News And Gossip
June 1999


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Thurs 24th June 1999
Patmore Extends Contract Until 2001 !!

Warren Patmore has this week signed a brand new two year contract that will keep him at Huish Park until 2001. The terms of the contract will include a testimonial game that will be arranged after he has completed five years service at the club. The club acted swiftly after Yeovil's star striker was recently the subject of a major bid for his services from fellow Conference club Rushden & Diamonds, which Yeovil Town rejected. As a result of the bid, the decision was made to offer Patmore a new contract before the season started. The deal was completed just before Wazza is due to celebrate another happy event in his life - he gets married in his home town on Saturday, and Ciderspace wish Wazza and the future Mrs Wazza all the best for the future.

Ciderspace understands that Patmore is the first of several Yeovil Town players who will be offered extended contracts before the start of the season, with the club hopefully looking to learn from the heavily drawn out problems experienced with Al-James Hannigan and Owen Pickard.

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From The Local Press....

Today's Western Gazette reports that there has been no movement in regards to the three transfer-listed Yeovil Town players. Colin Lippiatt is quoted as saying that Al-James Hannigan remains a Yeovil player at present as no money has been received from Slough for him. Nothing is ever that simple however as the Yeovil Express reports that a deal with Slough has been done and is expected to be completed within the next few days. You pays your money and you makes your choice....

Despite recent speculation it now seems certain that Darren Keeling will not be allowed to leave Huish Park without a fee being payed for him. Keeling and Ben Smith, who also has been the subject of no offers as yet, will be reporting for pre-season training next month unless any concrete offers are received.

Yeovil have arranged another pre-season friendly, Div 2 play-off runners-up Gillingham will visit Huish Park on Monday 19th July, kick-off 7.45pm.

The Gazette reports that the club are hoping to launch their official web-site within the next fortnight. According to the paper the site will include 'match reports, details of new signings and social events at Huish Park'.... The site is being developed and co-ordinated by pupils from Buckler's Mead Community School. Yeovil chairman John Fry is quoted as saying: "The web-site is just part of the re-structuring we are having. On the field the board have decided that the first team will make a real tilt to win something this year. Off it we have the Centre of Excellence plans under way, and there are plans for a look at the editorial for the reserves'and first team's programmes."

Finally, the Yeovil Express reports that those who were at the Cheltenham v Yeovil match in April were privileged to watch one of the top three games in world football last season. Honestly! Total Football's Gil Gillespie chose the match as one of his three best games of the season. The other two were the Man Utd - Ars*nal FA Cup semi-final replay (2-1 to United, including that Ryan Giggs goal) and the Serie A game between Parma and Lazio (1-3 to Lazio). Masochists may care to refresh their memories of Cheltenham's somewhat lucky 3-2 win by clicking here.

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Fri 18th June 1999
Pickard Set To Sign For Slough

Westcountry TV Teletext reports that former Yeovil Town striker Owen Pickard is to sign a contract with Ryman League side Slough Town on Monday, once again joining forces with manager Graham Roberts. Pickard is quoted as saying: "It looks like I will be going to Slough. It means I will be teaming up with Graham again - which I'm looking forward to."

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Thurs 17th June 1999
Keeling and AJH's Future Still Undecided Shock!

Today's Western Gazette reports that want-away striker Darren Keeling has been photographed wearing a Gloucester City shirt for the local Gloucester press but it's now looking increasingly unlikely that he will be back playing at Meadow Park next season. Yeovil chairman John Fry is insisting on a fee for the striker who Yeovil spent £15,000 on last November and Gloucester simply cannot afford any kind of cash deal. Conference rivals Telford United are reportedly interested in buying Keeling, but it doesn't appear that any formal offer has been made by them as yet.

Meanwhile the Gazette reports that a formal bid for Al-James Hannigan has been received from Slough, but that no decision will be made whether or not to accept it until Head Coach Colin Lippiatt returns from holiday. Hannigan remains a Yeovil player in the meantime.

Speculation that former Yeovil striker Howard Forinton had become a free agent and was set to leave Birmingham City to join Plymouth Argyle on a free transfer has been firmly denied. According to a City spokesman Forinton is under contract at the club until 2001. That's good news for the Glovers, as Yeovil are set to receive a further £10,000 when the striker makes 10 first team appearances and will also receive a percentage of any sell-on transfer fee.

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Tues 15th June 1999
Press Confusion Over Keeling

Press confusion continues this summer with conflicting reports continuing to arise over three transfer listed Yeovil players. Darren Keeling was reported in this weeks Plymouth based Sunday Independent local newspaper as having signed for Gloucester, but that is not the view of today's Gloucester Echo who claim that Keelings future will only be known on Friday when a meeting is scheduled at Huish Park, and therefore claim he is still a Yeovil player! Which newspaper would you rather believe ? Take your pick!

Meanwhile a second source at Yeovil Town has backed up the claims made in Ciderspace yesterday that Al-James Hannigan remains a Yeovil Town player whilst Slough continue to stall on making the transfer fee payment. Owen Pickard has still yet to sign for Slough and doubts are being expressed that he will ever sign for them. Exactly who that leaves Owen playing for next season is anyone's guess; he seems to have burnt his bridges at both Yeovil and Dorchester over the summer, although there are rumours that he could team up with Keeling at Gloucester City. With Sutton midfielder Steve Watson still yet to sign for Slough, despite earlier rumours that he had left Sutton under the Bosman Ruling, these are curious times at Wexham Park.

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Mon 14th June 1999
Keeling returns home but AJH is still here

According to the Plymouth based Sunday Independent local newspaper, the transfer of Darren Keeling has gone through, with him returning back to Gloucester, the club that Yeovil embarrassingly signed him from last November for a £15,000 fee. No fee has been mentioned with the return transfer although it seems likely that Yeovil will not have received a fee.

Meanwhile confusion still reigns over the transfer of Al-James Hannigan to Slough. Despite manager Graham Roberts claiming his signature in the Slough Express last week, sources at Yeovil claim that Slough have yet to formally agree a fee for Hannigan, and that whilst the matter of payment remains outstanding, that Hannigan is bizarrely still a Yeovil player.

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Reserve Team Friendlies Announced

The pre-season friendlies for Yeovil Town Reserves have been announced with four away fixtures and two home fixtures set up. The full list is as follows:

Thurs 22nd July : Bitton (away) k.o. 7:00pm
Thurs 29th July : Plymouth Argyle XI (home) k.o. 7:30pm
Mon 2nd August : Chippenham Town (away) k.o. 7:30pm
Tues 3rd August : Welton Rovers (away) k.o. 7:45pm
Fri 6th August : Gillingham Town (Dorset, away) k.o. 7:30pm
Sat 7th August : Devizes (home) k.o. 3:00pm

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Your Chance To Paint The Town!

Tim Lancaster, known on these pages as one of Ciderspace's photographers, is appealing for volunteers to help give Huish Park a facelift over the summer months. The plan is for supporters to get together on Sunday 27th June at 10:00am and spend the day cleaning and painting the ground. Brushes, paint and materials will be provided by the club, although Tim does need numbers to be known in advance so the right numbers of materials are made available.

If you are willing to help your club for the day, then Contact Us and we will pass details on. Your help will be very much appreciated by both Tim and the club.

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Thurs 10th June 1999
Transfer Two Finally On The Way Out ?

Despite it being the summer, it appears you've got to move fast round these parts to keep up with the transfer news in and around current and ex-Yeovil players.

No sooner had the Western Gazette below reported in this weeks issue that Darren Keeling had not been the subject of any offers and that Hannigan's transfer was breaking down, local press in other parts of the country appear to be painting a different story.

In today's Slough Express, Graham Roberts claims that the transfer of Al-James Hannigan has finally taken place. This contradicts information received by Ciderspace today so we are seeking confirmation of this at the Yeovil end, along with a figure for the transfer fee.

Meanwhile, today's Gloucestershire Echo is reporting that Darren Keeling was heading back to the club that Yeovil signed him from for £15,000 last November on a free transfer, until problems set in halting his return to Gloucester City. The problems occurred when Telford United declared their own interest in the player and Yeovil pointed out to Gloucester that they may expect a transfer fee as part of the transfer. Keeling still has a year left on his contract, and so Yeovil are entitled to do this, despite Gloucester boss Brian Hughes claiming the halting of the transfer to be a "cock-up" at Yeovil's end when he suggested that Keeling was available on a free transfer.

Next on the move is ex-Yeovil striker Guiliano Grazioli. He has left Peterborough on a free transfer under the Bosman Ruling, and as reported by Ciderspace on June 7th, Grazioli has signed for First Division Swindon Town.

Meanwhile his former Peterborough team mate and also ex-Yeovil loan player Neil Le Bihan is going to be spending his summer in an unusual location. Neil, currently with Dover Athletic, has been selected to represent Great Britain in the World University games in Palmer de Mallorca, Spain.

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Erection 2000 News

The Erection 2000 Appeal are giving two lucky youngsters the chance to act as official team mascots when Yeovil play the Masons Arms at Bradford Abbas on Saturday July 17th. The committee has acquired 2 junior replica Yeovil kits for the day, suitable for 6-10 year-olds. Anyone wishing to be a mascot has to answer a simple question, the winners being drawn from the correct replies. And that all-important question is:

Who was Yeovil Towns top scorer last season?

(a) Alan Shearer
(b) Warren Patmore
(c) Dwight Yorke

Answers on a postcard to Steve Sowden at the Yeovil Express, 46 Princes St, Yeovil, BA20 1EQ. Closing date for entries is Friday July 2nd. Include the childs name, age, address and daytime phone no' with the answer.

The Erection 2000 Appeal have booked the Executive Lounge at Huish Park on Wednesday August 11th for a grand football quiz night, entitled 'Statto Of Huish Park 1999'. The committee are looking for teams of four to take part on the night. Entrance will be £10 per team and entry forms are available now, either from Huish Park or the Yeovil Express office on Princes Street.

The quiz will consist of 8 rounds based on various footballing themes with a maximum of 50 points available per round, unless you play your joker which will double your tally for that particular round. The team with the most points at the end will receive a shield plus 20p for each point scored. Theoretically the winning team scoring maximum points could be as much as £90 better off! For more details phone Steve Sowden on 01935 479811 or fax him on 01935 432251

Regular general knowledge quiz nights in aid of the Erection 2000 Appeal are to be held in the Glovers Bar at Huish Park from Sunday June 20th, 7.30pm kick-off. The cost will be £5 per team of four people.

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11 New Signings Sensation!

Yeovil Town FC have stunned supporters by signing an entire new team to play at Huish Park! But Steve Stott, Wazza and the rest need not fear for their places next season, because it's the Sherborne Ladies FC that have transferred their allegiance to the green-and-white cause by becoming Yeovil Town Ladies FC. The switch was only logical as the team have been playing their home games at Huish Park for some time now.

On the same note next week has been designated by the FA as National Women's Football Awareness Week. Yeovil Town FC are hosting a number of events, including coaching sesions for girls aged 8+ this Sunday, June 13th, between 2.30.pm and 3.45pm at Huish Park. Other courses include a general FA coaching course and a FA first aid course. Contact John Flatters on 01935 423662 (ext 227) for more details.

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Conference Awards 1998-99

Champions Cheltenham dominated this seasons annual Conference Awards, winning the Manager and Player of the year trophies as well as providing 4 players for the Conference team of the year. As previously mentioned on Ciderspace, Yeovil were voted second in the Programme of the year section, but failed to have any players picked in the Team of the year

Manager of the Year: Steve Cotterill (Cheltenham)

Player of the Year: Neil Grayson (Cheltenham)

Mail on Sunday Goalscorer of the Year: Carl Alford (Stevenage)

Programme of the Year: Kidderminster Harriers

Conference Team of the Year: Book (Cheltenham), Duff (Cheltenham), Victory (Cheltenham), Bradshaw (Rushden), Smith (Stevenage), Patterson (Kingstonian), Pitcher (Kingstonian, Walters (Northwich), McAuley (Leek), Alford (Stevenage), Grayson (Cheltenham).

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More Conference Changes

The Nationwide Conference have decided that from next season clubs will be allowed to name 5 substitutes per game, though in line with more senior leagues only 3 will be allowed to be used during games. According to todays Western Gazette Head Coach Colin Lippiatt has welcomed the change, saying that it will give him more options during games.

In other news from the Gazette Lippiatt has confirmed that he does not intend to make any more new additions to the squad on top of the four players already signed. As yet the club have still received no offers for the transfer-listed duo Ben Smith and Darren Keeling. It doesn't now appear that Keeling will be released early from his contract, as Lippiatt has said that if no offers are received for either player they will be included in pre-season training and considered for selection, either in the first-team or reserve-team squads.

Al-James Hannigan still hasn't completed his long drawn-out move to Slough Town - Yeovil and the Rebels have still failed to agree upon a fee. Owen Pickard is expected to have completed his move to Slough under the Bosman ruling this week.

Elsewhere former Yeovil Town striker Giuliano Grazioli has signed a deal with Swindon Town, again under the Bosman ruling. Howard Forinton's position at Birmingham remains unclear at present.

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Mon 7th June 1999
Kit and Book Launch Evening

The Yeovil Town centenary book was finally launched this evening at Huish Park at a special event held in the club's executive bar. Entitled Hendford to Huish Park : 100 Years of Yeovil Town Football Club and priced £14.99, the book covers the history of the club up until the end of the 1994/95 season and is written by local football historian Kerry Miller.

The launch evening had 500 copies of the book available for sale, with a second batch of 500 expected to be printed within the next three weeks, so the suggestions of copies being scarce proved to be false. Kerry Miller attended the evening and spoke about the book, along with his main assistant, director Bryan Moore, and also chairman John Fry. Stuart Housley as usual acted as compere.

Also as part of the evening, Yeovil Town players took part in a cat-walk of the new kit and sportswear that will be used by the first team and reserve team next season. The kit is made by Derby based firm Paulas Benara, and their managing director was present at the evening's events. Tony Pounder and Jamie Pitman modelled the first team kit. Again it was reiterated by the club that both home and away replica kits will be available to buy at the first home friendly against Wimbledon.

Meanwhile the latest date for the Yeovil Town Official Internet Site is being pencilled in for towards the end of this month. Watch this space for further announcements.

The evening was also very beneficial to the Erection 2000 fund. Onyx Holdings, who are continuing their sponsorship of the reserve team, donated £245 to the roof campaign, then in Colin Lippiatt's speech, he announced he would be personally matching that amount, thus swelling the Erection 2000 coffers by nearly 500 pounds for the evening. If more local businesses and individuals would follow these two gentlemen's examples then surely the fund-raising would become a formality!

Photos of the new kit, as described in the 30th May 1999 News Article, will appear on Ciderspace some time on Tuesday evening.

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Forinton Confusion

Much confusion is surrounding the current state of play regarding ex-Yeovil striker Howard Forinton. Suggestions were made a few days ago on the Official Plymouth Internet Site that the Birmingham City striker was available under the Bosman Ruling. This was backed by a piece in the Sport First newspaper, with Plymouth, the club he played for on-loan this season being favourites to sign him.

However, confusion reigns in that it is believed that the Bosman ruling applies only to players over 24 years old, and that Forinton therefore does not fall under that ruling. The intrigue is compounded by the fact that Forinton's last first team action was to score a debut goal for Birmingham, and that Trevor Francis rejected a 200K bid from Plymouth for the player earlier in the season, regarding him as a vital part of the clubs future plans.

Meanwhile, also out of contract is Guiliano Grazioli, the player who once spent three goal-filled months at Yeovil, on loan from Peterborough. Ironically, one of the sides trying to attract his attention is Swindon Town, who he scored against for Stevenage Borough to send the Wilshire side crashing out of the FA Cup in controversial circumstances.



Yeovil Match Day Programme Wins Runners-Up Award

Yeovil Town's match day programme has finished highly in the annual Wirral Programme Survey. The programme was second only to Kidderminster when considering all the Conference club programmes in the survey, with Rushden finishing third.


Conference Changes

As a part of this years Conference AGM, Barrow have been expelled from the league following a turbulent season in which they were put into liquidation then reformed as a new club. The decision to remove Barrow appears to have been an academic decision as Barrow were earlier expelled from the FA, leaving the Conference with no choice.

The Conference AGM also revealed that Conference clubs will enter next years FA Cup at the fourth qualifying round. Other matters discussed did not see the light of day. The much talked about admittance of Conference Clubs into the Auto-Windscreen Shield has been abandoned for one year, whilst the possibilities of introducing a three up/down system from Nationwide League Division Three have stalled due to problems securing a financial package that would aid those additional clubs who would then drop out of the league.



Thurs 3rd June 1999
Summer Soccer School '99

Yeovil Town are organising a summer soccer school for girls and boys aged between 5-15 over 2 different weeks in the school holidays. The cost will be £35 per child. The courses are from 10pm to 3pm and take place on Monday 26th July to Friday 30th July; and from Monday 2nd August to Friday 6th August.

Further information can be had from John Flatters on 01935 423662 (ext 227), or 01935 424825.



Screwfix Up For Sale ?

DIY Retailer Screwfix Direct are, according to both the Western Gazette and The Clarion, up for sale. It is believed that bids for the fast growing company, co-owned by Yeovil Town director Jon Goddard-Watts, are being attracted by other national retailers such as B&Q, Homebase and Focus Do-It-All. Experts are valuing the company, set up in 1981 to provide mail order DIY, at around 60 million pounds, with the four major shareholders, all members of the Goddard-Watts family, in line for equal shares of the proceeds.

Obviously, should this sale go through, this raises questions as to Jon Goddard-Watts' long term involvement with Yeovil Town. If he plans to sell up his interests in the company, what are his long term plans for investment into the football club ? With such a windfall due, it must be tempting to move overseas to protect his investment from taxation, which could cause him to withdraw his interest in Yeovil Town (although one Yeovil Director lives mainly overseas). Alternatively, could this mean that he plans to invest the freed cash into the football club ? This is certainly going to be a story to watch closely.

The other body that will be watching closely will be the Western League. Screwfix have recently agreed an extension to their sponsorship of the Western League until the end of the 2001/02 season (see story on May 19th), but according to league secretary Maurice Washer he believes any sale of Screwfix will not jeopardise the fulfilment of that sponsorship deal.



Shirts "Guaranteed" for First Home Friendly

Green and White Supporters Club Chairman George Coggen has stuck his neck on the block in the Western Gazette this week by "guaranteeing" that replica shirts for next season will be available at the first home friendly on 21 July. If true, it will be the earliest the shirts will have been made available for over four years. See our story on 30th of May for more details.

In the same article, regarding the Yeovil Town centenary book, Taunton-based printers Character Graphics have promised that 600 books will be available for sale on next Monday 7th June. This is despite the same company raiding the Gazette offices this week for photos of FA Cup matches involving Yeovil. Talk about hot off the press!



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This Page Written By Martin Baker/Jon Morgan
©Ciderspace 1999
Last Updated 14th July 1999


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