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29 February 2004 : 'Cosmic spell' pleases Johnson
Glovers boss Gary Johnson answered questions from the press following yesterdays 4-1 win over Cambridge United:

So Gary, a bit of a demolition job today then? Certainly those 3 goals in 9 minutes or so?

ďIs that what is was ? Yes, we did have a cosmic spell didnít we? That was nice because they probably started the brighter in the first 5 minutes or so, they had a couple of corners and a couple of free-kicks, but when we got our game going we looked very sharp and very clinical which was nice. To get four goals at home in front of your fans is very nice.Ē

It was a fairly even start for the first 15 minutes or so?

ďIt was always going to be, wasnít it? Cambridge are fighting for their lives and need to get points. They want to stay in the league and even at the end you could see they were still battling and fighting and didnít give up. They hit the crossbar and right at the end there they were still pushing forwards so I think with that spirit they probably will keep themselves up, but we had a very good spell that won us the game.Ē

It was a nicely hit penalty from Gavin Williams?

ďYes, that was a pressure penalty because I did tell the boys that Cambridge havenít come back from being a goal down all season and we knew the first goal would be very important. He probably had that ringing in his ears when he was a couple of yards away from striking the penalty, but he took it very well.Ē

With hardly time to catch your breath you were 2-0 up with Andy Bishop digging something out in the 6 yard box.

ďWell again, his goals donít amount to 3 yards yet heís scored a couple and heís Johnny on the spot. Heís been playing with a bit of an injury - a heel problem - but he coped for most of the game and it was a good goal for him to score. Thatís what I want people to do - I donít mind scruffy goals at all, but I thought the third goal was a quality goal. It was a great ball from Lee and Bishop first made a great run and took a couple of defenders with him and Adam Stansfield took the ball sublimely and stuck it in the corner of the net for a quality goal.Ē

Can you let the boys off the goal they conceded?

ďNo, the only positive about that is that when your 3 up you can tend to lose a bit of concentration and it just meant that the half-time talk wasnít going to be all about 'well done lads', it was going to be listen, we're in the 3rd Division - every team's capable of scoring a goal as theyíve just proved, even though for a 20 minute spell they were demoralised. But they did come back and if we werenít ready for it then who knows what might have happened because they did keep going.Ē

Scoring three saved a bit of a tongue lashing at half time?

ďNo, it got them not such much of a tongue lashing but I just wanted to make sure we went out in the 2nd half to go for that next goal again, to get back what weíve just lost and credit to the boys we did it within 10 minutes, and that was a good goal as well.Ē

Lee looked up for the free-kick and you could see the 3 centre backs galloping up in formation, Colin Pluck peeled away and there he was at the back post to force it home.

ďIím going to claim part of the credit for that! I was screaming take it quickly before they got organised, he took it well and I think Andy Bishop got the first touch and fortunately it got all the way to Plucky and he struck it in, which as you can see he was very pleased with.Ē

More goals could have come but by then youíve done the job havenít you?

ďYes, the goalkeeper's made a great save from Gavin Williams, Kevin Gall came on and he still can't get that illusive goal at the moment. He had a couple of good chances but while we're winning games 4-1 you cant complain. A couple of other teams above us were beaten and a couple havenít played, so itís a good result at the end of the day and these are the results that are difficult that everybody expects you to win.Ē

There are two difficult away games coming up, but what a tonic to take into Tuesday night's game at Huddersfield?

ďYes, itís a big game. Huddersfield had the day off today with their game being cancelled, and Iíve just told the boys that theyíve got to live right over the weekend which I trust them to do, because weíve got two big games coming up. Weíve seen them both [Huddersfield and Scunthorpe] me and Thommo, we know what weíve got to do and hopefully the boys will get over their niggly injuries before Tuesday.Ē

Transcription courtesy of Richard Gibson


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29 February 2004 : Torquay Ticketing
Details for the sale of tickets for away supporters at Plainmoor on Saturday April 3rd are as follows ~

FULL Season Ticket Holders ONLY : Sunday 7th March, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.; Monday 8th March to Friday 12th March, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Saturday 13th March 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

HALF Season Ticket Holders ONLY : Monday 15th March to Friday 19th March, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

General sale : from Monday 22nd March, normal office hours as above.

Away fans are allocated the Sparkworld Terrace, with a nominal capacity of 1,100. Standard prices are : Adults £11, OAP's £8, Under 16's £5. However NB that Torquay United announced a £2 surcharge for this match, on the somewhat spurious, in our opinion, grounds of covering increased policing costs.

A block of 200 seats is usually allocated to away supporters in the Mainstand : Adults £12, OAP's £9, Under 16's £5 (plus £2 surcharge).


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29 February 2004 : Glovers graduates more than good enough for Cambridge
Yeovil Town completed their second double of the season when they cracked four past Cambridge United to bring their goal tally to 50. Three first half goals from Gavin Williams, Andy Bishop and Adam Stansfield were followed by a second half strike from Colin Pluck.

Yeovil were able to recall Colin Pluck and captain Terry Skiverton from injury while Adam Stansfield was handed a place up-front along side Andy Bishop.

Early on, Gavin Williams and Andy Bishop had two great opportunities to place the Glovers ahead but both failed to direct their headers on target. In the action again, Gavin Williams put Yeovil ahead with a well struck penalty, sending Shaun Marshall the wrong way following a push on Terry Skiverton. Four minutes later Yeovil were two up. A poor clearance from close range allowed on-loan striker Andy Bishop to score his second goal for the club. Lee Johnsonís perfectly timed pass found Adam Stansfield who controlled and powerfully drilled the ball, left footed, in the back of the net, for a fantastic third goal. Daniel Webb gave the Uís some small hope when he headed in an injury time cross just before the half time.

Shortly after the break Andy Bishop nodded on Lee Johnsonís free kick and the ball fell to Colin Pluck who put the game beyond doubt from close range. The visitors had two further opportunities to score but twice the post denied them any chance of a revival. Substitute Kevin Gall came close to scoring but he saw his shot fall just wide of the posts while Gavin Williams had a decent chance to add his second but failed to convert his one-on-one after a superb solo run. All in all a fine performance from the Glovers who outclassed a willing but limited Cambridge side.

Match precis: George Murray

Final score: Yeovil Town 4-1 Cambridge Utd.

One sour note from yesterday: Yet again there have been reports of racist chanting aimed at an opposition player from a very small minority - some 3 or 4 subhumans at most - in the Westland Stand. Ciderspace unreservedly condemns such moronic behaviour and would urge any supporters who hear or see such idiocy to immediately inform the nearest steward/police officer. It's no use waiting until after the game and whining about it on the forum or mailing list, action has to be taken immediately, when the racist abuse occurs. It's only a tiny minority who are bringing the club into disrepute and giving the vast majority a bad name - let's root them out once and for all.

Yesterday's results have really tightened things up in the chase for the play-off places with 5 clubs chasing the 4 spots available and all within 4 points of each other. Lincoln are 8th on 54 points from 33 games played after a fine 2-0 win over 2nd-placed Hull City, while Huddersfield drop to 7th on 56 points from 32 games after their match against Carlisle was postponed because of snow. Yeovil leapfrog the Terriers into 6th spot, also with 56 points but having played a game extra. Mansfield drop to 5th on 56 points from 32 games after losing 4-2 at improving Cheltenham, and Torquay move up to 4th place on 58 points after cruising to a 2-0 home win over struggling Boston - soon to be known as Cheats United again when Chief Cheat Steve Evans takes over as manager in the next few days.

In the automatic promotion places it was a good weekend for Doncaster Rovers who went 5 points clear at the top on 68 points after beating Kidderminster Harriers 5-0 at Belle Vue on Friday night. Not so good for 2nd placed Hull however, who lost 2-0 at Lincoln to remain on 63 points from 33 games played. Third-placed Oxford drew 1-1 at Bristol Rovers to go to 61 points, also from 33 games played.

The Glovers make the long journey to Huddersfield next up this coming Tuesday in what is another important 6-pointer against fellow promotion rivals. Andy Bishop was taken off in the second half of yesterday's game with a reccurence of his niggling heel injury but it is hoped he will be fit in time for Tuesday's game. Kirk Jackson, now returned from his loan spell at Dagenham will also be available for selection, but winger Nick Crittenden will be resting his strained hamstring. Other than that, and of course the continuing absence of long-term injury victim Roy O'Brien, Glovers boss Gary Johnson should have a full squad to select from.


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27 February 2004 : Football League confirmed as the Real Thing
The Football League has announced a new three-year sponsorship deal with Coca-Cola running from the start of 2004-05 season, bringing to an end the current deal with Nationwide.

Football League chairman Sir Brian Mawhinney welcomed the news, saying: ďThis new agreement is good news, it provides a tremendous boost for League clubs and, on their behalf, it is a great pleasure to welcome Coca-Cola to this partnership. I am grateful for their support. For our part we will ensure that we continue to deliver a quality product. Attracting a brand of the stature of Coca-Cola is clearly a coup for The League and demonstrates the enduring appeal of our competition. This partnership will contribute significantly to the proposed re-branding of The Football League. Attendances at League games are at their highest levels for 40 years and our clubs play an integral part in their local communities. We look forward to building upon that in the coming years.Ē

Details of the sums of money involved and how they will be shared out to clubs over the three divisions have yet to be released.


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27 February 2004 : Inaugural meeting of the Disabled Supporters Association announced
The inaugural meeting of the YTFC Disabled Supporters Association will take place on Wednesday 10th March 2004 at 6.30pm in the marquee bar at Huish Park. Members, associate members and all other interested supporters are cordially invited to the meeting, your attendance will be greatly appreciated.


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25 February 2004 : Pilgrims Sink Glovers Reserves
Yeovil Town Reserves lost out in a flurry of late goals at Home Park yesterday evening, as they were defeated 4-2 in a Pontins Combination League match. Fielding the five bench-warmers from Saturday's first team Darlington trip, plus Paul Terry, Kevin Gall and Andy Bishop - three of the players who did not complete 90 minutes at the Reynolds Arena the Glovers came up against a strong Argyle line-up featuring seven recognised first-teamers, including club captain Paul Wotton.

Kevin Gall did his confidence no harm by netting straight after his arrival as a substitute, latching onto a Dale Williams cross, whilst Adam Stansfield got a late goal when Argyle keeper Romain Larrieu dropped a corner ball at his feet. Argyle's scorers were Ryan Dickson, Lee Hodges and Jason Bent, with Hodges grabbing a second later on.

Main concerns for the night were that Andy Bishop limped off when he was substituted - hopefully as a precaution - whilst there were still no signs of central defenders Colin Pluck and Terry Skiverton getting back into the fold following their knee injuries.

Yeovil Line-Up (4-4-2): Stephen Collis; Andy Lindegaard, Charlie Welch, Stephen Reed, Sam Croft; Lee Elam, Jamie Gosling, Paul Terry (Steve Thompson 68), Dale Williams (Gregg Squibb 78); Adam Stansfield, Andy Bishop (Kevin Gall 36).

Final score: Plymouth Argyle reserves 4 - 2 Yeovil Town reserves.


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24 February 2004 : Football agent talks sense shock!
Forgive us our somewhat cynical headline, but we're not used to hearing common-sense from players agents, only having the appalling example of a certain Steven Denos to go by in the recent past. Stand up then and take a bow Phil Graham, agent of Glovers keeper Chris Weale, who today has been speaking to Sky Sports regarding the future of the 21-year-old stopper.

On being informed that scouts from Premiership outfit Newcastle United were reportedly watching Weale (though hopefully not against Darlington last Saturday!), Graham commented: "He's a very highly-rated young man. To be fair, I don't think it's in his best interest to leave (Yeovil)."

"Unless he's going to go somewhere and be a very close number two or a number one, I don't think there is any point in moving him," Graham added. "He's still very, very young. My advice to him is unless there is a club - and West Ham would have been ideal - where he would be genuinely fighting for the number one spot then there is no point in him leaving. For him, to go to a big club now and be a number two or number three really wouldn't be right for him. He's in no hurry and he knows he's got a bright future ahead of him, if he keeps focusing and working hard. We're not going to rush into anything."

If only the likes of Michael McIndoe and Anthony Tonkin had had the benefit of such wise counsel! Water under the bridge now, but it makes a very pleasant change to see an agent put his client's long-term future ahead of his own short-term monetary gain.

In other news its been reported that winger Nick Crittenden will be out for at least another fortnight with a hamstring strain. "It was a nasty injury in the end," Glovers boss Gary Johnson told the Western Daily Press. "You can't afford to bring these people back too quickly, because it goes again and then they are out until the end of the season."

Yeovil Town reserves travel to Devon to play their Plymouth Argyle counterparts this evening, 7pm kick off. "It's a big game," Gary Johnson commented. "It's coming to the part of the season where contracts have to be discussed - I have mentioned to some of the lads that they are playing for their football lives."


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23 February 2004 : Gary Looks For The 100-Percenters
After holding an hour long lock-in after Saturday's 3-2 defeat at Darlington, Glovers manager Gary Johnson wisely bit his tongue when fielding the following questions from the press, many of which centred on the performance of Oxfordshire referee Dermot Gallagher. Despite the poor officiating, Johnson instead criticised the level of effort supplied by a number of his players when they went behind:

It was a very entertaining game for the neutral but for the visiting manager a very frustrating and ultimately disappointing afternoon.

Yes, it was disappointing and it was frustrating. I suppose the game could have gone either way. We didn’t get much luck and a couple of decisions didn’t go our way. We were down to 10 men and 2-1 down and that’s hard to come back from. But there’s a lot more things in-house that we needed to sort out today. We have got 16 cup finals. We got rid of one last week, we got rid of one today and now we’ve got 14 cup finals left. We’ve just got to make sure that the ones who are not quite 100-percenters, we need them to very quickly become 100-percenters. I thought I had seven or eight 100-percenters out there today and they gave everything for the club. Maybe it is because some are new and don’t quite know our mentality or maybe it’s because some have been around for a little while. But we’ve got to learn to be able to compete when we are behind and go on and win games.

And now is the time to sort out those people who are not 100-percenters because there’s still plenty of the season to go.

Yes, of course there is. As I’ve just said, we’ve now got 14 cup finals. We’re building up to another cup final on Saturday. The things that were said in the dressing room were obviously private but sometimes you have to get at individuals a little bit in the hope that you can help them turn it around. We’ve got a very young, enthusiastic, inexperienced group of players and it was a good day today to throw in a little bit of knowledge for them and tell them a couple of home truths. Some of the boys done their job and some of them didn’t.

A lot of Yeovil fans will go home today talking about the referee and it was obvious that you were unhappy with the standard of Gallagher’s performance, as were Darlington too. Why were you disappointed with the second goal?

One of the reasons why I didn’t come out of the dressing room quickly was because I knew you would ask me that question. It’s not an easy question to answer straight after a game because you don’t want to say things that you’ll regret later on. But I thought that the game had a couple of decisions in it that spoilt the game for both teams. I felt that it was a big game and that both teams went out there not to be silly but to make it a good advert for the Third Division and unfortunately I didn’t feel it was a good advert for the Premiership.

It did even itself out as the Darlington manager was very unhappy with both sendings off.

Yes, that’s how I saw it. No-one is ever biased. They’ll be happy because they won the game of course, but if they’d lost 3-2, then they’d be saying what I’m saying but trying to keep it low-key like I am. But we just have to kick on and hope that we have a better one next week.

Paul was I take it sent off for what was in the referees eyes a professional foul?

Yes. I thought it was a foul and their boy did well to cut across him. But I felt we had a few people back and at that point in the game I felt we weren’t getting a lot of decisions going our way. So that was a bit disappointing. But we’d also felt that for their goal, they had a fellow standing right in the middle of the goal. We believe that is interfering with play, although perhaps I won’t moan if we get given one of them next week.

Are you likely to appeal against the sending off at all?

Well we’ll have a look at it on the video and if we feel that we had people in behind the ball then we will do. We’ll always look at it as you don’t want to lose people like Paul Terry.

You’re clearly disappointed but there is plenty of hope and plenty of life left in this season.

Yes of course there is. I’m paid to do a job and my next job is to root out the people I need to root out, help them during the week by getting into them, coaching them and managing them, including man-management after we’ve lost this game and making them believe that with 14 games left, you only need to win half of them to be in at least a play-off place.

David Hodgson has said that you’re the best team he’s played this season.

That’s very nice but I wish I had a pound for every time I’ve heard that after games where we’ve got beaten. It’s nice to know that but that’s even more of a reason why you have to be that little bit more clinical in both penalty areas. We always play well between both boxes, but the games we are losing at the moment tend to be lost in both penalty areas. We are trying to play football though and if people notice it, that’s got to be good. It was 1-1 when Gavin hit the post, these games are always going to be quite tight. You hit the post, you get a bit of a dodgy decision and the game doesn’t run for you. The teams at the bottom are hitting form – Southend, Carlisle – no-one wants to go into the Conference. We’re looking at the other end, but you can see the passion of those teams that could go down. But how can this stadium go into the Conference – it would be a disaster. They played with a lot of passion, and good luck to them for it.


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22 February 2004 : Poptastic Mate!
DN : I love Saturdays, don't you mate?

MS : Certainly do, mate. It's one of the best between Friday and Sunday type days we've got.

DN : Fantabulous footie's on a Saturday.

MS : Footie mate?

DN : I like the footie, don't you?

MS : Er, certainly do mate!

DN : And staight in at number 36 we've got a footie song.

MS : A footie song?

DN : Yeah, it's socceradabbadobulously bonkers, mate!

MS : What's it called then, mate?

DN : Yeovil True, mate!

MS : Yeovilicious. Who's it by?

DN : Er, that would be Yeovil mate.

MS : Yeovil True by Yeovil, mate? Truly awesome!

DN : Wise words, mate!

MS : So straight in at number 36 it's fantastic, poptastic, soccerettocious, hugomungous.........er, what was it called again?

DN : YEOVIL TRUE, mate.

MS : YEOVIL TRUE! Let's rock......

DN : Indeed, and you ain't seen nothing yet.........

MS : Not 'arf.........


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22 February 2004 : Premiership ref? You're having a laugh!
Yeovil Town once again this season returned empty-handed from a long trip oop north after in-form Darlington beat the Glovers 3-2 at a sparsely-populated Reynolds Arena yesterday. But yet again it was the performance of the referee that led to both teams and managers, not to forget the poor bloody paying public, to question how it is that some of these officials ever get to be put in charge of anything more onerous than a under-11's five-a-side match, never mind a professional sporting occasion which people pay good money to see and affects the livelihoods of dozens of people.

Darlo took the lead on 20 minutes, a rare Chris Weale error letting Barry Conlon in. Two minutes later and the Glovers were level, Lee Johnson chipping Darlo keeper Michael Price from the edge of the area. The home side regained the lead in controversial circumstances and against the run of play on the half-hour mark, a Neil Wainwright shot finding the net with Chris Weale claiming several offside attackers were both impeding him and obscuring his view - incredibly Premiership referee (!) Dermot Gallagher ruled they were not interfering, the first of many dubious decisions.

The Glovers were furious with Mr Gallagher again on 40 minutes when he gave Paul Terry a straight red card for a professional foul, despite there appearing to be at least one more defender between Terry and the goal when the foul was committed. The home side were the next to curse their luck, Neil Teggart appearing to be fouled in the box but not according to Mr Gallagher, who booked the player for diving. Teggart became the second player to see the red card on 64 minutes after what seemed to be an innoccuous challenge was punished by both a free-kick and a second yellow card by the referee - as clear a case of a poor referee 'evening-up' an earlier bad decision as one could hope to see, was the general consensus in the crowd.

The home side took a decisive lead with 10 minutes left to play, Neil Wainwright adding his 2nd goal and Darlington's 3rd with a well-taken individual effort. Adam Lockwood reduced the deficit to one in injury time, but it was too little too late for the Glovers in a match spoiled by an inconsistent and whistle-happy official.

Darlington manager David Hodgson, who reportedly described both sendings off as "scandalous" - which says it all when he was the winning manager, had high praise for his opponents admitting: "They were far and away the best side that we have seen all season and if I have to watch another game like that I'll probably end up having a heart attack. We were a bit nervous and edgy at times. But it's another three points and that's what counts."

Final score: Darlington 3 - 2 Yeovil Town.

The result means the Glovers drop a place to 6th in the league table, still on 53 points. Torquay are 7th on 52 points after their excellent 1-0 win at former leaders Hull City yesterday. Lincoln City are 8th on 51 points following their 2-1 away loss to Huddersfield, who leapfrog the Glovers into 5th place with 56 points. Hull's home loss to Torquay means the Tigers drop to 2nd place on 63 points, Doncaster going back to the top on 65 points after their impressive 2-1 win at 4th placed Mansfield, the Stags remaining on 56 points. Oxford drew 1-1 at home to Bury to remain in 3rd spot, on 60 points. The Glovers next opponents, Cambridge United, beat Bristol Rovers 3-1 at the Abbey Stadium to go to 15th position, on 38 points.


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20 February 2004 : Pardew On Keeper Merry-Go-Round
Speaking to the West Ham United Official Site manager Alan Pardew has revealed some of his thoughts on the saga of keepers at Upton Park which has been running since mid-January when David James moved to Manchester City for £2,000,000.

Pardew has brought in Pavel Srnicek from Portsmouth initially for a month's loan, following the departure of Rami Shaaban, also a loan deal, back to Arsenal.

Explaining the move, Pardew said :

We were looking for a goalkeeper with a bit more experience; Pavel is Tomas Repka's big friend so I thought this was a good thing to happen as Tomas has been important to us this year. Their relationship would be fruitful if they have to play together. Steve [Bywater] has done terrific and he will have a top quality goalie sitting behind him on the bench now. That will give him confidence. I am pleased with him and I am sure he and his family are pleased with him as well - because he has done magnificently.

On Yeovil Town's Chris Weale, who has trained on several occasions with West Ham, Pardew said :

Chris is doing very well and he is a great goalkeeper who we are going to constantly monitor. But we are still going down the road with Steve Bywater at the moment. We have to look to see where Steve is at the end of the season to see what kind of goalie we are going to bring in, whether it is an experienced one to be next to him, young competition, or whatever. We won't know that until we have seen Stephen over a period of 10 or 15 games or so.

West Ham also have goalkeeper David Forde currently on their books.


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20 February 2004 : Advance Ticketing Notice
The home games against Bristol Rovers on March 13th and Hull City on May 1st have been declared ALL-TICKET. As all-ticket games ticket purchases should be made by close of business on the Friday preceding the relevant match.

Tickets for these and ANY other of the club's remaining Division Three home fixtures can be bought during normal office hours from the ticket office at the ground, or by telephone from 01935 423662 ext.275, or mail order, with payment by credit card or cheque with bankers Card No.


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18 February 2004 : Wealey Going Nowhere............Yet
Gary Johnson has moved to resolve the Chris Weale situation, at least until the end of the season. West Ham United had been showing the most direct interest in Yeovil's first choice keeper, and Weale has had a number of training days with The Hammers, but a number of other teams are also keeping a close eye on one of the best prospects The Glovers have ever had on their books.

Manager and player have sat down to talk things through and have agreed that Chris will commit himself to Yeovil's promotion campaign until the end of the season, with no further training sessions or trials at other clubs.

The time has come now to settle down and concentrate on the job in hand, but if a club comes in with a realistic offer then, and only then, will a move be discussed. Itís only a matter of time before Chris becomes a top class keeper with a big club but while he is with Yeovil Town itís a bonus, said Johnson.

Ciderspace can only applaud the good sense shown by both sides, and wishes another star player from last season could have trusted his manager rather more to do the right thing by him. With continuing hard work, sensible decision making, and that little bit of luck that's always needed, Weale could go on to the very top in the game. It is important therefore that when Chris makes his move, as he certainly will, it's the right move.


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18 February 2004 : Yeovil True By Post
Those exiles having problems getting into Yeovil this week can solve their problems of getting hold of the Yeovil True CD simply by telephoning the Yeovil branch of W.H.Smiths. Just telephone 01935 426231 with your credit card handy, and they will organise one to be posted out to you. Purchases made this week up until Saturday will count towards any chance the club have of gaining a chart position.

A reminder that a second signing session has been arranged on Thursday afternoon - see below for details.


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17 February 2004 : Yeovil True Part Two
After the huge interest in the release of the Yeovil Town club record Yeovil True yesterday, which saw supporters queuing for hours to buy their copies and meet the team, a second chance to get a signed edition has been arranged. Team members will be at W.H. Smith in the town again, on Thursday 19th of February between 2.00 p.m. and 3.00 p.m. - though if demand is anything like Monday one hopes they haven't planned on an early tea.

Tickets for the Yeovil True Launch Party at Huish Park on Wednesday are selling well reports the Official Site, but are still available on a first come first served basis. Phone Sue on 01935 423662 to reserve a ticket. £10 for a buffet, a signed copy of the record, and to hear the players sing it live...........rumours it's an extra fiver if they promise not to have been denied.


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17 February 2004 : Jake The Peg, With The Dodgy Leg
Yeovil striker Jake Edwards may be looking at a four week lay off as a mid-season operation is on the cards. Edwards is thought to be suffering from Gilmore's Groin, a condition that is familiar to Yeovil players as a number including Nick Crittenden and Kevin Gall can testify from last year.

Gary Johnson said : He might need an operation. We are not sure yet, but he has to see a specialist this week. It has been a problem for Jake, because that sort of thing saps your energy.

The Western Dail Press reports : Gilmore's groin - when a player suffers a tear to his abductor muscles. It is a common complaint suffered by players who have stepped up a level in fitness. Several Cheltenham Town players needed the operation after the Robins won promotion to the Football League. Players with the problem usually need four weeks of rehabilitation following surgery.

The best of luck Jake, and hoping you're back fit soon.

Update 18/02/04 : Edwards will undergo an operation in London on Thursday 19th February. He is expected to be out of action for between four and six weeks. Gary Johnson said: Itís a blow for us and Jake, however an operation is needed and we will look forward to his speedy return.



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17 February 2004 : Youth Match
According to The Football League Official Site Yeovil Town U17 are playing Plymouth Argyle U17 away in the Umbro Isotonic Youth Alliance South West Conference today. Kick-off is 2.00 p.m.


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16 February 2004 : Just For The Record
Queues and huge crowds seem to have become common-place in Yeovil over the past three years, but today the Yeovil Town players saw their 'pop star' adulation take on a new level as they genuinely became pop stars for the day.

Taking over W.H.Smiths in the town centre for the afternoon, Gary Johnson and the players helped sign copies of their first ever CD Single entitled Yeovil True for supporters who were visiting to buy a copy.

The signing session was meant to only take up half an hour of their time but queues leading up Middle Street ensured that the players signed copies until closing time. By the end that Smiths were forced to shut their doors, over 1,500 copies had been sold!

The single is available this week exclusively from W.H.Smiths as the club attempt to propel themselves into the pop charts for Sunday. Hence if you are going to buy a copy, try and get yours by Saturday to give the club their best chance of some rather unexpected national coverage! General opinion is that they need to shift 3,000 copies to ensure a position in this Sunday's Top 40 charts.


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15 February 2004 : Two Pints Of Lager And Three Points Please
Glovers manager Gary Johnson gave his verdict on yesterday's 1-0 win over promotion rivals Oxford United when he answered questions from the press after the game:

'How pleasing was that performance, every player on the pitch seemed to play well there?'

Well every player on the pitch put in fantastic effort which is what you've got to do. We said we had 16 cup finals left and my boys played like that was a cup final. Oxford find themselves in that 3rd spot which is where we'd like to try and get to and we know against Oxford you have to battle hard and you have to play your stuff when you've got the ball and I thought we did that.

'They are a physical side Oxford United but you seemed to match them in that department, especially in midfield with Darren Way and Lee Johnson playing so well'

We had to work very hard all over the field whether it be at the back, midfield or up front. When we got the ball I thought we played some good
stuff. Unlucky Gally's got two great goals, both offside, but he's getting closer and getting nearer. I'm very pleased with Andy Bishop's first home game, he looked accomplished, held the ball up for us, scored a super goal and was unlucky a couple of other times so all in all it was a very strong performance by all our team.

'Andy Bishop got the goal, what pleased you most about him?'

Just his hold up play. His centre forward play was very good, when you want someone to be 'johnny-on-the-spot' you pay millions for those people sometimes. Because we havent got millions we've got to find 'johnny-on-the-spot' before anyone recognises them. He was there and I'm pleased he was, he was unlucky as I said with the header but his general play was very good and helped our team in our quest to get in to that top 3.

'Chris Weale again produced the goods with two brilliant saves, the second one was even better than the first'

Two great saves and thats what he's there for, not only did he make two great saves he was nice and solid. I thought our defenders were solid and to be fair I thought the only two good chances they had were from the set play and the strike at the end. So two good strikes by their team but Wealey was ready for it and up for it and thats his job.

'Do you think this is the game that proves you can get automatic promotion now?'

Well lets not get carried away just yet. We've had a good run of two wins. Beating Oxford is very sweet as they are above us, and especially as they are a difficult side to play against. A great game for our home supporters, they were our twelth man right the way through the game and we are proud of them as well. Our aspirations at the moment are just to get as many points as we can and see where we are at the end of February.

'Are you particularly happy because there were a few players out before the match?'

There were a few players out and then Plucky was out in the warm-up and we'd already put him on the team sheet. But we had to pull Paul Terry out the bar and he'd already had a couple of lagers!(*) He certainly didn't know he was playing because he wasnt involved today but I needed a big right back and he was the biggest left at my disposal. So we took him away from his family got him in the dressing room at ten to three, he had to do his warm-ups while they were tossing the coin and he came through it very very well and in the end alls well that ends well.

'Do you think it will help with the record sales? You've got the big record signing on Monday'

Well it will help put a smile on our faces when we are signing the autographs! But it's nice to go there and meet the fans, and we really do hope that this record goes somewhere because theres a lot of effort gone in to it. It's only a bit of fun but sometimes all these bits of fun might turn into something. It's much nicer having won and we are going to enjoy Monday afternoon down at W H Smiths.

(*) That's a joke of course ladies and gents ... Paul in fact prefers bitter!


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14 February 2004 : Bishop checkmates U's
Andy Bishop scores the only goal of the game
Andy Bishop scores the only goal of the game
Photo © 2004 Ciderspace

A goal from on-loan Walsall striker Andy Bishop sealed a valuable three points for Yeovil Town when they faced 3rd-placed Oxford United at Huish Park this afternoon.
Gary Johnson named three changes following the away victory at Kidderminster. Paul Terry and Kevin Gall were recalled to the side while Andy Bishop was handed his home debut.

Early on, Paul Terry had a great opportunity to place the Glovers ahead but his powerful header fell just wide of the post.

Glovers keeper Chris Weale brilliantly saved a free kick from Oxfordís Matthew Robinson, remarkably tipping his powerful strike over the bar. On the half-hour mark, Andy Bishop broke the stalemate. Uís keeper Andy Woodman palmed out Gavin Williamsí volley, the ball fell to Andy Bishop who neatly slotted the chance to put the home side ahead.

After the break, Matthew Robinson had a decent chance to draw the scores level, however his free kick from just outside the box failed to hit the target. Kevin Gall was very unlucky not to end his seven game goal drought with a number of one-on-ones but whenever he beat Uís keeper Woodnam, the assistant referee's flag was raised to deny the Welshman. Vice President's Man of the match Chris Weale was forced to make a second world class save, tipping Dean Whiteheadís bullet shot that was one handedly over the bar to the amazement and appreciation of most in the 7,404 crowd.

An absolutely vital win for the Glovers today then and one that keeps alive interest in the automatic promotion hunt. Encouragingly the passing game we have all grown to know and love was back working well today and although the Glovers pushed their luck at times they were overall good value for the three points, something recognised by U's boss Ian Atkins after the game. "We weren't at the races," he admitted. "Yeovil were a yard quicker than us all over the park." Glovers boss Gary Johnson commented: "We still are aiming for that third promotion place but we know that we still have a lot to do."

Final score: Yeovil Town 1 - 0 Oxford United.

The result means the Glovers stay in 5th place in the league table, on 53 points from 31 games played. Huddersfield, 1-0 winners at Torquay, stay 6th, 1 point behind the Glovers but with a game in hand. Torquay are 7th, on 49 points and again with a game in hand. Hull City remain top on 63 points, despite being held to a 1-1 draw by bottom club Carlisle. Doncaster stay in 2nd spot after a narrow 1-0 home win over Macclesfield, who drop to 23rd. Today's opponents Oxford are 3rd with 59 points, while Mansfield remain 4th on 56 points after a 2-1 win at York. The Glovers next opponents Darlington are running into form, a fine 3-0 win at Bristol Rovers sending the Quakers out of the relegation zone for the first time in months, all the way to the dizzy heights of 22nd, and 31 points.

Match precis: George Murray


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14 February 2004 : Darlo tickets reminder
Those making the trip to Darlington next Saturday are reminded that tickets bought on the day carry an additional charge - an extra £2 or £3. If you're at Huish Park today you can buy tickets at normal price - or contact the club to get them posted to you.

From the club's official site :

"Darlington v Yeovil Town
Saturday 21 February, 2004 - Kick Off 3 p.m.
Tickets are now on sale at Huish Park - All Seated Early Bird ticket prices: Adults - £12, Concessions - £6, Wheelchairs - FOC"


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13 February 2004 : Team News
The good news is that Colin Pluck and Paul Terry have both recovered from knee injuries and are available for selection against Oxford United on Saturday. The middling news is that captain Terry Skiverton (also knee injury) has been back in training, but faces a late fitness test. The bad news, that Nick Crittenden's hamstring problem will keep him out.

Speaking to the Official Site Gary Johnson said:

It's the first six pointer of the season. Thommo and I went to see them play in midweek and they are a strong side. It's going to be a good game, particularly in the tactics. What we do know about Oxford is they will compete and they have some experienced players, and it will take a good team performance to break them down.

Their goals tally shows they are not particularly defensively minded and they will certainly get the ball forward early. They are in third spot and you don't get there by being a bad side.

Having got a win under our belts, the first for a while up at Kidderminster, that should help and hopefully the lads can relax and put in that commitment and quality that will be needed to break them down.

The supporters will need to be patient as it is not one of those games that will see us score five goals as they are very strong at the back. All I would ask is, that whoever plays up front, they give their usual whole hearted support to and let's will that goal in from any one of the strikers. We need someone to wade in with ten goals or more between now and the end of the season.



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13 February 2004 : Giles Dealt Cards
Manager Gary Johnson declared some weeks ago that he would be looking to get a number of players on the fringes of the First Team out on loan to give them more starts. Woking of the Nationwide Conference today announced that Chris Giles will be joining them for a spell.

Cards manager Glenn Cockerill revealed the signing, suggesting that he primarily saw Giles as a replacement for the injured centreback Neil Sharp, but also recognising Giles could give him options up front too.

The loan deal is for a month.

We wish Chris every success at Kingfield.


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13 February 2004 : Youth match postponed, reserves rearranged
Tomorrow's (Saturday 14th Feb) under-17's fixture at Torquay United under-17's has been postponed according to the club's official site, as Torquay are unable to raise a team.

Yeovil Town reserves Combination League match away at Plymouth Argyle, originally scheduled for next Tuesday 17th February, has been put back a week to Tuesday 24th February, kick-off 7.00pm.


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12 February 2004 : Officials For Oxford United Match
Match officials for Saturday's match against Oxford United have been announced. Phil Crossley (Kent) will be the match referee, whilst he will be assisted by Steve Castle (West Midlands) and Simon Hollick (Devon).

Hollick was a linesman during September's 2-0 home win over Boston United; the other two officials will be involved in a Yeovil Town match for the first time this season. Crossley is in his second season as a Football League official, having been a Conference referee for two years before that. His last visit to Huish Park was for a 1-1 draw against Telford United in December 2001.


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12 February 2004 : Turner Confirms Rose Bid
Hereford United manager Graham Turner has confirmed that Yeovil Town lodged a bid for Bulls left-back Michael Rose. However, that bid has been turned down by the faltering Nationwide Conference side.

Despite Rose only having three months left on his contract, Turner told the Hereford Times: "We received a written offer from Yeovil which was unacceptable."


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12 February 2004 : O'Brien finally on the mend
Glovers defender Roy O'Brien has begun running again after recovering from an operation performed in December to repair damaged medial ligaments in his knee. Speaking to the Western Daily Press, the popular Irishman confirmed: "I started running yesterday and I am feeling very strong at the moment. I had an operation in December to fix my medial knee ligaments and I have seen the specialist in London three times and he is very pleased. He gave me the go-ahead to start running, so it is basically up to me and the physio now to get back to where I was. I have been told I will get back to that level and that is very comforting."

At present Roy isn't sure whether he will be able to return to on-field action by the end of the season: "The only thing I can do is take it a week at a time and build the leg up," he said. "I've done a lot of gym work and cycling but with running, because I haven't done it for a long time, I have to get used to getting my lungs working again. My contract is up in June and I am not really in a position to land another one, so I just want to get back and prove my fitness and see what happens from then. Hopefully, I will be given the chance to prove my fitness in pre-season, because I believe I can come back strong."

Meanwhile striker Adam Stansfield has called on Glovers boss Gary Johnson to give him a run of games in the first team to prove that he has what it takes to succeed in the football league. Speaking to the Western Gazette after he scored in the Glovers 3-3 behind closed doors draw with Woking this Tuesday, Stansfield said: "I have gone as far as I can go at this level. In order for me to get used to the step up to the third division I need to be playing more in the first team but all I can do is to try to produce the goods in friendlies and reserve-team games so I can be given that chance."

"I have only started two games so far this season," Stanfield continued, "and I have scored three goals. Two of those came as a substitute and one was in my first start against Swansea City in September, so it is hard to say whether I have been given a fair chance. I think you need a run of games in the first team before you can find out what you are like at this level but the gaffer knows best."

Stansfield confirmed that he has now fully recovered from the broken leg that kept him out of virtually all of last season. "It has been a bit frustrating because I want to be out there playing and showing what I can do in the first team but at the same time I understand we have got some other good strikers and we have been winning, even though we have had a few blips. The forwards who are playing regularly at the moment have been doing well and if the gaffer thinks that they are the best people to do the job then he is the manager and I am sure he will make the right decisions."

In response, Glovers boss Gary Johnson said to the Gazette: "People have just got to trust me and Adam to know when the time is right to bring him in. We are in the football league now and sentiment does not come into it. Even though I do my best to look after the players and they do their best to look after me we have a professional job to do and if someone is not quite ready then they are not quite ready. The worst thing you can do as a manager is put someone in who is not quite ready because you tend to have to take him straight out again. The player and the manager have both got to believe when the time is right."


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12 February 2004 : YTISA make formal complaint over Williams behaviour
The Yeovil Town Independent Supporters Association have written a formal letter of complaint to the FA about Kidderminster Harriers striker John Williams behaviour during the final minutes of the Glovers 1-0 win at Aggborough last Saturday.

With around 2 minutes left to play the Harriers were awarded a controvesial penalty when Glovers defender Adam Lockwood was ajudged to have fouled Williams in the Yeovil penalty box. "The decision by the ref to award a penalty was in itself controversial as we clearly felt that Williams had dived inside the area to win the spot kick," YTISA chairman Mark Kelly told the Yeovil Express, adding: "But what was even more insulting and inflamed an already tense situation was that Williams confirmed our views of him cheating when he mockingly laughed at us and then made hand gestures. This just incensed the Yeovil fans even more."

Williams then went on to display a 'Kick Racism Out Of Football' t-shirt worn underneath his team shirt. "We believe 100 per cent that his actions were trying to incite the kind of reaction from the supporters that that worthwhile campaign is trying to outlaw from the game," Kelly accused. "We are fully behind the Kick Racism Out of Football campaign and we have issued a warning to our 350-plus members that anyone found making racist remarks during matches will have their membership withdrawn as of immediate effect.

"But we cannot and will not tolerate such behaviour from any black player who clearly uses the Kick Racism Out of Football banner to try and incite racial abuse and, who would without question, be the first to complain if he had been the victim of racial taunting. Although the Kick Racism Out of Football campaign is a very important one and one which should be supported 100 per cent, the YTISA feels that the actions of John Williams on Saturday at Kidderminster did nothing but harm that project's aims and objectives."



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11 February 2004 : Carry on up the charts
The Glovers novelty CD single 'Yeovil True' will go on sale next Monday (17th February), obtainable exclusively from WH Smith & Son at £3 per copy. The single features the entire first team squad, manager Gary Johnson and singers Bobby K and Lisa-Marie.

ďI want it to be another first for Yeovil Town," Glovers bandleader Gary Johnson told the club's official site, tongue hopefully firmly in cheek. "Having broken the mould and won the F.A. Trophy and then gained promotion to Division Three it would be great to get a record in the charts and even appear on Top of The Pops. I hope all the supporters will help push the CD into the charts by buying from W.H.Smith next Monday and all week. Ours are the best supporters in the world and I'm sure they will help us achieve our newest goal by buying the CD in their thousands."

A launch party for members of the press was held this morning at Huish Park, but supporters can be present for the special Launch Party Night on Wednesday 18th February when the players will perform a live version of the song together with a caberet spot with singer Lisa-Marie.

Admission is by ticket only priced £10 and all present will receive a signed copy of the CD as part of their admission price. A buffet will also be provided and the bar will be open. A limit of 110 has been set for attendance and tickets will be sold on a first come first served basis from the ticket office.


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11 February 2004 : Reserves held by Cards
Yeovil Town reserves entertained Conference side and old friends Woking in a behind closed doors friendly at Huish Park yesterday afternoon. The final score was 3-3, Adam Stansfield, Chris Giles and Jamie Gosling netting for the Glovers second-string.

Included in Yeovil's side were two triallists - Luke Whitley, a right-back from Portsmouth, and defender Chris Davies from Reading. Whitley has been invited to train at Huish Park next week, according to the Western Daily Press.

Winger Nick Crittenden is a major doubt for Saturday's six-pointer against Oxford United after lasting only 25 minutes against Kidderminster at the weekend before being substituted. "Critts is going to see a specialist about his recurring hamstring injury," Glovers boss Gary Johnson told the WDP. "He's had a scan which shows no problems. It might be something associated with his back that is affecting his hamstring, so we will send him to see his specialist. Obviously that makes him a major doubt for the game on Saturday."

In better injury news, Paul Terry, Terry Skiverton and Colin Pluck are all on the mend from similar knee problems and are hoping to resume training in the latter half of the week.


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10 February 2004 : New issue of 'On To Victory' on sale Saturday
The new issue of On To Victory will be on sale at the Oxford match on Saturday, a match which will also see OTV sponsoring the matchball. The 48 page issue includes -


  • First ever OTV cartoon strip
  • An exciting new link up with the crew behind the 'Match Comments'
  • 3 different tales of the long trip to Carlisle
  • OTVs very own Liverpool scrapbook
  • Kevin Galls brother, John, on flying over from the States for the 'Pool game
  • All the usual crowd - Wheeler, Simon Robertson. Chris Sweet, Phil Sparks, Tim Hawker, Jeremy Gear and last but definitely not least Abby Carter.


OTV is only ONE POUND and remember all the profit goes to YTFC - Kit, Goal and Ball sponsors and proud sponsors of the Disabled Supporters Association's first ever Away trip to Kidderminster. It will be on sale at the four corners of the ground before and after the match.

Check out the Website www.ontovictory.co.uk which inlcudes an archive of all previous issues. Get in touch with OTV at mail@ontovictory.co.uk, but most importantly buy a copy on Saturday.


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10 February 2004 : No Increased Allocation For Glovers At Torquay
Yeovil Town will receive a standard away allocation - usually between 1,000 and 1,400 tickets - when they visit Plainmoor, home of Torquay United on April 3rd. There had been hopes that The Gulls, who average just 2,900 spectators this season, would open up the Pop Side terrace which has a greater capacity, for away fans to use.

Despite the extra revenue this would generate, and persistent grumbles from the Torquay board and management this season about their cash-flow, the Devon side's Chairman Mike Bateson has claimed that such a strategy was "not a consideration". The Gulls top crowd this season was 4,447 for the Boxing Day visit of Swansea City - still well short of their 6,283 ground capacity.

To add to the issues of the day, Torquay have announced that - despite the possibility of Plainmoor seeing it's highest crowd of the season - prices are going up by two pounds for all areas of the ground. Torquay claim this is to pay for additional policing costs - a flimsy excuse given the additional revenue that would be gained by the increased attendance.

Although tickets go on sale to home fans on Saturday, Torquay have indicated that they will not go on sale to away supporters until around three weeks before the game. Adult Terrace tickets will be £13 (senior citizens and students £10/Under-16s £7) whilst if the Glovers receive any seated allocation these will be priced at £14 (£11/£7).


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10 February 2004 : Gary After A Summer Rose?
Glovers manager Gary Johnson is tracking Hereford United left-back Michael Rose according to this morning's Western Daily Press. Rumours began to spread yesterday on the Ciderspace Fans Forum following speculation from Bull******s Hereford fans that Rose was on his way out of their side.

Rose is a 21 year old former Manchester United trainee who signed for Chester City in the summer of 2001 serving a whole season under Mark Wright. He then headed to Edgar Street on a free tranfer and is into his second season at the club.

Hereford have tended to keep their players on single year 40-week contracts over the past season or two, taking the risk that their players will not find new clubs whilst they are out of contract over the summer break. Being under 24, Rose would potentially command a fee, though his length of service at Edgar Street would keep that figure down.

According to the WDP, the non-league international is unlikely to move before the summer. Hereford manager Graham Turner is not believed to be the easiest of managers to deal with, with Gary Johnson giving up on an earlier bid on left-winger Paul Parry due to Turner's lack of response to the Glovers bids.

Gary Johnson has so far refused to comment on the validity of the rumours, preferring to talk to the WDP about the current good form of left-sided flank player Abdelhalim El Kholti, who ironically had been linked with Hereford as a possible replacement for Parry, until his recent surprise return to the first team.


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10 February 2004 : Woking Training Match Today
A Yeovil Town XI will take on a Woking XI at Huish Park today. The match, which takes place at 1.00pm, is however purely a training match and is classified as being "behind closed doors". Both managers are expected to play a mixture of Saturday substitutes, reservists, youth players and trialists. Dagenham and Redbridge's Steve Watts will be guesting for the opposition, whilst another interesting factor will be whether Glovers striker Kirk Jackson plays this afternoon. Jacko is currently on loan at Dagenham, but Cards manager Glen Cockerill has recently admitted that he has tabled a bid for the striker.


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9 February 2004 : Weale the hero as Glovers get back to winning ways
Yeovil Town ended their recent dismal run with a hard-fought 1-0 win against Kidderminster Harriers at Aggborough on Saturday, Gavin Williams' 64th minute goal enough to take all 3 points and move the Glovers back up to 5th in the table.

The Glovers were good value for the win overall, but a largely undistinguished match exploded into life with just a few minutes left on the clock when Kiddy striker John Williams appeared to dive in the penalty box when challenged by the outstanding Adam Lockwood. The assistant referee amazingly flagged for the penalty and a few minutes of mayhem ensued with Williams inciting the Yeovil supporters behind the goal and both sets of players getting involved in pushing and shoving matches with several hands raised at one point. After the dust had settled the penalty decision stood but justice was seen to be done when Glovers keeper Chris Weale made an outstanding save at the foot of his right-hand post to stop Adam Murray's well-hit shot.

The stop was Weale's first penalty save this season. "I haven't saved one recently - the last was Doncaster away on Sky and I have got a bit of stick for not saving a penalty, but it came up at the right time today.," the Glovers keeper said afterwards, adding: "I try to plan which way to go and obviously it hasn't worked recently, but it worked today. I only got a slight touch, but it went around the post. The Gaffer is entitled to take the credit because he has given me quite a few pointers to help me, but I don't really want to say I'm going to go that way every time. But it was about time I saved a penalty because we had the Colchester penalty shootout (in the LDV Vans Trophy) when I conceded five penalties and obviously as a keeper you want to save penalties." Weale returns to to West Ham United for the next couple of days to spend time training with the 1st division club.

This was an important 3 points for Yeovil who were again forced to field a makeshift back 4 with first choice defenders Terry Skiverton, Colin Pluck, Paul Terry and of course Roy O'Brien all missing through injury. On-loan striker Andy Bishop made a promising debut as a second-half substitute, showing he has a good touch as well as a fair bit of pace for such a big man.

Final score: Kidderminster Harriers 0 - 1 Yeovil Town.

Other results at the top of the table mostly went the Glovers way this weekend, only Hull City of last week's top 6 managing a win to strengthen their position at the top. Yeovil go back up to 5th place on 50 points, 6 points away from the last automatic promotion place which is currently held by Oxford United, who lost 1-0 at Leyton Orient on Saturday. The U's visit Huish Park for a real 6-pointer this coming Saturday.

Finally, Glovers boss Gary Johnson has denied that striker Kirk Jackson has no future at Huish Park. It's been reported that the Glovers have agreed a fee for Jackson's services with Dagenham & Redbrige, where the frontman is currently on-loan and re-discovering his scoring touch, but Johnson said on Saturday: ""We haven't agreed anything, Kirk remains with Dagenham on loan. Woking have asked about him, as have another four Conference clubs. But Kirk has only played a handful of games for Dagenham and I think he'll want to see the month out there before we talk about the future."


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8 February 2004 : Gary Has A Wealey Good Day
Glovers manager Gary Johnson looked a contented man when he met the press following his team's 1-0 win over Kidderminster Harriers. Gary fielded and answered the following questions:

Well no doubt Gary, you are delighted by that?

Yes, Iím delighted by the result of course. 1-0 away from home, especially when you are going through a bit of a dodgy patch. The game could have gone either way, letís be honest about it, but it was a quality goal that won the game and of course a quality save that won the game. Wealey has been promising me that heís going to save a penalty for the last 12 months. The last one he saved was at Doncaster but that was a very important save and a great save.

It was pure Roy of the Rovers stuff at the end.

It was at the end. I wanted to celebrate our win, but I was so upset that the penalty was given, and it was still annoying me at the end although Iíve recovered now.

It took a long time for the penalty to be taken. Was that enough to put him off do you think?

It doesnít help does it? Call it professionalism, call it what you want. There was a melee anyway because we didnít think it was a penalty. We thought we had a penalty decision turned down at our end, whilst they had one turned down just before that. There were a lot of niggly free kicks and there wasnít a lot of flowing football really. But that didnít matter because it was important that we got three points today. Weíve got 50 points now and they tell me you canít get relegated on 50 points!

There was a great atmosphere with the penalty and relief from everyone.

Yes, the poor lad had to endure so much. Then heís got to play it in front of our wonderful supporters who were all there making faces at him! He struck it very well but he didnít allow for Wealey making that great save. It helps because thatís when you want the big players on the pitch for the big occasions and the big moments. He came through a very very big moment.

It looked like it was going to be cruel because Gally seemed to be fouled at the other end a few moments earlier.

It was unbelievable because he was fouled. Also how is that not a penalty when Andy Bishop got there first. If he gets there first itís got to be a penalty. Itís the same at our end, but having said that Locky got a touch, the ball went out towards the linesman and he put his flag up.

West Ham have still got an interest in Chris Weale and really today strengthens his case.

Well heís made a great save there and heís looked rock solid and caught things. But that was a great save for the penalty. It was low and it was in the corner and weíve been talking about which way he should dive. I donít know whether itís luck or judgement but in the last 10 penalties heís dived the wrong way. So we told him to dive a particular way and itís come off for us.

Chris Weale is at West Ham on Monday and Tuesday.

Yes, they are showing their interest and they want to keep their interest. But there is a lot more interest going on. Other people are watching him and looking. It wonít hurt him anyway, but West Ham do need to make their decision fairly soon. I donít want to push it too much though as heís playing very well for us. It doesnít seem to be affecting him and the longer Iíve got Wealey the better for me.


When you started the game did you think you would be playing so many people in different positions, getting people off the bench and substituting the substitute?

It was nothing against Lee Elam, but Iíd used all my subs. Obviously if I had left Lee Elam on and his ankle had got a bit weak towards the end of the game then I didnít have another substitute that I could put on. So I had to take off the weakest player injury-wise, that might have got injured. I wanted to freshen it up front and it nearly came off when the ball got laid into Gally. He should have scored really and it was a great ball in from Andy Bishop. But the game was won by a great goal from Gavin.

Nick Crittenden came off injured?

Yes, he just pulled his hamstring again. He kept feeling it again. And I only took Lee Elam off because heís been injured, Iíd used all my subs and I couldnít risk anyone out there that might have to come off. Nick has just tweaked it, so he had to come off.

How about Andy Bishop?

He won his headers, but he lost his man in the box at the other end which Iíve told him about. He made Kevin Gallís chance and held it up well, so heís done alright. Weíve got competition now.

How close are the three defenders to making their return?

Close. Close enough to be close for Saturday.

Kevin Gall was through and as on so many occasions he put it wide.

Yes, but he looked lively. He did need it, and we were already up in the air, and Andy Bishop told me he was already on a lap of honour because he thought he was definitely going to score. But weíll keep going. None of our strikers are scoring at the moment, and we relied on Gavin Williams again. But the three points might just help everybody along with the confidence that comes with three points. We were starting to wonder where the next win was coming from! By hook or by crook, we got it today.

I hear results have not gone too badly for you today.

Well thatís nice; I havenít seen any of the results at the top yet. But weíve got to worry about ourselves at the moment. Weíve got to stay in the playoffs. If we can keep winning games and put a little bit of a run together than at least we will be in the playoffs. But Iíll look forward to seeing some of those results when I get home. It will be nice to have a full week of training having taken three points. Kidderminster have had a good little run here, but whilst there have been chances the luck was with us today. Itís a massive result, particularly given who was out and who weíve got playing. Itís another three points that weíve got in the Third Division and Kidderminster have been there a little bit longer than us. We played a lot better Tuesday than what we did today, but the three points we got are for what we did on Tuesday.

It was great the way the players were putting themselves in there today.

We had to compete. I thought Abdou and our back four did very well under a lot of long balls. In the second half they went very long and we coped with most, despite having some inexperienced people back there. Lindy and Abdou have had to come through some very big games. The pitch is very very heavy out there and they did very well to get the game on with all the rain. At half time I did say to the boys that we were playing a little bit too much like a five-a-side team. I didnít want a five-a-side team out there, I wanted an 11-a-side team. We were touching and chipping it and we werenít really getting stuck in and making a heavy game of it. But we did in the second half.

Whatís the situation with Abdel El Kholti? Youíve told him he could find another club havenít you?

Yes, and heís found us! He went out looking and decided he wanted to stay here! He played well Ė very well. He just needed a bit of confidence and sometimes that confidence comes when you are rock bottom. All of a sudden you realise that there is nowhere else to go, so you get your head down and get yourself sorted right here. There was some interest, but nothing that was of interest to him or me. Nine or ten of them are playing for contracts and heís the same. It just shows you how it can be turned around and why you should never drop your head at a football club. Youíve got to be ready because when your chance comes, youíre in and you canít sit there feeling sorry for yourself.


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6 February 2004 : Jacko: The end is nigh?
Reports coming from Dagenham & Redbridge are claiming that the Conference side have agreed a fee with Yeovil for on-loan striker Kirk Jackson and that Jacko will decide where his future lies when his loan period expires in a fortnight's time.

The 27-year-old striker has also been linked with Woking, with Cards manager Glenn Cockeril an evident admirer: "I've spoken to Kirk and offered him terms and now it's up to him," Cockeril told the Woking News & Mail. "He is still ambitious and wants to play in the Third Division and has asked his name to be circulated to all the Third Division clubs. But I have sold Woking in the best way I can and once he has seen out his loan spell at Dagenham he will make a decision. He would bring the goalscoring prowess which I haven't got in the squad. He knows where the net is and I'm confident he could make the difference for us."

With the arrival of Walsall striker Andy Bishop on loan at Huish Park with a view to a permanent deal, it is now obvious that Jacko's days with Yeovil are numbered, something that will be a big disappointment to the frontman who would have been hoping to make his mark in league football this season.

Bishop, meanwhile, has been talking about his hopes for the next month and beyond. "It's nice to be at a team challenging for promotion." the Walsall striker told the Western Daily Press. "I've not been at Yeovil long but it's clear that they are a club that is going places. I know that the lads are disappointed with their recent results, but there is still a buzz around the place. Everyone looks really sharp in training and I'm glad to be a part of it. I knew Yeovil were a good club and when I spoke to Colin Lee (Walsall manager) he agreed. It's a good opportunity for me and if things work out I'd love to sign. If not I'll go back and fight for my place at Walsall."

Speaking to the Yeovil Express, Glovers boss Gary Johnson said of the 21-year-old: "Andy was a big prodigy at Walsall as a youngster and he was being tipped to play in the Premiership, but due to Walsall having a number of managerial changes he hasn't really been given a chance. But we have watched him and we think he could do us a good job. He will be here for a month, but there is a view to a permanent move. He's been down here and watched us and likes what he's seen."

Bishop will be in the squad for tomorrow's visit to Kidderminster Harriers and wingers Lee Elam and Nick Crittenden are also expected to be fit after missing the last 2 games apiece with ankle and hamstring injuries respectively. Defenders Terry Skiverton, Colin Pluck and Paul Terry all have knee injuries and will face late fitness tests tomorrow.


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4 February 2004 : Gary Gets Something To Get His Teeth Into
Glovers manager Gary Johnson talked to the press immediately after the 2-0 defeat at Northampton Town, fielding the following questions:

Gary that was a bit of a bitter pill to swallow tonight.

I think it was. I can rant and rave in there which I do sometimes and I did last week. I felt then that we didn't do enough. But today is a bitter pill because we played some good stuff. We looked strong, we looked quick, we looked mobile and we looked comfortable. There were a couple of bits of indecision in both penalty areas really that cost us the game. Northampton's little bit of experience, with a couple of good goals from two experienced players won it. Their fellow Hargreaves had about his only chance, and I don't think he hardly touched the ball all game. It is a bitter pill, but I can work from there. I can work from that and we've just got to be a bit more clinical, haven't we? But we played some good stuff and I've certainly got something to get my teeth into now.

You went in at half time goal-less yet they were frustrating frustrating you more than you were frustrating them.

They were at home but we had quite a few chances. It's frustrating because we didn't finish off some of our quality moves. We didn't find people when we got wide. We didn't find people in the box. But there were still some great performances out there from our team and I've just got to build around those players.

There were two goals in the second half. What was going through your mind at that point?

The same as all the supporters. You're gutted at that point because you don't feel you deserve to be behind. Having said that, it was probably our most indecisive spell. But just prior to that we had two or three of our best chances and we just needed to take one of those. But then Northampton got the one goal and their tails were up. We went chasing and just left ourselves open a little bit for the second one. All in all it's bad that we lost, but at least I've got something to work with.

With some of the chances you had, you didn't really make the goalkeeper work did you?

No, that's right. That's what we've just said. Games are won in both penalty boxes and not from box to box. So we have to improve our penalty box play.

Paul Terry limped off.

Yes, he's still got that bad knee he had from Liverpool. It keeps coming back every now and again. But Lindy did a job out there and Simon Weatherstone did well when he came on. We looked a very strong fit outfit. But we got beaten 2-0 and we have to address that a little bit.

Has that decimated your back line or are Skiverton or Pluck going to be alright for Saturday?

I don't know. They weren't available for today so we'll have to wait and see. We'll be in tomorrow and we'll check the injured list. Obviously there's Critts and Lee Elam and we will have to see how they are recovering.

A trip to Aggborough on Saturday. How are you going to prepare for that?

Well shortly we're going to have to start on a pretty good run just to keep ourselves in the playoffs, let alone anything else. But whilst we are there, and whilst we're fighting like that, and some of the boys are showing that kind of quality and spirit, I still think we aren't going to be that far away.

So would you say you took more positives from tonight's defeat than the 2-2 draw on Saturday?

I got more positives from tonight than I did on Saturday, definitely. I thought we played with a bit of spirit today and we looked very strong. But we still lost 2-0 so I've got to be realistic and look at that. We want to be playing like that and winning 2-0 and it wasn't that long ago that we were doing that. So maybe we're getting nearer and maybe we just need that little bit of luck or quality in front of goal.

You've talked about the quality from within but you're also looking outside aren't you?

Well you have to if the quality from within doesn't come through quick enough. That's what happens sometimes but if you change things too quickly you'll end up with 40 players. People are under contract and you have to get them through it sometimes and gradually add to it. If you add to it at the right time it gradually enhances your squad. But you can't upset or take away the confidence of the players that you have already got on a contract.


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4 February 2004 : Bishop is a Glover
Walsall striker Andy Bishop has been revealed by the club's official site as the man joining the Glovers on loan for a month with a view to a permanent deal.

The 21-year-old, described as "big and strong" by the official site, came up through Walsall's youth ranks and was a prolific scorer at that level. He is yet to make an appearance for the 1st division club's first team, but has made 38 division three starts on loan at Kidderminster and Rochdale, scoring 8 times altogether. He's expected to be added to Gary Johnson's squad for Saturday's game against the Harriers, who he made 8 starts for on loan earlier this season, scoring twice.

The best of luck to Andy in his time at Huish Park, we wish him well.


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4 February 2004 : Cobblers! Poor run continues ...
Yeovil Town's poor run of results continued last night at Sixfields Stadium, hosts Northampton Town beating an injury-ravaged Glovers side 2-0. A bad night on the face of it then, but there was much to praise in the Glovers performance with definite signs that the recent slump may soon be a thing of the past. After all, form is temporary, class is permanent!

Again it was shortcomings in the penalty box at both ends that cost Yeovil dear, with too many chances being spurned in attack and some naive defending at the back not helping the cause. The Glovers approach play was sound and the passing game back on track after some recent hiccups, but goals scored are what win matches and the Glovers finishing did not come up to scratch again. Chris Hargreaves and Martin Smith took advantage of the makeshift Yeovil defence with two second-half goals to give the points to the Cobblers.

"We played some good football and looked comfortable," Glovers boss Gary Johnson said afterwards. "But indecision in both penalty boxes cost us the game. We've got to be more clinical in front of goal. We had quite a few chances and I'm disappointed we didn't finish some quality moves."

"We had to persevere, especially in the first half in the poor conditions." Northampton manager Colin Calderwood admitted. "After half-time, without being fluent for long periods we had lots of shots and crosses and made our own luck. Yeovil broke well against us and were a very good test. They cause teams lots of different problems."

Final score: Northampton Town 2 - 0 Yeovil Town.

No other division three games were played last night, so the Glovers remain in 6th place in the league table on 47 points, albeit having played a game more than our play-off rivals around us. The Cobblers move up to 13th place on 36 points.

The Glovers hope to have signed an unnamed new forward on loan by the time they travel to 21st-placed Kidderminster on Saturday. "I'll have more news on Thursday morning," Gary Johnson confirmed last night, adding: "I'm looking at the possibility of bringing a player in on loan with a view to him becoming a part of our future. I'm discussing a few things and I'm hoping something will be done before the weekend." A further attempt to bring in a defender in on loan has fallen through.


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3 February 2004 : Northampton Town vs Yeovil Town Match Preview
Yeovil Town travel to Sixfields, home of Northampton Town hoping to kick-start their season again after a run of three games without a win. They come up against a Northampton side who bar their FA Cup exploits are having a poor season, particularly by pre-season expectations. The Cobblers lie in 16th place in the table, 14 points behind the Glovers in 6th place.

Yeovil go into the match without long term absentee Roy O'Brien (knee/ankle), whilst Nick Crittenden (hamstring) is also not expected to travel. Doubts remain also on Lee Elam (ankle) meaning that Andy Lindegaard could get his third league start of the season. Defender Colin Pluck will also need a test on his knee after withdrawing at half time on Saturday.

Glovers manager Gary Johnson, speaking to the club's redesigned official site has told his team to remain positive, despite the set-back of the last couple of weeks results, explaining: "We are in 6th place which is still a strong playoff place and it looks like the teams from 4th to 10th will be competing for playoff places. I have a quote that sums up our position at present and it is 'Victory belongs to those who believe in it the most and believe in it the longest.' That will certainly be the gospel I shall be preaching to the players."

Northampton Town manager Colin Calderwood has his own issues to deal with ahead of tonight's match. The Cobblers are without experienced defender Ian Sampson who serves a one match ban for a red card. Winger Josh Low who scored against the Glovers back in August, is out injured as is defender Peter Clark. Striker Richard Walker has returned to Blackpool following his loan spell at the club. Finally doubts exist over midfielders Marc Richards (concussion) and Paul Trollope (arm).

Tonight's referee is Mick Thorpe of Suffolk, who officiated in Yeovil's first ever home Nationwide League game back in August, seeing the Glovers triumph 3-0 over Carlisle United.

For those travelling, the Ciderspace guide to Northampton can be found here.


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2 February 2004 : Vintage Badges On Sale
Glovers supporter Tim Lancaster has produced another set of Yeovil Town collectors badges. The latest set are a replica of a 20 year old badge and will be available in just under two weeks time.

Tim explains: "The interest in our club has led to the re-issue of an old style Yeovil Town badge from the early to mid-nineteen eighties becoming available through my supplier. A limited number of this badge will be available at the Oxford United game - it is of the same high quality as all the rest. The reprint will mean the badge will cost £3.50 rather than the normal £3.00. Collections can be made under the club crest at 2.30pm at the Oxford United game. Please note this is not one of my designs simply a one off re-issue that I have had the opportunity to purchase."

To reserve your badge, email Tim at tim.daff@btopenworld.com - Tim also has a very limited number of his special Yeovil vs Liverpool commemorative badges - get your orders in fast.


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2 February 2004 : Jacko At The Double
On loan Glovers striker Kirk Jackson finally got back on the goalscoring road on Saturday in the FA Trophy as part of his loan period with Nationwide Conference side Dagenham and Redbridge.

Jacko netted a goal in each half, but even that wasn't enough for the Daggers to see off Ryman League Division One North side Arlesey Town as they had to settle for a 3-3 draw at Victoria Road. Jacko's second goal stopped an upset occuring with just 17 minutes to go, and thus ensures that he will be back in action again on Tuesday night at Hitchin Road, Arlesey for the replay.

His Yeovil Town team-mates will be not too far away, with their Nationwide League Division Three match against Northampton Town being played at Sixfields on the same night, kick-off 7.45pm.


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2 February 2004 : YTISA Travel To Kidderminster
Anybody wanting to travel with the Yeovil Town Independent Supporters' Association to the Glovers' forthcoming Nationwide League Division Three fixture at Kidderminster Harriers on February 7 can do so by phoning the new booking hotline on 07800 837810 which has been funded by Hembury Plant Hire.

Coaches will be leaving Huish Park at 9.30am and prices are £12 for members and £14 for non-members.

The association has stressed once again that there will be no drinking or smoking on the coach.

There are currently around a dozen places left on the coach so get your bookings in now.


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1 February 2004 : Gary Searches For That Quality Streak
Glovers manager Gary Johnson gave his view on Saturday's 2-2 draw against Macclesfield Town straight after the game when he faced questions from the press:

Gary you made it hard for yourself today, twice conceding goals. Do you feel your side was worthy of getting all 3 points?

It doesnít matter does it - we didnít. We lost the game in the first 20 minutes. Our quality wasnít very good and Iíve just said to the boys weíve let our home supporters down in these two games against Leyton Orient and Macclesfield, where if you're going to be competing at the top level they are the teams you need to be beating. Youíve got to be showing that youíve got more quality and unfortunately during the two games, and especially the first 20 minutes, we didnít show any quality whatsoever.

I donít care whether thereís a typhoon, monsoon, hurricane, it doesn't matter. Some of the quality we put out there today was very very poor. That was the most disappointing part for me. Yes, we showed a little bit of spirit to come back. We had a bit of a nightmare over on that left hand side in the first half and obviously once we changed that and got a couple of other boys on then we did a bit more. Having said that we didnít really create that many chances even though we had quite a lot of possession in the second half. Weíve got to grad ourselves through it weíve got to get through it and Iím more disappointed that we let our home fans down.

Simon did the job on the left hand side didnít look as if he was entirely comfortable there is that fair?

I suppose it's fair because I took him off but either way it doesnít matter. Whether you're on the pitch as a goalkeeper or a centre-forward youíve still got to be able to keep the ball and pass it, run with it and hit the right ball at the right time. Unfortunately he had one of those days where he was probably trying too hard in his head to keep possession and wasnít keeping possession. Plucky was doing the same. Plucky has been a great strong-horse for us but unfortunately on the day it didnít happen and it cost us a couple of goals. Not just those two players, but the nature of the first half because of our poor quality meant that they came in ahead.

That said when it got to 1-1 it looked as if the game might turn on its head at that stage. Before they got their second goal you had a good period?

Yes I thought so. Teams are coming to Huish Park and you wouldnít say they are coming here to play. They leave their two up front and sit back and thatís why your quality has got to be better because they really do camp in the penalty area. It is difficult to break them down but thatís where you need a good cross or somebody getting on the end of something, or a good tackle that leads to somebody being free. But all of those things didnít happen today. I said to the boys, Thommo and myself are going to have to change it round because some of them are obviously not quite turning it round themselves. It doesnít mean we go out and get 10 players, it just means that we need to get some results pretty quickly to stay in contention with the playoffs.

You told me before that youíve been working very hard so hard work isnít everything is it?

Well today I just felt we were weak on our quality and that was all it was. I felt we had the legs. They were the team wasting time. They were more happy with a draw and we weren't. At the end of the day it was a draw and we will see whether it was 2 points lost. But you never know at the end of the season you might look at it and be a point in the play offs.

Chris Giles got a taste of the action so he has finally played some league football. There has been a lot of talk about him perhaps moving on elsewhere or is he still very much in your own plans?

I donít know, we use whoever weíve got at the club and Gilesy is still at this club today. So while he is here we will use what we think are his strengths. We needed them today. We thought about his long throw. Itís a shame that at 6ft 3in he cant throw it long and get in the middle for the header! But he caused a few problems with that throw and we just felt if weíd got a bit more quality in our crossing, we'd be OK. Iím pleased Jake had a half-decent game but most of them have got to do a little bit more, quite a lot more.

[Transcription by Richard Gibson]


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