Robins Altrincham FC Archived News

April, 2021

30 April 2021


Altrincham's game on Saturday (3pm) at home to Notts County will be streamed, as usual by Alty TV.

Access to the streaming service can be acquired here.

Looking for a first win in five matches, Altrincham will be hoping that some of the injured players who have missed recent games may be available for selection.

Apart from Andy White, who has been ruled out for the rest of the season, Fisayo Adarabioyo, Matty Kosylo, Shaun Densmore, Connor Hampson and Yoan Zouma have all missed games through injury recently.

Last Saturday, also saw Tom Hannigan (right), Josh Hancock and Joe Piggott not named in the Alty squad.

Both teams go into the game in poor form. Alty have lost their last four games whilst County have just a draw to show for their last five fixtures.

Anyone looking for a form guide for Saturday's game would start by looking at the reverse fixture, which Notts County won 3-1 early this season.

But both teams are likely to be virtually unrecognisable this weekend when compared with that match. Altrincham's team last weekend included just three of their starters for the game at Meadow Lane, namely Thompson, Mullarkey and Moult

And for Notts County it is not much different as only five of the squad when they beat Altrincham in the second match of the campaign started the Magpies' most recent game, last Tuesday, against Eastleigh. They were Rawlinson, Lacey, Kelly-Evans, Reeves and Doyle.


Saturday's visitors to the J. Davidson Stadium, Notts County report that their Head Coach, Ian Burchnall, "has praised the contributions of Kyle Wootton despite the forward’s recent run without a goal.

Wootton is our top scorer with 12 so far this season and... he’s been going through a dry spell of late...

'Woots is a top player,' said the head coach. 'I’ve worked with a lot of good centre-forwards over the years and he’s right up there with them. I’ve assured him that we appreciate what he contributes to the team. He takes a lot of physical batterings from centre-halves, he links play brilliantly and, defensively, his pressing is on point.

'He’s contributing massively to the team and consistently getting in the positions to finish. He’s not afraid, even though he’s missed a couple. We all believe in him and the goals will come, there’s no doubt about it.'

Burchnall will be hoping to see a more clinical display from his team when we visit Altrincham on Saturday with the aim of securing three points...

'We all believe we’re going to be in the play-offs. We believe we have enough,' said Burchnall. 'Even though recent results have been disappointing, there are enough aspects of our play that make us feel like once we get the result we want... it’s going to kick us on. I believe whether we’re home or away we have the capabilities and, when we generate the momentum to get back into the play-off spots, we’ll be a match for anyone.

'We need that one result to propel us and that’s what we’re searching for now.'”

ON THIS DAY: 30 April

Altrincham last played on 30 April in 2016 when they lost 3-0 at Braintree Town and were duly relegated from the top flight of non-League footbal for the fourth time in their history.

In this final match of the season they were comprehensively beaten by a Braintree Town side which secured a deserved place in the promotion play offs with this victory.

Above: Michael Rankine clears the ball as referee Ollie Yates awards the visitors a freekick in their own box at Braintree in 2016.

Braintree took a 17th minute lead when the impressive Simeon Akinola miscued a shot across goal and Michael Cheek was on hand to convert from close range at the back post. Cheek made it 2-0 three minutes before the break when he converted a cross, following a fine run by Mitch Brundle.

Brundle added the third when he converted a cross after Akinola had got to the byline.

For Alty, Ryan Crowther was once again an absentee, along with the four long-term injured players. Goalkeeper Tim Deasy was again playing when far from fit and was unable to take goalkicks.

ALTRINCHAM: 17. Tim DEASY, 6. Scott LEATHER, 26. Marcus HOLNESS, 5. Luca HAVERN, 3. Adam GRIFFIN, 4. Jake MOULT (capt), 7. James LAWRIE , 20. Jordan SINNOTT, 15. Josh GINNELLY, 9. Michael RANKINE, 10. Damian REEVES Subs: 23. Callum WILLIAMS, 27. Adam SAVILL, 14. Josh O'KEEFE, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 12. Sam HEATHCOTE.


The Hartlepool Mail reminds us that "Manager Dave Challinor has been constantly adapting and bolstering his squad throughout the season...

Pools have made no fewer than 24 signings, enough to make up a large squad on its own, since the end of the 2019-20 campaign and a large portion of them have made a positive impact at the club.

Whenever there has been problems with the team or a lack of cover, Challinor has been allowed to bring in the players to help address any issues despite operating on a limited budget compared with previous seasons.

'We’re proud of our recruitment, it’s been really good,' the Hartlepool manager told The Mail. 'We’ve taken some risks and at the start of the season we brought in players who had a bit of a point to prove. In fairness, the majority of them, if not all of them, have done that really well.

'The loans, there’s some risk involved in them especially with some of them being their first loans and they’ve been great. I think the spirit and togetherness in the squad has been brilliant which has helped enormously so regardless of what division we’re in we want to keep as many of them together as we can which will be a challenge in itself'">

In the Leader Live "Wrexham executive director Humphrey Ker has his say. 'I am currently back in Los Angeles and will be returning to Wrexham in mid-May, and am looking forward to being there for the run-in...

'Whatever happens on the pitch, we have a busy summer ahead of us and I am looking forward to working with Fleur Robinson and Shaun Harvey to get us ready for next season...

'The First Minister of Wales was in Wrexham recently and I heard that he mentioned my column in some way when he was visiting. I am delighted it is being read in the corridors of power. I have printed out and mailed one to the White House so we will see if Joe Biden takes any notice and if the President wants to weigh-in on our play-off prospects!...

'All our plans for next season are continuing apace so that we can be as prepared as we can be for the start of next season, whatever league we are in... We are continuing our work apace at constituting our Club Advisory Board.

'We have been talking to various fans' organisations to start to work out exactly who we will have on the Board, and precisely what its purpose is'".

Millwall have been tracking their loanees who are playing in the National League.

And this weekend two of their "Loanees meet at Gander Green Lane.

Isaac Olaofe and Sam Skeffington locked horns on Tuesday night as Sutton United defeated Barnet 1-0...

Omar Bugiel scored the winner as the Gander Green Lane outfit kept on the coat-tails of Torquay United at the summit of the League table, with Olaofe playing the 90 minutes.

Skeffington, meanwhile, made it to the 77th minute before being replaced as The Bees remain adrift at the foot of the table...

Bromley and [loanee] Alex Mitchell suffered a setback as they were defeated 2-1 at home by Chesterfield during the week. The defender played the full game against The Spireites".

In the Halifax Courier FC Halifax Town "manager Pete Wild says all the pressure is on Stockport in Saturday’s promotion six-pointer at The Shay.

Both sides have plenty riding on the game, with Town looking to take another step towards a top-seven finish, while Stockport are chasing a top three finish, which would guarantee them a pass into the play-off semi-finals...

'Stockport have got some fantastic players,' Wild said. 'The boot’s on the other foot on Saturday, where they’ve got to come and beat us, we’ve got to go out and express ourselves and go and show we can live with the best teams in this league...

'But what an exciting opportunity, where the pressure’s on them, not us... They’re living up to the pressure at the moment, let’s see what they bring to the party when they come here on Saturday.'

County come into the game having won 4-0 at King’s Lynn on Tuesday, extending their unbeaten run to 12 games. They have won five of their last six away games, keeping four clean sheets in the process.

When asked how he will approach the game, Wild said 'That’s for me to worry about. We went toe-to-toe with them at their place, and I’ll need to decide what formation, what team and how tactically I want to play. I don’t think there’s any pressure on us on Saturday. Everybody expects Stockport to roll up here, turn us over, get back on the bus and go home.

'So anything we get on Saturday is a bonus... What a fantastic position to be in, to go and prove people wrong'...

Stockport have scored 16 goals in their last five matches, and are the joint highest scorers in the National League...

'It’s 11 versus 11, they’ve all got two arms and two legs,' he said. 'We’ve just got to match them, that’s how you play against them, match them, deny them opportunities, have a little bit of luck along the way and take your chances when they come, because you’ll always get a chance in 90 minutes... If we took half the chances we create in games, we wouldn’t be as nervy,' he said...

'What a fantastic two months the players and the staff have had, and they deserve immense credit for that'.

On midfielder Jack Earing’s chances of recovering from his hamstring problem in time for the game, Wild said 'It’ll be 50-50, he trained well on Tuesday'".

And the Halifax Courier adds that FC Halifax Town's Matt Stenson is "confident he can come back stronger from long-term injury...

Stenson was forced off against Wealdstone on his debut. He had battled back from a hamstring injury in pre-season, only to then tear his anterior cruciate ligament, suffer a grade two tear on his medial cruciate ligament and tear his meniscus.

The striker previously missed two-and-a-half years of his career due to serious injury, but he showed vast reserves of belief and mental strength to fight back before, and it is those qualities that mean he is convinced he will do again.

'I believe I’m going to come back twice what I was before,' he says...

'I think I’m ahead of schedule so things are looking up,' he says. 'I’m not running yet, I’m only just walking properly without a limp. I just need to take my time and follow the schedule... It’s been six months now and it’s been horrible so it was such a good feeling to finally kick a ball, it felt good'...

Stenson was operated on for two hours at the start of February, undergoing an ACL reconstruction and repair to his meniscus....

'My last injury, no-one knew what it was so it was a lot of uncertainty, am I going to play again, what is the injury, is the surgery going to work,' he said. 'It was tough, but this time I’ve got an end goal, I’ve got good people around me... and I can see an end goal, whereas I didn’t have that before'...

'I still feel part of the team... I still watch every single game at home... Seeing the lads in the position they’re in, going for the play-offs, I’m kind of jealous in a way. It’s making me more motivated to come back, especially the thought that when I come back I could be a League Two player'".

29 April 2021


The Hartlepool Mail confirms that on the final day of the National League season, 29 May, an "alteration has taken place with all National League sides kicking off at 12:30pm opposed to the usual 3pm".

On that date Altrincham entertain title-chasing Torquay United.


Altrincham FC has announced a fifth pre-season friendly, away at Shawe View against Borough neighbours, Trafford FC. It is on Tuesday 10 August at 7.45pm

All of Altrincham's friendlies this summer will be away games owing to the major work planned on the playing surface at the J Davidson Stadium during the close season.

The other friendlies already announced are:

  • Sat.14.7.21 @3pm at Ashton United
  • Tue.27.7.21 @7.45pm at Nantwich Town
  • Sat.31.7.21 @2pm at Brightlingsea Regent
  • Sat. 7.8.21 @3pm at Curzon Ashton


Writing in the Sale & Altrincham Messenger, press and media officer John Edwards writes that "Phil Parkinson vowed to 'get it right' and insisted he would not sacrifice his football philosophy after calamitous defending allowed Barnet to turn round a two-goal deficit and inflict a fourth successive defeat on Altrincham at The J.Davidson Stadium on Saturday.

Alty appeared to be on course for a morale-boosting win after leading 2-0 early on, only for a misunderstanding between keeper Tony Thompson and defender Toby Mullarkey to hand Barnet a lifeline seconds before half-time... Barnet cashed in on more defensive lapses with an 88th-minute equaliser and 89th-minute winner to take the points 3-2.

'Their first goal gave them something to hold on to and was a real turning point,’ said Alty boss Parkinson. 'You don’t expect to see things like that within this team or at this level, but errors have been creeping into our game in the last couple of weeks.

'I don’t know whether it’s down to concentration or just bad luck, but it is something we will address. We have to look at things, because we need to know who is going to move this team forward. As a management team, we must look at whether we need to improve the strength and conditioning of the players and also if there’s a need for new personnel and in which areas of the pitch.

'We can see what needs doing. We are intelligent people, and we will get it right and move the club forward.'

He added 'It is important we stick to what we believe in. We must stick to our guns and not deviate from what our strength is. People always chuck Plan B in my face if things don’t go well, but we will concentrate on making sure Plan A is working.

'We have learned massively from this campaign, and it will stand us in good stead for next season. There will be some speed bumps along the way, but I would hope people will see we have a plan and know how to execute it.’"


Alty's next opponents, Notts County confirm that "Following the expiration of his loan deal, Tylor Golden has returned to parent club Salford City.

Initially brought in as cover for the injured Richard Brindley, Golden himself suffered an injury on his debut in our Buildbase FA Trophy tie against Oxford City and has found opportunities limited since his recovery...

Said head coach Ian Burchnall '“His attitude has been first-class and he’s a popular lad around the club. Unfortunately for him, his injury came at the worst possible time and, with Richard Brindley now nearing a return to full fitness, we feel we’re well covered in that position'".


On Tuesday night results meant that Grimsby Town were condemned to relegation back to the National League. They had spent five years in non-League football from 2010-15 before regaining EFL status and after five years in League Two they return to that level for 2021-22.

An omen for Altrincham is that although they have only lost once to Grimsby Town in six meetings in the league, in two of those three campaigns Alty ended the season being relegated!

The first meeting, in 2010-11, was a 2-2 draw at Moss Lane. Although allied to a 1-0 away win by Alty, the two encouraging results that season could not prevent a slide to tier 2 for The Robins.

The clubs next met in 2014-15 when Alty drew 1-1 at Moss Lane and also shared the points, 0-0, in the return fixture.

Above: Kyle Perry and Grimsby's Aristote Nsiala compete for an aerial ball.

Most recently, in 2015-16, Alty beat Grimsby 2-1 at Moss Lane but were thrashed 5-0 in Lincolnshire as the Robins went down again to the National North division.

ON THIS DAY: 29 April

Fifteen years ago on 29 April, 2006, Altrincham completed the season with a trip to Surrey, where they lost 3-1 to Woking.

Alty were again without Val Owen and Stephen Rose as well as long-term absentees Richard Norris and Eddie Hussin. With both Adams and Aspinall on the bench, Munroe started at right-back.

Alty arrived at Kingfield with sufficient points to guarantee their Conference survival but with the threat of an 18 points deduction hanging over them from the James Robinson affair. On the contrary, Woking had the FA Trophy final to look forward to.

Having been 13th in the table in mid-February, Altrincham were to win only one of their last 13 fixtures. They started and ended the game at Woking in 18th place.

Above: No.17, Watson's freekick beats Coburn and the Alty wall.

Emotional scenes greeted the final whistle as Alty players and supporters saluted each other at the end of a season which should have ended in celebration at the magnificent feat of survival as a part-time side with the lowest budget in the Conference. Instead, the club had a massive points deduction hanging over its head because James Robinson's previous club had not obtained international clearance for him. As a result, Alty did not know in which league they would be competing in 2006-07 season.

With the help of two dubious decisions by referee Ward, which gave the Cards a penalty and a freekick, from both of which they scored, Woking took a 3-0 lead. Alty hit the woodwork twice and forced two great saves from the keeper but only had Little's well taken goal after 72 minutes to show for a strong second-half performance. But Woking were deserved winners for their first-half showing.

In the first half, just after Potts's fine shot had hit the post, a mix-up between Scott and Talbot, set Murray clear and though Coburn saved well, McAllister netted the rebound (17 mins). Then, when Richards went down in the box, Scott was very harshly judged to have fouled him. Richards netted from the spot (31 mins). McAllister and Munroe then collided just outside the box and Mr Ward awarded a freekick from which Watson scored (40 mins).

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 17. Karl MUNROE, 4. Mark MADDOX, 5. Gary TALBOT, 11. Gary SCOTT, 7. Colin POTTS, 15. Peter BAND, 37. Ged MURPHY, 12. Warren PEYTON, 9. Colin LITTLE, 10. Rod THORNLEY. SUBS: 2. Steve ASPINALL, 3. Chris ADAMS, 14. Lewis CHALMERS, 18. Blake NORTON, 28. Pat McFADDEN.


According to the BBC, "Wrexham captain Shaun Pearson says the players are 'desperate' to see the club return to the Football League... [after] 13 straight seasons playing in the National League...

'One thing you're reminded of here is how long the club has been down at this level and we are desperate to end that,' said Pearson... 'It would be a fantastic achievement as a group... Once you're in the play-offs anyone can win it.'

With seven games remaining, Wrexham sit ninth... but with a game in hand over most of their rivals...

Since the new Wrexham owners, Hollywood actors Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney announced their takeover of the club, filming began [sic] for a documentary on the club... The new owners say they plan to turn Wrexham into 'a global force', but... 'Not a great deal has changed as of yet,' said Pearson.

'They aren't filming quite as much at the moment but it was very strange at the start without a doubt".

Stockport County "confirm that it has activated the recall clause in Richie Bennett’s loan deal at Hartlepool United.

The striker will now return to Edgeley Park, and join up with the first-team squad tomorrow ahead of this weekend’s game against Halifax".

And the Hartlepool Mail adds that "The 30-year-old striker scored five goals in two starts and two substitute appearances for Pools since arriving on loan from promotion rivals Stockport County at the start of April...

The Hatters have triggered their recall clause which came into effect this week.

A Pools club statement read... 'Bennett signed on April 1st and went on to score five goals in four games including a hat-trick in his last game against Wealdstone'...

Previously, Hartlepool manager Dave Challinor told The Mail... 'When we did the loan signing originally, we pretty much thought that... it would be short term... It’s worked well for us and we got out of it what we needed to'...

Pre-empting Bennett’s recall, Pools signed strikers Danny Elliott and Harvey Saunders to help bolster their attacking line alongside Luke Armstrong and Rhys Oates".

Also from the Hartlepool Mail we learn that "Dave Challinor explains why Hartlepool United didn’t try to sign Danny Rowe...

Chesterfield snapped up the previously prolific striker from League Two side Bradford City in an attempt to boost their play-off hopes.

Rowe’s previous spell in non-league football saw him score just shy of 200 goals for AFC Fylde under the management of now Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor...

Challinor insists a reunion with Rowe was not on his radar. 'I think Chesterfield have got themselves a good player but, for us, they need to fit with what we can do budget wise and Rowey didn’t... If we’re talking about a permanent deal, his wages alone are around double what we are paying for any other player in our squad at the moment. We’ve obviously benefited a lot from loans which have allowed us to protect the budget while bringing in quality players.

'I know him better than any manager in the division and he’s statistically the best goalscorer in the National League over the past four or five years. He’ll be a big asset to Chesterfield, I watched him on Saturday [at Wrexham] to see how they’ve changed things. We’ll look forward to playing him and stopping him in front of the BT cameras at the weekend.'"

Footnote: Whilst meeting Rowe's wages, Chesterfield have furloughed other players at the State's expense.

FC Halifax Town report that "The Shaymen recorded a 1-0 victory over Woking... [and] midfielder Martin Woods spoke after the match.

The Scotsman put in another great shift to help Town clinch the victory and [said]... 'It was a difficult outing today with the treacherous conditions, but the boys dug in and I felt the goal was going to come after we had a few chances. Overall, I believe we got what we deserved tonight; I know it wasn’t brilliant, but we deserved it.'

Both sides were goalless at the break and there weren’t many clear-cut chances in the first forty-five, so Woods expanded on what was said at half time in the dressing room. 'We just said let’s keep going because we will get a few more chances. But the thing is, it was Baltic conditions out there and because that caused puddles on the pitch, it was hard to pass the ball as it just got stopped from moving, so we spoke about having to minimise the risks of passing the ball backwards to Sam Johnson or anything that would cause us harm'...

Martin then added... 'Jake Hyde did what he does best by sticking the ball in the net, and it was a great passage of play with Luke Summerfield’s ball....

'The weather this afternoon was lovely with the sun, but this is typical Yorkshire weather'".

The Hard Tackle reports that "Chelsea are on the verge of sealing the services of non-league striker Jayden Wareham of Woking, who was also courted by other Premier League clubs.

According to Daily Telegraph, Jayden Wareham could soon be on the books of Chelsea... A striker by trade, Wareham currently plies his trade for non-league side Woking FC... The youngster had initially started his career with the Queens Park Rangers academy, but he was released in 2019...

The Woking forward is likely to be drafted into Chelsea’s Under-18 squad, where he will be given the opportunity to compete in the Under-18 Premier League. The fact that the youngster was courted by other Premier League clubs including Southampton, West Ham United and Leicester suggests that it is only a matter of time before the player earns a promotion to the Elite Development League.

The potential addition of Wareham also suggests the shift in Chelsea’s transfer policy, with the west London giants now emphasizing the influx of young British talents".

Royal Gazette admits that "Justin Donawa was unable to recreate his goalscoring exploits against Yeovil Town as Solihull Moors went down to a 3-0 defeat.

The Bermuda forward ended his season-long goalscoring drought in emphatic style with a hat-trick in a 5-1 thrashing of the same opposition just three days earlier.

However, in a complete turnaround of fortunes, Yeovil ended up with all three points, as Joe Quigley grabbed the headlines, claiming the match ball with a hat-trick..

Solihull started the brighter of the two sides in the early stages... However, it was the hosts who broke the deadlock after 27 minutes from the penalty spot. Having been brought down inside the area, Quigley took resulting penalty which was saved, but he was first to the rebound to head the ball in...

Yeovil doubled their advantage just eight minutes after the restart as Quigley found himself in the right position to poke home his second at the near post.

Yeovil continued in search of extending their advantage further and were rewarded after 71 minutes when Quigley completed his hat-trick.

Donawa, who was booked in the second half, played out the entire match but had no opportunity to reduce the deficit".

The starting XI for King’s Lynn Town saw the return of both Alex Kiwomya and Michael Gyasi to replace Cameron King and Elkan Baggot, who would return to parent club Ipswich Town to feature in their FA Youth Cup fixture this week. King’s Lynn owner Stephen Cleeve confirmed during the night’s live stream that Cameron King is awaiting hospital results after struggling to breathe during the weekend fixture with Dagenham & Redbridge.

For the visitors, Simon Rusk brought both Elliot Newby and Sam Minihan back into the lineup to replace Macauley Southam-Hales and William Collar.

The early moments in the game highlighted Stockport’s aerial dominance as The Hatters took an early advantage having scored from two corners in the first 15 minutes. The first was flicked on at the near post by Sam Minihan to be buried by in-form striker Paddy Madden whilst the second came from the forced pressure of Liam Hogan that resulted in Michael Gash headering [sic] the ball beyond Theo Richardson in the King’s Lynn net...

Regardless of the scoreline, King’s Lynn remained positive and grew in confidence, having had chances of their own in the first half... but Stockport were to show their quality once again when a looping ball from Elliot Newby down the right hand side allowed Harry Cardwell to join the scoresheet after jumping higher than Tai Fleming to head past Richardson. Cardwell would go on to add to his tally, after good work once again by Newby down the left forced Richardson into a save that would fall perfectly into the striker's path to put the visitors 4-0 up going into half time.

The second 45 minutes were a much stronger period for The Linnets... After the break, Culverhouse instructed that his side played much more direct and the results were clear. The change enabled the likes of Carey and Gyasi to receive the ball in open space and run at the County defenders. As a result of these changes, Lynn were able to push Stockport back into their own half...

The second half introduction of Macauley Southam-Hales gave the visitors the opportunity to extend their lead from the penalty spot. However, a strong hand to his left meant that Richardson would save the resulting John Rooney penalty".

The Barnet & Potters Bar Times reports that "Barnet were beaten for the first time in five matches on Tuesday night, when they were narrowly defeated 1-0 by Sutton.

The loss keeps the Bees seven points adrift at the foot of the National League table, despite a sensational comeback to beat Altrincham at the weekend.

Omar Bugiel scored the only goal of the game in midweek as Sutton moved up to second place...

Donovan Wilson was inches away from the opener in the 26th minute as the U’s pressed, with the first half held up by an injury to [Barnet] goalkeeper Aymen Azaze, who was taken to hospital after the match with a suspected concussion. The youngster left the field on a stretcher following a collision with Isaac Olaofe and 17-year-old James Callan came on.

Callan denied Harry Beautyman from close range in the 51st minute but Sutton did open the scoring with just over 20 minutes remaining. Rob Milsom’s corner found Louis John and after his shot hit a post, the ball fell kindly for Bugiel to fire home.

Barnet’s spirits were high going into the contest, after they had staged a remarkable recovery to win 3-2 away at Altrincham in their previous fixture...

Following the defeat to Sutton, manager Simon Bassey said... 'It was always going to be our biggest test. Unfortunately for us, our energy levels are decreasing as the games come. We need to try and get some players fresher if we can. We’ve got lots of improving still to do'".

The BBC informs us that "Torquay United manager Gary Johnson has hailed the spirit of his side after scoring a second goal deep in stoppage time to rescue points in as many games.

Scott Boden's goal in the seventh minute of stoppage time saw the Gulls beat Aldershot Town 2-1 on Tuesday.

Ben Wynter's 98th-minute goal secured a 2-2 draw with Notts County on Saturday.

'That's a group of lads that want to do well, and they want to do well not only for themselves, but for their teammates,' Johnson told BBC Devon...

Having returned to the top of the table after Saturday's late draw, Boden's winner ensured the Gulls stayed there with second-placed Sutton United beating Barnet 1-0 to move a point behind Torquay with a game in hand.

The Gulls still have six games left in the National League's delayed season with their next four matches against Eastleigh, Chesterfield, Bromley and Stockport who are all either in the play-off places or aiming for them...

'The boys have worked very, very hard,' added Johnson... 'We've got to get through these next two games on spirit, on hope, on all that sort of thing, and that's what we've got in abundance, so let's hope over the next few games we can keep this going.'

Hampshire's Daily Echo reports that "Eastleigh moved into the play-off places with a 2-0 win over Notts County.

Home goalkeeper Joe McDonnell produced a superb double save to keep out Kyle Wootton and Regan Griffiths just before the half-hour mark, as County enjoyed the better of the first half.

Andrew Boyce put Eastleigh in front in the 57th minute, heading home Ryan Hill’s cross at the back post.

Substitute Joe Tomlinson then made it 2-0 in the 75th minute when he found the corner of the net from the edge of the area.

The victory sees Ben Strevens's men leapfrog the Magpies to move up to seventh in a congested battle for a play-off spot...

Eastleigh have six regular season matches remaining, starting away at league leaders Torquay United on Saturday".

28 April 2021


Altrincham's opponents next Saturday, Notts County, lost 2-0 on Tuesday night at Eastleigh. They go into the match at the J. Davidson Stadium having lost four of their last five fixtures, the same record as Alty. But The Robins did win one of their last five games whereas the Magpies have taken only a single point from that same sequence.

After the game, Notts County admitted that "We were made to pay for a host of missed opportunities as Eastleigh scored twice after the break to earn victory at the Silverlake Stadium.

It had been one-way traffic in the first half, with Joe McDonnell in inspired form and Luke Steele considerably quieter at the other end...

But we struggled to impart the same level of dominance after the break and, after Andrew Boyce had headed the ball home with the Spitfires' first effort on target, substitute Joe Tomlinson capitalised on a defensive error to produce an outstanding finish and put the game beyond our reach.

STARTING XI: Steele; Ellis, Turner, Rawlinson; Chicksen, Kelly-Evans; Doyle, Reeves, Griffiths; Wootton, Knight. SUBS: Barnett, Brindley, Boldewijn, Rodrigues, Knowles

Before their midweek game, Notts County reported that "Ian Burchnall says we’re treating every game between now and the end of the season as a ‘must-win’.

The head coach leads us into another long away trip down to Eastleigh this evening after overseeing a strong performance against Torquay...

'Every game is must-win,' he said during his pre-match press conference. 'We want to finish as high as we possibly can, so we go into every game with that mindset. We’re not happy with a draw... The players can see the value in what we’ve been trying to do on the training pitch and how it looked and felt when we applied it in a game.

'We’re better when we’re calm and keep the ball. That’s what put us in a strong position against Torquay. When we became more stressed and started trying to move the ball from back to front too quickly, that’s when we started giving the ball back to them and allowing them to put pressure on us.

'We need to be really brave to keep doing the things that put us 2-0 up and then try and go for a third, and we also have to do the "ugly" bit by defending set pieces properly... Tiredness has to go out of the window. We’ve just got to enjoy the pressure and the competition. That way, we can make this a really exciting period rather than a difficult one.'

Burchnall confirmed that he will be without Jim O'Brien and Alex Lacey for tonight's trip after the pair came off with injuries at Plainmoor."


Tuesday, 27 April, 7.45pm unless stated otherwise.
  • Bromley 1-2 Chesterfield
  • Eastleigh 2-0 Notts County
  • FC Halifax Town 1-0 Woking [k.o. 7pm]
  • King's Lynn Town 0-4 Stockport County [k.o. 7pm]
  • Maidenhead United 0-1 Weymouth
  • Sutton United 1-0 Barnet [k.o. 7pm]
  • Torquay United 2-1 Aldershot Town [k.o. 7pm]
  • Yeovil Town 3-0 Solihull Moors [k.o. 7pm]
  • Wealdstone P-P Dover Athletic [Dover players furloughed]


Owen Dale, a former Crewe Alexandra loanee at Altrincham scored twice on Tuesday against Charlton Athletic. His second equalizer arrived deep into added time in a 2-2 draw.


Altrincham FC has launched "a new fundraising initiative to part-fund the planned overhaul of The J.Davidson Stadium pitch and drainage systems.

Aptly named ‘Pitch In’, fans and businesses are being offered the opportunity to support a number of unique fundraising opportunities; these include an Indiegogo Crowdfunder with tiered donation perks, and a selection of physical events to say farewell to the current playing surface".

ON THIS DAY: 28 April

On Saturday, 28 April, 2012, nine years ago today, eighth placed Altrincham welcomed play-off contenders Gainsborough Trinity to Moss Lane for the final match of the Blue Square Bet North season. Gainsborough needed at least a draw to confirm their play-off position, whilst Altrincham were fated to finish eighth whatever happened in today's game.

And just as happend last Saturday in 2021, Alty lost 2-3 having on this occasion been in the lead at 2-1.

Alty were without fullbacks Mark Lynch and Kieran Walmsley, both of whom were ill. Indeed, Mark was hospitalised with viral meningitis. Sam Grimshaw, the Alty Youth left-back made his first appearance in a BSBN squad on Alty's bench today. His youth team colleague Duncan Watmore, starting his second league game, moved to no.9 from the right wing.

Altrincham fell behind in the 14th minute when Mettam scored directly from a freekick, 25 yards out, left of goal, the ball going in off the bar.

Right: 18 year-old Duncan Watmore scored a fine goal for Alty against Gainsborough. Here he receives his team-mates' congratulations after the goal.

The equaliser arrived in the 34th minute when Nicky Clee scored a cracker from 20 yards (34 mins). Ten minutes later a fine lob from Duncan Watmore, who had been put clear, made it 2-1 to Altrincham. But, barely a minute later, it was 2-2 when a Lawrie foul gave Trinity a freekick, which Mettam headed in from Sandwith's kick (45+1 mins).

The winner arrived after 72 minutes when Mettam completed his hat-trick, getting the benefit of the doubt for an offside decision before rounding Coburn. Alty had several half-chances and Gainsborough twice had to scramble the ball clear in goalmouth melees but Trinity held on to complete a double over Altrincham.

ALTRINCHAM: 1 Stuart Coburn, 2. Shaun Densmore (capt), 5. Matthew Flynn, 6. Marlon Broomes, 3. Andrew Smart, 7. James Lawrie, 4. Scott Phelan, 8. Simon Richman, 11. Nicky Clee, 9. Duncan Watmore, 10. Damian Reeves. Subs 12. Chris Lynch, 14. John Miles, 15. Michael Twiss, 16. Sam Grimshaw, 18. Adam Reid (gk).


Football League World claims that "Bolton Wanderers are one of a number of Football League clubs looking at signing Aldershot winger Joel Nouble this summer, according to Football Insider.

Nouble’s youth career saw him pass through Chelsea and Millwall’s academies, but he’s spent the majority of his career in non-league. The 25-year-old secured a move to Aldershot at the start of the season following a spell at Concord Rangers in the league below, and after an extended period on the bench Nouble has played in every single game since late December.

Predominantly playing on the left wing, Nouble has scored five National League goals this season and... rivals Chesterfield failed in an attempt to bring him in before the registration deadline for the league closed on Thursday...

Nouble would be a bit of a punt for any EFL club, let alone Bolton who could be heading to League One soon, as he’s not exactly been prolific in the National League. Five goals is decent for a winger but the fact that Nouble at the age of 25 already seems like a bit of a non-league journeyman would be quite worrying".

According to Kent Online "Dover Athletic are going part-time but it’s not put manager Andy Hessenthaler off the job.

With or without a points deduction, they may be seen as relegation fodder. But Hessenthaler is confident of putting together a competitive team... Hessenthaler will be going part-time himself...

'I wasn’t going to walk away. I just had to check he [the chairman] wanted me to stay' said the 55-year-old... 'We are certainly going to... go back to how they have approached it before really, being part-time. So we are going to have to go part-time, in a full-time league. There are two or three others that are still part-time, not many, but we are going to readjust...

“It is going to be tough. We are still waiting on the decision from the appeal (over a 12-point deduction and £40,000 fine for stopping play this season) and I know the chairman has got a lot of legal people who have done great for the club, who have felt for us, doing it for nothing which is fantastic.

'I know there are cynical people out there who think we should be relegated but the chairman has done it to save the club and we have a club next year, that is the key. For me, as a manager, it is a challenge ahead that I will enjoy in terms of trying to prove people wrong really.'

Hessenthaler will talk with assistant boss Nicky Southall to see if they can work out a deal for him to stay. The duo have worked together for many years and the Dover boss wants that to continue.

They will also have to find somewhere to train. It's expected the players will be training Monday, Tuesday and Thursday nights when they have no midweek game.

The manager will also decide on what players from last season’s squad to offer deals to... Hessenthaler admits he is likely to be starting with a clean slate'".

News of another promotion rival comes in the Hartlepool Mail As "Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor explains THE signing of former AFC Fylde left-back Zaine Francis-Angol and why Boreham Wood allowed him to join permanently

Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor bolstered his squad with a player who has ‘been there and done it’ at National League level in Zaine Francis-Angol.

The 27 year-old left-back arrived at Pools last week straight after departing Boreham Wood by mutual consent... It’s the second time Francis-Angol has worked under Pools boss Dave Challinor. The pair enjoyed two successful seasons in the National League together at AFC Fylde, with two play-off campaigns, a play-off final and an FA Trophy win.

But since leaving The Coasters in 2019, the London born Antigua and Barbuda international has found game time hard to come by.

He made five appearances for Accrington Stanley in League One last season before returning to the National League with Boreham Wood. Francis-Angol started 10 league games for The Wood this campaign...

Following a run of three substitute cameos in 10 league games, the defender was placed on furlough and unable to play for Boreham Wood with his contract at Meadow Park originally set to expire in the summer...

'it’s been a bit stop-start for him,' Challinor told The Mail. 'Even going to Boreham Wood, the way they play their system is to play a more forward player as a left wing-back so he hasn’t been playing as much as he would have wanted...

'Zaine was looking towards next season and Boreham Wood had already made a decision on him and put him on furlough so rather than that, he’s cancelled his contract and is a great one for us.'

Francis-Angol’s arrival will provide some much-needed left-back cover for David Ferguson, who has been instrumental for Pools so far this season. The former Sunderland and York City left-back... has played every minute for the club so far in 2021...

The Leader Live informs us that "Dean Keates is expecting more twists and turns as the race for a play-off spot enters the final month of the season but the Wrexham boss says all that matters is where his side are at the end of the campaign.

Saturday's goalless draw with Chesterfield extended the unbeaten run to three games but saw Wrexham slip to seventh in the National League...

'I don't ride the rollercoaster; this place, emotions, its ups and downs,' said Keates. 'There are going to twists and turns, it is where we finish after the last game at Dagenham.

'I believe in the group, I believe in the changing room, we didn't have a great day on Saturday but we kept a clean sheet and we've picked up seven points out of nine'".

The Maidenhead Advertiser says that Woking "boss Alan Dowson admitted he was counting down the days till the end of the season after watching his side’s committed, if fruitless, attempts at a fightback against Maidenhead United on Saturday.

Woking have been without 13 first teamers in recent weeks, with the likes of former United striker Dave Tarpey and others placed on furlough as the club seeks to get through the next few weeks of the season with its finances intact.

Five academy players took to the field against the Magpies at York Road and they gave Alan Devonshire’s men a hell of a scare, battling back in the second half and laying siege to Maidenhead’s goalmouth area, albeit without creating too much of note, in the final stages. Ultimately they didn’t have the experience or ingenuity to break down the Magpies defence a second time.

Danilo Orsi-Dadomo’s first half double proved enough for the home side who faded after the break due to a combination of weariness from their trips to Stockport and Wealdstone and the energy-sapping heat of the day.

'Dev [Alan Devonshire]came to us straight away after the game and said it was a game of two halves,' said Dowson... 'We keep giving away the worst goals and we have done for the past five weeks.

'To be fair, I’ve got academy lads out there giving it a go, and I did think we were the better side second half, but you can’t give teams 2-0 head starts... The lesson we’ve got to learn, especially for the academy lads, is that we’ve got to come out of the traps a bit better.'

Dowson added 'I’ve got five academy lads and 13 players on furlough, so I think everyone knows where we are. It’s a difficult time and you’re counting down the days until the end of the season. I think it’s five weeks today. The quicker it finishes the better, and you’ll see a better version of Woking next season, 100 per cent.'"

NL Daily reportsthat "The emphasis is on freedom and enjoyment for Paul Hodges this time around at Woking.

The attacking player rejoined his hometown side last month from Slough Town until the end of the season.

Manager Alan Dowson explained that the deal is on non-contract terms, with Slough’s joint-manager Neil Baker commenting that he hoped the 27 year-old would be back with them next season...

Hodges explained... 'I remember moving up with Woking when we got promoted, and I think because I’d gone up in the leagues, I’ve always felt like I’ve had to kind of prove myself...

'Obviously, you have to prove yourself no matter where you go, but I have always felt an extra bit of pressure maybe, so I’m having to say ‘Oh, I am good enough for this level’, rather than when you drop down a league or two.'

He added 'If I play really, really well in the next few weeks and train hard, Dowse might offer me a full-time contract. If I work really hard and he doesn’t think full-time football’s right for me, then it’s not. I’m not gonna cry over it, I’ve just got to get on with it, and maybe pursue football in the Conference South and carry on teaching'"

Boreham Wood confirm that "The Club though is... excited to repay all those loyal supporters of ours who made the decision to remain season ticket holders throughout this campaign with a frozen/fixed 'loyalty' price for next season’s renewals...

Wood Chairman Danny Hunter... said... 'Please don’t buy a season ticket if you’re expecting me to provide either a top ten budget or if you are expecting a play-off challenge or more next season…

'Trust me, how I’ve managed to get us through this season and to this point has been testament to my remaining staff and the sacrifices that they’ve all made. In truth, I’ve been hurt by one or two staff who’ve perhaps took [sic] me to the cleaners but, on the pitch, we’ve simply had a dressing room that unfortunately slightly underachieved in the big moments and, as a realist, that's just football but it’s the big moments that do separate the mediocre sides from the top teams, because top teams turn key moments into magic moments and unfortunately we’ve not done that in the majority of games this season…

'All I’m saying to people, is if you’re really a Premier League fan who does love your footy on the TV, if you like the sound of your voice on social media and if you want instant success keep supporting the big six, stay watching Sky, stay tweeting about them and just follow us on social media as you won’t be missed or put even more simply, we as a Club are going to be scrapping for our lives from day one and so we need positivity and we need everyone behind us understanding that our present position is precarious...

'We’ll almost certainly have to be on life support for the foreseeable future and that’s only if everyone still decides to back us. We will then have to balance off any new players coming in with the present wage bill, which will need to be reduced, but we must get new talent in and more energy into our ranks... In the meantime, I’ll be trying to pull a few rabbits out of my business hat but in this environment that is going to be a very difficult task...

'I’ve run out of patience with a few who seem to know the price of everything and the value of nothing and if they go back to whence they came we won’t miss them. In truth I know I have to put in more money personally, which will hopefully not only guarantee our survival next season but give us at least a shout of competing with the big boys and over-achieving once again, but I won’t lie to any of my old-school support base about the difficult times that could well lie ahead of us…

'As such I’m more than happy to go into next season with perhaps a few less home fans but with a more committed core of old-school supporters who know me, who I know will be realistic with me and who are ready to answer my call to arms... if we are to remain a National League Club come this time next season',Hunter concluded.

27 April 2021


In a nine-goal match on Sunday, Altrincham FC Youth won at home to Stockport County Youth 5-4 in their latest group-stage match in the George Heslop & Neil Thomason Memorial Cup.

This followed Alty's 9-1 win in their previous home game, making it fourteen goals in those two matches! However, they had lost heavily in the intervening away fixture, see below.

The unchanged starting line up for Sunday's game at Manchester Health Academy comprised Ryan Forde, Alfie Johnston, Joshua Jordan, Frazer Graham, Lewis Waller, Theo Donachie, Oran McGowan, Alex Goulden, Luigi Mongan, Lewis Billingsley and Matthew Sumner. Dionicio Bohe, Maxwell Thoms, Matthew Plested were on the bench, alongside Ryan Radi and Joel Jennings.

The goals came from Goulden and Sumner, who each scored twice, and Billingsley.


Following their nine-goal haul the previous Sunday, Altrincham FC Youth hit the buffers with a 4-1 reverse away to AFC Fylde on 18 April.

Luigi Mongan netted the Alty consolation goal.

Plested, Bohe and Thoms were replaced by Donachie, Graham and Mongan in the starting eleven which comprised Ryan Forde, Alfie Johnston, Joshua Jordan, Frazer Graham, Lewis Waller, Theo Donachie, Oran McGowan, Alex Goulden, Luigi Mongan, Lewis Billingsley and Matthew Sumner. The subs comprised Joel Jennings, Scott Johnston, Dionicio Bohe, Matthew Plested, Maxwell Thoms.


Altrincham FC has a video interview of manager Phil Parkinson, conducted by press and media officer Brian Flynn, following the home defeat by Barnet last Saturday.


As reported on Saturday, Altrincham FC Reserves beat Greenall Padgate St Oswald's 4-1 that day in the group stage of the Cheshire League's cup competition. Further details are now below...

Three of the Altrincham goals came from substitutes, namely Pouncey, Howarth and Lewis, whilst Miller was the other scorer.

The starting eleven showed one change as Mercurius replaced Howarth.

The eleven comprised Joel Torrance, Daniel Gavaghan, Raheem Mercurius, Joe Haggerty, Thomas Millington, Dre Taylor, Madison Davis, Niall Butchart, Reiss Hughes, Curtis Miller, Marc Bellingham. The subs were Callum Graham, George Howarth, Daniel Lewis, Max Pouncey and Matthew Sumner.


Notts County visit Altrincham on Saturday but, unlike Altrincham, they have a midweek match tonight (Tuesday)

The Nottingham Post reports that "Notts County will be without experienced duo Alex Lacey and Jim O’Brien for Tuesday night’s crunch clash at Eastleigh after they both picked up injuries at Torquay.

Lacey has been sent for a scan due to a problem with his pelvis which forced him off at half-time of the 2-2 draw at Plainmoor.

O’Brien lasted 68 minutes of the National League clash but suffered a tight groin.

While it is not deemed serious, tomorrow night’s clash against Ben Strevens’ side has come too soon for the Notts midfielder.

Head coach Ian Burchnall said 'I don’t think Jim felt it was too bad. He just felt a tightness in there as he made a run... Hopefully, that’s not too bad.

'As for Alex Lacey, I am not sure. We’ve sent him for a scan today so we’ll know a little bit more after that'...

While Notts are set to be without O’Brien and Lacey, centre-back Mark Ellis should be involved despite suffering a broken nose and needing 20 stitches at the weekend.

The on-loan Tranmere defender suffered the injury following a challenge with Gulls substitute Josh Umerah who was dismissed in the game for two bookable offences".

And Notts County have an interview with Ian Burchnall "after seeing his side denied three points by a last-gasp equaliser at Plainmoor".

Menahwile, the BBC reports ob County's new goalkeeper signing. "When 36-year-old former Manchester United and Barnsley goalkeeper Luke Steele was released by Championship side Nottingham Forest last summer, he decided to 'scratch an itch' and become a non-league striker.

Playing for local sides Peterborough Northern Star Reserves and Jubilee FC, Steele scored 15 goals in eight games this season, but has now put his gloves back on to help Notts County try to gain promotion back to the Football League...

Steele told BBC Radio Nottingham... 'It wasn't a fantastic standard but I was making progress, and I would've kept going this year as far as I could but Covid prevented that... I always enjoyed playing outfield when I could, but never got the opportunity,' he said...

Steele last week returned to the professional game with National League side Notts County and made his debut, in goal, in their 2-2 draw at Torquay on Saturday".


Former Altrincham keeper Dave Parton's Congleton Town bowed out of the FA Vase on Saturday.


Eight years ago today Altrincham welcomed Droylsden to Moss Lane. The Bloods, before this match, had never won at Altrincham in fifteen attempts. They arrived for this game already condemned to relegation from the BSB North to the EvoStik Northern Premier League, having lost the reverse fixture to Alty 0-5.

Pre-match fitness doubts concerned Carl Rodgers and fellow midfielder, Danny Boshell and they were two of the six starters of last Tuesday's game not to be in the initial eleven today. Rested were goalkeeper Stuart Coburn, Matt Doughty, Duncan Watmore and Damian Reeves. Matt was on the bench and, for Damian, it was the first game he had not started in the league season. The six replacements were goalkeeper Tony McMillan, who was making his debut, plus Danny Hall, Patrick Lacey, Simon Richman, Ryan Brooke and Jake Moult.

Droylsden included former Alty men Carlos Logan and Joe O'Neill in their starting line-up but another ex-Robin, Lewis Chalmers, was only on the bench.

In a one-sided match, a much-changed Altrincham cruised to a 4-0 interval lead. Nicky Clee started the rout with a right-foot chip over Latham. Four minutes later Jake Moult hammered home a second from 15 yards. Ryan Brooke's fierce drive made it 3-0 after 29 minutes before the same player headed home a corner in first-half added time.

Above: Alty celebrate one of their goals against Droylsden

Two goals midway through the half made it 6-0; Moult taking advantage of a keeper error before James Lawrie beat the keeper in a one on one.

The sixth goal was Alty's 100th of the season in the league, 10 more than in the previous season, and the first time they had reached three figures since 1967/68 in the Cheshire County League. Alty had also conceded 20 fewer times this season and gained 19 more points than in the 2011-12 campaign. And this 24th win of the season had not been bettered as a total of victories since 1978/79 in the Northern Premier League.

Today's result meant that Alty were to meet Brackley Town in the two-legged play-off semi-finals.

ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, red shorts & socks): 1. Tony McMILLAN, 2. Shaun DENSMORE (capt), 3. Scott LEATHER, 4. Pat LACEY, 5. Gianluca HAVERN, 6. Danny HALL, 7. Simon RICHMAN, 8. Jake MOULT, 9. Ryan BROOKE, 10. James LAWRIE, 11. Nicky CLEE. Subs: 12. Matt DOUGHTY, 14. Damian REEVES, 15. Sam GRIMSHAW, 16. Callum MOONEY, 18. Josh SAMBERG


Dover Athletic "Chairman Jim Parmenter has opened up on the situation the club currently finds itself in and the tough challenges ahead.

He said... 'For obvious reasons, I am unable to provide any detail around the substance of our appeal [against a £40,000 fine and points deduction], which now looks unlikely to take place before mid-June but suffice to say we have appointed Queen’s Counsel to represent us at the hearing...

'Our local MP Natalie Elphick is also on the case and I understand representations will be made at the ministerial level as well as with Tracy Crouch’s inquiry into football governance. I am extremely heartened by all the messages of support from all over the country as well as the football media’s vocal support...

'With regard to next season, Hess (Andy Hessenthaler) will continue as Manager and obviously, we will be starting in a compromised position, regardless of the appeal outcome. We will not be able to compete financially with the big rich clubs in the league, but we are planning an ‘alternative approach’ because the financial madness which is prevalent in our league currently is not sustainable and is destroying the game aided and abetted by the hopeless administrative structure at our level.

'What we will need as a club is for the whole town and district to come together to help us regroup and show the establishment that we will not be bullied. We stand united for what is right and just and we will not be cowed... Let us show football there is a better way!'"

The Dorset Echo tells us that "Weymouth have extended the loan of striker Andy Dallas until the end of the season.

Dallas, 21, has scored eight goals in 17 games and registered five second assists since joining from League Two promotion-chasers Cambridge United in January.

Weymouth have renegotiated the deal for a player who is integral to their style of play, using his pace and movement...

Weymouth manager Brian Stock said... 'We have seen on numerous occasions this year what he brings to this team. His goals have played a pivotal role in the upturn of our results'...

However, the Scot is nursing an injury".

Also from the Dorset Echo we learn that "Aston Villa loanee Dom Revan has sustained a broken jaw and subsequently left Weymouth...

Revan, 20, had not played for the Terras since an aerial collision in the 2-1 loss at Torquay United on Saturday, April 10.

Weymouth initially suspected concussion but scans at Villa Park have revealed a broken jaw, ending the promising defender’s spell at the Terras.

Revan played 17 times for Weymouth, recording five clean sheets and one second assist. His place in the side for Tuesday's trip to Maidenhead will likely be filled by new signing Ben Morgan.

Boss Brian Stock explained... 'What a fantastic lad, he’s a massive loss... When he decided to join Weymouth we were languishing near the bottom of the table... It takes a lot of bravery for a player coming out of a Premier League club to join us and say "I’m up for the fight". That alone impressed me immensely. He can be a shy boy but what a fantastic character he is... The fact he chose us over a few other clubs, I was really pleased'".

According to the Maidenhead Advertiser, "Weariness caught up with Magpies but they got the job done.

Sam Barratt has admitted Saturday’s lethargic second half showing against Woking may have been a result of the side’s wearying trips to Stockport County and Wealdstone the previous week.

But he was glad to see them dig deep to get the job done and hopes they can lift their tired bodies and minds once again for Tuesday’s visit of Weymouth.

United looked to have the points in the bag after Danilo Orsi-Dadomo’s first-half brace seemingly put the hosts into cruise control.

But Kane Ferdinand’s goal out of the blue moments after the restart handed the inexperienced visitors a lifeline which they very nearly took as they seized the momentum in the second half".

The Derbyshire Timesreports that "Chesterfield can achieve something 'really special' this season, says midfielder Curtis Weston.

The Spireites are challenging for the play-offs in the last month of the campaign which was unthinkable six months ago when they were fighting relegation.

The 34 year-old has been one of Town’s top performers again this year...

Weston said 'Like the gaffer has said we have done not anything yet, we have done well so far, but there is still a job to be done and we have put ourselves in an incredible position where we can go and do something really, really special this season'...

The former Gillingham and Barnet man is enjoying his time playing under manager James Rowe, who he says demands intensity, discipline and provides a ‘clear roadmap’ of what you need to do to play in his team... Rowe’s recruitment has brought instant success...

The midfielder said... 'There are no bad eggs in the squad at all. The gaffer has done well to bring in a certain type of character and really good players as well... It is really pleasing that a lot of us are going to be together next season, hopefully in the Football League'...

The goals have dried up a little bit for Chesterfield in recent weeks... Losing star man Akwasi Asante to a ruptured ACL has not helped, and Weston himself is being managed game-to-game with a sore Achilles". 26 April 2021


Although Altrincham are on a run of poor form, having lost four matches in succession, they are only marginally worse off then their guests on Saturday. The visitors, Notts County, have taken just one point from their last four fixtures, their draw last Saturday at Torquay being the one point in question.

And both Alty and the Magpies surrendered two-goal leads last Saturday, although Alty's guests did hold on to a point at Torquay.

The Nottingham Post tells us that on Saturday "The Magpies surrendered a two-goal lead as they were forced to settle for a point at Plainmoor in the National League clash.

The Magpies had deservedly taken the lead before the interval when Dion Kelly-Evans rifled in his first goal for the club which came after Jimmy Knowles had hit the bar with a header.

Mark Ellis then made it two after the interval with a fine finish, but Connor Lemonheigh-Evans hit back for the Gulls with a strike at the back post.

The Gulls were then reduced to 10 men when substitute Josh Umerah received a second yellow card but, despite the disadvantage, Ben Wynter struck in stoppage time to break Notts' hearts...

The biggest frustration watching Notts this season is that through open play they are defensively sound. But once teams start loading the box and pumping balls into the box, that’s when you begin to fear the worst.

Set-pieces and long throws have been an Achilles heel for Notts throughout this season but in the first half against Torquay, they dealt with them remarkably well.

But Notts couldn’t maintain that level of authority and the goals which earned Torquay this 2-2 draw could have been easily avoided.

There needs to be an inquest as to how three players were unmarked at the back post for the first goal and the second wasn’t great either.

Burchnall said after the game he believes it is a problem with mindset rather than a result of coaching...

There was much to admire about Notts’ performance for much of this game... Mark Ellis, Connell Rawlinson and Alex Lacey all dovetailed superbly as the three centre-backs which ensured debutant goalkeeper Luke Steele did not have one save to make in the opening 45 minutes.

But it was the midfield axis of Jake Reeves, Jim O’Brien and Michael Doyle who were particularly impressive... undoubtedly the best performance we have seen from a Burchnall side since he succeeded Neal Ardley...

Injuries severely hampered their quest to claim all three points. Lacey, who had such a good first half, had to be replaced at the break before Jim O’Brien, who was a serious contender for man of the match, was forced off after 68 minutes.

Unfortunately, the substitutes who were brought on in their place struggled... as Calvin Miller, Regan Griffiths and Lewis Knight couldn’t quite match the tempo of the game...

Given how well Lacey and O’Brien had played, Notts would have undoubtedly taken all three points if they had been able to continue".

ON THIS DAY: 26 April

Back in 2014, Alty were playing their fifth successive away game on the date of 26th April.

It ended in a 5-0 win for Alty as they completed the season with four wins and two draws; the wins included a 6-1 triumph at Workington and a 5-1 defeat of Vauxhall Motors at Moss Lane.

Above: Mission accomplished; Alty players take a deserved drink at the end of the game at Histon, which secured a third-placed league finish in 2014.

Alty went on to win promotion via the play-offs through Greg Wilkinson's late goal against Guiseley, whilst Histon were relegated in second-bottom place. Indeed, for the second match in a row, Altrincham were meeting a club that would not be in the same division next season. In this case, Histon's relegation had been confirmed already. Back in August, Histon had drawn 2-2 at the J. Davidson Stadium.

The 2014 return fixture was in the Skrill North. Altrincham cruised into a 4-0 lead inside 25 minutes. Scott Leather's unchallenged header started the process in the sixth minute, from a James Lawrie freekick.

Nicky Clee made it 2-0 after ten minutes after a Reeves effort had been saved. It was 3-0 on 15 minutes when Reeves was put through and scored. The fourth arrived in the 24th minute when Reeves headed in after the ball had rebounded to him off Lawrie.

Histon had some threatening moments mainly from aerial balls arriving from long throws and corners and Coburn had to make a couple of useful saves in the first half.

Lawrie added a fifth four minutes after the interval but there were to be no further goals.

ALTRINCHAM: 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. James Walshaw, 10. Damian Reeves, 11. Nicky Clee SUBS: 12. Tom Marshall, 14. Matt Doughty, 15. Greg Wilkinson, 16. Kyle Perry, 18. Russ Saunders.


The Nottingham Post wanted to report on the Torquay v Notts County match last Saturday but "Not only were Notts Live denied access from covering the game at the weekend, but so too were BBC Nottingham...

Unfortunately, Torquay’s policy isn’t to hand out free streams so the Notts media were forced to pay to bring you coverage either in print or on the airwaves.

But if that was not bad enough, the head coach Ian Burchnall was forced to conduct his post-match press conference in a street rather than inside the ground... This was a phone interview as no Notts-based journalist was present and it simply made no sense.

Torquay are going great guns... but they let themselves down massively over their treatment of the Notts media at the weekend. Still, at least they had an extra £9 for the coffers."

Wrexham Fan reminds us that "A couple of weeks ago we were horrified at how quickly things had gone wrong; suddenly we’re loving life again.

Losing key players and three games on the trot cost us our outside chance of staying in the title race... However, the last two matches have made light of the crisis, and underlined the value of Dean Keates’s diligence.

Keates deserves a massive amount of credit for being so successful in a restricted transfer market...

I’m not trying to say that our three new forwards are long term solutions, or that they are going to power us into the Football League. However, there’s no doubt that, in the restricted circumstances he was able to operate in, Keates has certainly improved his options.

Obviously, Gold Omotayo has made the most striking impact. He’s an honest-to-goodness target man, who wins plenty of headers against centre-backs...

Chris Sang, in just two very late substitute appearances, has shown that he might have something. He’s quick, and showed a cool head when he played Omotayo in for his goal. On paper, he was the signing with the least on his CV, but in the short glimpses we’ve had of him, I suspect he might be rather more than a punt in desperate circumstances...

The third new man, Keanu Marsh-Brown, looked like he still needs to get fully up to speed... but he’s an exciting signing... He’s been consistently successful at this level before...

At a point where our season was in jeopardy, Keates has acted decisively and effectively. The promotion push is back on, and we have Keates’ problem-solving to thank for that".

FC Halifax Town tell us that "The Shaymen lost 2-1 to Bromley...

Pete Wild began by giving his thoughts on the game, saying 'Apart from the result, we dominated the possession and I think they came here and did exactly what we did to Chesterfield last Tuesday night; sat in central areas. Today, we got done by not playing with enough pace in our passing.

'Bromley came here and got it spot on with a typical away team performance, but we need to be quicker and try to hurt them. We had two or three great chances, but we just didn’t take them'.

The Ravens opened the scoring from the penalty spot...

Wild later summarised the second half 'We moved the ball quicker in the second half and we started to hurt them more and get in behind; and into the box but they got bodies in front and blocked our chances'.

James Alabi made the game 2-0 right at the death before Neill Byrne snuck in with a consolation just after...

Wild ended the interview by mentioning new signing Darren Stephenson, and why the Curzon Ashton forward was brought to the club on-loan until the end of the season. 'Daz is a top player, and I’ve known him for years; he’s played in the league above, this league and the league below. Darren is a very strong, powerful and physical centre forward, and with our luck with forwards this season I thought we could do with another; you can’t have too many forwards'".

Yeovil Town report that manager "Darren Sarll bemoaned a disappointing performance after his Yeovil Town side suffered a 5-1 defeat away at Solihull Moors.

Justin Donawa opened the scoring for the home side early on before Rhys Murphy equalised shortly after half time.

However, minutes later, Solihull took full of advantage of Town’s sloppiness re-taking the lead in the 58th minute. Soon after that, Mark Yates’s side run [sic] rampant, sealing the victory in fine fashion as Donawa got his hat-trick and Solihull’s fifth.

'I thought we looked really mentally tired today', he told BBC Somerset, post-match... 'I think we looked really fatigued mentally and it can’t be down to our physicality as we’ve had a clear week of playing. Mentally, there’s probably a real good reason for that, but four of their five goals were from set-pieces. This is the National League... and we’ve just got to control the box much better aerially. I thought we were very poor of that, and the two-centre backs know my feelings on that.

'I could see that in the first-half... I think we have a personality weakness. A character weakness, a lack of resilience, weakness more so from the younger ones, but they're developing that...

'We got well and truly beaten up today and... that will become unforgivable. It’s unforgivable because... there’s nothing to be scared of when it comes to playing a game of footbal... Today we looked weak, young and need to [do] better'".

We learn from Devon Live that "Asa Hall said the Torquay United dressing room is ‘full of character’ after the 98th minute goal by Ben Wynter that drew the Gulls level with Notts County on Saturday.

The goal was due reward for a lot of hard work in a game that Torquay had to come back from being 2-0 down by the 48th minute. And it propelled the team to the top of the National League again...

It was Connor Lemonheigh-Evans who scored the first goal back in the 75th minute. Torquay went down to 10 men in the 88th minute when substitute Josh Umerah received the second of his two strange yellow cards, and Wynter did just enough to force the ball over the line in the last minute of time-added-on.

Hall, the captain, said... 'There is a real belief that we want to get promoted and everyone is thinking about that. That comes from the Gaffer, from Aaron Downes and all the staff'...

For Notts County it was their fourth game without a win after three defeats and one that hurt looking at the reactions of the players at the final whistle. It could have been worse for them with Adam Randell putting a late free kick high over the bar.

But County are better than that run suggests and under new manager Ian Burchnall they have a coach who is trying to get the team playing some quick and clean football. However, Torquay are doing the gritty stuff this side of the season as well as they did the pretty stuff until Christmas. Gary Johnson knows well that you need both ways of playing in your armoury...

Hall said 'We know Notts County are a good team and they showed that, they took a 2-0 lead. Then the ref goes against you and things go against you but we have dug in and it was a massive finish to the game'...

It was an unchanged team that Gary Johnson named with Danny Wright, Amarni Little and Kyle Cameron all still missing and no return yet for Ben Whitfield or Aaron Nename. On the bench was new loan signing Lucas Tomlinson, the 20-year-old

Bermuda's Royal Gazette informs us that "Justin Donawa broke his season-long scoring drought with Solihull Moors in outstanding fashion with a hat-trick in a crushing 5-1 defeat of Yeovil Town...

The Bermuda forward has been an inconsistent presence in the Solihull squad, with only five starts in 16 appearances since his move from Darlington last October...

Meanwhile, [another Bermuda] Jonté Smith was an unused substitute as Woking’s struggles continued in a 2-1 defeat away to Maidenhead United.

It was only a month ago that Woking were in mid-table and dreaming of a trip to Wembley, but the March 27 defeat by Hereford in the FA Trophy semi-final has triggered a run of form in which they have lost six of their past seven league matches to sit a perilous four points clear of the relegation zone".

King’s Lynn "came into matchday 34 of the Vanarama National League with Dagenham & Redbridge in bright spirits after winning two of their last three games at The Walks stdaium.

The first half was lacklustre at best for King’s Lynn, despite the comeback against Aldershot Town in midweek, it was Dagenham & Redbridge who were to go into the break with a 2-0 lead.

The goals were provided by Paul McCallum and Angelo Balanta who both delivered superb strikes into the top left-hand corner of Richardson’s net.

Praise deserves to go to the visitors for this game as their link up play, with Balanta, Vilhete, Khan and McCallum all working insync to run Lynn riot throughout the first half. Going forward, Lynn struggled to challenge the Dagenham goalkeeper Justham...

Whilst both goals in the first half for The Daggers were of the highest quality, the first for the away side came during a time where Lynn were temporarily down to ten men when Cameron King went down injured, resulting in an early change for Culverhouse where Alex Babos was to come on to replace him...

Going into the break, the game was still up for grabs but the 5-2-2-1 formation for Lynn needed to change if they were to have any hopes of getting back into this match.

The final 45 minutes started in the worst way possible after Matthew Robinson was able to race into the box to nestle his header into the bottom corner of the Lynn goal to extend Dagenham’s lead even further.

Ian Culverhouse started the second half with a tactical change to show his intent on getting back into the game by bringing on the veteran striker Simeon Jackson to replace Lynn defender Tai Fleming. The change enabled Lynn to press higher up the pitch, in larger numbers, but... the tactical change failed to lead directly to any goals for the visitors...

The story of the first half continued in the second as Lynn were way off the mark, the energy and creativity was lacking in order to break The Daggers down".

25 April, 2021


After the defeat by Barnet, their fourth in a row, Altrincham assistant manager Neil Sorvel said of his team's performance, "It's completely unacceptable. We gifted them goals.

"If you draw from two-up it feels like a loss, but to lose feels like the end of the world".


Altrincham made a number of changes as Sutton, Mooney, Bell, Smith and Kirby all came in to start. Ceesay and Williams dropped to the bench, where Hardy came in. Notable absentees from the home squad today were Hannigan, Hancock and Piggott.

In a game where they were coasting at 2-0 after sixteen minutes, Alty threw the game away gifting Barnet a goal in first-half added time before conceding poorly twice more in the final two minutes of normal time in the second half.

Match report here


After their win at Altrincham, Barnet report that "The Bees pulled off a dramatic comeback as they came from two-nil down to secure all three points in the final minute of the match.

The hosts took the lead inside the first five minutes as an Altrincham free-kick fell as far Ryan Colclough who struck into the bottom corner from twenty yards... They were undone by the Robins on 15 minutes as Alistair Smith headed home from six yards...

In the boiling sunshine the Bees tried to respond as the half went on but never troubled the Altrincham goal as the final minutes of the half aproached.

However, we were handed a lifeline right at the end of the half, as Courtney Baker-Richardson tapped home into an empty net as he pounced on an error from the Altrincham 'keeper...

But the Bees rallied and found themselves with nine minutes left on the clock as Mason-Clark darted onto a loose ball before cooly slotting home.

However, the drama wasn't over and we found a dramatic winner in the very last minute of the match, as Mason-Clark squared it for Tomi Adeloye to bundle home, sparking wild celebrations on the pitch, the technical area and the press box! It was no more than Simon Bassey's side deserved after a rallying second-half showing.

There was late pressure from the Robins but the Bees dug deep and saw out the match to ensure their first win on the road since October".


Next up for Alty is another home game as Notts County make their first ever league visit to the J. Davidson Stadium. However, The Magpies did play at Moss Lane in an FA Cup First Round match in 1972-73 season, which County won 1-0. Alty played County at the wrong time.

Two years before they met Alty, Notts County had been languishing in the old Division Fout but, after winning promotion to Division Three in 1971, The Magpies came to Moss Lane in a 1972-73 season which was to end in theur promotion to Division Two.

Like Alty, Notts County suffered on Saturday from a late goal. The Nottingham Post reports that "The promotion-chasing Magpies surrendered a two-goal lead at Plainmoor as they succumbed to a late stoppage-time goal against the 10-man Gulls

Notts County head coach Ian Burchnall was frustrated by Torquay United’s last-gasp comeback but praised his side for outplaying their promotion rivals for large spells... The Magpies had looked on course to take all three points at Plainmoor where they had taken a two-goal lead handed to them by goals from Dion Kelly-Evans and centre-back Mark Ellis.

But Connor Lemonheigh-Evans pulled one back for the Gulls who then saw substitute Josh Umerah sent off for two bookable offences.

That looked to have put Notts firmly in command, but with virtually the last kick of the game, Ben Wynter’s strike was adjudged to have crossed the line.

Burchnall said he was disappointed with the manner of the goals Notts conceded particularly after they had dominated for the majority of the game.

'The first-half performance was absolutely fantastic and I think for large parts of the second half, we created really good chances again,' he said... 'We came away to team who have won five in a row and I thought for 75 minutes, we completely outplayed them'...

Soft goals from long balls into the box has been a problem that has plagued Notts for the majority of the season with set-pieces also posing a real problem...

'Right now, we’ve been a little bit vulnerable on these situations. And I think ourselves from the bench and the players on the pitch need to stay calm and focused, right to the end of the game because the minute it becomes frantic and stressed, I think it plays into the opponent’s hands.'

The result left Notts ninth in the table, just a point outside the play-off positions... The Magpies are next back in action again on Tuesday night when they tackle Eastleigh".

ON THIS DAY: 25 April

Six years ago today, 25 April 2015, was actually the last game of the 2014-15 season, whereas in 2021 we find National League clubs still having as many as ten games to complete (in the case of Maidenhead United).

Right, Dave Parton punches clear but he suffered a minor nose injury in the process.

Back in 2015, Alty lay twelfth with four matches to play but they were to lose all four games and end the season in seventeenth place. The match on 25 April 2015 was a 5.15pm kick off for a Vanarama Conference match in Essex against Braintree Town, who were then managed by Alan Devonshire the current Maidenhead manager.

In the two clubs' only previous encounter, Altrincham had emerged 1-0 winners earlier in the season at the J. Davidson Stadium but they went into this final match of the season in 17th place, just behind Braintree on goal difference.

For Altrincham this fourth succcessive defeat was the product of another lacklustre display and especially poor defending. The final score was 4-2 to Braintree with all six goals arriving inside a 46-minute spell in the middle of the game.

Mulley headed The Iron ahead in the 36th minute from a Sparkes freekick. Somewhat unexpectedly, Alty levelled four minutes later as Lawrie scored past a wrong-footed goalkeeper.

Two early second-half goals settled the outcome. Cox got them both in a four-minute spell (51 and 55 mins). The first came from a bad error by Havern, who missed a long ball and Cox half-volleyed home. Braintree's third was an unchallenged header by Cox from Sparkes's cross from the left.

Alty grabbed a potential lifeline when substitute Perry scored a fine goal with a low, drilled shot from wide left in the 78th minute. But when Mensah outsprinted Marshall the game was over at 4-2 (82 mins).

ALTRINCHAM: 17.Dave Parton, 6. Scott Leather, 5. Gianluca Havern (c), 16. Tom Marshall, 3. Adam Griffin, 4. Jake Moult, 26. Jordan Sinnott, 19. Ryan Crowther, 7. James Lawrie, 11. Nicky Clee, 10. Damian Reeves. Subs: 14. Kyle Perry, 9. Steven Gillespie, 8. Simon Richman, 25. Peter Cavanagh, 18. Sean Williams.


Lynn News reports that "Linnets boss Ian Culverhouse has labelled King's Lynn Town's pitch as 'not playable' after his sides' loss against Dagenham and Redbridge this afternoon.

Goals from Paul McCallum, Angelo Balanta, and Matt Robinson handed the Daggers a third successive win in a game they never really had to get out of second gear.

But rather than criticise that his players for a lacklustre display, Culverhouse focused on the state of the Walks' playing surface after the final whistle.

'I think this is possibly the worst pitch in the league and I don't know why as there's hardly been any games played on it,' he said. 'Even from kick-off we kick the ball straight back to our centre-half and he ends up volleying it without no one else near him. What the hell is going on? The pitch isn't good enough, it's shocking and it is absolutely killing us.

'For a possession-based side to actually have to play on this is embarrassing and I feel sorry for the boys. I'm asking them to do things which the pitch really isn't allowing them to do and I don't want to change the way we play.'

On the game itself, Culverhouse added 'It was about poor decisions and we conceded some poor goals. You can pick holes in that, but I can't fault the players as we're a patched-up team'...

Pat McCallum handed Dagenham the early lead when he fired a deep cross into the back of the net from the edge of the six-yard box after the hosts had lost midfielder Cameron King to injury minutes earlier.

The impressive Balanta doubled that lead shortly before the half-time break before Matt Robinson added a third goal a minute into the second half".

According to the Derbyshire Times, Chesterfield "Boss James Rowe said it was a ‘positive’ day for Chesterfield after collecting a point against play-off rivals Wrexham.

It was a much-improved performance by the Spireites who should have returned to Derbyshire with all three points...

The Blues’ winless run extends to four matches and they face more of their play-off rivals in the next week but Rowe... said 'We are not going to focus on each game, all that matters is where we are on May 29... and make sure we in the top seven on May 29...

'It is really positive that we have got a clean sheet after the sloppy last two games so that was objective number one... We completely pinned them in the second-half, played really well, the game plan was perfect. We have come to a team who are fifth and been the better team for large chunks of the game; it was just that final ball... All in all all it is a positive day'...

New signing Danny Rowe made his debut and showed ‘flashes’ of quality, the boss said. But it was Joel Taylor who was recalled to the side who caught the eye".

24 April 2021


Saturday 24th April
  • Aldershot Town 2-0 Wealdstone
  • Altrincham 2-3 Barnet
  • Boreham Wood 0-3 Stockport County
  • FC Halifax Town 1-2 Bromley
  • King's Lynn Town 0-3 Dagenham & Redbridge
  • Maidenhead United 2-1 Woking
  • Solihull Moors 5-1 Yeovil Town
  • Torquay United 2-2 Notts County
  • Wrexham 0-0 Chesterfield
  • Eastleigh v Sutton United (k.o. 5.20pm)


Altrincham host Barnet today (3pm). As usual the game is being streamed by Alty TV and access to the stream can be purchased here.

Before the match, Barnet reported that The Bees "will be looking to continue their upturn in form as they make the trip to The North-West to take on Altrincham...

The Bees next opponents have stumbled of late and are without a win in their last three, losing all three fixtures and scoring no goals in the process. Parkinson's side will be targetting the fixture with the Bees as one to eradicate their recent poor form and will be hoping they can stop the rot on home soil.

The Robins made a very good start to life back in The National League and were on the fringes of the play-off places back in January when the sides last met. However, on the whole, since the turn of the year they have slid down the league table and are firmly sat in the bottom half. All in all with no relegation, the Robins will be planning for their second season back in the league and will be hoping to perhaps build some momentum before the campaign finishes at the end of May.

The Robins were formidable when the sides last met at The Hive, after JJ Hooper put the Bees ahead, Parkinson's side responded quickly through Matty Kosylo to level the scores ahead of half time. Parkinson's side continued to pile on the pressure and got their reward in the first minute of added time when top scorer Josh Hancock [left] poked home to secure all three points for the Robins.

That game highlighted the Robins' style of football, they like to pass and keep possession, meaning it'll be another different test for Simon Bassey's side.

The Bees head to the North-West in fine fettle and will be full of confidence after going three matches unbeaten since Simon Bassey took the helm earlier in the month. Tuesday night's goalless draw was another strong display from the Bees, who stood up to everything the Wood tried to throw at them. Despite the pressure, Aymen Azaze rarely had to make a save in a scrappy game in Hertfordshire.

Tomorrow's trip provides a different test for the Bees, but they'll head to the J Davidson Stadium knowing that they are more than capable of securing a positive result, which could move them closer to the pack above them...

In terms of team news, Michael Petrasso continues to train with the team as he looks to ramp up his recovery from injury. Courtney Baker-Richardson is also available after serving his suspension".

First Team Coach, Simon Bassey, provided a video update on how the squad is shaping up ahead of the match with the Robins.

For their part, Altrincham will be hoping that at least one or two of their many recent absentees, through injury, are available. The lengthy list comprises Matty Kosylo, Fisayo Adarabioyo, Andy White (out for the season), Ritchie Sutton, Shaun Densmore, Yoan Zouma and Connor Hampson, who have all missed recent games following injury. In addition, Alistair Smith has not played in the last three matches, after his injury, but he was named on the bench last time out.


Altrincham referee Anthony Taylor has been selected as one of the referees to officiate at the forthcoming Euro 2020 championships this summer. He joins Michael Oliver as England's two chosen referees for the tournament.

ON THIS DAY: 24 April

24 April is a crucial date in Altrincham FC history as, in 2004, that was the date when they beat Runcorn FC Halton 1-0 in a tense match which confirmed that the club would be a member of the newly conceived Conference North division for 2004-05. Failure to qualify would have meant Alty staying in the Northern Premier League Premier but effectively being relegated to tier three of the non-League pyramid below the newly created division, which is now the National League North.

This was the most important game for Altrincham since their end of season game against Kidderminster Harriers in 2000 which could have saved them from relegation from the Conference. The weather was much the same as that day; bright sunshine and warm temperatures.

Alty lay 13th and Runcorn 12th at kick off. Though anything less than a win by 14th-placed Ashton United at home to Harrogate Town on the same afternoon would have ensured both Alty and Runcorn's qualification for the new Conference feeder division next season, both teams had to go for a win in this match to be certain of qualifying automatically.

The gate of 874 was Alty's best for a league game that season and the best since October 2002 when Stalybridge were the visitors, a match watched by 897 spectators.

Alty's injury problems continued right to this final game of the season, with Steve Aspinall having to cry off with a recurrence of an injury picked up a fortnight earlier. However, Barry Shuttleworth had recovered from his chest infection so Stephen Rose switched to right-back. The undemonstrative Rose, like Peter Band, had played in a host of different positions for Alty this season without ever letting the side down.

Compared with the side which Alty had beaten 3-0 at the cavernous Halton Stadium in Widnes in March, only defender Peter Ellis and striker Lee Kissock were missing from the starting line-up.

A 35-yard freekick from Barry Shuttleworth, in the very first minute of the game, gave Alty their needed win. Keeper Tony McMillan got a hand to the ball but failed to keep it out.

Above: Alty celebrate at the end of the game.

Alty gave another good team performance to keep Runcorn out and created a number of chances themselves in the rest of the game. Alty finished 12th in the table and Ashton's loss meant that Runcorn also qualified for the new Conference feeder division so there were mass celebrations at the end of the game.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 2. Stephen ROSE, 3. Barry SHUTTLEWORTH, 4. Mark MADDOX, 5. Gary TALBOT, 6. Ged KIELTY, 7. Gary SCOTT, 8. Ian CRANEY (capt.), 9. Marcus HALLOWS, 10. Peter BAND, 11. Stuart WRIGHT. Subs: 12. Matt BAILEY, 14. Stephen LUNT, 15. Jamie BAGULEY


The Derbyshire Times reports that "Danny Rowe’s arrival will give Chesterfield a ‘new energy’ for the remainder of the season and shows the ambition of the club, says boss James Rowe.

The striker, 32, has joined for an undisclosed fee from Bradford City, penning a two-year deal but a third year can be triggered depending on performance. The Spireites tried to sign him earlier this season before the forward moved from Oldham Athletic to Bradford [City].

When asked if it was a coup... Rowe said 'Yes, it is... We are really surprised (that he was available)... It has been a heavy 48 hours to get him in. I think it will bring fresh energy needed to the changing room because when you get rocked by Haydn’s injury and the Akwasi one, they are two big blows.

'It is not just a short-term one to gamble on promotion. Akwasi isn’t a short-term injury, it is a long-term one so, with Tom Denton’s long-term injury as well, we needed a striker for the longer term and Danny is that.

'We got close in January before we went to Bradford... but it did not work out because he wanted to continue in the EFL... It (his contract) is a couple of years guaranteed and then the third year is incentivised, it is performance-based, and I am sure he will hit those targets knowing Danny.. He probably underlines our ambitions as a club.'

Chesterfield have been on the end of some criticism in recent weeks over their transfer business. [They have furloughed other players at the State's expense].

Rowe said... 'It is nothing to do with furlough, there have been no other players being put on furlough for this to deal, it is a business deal, it does eat into that 20 per cent saving (on the budget for next year) a little but I am sure I can make it back through other ways going forward as I have shown in the last five months.

'People are looking at us saying we are spending a lot of money but let them talk, I am not fussed'...

'Danny is proven at this level, he can change a game on its head so he is an artist,' Rowe explained. 'He will help Kairo (Mitchell) with his development and I am really looking forward to seeing them [sic] two play up front but also not forgetting we have got Nathan (Tyson), Adi (Yussuf) and Marcus (Dinanga) as well so we have got some great firepower.'”

Football League World adds, of Rowe, "the 32-year-old struggled to set the world alight for the Bantams, scoring five goals in 18 League Two appearances".

Meanwhile, Chesterfield "face Wrexham on Saturday and James Rowe is expecting the clash to be a ‘really tasty game’.

He said 'They lost three on the bounce and they bounced back with two 4-0 wins. Everything is rosy in their garden... But I’m sure it’s going to be a really tasty game. They’ve brought a couple of players in and it seems to have given them a lift. They are consistent in what they are doing.

'I really respect their manager. He’s had a good time there in both stints and they are pushing on'".

There are three new faces arriving at Hartlepool United the first being Harvey Saunders, "the forward joins us on loan from League One club Fleetwood Town.

Harvey, who started from Northern League club Durham City, signed for Darlington and made his debut in January 2017... The forward well known for his electric pace and calm finishing, signed for Fleetwood... in January 2019.

As part of the deal, Saunders returned to Darlington for the remainder of the 2018/19 season, after signing a two-and-a-half-year deal with the club

And also, Hartlepool United "announce the signing of Zaine Francis-Angol.

The defender joins the club after leaving fellow National League side Boreham Wood this week. Francis-Angol started in the Tottenham Hotspur Academy. In 2011 he moved... to sign for Motherwell. After four seasons with Motherwell making over 60 appearances, Francis-Angol signed with Kidderminster Harriers.

After two seasons with Kidderminster, Dave Challinor signed him for Fylde on a 2 year deal... A move to league Two followed with Accrington Stanley, however after the expiration of his contract Boreham Wood snapped up the highly rated left back/winger.

Francis-Angol made 16 appearances for the Wood...

Dave Challinor said... 'Zaine is someone I know well and have worked with before. He’s been part of two playoff campaigns with me previously and has experienced high-pressure games. He gives us options down that left-hand side and his pace, power and quality will really add to the squad'".

And the third new player arriving at Hartlepool United is "goalkeeper Brad James. James joins on loan from fellow north-east club Middlesbrough until the end of the season...

He joined Billingham Town in work experience in late 2017 to gain competitive experience. Season 2018/19 proved a progressive one for Brad, with 16 appearances made for the U23s...

In July 2019, Brad linked up with National League North club Gateshead on loan for the season. James was vital in the Gateshead play-off push.

In November 2020, Brad joined Aldershot Town on a month’s loan...

Dave Challinor spoke about his new signing... 'With him being local he is a great fit for us. With Ben [Killip} being ruled out it was important we got an extra one in to cover all eventualities'".

The BBC recalls that "When New Yorker and Major League Baseball investor Peter Freund first set eyes on Victoria Road, the home of National League Dagenham & Redbridge, he was shocked.

The 6,000 seats in the ground were old and faded, its front building falling apart. Were you to punt a ball over one of the modest little stands, you would either break the window of a local resident or lose it in an accident repair centre. Yankee Stadium it was not.

But something about the place captured his attention, and by the time he had finished watching a video of Dagenham's 2010 League Two play-off final victory and polished off a few pints in a nearby pub, he was smitten.

Freund is one of a growing number of American investors putting his hard-earned money into the lower leagues of English football...

What is it about [clubs]... a million miles away from money-spinning breakaway leagues that is capturing the imagination of American investors?

In general, there are two major factors prompting the current US drive for stakes in England's lower leagues: affordability and authenticity.

The lack of relegation and promotion in American sport and the eye-watering values of the elite franchises make buying a controlling stake in them out of reach for all but the ludicrously wealthy.

It is the same story in the Premier League, but in the divisions below clubs are attainable for those with millions rather than billions of dollars to their name.

In theory at least, the structure of the sport means there is no limit to the on-field potential of their purchase...

Memphis Redbirds owner and New York Yankees investor Freund is part of a seven-strong consortium also including ex-Everton and USA international goalkeeper Tim Howard which purchased Dagenham & Redbridge in 2018...

'I became incredibly passionate about the English football system... When I first went out there [Dagenham] it was a surprise to me. But I saw this diamond in the rough and a club that could be returned to glory. I saw videos of them getting promoted at Wembley and I thought 'this is what I want...

'There is no experience like it in the world, sharing a pint after a match with your supporters... It is the most authentic sporting experience in the world'".

In the Nottingham Post we learn that Notts County "make the long trip to Plainmoor at the weekend looking to get their promotion push back on track after three straight defeats...

Notts County have been given a huge boost ahead of their clash against Torquay United after captain Michael Doyle was declared fit and Richard Brindley was also pushing for a first-team return.

Doyle trained on Thursday after struggling with a groin problem while right-back Brindley also came through unscathed after missing several weeks due to a groin problem...

Head coach Ian Burchnall said 'Obviously Brinds hasn’t played for me yet but I look forward to seeing what he can give us. As for Michael Doyle it goes without saying that in terms of leadership, organisation, how he drives the team on the pitch he is going to be huge for us..

The Magpies could also hand a debut to Luke Steele after he arrived on Wednesday with the veteran goalkeeper penning a deal until the end of the season. He will help offset the blow of losing Sam Slocombe who is going to be ruled out for the next two to three weeks with a groin problem.

Burchnall said... 'We had to move quickly to make sure that we have backup and security in that area.'"

And also from the Nottingham Post comes news that "Head coach Ian Burchnall says he understands the frustrations of Notts County’s fans as he vowed he and the players will give 'everything' they’ve got in a bid to keep their promotion dream alive.

The Magpies boss opened his doors to the local media to watch a training session in the build-up to Saturday’s huge clash at Torquay United... The fans have become increasingly anxious... which has led to plenty of dissent on social media...

'Of course I understand,' he said. 'They’ve suffered for quite a while, but we all want the same thing. We want the team back in the Football League.. The fans have every right to be frustrated and think whatever they like. But we’re going to give everything that we’ve got'...

'I’ve looked at the fixtures and of course, we have a lot of away fixtures, but still, for me, we need to finish the season strongly and there is no game we cannot win. We can win every game. There’s no doubt about that and we have the capabilities'".

Footnote: Notts County visit Altrincham on May Day.

"After last Tuesday’s draw at home to King’s Lynn Town, Aldershot Town "will look to return to winning ways back at home against against Wealdstone FC on Saturday.

Hear what First-Team Coach Michael Koopowitz had to say.. 'We’re coming off the back of two poor results, two poor performances which are very unlike ourselves, especially considering the run we had previously. The focus is just getting back to how we started, we looked at how we performed against Notts County, Dagenham and Weymouth and we found a really good formula and system... I think we’ve come away from that in the last couple of games...

'I think this season has been quite strange, there’s been so many twists and turns that whenever the word play-offs is mentioned, it distracts us from what we’ve been really good at and we don’t want to focus too much on those targets.

'Our focus for the next few games is to build on what we’ve put together, our team shape in possession and out of possession, a lot of the good things that we can hopefully use the remaining games as a pre-season for next year so it’s a great opportunity for the boys to come in and show us what they can do'".

23 April 2021


Barnet visit Moss Lane on Saturday.

Last time they visited Altrincham, Barnet won 3-1 in a Vanarama Conference match played on Saturday, 28 February, 2015, as The Bees headed towards promotion back to the Football League.

Right: Tom Marshall, Nicky Clee and Jake Moult are seen in action against Barnet as Stuart Coburn and Barnet's Michael Gash await developments.

Just as in the reverse fixture at The Hive that season, Altrincham conceded an early goal. This time it came even earlier as a ball over the top allowed Akinde, despite offside doubts, to barge into the box where Tom Marshall brought him down. The Alty defender was sent off leaving Alty with an uphill fight after Akinde had converted the spot kick (6 mins).

Barnet doubled their lead in the 29th minute when Villa's freekick from wide left was allowed to drift across the goalmouth into the far corner of Coburn's net, though Gash claimed a touch.

But Alty responded positively and, after a good spell just before the break, the already booked N'Gala, who had committed numerous other fouls without further sanction from the referee, brought down Alty's Man of the Match, Simon Richman. Mr Coy failed to produce the deserved second yellow for N'Gala.

Ironically the same player had likewise avoided a merited sending off for an assault on Jake Moult when already booked in the reverse fixture. But, whilst Mr Coy could not find a reason to book N'Gala for a second time, his manager clearly saw what a liability the big defender was and replaced him at the interval.

But Nicky Clee's penalty was lifted well over the bar to waste a golden opportunity to make a real contest of the game.

However, three minutes into the second half, Reeves got the better of Vilhete and slotted the ball home. The ten men continued to perform well and at times Barnet looked rattled. But Gash was allowed to head home a soft goal after Mr Coy had judged Reeves to have committed a foul. The ref allowed Barnet to take it from the wrong place (62 mins).

Even so, Altrincham continued to go forward and, when Macdonald injured himself committing a foul, both sides were down to ten men for the closing stages. Late on, a wonderful cross from Jordan Sinnott was headed wide by Reeves and Alty's leading scorer also rounded the keeper but saw his goalbound effort cleared off the line as Barnet were penned back.

Referee Coy left the field to a rich chorus of boos as Altrincham's spirited performance ended in disappointment.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart Coburn, 2. Shaun Densmore (capt), 5. Gianluca Havern, 16. Tom Marshall, 3. Adam Griffin, 4. Jake Moult, 8. Simon Richman, 7. James Lawrie, 11. Nicky Clee, 10. Damian Reeves, 14. Kyle Perry, Subs: 6. Scott Leather, 17.Dave Parton, 26. Jordan Sinnott, 19. Ryan Crowther, 25. Peter Cavanagh.


In their third group match in the J B Parker Premier Division Challenge Cup, Altrincham FC Reserves recorded their first win 1-0 at Middlewich Town last Sunday.

The winning goal was scored by Marc Bellingham. The starting eleven comprised Joel Torrance, Daniel Gavaghan, George Howarth, Joe Haggerty, Thomas Millington, Dre Taylor, Madison Davis, Niall Butchart, Reiss Hughes, Curtis Miller, Marc Bellingham. The subs were Sam Corbishley, George Howarth, Daniel Lewis, Max Pouncey and Max Fitzpatrick..

Next Saturday the Reserves are away to Greenalls Padgate St Oswald's in the same competition.

ON THIS DAY: 23 April

In recent years, matches against FC Halifax Town have been generally midweek affairs and eight years ago today was no exception as The Shaymen arrived at Moss Lane on a Tuesday evening for Blue Suqare Bet North fixture.

Right: For a Tuesday night FC Halifax Town brought a good following for the late-season match between play-off contenders.

Scott Leather and Duncan Watmore rejoined the starting line up after recent injuries, but Simon Richman remained sidelined.

Halifax's squad showed nine changes from their last match as they attempted to deal with their heavy fixture schedule by resting players.

Alty won the game to move up to fourth place ahead of a season ending game in the play-offs at Brackley Town. However, Halifax, who were to finish a place below Alty i nthe final table, nevertheless secured promotion via the play-off route.

After a fairly low-key first-half in which Halifax just about shaded the play, without either side seriously testing its opponents' goalkeeper, Alty stepped up a gear to secure a deserved win. Halifax supporters were saying they had fielded a second-string but they can have no complaints about the outcome after two well-worked goals left them comfortably beaten.

The first goal arrived in the 48th minute when Clee won the ball well, received a smart return pass from Rodgers, and placed a left-foot shot wide of keeper, Glennon. After Alty had withdrawn Boshell and Rodgers, they scored an impressive second goal in the 68th minute.

A slick one-touch passing movement took the ball forward up the left channel and was finished off by a well-placed right-foot shot by Matt Doughty, who was playing against one of his former clubs.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 2. Shaun DENSMORE (capt), 3. Matt DOUGHTY, 4. Carl RODGERS, 5. Gianluca HAVERN, 6. Scott LEATHER, 7. James LAWRIE, 8. Danny BOSHELL, 9. Duncan WATMORE, 10. Damian REEVES, 11. Nicky CLEE. Subs: 12. Danny HALL, 14. Pat LACEY, 15. Jake MOULT, 16. Ryan BROOKE, 18. Tony McMILLAN (gk),


News of a former Alty loanee comes from Stockport County who "announce the signing of Elliot Newby for an undisclosed fee, after the attacking midfielder made his loan spell from Chorley permanent by signing a two-year deal.

Elliot (left) has impressed significantly in his nine appearances since coming to Edgeley Park on loan back in February, with both club and player quick to take up the option to make him a permanent member of the squad.

Attacking midfielder Newby, 25, began his career as a youth player at Bolton Wanderers, before joining Barrow in 2016.

After a successful spells at Altrincham and AFC Telford, Elliot made the move to Chorley in the Summer of 2018, playing a key role in the Magpies promotion to the National League... before making the move to County alongside teammate

First-Team Manager Simon Rusk said 'Elliot has come into the group and impressed with his enthusiasm, hard work and creativity. He gives the group strong attacking options, and this permanent deal allows us to continue working together into the future. I look forward to helping Elliot further develop his career and achieve our shared ambitions over the next couple of years'.

Director of Football Simon Wilson said... 'For Elliot it’s a second chance of full-time football and a great environment for him to develop within. For us, it’s a very sensible deal for a player who we believe has the qualities to play in our team at this level and above'".

Also Stockport County "announce the signing of left-sided player Ryan Rydel from Fleetwood Town, for an undisclosed fee.

Oldham-born Ryan, 20, leaves Fleetwood having made 13 appearances in League One for the Cod Army after coming through their academy, and has signed a three-year-deal at Edgeley Park.

Capable of playing anywhere down the left-hand side, Ryan made his professional debut for Fleetwood at the age of just 17...

Looking to play regular first-team football, Rydel spent the last part of the 2019/20 season out on loan at Northern Premier League side Lancaster City... Ryan has again been involved in the first-team picture at Highbury Stadium this season, making an additional seven appearances for the Club this campaign and starting their last game against Crewe on Tuesday.

He joins fellow ex-teammates Paddy Madden and Macauley Southam-Hales in making the move from Fleetwood to County this season...

Director of Football Simon Wilson said 'We not only want to have the best players for now, but also for the future. Ryan has an opportunity to be a bit of both. Young, athletic, natural left sided players are not always easy to find'".

The Blackpool Gazette adds that "The 20-year-old has been in and out of the first team picture this season, but... started against Crewe Alexandra on Tuesday night.

It was Rydel’s fifth appearance since Grayson’s appointment as head coach at the end of January and speaking after the game about him, Grayson said... 'He had a few games a few weeks ago, then we took him out of the team. But in the last few weeks in training he’s shown that he deserved an opportunity. He came off (after 65 minutes) because we changed the system, went to a back four'".

Chesterfield "have signed Danny Rowe from Bradford City for an undisclosed fee.

Rowe, 32, joined Bradford from Oldham Athletic in January...

He said... 'The set-up here is brilliant. I spoke to the manager and he really wanted me to come. I have come here to play games and enjoy my football'".

Earlier, according to the Derbyshire Times, had reported that "Chesterfield are believed to be in the hunt for Bradford City striker Danny Rowe.

The 32-year-old has a prolific record at non-league level and would boost the Spireites’ attacking options following injury to top scorer Akwasi Asante.

Rowe only joined the League Two Bantams from Oldham Athletic in January on an 18-month deal for an undisclosed fee after scoring 11 goals in 32 appearances for the Latics.

He has scored five in 18 for Bradford this campaign but has not been featuring regularly recently.

Bradford’s joint-boss, Mark Trueman, told the Telegraph & Argus 'Danny wants to play football, but we’ve got a lot of good strikers in the building.'"

Get Surrey tells us that "Woking boss Alan Dowson admitted he is having to 'get the begging bowl out' just to get a team together as the Cards take on Maidenhead United at York Road on Saturday (April 24) before a trip to FC Halifax Town on Tuesday (April 27)...

Dowson has to hope youngsters such as Leo Hamblin, Jack Skinner and Sam Evans can continue to step up to the mark along with Joe Leslie too... Dowson is also indebted to MK Dons for allowing him to take midfielder John Freeman on loan for nothing while Crawley Town have already done that with Sam Ashford and similarly, Zach Robinson from AFC Wimbledon.

Unfortunately for the Cards boss, Ashford and Robinson are both injured but he intimated they could both return for the home game against Weymouth on May 1. Max Kretzschmar too could be back for that clash but Moussa Diarra is unlikely to be used again until Ramadan finished on May 12...

'We have to get a side out,' said Dowson. 'Moussa can’t play because he’s weak and I won’t play him now so I’ve taken that away from him. He’s been like that for a while. He can’t play with nothing in his stomach. I admire him, I do, but he will have to miss a few.

'Can I draft anyone in? I don’t know that we have to if Leo [Hamblin] plays like that and [Jack] Skinner too [against Torquay]. [Sam] Evans wants to come on and play too and you’ve got Joe Leslie on the bench as well. Then there’s Selim Saied who has done well in the youth team. We’ve got to just play them even though we have to protect them too.

'I see Wealdstone got done six again [lost 6-0 to Maidenhead] and it was seven on Saturday [lost 7-2 against Hartlepool] so they are similar to us. We’ve just got to make sure the manager takes the blame for results, just throw it on to me, I’m not bothered.

'I know exactly where we are going as a club and as a team. The owner [John Katz] knows and Rosemary [Johnson, chairman] has just been as good as gold again, and I think the supporters know too. They know where we are and what’s to come and it’s a very exciting time for the football club. We are just trying to see the season through'...

On the 2-0 reverse against Torquay, one player who was exemplary again was Kane Ferdinand".

Talking of Torquay, Devon Live tells us that "Gary Johnson has confirmed Danny Wright is injured, ahead of Torquay United's three home games, starting with the visit of Notts County on Saturday but the manager did not want to say how long the striker might be out.

Wright limped off the pitch at Sutton United last week and wasn't in the squad for the game against Woking on Tuesday night. The 36 year-old had a hamstring operation in February but was back in the team four games ago and scored on his return.

Wright's return has coincided with an upturn in form that has seen United win five games on the trot and get themselves right back into the race for the National League title, so seeing his name missing from the teamsheet on Tuesday, along with the names Armani Little and Kyle Cameron, was a concern for the fans.

But Johnson was happy to clear up why the trio were missing at Woking today... 'They were all missing for a reason. It wasn't that I was resting them, which I have seen somewhere. You would be a fool to rest players such as them. They have all got slight injuries that if given another game in quick succession, and then another game, are injuries where it was dangerous to play them and risk losing them for longer, maybe.

'Armani is probably the one that will come back quickest. We are still waiting on the verdict to see how Kyle was. I won't say the injuries because again we would like to keep that to ourselves. And then Danny just felt a slight twinge in his hamstring from what he had before so we don't know how long or short that is going to be just yet'...

Johnson thinks the National League schedule has been badly planned and that it has led to injury problems for all teams...Said Johnson 'And I want somebody to blame, I really do. I don't want to just chuck it out who I think is to blame but they obviously didn't confirm our schedule with a doctor because that doctor or specialist would have said 'hold on a minute, you are going to have too many injuries. You are going to take people to the limits and push them again'. And that's what all the clubs are finding.

'Anyway, our squad had got us in a good position and I thought Matt Buse came in and had a fantastic first half... and obviously Scott Boden came back in and this is where the involvement of the whole squad is important'".

News of another unrelated Johnson comes in the Halifax Courier, which tells us that "The presence of Sam Johnson between the sticks at The Shay has become reassuringly familiar over the last five-and-a-half years.

Johnson made his 200th league appearance for Town last month, having made his debut back in November 2015 under Jim Harvey... The 28-year-old admits his double-century has gone quickly...

He said, 'When you come on loan to somewhere you don’t expect to stay there (for that long) but everyone knows my love for the club, and I’m looking for another 200 hopefully... As a person, I’m pretty chilled and laid back so I’m still the same really...

'You do get better as a goalkeeper as the years go on... Personally, to be honest, I think I’ve been average, OK,' he said of his season so far... but if I’m really harsh on myself this has probably been my weakest season... Hopefully I get back to the standards I’ve been at...

'Goalkeepers are going to be at fault for goals... it’s about your reaction'...

'I think I’m still a very good shot-stopper, it’s just the little things that need tidying up... It’s probably the best Halifax team I’ve played in, especially going forward, we score quite a lot of goals compared to how we did in the past,' he said...

'I’ve kept a lot of clean sheets and finished 14th, 15th in the league, I’m not keeping as many this season but we’re fifth at the minute, so it’s an easy choice for me which one I prefer'...

'When I first joined it was two days a week, didn’t really know where we were training, in Salford, Sheffield, Halifax, Leeds,' he said. 'Then it went to three days and now we’re a full-time outfit at the Brownlee Centre'...

On Wild and assistant boss Chris Millington, he said... 'I can guarantee you’ve got a manager and an assistant manager who work ridiculously hard to give us every piece of information, so it’s down to us to go and implement what they tell us.'"

22 April 2021


Altrincham FC announces that "Phil Parkinson has completed a signing he believes can 'kick-start' an upturn in Altrincham's fortunes after landing energetic Harrogate Town midfielder Connor Kirby on loan for the rest of the season...

Though still only 22, the Barnsley-born midfielder already has an impressive pedigree after playing in the Championship for Sheffield Wednesday and making 34 League Two appearances on loan for Macclesfield Town last season and 16 for Harrogate this season... Parkinson said 'Connor is a really tenacious player who gets round the park well, likes a tackle and can also switch the ball ever so well...

'We are in a position where we can offer him some game time, because we are coming to the end of the season, with not a great deal to play for, and I need to take these opportunities to look at one or two things. Connor is not playing at Harrogate, and who know what the future may hold? He might like it here and want to be here, or Harrogate might want to keep him...

'The lads who are here need to be fighting to stay here, because if I see a lack of fight, and I felt there was an element of that at 4-0 down in the second half against Sutton, I won't accept it... It went very flat for me, so maybe Connor coming in will give everyone a kick up the backside and a lift'".

Footnote: Should he be named for Saturday's game he will become the 26th player to make a debut or second debut in an Altrincham league match squad this season.


The Sale & Altrincham Messenger reports via press and media officer John Edwards that Altrincham manager "Phil Parkinson admitted Altrincham were on the wrong end of 'a gulf in class' after they were given a 4-0 drubbing by Vanarama National League title favourites Sutton United...

Alty’s third straight defeat was far and away their heaviest of the season, and there were no excuses from Parkinson as he reflected on a display of strength and power from second-placed Sutton, who are just one point behind leaders Hartlepool United with three games in hand after the most emphatic of victories.

'It looked very much like a full-time team against a semi-professional side,' said the Alty boss [right]. 'You look at their organisation, desire and fitness, and the condition of their players compared to ours, and you have to say there was a gulf in class. I have to be honest and say I was expecting a few of these this season but, full credit to the lads, this is the first one where I have had to say, hand on heart, we were well beaten.

'We were our own worst enemy at times, with the goals we conceded, and we have addressed that in the changing room. But there’s no getting away from the fact that it was a 4-0 game. They showed real quality in executing what they are good at, which is being direct. It’s not often I give a direct team some credit, but they were very good at it.

'We have to accept that, as a part-time team, this is likely to happen now and again, but that is why we are trying to change things as a club and give ourselves the best chance of playing and competing at this level. It is imperative we are at the highest level in non-league football.

'We have more than held our own this season, but we know there is some fine-tuning to be done and there is an issue over not scoring enough goals. It is very difficult in the changing room at the moment, because we are not used to losing games like this.

'But we will strive to keep progressing. There’s no going back now. There may be some turbulent times along the way, because of the level we are playing at, but this club will keep going forward.'”


Altrincham host bottom club Barnet on Saturday, with The Bees enjoying an improvement in form recently.

The Barnet & Potters Bar Times tells us that "Barnet enjoyed their first National League victory in 13 games with a 3-1 win over Aldershot [last Saturday], which they then followed up with another solid performance in a 0-0 draw with Boreham Wood.

JJ Hooper gave the home side the lead at the Hive in the win over Shots, heading home in the 30th minute. Aldershot responded quickly... to produce an equaliser after 37 minutes.

Left: Oluwatomisin ("Tomi") Adeloye in his Alty days.

The referee then awarded Barnet a penalty after Ephron Mason-Clark was brought down in the area, and the forward stepped up to slot the ball into the bottom right-hand corner. [Ex-Alty man] Tomi Adeloye topped the triumph with a late goal in the fourth minute of injury time.

Things were much cagier on Tuesday night as Boreham Wood’s National League play-off hopes suffered another blow as the Bees held them to a goalless draw...

Barnet, who are now unbeaten in three matches, had a great chance on the half-hour, with Tomi Adeloye being denied by a fine save from Wood goalkeeper Nathan Ashmore".

Barnet's squad for the match on Tuesday night comprised Barnet: Azaze, Preston, McQueen, Kefalas, Taylor (Richards-Everton 88), Adeloye (Faal 75), Beard, Skeffington, Mason-Clark, Vaughan, Daly. Subs not used: Callan, Nugent, McBurnie.

Barnet "Manager Simon Bassey said he thought his side created the better chances against Boreham Wood...

'It was a different kind of test, a different shape to what we’ve played against before previously so that caused us some different problems...

'We defended well and in the first half I think we had the better chances. It wasn’t a game of loads of chances'".


Harrogate Town has a lengthy tribute to Jordan Sinnott (right) by his close friend and former team-mate, Jon Stead.

The article also refers to the Jordan Sinnott Foundation Trust, set up in his memory, and of which former Arsenal striker Ian Wright is a Patron.

ON THIS DAY: 22 April

Two years ago today it was Easter Monday and the date of the last home match of the regular 2018-19 Vanarama National League North season as Altrincham drew 1-1 against Hereford United which cemented their place in the play-offs. Technically Altrincham needed a point from this game to be absolutely certain of a play-off place but, in reality, their goal difference meant they were as good as qualified before kick-off today.

Phil Parkinson, with an eye on the extended season, did not risk a number of first-teamers who were carrying minor knocks. So, Altrincham went into this game without five regular starters in the shape of Andy White, John Johnston, James Jones, Sean Williams and Josh Hancock, with only the latter two being on the bench.

Back into the side from injury came Yusifu Ceesay whilst James Poole, Connor Hampson and Max Harrop also returned to the starting eleven. Matt Chadwick continued on the right wing after his full debut 48 hours earlier.

Hereford had become the division's draw specialists, having racked up six in their last twelve matches. They lay 18th in the table at kick off but had drawn with Alty at Edgar Street earlier in the campaign.

Above: Hereford keeper Yates tips a fine shot from Matt Chadwick (no.7) over the bar for a corner in the first half.

After a goalless first half, Altrincham took a fifty-fourth minute lead for the second game running. This time the goal arose when Poole got possession and was fouled just inside the Hereford half. The referee, who had earlier denied Alty a stonewall penalty, this time allowed Alty the advantage as Hulme broke forward before smacking the ball into the net.

The Bulls equalised ten minutes later when, 35 yards out, Hannigan tried to clear but the ball rebounded off Owen-Evans who advanced to shoot past Tony Thompson.

Despite an impressive cameo from substitute Callum Dolan, Altrincham could not get a winner and Hereford themselves also looked a threat. But, although there were five added minutes, the game ended level. Alty remained fifth.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Shaun Densmore, 3. Connor Hampson, 4. Ben Harrison, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. Matt Chadwick, 8. Max Harrop, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. James Poole, 11. Yusifu Ceesay. Subs: 12. Josh Hancock, 14. Sean Williams, 15. Callum Dolan, 16. Simon Richman, 20. Elliot Wynne.


MK Dpns confirm that "Midfielder John Freeman has joined Vanarama National League side Woking on loan.

Freeman, who signed a contract extension with MK Dons last week, will spend the remainder of the 2020/21 season with the Surrey club.

The midfielder made his debut in their Vanarama National League fixture with promotion-chasing Torquay United on Tuesday night. He played 90 minutes as the Cardinals were beaten 2-0".

The Hartlepool Mail informs us that "Hartlepool United loan star Richie Bennett has been on fire for Hartlepool United since arriving on loan from Stockport County.

With five goals in two National League starts, including a hat-trick in a 7-2 win at Wealdstone over the weekend, Bennett has quickly captured the hearts of Pools fans...

The striker’s parent club Stockport currently sit fourth but will be able to recall the striker at any time from April 29, leaving Hartlepool vulnerable.

'[Being recalled] is out of my control and I can just focus on being positive and having as much impact as I can for Hartlepool,' Bennett said... 'The new gaffer came in at Stockport and I was under-performing at the time which is down to me but the opportunity came up to come to Hartlepool and play games, get my confidence back and keep scoring goals.'

Stockport’s decision to loan Bennett out to a promotion rival above them at the table raised a few eyebrows...

'It’s been a frustrating couple of months for me where I haven’t had a lot of game time but I’ve came [sic] here and I’m enjoying it,' he admitted... 'I’m enjoying my football here, when you’re scoring goals it makes everything easier... Hartlepool create plenty of opportunities as a side...

'I’ve got to look at myself first and foremost as to why I wasn’t playing [at Stockport] but here I’m playing as much as I can.'"

According to the Derbyshire Times "Manager Pete Wild said Halifax’s game plan ‘worked a treat’ as they secured all three points at the Technique Stadium, [Chesterfield].

Jeff King gave the Shaymen an early lead on eight minutes when his soft shot from the edge of the area went through a crowd of bodies and found its way into the net.

And the visitors doubled their lead 20 minutes later when Jake Hyde glanced in King’s cross from close-range... and Halifax held on for the points despite Kairo Mitchell pulling one back with 20 minutes to go.

The win moves Wild’s men up to fifth, four points clear of Chesterfield, but they have played one game more.

'I thought first-half we were excellent, we decided to let them have the first pass,' Wild said. 'I have watched teams go up against them, they want to play through you centrally and I did not want that so we just let them have the first pass and then we tried to pick them off from there, and it worked a treat first-half.

'We thought our game plan worked, we picked them off, scored two and we could have had another one... We knew they would come after us second-half and they would try and load us up, hit the big diagonal into the number two, and we made it nervy, a little mistake, but such is life...

'We've rode the storm second-half but that's the game plan'... Wild added. 'I watched Bromley play against them on Saturday and they were compact, they could not play through them, they had to try and play round them'"

Draw specialists, Boreham Wood "continued their unbeaten run against Barnet in six competitive matches but will be disappointed not to have come away from Meadow Park with all three points.

Wood made two changes from Saturday’s defeat at Yeovil with Krystian Pearce and Matt Rhead coming in for Tom Champion and Keiran Murtagh who both drop to the bench. The first half started off at a frenetic pace...

Ashmore produced a fantastic save to deny the dangerous Adeloye. Tyrone Marsh fired over when well place soon afterwards. Just before half time, Tshimanga looked like he was going to score but was denied by some dogged Bees defending.

Boreham Wood were the dominant force in the second half and the visitors didn’t create anything of note. Wood forced eight corners and had chances to win the game but Barnet, to their credit, held firm and were defensively sound....

Boreham Wood... were the better side for most of this contest [but] they just couldn’t put the ball in the net. Barnet to their credit kept going with some stout defending but offered very little upfront. Since their 5-1 defeat at Wealdstone on Easter Sunday they have been unbeaten in three games in what has been a wretched season for the club".

The Maidenhead Advertiser reports on Tuesday's game in which "Danilo Orsi-Dadomo scored a seven-minute hat-trick as Maidenhead United hammered Wealdstone 6-0 (Tuesday) to revive their slim hopes of a play-off finish.

The visitors took the lead in the first half when Sam Barratt pounced on a defensive error to find the net, and Dan Sparkes scored twice in the final 10 minutes after victory had been rubber-stamped by Orsi-Dadomo’s quick-fire treble.

Victory over the Stones, United’s first three-point haul in six matches, lifts the side to 13th in the National League table, eight points off the top seven with matches in hand over all the sides above them.

Wealdstone’s form has nosedived of late with the side conceding 16 goals in their last three matches, defeats against Boreham Wood (3-1), Hartlepool United (7-2) and Maidenhead (6-0).

The Magpies have also put 10 goals past the Stones without reply in doing the double over them this season...

On an evening of highs there was only one low, with defender George Wells forced off by injury in the seventh minute. He was replaced by Seth Twumasi".

Revealing why he gave James Montgomery his debut in goal in place of Grant Smith, he added 'I want to look at him, I thought it would be a good game to see him in. It was a tactical decision.'"

From the other side, the Kilburn Times reports that "Wealdstone suffered another heavy home defeat in the National League on Tuesday.

Beaten 7-2 at home by Hartlepool on Saturday, Stuart Maynard's Stones saw the visitors forced into an early change with Seth Twusami replacing George Wells on eight minutes...

The Magpies took the lead on 34 minutes, though, when a defensive error gave Barratt the chance to tuck the ball past Askew... The visitors doubled their lead on 63 minutes when a long throw-in reached Orsi, who converted from close range...

Orsi's shot on the turn made it 3-0 on 70 minutes and he completed his hat-trick with a header from a Dan Sparkes' free-kick just two minutes later.

Askew... was beaten for a fifth time on 81 minutes when Sparkes got in behind the home defence and fired home... Sparkes headed home from close range to make it six".

From the Derbyshire Times we read that Chesterfield "Boss James Rowe said it is important Chesterfield do not ‘feel sorry for themselves’ after back-to-back defeats has [sic] dampened their promotion hopes.

The Spireites lost 2-1 at home to play-off rivals FC Halifax Town on Tuesday night at the Technique Stadium but they remain in seventh in the National League...

'We have to pick ourselves up quickly and not feel sorry for ourselves, I certainly won’t,' Rowe said. 'I said there would be ups and downs so we need to make sure our performance levels are back to where they were for 90 minutes and not 45...

'It has been a while since the club has been in big games that are not for relegation or looking downwards so that is positive and we must not forget that... If that [defeat] was not a jolt for us all then nothing will [be]'.”Goals from

Jeff King and Jake Hyde put the visitors ahead in the opening 30 minutes. Kairo Mitchell halved the deficit with 20 minutes to go but overall the hosts gave themselves too much to do.

'I was not happy with the reaction of the team for 20 minutes in the first-half so I was really disappointed with the players on that but ultimately I take it on my shoulders because I pick the team and I pick the shape,' Rowe explained...

'If you are getting 58 final third entries and they are getting 20 and you are getting 18 penalty entries and they are getting four and you lose 2-1, it does not take a genius to work out what is missing. We have had words in there and we won’t be losing at home like that again I can assure you.'

At Torquay United "boss Gary Johnson was pleased with another welcome three points for his side, as goals from Scott Boden and Connor Lemonheigh-Evans sealed a 2-0 away win at Woking on Tuesday night.

'I’m obviously delighted with the result because it was a little bit of a banana skin waiting to happen, because of the respective positions in the league' said Johnson.

'I thought the boys were magnificent in the first half, we created lots of chances, we were relentless in their box. Their keeper made a few unbelievable saves, and it could have been three or four in the first half. To be fair to Woking, they brought on a couple of young lads in the second half and they added some legs, had a lot of energy, and they were pretty fresh. We had to work hard to stick with them'...

'It’s our local rivals, if you like, and it’s put us in a nice position, because you can look at these type of games and think ‘that’s three points’. Well, you’ve got to go and earn them,... I was disappointed with our attacking play in the second half, as we’d have liked to have kept going and got a couple more...

'The boys held out as far as their defensive duties, against a a big team that put a lot of emphasis on set plays'">

King's Lynn Town tell us that "A Michael Gash equaliser saw Lynn return from Aldershot with a point in a good National League performance.

Lynn made one change from the team that lost to Halifax on Saturday with Tai Fleming replacing Simeon Jackson as Ian Culverhouse changed to 3 centre backs.

Aldershot started the brighter... Lynn were impressing, once again, with their passing game...

The hosts took the lead on 30 minutes, arguably against the run of play, when Ricky Miller received the ball just outside the penalty area, the striker turning a defender and putting a left foot effort past Theo Richardson.

Lynn looked for a quick equalier...

Ian Culverhouse made a double change on 60 minutes with Alex Kiwomya and Michael Gyasi replace Cameron King and Tai Fleming as Lynn went more attacking looking for an equaliser.

The change worked as Lynn were level within 3 minutes, Gyasi picking the ball up and releasing Kiwomya whose low cross found Gash to finish well past Walker.

Lynn started to look for a second and forced a number of corners...

Lynn got the point there performance deserved, again impressing with the passing game Ian Culverhouse likes his side to play. The point ended a run of three successive defeats".

21 April 2021


Altrincham welcome bottom club Barnet to the J. Davidson Stadium on Saturday.

Barnet's upturn in form since the departure of Tim Flowers saw them secure a goalless draw at Boreham Wood on Tuesday night to extend their unbeaten run to three games.

After last Saturday's match, Barnet had reported, "What a difference a week makes! The Bees backed up their hard-fought draw with Maidenhead United, with a dominant home win over Aldershot Town.

Goals from JJ Hooper, Ephron Mason-Clark and Tomi Adeloye secured the Bees the points on Saturday and they'll head to Meadow Lane full of confidence, in the hope that they can continue the good feeling amongst the team. What has been impressive has been the resilence Simon Bassey's men have shown defensively in the two matches he has taken to date, they have conceded very few chances, whilst also being threatening on the counter attack. This will be another big test for the Bees, but Bassey will believe that if the same effort can be matched again then a result may just be in the Bees grasp.

In terms of team news, the Bees will be without the suspended Courtney Baker-Richardson who serves the third game of his three match ban. Meanwhile, Simon Bassey confirmed that Michael Petrasso is nearing a return and is back out training with the team, which will be a welcome boost to the Bees in their upcoming matches".


  • Aldershot Town 1-1 King's Lynn Town
  • Boreham Wood 0-0 Barnet
  • Chesterfield 1-2 FC Halifax Town
  • Dover Athletic P-P Weymouth [Dover players furloughed]
  • Wealdstone 0-6 Maidenhead United
  • Woking 0-2 Torquay United


Altrincham FC has launched "a new fundraising initiative to part-fund the planned overhaul of The J.Davidson Stadium pitch and drainage systems.

Aptly named ‘Pitch In’, fans and businesses are being offered the opportunity to support a number of unique fundraising opportunities; these include an Indiegogo Crowdfunder with tiered donation perks, and a selection of physical events to say farewell to the current playing surface".


The revealing of pre-season games continues as a third away game has been announced by Altrincham FC. They "will take on Nantwich Town... at the Weaver Stadium on Tuesday July 27th. Kick-off is at 7.45pm.

Alty also visited Phil Parkinson's former club in the 2020 pre-season, winning 1-0 thanks to former Alty defender Josh Langley's own goal.


Altrincham Women FC, as the former Altrincham FC Ladies are now named, "announce that Aimee Hopkinson has been appointed Captain...

Aimee, a defender, is a strong leader...

Altrincham Women followed up last week's 2-0 victory against Northwich Vixens with a 4-3 win on Sunday against Runcorn based Brookvale United Ladies.

The game was played on a 3G pitch in Warrington".

ON THIS DAY: 21 April

Twelve years ago today Altrincham had a midweek game away at Mansfield Town in the Blue Square Premier. The hosts won 2-0 but this was the first game in six years that Altrincham had played knowing they would be in the same division the following season. For their first visit to field Mill, 96 away fans were in the visitors' end and kept up good natured taunting of their opponents throughout the game.

Right: From one end to the other; nearest the camera is Richard Acton making only his second league appearance of the season at Mansfield. Towards half way are Dale Johnson and Michael Welch, whilst on half-way we see captain Greg Young lining up for a pre-match photo with his Mansfield counterpart and The Stags' mascot. At the other end is the Mansfield keeper.

This match had been previously scheduled on three earlier dates but had been postponed or moved from 18.11.08, 10.1.09 and 17.2.09! The reverse fixture had been won by Chris Senior's goal after just eleven seconds but he was one of Altrincham's absentees tonight, with a hamstring injury.

Altrincham captain Robbie Lawton was finishing his two-match suspension. Stuart Coburn was out with a knee injury so Richard Acton stepped in as Alty's keeper, whilst Marc McGregor was again unfit with his hamstring problem.

Mansfield deservedly took the points but a late rally fom the visitors could have produced two penalties from a more sympathetic referee than referee Robert Madley, who was destined for the Premier League world of officiating.

The Stags dominated the first half after a scrappy opening quarter of an hour. They took the lead in the 28th minute when a freekick from 25 yards was allowed to fall to Garner as the Alty defence froze and the Mansfield man scored from 5 yards.

Mansfield again had most of the play in the first period of the second half but Altrincham staged a late rally and forced several freekicks from the Mansfield defence. When Denham was flattened a penalty looked to be the outcome but the ref thought otherwise and then he gave another foul which appeared to be in the box as a freekick just outside. But the home side deserved their win which left Alty 15th in the table.

ALTRINCHAM: 23. Richard ACTON, 22. James SMITH, 5. Greg YOUNG (capt), 18. Michael WELCH, 2.Chris LANE; 17. Ben WILKINSON, 21. Shaun DENSMORE, 16. Anthony DANYLYK, 3. Matt DOUGHTY; 9. Colin LITTLE, 14. Dale JOHNSON. SUBS: 1. Stuart COBURN, 4. Mark McGREGOR, 10. Chris DENHAM, 12. Joe O'NEILL, 11. Warren PEYTON.


According to the Football Insider "Huddersfield Town, Hull City and Lincoln City are tracking Stockport County flyer Macauley Southam-Hales.

He is a super-quick wing-back and has been the outstanding player this season for County.

A source has told Football Insider the EFL trio are all monitoring the 25-year-old ahead of the summer window.

Southam-Hales has played 21 times, including 14 starts, this season for County... He moved to Edgeley Park last summer after spending a season with Fleetwood Town.

The Welshman played five times for Fleetwood... Last season, he spent time on loan with Hartlepool United and he now has 28 National League games under his belt.

Huddersfield Town, Hull City and Lincoln City are all hoping to be in the Championship next season...

Hull signed defender Festus Arthur from Stockport last summer but he has failed to make an impact in East Yorkshire. The German made two appearances... but suffered a season-ending thigh injury in January".

The Leader Live says that "Two old friends have been reunited at The Racecourse and Gold Omotayo saluted Chris Sang after setting him up for his first goal in a Wrexham shirt.

Omotayo and Sang have been brought in to give Reds' boss Dean Keates more attacking options for the play-off challenge with top scorer Kwame Thomas facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines... and Jordan Ponticelli also out injured...

Omotayo opened his Wrexham account in Saturday's 4-0 victory over Woking with substitute Sang supplying the telling pass.

The duo were together at Bury during the 2018-19 season...

'If I play then I think we have got a bit more robustness about us', said Omotayo... And when Sangy came on, he did brilliant; he gave me an assist... We know how each other plays.

'It is not just me, it is about the team'".

The Nottingham Post confirms that "Notts County have been forced to sign former Nottingham Forest goalkeeper Luke Steele amid injury concerns over Sam Slocombe.

Steele has signed a short-term deal until the end of the season from non-league Stamford and will go straight into the squad to face Torquay this weekend.

Notts have been forced to move for the 36 year-old after it emerged that Slocombe needs a scan on a troublesome groin problem. The former Bristol Rovers goalkeeper went down injured during the defeat to Eastleigh at the weekend but was able to continue.

However, the experienced 32 year-old now looks set for a spell on the sidelines...

'Sam injured his groin at the weekend,' said [head coch] Ian Burchnall.

'He needs a scan but it looks like it’s going to be at least a couple of weeks, maybe a little bit longer. Luke Pilling has come into games and done well but it’s a risk to go into this stage of the season with only one senior goalkeeper.

'It would be a big ask for Tiernan Brooks to potentially step in at a high-pressure point of the season and I think some experience will really help the situation. Luke’s had an unbelievable career and people speak extremely highly of him. We’ve had to act really quickly... but I think we’ve done really well to bring him in.'

Steele has vast experience having begun his career at Peterborough before making a switch to Manchester United in 2002. He spent four years at Old Trafford before leaving to join West Brom who sent him on loan to Coventry and Barnsley.

It was at Barnsley where he made the majority of first-team appearances having racked up more than 190 games before leaving for Panathinaikos. He returned to England in 2017 to join Bristol City and after a year made the switch to Forest who farmed him out on loan to Millwall.

After being released by the Reds, he has been playing in non-league with Stamford in the Northern Premier League Division One South East.".

In the Hartlepool Mail, "Dave Challinor expects to get ‘a couple in’ at Hartlepool United before Thursday’s player registration deadline.

Pools have until Thursday to sign players to take part in the final six matches... Challinor’s side... are looking to strengthen following an injury to goalkeeper Ben Killip as well as the potential of a recall for in-form striker Richie Bennett to his parent club Stockport County.

'I expect us to get a couple in, more as cover than anything else,' he told The Mail.

'We’re still looking for a left-sided defender to cover Fergie [David Ferguson], a goalkeeper and potentially another forward player depending on the Richie scenario, which is uncertain. I suppose we’re preparing for him not being with us and if he’s not then we’ll be prepared.'”

20 April 2021


This Saturday, for the second match running, Alty will be facing a side which includes a Millwall loanee as News at Den reports that "Isaac Olaofe was handed a new position on the left wing in Sutton’s National League game at Altrincham on Saturday and it paid off as the attacker set up the second goal in a 4-0 win...

Rob Milsom gave the south London side the lead in the seventh minute before Olaofe raced down the left and found Donovan Wilson who made it 2-0...

At the other end of the table, winger Sam Skeffington helped Barnet end a 12-game winless run as they defeated Aldershot 3-1 at home.

Barnet are 13 points off safety and effectively bottom of the league after Dover’s season was expunged.

The Bees are unbeaten in two games since Skeffington joined, and under new boss Simon Bassey – only two of nine games out of 31 they have taken points from this season".


Following the announcement of a pre-season friendly away to Brightlingsea Regent on 31 July (2pm), Altrincham FC has revealed a second summer game, this time on more familiar territory, at the Tameside Stadium, against Curzon Ashton on Saturday, 7 August, at 3pm.

The sides last met in another pre-season game before the current campagn on Tuesday, 15 September, 2020 at 7.45pm, in a match played behind closed doors.

After a goalless and fairly uneventful in the first half, the game witnessed seven goals after the break. Ex-Alty man Craig Mahon, starting at right-back for The Nash, did hit the post with a low shot in the first half but the ball rebounded to Tony Thompson. An injury to Tom Hannigan forced him off before the interval.

Two penalties in a five-minute spell early in the second half saw the hosts forge ahead. Both were converted by former Chester FC man Matty Waters who had joined The Nash this summer after playing against Alty in the play-off eliminator at Moss Lane.

A low shot from the edge of the box by Curtis Miller was not dealt with by keeper Mason and that made it 2-1 (65 mins). Two minutes later Mason was left flat-footed as another Miller shot was diverted into the net by Tom Peers and this made it 2-2 (67 mins)

The pattern of two goals for each side in short order continued as a Curzon trialist netted a brace in the 75th and 81st minutes, making it 4-2 to the hosts. That trialist later turned out to be Fisayo Adarabioyo, who later joined Altrincham.

Jordan Hulme then returned to the fray and netted after Mason had failed to hold a Senior shot (86 mins). So the game ended 4-3 to the hosts.

Altrincham's team included two trialist defenders. They were full-backs Ashley Smith-Brown and Joel Senior.

The Robins fielded two separate teams for each half with Toby Mullarkey the only player to start both halves.

First half:1. Tony THOMPSON, 2. Joel SENIOR, 3. Ashley SMITH-BROWN, 4. Toby MULLARKEY, 5. Tom HANNIGAN, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 7. Yusifu CEESAY, 8. Sean WILLIAMS, 9. Jordan HULME, 10. Josh HANCOCK, 11. Matty KOSYLO.

Second Half: 19. Matt GOULD, 12. Shaun DENSMORE, Ashley SMITH-BROWN, Will HALL, 14. Ritchie SUTTON, 4. Toby MULLARKEY, 15. Curtis MILLER, 7. Yusifu CEESAY, 18. Simon RICHMAN, 16. Tom PEERS, 17. Max CLAYTON.


Two years ago today, Alty won a Vanarama National League North match 2-0 away to Nuneaton Borough.

Right: Josh Hancock is congratulated on his goal by Ben Harrison.

Andy White returned from suspension. Defenders Connor Hampson and James Jones had both been unable to complete the midweek game at home to Brackley Town, and neither started. Jones's concussion rules him out till the last day of the season whilst Hampson was a substitute today.

Yusifu Ceesay was not in the squad, having not trained in midweek, so Matt Chadwick made his full debut, on the right wing. Josh Hancock had started on the bench on Tuesday but began the game today.

Ben Harrison started in the absence of Jones.

Borough had named Addison as no.5 but he was replaced at kick-off by no.14 Dunkley who played on the right wing. No. 9 Barlone played at centre-back. Former Alty man, Curtis Obeng was at no. 2.

Boro named only two substitutes, one of whom Tyrell Belford, was not only the son of assistant manager Dale Belford but also the nephew of former Alty striker Kyle Perry!

On a sweltering afternoon and on a bobbly surface, Altrincham put in a mature performance to win 2-0 and secure a play-off place, barring two defeats and a complete meltdown of their impressive goal-difference in their two remaining fixtures.

After a goalless first half at Liberty Way in which relegated Borough actually came the closer to scoring when Caton's superb 25-yarder was brilliantly saved by Thompson, Altrincham took a fifty-fourth minute lead when Josh Hancock completed a neatly constructed move, at the second attempt, with a low shot from about 15 yards.

Alty went on to dominate the proceedings without further breaking down a resolute Nuneaton until added time. Then substitute Max Harrop bundled the ball home at the back post after Shaun Densmore had prompted an advance on the right.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Shaun Densmore, 3. Andy White, 4. Ben Harrison, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. John Johnston, 8. Sean Williams, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. Josh Hancock, 11. Matt Chadwick. Subs: 12. James Poole, 14. Max Harrop, 15. Connor Hampson, 16. Simon Richman, 17. Callum Dolan.


FC Halifax Town report that " We’re still waiting for clarity with regards to the return of fans to stadia; the road map out of lockdown is well documented and we’re waiting to hear how this impacts our home fixture against Chesterfield FC and fingers crossed the possibility of a play-off game(s).

If permitted,Season Ticket holders will get priority to this game again depending on the guidelines set out by Government/Public Health...

If guidelines and capacity allows, we would then welcome fans without Season Tickets on a pre-order match ticket basis..

We understand at this time that we can continue to stream our home games until the end of May 2021".

Meanwhile, the Hartlepool Mail reports that United manager Dave Challinor says "'I have no idea if we’re playing Weymouth at the weekend or not'... after Hartlepool United were informed over a week ago that their National League match against The Terras, scheduled for April 24, would be moved to the final day of the 2020-21 season on May 29.

The National League board gave the fixture rearrangement the green light yet, as of Monday morning (April 19), nothing has been ratified.

'There’s absolutely no clarity on the situation and I’m not happy about it,' Challinor said. 'We picked a team on Saturday [at Wealdstone] looking after Luke [Armstrong] with the hope that we can give him some downtime ahead of Chesterfield on the bank holiday weekend.

'I have no idea if we’re playing Weymouth at the weekend or not which is the fault of the National League. They need to do something about it because they made the decision that the game would be moved to the last day and gave the go ahead but Weymouth haven’t been overly forthcoming, which I understand.

'From our perspective, we need to know. We’ve got to plan a week and we’ve got players travelling home and we need to know what we’re doing with them throughout this coming week and that obviously changes if we have a game at the end of it... Someone needs to take responsibility at the National League.'”

According to the Maidenhead Advertiser, "Ryan Peters hopes Maidenhead United have overcome their recent ‘blip’ after Saturday’s positive performance in a 2-2 draw with automatic promotion hopefuls Stockport County.

The Magpies are still without a win in their last five league matches, but this was a big improvement on recent display...

Manny Parry side-footed the visitors in front from Dan Sparkes’ corner midway through the first half and Danilo Orsi-Dadomo thumped them into a 2-1 lead in the 74th minute, after good work from Ryan Upward and Alfie Egan and in the build-up.

But Stockport were unbeaten in nine matches heading into the contest, and they managed to extend that run to 10 thanks to goals from Harry Cardwell in the first half and Paddy Madden...

Assistant boss Peters said 'Brilliant performance. Of late they haven’t been that great. We’ve come up against a side that is going to finish in the top six, who are going to be fighting to go up, and we felt we should have won the game. Although it’s a good performance, we’ve come away thinking we should have got more from it.'

The Magpies were without Nathan Blissett for the trip to Stockport, after the striker sustained a nasty looking ankle injury in the latter stages of the side’s goalless draw with Barnet at York Road...

'I think the boys just got together this week and said enough is enough,' he said. 'At one stage we had three or four games in hand, and we were looking up. We’ve had a bit of a blip but we’re back on it now... We’re not a full-time team so there is some tail off (in sharpness) and we have to manage the boys...

They sit 16th in the table... This is the lowest they’ve been in the table since the third match of the season when they were yet to pick up a point".

Yeovil Town manager "Darren Sarll reflected on an emotional afternoon at Huish Park... following victory over Boreham Wood, but to him and all associated to Yeovil Town, it was more than three points.

Playing for the first time since the tragic passing of club captain Lee Collins, Sarll [said]...

'They (the players) were incredible, everyone knows how tough it’s been. It’s ironic really, one of our only clean sheets of the season came today...

'I thought Murphy’s impact was brilliant, as was Joe (Quigley) and who else do you want on the pitch to defend long balls than Charlie Lee... I told them that Lee and I both came here to win games and that’s what we did.'

Saturday’s opponents showed a touch of class, handing over a reef [wreath?] of flowers to Carl Dickinson ahead of kick-off, and handling the sensitive occasion with respect and dignity.

'I thought Boreham Wood’s class on the day was amazing, I’ve known Luke (Garrard) for a long time, handing over the reef before the game, and just the way they conducted themselves was excellent... Their respect for the occasion was top class.”

The Dorset Echo tells us that "Weymouth midfielder Jake McCarthy is relishing the extra workload at the Terras.

McCarthy has played 34 times for Weymouth this season, scoring five goals and recording two assists.

One of the founding members of the [ex-manager] Mark Molesley era, McCarthy had been used to training on Tuesdays and Thursdays. However, to compete against full-time teams in the National League, current manager Brian Stock has introduced a Wednesday session to top up fitness...

McCarthy said 'The workload’s gone up but it’s needed. In this league, if you’re not full-time you’ve got to be doing everything you can to try and bridge the gap. We’re getting there and we’ve just got to build on that.

'Adding that Wednesday, it gives a couple of lads that haven’t been in full-time football for a while, or at all (experience)'".

The Nottingham Post reminds us that Notts County manager "Ian Burchnall says Ruben Rodrigues, Jordan Barnett and Elisha Sam must produce the goods in training if they are to force their way into Notts County’s first team.

The trio were left out of the squad that was beaten at home to Eastleigh at the weekend as Notts suffered their third straight defeat in the National League... which saw them tumble out of the play-offs positions for the first time since January.

Notts head coach Burchnall was asked about their absence and whether he was disappointed by their contribution in training in the days leading up to the game. 'I am yes and that’s why they were out,' he said. 'There were no injury concerns. They need to do a bit more work and show it in training every day'...

Burchnall will hope the trio can put themselves in contention for a place in the side to face Torquay at the weekend... Notts have lost four of their last six games which has left some fans fearing their top-seven hopes are under serious threat...

'We didn’t want to lose a game and drop out [of the [play-offs], that’s obvious,' he said. 'But there are a lot of games left to play and that can give us the motivation to go chase and get back in them'".

19 April 2021


Having just played Sutton United, the team with the highest points per game in the National League, Altrincham's next guests at the J. Davidson Stadium are Barnet, the team with the lowest PPG and the bottom club in the division.

Altrincham and Barnet enjoyed twelve clashes in the Conference before summer 1991, when the Bees gained their first promotion to the Football League as a heavy schedule in the closing stages of the season meant that Alty missed out themselves.

Of the twelve clashes at Moss Lane before 1991, Alty won nine, drew two and only lost once

The sides have narrowly missed playing in the same league since then on two occasions.

Alty were relegated, for a second time, from the Conference in 2000, just a year before Barnet were relegated back to that division in 2001. Then in 2005, Alty regained their Conference credentials just as Barnet left that level on a second promotion to the Football League.

Barnet were relegated again to the Conference in 2013 so next Saturday will be their first visit to Moss Lane since February 2015, when Barnet won 3-1. This season Barnet have evaded certain relegation thanks to the Covid-based termination of Step Two football.

ON THIS DAY: 19 April

Above: Colin Little had just been fouled in this picture from the 2008 game at Ebbsfleet.

13 years ago today, in a Blue Square Premier match, played on Saturday, 19 April 2008, Altrincham lost 2-1 at Ebbsfleet United. Alty were without injured left back Ryan Lynch, so Chris Lane came in to the side in that position. Chris Senior was preferred to Joe O'Neill up front. The Fleet had had a very heavy fixture schedule so had rung the changes again to prevent fatigue.

Alty started the game in 19th position and were desperate to put a gap between them and the bottom four.

But the visitors could have no complaints after they lost to an Ebbsfleet side showing few signs of their taxing fixture schedule. Ebbsfleet went ahead in the 39th minute when McPhee scored after Alty failed to clear Charles's cross from the left.

Warren Peyton gifted Ebbsfleet their second with an underhit backpass which was picked up by Akinde. When he made a hash of his chance, Long sidefooted the loose ball home (53 mins). Little and Senior each wasted a great chance to pull a goal back, but in the final stages Alty rarely looked like getting back in the game.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN; 16. Ryan SHOTTON, 5. Darren TINSON (capt), 10. Greg YOUNG, 15. Chris LANE; 14. Greg TANSEY, 7. Robbie LAWTON, 21. Paul TURNBULL, 11. Warren PEYTON; 9. Colin LITTLE, 19. Chris SENIOR; Subs: 2. Steve ASPINALL, 3. Gary SCOTT, 12. Joe O'NEILL, 17. Richard BATTERSBY, 20. Carlos ROCA.


The Nottingham Post tells us that "The Magpies tumbled out of the play-off positions... in what was a third successive loss in the National League...

Ben House's goal just before half-time sealed all three points for Ben Strevens' side as they took advantage of a flat Notts performance.

Notts toiled away in the final third but lacked imagination and creativity leading to a comfortable afternoon for ex-Magpies stopper Joe McDonnell.

Elisha Sam and Ruben Rodrigues were used sparingly by Neal Ardley in the weeks leading up to his dismissal amid concern as to whether they possessed the characteristics required for the National League. The duo must have hoped that a change in manager would have given them a fresh start, but head coach Ian Burchnall left them out of the squad altogether at the weekend.

That’s now two managers who are yet to be convinced they are up to the standard required after they were identified by the club’s recruitment model in the belief they could have a major impact this season. In fairness, Sam and Rodrigues are not the only players who have been signed on the back of using statistics and video footage, but it has raised question marks over the quality of the club’s recruitment once again.

The harsh truth is there have not been many transfer success stories this season and key players who left the club have simply not been replaced by like for like quality in what was a huge mistake.

Instead, there has been a gradual shift by the club to sign young players who are considered 'projects' such as Lewis Knight, Jordan Barnett and Jimmy Knowles but they proved to be raw and unpredictable. That has been reflected by the inconsistency of their performances which has undoubtedly been one of Notts’ biggest problems throughout the course of the campaign.

One would hope that Richard Montague, the analyst and director who oversees the recruitment, will learn where the club has gone wrong this season... Nobody can ever dispute the owners’ financial commitment to Notts, but for all money invested in the squad since last summer, they have had little bang for their buck...

Defeat against Eastleigh meant... it was also the first time they have lost three successive games in the National League since their relegation from the EFL... There are still more than enough games left to salvage a place in the play-offs, but there needs to be a drastic improvement in terms of creativity and quality in the final third... but out of the players available it’s hard to see who can or will step up to the plate.

Kyle Wootton is going through a barren spell, Knowles was excellent against Woking but has failed to consistently produce that level of quality, while Knight looks very raw.

Callum Roberts is now out for the season, Sam did not even make the squad and Enzio Boldewijn started on the substitutes’ bench...

Michael Doyle’s importance cannot be underestimated. The influential captain was back on the substitutes’ bench after recovering from a calf problem... The former Coventry captain is the leading player in the National League when it comes to passes into the final third...

At the weekend... the midfield duo of Jake Reeves and Regan Griffiths were too safe... There were a swathe of bad performances at the weekend, but there was some light among the gloom in Dion Kelly-Evans. The full-back may give up considerable feet and inches to most players... but he has such a big heart".

On the Hartlepool Mail we learn how "Stockport County loanee Richie Bennett, Hartlepool United players and fans react to hat-trick in emphatic 7-2 win at Wealdstone to stay top of the National League

Hartlepool United equalled the club’s biggest ever away win in a league match as they beat Wealdstone 7-2 on Saturday afternoon. It was Pools’ biggest ever win in the National League and would have been the club’s biggest ever away win outright had they not conceded two late goals at Grosvenor Vale.

Recent loan arrival Richie Bennett took home the match ball with a hat-trick while Rhys Oates netted a brace, Nicky Featherstone scored a penalty and Mark Shelton got in on the action as well.

The historic win kept Pools top of the National League and extended their unbeaten run to 15 matches...

Pools teammate Gavan Holohan [stated] with a reference to the uncertainty over the future of Bennett's loan from Stockport County 'join us!'...

Club president Jeff Stelling also implored the striker to remain in the north east".

The Derbyshire Times reports that "Bromley boss Andy Woodman says he expects a ‘feisty’ contest when his team and Chesterfield face each other again later this month.

The Ravens ran out winners at the Technique Stadium on Saturday thanks to goals from Michael Cheek and Joe Kizzi either side of Laurence Maguire’s equaliser.

It got a bit heated on the touchline at times with Spireites boss James Rowe frustrated at being denied two ‘stonewall’ penalties.

Both teams are aiming to get in the play-offs and they will go head-to-head again on April 27.

'We were resolute,' Woodman said. 'I was probably a little disappointed we did not go a few more goals in front in the first-half... I don’t want to get carried away because they have got to come to us in a couple of weeks and that will be feisty, I am sure, because it was getting a bit feisty which I quite like to be honest.'

Cheek notched his 18th goal of the season when he finished one-on-one past Grant Smith...

Woodman said... 'We knew that that was how we were probably going to have our best chance to score and I am just disappointed we did not have a few more'... The hosts looked like the team most likely to win it but Woodman’s men hung on and took full advantage at the other end when Kizzi headed the winner with six minutes to go after beating Maguire in the air at the back post.

Woodman added 'In a weird way this team kind of reacts from setbacks so I was kind of looking forward to the reaction and I said to Kizzi at half-time ‘you have got to believe you are going to score on that back stick’ because he had a couple of chances first-half so I was even more happy that he did that and we had a little chuckle after.'

18 April 2021


With all the other National League games having been completed before Altrincham kick off at 4.30pm, the Robins had dropped to seventeenth (both on points and PPG) in the National League before this match started.

Sutton dominated the first half from the start and deservedly led 2-0 at the interval.

The visitors went ahead in just the seventh minute, from a freekick conceded on the front edge of the box by Williams.

From a central position Milsom curled the freekick into Thompson's top-left corner.

With Sutton still dominating possession Alty created no threat to the visitors' goal before conceding a second time in the 31st minute.

Oloafe fed Wilson from the left and from the edge of the box his low shot went through the legs of both Hannigan and Moult before beating Thompson.

Alty conceded a third before the hour mark as they failed to clear a freekick. Sho-Silva, unmarked, netted comfortably as John's cross from the right recycled the ball (56 mins).

The fourth goal for Sutton was wholly unavoidable. Thompson tried to kick the ball to Moult on the edge of the box. Instead it went to Wilson who hammered the ball back past Thompson (64 mins).

Alty failed to trouble the visitors' keeper throughout the game with tame efforts from Hancock in the first half and Ceesay near the end the only efforts on target.

Sutton rode out the last 25 minutes as comfortable winners, condemning Alty to their heaviest defeat of the season and their third successive game without a goal.

Match report here


Altrincham FC quotes Alty manager Phil Parkinson after the 0-4 defeat by Sutton United, saying "There was a gulf in class today on a number of fronts but overall there hasn't been this season."

Indeed, "Phil Parkinson spoke to Brian Flynn after Altrincham were well beaten by an impressive Sutton United side, who served notice of their title credentials with a very impressive 4-0 victory at The J.Davidson Stadium" and the audio interview is available via the above link.


Following the defeat by Sutton United, Altrincham FC assistant manger Neil Sorvel said, "They ran all over us. We were well second best. I'm disappointed with the goals we conceded but, give them their dues, they dominated.

"We expected the gulf to be big [since promotion] but this was the first time we've really seen it.

"I don't know if it was us playing poorly or them playing well but the difference in quality was evident".


Saturday, 17 April 2021: NB all matches moved to 12.30pm kick off to avoid clash with the funeral of Prince Philip. except where shown otherwise below.
  • Altrincham v Sutton United [k.o. 4.30pm]
  • Barnet 3-1 Aldershot Town
  • Chesterfield 1-2 Bromley
  • Dagenham & Redbridge 3-2 Solihull Moors
  • FC Halifax Town 4-2 King's Lynn Town
  • Notts County 0-1 Eastleigh
  • Stockport County 2-2 Maidenhead United
  • Wealdstone 2-7 Hartlepool United
  • Weymouth P-P Dover Athletic [Dover furloughed players]
  • Woking 0-4 Wrexham
  • Yeovil Town 1-0 Boreham Wood


Sutton United "provided the perfect response, both to Tuesday’s defeat by Torquay and Hartlepool’s demolition of Wealdstone earlier in the afternoon, with as dominant victory as they have enjoyed this season.

From the moment Rob Milsom won, and converted, a free kick after six minutes U’s were in control of the game, and with a four-goal advantage after little more than an hour were able to cruise through to their biggest away win of the season and re-establish the goal difference advantage over Hartlepool that had been slightly eroded by the leaders’ earlier 7-2 win in London.

With Omar Bugiel suffering a minor hamstring injury Tobi Sho-Silva returned to the starting line-up, while Matt Gray chose to accommodate both Isaac Olaofe and Donovan Wilson, Olaofe starting on the left wing, and that latter decision was spectacularly vindicated as Wilson added to his reputation with two goals to take his tally to four since joining from Bath on loan, the first set up by Olaofe...

Milsom was fouled, and it was Milsom who curled the free kick beyond Tony Thompson and in to the corner of the net... and it was U’s who continued to run the game...

The second goal that underlined the superiority came just after the half hour mark when Olaofe attacked down the left before playing a pass inside to Wilson on the edge of the penalty area, and he took a touch before sweeping a left foot shot through a crowded penalty area and past Thompson...

Although there was a brighter start to the second half from the hosts Sutton had soon tightened their grip as another Milsom free kick was headed across goal by Ben Goodliffe, and although Altrincham cleared that, the ball was played back in low by John and Sho-Silva controlled it well before shooting low on the turn in to the net...

After Thompson had beaten away a fierce shot from Craig Eastmond he gifted U’s a fourth, playing a short goal kick straight to Wilson who rolled the ball straight back in to the empty net and re-install U’s as the league’s leading scorers.

From then it was just a question of playing out time with no mishaps... Bouzanis remained largely an onlooker until injury time, when he had to collect a low shot from Yusifu Ceesay which carried little more threat than Hancock’s earlier effort".


According to the Nottingham Post "The Magpies tumbled out of the National League play-offs after losing 1-0 at home to Eastleigh in what was a third successive defeat

Notts County head coach Ian Burchnall rued a lack of cutting edge... Ben House's goal before half-time secured all three points for the visitors as Notts toiled away in attack with clear-cut chances at a premium.

Ex-Magpies goalkeeper Joe McDonnell was only seriously tested by Jimmy Knowles late in the second half as Notts enjoyed the bulk of possession but showed little imagination...

The Magpies who look short of confidence... tumbled out of the play-off positions for the first time since January...

'It is very frustrating,' he said. 'It was like the last game against Solihull Moors. It feels the same in that we dominated the game. We had complete control in the first half and we don't take the chances...

'But we are unpicked again in the 46th minute from the second phase of a set-piece and it's a goal. It's really frustrating. Even in the second half we had total control of the game. We are playing well until the final third and we are just lacking a bit of quality.

'We just need a bit more chaos and creativity just to open it up.'"

The Derbyshire Times tells us that "Chesterfield boss James Rowe said the officiating was ‘embarrassing’ after they were denied two ‘stonewall’ penalties in the defeat against Bromley on Saturday.

The visitors took the lead in the first-half through Michael Cheek before Spireites captain Laurence Maguire equalised with a well-taken finish after the break.

With the Blues pressing for a winner, the visitors broke and Joe Kizzi headed in at the far post with six minutes to go...

A frustrated Rowe said, 'It is an embarrassing result but not as embarrassing as the officials. The first one is a stonewall on George (Carline), he has been bundled down. The second one he (Carline) has touched it and (their man) has come through.

'If their assistant manager is saying it is a penalty then there is something seriously wrong... The lads did not deserve that.'

He added 'They scored two fair goals, there is nothing wrong with their goals... It is the overall feeling in your mouth, the taste you get after the game, that something is not right. That is not right, what has just happened there'".

And there was more bad news from the Derbyshire Times as "Chesterfield’s promotion hopes have taken a huge hit after top scorer Akwasi Asante has been ruled out for nine months with a serious knee injury.

The 28-year-old, who has bagged 10 goals since joining from Gloucester City last November, went off injured in the second-half against Boreham Wood...

Spireites boss James Rowe said a scan showed the striker had ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament... 'He is out for nine months, he has ruptured his ACL, so we have been dealing with that as a group'".

Meanwhile, the Hartlepool Mail informs us that "It was seventh heaven for Hartlepool United on Saturday afternoon as they ran riot at Wealdstone...

The 7-2 win, Pools’ biggest in the fifth tier, almost overshadows the fact that they are now 15 unbeaten and in first place with six games remaining of the 2020-21 campaign.

A Richie Bennett hat-trick, Rhys Oates brace, Nicky Featherstone penalty and Mark Shelton strike saw Pools 7-0 up going into the closing stages before debut substitute Sonny Blu Lo-Everton and Ryan Gondoh scored two fine late consolation goals to make the scoreline slightly less embarrassing for the hosts...

Top scorer Luke Armstrong surprisingly dropped to the bench for the first time with the returning Rhys Oates taking his place. It would prove to be an inspired decision.

New signing Danny Elliott was named as part of a very attacking group of substitutes for Pools with Ryan Donaldson and Luke Williams also named. Goalkeeper Brad Young made up the five with Luke Molyneux and Tom White dropping out of the matchday squad.

Believe it or not, for 25-minutes, this was anyone’s game... But as soon as Pools found a second goal, it was one way traffic... Hartlepool went in at half-time in complete control...

Bennett became the first Pools player to score a National League hat-trick in only his second start...

But Wealdstone’s end to the game... brought Hartlepool down to earth just that little bit. A fine solo goal from new loan signing Lo-Everton made it 7-1 before Gondoh drilled the ball into the top right corner from the edge of the box just before the full-time whistle".

17 April 2021


Altrincham have what is probably their first ever 4-30pm kick off today as they welcome Sutton United to the J. Davidson Stadium for the first time in 21 years.

The kick off was originally moved to 12.30 to avoid a clash with the funeral of Prince Philip but, at Sutton's request, the game was moved again, to 4.30pm, to facilitate the Surrey club's travel arrangements.

As usual with home matches, Alty TV is streaming the game; details are here

As Alty prepare for the game, it should be recalled that np fewer than nine Alty players were not in the matchday squad last Saturday, all having suffered injuries of one kind or another in the recent past. They were midfielder Alistair Smith, forwards Matty Kosylo, Dan Mooney and Fisayo Adarabioyo, as well as defenders Andy White, Ritchie Sutton, Shaun Densmore, Connor Hampson and Yoan Zouma.

All except Ritchie Sutton were mentioned in the club's injury update issued yesterday (see below), and NL Daily adds that "Altrincham manager Phil Parkinson believes the club will stand a stronger chance with regard to injuries next season...

Parkinson explained 'It has been difficult in terms of rehab and recovery from injuries, due to us not having access to gyms in recent months, but recuperation periods should be a lot shorter next season, and we should have fewer injuries to contend with, because we will be able to resume prehab work.

'Other teams have their own gyms, so haven’t had the same issues, but we are hoping to bridge that gap for the start of next season.'”


Altrincham FC have announced their first friendly of the forthcoming summer will be away at Brightlingsea Regent of the Isthmian Premier (step three) on 31 July 2021 with a 2pm kick-off. Brightlingsea is located not far from Colchester, which is the nearest venue at which Alty have played previously. The match has been arranged by Alty director Cathal Morrison who is Regent's First Team Recruitment Officer.

Brightlingsea Regent were formed in 2005 from a merger of Brightlingsea United and Regent Park Rangers. They were promoted to the Isthmian Premier in 2017.

ON THIS DAY: 17 April

Fidteen years ago today was an Easter Monday when Alty travelled to the seaside but lost 2-0 at Morecambe in a Nationwide Conference game. Alty had never won at Christie Park in the Conference in three previous attempts, but they had won the fixture against Morecambe that season at Moss Lane.

Above: The scoreboard, far left, tells the story, as Alty trail 2-0 at Christie Park in 2006.

Chris Adams and Mark Maddox returned after injury and suspension but Val Owen remained sidelined by injury and Stephen Rose was also unfit to play. Alty adopted a new 4-1-4-1 formation, deploying Band in front of the back four and giving teenager Pat McFadden his first start, employed as a lone striker. Colin Little was out of the starting line-up for the first time this season after reporting a leg problem before the game.

Despite being on the back foot, Alty kept in the game till just before the interval when Adams conceded a corner, as he attempted to clear when facing his own goal. From Twiss's corner from the right, Bentley headed home at the back post, though Alty claimed there had been a push in the process (44 mins).

Morecambe dominated the second half and again scored from a corner, when Carlton converted a low ball at the near post (62 mins). Alty never looked likely to get back into the game despite sending, first, Band and then Talbot up front.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 11. Gary SCOTT, 4. Mark MADDOX, 5. Gary TALBOT, 3. Chris ADAMS; 15. Peter BAND; 7. Colin POTTS, 37. Ged MURPHY, 2. Steve ASPINALL, 12. Warren PEYTON; 28. Pat McFADDEN. Subs: 9. Colin LITTLE, 10. Rod THORNLEY, 14. Lewis CHALMERS, 17. Karl MUNROE, 18. Blake NORTON.


One of the bizarre features of 2020-21 season is that some clubs in the National League have removed players from their wage-bill by furloughing them at the State's expense, yet some of the same clubs have then acquired new players to add to their wage-bill. One manager has got on his soapbox to defend the practice as the Derbyshire Times reports that "James Rowe says he is ‘not happy’ at the ‘mud thrown’ at Chesterfield over their transfer business and furloughing of players.

The passionate Spireites boss rejected claims from some quarters that they have spent big money on new signings and said they have actually cut the wage budget going into next season. He also feels the club has received some unfair criticism for furloughing players when many other clubs before and after them have done the same.

'It has been really pleasing that the board has backed me on the transfers I wanted to bring in,' Rowe said. 'But, on that, some of the inaccurate reports on transfer fees we have paid have been wild, way off the mark. Also, the timing of those fees won’t be coming out of this year’s budget.

'And thirdly we have cut the budget by 20 per cent going into next year so there is no wild spending here...

'There is no doubt we have played very well in these four months, we have been excellent to get up to fifth. But the mud that has been thrown towards the club I am not happy with because it is inaccurate.

'It is similar with furloughing of the players, we weren't the first to do it in this league and we are not the last. There has been furloughing of players throughout the league but it seems that because we have been honest about it we get mud thrown at us and I don’t really accept that to be honest'...

He added 'The budget has been cut, it needed to be transformed because it had not worked in the two previous years in the National League so it was important we started changing that, staff and players, and we have done that and we are getting instant success.'

The Hartlepool Mail reports that "Top of the table Hartlepool United travel to face 18th place Wealdstone this weekend.

Pools are unbeaten in 14 and going for their first promotion in 14 years while Wealdstone have won just one of their last seven matches and have little to play for with no threat of relegation this season.

It’s the type of game that Hartlepool will be expected to win on paper... But with Pools dropping points away at bottom four competing sides Barnet, King’s Lynn, Weymouth and Woking so far this season, manager Dave Challinor hopes his players will have learnt from their previous mistakes...

'It shouldn’t be a banana skin, players shouldn’t need motivating,' he said. 'If they are thinking games aren’t as important when we’re top of the league with seven games left then they’re crazy...

'We’ve watched Wealdstone and their games are different. We saw where they were Saturday in terms of their game against Boreham Wood. They were right in the game but it took a sending off and two late goals to make it look like a convincing defeat without looking too much into the detail.

'In the reverse fixture at home, we dominated the game for a long-long time and should have been well out of sight when we were 3-0 up but then on another day, the last 20-minutes they caused us problems and could have got something. They’ve got nothing to play for except themselves, their club, their pride and contracts for next season but in terms of the league table, there’s no pressure or motivation..

'We’ve got to keep in control and if we do that we’ll give ourselves a good chance of winning. But... it’s not going to be an easy game.'”

The National League has announced that "Mark Ives has been appointed as the permanent General Manager of The National League.

The former Head of Judicial Services at The FA for almost two decades had initially been appointed on a three-month interim basis from January.

On the appointment, chairman Brian Barwick said 'Following the departure of long-serving CEO Michael Tattersall in December... Mark will be a great asset for The National League and our Member Clubs. He is very experienced in football matters, is well trusted and has a wide network of contacts across the game.

'The last three months have given him an indication of what is needed to move the organisation forward and has already made wider communication one of his objectives'...

Mark Ives said... 'The interim period gave me further understanding of the organisation and its members... My priorities will continue to be helping Member Clubs manage the impact of the pandemic and to contribute towards a progressive future for The National League”.

Bromley confirm that "Ahead of Saturday’s match with Chesterfield, Andy Woodman has made further additions to his squad, bringing in the loan signing of Tate Campbell from Birmingham City.

The Birmingham-born, versatile midfielder joined the Blues in 2009 after being scouted in Sunday League Football. He went on to sign his first professional contract with the Club last Summer and has featured as part of the U23s squad this season".

Earlier Bromley had also reported the "signing of defender Alex Mitchell, on loan from Sky Bet Championship side Millwall.

The 19 year-old centre-back has been with the Lions since the U15 age group, and has spent four years at the Den so far".

The Guardian reports that Yeovil Town "are preparing to play on Saturday after paying tribute to Lee Collins with his family at the stadium this week.

Outside the ticket office at Huish Park, bouquets of flowers run seven or eight rows deep. Green and white scarfs, shirts, flags, framed pictures, footballs and teddy bears lie in tribute to Lee Collins, the former Yeovil Town captain who died this month aged 32. Nestled at the back, looming large like a towering centre-back, stands a cardboard cutout emblazoned with the number four and a message, in capitals, from the club’s manager, Darren Sarll. 'Lee, our captain, my friend. A leader of men, my ‘go-to’ guy. We’ll miss you running our changing room. I’ll miss you more. Sleep well skip. Gaffer.'

The National League club are in mourning, emotions still raw as they prepare to play at home to Boreham Wood on Saturday, their first match since Collins’s death. Players and staff have dealt with the tragedy in different ways. All players were given the option of returning to training the Monday before last. Some did, some didn’t. Some experienced players thought soldiering on would help them cope with the grief. 'If one feels like they can’t play or can’t prepare, none of us are going down the tunnel,' says Sarll. 'We have had an attitude that if one doesn’t go, none of us go. That’s been our ethos'...

The club have brought in a therapist and are working with Sporting Chance, a mental health charity, via the Professional Footballers’ Association. Some players have sought counselling away from the club...

'Nobody would bat an eyelid if some, any or all of the players didn’t want to play for the rest of the season,' says Ben Barrett of the Gloverscast podcast,,,

The Yeovil dressing room will be supercharged before kick-off. 'I’m not sure if I’ll be able to do too much of a team talk,' says Sarll. '“My lip goes, as soon as I see Carl Dickinson [the vice-captain] I start to cry. Lee is very much here with us. His locker is still his locker and his armband will be his armband. We’ll carry him with us. That the players, after two and a half weeks, are ready to go down the tunnel and back on to the pitch is an incredible show of strength.'".

16 April 2021


Altrincham host Sutton United tomorrow (Saturday) in a match that kicks off at 4.30pm.

The last time Altrincham and Sutton United met at Moss Lane both clubs were about to be relegated at the end of the 1999-2000 season. However, there are several other parallels between the two clubs, each located in the southern suburbs of a major city.

One such similarity is that, like Alty, Sutton have been down to Step Three since that 2000 relegation but are now enjoying their highest place in the Pyramid once again. And, again like Alty, Sutton were simultaneously at Step Two for five years, albeit in different regional Divisions.

Sutton United had first been elevated to the Football Conference in 1986 but, after four very respectable finishes (between 7th and 12th place), they were relegated in 1991, after a season in which Alty narrowly missed out on promotion to the Football League.

Left: First-half action from the Altrincham v Sutton United match on 4 March, 2000. Digital cameras were in their infancy then!

Eight seasons (1991-99) in the Isthmian Premier/Conference South followed for the Surrey club before they were promoted back as champions. But just like Alty, who had correspondingly won the Northern Premier League that 1998/99 season, they lasted for just a single campaign (1999-2000) back at the highest level before both clubs suffered another relegation to Step Two.

Like Altrincham, The "U"s also went down a further step in the pyramid, in their case that was after eight seasons at Step Two, in 2008. Three seasons back in the Isthmian Premier at Step 3 ended in a return to Conference South level in 2011 precisely as Altrincham endured another relegation from the Conference to which they had returned in 2005. So 2011 saw both clubs resuming life at Step Two in Conference South and North respectively.

Sutton remained in the Conference South for five years (2011-16) before regaining top-flight status via the play-offs, rejoining the top rung of the non-League ladder just as Alty suffered another relegation from that level after a two-year stay (2015-16). Since then, Sutton have finished six times in the top ten and four further times between 12th and 15th places, whilst Alty sank to Step Three (2017) before regaining their top-level status in 2020.

On their previous clashes at Altrincham the results have been:

  • 1986-87: Altrincham won 2-1
  • 1987-88: Sutton won 1-0
  • 1988-89: Altrincham won 1-0
  • 1989-90: A goalless draw
  • 1990-91: Altrincham won 4-1
  • 1999-2000: Altrincham won 3-0

The Altrincham FC official site has an Altrincham injury update from the club's Sports Therapist Tommy Uda and its Sports Scientist and Therapist, Ryan Murray.


In what has now been renamed the George Heslop & Neil Thomason Memorial Cup, Altrincham overhwhelmed Prescot Cables 9-1 in the NWYA under-18s' cup competition last Sunday. The newly named competition brings together the names of Altrincham's former youth team manager George Heslop and his former coach Neil Thomason. Until now the trophy had been played solely named in Neil's memory and had a knockout format.

The competition this season initially involves groups of four teams playing each other, home and away.

The starting line up for Sunday's game at Manchester Health Academy comprised: Ryan Forde, Matthew Plested, Alfie Johnston, Dionicio Bohe, Maxwell Thoms, Joshua Jordan, Lewis Waller, Oran McGowan, Alex Goulden, Lewis Billingsley and Matthew Sumner. The subs comprised Joel Jennings, Scott Johnston, Ali Khral and Rayan Radi.

Two Alty players (Lewis Billingsley and Alex Goulden) hit hat-tricks whilst Matt Sumner, Maxwell Thoms and Ali Khral completed the scoring.

Next Sunday, in the same cup competition, Altrincham are away to AFC Fylde before a home tie against Stockport County on 25 April.

The return tie at Prescot Cables follows on 2 May followed by the home tie against AFC Fylde on 9 May. Then, on 16 May, Alty are away to Stockport County.

ON THIS DAY: 16 April

Two years ago today, Altrincham lost 1-2 at home to Brackley Town in a Vanarama National League North match played on a Tuesday night. This was a clash between third and fifth in the league and was a game rearranged after a March postponement caused by bad weather

Above: Tom Hannigan rises to deal with a Brackley cross.

What started as a promising evening when Max Harrop's 38th minute deflected freekick gave Altrincham a 1-0 interval lead, ended in huge disappointment when Tony Thompson's air-kick allowed Tom Hannigan's back-pass to roll into the net in the 94th minute.

Brackley had deservedly equalized in the 70th minute of a second half in which Altrincham created few openings. Ndlovu netted the equalizer from close range after Ceesay had allowed a Brackley player to get behind him and cross from the right.

The defeat left Altrincham fifth when a win would have lifted them into third. And, to add to their woes, they lost two defenders to injury during the game; James Jones had to be replaced after 21 minutes and Connor Hampson succumbed in the 85th minute.

Andy White was suspended for this game but Connor Hampson came back after injury to play at left-back. Josh Hancock returned, but only on the bench, where Ben Harrison joined him after returning from his loan spell at Witton.

ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Shaun Densmore, 3. Connor Hampson, 4. James Jones, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. John Johnston, 8. Sean Williams, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. Josh Hancock, 11. Yusifu Ceesay. Subs: 12. James Poole, 14. Josh Hancock, 15. Matt Chadwick, 16. Simon Richman, 17. Ben Harrison.


Following the news of the death of ex-Alty player Ron Phoenix, we also learn of the death of Eddie Moss on 27th December 2020. Although Eddie only played three games for Altrincham, he was a legend at Runcorn in the 1960s.


According to the Eastern Daily Press King's Lynn manager "Ian Culverhouse says a fellow National League manager pointed him back in the right direction after he 'lost his way' at King's Lynn Town earlier this season.

The Linnets boss has had to steer his team through rough waters this season as they got their first taste of a higher league and then faced huge player cuts because of financial problems at The Walks.

Culverhouse has seen old faces go or be placed on furlough, and new players come in, mostly for free, but has refused to budge from his footballing philosophies. But admits he lost his way midway through the season.

'It's been the longest season ever,' he said. 'It has always been one step forwards two steps back here. Even at the start of the season we lost our two centre-forwards (Adam Marriott and Michael Gash) through injury and once you miss a pre-season then it is so, so hard to get that back in your legs again. Then we had players leaving at certain times. "And I lost my way as well halfway through the season where I got a little bit clouded in what I wanted to do and to be fair, I haven't made it public before, but I had a text from a certain manager in the league and he said "Don't lose your way... keep to your style"...

'That because that just put me back into place. I spoke to the players about it and they were in agreement, they wanted the identity to stay, I was a little bit muddled. It has been a great season for me because I have made mistakes, massive mistakes, in the way I was going and to come back on line again and restructure it has been a massive learning curve for all of us, it really has, and it has been a really tough time'".

The Hartlepool Mail says that "At least a dozen teams are still fighting for a top seven spot and a chance at promotion to the Football League via the play-offs...

When will the National League play-offs take place?

  • Eliminator round matches: fourth v seventh and fifth v sixth. The first round of play-off matches will see the sides finishing fourth to seventh compete with the highest ranked team playing at home in front of a limited crowd. These matches will take place the weekend of Saturday, June 5 with both matches being shown live on BT Sport. The fixture dates remain flexible based on the logistics of the BT Sport schedule. Specific times and dates will be ratified once the teams competing have been confirmed.
  • Semi-final matches: second v winner of fifth v sixth eliminator round match and third v winner of fourth v seventh eliminator round match. The semi-final matches will introduce the sides finishing second and third as they host the winners of the eliminator round matches...

    These fixtures are set to take place on the weekend of Saturday, June 12 and will be broadcast live on BT Sport. As with the previous round, fixtures remain flexible based on the BT Sport schedule.

  • Final match: Semi-final winner v Semi-final winner. The National League play-off final is set to take place on the weekend of Saturday, June 19 according to the National League.

    The match will be broadcast live on BT Sport with the winners going on the secure a place in the EFL for the 2021-22 season...

    The venue for the play-off final is yet to be confirmed. The usual venue of Wembley Stadium cannot be guaranteed due to the stadium hosting Euro 2020 matches for England on June 13, June 18 and June 22.

    A number of potential venues have been mooted, including unconfirmed reports of Leicester City’s King Power Stadium. Fans are set to be allowed back into all sports stadiums from May 17 with Wembley due to welcome 21,000 fans for the FA Cup final on May 15. There has been no clarification regarding how many supporters, if any, will be allowed to attend the play-off final this season".

    The Hartlepool Mail confirms that "Hartlepool United goalkeeper Ben Killip has been officially ruled out for the remainder of the 2020-21 season following further specialist assessment... after he was forced off early in the 2-2 draw at Boreham Wood on Easter Monday with an elbow injury...

    And manager Dave Challinor has confirmed that Killip will now be out for the remainder of the season with Derby County loanee Henrich Ravas set to retain his place in between the sticks for the time being...

    'He’s looking at 12 weeks out,' Challinor said. 'He hasn't ruptured his medial ligament [in his elbow] but he’s had a right good stretch. It’s still intact but it’s torn some fibres in there and on the opposite side as a result, he’s got a tiny fracture in the head of his radius... What will keep him out is the medial ligament. That’s going to be 12 weeks and that's him done for the season.'

    With Killip out of contract in the summer, Ravas on loan until the end of the season and 18-year-old goalkeeper Brad Young subject to interest from Premier League side Leicester City, Challinor is left assessing his options...

    Added the Pools boss... 'It reinforces the fact that we’re looking to bring a goalkeeper, just to give us cover moving forward and that all eventualities are covered.'

    Elsewhere in Pools’ squad, Joe Grey remains sidelined for the rest of the season with a stress fracture in his back while Ryan Johnson is still recovering from a hyper-extended knee injury.

    But Oates, who missed last Saturday’s 2-0 win over Notts County with a thigh strain, is set to return".

    On the positive siade, Hartlepool United "announce the signing of Danny Elliott. The forward joins us on a short-term deal until the end of the season.

    Elliott, 25, most recently played for Chester FC but the National League North side confirmed... that he had left the club, stating 'The 25-year-old leaves with our best wishes, taking the opportunity to play regular football for the remainder of the 2020/21 campaign'.

    Elliott joined Chester in the summer of 2019 and has most recently spent time on loan at Alfreton Town...

    Elliott joined National League North club Chester FC on a one-year deal in July 2019... He moved on loan to league rivals Alfreton Town in January 2020. He scored a hat-trick on his debut for the “Reds”... and was put back into the first-team following his return to the Deva Stadium. He scored three goals in 21 appearances for Chester in the 2019-2020 season.

    Dave Challinor spoke ... 'Delighted to get Danny in with us to give us extra options at the top end of the pitch... To have Danny in permanent and not as one of our loan allocation was essential in making this happen... We had been looking for pace in the attacking third to complement what we already have and he’ll certainly provide us with that'">

    In the Leader Live, Wrexham boss "DEan Keates hailed Jordan Davies's goalscoring feat but says the midfielder has contributed much more to Wrexham's cause than his stunning hat-trick.

    Davies, who came through the youth ranks at The Racecourse, rejoined his home-town spell in the summer following a spell with Brighton under 23... Davies lined up in midfield against Halifax on Tuesday and he bagged a first-half treble in the 4-0 victory...

    Keates feels... 'It has been a journey for Jordan. There's been ups and downs, he's played left-sided centre-back for me, left wing-back, box in the midfield three, left of the midfield two and he has also done a shift up top for us...

    He takes on the information and that is why he has played in different positions. The quality is there, he is showing the nastiness, the edge and the aggression he showed as a kid and what was part of his make-up coming through. He probably lost that little bit of edge when he came back, under 23s football is very tippy-tappy; you have possession, we have possession...

    'He is doing well and the hat-trick is amazing for the lad, I am absolutely over the moon for him'".

    News of an ex-Alty loanee also comes from the Leader Live which informs us that "Chris Sang thought his season was over so the striker is eager to make the most of his unexpected opportunity with Wrexham.

    The 21-year-old has been without a club since he was released by Barnsley at the end of the 2019-20 campaign... The free agent was approached by Reds’ boss Dean Keates who was short of attacking options due to leading scorer Kwame Thomas rupturing an Achilles’ and facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines, and Jordan Ponticelli also missing through injury.

    Sang, whose last competitive action came during a loan spell with Guiseley last season, jumped at the chance to join Wrexham on non-contract terms.

    'I have been at Tranmere for the last few months training with the first team just to keep myself fit,' said Sang. 'I last played a few games when I was at a few clubs in pre-season so I am just happy to be here and involved with Wrexham...

    'I thought the season was over for me and I was just looking forward to next season, and getting myself ready for it. Then I got the call that Wrexham needed a striker so I was excited to get in... There are nine games to show everyone what I have got so hopefully I can help the team first'".

    At Barnet "After his Man of the Match performance on his debut against Maidenhead United, we caught up with Sam Beard ahead...

    . On Joining the Bees [he said] 'I'm really pleased to be playing full-time football and to be at the Club... The boss had us well drilled on the Thursday and Friday. He made sure we were solid. To come in and get the Man of the Match and into the Team of the Week, I was really happy...

    'We need to build on the clean sheet we got on Saturday and progress from there I think...

    'I was with Dorking for five years, it's a really good set up and the boys were quality. They are a Club that is on the rise and I wouldn't be surprised to see them in The National League in the next couple of years...

    'It was obviously nice to join [Barnet] on the same day as a new boy (Sam Skeffington), obviously the boss had just come in, so it was a pretty good time to join'".

    The Derbyshire Times confirms that Chesterfield "have added goalkeeper James Montgomery to their ranks.

    The 26 year-old has joined on a short-term permanent deal from National League North side Gateshead.

    He said 'I’m delighted. The club has had a good run of results so it’s a good place to come to'...

    The Sunderland-born stopper began his career at Middlesbrough and, as well as having two spells at Gateshead, he has also been at AFC Telford United, Forest Green Rovers and AFC Fylde. Earlier this season in March he went to Southend United on an emergency loan deal.

    Montgomery will compete with Grant Smith for the number one spot. It is thought Adam Przybek has returned to Ipswich Town after a short loan stint at the Blues, making three starts".

    15 April 2021


    Saturday's match at the J Davidson Stadium against Sutton United will now kick off at 4.30pm.

    Originally the game was set to be a 3pm kick-off before the National League decreed that all matches should move to 12.30pm starts to avoid clashing with the funeral of Prince Philip. However, as Sutton had already made arrangements to travel for a 3pm kick off, it has been agreed that the match will now be played from 4.30pm.

    The fixture has had a convoluited history as, originally, this Saturday should have witnessed the away game between Sutton United and Alty at Gander Green Lane. However, concerns about bad weather and its effect on the Moss Lane pitch prompted the switching of the original home fixture on 9 January to Surrey, where the game ended 2-2.


    There will be a sombre mood at Altrincham FC today as two funerals pause outside the J. Davidson Stadium to allow friends and colleagues to pay their respects to two well-known figures at the club who both died recently.

    At 10.30am the cortege for Claire Allan will stop briefly on Moss Lane, followed at 2.45pm by Jim Vince's funeral procession.

    All those who knew Claire and Jim are invited to pay their respects at the above times whilst, of course, respecting social distancing requirements.


    Altrincham welcome Sutton United to Moss Lane next Saturday and, although the Surrey club had been enjoying life at the top of the table until last weekend, they arrive at the JDS with no better a record over the past five games than fourteenth-placed Altrincham. Both clubs has taken just six points from their last five games.

    After Tuesday's fixtures, Sutton United reported that their "unbeaten fourteen game run was ended in this top of the table clash as a goal by Torquay captain Asa Hall nine minutes from time enabled the Devon side, who were recording their fourth successive win, to move level on points with U’s, one point behind leaders Hartlepool.

    It was a tight game that always looked likely to be decided by one goal, and that strike came when Hall dived to head in Adam Randell’s cross, and although U’s put pressure on the visitors in the time that remained, they were unable to find the equaliser.

    Both sides had chances during the evening, with Dean Bouzanis in fine form for U’s until Hall’s header proved too well placed, while U’s accuracy in finishing let them down when several good opportunities arose. ...

    U’s made a change at half time, Joash Nembhard making way for debutant Junior Tiensia, with Harry Beautyman, making his 250th Sutton appearance, moving in to the centre of midfield, but Bouzanis remained the central figure, with a good save from Lemonheigh-Evans...

    With nine minutes to go the deadlock was broken as Hall’s diving header proved too accurate for Bouzanis. U’s reaction was to being on Donovan Wilson, Tiensia making way, and for the last ten minutes they pressed for an equaliser".

    The Sutton line up was 1. Dean Bouzanis, 2. Jonathan Barden, 5. Ben Goodliffe, 6. Louis John, 7. David Ajiboye, 9. Omar Bugiel, 10. Harry Beautyman, 15. Craig Eastmond (c), 20. Joash Nembhard, 24. Robert Milsom, 25. Isaac Olaofe. Subs not used: 12. Coby Rowe, 17. Tobi Sho-Silva, 22. Junior Tiensia, 26. Aaron Simpson, 28. Donovan Wilson


    Wrexham "confirm attacking midfielder Elliott Durrell [right] has left the club.

    Durrell, 31, has been released from his contract early by mutual agreement, following discussions with manager Dean Keates.

    Durrell rejoined the club for a second spell at The Racecourse Ground in the summer, and scored two goals in 28 appearances this season".

    ON THIS DAY: 15 April

    Fifteen years ago today, Altrincham entertained Hereford United but lost 1-0 at Moss Lane.

    Pictured right, Man of the Match, Gary Talbot, receives his award from an Alty hero from the past, Derek Halliwell, who was the match sponsor.

    It was a Nationwide Conference Game played on a Saturday afternoon in 2006. With the Conference hearing regarding James Robinson's eligibilty hanging over them, Alty had edged towards Conference safety with a fine 4-2 win at Dagenham the previous Tuesday, to end a run of eight games without a win. For their part second-place Hereford were going through a slightly disappointing period but were still looking for points to confirm their play-off place.

    Mark Maddox continued his suspension whilst Val Owen was out with a broken bone in his foot, injured for the third successive game. Chris Adams was only fit to be on the bench so Gary Scott continued at left-back. Alty's starting line-up was therefore the same as that which had done so well at Dagenham in midweek.

    In the match, Altrincham went down to a narrow defeat against an impressive Hereford side and had cinsequently not won at home in their last six games.

    Having done well to contain the Bulls' passing game for an hour, Altrincham were disappointed at the manner of the winning goal which came as a gap appeared up the middle and, despite Scott's attempt to cut the ball out, Fleetwood got behind him to poke the ball past the advancing Coburn (64 mins).

    Alty then made a double substitution, moving Peter Band up front at the same time, and for the last 20 minutes Alty began to cause Hereford some problems with Norton showing some good touches on the left.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 2. Steve ASPINALL, 15. Peter BAND, 5. Gary TALBOT, 11. Gary SCOTT, 7. Colin POTTS, 37. Ged MURPHY, 12. Warren PEYTON, 14. Lewis CHALMERS, 9. Colin LITTLE, 10. Rod THORNLEY. Subs: 3. Chris ADAMS, 17. Karl MUNROE, 18. Blake NORTON, 21. Kieran LUGSDEN, 28. Pat McFADDEN.


    Stockport County report that "The Hatters’ inaugural meeting with King’s Lynn Town saw them notch up a second successive victory, as well as a hat-trick of clean sheets in eight days, to remain fourth.

    Leading scorer Alex Reid put County ahead at Edgeley Park early on, before a goal following the break by John Rooney who, minutes earlier, had seen his penalty saved,– and a brace from Paddy Madden yielded a first National League four-goal haul of the season for the Hatters...

    Simon Rusk fielded an unaltered line-up from that which had started at Wrexham three days earlier. There was one change on the County bench with Jordan Williams featuring in the match-day squad for the first time in just under two months... in Lois Maynard’s stead.

    The visitors’ starting line-up, for its part, included recently-arrived midfielder Ethan Coleman, who had played for the Hatters as a trialist during the 2020 close season...

    Reid instinctively flicked on, and over Richardson, a Madden volley from the edge of the box, before finishing off the job with a header home for his third goal in two games... but Lynn, playing freely on the counter-attack beyond the half-hour, began to cause County some concern at the other end...

    Just ahead of the hour, Southam-Hales was brought down by Coleman to win a penalty for the Hatters but Rooney, who had scored from the spot at Wrexham, saw his kick kept out on this occasion by the legs of Richardson...

    Five minutes later, he [Roopney] picked up the ball from Richardson, and took a touch before letting rip with an unstoppable thunderbolt to double County’s advantage.

    Within another half a dozen, it was three as Madden powered in a header from a corner by James Jennings on the right. And Madden bagged his second, and the Hatters’ fourth, courtesy of another header that he put away from close range after connecting with Walker’s deep cross from the opposite flank".

    The Derbyshire Times reports that "A deal for Chesterfield to sign Curzon Ashton goalkeeper Cameron Mason has fallen through, we understand.

    The 25-year-old, who has had a previous spell at the Spireites, had been training with the club and was set to sign on loan from the National League North side until the end of the season. It is believed the original terms for the loan deal was for Town to cover Mason’s wages but then Curzon apparently also wanted a loan fee which the Blues refused to pay.

    The Nash today announced that he will be released when his contract expires at the end of the season. The deal now looks unlikely to happen...

    Mason was part of Town’s youth system in 2013 before joining Curzon seven years ago".

    From the Leader Live we learn that "Wrexham went into their clash against Halifax on the back of three successive defeats and down to eighth position..

    The Shaymen were one place above Dean Keates' side following a good run but the Reds turned the form book around by running out 4-0 winners... All the damage was done in a scintillating first half where Wrexham, who couldn't really afford to lose and let their opponents go six points ahead of them, ran riot.

    On top from the start, Wrexham scored four times in the opening 45 minutes with Jordan Davies bagging a hat-trick and Dior Angus getting back on the scoresheet.

    It was a lead that the Reds thoroughly deserved and they saw the game out in the second half to pick up a much needed victory...

    Keates made three changes from the side that started the 3-0 defeat against Stockport three days earlier.

    Captain Shaun Pearson returned to the heart of the defence in place of Reece Hall-Johnson after he was named among the substitutes for the previous two games, meaning Tyler French switched from centre-half to the right wing-back role. Paul Rutherford took over from Dan Jarvis in the hole behind the two frontmen where there was a first start for Gold Omotayo alongside Dior Angus.

    Omotayo appeared as a substitute at the weekend and he replaced Keanu Marsh-Brown... Left-back Cameron Green, who signed for Wrexham on a similar deal earlier in the week following a successful trial, did not make the squad while midfielder Jay Harris was still suspended.

    Despite their awful form this month, the Reds have made a bright start to games and it was no different at the Shay... Wrexham took a fourth minute lead as Davies turned the ball home from close range... Wrexham made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute. A stooping Omotayo did well to nod the ball down for Angus who fired past Johnson.

    It got even better for Wrexham who scored a third goal after 32 minutes. Nathan Clarke was dispossessed by Davies who went around Johnson and coolly found the back of the net...and they made it 4-0 four minutes later.

    The ball dropped to Davies outside the area and he took a touch before unleashing a stunning drive that found the top corner...

    [An ex-Alty loanee] Striker Chris Sang also came on for his Reds' debut in place of Omotayo and the visitors celebrated a welcome win".

    And there was good news off the pitch for the Red Dragons too as Wrexham report that the club "has had a £100,000 grant from Welsh Government, after a period of confusion on if pandemic support should originate from UK Government or Welsh Government...

    Wrexham Football Club was the only club out of 66 other league members not eligible for an avenue of UK Government pandemic support, apparently due to being a Welsh club in and English league system.

    In late January the Welsh Government announced a £17.7m grant based fund to support spectator sports in Wales, with football allocated £1.5m of the total pot, however Wrexham was also not included in that tranche...

    Club co-owner Rob McElhenney has previously commented on the matter saying 'We don’t need their money.'

    Today the Welsh Government have confirmed a grant of £100,000 has been made, with the Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism Dafydd Elis-Thomas MS saying 'Following an exchange of correspondence with the club, they were invited to submit an application to the Spectator Sports Survival Fund 2020-21.. “The application was deemed eligible for support and Wrexham AFC were offered a Funding Award grant in the amount of up to £100,000, which was accepted and paid in one instalment...

    Lesley Griffiths MS... said 'After the takeover, Wrexham AFC is fortunately in a much more secure position financially, but it was the principle of the matter that was important to me. I didn’t want to see Wrexham AFC missing out on something it is perfectly entitled to just because the club is located in Wales'".

    Bromley "made the short trip to Kingfield to take on Woking, with the Ravens looking to keep in touching distance of the playoffs.

    And it would be Bromley who would make a blistering start to the game. Just three minutes in, excellent play from Charlie Wakefield saw him dart in and out of challenges on the right, and as he was fouled, he managed to find Jack Bridge with a pinpoint pass. Bridge then did the rest, as he drove into the box and found the bottom corner with his left foot to give his side the lead.

    However, just 13 minutes later, the hosts would level. Moussa Diarra won a header inside the Bromley penalty area after reaching a Charlie Cooper free kick, and as the ball fell back to him, he prodded home from close range.

    On 20 minutes, Woking would take the lead. Another Cooper free kick was misjudged by the Ravens, and with Mark Cousins stranded, Jack Cook bundled home over the line, despite the best efforts of Chris Bush...

    Neither side would see another clear cut opportunity before the break...

    The second half would prove to be quite the dramatic affair. Early on, it was the hosts who shaded things...

    With just 11 minutes remaining, came the moment that truly sparked the game into life. Excellent work from Courtney Duffus saw him hold the ball up and lay it off for Cheek, who in true clinical fashion, curled a first time effort beyond Craig Ross.

    Less than two minutes later, the hosts would take the lead once again. A slick counter attack ended... but Dalby was on hand to turn home the rebound and score his side’s third.

    Just two minutes after that, from absolutely nothing, Bromley substitute James Alabi took aim from over 25 yards and scored one of the goals of the season... With just two minutes of the 90 left to play, Bromley scored a decisive fourth goal, and what would prove to be the winner. A wonderful, crossfield ball from Chris Bush found the feet of another substitute, Liam Vincent, and he took a touch before delivering a cross into the six yard box, where the unfortunate Cook diverted the ball past his own goalkeeper, meaning he had scored for both teams".

    The Niottingham Post tells us that Notts County "were beaten at Damson Park despite dominating the game for large spells as they suffered back to back defeats...

    Ian Burchnall wants Notts County to be more ruthless at defending set-pieces as the head coach insisted they must learn 'big lessons' from their defeat to Solihull.

    The Magpies were beaten 2-1 at Damson Park on Tuesday following a second-half fightback by Mark Yates’s side after Jimmy Knowles had put the visitors in front.

    But James Ball [scored?] midway through the second half before Kyle Hudlin poked home from close range after Notts had failed to deal with a set-piece...

    'We’ve got to learn very big lessons,' he said. 'We have to be ruthless in both boxes. We have to take our chances and we have got to protect much better especially on set-pieces. Every team we are playing against is launching long throws and any free-kick in our half, the big centre-backs go up...

    'We have to be more ruthless to get the first contact. For the first goal, the set-piece hadn’t finished and we didn’t defend the second phase well enough'...

    But the head coach was encouraged by the quality of their opening goal which highlighted how he wants his side to attack after taking over from Neal Ardley last month...

    'It was a really well-worked goal. We had four or five really good chances but we have to finish them... We kind of started getting dragged into being too long. We’ve got to be braver to keep playing because when we did do it, we can cut teams open'".

    Devon Live reports that "Torquay United manager Gary Johnson said he was ‘very proud’ of his players after they won the big game in the National League on Tuesday night... The Gulls remain third, but are now level on points with second-placed Sutton United after beating their big rivals 1-0...

    It was the captain Asa Hall who scored the only goal there, in the 81st minute, with a swooping header after an excellent cross by Adam Randell. But it was the whole team performance that really pleased the manager, who said 'My thoughts are that we definitely deserved to win the game, that’s what I’m very pleased with... We were the ones with the intent to go and win the game and score a goal...

    There was one change to the team that beat Weymouth 2-1 on Saturday, with Dean Moxey coming in at left back for Ryan Law...

    Torquay don’t have a game on Saturday because it was their Macclesfield Town date".

    FC Halifax Town manager Pete Wild spoke after the heevy defeat at home to Wrexham, saying "Make no mistake, that was the toughest first half of football we have had all season. It was uncharacteristic of us. We made silly mistakes that we have not been making all season as well as unforced errors. They have capitalised on every error. If you look at it, they have not even played that well and they are 4-0 up.

    But we have to own that. We can only apologise as staff and players, that was not good enough. But you look at the second half and we are back to dominant best. But it is easy to play when you are 4-0 down. It is a very frustrating evening, uncharacteristic, and it is a real wake up call for us all...

    We’ve got a lot to put right on Saturday,” Wild concluded.

    Woking felt that they "lost out harshly 4-3 to play-off chasing Bromley in an all-action seven-goal thriller at the Laithwaite Community Stadium, extending their winless league run to four games after the visitors came back from 3-2 with eight minutes left to play to nick the three points.

    Dowse made three changes to the starting side that drew 0-0 with Eastleigh on Saturday, with Josh Casey coming in at left-back and captaining the team, Charlie Cooper into central midfield and 18-year-old Zach Robinson started up front, the day that he signed on loan from AFC Wimbledon.

    The Cards made the worst possible start, as lively Bromley took the lead in the 3rd minute... Out of nowhere the Cards were level in the 17th minute with their first effort on goal and Diarra’s 4th of the season..

    Woking then took the lead in the 21st minute...

    Cheek scored the equaliser in the 79th minute with his 20th goal of the season... Suddenly it was Bromley dictating the play but within two minutes the determined Cards broke well and Ferdinand calmly squared it to Robinson, who after going past the keeper had an effort well saved but Dalby was on hand to tuck it away from close range with his left-foot to make it 3-2 and score his first goal for the Cards.

    Woking’s joy was short-lived though, as it was 3-3 a minute later, when substitute Alabi scored a worldy... The three points was [sic] anyone’s now in a frenetic finish with both teams throwing everything at each other, but the visitors took the three points in the 88th minute when a cross by Vincent bounced off Cook and past Ross for an own goal, making it 4-3 to Bromley...

    Despite going down to defeat, the Cards were the better side for much of the game".

    14 April 2021


    The delayed funeral of former Altrincham FC and local football volunteer Jim Vince has been rescheduled for tomorrow, Thursday 15 April. The funeral cortege will pause outside Altrincham FC on Moss Lane at 2.45pm and all of Jim's former colleagues and friends are invited to pay their respects at that time, whilst respecting social distancing advice.


    Altrincham FC advises that longstanding supporter "Claire Allan's funeral will take place at Altrincham Crematorium on Thursday 15 April 2021 at 11:00am and the cortège will be passing the Football Ground at 10:30am.

    It will be family flowers only. Donations will be for our wonderful NHS. All cheques to be made payable to Wythenshawe Hospital Charity and sent to Arthur Kershaw Funeral Service Limited, 168-170 Washway Road, Sale, Cheshire M33 6RH".


    We have just learned that former Altrincham player Ron Phoenix passed away on 9 March 2021, at the age of 91. Terry Rowley, who in addition to his expertise as a historian of Altrincham FC, happened to live next door to Ron many years ago, has kindly updated the profile of Ron which he first wrote some years ago for the Alty Legends section of the Altrincham FC website.

    The profile can be read here.


    Altrincham's next opponents, Sutton United, lost at home to Torquay last night so go into their trip to Moss Lane with the same recent record as their hosts; six points from their last five matches.

    Torquay United reported that "Captain Asa Hall’s late header won the day, as Torquay produced a performance and result that firmly blew open the National League title race.

    Manager Gary Johnson made a single change to the side that came from behind to beat Weymouth 2-1 on Saturday, where Dean Moxey swapped places with Ryan Law...

    Having dominated the opening period, Johnson’s side came within inches of breaking gaining the advantage just before the interval... Jake Andrews [sent] in a fearsome volley from eight yards which rattled the crossbar, with the home ‘keeper well beaten...

    The majority of the action continued to take place in Sutton’s half... Sutton finally created a chance of merit in the 67th minute, as Olaofe used his strength to hold off Sherring on the right-hand side, before feeding the ball to Omar Bugiel by the penalty spot, however the chance wasn’t taken, with a scuffed shot bobbling wide of the far post.

    Then, with nine minutes remaining, Johnson’s men got the goal they craved. With... Randell, the Plymouth Argyle loanee, sending in a cross into the box which Hall met with a diving header that finally beat the Sutton glovesman".

    Sutton's line-up comprised 1. Dean Bouzanis, 2. Jonathan Barden, 5. Ben Goodliffe, 6. Louis John, 7. David Ajiboye, 9. Omar Bugiel (17. Tobi Sho-Silva, 90′), 10. Harry Beautyman, 15. Craig Eastmond (c), 20. Joash Nembhard (22. Junior Tiensia, HT, (28. Donovan Wilson, 81′)), 24. Robert Milsom, 25. Isaac Olaofe. Subs not used: 12. Coby Rowe, 26. Aaron Simpson.

    Before Tuesday's defeat to Torquay Sutton United reported that "Randall is one definite absentee with a hamstring injury, while Kenny Davis (groin) is also still sidelined, but Matt Gray added Millwall’s Junior Tiensia to the squad on Monday, on loan until the end of the season, and he could be included in the squad tomorrow, while Coby Rowe played a full 90 minutes in the friendly game against Ebbsfleet on Friday. Harry Beautyman is scheduled to play his 250th game for U’s."


    During half-time of last Saturday's streamed match against FC Halifax Town, Alty TV broadcast Yusifu Ceesay [right] and Yoan Zouma discussing how Ramadan impacts on their playing at National League level. The video can be seen on the Altrincham FC website.


    Tuesday, 13 April 2021, 7.45pm unless stated:
    • Barnet P-P Dover Athletic [Dover players furloughed]
    • Chesterfield 0-0 Boreham Wood
    • Dagenham & Redbridge 2-0 Eastleigh 7pm
    • FC Halifax Town 0-4 Wrexham 7pm
    • Solihull Moors 2-1 Notts County 7pm
    • Stockport County 4-0 King's Lynn Town 7pm
    • Sutton United 0-1 Torquay United 7pm
    • Weymouth 0-3 Aldershot Town
    • Woking 3-4 Bromley
    • Yeovil Town P-P Maidenhead United [Postponed at Yeovils's request]

    ON THIS DAY: 14 April

    Four years ago today, on Good Friday in 2017 in a Vanarama National League North match, Altrincham scored an added-time goal to win 3-2 at the Tameside Stadium against Curzon Ashton.

    Goalkeeper Stuart Tomlinson was in the warm-up but not in the squad after recently deputising for Tim Deasy. Given the latter's injury problems this season, it was surprising that on Tim's return, Tomlinson was not named on the bench. Once again, Sean Miller, Craig Hobson, Tom Hannigan, Alan Goodall and John Cyrus all missed this game through injury, whilst Gary Jones also sat out this fixture.

    Clayton McDonald, signed just before Jim Harvey's departure in December, made his full league debut alongside Jake Moult at centre-back, whilst Kyle Brownhill returned from injury in midfield.

    Earlier in the match, all of Alty's efforts seemed to have been denied by the controversial award of a Curzon equalizer, when Tim Deasy was deemed, by an assistant referee, to have collected the ball after it had crossed his own goal-line following a corner.

    In the first half, Altrincham were the better side but fell behind after 42 minutes from a counter-attack, after Lynch had lost possession in the Curzon half. Guest broke forward and Warburton netted despite a last-ditch tackle from the retreating Laurence Taylor. But Alty equalized in the 45th minute when a push gave the visitors a spot kick which Jake Moult converted confidently.

    Above: Jake Moult celebrates with team-mates after putting Alty 2-1 ahead.

    Alty then took the lead with another penalty from Moult after James Lawrie had been brought down as he jinked across the penalty area (62 mins). But then came the controversial equalizer, awarded to Curzon's Hunt, fourteen minutes from time.

    However, the hard-working Robins had the final say as Simon Richman bundled the ball home after good work on the left from Clee and Evans, in the first added minute at the end of the ninety.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tim Deasy 2. Chris Lynch, 3. Andy McWilliams, 4. Laurence Taylor, 5. Clayton McDonald, 6. Jake Moult (capt), 7. Simon Richman, 8. Kyle Brownhill, 9. Micah Evans, 10. James Lawrie, 11. Nicky Clee. Subs: 12. Shaun Densmore, 14. Sam Patterson, 15. Damian Reeves, 16. Sam Heathcote, 17. Darius Palma


    The Derbyshire Times alerts us to the fact that "Chesterfield have signed midfielder Manny Oyeleke from Port Vale on a two-year deal.

    The 28-year-old, who was set to be out of contract in the summer, has joined on a permanent deal for an undisclosed fee.

    The Blues have paid a small fee for him now to help with their promotion push this season rather than wait until the summer for him to become a free agent.

    The Spireites’ chief scout, Paul Lemon, watched Oyeleke start Vale’s match against Morecambe last Saturday. The central midfielder has worked with boss James Rowe before at Aldershot Town when he was assistant manager at the Shots...

    Oyeleke said 'I enjoyed two good years with him. I know all that he’s about and the type of football he wants to play. When I heard that he was interested, it was a big, big factor... The club is really ambitious and I want to be part of that'...

    The Nigerian is a popular figure with the Vale fans but has suffered with some injuries during his time at the club. He has made 23 appearances for the Valiants this season, scoring two goals...

    Oyeleke was at Chelsea and Queens Park Rangers as a kid and then came through the Brentford academy. He has had loan spells at Northampton Town, Woking and Canvey Island during his career. Before joining Port Vale in 2019 on a two-year deal he had been at Exeter City.

    He is Chesterfield’s second signing in just a few days after striker Kairo Mitchell, 23, made the move from King’s Lynn Town.

    National League clubs have until Thursday, April 22 to register new players for this season".

    In the Hartlepool Mail, we learn that "Gavan Holohan is targeting double figures on the goal front after netting his seventh of the season in the win over Notts County.

    The Pools midfielder and on-loan Stockport County striker Richie Bennett scored as Dave Challinor’s side climbed to the top of the National League...

    Holohan said 'My target was probably 15 before the start of the season and I should probably be on that now to be honest with the chances I’ve had. If I can get double figures then I won’t turn my nose up at that... If we’re winning games it doesn’t really matter who is scoring as long as we keep getting three points'...

    Meanwhile, Holohan has also praised the impact made by Mark Shelton this season. The former Salford City midfielder, 24, is always among the Pools players to cover the most ground and that is appreciated by Holohan, who has enjoyed playing alongside him.

    Holohan added 'He’s a funny guy. Shelts does a lot of work that goes unnoticed where he covers 12.5km every game getting about the pitch... It gives us license to get forward and run around like maniacs. It’s a good partnership which just seems to work'". Before Tuesday's matches, in the Leader Live, "Keanu Marsh-Brown says anything is possible as Wrexham AFC aim to get play-off bid back on track

    Wrexham's promotion challenge is fading but new signing Keanu Marsh-Brown believes a much needed victory... can put the Reds back on track.

    Saturday's 3-0 loss at home to Stockport was Wrexham's third defeat in a row and leaves the eighth placed Reds three points behind the Shaymen, who occupy the final play-off place.

    Dean Keates's side face[d] Halifax in a crunch clash for both sides at The Shay [on Tuesday] evening and Marsh-Brown, who has won promotion from the National League with Barnet and Forest Green Rovers, remains upbeat about Wrexham's chances of finishing in the top seven with 10 games to go.

    'We need to stick together as a squad,' said the winger... 'If we can get a few results on the bounce, anything is possible in this league'".

    13 April 2021


    As announced yesterday, Saturday's match against Sutton United at the J. Davidson Stadium will kick off at 12.30pm.

    In advance of the game, Millwall announced on Monday that "Millwall Under 23s' left-back Junior Tiensia has joined Sutton United on a 28-day youth loan.

    The 20 year-old, who is a regular for Kevin Nugent's side, is yet to make a competitive first-team appearance, but has been named on the bench multiple times.

    Tiensia will slot straight in to the Vanarama National League side's squad for Tuesday night's visit of Torquay United to Gander Green Lane".


    Former Altrincham midfielder, David Lynch, nowadays manager of Clitheroe, has signed Sefton Gonzales, who arrived at Moss Lane in 2017, soon after Phil Parkinson's appointment as manager, but he moved elsewhere before the season had started.

    Left: Callum Jones. Right: Matt Cooke

    Two graduates of the Altrincham youth and reserve systems, Matt Cooke and Callum Jones have moved from Northwich Victoria to rejoin their former manager Chris Rowley at West Didsbury and Chorlton FC.

    Callum also made 6(+2) appearances for the Alty first team, whilst Matt was a Cheshire Senior Cup used substitute.


    Twelve years ago today, on Easter Monday in 2009, Altrincham beat Wrexham 1-0 at The Racecourse Grounbd in a Blue Square Premier match. Before the match Altrincham were still in need of a few more points to ensure survival but had won just once in their last 15 games. But Wrexham were just one place above them in the form guide over the last six matches after falling short of their aim to reach the play-offs.

    Right: Greg Young battles it out with Wrexham's Wes Baynes as Chris Lane looks on.

    With their sixth away win of the season, Altrincham secured the three points which helped to ensure their place in the BSP for the following season. Alty had a few scares with Johnson clearing off the line in the first half and Smith doing so in the second half but overall Wrexham were disappointing going forward.

    Young led the Altrincham defence superbly whilst Doughty was always looking to get forward up the left. The goal arrived after 52 minutes when a Lane freekick from near halfway was headed into his own net by Collin, the Wrexham centre-back.

    Assoumani was deservedly sent off late in the game for an off the ball headbutt against Denham. Altrincham's away support, numbering 306, gave great support throughout and the celebrations at the final whistle were as if Alty had won the league!

    For the game, midfielder Anthony Danylyk returned after suspension but Robbie Lawton was playing his last game before his two-match ban started. Dale Johnson returned to the starting line up, with Mark McGregor and the injured Shaun Densmore (hamstring) dropping out. The former was on the bench, however, against his former club.

    Winger Wes Baynes, later to play for Altrincham, and striker Obi Anoruo were the new players in the Wrexham starting line-up.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 22. James SMITH, 5. Greg YOUNG, 18. Michael WELCH, 2.Chris LANE; 17. Ben WILKINSON, 16. Anthony DANYLYK, 7. Robbie LAWTON, 3. Matt DOUGHTY, 9. Colin LITTLE, 14. Dale JOHNSON. SUBS: 4. Mark McGREGOR, 10. Chris DENHAM, 12. Joe O'NEILL, 23. Richard ACTON, 26. Rod THORNLEY.


    Wrexham "confirm the signing of left-back Cameron Green on non-contract terms following a successful trial with the club.

    Green, 21, started his career with the Met Police before progressing through the Reading academy.

    He moved to Watford Under-23s last season, and enjoyed a loan spell with Braintree Town before the National League South season was curtailed...

    'I've been here a week now and already feel part of the team. I've been keeping fit, training with a few Championship clubs, but there is nothing like game time and I'm looking forward to playing my part.

    'Of course I hope this leads to something longer-term in future... and there's no reason I can't earn a longer stay at the club.'"

    According to the Eastern Daily Press King's Lynn Town have received a further cash boost from the Blue and Gold Supporters Trust to improve facilities at The Walks.

    The Linnets have received a cheque for £3,635.08 to ensure The Walks is in accordance with ground grading requirements. The monies were made available to the club from donations made to the trust's Ground Development Fund (GDF).

    This is the second occasion that the Trust have assisted the club via the GDF scheme following the donation of £4,200 which helped the football club with the purchase of new turnstiles following its promotion to the National League North from the Southern Central Division nearly two years ago.

    The latest monies donated have assisted the Linnets with the purchase of a First Aid Unit, which has been installed at the Hospital End of the stadium, close to the entrance to the club room".

    King’s Lynn Town are set "to visit Edgeley Park to face Stockport County.

    In a run that has seen Lynn face four of the promotion contenders in their last seven games, Stockport County will only add to this list..

    Last time out, The Linnets took a first half lead but were only pegged back due to a lapse in concentration, having been punished by a clinical, well-organised Chesterfield side. In the last seven games, Lynn have given every reason to prove that they can compete with the top clubs in the division. Despite being without key players as of late, Lynn have recorded remarkable wins against Eastleigh and Altrincham, whilst also picking up a valuable point against current league leaders Hartlepool United.

    Linnet fans will be watching the game with interest after new signing Alex Babos put in a Man of the Match performance against Chesterfield, looking to see if the young midfielder can put in a display to replicate that of Saturday. Babos built a noticeable partnership with Cameron King in the middle of the park...

    < After Kairo Mitchell and Adam Marriott both departed the club, options in the attacking positions were limited. However, there is reason to remain positive, as Michael Gyasi, Simeon Jackson and Michael Gash (despite having to cover at centre back after the injury to Callan-McFadden) all deserved high praise after the weekend clash...

    Kyle Callan-McFadden left the action against Chesterfield with a suspected cheek bone break but is suspected to have been given the ‘all clear’ during his visit to the hospital. His return will likely mean that Michael Gash can return to his favoured attacking position... Michael Clunan is nearing a return to first team action but is still unlikely to be involved... A potential return is on the cards for Elkan Baggott who impressed during his last appearance for the club on Easter Monday against Altrincham".

    The Halifax Courier reports that "Town manager Pete Wild says his side knows the importance of Tuesday night’s clash with fellow play-off chasers Wrexham at The Shay.

    Halifax are seventh in the National League, three points above Wrexham with a game in hand...

    'Big game isn’t it, big game for both teams and we’ve just got to keep doing what we’re doing,' said Wild.

    'We know the importance of Tuesday night, we don’t want anybody to come to The Shay and turn us over... What a game, what a time of the year to be still involved in the right end of the table. One of the lads’ aims this season was to get to 50 points, we’ve achieved that, so that’s complete.

    'We now need to push on with the rest of what they want to achieve.'

    Wild said midfielder Luke Summerfield, who came off the bench in Saturday’s 1-0 win at Altrincham, could be fit enough to start if selected against Wrexham, his former club.

    Backup keeper Harrison Davison-Hale is expected to return to the squad on Tuesday night, with loanee Chris Renshaw having returned to parent club Witton Albion".

    From the Nottingham Post we learn that "Ian Burchnall has said it is unlikely that Notts County will dip into the transfer market to bolster their attack in the wake of Callum Roberts's injury.

    The Magpies' winger looks set for a spell on the sidelines again... Roberts is set to undergo a scan to determine the extent of his injury...

    But his absence has left Notts short of authentic wide players although Burchnall says signing a player to help fill the void left by the 23 year-old remain unlikel... The head coach said... 'If players are playing every week then they're probably not available. So most of the players that you take aren't maybe necessarily playing week in, week out... Unless it was a special situation where we felt someone will come in and make a huge impact I think we need to trust the players we've got'".

    12 April 2021


    The kick-off time of Saturday's match against Sutton United has been brought forward from 3pm to 12.30pm to avoid a clash with the funeral of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, which is taking place at 3pm.. All matches in the National League on Saturday will now kick off at 12.30pm.

    Altrincham welcome Sutton United to the J. Davidson Stadium on Saturday for a match which should have taken place on 9 January. But that fixture was switched to Sutton's ground because of bad weather and concerns about the Moss Lane pitch. Conversely, this Saturday's match should have been the away trip to Sutton for Altrincham.

    In the match in Surrey, Alty emerged with a creditable 2-2 draw, thanks to a 94th equalizer from left-back Connor Hampson.

    At the time, Sutton were in third-place but it was Altrincham who went ahead in the 16th minute, albeit with Sutton claiming for the goal to be disallowed for an alleged foul on a defender by Alty's Ritchie Sutton.

    It was Ritchie Sutton's defensive partner Toby Mullarkey who headed Alty ahead, the goal coming after a corner had been half-cleared and then redirected into the Sutton box from the left.

    Above: Joe Piggott has started the last six games up front for Alty, whilst full-backs Connor Hampson (centre) and Andy White (right) did not play last Saturday. White is likely to be out for the rest of the season.

    However, the hosts hit back with two goals in a seven-minute spell. From Randall's deep cross from the left Ajiboye headed in at the back post in the 33rd minute.

    Sutton went ahead in the 40th minute when a corner was not cleared and the ball seemed to come off an Alty player and fall for Olaofe to ram into the net, with Thompson booked in the aftermath for protesting that he had been held.

    Altrincham dominated the second half against a very unadventurous Sutton side who paid the price by conceding an equalizer in the fourth and last added minute. The goal was superbly struck from 25 yards by Connor Hampson to make it a very much deserved 2-2.

    Alty moved up to fifth after that result but on PPG would have been in mid-table with their record at the time of six wins, six draws and six defeats.

    For Alty, Matty Kosylo had returned from suspension and Toby Mullarkey had replaced Tom Hannigan at the back in the starting eleven. There was no place for Shaun Densmore on the bench as Byron Harrison made his first appearance in a matchday squad, having been injured since he had been signed on a short contract before Christmas.

    The Altrincham starters at Sutton included just seven of the players who started for the club this Saturday against FC Halifax Town, the four absentees being Hampson, Kosylo, Sutton and Smith.

    Sutton had no game on Saturday last but they have drawn their last three fixtures, which were all away games, at FC Halifax Town, Boreham Wood and Solihull Moors. Before they visit Altrincham, on Tuesday, they face a crucial home match against title rivals Torquay United, whilst Altrincham have no midweek match.

    For Sutton's most recent draw, in The Midlands, their squad showed two changes from the starting eleven against Alty, as Kenny Davis and Will Randall were missing. The squad for Sutton's last game comprised 1. Dean Bouzanis, 2. Jon Barden, 24. Rob Milsom, 15. Craig Eastmond, 5. Ben Goodliffe, 6. Louis John, 7. David Ajiboye, 20. Joash Nembhard, 9. Omar Bugiel, 10. Harry Beautyman, 25. Isaac Olaofe. Substitutes: 3. Ben Wyatt, 17. Tobi Sho-Silva, 21. Callum Kealy, 26. Aaron Simpson, 28. Donovan Wilson.


    Altrincham FC has Brian Flynn's post-match interview with manager Phil Parkinson who felt that "his side absolutely dominated the game on Saturday" against FC Halifax Town.

    "But we've got to start taking our chances" he added.

    ON THIS DAY: 12 April

    Seven years ago today Altrincham entertained North Ferriby United in a Skrill North match which ended one apiece. It was North Ferriby United's first visit to Altrincham and the game kicked off at 3.07pm, in keeping with other leagues whose games have been put back in memory of the "Hillsborough 96".

    For Altrincham, Damian Reeves and Simon Richman were not fit but Damian was able to warm up on the pitch with the recovering Mike Williams. Youth midfielder Jeff King, John King's nephew, who coincidentally played against Altrincham yeterday for FC Halifax Town, was on the bench for the first time in a league match.

    Nicky Clee received his Player of the Month award before the game from Bill King, chairman of the Football Conference and a former chairman at Altrincham.

    Altrincham played poorly in the first half as NFU looked much the stronger side and were able to find their men better than the hosts. Alty fell behind when a freekick for offside, taken by the NFU keeper deep in his own half, was not dealt with by Altrincham and it resulted in Havern seeming to hook the ball over Coburn, who was near the six-yard line. However, Kendall was credited with the goal (15 mins).

    Referee Mr Oldham then became the third official to fail to complete an Altrincham game this season when he found himself unable to continue through injury in the 27th minute. After a 12 minute delay, a qualified linesman took over on the line and assistant referee Mr Mulhall took charge of the match. Ironically, Premiership ref Anthony Taylor was at the game but not allowed to take over as he had a match scheduled for the next day.

    Above: Lee Sinnott takes advantage of the break for referee Scott Oldham's injury to convey his tactics to his team.

    Having brought on Tom Marshall and moved to a back three at the interval, Alty improved in the second half, without threatening a goal till Perry headed over a good cross from Walshaw after 74 minutes. Then, soon after coming on, Wilkinson equalised after Marshall had won a header from a freekick (79 mins). A spirited second-half showing had earned Altrincham a deserved point.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart Coburn, 2. Shaun Densmore (capt), 3. Adam Griffin, 4. Carl Rodgers, 5. Gianluca Havern, 6. Scott Leather, 7. James Lawrie, 8. Jake Moult, 9. Kyle Perry, 10. James Walshaw, 11. Nicky Clee. Subs: 12. Tom Marshall, 14. Matt Doughty, 15. Greg Wilkinson, 16. Jeff King, 18. Russ Saunders


    The Nottingham Post reports that "Notts County slumped to a 2-0 defeat at promotion rivals Hartlepool on a night when star winger Callum Roberts suffered a fresh injury setback.

    Kyle Wootton missed a glorious chance to put the Magpies ahead midway through the first half before Gavin Holohan gave Pools the lead in a first half which Dave Challinor's side dominated.

    Notts improved after the break but struggled to create clear-cut chances which led to the arrival of Roberts from the substitutes' bench. But he only lasted a matter of minutes before he disappeared down the tunnel due to injury and, with Notts having made three substitutes, meant Ian Burchnall's side were down to 10 men.

    Richie Bennett then made sure Pools took advantage when the on-loan Stockport forward crashed home after Notts failed to deal with a corner.

    Leigh Curtis [added]... 'Callum Roberts had only been on the pitch for a matter of minutes... He slumped to the ground, pulled his hands over his face before he punched the turf knowing that another attempt at a comeback was over... You could not help but feel overwhelming sadness for a tremendously gifted player who has endured a nightmarish season in terms of injuries...

    We should get a clearer picture of what the future holds for Roberts next week as head coach Burchnall refused to be drawn on whether that would be the last we see of him this term... The 23-year-old... is held in such high regard that he has carved out a reputation as being the best player in the National League... He is a humble boy blessed with incredible talent...

    Last year, Enzio Boldewijn won a place in the National League team of the year for being one of the most feared wingers in the division... But at present, we are having to watch this wonderful talent plod on at right wingback for the good of the team despite it not being his natural position...

    Outside of Roberts, the Dutchman is the most creative player in the squad when it comes to one v one domination but his talents are being wasted... The time has come to move him back to a position where he can hurt teams...

    Regan Griffiths, the on-loan Crewe midfielder, looked shocked at the decision to substitute him after 36 minutes given he had just created a golden opportunity for Kyle Wootton. But Notts needed to act to halt Hartlepool’s dominance in possession... Burchnall changed it to put three strikers v three defenders which helped stem the flow of the attacks and it did allow Notts more of a foothold in the game...

    Hartlepool’s 2-0 victory moved them to the top of the table although you suspect their lead at the top will be short-lived. {Altrincham's next visitors] Sutton, who are now in second, have four games in hand and are a point behind them while Torquay are three points off the pace with three games in hand... [Notts County] have five games in hand on the new leaders".

    Devon Live says that a "Late winner sets up Torquay United for the big game with Sutton United".

    At half time, "'I said I would give them 15 minutes to get the first goal and it was good because it gave them a bit of momentum; to say "Right, we are going to have to push for this", and we did', Gary Johnson told his players... as Torquay United were set the task of coming from behind to beat Weymouth on Saturday.

    In the end, goals from Jake Andrews with a wonderful strike from outside the area in the 59th minute, and Connor Lemonheigh-Evans with a header in the 85th minute, won the game to set up a mouthwatering top of the National League table clash at Sutton United on Tuesday night.

    It was a much better performance from the Gulls in the second half after they went behind to an Andrew Dallas penalty in the 42nd minute and it means they go to Sutton... just three points behind their opponents in third place.

    'At half time we had a word and it was important we came out all guns blazing,' said Johnson. "We had to play the percentages... The lads put in a real shift today because it's difficult to play a team that has a goalie that can kick it from one end to the other and that's what they were doing. There was no midfield play or anything'...

    Johnson made one change... Andrews coming into the side for Sunderland loan striker Benji Kimpioka, who left the field at the Racecourse Ground with a hamstring injury. That change meant that Andrews returned to the left side of midfield with Lemonheigh-Evans moving into the space behind Danny Wright up front".

    11 April, 2021


    Following Saturday's home defeat by FC Halifax Town, assistant manager Neil Sorvel told the NL Paper, "Goals win games. We dominated possession for long periods and had the best chances.

    "But we're struggling to put the ball in the net". Just nine goals scored in the last twelve fixtures underline the point.

    The NL Paper also quotes manager Phil Parkinson on his and Neil Sorvel's appointments as full-time employees of the football club. "It feels great to be able to call myself a full-time manager but it comes with a weight of expectation... but I am relishing the challenge".


    In a poor first half, Alty almost took an early lead as Josh Hancock's shot was tipped onto the bar by Johnson (8 mins). Three minutes later Alty stood off Jack Earing, allowing him a couple of touches, before he fired a left-footed shot past Thompson from the edge of the box to give the Shaymen the lead (11 mins).

    After that there was little to get the pulse racing before half-time which was reached with Alty still a goal behind.

    Altrincham were a little better in the second half and shots from Ceesay and Colclough forced Johnson to push the ball over the bar but overall the Shaymen were comfortable with their lead and Altrincham could have no real complaints at the outcome.

    Match report here.


    The Halifax Courier reports that FC Halifax Town "boss Pete Wild said he was 'over the moon' after his side won 1-0 at Altrincham.

    Jack Earing's first-half goal was enough to seal the victory for Town and hand them a crucial three points...

    'I thought we started really well, on the front foot, pressing them, kept nicking the ball off them, kept going towards goal, got our goal,' Wild said. 'They're really good at what they do to try and stretch you, to play through the spaces that you leave, and we thought when we got the goal, we'd drop off them a little bit, let them have the first pass, and I thought until half-time we frustrated them, they never looked like threatening.

    'When it's 0-0 they had a really good chance, but once we went 1-0 up and dropped off them a bit to let them have the ball, I'd seen King's Lynn had done that to them on Monday and we thought if we needed to do that, we could do, and I thought it really frustrated them until half-time.

    'We knew they'd come out second-half and have a real go, and we just didn't keep hold of the ball well enough second-half. They just kept coming back at us. When we did have good passages of play to get in their half, our final ball was rubbish.

    'That could have hurt us on another day but, at this time of the year, it's how you grind out three points and we've certainly ground it out today against a really, really good Altrincham side. They've caused us problems and I think they're one of the most entertaining teams in the league.

    'I'm over the moon to get three points... It's just when we got higher up the pitch, we just didn't keep hold of it enough... which is why later on we went to 3-5-2 to try and keep it up there.... but it's the time of the year where you've just got to grind out three points'...

    Wild praised the performance of goalkeeper Sam Johnson... 'Two really good saves, one in each half,' said the Town boss".


    In Saturday's J B Parker Premier Division Challenge Cup match at Greenalls Padgate St Oswalds, Altrincham Reserves lost 3-2.


    With no game on Saturday, Sutton United were knocked off top spot by Hartlepool United but the London club has four games in hand on their North-East rivals.

    Right: The Golf Road turnstiles; 1230pm on 4th March 2000

    Next Saturday's visit to Altrincham will be more then twenty years since the "U"s last frequented WA14. That was in 1999-2000, a season in which both clubs were relegated from the Conference. In contrast, in 2021, Sutton arrive second in the league table with the highest PPG.

    Having lost 3-0 at Gander Green Lane early that season, Alty gained revenge with their own 3-0 win in the return fixture at Moss Lane on 4 March 2000

    The match was played before a disappointingly small crowd of 889 people. Altrincham started in twelfth place after having garnered seven points from their previous three games and having been defeated only twice in their previous 19 League games. Sutton arrived at Moss Lane occupying bottom spot.

    Danny Adams had returned to the side for this match with Sutton after a one-match ban for bookings, a ban which had terminated his run of 97 consecutive first-team outings. Other team news included the return of leading scorer, Kevin Ellison after five matches out with a leg injury. Suspensions to Leroy Chambers, Steve Hawes and Phil Power ruled them out of consideration.

    Altrincham were also still lacking numerous players through injury (i.e. two goalkeepers, Coburn and Greygoose; striker Gavin Price, midfielders Burke and Crowe and centre-back Maddox). A rare (eighth) start was given to Richard Landon, who, nevertheless, had found the net 9 times in the Conference despite his restricted opportunities.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Key; 2. Hodson, 3. Adams, 4. Timons (capt), 5. Talbot; 6. Goodwin, 7. Gallagher, 8. Russell, 9. Morrell, 10. Landon, 11. Ellison. Subs: 12. Lovelock, 13. Senior, 14. Kielty, 15. Hulston, 16. Skelton

    In the match, Altrincham equalled their biggest winning margin with a 3-0 triumph over Sutton, though that outcome had seemed unlikely after a lacklustre first half. However, their joy was tinged with disappointment at the sending off of captain, Chris Timons, a few minutes before the end for the second of two fairly innocuous bookings. The win lifted them to their highest league position of the season but, ironically, this was to be their last win with eleven matches remaining of the season and relegation was to follow.

    Altrincham restored Hodson to his normal right-back position as Adams returned at left-back. Landon replaced Chambers, whilst Ellison returned to replace the suspended Hawes in midfield, with Russell moving inside to accommodate him. Lovelock dropped back to the subs' bench.

    After a goalless first half, in the 46th minute, an overhit cross from the right by Hodson was needlessly headed out for a corner on the left by Riley. Russell's fine corner found the Altrincham captain, Chris Timons, unmarked and his firm header opened the scoring from six yards.

    Two minutes later, Goodwin, moving forward into the box was brought down and after receiving treatment, Ellison took the free kick from the edge of the box. His firm, but not rocket-powered, shot passed the end of the wall and beat keeper Howells entering the net inside his left-hand post. In the excitement, Altrincham full-back Danny Adams's father, seated in the stand, spilled his coffee down himself!

    Nine minutes from time third goal arrived when Russell broke through in the inside-left position, drew the keeper and nonchalantly flicked the ball past Howells's left hand with his right foot in a manner reminiscent of his performances in 1997/98 when he played up front. The ball entered the net just inside the keeper's left-hand post to make the score 3-0.

    What should have been unadulterated pleasure for Altrincham, turned doubly sour as, firstly, Adams strode through the defence only to be pulled up by the ref's whistle. Not only was offside given but Adams was harshly booked for playing on after the whistle. Worse was to come. As a Sutton player routinely broke down their left-wing, Timons fouled him and was shown the red card on 85 minutes. He left the field (as shown left) to acclaim from the Altrincham fans and manager Bernard Taylor instantly put on debut-making Wayne Hulston for Morrell. Hodson moved to centre-back to replace Timons.

    This win moved Altrincham to their highest position of the season, tenth, whilst Sutton remained bottom. Sutton, like Altrincham, lacked the resources in 2000 to compete with the top Conference sides.

    The referee, Mr Penn gave a generally good performance but his booking of Danny Adams and sending off of Chris Timons, though strictly correct, had mitigating circumstances. Altrincham had had no one sent off between August and 4 December when Simeon Hodson had been given his marching orders in controversial circumstances at Dover. Then Jason Gallagher walked for a late tackle at Northwich; Talbot was rightly sent off at Stevenage for a last-man foul; Maddox bizarrely and Power quite justifiably were red-carded in the Macmillan Trophy against Telford (8 February) and now Timons went for two fairly trivial fouls against Sutton.

    So, only Adams of the regular defensive unit remained to suffer the indignity of the early bath.


    Wrexham "confirm attacking trio Gold Omotayo, Chris Sang and Keanu Marsh-Brown have all joined the club on non-contract terms. All three have been training with the club this week and, after impressing manager Dean Keates, have been added to the first-team squad.

    Swiss striker Omotayo and Guyanan winger Marsh-Brown were both with Gloucester City most recently, while Sang last played for Barnsley.

    Tall forward Omotayo, 27, has also enjoyed a short stint with FC Halifax Town this season, having previously played for Yeovil Town in the National League in 2019-20...

    Omotayo said...'I’m here to impress, we all know what the goal is and I’m here to get the job done'...

    Marsh-Brown, meanwhile, is well-known to National League supporters having helped Forest Green Rovers to promotion in 2017. Prior to his brief spell with Gloucester City this season, the 28-year-old winger... played in America’s USL Championship for Memphis 901...

    Marsh-Brown said 'I feel fully fit. I was away with the national team and before that I was training full-time so my fitness is up to scratch. I feel I can add experience, especially at this time of the season and going into the play-offs. I’ve got a lot of experience going into these games and I know how to win them'.

    Sang, 21, came through Wigan’s youth academy and made his senior debut for Bury in 2017. He was most recently with Barnsley Under-23s, and spent time on loan with Guiseley too.

    The young striker said upon signing... 'It’s a big opportunity, going for the play-offs. I want to stay here, I want to prove myself, so I’m happy to be here. I like to run in behind, I like the ball to feet too, hopefully I can get a few goals as well'".

    Footnote: Chris Sang was an Alty loanee from Bury who joined on the eve of Alty's fixture on 22 December 2018, for which he was an unused substitute. Whilst at Bury he had a loan spell with Southport in 2017-18 and, in 2018-19, with Marine FC. Before joining Alty he had made two appearances for Bury and nine apiece for both Southport and Marine. After just one start and barely another hour of action spread over four substitute appearances, Chris returned to Bury in late January 2019. Altrincham appearances: 1(+4), 0 goals.

    The signings did not help the Red Dragons as they lost 0-3 to Stockport County. Wrexham report that "Ex-Wrexham striker Alex Reid came back to haunt his former side as his first-half double helped Stockport to victory at the Racecourse.

    Reid supplied two close-range finishes and another former Red, John Rooney, scored from the spot as Wrexham suffered a heavy home defeat... with Guyanan international Keanu Marsh-Brown slotting straight into the starting line-up.

    With Jay Harris suspended, Marsh-Brown partnered Dior Angus up front, while Dan Jarvis retained his spot in attacking midfield. Gold Omotayo and Chris Sang, Wrexham’s other two new attacking reinforcements, were named on the bench but Rob Lainton, Jordan Ponticelli and Theo Vassell remained sidelined with Kwame Thomas.

    After a cautious start, Wrexham were actually first to try their luck at goal... Disaster struck just moments later, however, Tyler French failed to deal with a long ball forward and Reid nicked in between the defender and Christian Dibble to prod in. It was Stockport’s first attempt at goal...

    Stockport doubled their lead on 26 minutes though, Reid tapping in at the back post, after Harry Cardwell flicked Tom Walker's cross on at the near post.

    Shell-shocked Wrexham responded by pushing right wing-back Reece Hall-Johnson further forward...

    After a quiet start to the second-half, Wrexham introduced one new signing for another as Omotayo replaced Marsh-Brown on 57 minutes...

    Stockport ended any hope of a Wrexham comeback when Rooney scored from the spot on 70 minutes, after Reece Hall-Johnson fouled Southam-Hales. The goal actually came from Wrexham’s own corner...

    Stockport did not settle at three either – Cardwell’s shot was blocked by Kelleher on 73 minutes and Reid, seeking his hat-trick, curled just wide moments later. James Jennings then curled a 20-yard free-kick just wide in the 87th minute ...

    Stockport could not add to their lead, however".

    Fresh from scoring a race against Altrincham... the Derbyshire Times reports that Chesterfield's "New signing Kairo Mitchell has ‘potential’ and will bring ‘goals’, says manager James Rowe.

    The 23 year-old striker has joined Chesterfield, subject to National League and Football Association, from King’s Lynn Town, who they beat on Saturday. We are led to believe Town have paid £25,000, with £10,000 in potential add-ons, for the Grenada international.

    Mitchell, who watched on from the stands as his new team beat his former club, has scored eight goals in 22 games this season.

    Rowe said 'We were trying to get it done yesterday (Friday) but we could not quite get it over the line. I have watched him intently, the recruitment team have flagged him up to me so I have studied his game. He will add hunger to an already hungry group, pace, hold-up play, potential and goals and that is not a bad combination for a centre-forward'...

    Mitchell came through Leicester City’s academy before signing for Nuneaton and then Coalville Town. He joined the Linnets last October".

    He is the second King's Lynn forward to leave the club this week following the move of Adam Marriott to Eastleigh.

    After Saturday's game, the Derbyshire Times told us of a "dramatic comeback win against King's Lynn Town.

    Boss James Rowe said Chesterfield got their ‘just rewards’... Two goals in a minute in the second-half from substitutes Nathan Tyson and Tom Whelan flipped the game around after Sonny Carey’s free-kick gave the LInnets the lead.

    The victory is the Spireites’ fifth in a row...

    'Second-half I thought we upped the intensity again and we fully deserved the win,' Rowe said... 'It is win at all costs at this stage and we certainly did that... Over the course of the 90 minutes we played with a real intensity...

    'Wow, five wins on the bounce, we have got to be happy with that'.

    Tyson scored his first goal of the season when he swivelled and finished high into the net with 15 minutes to go after Goerge Carline’s cross found him in space in the box.

    And 60 seconds later another Carline cross reached Whelan who fired in for his fifth goal in a Blues shirt.

    'In the first 15 minutes I thought it was the best intensity we have had,' Rowe said on the first-half performance... 'But it was not good enough in the final bit, the final pass. They changed to a diamond formation after the substitute and we did not get to grips with it in the first five minutes and they scored. We left two v two at the back, (Curtis) Weston was not close enough, so small details like that matter'".

    Meanwhile, Lynn News opined that "Two goals in a minute broke King's Lynn Town hearts...

    On the day the Linnets pocketed an undisclosed fee for Kairo Mitchell from their league rivals, they showed great resilience for the first 70 minutes after Sonny Carey had given them them a half-time advantage...

    Lynn hardly touched the ball in the opening ten minutes and... Chesterfield dominated long periods of the first half with Lynn content to hit their visitors on the break with the pace of Michael Gyasi.

    Ian Culverhouse's side stunned the promotion-chasers by becoming the first team to score against them in more than seven-an-a-half-hours of football.

    Simeon Jackson, who'd only been on the field for a matter of minutes, was brought down by Gunning and Carey stepped up to drill home the resulting free-kick...

    The visitors remained on top and... The Spireites levelled matters when substitute Nathan Tyson fired home on the turn.

    Less than a minute later they took the lead after Carline provided a cross for Whelan to produce another clinical finish. Lynn missed a golden chance to level the scores in injury time after former Spireite Alex Kiwomya shot into grateful arms of Grant Smith".

    The Dorset Echo tells us that "Weymouth were left to lick their wounds after Torquay United came back from 1-0 down to record a priceless 2-1 victory at Plainmoor...

    The Gulls’ defence looked shaky in the first half as keeper Lucas Covolan tripped Andy Dallas for a penalty. The Scottish striker converted for his eighth goal of the season inn the 42nd minute, but Torquay dominated the second half.

    Joe Lewis and Asa Hall both struck the bar before a Jake Andrews sizzler levelled the score.

    Weymouth clung on until the 85th minute when Connor Lemonheigh-Evans rose highest to bury a header and score his second winner against the Terras this season.

    Given the half-time scenario this loss will sting for Weymouth boss Brian Stock, who made two changes... Ben Thomson came in for Josh Wakefield who dropped to the bench, along with Cameron Murray.

    New centre-back Ben Morgan, signed for a small fee from Gloucester City, came straight in for his debut as part of a flexible 5-3-2 formation. Joan Luque took Josh Leslie-Smith’s place on the bench in the only other switch.

    Torquay... made a commanding start at Plainmoor, dominating possession... But Torquay’s defence, including ex-Weymouth centre-back Sam Sherring, looked lacklustre... At the other end, Gary Johnson’s men were potent... as Torquay held out for a comeback win, doing the double over their Dorset opponents".

    We learn from the Maidenhead Advertiser that "Despite dominating possession and creating the game’s better chances, Maidenhead United failed to breakdown a resilient and hard-working Barnet side at York Road.

    Ahead of kick-off the Bees sat bottom of the National League table with only 13 points to their name, but they chased, harried, and hassled the Magpies all afternoon to earn their first clean sheet since December 5... It’s the Magpies fourth league game without a victory...

    Unsurprisingly, Maidenhead had the better of the game’s few chances, and it’s likely this would have been a much more comfortable afternoon for them had they been able to get their noses in front...

    The game became even scrappier after the interval... Maidenhead’s players grew increasingly irritated by their inability to turn possession into chances, but they were spared a fourth-straight defeat thanks to Taye Ashby-Hammond’s smothering save from Hooper, who was played through by Ephron Mason-Clark in the 86th minute.

    The hosts piled forward in the closing stages to little avail as the Bees put bodies on the line to preserve their point.

    Blissett also picked up a nasty looking injury late on, clattering into the hoardings behind the goal...

    The Magpies came into this game off the back of three successive defeats, but this doesn’t feel like a solid step in the right direction, despite keeping a first clean sheet in five matches. They remain 14th...

    Following discussions between both clubs Maidenhead’s trip to Yeovil Town this Tuesday has been postponed. They’ll return to action at Stockport on Saturday.

    Barnet’s first team coach Simon Bassey said afterwards 'A lot of questions have been asked of the group, but you can’t fault their character today... You’ve seen a team out there who worked hard, who were committed, who played for the badge, and a team that were together'...

    Magpies boss Alan Devonshire added 'We lacked the quality going forward... But we’ve had a clean sheet and you’ve got to give credit to Barnet, they’ve had their new coaches come in, a couple of new players. They did all right, but we’ve not been good enough and we’ve got to get better.”

    The Kilburn Times says that "Wealdstone crashed to a late 3-1 defeat away to Boreham Wood as they fail to build on their victory over Barnet.

    A brace from Kabongo Tshimanga stole the show for Wood at Meadow Park after Stones Jacob Mendy cancelled out Jamal Fyfield’s opener.

    First test for new signing George Shelvey in the Stones goal, who was brought in on loan from Nottingham Forest, [was as] he parried a Mafuta free-kick... Tyrone Marsh had the ball in the back of the net shortly after but he was flagged for offside after a strong start from the hosts...

    The hosts continued to put pressure on as Femi Ilesanmi had a spectacular effort from 30 yards which Shelvey tipped onto the bar...

    Boreham Wood finally broke the deadlock in the 74th minute as they were awarded a free-kick which was whipped into Jamal Fyfield who nodded in unopposed from close range.

    Dennon Lewis made a brilliant run past Mark Ricketts and cut it back to Mendy on the edge of the box but he swerved it over in the 80th minute.

    Two minutes later Lewis did the exact same thing but Mendy made no mistake this time and tucked the ball home to level the score at 1-1.

    The hosts restored their lead in the 84th minute as the ball was played into Tshimanga and he smashed into the roof of the net... In the 90th minute Stones Craig Fasanmade was given a red card for what looked like an altercation with Tom Champion.

    Tshimanga rounded new loan signing George Shelvey and slotted into an empty net in the 94th minute to make it 3-1".

    At Eastleigh, "The Spitfires failed to take advantage of ten men Woking as it ended in a goalless draw at the Silverlake Stadium.

    It was a quiet start for Eastleigh as they struggled to find their feet in the cold conditions... A well whipped ball into the box by Joe Tomlinson... was almost turned into the net by Woking defender, Moussa Diarra...

    The best chance of the half came in the 36th minute. A Jack Payne corner eventually landed on the foot of Andrew Boyce, but the centre-back’s effort was blasted high over the bar.

    The last chance of a dreary first half went to the visitors...

    It was the travelling side that started the second half best, but their luck would soon turn. A darting run forward by Baggie was halted as Tommy Block took down the Eastleigh winger on the touchline. The result was a second yellow as Woking were reduced to ten men.

    This opportunity gave the Spitfires the fight they needed, as they saw endless goal scoring chances fall their way... But despite having plenty of chances, the game finished with Woking salvaging a point".

    10 April 2021


    Saturday, 10 April, 3pm unless stated
  • Aldershot Town P-P Yeovil Town [Postponed following death of Yeovil captain, as is Tuesday's game between Maidenhead United and Yeovil Town]
  • Altrincham 0-1 FC Halifax Town
  • Boreham Wood 3-1 Wealdstone
  • Bromley 1-0 Dagenham & Redbridge
  • Dover Athletic P-P Sutton United [Dover players furloughed]
  • Eastleigh 0-0 Woking
  • Hartlepool United v Notts County k.o. 5.20pm
  • King's Lynn Town 1-2 Chesterfield
  • Maidenhead United 0-0 Barnet
  • Torquay United 2-1 Weymouth
  • Wrexham 0-3 Stockport County

    As usual at the J. Davidson Stadium, Saturday's game against FC Halifax Town will be live-streamed by Alty TV.

    Discover how to gain access to the stream here.


    Altrincham FC has announced that manager Phil Parkinson and his assistant, Neil Sorvel, have signed a contract to stay at the club till the end of the 2023-24 season. Appointed in late April 2017, that would take their tenure to seven years.

    In a Friday night YouTube presentation to Altrincham FC season-ticket holders, during which press officers Brian Flynn and John Edwards posed the questions, co-chairman Bill Waterson made the above announcement, whilst also indicating that the club plans to go full-time from 2021-22 season, finances permitting. Phil and Neil then gave their reactions and answered questions from Messrs Flynn and Edwards.

    The YouTube event will be available at 2.15pm to those subscribing to today's stream of the match against FC Halifax Town. It will later be released to the wider world.


    Altrincham FC advises that longstanding supporter "Claire Allan's funeral will take place at Altrincham Crematorium on Thursday 15 April 2021 at 11:00am and the cortège will be passing the Football Ground at 10:30am.

    It will be family flowers only. Donations will be for our wonderful NHS. All cheques to be made payable to Wythenshawe Hospital Charity and sent to Arthur Kershaw Funeral Service Limited, 168-170 Washway Road, Sale, Cheshire M33 6RH".


    This week Phil Parkinson has publicly called on his forwards to be more effective in front of goal and the following table indicates the squad's current strike rate in the National League.

    Including the now voided game against Dover Athletic, Alty have scored 38 goals in the league this season to date. On average they net a goal roughly every 80 minutes.

    Discounting the five penalties netted by Josh Hancock, that leaves 33 goals from open play in 34 games. These have been scored by the following players...

    • Jamie McDonald 1 goal, or a goal every 70 minutes on the pitch - striker
    • Dan Mooney 2 goals, or a goal every 255 minutes on the pitch - winger
    • Fisayo Adarabioyo 2 goals, or a goal every 262 minutes on the pitch - striker
    • Ryan Colclough 5 goals, or a goal every 276 minutes on the pitch - winger
    • James Hardy 1 goals, or a goal every 347 minutes on the pitch - winger
    • Josh Hancock 6 goals, or a goal every 393 minutes on the pitch - forward
    • Tom Peers 3 goals, or a goal every 460 minutes on the pitch - striker
    • Ritchie Sutton2 goals, or a goal every 539 minutes on the pitch - defender
    • Yusifu Ceesay 3 goals, or a goal every 561 minutes on the pitch - winger/striker
    • Matty Kosylo 3 goals, or a goal every 745 minutes on the pitch - winger
    • Jake Moult 2 goals, or a goal every 1,416 minutes on the pitch - midfielder
    • Connor Hampson 1 goals, or a goal every 1,445 minutes on the pitch - defender
    • Toby Mullarkey 1 goal, or a goal every 1,597 minutes on the pitch - defender
    • Alistair Smith 1 goals, or a goal every 2,088 minutes on the pitch - midfielder

    Those who have played 400+ minutes but have not scored at all in the league are the following:

    • Joel Senior 2,751 mins - defender
    • Tom Hannigan 2,555 mins - defender
    • Andy White 996 mins - defender
    • Billy Sass-Savies 532 mins - defender
    • Byron Harrison 479 mins - striker
    • Sean Williams 478 mins - midfielder
    • Joe Piggott 442 mins - striker
    • Shaun Densmore 434 mins - defender
    • Simon Richman 418 mins - midfielder
    • Regan Oagle 408 mins - defender


    Terry Rowley has kindly provided some information on former Altrincham player George Hudson who died on 28 December 2020.

    He was a Mancunian, born on 14th March 1937. He played for Blackburn Rovers (1958-60), Accrington Stanley (1960/61) before a £10,000 fee took him to Peterborough United in October 1961, where he stayed till 1963.

    A £21,000 transfer to Coventry City came in April 1961, a club record at the time. He scored a hat trick on debut in the Sky Blues' Division 3 North promotion season. He hit 25 goals the following season in Division 2, then 25 the again in the next season. Regardded as a legend at Coventry, in all he struck 75 times in 129 games before joining Northampton Town, then in Division One, for £22,000 in 1966.

    Following a spell with Tranmere Rovers he joined Altrincham, having played pre-season games in 1969. He made his debut as an inside-right before having two unused subs appearances. He was employed in Manchester on the Daily Mirror newspaper.


    Altrincham FC has Brian Flynn's report that "Altrincham FC Women returned to training on the last day of March and were straight into action at the weekend with a behind closed doors friendly against Chester FC Women on Easter Sunday.

    Honours were even in a 6 goal thriller at Chester's impressive 1885 Arena.

    The Robins led 1-0 & 2-1 but were pegged back on each occasion and it looked as if the home side woukld be the victors when they went into the lead for the first time to make it 3-2 but a last gasp equaliser secured a result for new manager, Nick Pearce, who was taking charge of his first game since being appointed in January.

    Altrincham's goalscorers were Jade Hesketh, Megan Rowley and Casey Beamon.

    The Women are next in action on Sunday in a behind closed doors fixture against Northwich Vixens at Egerton FC, Knutsford, which will be Altrincham FC Women's home venue this season".

    Footnote: The team now seems to have been renamed Altrincham FC Women, although their twitter account is called Altrincham Women FC and the Cheshire League website still has them as Altrincham FC Ladies!

    ON THIS DAY: 10 April

    Today's date, 10 April, has not been a popular date for Altrincham matches. There have been just two such games this millennium. And, to make matters worse, on the seven occasions that Alty have played on 10 March since 1976, Altrincham have not won once!

    The first match of the current millennium on this date was against Burscough in 2004 and it ended in a 3-1 defeat in Lancashire in a UniBond League Premier Division match.

    Above Right: Mark Maddox advances into the Burscough half, as Ged Kielty looks on.

    The corresponding fixture the previous season had been Graham Heathcote's first as manager of Altrincham and had witnessed a fine performance and 3-0 win for the visitors. Today, Altrincham arrived having stalled in the league and having taken only one point from their last three games, following a run of three successive wins.

    Injuries had played a major role in the reverse in Alty's fortunes in recent games. Indeed, the Robins arrived at Burscough with seven regulars missing; Adams, Aspinall, Scott, Rose, Thornley, Wright and Hardy, not to mention Murphy and Smith who had not kicked a ball this season through injury. Wright had been the latest victim, having succumbed to tonsilitis during last week.

    Replacing the injured Stephen Rose, Ryan Hutchinson came in for his third start since arriving from Stoke City but it was only his first start in six Alty games. A newcomer, on the bench, was Jamie Almond, a former Manchester City youngster, who arrived at Moss Lane via Woodley Sports and Mossley.

    Though wearing no.2, Peter Band paired up with Gary Talbot in central defence, whilst Mark Maddox moved across to right-back, to replace the injured Aspinall who had failed a fitness test before the game.

    Burscough, managed by ex-Alty player Derek Goulding, had just climbed out of the bottom three.

    The Linnets were deserved winners against an Alty side lacking seven first-team regulars at kick-off and losing a eighth (Talbot) before the interval.

    The Linnets took the lead after 33 minutes through Bell but they also squandered three other good chances in the first half. Any hope of recovery disappeared for Alty when Connell made it 2-0, a minute after the break. The same player added a third, though Shuttleworth appeared to be bundled over in the build-up (68 mins).

    Hallows got a consolation for Alty two minutes later after good work by substitute and debutant Jamie Almond. Ged Kielty was one of few players to emerge with credit in a disappointing overall performance by Altrincham, which saw them concede three goals away from home for the first time this season.

    ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts and red socks): 1. Stuart COBURN, 2. Peter BAND, 3. Barry SHUTTLEWORTH, 4. Mark MADDOX, 5. Gary TALBOT, 6. Ged KIELTY, 7. Ryan HUTCHINSON, 8. Ian CRANEY (capt.), 9. Marcus HALLOWS, 10. Matt BAILEY, 11. Jamie BAGULEY. Subs: 12. Stephen LUNT, 14. Kieran LUGSDEN, 15. Jamie ALMOND.


    Eastleigh Football Club "announce the signing of forward Adam Marriott from King’s Lynn Town FC.

    The 29 year-old striker joins the Spitfires on a permanent transfer for the remainder of the season.

    Marriott boasts an impressive goal tally for King’s Lynn, scoring 65 times in 99 games, six of those coming this season in The National League.

    Beginning his youth career at Norwich, Marriott has had a successful time at the likes of Cambridge United, Cambridge City, and Lincoln City before joining the Linnets.

    Upon signing, Adam Marriott said 'I’m absolutely buzzing. Eastleigh have given me the opportunity to play some games and hopefully do well for the club, I’m excited to get started.'.

    Lynn News adds that he had "scored 65 times in 99 appearances for the Linnets.

    The 29 year-old has been a talisman in Lynn's remarkable rise to the elite of non-league football since joining from Boston United three years ago. His current deal was due to expire in the summer".

    Footnote: King's Lynn Town had put Marriott on furlough so he has not played from some time.

    Barnet "Chairman, Tony Kleanthous, has penned an open letter to supporters", which includes the following explanation that his previous comments on the club's supporters included "criticism [only of those who] claim to be supporters but offer no support whatsoever. It was never my intention to attack any of the vast majority of our fans who have stuck with me and the Club through thick and thin and I can only apologise if anyone felt this was the case.

    It is unfortunate that nowadays all clubs have a small minority who seem to feel it is acceptable to use social media as a tool to abuse players and staff at every opportunity. Whilst we have come under rightful criticism this season, there is a fine line to overstepping the mark and becoming unacceptably abusive. As I say, this is a tiny minority, but we need to take a stance against this type of behaviour...

    I would like to start here and now and reach out to you by offering an unreserved apology to anyone who feels I have let them down in any way whatsoever in the nearly thirty years I have been at Barnet Football Club. I have always strived to do everything with the Club's best interests at heart and I will continue to do everything I can to give our Supporters the success they deserve.

    'We need to heal our wounds and at the time of reply I was annoyed that anyone would question my passion but on reflection, I can understand why this season’s debacle would raise such concerns. I can assure you that I am as committed now as I ever was and I will put this right. I hope we can together draw a line under this terrible season, show a united front for our new coaching team and truly support our great Club once again.

    'We are rebuilding; taking our time to carefully consider future appointments and putting in place the right team for the right job'".

    Meanwhile, Millwall report that "Under 23s' midfielder Sam Skeffington has joined Barnet on a 28-day youth loan.

    The 20 year-old, a regular in the heart of the midfield for Kevin Nugent's side, will now be able to combine Professional Development League football with appearances for the Vanarama National League side".

    According to the Plymouth Herald, "Plymouth Argyle [are] considering what next for Ryan Law and his Torquay United loan spell.

    The 21 year-old left-back has made five starts and one substitute appearance for the Gulls over the past four weeks

    A decision on whether to extend Ryan Law’s loan... will be taken in the next few days... Law was signed by Gulls’ boss Gary Johnson after an injury to former Exeter City left-back Dean Moxey...

    He has started the five games since then and Torquay have won four of them, keeping clean sheets in all of them, while also losing 1-0 at Dagenham Redbridge.

    Moxey replaced Law as a second half substitute at Dagenham and Redbridge but has been unused on the bench for the two matches since then...

    Argyle manager Ryan Lowe said... 'I know he (Law) went in as cover for Dean Moxey, who is back fit now... Would we like to bring him back and give him an opportunity? Possibly, yeah. Again, that will be down to the kid and us, and see what we want and what is best for him and us'".

    The revolving door continues at The Walks, as players go on the State's furlough scheme whilst new faces are taken on as KIng's Lynn Town "announce the signing of Alex Babos until the end of the season.

    The attacking midfielder was most recently at Alfreton Town. Babos started his youth career through Derby County, having also played for Real Unión in Spain on loan. Other clubs Babos has played for include FC United of Manchester.

    Babos has also appeared for Wales at Under 21 level".

    The Derbyshire Times Confirms that "Chesterfield have suffered a massive injury blow with news that Haydn Hollis has ruptured his achilles and will play no further part in this season.

    The centre-back hobbled off after half an hour in the win against Eastleigh on Good Friday...

    'It is a rupture so it is a serious one,' Spireites' manager James Rowe said... When asked if that was Hollis’ season over, Rowe replied 'And some'".

    Solihull Moors "have further strengthened the first team squad with the addition of Cheltenham Town winger Alex Addai.

    The 27 year-old joins on a short-term loan until 5th May, becoming Mark Yates’s second signing since his return to the club.

    Addai, who started his career at Tottenham Hotspur, joined the Robins in 2018 after a two-year spell at Merstham. The London-born attacker started as a youngster at Spurs before joining Blackpool as a trainee. He has had previous spells at Carshalton Athletic, Whitehawk and Kingstonian. Addai said... 'The facilities are second-to-none and all of the staff and players have made me feel really welcome. I’m quick, direct and I love to create things. That’s what you can expect from me'.

    In the Maidenhead Advertiser we learn that "Maidenhead United boss Alan Devonshire will hope to have James Comley and Rohan Ince back in contention for Saturday’s visit of Barnet after both Montserrat internationals missed Monday’s narrow 1-0 defeat to Eastleigh at York Road.

    The influential pair, who’ve formed a settled midfield trio with the hard-working Ryan Upward, have missed the last few games while on international duty in the Caribbean.

    Comley was able to return for Friday’s 2-1 defeat to Weymouth, but Devonshire admitted afterwards he probably wasn’t fully fit after flying back from representing the Emerald Boys in CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers only days before..

    It’s no coincidence that performance levels have dropped off since the pair, and Dan Sparkes, who has also missed recent matches through injury, have been missing from the squad. Sparkes was fit enough to return against Eastleigh and Devonshire will want to have all three players fit and firing for the visit of second bottom Barnet, who have collected just 13 points all season.

    'We found a nice little set up in the middle with Rohan, Coms and Uppy,' added [winger, Sam] Barratt, 'There was a good balance in there and it’s been disrupted a bit... I’ve found that, even though I didn’t think I’d been out for that long, just four or five weeks'".

    It is not just Altrincham ectending their managers' contracts as Woking announce that "Alan Dowson, Ian Dyer, Martin Tyler and Matt Winter have signed new deals.

    The Management Team have agreed contracts that tie the four to the Club until 2023.

    Since arriving at the Club from Hampton & Richmond Borough in the summer of 2018, Dowse, Dyer and Tyler have had much success with the Cards. In 2018/19 they masterminded the Emirates FA Cup run to the Third Round...Promotion back to the National League was secured through the play-offs...

    In 2019/20, the Cards exceeded expectations and finished 10th, just three points outside the play-offs before the season’s early curtailment...

    Dowse and his team are looking to build a full-time side for next season that will look to compete in the top half of the table.

    Winter has been involved with the Club since 2015, initially taking up a Goalkeeper Coaching role with the Academy...

    Dowse commented, 'We are already building for full-time football.'

    Assistant Manager, Ian Dyer also said... 'We are fully focused and committed as we move towards full time training'...

    Kelvin Reay, Football Liaison Director added... 'I am excited to see what comes over the next two years'...

    John Katz, Director concluded, 'Dowse, Ian, Martin and Matt are the obvious choices to lead the club moving forward. With full-time football and a playing budget built to compete with the top clubs in the Conference heading into next season, we have the perfect gaffer and backroom staff to restore our Club’s proud heritage'".

    9 April 2021


    The Altrincham v Yeovil Town game, postponed last Monday because of the untimely death of the Glovers' captain, Lee Collins, has now been rearranged for Saturday, 22 May.

    By a fortunate coincidence Altrincham were scheduled to play the now defunct Macclesfield Town on 22 May whilst Yeovil were expecting to meet Dover Athletic, who are no longer playing their fixtures. So Yeovil have been spared a long midweek trip and Altrincham will be hoping that, by then, regulations may allow some spectators to be admitted to the J. Davidson Stadium.


    Altrincham entertain FC Halifax Town on Saturday in the first of seven home games in their final nine fixtures of the season.

    Last time out, on Monday, Altrincham had eight players not in the matchday squad who had been enduring injury-related absences. They were:

    • Matty Kosylo: Matty has missed the last 4 fixtures. Initially he was out through a two-match suspension but has since missed the subsequent two matches having also picked up an injury.
    • Montel Gibson: Montel was injured in only his second game; he has since missed 6 matches.
    • Dan Mooney: Apart from 20 minutes as a used substitute against Aldershot Town, Dan has not featured in the last 14 fixtures.
    • Fisayo Adarabioyo: After eight starts, only one of which lasted for 90 minutes, Fisayo was injured and has since missed the last 22 league games
    • Andy White: Injury has sidelined Andy (right) for 8 of the last 9 games, with the exception being when he was named as a substitute, but was unused, against Aldershot.
    • Shaun Densmore: Shaun broke his arm against Bromley and has consequently missed the last 8 fixtures.
    • Yoan Zouma: Yoan has missed the last 4 games after picking up an injury in his fourth start.
    • Alistair Smith: Midfielder Alistair has missed 3 of the last 5 games.

    Hopefully, one or more may return on Saturday against FC Halifax Town at the J. Davidson Stadium.

    From the other side, the Halifax Courier reports on midfielder Jamie Allen, who recently was on international duty and "proud to be playing his part with Montserrat".

    From Allen's cross, an "89th minute equaliser by Nottingham Forest striker and Montserrat captain Lyle Taylor secured a draw against El Salvador, a nation who have featured at two World Cups and sit 113 places above them. It was the second of two World Cup qualifiers for Montserrat, who are managed by former Man City and Scotland defender Willie Donachie...

    Four days earlier, on March 24, Montserrat had only managed a disappointing 2-2 draw with Antigua and Barbuda...

    'It was good to get away and be involved in both games',said Allen, who now has four caps for Montserrat... 'Against El Salvador we put in a fantastic performance, nobody expected us to win or get anything from that game but we managed to get a point and probably could have won it at the end. El Salvador’s the big team in the group'...

    Allen played on the wing in a 4-3-3 in the first game, but the team changed to a 4-4-2 against El Salvador... Closer to home, Allen is pleased with how Halifax have performed this season.

    'Obviously we’re doing well as a team and personally, doing well,' he said... 'We can do better but we’ll keep kicking on... If we don’t finish in the play-offs it’ll be a disappointing season for us'...

    Allen has scored five goals in 22 league games this season for Town having signed a new two-year contract last summer....

    'Every day I’m learning new things... and in the last few games I’ve been dropping into the right wing-back role. They’re developing a new position for me, which I’ve never done before... We had a chat about it and they said when we need an outlet, I can be that outlet being more attacking, when we’re on the front foot we can get a lot of joy down the sides, like we do with Jeff (King) and on the other side with Danny Williams and Jack Senior'">

    ON THIS DAY: 9 April

    Two years ago, on 9 April 2019, Altrincham drew 1-1 at AFC Telford United.

    It was a Vanarama National League North match, played on a Tuesday night. Altrincham made an enforced change as Connor Hampson had limped off the previous Saturday. So, Andy White moved across to left-back with Shaun Densmore stepping in at right-back for only his second league start of 2019. On the bench, despite three Alty keepers (Wynne and Drench as well as Thompson) being involved in the warm-up, no substitute goalie was named as Billy Sass-Davies came into the squad for Steven Drench.

    Right: Alty line up before kick-off at Telford.

    Altrincham only just failed to emerge from the New Buck's Head with all three points as they surrendered an injury-time equalizer from a penalty. It was the second time in three days that the hosts had salvaged a point through a late spot-kick.

    Earlier, Altrincham had taken an eleventh-minute lead with a well-worked goal. Johnston advanced on the right to feed Ceesay in the centre; he laid the ball off for Hulme to fire a fierce shot from the right past the Telford keeper. Alty were the better side for the remainder of the first half, deservedly reaching the interval with their lead intact.

    As Telford began to build some second-half momentum, manager Phil Parkinson signalled his intentions, in the 64th minute, by withdrawing two forwards, Hancock and Johnston, in favour of defenders Sass-Davies and Richman. When Andy White brought down an opponent on their right flank, he saw a second yellow card and the inevitable red, leaving the remaining ten men to try to retain their lead through the final seventeen minutes, plus added time. A further change of personnel saw the booked Hulme also substituted meaning that Alty had withdrawn all of their three leading scorers in a ten-minute spell.

    The ten men survived a mounting tally of Telford corners, which eventually totalled sixteen, before Densmore was drawn into a 90th-minute foul on Udoh which meant a penalty kick. Andre Brown's stoppage-time spotkick was stopped by Tony Thompson's dive but the ball dribbled over the line to level the score.

    Altrincham ended up with six yellow cards, two of which were shown to White, and one to the already substituted John Johnston on the bench. That was their highest number of cards in any league game that season and outdid, in just ninety minutes, the cumulative total of cards accrued across their previous nine matches. The referee, Robert Massey-Ellis, did not emerge with much credit from this game.

    The result left Altrincham in fifth place, one point behind Spennymoor Town but with a game in hand

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Shaun Densmore, 3. Andy White, 4. James Jones, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. John Johnston, 8. Sean Williams, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. Josh Hancock, 11. Yusifu Ceesay. Subs: 12. James Poole, 14. Max Harrop, 15. Matt Chadwick, 16. Simon Richman, 20. Billy Sass-Davies.


    In a very brief statement Weymouth state that "The Weymouth Football Club board of directors can confirm that they have reluctantly accepted the resignation of Vice Chairman and Financial Director Rob Bowman.

    The board of directors wishes to thank Rob for his efforts and for everything he has done during his time with the club".

    According to the BBC, "Wrexham are hoping to sign a striker before Saturday's match with fellow promotion chasers Stockport County.

    Last week, top scorer Kwame Thomas was ruled out for the rest of the season with a ruptured Achilles tendon. Fellow striker Jordan Ponticelli limped off in their Good Friday loss to Notts County, so manager Dean Keates has had two free agents in training this week...

    Said manager Dean Keates, 'Obviously I have to be mindful the players coming in are not going to be up to match speed and it may be too much to ask of them to go straight into the starting 11'...

    Goalkeeper Rob Lainton looks unlikely to face Stockport after pulling out of Monday's 1-0 home defeat against Torquay with a groin problem. Defender Theo Vassell also missed Monday's loss, with a facial injury, and is again a doubt.

    Easter defeats against Notts County and Torquay have left Wrexham just outside the play-off places on goal difference".

    The BBC confiorms that "Yeovil Town's National League game at Aldershot Town on Saturday 10 April has been postponed.

    The Glovers have not played since captain Lee Collins died last week at the age of 32.

    An inquest into his death on Wednesday heard how the central defender had been found in his hotel room after not attending training on 31 March.

    Yeovil's game with Altrincham on Good Friday was also postponed in the wake of Collins' death".

    According to the Hartlepool Mail, "Hartlepool United passed the 60-point mark for the first time in a season since 2007 over the Easter weekend.

    And Pools boss Dave Challinor, who hasn’t given up on the automatic promotion slot just yet, believes it will take another eight points to secure a play-off spot... ahead of Saturday’s huge clash with play-off rivals Notts County...

    Reflecting on passing the 60-point mark, Challinor said 'I’d rather be at 70 points but it’s ticking another win off for us and getting us closer to where I think we need to be and it does it in a space of time where we’ve still got a number of games left to affect the table.

    'I’ve said, 68, 69 points would be enough to make sure you’re in the play-offs this season. It’s probably going to need at least 75 to finish second or third and in terms of winning the league, it’s probably going to take 84 which would mean virtually winning every game for us.

    'It’s still doable and that’s our aim but our short term aim is winning our next game and keeping the momentum building,' added the Pools chief.

    On Monday, goals from Gavan Holohan and Richie Bennett saw Pools come from behind twice to secure a point at Meadow Park despite playing the majority of the game with forward Rhys Oates in goal. Pools trailed 2-1 when Ben Killip was forced off due to an elbow injury...

    Challinor is set to provide an injury update on Killip on Friday".

    Meanwhile, opponents Notts County manager "Ian Burchnall has provided an update on a number of players...

    Michael Doyle: 'He trained with the physios today (Thursday) and they’re hopeful he can join the squad for some training next week... You need people like him in your group; they set high standards'...

    Cal Roberts and Alex Lacey: 'Cal had a full session today and trained really well, as did Alex Lacey. It was Alex’s first session back... but I’m certainly positive about Cal for the weekend.'

    Richard Brindley and Damien McCrory: 'Richard’s taking a step forward each day. He’s not trained with the full squad yet but I’m hopeful he’s making good progress... but he’s not close to starting at the moment. It’s the same with Damien, he’s still in the progressive rehab stage. Again, he’s making progress, but he’s not someone I’d consider being in contention in the next few weeks.'

    Stand-in skipper Jake Reeves: 'We have a lot of natural leaders like Connell Rawlinson, Mark Ellis and other experienced players, but it was important for me to have someone who can carry the way we want to play on to the pitch while Michael is out. Jake plays in a position where you can dictate many things on the pitch. He sees a lot of pictures from the deeper midfield role and I think he’s a good communicator who understands the game and what we want.

    'We’ve been asking him to be a bit more disciplined, to run a bit less into wide areas, enabling him to pick up more balls in midfield. He’s a smart player.'" Notts County’s top scorer Kyle Wootton has vowed he will not change the way he plays as he spoke out against the treatment he suffers at the hands of referees.

    And in the Nottingham Post top-scorer Kyle Wootton... will be available for the Magpies this weekend after he served a one-match ban for being sent off against Wrexham on Good Friday... having picked up a second yellow card following an aerial challenge with Theo Vassell.

    The defender suffered a head wound and needed to be carried off on a stretcher following the 50/50 tussle with replays showing Notts’ striker had cleanly won the ball.

    The referee did not even award a free-kick to Wrexham at the time and pundits felt Wootton had been harshly done by...

    'I don’t know if it’s just something against me or what, I don’t know. Defenders seem to get the benefit of the doubt over me. The referees say I’m holding the opponent, but I say to them ‘well if they’re holding me, how am I meant to get them off me to get the ball?’

    'I said if you’re not going to give a foul for them holding me then what do they want me to do? Stand there and not compete for the ball? I’m not going to do that... I’m just going to get on with it, not let it get to me and keep doing what I do for the team'...

    The 12-goal forward had started to look tired following a gruelling schedule of fixtures but says the break [suspension] has done him the power of good as he prepares to return to face Hartlepool this weekend... Against Wrexham my hamstring was getting really tight. Even though I didn’t want the red card to happen, I think it has come at a good time for me'".

    8 April 2021


    The BBC has a list of managers in the top five levels of English football. Their list for the National League is here re-ordered according to the date of appointment of the current incumbent of the managerial seat.

    In that ranking, Phil Parkinson (right) is the third longest-serving manager, albeit not the longest in terms of working in the National League's top flight. Having said that, there are already nine managers with shorter or the same current tenure in the National League as the Altrincham manager.

    The BBC gives the date of appointment followed by the name of the previous incumbent, excluding acting or interim managers.

    1. Maidenhead United: Alan Devonshire 5 May 2015 Johnson Hippolyte
    2. Boreham Wood: Luke Garrard 14 Oct 2015 Ian Allinson
    3. Altrincham: Phil Parkinson 28 Apr 2017 Jim Harvey
    4. Woking: Alan Dowson 16 May 2018 Anthony Limbrick
    5. Torquay United: Gary Johnson 13 Sep 2018 Gary Owers
    6. Dover Athletic: Andy Hessenthaler 8 Oct 2018 Chris Kinnear
    7. King's Lynn Town: Ian Culverhouse 1 Nov 2018 Neil Fryatt & Robbie Back
    8. Eastleigh: Ben Strevens 5 Nov 2018 Andy Hessenthaler
    9. Sutton United: Matt Gray 1 May 2019 Paul Doswell
    10. Aldershot Town: Danny Searle 20 May 2019 Gary Waddock
    11. Yeovil Town: Darren Sarll 19 Jun 2019 Darren Way
    12. FC Halifax Town: Pete Wild 25 Jul 2019 Jamie Fullarton
    13. Wrexham: Dean Keates 6 Oct 2019 Bryan Hughes
    14. Hartlepool United: Dave Challinor 11 Nov 2019 Craig Hignett
    15. Dagenham & Redbridge: Daryl McMahon 3 Jan 2020 Peter Taylor
    16. Weymouth: Brian Stock 4 Sep 2020 Mark Molesley
    17. Chesterfield: James Rowe 26 Nov 2020 John Pemberton
    18. Stockport County: Simon Rusk 27 Jan 2021 Jim Gannon
    19. Solihull Moors: Mark Yates 11 Mar 2021 Jimmy Shan
    20. Wealdstone: Stuart Maynard 11 Mar 2021 Dean Brennan
    21. Notts County: Ian Burchnall 25 Mar 2021 Neal Ardley
    22. Bromley: Andy Woodman 29 Mar 2021 Neil Smith
    23. Barnet: Simon Bassey 7 Apr 2021 Tim Flowers


    Writing in the Sale & Altrincham Messenger, press and media officer John Edwards states that Altrincham manager "Phil Parkinson (left) fired a warning to an out-of-sorts Altrincham frontline after they drew a disappointing blank against King’s Lynn Town...

    After forcing the pace for much of the first half and hitting the bar through Ryan Colclough, Alty looked set for a quick-fire league double over the Linnets... But two goals in the last 10 minutes turned the tables...and sealed a 2-0 scoreline that left Parkinson distinctly unimpressed.

    'I was massively disappointed and didn’t hide from telling the players that after the game,’ said the Alty manager. 'I thought in the first half we played it perfectly, creating opportunities and actually controlling the game more than we did at our place. It was really disappointing not to score in that period, but I still felt we were the only ones who looked like going on to get a positive result.

    'If they showed no real desire to come at us, it was because we were so much in control, but then the second half was such a contrast in terms of the quality we showed. It was so disappointing, and I let the players know afterwards that a performance level of that kind will not be tolerated at this club.

    He added 'We still had opportunities at the end, but for whatever reason, we couldn’t finish on the day. It has been an issue this season. We are a goalscoring side, but we have needed too many opportunities this season. The forwards have to step up to the mark and show more efficiency with their finishing. It has to improve.'

    The Alty boss already has one eye on next season, saying 'Neil Sorvel and I know exactly what is needed, and it’s something we are looking at now. We have shown we can compete at this level, but we know next season will be a lot tougher, because teams won’t be underestimating us, so we’ve got to make sure we are as strong as possible.'”

    The video interview with Phil Parkinson by Brian Flynn, on which the above is based, is on Alty TV.


    Altrincham welcome FC Halifax Town to Moss Lane next Saturday, with the Shaymen intheplay-off places (seventh) with six more points than Alty from three games fewer.

    In the reverse fixture on 28 December, Alty lost 3-2 at The Shay.

    Both clubs were relegated from the national level in 2016 by Halifax regained their status the next season whilst Altrincham departed the other way, dwon to the EvoStik Premier.

    So their last visit to the J. Davidson Stadium was on Saturday, 4 February 2017, when a scrappy game was won by a scrappy goal as ex-Alty loanee Liam King's deflected effort beat Tim Deasy with just nine minutes remaining of a dour encounter, in which the gap between bottom-placed Altrincham and play-off hopefuls FC Halifax Town was barely discernible for long periods.

    Sean Miller, Shaun Densmore, Craig Hobson were all still missing through injury whilst Alan Goodall was regaining fitness with the reserves. Tom Hannigan was out with a recurrence of his hip injury. However, Damian Reeves had recovered from illness to be available once more.

    Altrincham faced former Robins' players David Lynch who started, as did former loanee Liam King, whilst Jordan Sinnott was on the bench.

    And, of course, the winner just had to be scored by one of Halifax's three ex-Alty players, Liam King, who spent a loan period from Rotherham United at Moss Lane in 2008.

    Alty again deployed midfielder Jake Moult at centre-back with Heathcote at right-back in place of Patterson and McWilliams deployed on the left of the back four.

    The winner came just as Altrincham were beginning to show a bit of spark going forward but, in truth, they scarcely troubled visiting keeper, apart from in the eighth minute of the game, when Jake Moult blasted a penalty straight at the Halifax keeper, who beat the ball away. The spot kick had been won by Andy Owens, following good work from Nicky Clee.

    There was further first-half woe for Alty as striker Andy Owens went off injured with only 20 minutes on the clock.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tim DEASY, 2. Kyle BROWNHILL, 3. Andy McWILLIAMS, 4. Jake MOULT (c), 5. Sam HEATHCOTE, 6. John CYRUS, 7. Elliott NEWBY, 8. Gary JONES, 9. Andy OWENS, 10. James LAWRIE, 11. Nicky CLEE. Subs: 12. Simon RICHMAN, 14. Sam PATTERSON, 15. Damian REEVES, 16. Laurence TAYLOR, 20. Andrew JONES.

    ON THIS DAY: 8 April

    Four years ago today, Altrincham, bottom in the National League North, suffered a 3-1 defeat at home to Brackley Town.

    Shaun Densmore and Clayton McDonald both returned to the squad after several months' absence, the former through injury and the latter mainly due to his loan to Droylsden. Chris Lynch was unavailable following the death of his father on Friday. Alan Goodall, John Cyrus, Kyle Brownhill, Tom Hannigan, John Cyrus and Sean Miller all remained on the injured list so, yet again, it was a weakened Alty side which took to the field. On the positive side, youth teamer Darius Palma made his first league start, following his substitute appearance away at Darlington, the previous month.

    Right: Shaun Densmore made a welcome return to action after his long injury lay-off.

    In the match, Brackley secured an ultimately comfortable victory in the Altrincham sunshine. But the home side, with six out injured and Chris Lynch unavailable following his father's death, started quite promisingly, with their best effort being a rasping Clee shot, which Laurie Walker tipped round the post for a corner in the 24th minute.

    But, just after the half-hour mark, when McWilliams was stranded in the opposition half, Glenn Walker got free on the right. His low cross was easily converted from close range by Diggin. Altrincham almost levelled six minutes later when a fine move ended as Lawrie played in Reeves but keeper Walker made a superb one-handed save.

    The second half was a disappointing affair for Altrincham. Twelve minutes from time, Evans misheaded a Tomlinson kick and the ball ran free for unmarked substitute Hempenstall who beat Tomlinson with a well-judged lob from left of goal. In added time Ndlovu drove a 20-yarder past Tomlinson to make it 3-0 before Evans netted a consolation goal in the third added minute. He tapped in when Owens relayed a McWilliams cross to him from the left.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart Tomlinson, 2. Sam Patterson, 3. Andy McWilliams, 4. Laurence Taylor, 5. Sam Heathcote, 6. Jake Moult (capt), 7. Simon Richman, 8. James Lawrie, 9. Darius Palma, 10. Damian Reeves, 11. Nicky Clee Subs: 12. Andy Owens, 14. Shaun Densmore, 15. Clayton McDonald, 16. Micah Evans,20. Tim Deasy


    Following the news, reported yesterday, that the League chairman had announced his departure, The National League has issued the folowing statement...

    Barwick, 66, has enjoyed a long and distinguished career, spanning over 40 years, with senior roles in both major sports broadcasting organisations and high-profile sports governing bodies.

    In December, the former Football Association chief executive was awarded an OBE in the New Year Honours List for services to sport and broadcasting.

    The Chairman stated, 'After careful consideration I formally told the National League Board in February that I intended to step down at the end of the 2020/21 season. I think it is the right time to relinquish the role and give somebody else the great privilege of leading the organisation.

    'Since 2015, I believe the competition has continued to grow in stature and profile, sent strong clubs up into the EFL and built up a formidable and loyal set of commercial and broadcast partnerships. Our 66 clubs remain the life-blood of our competition and a vital part of their local communities, and that’s what makes our League so special.

    'I also acknowledge just how tough it has been for many of our clubs over the past twelve months facing the unprecedented challenges brought on by the Covid pandemic. In closing, I would like to thank my National League Board colleagues, the League’s executive, our commercial partners, the wider football family and, most importantly, our member clubs for their warm welcomes and support over the past six years.

    'I will continue to commit myself to the well-being of the National League until the end of the season. And, of course, I wish my successor as Chair and everybody connected with the National League my very best wishes for a brilliant future.'”


    Stockport County "announce that Sam Minihan and Jordan Keane have both agreed to sign two-year contract extensions at the Club in the Summer, keeping them at Edgeley Park until 2023.

    Full-back Sam originally joined the Club in 2016 from Worcester City, making over 150 appearances for the Club since then... ordan signed for County from Boston United in 2018, and made his 100th appearance for the Club earlier this season...

    Manager Simon Rusk said 'I am delighted the club have agreed extensions with Sam and Jordan and see both players continue on their upward journey with County'".

    But there are also two departures from Edgeley Park as NL Daily reports that "Two of Stockport County’s loan contingent have been recalled by their parent clubs.

    Forward Jack Stretton has been recalled by Derby County... following injuries to Martyn Waghorn and Lee Gregory.

    In addition, winger Nathan Shaw has been recalled by Blackpool".

    The Blackpool Gazette adds that "Blackpool have recalled Nathan Shaw from his unsuccessful loan spell with National League side Stockport County.

    The winger made the move to Edgeley Park on a one-month loan deal at the start of March. But the 20-year-old... made just two appearances for Stockport and saw just 56 minutes of action".

    At Barnet, "The Club are delighted to welcome both Simon Bassey and Dave Anderson to Barnet Football Club. Both have joined as the first two parts of the backroom rebuild at the Club.

    Bassey, who spent 17 years with now EFL League One side, AFC Wimbledon, joins the Club as First Team Coach and will lead the Bees in the immediate future, starting with Saturday's National League trip to Maidenhead United, whilst the Club continue to rebuild the backroom staff ahead of the next campaign.

    Anderson, who has previously managed the Dons as well, has extensive knowledge of the local non-league scene and has come into support Bassey as an assistant coach, he will also work with the Club's goalkeepers.

    Simon Bassey... stepped into the coaching side at the Dons, where he spent 14 years as firstly Reserve Team Manager before taking on the role of First Team Coach, playing an instrumental part in the Dons meteoric rise through the leagues before they established themselves within the English Football League...

    Dave Anderson is best known to have managed AFC Wimbledon during a three-year spell between 2004 and 2007... Since then Anderson has enjoyed a coaching career, of varying roles, within the local Non-League scene and has extensive knowledge of non-league football and the players within it".

    NL Daily adds that "chairman Tony Kleanthous says the club have brought in...Simon Bassey. The news was shared on the club’s website as part of responses to ‘the most frequently asked questions and topics’ to the Bees' chairman...

    Kleanthous confirmed Bassey’s appointment as part of his fifth response to the questions, adding that he will be assisted by former AFC Wimbledon boss... Dave Anderson. It is unclear, though, whether Bassey is a permanent or interim boss.

    Kleanthous said 'I have decided to rebuild the whole backroom team, which is why the process is taking a while longer than usual. We don’t want to hire a manager bringing his own staff, because if they do well, then they will all leave together for a bigger club, or if they do badly, they will all leave together because they did badly. Either way, the club is left with no succession or stability.

    'I therefore want to take my time and find a team of people who can be part of the longer-term vision for Barnet FC, where we are not always having to start from scratch. This means I need the right people to join Gary Anderson, our head of performance, Ollie Galloway, our physio, and Ricky Bartlett, who is joining us in July to handle football operations and logistics.

    'In this respect, it gives me great pleasure to announce that Simon Bassey, who was formerly at Wimbledon, has agreed to join us, and I am delighted to welcome him to the team. Simon will be coaching the first team going forwards... He is joined by Dave Anderson, who has enjoyed his own successful career as a goalkeeper with Northern Ireland and in non-league football management, and will be Simon’s assistant and goalkeeping coach.'"

    According to The Leader, "Dean Keates is running the rule over two strikers and the Wrexham boss is 'optimistic' he will have added to his attacking options before Saturday's clash with Stockport County at The Racecourse.

    Dior Angus was the only recognised striker available for Monday's 1-0 defeat to Torquay... Top scorer Kwame Thomas has ruptured an Achilles and is facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines, Jordan Ponticelli is currently out of action with another hamstring injury and Jake Bickerstaff is on loan at Caernarfon and cannot be recalled.

    Only able to sign free agents because Wrexham is a Welsh club, Keates will take a look at two frontmen...

    Said Keates..'Two are coming in and we will see how they develop over the course of the next few days. Fortunately enough they have played in the league so there are a couple of games I can look back at... You are asking a lot for them to come in and see if they can go straight away for 90 minutes... One has been offered who is right at the end of their [sic] career and they have not done anything for a long time.

    'One ruled himself out who I reached out to. He said he wouldn't do himself justice and he wouldn't do the football club justice so you appreciate the honesty on that. One or two others have not played for a long time and last season when they were playing, were quite injury prone. On the other side, you have got 19-20 year-olds who have been released from under 23s.'"

    According to Devon Live "Torquay United manager Gary Johnson wanted to be in a position where the Gulls could take back the top spot from Sutton United when they met and a win against Weymouth at the weekend could set up exactly that chance.

    Torquay go to Sutton next Tuesday night after Weymouth visit Plainmoor on Saturday. Because Sutton were supposed to be playing Dover Athletic this coming weekend, they are now without a game and, after Torquay completed an Easter double at Wrexham on Monday, the Gulls are now just six points below the leaders, with the same amount of games played.

    To be fair, Hartlepool United could scupper Johnson’s plans to go back to the top, but Hartlepool have played three more games than Torquay...

    Torquay started the Easter weekend with a 1-0 win at home against Woking... And they finished their Easter celebrations on Monday when they won 1-0 at Wrexham...

    If it wasn’t for injuries to Connor Lemonheigh-Evans and Benji Kimbioka at Wrexham, it would have been the perfect Easter for the Gulls.

    Asked if he enjoyed his Easter, Johnson said 'Yes, I enjoyed the points and I enjoyed the wins. Obviously, it was a good Easter for us'...

    Johnson said 'It has been a tough schedule with not a big squad to choose from'...

    Johnson also reported on the injuries suffered by key midfielder Lemonheigh-Evans and loan striker Kimpioka, saying the influential Lemonheigh-Evans hurt his knee in a challenge but it was an impact injury and hopefully not as bad as first feared. For Kimpioka, there will have to be checks on how bad his hamstring is after the Sunderland loanee limped off".

    In the Hartlepool Mail we learn Dave Challinor's "verdict on the National League play-off picture...

    Hartlepool United are well positioned... At this stage it is likely Pools... will be competing in the play-offs and the competition is intense.

    Pools have played 34 games and that is at least three more games than all of their play-off rivals... Challinor said 'It’s going to be interesting especially with the teams involved. All big clubs, ex-Football League teams with big fan bases... We've given ourselves a run of games where we can achieve what we want to,' added the Pools boss".

    Meanwhile, Sutton United "announce that Manager, Matt Gray, and his Assistant, Jason Goodliffe, have both signed new contract extensions at Sutton United.

    Club Chairman, Bruce Elliott, enthused 'We often remarked how taking over from Paul Doswell after eleven years of progress at this club was going to be one of the hardest jobs in Non-League football. After several years’ experience as an Assistant Manager at EFL and National League clubs, we are Matt’s first club as a 'number one' and we could not be more thrilled with the job he has done in his first two seasons in the role.

    He understands what Sutton United is all about, has an extraordinary knowledge of the game and a tremendous work ethic; his superb squad of players and his partnership with Jason and the rest of his Management team have brought results and a brand of football which we can all be very proud of. Long may it continue!'

    Matt was equally happy to commit himself to the club 'I couldn’t be happier at Sutton United. This is a special Football Club full of excellent people. It is a real pleasure working closely with Bruce, AB, Tim and every Board Director and club official, whose hard work and passion for the club is there for all to see'".

    7 April 2021


    Altrincham welcome FC Halifax Town to the J. Davidson Stadium on Saturday.

    "After FC Halifax Town’s 3-2 win over Weymouth, defender Tom Bradbury spoke...

    'It’s a big three points,' Bradbury said. 'We didn’t play too well, and we looked a bit off the pace. There were a few bad touches and poor passes. We said in the changing rooms that we were a bit down and Danny Williams had to make the point that we had just got three points. It moves us up the league and puts us in a good position. We’re happy in the dressing room but we know we have got to improve'...

    Bradbury restored the Shaymen’s league when he headed home to make it 2-1 in the 31st minute...

    Town looked comfortable going into the closing stages of the game before Jake McCarthy netted Weymouth’s second to cause a nervy end to the game... Bradbury said 'If we had drawn that game it would have been hell for leather. We are happy with the result. You would have taken a 5-4, 4-3, anything just to get the three points'...

    Town travel to Altrincham on Saturday, and Bradbury is hoping for an improved performance and a good result.

    'They played well when they came here,' Bradbury told Shaymen TV. 'They have got some good attacking players and they score a lot of goals. It will be a fun affair, but if we want to get in these play-offs then we have to beat Altrincham'".


    Altrincham fans of the 1990s will be interested to hear that the Alty Files have been contacted by former player Paul Showler's son, Jake.

    That was after Jake had read Terry Rowley's profile of Paul, which can be found in the Alty Legends section of this website, here

    Paul, now aged 54, and Jake nowadays run a successful physiotherapy clinic, Showler Physiotherapy, in Peterborough. Paul was for many years the physio at Peterborough United after retiring as a player.

    Jake and Paul are both chartered physiotherapists and members of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy and Health Care Professionals' Council and they have vast experience in NHS and private healthcare.

    Apart from running the clinic, Paul is a very proficient golfer and has even won his golf club's championship at Milton Golf Club.

    As Terry Rowley wrote in his profile, "Paul Showler was a player who spent only one season [1990-91] at Moss Lane but, in that one season, he was to leave an indelible memory on everyone who watched him play...

    John King signed him for Altrincham for the 1990/91 season and he quickly established himself as a key player in the Robins' assault on the Conference title.

    In the views of this author he was probably the best winger that the club has seen in this or any other era.

    He was fast, direct and his crossing was pin-point accurate. In a season in which Altrincham scored 127 goals, Showier was so often the catalyst, as well as scoring 13 goals himself".


    The NL Paper has an interview with former Alty striker Kyle Perry, now 35. He and his elder brother, Todd, have set up a fashion busines.

    Right: Kyle in action for Alty against Grimsby Town.

    "We thought there was a gap in the market for community localised work fashion and so we have put KyTo together, Kyle and Todd" said Kyle.

    He added, "I had my band, Stubbblemelt, which gave me an option to be creative and release what was inside.

    "And then I put on music festivals but now I want to create my own business and push on".

    Brother Todd plays for Dudley Town whilst Kyle is on the books of Kettering in National North.

    "Fingers crossed I'll be staying at Kettering next season", he continued. "I'm like marmite, aren't I? I get remembered from ten years back and people have an opinion, sometimes it is good and sometimes bad", he concluded.


    As reported below the Cheshire League has decided to try and complete its season though its website indicated that their top division, in which Alty Reserves play, had suspended its season, whilst its lower levels were continuing.

    However, last Saturday, in a a J B Parker Premier Division Challenge Cup match, the Altrincham Reserves drew 2-2 at home to Broadheath Central FC. Substitute Marc Bellingham netted one of the goals.

    This was not a knockout match but rather a group stage game; for more details and fixtures see the Reserves Page.

    The Altrincham starting eleven comprised Joel Torrance, Theodore Donachie, Daniel Gavaghan, Callum Graham, Joe Haggerty, Reiss Hughes, Raheem Mercurius, Dre Taylor, Curtis Miller, Luigi Mongan and Max Pouncey. The bench was made up of George Howarth, Madison Davis, Jake Foy, Daniel Lewis and Marc Bellingham.


    Last weeknd the Cheshire League "restarted and will attempt to fit in more than 400 matches before the end of June" reports the NL Paper.

    "None of its teams have turned out since Christmas but almost eberyone voted... to play competitively again".

    However, "The campaign for teams in its top flight... has been curtailed". That is the Premier Division in which Altrincham Reserves compete.

    "Meanwhile, the rest, split across four divisions, will play their remaining league games with promotion one of the prizes on offer".

    However, "there will be no relegation from either of the top two sections. Two teams from the third tier (Step 9) will be promoted, creating space to accommodate eight new clubs that want to join for the 2021-22 term... The teams must complete 60% of their league programme before a PPG calculation can be used to decide the final standings".

    ON THIS DAY: 7 April

    Three years ago today, Altrincham were at The Giant Axe where they overcame the hosts, Lancaster City, 2-1, in an EvoStik Premier match.

    This win and defeats for Warrington Town and Grantham allowed Alty to extend their lead to eight points at the top of the table, a position they had held for almost six months. But after cruising to an early 2-0 lead, Lancaster got a goal back and kept the game tight till the end.

    Alty had taken a tenth minute lead when Jordan Hulme's shot was fumbled over the line by goalkeeper Elliot Wynne, (later to join Alty) who was later named Man of the Match. Seven minutes later it was 2-0 as Hannigan powered a header into the net from Johnston's corner.

    Above: Tom Hannigan nets the opening goal, (his legs can just be seen, far right!), as he wheels away after heading home the goal.

    However the Dolly Blues pulled back a goal in the 24th minute when Simpson headed home an Akrigg cross from the right after a corner. Hulme missed a sitter before half-time and Altrincham were unable to convert a lot of second half pressure into a third goal.

    For this game Alty remained without James Poole, Connor Hampson and Ben Harrison through injury but Andy White was back and midfielder Rhain Davis joined the squad. Tom Peers was also out with a hamstring tweak.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony THOMPSON, 2. Shaun DENSMORE, 3. Andrew WHITE, 4. Tom HANNIGAN, 5. James JONES, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 7. John JOHNSTON, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 9. Jordan HULME, 10. Max HARROP, 11. Josh HANCOCK. Subs: 12. Rhain DAVIS, 14. Chris MERRIE, 16.Theo BAILEY-JONES, 20. Andrew JONES, 15. Sam HEATHCOTE


    The Hartlepool Mail reports that "Brian Barwick has revealed he is to stand down as chairman of the National League.

    It comes ahead of a vote of National League clubs over a motion no confidence against the league’s board and chairman Barwick...

    Speaking today to The Times, Barwick said 'I’m very comfortable about my decision. It’s a time of life thing. I’ve done this for six years and I’ve had a great time doing it. I wanted to give something back to the sport.

    'But the last 12 months have been the most difficult in my career. I’ve been trying my very best, as has everyone else, to get through this crisis. It blew us out of the water. There will be some who think we’ve done a good job and some who don’t.

    'I decided over Christmas that it was time for me to step down. I’m 67 in June and I’ve been around sport and sports broadcasting since 1979. I formally told the board at our February meeting. They were surprised and very supportive, and they’d love me to stick around. But I just thought, you know what, it is the right time.

    'I was determined out of a sense of duty to see this season through. I will stay until the end of the season. I think that’s the right thing to do. It’s morally right that they can prepare for the future. But if I’m honest it’s been tough. I am a part-time, non-executive chair who for the last 12 months has worked for 365 days.'”

    The Manchester Evening News states that "Stockport were left frustrated by a dour 0-0 draw with Bromley at Edgeley Park on Easter Monday, as Simon Rusk’s side missed the chance to keep the pressure on the National League’s top three.

    In a quiet first-half which produced just three attempts on goal, the returning John Rooney went closest to opening the scoring...

    For the visitors, the first-half seemed to be all about stifling the hosts with a compact defence...

    The Hatters resumed for the second half looking to break through the away defence from the restart... The game continued to drift along without any real chances created by either side, although substitute Elliot Newby almost teed up Paddy Madden for a simple finish into the last quarter of an hour before Bush blocked superbly.

    The visitors were able to rather comfortably withstand any spells of County pressure as time ticked on, with The Hatters struggling to really test visiting stopper Cousins throughout the second half".

    The Hartlepoool Mail reports that "A first Pools goal for Richie Bennett snatched a late point for Dave Challinor’s side at Meadow Park but that wasn’t the biggest talking point after the game.

    An injury to Ben Killip forced forward Rhys Oates to go in goal for the majority of the game as it ended 2-2 to extend Hartlepool’s unbeaten run to 13.

    Oates saw the funny side as he kept a clean sheet 'Well not how I planned my day going but a clean sheet and another game unbeaten!'...

    Gavan Holohan tweeted 'Considering all that went on in game it’s a good point away to a strong side'".

    In the Maidenhead Advertiser, Maidenhead United assistant manager Ryan Peters says that "Maidenhead United are still looking up the table with the intention of forcing their way back into the play-off picture, despite losing 1-0 at home to promotion rivals Eastleigh on Monday, their third straight defeat in the National League.

    The Magpies had looked to be dark horses for promotion... last month, but mistakes, poor decisions and rash challenges have counted against them in their last three losses to Altrincham, Weymouth and Eastleigh.

    In both of their last two matches they looked more than capable of claiming a positive result, only for sendings off to derail their progress. On Friday Manny Parry was wrongly sent off for a fair challenge on Weymouth’s Pierre Fonkeu, however, Peters accepted Josh Coley was deserving of his red card for a retaliatory kick-out at a Spitfires player at York Road on Monday.

    'We got a red card in our last game which wasn’t a red card,' said Peters... 'We got another red card today (Monday) that was a red card and it’s cost us again. The performance wasn’t great, but we were down to 10 men for a large part of the game... It was still a slightly sloppy, slightly slow performance from us.'

    Despite suffering three defeats in quick succession Peters insisted... 'We’ve got a very resilient group. The morale is fine. They’re positive, but... We don’t want anymore losses...

    'It was good to have Dan Sparkes back, and it’s good to have Sammy Barratt back as well. We’ve scored a lot of goals when they’ve been in form'".

    From the Leader Live we learn that "Dean Keates felt Wrexham should have won both of their Easter fixtures instead of suffering back to back defeats.

    The Reds, beaten 1-0 by play-off rivals Notts County on Friday, returned to The Racecourse for yesterday's clash with title contenders Torquay United who scored the only goal in the third minute of injury time.

    Some good chances went begging for Wrexham, with Jordan Davies twice hitting the woodwork, and Keates' side have dropped out of the top-seven ...

    'It was another tough one to take,"' said Keates. 'It was a scrappy game, weather conditions played a part in that with the wind... Their goalkeeper made the majority of the saves in the game.

    'We got caught by the second phase of a long throw. It dropped down to their player who caught it on the turn... We deserved at least a point out of it,' said Keates...

    'The quality wasn't always there but the amount of opportunities that we created, we should have been looking at three points... We did more than enough to get something out of the game. If we had got a point, I would have been disappointed not to get three.'"

    6 April 2021


    In a goalless first half Alty came the closer to scoring when they hit the bar in just the second minute through Ryan Colclough's twenty-yard strike.

    Altrincham also had the better of the early stages of the second half but, following the introduction of King and Gash from the bench, the final quarter of the game belonged very much to King's Lynn and they ran out deserved winners in the end.

    However, the visitors had good fortune in the 77th minute when Mullarkey was penalised for handball but Gash hit the resulting spot kick weakly and Thompson saved, to his left.

    The reprieve barely lasted two minutes as Gash was involved in an excellent Lynn move which Mitchell finished off to give his side the lead.

    And Alty then conceded a second penalty as Mullarkey tugged on Mitchell as he got into the box and Thompson then collided with the forward. This time Mitchell took the penalty and duly converted it to make it 2-0 (86 mins).

    There was no way back for Altrincham, who slipped to thirteenth.

    Altrincham were again without Matty Kosylo, Montel Gibson, Dan Mooney, Fisayo Adarabioyo, Andy White, Shaun Densmore and Yoan Zouma.

    Match report here.


    Monday 5th April, 3pm unless stated
    • Boreham Wood 2-2 Hartlepool United
    • Chesterfield P-P Dover Athletic [Dover players furloughed]
    • Dagenham & Redbridge 0-2 Aldershot Town
    • FC Halifax Town 3-2 Weymouth
    • King's Lynn Town 2-0 Altrincham
    • Maidenhead United 0-1 Eastleigh
    • Solihull Moors 0-0 Sutton United
    • Stockport County v Bromley [5.30pm kick-off]
    • Wealdstone 5-1 Barnet
    • Woking 2-4 Notts County
    • Wrexham 0-1 Torquay United


    Altrincham next play on Saturday, 10 April when FC Halifax Town visit the J. Davidson Stadium.

    On Monday The Shaymen defeated Weymouth.

    In the Halifax Courier "Town manager Pete Wild described his side's 3-2 victory over Weymouth as a scrappy win as The Shaymen moved back up to seventh in the National League.

    Two goals from Jake Hyde and one from Tom Bradbury were enough to see off Weymouth, for whom Jake McCarthy scored twice.

    'It was a scrappy win wasn't it, we showed some really good stuff in fits and starts but didn't show any real consistency,' said Wild.

    'It's yet another game where, what have we created, probably 15, 20 chances again? And probably 10 of real quality with some really good play in the final third, and then it's the final pass, or we don't score.

    'That frustrates me because we work all week on our final third play and we don't finish it off... So we nearly got undone again by not taking our chances and, at the other end, a set-piece and not picking up the seconds, which has been our down fall in the last couple of weeks...

    'But I never felt worried, I always felt (we were) in control of the game. It's nice that Hydey's got another two as well, which was really pleasing. When your centre-forward scores two goals, that's what we want him to do...

    McCarthy's second goal and a late chance for striker Andrew Dallas made it a nervy ending for Town in the game.

    'We need to stop getting too deep, we need to trust our play, we need to get the two holding midfielders off the centre-halves' toes,' Wild said...

    'Our play at times, not consistently, was good. It allowed me to rotate in the last 20 minutes and try to get some of the other players on and keep the legs fresh'...

    Hyde's performance drew praise from the Town boss, who said, 'He's on eight goals now, his hold up play and how he brings others into play is excellent, it allows whoever he's playing with to play more'...

    Billy Chadwick missed the game through personal reasons, and Wild didn't want to divulge anything further than that, with Jamie Allen replacing Chadwick in the starting line-up...

    Wild also gave a debut to loanee Micah Obiero in the second-half. 'He got hold of the ball, which was one thing when we played against him that I liked about him, his touch, his awareness, his ability to bring others into play, and I thought he showed that within the 20 minutes,' Wild said."

    ON THIS DAY: 6 April

    Two years ago today Altrincham travelled to Derbyshire for a clash between two of the top sides in the form guide; the hosts, Alfreton Town, had won three and drawn two of their previous five matches and were unbeaten in six games. Alty were unbeaten in five with four wins and a draw.

    But in this remarkable Vanarama National League North match Altrincham inflicted on Alfreton Town their heaviest ever home defeat, 0-7, with a dominant display at the Impact Arena. It might have been a different story had referee Mulhall acceeded to strong Alfreton appeals inside the first minute when Clarke went down in the box. But, after that, it was pretty much all Altrincham.

    Altrincham took the lead in the eighth minute when home keeper Ramsbottom failed to deal with a Johnston cross from the right. Blackpool loanee Ceesay was on hand to head against the crossbar from close range before he nodded the rebound into the net.

    Before the half-hour mark Altrincham lost left-back Connor Hampson to injury but, with right-back White having switched flank to replace Hampson, Alty's no.2 got himself to the left by-line from where he cleverly cut the ball back for Hulme to sweep it into the net (32 mins).

    Five minutes before half-time Altrincham gained a slightly fortunate penalty when Ceesay's flicked ball was handled by a defender. Johnston converted the spot-kick to make it 3-0 by half-time.

    A fairly uninspiring fifteen minutes after the break were ended when White advanced once more and the ball was worked to Hancock, who scored from the edge of the box in the 61st minute. Alfreton then won a penalty after a challenge by Jones, but former Alty midfielder Jordan Sinnott saw his penalty well saved by Tony Thompson.

    Above, Josh Hancock nets Alty's fourth goal at Alfreton. He is the farthest right player in the purple shirt.

    Three goals in the final three minutes, plus added time, brought the tally to seven for the visitors. Goal number five came in the 87th minute after substitute Matt Chadwick had advanced on the right towards keeper Ramsbottom, who blocked the shot but the loose ball fell for Ceesay to net his second goal of the match. Three minutes later it was 0-6 when Moult's goalbound effort, following a Chadwick corner, was diverted into the net by Hulme.

    And the icing on the cake arrived in the third added minute when James Jones shot home from the edge of the box following another Chadwick corner.

    Alty moved up to fifth in the table.

    Altrincham were unchanged as regards the starting eleven but on the bench James Poole returned, having only started one league match that season through injuries. Shaun Densmore and Elliot Wynne were involved in the warm-up but were not in the squad, whilst loanees Callum Dolan and Billy Sass-Davies were not in evidence. Ex-Alty players Jordan Sinnott and David Lynch were in the Alfreton squad.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Andy White, 3. Connor Hampson, 4. James Jones, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. John Johnston, 8. Sean Williams, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. Josh Hancock, 11. Yusifu Ceesay. Subs: 12. James Poole, 14. Max Harrop, 15. Matt Chadwick, 16. Simon Richman, 20. Steven Drench.


    At Yeovil Town "Manager Darren Sarll has penned a letter following last week's tragic news...

    The sadness that has consumed all of us at Huish Park has been overwhelming – each of us attempting to cope in our own different ways. In the depths of this darkness though I think is it important to acknowledge just how many people have messaged, called and paid their respects to the man we called captain. On behalf of all the players and the management team we cannot thank you enough...

    The ground has been flooded with flowers, scarves, shirts and messages paying respects to Lee...

    In respect to Lee’s teammates, they are all dealing with his loss in their own individual way, and we will do all we can to support them through this immensely challenging time. One of Lee’s teammates recently described Lee as 'our glue' and I take great comfort in thinking of him in that way...

    He brought the changing room together and when necessary, kept it in line!...

    I would like to take the chance to thank the National League and all the clubs that have held a minute’s silence in Lee’s honour over the last week. It is obvious that Lee had a huge effect on everyone he came across...

    Lee and I came here to win, to achieve and create the most wonderful lasting memories, and that is what we are going to do, with our #4 always by our side."

    Woking's "miserable run of results continued as second-half defensive howlers undid the laudable recovery they had made in coming back from a one-goal deficit to take a 2-1 lead at the break.

    Overall, it was a better performance than in most recent games but calamitous defending presented the Magpies with three points which they might otherwise have had difficulty in pocketing.

    There were four changes from the starting line-up against Torquay, with Jack Cook, Jonte Smith, Jamar Loza and Sam Ashford all returning in place of Ben Gerring, Kyran Lofthouse, Mark Cooper and Sam Dalby. Mark Smith continued in goal...

    The visitors began to settle, winning three corners in quick succession and it was from the last of these that they took the lead in the 20th minute. As Boldewijn dinked the ball back in Block slipped, leaving Mark Ellis to slam the ball past Smith from close range...

    The Cards got lucky. A wayward defensive header allowed Block to hurl in a long throw, resulting in Moussa Diarra being tugged to the ground as he tried to attack the second ball. Max Kretzschmar made no mistake from the spot, firing low and hard into the corner.

    The equaliser put an extra spring in Woking’s step and, conversely, seemed to deflate the Magpies. Only five minutes later the Cards found themselves in the lead... with Ashford anticipating superbly to slide the ball past the keeper.

    But, in the 59th minute, Cook failed to cope with an awkward bouncing ball, allowing Jimmy Knowles to run on and finish clinically past Smith to make it 2-2.

    Worse was to follow in the 65th minute. Smith came for a long ball but only succeeded in half-clearing it, allowing Knowles to fire past two Woking defenders as they sought vainly to protect the empty goal...

    The referee called time on a topsy-turvy game, in which two sides engaged in an uncharacteristic comparative goal fest. Woking will know that, on this occasion, it was sloppy defending, rather than their inability to score sufficient goals, that let them down."

    According to Devon Live, "Sam Sherring was Torquay United’s big hero at Wrexham this afternoon where the Gulls won 1-0 with the central defender scoring the all-important goal in the third minute of time added on.

    It was a hard-won three points for the Gulls to add to the three they won from Woking on Friday, making it a very successful Easter double for Gary Johnson and his players...

    Striker Danny Wright was promoted to the starting line-up in place of Scott Boden. Wrexham, with former Torquay midfielder Luke Young in the team, went into the game having lost both of their main strikers to injury in the last week and on the back of a 1-0 defeat against Notts County.

    Their first choice goalkeeper Rob Lainton also pulled up in the warm-up with Christian Dibble taking his place...

    The tempo began to rise as the game entered the final 20 minutes both sides sensing three points were there for the taking; but also both sides being sloppy at times...

    It was back and forth in the final 10 minutes, frustratingly, when Torquay looked to be getting into good positions, the play would break down.

    Five minutes were added to the 90 and with the ball bouncing around the box in the 93rd minute Sherring turned and smashed the ball home as the home side failed to clear their lines following a scuffed Boden strike".

    Boreham Wood report that "A seventy eighth minute equaliser from Hartlepool substitute Richie Bennett ensured a ninth draw in the last ten league fixtures for Boreham Wood, despite Hartlepool having an outfield player in goal from the thirty-seventh minute.

    Wood were unchanged from their 0-0 draw against Sutton United on Good Friday and definitely had the better of the first half...

    It was just five minutes in when Boreham Wood took the first lead of the game... Tyrone Marsh finished well past Ben Killip in the Pools goal. Unfortunately for Boreham Wood, they switched off and less than a minute later Gavan Holohan equalised for the visitors...

    On the eleventh minute, play was held up for six minutes when two Pools players, goalkeeper Ben Killip and defender David Odusina clashed resulting in them getting treatment. They eventually carried on...

    Boreham Wood did regain their lead, following an excellent run by Corey Whitely! The Wood wide man beat Killip at his near post and it looked like the goalkeeper’s error had something to do with the injury he’d picked up earlier.

    On thirty-six minutes it was obvious Killip couldn’t continue and with no substitute keeper on the bench, Pools boss Dave Challinor brought on Richie Bennett and striker Rhys Oates went in goal. This gave Boreham Wood an excellent opportunity to test the novice goalkeeper and increase their lead...

    The second half was dominated by the visitors in terms of possession and chances. Boreham Wood failed to test Hartlepool’s 'makeshift goalkeeper' at all...

    But unfortunately for The Wood, Ashmore could do nothing about the Pools goal at seventy-eight minutes when substitute Bennett produced a fantastic back post header...

    Luke Garrard was disappointed at another draw from a winning position, after the match, he said 'It was a game of two halves. In the first half, we were brilliant. We created some good chances. We didn’t have a shot in the second half with an outfield player in goal.

    'The fact we have dropped two points again is a bugbear. I can’t question their work ethic and commitment but it’s frustrating that we can’t see a game out'".

    5 April 2021


    Altrincham's match today, Easter Monday, is a 3pm kick-off at King's Lynn Town. The Linnets are streaming the match at a cost of £12 and access is here.

    On Sunday, the Eastern Daily Press reported that Kings's Lynn Town's "Elkan Baggott may be a rookie in football terms but the coach ride back to East Anglia following his King’s Lynn Town debut [at Altrincham] will have been an education.

    'He was at the back of the bus with me, Richo (Jordan Richards) and Mike (Clunan) and we were just chatting the whole way back,' said experienced striker Michael Gash. The conversation was all about football, but for an 18-year-old from Indonesia, who is on loan from League One Ipswich Town, it will have helped him settle into the Lynn way.

    Right: On Alty's only previous visit to The Walks, in November 2019, Andy White was keeping an eye on Michael Gash (foreground) in this image. The Linnets are the eighth different team for which Gash has played against Altrincham in his career!

    Gash also has the distinction of scoring against Altrincham for three different clubs in a single season when, in 2014-15, he played and netted for Kidderminster Harriers, Nuneaton Town and Barnet!

    In addition to that trio of clubs and his current employers, King's Lynn Town, he has been named against Altrincham for Cambridge United, Rushden & Diamonds, Ebbsfleet United and York City!

    Bedding in new players is a sign of the times at The Walks, they come in and go out, perhaps only temporarily, with increasing regularity. Richards himself is now on furlough as the cost-cutting endeavours which enable Lynn to complete the season cut deep again.

    The team sheet for today’s game against Altrincham at The Walks will bear no resemblance to the one manager Ian Culverhouse would have selected, in normal circumstances. Again, a sign of the times, when old heads like Gash and Clunan play an extra role.

    'It is different but, at every club, you get new players in every now and then,' said Gash. 'Obviously it is different; we are getting a new player every week, or two new players, but some people are going out on furlough, playing one week and out on furlough the next week and it is hard. But the group is so tight and I think you just keep it like that so that when new players come in then you make them welcome...

    'It can be difficult, a little bit, because... like today, you don’t know what type of player he is but you can see after five or 10 minutes he can get on the ball, he passes it, he is comfortable and so he is always going to fit in. I don’t think the gaffer would bring someone in who can’t do that...

    There are no cliques or anything in that changing room. The lads that are furloughed, they will come in and watch the game and it is good to see them so, yes, it is just something that we have got to deal with but it is something that in football that is part and parcel of the game'...

    Baggott was unable to play last weekend because of illness, but appears to have settled in, courtesy of that coach trip, on the way back from Altrincham...

    It’s a quick turnaround, with Altrincham visiting Norfolk on Monday, but Lynn will be in a better frame of mind, having ended an eight-game winless run with the win over Eastleigh, despite conceding in the first minute.

    'It was a killer blow really, first minute, you say from set pieces, dead balls, don’t concede and unfortunately we have,' said Gash... 'I think we dominated the first half really.. We came out in the second half and the first 20 minutes again we were exactly the same and got our just rewards really...

    Lynn will be hoping Baggott is available to face Altrincham, while there is likely to be a doubt over Clunan, who had to be replaced during the Eastleigh game".


    Altrincham FC has Brian Flynn's audio interview with Neil Sorvel in advance of today's match at King's Lynn Town.

    ON THIS DAY: 5 April

    Dover Athletic have elected not to visit Altrincham this season but five years ago today, they did so and even brought a supporters' coach for the long Tuesday evening trip, with 33 supporters entering the away end.

    There trip was worth it as they won this Vanarama National League match 2-1 at Moss Lane. Before the match, Altrincham were in great need of a win after recent results had dropped them into the relegation places. For their part Dover were seeking to consolidate a play-off position.

    Adam Griffin was ill, so Scott Leather moved to left back and Jordan Sinnott returned at right-back. Up front Michael Rankine was preferred to Damian Reeves presumably in acknowledgement of tonight's opposition's style of play. Loanee Jimmy Phillips started as Josh O'Keefe moved to the bench.

    The reverse fixture had ended controversially as Dover grabbed a last-minute winner with Alty keeper Stuart Coburn on the ground injured, with what proved to be a career-ending injury.

    Above: Alty warm up before the game against Dover in 2016.

    As a consequence, Altrincham dropped to 22nd in the Vanarama National League as they let a 1-0 lead slip. Alty were the better side in the first half and deservedly led thanks to a fiercely driven shot from Michael Rankine from Jordan Sinnott's lay off at a freekick just outside the box. The goal arrived after 36 minutes and Rankine might have doubled the lead, three minutes later, when put clear by Lawrie but his first touch was too heavy and keeper Walker got the ball.

    The second half was a different affair as the visitors penned Alty back from the re-start. The got their reward when an attempted clearing header by Altrincham struck a Dover player and allowed Ricky Miller to score from six yards or so in the 67th minute. Eight minutes later Stefan Payne got past Luca Havern to make it 2-1.

    Alty brought on Reeves, Crowther and Heathcote but could not get back into the game. So, for the second time in a week a half-time position of safety for Altrincham had witnessed a drop of three places during the second half.

    And there was post-match confusion as it emerged that Marcus Holness had been red carded after the final whistle following a challenge on a Dover player who had been winding down time at the corner flag very near the end of the game. Dover's Bellamy then tackled Holness, though no foul was awarded against either Holness or Bellamy at the time. Holness was then indirectly informed, in the dressing room, that he had been dismissed by referee Martin Coy

    ALTRINCHAM: 17. Tim DEASY, 20. Jordan SINNOTT, 26. Marcus HOLNESS, 5. Luca HAVERN, 6. Scott LEATHER, 4. Jake MOULT (capt), 8. Simon RICHMAN, 26. James PHILLIPS, 15. Josh GINNELLY, 7. James LAWRIE, 9. Michael RANKINE. Subs: 10. Damian REEVES, 12. Sam HEATHCOTE, 14. Josh O'KEEFE, 19. Ryan CROWTHER , 23. Callum WILLIAMS


    The Hartlepool Mail reports that "Hartlepool United defender Ryan Johnson could potentially be facing a spell on the sidelines after picking up a knee injury in training.

    The 24 year-old centre-back has played a key role for Pools so far this season but... manager Dave Challinor fears Johnson’s hyper-extended knee injury could be serious...

    'It was an innocuous incident in training, a ball came in, Henrich [Ravas] came in for it, Johno slammed the brakes on and there was a tiny collision but he’s hyper-extended his knee,' said the Pools boss. 'It was initially sore, got assessed and seemed fine, single-leg hopping and things like that but it’s stiffened up overnight and swelled up a little bit...We hope it’s not serious but we can’t rule that out yet. It potentially could be.'"

    And the Hartlepool Mail also tells us that "Stockport County hope striker Richie Bennett can regain his ‘mojo’ during his Hartlepool United loan spell.

    Pools swooped to sign the striker... on a loan deal until the end of the season, though Stockport do have a recall option after 28 days. The 6ft 4ins 30 year-old forward is aiming to make a big impact.

    Stockport County director of football Simon Wilson said 'Richie has unfortunately found himself out of the team recently and expressed an interest in gaining playing time... Although it is competitive sport it is still about people and relationships. Hartlepool are a well managed club and we know will provide a good environment for Richie to find his mojo'".

    4 April, 2021


    Following a 2-2 draw in Norfolk on their only previous visit to King's Lynn Town, Alty make their second journey to play at The Walks on Easter Monday afternoon. The match finds Alty in eleventh place with 41 points from 32 games and The Linnets down in 21st with 24 points from 28 games.

    It took a late equalizer for Alty to take a point back in 2019 with Josh Hancock scoring after 80 minutes and Jake Moult levelling in the sixth minute of added time to secure a just about deserved point .

    Following a goalless but entertaining first half, Altrincham switched to a back three at the interval and enjoyed the better of the second period. Against the run of play Lynn went ahead in the 77th minute. Gash won an aerial ball and Marriott cleverly dragged the ball back before slotting it past Thompson.

    Three minutes later Alty equalised after Peers had chased a ball to the byline, where he got the better of a defender before laying the ball off for Hancock to sweep home from 15 yards or so.

    However, Lynn regained the advantage in the 84th minute. Substitute Kelly did well and fed Marriott from the left. Again Marriott netted smartly with a low shot.

    A minimum of five added minutes were decreed and play had just ticked over into the sixth when a Johnston freekick was bundled home, after a goalmouth melee, by Jake Moult.


    Altrincham FC has announced that "Yoan Zouma [right] is staying with Altrincham for the rest of the season after Barrow agreed to a loan extension for the towering 22-year old defender...

    After sustaining a hamstring injury, the 6ft 4in Frenchman... returned to training this week".

    The brother of Chelsea's Kurt Zouma, Yoan's initial loan was announced on 1 March 2021. He had played at Bolton Wanderers in 2018, making 23 appearances before joining Barrow where, ironically, he has been competing for a centre-back berth with ex-Alty man James Jones.

    He has started four games for Alty and after completing the first trio of matches, his hamstring injury meant that he had to be subbed at half-time in his fourth outing.


    The extension of Yoan Zouma's loan reminds us that 25 players have made their debuts (or second debuts) in a league squad for Altrincham this season.

    21 of those players have been named in a first-team Altrincham league squad for the first time in 2020-21 season. A further four players have returned to the club in 2020-21 and subsequently been named in a league matchday squad this season.

    Those named in a league matchday squad in 2020-21 for the first time in their careers were:

    • ADARABIOYO, Fisayo - 8 starts, 2 goals, one of which has been voided by Dover's withdrawal
    • BLYTH, Jacob No longer at the club.
    • CLAYTON, Max - 1(+2) appearances, 0 goals. No longer at the club.
    • COLCLOUGH, Ryan - 14(+5) appearances, 5 goals.
    • DALES, Andy - 3 starts, 0 goals. No longer at the club.
    • GIBSON, Montel - 2 starts, 0 goals.
    • GOULD, Matthew - named in two matchday squads, made no appearance in league.
    • HALL, Will - named in two matchday squads, made no appearance in league. Was dual registered at Whitchurch Alport.
    • HARDY, James - 3(+3) appearances, 1 goal.
    • HARRISON, Byron - 7(+1) appearances, 0 goals. No longer at the club.
    • HOLGATE, Harrison - 3 starts, 1 goal. No longer at the club.
    • KOSYLO, Matty - 29(+1) appearances, 3 goals.
    • McDONALD. Jamie - 0(+3) appearances, 1 goal. No longer at the club.
    • OGLE, Reagan - 5(+1) appearances, 0 goals.
    • POTTER, Darren - named in two matchday squads, made no appearance in league. No longer at the club.
    • ROBBINS, Joe - 4(+1) appearances, 0 goals. No longer at the club.
    • SALMON, Lewis - named in two matchday squads, made no appearance in league
    • SENIOR, Joel - 30(+1) appearances, 1 goal.
    • SMITH, Alistair - 24(+1) appearances, 1 goal.
    • SUTTON, Ritchie - 14(+2) appearances, 2 goals.
    • ZOUMA, Yoan - 4 starts, 0 goal.

    The four players who have made their second debuts for Altrincham in 2020-21 after a previous spell at the club are shown below, with their 2020-21 league appearance data only.

    • BELL, Nyal - 0(+4) appearances, 0 goals.
    • CEESAY, Yusifu - 23(+7) appearances, 3 goals.
    • PIGGOTT, Joe - 4(+3) appearances, 0 goals.
    • SASS-DAVIES, Billy - 5(+2) appearances, 0 goals. No longer at the club.

    In addition, although Curtis Miller had been in an Altrincham league squad prior to this season, and had actually made a substitute appearance in National League North, he only made his first league start in 2020-21.


    Monday 5th April, 3pm unless stated

    • Boreham Wood v Hartlepool United
    • Chesterfield P-P Dover Athletic [Dover players furloughed]
    • Dagenham & Redbridge v Aldershot Town
    • FC Halifax Town v Weymouth
    • King's Lynn Town v Altrincham
    • Maidenhead United v Eastleigh
    • Solihull Moors v Sutton United
    • Stockport County v Bromley 5.30pm kick-off
    • Wealdstone v Barnet
    • Woking v Notts County
    • Wrexham v Torquay United

    ON THIS DAY: 4 April

    Altrincham's most recent game on today's date, 4 April, was a disappointing 2-0 defeat in 2009 at Lewes in a Blue Square Premier match.

    Michael Welch had surprisingly recovered from injury and he came back into the side in a 3-4-3 formation, with Young and McGregor the other components of the back line. Chris Lane moved to right midfield, with Doughty on the left. James Smith was serving the final game of his three-match suspension. Ben Wilkinson dropped to the bench with Warren Peyton and he being the only fit substitutes amongst the five named.

    Right: Dale Johnson (in yellow) competes for the ball at The Dripping Pan.

    Lewes were seeking to avoid an unwelcome record, having suffered 18 straight defeats in the BSP. For their part Alty had faltered badly in recent weeks after coming within touching distance of securing enough points to secure their place in the league for the next season.

    However, a poor performance from Altrincham at The Dripping Pan thrust them back into the relegation mix as their run extended to just three wins in their last 15 games.

    A very bobbly pitch did not help but Altrincham resorted far too much to aimless balls forward. However, in the opening twenty minutes Altrincham created and missed several half-chances whilst Lewes started nervously as was to be expected after 18 straight defeats.

    But once Wheeler had taken advantage of a slip by McGregor to score from the Rooks' first real chance, Alty were second best for the rest of the half. Slack marking allowed Keehan to make it 2-0 from a corner just before the interval.

    Wilkinson replaced McGregor at the break and Alty enjoyed plenty of possession but, apart from a couple of good saves from shots by Little, the visitors were kept at bay by the Lewes defence. How a penalty was not awarded when Johnson was almost throttled by the keeper in the box in the closing minutes was a mystery, but Altrincham could not complain at the result.

    To complete an awful afternoon, Danylyk picked up two yellows in a minute and was dismissed in injury time. Losing to an already relegated club which had lost 18 on the bounce before the game was a difficult pill to swallow.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN; 18. Michael WELCH, 4. Mark McGREGOR, 5. Greg YOUNG; 2.Chris LANE, 21. Shaun DENSMORE, 16. Anthony DANYLYK, 3. Matt DOUGHTY; 14. Dale JOHNSON, 9. Colin LITTLE, 12. Joe O'NEILL. SUBS: 11. Warren PEYTON, 10. Chris DENHAM, 7. Robbie LAWTON, 17. Ben WILKINSON, 19. Chris SENIOR.


    According to the Leader Live "Kwame Thomas will play no further part in Wrexham's promotion challenge and Dean Keates says the striker could be out of action for up to nine months.

    The Reds' nine-goal leading scorer ruptured his left Achilles' in training on Thursday...

    'He has just gone up for a header and as he landed we heard the scream,' said Keates... 'The sheer pain that the lad was in after that, it wasn't going to settle down so straight away we knew the worst. We got him straight off to hospital and scanned, and unfortunately for Kwame it is going to be a long journey, a long process.

    'He is looking at six to nine months'...

    Summer signing Thomas experienced a quiet first half of the season, scoring three goals, but the 25-year-old struck five times during a fantastic February...

    'He was in and out first half of the season but he got his opportunity,' said Keates. 'He has been absolutely immense over this period that we are in now to get us to where we are now in the league'...

    It got worse for Keates as Jordan Ponticelli, Thomas's replacement, went off with a hamstring injury against the Magpies leaving Dior Angus as the only recognised striker as Jake Bickerstaff is on loan at Caernarfon and can't be recalled

    Keates is unable to make permanent or loan signings and can only recruit free agents as he looks to bolster his attacking options...

    Said Keates, 'Now it is just out of contract players with our situation. I was always leaning towards not looking for someone who has not been anywhere from the first half of the season; we have got to get them fit. We have got to look at that situation now and we have to address it; we need another body, there is no denying that'...

    Ponticelli has endured a stop-start season because of hamstring problems and he only lasted 28 minutes against County... Said Keates...'For the first 20 minutes I thought he played really well with Dior. He showed it is not just about Dior and Kwame'... Keates added 'We will assess JP. Is there going to be two strikers around [to sign]? That is the thing.'"

    Woking report that "Just over a month after besting the Gulls in a hotly contested FA Trophy tie, the 1-0 scoreline on that afternoon was reversed thanks to a late winner from returning striker Danny Wright. With both sides half-crippled by injuries to several key players, it was not a game that will live long in the memory...

    The visitors were missing the vast majority of their offensive assets, with Jayden Wareham, Malachi Napa, Sam Ashford, Jamar Loza, Matt Jarvis, John Goddard and Dave Tarpey all unavailable, and Niko Muir returning to Hampton after his one-month loan. Nevertheless, Woking stuck to their usual 4-3-3 shape; Kyran Lofthouse was pushed forward to right wing, with Tommy Block deputising at right-back in his stead.

    Torquay, for their part, were missing an absurd sixteen players from that aforementioned FA Trophy tie and are still feeling the absences of key players including Aaron Nemane and Kyle Cameron. Things are improving though; Danny Wright was making his competitive return from a hamstring tear...

    As you’d expect, the first twenty minutes looked exactly like a game in which both sides had strung a squad together... Woking’s game plan had a clearly defensive emphasis, allowing United to boss the ball as long as they could keep two banks behind it. ..

    The setup was effective in denying the Gulls’ strikers space and time... but it did mean that Woking offered virtually no goal threat in the first half... It did not make for exciting viewing...

    If the first half was drab, the second was dire. Woking actually arguably improved, neutering the attacking threat of their hosts, but remained without attacking output themselves...

    As time began to tick down, while the quality didn’t improve, at least the quantity did... It had the flavour of a game that needed either the sublime or the ridiculous to break the deadlock, and the winning goal felt like a mix of both. Good work down the Torquay right, afforded Will Randell the chance to cross, and his fizzing ball into the near post was met by the returning Danny Wright. The 36-year-old’s toe-poked finish seemed to ghost through Smith, who despite being well-placed, couldn’t get low enough to keep the ball out...

    If there was an effort on goal in those last few minutes, it wasn’t significant enough for me to note it down. With almost every senior attacker unavailable, Woking were unable to muster any serious pressure on the Torquay goal...

    While the result is a big one for Torquay given their title credentials, it’s one that extends a bubbling discontent amongst the Woking faithful at present... It means that the Cards have scored just 14 goals in the 19 league games since the beginning of December, with 26 goals in 28 games representing the second-lowest total in the division.

    Having not beaten a side above them in the table since December 12th, and in light of last week’s cup debacle, it shouldn’t be a surprise if some Woking fans are unenthused at the prospect of 13 more league games".

    Bermuda' Royal Gazette tells us that it is now "Justin Donawa is delighted to see his Solihull Moors headed in the 'right direction'after chalking up a third consecutive win in the Vanarama National League away to Barnet yesterday.

    Goals either side of the interval from Tyrone Williams and Kyle Hudlin earned the visitors a comfortable 2-0 win over the basement club at Hive Stadium.

    'It’s a good feeling to get back to winning ways,' Donawa told The Royal Gazette... 'Three wins on the bounce is positive and sends us in the right direction.'

    Solihull... [had] put an end to a nine-game winless run with back-to-back victories against Aldershot Town and Wealdstone.

    Donawa added 'Performances haven’t been great, necessarily, but we’re finding a way to win... Confidence is growing within the group'...

    Defender Williams opened the scoring right on the stroke of half-time with his first tally of the season, a looping header from substitute Jamie Ward’s cross. Forward Hudlin then made the points safe after the break when he latched on to midfielder Joe Sbarra’s pass and rounded Barnet goalkeeper Ayman Azaze before slotting into the empty net.

    The home side’s afternoon then went from bad to worse when they were reduced to ten men after defender Themis Kefalas was sent off for a second booking in the 86th minute".

    FC Halifax Town "have agreed new contractual terms with Pete Wild and his assistant Chris Millington for a further two years.

    Wild said, 'Chris and I are thrilled to extend our stay at the Club. Since day one we, along with all members of staff have worked tirelessly to ensure we are competitive on and off the pitch. We have been determined to put this club back on the map and give the supporters something to be proud of. We feel we have laid the foundations of this project and are excited now to put the next layer on top.

    'I would like to thank the Chairman for his continuous support, he has been a pleasure to work for, as are all the staff at the club. Without David giving us a chance we would never have had a platform to blossom and for that we’re truly grateful'...

    The Chairman on securing the management team for a further two years [said] 'I’ve been really pleased with the progress Pete and Chris have made since they joined the Club in extremely tough circumstances back in 2019. There is always a risk in appointing management staff with no real previous track record in the role,but it is clear to see that the duo are learning their roles very quickly and progressing as a management team, within a Club with lesser financial resources than many of their competitors...

    'In committing their futures for a further two years I am delighted, as it helps to create the much needed stability we need'".

    "Defeat to Chesterfield was 'gut-wrenching', says Eastleigh boss Ben Strevens" in the Derbyshire Times.

    "Liam Mandeville struck the only goal of the game on 61 minutes, volleying in superbly at the far post. The Spitfires had the better of the first-half and had three efforts cleared off the line during the 90 minutes but they could not find a way past a disciplined Town defence who recorded their 15th clean sheet of the season.

    Overall Strevens felt the match was decided on ‘fine margins.’ 'It is tough to take,' he said. 'Ultimately it is a long-throw into the box, I don’t know if it is us or them on first contact, I think it was them, and then the lad hooks it in the goal. It is gut-wrenching to see it go in and then you are searching for that equaliser but we did not create enough chances'...

    Eastleigh edged the opening 45 minutes in terms of territory but did not force Blues stopper Grant Smith into any notable saves all afternoon... 'We had some good opportunities going into their box which I thought we could have got on the end of and we had a few cleared off the line but there were not many chances created from open play from either team,' Strevens added.

    'Fine margins in a game have ultimately cost us... They went for a box in midfield like they did at their place earlier in the season. We quickly nullified that and we made them change it at half-time and they put two up front. Nathan Tyson coming on up top with Akwasi Asante gave them a different option, a different outball to get down the sides of us a little bit, so the game changed slightly in the second-half.'”

    According to the Dorset Echo, "Weymouth manager Brian Stock believes substitutions 'changed the game' in the Terras’ sensational 2-1 victory over Maidenhead United.

    After a low-quality first half, the game exploded into life when the Magpies’ Sam Barratt scored directly from a corner.

    In the 57th minute, Manny Parry was sent off for a two-footed lunge on Pierre Fonkeu, despite winning the ball, to change the momentum of the contest. A flat Weymouth looked like going empty-handed but Sean Shields’s cross drifted into the far corner before Andy Dallas won and converted a 96th-minute penalty to snatch the points...

    Post-match, Stock said 'We left it late but the impact from the substitutions, especially after the sending off, completely changed the game. We stuck to the task'...

    With the exception of a curling effort at Maidenhead goalkeeper Taye Ashby-Hammond, Dallas was a peripheral figure for much of the game. But the Scot, on loan from Cambridge United, turned up when needed to dispatch his seventh goal of an impressive spell...

    On Murray and Wakefield, Stock said..'They both made an impact, brought an intensity to the game and a little bit of quality that we were lacking to unlock a stern, hard-working Maidenhead defence'...

    There was bad news for Weymouth before kick-off as Brennan Camp pulled up with a hamstring niggle, Pierre Fonkeu promoted to start from the bench".

    3 April 2021


    Altrincham have just ten fixtures to play in the National League 2020-21 season.

    Seven of those games are at home and these include five matches against the current top nine clubs (Sutton United, Torquay United, Notts County, FC Halifax Town and Eastleigh).

    The other two games are against bottom-placed Barnet and, the match which should have been played on Goood Friday, against 14th placed Yeovil Town.

    Only three away trips remain and all are against bottom eight teams (Solihull Moors, Weymouth and King's Lynn Town)


    For many of us during the pandemic, with few fixed routines imposed by work or travel, figuring out which day of the week it is has sometimes become an issue.

    And if you thought that Saturday afternoons were a fixed landmark in the week thanks to football matches taking place at 3pm on that day, you would need to think again if you were an Altrincham supporter.

    For, so far this season, Altrincham have played fourteen home games in the league but just six of those fixtures have been played on a Saturday at 3pm. As one of those six was not played at the J. Davidson Stadium but was transferred to FC United of Manchester's Broadhurst Park, (as was one of the evening home matches), just five league games have been played at Moss Lane on a Saturday afternoon this season.

    That means that, in well over a year (some 13 months) from 7 March 2020 when last season's regular fixtures ended, just six daylight league matches have been played at the JDS, which must make it the quietest Saturday spell at the ground since World War Two.

    Above: October 2020, all quiet at the J. Davidson Stadium... and it still is..

    Those six daytime games were the five 2020-21 matches mentioned above plus the Sunday lunchtime play-off tie against Chester FC at the end of 2019-20 season.

    The serial underuse of the JDS actually started at the end of 2019-20 when five home scheduled fixtures were never played because of the Covid lockdown imposed in March 2020.

    During 2020-21, so far, there have been no fewer than TWELVE league fixtures which were set to be played at the J Davidson Stadium but which were not played there on the advertised date(s). They comprise

    • Two fixtures called off because of Covid-19 at Alty (v Solihull Moors and Bromley)
    • One match switched to an away venue (Sutton) because of pitch concerns
    • Two called off for a waterlogged pitch (v King's Lynn Town and Woking)
    • Two matches transferred to FCUM because of pitch concerns (v Wrexham and Boreham Wood)
    • Two caused by Covid at opponents (the rearranged games v King's Lynn Town and Woking)
    • One cancelled by Dover's furloughing of players
    • One cancelled because Macclesfield Town had hit the buffers
    • One caused by the pre-match death of an opponent's player

    Away from home it is has been rather less disrupted with Altrincham having played eleven Saturday matches (and one Bank Holiday afternoon game) out of eighteen away fixtures, although one of those Saturday games scheduled for 3pm effectively became a 6.15pm evening match at Maidenhead last week, thanks to the dictates of BT Sport's cameras.

    In all, barely a half of Alty's 32 matches have been 3pm kick-offs this season in the league, that is just 17 out of the 32 fixtures played (excluding the void match at Dover).

    Some normality should be restored in April and May as every Altrincham match is scheduled to be a 3pm kick off except for the yet to be rearranged Yeovil game, postponed from yesterday.


    Altrincham FC had a training session on Saturday in lieu of their match against Yeovil Town which was postponed following the death of the Glovers' captain, Lee Collins.

    Players and staff of Altrincham paid their respects by observing a minute's silence before their training session, as shown on the Altrincham FC website.


    Altrincham's next match is at 3pm on Easter Monday at King's Lynn Town. The Linnets are streaming the match at a cost of £12 and access is here.

    Since Alty beat the Linnets 3-0 at Moss Lane on 23 March,NL Daily has reported that "King’s Lynn Town have signed midfielder Ethan Coleman.

    The former Reading youngster signed for Brackley Town ahead of last season.

    The 21-year-old has now agreed a deal with Ian Culverhouse’s Linnets until the end of the campaign.

    Coleman started Saturday’s 2-1 win over Eastleigh in the National League".

    ON THIS DAY: 3 April

    Six years ago today, in 2015, Altrincham hosted Southport in a Vanarama Conference match played on Good Friday. The omens were not good as Southport arrived on an unbeaten run of six games, whilst Alty had failed to win any of their four most recent home matches.

    Above: Jordan Sinnott is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring Alty's second goal.

    Nevertheless, Alty won the game 2-0. They got ahead thanks to a first-half strike from left of goal by Nicky Clee in the 37th minute. That was after Southport had set much of the first-half pace. The Sandgrounders had seen Brodie's early long-range shot smash against the underside of the bar and had been denied by several excellent saves from goalkeeper Stuart Coburn before Alty scored.

    The visitors continued to enjoy forward momentum after the break but a superb goal direct from a freekick left of goal by Jordan Sinnott put Alty 2-0 up in the 71st minute. After that, Altrincham had the better of things and their win moved them into the top half of the league for the first time this season. The points also ensured, mathematically, that Altrincham would be in the same division next season.

    Alty were without injured Shaun Densmore and suspended Peter Cavanagh. So, Sean Williams started and Scott Leather remained at right-back.

    The Southport keeper was none other than Alty's current keeper, Tony Thompson, whilst fufutre Alty midfielder Charlie Joyce also started for the Sandgrounders.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart Coburn, 6. Scott Leather, 5. Gianluca Havern (c), 16. Tom Marshall, 3. Adam Griffin, 18. Sean Williams, 26. Jordan Sinnott, 4. Jake Moult, 7. James Lawrie, 11. Nicky Clee, 10. Damian Reeves. Subs: 8. Simon Richman, 14. Kyle Perry, 17.Dave Parton, 19. Ryan Crowther, 9. Steven Gillespie


    Kent Online reports that "Andy Hessenthaler is up for the challenge of managing Dover again whatever the outcome of their appeal over a points penalty and £40,000 fine.

    The club were punished for refusing to carry on playing midway through the National League campaign after chairman Jim Parmenter said they could no longer afford to play without fans attending.

    Mr Partmenter has said they will appeal the decision, hoping to reduce a fine which they can ill afford and a 12 point deduction which would leave them facing a battle from the off next season...

    Hessenthaler, who has been on furlough since Dover stopped in February, said 'I am out of contract, everyone is, but I want to stay and take the challenge on, whatever that be... We have to sit down perhaps in the next week or so and see where we are going. Are we going to be full-time still, or are we going to be part-time because of the financial problems?...

    'It would be an uphill challenge for us, it would be a tough start if it is minus 12 but what a great challenge to have? If you can actually pull that back and stay in the division... I love a challenge. I feel as if I haven’t been able to do my job for the last two years, even the year before (2019/20) when we had to finish early with eight games to go, we were in and around it. We were four points outside the play-offs, we had a good chance of making that last place, but unfortunately that season stopped and then this season has been an absolute nightmare.

    'At the start of this season the chairman was honest and said the money was tight, we had to ask players to take pay cuts and we had to run it off a real shoestring budget. We didn’t get off to a good start and unfortunately we have only played 15 games. I would like to think the chairman wants me to stay, there is unfinished business because of what’s happened this year and last year...

    'I am up for it, whether it is full-time or part-time, I want to be part of continuing what we are doing there'..

    Dover’s punishment could have been demotion, and some might have preferred it, but not Hessenthaler. He said 'As a club we want to be in the top division of non-league, whether it’s minus 12 or not. It could well get reduced, we don’t know'".

    Hartlepool United "announce the signing of Richie Bennett.

    The forward joins us on a loan deal till the end of the season from fellow National League side Stockport County. Bennett’s temporary move to the North East includes a recall clause which becomes available anytime after 28 days.

    The six-foot-four centre forward, who originally came through the ranks as a schoolboy at Oldham Athletic, has signed a deal to stay with Pools till the end of the 2020/2021 season.

    After leaving Oldham, the 29-year-old front man worked his way up through non-league, playing for Curzon Ashton and Mossley before enjoying a hugely successful stint under Jim Gannon at Northwich Victoria... Since 2016, Bennett has had spells with Barrow, Carlisle, Morecambe and Port Vale before signing for The Hatters for an undisclosed fee back in March 2020.

    Dave Challinor [said]... 'He is proven at this level and provides a different facet to our game... He has been one we have looked at for a while'".

    According to the Dorset Echo, "Weymouth captain Josh McQuoid will be out for around three weeks with an ankle injury...

    McQuoid, Weymouth’s top scorer this season with seven goals in all competitions, sustained the injury during Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Chesterfield...

    Manager Brian Stock said 'Josh McQuoid’s ankle was heavily, heavily swollen. He even went to A&E to get an X-ray on it. We’re waiting to hear back from a specialist... He will be out for this weekend and... we’re looking at maybe two to three weeks. It’s going to be a big blow for the team. He’s been probably our most consistent performer throughout the whole of the season'...

    Andy Robinson (gluteal) and Jacob Mensah (adductor) are rated as 'touch and go'" for the weekend.

    In advance of Friday's defeat, we learned from the Leader Live that "Dean Keates admits he has got decisions to make when it comes to selecting his back-three for today's clash against Notts County...

    Fiacre Kelleher is available after missing last Saturday's 3-0 win over Bromley through suspension. Reds' captain Shaun Pearson has made a full recovery from a longstanding foot injury and replaced Kelleher in the heart of the Reds' defence for the Ravens clash...

    With more centre-back options at his disposal, Keates says he is spoilt for choice...

    Said Keates, 'Everybody is playing well and competing, and it is the strongest we have been all season'...

    The likes of James Horsfield, Paul Rutherford and Devonte Redmond have not even made the matchday squad in recent weeks but Keates says... 'Unlike everybody else in the division who is able to make signings and add to their squad, we can only go with what we have got and that has been the case since January.

    'Coming into the last 13 games, we are the strongest we've been all season'".

    Later, Wrexham reported on their defeat by Notts County as "Wrexham suffered a frustrating defeat as Mark Ellis scored from a late corner in a game which saw Jordan Ponticelli and Theo Vassell go off injured.

    Dean Keates made one enforced change... with the injured Kwame Thomas making way for Ponticelli, while County boss Ian Burchnall responded to Wrexham's excellent recent form by changing his formation to match the visitors' formation...

    Wexham suffered a hammer blow when Ponticelli... had to succumb to his injury, with Elliott Durrell replacing him. The change left Angus isolated up front, and Wrexham struggled to take the game to The Magpies as they had earlier...

    A corner brought about the breakthrough as Rawlinson's header was tapped in by Ellis (80 mins)...

    A change was made when Fiacre Kelleher was thrown on with two minutes left, to allow Shaun Pearson to go up front but within a minute, both sides were forced to reshuffle when Theo Vassell was cuaght in the face by Wootton's arm. It was immediately clear that the challenge had drawn blood, and Vassell had to be stretchered off while Wootton received a second red card.

    With the game reduced to ten against ten, Wrexham pushed hard for an equaliser... but it was not to be the visitors' day".

    Aldershot Town "announce the signing of forward Kaylen Hinds!

    The 23 year-old joins the Shots after progressing through the academy of Premier League side Arsenal, having joined the Gunners from the youth systems at Leyton Orient in 2012. Hinds would go on to sign... [for] Stevenage on loan in January 2017.

    The forward... [moved] from England to Germany, joining Bundesliga side VfL Wolfsburg on a three-year deal back in July 2017. During his time in Germany, Hinds joined Regionalliga Bayern side SpVgg Greuther Fürth II, the second team of 2. Bundesliga side SpVgg Greuther Fürth, on loan until the end of the 2017–18 season.

    In August 2019, Hinds returned to England and signed for then-Premier League side Watford FC on a one-year contract... Having left Watford in June 2020, Hinds has been looking for his next move".

    2 April 2021


    As Altrincham spent today without a game, having started the day in eleventh place, two clubs (Boreham Wood and Maidenhead United) were in a position to overtake Alty should they have won and a third club (Aldershot Town) was also able to pass them on goal difference should it win by three clear goals. But none of those eventualities happened so Alty remain eleventh.

    Alty also sat out last Saturday's afternoon games, having dropped two places to thirteenth the day before, thanks to Dover's season being rendered void. With their rivals having kicked off at 3pm, Alty had dropped to fourteenth before their own game kicked off at 6.15pm. However, they reclaimed eleventh spot that evening thanks to their televised win at Maidenhead in their evening match.

    Good Friday 2nd April, 3pm unless stated

    • Aldershot Town 1-2 Stockport County
    • Altrincham P-P Yeovil Town [Postponed owing to Yeovil captain's death]
    • Barnet 0-2 Solihull Moors
    • Boreham Wood 0-0 Sutton United
    • Bromley 2-2 Wealdstone
    • Dover Athletic P-P FC Halifax Town [Dover players furloughed]
    • Eastleigh 0-1 Chesterfield
    • Notts County 1-0 Wrexham 12.30pm kick-off
    • Hartlepool United 2-1 Dagenham & Redbridge 13.00 pm kick off
    • Torquay United 1-0 Woking
    • Weymouth 2-1 Maidenhead United


    As reported yesterday, today's match at home to Yeovil Town has been postponed owing to the death of the Glovers' captain Lee Collins.

    Altrincham's next match is away at King's Lynn Town on Easter Monday.


    Altrincham travel to Norfolk on Easter Monday to face King's Lynn Town.

    Like Altrincham, The Linnets have no match today. They go into Easter weekend lying 21st with 24 points from 28 games compared with Altrincham's 41 points from 32 matches.

    The Eastern Daily Press reports that King’s Lynn Town’s search for stars of the future continues this month with further Academy trials. The club have launched a Regional Talent Centre under Football Development Officer Dale Stokes... creating a pathway for players as young as six and seven years old.

    Academy under-19 trials have already been held with The Walks hosting further trials on Monday, April 12...

    The first round under-19 trials on Wednesday was a success.

    'It was brilliant to see so many lads who are wanting to represent the club,' said Academy manager Simpson. 'The uptake was beyond our expectations really, so much so that we have now had to add a further Under 19s' trial...

    Stokes added 'The positive side of it is that those whose who choose to trial and attend can still play for their club teams. That’s something we wanted to emphasise as we know how much the kids love their weekend football with their friends... Giving them the opportunity to do that and then represent King’s Lynn Town FC as well, was a no-brainer for us.'"

    ON THIS DAY: 2 April

    Ten years ago today, on Saturday, 2 April, 2011 in a Blue Square Bet Premier match, Altrincham drew 2-2 at Moss Lane against Cambridge United.

    With James Smith picking up a supplementary two-game ban from the FA for his sending off SEVEN weeks earlier at Kidderminster, and Anthony Danylyk suspended too, Alty deployed all 16 fit players in their squad for this fixture. So, Johnson again spearheaded the attack with Clee on the left and Reeves to the right.

    Right: Robbie Lawton is mobbed by his team mates after opening the scoring.

    The result of this game may have extended Alty's unbeaten run to five games but it also dropped them two places back into the relegation spots. And, after the disappointment of failing to beat Southport in midweek, Altrincham had again let a lead slip; this time a 2-0 advantage, and once more had had a man dismissed.

    It all started so well with Robbie Lawton surging into the box to score into the roof of the net after 27 minutes and Damian Reeves adding a penalty five minutes later after Nicky Clee had been upended.

    But Alty let United back into the game after 39 minutes when Marc Joseph tried to shepherd the ball out, Danny Wright [now at Torquay] got away with pushing him, and laid the ball back for the unmarked Hughes to make it 2-1.

    Alty started the second half poorly and, to make things worse, lost top scorer Damian Reeves to a hamstring injury just seven minutes into the second period.

    Brian Saah made it 2-2 after a corner which was won by Wright, who once more got away with a foul in doing so.

    With home substitutes Baynes, Beesley and Twiss not having any impact, Alty laboured and things got worse when Connors and Bentley were involved in a wrestling match. Connors was shown a second yellow and dismissed for the second time this season (81 mins). After no red cards in their first 24 league games, Alty players have now seen seven red cards in the last 17 matches.

    Cambridge were incapable of making their extra man tell and it was Alty who finished the game the stronger but 2-2 was a disappointing outcome for Altrincham in their relegation fight.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart COBURN, 3.Jon BATESON, 4. Marc JOSEPH, 5. Rob WILLIAMS, 26. Carl PIERGIANNI, 22. Greg YOUNG, 7. Robbie LAWTON (capt), 18. Steven CONNORS, 11. Nicky CLEE, 8. Damian REEVES, 14. Dale JOHNSON, Subs: 30. Craig DOOTSON, 9. Michael TWISS, 17. Wes BAYNES, 15. Ryan BROWN, 19. Mark BEESLEY


    Devon Live says that "Danny Wright will return to the Torquay United squad for an Easter weekend double...

    Striker Wright, 36, underwent an operation after a hamstring injury resulted in him limping from the pitch in Torquay’s 6-1 win against Yeovil Town on Boxing Day. His absence coincided with the slide in form that saw the team relinquish their lead at the top of the table and drop to third...

    Before his injury Wright had scored eight times in 17 games, but it wasn’t just ‘his’ goals that counted with the experienced player creating space for teammates to find the net, too... Wright was on target for Torquay in a friendly game against a second-string Exeter City team on Monday and it is highly likely he will be on the bench for tomorrow afternoon’s home game against Woking.

    Manager Gary Johnson said 'He has been training with us now for a couple of weeks... The Exeter game was for him and a few others, Gary Warren as well and some of the lads that have been on the bench like Josh Umerah and Billy Waters, and the younger lads like Olaf Koszela and Louie Slough that are not getting enough games at the moment. But he did very well so we were pleased with his showing really.

    'That puts him in our minds for the squad over Easter.'

    Torquay go into the weekend 10 points adrift of leaders Sutton United, who have played the same amount of games...

    Woking are 18th but don’t let that fool you; they will be a huge threat with the two clubs having fostered a friendly but fierce rivalry in recent years...

    [Woking's] Jamar Loza... is one of the players currently injured with the manager boss Alan Dowson decrying his luck in that department this week. On top of having to furlough players to make ends meet, it seems Woking’s squad is not in its best shape.

    Dowson said 'We have a lot of injuries at the minute. We’ve got Jamar Loza out, Malachi Napa out, Matt Jarvis out and Sam Ashford out... We will be competitive. Somebody said we were going to do the same as Dover. We’ve never once said that we’re not going to play fixtures. We have always said we will play fixtures, it’s just about who we can get out there'...

    Torquay spent £5,564 on agent fees involving the transfers to the club of Aaron Nemane, Connor Lemonheigh-Evans, Joe Lewis and Andrew Nelson, who suffered an injury in pre-season and is yet to play for the club".

    The Derbyshire Times tells us that "Chesterfield boss James Rowe says it is important not to ‘over dramatise’ any adversity that comes Chesterfield’s way between now and the end of the season.

    The Spireites moved into the play-off places for the first time after the win against Weymouth but Rowe acknowledges that they are now the ones being hunted down.

    He said 'It is different now, people are chasing you. I have said that to the players. We have obviously been chasing for a while, we are in there at this moment in time but it is where you are on May 29. We have got to make sure that if any adversity comes that we don’t over dramatise it'...

    Rowe’s first objective when he was appointed was to achieve safety and Chesterfield have done that with ease. 'I think we can take great confidence that we have still got nine or so weeks left of the season and we have achieved that first objective from when I came into the club,' he said...

    'Now can we secure a play-off place and can we do it as early as possible? That is going to be a big ask... There is a real togetherness on and off the field'".

    Boreham Wood "Chairman Danny Hunter and the Club’s media team led by Nicole Cox, are looking for two motivated BWFC supporters to help with the clubs 'Road To Recovery' plans.

    Over the next eight weeks the Chairman is hoping that two loyal supporters might step forward to become a part of a dedicated and professional team of people helping to promote the club's new season ticket and membership scheme for next season, as well as promoting all our our available astro pitch space while showcasing our other facility hires.

    We will also be promoting our pre -season games, our newly-built new sponsors' lounge and eatery, we’ll provide further information on possible new builds and include all things first team, all things Academy and promote our forthcoming academy trials.

    On top of this there will be new contracts with Arsenal, with a new education provider and a new main sponsor to introduce to our town and community, so the 'Road to Recovery' starts now.

    We feel this is a great opportunity for our Community, our Club and the Wood Army to come together to help promote their local football club to come out of the hardest year in its history and back into the normality of the community it serves".

    In the Leader Live we learn that Wrexham manager "Dean Keates will appeal against a charge of aggressive behaviour following his red card in the 2-2 draw with Eastleigh.

    Players and staff from both teams were involved in a pitch-side brawl after Reds' boss Keates and Eastleigh striker Ben House squared up to each other towards the end of the Racecourse clash on March 16.

    Keates and Spitfires' assistant manager Jason Bristow were sent off by referee Louis Smith, but none of the players were carded in the incident.

    After speaking with Smith, Keates was told he was shown a card for delaying a throw-in, which was Wrexham's!

    Having now been charged by the Welsh FA, Keates, who could be handed a touchline ban and fine if found guilty, is appealing against the charge. But he revealed that the reason for his dismissal is different in the referee's report sent to the FA...

    'It is something we will appeal,' said Keates.. 'I imagine it will go to a hearing... But the report that has been put in is different to what was said to me after the game. The referee said at the time what I was sent off for and there were witnesses... There are seven people that have heard him say what he has sent me off for, and now he has changed.'"

    The Hartlepool Mail reports that "Hartlepool United manager Dave Challinor has assessed Hartlepool United’s chances of bringing a new player in before the Good Friday match against Dagenham & Redbridge.

    Pools have been actively pursuing targets for a number of weeks as they look to strengthen before the April 22 registration deadline.

    Challinor and his coaching team have been assessing players across the National League North and South... and the Pools' boss revealed that we could still see a player through the door before Friday’s match at Victoria Park...

    'We’re hoping to bring some bodies in as I’ve said previously', Challinor said... 'It’s probably 50/50 whether we get one done'...

    The Mail understands that the club have made several enquiries into the availability of a number of National League North players, including Spennymoor Town striker Glen Taylor... Challinor added 'The obvious ones that stick out, if they’ve not been done and they’re obvious then I’d suggest there’s a reason because their clubs don’t want to let them out, logistics for players don’t work or our budget doesn’t work.

    'We’re looking at players who aren’t playing in Conference North, Conference South and even below that level'".

    1 April 2021


    On Friday Altrincham were set to entertain Yeovil Town but today (Thursday) the Somerset club has announced that "All at Yeovil Town Football Club are mourning the loss of club captain Lee Collins.

    Lee sadly passed away yesterday and our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.

    We ask everyone to respect the family's privacy at this time.

    The club will make no further comment at this time.

    Our game with Altrincham tomorrow has been postponed".

    Collins was in Yeovil's squad for their game last Saturday. The Yeovil Town website's profile tells us that the 32 year-old was "One of Darren Sarll’s first signings as Glovers manager... [having] agreed a two-year deal at Huish Park.

    He played a part in helping Forest Green Rovers to the League Two play-offs last season but has now made the short trip to Somerset.

    Having played the entirety of his career in the EFL amassing over 350 league appearances, Collins has been handed the captaincy for 2019/20.

    Able to operate all across the back four and in defensive midfield, he started out at Wolves prior to helping Hereford United to promotion from League Two whilst on loan at Edgar Street.

    A four-year stay at Port Vale followed where Collins made over 120 appearances, before spending time in the Championship with Barnsley.

    Stints at Shrewsbury, Northampton and Mansfield followed prior to joining Forest Green in May 2017.

    In Summer 2020, alongside fellow centre back Luke Wilkinson, Collins extended his stay for an extra year".


    In the Sale & Altrincham Messenger John Edwards writes that "Phil Parkinson [left] issued an impassioned rallying cry to his Altrincham players after a second straight win breathed new life into their Vanarama National League play-off hopes.

    Fresh from beating King’s Lynn Town 3-0, Alty turned on the style to win 1-0 at Maidenhead United...

    'The first half at Maidenhead was as good as we have played all season,' said the Alty boss. 'Are the play-offs a realistic target? You’d say probably not, but you’ve got to keep dreaming, you’ve got to keep believing.

    'Don’t give up, don’t stop, keep pushing, because who knows what might happen? Other teams could have a downturn or be hit by injuries or games piling up, so if we can hit a consistent run of form and keep the pressure on, who knows? It’s very fine margins, but this team never lets me down, and any fans worth their salt know it never lets them down, either, so my message would be stick with us and stay behind us'...

    The breakthrough came in freakish style, as a Maidenhead defender swung wildly at a low bobbling corner by Ryan Colclough and completely missed it, allowing it to sneak in at the near post.

    'We could have had a goal-of-the-season contender in the first half when James Hardy combined brilliantly with Josh Hancock, who should have scored, then Ryan hit the bar with the rebound,' said Parkinson. 'The brand of football we were playing in the first half was a joy to watch, so it was a bit strange to win it with the scruffiest of goals. We needed both sides of our game, as I always knew we would against a team like Maidenhead.

    'Some of our interplay when we were on top was fantastic, and when they put us under the cosh a bit in the second half, we dealt with that superbly as well.'”


    Due to circumstances beyond the family's control, the funeral of Altrincham FC volunteer Jim Vince, whose death was sadly announced recently, has had to be postponed to a later date.

    Originally, it had been planned to take place today (Thursday), with the cortege pausing outside Altrincham Football Club en route to Dunham Lawn, but this will now need to be re-arranged


    Although there is well over 200 miles between Altrincham and Yeovil and the clubs had not met once in the previous 20 seasons till the current campaign's clash at Huish Park, there is a surprising number of Yeovil's current squad who have faced Altrincham for other clubs in the intervening period or, in one case, played for The Robins.

    Yeovil's most familiar player to Altrincham supporters will be loanee, Billy Sass-Davies who was a loanee with Alty earlier this season before being recalled by his parent club, Crewe Alexandra.

    Alty fans will also know Matty Warburton who has played and scored against Alty for Stockport County.

    Other current Yeovil players who have crossed paths previously with Altrincham before joining The Glovers include Emmanuel Sonupe, who scored for Kidderminster at Moss Lane in 2017.

    Yeovil's Albi Skendi was an unused sub for Oxford City versus Altrincham as far back as 2012, whilst Joe Quigley played for Woking against Alty in 2016.

    In terms of national fame, 34 year-old striker Chris Dagnall is Yeovil's most recognisable player. His former League clubs include Crewe Alexandra, Barnsley, Scunthorpe United and Rochdale.

    Dagnall has played against Altrincham, too, in a friendly for Crewe Alexandra in 2016.


    Non-League Daily has a lengthy interview with Altrincham goalkeeper Tony Thompson, his team's only ever-present throughout this league season.

    "Goalkeeper Tony Thompson has been part of Altrincham's hugely impressive climb back from the Northern Premier Division since Phil Parkinson’s arrival. Having been full-time in the past, the 26 year-old ex-Rotherham United and Morecambe youngster can say without hesitation that he has been going the extra mile in pursuit of a return to the professional game. In this interview, the Liverpudlian livewire was somewhere between a building site in the North West and a league game 200+ miles away.

    [For midweek fixtures],'It’s always in the one day on a Tuesday because obviously lads have got to get back to work the next day. You’ve caught me on a good one here, it’s Woking away, so I left my house at 6 this morning, travelled to Manchester, where I’m working, scaffolding, and I’ve just finished now, 1 o’clock. I’m on my way to Stoke-on-Trent to meet the lads on the coach; you can either get on at the ground, and then there’s a couple of meet points. We’ll hopefully get there for half 6, if it’s a quarter to 8 kick-off. It looks like I’m gonna be getting home at about 3 o’clock in the morning.

    'I tend to stay away from the card table; it’s not a lot of money but an away trip can end up costing you £50! Then you’ve got your quiet tables, with your Jake Moults, Shaun Densmores, the experienced lads...

    'The season, I feel, has been my best at Altrincham. So far, I’ve just been able to showcase my abilities, basically... I put myself right up there with the keepers in this league...

    [To eventually get into the EFL]... 'It’s a massive, massive desire. The gaffer knows it, everyone around me knows it. I really wanna hang my spanners up, to be honest with you! Just to be able to concentrate solely on football. The lifestyle’s a lot better obviously, you’re getting paid to keep fit, and it’s so hard when you’re doing 12-hour shifts on a work site and trying to keep fit as well. I wanna prove to people that I can. A lot of people talk about my height, but I think if you’re good enough, you’re tall enough....

    [Former team-mate] Jordan Hulme, 'He’s settled down a lot now, but he’s the maddest thing I’ve ever seen in football, I think... Hhe’s sadly missed. Just for the nights out; it’s not even his goalscoring, I think it’s just his drinking! There’s a few lads who’ve stepped up: Willo (Sean Williams) is a bit of a mad one. Myself as well, I think! While we’re here, I think we should enjoy it...

    The camaraderie at Altrincham’s been unbelievable, from day one to now. We know each other inside out and credit to the gaffer and Sorvs for recruiting that type of changing room. A lot of lads come in and say it’s the best they’ve ever been in, and I think that’s why we do so well...

    'I love making people feel comfortable in the changing room. I’ll go and speak to lads, I’ll phone them, and I always want that connection with them. I think Phil Parkinson a few times took it the wrong way, though! Sometimes if he brings a player in and they do something wrong, I’ll say "have you still got the receipt?" I don’t think he likes that...

    'The lads laugh at me because I’m a proper family man; I’ve got no kids at the minute but I’m always with my sisters or my nephews and nieces. I love eating out as well; I reckon I could be a food critic. But I’m just more of a social man, I’d say'".


    In the Maidenhead Advertiser "Maidenhead United’s assistant boss Ryan Peters admitted the Magpies energy levels were nowhere near where they needed to be in Saturday’s disappointing 1-0 defeat to Altrincham.

    Peters had hoped the Magpies would put on a performance for the BT Sport cameras, despite the absence of James Comley and Rohan Ince to international duty and the loss of Dan Sparkes and others to injury.

    They were able to get Sammy Barratt back on the pitch during the second half but the man who was Maidenhead’s talisman earlier in the campaign looked short of fitness as the hosts desperately chased an equaliser to Ryan Colclough’s goal in the closing stages.

    Peters accepted the side had missed their Caribbean internationals... 'NOur energy levels were nowhere near where they needed to be. The last two games have been brilliant, but unfortunately today, after a 10-day rest we were [un]able to get the same energy levels. These are a good side; they’ve taken six points off us this season, but we weren’t good enough today unfortunately.

    'Possibly we didn’t deserve an equaliser... It was a poor goal to give away today.”

    Alfie Egan made his debut for the Magpies after joining on loan from Ebbsfleet United for the rest of the season... 'We didn’t help him with our level of performance. Nothing against the boys that have played but when you lose two key individuals from any side, you’re going to change the dimension of the team'" concluded Peters.

    ON THIS DAY: 1 April

    Four years ago today, on 1 April 2017, it was a grim day for Altrincham as a 2-1 defeat to Salford City in a National League North match confirmed Altrincham's relegation.

    Altrincham were without eight players; Shaun Densmore, Alan Goodall, Sean Miller, Craig Hobson, Clayton McDonald, Kyle Brownhill and John Cyrus were all sidelined whilst Tim Deasy was only fit enough to be on the bench. Tom Hannigan was starting only his twelfth league game of the season and this was his first start in nine league fixtures.

    Future Alty striker Jordan Hulme was on the bench for The Ammies, whilst his future Alty team-mate, John Johnston, started the game.

    However, Altrincham should have emerged with at least a point, if not all three, following a spirited performance. Referee Marsden was the centre of controversy as he denied the visitors three very strong penalty appeals whilst granting Salford a more questionable spot-kick which got The Ammies back into game after they had trailed at the interval.

    Right: Gary Jones is mobbed by delighted team-mates after his fine goal.

    Altrincham had taken a deserved 38th minute lead when Gary Jones netted with a superb 30-yard strike. But thirteen minutes into the second half Sam Heathcote was penalised in his own box and Walker netted from the spot. The goal prompted the hosts best spell of the afternoon and they took a 62nd minute lead when Simon Grand scored from close range after Tomlinson had saved well from King's shot.

    Alty finished strongly; they hit the bar through Owens, and referee Marsden waved away appeals for penalties when Owens was bundled over and when a defender appeared to stop the ball on the line with his hands. But, in the end, even a win for Alty would only have delayed the inevitable relegation which has been beckoning for some weeks.

    And to compound their woes, Alty, already lacking eight injured players at kick-off, lost Tom Hannigan to another injury during the first half.

    ALTRINCHAM: 1. Stuart Tomlinson, 2. Chris Lynch, 3. Andy McWilliams, 4. Laurence Taylor, 5. Jake Moult (capt), 6. Tom Hannigan, 7. Simon Richman, 8. Gary Jones, 9. James Lawrie, 10. Damian Reeves, 11. Nicky Clee. Subs 12. Sam Heathcote, 14. Micah Evans, 15. Andy Owens, 16. Sam Patterson, 20. Tim Deasy


    In the Nottingham Post, "Notts County head coach Ian Burchnall explains the Matty Wolfe situation. The on-loan Barnsley midfielder has only made a handful of appearances this season having joined the club from the Championship side earlier in the campaign

    Head coach Ian Burchnall confirmed the on-loan Barnsley midfielder is struggling with injury... Burchnall said 'He's gone and had a scan. I am not sure on the outcome of that... He won't be seen anytime soon.'

    Notts have moved swiftly to offset the blow of losing Wolfe and Doyle by adding Crewe midfielder Regan Griffiths to the squad on loan until the end of the season....

    He becomes head coach Ian Burchnall's first signing since arriving at Notts... 'We didn’t anticipate having to bring anyone in so quickly but with Doyler’s injury it’s really important we’ve got cover in that area,' said Ian Burchnall...

    'He’s technical, he’s got quick feet and he can see a creative pass. We think he’ll balance us out and give us something extra in there. He’s a really interesting player'...

    In the last year he has spent time out on loan at non-league sides Kidsgrove Athletic and Witton Albion.

    Earlier the Nottingham Post confirmed that Michael Doyle "the club captain, injured his calf during the FA Trophy semi-final defeat to Hornchurch at the weekend...

    Burchnall said he was relieved that Doyle’s injury was not as bad as first feared... 'It’s going to be two or three weeks. At first, we thought it wasn’t going to be good, but the scan came back with some positivity'"

    According to Devon Live, "Torquay United's promotion push [has been] buoyed by Danny Wright's goalscoring return from injury

    News that Wright had been scoring in training games and was on target in a friendly against Exeter is a huge boost.

    Torquay United head into the Easter weekend knowing that to win the National League title they will have to do 11 points better than Sutton United in the remaining 13 games...

    It wasn’t a great couple of days for the Gulls at the end of last week. On Friday night they learned they had lost three points because of Dover Athletic’s records being expunged and then they lost 1-0 at Dagenham & Redbridge on Saturday...

    Torquay and Sutton are now on the same number of games for the first time since the early days of the season...

    The goal at Dagenham came in the 80th minute following a mistake at the back, but the introduction from the substitutes’ bench of Torquay’s new loan striker Benji Kimpioka nearly paid dividends for the manager Gary Johnson, with the 21 year-old going close and having one shot only cleared off the line by one of his own teammates.

    Kimpioka has joined the club from Sunderland where Johnson’s son Lee is the manager...

    Johnson said 'He is a good player and it is a good coup for us to get someone in like him. He is young and he is enthusiastic and he wants to impress both of his managers, me and Lee'...

    Johnson Sr has been aware of Kimpioka for some time but had to wait... before being able to sign the player".

    Torquay United also report that, "Ahead of United’s return to Plainmoor against Woking on Good Friday, manager Gary Johnson gave an update on the Club’s loan players.

    “Rob Street and Max Sheaf have gone back, for the time being, to their parent clubs. James Hamon is now out of his loan contract with us, and he is now beginning his job once again at the golf club,” said Johnson.

    “Marcin [Brzozowski], who came to us for a short spell for some experience and to help us out for the previous Woking game, has now gone back to QPR, leaving the club with five loans, which is the maximum number you can play in any starting eleven.”

    In the Derbyshire Times we learn that "The amount of money Chesterfield have paid to agents in the last year has been revealed.

    According to Football Association records, the Spireites spent as little as £1,430 for the 12-month period between February 1, 2020 and February 1, 2021.

    The fees went on transfers for Milan Butterfield, Kyle Letheren, Joel Taylor and Martin Smith.

    This sum is much less than the £16,090 they paid during the same period from 2019 to 2020.

    Town were among the lowest spenders on agents’ fees in the National League.

    Notts County topped the list with £57,958, Stockport County were next with £46,275 and Solihull Moors third with £25,218. Dagenham and Redbridge spent £18,085 and Hartlepool United paid £14,403.

    Non-league clubs spent a total of £271,838 overall, compared to £319,634 the previous year.

    Premier League clubs spent a huge £272m, while £40m was paid by those in the Championship, £3m in League One and £1m in League Two".

    We learn from the Brent & Kilburn Times that "Wealdstone manager Stuart Maynard was ‘frustrated’ as his side crashed to a 3-0 defeat away to Solihull Moors which sees them remain just above the relegation zone...

    Goals from Joe Sbarra, Reiss McNally and Ryan Barnett sealed a comfortable win for the Moors at Damson Park.

    'It is frustrating because we thought we could have a real go at them, we're shooting downhill, then you let in a goal out of nothing and your plan goes out the window,' Maynard said.

    'We said at half time this is the difference in levels, you make half an error and the ball's in the back of your net and we've been punished.'

    The boss was pleased with how his side adapted after a slow start to the match originally but missed chances proved costly...

    'They came out the traps fast at home and downhill which does make a difference. From then on in I thought we controlled the ball and the game really well, we created the best chances...

    'Then we come out second half and concede one straight away from a set piece, which since we've come in we've be excellent at, I think we've only conceded from one other set piece which is frustrating because we're in the game and then it becomes an uphill battle'".

    In the Barnet & Potters Bar Times comes news that "Barnet interim boss Gary Anderson described his side’s first half performance in their 3-1 defeat to Yeovil Town as 'just dreadful' and said his players did not know what they were supposed to be doing until half time.

    Yeovil produced a devastating first-half display in the match on Saturday... Goals from Tom Knowles, Charlie Lee and Josh Neufville settled a one-sided contest before the break as the hosts coasted to a 3-1 victory, winning for the first time in four games...

    Knowles thundered in a long-range effort to cap a fine counter-attack. Knowles was involved in Yeovil’s second after 24 minutes as his deep cross was flicked on by Reuben Reid into the path of Lee, who fired home on the volley.

    Carl Dickinson saw a scuffed effort cleared off the line before Yeovil made it three in the 34th minute, Neufville weaving his way through the Barnet defence to score.

    The hosts took their foot off the gas in the second half and Themis Kefalas pulled one back with his first goal for Barnet in the 68th minute, but it was no more than a consolation...

    'The first 30 minutes of the first half are what went wrong,' said Anderson. 'We had a plan and we just didn’t use what we thought we should’ve done in the first 30 minutes, it was just dreadful, it really was. Too many gaps. players probably not putting in the effort that they should’ve done.

    'I’m disappointed because we worked on it all week, on what we were going to do, and it wasn’t until half time that everybody realised what we should’ve been doing. There were just too many gaps, we gave them so much time and three goals from distance in the first 35 minutes I think it was, it’s a mountain after that.'"

    The Halifax Courierconfirms that "FC Halifax Town manager Pete Wild says that is it for now after adding Huddersfield youngster Micah Obiero to his squad and being allowed to keep Hull loanee Billy Chadwick until the end of the season.

    With Jake Hyde recovered from his injury and Luke Summerfield back in full training, Town’s squad now looks a lot healthier, leaving Wild content with his options.

    Chadwick scored his first goal of his second loan spell on Saturday against Sutton.

    'I’m really pleased, really thankful to Hull for how they’ve been so accommodating,' Wild said of his deal being extended 'I was pleased he got a goal on Saturday because he’s worked ever so hard since he got back but not got that goal... and I think there’s a combination of the three we’ve got now in terms of Hyde, Chadwick and Jamie Allen, I think there’s some really exciting times for that three.

    On new signing Obiero, Wild said 'Micah played against us when we had the game against Huddersfield about a month ago... He stood out for me in terms of his ability to play in the number 10, his ability to play as a wide forward if we play as a three...

    'Money is at a premium so how accommodating Huddersfield have been in terms of the finances is fantastic and it shows the local clubs are trying to help us out and trust us with their quality young players.'

    Obiero has already been on loan at League Two Carlisle this season, where he played six times... 'If we can add some experience to him and send him back to Huddersfield at the end of the season a better player then we’ve built another partnership with another club... He’s got really good receiving skills... he can face people up, he’s got pace and he can chip in with a goal or two as well'...

    And Wild says he is not planning on any further additions to his squad for the time being. 'I think that’ll be it for now,' he said. 'With the deadline being extended to the end of April, you never say never, but touch wood we don’t get any more injuries'".


    The Vanarama National League games to be televised, live, in April 2021 is:
    • Friday April 2nd – Notts County v Wrexham – KO: 12.30pm
    • Monday April 5th – Stockport County v Bromley – KO: 5.20pm
    • Saturday April 10th – Hartlepool United v Notts County – KO: 5.20pm
    • Saturday April 17th – FC Halifax Town v King’s Lynn Town – KO: 12:30pm
    • Saturday April 24th – Eastleigh v Sutton United – KO: 5:20pm