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Mon 29th April 2002
Awards! Awards! Get Yer Awards Here While They're Hot!

It was that time of year again at Huish Park on Saturday as the annual end-of-season awards were handed out to the lucky winners following the final match of the season against Dover Athletic.

The awards and winners, in no particular order, were as follows:

YTISA Player of the Year
Michael McIndoe and Colin Pluck - photo courtesy Stew Bratherton
Michael McIndoe (left) and Colin Pluck (right) with YTISA stalwarts Mark Kelly and Sara Brimble.
Winner: Michael McIndoe, runner-up: Colin Pluck.

G&WSC Player of the Year
Winner: Michael McIndoe, runner-up: Chris Weale.

Cary Glovers Award
Winner: The entire first team squad

Yeovil Express Player of the Year
Winner: Colin Pluck

Western Gazette Player of the Year
Winner: Michael McIndoe, runners-up: Adam Stansfield, Colin Pluck.

Bradfords "biggest contribution to the season" Award
Winner: Gary Johnson and Steve Thompson

Congratulations are due to Boston who overcame Hayes by 2-0 at Church Road yesterday to win the Conference title on goal difference from 2nd-placed Dagenham, who beat Chester 3-0 at Victoria Road. Commiserations to Daggers fans, as we Glovers know only too well you get nothing for coming second in this league. And yes, it does hurt!

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Sun 28th April 2002
No Back-door Route To Promotion Says League

League spokesman has Ian Christon has tried to pour cold water on speculation about Non-League clubs moving into the Nationwide League if the possible scenario of several current League clubs imploding as the TV money disappears comes to fruitition. There's also further bad news for Halifax.

We only take the Champions - that is the only way of moving into the League. Should any team step out, there would be no reprieve for Halifax nor a chance for the Conference runners-up.

Christon also commented on threats that Carlisle's chairman Michael Knighton might voluntarily pull his club out of the League, saying the resignation deadline of April 1st had been missed:

It is not possible to pull the club out of the League. Even if Mr. Knighton asked to leave the Third Division, our rules don't allow a Conference club to replace them.

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Sun 28th April 2002
Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance Ground Collection

This comes from Irvin Morris:

TO THE CHAIRMAN, DIRECTORS, OFFICIALS & SUPPORTERS OF YEOVIL TOWN F.C.

On behalf of the Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance I would like to say a very big and sincere thank you for your support yesterday for allowing us to have a collection on the ground. It is very difficult these days to get volunteers to do this but I am sure you will be pleased to learn that even with the limited personnel available we were able to collect the sum of £762.78p This of course is without sponsorship money which Colin Biss has yet to collect for his magnificent effort on his "Pub to Club" Spnsored Run from Skippers in Sherborne to Huish Park an extended distance of 11 miles completed in exactly an hour and a half.

Finally, once again thank you most sincerely for allowing us the opportunity of collecting greatly needed funds for the Air Ambulance, and please take with you to Villa Park our Very Best Wishes and Support and bring back the Trophy for the Town and surrounding area of Yeovil, Good Luck.
Irvin Morris for and on behalf of The Fund Raising Manager, Dorset & Somerset Air Ambulance.

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Sun 28th April 2002
New Ballot in Non-League Reorganization

Discussions and consultations about the long proposed restructuring of Non-league football continue to meander along slowly. The full details of the five options finally put forward by the F.A. in January can be found here on Ciderspace. In the first round of consultations in February Option D, supported by the Isthmian and Northern Leagues, gained most backing - but no over-all consensus - whilst Option C, favoured by the Conference and the F.A. itself, got second most support. It looks as if the F.A. is going for a sort of run-off ballot of clubs to decide between these two options, with the three other propsals dropping out of the picture, sometime during May.

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Sun 28th April 2002
Glovers Finish Third - Now Bring On The Boro!

Yeovil Town finished off the league programme at Huish Park yesterday, beating already-relegated Dover Athletic 2-0. With Morecambe obliging by beating Doncaster 2-1 at Christie Park yesterday, Yeovil leapfrogged the Yorkshire side to finish third in the Conference table - a hugely creditable effort when one considers the generally poor home form this season. What might have been if only we had been average at home!

Yesterday's match was settled in the first half. Carl Alford put the Glovers 1-0 up on 19 minutes, the goal made by the quick-wittedness of Michael McIndoe. Fellow striker Adam Stansfield made it 2-0 on the stroke of half-time, and with Dover defender Lee Shearer being sent off shortly afterwards the game as a contest was over - as was proved by a completely non-eventful second half. The ytfc.net match report is now online.

All the relegation issues have been settled then after Woking's 3-3 draw at Telford yesterday, the point gained ensuring that the Cards are safe and that Hayes are down, no matter what happens at the their match against The Dark Side Boston today. It's commiserations and goodbye then to 'Ayes, Stalybridge and, of course, Dover. Replacing them it's congratulations and a great big "hello!" to Burton Albion, Kettering (bouncing straight back to the Conference at the first attempt), and Gravesend & Northfleet. Coming down from Division 3 are in-administration Halifax who incidentally released most of their playing staff last week apart form one chap who they're hoping to sell and a few youth team players.

The only question remaining is, who will take Halifax's place in Division 3? The answer to that question is in Boston's hands: If the Pilgrims win at Hayes this afternoon - the match being televised live on Sky Sports - then Boston will be promoted, their goal difference being far superior to Dagenham. If Boston slip up however then the Daggers stand poised to capitalise providing they can overcome Chester at Victoria Road. It promises to be a tense and compelling finale to the season, to which Ciderspace can only say, in our usual unbiased fashion, "Come on you Daggers! Don't let the Dark Side win!". We thank you.

Top of the table, 27th April 2002
Home Away
Team P W D L F A W D L F A Pts
1. Boston United 41 12 5 4 53 24 12 4 4 29 18 81
2. Dagenham & Redbridge 41 12 6 2 32 20 11 6 4 35 27 81
3. Yeovil Town 42 6 7 8 27 30 13 6 2 39 23 70
4. Doncaster Rovers 42 11 6 4 41 23 7 7 7 27 23 67
5. Barnet 42 10 4 7 30 19 9 6 6 34 29 70


TROPHY FINAL TICKETING UPDATE:

Very nearly 10,000 tickets sold in the Yeovil sections of Villa Park now, according to reliable sources, with only a few seats left in the Trinity Road Stand and the Lower Tier of the Holte End. When these have been sold the Holte End Upper Tier will be opened to Glovers fans. After less than a week of ticket sales some rather pessimistic forecasts of the final amount of tickets sold to Yeovil supporters have already been surpassed, perhaps the more optimistic claims of 20,000 Glovers fans at Villa Park will prove to be correct eventually? With 2 weeks of sales left there's plenty of time for such a scenario to come about....

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Wed 24th April 2002
Glovers Held By 10-Men Southport

After two good away wins in succession Yeovil returned home to Huish Park last night and again disappointed long-suffering home fans with a 0-0 draw against struggling Southport. It wasn't that the Glovers played particularly badly or that Southport - reduced to 10 men after Lee Elam was sent off for a second bookable offence early in the second half - were particularly good; more that Yeovil enjoyed no luck in front of goal when it mattered. The Glovers could take two positives from the game: Firstly no-one was sent off despite referee Mr Dorr's best efforts (7 bookings and 1 red card in a game that contained not one bad tackle); and secondly the improved performance of Francis Kumbur who appears to be getting to grips with the hurly-burly of Conference football and looks to be a player with a good future in the game.

The draw left Yeovil level on points with Doncaster in 4th place, though the Yorkshiremen have a much superior goal difference. Depending on results on Saturday, the Glovers could finish third, fourth or conceivably fifth, should Barnet win their final game and Yeovil lose to Dover.

At the top things couldn't be much tighter. Dagenham won 2-0 at Woking last night to go level on points with leaders Boston who could only draw 0-0 at Morecambe. It's still advantage Boston - just - because of their superior goal difference, but it's all to play for on the final day of the season. A reminder that both Boston's visit to Hayes (relegated unless there is a mathematical miracle) and the Daggers home match v Chester have been moved to Sunday and will be televised live by Sky TV.

Top of the table, 24th April 2002
Home Away
Team P W D L F A W D L F A Pts
1. Boston United 41 12 5 4 53 24 12 4 4 29 18 81
2. Dagenham & Redbridge 41 12 6 2 32 20 11 6 4 35 27 81
3. Doncaster Rovers 41 11 6 4 41 23 7 7 6 26 21 67
4. Yeovil Town 41 5 7 8 25 30 13 6 2 39 23 67
5. Barnet 41 10 4 7 30 19 8 6 6 31 29 64

In other news the club have announced that children under-16 will be admitted free to the final match of the season home to Dover this Saturday. Admission will be by voucher, collectable on the day from the portacabin positioned on the corner of the away terrace and the Main Stand. The kids will be able to either stand on the away terrace (parents/guardians may join them there, paying through the turnstiles as usual) or sit in the Family Section of the Main Stand. Dover fans will be accomodated in the away section of the Bartlett Stand. The club are to be congratulated on this initiative, our only criticism being that they should do this kind of thing more often! Children are the paying fans of the future - it's never too early to be encouraging them to come to watch their local football team.

FA Trophy Final ticketing update
An usually reliable source informs us that around 5,000 tickets have been sold by the club for the Yeovil areas of Villa Park - not bad after 2 days of sales! The Ciderspace FA Trophy Final Guide can be found online here.

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Sun 21st April 2002
Fair-Leigh Good Win Oop North

The final away league fixture of the season yesterday for the Glovers and yet again the team returned home from their travels with all 3 points, this time beating Leigh RMI at Hilton Park by 0-1, striker Francis Kumbur notching his 3rd goal in 2 games. Manager Gary Johnson rung the changes again after Thursday's win at Stevenage, showing that the strength in depth in the Glovers squad is a fact now rather than an aspiration, something that bodes well for the FA Trophy final in 3 weeks time. The ytfc.net match report is online. And talking of the Trophy final, opponents Stevenage warmed up nicely for it yesterday, going down 5-1 at Chester.

There are still league points to play for before then however and the possibility of finishing 3rd in the Conference table should Doncaster slip up ahead of us. The Glovers have 2 home games left next week, against Southport on Tuesday evening and relegated Dover next Saturday; whilst Doncaster, who beat Southport 1-0 at home yesterday, have to travel to in-form Barnet and Morecambe.

At the very top it's advantage Boston, who took a 2-point lead after their 4-0 thrashing of Farnborough. 2nd-placed Dagenham could only draw 0-0 at Scarborough; but the title could still go either way with 2 games left to play for both sides. Boston face a trip to Christie Park to play Morecambe and then travel to Hayes; whilst the Daggers are away to Woking before entertaining Chester at Victoria Road. Both of the top two's final matches have been moved to next Sunday (28th April) and will be televised live by Sky TV, eat your heart out Barry Hearn.

At the bottom, things look pretty cut and dried. Dover and Stalybridge are relegated with Hayes red-hot favourites to join them. Commiserations to the fans of those clubs.

Top of the table, 20th April 2002
Home Away
Team P W D L F A W D L F A Pts
1. Boston United 40 12 5 4 53 24 12 3 4 29 18 80
2. Dagenham & Redbridge 40 12 6 2 32 20 10 6 4 33 27 78
3. Doncaster Rovers 40 11 6 4 41 23 7 7 5 26 19 67
4. Yeovil Town 40 5 6 8 25 30 13 6 2 39 23 66
5. Barnet 40 9 4 7 28 19 8 6 6 31 29 61

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Fri 19th April 2002
League Chairmen Find Another Excuse To Say No

So who did say play-offs were a bad idea? We did actually, and that very firmly remains our view while there is only one promotion place between the Conference and the Football League. If there were 2 places however, then that would be different. As it happens, the League chairmen met at Maine Road yesterday to discuss, amongst other things, their reaction to the FA's offer of a £75,000 bribe per club per season for the next 5 years in return for 2-up/2-down to become a reality for next season.

According to reports beforehand the meeting was supposed to be little more than a formality to rubberstamp recommendation of the FA's proposal before the chairmen vote on the issue in their June AGM. In the event the League's ongoing row with ITV Digital seems to have driven most thoughts of increasing promotion places out of the League chairmen's minds with the issue barely being discussed and no agreement being made prior to the June meeting. Which inevitably will mean that a 'no' vote will follow as sure as Summer follows Spring. Turkey's won't vote for Christmas.

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Fr 19th April 2002
Kumbur Needs No Prompting In Satisfactory Dress Rehearsal

A much changed Yeovil side travelled to deepest Hertfordshire last night to play relegation-threatened Stevenage Borough in a dress rehearsal Conference fixture ahead of the FA Trophy Final between the two teams next month. This season, if Yeovil are away then that generally means a win, our away form being as excellent as our home form is poor, and so it went last night, the Glovers taking all 3 points with a 3-2 victory.

Chris Giles put the Glovers 1-0 up in the 12th minute with Nigerian striker Francis Kumbur doubling the advantage on 26 minutes. Kirk Jackson pulled one back for the hosts 2 minutes later, but Kumbur was on hand again to make it 3-1 to Yeovil on the stroke of half-time. The Glovers were content to play within themselves after the break, the alarm bells not ringing until the 87th minute when Jackson scored his and Borough's second. Gary Johnson's men held out to take all 3 points and to consolidate their 4th position in the table. The ytfc.net match report is now online.

With 3 games left to play leaders Boston and and Dagenham are uncatchable on 77 points each. 3rd-placed Doncaster with 64 points are 1 point ahead of Yeovil in 4th position. Who said play-offs were a bad idea? :-)

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Thurs 18th April 2002
FA Trophy Final Ticketing Information

The club has released the following information regarding the distribution of tickets to Yeovil supporters for the FAT Final v Stevenage:

The FA Umbro Trophy Final between Stevenage Borough and Yeovil Town takes place at Villa Park on Sunday 12th May 2002, kick off 12 noon.

Ticket Prices are £15 for adults, £1 concessions and will be available from the ticket office at Huish Park from the following dates:

Monday 22/04/02 - Friday 26/04/02 : 10am - 7pm
Tuesday 23/04/02 : Prior to the Southport Match
Saturday 27/04/02 : 12 noon - 3pm prior to the Dover Match
Sunday 28/04/02 : 10am - 12 noon
Monday 29/04/02 - Thursday 02/05/02 : 10am - 7pm
Friday 03/05/02 - Sunday 05/05/02 : 10am - 12noon
Tuesday 07/05/02 - Thursday 09/05/02 : 10am - 4pm

No tickets will be available on Friday 10/05/02

Yeovil have been allocated the Holte End and the lower tier of the Trinity Road Stand.

Disabled fans and wheelchair users should phone the Villa Park Ticket Office directly on 0121 327 5353 for further details.

Postal applications and credit card bookings are welcome (excludes Switch). Cheques must be made payable to Yeovil Town FC. Please remember to enclose a Stamped Addressed Envelope to aid a speedy turnaround to your application.

Write to: The Ticket Office, Huish Park, Lufton Way, Yeovil, Somerset, BA22 8YF. Tel (01935) 423662

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Wed 17th April 2002
The Least Number Of Home Games Won In The Conference

Nineteen home matches now played this season in the Conference and Yeovil have won a grand total of five (count 'em!) of them. Even Dover, Hayes and Stalybridge have won more games at home this season and two of them are going down, possibly all three. Look no further for the reasons why the club isn't challenging for the title this year and then thank god for our superb away form, for make no mistake, our home results are bad enough to be classed as relegation form, not a phrase we bandy about lightly here at Ciderspace!

All of which is a preamble to saying that the Glovers entertained Barnet last night at Huish Park and lost again, 2-1 this time. As per usual the visitors took a lead and defended in depth and as per usual we lacked the spark, the nous, the imagination and flair to break down a packed defence. Wayne Purser and Neil Midgely put the Bees 2-0 up by half-time and Darren Way pulled a goal back in the second half, but both the team and the fans were resigned to defeat long before the referee blew the final whistle. The ytfc.net match report should make familiar and depressing reading and can be found here.

Okay, it's not all doom and gloom at Huish Park obviously, what with the Glovers lying 4th in the table and in the final of the FA Trophy for the first time ever (ticket news later today hopefully!), but Gary Johnson does have a problem regarding the home form which does need addressing before next season's promotion campaign is as fatally undermined as this season's has been.

Finally, and talking of the FA Trophy final, it appears that the club are rushing out a new shirt in time for the final, as are opponents Stevenage. No further details are available as yet other than the grand unveiling is set for this Friday - watch this space.

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Mon 15th April 2002
Promotion Payments?!

Parachute payments, eh? With the ITV Digital v Nationwide League row getting more and more vicious news comes that we poverty striken folks in the Conference are to get extra money from Sky next season for broadcasting rights. Ratings are reported to have been good (presumably despite the Dagenham & Redbridge v Boston United game), and Sky is planning to extend its coverage. How much more than the £ 100,000 this year has not yet been revealed. Sky is especially interested in more matches in the 12 noon slot, which have proved particularly popular in ratings terms. Much more of this and perhaps we should be asking Mr. Hearns for special payments to compensate for the loss of revenue for Conference clubs moving up to his poxy under-funded Third Division.

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Mon 15th April 2002
International Squad Announced

The National Game XI manager John Owens has announced his squad for the match against Holland at Huish Park on Wednesday 24th April, kick-off 7.30 pm. As expected, once again he has not picked Conference players from clubs engaged in promotion or relegation battles, and with Yeovil Town playing Southport the night before there are no players from the hosting club either. Quite why this game was scheduled at the climax of the league campaign is beyond us!

Squad:

Goalkeepers:
Wayne Brown (Chester City)
Andy Woods (Scarborough)

Defenders:
Simon Travis (Forest Green Rovers)
Greg Heald * (Barnet)
Jason Goodliffe (Stevenage Borough)
Tim Ryan (Doncaster Rovers)
Neil Moore (Telford United)

Midfielders:
Nick Roddis (Margate)
Simon Wormull (Stevenage Borough)
Mark Gower * (Barnet)
Aaron Webster * (Burton Albion)
Tim Hambley * (Havant & Waterlooville)
Darren Stride * (Burton Albion)

Forwards:
Kirk Jackson (Stevenage Borough)
James Taylor * (Havant & Waterlooville)
Wayne Purser * (Barnet)

* players new to the International squad.

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Mon 15th April 2002
Bring On The 'Boro!

'Wemberley, Wemberley! We're the famous Yeovil Town and we're going to Wember....er, Villa Park!' Okay, we're not going to Wembley after all, but we are going to Villa Park for the final of the FA Trophy, a competition which we've been trying to win without success ever since it was first introduced; and the competition that, until the introduction of automatic promotion to the Football League, was regarded as the pinnacle of the non-league game. Some people will try and tell you that because the final is not being held at Wembley that it has been devalued somehow. Don't believe them! It's the FA Trophy Final and, for the first time in our existence as a football club, Yeovil Town will be there! As will Stevenage Borough, or the DCB as they are jocularly known in these parts, but more on them will follow on Ciderspace in the fullness of time....

The Glovers got to the final following yesterday's 2-1 2nd leg loss at Burton Albion's Eton Park ground, winning 5-2 on aggregate after the 4-0 home win in the first leg of the semi-final. Yeovil dominated the first half of the match, televised live on Sky TV, but somehow contrived to miss half-a-dozen good chances to leave the scoreline goalless at the break. Burton came back into the game in the second half taking the lead through a Dale Anderson strike after 52 minutes, but Carl Alford levelled 5 minutes later with a back-post header after good work by Anthony Tonkin. Shaun Farrell gave Burton the consolation of a home win in the 72nd minute, but over the two legs the Glovers had without doubt proved the more accomplished side. The ytfc.net match report is now online.

In the other semi-final, played on Saturday, Stevenage Borough beat Morecambe 2-0 at Broadhall Way to add to their 2-1 win at Christie Park, 4-1 to the 'Boro on aggregate. Thoughts will now inevitably tend to focus on Villa Park and May the 12th, but there are important games to be played before then for both clubs - Boro still need points to be absolutely certain of avoiding relegation from the Conference, whilst if Yeovil win their games in hand they can move above Doncaster to 3rd place in the table. To that end the Glovers now play a further 5 games in the next fortnight, starting at Huish Park tomorrow night (Tuesday 16th April) v Barnet, followed by a dress-rehearsal of the FA Trophy final this Thursday (18th April), away to Stevenage. It will be interesting to see what sort of side both managers will pick for Thursday's game!

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Thurs 11th April 2002
Take Nothing For Granted!

Yeovil Town are going into this Sunday's 2nd leg FA Trophy semi-final v Burton Albion protecting a 4-0 lead after the 1st leg at Huish Park - but they will not be taking Nigel Clough's men lightly. Gary Johnson, speaking to the Western Gazette, said: "We have done half a job - and it was a very good half. But now we have to finish the job off and I want to go there to win the game. We had a fantastic result on Saturday - it was a great day. We had great support and got the fans going with an early goal. I think we showed what we can do with a pitch that is a little less lively than usual. We are still preparing properly and we will be travelling up the night before the game. We have trained hard in the last couple of days and I do not want to leave anything to chance."

Chairman John Fry, also speaking to the Gazette, said: "The manager has been training the players hard this week and nothing will be taken for granted. Just look what happened when we went to Doncaster! But I hope that by the time Arsenal's FA Cup semi-final kicks off on Sunday that we can sit back and enjoy it, knowing we are certainly at Villa Park."

Asked by the Gazette what the financial rewards for the club would be should they make and then win the final, Fry replied: "Financially it could mean six-figure returns for the club in various forms, but for the supporters it is also the importance of the silverware, which then leads on to bigger things. It would mean more season-ticket sales, patron sales and bigger crowds for next season. It would certainly generate a lot more interest and might contribute something to the development of the pitch. If this is the first big competition we win, then maybe the rest will follow. Things like this build confidence and give you a higher platform from which to launch at the start of the new season."

The only injury doubt for the Glovers would appear to be player-coach Steve Thompson, who has a groin strain. Carl Alford is available for selection again having completed the 3-match ban he picked up after being sent off in the quarter-final win over Northwich.

There are still over 100 tickets available to buy for the game by Glovers fans - the last chance to purchase them will be tomorrow (Friday) when the ticket office at Huish Park will be open between 10am and 4pm - no tickets will be sold on the day of the game.

A strong Yeovil Reserves team - including the likes of Francis Kumbur, Jon Sheffield, Roy O'Brien, Tom White, Olivier Brassart, Andy Lindegaard, Carl Alford and Chris Giles - lost 3-1 against Dawlish in a Screwfix Direct League fixture last night. Francis Kumbur scored Yeovil's goal.

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Tues 9th April 2002
Conference Waits On FA's 2U/2D Initiative

A meeting of Football League clubs, set to take place at Manchester City's Maine Road ground next week, is expected to clearly indicate whether there is any serious possibility of the long awaited extra promotion/relegation place between the Conference and Division Three actually coming into existence in time for next season.

According to an article in today's Times newspaper, the Conference has been deliberately sitting back and allowing the FA to negotiate an improved compensatory financial package with the Division Three clubs which, it is hoped, will lead to 2-up/2-down being approved for next season. John Moules, the Conference chief executive, said: "We havenít been party to the discussions, but if the figures that we hear have been bandied about are true, then the FA will have made an offer to third-division clubs that will help to focus minds. We should know next week, after all the League clubs have met at Maine Road, whether it will be a matter of a second promotion place being rubber-stamped at their annual meeting."

Moules went on to reiterate that if the extra promotion place wasn't allocated then the Conference would only relegate one team in return. "Itís all tied together. If we get the extra place then we are quite happy to maintain the status quo, but if we donít then it is unacceptable that we get only one up but three down. Last season we lost three Football League-graded grounds and we got only one back - and that is one out of four if you include Barnet, whose ground does not meet League standards."

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Sun 7th April 2002
It's Only Half-Time, But.... So Far So Good!

The Glovers entertained runaway Unibond League leaders Burton Albion in the 1st leg semi-final of the FA Trophy at a sun-drenched but breezy Huish Park yesterday afternoon, and will be going into the 2nd leg next Sunday confident of reaching the final for the first time in the club's history after an excellent 4-0 win over Nigel Clough's side.

The Glovers got off to the best possible start when Kim Grant touched in Lee Johnson's free-kick in the 4th minute and never really looked back from there. The Brewers - who had already survived one strong penalty appeal earlier in the half - were 2-0 down after 37 minutes, Nick Crittenden converting the spot-kick after a handball in the box. Michael McIndoe made it 3-0 on the stroke of half-time with the best goal of the game, and super-sub Chris Giles wrapped things up with 3 minutes left on the clock to make the final score Yeovil 4 Burton 0 - the ytfc.net match report is now online.

A great result from the Glovers then in front of a smaller than expected crowd of 5,614 - a legacy of what has been, in all fairness, a disappointing season at home, perhaps? Whatever, the stayaways missed a fine performance by Gary Johnson's team, who must now put in a professional performance in the 2nd leg at Eton Park next Sunday - the game being shown live on Sky TV. The match is all-ticket, with 1,000 being made available to Yeovil fans. At the time of writing (12 noon 7/4/02) around 800 tickets have been sold - those left will go on sale to all-comers, including telephone enquirers (phone the club on 01935 423662), from 10am tomorrow morning (Monday).

In the other semi-final Stevenage hold the advantage having beaten Morecambe 2-1 at Christie Park. In the Conference the top two continue to fight it out, Dagenham winning 2-1 at Northwich to come within 2 points of leaders Boston, who didn't play yesterday.

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Thurs 4th April 2002
Ike Clarke

Ciderspace is sad to report the death of Isaac "Ike" Clarke, which occurred on Tuesday 2nd of April. Ike was Yeovil Town player-manager from 1953 to 1957, and led the club to a Championship Shield amomgst other trophies. He passed away in a Margate nursing home, and the funeral will be at 10.40 on Monday 8th April at Thanet Crematorium, Margate. Our sincere condolences go to his family and friends.

A fuller tribute to Ike can be found on the site here.

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Thurs 4th April 2002
YTISA Travel Update / Player Of The Season Vote

The Yeovil Town Independent Supporters Association will be running a coach to Burton on 14th April for the semi final second leg.

Anyone who would like to travel with the YTISA should phone Mark Kelly on 01935 412236 as soon as possible.

The coach will be leaving Yeovil Bus Station at 7.30am prompt. Prices will be £14 for non-members and £12 for members.

Meanwhile, YTISA members are advised to start getting their Player of the Season votes in now. The award, currently held by Darren Way, gives YTISA members the chance to cast their vote on which player they feel has been the most consistent performer throughout the season.

Members should send their votes to Chairman Mark Kelly at markkelly@ytisa.freeserve.co.uk - detailing their first choice and second choice vote.

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Tues 2nd April 2002
Home International Venues

Following up from our news on February 4th for the dates of the Four Nations' Semi-Professional Tournament we can now fill in details on the venues.

York Street, home of Boston United, and Rockingham Road, home of Kettering Town, have been chosen to host this competition.

Tuesday, 14 May
England v Wales, at York Street
Scotland v Republic of Ireland, at Rockingham Road

Thursday, 16 May England v Republic of Ireland, at York Street
Scotland v Wales, at Rockingham Road

Saturday, 18 May Republic of Ireland v Wales, at York Street
England v Scotland, at Rockingham Road

The F.A. is currently negotiating for sponsorship of the competition, and Sky has been approached with a view to providing coverage including, it is hoped, the showing of the England v Scotland match live. Watch out for your cross-bars, Kettering!

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Tues 2nd April 2002
Skivo Ends Goal Drought

Yeovil Town's three-match goal drought came to an end at the Deva Stadium yesterday, club captain Terry Skiverton netting in the Glovers 1-1 draw with Chester City. It was a tale of two halves at the Deva: Yeovil were in control before the break, Skivo's 42nd-minute goal just reward for the Glovers first half display. Chester came back into it in the second period, Martyn Lancaster's 55th minute strike ensuring a share of the points though the Glovers were hanging on towards the end of the match. Yet again both sides suffered through the incompetence of the match referee, but that's become such a familiar tale this season that it barely seems worth mentioning anymore - in fact it's rarer to find a competent official these days. Mr Singh, where are you when we need you?! The ytfc.net match report is now online.

Striker Adam Stansfield was rested for the match at Chester, but is expected to be fit for this Saturday's FA Trophy semi-final 1st leg v Burton Albion at Huish Park. Kim Grant left the pitch with an injury in the 2nd half, but initial reports suggested he should be fit for Saturday. Carl Alford is of course suspended for the 1st leg.

Leaders Boston and Dagenham both won yesterday against Southport and Morecambe respectively to pull further away at the top, Boston keeping the advantage of points in hand, but relying on two injury-time goals to gain the win. Third-placed Doncaster lost 1-0 at Stalybridge - the Glovers remain fourth but gain a point on Rovers.

Top of the table, 1st April 2002
Home Away
Team P W D L F A W D L F A Pts
1. Boston United 36 11 4 4 49 24 11 3 3 27 15 73
2. Dagenham & Redbridge 35 10 6 2 29 19 9 5 3 31 25 68
3. Doncaster Rovers 37 9 6 4 36 23 7 7 4 26 18 61
4. Yeovil Town 37 5 6 7 24 28 11 6 2 35 21 60

NB Artificial grass pitch, a calf transplant for Thommo... Looking at yesterday's date you weren't really fooled...were you?

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Mon 1st April 2002
The Green Green Artificial Grass Of Home

Yeovil Town have been chosen as guinea-pigs for FA-sponsored trials of a revolutionary new artificial pitch at Huish Park next season. The FA and American firm Synthograss, the manufacturers of the articial turf, have been looking for some time for a suitable club to hold the trials at and after a visit to Huish Park two weeks ago have invited YTFC to host the year-long trial. Ciderspace understands that the FA were specifically looking for an easily waterlogged pitch in very poor condition - Huish Park fitted the specifications perfectly. The estimated £350,000 cost of digging up the existing pitch and replacing it with the artificial turf will be borne entirely by the FA and Synthograss.

"It's an exciting development," said Yeovil chairman John Fry. "We've gone into it very thoroughly and it seems that the Synthograss is virtually indistinguishable from the real thing. Artificial grass technology has made great strides since it was first introduced in this country in the 1970's and from the samples we have seen we should at last have a pitch to be proud of in time for next season."

With many grounds the length and breadth of the country suffering from the extremely wet weather now seemingly a permanent part of the climate, the FA, Premiership and Nationwide League will be looking closely at how the artificial pitch stands up to the rigours of next season. If successful it could open the way to synthetic pitches becoming a permanent part of the English football scene.

In other news from the club it's emerged that evergreen Yeovil player/coach Steve Thompson is to undergo a revolutionary new calf transplant operation in the summer in a bid to prolong his playing career. Manager Gary Johnson said, "We all know how fit Thommo is - it's just his calf muscle that is causing him problems. A specialist has told us that if he had this transplant, that he could carry on playing 42 games a season at this level for the next five years.". Thommo is expected to go under the surgeon's knife as soon as a suitable donor can be found after the season ends.

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Last Updated 6th April 2002


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