< Alty Files Archived News

an unofficial website

August, 2015

31 August 2015


Congratulations to Shaun Densmore! Saturday's game against Tranmere was the Altrincham FC captain's 300th appearance for the Club. He has made 293 starts, plus seven appearances from the bench, and has scored 25 goals since joining Alty in September 2008.


Altrincham are away at Haig Avenue on Monday (3pm).

You can follow the fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn advises that Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary of Monday's game at the Merseyrail Community Stadium. The commentators are Joe Barry and Brian Flynn. The match summariser is John Edwards.

The match commentary sponsor is Barry Pond. Coverage starts at 2.55pm and you can listen to Radio Robins on the internet at http://www.radiorobins.com/

There will be a match preview on Periscope, which is a live video streaming App. Viewing of the match preview will be by a link on a message on the official Altrincham Football Club twitter account, which will be available at 2.55pm".

Howard Watts's Through the Years records show previous Alty results on 31 August.

Mike Garnett's record of games between the two clubs shows:

  • At Altrincham: P18-W10-D4-L4-F26-A21
  • Away: P13-W3-D3-L7-F16-A22
  • All: P31-W13-D7-L11-F42-A43



Without eight of their squad, Altrincham Youth nevertheless secured a narrow win over Warrington Town, at Partington, on Sunday afternoon. In a match which was increasingly bad tempered as refereeing decisions were questioned, a 73rd minute winner was scored by Ashley Leather from an excellent headed flick-on by substitute Dominic O'Gara. Match report here.


Southport asks supporters to "Support the Port on Bank Holiday Monday. Paul Carden describes Bank Holiday Monday as 'a must-win game'.The Port boss also stresses that his new look Port squad are better than the current return of one point out of six matches. 'We all need to stick together on and off the pitch. I will get the players going from the kick off Monday'.

Southport take on Altrincham at the Merseyrail Community Stadium on Bank Holiday Monday kick off 3pm. After collecting just one point out of the first six Vanarama National League fixtures the Port squad and management need everyone's support on Monday to kick start their season...

Paul Carden will be without the two Port players who both picked up late red cards at Barrow. Midfielder Andrai Jones received his second red in three Port appearances and now serves a four-match ban while Josh Thompson is suspended for three matches. Adam Blakeman suffered a painful first minute hand injury at Barrow. He went for x-rays after the match and will be under treatment over the weekend. The good news is the Port's only goal scorer so far this season, Louis Almond, may return having recovered from a hamstring strain faster than first anticipated."


Lee Sinnott is named as Manager of the Week in the NL Paper. He told the Paper, "That was a great result. We were under a little bit of pressure, following our results. I thought we were the dominant force in the first half but Tranmere put pressure on us in the second.

We defended well and I looked a bit of a chump, really, with them scoring just after I'd changed the defence around. But I just felt we needed some fresh legs and they saw it out.

I told the defenders at half-time to be more nimble, as they were lunging in and conceding yellows. Our service to Michael Rankine got patchier but I thought he was a handful".

Pictured, right, by Mike Ripley, is Jake Moult in action against Tranmere. Mike has further images of Saturday's game here whilst Tranmere Rovers also have good photos of the game.

Tranmere Rovers report that "Gary Brabin was left frustrated after his Tranmere side fell to a 2-1 defeat at Altrincham. The manager was disappointed with the defending that led to the home team's two goals.

He said, 'I thought it was very disjointed for the first half an hour, we gifted them two goals and from then we were chasing the game. We made a bold decision in terms that we changed the formation a bit. As a team, we're finding it hard to break teams down so we want to play with width, two strikers and have that extra man in midfield. So, we changed the formation today but I thought we got caught by poor defending in the first half an hour.

We are disappointed at losing two games but we're looking at this as one step backwards to try and take two forward. We know we need to be better, we've spoken about it at length. We need to be brave and play on the front foot but there's no legislation for poor defending. Adam Mekki gave us what we are looking for, getting in the final third and creating chances. We've got Lois Maynard who we want breaking from a central midfield role and he's done that today and scored'".

Tranmere Rovers also say that "Lois Maynard was happy to get his first goal in a Tranmere shirt at Altrincham yesterday.... He said, 'It's pleasing to get off the mark but the team didn't win and that's the main aim so, overall, I'm disappointed. It is a target for me to hit double figures... We have to defend better if we want to get promotion. It's early days but we will get better'".

The Liverpool Echo adds that "Tranmere Rovers continued to stutter in the National League after falling to a second consecutive defeat, [this time] at the hands of Altrincham. George Bowerman’s seventh-minute strike and a header from Michael Rankine handed the hosts a deserved lead at half time... Altrincham had considerable success down both flanks as Tranmere’s three-pronged defence struggled for support from those ahead of them".

30 August 2015


Right: Michael Rankine in action against Tranmere. He was a deserved Man of the Match. Photo courtesy of Gavin Rathbone of GR Photography.

Match report here.

Tranmere Rovers reported that "Tranmere fell to a narrow 2-1 defeat at Altrincham. First half goals from George Bowerman and Michael Rankine was replied to by a Lois Maynard strike late in the second half. Marcus Holness made his first start since January while Cole Stockton was recalled to start up front alongside Jonny Margetts, while new-boy Marlon Jackson named among the substitutes...

The home side took the lead on seven minutes as a long ball forward found James Lawrie whose shot from the edge of the box was saved by Scott Davies but George Bowerman was on hand to steer the ball home. After a couple of half chances at both ends, Alty doubled their lead on 29 minutes when a cross from the right found the head of Michael Rankine who sent the ball past Davies...

Rovers halved the deficit on 86 minutes as Lois Maynard netted his first for the club by firing home from 15 yards. But it was not enough as more pressure on the Altrincham goal could not bring an equaliser".


Our opponents on Bank Holiday Monday, Southport, had two players sent off on Saturday as they lost 1-0 at Barrow. Those dismissed were Josh Thompson and former Alty loanee Andrai Jones, both for violent conduct.

Southport: 1 Coughlin, 2 Challoner, 5 Thompson, 23 Cameron, 6 Foster, 12 Blakeman, 8 Wright, 11 Jones, 18 Jones, 22. Phenix, 10 Bishop. Substitutes: 4 Nolan, 7 Allen, 15 McCarthy, 16 Rutherford, 19 Viscosi.

The NW Evening Mail has a match report. The Football Network reports that "Torquay United manager Paul Cox did not mince his words after the Gulls had been routed by Gary Johnson's Cheltenham Town, even though the unbeaten Robins played with only ten men from the eighth minute. To rub salt into United's wounds, Town's first goal was headed home by former Gulls' defender Aaron Downes, before centre-forward Danny Wright capped an outstanding individual display with two strikes in the second half.

The scoreline was no more than Cheltenham deserved, a fact acknowledged by Cox. 'Myself and the players owe our supporters an apology', said Cox. 'I thought we got bullied. This is a big boys' league, and I can't afford to hang around waiting for people to learn this game. I've got some big decisions to make. There were no excuses whatsoever. Cheltenham are in a different place in their strength of character and mentality. Even take the result away, and I thought we were pretty poor today. I never thought we looked like scoring.'

United, unchanged from the team which had drawn encouragingly 2-2 at Grimsby seven days before, made a shaky start... What a contrast to the last time that Wright played at the Launa Windows Stadium - then he was booed off the pitch by Kidderminster supporters near the end of last season, when he could hardly do a thing right before he was substituted in a home win for Torquay.

It was a very different story yesterday.

Johnson was understandably delighted. 'My team played like trojans today. We certainly didn't look like we were a man down. I felt sorry for George (McLennan; he was just competing for the ball and there was nothing vicious in it. We had to change to 4-4-1, which forced Danny Wright to work very hard on his own... Cheltenham Town (4-4-2): Phillips; Dickie, Parslow, Downes, McLennan; Barthram, Pell, Storer, Munns (Hall 54); Wright (Cooke 88), Amari-Smith (Waters 88); subs not used - Rowe, Lovett (gk)".

Sheffield United report that "Two United youngsters will further their footballing development by plying their trades in Vanarama National League on a temporary basis. Midfielder David Brooks and winger CJ Hamilton have joined FC Halifax Town on-loan, initially until the 27th September, as they bid for regular first-team football with the Shaymen.


Ex-Alty players and clubs in FA Cup action on Saturday included:
  • Abbey Hey 3-2 Warrington Town (for whom Stephen Gillespie scored).
  • Trafford (for whom Ben Deegan scored) 1-2 Witton Albion

In the Unibond League: Grantham Town 3 - 3 Ashton United - both Christopher Baguley and Dale Johnson netted for Ashton.

Ex-Alty Youth, Matthew Todd, has moved from from Stockport County to Northwich Victoria (on loan).


  • Aldershot Town 1-2 Eastleigh (att. 1748)
  • Altrincham 2-1 Tranmere Rovers (2460)
  • Barrow 1-0 Southport (1343)
  • Boreham Wood 1-1 Woking (601)
  • Bromley 1-1 Dover Athletic (tba)
  • Guiseley 0-2 Gateshead (603)
  • Kidderminster Harriers 0-2 Forest Green Rovers (1905)
  • Lincoln City 1-1 Grimsby Town (5849)
  • Macclesfield Town 1-2 Chester FC (2062)
  • Torquay United 0-3 Cheltenham Town (2018)
  • Welling United 1-2 Braintree Town (521)
  • Wrexham 3-1 FC Halifax Town (5662)

29 August 2015


Altrincham deservedly beat their guests from The Wirral with their best performance of the season so far, led by a Man of the Match performance by Michael Rankine and some resolute defending in the closing stages. Alty took an eighth-minute lead when Rankine won an aerial ball and located Lawrie. His shot was well saved by Davies but the loose ball ran to Bowerman, who finished confidently to maintain his impressive scoring sequence.

The lead was doubled after half an hour. Rovers game the ball away cheaply, allowing Rankine to find Lawrie. His cross, from the right, was headed into the net by Rankine past a flat-footed keeper.

Altrincham looked quite comfortable in the second half until the 85th minute when they momentarily lost concentration, immediately after the substitution of Lawrie by debutant midfielder Griffith. Maynard was allowed to advance and poke the ball beyond Deasy who, otherwise, had only a few routine saves to make on his own debut for the Club. Successive defeats at the hands of Boreham Wood and Altrincham have underlined to Tranmere supporters the difficulty of bouncing back to League Two at the first attempt.

Match report here.

Right: There were contrasting emotions as George Bowerman and Tim Deasy celebrated victory and Tranmere's Richie Sutton trudged off at the end of the match.


Altrincham Reserves beat Billinge today, 2-1. With regular keeper Jamie Burrows unavailable and player-manager Chris Rowley on holiday, defender David Brown kept goal for the entire 90 minutes and will now be pressing Lee Sinnott for a place on the first-team bench as understudy to Tim Deasy!


Following the injury which has sidelined Stuart Coburn, former Altrincham goalkeeper Josh Ollerenshaw (right), now at the re-named Hyde United, has signed National League forms. This will allow him to serve as emergency cover, if required, for Tim Deasy. Tim will make his Altrincham league debut against Tranmere Rovers on Saturday. Josh (d.o.b. 5 October, 1990, height 6ft 5ins) featured in Alty's pre-season in 2011 and signed for the club in early August 2011. However, he did not make any first-team appearances before moving on to Curzon Ashton in September 2011.

Josh started out with Oldham Athletic from where he had loan spells with Salford City, Mossley and Northwich Victoria before signing for Curzon Ashton. After some two years at Curzon Ashton, he moved to Colwyn Bay. Fleetwood Town then signed him and from there he went on loan to Warrington Town then back to Colwyn Bay. A loan period with Buxton followed before he joined Stalybridge in early 2015, where he had dual registration with Skelmersdale United. He then joined Hyde.


Before Saturday's match Tranmere Rovers reported that Rovers midfielder "Jay Harris believes there is much more to be come from the Tranmere squad. Speaking ahead of the trip to Altrincham on Saturday, Harris... said, 'There's a lot more to come from this squad. We're still gelling and it could take 10-15 games before we really click. If you look at successful teams in this league previously, they don't start picking up their form until 15 games into the season. I remember Kidderminster were near the bottom of the league a few years ago after 15 games and finished in the play-offs.

Altrincham like to play it on the deck,but we've not got to worry about their style, we have to focus on ourselves and try and be more entertaining to the fans. We go into every game wanting to win and needing to win as well because you need to get points on the board to get out of this league and the earlier you get them, the better."

Harris told the Liverpool Echo, "We players had a long and frank discussion amongst ourselves in the dressing room after losing at home to Boreham Wood last Saturday. It went on for 40 minutes. No one wanted to leave. We'd just walked off the pitch at the final whistle to a chorus of booing from our supporters...

That 40 minute talk was about how we're going to build a winning formula between ourselves, by working with each other... Our gaffer Gary Brabin, likes to spark a debate among the players, listening to things from their point of view. I think what he does is quite clever. Those minutes immediately after the game are when players can be at their most emotional and can say some of the things they want to say without inhibition. If someone is not doing their job, or a department of the team is not doing its job, it needs to be said...

People like to be told when they are doing things right. If they are told when they are doing things wrong, they have to accept it. That applies to me more than anyone because I'm captain...

Supporters are entitled to say what they want but I do hope they will be a bit more patient with us than some of them were last Saturday... We are work in progress. When we came off at half-time against Boreham Wood with the game at 0-0, I could hear a few boos and jeers, which were not helpful... We could have as many as 1500 fans following us to Altrincham this weekend... If they are more patient with us they will benefit the whole of the team and help us build the success we all want...

We have spent time this week on the training ground working on ways to break down opposing teams who set up with a plan to frustrate us, as Boreham Wood did last Saturday... to overcome teams who play 4-5-1 or 5-4-1 formations against us... The job is to pull the opposition out of their shape, build up pressure and create openings.

Maybe the defeat was the kick up the backside we needed and better it happened now, after five games, than 10 or 20 games into the season".


Alex Sarwar writes that "Saturday sees the start of the bank holiday weekend where Altrincham will face two fixtures in three days. The first of those games is back at the J Davidson stadium where the visitors will be Gary Brabin’s Tranmere Rovers. We spoke to Alty boss Lee Sinnott who gave us an update on the injuries to Stu Coburn and Adam Griffin, both sustained at Dover last Saturday:

'Stu is waiting for a scan on his calf. We’d imagine it’s going to be a few weeks but it could be longer, depending on the results of the scan. Adam is training with us now and we’re hopeful that he’ll be fit for the game on Saturday'.

New signing Andy Parry has settled quickly into the team after being brought in last Friday and Sinnott was pleased with his contribution to the squad so far. 'Andy performed very well against Dover, he found a good understanding with Scott Leather straightaway and knew his way around the position. It was a very composed, polished performance considering he had to drive down to Dover on Friday night.'

Tranmere Rovers joined the Vanarama National League this season after being surprisingly relegated from Sky Bet League Two. The Robins are coming off the back of their first win at the J Davidson Stadium this season against high-flying Grimsby and Sinnott is backing the players to perform again in front of a big crowd. 'There is pressure on them, obviously, as you get with teams with big followings that drop down to this league. But it’s up to us to enjoy that, like I said before the Grimsby game. We took that task on and did well then and we’ll look to do the same against Tranmere.

'We’re only focused on what we have to do to get a positive result. It’s another opportunity for us to put on a big performance and take three points at home in front of our supporters'".


FC Halifax Town have announced that their home game against Altrincham has been moved forward 24 hours to Good Friday (25 March, 3pm).


Altrincham travel to Southport on Bank Holiday Monday (31 August, 3pm). TASC is providing a supporters' coach and details of times and fares are here. To book your seat, ring the Club on 0161 928-1045 during normal weekday office hours or sign the list in the Community Sports Hall on Saturday, when we meet Tranmere Rovers.


Issue 2 (September 2015) of The Non-League magazine will be on sale at the Altrincham v Tranmere Rovers game at the special promotional price of £3 (normal price is £4.50). There is a special feature on Tom Marshall in this issue. £1 of the price goes straight to the Football Club.


The Cheshire FA has made the draw for the 2015-16 Cheshire Senior Cup. Altrincham have a bye to the First Round but the preliminary round draw is below. Ties are to be played in the week commencing Monday 2nd November 2015.

"Exempt to Round 1: Congleton Town, Macclesfield Town, Northwich Victoria and Stockport County. Byes to Round 1: Altrincham FC, Barnton FC, Cheadle Town, Runcorn Linnets and Warrington Town."


The National League reports that "Dover Athletic have announced that manager Chris Kinnear has moved to bring Aswad Thomas to Crabble. The England C international has strong experience at this level with Woking, Braintree Town and Grimsby Town. Thomas started his career with Charlton Athletic... He was loaned to Accrington Stanley in 2008 and made his Football League debut for the Lancashire side, before spending time on loan at Barnet and Lewes.

He signed a deal with Woking in 2009, and moved to Braintree two years later... The 26-year-old then signed a two-year deal with Grimsby in 2012 for an undisclosed fee, and made ninety appearances before re-joining Woking for the closing period of last season".

Elsewhere, "Winger Joel Logan has extended his stay with Wrexham AFC. The 20-year-old, who had initially joined the club for a month, will now stay with the Dragons until January. The Manchester-based player has made a handful of appearances for [Roch]Dale, before Wrexham boss Gary Mills spotted his potential".

And "Forest Green Rovers have confirmed that Danny Coles's time at The New Lawn has come to an end, with the defender's contract having been cancelled by mutual consent. Signed from Exeter City in August 2014, the 33-year-old made thirty-four appearances in all competitions for the club last season... He signed a contract extension in January after an impressive first six months in a Forest Green shirt. However, following an injury picked up shortly afterwards, he struggled to force his way back".

28 August 2015


Altrincham will definitely be without the defensive injured trio of Tom Marshall (broken leg), Luca Havern (hamstring) and goalkeeper Stuart Coburn (groin) for Saturday's match against Tranmere. However, there is better news about Adam Griffin, who suffered a back spasm in the game at Dover last weekend. But Nicky Clee, who finished the game in goal at Dover, remains an injury concern for this weekend's match.


Although now sadly sidelined by injury, Altrincham goalkeeper Stuart Coburn features in the latest issue of the National League's National Scene statistical bulletin. To Stuart goes the accolade of having completed the most saves of any goalkeeper in the National League this season - 28 saves in total.

The same publication records each player's disciplinary record. Alty have a total of just seven cautions in their five games to date. They were:

  • 2 cautions: Josh O’Keefe for 6 fouls
  • 2: Scott Leather for 3 fouls
  • 1: Tom Marshall for 4 fouls
  • 1: Shaun Densmore for 2 fouls
  • 1: Jordan Sinnott for 1 foul

By comparison, the leaders in the "Most Fouls without a Card" category are Matt Rhead (Lincoln City) and Omar Bogle (Grimsby Town), who have each committed 13 fouls yet have not been booked once. By another statistical anomaly, Lincoln City are joint lowest in the card count (4 yellows) yet are top of the foul count (67 offences)!


Altrincham FC associate director, Barry Pond, tells us that for next Saturday's game, Altrincham v Tranmere Rovers, there will be a special offer for all supporters in the Manchester Glass Sponsors' Lounge.

You can enjoy free entry to the J Davidson Stadium, a two-course meal prepared by Club caterer Richie Bentley, a free drink before the match and at half-time, a free Robins Review matchday programme, and reserved seats in the Dunne & Gray Family Stand. All this is available for just £35 for all supporters (home and away) or just £25 for holders of current Altrincham FC season tickets. To take advantage of this special offer, please ring Barry on 07957 456375 as soon as possible, or contact Stacey Rowley at the Football Club on 0161 928-1045.


Saturday's match referee, Mr R. Martin, will be travelling a lot further than Alty's opposition to take charge of the game between Altrincham and Tranmere Rovers. He is Mr R Martin of Somerset (Weston-super-Mare). He has officiated at several Altrincham matches previously.

These include Alty's 4-0 defeat at Kidderminster Harriers last season, when Simon Richman was sent off, a decision later rescinded on appeal. In February 2011 he oversaw the same fixture at Aggbrough when two Alty players were sent off, Carl Piergianni and James Smith, as Alty lost 2-1.

A less eventful match, which he also oversaw, was Alty's 2-0 defeat at Weymouth in October, 2008.


Tranmere Rovers has an article entitled "The manager looks ahead to the away game at Altrincham this weekend. Tranmere manager Gary Brabin is fully aware of the threat that Altrincham pose ahead of Rovers' trip to the J. Davidson Stadium on Saturday.

Alty have already upset Grimsby Town on their home patch this season and the manager is expecting a tough afternoon at the weekend. He said, 'Altrincham have held their own at this level and got stronger each year. They've beaten Grimsby already this season, who will be one of the favourites for automatic promotion. They have some good players and it's always a difficult place to go. We're expecting a difficult game but I try not to focus too much of the opposition, it's mainly about us. If we can play to the best of our ability, then I think we'll be more than a match for anybody in this league.

Our preparations are almost the same for every game, barring the travelling, and that's to try and get the best out of ourselves. Hopefully, we can get ourselves just right and perform in the way we know we're capable of. We've got goals in the side, I think we just need to a bit better at creating chances in the final third but I think it's something that we will get better at.'

There will be a large following of Tranmere supporters at Altrincham at the weekend and Brabin wants his side to give them plenty to cheer about. He added, 'The support of the fans is never in doubt and they're passionate about their football. We want to bring happier times here. We want to start getting better, bring back winning ways to this football club because the support has been brilliant.'"

The Liverpool Echo confirms that "Tranmere are likely to have a bumper following in Saturday’s encounter with Altrincham. Rovers have already sold around 1,200 tickets for the fixture at Moss Lane and the figure should rise by the weekend. They are averaging above 5,000 for the three home games played at Prenton Park so far. Altrincham was a regular destination for Tranmere in pre-season friendlies in recent years."

Howard Watts's Through the Years records show previous Alty results on 29 August.

Altrincham go into this game with serious injury problems. Of the back five which started the season, only Shaun Densmore remained by the end of last Saturday's match at Dover. Central defenders, Tom Marshall (broken leg) and Luca Havern (hamstring) were joined on the injured list by goalkeeper Stuart Coburn (groin) and left-back Adam Griffin (back spasm) who were both taken off, injured, at The Crabble. In addition, left wiger Nicky Clee has not been fully fit since pre-season and is also a pre-match doubt for Saturday.

So, Tim Deasy will get his first start in goal for Alty, whilst loanee defender Andrew Parry makes his home debut, on loan from Luton Town, after a solid performance against Dover.

Mike Garnett's record of games between the two clubs shows that we have met Tranmere before in league matches at 1st XI level - in the Lancashire Combination from 1911-12 till 1916-17. Mike is provding fuller details in Saturday's Robins' Review programme but below is his summary...

  • At Altrincham: P9-W2-D4-L3-F17-A19
  • Away: P10-W2-D1-L7-F14-A26
  • All: P19-W4-D5-L10-F31-A45

Mike also advises us of Alty's record against Tranmere Rovers Reserves (1920-2014):

  • Home P42-W25-D7-L10-F123-A66
  • Away: P42-W11-D4-L27-F 69-A117 (one result unknown - 1925-26)
  • Neutral: P1-W1-D0-L0-F4-A1
  • All: P85-W37-D11-L37-F196-A184


The BBC reports that "Southport have signed striker Andy Bishop, after he spent just two months at Halifax Town. The 32-year-old started his career at Walsall and has spent time at Kidderminster, York, Bury and Wrexham. He moved to the Shaymen in June after his release by the Dragons...

'We talked in the summer and, now, after four matches, Andy is with us,' boss Paul Carden told the club website".

The Shropshire Star confirms that "AFC Telford United [have] brought back Rob Smith [as] their new manager following his departure from National League North rivals Hednesford Town. Smith and assistant Larry Chambers have both left the Pitmen in order to return to the New Buck's Head, where they were previously in charge between 2006 and 2010.

The Bucks confirmed their appointments to replace boss Steve Kittrick, who was sacked on Sunday just five games into the season... with the team bottom of the table.".

Three of Alty's squad last season, Kyle, Perry, Dave Parton and Sean Williams, joined Hednesford over the summer.

The Telegraph & Argus states that "Mark Bower will look to utilise his full squad as Guiseley’s marathon month culminates with two games in three days over the Bank Holiday weekend.

The Lions, thumped 4-0 at home by Aldershot last weekend, face Gateshead at Nethermoor on Saturday before a trip to Chester on Monday. The Lions' boss could hand opportunities to a number of fringe players after several featured in a 4-1 defeat to Bradford Park Avenue in a behind-closed-doors friendly on Tuesday. Bower, whose side will have played seven games by the end of the month, said:, 'Before the Aldershot performance, we had seven points from four games, which was probably not a fair reflection of the performances we put in. We’ve got two games in three days now, so we will look to utilise all the squad and possibly make one or two changes from the Aldershot game, so everyone has got to be ready.

'The behind-closed-doors match on Tuesday was for the lads who have not been playing, so everyone has had some game-time in the last week or so. It’s difficult being part-time when you’re up against full-time opposition because their lads who don’t play are being well looked after in training. We’ve just got to do the best we can to look after not only the lads who are playing but also the lads who aren’t in the side at that given moment in time. They all did well but the lads are not at the club to be playing those sort of matches ; they want to be playing first-team games on a Saturday.

'The attitude and fitness levels were good and Ben Parker, coming back from injury, got 90 minutes under his belt and that will have done him the world of good. But all the senior players who played did well and four or five of the academy lads that were involved showed their promise'...

Although Parker is getting closer to full fitness, Gavin Rothery picked up an ankle injury against Aldershot and could miss out this weekend. Reflecting on last weekend’s heavy loss, Bower added, 'We can’t over[re-]act because we’ve got a good squad of players and we have to utilise it well.”

27 August 2015


Ian Senior, Alty's goalkeeping coach and owner of SKkits writes, " I am auctioning both of Tom Marshall's home shirts, with all monies raised going to the injured players' fund. Once Tom is back, I'll supply new shirts for him". Ian can be contacted by e-mail. (Each Alty player is issued with two home shirts).


On Saturday, Alty welcome Tranmere Rovers to the J. Davidson Stadium.

Howard Watts provides details of previous Alty games on 29 August in his Through the Years files.

Historically, Alty have not met Tranmere Rovers in a league match other than in the Cheshire County League when Rovers' reserves were members alongside Alty. Mike Garnett's record of games between the two clubs shows:

  • At Altrincham: P9-W2-D4-L3-F17-A19
  • Away: P10-W2-D1-L7-F14-A26    
  • All: P19-W4-D5-L10-F31-A45


Northwich Vics have added to their number of ex-Alty players with the signing of Andy Smart. He and fellow ex-Robin, Brian Summerskill, are currently sidelined by injury and they are joined by former Youth teamer Stuart Cook at the Vics.

Elsewhwere,Chelmsford City "have announced that goalkeeper Ashley Timms has been released. Timms, who joined for the Clarets in the summer, after leaving Maidenhead United, made five appearances for Chelmsford. He saved a penalty in the Clarets' 2-2 draw with Oxford City on the opening day of the season before keeping a clean sheet in City's 4-0 thrashing of Hayes & Yeading.

The Clarets are looking to sign a keeper in time for Saturday's home tie with St Albans City, and would like to extend its thanks to Timms for his services".


Altrincham will be the seventh league visitors to promoted Boreham Wood this season. The club has announced that "Having spoken to, and taken advice from, various bodies, including the safety advisory group, our safety officer, our chief steward and the Herts Constabulary police, our match day arrangements and policies are now all very much complete and in place.

As such, we respectfully remind both home and away supporters, that our first seven home league games will be segregated and that we will operate a strictly home supporters' bar on a match-day. We can also announce that for the visit of Grimsby Town, to Meadow Park on Saturday, 5th September, that the game will be an all-ticket affair...

As new boys to the new National League, we want to ensure that we run very safe, enjoyable and family-oriented days for all concerned, as we welcome so many new clubs and supporters to Meadow Park. With attendances expected to be higher this season and on the advice of experts and experienced people who operate at this level of football, it is believed that this is the best and safest way for us to operate as we initially find our feet...

Away supporters are reminded that entry to their allocated away seating and terracing areas, is restricted to the entrance and turnstiles located in the Brook Road car park... Parking in the club's car park on a match day, will only be available to players, match officials, visiting directors and the clubs increased match-day staff. We respectfully remind all supporters that the adjoining Brook Road car park, is a large council owned car park. It has ample parking for most games and is the nearest public car park to our Meadow Park ground.

We respectfully remind all supporters that our club bar, is a strictly home supporters' bar only and no away supporters will be allowed access on a match day. We thank you all for your co operation in advance and look forward to welcoming fans from all over the country to Meadow Park".


Brian Flynn offers the chance to hear again the Radio Robins' match commentary from last Saturday...

Dover Athletic now have a report on last Saturday's game. It says that "Dover Athletic claimed their second Vanarama National League victory of the season as Sean Raggett's dramatic goal clinched a win over lowly Altrincham.

Duane Ofori-Acheampong slammed home from Stefan Payne's excellent pass to put Whites in the lead on 22 minutes... But the visitors grabbed an equaliser from out of nowhere as George Bowerman latched onto the ball inside Dover's area before successfully rounding a defender and coolly slotting past Whites' keeper Mitch Walker.

Chris Kinnear's side gained all three points at an extremely hot and sweltering Crabble, with temperatures exceeding 30°, as Raggett thumped home after Tom Wynter's cross bounced off the bar... In a fixture played under intense heat, the game never got going despite three goals at Crabble...

Whites finally found the winner they were searching for in dramatic circumstances; Miller's shot was sensationally saved by Coburn in motionless fashion, before Wynter's cross hit the bar and [fell] into the path of Raggett, who made no mistake by firing home".


Vanarama National League press release:

"There is a BIG weekend coming up for fans of The Vanarama National League as BT Sport not only start their new featured Highlights Show, they also screen their first full LIVE match of this season.

Sunday August 30, BT Sport will be broadcasting their inaugural highlights show, hosted by Mark Clemmit. It will bring football fans everywhere a taste of the top of the non-league game, with action from the games played this Saturday.

The programme which is available to BT Sport subscribers via BT Sport 1 goes out at 9.45pm. The show will be a precursor to the first full LIVE match of the season to be screened the following day, as BT Sports cameras will be at the World of Smile Stadium, the home of Cheltenham Town on Bank Holiday Monday with a 5.30pm kick off. Again viewable on BT Sport 1, the visitors to the Robins will be the Red Dragons from Wrexham. Two wily and experienced managers will lock horns in the shape of Gary Johnson and Gary Mills.

Both clubs are holding challenging positions in the table after bright starts and this is sure to be a first class encounter between two ex Football League clubs who will be desperate to be in the mix for a return come the end of the season.

It certainly is going to be a BIG weekend coming up for The Vanarama National League in partnership with BT Sport, so make sure you join us!"

26 August 2015


Following his earlier article, (see below), John Edwards, joint Press & Media Officer at Altrincham FC, writes that Altrincham FC manager "Lee Sinnott (below, right) could barely contain his anger after a point slipped away and keeper Stuart Coburn joined an ever-lengthening injury list amid bitter controversy at Dover.

Alty were seconds away from a hard-earned 1-1 draw when Coburn left his line to punch the ball clear and crumpled to the turf with a calf problem that will sideline him for six weeks.

To add insult to a devastating injury, referee Alan Young refused to stop play for treatment to the flat-out Alty number one and allowed Dover to continue an attack that led to a highly-contentious winning goal.

Summer signing Tim Deasy will step in for his Vanarama National League debut against Tranmere at The J.Davidson Stadium on Saturday, with Sinnott now forced to ponder another sortie into the loan market after already signing defender Andy Parry for a month from Luton.

‘You have to be careful what you say, but I’m still angry and annoyed,’ fumed the Alty boss. ‘If it’s an outfield player, you look to see if it is serious and whether treatment is needed, but if it’s the keeper, it’s a given. Play stops there and then.

‘Stuart put his foot down, going for the punch, and the force through his calf caused him a problem. It was clear he was in trouble, yet play continued.

‘Right’s right and wrong’s wrong, you have to stop if the keeper goes down. It’s the one position where that has to happen, otherwise someone’s going to fire it in from the halfway line.

‘Even then, while he was down, Stuart still managed to stick a hand up and pull off an absolutely unbelievable save from the initial shot. It was his natural instinct to want to protect his goal and typical of a fantastic feller and fantastic servant to this club.

‘Of course, he couldn’t carry on and had to be helped off after the goal went in. We are sorting out a scan for him to ascertain the full extent of the injury, and I just hope it will be no more than six weeks.

‘If it had been the other way round, and Dover’s keeper had been on the floor injured in similar circumstances, I’d have had every sympathy for their manager Chris Kinnear.

‘I’m having to watch my words, so that tells you what I think. The Non-League Paper said I refused to speak to them, but that’s not the case. I told them I couldn’t say what I really thought, because I’d be in trouble.

‘It was a poor game, without any disrespect to either team, in conditions that made it very difficult. It was so hot, you’d have thought you were in the Mediterranean somewhere.

‘It was looking a draw all day long, but then things started going against us. Josh O’Keefe somehow had a free-kick against him, after heading the ball forward cleanly and getting a bang on the side of his head from an opponent, and then Scott Leather let the ball run out for a goal-kick, only for a corner to be the outcome.

‘Then Stuart’s on the floor and play goes on. You have to be so careful about what you say, but I went on and shook hands with the officials at the end, including the referee, and told him what mark he’d be getting.

‘I think it’s fair to say it’s a testing time for us at the moment, particularly after a third big injury inside the first couple of weeks of the new season. It has been a tough week, with a fair old trip to Woking, where we gave a good account of ourselves and were a bit unlucky to lose, a full-on game with Grimsby that produced a wonderful result and then the long haul to Dover.

‘It has been a demanding week for the players, no doubt about it, but I’m proud of how they have worked their way through it. I feel sorry for them at coming back from Dover with nothing to show for their efforts in circumstances like that.

‘After going behind, we came back with a really good equaliser in punishing conditions, and it was harsh to end up losing in that manner.

‘We are fortunate to have Tim ready to step in, because he showed his qualities as a keeper in the pre-season games. Now we have to address the issue of having someone on the bench, and that’s not going to be easy or straightforward.

‘On the other injury issues, there is some concern over Nicky Clee (left), but at least it’s better news on Adam Griffin (right). Nicky suffered a groin injury at Witton pre-season, and it flared up again on Saturday.

‘We are looking at it and assessing him, because we don’t want it to just degenerate. It’s proving a problem when he tries to push off with a bit of explosive acceleration, so we’re keeping an eye on that and how best to deal with it. Adam jarred his back at Dover, but thankfully it seems to have settled down a bit, and we are hoping he might be OK for Saturday.’

Parry made a positive impact in central defence on his Alty debut, and Sinnott added: ‘You could tell he has played at this level, and I thought he performed very well in difficult circumstances.

‘He struck up a nice understanding with Scott Leather straightaway and looked strong throughout the game. Andy actually drove down to our hotel in Rochester on the Friday night and met the lads for the first time then. He barely had time to say hello before he was pulling on the jersey and stepping out for his debut.

‘But it was clear he knew his position, the way he went about his work, and there was an instant understanding with Scott.

‘Now we move on to Tranmere. They are bringing a big following with them, so it should be a good one for the players to get their teeth stuck into and show they can ride things out when the rub of the green isn’t going their way.

‘When you look at the effort they have put in and some of the football they have produced, I’m convinced that, at other times in the season, it will be enough to generate more points than we’ve been picking up so far. We just have to get our heads down now and push on to the next game.’"


Joint Press & Media Office, John Edwards, writes that "Altrincham have been dealt another serious injury setback after it emerged that in-form keeper Stuart Coburn (right) faces six weeks out with a damaged groin. Alty's record appearance-maker hobbled off after being injured in the build-up to a controversial late winner for Dover on Saturday.

While there was widespread anger in the Alty camp at the referee's failure to stop play and allow treatment for Coburn, it turned to dismay when the extent of the Robins' number one's injury became clear.

Tim Deasy (left) will step up from the bench for his Vanarama National League debut for Alty against Tranmere at The J Davidson Stadium on Saturday, while the club will look into the possibility of another loan signing.

'As Stuart came to punch the ball clear, and planted his foot down, the force that went through his calf gave him a problem,' said manager Lee Sinnott. 'We're sorting out a scan for him, but the feeling is it will be six weeks. He left the field straightaway. There was no way he could continue, and I just hope he won't be out any longer than that. We'll have to wait to ascertain the full extent of it.

'Fortunately, we've got Tim Deasy ready to take over. Tim showed his many qualities in our pre-season games, but, of course, there's the issue of having someone on the bench. We are looking at the possibilities in terms of options for goalkeeping cover, but it's not easy. For instance, you go to a League club and ask to take one of their young keepers, and you not only have to pay the wages, they expect him to start games.'

There was mixed injury news among Alty's outfield players. Nicky Clee is being assessed by medical staff after a groin problem sustained at Witton in pre-season flared up again at Dover, but left-back Adam Griffin is hopeful of being passed fit for Saturday. Griffin jarred his back at Dover, but the injury has shown signs of settling down over the past 24 hours.

*More from Lee on Stuart's injury, and how Dover were allowed to play on and score what proved the winning goal while he was on the floor needing treatment, will appear here, on the club's official website, tomorrow".


Altrincham FC Reserves drew 1-1 at home tonight against Maine Road Reserves, watched by assistant manager Neil Tolson. They had plenty of chances and went one-down in the middle of the second half, against the run of play. They continued to battle hard and were rewarded by a goal, late on, scored by Connor Sutton.


Altrincham FC official caterer, Richie Bentley, informs us that "to contribute to the weekend bucket collection for the injuries to Matt Christie and Tom Marshall, I will be selling homemade funnel cakes, an American classic, buns, scones and cakes as a fundraiser during the Tranmere match. With an extra large away support and home crowd expected, I am appealing to fans and bakers alike to bring/donate some cakes to sell at the game. Anyone interested in helping can email me here. All proceeds will go, via the Club, to the players. We will also be providing catering from all four corners of the ground at the Tranmere match, so look out for notifications on Facebook".


Following the construction of the Community Sports Hall the Noel White Suite (formerly the bar) area has been revamped as a Vice-Presidents' Lounge (pictured above). Chairman Grahame Rowley says, "If anyone has any Alty memorabilia which they may want displaying in there, please contact me or the club. There is plenty of wall space still available".


The Manchester Evening News confirms that "Former Altrincham forward Duncan Watmore has been named in England’s Under-21 squad.Manchester United striker James Wilson and Manchester City keeper Angus Gunn have also been called up by the U21s for the first time...

Watmore continued his remarkable rise by scoring on his Premier League debut for Sunderland last week. After being released as a youngster at United, Watmore came through the ranks at Altrincham and earned a move to Sunderland in 2013. The 21-year-old from Wilmslow impressed in the Black Cats’ Under-21 side last season, earning a call-up to England’s U20 squad for the Toulon tournament. Having scored twice in France he was named ‘revelation of the tournament’ and came off the bench to score for Sunderland against Norwich last week...

The Young Lions face USA’s U23s next Thursday at Preston’s Deepdale ground before taking on Norway’s U21s away the following Monday".

Duncan added to his growing reputation with a goal for Sunderland in Tuesday night's Capital Cup win.


The Halifax Courier announces that "FC Halifax Town boss Neil Aspin could bring in 'one or two' new faces before the end of the transfer window. The Shaymen are yet to win a game so far this season, but registered their first point of the campaign in Saturday’s 2-2 home draw with Bromley...

'I’ve got to look to see if I can switch things round,' he said. 'You’re always looking for personnel and, if we can get someone in, then I have to look at all options. You can go so long but eventually we’re going to need to win games and I’m aware of that. I have to look to see if I can freshen things up, maybe with one or two new faces'...

He added, 'If you do get a new face in it can give people a lift... We’re in a bad position at the moment but we’ve got 41 games to get out of it so it’s not desperate... As a manager you’re depressed when you look at the league table but that’s football. It is a hard league. When we first came into this league I expected some hard times but it went really well, probably better than I thought. Then, last season ended poorly and it’s carried on to this season'".

The National League has announced that "All fixtures played on Saturday will observe a one-minute silence for the victims of the Shoreham Airshow tragedy". Two Sussex footballers were amongst those killed in the air crash.

25 August 2015


On Saturday, Altrincham FC Reserves won 5-0, away at Grappenhall. The score Was 0-0 at half time but second-half goals from Yannis Stouppis (2), Jimmi Folagbade (2) and David Brown secured the win. Although he did not score, Man of the Match was Joel Swift.

The Reserves' next game is on Tuesday 25th August at home (at Egerton Boys' Club, Knutsford) against Maine Road Reserves with a 6.30pm kick off. All support will be very welcome!


The half-time bucket collection on Saturday at half-time in the Altrincham v Tranmere Rovers game will be on behalf of injured players Tom Marshall (first team) and Matt Christie (reserves). There will also be collection buckets near the programme sellers as spectators come through the turnstiles.

Donations can also be made online via Go Fund Me.

All proceeds from the collections "will be used to help cover the players' earnings whilst they are unable to work/play football and any amount would be greatly appreciated", said a Club spokesman.


Judy Henson, deputy manager of the Community Sports Hall reminds us that this is the final week for the following...

  • Multi-Sports: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 9.30am-3.30pm. £12/day. Wrap around care available. Age group: 4-14 year olds
  • Multi-Sports - Drop In Session: Friday, 9.30am-3.30pm. £12/day or £6 for a morning or afternoon session. Age group: 4-14 year olds.

Please ring the Club on 0161 928-1045 for further details.


The BBC reports that "Barrow have signed New Zealand international Benjamin van der Broek on a one-year contract. The 27-year-old who can play in midfield or up front, was a free agent after leaving Romanian club Universitatea Cluj.

The club are still awaiting clearance for Netherlands-born Van der Broek, who had been on trial at Holker Street".

Still at Holker Street, the NW Evening Mail adds that "Darren Edmondson is refusing to panic in the wake of Barrow AFC’s poor start to the campaign. The Bluebirds’ agonising 2-1 defeat at unbeaten Cheltenham Town means they have collected only four points from the maximum 15 available and leaves them hovering just above the National League relegation zone...

But with the Bluebirds losing key players to injury, illness and suspension, including important attacking duo Andy Cook and Dan Pilkington, their battling display deserved some reward.

The AFC boss criticised his side’s lack of killer instinct, plus their attacking play and decision-making in the final third...

Edmondson said, 'In general play, we matched a Cheltenham side that is at full strength. We’ve got injuries, don’t forget, which hasn’t helped and which means you are having to chop and change formations, squad players and bringing people in who are just a little bit off fitness-wise as well. That makes it harder.

But we got into some really good areas today and I’m gutted for the players and also the 100-plus fans that travelled, they were fantastic throughout the game'...

He added, 'For a whole 90 minutes, we matched a Cheltenham team, and in spells, I thought we were the better side at times... In the last 15 minutes, they were very direct'...

Edmondson will also review the Robins’ two headed goals as the manager questioned the quality of his side’s marking, with Dickie’s winner arriving from a corner... They host bottom club Southport on Saturday before heading to second-from-bottom FC Halifax Town next Monday...

Edmondson said, 'It’s a must now not to get beat over the weekend and get some pride back in there, and make sure we learn from this'...

Edmondson is hopeful talismanic striker Cook will be declared fit to face Southport this weekend, while centre-back Danny Livesey is expected to be okay...Injured wing duo Dave Symington (hamstring) and Pilkington (groin) are doubts".

Cressing Road the home of Braintree has been a reasonably happy hunting ground for the Sandgrounders" reports the Southport Visiter.

Paul Carden was able to call upon Andrai Jones returning from suspension and Andy Wright was available for selection having been deemed fit...

A goal arrived against the run of play, Dan Sparkes took a cross down and turned and struck an accurate low hard volley to give the Irons the lead... Boss Carden was yet again left frustrated as he rued another narrow defeat with his goalkeeper untroubled for long periods of the contest.

With one goal and one point in five games it is fairly obvious where Port’s problems lie. The loss of their only bright attacking outlet Almond means Carden will have to move into the market to acquire a recognised striker to halt the poor run before Port are cut adrift at the foot of the division".

Meanwhile, Tranmere Rovers report that "Gary Brabin says they will be using the free week as best as possible to put things right after Saturday's setback against Boreham Wood last weekend.

Rovers make the short journey to Altrincham this Saturday... The manager says there is room for improvement and they will be working during the week to make those changes.

He said, 'There are lots of things we need to improve on and that was evident on Saturday. The disappointing thing for me was leaving ourselves open to the counter attack. Instead of being disappointed with a 0-0 draw, we've ended up losing the game. A free week gives us a bit more time on the training ground in preparation for the next game at Altrincham...

We rushed things. There was a sense of desperation in our play, at 0-0 chasing the game and we ended up leaving ourselves wide open and losing the game. We need to be patient, we know teams are going to come here to frustrate us so we need to be patient, be clever, be bright and try to be creative in the final third and once you get the goal, it changes the opposition's game plan then.

When I say the team is not ready, I'm judging us on a team that's good enough for automatic promotion and, at this moment in time, we're still building towards that... We don't have a large squad and we've had one or two knocks, so we've got a whole week to work on the training ground and it also gives an extra few days for players to recover from any knocks and bruises'"

According to the Liverpool Echo "Manager Gary Brabin says Tranmere must quickly absorb the lessons from their first defeat...

'I can’t say I was expecting a performance like that because I wasn’t' he said. 'The players were gutted. There were a lot of home truths being spoken in the dressing room and that’s what I have come to expect from this group of lads. It’s about how we bounce back now'...

The final whistle was greeted by a chorus of booing from home supporters... Brabin said, 'It is a big transition for this club. I have taken on a team that had successive relegations and they are not used to winning football matches... But we are certainly going to be winning more games than we lose this season... I’m used to it, I’ve seen it all before, the time-wasting, little things like that'...

Brabin changed Tranmere’s 4-4-2 formation early in the second half, introducing new loan signing Nathan Blissett. However, the manager felt his team resorted too often to playing high balls up to the towering striker, who is on a month long loan from Bristol Rovers".

The BBC confirms that "AFC Telford have sacked Steve Kittrick in the wake of the club's poor start to the National League North season. Former Guiseley manager Kittrick was appointed Bucks' boss in December 2014 following the dismissal of Liam Watson.

But the 57-year-old could not keep Telford in the non-league top flight and they are now bottom of the table, having picked up just one point and scored one goal in five matches... Whoever is appointed at the Bucks Head will become the Shropshire club's seventh manager in just over two and a half years".

24 August 2015


Alty have now lost four of their first-choice back five to injury this season...

Match report here.


Alty Youth won 3-2 at Prescot Cables on Sunday.


The National League reports that "Forest Green Rovers maintained their 100 per cent start... after beating Lincoln City 3-1 at the New Lawn...

Dominic Vose's 90th minute goal secured a fourth successive win as Wrexham beat Welling United 1-0 at The Racecourse... Eastleigh remain unbeaten after a hard-fought 1-0 win against Macclesfield Town at the Silverlake Stadium. However, had it not been for a terrific performance from Richie Branagan in the Silkmen`s goal, the Spitfires would have won the game far more comfortably...

Chester FC`s unbeaten start to the season came to an crunching end at Kingfield against Woking. John Goddard's 25th minute penalty broke the deadlock...

Tranmere Rovers fell to their first defeat of the season at Prenton Park against newly-promoted Boreham Wood. Two second half goals from Graeme Montgomery and Harry Crawford gave the visitors all three points...

A late equalising goal from Gateshead at the International Stadium saw Kidderminster Harriers' wait for a win go on... Cheltenham Town came back from being a goal down to beat Barrow AFC 2-1 at home with a goal 2 minutes from time...

Sean Raggett earned Dover Athletic a last-gasp 2-1 win against Altrincham at a boiling hot Crabble. Raggett popped up to scramble home inside the box with just a minute of the game to go...

Braintree Town won for the second time under Danny Cowley and condemned visiting Southport to bottom spot after a 1-0 win at the Amlin Stadium... Aldershot Town recorded their first win of the new season, and in emphatic style at newly-promoted Guiseley AFC's Nethermoor...

Grimsby Town came from two goals down to earn a draw with Torquay United at Blundell Park. The visitors were the better side during the first half and they were rewarded with a 2-0 half-time lead...

FC Halifax Town left it late to secure their first point of the season with a 2-2 draw at home to Bromley... Pierre Joseph-Dubois doubled Bromley’s lead in the 90th minute... Connor Hughes added what looked like a stunning consolation in the 94th minute when his 25-yard strike rifled into the top corner before the Shaymen were awarded a 95th minute penalty when Elliott Whitehouse was brought down. Jordan Burrow stepped up and duly tucked it away to make it 2-2".


  • Braintree Town 1-0 Southport att. 504
  • Cheltenham Town 2-1 Barrow att. 2209
  • Dover Athletic 2-1 Altrincham att. 711
  • Eastleigh 1-0 Macclesfield Town att. 1928
  • FC Halifax Town 2-2 Bromley att. 1107
  • Forest Green Rovers 3-1 Lincoln City att. 1385
  • Gateshead 1-1 Kidderminster Harriers att. 800
  • Grimsby 2-2 Torquay United att. 4290
  • Guiseley 0-4 Aldershot Town att. 782
  • Tranmere Rovers 0-2 Boreham Wood att. 4832
  • Woking 5-2 FC Chester att. 1503
  • Wrexham 1-0 Welling United att. 5277

23 August 2015


Altrincham slipped to a late defeat on a sweltering afternoon at Dover. They fell behind to Ofori-Acheampong's goal before George Bowerman finished well from an excellent feed by Sinnott just before half time.

In a disappointing second half they lost Adam Griffin to injury before conceding a controversial 89th minute goal. In the goal melee, Coburn was hurt and was unable to continue. Nicky Clee went in goal and made a couple of good saves.

Alty have now lost four of their first-choice back five to injury this season.

Match report here.


  • Braintree Town 1-0 Southport
  • Cheltenham Town 2-1 Barrow
  • Dover Athletic 2-1 Altrincham
  • Eastleigh 1-0 Macclesfield Town
  • FC Halifax Town 2-2 Bromley
  • Forest Green Rovers 3-1 Lincoln City
  • Gateshead 1-1 Kidderminster Harriers
  • Grimsby 2-2 Torquay United
  • Guiseley 0-4 Aldershot Town
  • Tranmere Rovers 0-2 Boreham Wood
  • Woking 5-2 FC Chester
  • Wrexham 1-0 Welling United

22 August 2015


Howard Watts's Through the Years records show previous Alty results on 22 August.

Mike Garnett's record of games between the two clubs shows:

  • At Altrincham: P6-W3-D2-L1-F13-A6
  • Away: 6-2-2-2-12-9

Saturday's match referee is Mr A Young (Cambridgeshire).


Following the injuries to centre-backs Luca Havern and Tom Marshall, Altrincham welcome defender Andrew Parry (d.o.b. 13 Sep, 1991) from Luton Town on a one-month loan until 23 September. Following youth experience at Blackburn Rovers, Andrew played at Radcliffe Borough before moving to Kettering Town for a brief spell in 2011-12. 67 appearances for Southport in 2011-13 were followed by 23 for Luton Town during their promotion season from the Conference (2013-14). In 2014-15 he had loan spells at AFC Telford United (14 apps) and Southport (4 apps).

He will go straight into the squad for the match at Dover on Saturday. His squad number will be 22.

John Still, the Luton manager, said, "Andrew can play centre-half, right-back and in central midfield and, since I've been at Luton, he's played in all three positions so we know what strings he's got to his bow".


Alex Sarwar writes, "The players and coaching staff at Alty will be making the long journey to Dover a day early, so we spoke with assistant manager Neil Tolson before the long trek down south. He stressed that, should the Robins not put their bodies on the line and fight like they did against Grimsby Town on Tuesday night, it would lead to a negative result against the Whites.

'It won’t be easy down there, they are very good at what they do. If we haven’t got the same commitment and the same determination as we had against Grimsby, then we won’t be getting anything down there because they are a very good side. As I’ve said many times there are no easy games at this level. We have to work hard every single week to give ourselves a chance. But we’ve been together long enough to gain a good understanding of each other and they’ll dig in deep for each other again on Saturday'.

Tolson also gave an update on the condition of Tom Marshall (right) after his injury on Tuesday night left him stretchered off the pitch and sent to hospital in an ambulance.

'I think it’s more positive since he’s been in hospital and had his leg looked at and x-rayed. We originally feared that it was going to rule him out for up to twelve months. But, without putting any pressure on him, we’re now hoping that maybe he’ll only be out until up to around Christmas or January time. It’s vital that we don’t rush him back and that he takes as much time as he needs to recover from such an injury.'

With Marshall joining fellow centre back Gianluca Havern on the sidelines, Tolson confirmed that he and manager Lee Sinnott are on the hunt for potential incomings to the squad. 'We’re always looking to strengthen the squad even if both Tom and Luca are fully fit. But obviously, with what’s happened to the both of them, it’s been pushed a little bit faster this week to try and get somebody in as soon as possible'".


The Dover Express says that "DOver Athletic made it three National League games unbeaten in midweek with a 1-1 draw at Aldershot and look to extend that run when Altrincham visit Crabble on Saturday.

Nicky Deverdics will be most looking forward to facing Alty, having scored three times against them last season; twice in a 2-1 win at Crabble in March and once in a 2-2 draw at Moss Lane last December. Alty come into the clash on the back a fantastic 2-1 win over title favourites Grimsby Town, George Bowerman netting twice to stop the rot of three straight defeats to start the campaign to Forest Green, Guiseley and Woking, without scoring in the process.

Dover are one point better off than they were at this stage last season after four games, five points instead of four, with Stefan Payne leading the scoring charts with two. For Dover, their newest recruit Jaydon Gibbs... is expected to be included in the squad after signing from Aldershot Town on Wednesday night. Midfielder Jack Parkinson belatedly made his Whites debut in the midweek draw with the Shots, playing the final ten minutes and is pushing for a start. Ricky Modeste, Tom Murphy and Andy Rafferty are all sidelined with injuries."


News of the Alty Slimathon comes from Noel Shield...

"On Tuesday night against Grimsby we had the big weigh-in for the Alty Slimathon and, even though there are still a few people who were not present on the evening, we will catch up with them soon so that the challenge can be completed and all the pledged money can be collected.

We will announce the total raised when all the money is collected. As this fundraising event is for the Community Sports Hall the donations can be also be gift-aided. We would like to thank all those who have entered the Slimathon or sponsored one of our participants in our fundraising efforts for the Community Sports Hall.

Our Winner of the Alty Slimathon is Dawn Abbott who has lost 2 stone 12lbs, which is an amazing effort, and if anybody would like to support Dawn please either make a donation direct or on the Just Giving site.

Please support these fundraising efforts and donate what you can; every pound counts.

A special mention to Tom Marshall, as we all hope that he makes a speedy recovery, and well done to the team for such a great result on Tuesday against Grimsby".


Andy Mitten, a good friend of Altrincham FC, writes in the Manchester Evening News that "A Mancunian made his Premier League debut on Saturday. He scored too, the only Sunderland player cheered by a huge crowd which was a lot less than the 41,000 present at the start of Sunderland’s 3-1 home defeat to Norwich City...

Duncan Watmore, 21, was a second half substitute when Sunderland trailed and fans were already venting their spleen. The winger scored the consolation goal, marking an incredible rise. Last season, a pair of senior United coaches were watching United’s under 21s against Sunderland. One player stood out: Watmore. 'Where’s that lad from?' asked one of the coaches. 'Manchester,' came the reply. 'He came from Altrincham.'

'You’re joking,' was the response. 'How did we miss him?' United didn’t miss Watmore, they just let him go when he was 12. The son of former Football Association chairman Ian Watmore, he knuckled down with his studies and played football for fun. At 16, he joined Altrincham’s youth team. At 18, he broke into the Robins’ first team under current boss Lee Sinnott.

'Non-league is full of players who are missed by clubs,' offers Graham Heathcote, a legend as a player and manager at Altrincham. 'Duncan puts his head down, runs at players, goes past them too. His dribbling and pace was too much for opponents in non-league and he gets his share of goals. He was only at Altrincham little over a season but as it wore on more he really stood out and more teams began watching him. He also scored 14 times'.

Sunderland got his signature on a two-year deal, for an undisclosed fee in the region of £100,000, plus add-ons. That’s a significant amount for Altrincham, yet money was secondary for Watmore. They got their man because the Mackems encouraged him to continue his economics and finance degree, switching from Manchester to Newcastle University...

He was selected for the first team squad v the Uniteds of Manchester and West Ham, made his debut for England under 20s and was named as the revelation of the Toulon tournament after impressing with two goals in France. While at that tournament, he found out that he was the only player in the squad who bought his own boots as the rest were on deals.

Altrincham were 2-0 down at Woking on Saturday when their chairman Grahame Rowley started receiving texts. 'First, they said that Duncan had made his debut, then that he’d scored,' said Rowley. 'That made the long journey back to Altrincham more bearable. I spoke to Duncan, who has always kept in touch with us, as he was just leaving the stadium, with fans asking for his autograph and photos... We’re very proud of Duncan’s achievement. He was a joy to work with, an intelligent and grounded young man who had good guidance from his father. His education came first, but it didn’t interfere with his football. He deserves his success...

Defenders hated Duncan running at them and he was also good with both feet. We’d will him to get the ball because he’d produce magic once or twice a game, but he didn’t always play. Our manager Lee Sinnott did a good job with him, because he didn’t play him every week. He got stick for that, but Lee deserves credit in Duncan’s development.'

Altrincham also made good use of the money. 'Our revenues are quite static so, when we get a fillip, it really helps us,' said Rowley. 'The money from Sunderland meant we bought a couple of players in who helped us get promotion in 2014 and we chipped in to build our new Community Sports Hall.'"


The National League reports that "Midfielder Matt Robinson has joined Grimsby Town on an initial one-month loan deal from Luton Town. The young central midfielder has an eye for goal and impressive performances earned him a contract with the Hatters in 2012... He made thirty-one appearances for the Town in the title-winning campaign and scored twice.

In 2014/15, the midfielder was harshly red-carded in the 2-0 defeat away to Shrewsbury and failed to break back into the side which led to a loan spell with... Kidderminster Harriers".

Bristol Rovers confirm that "Striker Nathan Blissett has joined Tranmere Rovers... Blissett joins Tranmere on a one month loan deal... Blissett turned down the chance to join Grimsby Town and opted for Tranmere after not featuring in any of Rovers' games this season. The 25 year-old was a main feature for Rovers as they won promotion back to the Football league and scored six times in 23 appearances after signing from Kidderminster."

More on Blissett comes from the Liverpool Echo which states that "Manager Gary Brabin made his move at a time when Tranmere have fitness concerns over James Norwood, who aggravated a side strain... Six foot three inch centre forward, Blissett, who is nephew to former England and AC Milan striker Luther Blissett, began his professional career at Kidderminster Harriers...

Manager Gary Brabin said, 'He’s a good player and will add a different dimension to the squad'”.

From the Grimsby Telegraph we learn that "Grimsby Town haven't yet 'earned the right to call themselves a good team', according to boss Paul Hurst. The Mariners squad were back in training yesterday following Tuesday night's 2-1 defeat at Altrincham...

Hurst was pleased with the response that he saw from his players during that session and he wants that to continue into tomorrow's clash with Torquay Unite. Asked what it will take to bounce back... Hurst replied, 'The right attitude and the right mind-set, that's the key for me. We haven't yet earned the right to call ourselves a good team yet, it's too early in the season for that. But, I do believe that we can become a good team and one result, like Tuesday night, doesn't change that....

'I'm not going to throw everything out of the pram because we lost. I'm still not happy about it because, as far as I'm concerned it was an opportunity that we let slip... It's about getting back to being confident, working hard for each other'".

Cheltenham Town report that "Following reports from the Cheltenham Town fans who travelled to Chester Football Club on Tuesday night, the Robins Trust and Cheltenham Town board have been in discussions regarding rule Rule 21 and the £18 ticket price charged to away fans. We can’t comment further at this stage but can state that contact has been made with the National League regarding this matter".

Chester FC charge £18 for seating in the MaxiFlow / Centurion Community Stands and £15 for standing in the Harry McNally Terrace. As we at Alty have found before, it is permitted to charge away fans more for away seating than home fans pay for standing, even when away fans have no option to stand available to them. Rule 21 from The National League Rules 2015-16 states "Admission charges, excluding home Club concessions as appropriate, must be the same for home and visiting supporters at Competition matches. Clubs may, with the written permission of the Board, have a maximum of three Competition Match Days each Playing Season during which they can vary admission charges for adults including allowing free admission.

21 August 2015


Altrincham are away at Dover Athletic on Saturday (22nd, 3pm).

You can follow the fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn advises that Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary.

Howard Watts's Through the Years records show previous Alty results on 22 August.

Mike Garnett's record of games between the two clubs shows:

  • At Altrincham: P6-W3-D2-L1-F13-A6
  • Away: P6-W2-D2-L2-F12-A9
  • All: P12-W5-D4-L3-F25-A15

Saturday's match referee is Mr A Young (Cambridgeshire).


From the Football Conference we learn that "Dover Athletic have signed right-back or winger Jaydon Gibbs, who left league rivals Aldershot Town in the summer. Gibbs left the Shots after failing to respond to an offer of a new contract.

The 25-year-old was made the offer following an assessment of his fitness after undergoing a scan on his injured back in June. Jaydon is twin of England and Arsenal star Kieran, who regularly turns out to support his brother. Originally with Whyteleafe as a youngster, Gibbs Jnr went on to have a spell with MK Dons without making the breakthrough. He signed for Guildford City in 2010 and enjoyed three successful seasons there before moving to Chipstead during the 2012/13 season. He signed for Aldershot in July 2013 and went on to make sixty-five appearances without managing to find the net."


Alty TV has excellent highlights of Alty v Grimsby Town.

And if you want to listen to the game, Radio Robins has commentary:


Organisation: Altrincham FC Community Sports Trust

Salary: Dependent on experience.

Location: Altrincham and the surrounding local area, it would be desirable if the candidate can drive as some work will not be based at the Football Club.

Contract type: Casual hours

Closing date: 14th September 2015

Job Description: Altrincham Football Club is seeking dynamic, reliable, punctual and enthusiastic coaches to work within the football club and local community. These coaches need to be able to lead sessions confidently, be pro-active in nature, adaptable and also be willing to learn.

You must have an FA Level 1 qualification as a minimum. Coaching sessions include football and multi-sports. You would be delivering to a range of ages and abilities.

The coach will also have an up to date DBS (formerly CRB), Emergency Aid and Safeguarding Children Certificate. Pay will be dependent on experience and qualifications.

This role is for a zero hours contract. Work will be on a casual basis, with a possibility to secure permanent hours in the future.

How to apply:

For more information, or to apply for an interview, please send your CV here.


NL Pitchero reports that "Colwyn Bay have added to their first-team squad by bringing Kevin Holsgrove back to the club. The 27-year-old attacking midfielder comes on an extended loan from Stockport County, initially until December 31st. He has agreed to return for a third spell with the Seagulls, despite competition from National League sides AFC Telford United and Southport, and manager Ash Hoskin is hoping the paperwork and international clearance can be completed in time for him to be involved in Saturday’s home game...

The manager revealed that head of recruitment Phil Staley did the business by persuading Holsgrove to return for a third spell at Llanelian Road and commented, 'We knew Telford and possibly Southport were in for him, once Neil Young at Stockport said he was available, but my man Mr Staley has got him to come to us which is fantastic news. It is a fantastic signing for us because he already knows the club and is just the type of player we are looking to bring in'".


The BBC reports that "Cheltenham Town manager Gary Johnson has warned his players they will face their very own ice-bucket challenge, if they continue to start games slowly. Johnson described their start against Chester on Tuesday as 'slovenlys. And he says he may well re-introduce a tactic first used in his days at Cambridge United with boss John Beck.

'All these people saying the ice bucket challenge is new, I was doing it with John Beck at Cambridge 15 years ago', Johnson told BBC Gloucestershire. 'We've spoken about something we did in my Cambridge days when we used to throw cold buckets of water over players before a game after a long journey. The players won't like me mentioning it but we may start doing that if we start slothenly[?] again. We did it so well at Cambridge that we did it at home games too, so there was no respite from it'.

Cheltenham are unbeaten in the National League with three draws and one victory, but Johnson wants a more assertive start against Barrow on Saturday. 'You've got to keep the players on their toes to keep their minds active and keep them guessing', he added. Defender Daniel Parslow said the possibility of being soaked in cold water was something the squad are keen to avoid. 'He told us this story prior to the game', Parslow told BBC Gloucestershire. 'It worked back then and after our poor start on Tuesday the threat might be very real'".

Also, Cheltenham Town say that "Cheltenham Town midfielder Joe Hanks has re-joined Gloucester City on loan until January. Hanks has previously had a spell on loan at Gloucester in 2014... Cheltenham Town Assistant Manager Russell Milton explains the deal. 'We're just looking to get him regular games, like we have done with Harry (Williams), Bobbie (Dale) and Zack (Kotwica). We want to get men's senior football into them more than the odd 15 minutes here.

There's a 28 day clause in the deal so we'll see where we are then. It was important that he went to the highest possible standard and Gloucester fits perfectly. He knows the surroundings and players so he should go there and do well'. The loan will run to January but as Milton says, there is a clause for possible recall after an initial 28 days should anything happen to one of the current crop of midfielders. The 20 year-old Gloucester born midfielder has so far been on the bench for all four of the Robins' National League matches, coming off the bench against Lincoln".

20 August 2015


Mark Eckersall, TASC Travel Organiser writes, "Big thanks to those that came with us to Guiseley and Woking. As announced on the club website 3-4 weeks ago we are not able to provide transport to Dover on Saturday 22nd August. This is due to a number of regular travellers being unable to make the journey and the need for two coach drivers to be employed due to the distance on the fixture and legal driving hours.

This makes the hire price very high and, whilst we always try and balance the books with a profit on some games and loss on others, the potential high loss meant it could have jeopardised travel for the rest of the season.

The travel needs to break even each season and we managed it last year (just) by making sure we did not offer travel where there was a potential for a high loss.

We hope that this does not disappoint too many supporters and that you will book on early for the Southport coach so that we can gauge the size of vehicle needed. If you have any questions at all then don’t hesitate to E-mail me.

Mark Eckersall, TASC Travel Organiser."

Details of the trip to Southport are here.


Above: George Bowerman (left) shoots at goal for Altrincham's first goal on Tuesday night. In attendance are Scott Leather, Tom Marshall and, half-hidden, Michael Rankine. Image courtesy of Michael Ripley Photography

Brian Flynn has a post-match interview with Lee Sinnott from Tuesday night, here.

You can decide for yourself about Alty's first goal on Tuesday night by viewing the excellent video from the Alty TV pitchside camera.

And Michael Ripley has excellent images from Tuesday night's game.


Sports journalism student Alex Sarwar writes...

Following Altrincham’s outstanding 2-1 win against Grimsby Town at the J Davidson stadium, we spoke to centre-back and Man of the Match Scott Leather (left) to get his thoughts on the game.

'The lads battled so well, we obviously lost our first three games without scoring so it was good to finally get on the scoreboard tonight and we’ve all worked hard together. We’ve been unlucky over the first three games but we’ve put that right tonight and now we have to keep on going. Against such a good team, we’ve all battled and dug deep for each other. If one player made a mistake, another was right there covering round for him. We did that all the across the pitch tonight'.

Leather also spoke about the injury sustained by centre-back partner Tom Marshall deep into the second half. 'Mine and all the lads’ thoughts are with "Masha". We’ll see how serious it is in the next day or two but all our best wishes go out to him and hopefully he’ll be back playing in no time'.

Alty’s next game is down at the Crabble against Dover Athletic and Leather hopes that travelling down the day before will give the Robins more of a chance to build on the victory over the Mariners. 'Going down on the Friday will give us the chance to get a good rest the night before, rather than travelling down on the day. So, hopefully we can build on this win. They are quite a direct team, similar to what we faced tonight, so we’ve got to battle hard and win all of our tackles, headers and put our bodies on the line to get the right result'".


The Grimsby Telegraph adds that "There was a quiet start to the game with few early chances. But the home team took the lead on 13 minutes... It looked liked it was going to be a long night for Town as they tried to get back into the game but struggled to break through. But Omar Bogle grabbed a superb equaliser just before half-time...

After the break there was heavy pressure from Town as they sought to take the lead... But the hosts took the lead against the run of play when Bowerman bundled home after a cross was not dealt with by James McKeown... There were 825 travelling Town fans in the crowd of 1,680".

More from the Grimsby Telegraph says that "Mariners' boss Paul Hurst admits his side let themselves down...

Hurst told the Telegraph, 'I'm very disappointed to lose. We had another good away following and I think we let ourselves down a little bit. When we played football, we showed we were capable of being the better team. If we analyse it when I'm a bit calmer, we will find that, realistically, we have probably given them the game with a mistake. And that was after a dubious first goal. So, from that point of view, we could have quite easily been talking about a different result'...

Hurst added, 'My disappointment with the decision for the first goal was that the event had finished. It was almost like an after-thought to put his flag up, when we all thought he had seen a foul in the penalty box. More often than not when it's a scramble, it goes in favour of the defending team and I found that a little bit strange'.

Hurst continued, 'We've had three great chances apart from the goal. Padraig (Amond) headed wide and we're not sure how it ended up there, and Toto (Nsiala) got well above his marker twice. Taking everything out of the first half, we were realistically the side that created the most chances when we were on top'".


Altrincham FC sends its best wishes to first-team defender Tom Marshall and reserve Matthew Christie and their respective families after the serious injuries to both of them in Tuesday's games.

Matthew was playing for the Reserves against Middlewich Town and the game was abandoned after 12 minutes due to his injury. He has sustained a compound fracture of the tibia and fibula and was in the operating theatre last night (Tuesday) and will have to have another operation later in the week. Altrincham FC would also like to thank Middlewich for their e-mail wishing Matthew all the best.

Both Matthew and Tom are in Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester.


At Alty's match on Tuesday, Altrincham supporter Noel Shield was distributing leaflets (see image) encouraging supporters to consider fostering a child via Trafford Council Fostering Service. Please visit their website via the above link for full details of this rewarding venture.


Below is a list of the Altrincham squad, arranged by number, with their (H) home and (A) away shirt sponsors. To add your name to the sponsors, please contact the club on 0161 928-1045 or by e-mail.
  • 1 Stuart Coburn: (H)Eddie Bishop
  • 2 Shaun Densmore: (H)Eliot,Jack & Lara Shaw (A)Derek Wilshaw
  • 3 Adam Griffin: (H)Nigel Bunce
  • 4 Jake Moult:
  • 5 Luca Havern: (H)Paul Daine (A)Jonathan Wall
  • 6 Scott Leather: (H)Allison & Tim Olin
  • 7 James Lawrie: (H)Sarah Rowley (A)Martin Green
  • 8 Simon Richman: (H)Hugh Purchas
  • 9 Michael Rankine: (H)Thomas Murray
  • 10 Damian Reeves: (H)Jonathon Wall (A)Katie Murray
  • 11 Nicky Clee: (H)G.D & A Whitehouse (A)Josh
  • 12 Sam Heathcote: (H)In Memory of Jean Heathcote (A)In Memory of Phil Heathcote
  • 14 Josh O’Keefe:
  • 15 Anthony Griffith:
  • 16 Tom Marshall: (H)Tom Marshall
  • 17 Tim Deasy (H)Chris Rowley
  • 18 George Bowerman (H)The Fosters
  • 19 Ryan Crowther (H)Terry Surridge
  • 20 Jordan Sinnott
  • 21 Joel Swift (H)Mark Embury (A)Andy Mein
  • Lee Sinnott Hugh Purchas
  • Neil Tolson Daisy & Penny Rowley
  • Alan Ainsley The Rowleys


Gavin Rathbone, official photographer at Altrincham FC writes, "I'm going to be running a new option for the 2015/2016 season which we hope will get the support for the club. If you want to have a nice gallery of Alty images on your PC or tablet here is a chance to download some images and wallpapers to customise your devices with. I will be putting up a number of different types of wallpapers and creative images as the season goes on.

You will be able to access these images by requesting them and you will receive an emailed digital file for you to do as you please with, as long as it's for personal use. All I ask is for a £1 donation for the file, and it is a donation as all £1 will go straight to the club. The file is then yours, with no watermarks and in a quality format.

The first one is up on line here and more will follow. I will also take requests for images if anyone wants to put a suggestion for one. Please do support the idea where possible in order to provide a small bit of extra cash for the club.

Many thanks, Gavin Rathbone".


Barry Pikesley's article "In The Future When All's Well", from the Robins' Review of 8 August, is here.


  • Aldershot Town 1-1 Dover Athletic, att. 1559
  • Altrincham 2-1 Grimsby Town, att. 1680
  • Barrow 1-1 Guiseley, att. 1440
  • Boreham Wood 0-1 Forest Green Rovers, att. 464
  • Bromley 1-2 Braintree Town, att. 775
  • Chester FC 1-1 Cheltenham Town, att. 2304
  • Kidderminster Harriers 1-3 Wrexham, att. 2620
  • Lincoln City 5-3 Macclesfield Town, att. 2320
  • Southport 1-2 Gateshead, att. 806
  • Torquay Utd 0-1 Woking, att. 1936
  • Tranmere Rovers 1-0 FC Halifax Town, att. 5235
  • Welling United 2-2 Eastleigh, att. 545


There are National League highlights from Game Week Three on BT Sport.

The BBC reports on strange goings on... "Torquay boss Paul Cox was sent to the stands after the 'wrong player' was substituted in their loss to Woking. The Gulls wanted to take off Louis Briscoe for debutant Simon Heslop in the 68th minute, but striker Alex Fisher was replaced instead. The confusion appears to have stemmed from Briscoe wearing number seven and Fisher sporting the number 17 shirt.

'All the referee needed to do was show common sense, which is sometimes hard for them', Cox told BBC Radio Devon. 'The fourth official said the paperwork said 17, but it said seven. The whole thing erupted. If he made an honest mistake, just use common sense and rectify it but, instead, he stuck his heels in and said the substitution had been made'.

To make matters worse for Torquay, Ismail Yakubu headed a 90th-minute winner for Woking to consign them to their first home National League loss of the season. Football Association rules state a substitution is completed when the replacement enters the field of play, and the substituted player can take no further part in the match. 'I'd actually run up to the halfway line to stop him (Fisher) coming off,'" added Cox. 'I thought he was coming off for a drink at first, but I caught him as he placed one foot over the touchline. It seems the night will be remembered from an officiating point of view and that's disappointing at this level of football'".

Charlie Price, BBC Radio Devon commentator at the game [adds]... 'I saw number 17 flash up and Alex Fisher left the pitch but the Torquay bench pointed out the error so he came back on and Louis Briscoe came off. The game was going to restart but the fourth official showed a piece of paper to the referee, presumably saying Fisher's number (17) was written down. There were heated discussions for a few minutes and the home crowd weren't happy. Briscoe had taken his shin pads off and sat on the bench but he had to get up and come back on. Paul Cox kept arguing, so the ref sent him to the stands. The funny thing is Briscoe was subbed a few minutes later anyway'".

Tranmere Rovers report that "Andy Mangan's first goal in a Tranmere shirt gave the Whites all three points as they beat FC Halifax Town 1-0 at Prenton Park. Rovers wasted chances and had to be patient to break stubborn visiting resistance, but found the breakthrough after 75 minutes...

Gary Brabin made two changes to his starting line-up with Martin Riley replacing the injured Liam Hogan and Jonny Margetts coming in his Tranmere debut, taking the place of James Norwood up front. Meanwhile, Michael Ihiekwe was making his 50th Tranmere appearance since joining the club from Wolves in the summer of 2014...

With just over a quarter of an hour to go, Rovers broke the deadlock. Ridehalgh's incisive pass found Mangan, who had ghosted beyond the Halifax defence, and the striker made no mistake, slotting coolly into the bottom corner to lift the roof off Prenton Park... There were three nervy minutes of stoppage time but the Whites held on for three points, a third win from four games and consecutive clean sheets for the first time since mid-January.

Tranmere: Davies; Ihiekwe, Sutton, Riley, Hill; Jennings, Harris, Maynard; Ridehalgh, Margetts, Mangan. Substitutes: Turner, Holness, Mekki, Kirby, Stockton".

The Dover Express reports that manager "Chris Kinnear said it was two points dropped for his side as Dover Athletic drew 1-1 with Aldershot Town. Whites were pegged back at the EBB Stadium after Stefan Payne's early strike was cancelled out by Richard Brodie eight minutes before half time...

Kinnear said he felt that his side should have killed the game off when they were on top in the first half. 'It is two points dropped again', he said. 'We are disappointed with the chances we have created that we haven't got the win. We don't look a bad side and, the first 30 minutes we have run them ragged and we really should have gone and finished them off. It is about killing games off like that, although to be fair to them they showed some spirit'.

Dover now prepare to face Altrincham at Crabble on Saturday as they look to build on their total of five points".

19 August 2015


John Edwards, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes...

"Lee Sinnott launched an urgent quest for defensive reinforcements after an outstanding first Vanarama National League win of the season for Altrincham was marred by a serious injury to key centre-back Tom Marshall.

After appearing to get his studs caught in the turf, as he tried to turn, Marshall was treated for nearly 10 minutes before being stretchered off and taken by ambulance to Wythenshawe Hospital.

It was later confirmed he had dislocated his ankle and broken his fibula, the small bone at the back of his leg. Though that is not as serious as breaking the tibiula, he still faces a long road back to fitness and will miss the next few months.

In a sickening coincidence, Alty Reserves' midfielder Matt Christie suffered a compound fracture of his leg after 12 minutes of their Cheshire League One fixture with Middlewich the same evening. The injury was so bad, the game was abandoned.

With centre-back Luca Havern still a month away from fitness with a hamstring injury, Sinnott is scouring the transfer market ahead of Saturday’s trip to Dover.

‘We are going to have to seriously look at bringing someone in because it’s a bad injury to Tom and Luca is looking at another three or four weeks before he’s ready,’ said the Alty manager, after a rousing 2-1 win over promotion favourites Grimsby. ‘It seemed like Tom got his studs stuck, and it didn’t look good at all.

‘There was a lot of concern, and we can only wish him well. He had stood up to the challenge Grimsby posed really well, and I thought it was the best he has defended all season. People were shouting for help as soon as he went down, and we can only wish him a speedy recovery.

‘It leaves us light, so we will have to address that. Jake Moult can slot into the back line alongside Scott Leather, as he did when Tom went off, but we will be looking to get someone in.’

Alty went ahead twice, through two-goal summer signing George Bowerman, and withstood a late aerial barrage during 12 minutes of added time to register their first points and move off the bottom.

‘To be fair, Grimsby could have put the game to bed when they had a spell of pressure early in the second half, but full credit to the players for sticking at it and doing their jobs so well,’ added Sinnott. ‘They should be proud of themselves for not wilting and coming back at Grimsby so strongly after that. They will gain confidence from this, but it is important they use that to put more points on the board.’"


With the referee not required to rule on who scored Altrincham's first goal last night, the Club has been scrutinizing the excellent video of the incident taken by Alty TV. It shows George Bowerman's effort being blocked on the line and then forced over it by Michael Rankine. Accordingly, the Club has awarded the goal to Michael.


Above: Gavin Rathbone's image of George Bowerman marks Alty's first win.

A stirring performance from Altrincham was overshadowed by a bad injury to centre-back Tom Marshall who suffered a fracture to his right leg.

Altrincham had taken a 13th minute lead. Following a corner from the left, Bowerman shot at goal and in a melee, goalkeeper McKeown grabbed the ball but it was deemed to have crossed the line through Michael Rankine, to the annoyance of the Grimsby players who mobbed the referee and his assistant but to no avail.

Omar Bogle grabbed an equaliser after 42 minutes when he fired into Coburn's right-hand corner from Arnold's pass. The visitors dominated the opening stages of the second half but Alty defended valiantly. And, on the hour, when a cross from the Alty left seemed to be drifting out of play, goalkeeper McKeown for some reason tried to push it away but only succeeded in palming it down to Bowerman who netted smartly from just beyond the back post.

The goal seemed to deflate the visitors and Altrincham then looked quite comfortable but, eight minutes from time, Tom Marshall was injured as he tackled Bogle. After a lengthy delay, the centre-back was stretchered off with a broken leg. Ten minutes of added time were announced which actually extended into the thirteenth added minute, due to a late knock to goalkeeper Coburn.

Alty played out the closing stages without serious discomfort to continue their jinx over the Lincolnshire side. Alty moved up to 19th but now need to seek defensive reinforcements having lost two centre-backs to lengthy injury absences already this season.

Match report here


  • Aldershot Town 1-1 Dover Athletic
  • Altrincham 2-1 Grimsby Town
  • Barrow 1-1 Guiseley
  • Boreham Wood 0-1 Forest Green Rovers
  • Bromley 1-2 Braintree Town
  • Chester FC 1-1 Cheltenham Town
  • Kidderminster Harriers 1-3 Wrexham
  • Lincoln City 5-3 Macclesfield Town
  • Southport 1-2 Gateshead
  • Torquay Utd 0-1 Woking
  • Tranmere Rovers 1-0 FC Halifax Town
  • Welling United 2-2 Eastleigh


From the FA we learn that Darren Edmondson, manager of Barrow, has been "given a five-match touchline ban from start of the 2015/2016 season, fined £1,500 and ordered to pay costs of £1,500, and ordered to complete an education course within four months. Failure to comply will result in an immediate suspension from all football activity". He was found guilty in the Gainsborough Trinity FC v Barrow AFC match last December of "Breach of FA Rule E3 - It is alleged that during the above mentioned fixture, Mr Edmondson used abusive and/or insulting language in respect of the Assistant Referee, contrary to Rule E3(1). It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3(1) is an #Aggravated Breach# of Rule E3(2), as it included a reference to gender".

Barrow's Holker Street Newsletter reports that "Danny Livesey was as shocked and surprised as the rest of the people at this weekend's game at Forest Green Rovers when the ref. reached into his top pocket and pulled out a red card after the Barrow player blocked FGR player, Rob Sinclair's first-half shot, and speaking to the Mail he told us, 'First of all, when every single opposition player comes up to you and says that it wasn't even a penalty, never mind a sending off, then surely you start to think that there's something wrong. They pulled the ball back to the edge of the box, I was at the near post so I sprinted out to block it. I wasn't looking at it, I threw my face away and my arms were just where they were. The ball has hit my hand but I didn't think I put my arms out.

The referee said that I should have had my arms by my side, that's how you can charge a ball down. And then he said that I saved it from going into the top corner. I wasn't even looking at the ball,,, and I definitely never made a movement towards the ball'".

The National League tells us that "Macclesfield Town have announced that they have acquired the services of Damani Holness on non-contract terms. Holness will join up with squad having impressed manager John Askey... He is a central midfielder by trade and will arrive after departing Northwich Victoria last season, having also played for Stockport County and Morecambe throughout his career".

On the field, "Barrow AFC have taken two players on a month`s Loan. George Williams arrives from Barnsley and striker Sam Cosgrove from Wigan Athletic. Williams began his football career with MK Dons and won a silver medal in the World University Games in Russia representing Great Britain in 2013. He signed for Worcester from Loughborough University in the summer of 2013 and went onto make forty-five appearance that season, mostly as right-back.

His impressive performances led to his award of player of the season... In December 2014, the 22-year-old signed for Barnsley on an eighteen-month contract form an undisclosed fee. He made a handful of appearances in the senior side at Oakwell during the remainder of the 2014/15 season...

Sam Cosgrove from Wigan Athletic [is an] 18-year-old is highly-rated at the JJB Stadium and featured on the first-team bench several times towards the end of last season."

Elsewhere, "Kidderminster Harriers have completed the signing of promising left-back Andrew Fox on loan from Peterborough United. The 22-year-old joined the Posh this past summer... on the back of a four-year spell in Texas where he’d been studying and playing for a University side... Comfortable at full-back or further forward, Fox will spend the next month at Aggborough".

We learn from the BBC that "Braintree have signed Brighton defender Tom Dallison and Cambridge United forward Jordan Chiedozie on loan. Dallison, 19, has yet to make an appearance for the Seagulls, but played 12 games in a loan spell at then-Conference side Dartford last season. Chiedozie, 21, has made six appearances for the U's, and also featured in four games on loan at Dartford last term".

More comes from the Braintree & Witham Times which says that "Braintree Town manager Danny Cowley is hoping that it will be weeks rather than months before Matt Fry is back in action for the Iron. Fry suffered a nasty-looking knee injury late in their 0-0 draw against Tranmere Rovers last weekend...

It was feared that it may even be a season-ending injury for the 24-year-old Iron defender, who had only joined from Concord Rangers over the summer, but Cowley... said, 'It can take a while for injuries like this to calm down but we’re hoping that it’s medial ligament damage rather than cruciate. It’s going to be weeks rather than days for him to recover, but we’re quite hopeful... It never looks good when you see a player stretchered off needing gas and air... We can’t afford any more long-term injuries in a small squad'". And "Torquay United have signed former Mansfield midfielder Simon Heslop on non-contract terms. The 28-year-old was a free agent after being released by the Stags in May. He made 30 appearances for the League Two club in all competitions last season, and has also played for Oxford, Stevenage, Tamworth and Halifax...

Said director of football Dean Edwards, 'He's a player with plenty of know-how and experience at a higher level'. Heslop is manager Cox's 15th summer signing and could make his debut against Woking on Tuesday night. "

18 August 2015


Altrincham entertain Grimsby Town tonight, Tuesday (7.45pm).

You can follow the fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn advises that Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary of Tuesday night's game at The J.Davidson Stadium. The commentators are Tim Ainsworth and Alex Sarwar. The match summariser is John Edwards.

Coverage starts at 7.40pm, You can listen to Radio Robins on the internet at http://www.radiorobins.com/

The match preview will be available to watch via Periscope, which is a live video streaming App. Viewing of the match preview will be by a link on twitter from @altrinchamfc, which will be available as the broadcast starts at 7.40pm".


On Tuesday, The Fishy reported that Grimsby "Town head to Altrincham tonight, a ground where they conceded a late equaliser in a similar manner to that at Kidderminster last season. In fact Grimsby have never beaten Altrincham in four attempts so although the Cheshire club have yet to get a point or a goal this season, the Mariners will be taking nothing for granted against a 'bogey' side.

Paul Hurst is unlikely to make many changs after two good results against Barrow and Bromley. However Shaun Pearson and Jack Mackreth are both options for the Town boss, which he may exercise due to the quick succession of fixtures and a desire to keep some players fresh.

Hurst has a few players still injured so his other choices to some extent are limited at the moment. Scott Brown (foot), Gregor Robertson (knee), Marcus Marshall (knee) and Jon-Paul Pittman (stomach) are all at various stages in their recoveries but none of them are fit enough to start the match...

The Robins have no injuries. The most likely change is a recall for striker Damian Reeves, given that neither of the strikers who have started games so far have found the net".

The Grimsby Telegraph adds that "boss Paul Hurst expects Altrincham to pose a genuine threat tonight, even though they’ve yet to hit the net this season!...

But, given last season’s clashes between the teams yielded two draws, Hurst says Town’s latest task won’t be that simple. He said, 'Lawrie is one that’s always done well for them, with his creativity. Then you have Reeves and Michael Rankine, who we obviously know well from a spell he had on loan here. Reeves always scores goals, and they have a few strikers there now so they will get off the mark eventually. Hopefully, that’s not against us, but we have to be mindful'"

"Mariners' duo Shaun Pearson and Jack Mackreth could force their way into the starting XI tonight. That’s according to Grimsby Town boss Paul Hurst... Pearson started the season opener at Kidderminster, but has since found himself on the bench alongside Mackreth, who has yet to start a game this term.

Hurst told the Telegraph, 'Just because people have been involved in 4-1 victories, it doesn’t mean everyone necessarily had a good game... But I’ve got Shaun and Jack, in particular there, pushing for a starting place'".

Off the field, the Grimsby Telegraph adds that "A huge blaze is causing major disruptions for train passengers going to and from Grimsby today. The fire has broken out near the railway tracks between Meadowhall and Doncaster, blocking all of the lines... The line closure will mean major disruption for Grimsby passengers...

A Northern Rail statements says, 'Disruption is expected until 4pm.'". Hopefully all travelling Grimsby fans will still manage to get to the match in time.


Mike Garnett's data gives us the historical record between Alty and Grimsby Town. To date, Alty are unbeaten in these matches.

  • At Altrincham: P2-W0-D2-L0-F3-A3
  • Away: P2-W1-D1-L0-F1-A0
  • All games: P4-W1-D3-L0-F4-A3

Howard Watts's Through the Years records previous games on 18 August.

Sports journalism student Alex Sarwar writes that "This evening will see Altrincham return to the J Davidson stadium for their second home game of the season, where they will face high-flying Grimsby Town. Last season’s Promotion Final losers have started the season brightly, taking seven points from a possible nine.

Alty manager Lee Sinnott spoke about the Mariners and the obvious threat they pose to his side, 'Grimsby will be a force. Obviously they have some quality players and have signed well in the summer. We’ll know what to expect from them, no game against Grimsby is an easy one but I’m sure the players will be looking forward to it'.

Last season saw two hard-fought draws between the sides and Sinnott will be hoping Alty can get their first points of the campaign at the J Davidson Stadium, 'It’s one of those games that has a little bit of added spice with them being Grimsby and being such a force in this league. But we don’t play a name, we play the eleven players on the pitch and that’s how we always approach things'.

Kick-off is at 7.45pm and you can find all gate prices on this website. Be sure to get down to the ground and support the Robins.


Grimsby Town have an "Altrincham Preview. It is expected that Hurst will name the same matchday squad as in the last two games, but... he hasn't ruled out switching things around in the starting 11.

Scott Brown, Marcus Marshall and Jon-Paul Pittman still won't be available for the trip to Greater Manchester as their recovery from injury continues. Town visit Altrincham on Tuesday night for their fourth game of the 2015/16 Vanarama National League campaign. Two comfortable 4-1 home victories, both against promoted opposition, have seen the Mariners climb to second in the league table at this early stage, though Tuesday’s match provides an opportunity to earn a first away win of the season.

Paul Hurst’s side have scored more goals (10) so far than any other side in England’s top five divisions, with new signings Andy Monkhouse (3), Padraig Amond (3) and Omar Bogle (2) wasting no time in getting amongst the goals.

Altrincham, on the other hand, have lost their opening three fixtures and are yet to find the back of the net. The Robins could be involved in a relegation battle this year and will be desperate to register their first points of the season. Town’s last two visits to Moss Lane have ended with stoppage time equalisers for the hosts, denying the visitors all three points.

Scott Brown has been sent to see an ankle specialist and will not return to action any time soon, while Jon-Paul Pittman and Marcus Marshall also remain sidelined by injury. Shaun Pearson may earn a recall to the side, in place of Josh Gowling or Toto Nsiala. Gregor Robertson will be hoping to make his first start of the season, along with Jack Mackreth, who came off toff the bench on Saturday to set up Craig Clay’s late strike...

Possible Mariners XI: McKeown, Tait, Nsiala, Pearson, East, Arnold, Disley, Clay, Monkhouse, Bogle, Amond".

Grimsby manager Paul Hurst said, “I think Altrincham play good football. Chris Doig went to watch one of their games while I took in another, and he was impressed. Their first few games have been close. We went there last season and it was one of those games I felt we should have won, but didn’t and had to settle for a draw. So we’ll go there to try and win the game again, but I think it will be our toughest game so far".

He added "I've never been one that has said, and I don't buy into, the never change a winning team. So if I felt that there was a reason to..."

The Grimsby Telegraph adds that "Paul Hurst says Grimsby Town face their toughest game of the season so far at Altrincham tomorrow night (7.45pm)... He told the Telegraph.. 'I think it will be our toughest game so far with it being at their place. They do play some good football but they've also added more of a physical element as well this season, so we know what we're in for'...

After a busy start to the season, Hurst admits that, on one hand, he'd like the opportunity to freshen things up for tomorrow's trip to Greater Manchester. But after back-to-back victories and the fact his options are limited by injuries, he's likely to resist the temptation to tinker. He added, 'In a way, I'd like to freshen it up a bit, but I'm sure if you asked the players that are in there at the minute, they want to keep playing. I don't think I'll have anyone knocking on my door saying I want a rest at the minute, put it that way'".


Above: Before the teams exchanged handshakes at Woking, Alty's Michael Rankine shook hands with his team-mates.

Woking TV has highlights of the game against Altrincham, last Saturday.

BT Sport has all the goals from Saturday, here.


According to NL Pitchero, "Paul Phillips, joint-manager of Ashton United, has confirmed the signing of Chorley front man Aaron Burns. Having plied his trade at Hurst Cross in the past, Burns gained a reputation for being one of the most prolific goal scorers in the club's 137 year history. Scoring over 100 times during 250 plus appearances, the forward has played for Nantwich Town and most recently the Magpies since leaving the Robins in 2013".


  • Braintree Town v Southport
  • Cheltenham Town v Barrow
  • Dover Athletic v Altrincham
  • Eastleigh v Macclesfield Town
  • FC Halifax Town v Bromley
  • Forest Green Rovers v Lincoln City
  • Gateshead v Kidderminster Harriers
  • Grimsby v Torquay United
  • Guiseley v Aldershot Town
  • Tranmere Rovers v Boreham Wood
  • Woking v FC Chester
  • Wrexham v Welling United


Next Saturday Alty face the long trip to Dover, from where the Dover Express says that "Dover Athletic stopper Andy Rafferty has been ruled out of action for six weeks. Rafferty, who took the number one jersey from Mitch Walker when the latter got injured last season, has had surgery to remove his appendix and is set for a spell on the sidelines. Rafferty was on the bench for Dover's game against Chester only 24 hours before he had the surgery.

Walker had regained the spot between the sticks after a fine pre-season and has played the full 90 minutes of all Dover's games so far this season."

In the Halifax Courier we learn that "FC Halifax Town manager Neil Aspin described his side’s defending as 'diabolical' after they were beaten 3-2 by Torquay at The Shay. Town are still without a point in the National League after their third consecutive defeat, with all three of Torquay’s goals coming through poor Halifax defending.

Aspin said, 'It’s possibly the most disappointing of the three games, because we’ve scored two goals and still lost. You’d have to say again it was diabolical defending for the goals. If you score two goals at home you’d expect to be getting something from the game, so it’s very disappointing. We’re all frustrated, especially myself. I’m down at the moment and we’ve got a difficult game on Tuesday (at Tranmere). We keep shooting ourselves in the foot with the goals we’re conceding'".

Further South, the News Shopper reports that "Bromley were given a serious lesson in the reality of Conference football on Saturday when they were comprehensively beaten 4-1 by promotion hopefuls Grimsby Town... The Ravens had no answer to the fast fluent passing of their hosts and were two goals down inside seven minutes.

Without the services of the injured Rob Swaine and Lee Minshull, with Alex Wall and Moses Emmanuel relegated to the bench, Reece Prestedge, Ben May and Jack Holland were drafted in for their first starts of the season. There was also a place in the XI for Gillingham loanee Callum Davies. But the changes had little effect as Bromley fell behind after just three minutes...

Cook was fortunate to only receive a yellow card for a horrendous tackle on Bogle before the visitors reduced the arrears [to 3-1] on 40 minutes".

17 August 2015


Mark Eckersall, TASC Travel Organiser writes, "Big thanks to those that came with us to Guiseley and Woking. As announced on the club website 3-4 weeks ago we are not able to provide transport to Dover on Saturday 22nd August. This is due to a number of regular travellers being unable to make the journey and the need for two coach drivers to be employed due to the distance on the fixture and legal driving hours.

This makes the hire price very high and, whilst we always try and balance the books with a profit on some games and loss on others, the potential high loss meant it could have jeopardised travel for the rest of the season.

The travel needs to break even each season and we managed it last year (just) by making sure we did not offer travel where there was a potential for a high loss.

We hope that this does not disappoint too many supporters and that you will book on early for the Southport coach so that we can gauge the size of vehicle needed. If you have any questions at all then don’t hesitate to E-mail me.

Mark Eckersall, TASC Travel Organiser."


After the game at Woking, Lee Sinnott told the NL Paper, "Frustration is the only word to sum up today. For the majority of the game, we were right in the hunt. We moved the ball about really well and more than matched them apart from finishing.

It's not as if we did not create chances but what we need is for one to go in off someone's backside to set us off and running".

Links to yesterday's Radio Robins' commentary from Woking are below:-

After Saturday's game, Woking reported that it was "two wins on the bounce thanks to a man-of-the-match performance from new loan signing Dan Holman, who had a hand in Giuseppe Sole’s opener and sealed the victory against Altrincham with a debut goal. Holman, whose loan from Colchester United had only been announced on the morning of the game, had instant impact in a dream debut which saw Woking fight off a spirited Altrincham side to record their second 2-0 home victory in the space of four days.

The 25-year-old’s first half long range effort on 32 minutes was spilled by Altrincham goalkeeper Stuart Coburn, allowing Sole to prod home for his first goal of the season. In the second half, Holman impressively linked up with the Woking midfield and grabbed his debut goal with 15 minutes remaining, firing low into the bottom right corner after clever interplay between substitutes Bruno Andrade and Kadell Daniel.

Despite a fightback from the away side, which saw James Lawrie [i.e. Simon Richman] hit the post and a late Damian Reeves [i.e. Simon Richman] effort cleared off the line by Brian Saah, the Cards looked largely untroubled as centre back pairing of Ismail Yakubu and Saah continued to flourish...

The home side started on the front foot with new signing Holman slotting straight into the starting line-up in attack, replacing Daniel, with Sole operating in a wide right position and John Goddard cutting in from the left... The Robins reacted strongly thanks to some trickery on the wing by Jordan Sinnott [i.e. George Bowerman], who slalomed into the penalty box to tee up Michael Rankine but his first touch was poor, which enabled Murtagh to get in a challenge and clear the danger...

The away side, who were facing a third defeat in their opening trio of league games, made a substitution to refresh their attacking options with former Cards player George Bowerman replaced by Nicholas Clee and they slowly grew into the game... Altrincham’s attacks sparked Woking back into action and Holman made up for his earlier miss with a similar effort to score on his Cards' debut. Clever work from substitutes Andrade and Daniel saw a quick switch of play stretch the away side out of position, which provided Holman the time to shift the ball on to his right foot and he made no mistake by driving a powerful shot in from 12 yards out.

With the two-goal cushion, Woking eased off slightly and were given a fright when Simon Richmon [i.e. Simon Richman] blasted an effort from the edge of the penalty box which had Cole beaten but the ball cannoned off the left-hand post and away to safety".

The BBC has an interview with Scott Rendell on the Woking v Altrincham game.


Altrincham FC Youth came from behind to lead 2-1 in the closing stages of Sunday's opening match of the season, at home to Salford City. But having been reduced to ten-men they conceded an injury time leveller to draw 2-2.

Match report here.

Other results in the NWYA Premier Division were:

  • AFC Fylde 1 - 1 Chester FC
  • Ashton A. 3 - 2 W. Didsbury & Chorlton
  • Warrington T. 2 - 1 Prescot C.
  • Curzon Ashton 2 - 2 Skelmersdale U.
  • Morecambe 7-1 Hyde FC


Congratulations got to Altrincham FC Ladies' manager, Keith Edleston, who was married on Saturday at Davenport Methodist Church. The service was followed by a reception at the Cresta Court Hotel in ALtrincham. The Club wishes him and his wife many happy years together.


Ex-Alty players moving in the EvoStik League include:
  • Osebi Abadaki from Ramsbottom United to Buxton
  • Astley Mulholland from Chorley to Glossop North End
  • Ashley Stott from Witton Albion to Glossop North End


Local neighbours Trafford have made five recent signings,
  • Porya Ahmadi from Mossley
  • Robbie Bromley from Clitheroe
  • Jack Dorney from Chorley
  • Jordan Hadfield from Northwich Victoria
  • Matthew Kay from FC United of Manchester


Saturday, 15 August 2015
  • Braintree Town 0-0 Tranmere Rovers - att. 838
  • Cheltenham Town 3-0 Southport - att. 2251
  • Dover Athletic 0-0 Chester FC - att. 801
  • Eastleigh 1-1 Lincoln City - att. 1354
  • FC Halifax Town 2-3 Torquay United - att. 1199
  • Forest Green Rovers 4-0 Barrow - att. 1217
  • Gateshead 2-1 Boreham Wood - att. 760
  • Grimsby Town 4-1 Bromley - att. 4731
  • Guiseley 1-0 Kidderminster Harriers - att. 756
  • Macclesfield Town 2-1 Welling United - att. 1236
  • Woking 2-0 Altrincham - att. 1297
  • Wrexham 3-0 Aldershot Town - att. 4951


Alty's next opponents are Grimsby Town. The BBC has an interview with their manager Paul Hurst on their win at Bromley last Saturday.

Grimsby Town quotes Hurst as saying, "The fact that we had both strikers on the scoresheet was encouraging...."Both strikers wanted the penalty, and before the start of the season, Craig Disley said he wanted them as well. Being soft as he is, he let the others take it. They sorted it out between them in the end and I don't care who takes them as long as it ends up in the back of the net...

They [Bromley] changed the system towards the end of the first half and there was still space there for us but there was just a different tempo and feel to the game when you're winning 3-1... I don't think we ever really looked in too much danger of conceding again...

There's still a hell of a lot of work for us to do in terms of the midfield two because we're on top of games at the minute and it's a case of them knowing when to keep the ball. At times, they both force it and take too many touches and I want to improve them. Craig Clay is still at the start of his career while 'Dis' is more experienced, but it doesn't mean you can't get better and improve still; they both can get better in that aspect. The best player in terms of that for me is Andy Monkhouse. How many times does he just pass a ball instantly and make the game look easy?...

I don't think there's any injuries as such... just a few stiff legs. It's the third game in and I haven't had the luxury of being able to change things around'".

The National League summarises the Saturday games... "Forest Green Rovers are the only team in the Vanarama National League with a 100% record after they beat nine-man Barrow AFC 4-0 at the New Lawn... Grimsby Town recorded their second 4-1 victory in a week after dispatching newly-promoted Bromley at Blundell Park.

The Mariners made a lightning start and were 2-0 up inside 10 minutes...

A late Adam Boyes goal left Kidderminster Harriers ruing their wastefulness in front of goal as they were edged out in an entertaining clash at Nethermoor against Guiseley... Wes York, James Gray and Dominic Vose scored the goals to secure a 3-0 victory for Wrexham over Aldershot Town at The Racecourse Ground. It was Wrexham's second successive win and the result was never in doubt...

FC Halifax Town are still looking for their first points of the new season after they were beaten 3-2 by Torquay United at The Shay. Town’s new-look squad is still a work in progress, particularly at the back, where some sloppy defending proved costly...

Cheltenham Town scored three second half goals to ease past Southport and secure their first league win of the season... Macclesfield Town earned their first win of 2015/16 with a 2-1 success against Welling United at the Moss Rose... Gateshead secured a second win of the fledgling campaign, while it was a second defeat for visiting newcomers Boreham Wood at the International Stadium...

Woking ensured Altrincham would remain point-less after three games with a 2-0 Kingfield win... Jake Moult {i.e. Simon Richman] went closest to responding for Alty, but his 78th minute effort hit the post.

Lincoln City earned a 1-1 draw at the Silverlake Stadium against Eastleigh as both sides remain unbeaten... Chester FC extended their unbeaten start to the campaign by earning a goalless draw at Crabble against Dover Athletic... Tranmere Rovers also played out a 0-0 draw away at Braintree Town after a scrappy affair".

16 August 2015


There has been a late change of venue for Altrincham FC Youth (under-18) home games. For the first six weeks of the season, home games will be played at Partington Sports Village, Chapel Lane, Partington M31 4ES and NOT at Hale Country Club and Spa on Clay Lane. This is because the Country Club are holding outdoor events which would conflict with the football. So, today's match, at home to Salford City will be played at Partington (k.o. 2.30pm).


Altrincham again failed to end their goal drought this season as they slipped to their third successive defeat. They started brightly enough but fell behind in the 32nd minute. Former Histon man, Dan Holman, just signed on loan from Colchester, forced a save from Coburn. But the ball ran loose and Sole netted from close range.

The Cards settled the outcome with a second goal, after 75 minutes. He was allowed to twist and turn on the edge of the box before slotting a low shot into the corner of the net, to Coburn's left.

Alty did hit the post after 78 minutes, through Richman, who also had an effort cleared off the line but despite bringing on Reeves and Clee, there was no way back. The result sent Altrincham to the foot of the table, although this was an improved performance.

Match report here.


Altrincham Reserves won 1-0 away at Golborne on Saturday.


Saturday, 15 August 2015
  • Braintree Town 0-0 Tranmere Rovers
  • Cheltenham Town 3-0 Southport
  • Dover Athletic 0-0 Chester FC
  • Eastleigh 1-1 Lincoln City
  • FC Halifax Town 2-3 Torquay United
  • Forest Green Rovers 4-0 Barrow
  • Gateshead 2-1 Boreham Wood
  • Grimsby Town 4-1 Bromley
  • Guiseley 1-0 Kidderminster Harriers
  • Macclesfield Town 2-1 Welling United
  • Woking 2-0 Altrincham
  • Wrexham 3-0 Aldershot Town

15 August 2015


Red Planet has an excellent search facility which will give you routes to the J. Davidson Stadium from anywhere, by various modes of transport. Cost estimates are also provided.


Brian Flynn spoke to Jordan Sinnott (left) before training on Thursday night. His interview can be heard here.

At the same time, sports journalism student Alex Sarwar "caught up with Alty boss Lee Sinnott to get his thoughts not only on the game, but the progress his side have made over the past week.

He spoke about the fine margins that saw Alty come up just short in both the Forest Green Rovers and Guiseley games.

'We’ve done some things well and some things we need to step up on. The two results have been disappointing but we’ve only lost by the one goal in both games and it’s important to stay positive ahead of the next one.

'We’ve had a couple of opportunities and if we can put them away then both games may have had a different result. It’s important that all the players stay focused and the results will come. We’ll continue playing the football that we play and try to tighten up both in defence and attack.'

Sinnott also touched upon the job he has preparing for another two Vanarama National League games with only one training session to work with his players before then.

Right: Scott Leather.

'You can only throw so much at the players in one training session. It’s important to take it game by game and not throw too much at the players in one go. You have to prioritise the messages you want to get over to the team ahead of the next match.'

That next match for Alty is the trip to Woking and the Robins will be without centre back Gianluca Havern, who was forced off with a hamstring injury against Guiseley. But Sinnott is confident in 2013/14 Player of the Year Scott Leather’s ability to fill the void left by Havern.

'Scott’s a young centre half and was unfortunate to lose his place last season after his suspension and Tom Marshall’s form afterwards. I have full confidence in both of them to work well together in the centre of defence. We’ll keep an eye on the situation and assess how long we’ll be without Luca'.

The Cards did the double over the Robins last season and Sinnott expects another tough test this campaign.

'I thought they were one of the best teams to come to the J Davidson Stadium last season but, away from home, we performed pretty well and could have, maybe, secured a point. We know it’ll be a difficult trip but the players will be ready for it'".


On the eve of Altrincham's visit to Kingfield, the BBC confirmed that "Woking have signed teenage Queens Park Rangers striker Ben Pattie on an initial one-month youth loan deal. The 19-year-old joined QPR's youth set-up two years ago but is yet to make his senior debut. The move for Pattie comes days after Scott Rendell, Woking's top scorer last season, was ruled out for the rest of the campaign with a knee injury".

Also from the BBC we learn that "Torquay assistant manager John Ramshaw says the National League side is 'actively looking' to add experience to its extremely young squad. Apart from 30-year-old defender Exodus Geoghaghon, the average age of the Gulls' side for their 3-1 loss to Wrexham was 20.6 years. It's a very young side and an old head wouldn't go amiss', he told BBC Devon.

'We are working towards that, just that little bit of experience to help pull this young side together'.

Torquay have brought in 14 new players since Paul Cox took over as manager in the summer but,apart from Geoghaghon, all have have been in their early twenties. 'From one side of the coin it's a new broom that sweeps clean and they're new faces and people you can mould into your pattern of play', Ramshaw added. 'But, on the other hand, it is a big ask and a lot of the side haven't played together before. That's what we've got to work on over the next couple of months, gelling this team together and then putting out 11 bodies every Saturday who will play as a team'".

The Cod Army visits Altrincham next Tuesday and the Grimsby Telegraph reports that "Grimsby Town's walking wounded are slowly but surely getting back to fitness. That's according to boss Paul Hurst who was pleased to report that Jon-Paul Pittman and Marcus Marshall made encouraging strides in their recoveries this week.

Gregor Robertson, who has been named on the bench for the Mariners' last two games is also progressing well on his journey back to full-fitness. However, there is less encouraging news for Scott Brown, whose frustration with his ankle problem continues to grow.

Hurst said, 'It was good to get JP back out on the grass and joining in but he did look a little tentative and nowhere near 100 per cent... Gregor is continuing his training... but he's not 100 per cent either, which is understandable. Marcus had a run around and joined in a little bit of head tennis this week and there has been a big improvement there, which is promising. But Browny went to the gym on Wednesday, went on the bike and felt fine, but then woke up on Thursday and it was giving him some gyp. He was due to try and join in and give it a go in the first part of the warm-up and passing drills towards the end of the week, so it's frustrating for him'".


Kick It Out has today (13 August) released the second version of its reporting app providing users with the ability to attach video, photo and audio evidence to complaints to help support investigations into discriminatory abuse and behaviour across football.

The free app, of which the first version was released in July 2013, allows users to confidentially report incidents they may see, hear or witness at a match. The app was developed by makepositive, a cloud technology firm specialising in Salesforce, and covers over 95% of smartphones.

The second version of the app has focused on gathering more conclusive evidence for investigations with new functionality allowing media to be attached to reports. A very significant new addition to the app is the option to report incidents of football-related hate crime on social media platforms.

This comes after Kick It Out revealed 50% of complaints it received for the 2013/14 season related to social media abuse and research commissioned by the organisation in April 2015 also estimated an abusive post was directed at a Premier League player or club once every 2.6 minutes.

The new version of the app also allows complainants to shield their identifying information from professional clubs and the football authorities by clicking the ‘remain anonymous’ button contained within the reporting form. Women’s Super League (WSL) clubs have also been included in this version.

Steps have also been taken to make reporting grassroots and non-League incidents more user-friendly. Selecting grassroots and non-League comes at the very top of the reporting form and there are now less entry fields making complaints clearer and more concise.

The first release of the app built upon well-established methods of reporting, including via email and freephone, and was a huge success with 38% of all complaints from the professional game in 2013/14 coming via the app as part of an overall 269% increase in reports made to Kick It Out.

The latest set of statistics from Kick It Out for the 2014/15 season shows 36% of reports registered in relation to the professional game came via the app - making it the most-used mechanism for registering complaints at that level.

Usage of the app has increased by 59% between the 2013/14 season (34 complaints) and the 2014/15 campaign (54 complaints) with the reporting tool becoming one of the most prominent and well-known forms of registering a complaint.

Anna Jӧnsson, Reporting Officer for Kick It Out, said, 'The updated version of the Kick It Out app allows complainants to provide us with a greater level of evidence to support investigations through the use of video, photos and audio. We have seen the app become one of the most prominent and popular mechanisms used to report incidents since its release in 2013, and took the decision last year to strengthen its level of functionality. We have particularly seen the use of video evidence play a key role in highlighting discriminatory behaviour and it is important we give complainants the opportunity to bring this to our attention if they have the footage recorded.

With the constant advances we are seeing in technology, it is important we make sure the app reflects these developments as we look to ensure appropriate action is taken against perpetrators in as many cases as we can. The concern over escalating levels of football-related hate crime on social media platforms has been taken into account and we have developed a special form within the app which allows users to attach screenshots of the abuse. We know incidents at grassroots level go under-reported and we want the app to empower people participating at that level – building confidence is crucial and all users have the ability to remain anonymous when filing a complaint.

The Women’s Super League stadiums have been incorporated too with the support of The Football Association. This does not relate to a spike in incidents within the WSL or women’s football; it’s more about providing people with the ability to report incidents if an incident does occur. The app has changed dramatically since we launched it two years ago and we will remain open-minded as to how we can further develop this reporting mechanis...

The free Kick It Out app is available on iOS and Android devices. You can download the app NOW from the App Store and Google Play".

14 August 2015


Following Thursday night training, Altrincham manager Lee Sinnott said that he hoped to have the full squad available for selection on Saturday at Woking, except for Luca Havern (right). The centre-back limped off at Guiseley on Tuesday with a hamstring injury. Lee indicated that it was still to soon to say for how long the normally ever-present defender would be sidelined as the initial treatment is sustained "icing" of the injury before a proper assessment can be made of the extent of the injury.

Both Nicky Clee and Simon Richman, who have missed both games of the season so far, are recovering well whilst the four players who took minor knocks at Guiseley (see below) are all expected to be available at Woking".

Earlier, the Manchester Evening News had reported that "Jake Moult, Tom Marshall, Densmore and Rankine should all shake off minor knocks" before the game at Woking. Centre-back Luca Havern, who suffered a hamstring injury on Tuesday, at Guiseley, will be missing.


Highlights of our next opponents Woking's last game, against Bromley, are here

Woking report that "The Cards’ superb 2-0 win over Bromley on Tuesday night was just the fillip everyone needed after the dreadful news of Scott Rendell’s injury and the undeserved defeat at Tranmere. Garry Hill’s side played some excellent football to overcome a strong Bromley outfit. Come down to the Laithwaite Community Stadium on Saturday to cheer the Cards onto another victory...

Those Woking fans who feared for the Cards’ prospects without talisman striker Scott had a very welcome surprise on Tuesday night when they saw the side adapt magnificently to his absence, playing intelligently to the strengths of his team mates to record a very satisfying win. The centre back pairing of Ismael Yakubu and Brian Saah provided a tremendously solid platform, with Mark Ricketts offering an effective defensive shield, allowing John Goddard, Keiran Murtagh and Joey Jones to show their creative skills, well supported by Kadell Daniel, his replacement, Bruno Andrade, and sponsors’ ‘man of the match’, Chris Arthur, while Gez Sole, working tirelessly up front in a role which no one believes is his true vocation, played a crucial part in both goals. The temptation was avoided to throw high balls forward and, instead, clever movement and some good passing on the ground enabled Woking to pierce a Bromley defence that still seemed to be set up to cope with a conventional number 9.

Let’s hope the Cards are able again, on Saturday, to show just how good a footballing side they are.

Alty finished in 17th place last season, well clear of the relegation zone, in their first season back in the Conference Premier. They’ve started this season with two 1-0 defeats... Manager Lee Sinnott admits, however, that Alty did not play well in the first half at Guiseley and again went down to a set piece goal".

Woking add that "The Cards' Trust will be shaking buckets again on Saturday to boost the fundraising campaign to raise money to cover Scott’s medical costs and the Club’s costs. The response so far from Woking fans and others has been astonishing, reflecting the great esteem in which Scott is held...

Make sure you get your copy of the Club’s excellent 64-page matchday programme".


Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience. He has produced the following Directions to the Laithwaite Community Stadium, Woking.

For any Alty fans planning to make the journey down south to see the Robins in action at Woking this Saturday, here are some directions if you are unsure about how to get to the ground.

Supporters’ Coach

There are currently 3 seats available on the TASC supporters' coach, full details of which can be found here. Seats must be booked in advance by ringing the Club on (0161) 928-1045.

Ground name: Laithwaite Community Stadium Ground Address: The Laithwaite Community Stadium, Kingfield, Woking, Surrey Postcode: GU22 9AA.

To get to the ground by car

You’ll find the ground on the A247, opposite the entrance to Woking Park, midway between the town centre and Old Woking. Take the M25 and leave at either junctions 10 (Wisley) or 11 (Chertsey) and you’ll see signs towards Woking. Once you get near the town centre, you are advised to follow the brown signs that show Heathside car park. There are no parking areas around the stadium and away supporters are asked to use Heathside car park. The ground is an approximate 15 minute walk from the car park. Simply come out of the car park and follow the signs for Woking FC.

To get to the ground by train

If you don’t fancy driving, then you can always get to train down south instead. If you are travelling from Altrincham, simply hop on a Northern Rail or Metrolink service that takes you to Manchester Picadilly station. From there, you can get a Virgin Trains service to London Euston. Three trains run per hour although you are advised to book in advance to save money. Alternatively, you can take a Northern Rail service from Altrincham to Chester where you can also get on a Virgin Trains service direct to London Euston that runs at 35 minutes past every hour.

Once in London Euston station, make your way to the Underground service and catch a Northern Line tube straight to Waterloo Station. From there, you will find frequent fast services to Woking station. Barring any engineering works, the train from Waterloo to Woking should take about 28 minutes.

The ground is about a 15 minute walk from the station, which is located in the town centre. Leave the station by the exit on platform 5 and follow the signposted route ahead of you down White Rose Lane. Or, you can simply take a taxi from Woking Station straight to the ground. This should only cost you £4 and is strongly advised".


The Manchester Evening News hass an extensive piece on Salford City. It includes the following... "Giggs stressed that ... 'Our aspirations are to be in the Football League and have a 25,000 seater stadium'".


Welsh Premier reports that "Llandudno manager Alun Morgan is delighted to have lured former Wales Under-21 cap Mike Williams out of retirement.

'I’m looking forward to working with him for the coming season, his experience will be vital for us.' The 28-year-old, who featured for Wrexham, Kidderminster Harriers and Altrincham, retired in November 2014 after being diagnosed with osteoarthritis in both hips, but has successfully negotiated pre-season...

'After not playing for a good while, pre-season was an opportunity for me to get my head down, prove my fitness and earn myself a contract', Williams said."


The Worcester News says that Kidderminster boss "Gary Whild is hoping experienced centre back Kelvin Langmead will have recovered from injury in time for Saturday’s clash at Guiseley.

The powerful 30-year-old was taken off during half-time in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Grimsby and missed Tuesday night’s thrilling 3-2 loss at Dover Athletic. But the manager is keeping his finger’s crossed that Langmead will have shaken off a heel problem ...

Langmead’s absence has been felt as the Reds conceded five goals in their opening two games. Reece Styche and Aman Verma bagged levellers as Kidderminster demonstrated admirable spirit to come from behind twice to surprise much-fancied Grimsby at Aggborough.

Adam Dawson and Gurjit Singh bagged their first competitive goals for Kiddy in Kent midweek but Stefan Payne’s late winner ensured they returned to Worcestershire pointless.

The manager said, 'Kelvin had a heavy fall on Saturday but I’m hoping he’ll be OK for Guiseley. I felt for the players after the Dover game, we played some good football, scored some excellent goals and didn’t deserve to lose but at our level of football you get punished'...

Styche is nursing a hamstring problem but fingers are crossed he’ll be fit for Saturday’s clash... Whild continued to freshen up his squad over the last few weeks, bringing in West Bromwich Albion youngster Tahvon Campbell on a youth loan, who teams-up with fellow Baggies rookies Andre Wright and Alex Palmer.

Left-back Rob Taylor has signed a non-contract deal but is deemed not yet match fit. Kennedy Digie has joined Tyrone Williams on-loan at Hednesford, while striker Jamie Spencer has switched to Worcester City on a month’s loan."

In the Grimsby Telegraph we learn that "Shaun Pearson will work 'harder than ever' to get back into Grimsby Town's starting XI. That's according to Mariners' boss Paul Hurst, after the defender's surprise omission from the midweek victory over Barrow.

Pearson, 26, was an unused substitute as Josh Gowling and Toto Nsiala were preferred at the heart of Town's back four...

Hurst told the Telegraph, 'It was a massive call as Shaun has been exceptional for me over the years, and still has a major role to play. I know for a fact he will work extremely hard in training, harder than he has ever done, if that's possible, to try and get back in there...

I hadn't quite settled on the team at 6.15pm but, after one last discussion with a member of staff, we decided to go with Josh and Toto. Shaun took it brilliantly well, and he will always support the team when they are out there. He shook everyone's hand and picked up the water bottle! He epitomise what you want as a club man, but make no bones about it Shaun wants to be in the team'.

Town were quick on to the front foot against Barrow... [at 1-0 up] Omar Bogle, the club's marquee summer signing, doubled that advantage... before Monkhouse made it three shortly after half-time...

Hurst continued, 'The decision to leave Shaun out was purely down to Josh and Toto, and the competition we have. What I want to do is get to the point where I've got a Shaun, Josh or Toto on the bench in as many positions as we can'".

At Eastleigh, "Following the outstanding success of last seasons ‘Community Fixture’ against Macclesfield, which saw an attendance in excess of four thousand Eastleigh Football Club are delighted to announce that they are repeating the scheme through their new Community sponsors ‘Total Fleet Solutions’ for the same fixture this season on 22nd August at The Silverlake Stadium.

All local boys and girls football teams and local sports clubs are welcome on that day to watch the match with free admission, though appreciating that it is short notice for that fixture we have also extended the same arrangement for the fixture against Gateshead on Saturday 12th September. In an attempt to ensure the scheme this season is met with similar success we are willing to offer tickets to either game or indeed both games".


Great deals on vans, cars and pickup trucks from Vanarama

National League sponsors Vanarama are famous for great deals on vans. As the UK’s number one new van supplier we have some of the cheapest deals available and by using Vanarama for your next vehicle you will earn your club £100 for every vehicle leased. In addition to the £100 for your club we’ll reward you with a Vanarama Reward MasterCard pre-loaded with £30 credit for you to spend anywhere.

We’ve got some great deals on a new van or pickup truck at www.vanarama.co.uk and if you find a better deal anywhere else that we can’t match we’ll give you a Vanarama Prepaid MasterCard with £50 of credit to spend anywhere you like! Just one of the promises in our industry leading 8 Point Price Protection Guarantee.

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Because of our buying power for commercial vehicles we’re able to bring you an equally fantastic deal on a brand new car for personal or business use. Have a look at www.autorama.co.uk for our latest deals on a brand new car.

Don’t forget, whether you lease a new van, car or pickup truck from Vanarama we’ll give your club £100 to invest back into grass roots football AND we’ll reward you as well!

Why choose Vanarama for your next new vehicle?

We are the official vehicle leasing partner of The National League. As big investors in grass roots football we thrive off supporting teams like yours. Feeding investment back into the game is a big part of our strategy, the club affiliate scheme is a great way for us to honour our pledge of investing money into the grass roots of the beautiful we all love.

13 August 2015


Altrincham FC associate director, Barry Pond, tells us that for next Tuesday's game, Altrincham v Grimsby Town, there will be a special offer for all supporters in the Manchester Glass Sponsors' Lounge.

You can enjoy free entry to the J Davidson Stadium, a two-course meal prepared by Club caterer Richie Bentley, a free drink before the match and at half-time, a free Robins Review matchday programme, and reserved seats in the Dunne & Gray Family Stand. All this is available for just £35 for all supporters (home and away) or just £25 for holders of current Altrincham FC season tickets. To take advantage of this special offer, please ring Barry on 07957 456375 as soon as possible, or contact Stacey Rowley at the Football Club on 0161 928-1045.


Brian Flynn interviewed Stuart Coburn after the Guiseley match. You can listen to it here.

Right: Jake Moult played well as he switched to centre-back in the second half at Guiseley. Image courtesy of Mike Ripley.

The Radio Robins commentary from Guiseley is below:

Photos from the Guiseley v Alty game are on Michael Ripley's website.

The BBc reports that "Guiseley recorded their first win in the fifth tier of English football as they took all three points at home to Altrincham...

  • Possession 57% Guiseley 43% Altrincham
  • Shots: Guiseley 15 Altrincham 3
  • On target: Guiseley 9 Altrincham 2
  • Corners: Guiseley 9 Altrincham 9
  • Fouls: Guiseley 10 Altrincham 12

Guiseley themselves have a very brief report which includes... "Mark Bower’s side dominated the first half and gained their reward through Rob Atkinson’s powerful header from a Danny Lowe corner. However, after the break the visitors got into their stride and were unfortunate not to claim an equaliser – Michael Rankine unable to get a decisive touch on a dangerous delivery from the left. Guiseley missed chances to put the game to bed but, in the end, the hosts held firm to see out the win".

Off the field "The club has released the following statement regarding our ongoing plans to develop the facilities at Nethermoor... We are putting a project plan together with a view to getting builders on site in early October and getting that elusive A grade come the end of March. We are also having very constructive discussions with the Cricket Club in order to find a way forward with the rebuild of the clubhouse and changing rooms to form modern facilities for both clubs and the community in general. There are significant complications around the redrawing of the respective clubs’ lease boundaries but, given what we believe is a genuine desire on both sides to make things happen, we think we can bring this to a successful conclusion over the coming months.

None of this is helped by the activities of an as yet unknown individual who took it upon him or herself to leave a number of scruffy notes around the bar encouraging supporters not to drink there. The Joint Social Club, along with many pubs and clubs, has gone through some very difficult times of late but, as can be seen, is now generating sufficient funds to allow some investment in refurbishment and new carpets.

Richard and Michelle, whilst running the bar, have made huge efforts, along with other members of the Cricket Club committee, to foster better relations between the clubs. Guiseley AFC is not prepared to see this jeopardised by the activities of rogue individuals and action will be taken should we discover the perpetrators."

Meanwhile the Ilkley Gazette says that "Guiseley are off the mark after winning a thrilling National League clash at Nethermoor on Tuesday night... Atkinson arrived in the box for a corner and thumped his header into the top left corner to delight the home crowd.

It also gave them a measure of revenge for the agonising 2-1 defeat Altrincham inflicted on them in the 2014 Conference North play-offs... Both sides had a good number of scoring chances but Atkinson’s goal was surprisingly the only one of the game...

The Lions had five new signings in their side and they all played their part... Altrincham played their part in an entertaining encounter and they also had some clear chances. Former Farsley striker Damian Reeves missed from point-blank range and Michael Rankine headed against the bar minutes after Atkinson had given Guiseley the lead. Whereas Guiseley had dominated the first half with their attractive style of play, Altrincham had the better of the second period.

Their manager Lee Sinnott switched to three at the back and threw men forward which meant that Guiseley had to rely on breakaways to relieve the pressure... Guiseley preserved their hard-earned lead. It wasn’t always pretty but it was always pretty effective... A lack of accuracy with the final ball meant that Guiseley were unable to kill their opponents off".


NL Pitchero says that "Right-back Cavell Coo has been released by Salford City. Coo joined Salford in October 2014 from Ashton United having impressed then manager [ex-Alty forward] Phil Power during FA Cup ties between the two clubs. A total of sixteen starts were made before the end of the season, with a further two from the bench, but Coo did not start a game for the Ammies after the trip to New Mills on 14th March. Cavell was voted into the 2014/15 NPL First Division North team of the season."

Wythenshawe Town have signed former Alty striker Jimmy McCarthy and ex-Alty youth and reserve teamer Louis Brown.


Above, we see Gavin Rathbone's official team photo of the 2015-16 Altrincham FC squad and club officials, (click to enlarge); pictured left to right are:

  • Back Row: Michael Rankine, Josh O'Keefe, Sam Heathcote, Tim Deasy, Stuart Coburn, Tom Marshall, Scott Leather, Gianluca Havern.
  • Middle Row: Alan Ainsley (physio), Barry Pond (assoc. director), Luke Pickering (kitman), Anthony Griffith, Joel Swift, James Lawrie, Jake Moult, Ryan Crowther, Jordan Sinnott, George Bowerman, Simon Richman, Ian Senior. (goalkeeping coach), Neil Faulkner (director), John Skelhorn (kitman).
  • Front Row: Adam Griffin, Shaun Densmore (capt), Lee Sinnott (manager), Grahame Rowley (chairman), Neil Tolson (asst. manager), Nicky Clee, Damian Reeves.


In advance of Saturday's match at Woking, Through the Years by Howard Watts, shows us our record in previous games on 15 August.

The BBC says that "Supporters of Woking have raised £6,000 in just over 24 hours to pay for injured striker Scott Rendell to have an operation. Rendell, 28, will miss the rest of the season with knee-ligament damage. A crowdfunding page, with a target of £10,000, was set up by Cards' director and club chaplain Ian Nicholson on Tuesday.

Bournemouth midfielder Harry Arter and Crawley defender Joe McNerney, both ex-Woking players, have made donations. Fans of the Surrey side raised £1,234 during a bucket collection before their league game against Bromley on Tuesday. Rendell's team-mate Giuseppe Sole, who had a similar injury in 2012, has also contributed...

Rendell, who scored 24 league goals last season, was taken off on a stretcher during the first half of Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Tranmere Rovers after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament...

Manager Garry Hill told BBC Surrey, 'To lose your top goalscorer and your talisman, with the experience he has got on and off the pitch, after 40 minutes of the new season is very hard to take. We are looking to bring in two strikers now to add competition'".

And, on Tuesday, "Woking won their first game of the new National League campaign thanks to a John Goddard double against Bromley... Bromley lost both Lee Minshull and Rob Swaine to injury either side of Goddard putting the Cards in front from close range. Goddard tapped in a rebound for his second...

Woking manager Garry Hill told BBC Surrey, 'We were very much in control tonight and at 2-0 it was a case of seeing the game out more than anything. To win 2-0 and keep a clean sheet on the first home game of the season was very pleasing... I don't paint over cracks in respect of what we need and what we've got to do'"

The News Shopper says that "A goal in each half from Woking’s John Goddard put paid to any hopes of a Bromley victory at Kingfield on Tuesday evening. On a wet evening, the home side had the better of the early exchanges...

The hosts opened the scoring nine minutes before the break. A long cross into the danger zone saw indecisiveness from Ugo Udoji. Giuseppe Sole was able to win possession before knocking a delivery back into the goalmouth, where Goddard stabbed home from close range. With five minutes of the half remaining, Rob Swaine fell awkwardly onto his shoulder, which he dislocated last season. Clearly in pain again, he took no further part in proceedings and was replaced by Jack Holland.

Woking doubled their lead six minutes into the second half. Julian appeared to have been impeded from a right-wing cross and the ball ran loose for Goddard to drive into the bottom right hand corner. Despite the visiting keeper’s protests, and the referee consulting his Assistant, the goal was allowed to stand.

Bromley offered very little in attack and when they did manage to advance came up against a very efficient defence".

Woking add that "An excellent all-round performance from the Cards provided the perfect response to Saturday’s opening day disappointment at Tranmere Rovers, with a brace from John Goddard enough to see off newly promoted Bromley. Woking’s midfield maestro scored either side of half-time to help ease the burden of Scott Rendell’s absence, while Giuseppe Sole, leading the line in Rendell’s place, also did well, working extremely hard throughout.

Defensively, the Cards were largely untroubled, with centre-back pairing Brian Saah and Ismail Yakubu marshalling the threat of prolific non-league striker Alex Wall... Garry Hill made just two changes to the team that was narrowly beaten at Prenton Park, with Sole replacing the injured Rendell, while Kadel Daniel started on the right in place of Bruno Andrade. Full-back Adam Newton, out of retirement after just three months away from the game, made up the numbers on the bench...

A strong and physical Bromley side quickly worked their way back into the game... After a hard-fought opening half hour which produced very few clear-cut opportunities, the game turned dramatically in Woking’s favour. The away side lost both Lee Minshull and Rob Swaine to injury, either side of the opening goal, throwing the plans of visiting manager Mark Goldberg into turmoil...

The home side, now full of confidence, dominated much of the second-half... It was an extremely positive night for the Cards... It’s good to know that we can produce a performance of such quality even without our main striker... Woking: Jake Cole, Jake Caprice (Adam Newton 83), Chris Arthur, Mark Ricketts (c), Brian Saah, Ismail Yakubu, Joey Jones, Keiran Murtagh, Giuseppe Sole (Godfrey Poku 79), John Goddard, Kadel Daniel (Bruno Andrade 64), Subs not used: Reece Beckles, Nick Hamann... MOTM: Chris Arthur – he worked his socks off all night down the left-hand side".


A week on Saturday (22 August), Altrincham travel to Dover, from where the Dover Express reports that "Dover Athletic manager Chris Kinnear admitted there are areas he needs to strengthen the side in but stopped short of saying where exactly they were. Dover have brought in Sam Magri, Duane Ofori-Acheampong, Naby Diallo, Matt Young, Jamie Grimes and Jack Parkinson in the summer but were dealt a blow in Tuesday's 3-2 win over Kidderminster Harriers.

England C winger Tom Murphy was stretchered off with a suspected hamstring pull or tear on 23 minutes and looked in serious pain as he was carted off. And the manager said after Dover's first victory of the season in the National League he was still on the lookout for reinforcements before the transfer window slams shut on September 1.

He said, 'I am on the lookout, for sure. I have identified areas I think we need to strengthen, but I'm not going to tell you where. That's for me to know. It was a hamstring problem for Murph. He has gone off to hospital for a scan. It's a strange one as Murphy never gets injured, never. Hopefully, it isn't too serious as he is an important player for us'.

On the Harriers win, the manager was thrilled to get off the mark but not happy with how his side played. He said, '"We were a bit rusty, we are better than that. I have told the lads that and they know it as well. You can't read too much into the first two games. [Against Barrow] we gifted them the two goals, we should have been three or four up before we scored the first. We made mistakes and we made mistakes again tonight. But it's only two games in, we have got to be realistic. I am not going to lay into the lads, they won't learn that way. They know what they need to do and it is up to them to do it'"

In the Southport Visiter. we learn that "Southport travelled to Moss Rose on the back of a four-nil drubbing to Eastleigh with every intention of ending their winning run. Paul Carden axed Richard Brodie from the sixteen and was without vice-captain Andy Wright but the manger welcomed three new additions to his team.

Courtney Cameron from Torquay and Liam Nolan, a former Crewe Alexandra academy graduate, signed contracts with the Sandgrounders despite interest from other professional outfits and former Skelmersdale and Telford winger Mike Phenix joined the club on loan from Barnsley until January on-loan. All three went into the starting XI.

Macclesfield started the brighter but a shuffle of shape after 10 minutes saw Paul Carden’s men gain traction as the game progressed. The visitors gradual momentum culminated in a penalty, when Luke Foster was shoved in the box. Gary Jones stepped up but Jalal guessed the direction of the penalty correctly and parried his effort to safety...

A penetrating run down the left saw [Macc's] John Hills fell Louis Almond as he surged towards the 18 yard box. The referee was given little choice but to give Hills his second caution of the afternoon resulting in his dismissal. Macclesfield didn’t buckle despite the deficit and continued to foray forward...

All three of the debutants made promising starts and brought more attacking balance and width to Paul Carden’s side".

The Holker Street Newsletter reports on Barrow's 4-1 defeat at Grimsby on Tuesday night. "After the game, [manager] Darren Edmondson took a deep breath before he spoke with the Mail, and came up with 'If you make mistakes at this level, you get punished. And three or probably all of their goals could have been sorted out by us. And then what you see is a good Grimsby side who are clinical going forward. They have got some good attacking players. You've got 5000 fans who are then buoyant and behind their team and it makes it an uphill battle.

So we've got to learn from tonight. Grimsby have a squad and a football club that are probably three or four years ahead of us at the moment. That's not making an excuse for getting beat 4-1, but if you look at it in a calculated fashion, and just take away the result itself, that's where we find ourselves."

12 August 2015


Fielding the same side which played on Saturday, Altrincham lost this game with a poor first-half performance in which they failed to play the ball to feet. For their part Guiseley's slick passing got its reward in the 16th minute. But, once again it was failure to defend a corner which cost Alty the decisive goal as Atkinson's bullet header powered past Coburn, who was to be his side's Man of the Match.

Alty were much improved in the second half when they moved to a back three as Moult moved into the back line but they could not effect a breakthrough. A bad night was made worse by the loss of Havern to a hamstring injury in the first half. He joins Nicky Clee and Simon Richman who also missed this game through injury.

Match report here.

Above, right: Stuart Coburn was a busy man at Nethermoor on Tuesday evening. Here striker Michael Rankine is also back in his own penalty area, helping out.


John Edwards, Alty's joint Press Officer, writes, "Lee Sinnott was left rueing a lacklustre first-half display and a blatant penalty that wasn’t given as Altrincham slipped to a second successive 1-0 Vanarama National League defeat at Guiseley on Tuesday night.

Despite Damian Reeves firing wide with only the keeper to beat and Michael Rankine and James Lawrie both hitting the bar, Alty deservedly trailed at half-time after again conceding from a left-wing corner.

A half-time change in formation to three at the back led to a marked improvement, but Alty were denied an equaliser when a clear trip on Shaun Densmore inside the area went unpunished.

‘Things are not falling for us inside the box at the moment,’ said Alty boss Sinnott. ‘Balls are coming in just the wrong side of people, but you have to work your way through spells like that.

‘The first half was annoying for me because we didn’t step up to the plate. Only a couple of players emerged from that half with any credit. Too many were off the pace, not first to the ball, not anticipating and allowing passes to go astray.

‘The only saving grace was we weren’t further behind, and we were a different animal in the second half. The system change helped, but if you are not sharp enough and not at the races from the first whistle, you are going to have problems.

‘It looked like we should have had a penalty. Dens said he was caught and said the full-back even admitted he’d caught him, but we have to look at ourselves. We have conceded in identical fashion to Saturday, an unchallenged header from a corner, which is annoying and shouldn’t happen. I’ve had a stern chat with the players. We have to regroup and we will.’

Luca Havern could face a lengthy lay-off with a hamstring injury, but Nicky Clee and Simon Richman are in contention for a return at Woking on Saturday and home to Grimsby next Tuesday. Jake Moult, Tom Marshall, Densmore and Rankine should all shake off minor knocks".


  • Braintree Town 1 Lincoln City 3
  • Cheltenham Town 0 Aldershot Town 0
  • Dover Athletic 3 Kidderminster Harriers 2
  • Eastleigh 1 Boreham Wood 0
  • FC Halifax Town 0 Chester FC 1
  • Forest Green Rovers 1 Welling United 0
  • Gateshead 1 Tranmere Rovers 4
  • Grimsby Town 4 Barrow 1
  • Guiseley 1 Altrincham 0
  • Macclesfield Town 0 Southport 0
  • Woking 2 Bromley 0
  • Wrexham 3 Torquay United 2

11 August 2015


The TASC supporters' transport to Alty's game at Guiseley on Tuesday is now full. However, a reserve list is being compiled to cover any late cancellations. If you wish to be added to the reserve list, please e-mail Mark Eckersall, the TASC Travel Coordinator. Details are on the Away Travel page.

Places are still available on the transport to Woking (Saturday, 15th). As usual, please ring the club in advance, during weekday office hours, to book your seat (0161 928-1045).


Altrincham entertain Guiseley on Tuesday (7.45pm).

You can follow the fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn advises that "Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary of Tuesday night's game at Nethermoor Park. The commentators are Simon Ellis and Joe Barry and the match summariser is John Edwards. Coverage starts at 7.40pm & you can listen to Radio Robins on the internet at http://www.radiorobins.com/ or via the above link."


Howard Watts's Through the Years records for 11 August show that this year's match is only the third ever on this date for Altrincham.

Alty have never won at Guiseley. Mike Garnett provides the full historical record between the clubs:

  • Home: P6-W4-D1-L1-F12-A7
  • Away: P7-W0-D3-L4-F8-A16
  • All: P13-W4-D4-L5-F20-A23


Alex Sarwar writes that "Following Altrincham’s defeat against Forest Green Rovers at the J Davidson Stadium on Saturday, Alex Sarwar spoke to Assistant Manager Neil Tolson and got his thoughts on the match.

'I don’t think either team did enough to win the game. Unfortunately it’s about taking chances, they took their only chance while we missed the couple of chances we had. That’s the fine line between three points and no points at this level. We try to pride ourselves on not conceding goals from set pieces so obviously we’re disappointed. It’s not the way we want to be losing the game, but the other side of it is that we’ve not been opened up. We played one of the favourites to win the league and they haven’t created a chance from open play against us. We’re defending right and we’ll go back and work on set pieces in training.'

There were a lot of positives that we can take out of that game. I’m far happier with the way that we’ve lost against Forest Green than the way we lost at Aldershot twelve months ago so we’ll dust ourselves down and go again'.

The Robins face a quick turnaround as they take on newly promoted Guiseley on Tuesday night. Guiseley were also beaten in their opening game and Tolson is aware of the pressure that brings on both teams to get a result. 'You’d probably say they are under a little bit more pressure than us being the home team and we also know the league a little bit better than them. We’re just going to go there, work hard and hopefully we’ll be able to bring home the three points'".

Brian Flynn advises that "Live Sports FM covered Saturday's match against FGR and their commentary is here".


There are You Tube highlights of last Saturday's defeat for Guiseley at Welling United.

The Yorkshire Post says that Guiseley "manager Mark Bower was heartened by what he saw as Guiseley suffered defeat in their first game at this level. Bower said, 'You have to take your chances. We cut them to shreds at times, we were unlucky at times, but you have to defend when the chance comes to them'.

Bower believed his side were unlucky not to gain at least a point. The crucial goal was scored just before half-time... Before that, it was the visitors who had the better chances. Tom Craddock nearly scored a great goal after a run and shot, which struck the crossbar... The second half again saw the away side creating the best chances...

Guiseley will have a good opportunity to get the first point on the board as they face Altrincham at home...

Guiseley: Drench, Rob Atkinson, Nicky Boshell (Liam Dickinson 71), Lockwood, Lowe, Lawlor, Thompson (Toulson 60), Hatfield (Rothery 77), Craddock, Boyes, Brooksby. Unused substitutes: Daniel Atkinson, Hall".


In their first game in The Hallmark Security Cheshire Football League, Altrincham FC Reserves lost 0-4 at home to Billinge FC. In A/Z order the Alty side comprised Shaun Arrowsmith, Ryan Barry, David Brown, Matthew Christie, William Foster, Craig Goulden, Elliot Messam, Christopher Rowley (GK), Ioannis Stouppis, Connor Sutton, Thomas Westall. Substitutes: Marcus Dibble, Jimi Folagbade, Matthew Graetzer, Rob Kennerley, Laurence Taylor.


Forest Green assistant manager Jamie Day speaks to BBC Radio Gloucestershire after Saturday's 1-0 win at Altrincham.


The BBC reports that "Cheltenham Town have signed forward Josh Cooke on loan from Swindon Town until January, their 16th arrival since the end of last season. Cooke began his career at Swindon and has made two senior appearances for the first-team with his debut coming last term. He also spent part of last season on loan at Staines Town".

The National League reports that "BT Sport is to broadcast a new weekly half-hour TV highlights show around the Vanarama National League. The National League Highlights Show debuts on Sunday, August 30 at 9.45pm on BT Sport 1. The show will thereafter air every Sunday evening after Vanarama National League match-weeks (times might change).

BT Sport Vanarama National League expert Mark Clemmit will present the show, supported by Natalie Quirk, which will show action from Vanarama National League matches each weekend. And on match-weekends where BT Sport airs a live game, BT Sport will make this game a feature of the highlights show.

Ahead of the Highlights Show TV debut BT Sport will make a selection of goals from the weekend’s National League games available to all on BTSport.com"

The National League also announces various changes to kick off times, as follows:

  • Chester FC v Wrexham on 3 October NOW KO 14:00hrs
  • Wrexham v Guiseley AFC was 13 October NOW 14 October
  • Wrexham v Chester FC on 19 March 2016 NOW KO 14:00hrs"

The Yorkshire Post says that "Neil Aspin admitted his side did not defend well enough after FC Halifax Town lost their opening game [at Boreham WOod]. Jordan Burrow’s penalty on his debut meant Halifax went in level after Ricky Shakes’s opener, but second-half goals from debutants Jamie Lucas and Harry Crawford sealed the win.

The Halifax chief was unhappy with his side’s defending for all three goals, with captain Hamza Bencherif’s slip leading to the hosts’ second and Crawford getting the better of Matty Brown for his late effort. Aspin said, 'It’s very frustrating because I thought we were controlling the game when we conceded the first goal and then I felt we were getting on top when we conceded the second. They were both terrible goals to give away. Unfortunately, defensive mistakes have cost us. Their third goal is bad defending as well. All three goals should have been defended better'".

At Southport "Secretary Ken Hilton is awaiting for the international clearance to come through for Dutch striker Alfons Fosu-Mensah. The Dutch striker impressed in pre season". 10 August 2015


Our next opponents, Guiseley report that "Guiseley are back in Vanarama National League action against Altrincham at Nethermoor on Tuesday (7.45pm kick-off). The Lions got off to a losing start on their first season in non-league’s top tier... as Mark Bower’s side were punished for a lack of cutting edge.

However, Bower’s men have chance to make amends when they welcome 2014 play-off opponents Altrincham in midweek... With both sides eager to get off the mark, Bower says the Lions will take confidence from their defeat at Welling on Saturday ahead of two home fixtures against Altrincham on Tuesday and Kidderminster Harriers on Saturday.

'Welling were the team that just stayed up last season and they’ve given us a tough game,' he told Chris Bell. 'But we’ve nothing to fear. The lads are disappointed, obviously, at losing but I think they can take heart from the fact we should have won that game against a side who rarely get beaten here. I thought defensively we looked very solid. We created the chances and I thought 90 per cent of the performance was very good. It was just that final part of sticking the ball in the net that was missing.

We’ve got two home games now and it’s an opportunity to get off the mark and, if we get as many chances as we did [at Welling], hopefully we can stick a few away and win the game on Tuesday'. As always, we ask that fans driving to Tuesday’s game park responsibly and recommend using the free car park on Netherfield Road."

Ex-Alty midfielder Danny Boshell is currently suspended so will miss the match with Altrincham.


Match report here.

Alty TV has highlights of the match.


The last game of last season saw Altrincham FC manager Lee Sinnott complete 200 competitive games in charge of the Club (excluding the aborted cup match at Colwyn Bay). His record over the four seasons that he has presided over the Club shows a win ratio of 47.5%. The details are below:

By way of comparison, Barrie's View has a list of all the Premier League managers and their "win ratio", to 12 May 2014. The statistics show that while Jose Mourinho, at that time, had a 70% win ratio in the Premier League and Alex Ferguson had 65%, several other well-known managers fared less well, including Lee's former boss, the former Watford and England manager, Graham Taylor...

  • Graham Taylor 24%
  • Gareth Southgate 25%
  • Alan Pardew 33%
  • Bobby Robson 44%

The obvious conclusion is that Lee is almost twice a good a manager as his former boss, Graham Taylor!


AFC Telford United report "the signing of Greg Wilkinson after his release from Altrincham FC". Greg had previously joined FC United of Manchester and, at the time of writing, still appears on their squad page.

Telford add that "Greg started his career with Curzon Ashton before joining Manchester United's Academy, coming through their ranks with the likes of Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley. He was released after four years at Carrington, and became a mainstay of the Stalybridge Celtic midfield for almost six years at Bower Fold... [He] already knows a number of the Bucks' squad after playing at Stockport FC with the likes of Danny Glover and [another ex-Alty man] Mark Lees."


The BBC reports that "Manager Gary Mills said he was worried by Wrexham's capitulation from a dominant position to lose 3-1 at newly-promoted National League side Bromley. Wes York's goal capped a purple opening 20 minutes, but the home side struck three times before the break.

'I felt we weren't brave enough once we conceded', said Mills after his first game in charge. 'Maybe the second goal knocked the stuffing out of us a bit more as well. That's when you've got to be brave'. There was little to concern Mills as a new-look Wrexham, containing seven debutants, gelled instantly against a club playing for the first time at this level. York's goal was just reward for their dominance, but the home side equalised through Sean Francis within two minutes and went ahead five minutes later when Alex Wall scored. Moses Emmanuel added a third before half-time and Wrexham had no answer.

'For 20 minutes we were the side I want to us to be but that's got to be for 90 [minutes]', said Mills. 'We can't give goals way like that. We were moving the ball quickly, we had good movement, we were creating chances, we got the goal we deserved and then we conceded a goal that gave them a massive lift. To be honest, after 20 minutes, they were on their knees. They didn't know how to deal with us. But we've given away a soft goal that's lifted not just them but the whole place.

The second one, we're too open, so there's something to work on there. It can't happen again. We've got to stay solid....It's a game we should have won; you can't dictate a game like that and all of a sudden lose a game'".

There is a happier manager at Birkenhead as the local Wirral Globe reports how "A spectacular debut strike from Jay Harris gave Tranmere Rovers a crucial opening day victory over Woking... The former Wrexham midfielder dispatched a 20-yard pile driver just before the hour mark and it was enough to hand Rovers all three points by the slenderest of margins...

The visitors who should have took[!] the lead when Matt Hill cleared a side-footed John Goddard effort off the goal line. The Woking midfielder should’ve done better with the goal at his mercy... The Cardinals continued to created the more dangerous chances. About eight minutes before half time, there was a break in play when Scott Rendell required treatment for a clash in his own penalty area. The Woking striker eventually left the field on a stretcher, replaced by Giuseppe Sole...

Tranmere’s best chance of the match came in the 55th minute when Liam Ridehalgh crossed for Norwood, who’s [whose] snap shot from 12 yards was blocked before Stockton blazed over the rebound. But only two minutes later a well worked free kick on the edge the box teed up Jay Harris who smashed home...

Manager Gary Brabin said, 'I’m delighted. I thought it was important that we got a good start. The supporters have been fantastic during the close season and pre-season and this is where it starts. I keep saying, we’re going to get stronger, we’re going to get better, we’re not the finished article yet but it’s encouraging that we’ve started the season with a clean sheet, a Jay Harris goal and three points... When we signed him a had a laugh with the chairman. I said he’s the new Mark Palios and he replied, "He doesn’t score as many goals as me", so I can’t wait to go and remind him of that...

" Woking are no mugs. They’ve got a good manager in Gary Hill and good players. They’ve got a good side and I think... they’ll be a good side again this year'".

Their game scored a solitary one out of five marks for entertainment in the NL Paper, but Welling United "got their 2015-16 campaign off to the perfect start with a battling 1-0 victory over newly promoted Guiseley AFC... The opening game saw a Welling side with no fewer than 5 players making there Wings debut... The away side almost snatched the lead when an audacious Adam Boyes effort crashed off the crossbar that had King beaten...

The game was drifting towards half time when Welling took the lead in the 40th minute, a Wellard free kick from the left found the run of Kevin Lokko whose accurate header back across goal found Kabba, who prodded the ball into the corner of the net as the striker wheeled off with his trademark somersault celebration... Guiseley Boyes missed a golden chance when clean through but failed to hit the target...

Guiseley were becoming a bigger threat but again slack finishing let them down this time Liam Dickinson dragged his shot wide after being played in by Brooksby. After the Wings lost player manager Loui Fazakerley to injury Guiseley came agonisingly close to snatching a point in the final minute of injury time as the ball fell to Gavin Rothery and, with the goal at his mercy, Wings defender Kevin Lokko was in the right place to hack the ball of the line and secure the three points".

9 August 2015


Above: Jordan Sinnott was Alty's "Man of the Match" against FGR. Here he is seen selling a dummy to FGR's Racine on Saturday. Photo courtesy of Gavin Rathbone of GR Photography.

John Edwards, joint Press & Media Officer at Altrincham FC interviewed Alty boss, Lee Sinnott, after Saturday's match...

"Lee Sinnott (right) insisted Altrincham had been hard done by after promotion favourites Forest Green Rovers shaded a tight encounter by the narrowest of margins at The J.Davidson Stadium.

After Damian Reeves just failed to convert a first-half chance set up by Jordan Sinnott, burly former Preston striker Jon Parkin sealed a 1-0 win for the visitors with a late header from a corner.

‘No one likes to lose, but it is a different feeling to 12 months ago at Aldershot, when we came off the pitch knowing we faced a steep learning curve,’ said Alty boss Sinnott. ‘I won’t have it from anyone that we deserved to lose. There was one clear-cut chance apiece in the 90 minutes, and that against a team who are expected to go one better than last season, when they reached the play-offs.

‘Judging it overall, we had the better of the first half, they had the better of the second, but it was disappointing to concede from a set-piece, especially when we had bodies in there. ‘It was a good header, but he shouldn’t have been allowed to execute it virtually unchallenged. Neither keeper has been worked really overall. It was just their chance that counted and ours that didn’t, when Jordan cut in and hit it with his left foot, and the ball landed at Reevesie’s feet. If it had been a bit tighter to him, with the keeper already committed, it would have been a slot-in.

‘I thought we were looking comfortable, even when there was a reaction from Forest Green in the second half. They were pumping the ball into our box, but we were coping fine. There were a couple of occasions in the first half, when we were on top, where the quality of our final ball wasn’t what we would expect, but that can happen in the opening game.

‘Let’s be fair, they are one of the favourites for the title, but they have only just scraped through against us. You ask yourself the question, did we deserve to lose? The answer is no. Did they deserve to win? No. Not in my view, when you look at the efforts on goal.

‘The season doesn’t settle down for six to eight games, but it is a fact that we looked completely different to this time last year, when we took our first step into this league. These players know they can do it at this level, and I sensed that in the dressing room beforehand. There is a lot more to come from them, a hell of a lot more.

‘I saw bits of Manchester United’s game against Tottenham at lunchtime, and it just reminds you that no team in the land is at their highest gear on day one. We deserved something out of the game, but it just didn’t happen for us. Hopefully, that will even itself out as the season unfolds.’

On an attacking selection that included two up front, in Reeves and Michael Rankine, and Sinnott and James Lawrie on the flanks, the Alty manager added, ‘There was good energy in there. Josh O’Keefe, James and Jordan are all tops in our running groups, so there were always going to be good energy levels. I was looking for good organisation as well.

‘It’s important you start looking secure, and I thought we did. The goal took the stuffing out of us a bit, but you find that, particularly in hot conditions. You find that it doesn’t half get easier for the team who get their noses in front. It’s difficult chasing on the opening day. If we had opened the scoring, it would have been interesting to see how Forest Green reacted.’ Jordan Sinnott responded positively to being given a start on the right of midfield, cutting inside his full-back to good effect in the first half and frequently finding team-mates with passes or crosses.

‘I said at the end of last season I would judge him as the 26, or whatever number he might be wearing, not by his name,’ said Lee. ‘He looked after the ball, and I thought he looked more confident. He gives us options in a number of positions, and he will get better. There is more to come from him, just as there is from other players.’

Winger Nicky Clee and midfielder Simon Richman are unlikely to be risked at Guiseley on Tuesday night, after missing Saturday’s game, but should be fit for next weekend.

‘If anything, we will err on the side of caution, because there are so many games between now and the end of September,’ added Sinnott. ‘If we push them back too quickly, we could set them back two or three weeks, and we don’t want that. We will see how they are, but if it means waiting another game to get one or both of them back fully fit, we will do that.’"

Commenting on the match on Saturday, Lee Sinnott told the NL Paper's Dave Stringer, "I am disappointed to lose because I thought we were the better team in the first half. It was a disappointing goal to concede and I am frustrated to have come so close to getting something against one of the favourites for promotion".

The Gloucester Citizen reports that "Skipper for the day Jon Parkin gave Forest Green a winning start to the new Vanarama National League campaign at Altrincham.

Ady Pennock's first starting XI of the season included two competitive debutants in goalkeeper Jonny Maxted and striker Aaron O'Connor, with fellow new boys Keanu Marsh-Brown and Delano Sam-Yorke on the bench.

Midfielder Rob Sinclair was passed fit after a groin injury but Darren Jones failed to recover from a calf problem, meaning a start for club captain David Pipe at right-back and a central defensive role for Dale Bennett.

The visitors made a bright start... But there was cause for alarm four minutes later when Altrincham winger Jordan Sinnott embarked on a mazy run and saw his shot cannon off team-mate Damian Reeves, dribbling just past the near post.

The contest was disjointed in the second period... Rovers forced a succession of corners midway through the half... The breakthrough came... and this time it was Frear's corner that located Parkin in enough space to plant the ball past a helpless Coburn with his forehead".


Geoff Morris announces the latest Altrincham FC Monthly Draw winners...
  • No.93 Nigel Davis - £100
  • No. 92 John Edwards - £50
  • No. 31 Paul Brady - £35
  • No. 9 Steve Foster - £15


  • Att: 1749 Aldershot Town v Gateshead
  • 975 Altrincham v Forest Green Rovers
  • 2285 Barrow v Dover Athletic
  • 701 Boreham Wood v FC Halifax Town
  • 2083 Bromley v Wrexham
  • 2256 Chester FC v Braintree Town
  • 3459 Kidderminster Harriers v Grimsby Town
  • 2767 Lincoln City v Cheltenham Town
  • 1017 Southport v Eastleigh
  • 2066 Torquay United v Macclesfield Town
  • 5583 Tranmere Rovers v Woking
  • 505 Welling United v Guiseley


NL Pitchero says that "Nantwich Town have announced that Mat Bailey will be re-joining the club for the forthcoming season. Bailey returns to the Weaver Stadium from AFC Telford United for what will be his fourth spell, including two loan stints".


  • Braintree Town v Tranmere Rovers
  • Cheltenham Town v Southport
  • Dover Athletic v Chester FC
  • Eastleigh v Lincoln City
  • FC Halifax Town v Torquay United
  • Forest Green Rovers v Barrow
  • Gateshead v Boreham Wood
  • Grimsby Town v Bromley
  • Guiseley v Kidderminster Harriers
  • Macclesfield Town v Welling United
  • Woking v Altrincham
  • Wrexham v Aldershot Town


The National League says that league "newcomers [made] a good impression, with only Guiseley AFC... losing on the opening day.

Cheltenham Town, back in the competition after a 16-year gap, began with a decent point from a 1-1 draw at Sincil Bank against much-changed Lincoln City. Liam Hearn came off the substitutes` bench to salvage a draw for the Imps...

Tranmere Rovers... had a hard-fought 1-0 win at Prenton Park against Woking... A goal from Jay Harris after 58 minutes earned Rovers all three points on debut in front of a crowd of 5,583.

Barrow AFC, who returned to the competition as northern champions, started well as they inflicted a 2-1 win on long-journeying Dover Athletic... Andy Cook's brace after 24 and 34 minutes ensured the Bluebirds opened their campaign with a win...

Gary Mills's Wrexham endured a disappointing beginning to the new campaign as southern champions Bromley recovered from a goal behind to win 3-1 at Hayes Lane... Boreham Wood, who came up with Bromley as play-off winners, also started off with a victory, beating much-changed and fancied FC Halifax Town 3-1 at Meadow Park...

The only newcomers to lose on the opening day were Guiseley, who made the journey to Kent and suffered a 1-0 defeat. Sahr Kabba scored the winning goal for Welling United on his debut at Park View Road...

Of the new managers on debut, Torquay United`s Paul Cox, who has taken Mansfield up from this division, saw his side win 1-0 at home against Macclesfield Town... Danny Cowley didn`t have such a good start as manager of Braintree Town, who were beaten by the same scoreline at Chester FC...

Two of the division`s new bosses came face to face at Aldershot Town but it was visiting Malcolm Crosby who returned home the happier after a 2-1 win...

Aman Verma grabbed an injury-time equaliser as Kidderminster Harriers grabbed a 2-2 draw against fancied Grimsby Town at Aggborough...

Eastleigh top the standings after they won 4-0 at Southport".

The Southport Visiter report that "Manager Paul Carden said there were positives to taken despite an opening day defeat for Southport against Eastleigh.

Down to ten men, Carden’s side conceded three times in the second half to lose against one of the promotion favourites in the Vanarama National League.

Although in the end it was a heavy defeat, the game probably hinged on a 12-minute spell either side of half-time, during which Eastleigh scored twice and Southport debutant [ex-Alty loanee] Andrai Jones was sent off... Said Carden, 'We conceded a goal on 42 minutes, we had a man sent off and then we conceded again straight after. That took away any chance we had of getting something from the game. I thought we were the better team in the first half and had the best chances...

I think we probably need three more players and that extra bit strength in depth. We’ll be looking to do something in the next few days'".

From Get Surrey we learn that "New-look Woking suffered a double whammy as they went down 1-0 in their Vanarama National League opener to a deadly set-piece at Tranmere Rovers, and lost top striker Scott Rendell to injury.

Jay Harris smashed home...to see the Cards off. But perhaps a bigger blow was the loss of last season's 24-goal top scorer Rendell with suspected knee damage following what looked like a robust 50/50 challenge. He is due to have a scan to assess the extent of the problem this week...

With Bruno Andrade, a triallist at St Albans City a week earlier, and substitute Kadel Daniel drafted into the squad late in the week, there was a very different complexion to the visitors' side. But along with fellow new faces Jake Caprice and the solid centre-back Ismail Yakubu, they showed promising touches".

The NW Evening Mail says that "winger Dan Pilkington could be sidelined for a minimum of two weeks after suffering a suspected groin strain in Barrow AFC's 2-1 opening-day victory over Dover Athletic".

For Tranmere Rovers, "Gary Brabin named six debutants in his starting line-up with Scott Davies, Liam Hogan, Ritchie Sutton, Lois Maynard, Harris and James Norwood all starting...

Woking striker Scott Rendell, who had scored more than 40 goals over the past two National League seasons, had to be taken from the pitch on a stretcher shortly before half-time after picking up an injury when defending a Rovers free-kick".

And Kent Online confirms that "Welling fielded five debutants, including on-loan Millwall keeper Tom King and striker Kabba in a new-look attack. They also lost new signing Harry Osborne to injury the previous day but his replacement Kevin Lokko impressed in defence...

It was not until the last 15 minutes with a three-man forward line that Guiseley created clear-cut chances that should have produced an equaliser".

The Football Conference reports that "Guiseley AFC manager Mark Bower has added two further players to his squad... Midfielder Zac Thompson and goalkeeper Daniel Atkinson have both signed on ahead of the coming season...

Thompson, 22, was released by neighbours Leeds United at the end of last season, having started out at Everton while also spending a season out on loan from Elland Road at Bury. He can also play right-back. Atkinson, 20, is also a former Leeds man, having left the club last season."

Macclesfield Town "are pleased to announce the signing of goalkeeper Shwan Jalal following the players’ successful trial and performances in the game against Congleton... The goalkeeper has a vast history and experience in the game, having racked up over 250 league appearances".


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules. Alex has started work on content for the club website focusing on the Vanarama National League teams that we will be coming up against this season and player profiles". A Guide to the Opposition 2015/16, Part Four, by Alex Sarwar

We’re taking our final look at the teams that will come up against Altrincham in the Vanarama National League this coming season. The last six clubs to be covered will be Southport, Torquay United, Tranmere Rovers, Welling, Woking and Wrexham.

Southport F.C.

  • Nickname: The Sandgrounders
  • Founded: 1881
  • Stadium: Merseyrail Community Stadium
  • Capacity: 6,008
  • Manager: Paul Carden
  • Last season: 19th

Last season Southport clung on to their Vanarama National League status by the skin of their teeth. Their fans will be desperate to avoid another relegation scrap this season and manager Paul Carden will likely have a tough job to do so.

Former Chester City captain Carden has taken his first full step into management at Southport following two caretaker spells at Cambridge United. Carden had previously spent the majority of his coaching career as part of Tranmere boss Gary Brabin’s backroom staff at Cambridge, Luton Town and Southport themselves.

The Sandgrounders won’t have Luke George or Dom Collins with them next season, however, after a long pre-season featuring many trialists, Carden has managed to bring nine players to the club on free transfers so far. The Robins visit Southport on August Bank Holiday Monday, a trip to look forward to for Alty fans.

Torquay United

  • Nickname: The Gulls
  • Founded: 1899
  • Stadium: Plainmoor
  • Capacity: 6,200
  • Manager: Paul Cox
  • Last season: 13th

Last season seemed to be more about matters off the field rather than on the field for Torquay. While the club went through a takeover process, the team itself struggled to find any consistency and limped to a solid yet uninspiring 13th place. With a new board in place, fans will be hoping for a little more consistency on and off the field this time round.

Manager Paul Cox was appointed Gulls manager in June this summer. Previously he had a six year spell as Eastwood Town manager and three years at Mansfield Town where he led the Stags to the Conference title in 2013.

No doubt looking to do the same this season, Cox has overseen a dramatic reshuffle at the club, with thirteen players being moved out and thirteen moved in. One of those brought in is Exodus Geohaghon, a man known just as much for his long throw as he is for his name. Also joining the Gulls is Nathan Smith on loan from Port Vale.

Tranmere Rovers

  • Nickname: Rovers
  • Founded: 1884
  • Stadium: Prenton Park
  • Capacity: 16,567
  • Manager: Gary Brabin
  • Last season: 24th (Relegated from SkyBet League Two)

After 94 years, Tranmere Rovers slipped out of the Football League last following a disastrous campaign. Since then it’s been all change as the Wirral based club tries to get to grips with being a Non League football club. The fans will demand nothing less than an instant return to the Football League, anything less would be considered a huge failure.

The man given the job is Gary Brabin, who left a role at Everton to join the club. Brabin has previously managed Cambridge United, Luton Town and Southport in the Vanarama National League so he will know exactly what to expect from the division.

Many players have left the club, the most notable being midfielder Max Power who joined League One side Wigan. However Brabin has moved to bring in eleven new players and four trainees in a bid to assemble his new squad. Striker Andy Mangan joins from Shrewsbury Town, Liam Hogan from Fleetwood and the impressive Lois Maynard has also signed a deal at Prenton Park after his contract at FC Halifax Town ran out.

Welling United

  • Nickname: The Wings
  • Founded: 1963
  • Stadium: Park View Road
  • Capacity: 4,000
  • Manager: Loui Fazakerley
  • Last season: 20th

It went down to the last day but Welling United just about kept hold of their Vanarama National League status for a third successive season despite defeat to Southport, thanks to a better goal difference than Alfreton Town.

It was a very tough season for the club from London, long serving manager Jamie Day left midway through the season for Ebbsfleet United after a solid start to the season. Caretakers Jake Gallagher and Jamie Turner, along with Grays manager Jody Brown all came and went before right back Loui Fazakerley was given the job in March and did a remarkable job to achieve survival.

Welling have made seven signings and promoted four players from their youth system. Also joining the club on loan is goalkeeper Tom King from Millwall. Realistically, for Welling, another battle looks likely and avoiding relegation for a third season will be a classed as another successful campaign for the Wings.

Woking F.C.

  • Nickname: The Cardinals
  • Founded: 1889
  • Stadium: Kingfield Stadium
  • Capacity: 6,036
  • Manager: Garry Hill
  • Last season: 7th

Woking were one of the surprise packages last season after an excellent campaign saw them finish two places below the playoffs. With the league getting tougher every year, the Cardinals will have a very difficult job building on that finish this season.

The goals of Giuseppe Sole have provided the perfect springboard for Garry Hill’s side. Add Scott Rendell into the mix and Woking have an intimidating strikeforce. Hill has managed the club for four and half years and led them to the Conference South title in 2011/12.

This summer Hill has brought in five new players including Godfrey Poku from AFC Telford and Ismail Yakubu from Newport County. However he has suffered a big blow with the loss of Josh Payne to Eastleigh.

Wrexham AFC

  • Nickname: The Red Dragons
  • Founded: 1864
  • Stadium: The Racecourse Ground
  • Capacity: 10,771
  • Manager: Gary Mills
  • Last season: 11th

This season will be Wrexham’s eighth in the Vanarama National League. Two failed playoff campaigns and a FA Trophy win is all Wrexham will take from their current spell out of the Football League for the first time in 87 years.

The Red Dragons have appointed Gary Mills as manager after sacking Kevin Wilkin following defeat in the FA Trophy final last season. Mills gained promotion to the Football League with York City and will no doubt look to do the same again here.

Wrexham are another side to considerably shuffle their squad around, with fifteen players leaving and ten players coming in. The most notable being James Gray who has joined from Accrington Stanley, whilst Lee Fowler has signed from relegated Nuneaton Town.

8 August 2015


Forest Green Rovers powered their way to a 1-0 win over Altrincham on a hot afternoon at the J. Davidson Stadium. Before kick-off Altrincham were hit by the absence of Simon Richman (ankle) and Nicky Clee (groin)...

Match report here.

Right: Alty's Tom Marshall had his hands full with Jon Parkin in the match with FGR.


  • Aldershot Town 1 - 2 Gateshead
  • Altrincham 0 - 1 Forest Green Rovers
  • Barrow 2 - 1 Dover Athletic
  • Boreham Wood 3 - 1 FC Halifax Town
  • Bromley 3 - 1 Wrexham
  • Chester FC 1 - 0 Braintree Town
  • Kidderminster Harriers 2 - 2 Grimsby Town
  • Lincoln City 1 - 1 Cheltenham Town
  • Southport 0 - 4 Eastleigh
  • Torquay Utd 1 - 0 Macclesfield Town
  • Tranmere Rovers 1 - 0 Woking
  • Welling Utd 1 - 0 Guiseley


John Edwards, joint Press & Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes that "Another Vanarama National League campaign is almost upon us, and as the countdown continues to our opening fixture with Forest Green Rovers, the finishing touches have been applied to a new-look, revamped Robins Review.

The front of the programme still contains manager Lee Sinnott's notes and an insight into the dressing room, courtesy of Shaun Densmore's 'Captain's Chat', but 'Edlines' has been renamed 'From The Boardroom'. It is still penned by chairman Grahame Rowley, but there is a greater emphasis on boardroom news and views and even an open invitation to supporters to pose any questions they may have about the club. Grahame will do his utmost to address them and answer them to everyone's satisfaction.

Other new features include a column by Neil Tolson entitled 'Tols' Training Ground Tales', in which our assistant-manager brings us the low-down on who's doing what and who's saying what in between games. For instance, which hugely-popular player's idea of footwear fashion gets the Tols thumbs-down?

All is revealed in Saturday's Review. There's also the launch of a players' quiz, for the right to be called Brain of Moss Lane, a photo spread on recent match action, a new look at the opposition team and a trip down memory lane with Brian Flynn. Not only that, the price has been pegged at £2.50, the same as last season. Make sure you get your copy of the Robins Review, packed with news, views and anecdotes on all matters Alty and on sale inside the ground."


Altrincham entertain Forest Green Rovers on Saturday (3pm).

You can follow the fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn advises that "Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary of Saturday's game at The J.Davidson Stadium. The commentators are Ian Wilkinson and Paul Salt and the match summariser is Alex Sarwar. Coverage starts at 2.55pm and you can listen to Radio Robins on the internet at http://www.radiorobins.com/ or via the above link.


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules". Here, Alex interviews manager Lee Sinnott.

"With the new Vanarama National League season about to kick off. We caught up with Alty manager Lee Sinnott at first team training ahead of the new campaign. He spoke about how pre-season has prepared his squad for the upcoming campaign.

'I thought we played some good challenging games in pre-season. The main thing when they reported back in June was always to get them in the best possible shape for August 8th and we’ll see, come Saturday, how far they’ve progressed'. Sinnott also commented on how well the new players have settled into the squad and what last Saturday’s new signing George Bowerman will bring to the team, 'The squad is in a good place, it’s a tight knit bunch and they all get on well, but, when it’s time to work, they’ve got their heads down and have integrated very well with the rest of the squad'.

'George gives us options. He’s settled in really well. I used to play centre-half myself and his work rate and the questions he asks of central defenders are a nightmare to play against. Between George, Damian, Michael and James Lawrie we have different combinations for different systems, and they all bring something separate to the table, which is pleasing'.

Looking ahead to Forest Green Rovers, while under no illusions at the challenge the Robins face, Sinnott was confident in his side’s abilities to play their own game and cause problems for the opposition. 'They’ll be stern opposition obviously, but we’re looking at it from our point of view. We’ll be looking to get into our way of playing and get our football going. Hopefully, then, we’ll create the opportunities for any of the forwards to get on the scoresheet. It’ll be a hard game on Saturday but all the games this season are hard in different kinds of ways'.

Both Simon Richman and Nicky Clee face a race against time to be fit ahead of the game and the manager couldn’t say whether either of them would be available for selection. 'I speak to the physio everyday and we’ll continue to assess both players ahead of the match. We don’t want to rush both players and take risks because the games will be coming thick and fast towards now and the end of the month. But we’ll continue to monitor them and, hopefully, one or both will be fit to play on Saturday'".


Before they travelled to the J. Davidson Stadium, the Gloucestershire Citizen reported that "Forest Green manager Ady Pennock is backing new goalkeeper Jonny Maxted to handle the opening-day pressure at Altrincham. Signed on a free transfer from Hartlepool United, Maxted will make his Rovers debut in Saturday’s Vanarama National League opener at Moss Lane in place of the injured Steve Arnold.

The 21-year-old has little experience of competitive first-team football, having been an understudy at both Hartlepool and his previous club Doncaster Rovers... Pennock said, 'Jonny will play at Altrincham and I’ve got no worries about him at all. He is only a young lad but he has got a good mature head on his shoulders and he has a presence about him... I’ve known about him since my coaching days at Stoke and I’ve kept tabs on him ever since...

Steve Arnold is not too far away from coming back from his (calf) injury'...

Maxted is unlikely to be the only debutant in green and black hoops, with fellow summer recruits Keanu Marsh-Brown, Aaron O’Connor and Delano Sam-Yorke also expected to be involved in some capacity. Pennock is confident the new arrivals will add a different dimension to the team, with greater emphasis on flair and invention.

He said, 'There’s been an injection of pace into the team this year, along with some technically gifted players who we will want to get on the ball and make things happen for us'".

Forest Green Rovers add that "The wait for the new season is finally over as Forest Green’s new campaign gets underway with a much-awaited trip to Altrincham on Saturday (3pm). After last season’s highest place finish, Rover’s 18th consecutive season at this level begins with a trip to Greater Manchester, as Ady Pennock’s side target an opening day win...

There are seven potential debutants on Saturday although one of the new faces will miss the tie after Darren Jones picked up a strain in training. Steve Arnold’s injury will lead to Jonny Maxted gaining a start in goal, while Rob Sinclair looks set to undergo a fitness test as he looks to clear up a slight niggle. Danny Coles is definitely out after undergoing surgery today. Sam Wedgbury and James Jennings are two former Alty faces in the FGR squad. The duo both spent time on loan with Saturday’s opponents when on the books at Macclesfield."


On Thursday evening, Brian Flynn (Joint Press & Media Officer) interviewed new signing Josh O'Keefe. This can be heard here.


Former Alty midfielder Dave Gardner is the subject ofa report in the Manchester Evening News which records how he turned out for an All Stars team against a Manchester City veterans team to raise funds for the Mercia Regiment's Benevolent Fund at Hyde FC. He was pictured with his partner, actress Liv Tyler.


The BBC reports that "Macclesfield Town have signed striker John Marsden after a trial period in pre-season. The 22-year-old scored last weekend against Congleton in a 7-1 victory for the Silkmen. Marsden began his career at Shrewsbury, where he made five appearances before moving to Lincoln City and Southport.

'It's great to be given the opportunity to play and prove myself', he told the Macclesfield website. 'I see myself scoring goals in this team, it's a good attacking side with great ability and I believe if I get the chance I'll put the ball in the back of the net'.

Meanwhile, "Torquay United have signed centre-back Jamie Richards and striker Malachi Lavelle-Moore on non-contract deals. Richards, 21, was released by Plymouth Argyle in May, having spent last season on loan at Linfield and Dartford. Lavelle-Moore, 20, left Macclesfield in the summer... Both have been part of Torquay's squad during pre-season, with the club bringing in 13 new players this summer".

We also learn that Torquay United "have been dealt an eve of season blow with the news that influential midfielder, Luke Young, will be ruled out long-term. The former Plymouth Argyle man has suffered knee ligament damage, which is set to keep him sidelined for at least six months".

The Football Conference reports that "Woking have announced they will play at The Laithwaite Community Stadium this season after Laithwaite Financial Services Ltd, a local firm of Independent Financial Advisers, acquired the naming rights of Kingfield Stadium.

Last season Laithwaite Financial Services Ltd joined the club as sponsors of the new look Geoff Chapple Lounge and have expanded their partnership even further for the forthcoming season by becoming the official ground sponsor. Andrew Laithwaite (Managing Director) explained the reasoning behind the firm’s decision to initially join the Club (last season). 'For many years I have been involved in youth football and, when the opportunity to become a sponsor at the club presented itself, I could see the benefit of a partnership with youth football and Woking Football Club'...

Re-naming the ground to The Laithwaite Community Stadium represents a significant and very important change, which will put us on a stronger financial footing going forward and allow us to focus on giving our best performance on the pitch. Laithwaite Financial Services Ltd is the first ground sponsor in Woking Football Club’s history".

The Grimsby Telegraph reports that "Grimsby Town are still on the search for a new striker but he won’t arrive in time for tomorrow’s curtain raiser at Kidderminster. With Jon-Paul Pittman injured, the Mariners head into their National League opener with just two fit senior frontmen.

Omar Bogle and Padraig Amond, who both joined in the summer, are likely to be given the nod up front at Aggborough. But the pre-season form of winger Nathan Arnold may see him occupy a more central role. However, while Town have been linked with Bristol Rovers striker Nathan Blissett, Hurst says there won’t be any movement before the weekend.

He told the Telegraph, 'Nathan is an obvious one, because I looked at him last season... He will be looking to establish himself at Bristol Rovers... Once the first games are underway, then people’s views and opinions may change on what they want to do'".

The Halifax Courier reports that "FC Halifax Town striker Dan Maguire has completed a switch back his former club Blyth Spartans, just over two months after moving in the opposite direction... The move turned sour after the forward found it difficult to make the 350-mile round trip for training as well as carry on his job away from football".

According to the Gloucestershire Echo, "Cheltenham Town manager Gary Johnson has withdrawn his contract offer to JJ Hooper after the striker asked to speak to another club. The 21-year-old had agreed a contract with the Robins and was set to put pen to paper after training yesterday but bizarrely disappeared.

Johnson said, 'It's a strange situation and one that has never happened to me before. We trained in the morning as normal and then had the photos taken of us shaking hands and did all the interviews. JJ was then due to come in after giving our secretary (Paul Godfrey) all his details for the contract. Paul told him to come in after training and it'd all be ready for him. He trained well, but then he didn't come in.

I was in a dentist's chair for a couple of hours and, when I came out of it, people were wondering where he was. I made a couple of calls to him and to his agent, but he was AWOL and then you start worrying about people. Word got back that he had a family emergency but it then emerged in a text from him five hours later that he had an offer from another club and he'd like to go and see the club to see what the situation is. The minute I lose trust in someone and if it's not quite right, that's it. He asked if I would wait for the weekend so he could speak to the other club and I said no because it's disrespectful to me and the football club given the situation. So I made his decision easy and said Cheltenham Town Football Club was no longer an option for him.

This won't affect any of us on the even of the first match and it may be a blessing in disguise. We wish JJ Hooper all the best, but Cheltenham isn't a club he can come back to'".

Barrow report that "Former Carlisle winger, Dave Symington, today penned a three-month contract at Barrow AFC. The 21-year old has recovered from a bad knee injury sustained early this year and will add competition for Dan Pilkington & Andy Haworth".

From NL Pitchero we learn that "new boys Boreham Wood have announced the signing of midfielder Conor Clifford following his release from Southend United. Clifford began his career at Chelsea, but despite not making a first-team appearance for the Blues, he made over thirty League appearances in total whilst on loan at several clubs.

After spending over four years at Chelsea, he decided to move on and signed a two-year deal with Southend.He went on to make thirty-six appearances for the Shrimpers before being loaned to Barnet for the latter part of their Conference title-winning 2014/15 season. Clifford made thirteen appearances in Barnet’s run in...

Wood manager Ian Allinson said, 'In truth, at this stage of pre-season, to find a player of his quality available makes it a great signing. He’ll go straight into my squad for Saturday and having won the title with Barnet last season will know exactly what to expect when FC Halifax Town arrive in town'".


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules. Alex has started work on content for the club website focusing on the Vanarama National League teams that we will be coming up against this season.

Altrincham Squad Profiles 2015/16. Part 4 - Forwards

In the last part of our guide to the squad lining up for Altrincham this coming season, we look at the men required to stick the ball in the back of the net.

Damian Reeves

This man really needs no profile or introduction, as every Alty fan knows exactly what he can do. Reeves will be embarking on his sixth season at the club on Saturday and in every year so far he has played an integral role to the club’s success. 147 goals in 215 games tell its own story. In two seasons Reeves netted a total of 85 goals including 44 in one season that earned him the title of England’s highest scorer from Step 6 and above. In four of the last five seasons Reeves has topped the goalscoring charts for Alty and will be a sure fire bet to do the same this campaign.

Michael Rankine

Michael is one of two new strikers this season, after joining upon the end of his contract at Gateshead. He has had previous notable spells at Barrow, Scunthorpe United, Rushden & Diamonds, York City, Aldershot Town and Hereford United. Rankine is a powerful player and his physical figure will cause problems for Vanarama National League defenders this season. He has been developing a promising strike partnership with Damian Reeves in pre season that can hopefully flourish in the league.

George Bowerman

Bowerman is the second new striker at the club having joined at the end of his contract with Accrington Stanley. Bowerman came through the youth ranks at Walsall where he spent eight years developing his trade. A short loan spell at Woking then led to a move to Accrington where he spent the last two years with a loan at Stourbridge in between. At only 23 years old, George will be hoping to make a big impact here at Alty.

James Lawrie

Capped by his country for the first time in 2009, James Lawrie brings international pedigree to Altrincham. Having been the club now for nearly four years, the versatile front man has seen things that some Premier League footballers will never see in their career. Coming through the ranks at Port Vale, Lawrie played for the Northern Ireland senior squad three times including one game against Italy. After a spell at AFC Telford, Lawrie joined the Robins and has since made 140 appearances with 37 goals.

Joel Swift

Youngster Swift has been a regular scorer in Alty’s reserve side and was brought into the first team squad in December 2014. Swift will be hoping to continue his development this season and look to make more appearances on the pitch for the first team this campaign.

The strike-force manager Lee Sinnott has assembled this season looks very exciting for Alty fans and, should they come out firing this season, we could be seeing goals galore at the J Davidson Stadium. No defence in the Vanarama National League will be looking forward to facing this front line."

7 August 2015


Alty's joint Press& Media Officer, Brian Flynn, interviewed new signing George Bowerman before Thursday's training session. The Interview is here.


On Saturday, Altrincham kick off their 27th season at the top level of non-League football against Forest Green Rovers, who are starting their 18th successive season at the same level. On FGR's last visit, the game ended 2-2 and the reverse fixture at Nailsworth was also a draw, 1-1.

Amongst the new players at FGR this season are some well-known non-League names, including Aaron O'Connor (ex Gresley Rovers, Newport County, etc), Barnet's Keanu Marsh-Brown and Delano Sam-Yorke from Lincoln City.

Altrincham have five new faces this season in goalkeeper Tim Deasy, midfielders Josh O'Keefe and Anthony Griffith and forwards Michael Rankine and George Bowerman. Profiles and updated images of the full squad are here.


A drenched Mike Ripley has excellent images from Alty Ladies' match against Lee University Flames on wednesday evening, here.


Guiseley "are delighted to confirm that the Plans Panel at Leeds City Council have unanimously backed our plans to upgrade Nethermoor. Initial planning permission was granted at a meeting on Thursday afternoon and [is] only subject to the final approval of designs for the terracing and a 106 agreement [?].. We will now look to tie up these loose ends with a view to starting construction as soon as possible in order to meet the National League deadline.

Club secretary and CEO Adie Towers said, 'This is obviously a massive step forward for us in our plans to bring Nethermoor up to the necessary standards for this division'".

Southport report that manager "Paul Carden confirmed tonight that highly experienced Gary Jones has agreed terms... Carden said 'Gary is a real genuine professional. I played with him at Rochdale where he made 464 appearances which speaks volumes. Gary will add a great deal to the squad and his influence to younger players will be immense'.

Jones has... made 632 Football League appearances at Swansea City, Barnsley, Notts County and Bradford City".

Barrow inform "fans of some upcoming changes to ensure that their match day experience is as enjoyable as possible. We ask fans to be responsible and observe the rules so that the club or the fans are not punished for irresponsible people’s actions.

No entry to the ground is permitted without a match-day ticket. Ticket sales will commence at 12:00 P.M. at the main ticket office on Match day or can be purchased in the week leading up to the match... A new parking lot will be available behind the Ray Wilkie Stand off of Holker Street. A charge of £2 to park will be applied beginning September 5th.

There will be a zero tolerance policy towards the possessions of flares, smoke bombs, and any other such pyrotechnic articles... A new outdoor marquee bar next to the cross bar will be open to the fans from 2:00 P.M. on match days... The Holker street end will be used for away fans when a match requires segregation.

The club will require a stand transfer for those people that buy a ground ticket and would like to move to the stand. A stand transfer of £1 will be applied to children under 16 and £2 to everyone else.

  • Adult Standing – £14
  • Concession Standing – £11
  • Youth (11-17) – £5
  • Child (U11) – £1
  • Adult Main Stand – £15
  • Concession Main Stand – £12
  • Assisted – £12

Confirmation comes from Cheltenham Town on the signing of James Rowe. Manager Gary Johnson said, 'It was pretty much a formality. He needed the medical anyway, he'd had a slight strain in his thigh... The reason I've kept him here since day one with his injury is because we like him as a person, I like him as a player and I think he'll be perfect for our squad and the way we want to play and the shape we want to play.

I'm keen to put JJ Hooper on our books because I feel his gives us that stretch in behind... We have followed his career for a little while. He hasn't quite shown the Cheltenham fans that yet, maybe little bits but he will be a very efficeint squad member as well. The board have kindly gone over budget again, for about the fifth time.

And I appreciate it because I'm able to convince them that they are going to have a good player in their midst...

We haven't just got plans A and B, we've got the whole alphabet lined up! We do know we have people available to us as and when we need them. Touch wood we don't have any injuries on saturday, but if we did and it was key player... especially at centre half where we are a little short for cover, then we know we can go out and get someone within hours...

Pre season has been fantastic. The reason is we got all the boys near enough in from day one. It's 16 signings now and I think we had 14 in from day one of pre season. That gave me 6 weeks to work with them. Some teams are still making late signings for their starting 11, but we've worked the 6 weeks with what I felt was going to be the starting 11 and that hasn't changed much...

People can pretty much guess what the starting line-up is going to be. Although unfortunately that means so can the opposition probably. We've got to be better than that and we've got to make sure whatever other teams see or think of us we have got to go and perform...

I don't think games at the start are harder to win, but they could be more important to win. You need a good start, you need 20 points after the first 10 games... We have to keep aiming for that 2 point average because you are going to have those games where you don't play very well and lose 1-0 somewhere. That's not a disaster if you can win your next two...

All teams have the same targets as well, to score two goals a game and two points a game... Some people might be a bit disapointed that some of the younger players have gone out... I need to bring people in with the experience and the quality, that have played at a higher level... I just felt our young lads are not quite there... So certainly for the first 28 days I want them out getting games...

we've got some new sponsors in new and the budgets have stayed the same. The board have decided that we can go slightly over because hopefully if we have a good team we'll have higher gates and hopefully a cup run. We've certainly speculated".

At Eastleigh, the club has "completed the signing of full back Dan Harding. Gloucester-born thirty one year old Harding was with Nottingham Forest last season though he spent a loan spell with Millwall. With over 350 Football League appearances to his credit with Brighton & Hove Albion, Leeds United, Ipswich Town, Southend United, Reading and Southampton on his CV...

Harding commented 'I would never have thought I would be retiring from full professional football at age 31. Early on I had a few offers from different clubs, one being Portsmouth...

Richard said he was happy for me to come and train with him and the lads until I found the right club for me. If I am honest I never expected to enjoy it as much as I did. The facilities are very good and all the staff, manager and players were amazing and made me feel very welcomed. During this time I was approached by four championship Managers. On more than one occasion had talked for great lengths of time with these managers about signing, been ready to go and sign only for them only for them to disappear off the radar and never answer a call again. There is no honesty or respect in football and that’s something that grates on you over time.

I guess as the summer went on I started to realise what I already knew deep down that I wasn’t happy anymore. I just wanted to play and enjoy it and I hadn’t done that for a good few years... We have had to deal with an incredibly tough time after being told one of our twin girls wouldn’t make it to birth... If I was asking everyone to move 5 hours from home it would need to be for my love of football and not money and unfortunately that has been drained out of me. Again it didn’t seem right...

Although I consider myself retiring from League football that doesn’t mean I am not fully committed to Eastleigh. I will continue to give them 100% week in week out... If you have never been to Eastleigh before I would recommend it to any fan of football, young or old. It is a fantastic club that is run properly from top to bottom. I cannot speak highly enough of Richard and Stewart".

Torquay United "fully supports the National League’s new Smoke No Joke campaign to reduce and eradicate the indiscriminate use of flares, smoke bombs and pyrotechnics at matches.

Flares and smoke bombs disrupt play and people’s enjoyment of games, and the toxins they contain can seriously damage health and/or cause life-threatening injury or concern.

We have been directed to take the strongest action available against anyone found in possession of a flare, smoke bomb or any other such pyrotechnic article(s), and spectators are warned that we and The National League apply a zero tolerance approach to anyone attempting to bring such article(s) into The Launa Windows Stadium...

In order to protect all supporters, we reserve the right to search your person and/or effects, and we further reserve the right to pursue legal action, civil or criminal, against any person who contravenes current legislation or our stadium regulations...

Courts have a sentencing guideline of three months’ imprisonment and a three-year football banning order. Those prosecuted face not only a criminal record and imprisonment but also many future difficulties, including restrictions on travel overseas.


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules. Alex has started work on content for the club website focusing on the Vanarama National League teams that we will be coming up against this season and player profiles". A Guide to the Opposition 2015/16, Part Three, by Alex Sarwar

We’re continuing our look at who Alty will face in the Vanarama National League this season. The six clubs on our radar now are Gateshead, Grimsby Town, Guiseley, Kidderminster, Lincoln City and Macclesfield Town.

Gateshead F.C.

  • Nickname: The Heed
  • Founded: 1889
  • Stadium: Gateshead International Stadium
  • Capacity: 11,800
  • Manager: Malcolm Crosby
  • Last season: 10th

Another side that have firmly established themselves as a solid Vanarama National League side since winning promotion back in 2009. Gateshead go into the season off the back off a mid table season following a play-off final defeat to Cambridge United in 2014.

They will also go into the new season with a new manager after Gary Mills left for Wrexham. That man will be Geordie Malcolm Crosby, who joins the club on a one year rolling contract. Crosby was last at Birmingham City before he moved back up north.

Nine players have been signed this summer including two players from both Carlisle United and Forest Green Rovers. They have also paid £10,000 for the signing of striker Ryan Bowman from Torquay United.

Grimsby Town

  • Nickname: The Mariners
  • Founded: 1878
  • Stadium: Blundell Park
  • Capacity: 9,062
  • Manager: Paul Hurst
  • Last season: 3rd

It was heartbreak last season for the team from Cleethorpes, coming within a penalty shoot-out away from a return to the Football League. Unfortunately for them it was Bristol Rovers that came through and the Mariners will have to play a 6th season in Non League.

Paul Hurst retains his position as manager that he has held on his own for two years. He has lead Grimsby to Wembley twice in that time, losing out on both occasions in a penalty shootout. No doubt Grimsby will be hoping for nothing less than 1st place in the table this season.

Despite the loss of striker Lenell John-Lewis to Newport, Grimsby have recruited some impressive signings this summer. Omar Bogle joins from Solihull Moors and Andy Monkhouse moves from Bristol Rovers. Six other players have joined the club.

Guiseley A.F.C

  • Nickname: The Lions
  • Founded: 1909
  • Stadium: Nethermoor Park
  • Capacity: 3,000
  • Manager: Mark Bower
  • Last season: 5th (Vanarama National League North) Promoted via Playoffs

The team from across the Pennines will play step five football for the first time in their history this season after an amazing comeback in the Conference North playoff final. Two nil down at half time to Chorley. The Lions came back to win the game 3-2 and book their spot in the National League this season.

Mark Bower currently coaches the side and has done so since 2013. Bower joined the club in 2011 as a player but was given the promotion two years later after the manager at the time Steve Kittrick was sacked.

After a successful season, Bower has not needed to make many signings. However a big coup for the Yorkshire club was persuading striker Tom Craddock to move from Portsmouth. The 28 year-old frontman has enjoyed success in the National League previously with Luton Town and in the Football League with both the Hatters and Oxford United.

Kidderminster Harriers

  • Nickname: Kiddy
  • Founded: 1886
  • Stadium: Aggborough
  • Capacity: 6,250
  • Manager: Gary Whild
  • Last season: 16th

It was a real tale of two halves for Kiddy last season as a dramatic slump saw them finish 16th after sitting in 6th place on Boxing Day. A run of only three wins in twenty games including twelve losses put paid to any hopes of promotion.

Manager Gary Whild has had to significantly reduce the wage budget this summer. Whild has been at the club for just over a season having taken over from Andy Thorn who only lasted 54 days in charge early last year.

With the wage budget needing to be reduced, Whild has shown the door to thirteen players whilst only bringing in six free transfers including a trainee. One of those players is former Leicester City winger Adam Dawson, who impressed on loan at Bristol Rovers last season.

Lincoln City

  • Nickname: The Imps
  • Founded: 1884
  • Stadium: Sincil Bank
  • Capacity: 10,120
  • Manager: Chris Moyses
  • Last season: 15th

Since relegation to the National League in 2011, Lincoln City have found the going extremely tough, looking more like slipping further down the English footballing ladder rather than climbing back up. Next season they will be hoping to challenge higher up the table.

Former player Chris Moyses manages the club and has done so since November 2014 when he took over on a twelve-month rolling contract from the sacked Gary Simpson. Moyses is in only his second managerial job after Lincoln Moorlands Railway, where he was in charge for a year.

This summer the Imps have brought in ten players on free transfers and paid an undisclosed fee to sign centre forward Matt Rhead from Mansfield Town. Ten players have left the club including Ben Tomlinson, who has gone into the Football League with Barnet.

Macclesfield Town

  • Nickname: The Silkmen
  • Founded: 1874
  • Stadium: Moss Rose
  • Capacity: 6,355
  • Manager: John Askey
  • Last season: 6th

Macclesfield came agonizingly close to the play-offs last season but missed out by one spot after a final day draw away at Torquay. Just to come so close was an achievement considering the finances of the Silkmen compared to other teams in the league.

In charge is John Askey, who will be embarking on his third season in charge since replacing Steve King. Askey has won plaudits for his work with Macc and will hope that he can continue that good work this season and perhaps go one step better than the last campaign.

Askey has made a couple of signings from the Football League this summer. Jack Sampson has been brought in from Morecambe and Danny Whitehead from Accrington Stanley. Newport County have come in for two Macc players, both Scott Barrow and Rhys Taylor have returned to their native Wales.

We’ll bring you the final six teams of our guide to the opposition next season soon.

Altrincham Squad Profiles 2015/16. Part 3 Midfielders, by Alex Sarwar.

In this part of our guide to the Altrincham squad taking to the pitch for the 2015/16 Vanarama National League season, we’re profiling the players that will operate in the Robins' midfield.

Anthony Griffith

Signed by manager Lee Sinnott this summer, defensive midfielder Griffith joins the club from Carlisle United having previously played under Sinnott at Port Vale. After starting his career at Halfax Town, Griffith made a name for himself at Vale where he was named Player of the Year in 2010. After over 200 appearances, Griffith moved to Leyton Orient before a spell at Shrewsbury bought him to Carlisle and ultimately the Robins. His tenacity and experience makes him an imposing figure in the middle of the park.

Josh O’Keefe

Another new signing in the midfield, this time from Kidderminster. O’Keefe had loan spells at both AFC Telford United and Chester FC, so will be looking to settle down at the J Davidson stadium. He has also had spells at Walsall, Lincoln City, Southport and Hereford United, having started his career at Blackburn Rovers. O’Keefe can take penalties and will attack and defend from the midfield when required.

Simon Richman

A former Bolton academy product, Simon Richman has been at the Robins since summer 2011 and was manager Lee Sinnott’s first signing at the club. A recipient of the Port Vale Young Player of the Season award in 2009. Richman has extensive football league and non-League experience. An ever-present in the side, Richman is likely to continue to play a big role in the engine room during this campaign.

Jordan Sinnott

Son of boss Lee, Jordan has appeared heavily in pre-season this summer. Normally found playing wide on the right, Jordan’s crosses will be well received by the strikers this season. He first featured for Alty in a six-game loan from Huddersfield Town back in 2011/2012. Since then, he has featured on loan at Bury before rejoining Alty in February 2015.

Jake Moult

Another player with over 100 appearances for the Robins under his name. Jake was last season awarded the Players’ Player of the Season award after a fantastic campaign in midfield. He joined the club in August 2012 on a free transfer from Alfreton Town and has been a regular in the side since. Jake will not come up against his brother this season in The Vanarama National League, though, as Louis has moved to Scottish Premiership side Motherwell during the summer.

Ryan Crowther

Crowther will begin his second season at the club after joining in summer 2014 following a spell with FC Halifax Town. Previously on the books of Liverpool, Crowther has played for Stalybridge Celtic, Ashton United, Hyde & Fleetwood Town before ending up in Yorkshire. He made 19 starts last season and scored three goals for the Robins from wide midfield. No doubt he will be looking to add to that this year.

Nicky Clee

With 217 starts for Alty the popular left-winger will be lining up for his seventh season in August since joining from Hyde in 2009. Clee has established himself as a real fans' favorite with his long throws and skill on the ball. Hopefully, the left winger will bag a few more memorable goals for the Robins in 2015/16.

So that’s the midfielders covered. Look out for profiles of the forwards in the Alty squad coming soon.

6 August 2015


On a wet Wednesday evening at Mersey Valley FC, Altrincham FC Ladies played a visiting USA ladies' team, Lee University Flames of Cleveland, Tennessee. The skilful and speedy visitors proved too good for the Alty Ladies who, nevertheless, gave a good account of themselves. The Flames struck four times in eleven minutes midway through the first half, before adding two second-half goals, to run out 6-0 victors.

More details to follow, from Phil Taylor, whilst Mike Ripley will post images from the game on his website. Altrincham FC thank the Lee University team for their visit and wish them well throughout the rest of their tour of the country.

Above: The two teams mingle for a joint photo before the match kicked off..


Salford City confirm that ex-Alty Youth "Striker Sam Madeley has left the club, by amicable and mutual consent, to join local Conference North side FC United of Manchester. Sam played a big part in last season's success, scoring 20 goals and he was included in the First Division North team of the season. The ex-Droylsden and Mossley forward endeared himself to Ammies supporters with a string of swashbuckling performances and 100% commitment."

And NL Pitchero says that, "Four more players have put pen-to-paper for Hednesford Town". One of them is "Sean Williams, who has previously played for Colwyn Bay at this level and last season plied his trade at Altrincham".


Ian Senior of SKkits and goalkeeping coach at Altrincham FC announces that "All the 'home' shirts which were used during pre-season are now available for £25 on a 'first come-first served basis'. All have an 'enlarged' Mornflake logo on the rear, due to a change by the company, but they have names/numbers attached as usual. So if you have a favourite player or just fancy a match shirt, contact the Club on 0161 928-1045. The chosen player will happily sign your shirt"


According to the Gloucester Citizen, "Chairman Paul Baker says Cheltenham Town would consider extending the club's groundshare deal with Gloucester City beyond the end of the season. Gloucester were hoping to move to their new stadium at Meadow Park in time for the start of the 2016/17 season but a delay in their application towards full planning permission means that will not be possible.

Baker admitted in March that a deal for the 2015/16 season would have been unlikely if the club's Football League status was [i.e. had been] already assured".

Kent Online reports that "Dover Athletic have finally agreed a fee with Leyton Orient over the signing of former Whites skipper Connor Essam. The League 2 club have paid Dover an undisclosed fee for the defender, who agreed a two-year deal at Brisbane Road last week after impressing on trial.

Dover initially refuted any agreement had been reached between the clubs, with Dover entitled to compensation for Essam as he is under the age of 24 and was offered a new contract at Crabble. However an Orient statement released on Wednesday, nine days after they first announced his signing, said, 'We are pleased to announce today that an undisclosed fee has been agreed with Dover Athletic in regards to the sale of Connor Essam. No FA tribunal will be required and throughout this transfer the Club have always acted in a correct, professional manner'...

Essam, who started his career at Gillingham, renews acquaintances with Orient boss Ian Hendon and assistant Andy Hessenthaler, who both worked with him at Gills. Hendon said... 'We gave him his debut at Gillingham back when me and Andy were there and he was literally a boy. He was a big lad but he was very skinny but now he has physically developed and he has already shown us what he is capable of. He handled playing in the Conference last year for a season very well'...

The 23-year-old was a deadline day signing last September for Dover boss Chris Kinnear, who handed Essam the captain's armband".

We learn from the National League that the promotion final for the National League will be on Sunday 15th May at Wembley Stadium. National League North and South promotion finals willbe on Saturday 14th May on the ground of the higher placed club involved.

The Huddersfield Daily Examiner confirms that "Huddersfield Town have loaned teenage centre-back William Boyle to Macclesfield until October 3. It’s a second stint in the National League for the 19-year-old, who made two appearances for Kidderminster Harriers last season. Those outings came after his Town debut, as a late substitute in the 3-0 home Championship win over Reading in February."

NL PItchero says that "Torquay United have secured the services of front-man Alex Fisher. The 25-year-old has played under manager Paul Cox previously at Mansfield Town... His career began at Oxford United before he linked up with the Glenn Hoddle Academy in Spain and then played in Belgian and Italian football.

'First and foremost Alex is a different type of player to what we have here already', said Cox. 'He’s a lad that I’ve worked with previously and I know exactly what we’ll get from him. He’s played at a higher level and he has good experience for someone of his age, so that will help the younger lads around him. His work-rate is excellen'".

Elsewhere, "FC Halifax Town have announced that goalkeeper Jordan Porter has signed on for the 2015/16 season. He has been on trial during pre-season with the club and will wear squad number one this campaign. Parker is an England Futsal international."

Injury hit Grimsby Town report that "Marcus Marshall is set to miss the start of the season after picking up a medial knee ligament injury at Boston at the weekend. The winger has been in good form since his return to Blundell Park in the summer and the news comes as a massive blow to Town boss Paul Hurst who already has several injury concerns going into the new season.

'The competition in the squad is starting to get a little thin with the injuries we already had going into Saturday at Boston and, then, Marshy had to come off', Hurst said. Scott Brown, Jon-Paul Pittman, Gregor Robertson and Josh Sunter are already sidelined but there is some better news on Omar Bogle. The big striker, who has missed the last three pre-season games with a knee injury, returned to training on Tuesday and could be ready for the big kick-off at Kidderminster on Saturday.

Hurst added, 'I would obviously have preferred Omar to have been fit all pre-season. "My only concern is that he's missed more training sessions and game time'. It is not known at this stage how long Marcus will be out for."


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules. Alex has started work on content for the club website focusing on the Vanarama National League teams that we will be coming up against this season and player profiles.

A Guide to the Opposition 2015/16, Part Two, by Alex Sarwar

We’re continuing our look at who Alty will face in the Vanarama National League this season. We’ve seen Aldershot, Barrow, Borehamwood, Brantree and Bromley. Now let’s take a look at six more teams we’ll be playing home and away this campaign.

Cheltenham Town

  • Last season: The Robins
  • Founded: 1887
  • Stadium: Whaddon Road
  • Capacity: 7,266
  • Manager: Gary Johnson
  • Last season: 23rd (Relegated from SkyBet League Two)

It was a nightmare season for Cheltenham last year, relegation from the Football League after 16 seasons was a massive blow and manager Gary Johnson has overseen a massive clear out this summer. Johnson is a vastly experienced manager who joined the club in March but couldn’t save the club from relegation. He knows what it takes to win the National League, having done so with Yeovil Town by a record 17-point margin. Since then he has had spells at Bristol City, Peterborough, Northampton Town and most recently back at the Glovers.

Fourteen new signings have come through the Whaddon Road doors this summer. Most notable players include Kyle Storer, Danny Wright, Billy Waters and Amari Morgan-Smith. The club will no doubt be looking to bounce back into the Football League at the first attempt.

Chester FC

  • Nickname: The Blues
  • Founded: 2010
  • Stadium: Lookers Vauxhall Stadium
  • Capacity: 5,376
  • Manager: Steve Burr
  • Last season: 12th

The club, perched on the border of England and Wales, enjoyed some much needed stability last season with a mid-table finish under the guidance of highly rated manager Steve Burr.

Burr is only the second manager of Chester FC in its phoenix form, following on from current Stockport County manager Neil Young, who brought the Blues to the National League all the way from the Evo Stik Division One North. Known for his work at Kidderminster, Burr has stabilized the club following a terrible 2013/14 season that saw the club relegated on the last day. But the expulsion of Hereford United gave the fans owned club a reprieve and one that they’ve made the most of.

The summer has seen a lot of change with nine new players arriving. The most notable of those being striker Ross Hannah will who be hoping to fire the Blues to a playoff place following a tough year at Grimsby Town.

Dover Athletic

  • Nickname: The Whites
  • Founded: 1983
  • Stadium: The Crabble Stadium
  • Capacity: 5,745
  • Manager: Chris Kinnear
  • Last season: 8th

Dover enjoyed an outstanding season back in the Vanarama National League last year. Helped by some fantastic home form, the Whites claimed an 8th place position and will hoping for similar success this season.

Manager Chris Kinnear a former Dover player joined the club for his second managerial spell in January 2013. After taking his side back to the National League, he has established them in the division last campaign and will be looking forward to more of the same this time round.

Kinnear has only made five additions to his side this summer, bringing in Jamie Grimes from Kidderminster, Ricky Miller from Luton Town, Sam Magri from Crystal Palace, Naby Diallo from Bath City and Duane Ofori-Acheampong from Torquay.

Eastleigh FC

  • Nickname: The Spitfires
  • Founded: 1946
  • Stadium: Ten Acres
  • Capacity: 5,192
  • Manager: Richard Hill
  • Last season: 4th

Another Hampshire based National League club. Eastleigh came close to promotion last season, but were beaten in the playoff semi finals by Grimsby Town. There is only one goal for this ambitious club and that is to get to the Football League for the first time in their history.

The man tasked with that job is Richard Hill. Eastleigh is only his second managerial role after a two-year spell at Stevenage. After leading the Spitfires to the Conference South title, the former Northampton player has established the club in the National League and will be determined to gain a second promotion this season.

Chairman Stuart Donald has once again invested heavily into the side this summer and players such as Josh Payne, Andy Drury, Ross Lafayette and Lee Cook have joined up with the squad. Drury stands out as a player expected to shine at Non League level this season.

FC Halifax Town

  • Nickname: The Shaymen
  • Founded: 2008
  • Stadium: The Shay
  • Capacity: 10,561
  • Manager: Neil Aspin
  • Last season: 9th

The Shaymen took a step back last season after losing in the playoff semi final back in 2014. But for a fans owned club that craves stability 9th place can be considered a very respectable achievement. Having been in the top three for the first part of the season however, manager Neil Aspin will be looking to maintain some consistency next year.

Aspin has been in charge of the Shaymen since 2009 and took the club to the Vanarama National League all the way from the Evo Stik Division One North. He boasts a 50.77 per cent win ratio at the club and will be looking to improve on that whilst leading his side to the higher end of the table.

In order to do so, eleven signings have been made this summer. Striker Andy Bishop has joined from Wrexham, as have Matty Brown and the highly rated Kingsley James from Chester. Thirteen players have moved on and fans will surely see a very different Halifax side this campaign.

Forest Green Rovers

  • Nickname: Rovers
  • Founded: 1889
  • Stadium: The New Lawn
  • Capacity: 5,032
  • Manager: Adrian Pennock
  • Last season: 5th

It was playoff heartbreak for FGR last season as Bristol Rovers beat them in the semi final. Chairman Dale Vince will be determined to see his side go one better this time around and they will prove very tough opening opponents for Alty at the J Davidson Stadium on Saturday.

Vince has given manager Adrian Pennock the job to try and gain promotion. Pennock has been at the club since November 2013 and led the club to 10th place in his first campaign. After last seasons 5th place finish, he will want to see his side go further this campaign.

Signings this summer include Aaron O’Connor from Newport County and Keanu Marsh-Brown, who has joined from Barnet for an undisclosed fee. O’Connor will be looking to form an intimidating strike partnership with Jon Parkin this season.

We’ll be bringing you six more opposition guides very soon so watch out for it on the official website.

Altrincham Squad Profiles 2015/16 by Alex Sarwar

Part 2: Defenders Following on from looking at the Altrincham goalkeepers for this coming season. This part of our squad profile series sees us take a look at the defenders set to line up in the Robins squad.

Gianluca Havern

Havern will be spending his 4th season at Alty since joining in July 2012. The centre back with Italian descent started his career at Stockport County. He came through the youth ranks at Edgeley Park and even scored on his senior debut for the club against Brentford. Spells at Mossley, Ashton United, and Hyde followed before he joined Altrincham. Since then he’s made 147 appearances for the club.

Shaun Densmore (captain)

The skipper and son of former Alty player Peter Densmore. Shaun is a former England C international and Everton Academy Player of the Year. Since joining Alty in September 2008, Densmore has established himself as a lynchpin of the team as the years have gone by. Injuries have occasionally seen him sidelined for extended periods of time but the midfielder turned right-back has still managed to rack up 287 appearances for the Robins.

Adam Griffin

Left back Griffin joined the club in December 2013 and has gone on to make 76 appearances for the club. Despite only scoring one goal last season, that goal, against Eastleigh, proved to be the winner of the Alty goal of the season competition in 2014/15. Vastly experienced in the Football League, Griffin has played for sides such as Oldham Athletic, Darlington, Oxford United and Stockport County. Before joining Alty, Griffin was plying his trade at Hyde.

Tom Marshall

The 6ft 4inch centre back has been at the club since signing from Stafford Rangers in December 2013. Before then Tom had spells at Tamworth, Kidderminster and, perhaps most notably, Hednesford Town where he made 170 appearances from the age of 17. Despite an injury-hit first season, Marshall was a regular feature in the team last year, his form earning him the Supporters' Player of the Season award.

Sam Heathcote

Son of former Alty player and manager, Graham Heathcote, Sam will be looking to step up into the first-team squad from the youth team squad. A former captain of the youth side, Sam has figured in pre-season and will be hoping to continue that trend as the campaign kicks off.

Scott Leather

Another player with over 100 Alty appearances to his name, Scott previously spent eight years at Crewe Alexandra. A short spell at Preston North End followed before Alty signed Scott in the summer of 2012. During his time at the club, Scott has played across all four positions in defence and provides a versatile option for the manager.

Still to come in this series we’ll be having a look at all the midfielders and strikers lining up for the Robins this campaign so stay tuned.

5 August 2015


Pending the release of Gavin Rathbone's official team photo of the 2015-16 squad, above is a less professional shot, (click to enlarge), of the Altrincham FC players and officials. Pictured left to right are:

  • Back Row: Michael Rankine, Josh O'Keefe, Sam Heathcote, Tim Deasy, Stuart Coburn, Tom Marshall, Scott Leather, Gianluca Havern.
  • Middle Row: Alan Ainsley (physio), Barry Pond (assoc. director), Luke Pickering (kitman), Anthony Griffith, Joel Swift, James Lawrie, Jake Moult, Ryan Crowther, Jordan Sinnott, George Bowerman, Simon Richman, Ian Senior. (goalkeeping coach), Neil Faulkner (director), John Skelhorn (kitman).
  • Front Row: Adam Griffin, Shaun Densmore (capt), Lee Sinnott (manager), Grahame Rowley (chairman), Neil Tolson (asst. manager), Nicky Clee, Damian Reeves.

The Altrincham FC squad numbers for 2015-16 are as below.

1. Stuart COBURN, 2. Shaun DENSMORE (capt), 3. Adam GRIFFIN, 4. Jake MOULT, 5. Gianluca HAVERN, 6. Scott LEATHER, 7. James LAWRIE, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 9. Michael RANKINE, 10. Damian REEVES, 11. Nicky CLEE, 12. Sam HEATHCOTE, 14. Josh O'KEEFE, 15. Anthony GRIFFITH, 16. Tom MARSHALL, 17. Tim DEASY, 18. George BOWERMAN, 19. Ryan CROWTHER, 20. Jordan SINNOTT, 21. Joel SWIFT.

Changes in terms of kit this season are that Altrincham will wear white socks with their home shirts this season, instead of last season's black, and the away strip of yellow shirts, with blue trim, will be accompanied by yellow rather than blue socks.


Alty entertain Forest Green Rovers on Saturday, 8 August (3pm), in the first match of the Vanarama National League season. Mike Garnett reminds us of our record against the Gloucestershire club, which is...
  • At Altrincham: P8-W3-D4-L1-F14-A14
  • Away: P8-W1-D3-L4-F11-A18
  • All: P16-W4-D7-L5-F25-A32

Meanwhile, Howard Watts's Through the Years data provide a record of previous Alty games on 8 August. Curiously, Altrincham have only ever played twice before on this date in their entire history.


Altrincham FC Ladies are playing the Lees Flames, a University team from Tennessee, USA today, Wednesday, 5th August. The visitors are pictured, right, (click to enlarge). The match is at Mersey Valley FC, kick off is at 7.15pm. Please come down and support the Ladies in this transatlantic challenge!


Altrincham FC Director, Neil Faulkner writes, "We are in the final stages of the slimathon and the big weigh-in is on Saturday at our first home game against Forest Green. We have been busy collecting money towards paying off some of the outstanding balance of the Community Hall. We managed to get the following to sign up for the Slimathon...
  • Dawn Abbott
  • Paul Daine
  • Keith Eddleston
  • Neil Faulkner
  • Brian Flynn
  • Darren Gregory
  • Grahame Rowley
  • Noel Shields
  • Phil Taylor
  • Frank Wheldon
  • Ian Langford

You can either make donations to the individual on their sponsors' form by a set amount or for every pound lost. We have even got a just giving site that you can donate here".

Please support this fundraising initiative if you possibly can!


Pictured, right, by Gavin Rathbone of GR Photography, is Alty midfielder Jordan Sinnott in action last Saturday against Port Vale.


Brian Flynn, joint Press and Media Officer at Altrincham FC writes, "Alex Sarwar, a sports journalism graduate and current MA sports broadcast journalism student, is currently helping the club on the media side as part of his work experience required for one of his course modules. Alex has started work on content for the club website focusing on the Vanarama National League teams that we will be coming up against this season and player profiles. The first article is attached featuring Aldershot Town, Barrow, Boreham Wood, Braintree Town & Bromley, as well as our two goalkeepers, Stuart Coburn and Tim Deasy".

A Guide to the Opposition 2015/16, by Alex Sarwar.

After a long pre-season campaign, the Vanarama National League finally gets underway on Saturday. To whet your appetite ahead of the big kick off, we’re giving you a guide of all twenty-three teams who await Altrincham home and away this season.

The first part of this guide to the opposition series focuses on five of those teams including three clubs promoted into the Vanarama National League this season.

Aldershot Town

  • Nickname: The Shots
  • Founded: 1992
  • Stadium: The EBB
  • Stadium
  • Capacity: 7,100
  • Manager: Barry Smith
  • Last season: 18th

The 2015/16 season will be Aldershot’s third season back in the Vanarama National League after a five-year stay in the Football League.

It will also see the debut of Barry Smith in the Shots dugout, after the former Dundee and Alloa Athletic manager joined the club on a one-year rolling contract, two days after the end of last season.

Since returning to the Vanarama National league in 2013, Aldershot have found the going quite tough. Financial problems saw them start the 2013/14 season with a ten-point deduction. Under the management of Andy Scott, they managed to overcome that point’s deduction and finish in 19th position just outside the relegation zone.

Last season was another frustrating campaign as the side from Hampshire couldn’t build on their survival the year before and only finished one place higher, despite starting without 10 points to make up. With new manager Smith at the helm, they will be determined to have a more successful campaign this time out.

Barrow A.F.C

  • Nickname: The Bluebirds
  • Founded: 1901
  • Stadium: Holker Street
  • Capacity: 4,414
  • Manager: Darren Edmonson
  • Last season: 1st (Vanarama National League North Champions)

On paper Barrow seems like the promoted club most equipped to deal with the capabilities of the Vanarama National League this season. They will be going into the division full of confidence after beating AFC Fylde to the Conference North title last season. Managed by former player Darren Edmonson, the Bluebirds are owned by businessman Paul Casson, who took over the club in May 2014. His financial backing has breathed new life into the club, following relegation in 2013.

Edmonson has recruited well, most notably bringing in Neil Ashton from Wrexham and Ashley Grimes from Walsall. The Barrow fans have plenty to be excited about going into the new campaign.

Boreham Wood

  • Nickname: The Wood
  • Founded: 1948
  • Stadium: Meadow Park
  • Capacity: 4,502
  • Manager: Ian Allinson
  • Last season: 2nd (Vanarama National League South) Promoted via Playoffs

Boreham Wood will be embarking on their first ever season as a Vanarama National League club after defeating Whitehawk in extra time last season to be promoted through the playoffs.

The Wood made history last season finishing 2nd in the Conference South, it was their highest ever finish in the English football league system and they will be eager to make a little more history this season.

While the club itself may be new to the Vanarama National League, certain players on the books won’t be. Former Brentford striker Charlie MacDonald is one player who has signed for the club this summer. With a forward like him to call upon, you can guarantee that Ian Allinson’s side will no pushovers this coming season.

Braintree Town

  • Nickname: The Iron
  • Founded: 1898
  • Stadium: Cressing Road
  • Capacity: 4,222
  • Manager: Danny Cowley
  • Last season: 14th

Braintree Town have firmly established themselves as an established Vanarama National League side since they won promotion back in 2011. But last season the club slipped 8 places from their 6th place finish in 2013/14, by finishing in 14th place.

However the club from Essex will enter new territory next season after their manager Alan Devonshire departed after nearly 4 years with the club. During his time at Braintree, Devonshire racked up an impressive 40.50 per cent win ratio.

Leading the Iron this campaign will be former Concord Rangers boss Danny Cowley. The 36 year-old has signed a two-year deal at the club and left Concord having guided them to three promotions during his eight years in charge.


  • Nickname: The Ravens
  • Founded: 1892
  • Stadium: The Stadium, Hayes Lane
  • Capacity: 6,000
  • Manager: Mark Goldberg
  • Last season: 1st (Vanarama National League South Champions)

The Greater London based football club will enter the division with Barrow as champions of their division. Eight years in the Conference South finally reaped its rewards last season and Bromley, like Boreham Wood, will be playing step 5 football for the first time in the club’s history.

Former Crystal Palace chairman turned manager, Mark Goldberg, will be spending his 10th year with the Ravens, having joined the club back in 2006. He joined the club back when they were playing in the Isthmian Premier League. Players Alty fans may recognize from Bromley include Lee Minshull and Max Porter, both players formerly of Newport County. The club have made six summer signings as of now.

Stay tuned to the website for part two of this opposition guide for the 2015/16 season.

Altrincham Squad Profiles 2015/16, by Alex Sarwar.

Part 1: Goalkeepers

With the start of the season on Saturday, we thought we’d spend the week getting to know some more information on the Alty squad set to line up this campaign. In this article we take a look at the two goalkeepers set to do battle for the spot between the sticks this season.

Stuart Coburn

This man needs no introduction. The club’s all time record appearance holder has been with Alty on and off since the last millennium. His association with the Robins first began in 1998 after joining from Trafford. After leaving in 2002 for Leigh RMI, a club higher up the pyramid at the time, he rejoined Alty in October 2003 and since then has never looked back. With 682 appearances to his name (including 1 goal scored at Runcorn on Boxing Day 1998) Coburn will be looking once again to play a major role between the sticks this season.

Tim Deasy

The Salford-born 29 year-old started his career at Macclesfield Town, Deasy has had spells at clubs such as Stockport County, Bradford Park Avenue, Gateshead and most notably Barrow, where he made 109 appearances in all competitions. Before joining Alty in May 2015, Deasy had been keeping goal for Northwich Victoria where he helped the Vics win the Cheshire Senior Cup in 2014.

Both players have impressed this pre-season. Highlights include a fantastic Deasy penalty save from Wigan Athletic right-back James Tavernier, whilst Coburn made a string of super saves in Alty’s final pre-season game against Port Vale. Manager Lee Sinnott has a difficult decision to make deciding who will start against Forest Green Rovers on Saturday.

So that’s the keepers covered. We’ll also be profiling the defence, midfield and attack this week so keep an eye out on the club website.


The EvoStik League reports that "Colwyn Bay skipper Wes Baynes has given the club a huge boost by rejecting an offer to play elsewhere... Delighted officials at Llanelian Road say the 27-year-old midfielder turned down an approach from National League North club Brackley Town to carry on playing for manager Ash Hoskin who has handed him the skipper's armband for the upcoming Premier Division season...

The former Wrexham, [Altrincham] and Telford player said, 'I am more than happy to stay. I enjoyed myself here last season and, although a few clubs approached me in the summer, once I'd spoke[n] to Ash it was always Colwyn Bay where I wanted to be. We've got a good set of lads here who I think can get us promotion. That is the aim'...

Hoskin said, 'Brackley's management team contacted us about Wes and I have always said I would not stand in any player's way if a team from a higher league came in for them. But straightaway Wes said he wasn't interested and didn't even want to talk to them'".


The BBC reports that "Chester FC have completed the signings of goalkeeper Dylan Forth and defender Dale Tonge after both players successfully completed their trials. Tonge, 30, joins on a one-month deal having most recently been at league rivals Torquay United, where he played 56 times since joining in 2013.

Forth, 18, joins after being released by Aston Villa in the summer. Forth and Tonge are boss Steve Burr's eighth and ninth summer deals, all of which have been completed on 'frees'".

From the BBC we learn that "Cheltenham Town head into the new campaign with the possibility of fielding a team of strangers after a summer clearout at Whaddon Road.

A pre-season friendly against Sheffield United saw a team of fresh faces, and 14 in total have been snapped up for their National League campaign. Just nine players remain of the squad that were relegated from League Two.

Among those new players is defender George McLennan, who admitted he has been taken aback by how quickly the squad has gelled. 'I arrived a couple of days after most of the lads and I didn't realise they'd signed so many players, because I thought they were all the old players talking to each other', McLennan told BBC Gloucestershire.

'They seemed like they'd known each other ages. It was kind of surreal. It felt like I was coming into a team that had been together for 10 years'.

[Manager] Johnson said change was needed... 'Relegation brings change... They've gelled very quickly and also they have promoted themselves very quickly to the supporters through social media and by the way they have played in pre-season... You sit at home during the close season and you pick individuals out in your head but you have to believe you can turn them into a team... They look to be the right personality and character, they seem to be ambitious and enjoying themselves. This group want to do well'...

Johnson says the club cannot afford a season of consolidation. 'The brief is promotion', he said. 'That is pressure but that has given us focus. We cannot consolidate for 108 years like Yeovil had to. We've got to do it right now'".

Meanwhile at another ex-League club, "Kidderminster Harriers' chairman Rod Brown says although the 'dire" financial situation at the National League club has improved they are 'not out of the woods'. Cash-strapped Harriers have had to make severe cutbacks ahead of the new season but Brown is upbeat about the future.

'We're in a situation where we're a lot more comfortable financially,' Brown told BBC Hereford and Worcester. 'However we're not out of the woods yet and haven't kicked a ball in earnest'. Brown initially joined the Harriers board in March as vice chairman, before becoming chairman following the resignation of Ken Rae... When asked how he would rate Harriers' financial state then and now, on a scale of one to 10, Brown said.. 'When I came in it wouldn't have been much above one; it was in a dire situation. What we've managed to do is take it to a five, the activity that's gone in the close season - to do with trying to create a foundation, we've had a great success, our commercial department has had its best return for 10 years...Everyone's come together'...

Brown, who hopes to get the club on an even keel financially by the end of the season, knows staying in the National League is a minimum requirement but is full of praise for the way boss Gary Whild has managed to get a competitive squad together on a budget slashed by 50%. 'We had to be very radical as far as the budget's concerned... I never had any doubt, whatever financial tools Gary was given, he would come up with the goods. He's been very shrewd with some signings. We're not looking to be a top-six side. I'd take fifth from bottom now but we want to try and entertain."

The Football Conference says that "After lengthy consultations, Southport`s defender Paul Smith will miss the whole season. The 23-year-old former Chester City trainee made Football League appearances under Mark Wright at the Deva Stadium before a spell at Barrow AFC, joining Port in August 2014...

Smith suffered a foot injury 3 seconds into the Altrincham away match last season. Despite being flying fit physically for pre-season, he suffered pain to his foot on any ball work. He is awaiting an operation and hopefully the news he will recover in a nine to twelve-month spell. Smith has already been told that the operation may reveal that he may not be able to play again".

According to NL Pitchero, "Tranmere Rovers have signed midfielder Adam Mekki on a contract until January 3rd 2016 following a successful trial spell. Mekki spent his youth at the Reading academy, before switching to Aldershot Town in 2006... In January 2011 he was loaned out to Oxford City... He subsequently had loan spells with Carshalton Athletic, Dorchester Town and Basingstoke Town that season.

Mekki was named as a standby player for the Wales under-21 squad in August 2012... He made eighty-eight appearances for the Shots before leaving in June 2014. Mekki joined Barnet on a short-term deal at the start of 2014/15 season and made nine appearances, but left The Hive to gain regular football and in January 2015 he signed for Dover Athletic on contract until the end of the season."

NL Pitchero says that "Meanwhile, defender Jack Deaman has joined AFC Telford United on a six-month loan deal from Cheltenham Town. The 22-year-old also had interest from Dover Athletic, turning out for them on Saturday, but he appeared for Telford on Monday night's 1-0 friendly win over Market Drayton Town".

Elsewhere, "Torquay United have completed the signing of goalkeeper Fabian Spiess following a successful trial spell. the 21-year-old is a product of the Notts County youth system, who has served the likes of Lewes, Corby Town and Bristol Rovers on loan... He made a handful of senior outings for County...

'Fabian is a goalkeeper that I have watched for two and-a-half years', admitted Torquay boss Paul Cox. 'He was extremely highly rated as a youngster, with all the big clubs monitoring him but, as is the case with some young players, his progression to the first-team was halted and that impacted on him... It means that we now have two top-class young goalkeepers both vying for a starting place, and that is a great position to be in. I am delighted to have him on board.”

Meanwhile, the emerging Jim Kellerman has had to return to parent club Wolves having suffered a knee injury in training".

4 August 2015


When Altrincham entertain Forest Green Rovers on Saturday, it brings together the team with longest current spell in the Football Conference's top flight and, in Altrincham, the team in the division with the most seasons at that top level of any current member of the National League. FGR have been in the same division since 1998-99 whilst Alty start their 27th season in 2015-16 comprising 18 successive seasons (1979-97), followed by a single season (1999-2000), then six seasons, (2005-2011) and two more to date (2014-16)


The National League reports that "Boston United have completed the signing of former Bradford Park Avenue and AFC Telford United midfielder Jordan Deacey. The 21-year-old has put pen-to-paper on an initial one-year deal with the Pilgrims following some impressive cameos in pre-season". Deacey was on trial at Altrincham earlier this summer.

And NL Pitchero says that "AFC Telford United have announced the signing of defender Mark Lees after his release from new league rivals Stockport County."

The EvoStik League reports that former Alty winger Joseph Mwasile has now moved from from Burscough to Salford City. It also confirms Rob Williams's move from Barrow to Kendal Town.


NL Pitchero reports that "Macclesfield Town have confirmed the signing of midfielder Danny Whitehead. The former West Ham United midfielder has been on trial with the club over the last few weeks, and his impressive performances have certainly caught the eye. Whitehead began his career with Stockport County before a move to the Premier League with West Ham.

After one appearance for the Hammers, Whitehead left the club by mutual consent and made the switch to Accrington Stanley on a short-term deal. He made two appearances in League Two for Stanley before leaving the club in the summer and arriving at the Moss Rose on trial".

Meanwhile, "Newcomers Boreham Wood have signed striker Harry Crawford on a contract until the end of August. The 23-year-old left Dartford at the end of last season after scoring seven goals in forty appearances as the club suffered relegation. He commenced his career at Southend United and during his two-year spell with them made thirty-three appearances scoring 3 times.

During his spell at Southend he made two appearances for the Republic of Ireland under-19 team... and also had a short loan at Dover Athletic. In May 2012 he was one of eleven players released by Southend and signed for Dartford in the August... He scored 12 goals in twenty-four appearances which attracted interest from Barnet and in January 2013 he signed a three-year contract with the Bees."

Elsewhere, "Kidderminster Harriers have announced the signing of trialist Adam Dawson. Winger Dawson has quickly endeared himself to Harriers' fans with some exciting performances in friendlies... Despite being just 23 years old, Dawson has packed in quite a lot to his career; beginning in the academy at his home-town club Bury he moved to Liverpool when he was just 15 for a fee of £100,000... He returned to Bury before moving to Wigan Athletic for his first professional contract. A loan spell at Accrington Stanley saw him make his senior debut before leaving Wigan in 2012.

A series of moves around non-League clubs in the north-west saw him give service to Bacup Borough, FC United of Manchester, Barrow AFC and North West Counties Leaguers Nelson. The following year he was picked up by Leicester City and last season he had loan spells with Notts County, Nuneaton Town and Bristol Rovers where he played a big part in their run towards the play-offs. His successful trial spell with Harriers has earned him a contract that will keep him at Aggborough for the 2015/16 season."

FC Halifax Town report that "The Club Secretary of two years Tony Allan is leaving the Shaymen at the end of August to accept the position of General Manager at Chester FC. In his time with the Shaymen Tony has done a first class job and has always been a true gentleman in all that he has undertaken. Travelling time is halved in his move to Chester, being significantly more local as he is a resident of St Helens".

On the field "FC Halifax Town have confirmed that striker Sean Tuton [ex-Buxton] has signed for the Club on a permanent basis following his trial this pre-season. He will wear squad number 18 for the 2015-16 season."

"Rhys Lovett has signed for Cheltenham Town and an immediate loan move is under discussion for the young goalkeeper to build his experience. He spent seven years at Walsall before being loaned to Aston Villa... and also spending time on loan with Coventry City. He then moved to Rochdale... playing regularly for their Under-18s last season... He linked up with Cheltenham from the start of pre-season.

Johnson has earmarked him as one for the future and he will go out to play regular football, with Dillon Phillips set to start as number one with Calum Kitscha his understudy. Lovett, who has appeared for Gloucester City and Hereford on trial earlier in the summer, is Cheltenham's 14th new signing this season. "

From Gateshead we learn that "Kick-off for Gateshead’s fixture at Southport on August 18 has been brought forward to 6.30pm. The Heed have agreed to the Sandgrounders’ request of an earlier kick-off time, with the floodlights at Haig Avenue currently in the process of being replaced. The game was originally scheduled to begin at 7.45pm."

On the other side of Merseyside from Southport, the Liverpool Echo reports that "Manager Gary Brabin... said, 'I look at the pre-season and so far we have defended well and looked solid at times, we have played some good football in the attacking third and scored goals at times. It’s just getting it all together in the same game, which is what we are trying to perfect.

We’ve been together as a group for five weeks and we have achieved a lot of what we wanted to do in terms of building a side. We are ready fitness wise. Tactically we need to work on aspects of our game'.

Brabin could not be satisfied with a 4-1 home defeat to Shrewsbury Town in Rovers’ final warm-up game... Tranmere were punished for defensive lapses, undermining some solid work in midfield and bright moments going forward... Brabin said, 'Three of the goals we conceded resulted from issues we have been speaking about. If it is happening in games it is easier to take on board. But there were lots of pleasing aspects. I thought we played some good football and...“On the positive side I had a chance to look a couple of trialists and James Norwood [ex-FGR] and Martin Reilly got more minutes under their belts.

Tranmere gained a bonus with Marcus Holness seeing a few minutes of action towards the end of the game, the centre back’s first since suffering a serious knee injury at Morecambe in February... Brabin admitted that in recent weeks the pre-season programme had become a 'bit of a balancing act' between looking at trialists, looking after players who fell behind the rest in terms of fitness and getting the squad ready for action...

There is still scope for strengthening the squad, Brabin said, but he won’t be rushed. Decisions have to be made on a couple of trialists who were on view against Shrewsbury... Brabin acknowledged Tranmere will be starting the season without a specialist right back. Versatile defender Liam Hogan has filled the role in a number of friendlies. 'The right back situation is something we are aware of this but I would not say it is our priority', Brabin said".

The NW Evening Mail tells us that "The door is open for FA Trophy hero Andy Bond to seal his return to Holker Street.... After departing Football League side Stevenage at the end of last season, he is back on trial with Barrow...

The manager said, 'We’ll have a look at Andy this week and, if he wants to come in, he lives quite close to where we train (Lancaster University) so it’s ideal for both of us. If he shows what we know he’s done previously, then you’re always open to trying to improve... We’ll... see where his levels are fitness-wise and then go from there', added Edmondson...

Edmondson is in the market for a striker but insists he does not need to rush his search as he can swoop any time this month to ensure he snares the right target. And the boss is reassured by this options at right-back, despite former contract target Matt Young leaving the club. Niall Cowperthwaite operated at right-back against Leeds and was replaced by recently-signed young Barrovian Brad Carroll.

Dave Symington, who will pen an AFC deal soon, can also play at right-back, and Edmondson, said... 'Young Brad Carroll has done very well in training and so he might just be the back-up that we need. He’s a young kid but he’s tall, strong and his physique is excellent'... With regards to the prospect of hunting for a new right-back, he added, 'I’m not totally ruling it out... We’ll just see how we go again this week and if anybody becomes available we’ll look at it'".

According to the Telegraph & Argus, "Guiseley have completed the signing of former Accrington Stanley player Rob Atkinson. The 28-year-old, who has featured regularly during the Lions' pre-season preparations, will add further quality to the centre of Mark Bower's defence, following the close-season signing of Adam Lockwood.

Atkinson, who has also featured for Barnsley and Grimsby Town, won non-league's top tier while on loan at Fleetwood Town, while he has also been on loan with Scarborough and FC Halifax Town. Bower said, 'He's someone I've wanted to bring in since early on in pre-season and, like Locky, he'll provide a calm head for us at the back this season'".

Confidence abounds down in Hampshire from where the Daily Echo says that "He may not have had the best of pre-seasons in terms of results, but manager Richard Hill rates his new-look Eastleigh squad highly. So highly, in fact, that he believes it is the best group of players he has assembled in three years at the Silverlake and, therefore, the best the Spitfires have ever had.

Saturday’s defeat at the hands of promoted Conference champions Barnet was Eastleigh’s third 2-0 reverse at home to League Two/Scottish Premiership opposition and, in all, they have won just two out of seven friendly workouts. But, as with Oxford United the previous week, they matched Martin Allen’s Bees for decent spells of Saturday’s game only be undone by a couple of slack pieces of defending...

Said Hill, 'Pre-season is a nightmare, you end up baby-sitting the players, and I just hope that with the calibre of player we’ve got here, we’ll be ready to go next week. Taking Tranmere and Grimsby out of the equation, and I only say that because of their stature, I’ve got the best job in non-League football. Eastleigh is the next best club. This is the best squad in my time here in terms of calibre and experience of player and, if it’s the best since I’ve been here, that means it’s got to be the best squad ever assembled at Eastleigh FC.

Now we’ve got to make sure we look a bit more like a team than we do at the moment. The pretend football's over and we need to go out and win games'...

Eastleigh: Michael Poke, Joe Partington, Michael Green (Aswad Thomas, 75), Jamie Turley, Paul Reid (Will Evans, 67), Yemi Odubade (Ross Lafayette, 56), James Constable, Jack Midson (Jack Alexander, 82), Ben Strevens, Lee Cook (Jai Reason, 56), Andy Drury. Sub (not used) Lewis Noice."

3 August 2015


With the help of Trafford FC's David Law (right), Alty chairman Grahame Rowley (left) presided over the Altrincham FC Patrons' Draw last Tuesday.

The winners were:

  • 1st Les Pearson, who wins 10 places in the Sponsors' Lounge
  • 2nd Laurence Howarth, who wins 5 places
  • 3rd Matthew Wheeler, who wins 2 places

The above winners are asked to contact the Club (0161 928-1045) during normal office hours, as soon as possible. The Club thanks all of the participants. Details of the Patrons' Scheme are here.


Alty TV has its usual high standard highlights of the Alty v Port Vale match last Saturday.

The Stoke Sentinel tells us that "The opponents were Altrincham but Crewe Alexandra loomed large over Port Vale's final pre-season game on Saturday. A Crewe scout watched the Valiants' 2-1 win from the stands while, on the pitch, Vale boss Rob Page's decisions were understandably influenced by that eagerly anticipated season opener at Gresty Road which is now just six sleeps away.

So, when Ryan Inniss fell awkwardly on his shoulder after 10 minutes and required an examination from physio James Rowland, Page had no hesitation in substituting the on-loan Crystal Palace defender.... but said the centre half will still be in contention for a place in the side on Saturday...

He said, 'Nobody can sit easy thinking it is a given that their name is going to be on the team sheet. We have that competition all over the pitch, not just the centre-half places... The players who have the shirt have to do their utmost to keep hold of it'... Up front, Uche Ikpeazu is expected to line up against his old club Crewe after an impressive pre-season which has deserved more goals than Saturday's 39th-winner against the Vanarama Conference side.

Ikpeazu, who played for the opening 45 minutes, left the ground after the game with an ice pack on his shin but said that was just a precaution... If Page's six sleeps until Crewe are interrupted little, that might be because of the goalkeeping situation. The experienced Chris Neal is out with ankle injury and back-up keeper Sam Johnson made a mistake on Saturday when his scuffed clearance scuttled straight to striker Damian Reeves who fired into an empty net to put Altrincham in front on three minutes. The 22 year old Johnson played the first 45 minutes than gave way to 20 year old Ryan Boot for the second half. If Page does have any concerns about Johnson then he wasn't about to maul his young keeper through the media after the game. He said, 'We are disappointed to conceded a goal after three minutes when we had started brightly. Of course it is not ideal but we are not going to dwell on it... Mistakes are going to be made and that is why we would rather it be made here than in the league games where the points matter'...

Altrincham's goal and Inniss's injury scare made for a rather frantic start, but Vale were in control for the rest of the game against a side managed by their former boss Lee Sinnott and which included ex-Valiants Simon Richman and James Lawrie in their starting line up... Andoh was sent onto his backside by a hard but fair body check from Griffith but was back on his feet to nick the ball away from the combative former Valiant in their next challenge. Griffith, who was just the man for a derby contest, will no doubt have been impressed by the young forward's resilience."


As previously announced, Altrincham FC Ladies are playing the Lees Flames, a University team from Tennessee, USA on Wednesday, 5th August. The visitors are pictured, right, (click to enlarge). The match is at Mersey Valley FC, kick off is at 7.15pm. Please come down and support the Ladies in this transatlantic challenge!

Image courtesy of Keith Edleston.


Alty's first guests this season, Forest Green Rovers report that "Forest Green's pre-season programme ended with a humbling 3-0 defeat at the Corinium Stadium [Cirencester]. Aidan Bennett's double and a penalty by Rovers old boy Charlie Griffin stunned the National League side, who fielded an entirely different XI to that which faced Plymouth Argyle the previous evening.

Assistant manager Jamie Day was in charge of the visitors with Ady Pennock elsewhere on a scouting mission, and there were starts for two academy starlets in right-back Macauley Dodson and midfielder Lou McGrory... The breakthrough came in the 29th minute, Bennett cutting inside Clough and arrowing an impressive shot into the far corner of the net... The Centurions were good value for their lead at the break.

Rovers' task doubled in magnitude within 10 minutes of the restart, Clough penalised for a late and needless challenge... Griffin... duly sent White the wrong way from the spot to make it 2-0. James Jennings saw a skidding attempt routinely saved by Garner, who then excelled himself again to help Marsh-Brown's shot over the bar. Moments later it was 3-0, Bennett capitalising on more hesitant defending to prod the ball past the onrushing White and roll it into the vacant net...

Forest Green: P. White; M. Dodson, C. Clough, A. Baldwin, J. Jennings; K. Marsh-Brown (J. Stokes 74), D. Pipe, L. McGrory, T. Bender; C. Moore, K. Guthrie; Subs not used: E. Frear, J. Maxted."

The previous day "Plymouth Argyle came from 3-0 down to claim a 5-3 victory over Forest Green during an end-to-end encounter in Rovers' penultimate pre-season game at The New Lawn. Rovers opened the scoring as early as the 6th minute with a low swerving effort from Darren Jones after corner fell to him on the right of the box. The build-up had seen Elliott Frear sear down the left... and it wouldn’t be the last time that Frear would stamp his mark on the game.

Minutes later the former Salisbury wide man had his own name on the score sheet with a beautifully crafted goal... On the 30th minute it was 3-0 with John Parkin claiming his first goal of the pre-season from the spot, after Sam-Yorke had played O’Connor in on goal with a sweetly placed through ball, before Kelvin Mellor dragged him down from behind... The night’s proceedings were rounded off in appropriate fashion. A scything shot from Plymouth's Gary Sawyer, who drilled a grass-cutter into the bottom right corner from 25 yards.

FGR: J Maxted; D Bennett, D Jones, A Racine, M Kelly; D Sam-Yorke, C Kamdjo, S Wedgbury, E Frear; A O'Connor (SUB: K Marsh-Brown), J Parkin. Subs not used: L McGrory, P White, C Moore, A Baldwin."

The Gloucestershire Echo reports that "Gary Johnson plans to hold talks with striker JJ Hooper over a possible deal this week after his second friendly appearance for Cheltenham Town on Saturday. The former Havant and Waterlooville front man went on at half-time in the Robins' 3-1 defeat at AFC Wimbledon... Hooper also appeared against Cardiff City last Wednesday after making the long drive down from Scotland following trials with Raith Rovers and Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

Boss Johnson has so far signed 13 new players this summer, with midfielder James Rowe and goalkeeper Rhys Lovett set to follow, along with a young loan defender from a Championship club."

2 August 2015


Above, Damian Reeves, off picture to the right, scores Alty's goal. (The ball is seen in the net beteeen the stranded keeper and Michael Rankine).

Match report here


As previously announced, Altrincham FC Ladies are playing the Lees Flames, a University team from Tennessee, USA on Wednesday, 5th August. The match is at Mersey Valley FC, kick off is at 7.15pm. Please come down and support the Ladies in this transatlantic challenge!


Altrincham FC have made their fifth signing of the close season in the shape of striker George Bowerman (right). George initially appeared for Alty as an unnamed "trialist" striker in the pre-season game against Wigan Athletic on 14 July 2015.

George Oliver Bowerman (height 5ft 10ins, d.o.b. Sedgley, West Midlands, 6 November 1991), started out as a trainee at Walsall (2010-13) where he made 13(+37) Football League appearances and scored nine times. He went on loan to Redditch United in early 2011 before making his Walsall debut at the start of 2011-12 season.

Following his release from the Bescot Stadium, a two-month spell at Woking followed in the early part of 2013-14 season. At Kingfield he made two appearances for the Conference club.

In October 2013 he arrived at Accrington Stanley before his release in July 2015. He made 12(+5) League appearances for Stanley and netted three times.


After Saturday's game, the Stoke Sentinel reported that "First-half goals from Colin Daniel and Uche Ikpeazu ensured Port Vale ended their pre-season campaign on a high with a 2-1 win at Altrincham.

The Valiants had to come from a goal behind after Sam Johnson's third-minute mistake gifted the home side an opener. But they rarely looked like conceding after that in their final warm up before next Saturday's opener at Crewe.

Johnson's mistake wasn't ideal preparation for the Gresty Road game, but Ikpeazu's first goal for the Valiants was more encouraging ahead of the showdown against his old club. Page could also take heart from the way his side got the ball down and played after falling behind. They made an awful start as Johnson ran from his area to clear a ball over the top. The keeper tried to launch the ball up the field but scuffed the clearance straight to striker Damian Reeves.

The keeper was stranded out of his area and so Reeves had no trouble running through and firing into an empty net from 20 yards...

Vale went close to a leveller on 14 minutes when Colin Daniel's cross from the back post picked out Sam Foley. The midfielder's header was aimed at the top corner, but turned away by keeper Stuart Coburn...

However, the Valiants levelled on 28 minutes when Dickinson's cross from the left was helped on by Dodds to Daniel just inside the area. The former Mansfield forward finished cooly, placing the ball low past Coburn and into the keeper's right-hand corner.

Ikpeazu turned sharply in the area before trying a 16-yard strike which was brilliantly turned over by Coburn. But the powerful striker got the goal he deserved on 39 minutes when he held the ball up on the edge of the area before turning his marker and slotting the ball past Coburn.

Rob Page made four changes at half time as Ryan Boot, Anthony Grant, Sam Kelly and Ajay Leitch-Smith replaced Johnson, Brown, Daniel and Ikpeazu... Page made a treble change on 66 minutes as Moore, Dodds and Dickinson were replaced by Andoh, Yates and McGivern.

Altrincham's former Vale manager Lee Sinnott also made changes, including the 68th-minute introduction of former Valiants midfielder Anthony Griffith who got a generous reception from the travelling supporters.

Vale were dominating the game, with Dodds and Leitch Smith up front, Andoh drifting inside from the left, and full backs Yates and McGivern bombing forward in support. But Altrincham defended doggedly... while, at the other end, George Bowerman's 20-yard strike on 87 minutes was easily dealt with by Boot".


NL Pitchero tells us that "Former captain Mark Lees has left Stockport County by mutual consent"


NL Pitchero reports that "Gary Mills, manager of Wrexham, has completed a loan move for Rochdale youngster Joel Logan... for a four-week period. Based in Manchester, the midfielder has appeared in the Dale first-team over the last two seasons and also had a month with Wrexham`s league rivals Southport".

At Southport, "Paul Carden has announced the signing of two more players as the manager continues to build up his squad. Following the signing of ex-Chester goalkeeper Jon Viscosi, who will compete with Andy Coughlin for the number one slot, Carden has also signed Will Beesley and Josh Thompson.

Former Blackburn Rovers left-back Beesley put in several vital defensive displays in last season`s run-in before suffering a fracture to his hip which meant he had to prove his fitness, something he has done with flying colours.

Former Stockport County, Portsmouth, Colchester and Tranmere Rovers defender Josh Thompson, who joined Celtic from Stockport for £250,000 in August 2009, has also signed a deal".

Meanwhile, "Aldershot Town have signed former Norwich City and Charlton Athletic winger Rhys Browne following a successful trial period. The 19-year-old from Romford... impressed in Wednesday night’s defeat to Chelsea under-21s.

Browne, who was part of Charlton’s under-21 squad last season, made his full international debut for Antigua & Barbuda in June, playing in both legs of a World Cup qualifier...

'He's got a lot of ability and he’s definitely a player who will please the fans', said manager Barry Smith of the winger who can also play as a striker and attacking midfielder. 'Rhys fulfils everything that we’re looking for in a wide player, he’s quick, he’s got a trick, he’s enthusiastic and has had a good upbringing in football. When you see someone as exciting as Rhys you want to have these type of players in your squad'"

1 August 2015


With Virgin Media, once more having a major broadband outage in this area (more than 24 hours so far), website updates are currently more complicated than usual and are being achieved via a more efficient alternative company. Apologies, therefore, for any curtailment in news provision over the foreseeable future.


Altrincham gave a much improved performance in this pre-season friendly but the Valiants deserved their narrow win. It started badly for the visitors when their goalkeeper Johnson came out to clear. However, his kick hit a team-mate and rebounded to his left where Alty's Damian Reeves, unmarked, had an easy job to knock the ball into the unguarded net from the edge of the box in only the third minute.

Port Vale levelled with a goal which also owed a lot to a deflection. In this case, Dickinson's low shot from the edge of the box was diverted into the bottom right of Coburn's net (28 mins). Coburn made several excellent saves during the game but he was unable to stop Vale's impressive loanee from Watford, Ikpeazu, netting his side's second goal, after 39 minutes, following a mix-up by Alty on the front edge of their box.

Both teams lost a player to injury in the first half (Inniss for Vale and Richman for Alty). The second half was entertaining but produced no further goals, though Alty's new signing Bowerman produced an impressive cameo after joining the game in the 67th minute.

Report to follow


Port Vale announce that "Port Vale's pre-season will come to a close when they travel to face non-league Altrincham on Saturday (3pm kick-off).

The Valiants head to the J.Davidson Stadium off the back of Tuesday’s narrow 2-1 defeat against Bolton Wanderers and Rob Page’s side will be looking to restore the winning formula to the dressing room ahead of the start of the season on 8th August. Tuesday’s defeat was the first of pre-season after the team had previously beaten Newcastle Town, Alsager Town, Kidsgrove Athletic, Notts County and drawn with La Liga side Getafe.

The game will be the last chance for players to stake a claim for a starting place in Page’s line-up when the season begins away to Crewe Alexandra, a week on Saturday. Striker Uche Ikpeazu will be hoping to net his first goal for the club since joining from Watford earlier this month. The powerful striker has produced some bullying performances so far this pre-season but still awaits that elusive goal which has so far deserted him.

Boss Rob Page spoke exclusively to Valiant PlayerHD after the Bolton defeat and expressed his delight with the team’s fitness levels ahead of the final trip to Altrincham and the start of the season. He said 'We are really pleased with the fitness levels, you saw Byron in the 90th minute chasing down and making 40 yard runs, Purkiss at right-back, Granty and Foley in the centre of the park, so the fitness levels we are pleased with.

We know, against a very good team who had a lot of the ball, we had to do a lot of running so, overall, I am really pleased'...

Defender Remie Streete highlighted that the squad was expecting a tough test from the Cheshire-based side. 'Like a lot of lower league teams they will run about and put their foot in and make it hard,' he commente. Nothing will replicate the opening game of the season but everyone wants to win in pre-season but it is the performance that matters'".

News of a player who has worn the Alty strip also comes from the BBC which tells us that "Port Vale defender Adam Yates says he was disappointed to lose his number two shirt for this season. The 32-year-old former Crewe Alexandra trainee, Vale's longest-serving player, signed a new one-year deal in June. But he has been given competition at right-back by the arrival of Ben Purkiss, who has been given the number instead.

'I was not best pleased about it. I don't think anyone would be', Yates told BBC Radio Stoke. The decision was taken by Vale manager Rob Page. 'It was his call', said Yates. 'He knows I wasn't happy about it. I've been here six years. I told him if it had happened to him he wouldn't have been happy about it but it's part and parcel of football'.

Although Yates is hurt at instead being given the squad number 16, it has only increased his determination to win a place in Vale's starting XI for their opening game against his first club Crewe on the opening day on 8 August. 'That what you work so hard for in pre-season', he added. 'And, if not, there's another 50-odd games this season that anyone could play in. You have to get your head down and keep going'".


The National League reports that "For a number of months Guiseley AFC has been working hard to progress plans to upgrade Nethermoor to a level suitable, and necessary for the Vanarama National League.

Following consultations,held in 2014 with local residents and community members, the club have reviewed its plans and are currently putting forward proposals for new spectator terracing, a new turnstile unit and new toilets. These are to be put before the Plans Panel of Leeds City Council on Thursday, August 6th. The new plans, necessary to meet the spectator safety and comfort regulations set out by the National League, have been recommended by the planners and, as such, the club are hopeful of getting the green light...

Said chairman Phil Rogerson, 'It's been vital that we incorporate the views of our neighbours, supporters and the wider community and so [we] have adapted our initial plans. We received great support for the development of a Community Building, which we remain committed to for the benefit of both the club and local people. Our future plans, which will be put forward for review at a later date, will involve collaboration with Guiseley Cricket Club. In the long-term we aim to build attached but discrete facilities for both clubs for their mutual benefit and that of the general community'".

The NW Counties Footbaall League says that "The FA have announced increases in the fines which will be applied for Respect offences, commencing from this coming season. Dissent, abusive language and breaches of discipline during and after games will be punished more severely, with the fines applied dependent on the level of the League within the Non-League Pyramid... For 15 incidents the fine will be doubled, and thereafter if any further occurrences arise, these will result in charges being applied in accordance with FA rules."

The BBC confirms that "Southport have signed goalkeeper Jon Viscosi and defender Josh Thompson, while Will Beesley has agreed a new contract. Viscosi made one appearance in the Conference for Chester last season. Left-back Beesley has recovered from a hip injury and has proved his fitness to earn a new deal.

Ex-Celtic centre-back Thompson, 24, ended last season at Tranmere and impressed for Southport in a pre-season friendly against Everton.

'All three signings will add depth and quality to my squad', manager Paul Carden told the club website'".

On the field, the BBC adds that "Guiseley have signed Huddersfield Town forward Jake Charles on a one-month loan deal. The 19-year-old... the grandson of former Leeds and Wales striker John Charles...

'I know Chris Powell thinks a lot of him and we're sure he'll add extra quality and strength in depth', boss Mark Bower told the club website".

We learn from the Gloucester Citizen that "Places are still up for grabs in Forest Green’s team with eight days to go until the start of the National League campaign. Rovers entertain Plymouth Argyle in their penultimate pre-season friendly tonight (Friday), with manager Ady Pennock expected to keep substitutions to a minimum...

Tuesday’s 1-0 win over a West Bromwich Albion XI saw new signings Keanu Marsh-Brown and Delano Sam-Yorke impress on the flanks, only for last season’s regular left winger Elliott Frear to step off the bench and carve out the winning goal for Kurtis Guthrie.

And Pennock admits he has yet to even pencil a rough draft of his starting line-up for the first competitive fixture at Altrincham on August 8. He said, 'Tuesday was the first time we’ve really talked about tactics before the game; until then, it was all about fitness and steering clear of injuries. The squad is coming together well and there is good competition for places all over the pitch...

I really don’t know what the starting XI will be at Altrincham... Places are 100 percent still up for grabs. I’ve got two players for every position and that’s a very healthy situation to be in'.

Snapped up from Barnet for an undisclosed fee, Marsh-Brown arrived in Nailsworth earlier this month after a troubled year... 'Keanu is a month or two behind everyone else because he hasn’t played properly for a year,' said the Rovers boss... 'I don’t want him to break down through fatigue, but he’s been working very hard'...

On the injury front, Rovers' goalkeeper Steve Arnold could yet come into contention for the Altrincham trip after making a promising recovery from a calf problem. But central defender Danny Coles looks set for a lengthy absence, with surgery planned on his knee. Pennock added, 'Steve should be okay to train by the middle of next week. The injury wasn’t as bad as we thought. Danny Coles will have an exploratory operation'".