009 in which Farley and Potter played and the Marine v Witton Albion league game played on Friday, 21st March 2008 in which none of the four players played".


    The FA confirms that Chris Senior will miss three matches following his dismissal last Saturday, whilst Luton's Rossi Jarvis will also miss the game at Moss Lane this Saturday through suspension. At the time of writing, Matt Doughty's ban had not been posted on the FA website.


    Mansfield Town's website has a video interview with manager David Holdsworth who "says Saturday's whirlwind match at Altrincham will make our FA Cup tie at home to the Robins extra tasty... The manager is in conversation with Mansfield 103.2's Tony Delahunty".

    The Stags add that "Right winger Craig Dobson has joined us on trial and is expected to play in a practice match... The 25 year old started his career at Crystal Palace and will perhaps be best known for his spell at Stevenage Borough, where he spent two years. Meanwhile, Luke Jones could make a sensational return to the squad this weekend after resuming training. The 22 year old turned his ankle on the training ground three weeks ago and it was feared that he may be out for six weeks... Injured strikers Grant Ryan and Jason Bradley will need operations, however, following their injuries. Striker Daryl Clare and midfielder Kyle Nix are still ill and are still recovering".


    The BBC says that "Chester have dropped their appeal against the 15-point penalty from the Football Conference... New chairman Ian Anderson told BBC Radio Merseyside: 'If we were strong financially, I'd say let's spend £100,000 and take on the appeal. But the money now needs to stay in Chester City Football Club'.... But despite not appealing against the points penalty, Anderson does hope the club can give financial support to new manager Jim Harvey to strengthen his squad... Anderson continued. 'I've had a meeting with the owner [Stephen Vaughan] and he assured me there is money available'".

    Meanwhile, "New Chester City manager Jim Harvey says he was pleased with his players despite their 1-0 defeat at home by Rushden & Diamonds on Saturday... 'There was plenty of effort and commitment', Harvey told BBC Radio Merseyside after the game... 'We're not top of the league - we're a team, trying to gain confidence and get some wins', he continued... 'I would think in another three or four weeks' time we'll be quite happy to play against [a team like] Rushden'".

    "Ebbsfleet boss Liam Daish has admitted the time has come to tell some of his players that they are not good enough to play in the Blue Square Premier... Daish told BBC Radio Kent: 'The squad's not good enough, the personnel's not good enough...There are a few young lads that I think are worth persevering with but too many players are not performing and it's costing us. I think there will be some to the point meetings during the week with personnel within the squad'".

    12 October 2009


    Altrincham FC will play Mansfield Town away at Mansfield in the FA Cup 4QR on Saturday October 24th.


    There is a match report on Altrincham FC Youth team's fine win in the FA Youth Cup on Sunday at Vauxhall Motors, in the Youth section.


    From This is Nottingham we read that "MAnager David Holdsworth has praised Mansfield Town's fans for their 'tremendous' support at Altrincham yesterday... 'I couldn't believe how many fans had made the journey across from Mansfield', said Holdsworth. [389 were recorded in the away terrace and there were others in the stands too]. 'They were shouting and singing for the whole game – and we appreciate it. They all got nervous at the end, but we were all the same'. Holdsworth insisted he was not worried in the final minute when Robbie Williams headed home for Altrincham to seemingly make it 2-2. He said: 'I knew straight away that he was offside because as a defender I knew to look straight across at the flag. We work hard on those situations and we defended correctly. I think Graham Heathcote (Altrincham manager) knew it was offside straight away too'".

    The Chad adds that "David Holdsworth experienced the whole range of emotions at Altrincham on Saturday as his side clung on for a 2-1 win against nine men... No one saw a close finish on the cards in what turned into a thriller. Holdsworth said: 'We have had the chances but we didn't finish them off so I have been quite critical of my forward players. We have not worked their keeper enough. The game should have been well and truly dead but Altrincham were still in it to the end. It just shows you at this level you have people not playing a higher level for a reason. And if they don't learn from their mistakes they will continue to play at this level and won't go any higher. Gary Silk made a poor judgement to be in midfield when there was no need – he has held his hands up. And my two central defenders got caught too narrow. Full credit to their forward who scored [substitute Aaron Burns], he ran his socks off throughout the game. I couldn't have been more delighted. I was very very pleased with the quality we showed and we were the far superior side. It was a wonderful first half for us.

    I don't like to talk about other team's players but if you raise your hands in this game and push someone in the face or head then the referee has a decision to make. At Kidderminster we had a referee decide that was only worth a yellow. There were a lot of challenges out there today and it was a niggly game so I was pleased we kept out discipline... But I must commend Altrincham today for the high level of spirit they showed. You could see they are a tight-knit bunch'...

    Defender Luke Graham said: 'We gave them a sloppy goal and got caught cold. A lot of the boys just switched off. Two went for the same ball and I got caught too high... I think we thought we were going to steamroller them when they went down to nine men. It just shows the spirit here and why they are high in the league. They will do well this season'...

    Steven Istead made his full debut in a 4-3-3- formation and added: 'This is a hard place to come to and we have got the points'"


    Matthew Wheeler kindly informs me from Australia that "Two Alty old boys came head to head this afternoon (Sunday) in the Australian A-League, as Central Coast Mariners drew 1-1 with North Queesnland Fury. James Robinson was a starter for the Fury, who made the long journey south to the Central Coast of New South Wales. After 14 seconds, the home team went 1-0 up, to the delight of the 8,043 spectators.

    Matty Crowell was sent on as a 71st minute substitute for the Mariners, and a few minutes later he could only watch as a Robbie Fowler corner eluded him and was nodded in by the Fury for an equaliser. In the 80th minute, a crunching tackle by Crowell on Robinson resulted in a free kick, and a word from the referee. The two players had a few words to say to each other too, although from the looks on their faces I doubt they were swapping stories about Moss Lane!

    Sadly, the game was a dismal affair, and not a good advertisement for the A-League".

    Stalybridge Celtic drew 3-3 with FCUM on SUnday in the FA Cup. Carlos Roca scored for FCUM before 2,819 fans at Gigg Lane. FCUM led 3-1 before Joe O`Neill scored twice; his second being a penalty.


    Alty will be without the suspended Chris Senior and Matt Doughty this Saturday but our opponents will also have a player banned. The Luton and Dunstable Express reports how against Kidderminster "Luton battled back from 1-0 down in a remarkable second half that saw Adam Newton hit a stunning equaliser before substitute Ryan Charles bagged the winner with 30 seconds remaining. The win kept up caretaker boss Alan Neilson’s 100 per cent record which looked severely under threat after a terrible first half marred by a red card for each team... Luton were thumping aimless balls forward to Tom Craddock and Ben Wright who simply aren’t built to deal with them.

    Tyler, not for the first time this season, kept his team in it when Duane Courtney looked to have doubled the lead on 28 minutes. It was typical of how in control of the game Kidderminster were that their smallest player rose highest in the penalty box to plant a header, that if not for a stunning low save to push away, would have nestled in the bottom corner.

    Then in one minute Rossi Jarvis went from hero to villain as he cleared Chris McPhee’s effort off the line. But then, a rash challenge in front of the dugouts from the Luton midfielder on the man he’d just thwarted earned him a straight red – the Hatters’ fifth of the season...

    When Claude Gnakpa came on for Ed Asafu-Adjaye in the 52nd minute Luton suddenly had an outlet and from the right side the Frenchman occupied cross after cross petrified the Kidderminster defence.. .Gnakpa’s umpteenth run down the wing saw the ball find Hall who crossed to the near post to Charles whose deft flick looped over Coleman to create rapturous scenes in front of the travelling support. Luton: Tyler, Asafu-Adjaye (Gnakpa 52), White, Pilkington, Murray (Howells, 87), Nicholls (c), Jarvis, Hall, Newton, Craddock, Wright (Charles, 61) SUBS: Gore, Blackett,

    And Luton Today agrees that "Supersub Gnakpa turns the tide".

    From Kidderminster Harriers we learn that "Harriers' boss Mark Yates was left angry at the end of a controversial day at Aggborough after watching his team slump to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Luton Town.. Of the two dismissals, he said: "I'll have a look at the video - I didn't see their sending off as I'd moved out of the way but I heard it - his ankle and shin pad. But, and I don't like criticising [referees], he has reacted to the crowd'...

    It may have been ten v ten but there was an extra set-back for Harriers - the challenge that saw Luton's Rossi Jarvis given his marching orders also forced skipper Chris McPhee off with injury".

    Luton Town themselves report that "Thrilled caretaker manager Alan Neilson thought his side were full value for their 2-1 victory... [He said] 'The lads that came in affected the whole game, Claude, Rio and Jake' he said. 'Claude [Gnapka]'s asset is getting forwards. He got at their left-back all the time'... He said: 'For Rossi's sending off I think I will look at the footage but definitely appeal it. He definitely caught the lad but didn't jump in and stayed on his feet. Their red was very harsh. It was straight after our sending off and it was at our end and our fans got on his back and he sent him off... I'm just getting on with the job in hand and letting 2020 and the directors get on and find their man'".

    11 October 2009


    Altrincham FC Youth advanced to the next round of the FA Youth Cup with a hard-earned away win at Vauxhall Motors on Sunday morning. After falling behind early in the game, Alty got level when Blaine Whiteside seized on a poor back pass and rounded the keeper to score. Substitute Joel Brownhill secured the win with a left-foot shot, late in the game. Alty now travel To Stalybridge Celtic in the next round, in w/c 19 October 2009. Report to follow.

    Right: Alty captain Dan Shaw battles for midfield possession at Vauxhall.


    Mark Maddox recently took over as manager at Formby in the Vodkat (NW Counties) league; he has now been joined by Gary Scott who has signed forms for the club.

    Kieran Lugsden scored both of Buxton's goals as they drew 2-2 with BPA in the FA Cup. In the UniBond Premier, Jake Sedgemore netted for Nantwich Town against North Ferriby United, and Steve Aspinall scored one of Colwyn Bay's goals in their away win at Harrogate Railway.


    The draw for the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round, at which stage Altrincham enter the competition, is to be made on Monday (12th). In the FAC3QR, the results in the northern section were as follows; as you will see the north includes parts of East Anglia!
  • Fleetwood Town 3 - 2 Vauxhall Motors
  • Northwich Victoria 4 - 1 Chorley
  • Buxton 2 - 2 Bradford (Park Avenue)
  • Guiseley AFC 1 - 1 Kendal Town
  • Workington 3 - 0 Radcliffe Borough
  • Alfreton Town 2 - 2 Southport
  • FC Halifax Town 1 - 0 Burscough
  • Lincoln United 1 - 1 Frickley Athletic
  • Cambridge City 0 - 5 Hinckley United
  • Solihull Moors 0 - 2 Redditch United
  • Stourbridge 0 - 0 Hucknall Town
  • Bury Town 1 - 1 Bedford Town
  • Coventry Sphinx 0 - 1 Bedworth United
  • Lowestoft Town 0 - 0 Sutton Coldfield Town
  • AFC Telford United 0 - 0 Worcester City
  • Nuneaton Town 1 - 0 Gainsborough Trinity
  • Ilkeston Town 1 - 1 Eastwood Town


    After Saturday's game Mansfield Town reported that "Town put a halt to Altrincham's seven match unbeaten run in a fiery contest at Moss Lane which saw the home side reduced to nine men. In an extraordinary match which saw referee Andy Halladay the centre of attention, Stags should have killed the game off long before the final whistle, but ultimately they had to settle for a nervy finale... It was a match to set the pulses racing, and never short of incident. Manager David Holdsworth was delighted with the points yet disappointed in his strikers' lack of ruthlessness in front of goal... On 27 minutes, Altrincham lost their cool after Gary Silk was fouled on the far side. The mêlée to follow resulted in the referee brandishing a red card to Chris Senior after an attack on Kyle Perry. Nicky Clee and Matt Doughty also went into the notepad, but under the 'yellow card' column...

    But Alty weren't prepared to lie down and die despite their numerical disadvantage and they were unlucky not to equalise ten minutes from half time. Shaun Densmore's inch perfect cross from the right was superbly headed onto the underside of the bar by Colin Little and onto the goal line, where Mansfield managed to scramble clear...

    Altrincham were dealt another set back on 53 minutes when they were reduced to nine men. Gary Silk fouled Matt Doughty on the right, and Silk went into the referee's book. As did Doughty, for the second time... Altrincham were handed a lifeline when Burns broke the offside trap halfway inside the Stags' half. Colin Little slipped him in through the middle and the backtracking Paul Heckingbottom was unable to chase him as Burns finished coolly... Alty hearts were broken in the dying moments when they put the ball in the back of the net, only to be ruled out for offside".

    Various statistics of the game have appeared. For example ESPN have as the foul count Alty 7 Mansfield 18; the NL Paper has Alty 10, Mansfield 22.

    This is Nottingham tells us that Mansfield "made much harder work than it should have been against nine-man Altrincham... But once Aaron Burns pulled a goal back in the 64th minute, Mansfield were suddenly looking nervy. The home side battled on until the end and were unlucky not to level in the closing stages when Robbie Williams' header was ruled offside... Skipper Mills was the first player booked in the 13th minute as he scythed into the back of Chris Denham close to the halfway line". Denham was unable to complete the first half. The Chad calculates that "Adding to the two red cards, there were also nine yellow cards in a passionate encounter". NL Paper stats show that this season Altrincham have committed the least fouls of any team in the BSP, whilst Mansfield's total is the fourth highest.

    The BBC has an interview with the Mansfield manager.

    10 October 2009


    Right: Mansfield's Marriott claims the ball in the first half.

    Altrincham paid the price for two defensive errors in a game where once again the referee became a major talking point. It was not that Mr Halliday sent off Chris Senior, who ill advisedly ran 15 yards to push Perry in the chest, who collapsed like a felled oak. Nor was it that he dismissed Matt Doughty for an alleged kick, which earned him a second yellow card, but the referee's general failure to clamp down in the first half on Mansfield's rugged approach to the game (18 fouls in the game to Alty's 7) meant that one or two Mansfield players stayed on the pitch whose cumulative fouls should have earned them an early bath. Four of Mansfield's five bookings only came after the score had reached 2-0.

  • Match report here

  • League table
  • Alty player stats
  • Alty line-ups and bookings


    Saturday 10 Oct.-
  • Altrincham 1 Mansfield Town 2
  • Cambridge United 4 Ebbsfleet United 0
  • Chester City 0 Rushden & Diamonds 1
  • Crawley Town 0 Barrow 1
  • Forest Green 2 AFC Wimbledon 5
  • Gateshead 3 Eastbourne Borough 0
  • Kidderminster Harriers 1 Luton Town 2
  • Oxford United 5 Grays Athletic 0
  • Salisbury City 1 York City 0
  • Stevenage Borough 4 Hayes & Yeading Utd 0
  • Tamworth 1 Histon 3
  • Through the Years by Howard Watts


    Alty's joint press officer, John Edwards writes:

    "Trying to plot Mansfield's downfall may well be Graham Heathcote's main concern tomorrow (Saturday), but he will be keeping an eye on at least one other result after booking Dale Johnson (right) in for a scan on his injured knee. The Alty striker is Heathcote's only remaining injury concern, after Robbie Lawton, Colin Little, Greg Young and Michael Welch all appeared on the bench against Rushden and Diamonds last Saturday and on-loan forward Aaron Burns was passed fit during the week after being ruled out at Nene Park with a head wound.

    Speaking to the club's official website, Alty's manager said: 'Dale hurt his knee when a Grays defender went through the back of him, but we don't know the exact nature or extent of the injury. He will have a scan on Saturday morning, and we will see how we go from there.

    'It is good to be getting players back, and, in theory, it should make us stronger than ever. I say in theory, because the slight danger is that, while adversity often brings the best out of players, and clearly has done with ours in recent weeks, you can start thinking the pressure is off when things finally take a turn for the better. It is vital we guard against that and make sure our resolve doesn't lessen one bit. Now we've got almost all the players back, I want to see them fighting for places and showing a real desire to build on what we have done so far.

    It is just as important people turn out in numbers to support the team. I can't stress enough how much I appreciate the backing of those who turn up on a regular basis, but it would be great to see the lads stepping out in front of 1,200 or so every home game. It would make a real difference, because I know for a fact the players respond positively to being before a big crowd'.

    Heathcote described how visiting teams are now heading for Moss Lane with a different perception of Alty after the way last season's upturn in fortunes has soared to even greater heights this term. 'There has been a bit of disappointment about the number of draws we've had at home,' he said. 'The injury problems haven't helped, because there's no question we have missed Colin Little's ability to grab a goal, but there is more to it than that.

    'A lot of full-time clubs used to come here with an expectation that they were going to take the points. The thinking seemed to be "it's only part-time Alty", but that has changed. They have seen what we have done and are coming here now with a different mentality. They still want the points, but they arrive now knowing they've got a job to do. Teams are coming here with a more disciplined approach and are making it more difficult for us to break them down. It's a compliment in a way, I suppose, but it's something we've got to deal with. It's another challenge for us, and I hope we can meet it'".

    The BBC says that "Defender Luke Jones remains missing for Mansfield because of a long-term ankle injury and... Midfielder Kyle Nix and striker Daryl Clare are struggling with illness but goalkeeper Alan Marriott should be fit". The BBC wrongly adds that "Alty are currently on their best league run for 10 years having been unbeaten in their last seven games". They went 14 unbeaten in the Conference in 1999-2000.

    Mansfield Town themselves confirm that "Midfielder Kyle Nix and striker Daryl Clare have both been hit by a bug which has kept them from training. The pair are currently classed as 'very doubtful' to feature in tomorrow's tie at in-form Altrincham. Meanwhile Craig Armstrong is on the mend after a recent hamstring problem, while Alan Marriott is back in training after a recent viral condition". In a video interview on the Mansfield site, manager Holdsworth confirmed that Leicester City had recalled loan player Levi Powell and that, as of Friday, Clare and Nix were out of Saturday's game. They have been kept away from training to prevent their infection passing to other players.


    Altrincham have an important match against Mansfield Town today (Saturday) but manager Graham Heathcote nevertheless found time to promote the club in two major ways on Friday.

    He was interviewed live on Friday evening on Manchester's Channel M television station, where he paid tribute to his team who have got Altrincham into eighth place despite an extensive injury list, which at one point totalled eight players. Sometimes, Graham said, when things are against you, it can breed team spirit and that might even have been helped by the many injuries. However, referring to four league draws this season at Moss Lane, Graham added "We've got to improve our home form. It is a mark of respect from away teams that they have come and made it difficult for us", rather than just expecting to come and "roll us over".

    Asked about competing with full-time clubs, Graham pointed out that our budget is "miles apart" from the likes of Oxford United and that Altrincham players, when they have a Saturday and a Tuesday game only come together for another hour each week for Thursday night training, after work. However, he underlined that "There are no Real Madrids in our league" as he pointed out that "If you get a set of lads willing to give everything for 90 minutes, you've got a chance against anyone".

    On the financial front Graham saluted the "army of volunteers at Alty who make us a really professional outfit". He explained how a lot of effort goes on outside the ninety minutes on the pitch to raise funds and he cited the recent Ricky Ponting dinner as a prime example of that. Asked if he harboured ambitions to join League Two, Graham pointed to Macclesfield and Accrington who have had problems trying to survive on small gates since going up. Whilst obviously aspiring to League Two, promotion for Altrincham "would give everyone a headache", Graham joked. The manager also said that he was keen to do well in the FA Cup both "for the finance and the public exposure". "The FA Cup is full of dreams" he added before the interviewer reminded him that he had scored against Liverpool in the FA Cup in front of The Kop, to which the Alty boss modestly replied "Goalkeepers couldn't move before penalties were taken in those days!".

    Before his Channel M interview, Graham had spent much of the day entertaining three Year 1 groups from St. Vincent's School, Altrincham, who were at Moss Lane for their annual visit. As well as regaling them with amusing stories and entertaining them by showing them the club trophies, Graham got each school to see how loud they could chant for Alty. Moving further and further away from them on the pitch as they chanted, Graham indicated the point at which he could not hear them, which caused the children great amusement and brought out their competitive streak. The final group were awarded the accolade of shouting the loudest. All the children were given a free ticket to come to Moss Lane in the next month or two and, hopefully, some of them will become Altrincham FC fans for life.

    And Graham should also have received a phone call today as The Chad reports that "Mansfield radio station boss Tony Delahunty may be banned from tomorrow's Stags match at Altrincham. Delahunty, who has covered Mansfield Town all season home and away for 103.2, appears to have upset 'Alty' manager Graham Heathcote in his previews to the BSP match at Moss Lane on Saturday - which features two clubs in the top eight.

    The 103.2 boss asked Heathcote for his views on the Stags' former Football League status and then later mentioned the manager's comments in an interview with Stags' David Holdsworth. Heathcote - who doesn't speak to newspaper reporters after a match - watched that interview on Mansfield Town's official website and then issued a statement on the Altrincham FC website saying: 'I look forward to seeing this reporter on Saturday at Moss Lane, if we let him in'...

    Delahunty, who has never been banned from a ground after covering football for 30 years - including broadcasting live from the Bradford City and Hillsborough disasters - told Chad on Friday morning: 'I didn't intend to upset anyone. I thought Graham Heathcote did an excellent interview from his point of view. It is unfortunate that he has taken umbridge when I put his views to David Holdsworth. It promises to be a cracking game and I hope this difference of opinion will be buried. I have never been banned before so that would be a first, but I will ring Graham this morning. This deserves a conversation at least!'".


    Ian Senior, Alty's goalkeeping coach and kit supplier, (through his Sensport Kits company), confirms that in this week's international at Moss Lane, the Scotland fire brigades team beat England 2-1, courtesy of a last minute penalty. An enthusiatic crowd of about 200 watched the game, including 150 local schoolchildren.


    The Football Conference "conducted a hearing at its Birmingham Offices on Friday (9th October) to consider a charge against Gateshead FC. This was for a breach of Rule 8.6 - "failing to fulfill an engagement", following the abandonment the above fixture. A panel of independent members found the charge proved and made the following decisions:-.
    1. The club was found guilty of 'failure to fulfil an engagement' by being responsible for the above match being abandoned by the referee.
    2. The result of the match is to stand.
    3. The club is deducted one point, in accordance with Rule 8.6.
    4. The club is fined £2,500. The fine is suspended until the club’s final match in the Football Conference in the 2009/10 season, subject to a similar breach of Rule not being repeated.
    5. The club has the right of Appeal in accordance with Rule 17.4 within 14 days from the date of the written notice of this decision.

    The BBC says that "Even Sir Alex Ferguson or Arsene Wenger, never mind Jim Harvey, would baulk at the prospect of making sense of Chester City under the current style of ownership... The events of the last few weeks epitomise the malaise at the heart of the club which once upon a time announced Ian Rush to the world and nowadays just craves stability and continuity after owner Stephen Vaughan installed Jim Harvey as his 11th manager in eight seasons... Managing director Bob Gray revealed a projected loss of more than £600,000 for this season, and claimed that unless new investment was found the club would go out of business in a matter of weeks. When word went round that September's salary cheques had bounced, as well as the cheque to pay for the team bus to Hayes and Yeading, the reality seemed even more perilous.

    Then on 6 October, Harvey - previously prince of Prenton Park in his Tranmere Rovers playing career and more recently boss of Morecambe and Forest Green - was appointed amid familiar pledges of funding for new players. At the same time, Vaughan strenuously denied the club was in danger, claiming he did not know how his managing director had produced the figures.

    And in a move surely calculated to indicate progress, club director Ian Anderson was appointed chairman on Thursday evening. However Vaughan, the outright owner, does not have a seat on the board after resigning nearly two years ago... Even those with short memories will recall similar promises about new signings made to Mark Wright in his third incarnation as Chester boss last season... Disillusionment and apathy are taking hold with a potentially fatal erosion of an already small support base...

    It's understood that an official at the club gave a personal guarantee that all football debts would be cleared by the middle of October. Time is almost up but how much money's gone down to meet the deadline?... Reports that the former York City chairman, John Batchelor, with plans for rebranding as Harchester Rovers or even Red Bull Chester City, was prepared to pay in excess of £1m might explain why Vaughan appears in no rush for an exit".

    Nevertheless, Bullsnews reports that "Chester have signed former Bulls striker Mark Beesley on loan from Cambridge. He worked with Jimmy Harvey at Forest Green".

    They may have been relegated last season, but The Surrey Advertiser reports that "Woking are making an audacious bid to lure veteran Dutch star Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink to Kingfield. The former Chelsea and Leeds United hotshot, now 37, has had talks with Cards chairman Shahid Azeem and may sign for the Blue Square South outfit in the next week if a deal can be thrashed out. Hasselbaink’s list of clubs also includes Atlético Madrid, Middlesbrough, Charlton and – most recently – Cardiff City, for whom he appeared in the 2008 FA Cup final... Azeem confirmed there had been dialogue after he was introduced to Hasselbaink... He said, 'Jimmy has admitted he’s not fit enough and hopefully we can help him. He is living locally now and I have invited him to the game on Saturday if he is not doing his TV work".

    9 October 2009


    Centre-back Robbie Williams will join assistant manager Ken McKenna and defender Michael Welch as a guest at the New Recruits evening on Saturday week (17th) in the Manchester Glass Ltd Sponsors' Lounge at Moss Lane. To get your ticket (£15), which includes a hot meal as well as a chance to put your questions to the guests, please ring the club on 0161 928-1045. Graham Heathcote will compere the event in his inimitable style, so it is bound to be a very entertaining evening.


    Graham Heathcote (right), the Altrincham manager, has responded to a video interview (details below) between Mansfield's 103.2 radio station and Mansfield boss, David Holdsworth.

    On Thursday, Graham issued the following statement to the Altrincham FC website:

    "In response to a video I have listened to, I need to put the record straight in relation to the reporter from Mansfield 103.2 who rang this week to ask my view on Mansfield Town. You'd think I would have learnt by now not to bother speaking to any of these press people as they put a slant on a conversation that wasn't there.

    This reporter later did a video interview with David Holdsworth and said to him that I "snapped back" at him in this interview about our aims. This is totally untrue. I would know if I snapped back at him. Why would I? He said that I said that I don't respect League or ex-League clubs. I was saying that they [Mansfield] come to us as a non-League club and the fact that they have been a League club is irrelevant. I totally respect every club we play against and always will.

    I said a lot of the ex-League clubs are in non-League because they have had problems, invariably off the pitch. We had this same sort of problem [at Altrincham, in the past]. The way it was put to David Holdsworth, he [the reporter] interpreted that maybe I was "attention-seeking". The reporter doesn't know me at all. I am the only manager in the Conference who does not speak to the papers after games - because of a report about a game at the end of the season before last.

    I did this reporter a favour again. I should have learnt. He has been a bit naughty and tried to paint me as disrespectful to other clubs, something I am not or ever will be.

    I look forward to seeing this reporter on Saturday at Moss Lane, if we let him in".

    Graham's response was prompted by an audio interview on the Mansfield Town site, which reports that "Manager David Holdsworth is in confident mood as we head to Altrincham this Saturday. He is in conversation with Mansfield 103.2's Managing Director Tony Delahunty".

    Meanwhile, Blue Square Football says that "Mansfield Town manager David Holdsworth has revealed that former Leyton Orient defender Alton Thelwell is currently on trial at Field Mill. The former England under-21 international was released by the O's at the end of last season... 29-year-old Thelwell featured for the Stags in a practice game earlier this week and Holdsworth... told This Is Nottingham: 'At the moment we are not great in terms of numbers in central defence with Luke Jones out for another two to three weeks. Like Paul Heckingbottom, Alton is someone who has experience and Paul showed how important that can be in his first game back last week... I will have a closer look before making up my mind'".


    Above - Few changes can be expected in the Altrincham line-up against Mansfield this Saturday from the players who lined up at Rushden last week though both Greg Young and Colin Little came back into the reckoning last week. Above, left to right, is the starting eleven at Rushden; Tom Kearney, Matt Doughty, Shaun Densmore, Chris Denham, Nicky Clee, Robbie Williams, Chris Senior, Sam Sheridan, Anthony Danylyk, Stuart Coburn and, as in every game, last in the line is James Smith, who has taken over that pre-match superstition from Mark McGregor.

    It is unlikely that there will be the usual match updates on this site during Saturday afternoon; your correspondent is recovering from a cartilage operation which makes using a laptop a bit awkward! Hopefully normal service will resume for the visit of Luton Town on 17th October.


    The latest monthly Friends of Altrincham FC draw has produced the following winners:
    1. Bryan Ford £100
    2. Pete Hughes £35
    3. Graham Jackett £15

    Follow the above link to see how you, too, can support the club and be ebtered in the monthly draw.


    Altrincham FC Youth are away at Vauxhall Motors this Sunday (11am at Rivacre Park) in the FA Youth Cup. The winners now know their opposition in the next round as, on Wednesday evening, Stalybridge Celtic won 5-4 a.e.t. at the Racecourse. Wrexham reported that "It was another epic encounter against Celtic, which followed a similar pattern to last year's clash, with both games going into extra time before the away side finally triumphed". Stalybridge had been trailing 4-2.


    Alty's joint Press Officer, John Edwards, has contributed the following which should appear in the same or similar form in the Sale & Altrincham Messenger...

    "Graham Heathcote has called for a combined effort from players and supporters to help turn a season rich in promise into one of the most memorable in Altrincham's recent history. The Alty manager made an impassioned plea for the whole town to play a part in ensuring his side's early momentum is maintained after they made it seven games without defeat with a 1-0 win at Rushden and Diamonds.

    Speaking ahead of Saturday's home game with Mansfield, he said: 'It's no fluke if you are in the top eight after 15 games, but the question now is what happens next. I've had sides in the past who have got themselves into good positions, albeit not this high, but have fallen away, rather than pushing on. I happen to believe these players are better than that and are capable of remaining where they are, or even going a bit higher. But they have to make that a reality. There can be no easing up and thinking the pressure is off, and I have spoken to them about what their ambitions need to be.

    The next two games, at home to Mansfield and Luton, are absolutely vital in terms of players' attitude and support from the terraces. I want to see a belief that we can compete with the so-called top teams and give them a game. It's Oxford after that and the aim must be to go there, having made a statement about sticking around near the top.

    It has to be a combined effort, with everyone, from the players and staff to people in and around the town, pulling together and showing the same desire to keep going in the right direction. This run has to end sometime, but there is no reason why it can't go on for a while yet. I have nothing but the highest praise for the fans who keep turning up and getting behind the team, but I would love to see us push on from 800-900 to around 1,200'.

    .' On international weekend, Alty are offering Premier League and Football League season-ticket holders £5 admission, on production of their ticket and ID, via main stand turnstile six.


    Steve Foster of TASC writes:

    Altrincham F.C. in association with TASC and Ideas4Alty are pleased to announce an exciting new form of the “My Square” pitch sponsorship for the 2009/2010 season.

    The “My Square” pitch sponsorship scheme gives Alty fans the chance to sponsor their own little square of the Moss Lane pitch for a whole season for as little as £3!! What better way to be a part of your club and show your support for the Robins? Once again, a draw will take place at the end of the season and one lucky winner will receive a very special prize – their very own square of Moss Lane turf to plant at home in their garden! What better way to add a permanent piece of Moss Lane to your home? You will also receive a nice bottle of champagne to toast your victory!

    For full details, visit the My Square page.


    Darren Gregory, Health & Safety Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Would you like free entrance to the next two home games? Altrincham FC is looking for a volunteer car park supervisor to oversee the car park at the back of the Popular Side. You won't miss the match as you are only required between 1pm and 2.45pm. Free entry to match. If interested, please contact the club on 928-1045 asap".


    Thursday afternoon's international at Moss Lane between the English and Scottish fire brigades' representative sides was watched by a sizeable number of vociferous local schoolchildren from Altrincham C of E, Oldfield Brow and Gorse Hill primaries who provided lively support to the two sides.


    From the Chester Chronicle we learn that "The last seven days have been full of chaos and confusion for Chester City fans, with the sacking of Mick Wadsworth followed by reports that the club is only weeks away from closure... and angry Blues supporters are demanding answers from club owner Stephen Vaughan.

    We put Vaughan on the spot and asked him the questions that you, the fans, have been wanting him to answer.

    Q: In the Non-League Paper on Sunday there was a report that said the club is to fold in the 'next few weeks'. Is this the case?

    SV: It’s absolute nonsense... I’ve not read or seen the Non-League Paper since we first came out of non-league in 2004. So I can rubbish that report immediately.

    Q: But the quotes did come from the club’s managing director Bob Gray. Have you spoken to him about it?

    SV: I’ve spoken to Bob and he can’t recall making them exact quotes and I’m sure if you spoke to Bob Gray he would be willing to rectify that situation.

    Q: The club has projected their profit and loss figures for the season and, with a projected £660,000 loss, surely the fans have the right to be worried?

    SV: The profit and loss account came from a forecasted figure. We’ve had complaints from supporters that we haven’t kept them in the loop, so for the first time we decided to publish the accounts. The figures are the worst-case scenario. Immediately we can rubbish £100,000 from that from the management team that has just left the club. We’ve also not accounted for an FA Cup or FA Trophy run, the sale of any players or the fact that the support, if we can put some results in, will improve and that will help with the loss quite dramatically. It is the worst-case scenario but we’ve been truthful and honest...

    The club has been accused of being mismanaged... you tell me a club in this country that isn’t managed in the same way. It’s speculating to accumulate. Unfortunately for Chester City, since we got back into the Football League, it’s gone wrong for the last five seasons...

    The club is not for sale... We’re looking for Jim Harvey to bring in a number of players, which will be funded by the board of directors, and hopefully he’ll pull it around".

    As for Jim Harvey "Forest Green were in a right mess financially when he took over there, but he helped rectify that situation by bringing in decent players, got them out of trouble and obviously the finances improved because of the results on the park. And that’s what we’ve brought Jim Harvey in to do here".

    According to This is Glos "Andy Mangan will be welcomed back to Forest Green Rovers with open arms once he has served his betting ban. So says new Rovers' boss Dave Hockaday, who must do without the prolific striker until December 22 after an unsuccessful appeal against a five-month suspension and £2,000 fine. Mangan, who scored 30 goals in all competitions last season, has been unable to play or even train with Rovers since being found guilty of betting on a victory for Bury against Accrington Stanley in the final game of the 2007-08 season. A Bury player at the time, the 23-year-old was alleged to have placed £3,500 on his team to win at Accrington – which they duly did 2-0.

    Mangan has still to sign a new one-year contract offered by Rovers during the close season, but Hockaday is expecting the 'fox in the box' to pull on a black and white shirt again. The manager said... "It (the verdict) came as no surprise. We get him back in late December, so we'll get him trained up and get him playing and see what he's got. Everyone has told me he's a fox in the box, and in every game we've played since I've been here we've created good chances and not taken as many as I'd like... We need a killer instinct and maybe Andy can provide that'".

    At Barrow "Darren Sheridan & Dave Bayliss are chasing an un-named Championship winger ahead of the trip to Crawley. With Malvin Kamara having gone to the United States for trials, the pair are keen to fill the gap he has created. The wing play of Kamara and Neil Wainwright were key to the recent improvement which saw a victory over Mansfield and draw against Oxford. The managers are waiting to hear back from the club concerned and would like a deal tied up today or early tomorrow".

    "Ben Osman is to leave the Ray Mac after asking to be released" say Salisbury City. "Whites' manager Tommy Widdrington said the non-contract player departs with the club's blessing".

    8 October 2009


    Blue Square Football reports that "Chester City owner Stephen Vaughan is adamant that he has made the correct choice in appointing Jim Harvey as the club's new manager... Vaughan told The Leader: 'There have been a number of decent names who have raised their heads for the Chester job, and one of them was Jim Harvey. I've made a lot of mistakes during my time at Chester and I've rushed into making appointments and brought previous managers back, but Jim Harvey has always shown an interest and he's moved back to the area to live in Bebington. He has vast experience of football at Conference level and people now have to understand that we are a Conference club. I've known Jim for a number of years and I've appointed him because I feel he can keep the club in this division... He's worked before with a small budget and he's got a brief from me to go out and sign players in time for our home match on Saturday against Rushden and Diamonds... Jim will be assisted by Tim Ryan."

    Chester First reports that "Jim Harvey insisted he wanted to bring a smile back to Chester fans’ faces. The 51-year-old said: 'It’s better working than not working, so that was one reason why I had the motivation to come to Chester and take the job on. But the Chester job was one that I have been interested in over a number of years. I worked here in the early 1990s when Graham Barrow was at Chester, but unfortunately he couldn’t take me on at that time... I know it’s not going to be easy, but I’m just delighted to be back in work again because I love my job and it’s not very nice when you’re not working'...

    He added: 'I’ve still got to talk to Stephen Vaughan about the possibility of strengthening the current squad by bringing players in. I am a little bit short on numbers in the squad at the moment and we may need some players to come into the squad, but I’ll have a good look around the squad first before making my mind up.. Both Morecambe and Forest Green were at the lowest they could be when I joined them'".

    There are two long-term injuries at Grays Athletic where "Following further medical tests, the injury to Lee McEvilly is likely to place him out of action until the beginning of next year [and] Adriano Rigoglioso has a long term injury and is unlikely to play this season; therefore the club are seeking a settlement to terminate his contract with the club".

    At Crawley Town the "Football Club are delighted to confirm that striker Calum Willock has signed with the Reds until January 2010... Big Calum’s performances for The Reds have attracted interest from two Blue Square Premier clubs in the past few days but despite this interest, the player has this morning put pen to paper on the contract extension and all Reds fans will be delighted that his immediate future is with Crawley".


    AFC Fylde lost 0-3 to Trafford for whom Scott Metcalfe scored. In the Abbey Hey 1 New Mills 7 game, Danny Heffernan scored against his former club. Mark Maddox's Formby lost 1-0 at St Helens Town in the Vodkat Premier.

    Welsh Premier reports that "Bangor City striker Ashley Stott is at the centre of a row after Beautiful South star Paul Heaton's Sunday football team were ordered to hand back a trophy they won after breaking the rules. Hardly Athletic, whose players include the famous singer, will have to return the Manchester Amateur Sunday League's Diamond Cup together with all 16 winners' medals as well as being fined £50 and warned of their future conduct.

    The Davyhulme club admitted fielding an ineligible player in the 40-team pre-season tournament played in Stretford last month after being called on to face the music by the MASL, who refused to name the player... But the Manchester Evening News has revealed that the man involved is City [and former Altrincham Reserves] frontman Stott.

    In an apparent bid to hide from Bangor that he was playing Sunday football, Stott used his mother's name to take part in the Diamond Cup as Ashley Ince - the name under which Hardly had previously registered him with the MASL. Stott starred throughout the one-day competition, scoring both goals in Athletic's 2-0 final victory over Withington Posh, but suspicions were raised when he refused to be photographed celebrating Hardly's success alongside his triumphant team-mates. Stott, who has scored 31 goals from 63 Welsh Premier appearances for Bangor, returned to Farrar Road this summer after a season away with Halifax Town".

    7 March 2009


    Tuesday 6 Oct.
  • Tamworth 2 York City 3
  • League table

    Altrincham drop to eighth and our next opponents, Mansfield Town, drop to fifth.


    Sarah Rowley advises that the "Altrincham FC Pontoon competition raised £500 for the club which is going to be put towards covering the cost of the Sky Sports package, recently installed at Moss Lane. We are going to launch a new Pontoon competition, which is going to start on 1st December 2009. We are therefore appealing to all fans to participate and take a team in the Pontoon by November 30th. The money raised from this second pontoon will also go towards the Sky Sports costs". Bar revenue from the televised claims will be an important earner for the Club.

    Sarah adds that "The All Change for Alty Scheme has currently raised over £800. If anyone still has a tin to bring back, please bring it into the offices in the week or give it in to Sarah Rowley or to the club shop on a matchday. If anyone would like to take a tin, please call into the offices".


    The Treasurer's Report in the TASC minutes for August inidicate that The Altrincham Supporters' Club has now raised an excellent £8,314 for the club. Thanks are due to the hard working committee and all of the members who have supported TASC's initiatives. If you are not a member, why not join now? Visit the TASC area of the club shop on match days or ring the club on 928-1045.


    Whilst Altrincham seek to extend their unbeaten run to eight games on Saturday, our opponents are seeking to end a sequence of three successive away defeats. "Mansfield Town must not give up on winning automatic promotion back to the Football League, first team coach Gareth Holmes insisted" to This is Nottingham. "Holmes says... 'There has to be an ambition to reel in the leaders even though Oxford have started very well... It is good to have a look at Oxford because that is where we want to be. It is important to get our home and away form to that kind of standard. The gap to them at the moment is ten points but we are looking to rein that in. There is a really positive vibe in the dressing room'. After a succession of midweek games, Holmes is pleased to have a full five days to prepare for away games against Altrincham on Saturday and Eastbourne the following week. The Stags are out to prove they can pick up points away from Field Mill after their last three trips have ended in defeats".

    The referee for Altrincham v Mansfield this Saturday is Mr Andy Halliday. Coincidentally, a week after Alty's win at Nene Park, he handled last year's Rushden v Altrincham match which was televised. He also officiated the Torquay v Altrincham game in 2007-08 and Barrow v Altrincham last season.

    Altrincham's current run of seven games without defeat in the Conference is their best since their 14-game run in 1999-2000. Despite that great achievement, Altrincham were relegated in 1999-2000, which must make it the best-ever unbeaten record by a demoted side. One reason for the relegation was that the 14 games included 11 draws! In the period covered by these eleven league games Alty also played three FAT games, and a league cup match, with their only defeat being in a FAT penalty shoot out against Southport. The Conference run ended with a 5-0 thrashing at Hednesford and the season concluded with eleven games without a win

  • 9/10/99 (A) TELFORD UNITED 1-0
  • 23/10/99 (A) WELLING UNITED 2-2
  • 6/11/99 (H) HEREFORD UNITED 2-1
  • 14/11/99 (A) KETTERING TOWN 0-0
  • 20/11/99 (H) MORECAMBE 2-2
  • 30/11/99 (H) NUNEATON BOROUGH 2-2
  • 4/12/99 (A) DOVER ATHLETIC 2-2
  • 18/12/99 (H) FOREST GREEN ROVERS 1-1
  • 27/12/99 (A) NORTHWICH VICTORIA 1-1
  • 3/1/00 (H) NORTHWICH VICTORIA 2-0
  • 8/1/00 (A) FOREST GREEN ROVERS 1-1
  • 22/1/00 (A) HEREFORD UNITED 2-2
  • 29/1/00 (A) STEVENAGE BOROUGH 1-1
  • 1/2/00 (H) TELFORD UNITED 3-3

    £4,500 TO BE WON FOR £1

    The Altrincham FC Saturday Yankee jackpot now stands at £4,500 and will be capped at £5,000. Prize money will continue to accrue until someone wins the jackpot and that additional money will roll over into the next jackpot. So that ensures that there should be more big money prizes to be won in future weeks. To join, visit the Yankee page for details.

    Last week there were five winning trebles each awarded £40. The unissued winning code was 1729.


    At Moss Lane on Thursday, October 8th, kick off 2pm there is international football when England Fire Services meet Scotland Fire Services. Spectators are welcome.


    The local firemen were sadly involved in more serious business this week as NL Daily reports that "Salford City, already reeling from the FA decision to make the club play their FA Cup Second Qualifying Round tie, despite opponents Hyde United failing to fulfil the fixture on 26th September due to their financial problems, were dealt a second even more severe blow in the early hours of last Sunday morning when arsonists set fire to the clubhouse destroying the building which was not insured due to the nature of its construction.

    The club are working now to get makeshift accommodation for visiting club officials in the immediate future but, although games will be able to go ahead at the ground, facilities will be restricted. The club desperately need help and are asking all their friends and people who have a love of football to contact them with any offers of help at or phone secretary Bill Taylor on 07989 800231".

    The next round of the FA Vase, on Saturday, 14th November, includes the following local teams

  • Winsford United v Pickering Town
  • Crook Town v Bacup Borough
  • Nelson v Morpeth Town
  • Daisy Hill v Armthorpe Welfare
  • Glossop North End v Dunston UTS
  • Whitley Bay v Alsager Town
  • Cheadle Town or Congleton Town v Shildon
  • New Mills v Tividale


    Ebbsfleet United "stand to benefit from an injection of funds with money from the Premiership solidarity payment as well as additional transfer fees from the John Akinde sale now coming into play. And although this will boost Liam Daish's total budget by £14,000, Fleet chairman Duncan Holt is keen to emphasise that additional funds are required for the playing budget, given the Fleet's start to the season.

    In a joint statement issued to MyFC members, Holt and Daish underlined the importance of strengthening the squad".

    Holt writes "I think we now know the reality of how tough this season will be... The [lost] TV money still leaves a £30-40k hole in our budget, we are £10k down on projected gates. Commercially we are £25,000 light in a tough environment at the moment. Now we have £10,000 coming into the general budget from John Akinde and we still potentially may get a TV deal from the league but we need to monitor this carefully. Liam will get £10,000 from the John Akinde money and the PASE setup will get £5k but they have already set their budget this year so they have earmarked £1,000 for their cashflow and have offered the other £4,000 to Liam's playing budget. So Liam now has £14,000 additional funding...

    If we could... give him £40,000-45,000 in total, he could really have an impact. I appreciate this again is asking for money but I'm sure everyone realises how important staying in national football is to us and if we continue as we are, gates and commercial income will fall further. I personally think waiting for January will be too late. £25-30k now could save money later down the track with higher gates and commercial income. I will put in the first £500 on the 'putting my money where my mouth is' theory".

    Daish adds, "this has been my worse start to a football season... I've been working hard to move players that are not featuring to lower league clubs to get match practice and am on the constant lookout for players at higher-level clubs who are not featuring to strengthen the squad... I am looking for one more full back, one or two midfielders and another striker... The sort of numbers Duncan has mentioned could make a real impact and another £1,200-1,500 a week for the rest of the season... I am limited to loan players until January, but can look to sign players once the transfer window is open in January'".

    From Stevenage Borough we learn that "Boro Bear took part in the 11th John Smith's Mascot Grand National at Huntingdon Race Course [on Monday], finishing in a respectable 13th place. The famous bear competed alongside 68 other mascots as they battled it out over the full furlong...The race was eventually won by Stag from Huntingdon Rugby Club. The race which was in aid of the Willow Foundation raised a total of £2,929".

    The Cambridge News reported yesterday that "Cambridgeshire FA are expected to release a statement on the future of the community stadium after Cambridge United appeared to withdraw their support for the project. The U's chairman Paul Barry revealed yesterday that he wants the club to concentrate their efforts on staying at, and improving, the R Costings Abbey Stadium... His comments would seem to rule out United's involvement in the community stadium. As reported by the News in August, Government inspectors rejected proposals for a 10,000-capacity sports stadium at Milton... Barry said: 'Cambridge United is at the heart of the community in Cambridge and I believe we must now focus on our current location. Staying at and improving the Abbey would be my personal wish'".

    6 October 2009


    Experienced manager Jim Harvey "has been handed the Chester City manager's job until the end of the season" reports the Chester Chronicle. "The 51-year-old Irishman is City’s 11th manager in eight years and follows Mick Wadsworth, who was sacked last week following a lacklustre start to the season. Speaking at the club’s training ground earlier today, Harvey told The Chester Chronicle: 'Obviously, it will be a difficult job with the points deduction. We’re going to have to put in some tremendous performances and get some excellent results to avoid relegation. But that's the job and I'm going to get on with it'. Harvey has a reputation as a Conference specialist having managed Morecambe and Forest Green, the club he left in August of this year.

    His 12-year stay at Morecambe was ended in May 2006 - on the very day he returned to work after recovering from a heart attack suffered in November 2005. He began his playing career with Glenavon before joining Arsenal in 1977. A midfield general and dead-ball specialist, he is best known for his spells with Hereford United and Tranmere Rovers. Chester captain Tim Ryan will work as Harvey's assistant boss".


    Altrincham FC will admit holders of Premier League and Football League season tickets for £5 this Saturday for the Altrincham v Mansfield Town game (3pm). Entry is via turnstile 5 and 6. Valid season tickets and proof of ID must be shown to claim the discount.


    There is now a report on Altrincham FC Youth's 4-0 win at Curzon Ashton in the Youth section. The team, managed by George Heslop, with the assistance of Tony Spilsbury and Gareth Thomas, has now won six and drawn one of its seven games this season. Next up is an FA Youth Cup match at Vauxhall Motors' Rivacre Park, this Sunday (11th at 11am). All supporters welcome! The winners meet Wrexham or Stalybridge Celtic, away (w/c 19/10/09).

    The NW Youth Alliance Premier Division results last weekend were:

  • Curzon Ashton 0 v Altrincham 4
  • FC United 1 v Stalybridge Celtic A 9
  • League table


    The Rushden and Diamonds website has an interview with manager Justin Edinburgh after defeat by Altrincham. Rushden have now lost three on the trot and scored just one goal in four games. He said of the Alty game "We've played with fear, people not wanting the ball, people hiding when we're in possession of the ball and they are disappointing things because there was no bravery. You can talk about brave as in putting your head down low to block a shot; you need to be brave in possession of the ball. We certainly weren't that today". As for Downer's red card, Edinburgh agreed "It was a clear red card. No complaints, nobody appealing. I've seen it again, its sloppy play, a ball across the back, don't think Curtis Osano has done well enough. He's had to ball pinched off him and Simon's been isolated, he's done well [i.e. Nicky Clee] and burst past him, and it's a red card as far as I'm concerned".

    To his great credit Edinburgh also agreed that R&D's penalty appeals by Sam Smith were unfounded - "I think we're clutching at straws if we're looking for a penalty... It's three defeats at home... I'm bitterly disappointed, I'm angry, I feel let down".

    Rushden captain Jamie Stuart added, "I think we're looking nervous at the minute... Today, we defended well and they didn't look like scoring... It was one of those games that had 0 - 0 written all over it and then one mistake by Curtis and then Simon... I didn't think Simon was the last man, I thought Curtis was giving enough cover, I was coming across, but contact wise, I didn't see, I wasn't sure if it was shoulder to shoulder or in front of him... A lot of boys are down at the moment, the gaffer's said some harsh words, rightly so".


    Our next opponents, Mansfield Town say that "Vice-captain Luke Jones may make a return to the squad quicker than anticipated, after seeing a specialist about his ankle injury. The 22 year old suffered the injury in training two weeks ago and... it is been revealed that Jones will now not require surgery. Said first coach Gareth Holmes: 'He'll be back quicker than we anticipated which is now probably within the next four weeks'. Meanwhile, ex Coventry City midfielder Kevin Thornton is still training with us on trial".

    From This is Nottingham we hear that "Paul Heckingbottom believes there is more to come from him once he regains full fitness following a hamstring injury. The left-back was thrown into Mansfield's side with very little match practice because Craig Armstrong was not fit to play. And he responded with a solid debut that showed the Stags fans something of what they have been missing... Said Heckingbottom, 'It is 12 months since I last played a full game... I played behind Ryan Williams and we are both experienced players. I used him a lot to help me through this game. But hopefully in the games to come I can help him in return by getting forward into the attack. I thought Ryan was fantastic because he tucked in and got in all the right positions rather than just staying out wide the whole time. I have still got a bit of pain in the injury at the moment, but it is manageable now'".

    And in The Chad Heckingbottom added "No one works harder than me to get fit in the gym after training and I felt fine even though my injury is still not 100 per cent". Of the game, manager David Holdsworth added: "The boys have had a long week as they had a rollicking off me after the defeat at Barrow and a few out there were playing for their places... a second goal would have been the mattress[!] we wanted. At 1-0 Forest Green were still in the game so I am pleased with the clean sheet".


    From Grays Athletic we learn that "Midfielder, Sam Long, has joined Histon FC on loan until January. Lee Butcher has returned to Tottenham Hotspur. We are currently looking at another goalkeeper to fill the no.2 slot. Sam Gaughran's loan spell with Grays Athletic has ended. Anwar Uddin's loan spell with Grays Athletic has also ended but we are currently seeking a further extension of his loan from Dagenham & Redbridge".

    According to the BBC "The manager of struggling Ebbsfleet United, Liam Daish, has said their poor training ground is one of the factors behind their bad start to the season. Daish's side, who have won just one of their first 15 games, switched training venues from Fleet Leisure to the AEI sports club in Gravesend in the summer. 'It's bad, it's tough, it's hard, it's concrete, and it's rutted', Daish told BBC Radio Kent. 'There's no real decent full-sized pitch to go through 11 against 11'".

    The Daily Post reports that "Speculation over the future of Dean Saunders as manager of Wrexham has again been quashed in the wake of Saturday’s 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Salisbury City. Racecourse managing director Paul Retout dismissed rumours of a post-match crisis board meeting and insisted that directors remain convinced that the former Wales international – who last week completed 12 months in the hot-seat – will engineer a change in fortunes. Saturday’s defeat means the Dragons have won just four of their 13 league games to date and are 17th in the table...

    Retout said: 'We remain convinced Dean is the right man to turn it around. He has our 100% backing'... Saturday’s Racecourse attendance of 2,556 was the lowest of the season by some distance and Retout acknowledged that... 'Today’s crowd was poor and we realise that we need to be winning games to attract them back... Getting rid of the manager is not the answer... Dean did not get us into the Blue Square Premier League and he is doing his best to get us out of it and back into the Football League. As directors of the club, we share the responsibility too and we know we have to get it right, both on and off the pitch'".

    "These are extremely worrying times for manager-less Chester City" states the Liverpool Daily Post. "On the pitch they are lumbering along with a wafer-thin playing squad of under achievers, many of whom would struggle in any local Sunday League team, while off the field there are daily rumours of financial meltdown and unpaid invoices. Only yesterday in an interview, City’s managing director hinted that the Deva Stadium outfit were edging towards a Doomsday [?Domesday] scenario, if a financial injection or investment wasn’t forthcoming.

    The harsh reality is that nobody will invest in a club that is projecting a loss this season in excess of £600,000 and doesn’t possess any tangible assets. An obvious solution would be a change of club ownership, but it would appear that the current owner Stephen Vaughan is either unwilling to sell up, or nobody has offered to take over the stricken club and arrest it’s fiscal free-fall, neither of the aforementioned questions have received a serious answer when posed recently...

    What are the board’s future plans for the club? And if they do intend to plough on, how are they going to turn City’s parlous financial state around?". On Saturday Chester failed to beat nine-man Hayes, who also missed a penalty. "Following the game City’s caretaker manager Tim Ryan said: 'The chairman has told me to take training this week, which I love doing... Come next Saturday if I am playing and not managing, I will be out there giving it my all'”.

    5 October 2009


    Alty Youth beat Curzon Ashton 4-0, away, on Sunday in the NWYA Premier Division, thanks to a Blaine Whiteside hat-trick and a goal from captain, Dan Shaw. Report to follow.


    The Altrincham Supporters' Club (TASC) minutes for 22 August are now on the website.


    The new Sky Sports TV facility in the bar at Moss Lane will be showing the following games in October. Come along and enjoy the games in the company of Alty supporters and local residents - everyone is welcome!

  • Mon. 5 Oct: Aston Villa v Manchester City (k.o. 8pm), bar open 7pm
  • Sun. 18 Oct: Blackburn v Burnley (k.o. 1pm), bar open 12.30pm
  • Sun. 18 Oct: Wigan v Manchester City (k.o. 4pm)
  • Sun. 25 Oct: Liverpool v Manchester Utd (k.o. 2pm), bar open 1pm
  • Sun. 25 Oct: West Ham v Arsenal (k.o. 4.15pm)
  • Sat. 31 Oct: Manchester Utd v Blackburn R. (k.o. 5.30pm,), bar open 5pm


    Alty's loan and dual registration players this season seem to have been cursed. Scott Moffatt, from Manchester United, lasted fewer than two games before injury curtailed his planned one-month stay. Danny Edwards completed ninety minutes on loan from Port Vale before he succumbed to injury. Northwich Victoria's Aaron Burns suffered a gashed head in his second outing for Altrincham and missed yesterday's game at Rushden though, hopefully, he will be fit to play again soon. And Tejal-Ross Thaker made two substitute appearances before going back to Ashton United. So the prize for longevity goes to Sam Sheridan, from Bolton Wanderers, who has now completed four matches for the Robins. Despite their mixed fortunes, Altrincham FC would like to thank all of the players concerned and wish them a full recovery and/or a successful future career.

    Due to injuries, Altrincham have already employed 25 players this season but six of have not started a game for the club this season (Robbie Lawton, Andrew Pearson, Russell Saunders, Tejal-Ross Thaker, Rod Thornley, Michael Welch) whilst Colin Little has only begun one game and has yet to complete 90 minutes, through injury. Just four players (three of them in the defence) have started all 15 games so far; Stuart Coburn, Tom Kearney, Matt Doughty and James Smith. However, Chris Denham has also been involved in all 15 matches, though he started one of them as a substitute. He is the leading scorer this season, with five goals to his name.

    The current squad, including cover-goalkeeper Richard Acton and cover-striker Rod Thornley comprises 21 players. Sam Sheridan and Aaron Burns are the only current players whose parent club is not Altrincham, leaving 19 players on Alty's books.

  • Goalkeepers: 1. Stuart COBURN, 13. Russell SAUNDERS, 23. Richard ACTON
  • Defenders: 2. James SMITH, 3. Matt DOUGHTY, 5. Greg YOUNG, 6. Shaun DENSMORE, 12. Robbie WILLIAMS, 18. Michael WELCH, 21. Andrew PEARSON, 26. Sam SHERIDAN
  • Central Midfielders: 4. Tom KEARNEY, 7. Robbie LAWTON, 16. Anthony DANYLYK
  • Forwards (strikers and wingers): 9. Colin LITTLE, 10. Chris DENHAM, 11. Nicky CLEE, 14. Dale JOHNSON, 15. Rod THORNLEY, 19. Chris SENIOR, 25. Aaron BURNS

    Details of all the Alty players are on the Squad Page.


    Sarah Rowley writes...

    Three teams reached 21 goals on Saturday but, with only two winning places up for grabs, we had to look at the times that the goals were scored. Therefore Grazia Smith comes in 2nd place with Kidderminster Harriers, who scored their 21st goal in the 47th minute and John Edwards scrapes into 3rd place with Colchester United, who scored their 21st goal in the 80th minute. Just missing out on a winning place was Bryan Ford, with Dagenham & Redbridge, who scored their 21st goal in the 83rd minute.

    Thank you to all who took part in the competition. We are hoping to run another pontoon starting in December. If you are interested please call into the offices in the week or see me on a matchday. Once again, teams will be selected using random numbers.

  • Pontoon Final Table


    Get your tickets before they sell out for the Meet the New Recruits evening at Moss Lane on Saturday, 17th October, following our game against Luton Town. The evening starts at 7pm in the Manchester Glass Ltd Sponsors' Lounge and will be hosted by Alty boss, Graham Heathcote. The confirmed guests to date are Ken McKenna and Michael Welch though other names are to expected to be added. Tickets are just £15 per ticket and include a two-course meal. After the meal there will be a "Questions & Answers" session with the guests. Please phone the Club on 0161 928 1045 or send an e-mail to book your place.

    Vice chairman Graham Rowley also announces that the Altrincham FC Christmas Party has been arranged for Saturday, 28th November, after our home game with Kettering Town. Most of the players and management will be there. Tickets are just £35 each or £60 per couple, or £300+VAT for a table of ten people. Graham says "Your support for these two events would be greatly appreciated as the club strives to provide the management with extra resources to strengthen our squad".


    Two seasons ago he was a very popular loan player from Stoke City at Altrincham but now Ryan Shotton is making himself a name in the Championship. Now on loan at Barnsley, the young defender was Man of the Match as the Yorkshire club defeated Roy Keane's Ipswich Town last Saturday.

    Alex Frost, a product of Alty Youth and of the reserves, is now at Ashton United. He features in the NL Paper's "Dream Team" as selected by Ashton's Ben Smith. Alex is described by his team-mate as "a quality right-back, equally as good at centre-half. He's got great banter as well and loves an argument. One of those people who is never wrong".

    Kevin Ellison scored for Rotherham against Crewe, but Danny Adams was sent off for Morecambe in a game in which Ian Craney also played for the Shrimps. Lewis Chalmers played for Aldershot Town in League Two yesterday.


    The BBC reports that "Dean Saunders concedes he questions his Wrexham future 'every five minutes' as the under-pressure manager's poor run continued with defeat to Salisbury. But the Racecourse boss insists he will not quit the Blue Square Premier League strugglers despite winning just seven of their last 31 league games... Saunders said: "I think "Am I fed up of this?" probably every five minutes!'... He has signed dozens of new players - including former Premier League stars Matt Jansen and now Frank Sinclair - but Wrexham have mis-fired since March and Saunders has been the target of the Racecourse boo boys. Wrexham have one of the biggest squads in the Blue Square Premier League but the Dragons are just four places above the relegation zone. Saunders' Wrexham have 14 points league points which is the same points tally Brian Little had amassed when he left Wrexham last season.

    The 45-year-old coach told BBC Sport: 'I always stick up for the players. And I'll stick with them as long as they want to receive the ball, want to play football and show effort and determination. But when I see things like I did against Salisbury...I do think "what am I doing?". Corners are coming out of the back, playing a short free kick to Frank Sinclair, who has never scored a free kick in his life, in the middle of the goal when he has got cramp and can hardly walk and crossing free-kicks straight into the goalkeeper's hands, things like that drive me around the bend. But you have to keep going... In football there's a smack in the face around every corner you turn no matter what level you're at', said Saunders".

    On Saturday, "In the first-half it was the poorest we have been and to give the goal away as we did, it drives me around the bend. You'd swear we didn't do any set-piece practices. It's a different player every week allowing his man to run free... We don't work all week in training to smack the ball on Gareth Taylor's head every time we have the ball, which is also driving me around the bend'".

    The NL Paper has disquieting news of Chester City which has "posted losses of £660,000 for the current financial year... Chester are haemorrhaging money with attendances struggling to hit four-figures, half of what was predicted. They now have to pay off the remaining nine months of the sacked boss [Mick Wadsworth]'s contract... They also face a legal challenge by Vauxhall Motors... [re] the striker they agreed a £30,000 fee for last year". Yet managing director Bob Gray says that they club has received 20 applications for the manager's job. Gray added, "We have a few weeks left because we cannot go on as we are. Attendances are well down and we can't get by on the money we are bringing in... We are losing money hand over fist and there is no sign of anyone coming in. These are dark days and, without help, we are going under... If things don't improve, I don't think we'll be here much longer and that is not an idle threat". Meanwhile former Alty man and Chester captain "Tim Ryan, 34, will take charge until a replacement for Wadsworth is found".

    According to the Luton & Dunstable Express "Match-winner Ben Wright gave exactly the kind of performance that could have saved Mick Harford's job. Signed on-loan just before Tuesday night's fateful game against Stevenage Borough, Harford toyed with the idea of starting the Peterborough United striker but left him on the bench. The rest is history. Caretaker boss Alan Neilson saw enough of Wright in training and impressed by the goals he got in a practice match midweek opted to give the 21-year-old his first home start ahead of Tom Craddock and his backing was repaid with an exquisite goal that proved enough to keep Tamworth at bay. Up front with fellow London Road loanee Liam Hatch, Wright was pivotal to Luton's impressive first half display"...

    Next up for the Town is a double header away from home at Kidderminster and Altrincham and Wright is hoping the spirit of the remarkable 4-3 turnaround at Cambridge can spur them on to six points... With ex-Cambridge United boss Gary Brabin and Kettering manager Mark Cooper bookies' favourites for the hot seat the loan star just hopes the decision regarding the top job at Kenilworth Road will be made quickly".

    News of our next opponents comes from This is Nottingham which says that "David Holdsworth hopes Mansfield can return to their early season form at the back after a first clean sheet in eight matches in the 1-0 win over Forest Green Rovers... Holdsworth was upbeat about the way his side defended and now wants to see a run similar to the one which saw just two goals shipped in the first seven games of the campaign".

    4 October 2009


    Sunday 4/10/09:
  • Histon 1 Cambridge United 1


    The new Sky Sports TV facility in the bar at Moss Lane will be showing the following games in October. Come along and enjoy the games in the company of Alty supporters and local residents - everyone is welcome!
  • Mon. 5 Oct: Aston Villa v Manchester City (k.o. 8pm), bar open 7pm
  • Sun. 18 Oct: Blackburn v Burnley (k.o. 1pm), bar open 12.30pm
  • Sun. 18 Oct: Wigan v Manchester City (k.o. 4pm)
  • Sun. 25 Oct: Liverpool v Manchester Utd (k.o. 2pm), bar open 1pm
  • Sun. 25 Oct: West Ham v Arsenal (k.o. 4.15pm)
  • Sat. 31 Oct: Manchester Utd v Blackburn R. (k.o. 5.30pm,), bar open 5pm


    Above: The foundations of Alty's win at Rushden were laid on their defence. Above left, we see captain Tom Kearney in front of the back four (Doughty, Smith, Williams and Densmore), whilst, right, is goalkeeper Stuart Coburn. All are seen in action at Nene Park yesterday.

    In addition to the Report last night and picture below, the two management teams have given their views to the NL Paper today...

    Alty assistant boss Ken McKenna admitted "To be fair it was a scrappy game. We had to defend well at times and the game could have gone either way but we just sneaked it in the end with a free-kick. The defence have been playing really well recently and we sat and let them come on to us but, thankfully, we were rock solid and Stuart Coburn has been brilliant. Overall, a draw may have been a fair result but we've nicked it and we'll take that. Our goalscorer Tom Kearney makes us tick and I was pleased for him that he got his just reward today".

    From the other side, Justin Edinburgh, the Diamonds' manager told his club's website that "a lot of players have lost their place in this team" with Saturday's performance. He told the NL Paper, "I was bitterly disappointed and very angry. Performances like that are totally unacceptable. We didn't work hard enough or pass well enough... I'm not going to defend the players... It wasn't good enough from us... There will definitely be changes for the Chester game next week".

    The R&D website added that "The Diamonds had a number of chances after going behind, but a combination of poor finishing and a good save by Stuart Coburn meant they failed to take advantage... The first-half was the worst half of football seen at Nene Park this season, with only two decent attempts on goal from the Diamonds... At the other end the visitors created little, as they played into the strong wind for the first half, but did have two good chances just before half time, the first falling to Chris Senior from a long throw by Clee, but his attempt didn't trouble Abbey, and then Nicky Clee failed to take advantage of a skewed clearance by Jamie Stuart from a Matt Doughty shot...

    The second half had to provide more entertainment than the first, and although it managed this, there was still something lacking compared to the games seen at Nene Park during August and September... The visitors main threat was continuing to come from the Clee long throws... The Robins should have taken the lead... Senior appeared to have as much time as he wanted to strike on goal, but he hit it early and Nathan Abbey saved well with his legs... Further substitutions saw the tall Robins defender Robbie Williams pushed up front, and he quickly showed what made Graham Heathcote take that decision as the Diamonds defence struggled to cope with his aerial threat".

    Further views come from the Northants Evening Telegraph which reports that "Simon Downer was sent off for the second time this season as Rushden & Diamonds suffered a third successive defeat. His professional foul on Nicky Clee – following a mistake by Curtis Osano – became a double blow when Altrincham skipper Tom Kearney's free-kick was deflected into the bottom corner. Downer was also dismissed on the opening day".


    At Altrincham, the players train two evenings a week, after their daytime jobs. On the FGR Forum Press Officer, Colin Peake, throws some further light on the part/full-time status of Forest Green Rovers. "All the [Forest Green] players are required to train at Hartpury College four days a week - subject to match days. They get two days off per week - like any other job. Mostly it is a Sunday and a Wednesday. Where they come from is not a relevant issue, with some travelling daily and some staying locally, including one at my house. If they sign for the club that is where they report in accordance with the club playing staff rules.

    DH [manager David Hockaday] is at his desk at the College every morning at 8am from his home near London. What he gives, he expects from the players. A new ethos is being bred in the players - and if they don't like it, it is time to move on. However to be fair to the squad there is a air of discipline about the place and they seem to have accepted the changes. For instance, at home matches they have to be in for 11.45am whereas before they could turn up somewhere around 1.15pm.

    For away matches the team coach can only arrive at the ground one and half hours before kick off, so they have a structured time setting as they prepare for the match. There are loads of other things in place and DH is heavily involved in all aspects right throughout the club at all playing levels. It is not all about seeing someone at a specific game which means they are committed.

    Whilst DH had no previous management experience he comes with some excellent bits on his CV. Obviously time will tell but what is important at the moment is to stop the downturn on the field of play, give the club a boost and, with that, move on off the field of play behind the team to bring in more financial stability.

    Behind the scenes I am working flat out and hopefully we shall have a new horizon or two in the next couple of weeks which will bring new challenges to all of us. Watch this space!!!".

    Blue Square Football confirms that "Salisbury City have bolstered their ranks with the addition of Southampton defender Ryan Tafazolli... on a one-month deal... The 18-year-old joined the Saints' ranks in 2005".

    "Oxford United goalkeeper Ryan Clarke has won the Blue Square Premier "Player of the Month" award for September. The former England U21 stopper has been a key feature in Oxford's fantastic start to the season since signing from Northwich Victoria in the summer. Clarke completed a run of six consecutive clean sheets in the first four games of the month and made it five shut-outs from seven in the period. The award makes a double for Oxford with boss Chris Wilder scooping the honours for 'Manager of the Month'". In the month from 8th september, Alty's Stuart Coburn has also kept five clean sheets in seven games.


    Pat Mc Fadden scored as Ashton United went to the top of the UniBond League Premier Division yesterday. FCUM beat Stocksbridge PS on Saturday thanks to goals which included a penalty by Carlos Roca and a goal from Ben Deegan before Roca added a late goal to clinch the game. Jody Banim scored twice for Radcliffe Borough, as did ex-Alty trialist Eddie Stanford in a 6-3 win over Mickleover Sports in the FA Trophy. At Shawe View, Trafford went out of the Trophy 3-4 with former Alty loan player James Dean hitting a hat-trick for the visitors, FC Halifax Town.
    3 October 2009


    Right: Tom Kearney leads the celebrations after scoring his winning goal at Rushden. Following Tom (extreme right) are, from right to left, Matt Doughty, Robbie Lawton, Shaun Densmore and Chris Denham, with Greg Young in the background. The ball is still in the net.

    Altrincham moved up to seventh place with this first-ever win at Nene Park. The goal came after Downer brought down Clee and, as the last man, the defender was sent off. From the resulting freekick, Tom Kearney's low drive took a deflection from 20 yards into the bottom corner to make it 1-0, eight minutes from time. Five added minutes were played and Stuart Coburn had to make two fine saves to preserve the lead. Earlier, Alty had had the better of the first half whilst Rushden were the more dominant in the second. The strong wind hampered both sides throughout.

  • Report here.

  • Alty player stats
  • Alty line-ups, bookings

    Saturday Results 3/10/09:

  • Through the Years
  • AFC Wimbledon 0 Kidderminster Harriers 1
  • Barrow 1 Oxford United 1
  • Eastbourne Borough 0 Kettering Town 1
  • Ebbsfleet United 0 Crawley Town 0
  • Grays Athletic 0 Gateshead 0
  • Hayes & Yeading Utd 0 Chester City 0
  • Luton Town 2 Tamworth 1
  • Mansfield Town 1 Forest Green R. 0
  • Rushden & Diamonds 0 Altrincham 1
  • Wrexham 1 Salisbury City 2
  • York City 1 Stevenage Borough 1


    As usual on matchdays, there will be news from Nene Park from Rushden and Diamonds' game against Altrincham, on Saturday afternoon...



    Brian Flynn, Alty's joint press officer, writes:

    "Altrincham manager Graham Heathcote has received a double boost ahead of the trip to Rushden & Diamonds. Both Greg Young and Colin Little are likely to be available for selection to increase the Altrincham manager's selection options. Young has missed the last three games with mumps and Little was injured in his only start of the season to date against Chester City at the end of August.

    Aaron Burns (left) will definitely miss the game at Nene Park, having suffered a four inch gash to his head as he bravely won the corner that started a dramatic injury-time comeback that saw Altrincham score twice to snatch all three points against Gateshead on Tuesday.

    Two players leaving Moss Lane are Danny Heffernan and Ross Thaker. Heffernan has joined New Mills and Thaker has returned to Ashton United. Altrincham will retain each player's Conference registration.

    The loan periods of Danny Edwards (Port Vale) & Scott Moffatt (Manchester United) have now expired and each player has returned to his parent club. Altrincham Football Club are grateful to all four departing players who all played a part in helping the club through a very difficult start to the season injury wise".

    Alty's squad now numbers 21 in total, including three keepers. Of these, Dale Johnson is currently the only player sidelined through injury.

    The BBC claims that "Rushden striker Aaron O'Connor has a muscle problem and is only rated as 50-50 for the visit of Altrincham. Lee Tomlin serves the final game of a three-match suspension, while midfield pair Rob Wolleaston and Nick McNamara (both knee) are still out.

    Altrincham could recall Greg Young following the defender's recovery from a bout of mumps. However, Colin Little (knee), Dale Johnson (leg) and Aaron Burns (head) will all miss the game at Nene Park".

    The Northants Evening Telegraph tells us that "Michael Stone remains confident that Rushden & Diamonds can get back on track in the next two games. They dropped into the bottom half of the Blue Square Premier with a second successive defeat as AFC Wimbledon won 1-0 at Nene Park on Tuesday night. Just a week earlier they were in the play-off places – although Justin Edinburgh's side are still only three points behind fifth-placed Mansfield Town. Diamonds entertain Altrincham [who are three points off fourth place] on Saturday before a trip to bottom-of-the-table Chester City the following weekend.

    Assistant-manager Stone said: 'It's such a tight pack that you drop down if you lose two and winning two suddenly puts you right back up there. We're in a positive frame of mind to put ourselves back on track... We have to make sure we don't give away silly goals from coming out the back and maybe over-playing in front of our penalty box. We also need to take our chances and not put pressure on the defence to keep a clean sheet to win the match'... Early errors by Simon Downer and Nathan Abbey gifted Wimbledon's winner while Diamonds were unable to force an equaliser – despite a couple of second-half changes following Craig Farrell's penalty miss.

    Stone added, 'In the past Sam Smith has come off the bench and scored important goals at 1-0 down. He gives us that extra option and Neil Cousins also came on for aerial strength'... Before Saturday's game Curtis Osano will be presented with September's player-of-the-month award".

    Meanwhile,"Rushden & Diamonds goalkeeper Joe Day has joined Harrow Borough on a month-long loan deal...Also midfielder Jamie McGuinness has returned to the Diamonds following his loan deal at Bedford Town" says Blue Square Football.


    New Mills are "pleased to announce the signing of Danny Heffernan from Altrincham where he has made a number of substitute appearances this season. 22 year old Danny is a versatile player who can operate virtually anywhere on the pitch but he has played most of his career either in midfield or up front. Danny has played in the NWCFL before at Abbey Hey and has also played for Leek Town. Danny is unfortunately unavailable for Saturday's FA Vase game at Bourne Town but will be available for the possible replay on Monday or Tuesday's NWCFL game at his old club Abbey Hey".


    After just two run outs as a substitute for Altrincham, Tejal-Ross Thaker has returned to Ashton United.


    In the FA Youth Cup 2nd Qualifying Round, the incentive for Altrincham FC and Vauxhall Motors, who meet next Sunday (11th at Rivacre Park, k.o. 11am) is a trip, in the third qualifying round (w/c 19 October), for the winners to either The Racecourse to play Wrexham or to the Bower Fold to meet Stalybridge. Wrexham host Stalybridge next Wednesday.


    The latest committee-meeting minutes of The Altrincham FC Supporters' Club (TASC) are now available via the TASC page.


    The 11th John Smith’s Grand National for Mascots takes place at Huntingdon Racecourse this Sunday. Rocky Robin is not competing but in the field of 73, a number of non-League clubs have entered, including Stevenage Borough's "Boro Bear". The race is over a furlong in which the contestants have to clamber over "fences" comprising adevrtsising hoardings. It will be televised live on Sky Sports News at around 12 noon on Sunday.


    After Chester's sacking of Mick Wadsworth, fellow Cheshire side Crewe Alexandra report that they have "sacked manager Gudjon Thordarson", reports Bullsnews. "In a statement chairman John Bowler said... 'that it would be in the best interest of the club that we parted company with Gudjon as manager', said Bowler... For an interim period Dario [Gradi] is taking over as manager'. Crewe have lost their last four games... and they have won just four of their last 22 games".


    Alty's guests at Moss Lane later this month are Luton Town. At Kenilworth Road, Luton Town "Caretaker manager Alan Neilson and First Team Coach Kevin Watson are looking for a reaction from the Town players for tomorrow's visit of Tamworth three days after the departure of Mick Harford... Watson said 'They've got to show a reaction tomorrow. Ultimately when they have crossed the white line they have cost Mick his job. They are good players so you want to see a reaction. If you don't see a reaction we might as well all give up. I think if you ask any one of them they will say they have not been what they should be. We've got to go out against Tamworth on Saturday and get the three points... I'm classed as caretaker for the game. Kevin, Dmitri [Kharine] and Harry [Scott-Stackman] the physio, we are all in it together'...

    On the selection front the only addition to the Hatters' squad following Tuesday's defeat to Stevenage is the return from suspension of striker Liam Hatch. Striker Kevin Gallen and midfielder Keith Keane have both had injections to help them with their shoulder and knee injuries respectively. Lewis Emanuel is back in light training after recovering from a slight set-back in his recuperation from a broken toe while Andy Burgess is back jogging...

    And Neilson...said: 'With suspensions and injuries he [Mick Harford] has never had his full strength side out. But it's part and parcel of football. Kevin Gallen... could be back for next week [against Altrincham]". Referring to this Saturday's clash with Tamworth, Neilson revealed his game plan, "From the first minutes we are going to attack them and get the crowd on our side... We've got 33 games to get promotion".

    Blue Square Football confirms that "Oxford United manager Chris Wilder has won the Blue Square Premier 'Manager of the Month' award for September, to follow up on the same achievement from last month."

    The Oxford Mail says that "The one huge task still facing Oxford United is the purchase of the Kassam Stadium – but Kelvin Thomas remains positive about the possibility. 'I am in good conversation with Firoz (Kassam [who owns the stadium]) about ways that our goals can be achieved', he said... 'Whether that is short term or long term, time will tell. We need to make the football club a self-sustaining business without owning the stadium, then if and when we do own it, what a bonus that will be'... Kelvin Thomas is now the only board member at Oxford United, but this is something that will change. 'We will be looking to add a couple of people to the board', he said. 'I have always been a fan of smaller boards, as I feel that allows you as a business to be more flexible in your decision-making'”.

    According to Chronicle Live "Ian Bogie has warned his under-performing Gateshead stars to keep looking over their shoulders – because he is ready to shake up his squad. The Tynesiders boss felt happy with the 22-man squad he began the season with. But a disappointing start... has been something of a wake-up call, and forced a rethink...

    'I’m looking to strengthen the squad in the next week or so, possibly with ins and outs', Bogie said. 'We worked hard to get into this league and we’re not going to leave it without putting up a fight. If that means drastic changes then that’s what I’ll do. I’m looking at all areas because it’s not quite working for us. We’re competing in games, and we’re not getting battered. But silly mistakes are costing us and we can’t afford that. Offensively, we’re passing the ball about as well as ever but we’re not creating enough real chances, so I’m also looking at people to score goals. There are also lads here who’ve been out of the picture so far, and they will get their chances. Everyone needs to be on their toes, because I’m not afraid to make drastic changes'.

    And after snatching defeat from the jaws of victory at Altrincham on Tuesday, those changes – with Steven Richardson doubtful with an ankle injury – are likely to come at Grays Athletic tomorrow [Saturday]. 'The lads were deflated at the end of the (Altrincham) game but it’s my job as manager to pick them up', Bogie said... 'A couple of good results can put us right back on track'”.

    Forest Green Rovers' "new manager David Hockaday is at it again. Due to four defenders being injured and not sure when they will be fit enough to play, he has used his contacts by persuading Paul Ince at MK Dons to allow 19 yr old midfielder Dave King to join the New Lawn outfit on loan for a month. At present Hockaday has been forced to play some of his more experienced midfielders in full back positions until the injury list improves".

    Meanwhile "Dave Hockaday is demanding his Forest Green players become more ruthless, despite their stunning September revival" claims Said Hockaday, 'I used the analogy of being in a fight. If you've got somebody down you don't let them get back up. We need to learn to be killers, as that second half was not good enough. I can accept it if people make mistakes at this level but we have to be honest with ourselves... I want to be looking up, not looking down'".

    2 October 2009


    Right - Chris Denham scores his goal against Gateshead. More of Gavin Rathbone's pictures are on his GR Photography website

    Rushden & Diamonds report that "After the disappointment of the midweek defeat at home to AFC Wimbledon, the Diamonds welcome Altrincham to Nene Park on Saturday... Altrincham have been having a similar season to the Diamonds, but recorded a win in their game against Gateshead last Tuesday, scoring two goals in added time at the end of the game after being 2-1 behind. That victory left them in 10th position in the league, one point ahead of the Diamonds... In their squad they will have a number of players familiar to Diamonds fans, such as Matt Doughty who played for Rochdale in both of the Division 3 play-off games, as well as facing the Diamonds several times for Halifax Town, and he is joined by several other ex-Halifax players, such as Tom Kearney, Colin Little and Chris Senior... The first five games between the teams at Nene Park resulted in Diamonds wins, but the visitors picked up a point last season, in front of the Setanta cameras".

    Manager Justin Edinburgh reported that former Grays striker Aaron O'Connor "will be ok for Saturday barring any disaster or reaction". Asked about Altrincham he said "They've certainly had an excellent start to the season, they're usually everyone's favourites each year to go down but that shows the resilience that them and their manager have got. Fair play to them, they've assembled a good squad over the last couple of years. I don't want to under-estimate them or take them lightly...I'm expecting... another difficult game... It's the first time I've had back to back defeats here as a manager, and certainly as a group of players we want to put that right on Saturday".


    Below is Brian Flynn's latest "Flynnzine" article from the Robins' Review...

    "Role Model Behaviour!!!

    Whilst we have not yet reached the end of September, by 10.00pm tonight we will be almost a third the way through the season and some interesting result patterns are beginning to emerge. Four draws from six games here at Moss Lane and a real scarcity of goals is contrasted with three victories already achieved on our travels, including two by a three goal margin. There is no doubt that the fans who travel away have seen the best of the team this season as our style of play and individual personnel seem better suited to keeping a strong back line and exploiting the extra space that you generally get against home teams that press from the start.

    Graham Heathcote deployed a 4-4-1-1 formation that had been very effectively utilised against us by Tamworth last week, when Bradley Pritchard, playing behind a lone striker proved to be an awkward player to deal with until the midfield was re-organised at the interval. Having been the better side in the first half on Saturday, we battened down the hatches after the break as Stevenage struggled to penetrate our well drilled and increasingly confident defence. It just goes to show the value of quality strikers in this league as Graham Westley's side have undoubtedly lost a dimension to their play with the departure of Steve Morison to Millwall. The injury time equaliser was a dagger blow at the time, but a draw was probably about right and we came within a couple of minutes of beating a team that hasn't lost at home for almost eleven months!

    One of the main differences this season is that, apart from the games at Eastbourne and Crawley in February, we are travelling on the day to away games. There is a long way to go, of course, and tiredness will undoubtedly have its effect as the season wears on, but to date the results on our travels have been outstanding. Also when you look back over the last four seasons since we gained promotion, some of our best away results have come when we have had to make long midweek trips without an overnight stop e.g. the 4-2 win at Dagenham & Redbridge in 2006 and draws at Forest Green Rovers (2006), Cambridge (2006) & Torquay(2008). I am sure that this will be fully reviewed at the end of the season, but maybe many players actually prefer to sleep in their own bed and deal with the inconvenience of an early alarm call on a Saturday morning.

    One of the most motivating sights for me on Saturday was to see Greg Young in attendance. As our 'Player of The Year' is recovering from mumps, there was absolutely no obligation for him to travel to Hertfordshire, yet there he was, along with his Mum & Dad who attend most matches, showing a real commitment to the cause and I am sure that that gave everyone a lift. Greg's exemplary attitude can be contrasted with many examples of players whose behaviour can, at best, be described as questionable.

    I remember talking with John Williams, who was Altrincham's manager from June 1986 to September 1987, about Stan Collymore, who he managed at Stafford Rangers in the late eighties and early nineties. Having made a handful of promising appearances for the Staffordshire club, they were due to travel to Dagenham & Redbridge and Williams got wind at training on the Thursday before the game that Collymore might not be too motivated to travel to Essex. Sure enough, on the Friday the call came in from Collymore's Mum.... "Stanley's not feeling very well & wont be able to make it tomorrow".

    It takes all sorts!!



    Gateshead announce that "A date and venue have been confirmed for Gateshead to put their case to the Conference Board regarding the abandoned game against Hayes & Yeading United on September 5th. The hearing will take place at Conference headquarters in Birmingham at 1:30pm on Friday 9th October".

    Meanwhile, "Gateshead have missed out on former Premier League star Michael Bridges after the Tynesider opted to join Australian outfit Newcastle Jets" reports the Chronicle Live. "Bridges, 31, cost Leeds United £5m in 1999 from Sunderland and spent six years at Elland Road, the last four of which were injury-ravaged. His career, which included brief spells at Newcastle and Sunderland, then drifted, before it was resurrected in the lower leagues at Carlisle United. That brought a move to Hull City, who loaned the striker back to Carlisle, and he then recently failed to secure a permanent deal at Norwich City and MK Dons. Gateshead have struggled to replace the prolific Lee Novak, now at Huddersfield Town, and targeted Bridges to spearhead their attack. Chairman Graham Wood held talks with the former England Under-21 international, and although Bridges has signed a six-month contract with Newcastle Jets, he could yet become a Gateshead player. 'The talks with Bridges went well', said Wood. 'He took a few days to think over the move, but the lure of a return to Australia proved too powerful. He will be back in England at the end of February as a free agent and it may be that we try and bring him in for the final two months of the season'...Gateshead will continue the search to strengthen a squad that has lost more games, nine, and conceded more goals, 26, than any other in the Blue Square Premier. 'Numerically we’re a bit top heavy with 24 players', added Wood. 'Some players could go out on loan to get match practice but we’re looking to bring players in on loan from Football League clubs. It is absolutely vital that we stay in the Blue Square Premier'".

    "Administrators at Salisbury City have accepted a proposal from a consortium of businessmen to buy the club" states the BBC. "The bid from the three-man group, headed by William Harrison-Allan, was the only one received before Wednesday's deadline. Administrator Mike Fortune told BBC Wiltshire they now have to strike a deal with HM Revenue & Customs who are owed almost £200,000. 'I'm reasonably confident that we are going to be able to meet the criteria... I'm due to meet with the consortium early next week to go over their offer in detail. The next stage is to transmit that offer to the Crown (HMRC) and get their views on it... We're hoping by the end of October at a squeeze (to complete the takeover)'.Harrison-Allan is a financial advisor based in south Wiltshire and is also chief executive of the Country Gentlemen's Association... He said. 'We've put in significant money. It's three new directors so hopefully the Revenue will look on this kindly. We have paid the wages over the last couple of months so they can see that the new people are sticking to what they say and I'm hopeful that they, and the other creditors, will play ball'..

    The consortium also includes Jeff Hooper, who has a business background in wholesale floristry, and Wilton Carpet Factory managing-director Chris Bramall"

    The FA confirms that "An Appeal Board has reached its decision in appeals brought by five players in relation to charges of betting in football. Appeals were brought by Peter Cavanagh, James Harris, David Mannix, Robert Williams and Andrew Mangan. The players, with the exception of Harris, appealed... All appeals were dismissed except with regard to the matter of costs... The Appeal Board was unanimous in dismissing all appeals against findings of guilt and sanction... The Appeal Board was nevertheless satisfied that as a result of those findings, in addition to the orders made by the Commission in relation to costs, each of the five players faced a cumulative financial penalty which was, in all the circumstances, disproportionate. Accordingly, the Appeal Board concluded that it would be appropriate to temper that financial impact by reducing the costs orders imposed by the Regulatory Commission in each case from £5,000 to £1,000, and in the case of Peter Cavanagh, from £9,626.45 to £2,000".

    This is Tamworth. "Michael Wylde is edging ever closer to a return but Neil MacKenzie... will have an operation on his knee on Monday... Trevor Benjamin's availability for Saturday is also in doubt after he received an offer from an unnamed Conference North club. Josh Apps and Anthony Bruce have left the club to join Atherstone Town on loan".

    Chester First confirms that "Steven Vaughan today started his search for another manager... He said: 'The appointment of Mick just didn’t work out... It was clear that he wasn’t winning enough games... Previous managers have also struggled at this club in recent years and I’m lost for words when I’m asked why that should be... Mick lost one away game and Tuesday’s defeat against Forest Green was the club’s fifth home defeat of the season. He was working in a performance-related industry and unfortunately he struggled to turn things round... As far as I’m concerned it’s another Chester managerial casualty, but we didn’t have the best preparation to our season..

    Team captain, Tim Ryan, is suspended for this Saturday’s league match at Hayes and Yeading, but he will be put in charge of team affairs with Mark Newman and Billy Gerrard'... Vaughan admitted 'There is no contingency plan in place at the moment... “No disrespect to Forest Green Rovers, but we shouldn’t be getting beat to relegation candidates who only have nine contracted professional players on their books. I’ll now see what candidates put themselves forward... We’ll see how the interview process goes because we have just published the club’s profit/loss statement which included provision for a manager’s wages, but that figure may now have to be altered based on whatever candidate is appointed'”.

    He was at Altrincham's game on Tuesday night and now "Garry Brabin has emerged as one of the early front-runners for the vacant Chester City manager’s job – but yesterday admitted it was too early to say whether he is on his way back to the Blues" reports the Chester Chronicle. "City owner Stephen Vaughan is searching for the 11th manager of his eight-year reign after Mick Wadsworth’s departure – and Brabin appears to be the perfect candidate. The highly-regarded 38-year-old is friends with Vaughan and is a former Chester player. Crucially, he is also out of work having left Cambridge United in the summer...

    Brabin was keeping tight-lipped when he spoke to The Chronicle yesterday. 'There’s not much I can say because I’ve only just seen the news on Sky Sports this morning', said Brabin, who was named City’s player of the year in 2001-02... 'I’m out of work at the moment so I’m weighing up my options. Obviously I’ve got to be interested in all jobs that come up and, given my connections with Chester, I was always going to get my name linked... It’s a bit too soon for me to say anything more'.

    Ex-Preston North End and Shrewsbury Town boss Gary Peters is another name in the frame. The 55-year-old watched the Blues in Sunday’s derby draw at Wrexham as a guest of Wadsworth, who was number two to Peters at the Shrews.... Impressive young loan defender Chris Lynch has gone back to Burnley after he sustained suspected cruciate-ligament damage against Wrexham".

    However, there are counter claims from Luton Today which claims that "Ex-Cambridge boss Gary Brabin has been installed as the favourite to take over from Mick Harford in the Luton Town managerial chair. Victor Chandler bookmakers have priced Brabin... at 7/1 ahead of current Kettering Town manager Mark Cooper who is at 8/1. Caretaker boss Alan Neilson is priced at 9/1 and ex-Forest Green man Jim Harvey is 10/1. A number of experienced managers such as John Gregory, Brian Horton, Lawrie Sanchez and Colin Calderwood have also [been] linked with the post as have younger managers like Dover's Andy Hessenthaler. If you're looking at an outside bet for the job then Steve Staunton, 20/1, Glenn Roeder, 22/1, or Bruce Rioch, 18/1, could take your fancy".

    According to the Uxbridge Gazette "Hayes & Yeading United are struggling to attract new players to the club because of its lack of resources. That is the opinion of manager Garry Haylock... Earlier this week, he snapped up attacking midfielder Kyle Fraser-Allen and has used the loan system to capture George Daly and Sean Canham, yet he admits it is still sometimes a struggle to convince some targets to come to Church Road. Haylock said: 'We've got nowhere to train. It's going to be a long, hard winter as we don't have a big budget or superb facilities. I've nothing to sell to league players coming in'. Haylock has been speaking to several players, but says he must trim his current squad before he can bring anyone in. And that has started with the departure of popular goalkeeper Delroy Preddie".

    Kent Online reports that "Ebbsfleet chairman Duncan Holt says lessons must be learned following the player budget problems in pre-season. He says manager Liam Daish will get some of the money from the John Akinde sell-on, and the Premier League payment to clubs following the collapse of the Setanta TV deal. However Mr Holt... said: 'We have made life very difficult for Liam in the way the budget was given to him from July. Some of it has been unavoidable, but we need to get that right next year to give him a fair crack in a very tough league'".

    1 October 2009


    Former Alty captain Mark Maddox has joined the managerial ranks, as NL Daily reports. "After six defeats in nine Vodkat North West Counties League Premier Division games and being knocked out of two cups, Formby decided it was time for change. Therefore Tony Martin has stepped aside for a new manager to take control. Mark Maddox (pictured right) will take the helm for his first game on Saturday at home Ashton Athletic.

    Maddox, who holds a UEFA `A` licence, played at Altrincham for ten years before moving to Leigh RMI and then Vauxhall Motors. He was also the manager of Accrington Stanley`s Centre of Excellence. Formby secretary Lesley Pierce said: 'The players themselves will now have to step up to the new challenge and prove their worth. With Mark's past experience, none of them will be able to question his decision making. May I take this opportunity to thank Tony for all the hard work he has put in to the club this season and wish Mark all the best with his new challenge'".


    Folowing yesterday's departure of the Chester City boss, today the BBC confirms that "Luton Town have parted company with manager Mick Harford by mutual consent. The former Hatters striker, 50, was at the helm for two successive relegations after the club were deducted points for administration and financial problems... First team coach Alan Neilson has been named caretaker boss for Saturday's home game against Tamworth. Luton's managing director Gary Sweet told the club's website: 'The entire board are incredibly disappointed to part company with Mick, who we all had a great relationship with. It was an incredibly tough business decision that was made with a very heavy heart'... Luton have lost only three of their 13 league games this season but all of those defeats have come in their last five matches, denting their bid to return to the Football League at the first attempt...

    Luton's managing director Gary Sweet [said] 'Mick hasn't seen a single stroke of luck throughout this campaign and perhaps if we had fewer injuries I am sure things would have been different... His management of our squad regeneration programme has been nothing short of remarkable considering the budget constraints and challenges he has had to deal with during his time here... We know what we are doing and our target of getting back into the League at our first attempt, of course, remains unchanged. We will be advertising the manager's position'".


    The Manchester Evening News reports that "Jubilant Hyde United are celebrating their greatest-ever victory after winning their High Court appeal against being wound up. And, as an added bonus, the Tigers have also been cleared to carry on playing in the FA Cup, with their delayed second qualifying-round tie with Salford City now pencilled in to take place at Ewen Fields on Monday...

    Hyde received the news they’d been praying for after raising £35,000 in less than a week to allow them to pay off a £122,000 tax bill and so convince the court to rescind the winding-up order they’d previously been hit with. Among those who helped the 90-year-old Blue Square North outfit’s cause were City fans, who donated £7,800 to a bucket collection held at the Blues’ Premier League clash with West Ham three days ago. Tigers' director Tony Beard said: 'It’s fantastic that we’re officially back in business and we’d like to say a huge thank-you to all those who have helped us through this most perilous of times. The fact we chose to pay off the debt rather than enter administration means we’ve come out of this crisis with an unblemished record and no points deducted. It’s a huge relief'... Hyde’s league game at Farsley Celtic on Saturday can now go ahead as planned".


    Our next opponents Rushden & Diamonds lost at home to AFC Wimbledon on Tuesday. "In a fairly even game the Diamonds hit the post and missed a penalty in the first half, and poor finishing failed to give the Diamonds anything to show for their possession. A pair of defensive errors gave the Dons their early goal, with Simon Downer's error in conceding the ball to Ross Montague compounded when Nathan Abbey let the striker's 25 yard shot past him when he appeared to have it covered... The Diamonds now have a few days to reflect on this defeat before Altrincham visit NenePark on Saturday. Rushden & Diamonds: Nathan Abbey, Curtis Osano, Kurt Robinson, Paul Terry, Jamie Stuart (Capt), Simon Downer, James Reid (Neil Cousins 66), Mark Byrne. Craig Farrell, Cliff Akurang, Matt Pattison (Sam Smith 71). Subs Not Used: Max Porter, Michael Corcoran, Dale Roberts".

    "Rushden & Diamonds suffered their first home defeat since the opening day of the season" says the Northants Evening Telegraph... Dons' boss Terry Brown was sent from the touchline for sarcastically clapping the referee who was constantly on the end of verbal abuse from the AirWair Stand".


    Anthony Danylyk is chaired by Nicky Clee and cheered by Chris Senior after his excellent goal against Gateshead on Tuesday. More of Gavin Rathbone's pictures are on his GR Photography website.

    Alty joint press officer Brian Flynn writes...

    Reality Check!!!!!!

    "After the incredible drama of scoring two injury time goals to take all three points against Gateshead on Tuesday evening, Altrincham are now unbeaten in six matches and sit just two points away from a play off position. The Robins fans may be in jubilant mood after one of the most incredible climaxes to a game at Moss Lane for many years, but manager Graham Heathcote was disconsolate the morning after a 3-2 victory had catapulted the Robins into tenth position in the Blue Square Premier.

    'I thought we played some of our best football of the season last night against a team that I rate highly, but I have been astounded by some of the comments that I have read and heard about our performance. Ken Mckenna and I were delighted with the patience that we showed and the quality of our football, yet many people do not seem to appreciate how difficult it is to break down a well organised side who often defended with all eleven players in their own half. We have come a long way in seven years & I think that some people need a reality check. Everyone knows that we have had an horrendous run in terms of injuries, but the physical fatigue that the players experience playing three games a week at this level is massive and there is only so much that a player can give'.

    Altrincham are clearly punching hugely above there weight at present and were unfortunate to concede an injury time equaliser at high flying Stevenage Borough on Saturday. 'We played some great stuff at Stevenage,particularly in the first half', reflected the Robins' supremo and it is a testament to how much progress is being made that the team were so disappointed after the final whistle with what was undoubtedly an impressive draw.

    Altrincham travel to Northamptonshire on Saturday to take on Rushden & Diamonds. They will be looking for their first ever victory at Nene Park".


  • Match report here

    Gateshead report how the Tyneside club "held the Indian sign over Altrincham for three years between 1991-94 when they incredibly beat the Robins nine times in a row. The run of the early 90s is unlikely to be repeated, but Gateshead should have at least taken the first step at Moss Lane with a second away win of the season. The Tynesiders however are finding different ways to lose games this season and, despite winning in injury time, somehow conjured up defeat from victory. Altrincham levelled from a set piece on 93 minutes and then, in the sixth and final minute of time added on, pinched victory with a penalty which baffled most in the 769 crowd.

    A subsequent look at the match DVD however showed that referee Steve Martin had been correct in awarding the spot kick, and the Robins duly celebrated the unlikeliest of victories... 'To lose in such circumstances is very hard to take because we should have been able to see the game out to claim three important points', said assistant manager Jeff Wrightson. 'The last minute penalty was a massive setback, but the real killer blow was the equaliser from the set play after one of their players had been receiving treatment for a couple of minutes. We had plenty of time to get ourselves organised but instead switched off, allowed Denham to steal a yard and suddenly the ball is in the roof of the net. At 2-1 everything was rosy but we then lost both Darren Williams and Steven Richardson which affected our shape, and we effectively played the last 16 minutes with ten men. We had kept our discipline and Altrincham weren't hurting us but, not for the first time, we have thrown the game away... We have let them back into a game they should have lost'...

    Altrincham struggled to break down the Tynesiders who offered little offensively... Gateshead however took a 67th minute lead with only their third shot of the game... With all three subs used, Gateshead were down to ten men, but Altrincham suffered a similar feat in injury time - and then scored twice in three minutes... Wayne Phillips was then wrongly adjudged to be offside from One's through ball, and from the free kick deep inside the home half the Robins delivered the fatal blow. Robinson could only glance the ball backwards into the danger zone, but Farman was always favourite to gather several yards away from his left hand post. Chris Senior ran diagonally across the area to apply pressure - only to be needlessly bodychecked by Curtis as Farman duly smothered the ball. Curtis's challenge sent Senior tumbling and gave referee Martin the opportunity to award a spot kick which was clinically dispatched by Doughty who ran half the length of the field, pursued by team-mates, in celebration".

    The Chronicle Live agrees that "Gateshead threw away victory at Altrincham... The Robins had rarely threatened in a drab game which had an explosive beginning and end, with two goals scored in both the opening five and final five minutes. Assistant manager Jeff Wrightson was distraught, 'We switched off at a corner for their equaliser. Altrincham had gone, but the goal gave them fresh impetus and we the paid the ultimate penalty'".


    The Altrincham FC Pontoon has been won! Sarah Rowley has compiled the updated table which shows that Terry Surridge (with Kettering Town) reached 21 goals last night to win first place in the competition. The race now continues for second and third place with many people getting close!


    On Tuesday in the FA Cup 2QR replay Radcliffe Borough beat Warrington Town with Jody Banim and Alty trialist of this summer, Eddie Stanford, scoring. Meanwhile Jonathan Mitten hit a hat trick as Prescot Cables won 3-2 against Garforth Town. Another ex-Alty trialist went one better as Chris Baguley scored all four for Leigh Genesis in a 4-4 cup draw with Atherton L.R. Leigh won 4-3 on penalties.


    The Sports Echo says that "Brian Little, manager of Gainsborough Trinity, has further boosted his squad by signing defender Alan O'Hare on loan from York City. The Trinity boss arranged the one-month loan deal with Minstermen manager Martin Foyle, who was first-team coach at Wrexham when Little was in charge. Irishman O'Hare (pictured) has yet to make an appearance at York, who he joined in the summer... The 27-year-old joined Mansfield in the summer of 2008 where he made twenty-five appearances for club".

    Bulls News report that "Chester expect to lose £660,000 this season. They have posted their profit and loss projections for the season to their official site that suggest a weekly playing budget of £11,500. They expect gate income and season ticket sales to barely outstrip the £215,000 they are to receive as a parachute payment - but the parachute payment will be reduced due to monies owed to the FL and other football creditors from last season".

    Bullsnews also reports the sad news that "Weymouth chairman Ian Ridley is to step down after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. He is to start two months of radiotherapy".

    Michael Welch's 70-yard Goal of the Season was past Crawley keeper Simon Rayner. On Tuesday night he was a victim again as the Oxford United website reports that "Crawley keeper Rayner was booked for time wasting twenty five minutes from the end (again, you do the maths) but it was to no avail because as soon as he eventually took the goal kick he had delayed United took the lead again. Kinniburgh has been outstanding since arriving on loan from Rangers and grows with every game... Having jinked past a defender to get himself 25 yards from goal the Scottish left back looked up, sized up his options, and then very deliberately chipped the ball over Rayner. The ball was in the air for about three hours, during which time Rayner backpedalled for all he was worth, but in the end all he could do was fingertip the ball into the back of the goal, beaten by a top quality finish."

    At Luton Town "A bitterly disappointed Mick Harford could understand the Town supporters' frustration after seeing his side lose 1-0 at home to Stevenage Borough. The Hatters were booed off the pitch by sections of the Kenilworth Road crowd... 'I don't blame the crowd's reaction', Harford said afterwards. 'It hurts coming off the field to that reaction and I feel for the players as they are good players and a whole-hearted bunch... In the first-half Stevenage played very well. We couldn't get to grips with them. They caused us all kinds of problems... We were poor in the final third, weren't clinical enough and never really tested their goalkeeper... Luton Town should be beating Stevenage with the players we have available."

    The BBC reports that "Ebbsfleet United boss Liam Daish says he is finding their poor start the most frustrating experience of his career... with just one win from 14. 'It's something I'm not used to', the former Republic of Ireland defender told BBC Radio Kent... 'And I'm not comfortable with it... It's something you can enjoy and turn round, grit your teeth, get through it, and prove a few doubters wrong. It's tough when you're down the bottom as you think the world and his dog is against you... It's tough to get anyone in that's better than what you've got, as teams don't want to release them'".

    The Football Conference says that "Hayes & Yeading United have signed French striker Franck Padovani. The Nice-born 24-year-old started out with OGC Nice and had spells with Sporting Toulon, Entente Sannois Saint-Gratien and Sans Club before turning out for Trinity Sports Club in the DH Mediterranean League. He spent the majority of pre-season with Hereford United before being released in mid-August. He doesn't speak very much English but has some interesting qualities".

    "Incensed Mansfield Town boss David Holdsworth tore into his players after defeat at Barrow last night, warning: 'I won't tolerate any more performances like that'" reports This is Nottingham...They were beaten 3-1 in Cumbria as they were second best to the Bluebirds for long spells. Holdsworth fumed: 'I won't keep having faith in people away from home when they don't keep turning up. If people think they can turn in lacklustre performances and not show the right mental desire, they are wrong. I'm not having it. I have given my faith to people and we had a plan to play good football, but it was not to the standards I expect. There is no hiding place and you can only defend people so much. We were not strong enough. I have been into the dressing room and asked the question why we play well at home but not away. We have some very good players who only turn up at Field Mill in front of our lovely fans, but you have to have a different mentality on your travels'. Rob Duffy was forced to have stitches in a head injury sustained in the first half. But Holdsworth felt most of the problems stemmed from the other end. 'We gave it away cheaply in wide areas and I couldn't understand why my centre halves had such an uncomfortable night', he said".


    The following appeared in Tuesday's Robins' review...

    The Altrincham Supporters' Club (TASC)

    Good Evening, and welcome to our old friends from Gateshead for another big game for the team. Congratulations should be passed on to them for winning the Conference North playoff final last season.

    Mobile phones

    TASC have relaunched the mobile phone recycling scheme. Our target for this year is to raise the same amount as last year. We raised over £800 from 131 phones last year. Please hand your old mobiles in to any member of the TASC committee, into the boxes in the bar or shop, or to the club's offices during normal office hours on any working day. So far this year we have only received a couple of phones - let's not forget this scheme, it was a big earner for us last year, for not much effort!

    Altrincham FC calendars

    TASC, in conjunction with Gavin Rathbone have launched a calendar for the new season, We have currently sold around 50 calendars, which is a good effort, but we want to sell more! Calendars cost £9.99 and can be obtained from the shop pre match or in the bar after the game. There are not many calendars left, so get them quickly!

    Cult Zero

    TASC have joined together with Cult Zero to offer T-shirts with images of Altrincham players available on them, together with your own choice of words below. A few samples can be viewed in the shop. Orders can be placed on the internet. T-shirts cost £13.99. Tasc will receive commission for all T-shirts bought via this link.

    If you want to order T-shirts, please go to this link. Please note, if you do not use the link below TASC will not get any commission. Please make sure that you do use the link!


    The bucket collection last Tuesday against Tamworth raised £45.92 which will be added to the SOS fund. Thanks for your donations!

    "My Square" pitch sponsorship

    The "My Square" pitch sponsorship scheme will be running again for the 2009/10 season. We will be taking sponsors for the squares on a first come first served basis starting at the Mansfield game on October 10th 2009. This is a fantastic fundraiser for the club and a fantastic way to own your own little part of Moss Lane and have your name in the matchday programme.

    This year we will have a pitch map on a whiteboard in the club shop before games and in the Noel White Suite afterwards so you can see your name 'up in lights' as soon as you join.


    "SWINDELLS SQUARES" - Each of the squares in the 6 yard boxes at Moss Lane will be named in honour of our greatest goal getter, the late, great Jackie Swindells. The "My Square" page of the Robins' Review will focus on these on 6 occasions and the sponsor will be able to give their recollections of Jackie.

    "FREEMAN" and "WELCH" squares - these will be available by auction and again will feature in the programme. AND HERE’S WHERE WE NEED YOUR HELP

    “MAGIC MOMENT” SQUARES – We plan to allocate certain squares of the Moss Lane pitch to magical Robins moments of the past. For example, the square just on the edge of the Golf Road penalty area where Ken McKenna slipped home his last gasp winner against Kettering in 1991. Again, this would be featured in a particular edition of Robins Review and the sponsor would be able to add their own recollections of the event.

    If you have any general queries about TASC or questions to ask about TASC matters we have set up an email address. Please contact us on e-mail.

    Enjoy tonight’s game.

    Gareth Thomas and Steve Foster (TASC Committee members)