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24 October 2014 : Brooks Extends Terras Deal
Yeovil Town defender Calvin Brooks has extended his loan deal with Southern League Premier Division side Weymouth. The 20 year old was coming to the tail end of his first month's loan after this weekend's fixtures, but has agreed to extend his stay at the Wessex Stadium for a further month, taking him up to the tail end of November.

Since making his debut as a substitute in Weymouth's FA Cup Second Qualifying Round tie against Bideford, he has gone on to make four first team starts, and has played a full 90 minutes in their last two league matches. As such, Terras first team manager (and former Yeovil Town trialist) Jason Matthews has agreed to keep him for another month. Brooks told the Dorset Echo that he was pleased to get the game time given that he wasn't getting on the field of play with Yeovil:

"Since I have been down there I have loved it, and getting the games has given me that little bit more of an edge in training when Iím at Yeovil in the week. One of the most important things for me is to feel wanted and feel like I can actually make a difference to a team. I havenít had much chance at Yeovil and Dorchester so to get it at Weymouth has been really good and Iíve had a lot of positive feedback from the fans."

Brooks added that he had been made very welcome on the Dorset South Coast, despite being a former Dorchester Town player who was on the Glovers books - two of Weymouth's main rivals! He praised Matthews for giving him a chance in his team:

"I want to thank all the boys for the way they have welcomed me and made me feel at home, when I go to the stadium now it doesnít feel like Iím just at a loan club. I have to thank Jase (Jason Matthews) as well for giving me the opportunity because I didnít have a lot of pedigree. I had Yeovil to my name but I hadnít done that much and I feel grateful to him for giving me the opportunity to play games."

One interesting snippet from the Echo is that they indicate Brooks is on a contract at Huish Park - previously he has been referred to as on non-contract forms with Yeovil Town. The paper describes the centre-back as being on a contract until January 2015, suggesting he had been given a half-season deal with the Glovers.


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24 October 2014 : Gary Previews The Rochdale Home Game
As part of the build-up to Saturday afternoon's home match against Rochdale, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from BBC Somerset reporter Ed Hadwin, Gary speaks at length about Tuesday night's defeat at Sheffield United and the main problem areas, tomorrow's opponents Rochdale, and his ability to bring in new players into his squad. Read that interview via the link below.

Link: Gary Johnson Speaks To The BBC As Part Of The Build-Up To Rochdale.


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24 October 2014 : Johnson Warns Bringing In Fresh Blood Will Take Time
Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson has warned that it will take time for him to change his squad across the course of the season, and that it is unlikely to happen within days of a poor performance. The rather patchy showings during the 2014-15 season so far have seen the Glovers make good showings against the likes of Peterborough United and Swindon Town, but mix that up with a poor one against Sheffield United on Tuesday night, coupled with a dreadful match against Port Vale just under two weeks ago.

The Glovers boss has made clear that he will need to need to strengthen his squad between now and the end of the January transfer window, but told BBC Somerset that such changes would happen gradually over the course of time, rather than be situations where he could ship players out and bring new ones in within a matter of days:

"It doesn't come within days of poor performances. It comes over a period of time - you have to let the players know, let the agents know, and talk to agents. You've got to make sure that what you've got coming in is better than what you've maybe going out. Then there's got to be availability. People have got to want your players, and the players that you want have got to become available. So it's not done in just one or two weeks - it's done over a period of time."

Gary indicated on Tuesday night that he had been actively searching, but explained that was a continuous process, and not one that had a specific target or timescale in mind. He said the end goal was to ensure that the second half of the season was an improvement on the first, but didn't want his team to get too far adrift in the meantime:

"As I said to people on Tuesday night, we're looking all the time to try to improve our lot, and to try to improve our squad, and that's the nature of the game. We've got to get a consistency. The thing that I know is that we always get that during the second half of the season. But we mustn't be too far behind when that does happen. We suss our players as footballers, and we move on the ones that are not up to it, and we keep trying to build with the ones who are up to it. We know we'll get there in the end."


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24 October 2014 : Officials For Yeovil Town vs Rochdale
Officials for Yeovil Town's League One home match against Rochdale have been published by the Football League. The match takes place on Saturday 25th October 2014, with a 3.00p.m. kick-off. The man in charge of the fixture will be referee Pat Miller (Bedfordshire).

We've seen Mr Miller a a number of times over the years, oddly with all of the matches being away from home. He took charge of the City Ground defeat in April 2006 and for a Leyton Orient fixture in November 2006. On that occasion Miller caused outrage both on the Yeovil Town bench and amongst the visiting fans when bottling a late decision as Arron Davies was taken out, running into the box. Following those two, he was back in the middle for the Johnstone's Paint Trophy at the Quarter-Final stage against Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium. On this occasion we failed to notice him.

Mr Miller took charge of Yeovil's 1-0 triumph over Charlton Athletic in the Carling Cup in August 2008. Despite us winning the match in a tremendous performance, we weren't quite so pleased with Mr Miller's definition of when a well-timed robust tackle becomes a reason to blow a whistle for an opposition free kick. Following Charlton but in the same season, he was in charge of the 2-0 defeat against Walsall in February 2009, where we had no significant complaints about his performance on the day.

During the following season, he took charge of a November 2009 away match at the Priestfield Stadium. Here he dished out six yellow cards and a red card to Jean-Paul Kalala. No complaints about the incident that caused JP to walk, given that it looked more like Eric Cantona at Crystal Palace than a touch of the beautiful game. However, there were a number of worthy complaints about what had gone on before, with Gillingham using some rough-house tactics to try to wind up both Kalala and Sam Williams with the pair on yellow cards. Manager Terry Skiverton felt his players deserved better protection from the match officials from that kind of tactic. Mr Miller also awarded Gillingham a penalty in the 10th minute that eventually won the game - no big complaints there.

We were due to have Mr Miller for the March 2011 match between Yeovil Town and Walsall, which would have been his first visit to Huish Park. Instead he was replaced by Roger East at the last minute - perhaps he prefers to only see us when we are on our travels? Instead he turned up at Griffin Park at the start of the following season for a 2-0 defeat against Brentford. We were beaten by the better team, but the match officials somewhat gifted the Bees their opening goal, by awarding them a penalty for handball when a Shaleum Logan cross struck arm of Nathan Jones - the crucial bit being that had his back turned towards the ball as he tried to use his body to block the cross - how can a handball be 'deliberate' if you can't even see the ball coming towards you? Terry Skiverton, who was manager at the time questioned: "if the player doesn't raise his arms, and he doesn't lean towards the ball and the ball strikes him, how is that supposed to be a penalty? I can't quite fathom it."

In the three years and two months that have past since then, Mr Miller has been conspicuous by his absence. That's not just a Yeovil thing - during the 2013-14 season, he did two games in August but no more after that. During 2012-13, he managed six matches, disappearing after October. This season he's already surpassed that total, with nine matches, featuring a relatively average count of 25 yellow cards and one red card. The big question is, after all this time will he finally make it down to Huish Park?

Mr Miller will be assisted by Colin Lymer (Hampshire) and Andrew Quin (Devon). The Fourth Official will be Andrew Bennett (Devon).

Link: April 2006 : Nottingham Forest 2 Yeovil Town 1

Link: November 2006 : Leyton Orient 0 Yeovil Town 0

Link: November 2007 : Swansea City 1 Yeovil Town 0

Link: August 2008 : Charlton Athletic 0 Yeovil Town 1.

Link: February 2009 : Walsall 2 Yeovil Town 0.

Link: November 2009 : Gillingham 1 Yeovil Town 0.

Link: August 2011 : Brentford 2 Yeovil Town 0.


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23 October 2014 : YTFC Cycle Campaign Raise Fifty Grand From Boro Trip
Yeovil Town's YTFC Get Pedalling campaign have announced the amount of money that will benefit three charitable causes, following their mammoth charity ride earlier this year. The 2014 Get Pedalling campaign saw them travel 334 miles from Middlesbrough's Riverside Stadium to Huish Park, with all 64 riders completing the journey in time for the club's final home match of the 2013-14 season.

The good news is that for all of the aches, pains, and saddle soreness, they have raised a total of £51,000 in sponsorship across all of the riders. That money will now be split three ways, with Prostate Cancer UK, St Margaret's Hospice and Yeovil Town Community Sports Trust all set to be given a cheque for £17,000 each.

If that effort wasn't enough, tonight they are at their YTFC Get Pedalling 2015 launch night, where they are are going international with their 'Pedale de Paris' - a 386km ride that will commence on April 29th 2015 in the French town of Herblay and end five days later on Sunday 3rd May 2015 at Huish Park.

The 2015 efforts will benefit three charities again - with Yeovil Town Community Sports Trust being joined by the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the highly appropriate Cyclists Fighting Cancer charity. They also plan to use their publicity schedule to highlight the Organ Donor Register.

Even if you've missed their launch night tonight, there is still a chance for any budding cyclists to enroll and prepare for the trip. Drop ytfccycle@gmail.com an email or visit their website where you'll find information on costs. They are aiming to get up to 100 riders on this trip - hopefully they'll get as much support as they did during this year's campaign.


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23 October 2014 : Johnson Looking For More Drive And Flair In Attack
Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson wants to see his team show more flare and passion when attacking the opposition goal in future games. So far this season, his side have netted in all bar four games, but perhaps significantly have only scored more than one goal in a game on two separate occasions, in the wins against Walsall and Bradford City. Tuesday night's 2-0 defeat against Sheffield United saw the Glovers create only a small number of chances, with the Blades back four snuffing out everything bar half chances, meaning that once they fell behind, it became increasingly unlikely that they would get back into the game.

Johnson told BBC Somerset that he felt the big atmosphere at the stadium, in front of 19,353 spectators, saw a few players fail to rise to the occasion, and he wanted to see a bit more drive from his players going forward in games:

"We didn't show enough flair or passion to go and score a goal. That means driving at someone, whipping a cross in, or having a diving header from a centre-forward. Or having the centre-forward getting in and being one-on-one with the goalkeeper like they were. That's what we need to create. It was a big old crowd and a very partisan crowd, and some of our lads didn't quite handle that on the day, for one reason or another. We certainly have got to do a little bit better when we go away to some of these big teams."

The Glovers boss felt that the 155 fans who had travelled to Bramall Lane in difficult weather conditions brought by the remnants of an Atlantic storm hadn't really got what their efforts deserved, and was frustrated that his team couldn't repeat the more positive showing on home turf in last Saturday's match against Swindon Town at Huish Park:

"A few days earlier (against Swindon) we did play very well, so it was disappointing. Huish Park is a place where the last good performance was - the last two were good in Peterborough and Swindon. So we've got to get that going again. We thank our supporters for travelling up to Sheffield in the eye of the hurricane Gonzalo, but we didn't really give them that much to sing about, or to warrant them making that long trip."


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23 October 2014 : Restaurant Offer For The Rochdale Game
Yeovil Town supporters wanting to enjoy some additional hospitality around their matchday on Saturday can eat in the Glovers Restaurant prior to the match. The Glovers take on Rochdale on Saturday 25th October with a 3.00p.m. kick-off, and you can reserve a place in the restaurant by booking via the club's Ticket Office (01935-847888).

On offer for this weekend's match is a three course carvery for the price of £25.00. This entitles you to also use the restaurant bar before and after the game, as well as at half time, with a chance to mix with the players after the game. There will be a complementary matchday programme provided for each booking made.

Note that you must purchase your matchday ticket separately (or be a season ticket holder) and that the Restaurant operates under a 'smart casual' dress code. To place your bookings, call the Ticket Office now.

Glovers Restaurant offer for the Rochdale game - book now
Glovers Restaurant offer for the Rochdale game - book now.



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23 October 2014 : Gary Talks About Sheffield United Team Selection
Just before Tuesday night's match against Sheffield United kicked off at Bramall Lane, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from local journalist Chris Spittles, in an interview for BBC Somerset, Gary talks about where he sees some of the improvements needed in the team's play, the role that he wants Manchester City loanee Jordy Hiwula to play and how other players should be supporting him. Read that interview via the link below.

Link: Gary Johnson Speaks To The BBC Just Before Kick-Off Against Sheffield United.


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22 October 2014 : Beer Tent Gains Approval
Further to the report earlier this month, Yeovil Town have had their planning permission for the Hospitality Marquee (aka the Beer Tent) approved. The application to South Somerset District Council was made due to the existing permission on the existing 'temporary' structure having expired in August 2008, and thus had been in place for the past six years without authorisation.

The new planning permission has been granted for a five year period. There had been representation from Brympton Parish Council for this to be pegged back to a one year period, on the basis that they had expected Yeovil Town to redraft its stadium development plans, following the withdrawal of the club's Food Store application. However, SSDC have authorised the full five year term as follows:

"Grant permission : Subject to the following : The following structures hereby approved namely the refreshment marquee, ancillary facilities and storage shall be removed and the land restored to its former condition on or before 31 October 2019 in accordance with a scheme of work to be submitted to and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority."

The permission allows the football club to use the structure between the hours of 09:00hrs and 23:00hrs seven days a week. Note that does not imply alcohol licencing hours - it merely sets out the hours in which the club can use the Marquee from a business point of view. If the club want to extend the Marquee's use beyond October 2019, they'd need to submit a further planning application.

The Marquee has been in place since the summer of 2003, when it was intended to be used as a temporary facility for supporters, after the upstairs bars were restricted to Vice Presidents, Sponsors and corporate guests.


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22 October 2014 : Gary's Verdict On The Sheffield United Away Game
Following Tuesday night's 2-0 defeat against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from local journalist Chris Spittles, in an interview for BBC Somerset, Gary's post-match verdict can be read via the link below.

Link: Gary's Verdict On The Sheffield United Away Game.


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22 October 2014 : Gary Johnson: We Needed All Eleven To Turn Up
Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson felt that two or three of his players dropped their standards too far when they came up against promotion-chasing side Sheffield United at Bramall Lane last night. Having all largely impressed during last Saturday's match against Swindon Town at Huish Park, the Glovers travelled to Yorkshire but lost out by a 2-0 scoreline.

Johnson told BBC Somerset after the game that he recognised the qualities that the opposition had, but felt that was why all eleven of his players needed to perform at a top standard. He felt a number of his players dropped their standards which created weaknesses in his team:

"You're going to get games where you get beaten 2-0 by a club that's got the quality that they've got. But we had two or three that didn't turn up today, and that's what disappoints us. You need all eleven of them. Sheffield United showed a bit of power and pace and a bit of assuredness on the ball. I said before the game that we've got to keep the ball a little bit better, and we couldn't. We just made that same mistake where we pat-a-cake the ball down into the path of somebody, and then all of a sudden you're 1-0 down."

With Blades winger Jamie Murphy dominant throughout the evening, Johnson replaced winger Joel Grant with Kevin Dawson at half time in an effort to cancel out the dominance of the home side down that flank. The Glovers boss felt that Grant hadn't been doing enough to support full-back Seth Nana Twumasi by stopping his opposite number's runs:

"He didn't do enough. He was out there. But we said about stopping crosses, helping full-backs and unfortunately we didn't get anywhere near that desire and commitment that we asked for. We kept ourselves in the game without really playing that well. But we couldn't seem to get a foothold on that game today. Some of them have got to look at themselves a little bit and see whether they can affect this level."


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21 October 2014 : Man of the Match Voting for Sheffield United vs Yeovil Town
If you watched Tuesday night's match against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane, don't forget to cast your Man of the Match votes. Choose your top three players from the match, plus entertainment and performance ratings along with any other comments you want to make on the game, using the form below.

Link: Man of the Match Voting for Sheffield United vs Yeovil Town.


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21 October 2014 : Sheffield United 2 Yeovil 0 : Blades Earn Comfortable Win
Yeovil Town went down to a 2-0 defeat against Sheffield United tonight at Bramall Lane as they took a slight step backwards from Saturday's promising display against Swindon Town. The Blades were the superior side, particularly in the first half, when Marc McNulty took advantage of a loose ball after Artur Krysiak could only parry a Louis Reed shot into his path. In a match in which the Glovers had to feed off scraps at times, the home side sealed the points midway through the second period when dangerous winger Jamie Murphy cut in from the flank to fire home, and send Yeovil back below the dotted line on goal difference once again.

Unsurprisingly given Saturday's performance against the Robins, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson selected the exact same starting eleven for tonight's fixture. The only alteration was an injury to midfielder James Berrett which meant that he didn't travel up to Yorkshire, resulting in the bench being a man light. Strikers Kieffer Moore and AJ Leitch-Smith and defender Jakub Sokolik continued their absence through injury.

Sheffield United took the lead just 14 minutes into the match with probably their first true chance of the half. Louis Reed shot from the edge of the box, but Artur Krysiak's parried save was a weak one and only succeeded in palming the ball into the path of Marc McNulty who was on hand for goalpoaching duties on the rebound. 1-0 down and inevitably the home crowd turned up the volume in response.

The home side's superiority largely came in their ability to keep the ball far better than Yeovil were able to, and also in the pressure that they exerted down the flank occupied by Joel Grant and Seth Nana Twumasi. Giving the ball away didn't help, with Artur Krysiak redeeming himself for the opening goal when he blocked a Stefan Scougall attempt that came through Ryan Inniss losing possession in his own half. The main positive at the break was that there was only one goal in it, and the Blades fans were becoming a little restless at their side's failure to turn the excess possession and territory into hard chances.

The second period opened with Yeovil making a half time change. Joel Grant's withdrawal for Kevin Dawson was no doubt a reaction to the problems down that flank, and that allowed the Glovers a chance to cancel out Sheffield United, albeit without creating too much at the other end themselves. Jordy Hiwula came close when defensive dithering between a Blades player and his keeper allowed him to break through, but referee David Webb awarded a foul against the Man City loanee, when he might have had a case for obstruction.

Minutes later, Sheffield United doubled their lead. A long pass from Louis Reed was flighted into the path of Jamie Murphy. The winger burst clear of Seth Nana Twumasi, cut inside and then fired home to double the lead, and to bring to an end any of the little nerves that the home team had been building up due to their single goal lead. Now settled with a 2-0 advantage, it was hard to see the game going any other way.

The Glovers managed to grab a few chances during the closing stages, when a Liam Davis cross saw Kevin Dawson head just wide of the post, and Jordy Hiwula had a couple of half chances that were snuffed out by Blades defenders. But the result was rarely in doubt throughout the night, and as a result, after Saturday's one step forward against Swindon that lifted them out of the relegation zone, they took one step back into 21st place - albeit only by virtue of their inferior goal difference in the extremely congested league table.

Link: 2014-15 Latest League One Table.

Final Score: Sheffield United 2 Yeovil Town 0.

Scorers: Marc McNulty (1-0, 14 mins), Jamie Murphy (2-0, 67 mins)

Sheffield United:
1. Mark Howard
2. Craig Alcock 6. Chris Basham 17. Harrison McGahey 3. Bob Harris
20. Jamal Campbell-Ryce 22. Louis Reed 8. Michael Doyle 9. Jamie Murphy
10. Stefan Scougall
12. Marc McNulty

Substitutes:
7. Ryan Flynn (62 mins for Jamal Campbell-Ryce) 11. Jose Baxter (72 mins for Stefan Scougall) 14. Stephen McGinn 16. Ben Davies 21. Michael Higdon (62 mins for Marc McNulty) 24. Iain Turner 27. Terry Kennedy

Yeovil Town (4-4-2):
12. Artur Krysiak
15. Seth Nana Twumasi 20. Ben Nugent 24. Ryan Inniss 19. Liam Davis
17. Joel Grant 4. Joe Edwards 23. Simon Gillett 16. Nathan Ralph
9. James Hayter 25. Jordy Hiwula

Substitutes:
1. Chris Weale 2. Brendan Moloney 3. Nathan Smith (81 mins for Nathan Ralph) 5. Aaron Martin 7. Kevin Dawson (46 mins for Joel Grant) 11. Sam Foley (74 mins for James Hayter)

Sheffield United Bookings: None.

Yeovil Bookings: Joel Grant (38 mins, foul), Kevin Dawson (61 mins, foul)

Sheffield United Match Statistics: Possession: 54%; Shots: 7; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 2; Fouls: 8.

Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 46%; Shots: 9; Shots On Target: 2; Corners: 7; Fouls: 18.

Referee: David Webb (County Durham). Assistant Referees: Ken Haycock (South Yorkshire) and James Mainwaring (Lancashire). Fourth Official: Joe Clark (West Midlands).

Attendance: 19,353 (with 155 Yeovil supporters).


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21 October 2014 : Team News For Sheffield United vs Yeovil Town
Yeovil Town have named an unchanged side for tonight's League One match against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane. Having named eight changes for the Saturday match against Swindon Town but seeing significant improvement in the first team performance, manager Gary Johnson has opted for stability this time round with the same eleven players turning out for tonight's fixture.

There is one absent player from Saturday's bench, with midfielder James Berrett not having travelled up to Yorkshire because of injury. Striker Kieffer Moore, defender Jakub Sokolik and striker AJ Leitch-Smith remain out through injury.

The team is as follows:

Yeovil Town (4-4-2):
12. Artur Krysiak
15. Seth Nana Twumasi 20. Ben Nugent 24. Ryan Inniss 19. Liam Davis
17. Joel Grant 4. Joe Edwards 23. Simon Gillett 16. Nathan Ralph
9. James Hayter 25. Jordy Hiwula

Substitutes:
1. Chris Weale 2. Brendan Moloney 3. Nathan Smith 5. Aaron Martin 7. Kevin Dawson 11. Sam Foley

Speaking as part of the build-up to tonight's match at Bramall Lane, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson told BBC Somerset that he was expecting to play in front of a noisy crowd but hoped that his team would show the same level of commitment that they showed on Saturday against Swindon Town:

"They get great support and big support, and lots of numbers singing their songs. They've got songs that they sing that do get them going. They're a fit team because they do seem to be scoring a few goals at the end of games. But we can look forward to it now because we know that at least if I pick the same team, then there's going to be a commitment."

The Glovers continue to keep Artur Krysiak between the sticks tonight as he makes his third appearance for the club, and his second at League One level. Johnson praised his goalkeeping coach Gareth Stewart for his work with the goalkeeper, as well as his current back-up Chris Weale, and felt that Krysiak had shown a good attitude in training over the two months that he hasn't been playing:

"Not once in the time that he's been here, has he dropped his head. Gareth Stewart has done a great job with him and Wealey in helping them get to a higher level than they were playing at previously. The players are slightly fitter, stronger and cleverer at the next level up, so we just had to get them sorted. He's done some good work with both of them."


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21 October 2014 : Taff's Gloversblog : Steps In The Right Direction
In the short gap between Saturday's home match against Sheffield United, and tonight's League One fixture against Sheffield United, there's a chance to contemplate a better weekend just gone for Yeovil Town. The latest Taff's Gloversblog considers some of the changes made since the previous weekend, and the effect that had on what had been an extreme low point at Vale Park. Read on via the link below, and add your own views at the bottom of the article.

Link: Taff's Gloversblog : Steps In The Right Direction.


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21 October 2014 : More Football And More Politics
Following last week's announcement by the Labour Party concerning their plans to give supporters a greater say in the running of their football clubs, the current coalition Government have unveiled their own plans that run along similar lines.

Sports Minister Helen Grant has set up a Supporter Ownership and Engagement Expert Group to meet in November, with representatives from the coalition Government, the FA, the Premier League, the Football League and Supporters Direct - the fans body that act as an umbrella group for Supporters Trust organisations - all invited to attend.

The group will be chaired by Joanna Manning-Cooper, who is a Marketing and Communications Director for the 2015 Rugby world Cup and also a member of Portsmouth Supporters Trust, as well as being one of Portsmouth's community shareholders. With Portsmouth's fans having taken ownership of their club away from a series of owners that racked up huge debts and a series of administrations, they currently stand as the biggest football club in the country that is wholly owned by their supporter base.

As yet, the current Government position hasn't been clear since a Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) published a report on the state of the game in July 2011, highlighting the lack of supporter representaton and the amount of risk-taking certain clubs were taking. However, Grant has outlined what her starting position is with respect to the committee's formation:

"Football fans are the lifeblood of the club they support. Owners, executives and managers may come and go but it is the fans that are the constant, loyally following their clubs through thick and thin. We want to see what more we can do to give fans a stronger voice in how their club is run, as well as looking at ways in which we can help remove some of the barriers to supporter ownership."

Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore risks the wrath of some of his league's members by indicating that the country's top flight division is willing to back changes to the game that would give supporters a greater voice in the game:

"The Premier League supports the government's plans to remove legal obstacles which make it harder for fans to acquire shares in their clubs and so welcomes the creation of the expert working group. Dialogue with fans has helped shape recent regulatory changes, including stricter owners' and directors' tests, and tougher financial regulations and we will engage with the working group to identify where further improvements in company law or football rules and regulations can be made in removing unintended barriers to fan ownership."

The initial direction from all three major political parties suggests that in principle they are fairly aligned with a common goal of reforming football and forcing owners to engage with their supporter community, and have influence in the running of their clubs. However, with the last DCMS report currently three years and three months old, and its Committee Chairman John Whittingdale having given the the Football Association a supposed 12 month deadline to see change back in January 2013, it's clear that actions, rather than words, will provide the most compelling argument here.


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21 October 2014 : Alcock Set For Home Club Reunion
Tonight's match against Sheffield United will see former right-back Craig Alcock come up against a Yeovil Town side for the first time in his career. The 26 year old, who was based in the Wincanton area, was a product of the Glovers youth system, making his debut for the club in May 2007 and going on to make 121 appearances, scoring three goals. Despite seven years having past since that moment, he remains the last player to rise through the club's youth ranks, but left in 2011 to sign for Peterborough United, where he spent three years.

Alcock's move to London Road meant that he has never played against his first professional club. When the Glovers moved up into the Championship, Peterborough swapped places with them, falling into League One. He made 112 appearances for them before deciding to sign for the Blades on a free transfer in July. Speaking to the Sheffield Star, Alcock confirmed this would be a first for him, but that he would only be focussed on his new club:

"I came through the ranks at Huish Park and Iíve got so many fond memories of the place but sentiment doesnít come into it. Iíve never actually played against Yeovil before,Ē Alcock said. ďThings change quickly in football but there are still a few of the old faces from my time still around, Chris Weale, Nathan Smith and Gary Johnson of course, so it will be good to see them again."

With assistant manager Terry Skiverton another one of the faces Alcock will recognise tonight, the Truro-born player revealed that as a youth team player he was responsible for cleaning Skivo's boots:

"I was actually Terryís boot boy when I was coming through the ranks. He is probably the greatest defender that Yeovil have ever had and I donít say that lightly at all. Quite a few people were surprised when he stayed at the club to become a number two after being in the main job for so long but Terry is very loyal and thinks a lot of Yeovil. He wants what is best for them at the end of the day and, from what I can gather, still has a lot of input. Itís a very friendly football club and, while it might not be the biggest on the planet, thereís a real Ďus against the worldí mentality behind the scenes."

Link: Craig Alcock : Yeovil Town Appearances.


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20 October 2014 : Ciderspace Guide To Sheffield United
Tomorrow evening sees Yeovil Town head up to Yorkshire where they will take on Sheffield United at Bramall Lane in a League One fixture. The Ciderspace guide to the stadium and surrounding area, including directions, parking, ticketing, pubs and other such stuff can be found via the link below.

Link: Ciderspace Guide To Sheffield United.


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20 October 2014 : Ladies Captain To Hang Up Her Boots
Yeovil Town Ladies first team captain Rachael Edwards is retire from the game after Sundays final Womens Super League game of the 2014 season at Durham. The 34 year old, who has been a regular in the first team squad all season as a centre back, will play her final game in the green and white hoops up north, when her side play against Durham Women at New Ferens Park.

Edwards, who has been at the club for 8 years making close to 200 appearances, has been an integral part of the squad having also captained the side in the Womens Premier League over recent years before the club began life in the FA WSL. Having made this tough decision she said:

"Iíve been at the club for a very long time and Iíve loved every minute of my time here. The coaches, players and people who do everything behind the scenes are fantastic and I will miss each of them dearly. Itís been a difficult decision to make, however itís just the right time for me and for my family, itís time to spend more time with them and for the next chapter in my life. To finish my playing career being part of this squad and playing in the WSL 2 has been incredible and I will always remember it."

"To say I have played in a team which is part of the top 18 womenís football teams in the country is amazing and an opportunity for me to finish on a high. The journey the club have been on since I started with them has been unbelievable and they are only going to get better and really achieve things in the future."

Rachael Edwards, who plans to retire at the end of the Ladies' season
Rachael Edwards, who plans to retire at the end of the Ladies' season


Edwards added that this would not be the final time that she would be at a Yeovil Town Ladies match, explaining that she would be cheering from the sidelines in the future:

"Iím looking forward to being in the crowd and cheering them all on next season, I believe with the staff and players they have in place they can really go places. Itís hard to put into words how Iím feeling about playing my final game next weekend however I know Iíll be around my friends, playing the game I love and Iíll savour every minute. There are a lot of people I want to say a huge thanks to and over the next week Iíll get the opportunity to do that, but just to say a huge thanks to everyone involved with the club and to the management team and my teammates, Iíll miss you all very much and I canít wait to be your no.1 supporter next season."

Club Chairman David Mills commented on Edwards announcement by saying: "Rachael has been an outstanding player, Captain, Welfare Officer and role model for the Club. A few years ago Rachael almost retired but had a last minute change of mind. This proved to be a great decision as ever since, she has just got better and better as a player and I think this season has been her best ever. Great players should sign off at the top of their game and Rachael Edwards is a YTLFC 'Hall of Fame' level player."

Manager Jamie Sherwood added: "To lose a player of Rachaelís stature within the club, with be very difficult to replace. Her influence on and off the pitch has been crucial. Her leadership and enthusiasm for the game is second to none. The club has grown dramatically and Rachael has been integral to that growth and whoever wears her number five shirt in the future, will have a lot to live up to."


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20 October 2014 : Sheffield United Ticketing Update
Yeovil Town travel to play Sheffield United in a League One fixture at Bramall Lane tomorrow evening. The 7.45p.m. kick-off was initially set as an all-ticket game. However, the Blades have now indicated that this position has been relaxed and tickets WILL be available on the night - but at increased prices.

The Huish Park Ticket Office will hold advance tickets sales until 11.00a.m. on Tuesday morning for those who haven't got one yet - give them a call on 01935-847888 or visit in person.

For those who choose to pay the increased prices, there is a dedicated away ticket office situated next to the Away Turnstiles at Bramall Lane. You will need to pay Cash Only. For pricing, see the original article below.

Link: Ticketing For Sheffield United vs Yeovil Town.


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20 October 2014 : Officials For Sheffield United vs Yeovil Town
Officials for the League One fixture between Sheffield United and Yeovil Town have been published by the Football League. The match takes place at Bramall Lane on Tuesday 21st October 2014, with a 7.45p.m. kick-off. The man in charge of the fixture will be referee David Webb (County Durham). For the avoidance of doubt he is not THAT David Webb - the idea of having a former manager and club owner officiating the game might go slightly against league rules.

This particular David Webb is from County Durham, which probably explains why we've not got much history with him, even though he's been at Football League level as a referee since the summer of 2008. We've had him just twice. The first was for an away match against Notts County in September 2010 at Meadow Lane. That game was a bit of a car crash - we lost 4-0 with a team that included Luke Ayling as a right winger and Adam Virgo as a striker! We lost badly, and to be honest the end scoreline flattered us. The idea of attaching any blame to the match referee for it would be laughed out of town.

We then had him for a March 2013 away match against Hartlepool United. A bit of a dull game all round, with only a Paddy Madden shot off the underside of the crossbar theatening to break the deadlock. As for the officials - they didn't seem to get visibly involved, which was nice. Two Hartlepool bookings, but nothing shown in our direction, in what was a low key game and an eventual 0-0 draw.

Mr Webb started life as a referee 15 years ago after he spotted an advert in a football programme recruiting referees, and went into the Consett Sunday League in the North-East, whilst running the line in the Wearside League. Heading through the Northern League and the Football Conference, he spent just one season at Conference level before being promoted to the Football League lists in the summer of 2008. In early 2009 he was England's representative at the Dallas Cup international youth tournament and also took charge of the Under-16s international between England and Scotland during the same season.

Mr Webb will be assisted by Ken Haycock (South Yorkshire) and James Mainwaring (Lancashire). The Fourth Official will be Joe Clark (West Midlands).

Link: March 2013 : Hartlepool United 0 Yeovil Town 0.

Link: September 2010 : Notts County 4 Yeovil Town 0.


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19 October 2014 : Gary Talks About Swindon Team Selection
Just before Saturday afternoon's home match against Swindon Town kicked off at Huish Park, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from BBC Somerset journalist Andy Howard, Gary talked about the huge number of team changes he made, the opposition tactics, and also his views on the pressure he was under as a manager to achieve results. Read that interview via the link below.

Link: Gary Johnson Speaks To The BBC Just Before Kick-Off Against Swindon.


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19 October 2014 : Swindon Boss Frustrated But Backs Johnson To Succeed
Swindon Town manager Mark Cooper has said that he was 'frustrated' not to have won yesterday's match against Yeovil Town, despite finishing the game with ten men. The Wiltshire side played out the final 11 minutes of the 1-1 draw a man short after Nathan Thompson was dismissed for two bookable offences, handling the ball whilst lying on the deck for his eventual dismissal.

Cooper said after the match that he felt his side was outstanding in the second half, but admitted that they deserved to be behind in the game when James Hayter gave Yeovil a half time lead:

"In the first half we weren't fluent like we usually are and that's full credit to Yeovil. They have obviously watched us and they pressed us all over the pitch and we weren't good enough to cope with it. In the second half, I thought we were outstanding. We dominated the game and could have won it even with 10 men and we I'm frustrated we haven't won."

During the second period, former Glover Andy Williams secured Swindon a draw when his 71st minute conversion of a Jack Stephens cross saw the visitors threaten to steal more than just a point. Cooper said that he was pleased with the way the goal came but claimed that there had been a foul on Thompson just prior to the handball that saw him prematurely leave the field:

"We have to try and be better than that, but the equalising goal is what we are all about. It was great movement and a wonderful finish from Andy Williams and it gave us a real momentum. I think without the sending off we would have won and I see it as two points dropped. On the sending off, I thought it was a push on Nathan (Thompson), there's contact there which means it was a foul, but we were flabbergasted with some of the decisions."

In the lead-up to yesterday's game, Cooper - who like Glovers boss Gary Johnson has also managed Kettering Town and Peterborough United - came to the defence of his opposite number. With Johnson under pressure following the club's slow start to the 2014-15 season, the Swindon boss told the Swindon Advertiser that he saw the tendency to chop and change managers as being a modern 'fad':

"You never used to see a manager getting sacked, it was either his contract finished or he wanted to move to a different part of the country. I think now itís more of a trend thing, more of a fad, letís have a go at the manager and letís get the manager out. I think Garyís had to do a bit of surgery on his squad, which takes time to gel and itís not going to happen overnight for them. Heís brought some good players and Iím sure somewhere along the line theyíre going to get it going."

Cooper suggested that the way that social media worked could create a snowball effect against a manager, and added that he felt that Johnson needed time to allow his new signings to bed into the team and start working together:

"Heís an experienced manager, he knows that heís doing and heís had a lot of success. When you look at the surgery theyíve had to on the squad it takes time. You canít expect to sign that many new players and everything be ok after 10 games. Heís going to need a little bit of time. Thatís the society we live in. With social media, you lose a couple of games and someone puts it on the internet that a manager should be sacked somebody else does and it snowballs. Before you know it thereís a campaign to get the manager out, itís ridiculous."


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18 October 2014 : Gary's Verdict On The Swindon Town Home Game
Following Saturday afternoon's 1-1 draw against Swindon Town at Huish Park, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from BBC Somerset reporter Andy Howard, Gary's verdict on the match can be read via the link below.

Link: Gary's Verdict On The Swindon Town Home Game.


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18 October 2014 : Man of the Match Voting for Yeovil Town vs Swindon Town
If you watched this afternoon's match against Swindon Town at Huish Park, don't forget to cast your Man of the Match votes. Choose your top three players from the match, plus entertainment and performance ratings along with any other comments you want to make on the game, using the form below.

Link: Man of the Match Voting for Yeovil Town vs Swindon Town.


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18 October 2014 : Johnson: We Got The Reaction We Were Looking For
Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson said that he got the reaction from his players that he had been hoping for, following last weekend's poor 4-1 defeat against Port Vale. The club's 1-1 home draw against promotion-chasing Swindon Town was gained during an impressive first half that saw James Hayter open the scoring with his second goal of the season, converting a Jordy Hiwula pass from inside the box.

Swindon came back into the match during the second period and equalised on 71 minutes when former Glover Andy Williams inevitably converted a Jack Stephens cross, meaning that the points were shared by both teams. But Johnson told BBC Somerset that it was his side's turnaround from the previous weekend's performance that impressed him, and added that he was proud of the way his players had reacted to that setback:

"We certainly got what we were looking for. We got a first half especially that was full of competitiveness and the will to win, and that's the least that we had to show. We got our goal and deservedly so. Swindon play a game where their keeper (Wes Foderingham) is sometimes their best player in finding an outfield player and we decided we would go and shut that down. We got our goal because of it and we had a couple of chances. In the second half, Swindon went a little bit quicker forward, and we couldn't quite shut them down as much. I'd liked us to have been a little bit more assured on the ball. Swindon got their goal, but I'm proud of the boys because the turnaround from last Saturday (against Port Vale) to here was magnificent. We know we've got that 12 or 13 out there that gave their all today and we can only be proud of them."

Johnson's pre-match team selection was a radical one, making eight changes to his team's starting line-up as only Joe Edwards, Simon Gillett and Jordy Hiwula survived a rather brutal cull of players. That included a new back four and goalkeeper, including new Crystal Palace centre-back Ryan Inniss. Gary explained that he had prepared his team for those changes very early in the week, and had high praise for his new arrival:

"We made those changes early in the week. So the lads sort of knew what we'd be doing. We brought in an organiser at the back. Ryan Inniss is only young, but when he says something he says it in a way that people will listen. That's good because we needed to play our tactics and it was very important that our back four played how we wanted them to play. It worked out for us as far as that was concerned. Of course we're disappointed at drawing 1-1 from being 1-0 up, but because of last Saturday it was a great performance, and the supporters have seen that everybody is still well up for it."


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18 October 2014 : Yeovil 1 Swindon 1 : Williams Returns To Deny Glovers Win
Yeovil Town gained a home draw this afternoon against high-flying Swindon Town at Huish Park, in an end-to-end match that both sides could have won. In a match that the Glovers were the more impressive team during the opening period, they took the lead when Manchester City loanee Jordy Hiwula set up James Hayter inside the box to give them the lead at the break. The Wiltshire side came back into the game more during the second half, and they equalised when former Glover Andy Williams converted a Jack Stephens cross. Swindon finished the game with ten men as Nathan Thompson was red-carded for two bookable offences, but despite that man difference both sides finished still going for the win in an entertaining 1-1 draw.

During the week, manager Gary Johnson promised radical changes to his team, but few could have predicted that he would make eight changes to his starting line-up for the visit of a Swindon side who were only kept out of the automatic promotion slots by virtue of them having sat out the last two international breaks. Only Joe Edwards, Jordy Hiwula and Simon Gillett survived the great Port Vale cull, with the back four and goalkeeper being changed entirely, and new Crystal Palace loan signing Ryan Inniss being chucked in the deep end.

The first half saw a clash of tactics, as Yeovil's 4-4-2 battled against Swindon's 3-5-2 and the Glovers found most of their attacking outlets came at exposing the Wiltshire side's wing-backs. Liam Davis clipped the top of the crossbar with a ball into the box that ended up curling closer to the goal than perhaps he had intended, whilst visiting keeper Wes Foderingham was kept busy - pushing a Joe Edwards header out for a corner.

This was a typical local derby - even if Yeovil and Swindon don't have too much of a history between them it has always been a game that has seen plenty of feisty stuff. A couple of incidents involving Yaser Kasim and James Hayter seemed to set the tone of the game, with the Yeovil striker landing in the book, and then Kasim appearing to get involved in an off-the-ball incident with the same player that led referee Scott Mathieson unsighted and having to have a lengthy talk with his assistant referee before deciding that all he could do was issue a finger-wagging to both.

James Hayter was also crucially involved when Yeovil took the lead in the 34th minute. A poor clearance by Swindon keeper Wes Foderingham saw Simon Gillett rob Louis Thompson of the ball, and that set the Glovers on an attack led by Hayter. He passed the ball through to Jordy Hiwula, who pulled the ball back to his strike partner and Hayter converted from close range to give Yeovil a lead that their first half play deserved. They could have easily added to that lead during the ten minutes between the goal and the whistle, but Foderingham's actual goalkeeping was excellent, as he blocked another Hiwula effort.

Just before the break, former Glover Jonathan Obika had fallen awkwardly on a shoulder that had kept him out through injury in recent matches, and it was no surprise to find him replaced at the break, with Andy Williams the equally unsurprising replacement. His pace allowed Swindon to play a little more direct, in an attempt to use pace at the Yeovil back four, and he got an early chance through that sort of 'route one' approach - Wes Foderingham's long clearance finding the striker, but he blazed wide of the target.

This was real end-to-end stuff, with Jordy Hiwula having a shot blocked by Nathan Thompson, whilst Swindon's Nathan Byrne had a series of second half chances, with one whistling just wide of the goal frame. Yeovil fans thought Hiwula had scored ten minutes into the half when he caused the side netting to ripple - unfortunately his shot was the wrong side of the goal frame. Foderingham saved acrobatically again, as Simon Gillett's spin on the edge of the box, followed by a sharp shot saw the ball turned around for a corner.

But as the half wore on, a few Yeovil legs began to wobble a bit, and Swindon finally clawed their way back into it. Jack Stephens worked his way down the flank, and Liam Davis couldn't stop the cross from the by-line, allowing Andy Williams the chance to dart in and convert a 71st minute equalising goal in front of 1,545 travelling Swindon Town fans. 1-1 and the game was now very delicately poised.

In theory, Yeovil should have had the upper hand eight minutes later when Swindon's Nathan Thompson was dismissed for a second bookable offence. His decision to clutch at the ball after he fell to the deck, and attempt to influence the referee into awarding a foul his way backfired significantly as referee Scott Mathieson - no stranger to a red card in Yeovil Town matches during 2014 - dismissed the Robins captain for deliberate handball, leaving them having to play out eleven minutes with ten men.

Surprisingly, and to their credit, the remaining Swindon players made no attempt to shut up shop. Nathan Byrne kept the tiring Yeovil back four busy, as he twice fired shots on goal. Yeovil had late appeals for a penalty turned down as a shirt pull inside the box was ignored by referee Mathieson, and so had to settle for the point, and one that was probably - based on the balance of the two halves - a fair result for both sides. Most importantly though, they climbed out of the relegation zone on the back of that draw, and all players on the pitch showed a clear reaction to last weekend's poor showing at Vale Park. A draw can't be called a full turnaround on that, but it was certainly a big step in the right direction.

Link: 2014-15 Latest League One Table.

Final Score: Yeovil Town 1 Swindon Town 1.

Scorers: James Hayter (34 mins, 1-0), Andy Williams (71 mins, 1-1)

Yeovil Town (4-4-2):
12. Artur Krysiak
15. Seth Nana Twumasi 20. Ben Nugent 24. Ryan Inniss 19. Liam Davis
17. Joel Grant 4. Joe Edwards 23. Simon Gillett 16. Nathan Ralph
9. James Hayter 25. Jordy Hiwula

Substitutes:
1. Chris Weale 2. Brendan Moloney 3. Nathan Smith 5. Aaron Martin 7. Kevin Dawson (75 mins for James Hayter) 8. James Berrett 11. Sam Foley

Swindon Town:
1. Wes Foderingham
2. Nathan Thompson 5. Jack Stephens 6. Jordan Turnbull
3. Nathan Byrne 4. Massimo Luongo 8. Yaser Kasim 19. Louis Thompson 12. Amari'i Bell
9. Michael Smith 20. Jonathan Obika

Substitutes:
7. Ben Gladwin (61 mins for Amari'i Bell) 10. Andy Williams (46 mins for Jonathan Obika) 14. Jake Reeves 16. Connor Waldon 23. Jack Barthram 25. Tyrell Belford 26. Anton Rodgers

Yeovil Bookings: James Hayter (foul, 23 mins), Ben Nugent (foul, 74 mins)

Swindon Bookings: Nathan Thompson (foul, 43 mins), Louis Thompson (foul, 89 mins), Michael Smith (foul, 90 mins). Red Card: Nathan Thompson (handball, second bookable offence, 79 mins)

Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 42%; Shots: 8; Shots On Target: 5; Corners: 7; Fouls: 19.

Swindon Match Statistics: Possession: 58%; Shots: 10; Shots On Target: 4; Corners: 1; Fouls: 12.

Referee: Scott Mathieson (Cheshire). Assistant Referees: John Busby (Oxfordshire) and Chris Powell (Dorset). Fourth Official: Adam Hopkins (Devon).

Attendance: 5,679 (with 1,545 Swindon supporters)


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18 October 2014 : Team News For Yeovil Town vs Swindon Town - EIGHT Changes!
Yeovil Town have made EIGHT changes to their starting line-up for this afternoon's home League One match against Swindon Town at Huish Park. Only midfield pair Joe Edwards and Simon Gillett plus Manchester City loan striker Jordy Hiwula survive from last weekend's nightmarish performance against Port Vale, as a complete revamp of the squad is made.

Three players drop out of the squad through injury, with Jakub Sokolik, AJ Leitch-Smith and Kieffer Moore all carrying knocks. A fourth change is forced - with Jake Kean returning to Blackburn Rovers last weekend, there's a chance for Artur Krysiak to get his first League One game between the sticks, with Chris Weale occupying the bench.

There are two players who return to the squad, with Joel Grant having completed his international duty, whilst Cardiff City loanee Ben Nugent returns from a one match suspension. Both start the match, with Nugent part of a brand new back five - every player who was part of that defensive performance ar Vale Park is purged.

Striker Kieffer Moore misses the match due to a hamstring injury that he aggravated when coming on as a substitute at Port Vale last weekend. The team for this afternoon reads as follows:

Yeovil Town (4-4-2):
12. Artur Krysiak
15. Seth Nana Twumasi 20. Ben Nugent 24. Ryan Inniss 19. Liam Davis
17. Joel Grant 4. Joe Edwards 23. Simon Gillett 16. Nathan Ralph
9. James Hayter 25. Jordy Hiwula

Substitutes:
1. Chris Weale 2. Brendan Moloney 3. Nathan Smith 5. Aaron Martin 7. Kevin Dawson 8. James Berrett 11. Sam Foley

Swindon Town:
1. Wes Foderingham
2. Nathan Thompson 5. Jack Stephens 6. Jordan Turnbull
3. Nathan Byrne 4. Massimo Luongo 8. Yaser Kasim 19. Louis Thompson 12. Amari'i Bell
9. Michael Smith 20. Jonathan Obika

Substitutes:
7. Ben Gladwin 10. Andy Williams 14. Jake Reeves 16. Connor Waldon 23. Jack Barthram 25. Tyrell Belford 26. Anton Rodgers


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18 October 2014 : Yeovil Town vs MK Dons : Man Of The Match Result
Two weeks ago, Yeovil Town played their last home match, when they took on Milton Keynes Dons at Huish Park in a League One encounter. It had been a relatively even encounter until Ben Nugent's dismissal in the 66th minute swung the game in the visitors' favour. They ran out with a 0-2 scoreline and a disappointing end to the match for the Glovers.

Man of the Match voting saw a significant spread of opinion, with all 14 players who got on the field of play clocking up top three nominations. Near the top of the pile, midfielder Joe Edwards and right-back Seth Nana Twumasi got praise, with Simon Gillett's return to the team also seeing him pick up where he left off with another assured performance. However, the poll winner was striker James Hayter, who was off the pitch by the time the poorer section of the match ultimately lost the Glovers the game.

Full results, with outright Man of the Match votes shown in brackets, are as follows:

1. James Hayter 88 (6)
2. Simon Gillett 74 (3)
3. Seth Nana Omuri-Twumasi 68 (4)
4. Joe Edwards 64 (4)
5. Aaron Martin 52 (4)
6. Jordy Hiwula 46 (2)
7. Nathan Ralph 36 (2)
8. James Berrett 20 (0)
9. Ben Nugent 16 (1)
10. Joel Grant 12 (1)
11. Nathan Smith 8 (0)
12. Jake Kean 4 (0)
13. AJ Leitch-Smith 2 (0)
13. Jack Price 2 (0)


OVERALL MATCH RATING : 4.9
Performance : 4.97
Entertainment : 4.83
VOTES RECEIVED : 29


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17 October 2014 : Gary Previews The Swindon Home Game
As part of the build-up to Saturday afternoon's home match against Swindon Town at Huish Park, Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson spoke to the BBC. With questions from BBC Somerset reporter Alistair Durden, Gary spoke about new Crystal Palace loan signing Ryan Inniss, the team's current form and the players reaction to last week's defeat, the possibility of players departing the club in the long run, and of course his views on the opposition. That can all be read via the link below.

Link: Gary Johnson Speaks To The BBC As Part Of The Build-Up To Swindon.


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17 October 2014 : Football And Politics
With the General Election looming next year, there are signs that the major political parties are looking to put forward their case for how they would deal with some of the issues surrounding the football industry. Overnight, the Labour party issued a press statement laying down their current policy position and what they would seek to do if they were elected to Government in May 2015.

They highlight three areas of concern, highlighting where they feel the football industry has failed fans over the years. These include:
a) Club owners going directly against the majority view of their supporters - Coventry City's exile in Northampton, Cardiff City's change of club colours from blue to red, and Hull City's attempts to rebrand themselves as Hull Tigers
b) The continued high number of debt and insolvency cases - citing that 36 Football League clubs have entered administration since 1992.
c) High ticket prices - as highlighted in this week's BBC Sport Price of Football survey.

Labour's proposals are for fans - using a modified version of the Supporters Trust structures - to be able to have greater influence over the running of their football clubs. Their plans include the following:
a) Supporters Trusts interested in opting into the plans would become Industrial and Provident Societies
b) They would have the right to purchase up to 10 percent of the football club share allocation
c) They would have the right to be represented in the boardroom with up to a quarter of the Board of Directors, or a minimum of two Directors, whichever is greater
d) They would have the right to obtain, by virtue of a confidentiality agreement, financial and commercial information about their club
e) The Government legislation would offer training to Directors appointed under such a scheme, concerning their role.

Currently only 14 clubs out of the top 92 have a Supporters Director on their board. Meanwhile only eight Supporters Trusts own more than 10 percent of their football club, whilst only four clubs - all in League Two - are run wholly by their Supporters Trusts. Only one club at Premier League level - Swansea City - has a Supporters Director position channelled through their Trust.

The Football League have given a luke warm response to these proposals, with Chief Executive Shaun Harvey perhaps not appreciating that his former club Leeds United were singled out as an example of a club that had suffered financial failure. Harvey claimed the proposals might put off future investors:

"As ever, we welcome dialogue with the political parties regarding football, as our clubs represent communities across England and Wales. Many of the individuals that choose to invest in football do so without expecting any financial return on their investment, as they too are supporters of their club. Instead, they do so for a variety of different reasons and we have to be careful not to create barriers that act as a disincentive to the next generation of owners and directors, as the game will only suffer as a consequence."

Harvey also seemed to blur the boundaries between share ownership, and a funding commitment by suggesting that buying shares in a football club would expose them to 'unacceptable levels of financial risk', despite share ownership and operational business plans being wholly independent of each other:

"It is also important to understand any proposal for supporters to have a legal right to purchase a stake in a club within the context of the obligations that come with it. For example, the average annual loss of a Championship club in 2012-13 was more than £13m with that shortfall having to be met by the clubís shareholders to enable it to continue playing football. Improved communications with supporters shouldnít come at the cost of exposing those same supporters to unacceptable levels of financial risk. From personal experience and that of club directors that I speak with, there is no surer way of jeopardising a Saturday afternoonís enjoyment than being responsible for it on a Monday morning."

The Liberal Democrats also covered similar ground in their Party Conference earlier this month. Whilst their conference debate doesn't form official party policy, activists present appeared aligned with Labour, referencing club debt, excessive admission prices and incompetent owners as covering the game's problems. The LibDems say they will look to make homophobic chanting a criminal offence, help beef up the FA's Fit and Proper Person Test for owners and directors, whilst taking a greater share of the current television rights agreement to support grass roots football development.

In terms of the individual parties, the Conservatives have yet to show any obvious policy concerning the football industry. However, the current coalition Government has used the Commons Culture, Media and Sport committee published a report in July 2011, concerning the health of the game. Committee Chairman John Whittingdale said at the time that the report highlighted concerns regarding the Fit and Proper Persons Test, the practice of selling land assets to raise funds, the lack of investment in grass roots football and the need to restructure the Football Association. In January 2013, frustrated at the failure of the FA to make changes to the way the game was run, Whittingdale claimed that if these sorts of changes weren't introduced that the Government would aim to force legislation to make that happen:

"While some progress has been achieved, much greater reform in football is needed to make the game inclusive, sustainable and driven from the grass roots. The proposals for reform so far simply don't address the fundamental problems: the licensing model, the way supporters are engaged at club level and the membership of the Main Board, which is not fully representative. In addition, the financial risk-taking by clubs is a threat to the sustainability of football as a family and community orientated game. This central issue must be addressed. We recommend that the DCMS (Department of Culture, Media and Sport) make it clear to the football authorities that further progress on these issues is expected within twelve months. If football cannot reform itself, the Government should introduce legislation as soon as practically possible."

Despite the twelve month deadline, nothing further has been forthcoming, and is unlikely to be on the priority list before next year's General Election. Meanwhile, as the BBC Sport survey showed this week, the need to reform the game in many areas continues to sit on the agenda.


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17 October 2014 : Outgoings On The Horizon As Johnson Reshapes Squad
Yeovil Town manager Gary Johnson has said that he expects there to be further outgoings as he attempts to shape his squad over the coming months. The Glovers currently have three players out on loan, with Sam Hoskins (Barnet), Adam Morgan (St Johnstone) and Calvin Brooks (Weymouth) getting first team football elsewhere.

With a number of poor results - particularly last weekend's 4-1 defeat against Port Vale - so far this season, the Glovers boss is keen to make changes to his squad, but is constrained by the fact that the only movements he can make either way lie in the Emergency Loan market - with permanent transfers either way only possible in two-and-a-half month's time.

Johnson told BBC Somerset that he would ultimately be telling players where he felt that they didn't have a future at the club, but said that there were no outgoings specifically lined up at this point in time:

"We're anticipating outgoings, but that doesn't mean that's going to be soon. There's nothing in the pipeline just now. We're just going to assess the squad, as we always say we do around this time. We'll let the lads know which ones we think will take us further and which ones won't. But at the same time you've still got to have people that can come in and do the job."

Despite the arrival of Crystal Palace centre-back Ryan Inniss on a month's loan yesterday, Johnson said that he was under no direct pressure to reduce numbers in his first team squad, explaining that the club's Board of Directors were allowing him to manage that at his own pace:

"The board don't put me under that sort of pressure. They all know that I'll get it back to even-stevens as soon as I can. But sometimes you have to get in before you can get out. That's the situation - it was the situation with the goalkeeper last month. We weren't able to get a club that needed a goalkeeper at the time (for Chris Weale or Artur Krysiak to go out on loan)."

In terms of incoming fresh blood, Johnson said that was on his mind as well, with the need to keep the available number of first team squad players high. However, he warned that wages and consequently the experience of players that he would be able to recruit would be strong factors in what he brought in:

"You just have to wait and see who is available and who is not, whether there's a position for him, and what the salary is because that's very important. Generally you're going to get younger players with potential, as opposed to the ready-made player who has had 200 games experience."


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