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28 February 2006 : TBCUTR Stack Up The Loans
Calvin Andrew has extended his loan spell at Bristol City and will be spending a further month playing at Ashton Gate according to the City Official Site.

The Luton Town striker moved to the Robins at the end of January, but following a promising start the 19-year-old picked up a knee problem in the defeat to Brentford and has been unable to feature since.

The loan extension should see Andrew finish his time at TBCUTR in their home game with the Glovers, though he is behind Steve Brooker and fellow recent loanee Mark Mccammon in the pecking order. All three of these somehow appear to be ahead of high-profile summer signing and last season's top Championship scorer Marcus Stewart. Wonder what happened there ......

[Article by Chris Medland]


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28 February 2006 : SPC Ticketing
Prices for the forthcoming Somerset Premier Cup Third Round tie between Yeovil Town Reserves and Clevedon Town at Huish Park on Tuesday 14th March, kick-off 7.45 p.m., are :

Adults £5.00; Concessions £3.00.


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28 February 2006 : Win For Scunny Not Good News
Just the three matches in League One this evening.

Scunthorpe United travelled to Vale Park and came away with their fifth away win in the league this season. The Iron took an early lead on ten minutes, and when Vale's Jason Talbot was shown a straight red card for a two footed challenge on Richard Hinds three minutes later it might have been game over. Brian Laws was so incensed at the tackle he conducted a one man pitch invasion, and another red card was issued as the Scunthorpe manager went to the stands for his trouble. However the home side fought back, more legitimately, and equalised on 17 minutes through Jeff Smith as Scunny keeper and an outfielder left the ball to each other and a free kick from wide curled straight in. A second half strike by Cleveland Taylor from 20 yards settled the destination of all three points. Not good news for the Glovers, the victory moving Scunthorpe on to 44 points and from 16th up to 12th. Port Vale remain on 46 points in 11th.

AFC Bournemouth started the evening in 15th on 41 points. Visitors Barnsley could have gone second with a win, but had to be satisfied with a draw which moved them up from 5th to 3rd. The Tykes should have been out of sight by half-time, such was their dominance, but only managed a single goal from Steven McPhail on 20 minutes. The Cherries fought back in the second period to share the spoils when Adam Griffiths headed in a corner in the 70th minute. Bournemouth move up one place.

At Earth Stadium (Belle Vue) Doncaster Rovers and Brentford fought out a 0-0. The visitors stay in 6th, Donny up one to 9th.


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28 February 2006 : Officials For Saltergate
For the third time this season Yeovil Town will experience the officiating skills of Mike Russell (Hertfordshire), as we travel to face Chesterfield on Saturday 4th March.

Both Mr Russell's previous stints with The Glovers have been at Huish Park. The first saw some worryingly unimpressive refereeing in the Carling Cup Second Round 1-2 loss to Millwall back in September, with The Lions credited a doubtful goal and Liam Fontaine sent off. The second was a much less eccentric ninety minutes of work in the victory over Barnsley on December 17th.

The assistant referees are David Storrie (Yorkshire) and David Unsworth (Lancashire), whilst Guy Stretton (Leicestershire) takes the role of fourth official.


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28 February 2006 : Vale will take that
Valiants fan and multi-millionaire Robbie Williams has bought the remaining available shares in League One rivals Port Vale FC, and with it ploughed in 'significant investment' - around a quarter of a million pounds according to some sources, including the BBC.

Pop star Williams said: "Although I can't be at the Vale often enough, my investment is just to say that my heart is still there and I'm a huge supporter. I'm really excited about what we may be able to do with the club in the future."

Vale Chairman Bill Bratt said: "I'm extremely pleased and excited that Robbie has invested in the club. It clearly shows that he cares about Port Vale and its future. It is now up to the board and all at the club to ensure his investment is used wisely.

"Robbie has supported Vale since he was a lad and we are delighted with today's announcement. He has bought the remaining shares in the club and, while we cannot go into detail at this time, he has become a significant shareholder."


Manager Martin Foyle added: "I've always known Robbie's heart is in the Vale. I'm delighted but not surprised by what he has done."


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28 February 2006 : No bad blood with PT, says Thommo
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has played down the show of dissent made by midfielder Paul Terry when the former Dagenham man was substituted during the first half of Yeovil's 2-0 loss at Blackpool last Saturday.

"One of the reports said Paul refused to shake my hand, but that is not true, he did shake my hand," Thompson told the Western Daily Press today. "He took a little while about it and I had to talk to him first, but he was obviously a little bit upset. He was disappointed to come off and I understand that because no player likes to be substituted before half-time. But we have spoken about the situation and me and Paul are both fine about it. There are no grudges held by either of us - we both realise the situation we are in and we have to work hard as a group to get out of that."


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28 February 2006 : Jevons out for Saturday as Thommo steps up striker search
The doubts over striker Phil Jevons fitness for Saturday's game at Chesterfield which were being reported yesterday (see news story below) look unfortunately to be justified - the Glovers leading scorer has almost certainly been ruled out of Saturday's match with ankle ligament damage and could be out for a fortnight. With fellow striker Matt Harrold also struggling to be fit in time with an ankle injury manager Steve Thompson is persisting in his efforts to sign a loan striker. He'll be forced to rely on youth again however, with higher league clubs seemingly happy to let their teenage talent out on loan but wanting to keep hold of proven, more experienced men.

"I have spoken to eight different managers about strikers today, but they just don't want to let the more experienced ones out at the moment. But I'm still talking to the agent of an 18-year-old from a Premiership club and to a couple of Championship clubs, about a 19-year-old and an 18-year-old." Thommo told the Western Daily Press today. "I have also discussed midfielders and there is a good chance we will get in two new players before Saturday."

"Phil (Jevons) hasn't trained today and we don't know exactly how long he will be out for, but I would imagine he will definitely be out for Saturday," Thompson added. "He has an ankle ligament injury and I would have thought it means a minimum of ten days to two weeks out. We are hoping that Matt Harrold will be fit for Saturday, but that is by no means certain."

Thommo met with club's board last night at Huish Park to spell out what was needed to ensure survival in League One this season - and the resources to fund adequate loan signings must surely have been high on his list. Chairman John Fry admitted that responsibilty for the club's currently poor league positon lay with everyone at the club and was not merely down to the manager.

"It is not just Steve, but everyone at the club who has to turn this around, and we are confident," said Fry. "I spoke to the players on Saturday and will be talking to all the staff over the next few days."

Another issue discussed at last night's board meeting was that of players who are out of contract at the end of the season - who include the likes of Chris Weale, Steve Collis, Paul Terry, Phil Jevons, Kevin Gall, Arron Davies, Andy Lindegaard, Colin Miles and Scott Guyett amongst others. Supporters may be surprised to learn that - judging by the chairman's comments - contract talks have yet to be held with any of the players.

"We are as ambitious as we have ever been and most people at the club will be part of the future," Mr Fry said. "However, in all walks of life people leave jobs and that creates opportunities for others. The issue of new contracts will be dealt with in March." Not before time, surely?


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28 February 2006 : Jevons and Harrold In Doubt
Both Phil Jevons and Matt Harrold could be ruled out of Saturday's trip to Chesterfield. Both players have ankle injuries, with Harrold's being sustained during training in the lead up to the trip to Blackpool whilst the injury to Jevons was sustained when Blackpool's Robert Edwards took the stand-in captain out from behind resulting in him hobbling off and the Glovers, who had already used all three substitutes, being reduced to ten men.

Speaking to the Teamtalk website, Thommo admitted that he couldn't rely on either player being available explaining: "I am hoping Matt might make it back for training later in the week but that's not certain and I think Phil is struggling to make Saturday."

If neither player makes it, then Thommo will have to choose from Kevin Gall, Pablo Bastianini and Daniel Webb or somehow breach the barriers that are preventing him from signing up loan players before the team head off to Derbyshire this weekend.


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27 February 2006 : Action Photos From Yeovil Town vs Oldham Athletic
The action photo gallery for the November 2005 League One match at Huish Park that saw a 0-2 home defeat against Oldham Athletic has finally been completed and is now on-line. Access all 80 photos by heading here or by accessing the main Photo Gallery Index page.


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27 February 2006 : Another Offering For Badge Collectors
Two new badges are on offer, for the AFC Bournemouth vs Yeovil Town fixture on Saturday 18th March.

AFC Bournemouth v Yeovil Town, 2005/6 AFC Bournemouth v Yeovil Town, 2005/6
AFC Bournemouth v Yeovil Town, 2005/6
Photo © 2006 Tim Lancaster


Available from Tim on the day at the Fitness First Stadium for £3.00, or for £3.50 including first class P&P :

Tim Lancaster, 45, Goytre Road, Goytre, Port Talbot, West Glamorgan, SA13 2YN.


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27 February 2006 : Five Booking Point Passes
As February runs out so do the suspensions for five yellow cards. In regard to league games Yeovil Town has the second best record on yellow cards in League One so far this season, with a miserly 27. Only AFC Bournemouth can better that, with 23. To put those totals in perspective six teams in League One are already over the sixty mark for league matches, with Barnsley and Swansea City the worst on 66 each.

Only one Yeovil player has been suspended this season for reaching five : Paul Terry.

From now those players accumulating five yellow cards receive a letter of warning from the Football Association as to future conduct. Suspensions will only occur for those reaching the ten figure. Terry is obviously the closest on six. Terry Skiverton is on four and Matt Harrold on three. Without wishing to tempt fate, with the cut off point for suspensions for ten bookings being Sunday 9th April (eight matches away for Yeovil), it should be unlikely The Glovers will pick up any further suspensions for yellow cards.

The full current disciplinary record for Yeovil players in all First Team games, league and cup, can be found here on Ciderspace.


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27 February 2006 : Ifil Out Of Relegation Clash
In yet another six-pointer, which sees Yeovil Town play host to Swindon Town on Saturday 11th March, Jerel Ifil will be suspended for the visitors. Ifil was dismissed for two yellow card offences in Swindon's 7-1 demolition by Nottingham Forest at the City Ground last Saturday. As the defender has picked up two previous red cards this season he will be out for their next three matches. Ifil has been virtually an ever-present for Swindon this campaign....... er, except when suspended.


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27 February 2006 : You 'Orrible Little Man......... What Are You?!
"I'm an 'orrible little man, sergeant."

The squad are due to head off to the Royal Marine Commando Training Centre at Lympstone in Devon on Tuesday for some team building. Arranged a couple of weeks ago, they will be following in the footsteps of a number of major football and rugby sides who have been put through their paces with the Marines already this season.

Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson, ex-R.A.F. and therefore doubtless in for a particularly hard time himself, said :

It will be good to get the players away to a different environment for a day. They will have a go on the assault course and what have you. I am sure it will be a very productive day.

We can state that rumours of a certain RM Bratherton switching his duty days to see the pain are........... entirely true.


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26 February 2006 : Ciderspace Match Report : Blackpool vs Yeovil
The Ciderspace match report for Saturday's 2-0 defeat at Blackpool can be found here.


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26 February 2006 : Youth Team Thrash Cirencester
Yeovil Town's Under 18s side kept up their fine recent form with a 5-1 thrashing of Cirencester Town. Goalscorers were Dale Williams (2), Richard Cullingford, Gavin McCallum and Craig Alcock. More details, including the team line-up later in the week.


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26 February 2006 : Programme Out Of The Relegation Zone
Last year, when we reported on the Programme of the Year Awards from Programme Monthly, the product from Yeovil Town did very poorly. In response the club committed itself to improvement (see Ciderspace 9th March, 2005).

A major concern was value for money based on price per page of content. In this regard the programme has improved, now lying 17th amongst League One issues and =64th for all Premiership and Football League clubs, up from =85th.

The awards in League One were as follows :

Best in Division : Colchester United. It also picked up the Best Design award. In the overall Best in Division category Oldham Athletic came second, with Southend United third.

Best Value : Blackpool.

Best Read : Oldham Athletic.

Most Improved : Rotherham United.

Merit Award for Continued Excellence : AFC Bournemouth.

Other programmes commended as being in contention for awards came from Bristol City, Brentford, Doncaster Rovers, Huddersfield Town and Swindon Town.



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26 February 2006 : Thommo's Verdict On the Blackpool Game
Glovers boss Steve Thompson said he wanted to find what his players were made of after his side slipped to a 2-0 defeat against Blackpool that saw the Glovers head to a bottom four position yesterday. Speaking after the game, Steve answered the following questions:

Qu: Steve how are you feeling after that game at Blackpool?

ST: Well obviously very disappointed with the result. I am going to find out a lot about my players in this situation now. I have found out bits today and I have found out quite a lot about my players today. It was a game in which we had chances to win. It hurts me to have to say that again but I feel it is factual so I have to say that. But I think I am going to find out a lot about the players now.

Qu: It's easy to say now but if just one of those chances had gone in, it could have been a completely different game.

ST: Yes that's all ifs and buts and I don't really want to come out with that. We did have a lot of chances and we didn't take them - again.

Qu: You played well in the first half and there were some encouraging signs coming in at the interval.

ST: Yes, we should have been two up at the break. We had three or four good chances and Blackpool had one good chance, but that's the trend at the moment isn't it? Myself and the players have got to do something to try and break that trend.

Qu: Is it just a case of lack of confidence in front of goal in that when the confidence is low things don't run for you?

ST: Yes, it doesn't help if you are not scoring regularly. Confidence is an important thing in football in terms of everything, but I suppose in terms of finishing in particular. But we haven't got too much time to wait on people for confidence to return. We've got 39 points to play for. It was 42 before today, but now we have 39 left to play for and we need to start getting results quickly.

Qu: It's difficult for you because the quality of the football, especially in the first half, was as good as it's ever been. It's just that final touch to get the ball in the back of the net.

ST: Yes, finishing is such an important aspect of the game. It is the bit that we are missing the most at the moment.

Qu: What about the start of the second half. When the first goal went in it was a sloppy one to defend.

ST: Yes, I think the free kick went straight in and just glanced off Andy Lindegaard's head and then went in. I think that otherwise Lindy has had a very good game. Yes, it is a mistake. It was a good ball in, but I didn't think it was a fantastic ball in, and to allow it to go right in was disappointing. I will have to have a look at that one on video to see if we can do anything different to stop that happening. But what more can I say - it's gone in the net and it's a weak goal to concede.

Qu: The second one was from a corner, and John Murphy had a lot of space to head it home.

ST: Yes, someone made a very late run and won the first header and Murphy put it in. I am disappointed with both goals from the defensive side of things because they were both set pieces.

Qu: How is Phil Jevons? He didn't look very good when he came off.

ST: I don't know. I've been seeing to other things in there and talking to people about other things so I don't know how Jevo is. I'm not sure yet - we'll probably know more about it on Monday.

Qu: And Paul Terry - was that a tactical change in the first half?

ST: Yes, I just felt that we needed to maybe get at their left back a little bit more and Arron is a bit more of an attacking player than PT.

Qu: He didn't look too happy when he came off the field - is that fair to say?

ST: No-one is happy when they get substituted - or at least they shouldn't be happy. I remember when I was a player and I got substituted I was annoyed to put it mildly. But that's the manager's job - he has to make decisions and he has to stand by them, and he stands or falls by them.

Qu: Are you still looking to bring a striker into the club if you can via a loan deal?

ST: Yes, I have been looking and talking to various people and clubs over the past two or three weeks now and with the Jevo situation and the fact that Matt Harrold was unavailable today through injury but should be available for next Saturday may increase that need. Jevo could be out but I'm not sure. I am actively looking at bringing people in.

Qu: Is it a case of up until now you've tried to be fussy and get exactly the right sort of player, but now needs must and you just need to get a couple of bodies in?

ST: I'm not sure because if Jevo is fit and Matt Harrold is fit then I don't need to just get a couple of bodies in, because we would then have five or six strikers. It's a question of whether I then choose to bring someone in, so I'm not sure if it's a case of 'needs must'. It depends what you mean by 'needs must' and whether you are just looking for having bodies available or whether you want to sign someone who can score a goal. Phil Jevons was top scorer in League Two last year and he hasn't scored for a few games now. People will probably point the finger at Kevin Gall because he missed three or four good chances today but he got into those positions. I know he missed them, but at least he is getting into those positions. Getting into those positions is important to give yourself the chance to score and at least Gally has done that today.

Qu: After the game what have you said to the players? Have you ripped into them, or have you pointed out the positives?

ST: It was a bit of everything really, but what I have said will stay between me and the players.


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26 February 2006 : Internet Bashing A Replacement For Fox Hunting?
Some might think Yeovil Town Football Club has rather more to worry about at the moment than what seems to be a paranoia setting in about the Internet. Along with many others the administrators of this web site, Martin Baker (a.k.a. Badger), Hugh Gleave (a.k.a. HHH) and Jon Morgan (a.k.a. Taff and previously Taff Glover), have been using a succession of forums dedicated to discussing The Glovers for around seven years. If only we'd realised what power they supposedly have over the club........ all those long wish lists each supporter undoubtedly has for the club magically brought on to the agenda with a few taps on the keyboard. Oddly for six years and quite a few months it hasn't felt like that at all. However in the last two months it seems forums have developed an awesome power to force resignations and undermine the whole fabric of the club ~ nah, we don't believe it either.

Manager Steve Thompson has become another voice from the club to have a go. Asked for his reaction to the resignation of David Webb as Chief Executive last Monday, Thommo, speaking to Saturday's Western Morning News, said :

I understand how David feels because he has come in and he isn't happy with the stuff that's being said on the Net and other general comments, and he has decided to play it pretty much as John Goddard-Watts did and take a back seat now.

Dave has assured me he will still be there if I need him to go to games or if I need advice on anything. He just won't be here for the day-to-day running of things.

Sadly, this is the way the world is nowadays with Internet forums, chat rooms and I don't like the way you can slate people on there and there is no right to reply as such.

He
[Webb] came in with the right intentions and feels the reaction to him has been unfair and I can understand that. I said when Gary Johnson left that whoever took over faces one hell of a task, and the same applied to John Goddard-Watts. The club has enjoyed a lot of success over the last four years, so how far can the club go?

Dave saw a way he felt he could take the club forward, but he feels as the hype and publicity surrounding him has been bad, so he isn't happy with the way people have reacted and I can understand that.


In today's The League Paper, Colin Mafham, a journalist with long-standing associations with Yeovil Town, has penned a piece under the headline :

Internet hoodies force out Webb.

We reproduce it below :

[Text]

Yeovil last night vowed to crack down on fans who wage wars of words on Internet forums.

Internet yobs were yesterday blamed for hounding former Chelsea hero Dave Webb out of his role as chief executive after just six weeks.

Webb blamed personal abuse and innuendoes for his decision to step down which, he said, was taken "with a heavy heart".

The hate campaign is believed to have gathered momentum after the recent transfers of Lee Johnson to Hearts, Darren Way to Swansea and Efe Sodje to Southend.

And Webb's replacement John Fry - who starts his third stint in the hotseat during 13 years at the club - left no doubt about who Yeovil blame for it.

"They are Internet hoodies who hide away under anonymous names. If they can't put their names up they can't expect us to be transparent with them," he said.

Webb, who continues to have a controlling interest in the club, pledged his continuing backing for Fry and Yeovil. "I will give them my full support in their efforts to attain the ambitions for the benefit of those with the well-being of the club at heart," he added.

Yeovil have already shut down an official forum "because it created negativity throughout the club" and refused to allow maverick sites to use the club's logo.

Now they are hoping the authorities will help them outlaw the cowardly critics.

Fry said: "You build up enemies over the years for whatever reason and now they can come back at you under a false name with comments that can be damaging, particularly to our families.

"I have developed a thick skin over the years and just get on with my job, but something needs to be done.

"We are very sorry David has taken this decision because he did an awful lot of good here. I wish he had been here six months rather than six weeks."

[End]

Ciderspace is intrigued by the statement : "Yeovil have already shut down an official forum........." What "official forum" would this be? If Yeovil Town has ever had an official forum it's certainly been the best kept secret on the planet. The only Yeovil Town related forum we are aware of closing down recently is that which was hosted by this site. This site is, and always has been, independent of the club, as was the forum. The administrators of Ciderspace took the closure decision back in December entirely of their own accord, after much heart searching and discussion, because we wished to focus more time on other dimensions of the site. That decision was made public on December 26th. Just to be absolutely clear: the club announced the return of David Webb on December 29th. The closure of the forum had nothing to do with that return. And, although the forum being referred to is not named, beyond some fanciful reference to an "official forum" that has never existed, if the inference is that our former message board was closed down through any pressure or action from the club we absolutely refute it.

Most of the 1,000+ members of that forum would know that had any such pressure or attempt been brought Ciderspace would have publicised it, and fought it tooth and nail. Whilst having the best interests of the club at heart - we are supporters - this site is independent and has never let itself be pushed around or succumbed to threats from anybody. We have always fought our corner, so far successfully, against attacks from individuals and institutions. We would point out that in seven years those institutions have, to date, never included Yeovil Town F.C. On very rare occasions that could be counted on the finger of one hand - we can actually recall two - representatives of the club have approached us asking for the removal or editing of items. On both occasions we made it clear it was our decision to comply with the request, stated that publicly, and informed those concerned. Any other editing or removal of postings when the Ciderspace forum was running, and we did it rarely and with reluctance, were entirely based on our view of items failing to meet our expectations and standards as listed at the top of that message board.

With over 50% of the U.K. population on-line forums reflect a broad cross section of the population, and of Yeovil Town fans. They are a vehicle for young and old, the dedicated and the part-time, locals and exiles, the optimists and the pessimists, for Mr and Mrs Angry and Mr and Mrs Hello-Clouds-Hello-Skies, and everybody in between, to set out and discuss the same sort of opinions, views and suggestions they would on the terrace, in the stands, in the bars, pubs and bars, at work, or in cars, coaches and trains travelling to games. Leaving aside any journalistic licence from Mr Mafham with the use of words like "cowardly" and "yobs", for the club chairman to be quoted referencing such people as "Internet hoodies" does a grave disservice to the relationship between a significant number of committed fans and the club, in the opinion of Ciderspace. Some views and opinions may indeed be unfair or founded on a lack of knowledge, but as regular Internet users, unlike the main critics from the club, we feel the overwhelming proportion of postings are genuinely held, not malicious stirring. And of course for almost every critical view there will be posters arguing a counter case. That's what discussion is about, not tarring the Internet forums as the home of "hoodies".


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25 February 2006 : Blackpool rock Glovers
Well, if it wasn't a crisis before then it's getting to be one now. A 2-0 loss against fellow relegation strugglers Blackpool in a dire game at Bloomfield Road this afternoon left Yeovil Town winless and with a mere 2 goals to their credit from the last 6 games and back in the relegation zone. Reports from the ground suggest that tensions beween management and some players were openly on show and while no-one wants to be accused of panicking or not being in anyway supportive nor is it any use to try to bury one's head in the sand and pretend that everything in the garden is rosy when quite patently it is not. The good ship Yeovil Town FC is currently in trouble both on and off the pitch and urgently needs a lift. With 2 games in hand over most sides and only 4 points between ourselves and 12th position then the solution is very much in our own hands still, but answers to the team's current inability to score or to defend adequately for 90 minutes need to be found very quickly - time is undoubtedly starting to run out.

As for the match itself it was the same old story that we've heard so often already this season - a tale of some excellent Yeovil chances wasted and 2 soft goals given away at the back, compounded by a touchline argument between the substituted Paul Terry and manager Steve Thompson. The final straw came with around ten minutes left and the Glovers already 2-0 down and having used all 3 substitutes, when Phil Jevons was crudely chopped down from behind and forced to leave the field with a leg injury, leaving 10 men to play out the rest of the game. What was already a mountain to climb became an insurmountable barrier.

Final score: Blackpool 2 - 0 Yeovil Town.

Injury news: Matt Harrold apparently picked up a knock in training last week which led to him missing today's game - he's expected to be fit for the trip to Chesterfield next weekend. As mentioned above Phil Jevons picked up a leg injury towards the end of the game today, he will be assesed over the next day or so but it's hoped that he'll be fit for next Saturday.

The result leaves the Glovers in the relegation zone in 21st position, still on 38 points. Franchise FC remain bottom of the league but gained 3 points with a priceless 90th minute winner to beat Bradford 2-1 to go to 34 points. 23rd-placed Rotherham (36 points) suffered a horrible day, losing 0-4 at home to Chesterfield and Swindon's recent revival was put into perspective by a rampant Nottingham Forest at the City Ground, Forest winning 7-1 to put the Robins down to 22nd on 38 points. Yeovil (38) are 21st and in the final relegation spot, behind 20th-placed Walsall on goal difference - the Saddlers held league leaders Southend to a 0-0 draw. Hartlepool (39) are 19th after a 1-1 draw with Doncaster and with only 3 points and a further 7 sides between themselves and Bradford City (42) in 12th position the bottom half of the league table remains extraordinarily tight, with every side from the Bantams down in relegation trouble.

Southend (64) remain top of the league despite that 0-0 home draw with Walsall. Huddersfield (60) drew 2-2 at Swansea in a televised game last night to displace Colchester in 2nd, the U's losing 1-0 at Barnsley this afternoon to drop to 3rd on 59 points. The Jacks (58) are 4th, above 5th-placed Barnsley on goal difference. Brentford and Oldham make up the other play-off places.


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24 February 2006 : Kev A Calls For Goals
Yeovil Town right-back Kevin Amankwaah, who has recently been proving he can also perform well as a centre-back, believes that the only thing missing from the Glovers play is a goal or two as they seek to break out of a run that has seen them score just one goal in the last four games.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol Kevin said of the situation: "Apart from the Southend game, I think the performances have been there. We're struggling to score but our general play outside the box has been good. We're struggling to finish teams off. If we get the one goal, we're struggling to get the second. We feel out play has been going quite well, but obviously we need to get results and not just good performances."


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24 February 2006 : Barry: Glovers In False Position
New Glovers signing Anthony Barry believes his new club are in a false position based on what he has seen so far. The former Accrington Stanley midfielder has so far played in the matches against MK Dons and Port Vale and also watched the game against Southend United and believes he has seen enough to hold the opinion that the Glovers can rise up from their current 20th place in the League One table.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol, Anthony explained: "As far as I am concerned it is a false position, particularly with the two games in hand. In the games that I have played and in the game that I watched from the sidelines against Southend I've seen enough to believe that the club can climb the league easily with those two games in hand, if we keep working hard. I've come into a squad with a great team spirit and a winning mentality and we believe we can get climbing back up that league, starting at Blackpool."


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24 February 2006 : Lindy's Second Lease Of Life
Yeovil Town utility player Andy Lindegaard feels he is getting a second life after being put on the transfer list earlier this season by former manager Gary Johnson. Lindy thought he'd played his last game for the Glovers when Johnson substituted him in Chesterfield home match in August, gave him a dressing down in his office, publicly criticised him and packed him off on loan to Conference National side Crawley Town.

Since the change of management though, Lindy has felt more part of the scene under Steve Thompson and the local lad is more than pleased to be off the transfer list and back in the fold once again.

Speaking to this week's Western Gazette, Andy revealed what the whole experience had been like: "It has been an up-and-down season for me. Gary Johnson put me on the transfer market earlier in the season and I went out on loan to Crawley Town. I was disappointed but I was also realistic and understood that what had happened was just football. I played one game and did not do what the manager wanted me to do. The club had gone up a level and I was clearly not part of his plans. Then there was a change of manager and immediately I was taken off the transfer list and since then I have been pretty much involved ever since, whether it has been on the bench or in the team."

In the past two games, the 25 year old has moved back to the position he started playing for Yeovil Town - taking the right-back slot as Kevin Amankwaah moved centrally to cover for injuries and illness in the centre of defence. But he still had to wait his turn to break into the team even after his return from Crawley.

Andy explains: "When I came back I knew I had to wait for my chance. Kevin Amankwaah has been fantastic this season so I had to knuckle down. Because Colin Miles was ill, I got my chance at Port Vale and kept my place against Milton Keynes Dons and I would like to think I did well. I now have to keep working hard and see what happens over the next few games. I am certainly a lot happier than four months ago. Going to Crawley was good for me because it allowed me to play games as well as train which is what I needed at that time."

Andy is also refusing to get drawn into worries of relegation from League One, pointing out that almost half the league are in the same position and that with 14 games left, there is still a long way to go. He also cites the change of management, coupled with the change of club ownership as a factor in Yeovil's fortunes so far.

"There are ten teams in a similar situation to us but not many clubs have had the same things going on as we have had this season," Lindy explains. "A lot has changed but it is just a case of continuing to work hard and trying to get results. Our performances have been good generally and at the moment we are waiting for one scrappy goal to kick-start things. The spirit at the football club is always the same. The goals have just dried up a bit in recent weeks and we know we have to start getting results but we are not panicking. We need to keep working hard. We do not like to look too far ahead. Every game is big in this league and we knew that at the start of the season but we have also learned a lot. I think people have got to remember that this is the highest league Yeovil have been in. To be fair, the performances - except for a poor second half against Southend United - have been quite good recently so we have to keep focused."

Andy also believes the new signings are now starting to show their worth in training adding: "The new signings have come in and settled well. We have got four in and three of them are still young lads. Coming to Yeovil has been a big move for those three and looking at the performances of Daniel Webb and Anthony Barry recently, they are both certainly playing their part."


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24 February 2006 : Jevo : Just One Of Those Things
Yeovil Town's stand-in captain Phil Jevons has used the experience he gained last season as part of the belief that the Glovers current form is only temporary as the team head up to Lancashire for tomorrow's crunch match against Blackpool.

Last season the Glovers went through a dreadful run of form around March that saw them pick up just seven points out of a possible 24, but they then finished the season with an unbeaten five match run to secure the League Two title. Jevo believes that shows that his team can recover from their current rough patch that has not seen them win in five games.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol, the Liverpudlian explained: "We need to pick things up. We're doing everything that we can but sometimes games go like that. You got through bad patches in the league. We did it last year when we won the league - we went about seven games without a win. So it can happen. We've just got to keep positive and keep believing in what we are doing and hopefully our luck will turn around."


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24 February 2006 : Action Photos From Port Vale vs Yeovil Town
The action photo gallery for the League One match at Vale Park just under two weeks ago that saw a 0-1 away defeat against Port Vale is now on-line. Access all 103 photos by heading here or by accessing the main Photo Gallery Index page.


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24 February 2006 : Youth Team vs Cirencester
A reminder that Yeovil Town's Under 18s side take on Cirencester Town's U-18's tomorrow morning on the Huish Park Top Pitch. Kick-off is 11.00am and admission to the game is free.


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24 February 2006 : Interview With John Fry
Glovers Chairman and re-appointed Chief Executive John Fry spoke to Ciderspace on Tuesday about some of the recent developments at the club.

John gave an in-depth account on how the club plan to fund their stadium expansion, their plans for partnerships with other parties and investors, why the club are budgeting for a loss this season, whether outgoing Chief Executive David Webb plans to sell his shares, the latest thinking on player contracts, why the club are temporarily looking at 'ready-made' players, and whether Webb's departure will affect the club's overall business plans.

Read the full interview with John Fry by clicking here or head to the Ciderspace Interviews Section.


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24 February 2006 : The 'Not The LDV Vans Trophy'
With LDV Vans going into administration the sponsorship deal for that competition with the Football League has collapsed. All prize money has now been cancelled, with those defeated in the Area Semi-Finals losing £15,000, and no future monies, apart from a share of gate receipts, being paid to those clubs remaining in the competition.

Presumably it will get more embarrassing still, with the Final due to be be broadcast live on Sky Sports from the Millennium Stadium on Sunday 2 April 2006. One can't imagine the Football League or the broadcasters wishing to continue promoting and advertising a company that has gone down the pan and defaulted on its commitments, so what to call it? Answers on a postcard to : The Right Honourable the Lord Mawhinney, Chairman of The Football League.........


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24 February 2006 : Blackpool v Yeovil Town match preview
The Glovers make the long trip up to Blackpool this weekend for yet another 6-pointer in what is turning into a season of 6-pointers... But with tomorrow's hosts a point behind Yeovil and in the final relegation spot, the importance for both clubs of tomorrow's match can hardly be overstated. And despite that what a relief to be getting back to football and away from the self-inflicted wounds the last week has brought to the club!

The Glovers only previous visit to Bloomfield Road was for a televised 2nd round FA Cup tie in September 2000, which of course we won by a single goal, Nick Crittenden of blessed memory the scorer. The teams have already met once in the league this season for a 1-1 draw at Huish Park, a match the Glovers dominated in terms of possession and chances but failed to put away - a tale that has become a little too familiar for comfort this season.

Blackpool's home record can only be described as poor. They've won 5, drawn 5 and lost 6 at Bloomfield Road, ranking 22nd out of 24 at home in League 1. They've taken 2 points out of the last 12 available, including a 3-0 loss at Franchise FC to mention a team we too have recently played as an object of comparison. Having said all that, Yeovil's away record itself is nothing to write home about; ranking 17th out of 24 we've won 4, drawn 3 and lost 9 on the road; and on current form we have only taken 1 point from the last 12 available. Enough of the stats, they're starting to depress me.

The Seasiders have their share of injury problems leading up to tomorrow's game with 4 players unavailable. Defenders Danny Coid (ankle) and Phil Doughty (leg) remain on the sidelines and they are joined by Marc Joseph and midfielder Ciaran Donnelly, both with hamstring trouble. On-loan Sunderland defender Sean Taylor has extended his loan period to the end of March and is expected to play tomorrow.

From having virtually no central defenders a couple of weeks ago the Glovers now have a surfeit - Scott Guyett proved his fitness in midweek for the reserves and Colin Miles is also available. The match comes too soon however for club captain Terry Skiverton, back in training after recovering from surgery from a double hernia. Whether manager Steve Thompson changes from the central defensive pairing of Kevin Amankwaah and Adam Lockwood that has done duty lately however is problematic - results haven't been good, but by general consent both players have performed well. New signing Jamie Vincent may come into contention for the left-back berth - he put another 90 minutes under his belt for the reserves in midweek to further improve his fitness.

Up front Thommo is likely to stick with Kevin Gall as one of the strikers. Including reserve team games Gall has hit 7 goals since the 10th of January, including 1 in the Glovers last outing against Franchise FC and Thommo is hoping that the Welshman can go on a similar run of scoring for the first team now: "It would be nice if Kevin could go on a run like he did when he first joined the club when he scored something like 10 goals in 13 games," said Thompson, adding: "He has been looking sharp in training."

Selected betting odds: Blackpool win - 11/10; draw - 11/5; Yeovil win - 11/5. Our recommendation: Well, 'recommendation' is putting it a little too strongly - our hopeful guess is probably more accurate, as anyone following our tips over the season has probably realised by now. Our fiver's going on the draw this week; though, as always, we'll be hoping for the win. Record so far this season: +80p. Gah! Always said gambling was a mugs game.

There should be a good number of Yeovil fans at Bloomfield Road tomorrow with several coach parties making a weekend of it at a proper seaside town (unlike the pretenders down the road in deepest Daarset) - and amongst their number will be a contingent of Celtic fans making their annual pilgrimage south of the border to support their fellow green-and-white hoops. If you're one of those going the Ciderspace guide to all things Blackpool is online here. Come on you mighty greens!


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23 February 2006 : Lisbie The Ram
Sky Sports say that Yeovil Town target Kevin Lisbie has now signed a month long loan deal with Derby County from Charlton Athletic.


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23 February 2006 : Thommo Can't Wait For Break To Be Over
Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson has admitted that his side could have done without the 10 day break that left them without any form of football as they look to get recent results out of their system. The last Glovers first team match was a 1-1 draw with MK Dons that saw the visitors grab an equaliser with the last kick of the game. They did not play last Saturday, due to original opponents Brentford being involved in the FA Cup - a match that will now take place at Huish Park on Tuesday March 7th.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol Thommo said of the gap in fixtures: "It wasn't ideal to have that game off on Saturday. Obviously with the disappointment of conceding that 93rd minute goal (against MK Dons) you just want to get back out onto that pitch as soon as possible to try and get that out of your system. We won't have been able to do that in terms of a competitive match now for 10 days by the time we play Blackpool (on Saturday). But we have 14 league games left and every one of them is going to be very important."


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23 February 2006 : Kev A happy at Huish Park
The Glovers versatile defender Kevin Amankwaah has been ever-present in the first XI so far this season and after enduring injury after injury at previous club Bristol City is now relishing the chance to play regularly.

"My career has been stop-start, so I've never got a rhythm until I've come to Yeovil," he told BBC Radio Bristol. "When I was at City I had too many injuries, so every time I got in the team I'd be out again because of injury or because I'd been dropped. It's good to get a big run of games which I've had this year, I've played every game so it's been good in that sense."

More normally a right back, Amankwaah has been filling in as a central defender to general acclaim recently due to injuries. Club captain Terry Skiverton, himself one of the injured Amankwaah has been covering for, has been impressed:

"Kevin has been fantastic this season wherever he has played," Skivo told the Western Daily Press today. "Not only is he such a good player, he is also a great character to have in the dressing room. Because of his many attributes and his pace he could play in any position on the pitch although, to be fair, he couldn't play in goal because he is rubbish in goal! But he and Adam Lockwood have been doing fantastically well at centre half and it has just been unfortunate at times that we haven't got the result we have wanted in recent weeks."


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23 February 2006 : Broadhurst in the saddle
Walsall have made Kevin Broadhurst their new manager, initially until the end of the season. He replaces Paul Merson, sacked earlier in the month (see 6th February news story) - coincidentally Merson himself has agreed a short term deal as a player with Conference outfit Tamworth, beginning this weekend.

Broadhurst is of course an experienced manager in his own right but Yeovil fans will remember him from last season as Ian Atkins right hand man at Bristol Rovers - before both were eventually replaced by the current Gas management team of Lennie Lawrence and Paul Trollope. With Walsall currently 22nd in League One on 37 points rumours that Atkins may be reunited with his former no.2 at the Bescot Stadium are probably only wishful thinking as far as Glovers fans are concerned.


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22 February 2006 : Reserves Can't Hold City
Gary Johnson came back to Huish Park again, this time with his Reserves.

Midfielder Alex Russell opened the scoring on twenty minutes. A corner from Adam Green was only half cleared towards the edge of the box, and Russell reacted quickest, striking the ball cleanly past Steven Collis. Five minutes later Bristol City struck again. Mark McCammon, recenly arrived on loan from Brighton & Hove Albion, heading in another Green corner from close range.

Yeovil youth teamer Ebeneezer Masade was booked straight after the restart, and a short while later repaced by fellow youth Tom Clarke.

On fifty-six minutes The Robins closed out the game with Mccammon getting his second. A through ball saw him fend off Scott Guyett a little too easily, and the striker slid the ball home for City's third. Mccammon was subbed almost immediately after the goal, along with Alex Russell, the first, and maybe both, possibly having done enough to feature in Johnson's plans for the visit of AFC Bournemouth to Ashton Gate on Saturday.

On sixty-eight minutes the supplier of corners, Green, was in the game again, but this time giving away a penalty with a foul on Daniel Webb. Webb took the spot kick himself, only to see it saved by Steve Phillips.

The only stranger in the Yeovil line-up, Justin McKay, who we believe has or had Swindon Town connections, was subbed by Richard Cullingford a minute later; and almost immediately afterwards City made their final substitution. Since it had been announced on the Bristol City Official Site this morning that new signing Nathan Abbey could expect a spell with the gloves at some stage during the evening the reaction of Phillips was rather strange : storming off with a "You're taking the piss aren't you?" directed at his manager. However it is an open secret there is absolutely no love lost between Johnson and Phillips. Presumably this has not improved that relationship.

As the match drew to a close Bradley Thomas nearly got a consolation for Town, only to see Abbey make a grab right on the line. Webb was replaced by Gary Bowles on eighty-three minutes for Yeovil's final substiution - and that was it.

Final score : Yeovil Town Reserves 0 Bristol City Reserves 3

Yeovil Town Reserves : Stephen Collis, Ebeneezer Masade (Tom Clarke 50), Jamie Vincent, Justin McKay (Richard Cullingford 69), Bradley Thomas, Scott Guyett, Arron Davies, Gavin McCallum, Daniel Webb (Gary Bowles 83), Pablo Bastianini, Dale Williams.

Bristol City Reserves : Phillips (Abbey 70), Smith, Keogh, Barnes, Green, Wring, Artus, Russell (Lamb 58), Williams, McCammon (Benyon 58), Savage.


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22 February 2006 : Skivo Gives Squad Boost
Club captain Terry Skiverton's return to full training has boosted the mood in the Yeovil Town squad this week - even though manager Steve Thompson admits that his skipper is not in contention for selection against Blackpool on Saturday.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol, Steve was asked if Skivo's presence at training sessions had lifted the squad and he replied: "Of course it has. Terry is a marvellous character both on and off the pitch and to have him around whilst we're training is good. He generates that willpower and that enthusiasm that you need. It will be too soon on Saturday (for him to play), but I'm hoping to have him available for selection on Saturday week at Chesterfield."


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22 February 2006 : City Line-up Tonight
Mark McCammon and Bas Savage will lead the attack for Bristol City Reserves in this evening's Pontin's Holidays Combination game at Huish Park.

McCammon will be looking to boost his fitness after a substitute appearance in his debut at Bradford City. Savage returns to football after missing the last two first team matches with a bout of illness.

Steve Phillips starts in goal, but new signing Nathan Abbey is expected to make an appearance at some stage.

Bristol City Reserves : Phillips; Smith, Keogh, Barnes, Green; Wring, Artus, Russell, Williams; McCammon, Savage.

Substitutes : Allward, Benyon, Lamb, Abbey.


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22 February 2006 : Frying tomorrow night
Glovers chairman and chief executive John Fry is to appear on the Carlton Westcountry and HTV versions of the Soccer Night programme tomorrow night (Thursday) according to the club's official site, 11pm kick-off.

The topic up for discussion is "internet forums", something the media see as 'newsworthy' following the resignation of David Webb as Chief executive at Huish Park this week. Steve Lansdown and Geoff Dunford, chairmen of Bristol City and Rovers respectively, will be joining the Yeovil Town chairman to give a well reasoned and balanced view.

The HTV edition of Soccer Night is normally recorded at the HTV studios in Bristol, however the Westcountry version is generally filmed on location from a pub near one of the region's football clubs, with both The Bell and The Arrow in Yeovil being used in the past. At the time of writing there's no indication as to where the show is being recorded this week.


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22 February 2006 : Barry's the real deal, says Skivo
Yeovil Town club captain Terry Skiverton has been watching the Glovers new midfield signing Anthony Barry, picked up from Conference leaders Accrington Stanley in January, and Skivo has been impressed with what he's seen. Like manager Steve Thompson, Skivo sees a lot of former Glovers midfielder Lee Johnson in Yeovil's new acquisition, with the bonus that Barry is evidently a good tackler - not a trait that even Johnno's biggest fan would associate with the Hearts midfielder!

"Lee was always keen to go forward and attack but Anthony is keen to get stuck in and make tackles as well which is a really good sign," Skiverton told the Western Daily Press today. "Anthony stays behind after training and works on his game like Lee did. His ability is second to none, he has got a good shot on him and he gets around the pitch well, too. He is a really nice lad who has settled in well and he is good to have in the changing room."

It's been a big ask for a 19-year-old to come in and immediately gell with the rest of the team, but Barry's performances in the last two games certainly bode well for his future. Neither he nor Skiverton will be involved in tonight's reserve team fixture at home to Bristol City, Skivo has now trained for the last 2 days with no problems following his lay-off with a double hernia but tonight's match and Saturday's 6-pointer at Blackpool come to soon into his recovery for him to be involved in.

"I've suffered no ill effects to training and I'm itching to get back in action, but the Blackpool match may be just too soon," Skiverton said.


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22 February 2006 : Thommo Searches For The Ready-Made Product
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has refined his search criteria for new blood that he hopes to bring in before the end of the season. Steve believes he needs to bring in loan players that can instantly step in and make a difference to the starting eleven with just 14 League One games remaining, rather than the more long term policy of bringing in players that can be developed across the next few seasons. Steve said he was still looking out for players in advance of the trip to Blackpool but would be selective in who he brought in.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol Thommo explained: "There is always a chance. In all honesty I could have made one or two signings over the last four or five days. But I do feel they have to improve the team. I don't think we are in a state where we are trying to improve the squad. I think we have enough squad players and it is now a case of can we improve the team? Can we have a player that can go straight in?"

Steve was asked if Charlton Athletic striker Kevin Lisbie was a good example of the calibre of player that he wanted to bring in and he admitted: "Yes, I have always rated Kevin Lisbie as a very good player. He would have been fantastic for us. I did make an enquiry to Charlton but unfortunately so did five Premiership clubs! It looks as though he may be on the way to Derby but you always hope. With so many Championship clubs in for Kevin, however, it is difficult to see how we are going to get him."


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22 February 2006 : Glovers Concentrate On Blackpool
Glovers boss Steve Thompson says his side are concentrating only on one thing this week - getting a result at Bloomfield Road when they travel to play Blackpool on Saturday. The two sides are divided only by a single point and the relegation line in the League One table, and a positive for either side would pretty much guarantee that the loser spends the rest of the weekend in the drop zone. Whilst the Glovers have as much as two games in hand on many of their rivals, it is one psychological barrier that the club would not wish to break.

Speaking to the Glovers official site, Thommo explained: "We are training with the Blackpool match very much in mind this week. It is a very important game, with everything to play for, the challenge is obviously a big one. Myself, Kevin and the players are enjoying the challenge. You would rather be up there challenging at the top but at the moment we have our own fight and that fight has one meaning only and that is Blackpool away. Everything must go into that game, you can only take one game at a time and if you start looking at bunches of games you end up taking your eye off the ball and at the moment that ball is Blackpool away on Saturday."

The Ciderspace guide to Blackpool can be found here.


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22 February 2006 : Beckford Chase Hots Up
Yeovil Town's plans to sign Wealdstone striker Jermaine Beckford may have hit a small snag this week. Premiership leaders Chelsea have decided they are running out of players and so have offered to take Beckford on a two day trial at Stamford Bridge to assess whether they want to offer him a professional contract.

All has gone quiet after Yeovil put in their offer for the pacey and prolific scorer who is now up to 34 goals this season, and Ciderspace has a small suspicion that Roman Abramovich may be able to edge out any offer on the table from his Yeovil counterparts, should Beckford's trial prove successful.


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21 February 2006 : Directors Respond To Webb Exit
Yeovil Town's Board of Directors have issued their own statement in response to the resignation of David Webb as Chief Executive (see yesterday's story). The brief statement was issued via the official site and reads as follows:

"The Directors of Yeovil Town Football Club were saddened by the news of David Webb's decision to resign from his role as Chief Executive of the Club and not take up his seat on the board. New Chief Executive John Fry and the board will continue to give David Webb our full support and carry on running this club with the financial prudence that has established Yeovil Town as one of the best run clubs in the Football League. For the present our main concern is Saturday's match with Blackpool and our determination to maintain our Coca Cola League One status."

Club chairman John Fry - now back in his Chief Executive role - conducted an interview with Ciderspace tonight and the output from that should hopefully appear on this site within the next 24-48 hours.


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21 February 2006 : Reserves vs Bristol City
A reminder that Yeovil Town Reserves take on Bristol City's Reserve side at Huish Park tomorrow (Wednesday) night at 7.00pm in a match that will no doubt see former manager Gary Johnson either in the dugout or sat in the stands.

Prices for tomorrow's game are two pounds for adult season ticket holders with concessions admitted free of charge. Non season ticket holders gain admission for three pounds, with concessions priced at two pounds.

The official site has predicted tomorrow's starting line-up to be as follows:

Steve Collis, Jamie Vincent, Stephen Reed, Scott Guyett, Dale Williams, Bradley Thomas, Pablo Bastianini, Richard Cullingford, Arron Davies, Gavin McCallum, Daniel Webb.

Bristol City have yet to publicise any team news from their end - this will be publicised as soon as it is known.


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21 February 2006 : Jevo and Kevin Stick Together
Yeovil Town players Phil Jevons and Kevin Amankwaah have vowed to not let this week's events off the field affect their performances on it, as they prepare for Saturday's trip to Blackpool with the losers certain to end Saturday in the relegation zone. The duo spoke to BBC Radio Bristol today and both said they would be putting the resignation of former Chief Executive David Webb out of their minds.

Kevin stressed the importance of team spirit explaining: "We have meetings before training and we agreed the important thing for us is to stick together. We are trying to stick together as much as possible. The team spirit is still there. Even though we have not been getting the results as a team, that team spirit is still there."

Jevo added that he was more interested in what was happening on the field of play: "All of those sort of things are out of our hands so we just get on with the games. We just put it out of our heads and enjoy our training. Hopefully we can put all that behind us and not worry about it and concentrate on what is happening on the pitch."


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21 February 2006 : City Fighting Their Way Into Trouble
The fall out from the night club 'incident' shortly after Gary Johnson arrived at TBCUTR (see Ciderspace 13th October, 2005) continues, with four Bristol City players formally charged.

Steve Brooker, Scott Brown, Bradley Orr and Dave Partridge all face charges of affray. Partridge, currently on loan to Franchise F.C., faces a further charge of assault causing actual bodily harm.

The case has been adjourned until 1st March 2006, when it is due to be heard at Bristol Magistrates Court.


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21 February 2006 : Another Year To Wait For That Wembley Appearance
What everybody has been expecting for months was announced today. The Football League has confirmed that, with the Wembley development behind schedule, the Championship, League One and League Two Play-Off Finals will be held at the Millennium Stadium once again. Oh well, on the strength of that the Glovers might as well give it a miss this year then.......


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21 February 2006 : Officials At Blackpool
The referee for Saturday's 21st v 20th clash at Bloomfield Road is Paul Robinson of Yorkshire. It's quite a while since we've seen Mr Robinson : the 0-2 victory at Roots Hall towards the end of our first season, 2003-04, in the Football League in fact. All we recall of note in the officiating department is that the second half kicked off late as Robinson was seeking whoever was responsible for the P.A. system to instruct them to turn the volume down.

Kevin Mattocks (Lancashire) and Steve Pardoe (Cheshire) are the assistant referees, with John Stokes (Wirral) the fourth official.


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21 February 2006 : Thommo 'hopeful' of signing loan striker before Saturday
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has confirmed that the offer he made to take Charlton striker Kevin Lisbie on loan has fallen through, but that an 18-year-old Premiership striker could be at the club in time for Saturday's trip to Blackpool.

"I did ask about Lisbie but he's going to a Championship club," Thompson told the Western Daily Press today. "That's been the problem with a few strikers I wanted. A lot of the time clubs at a higher level are also in for them and you can understand why they make the decision to play higher up.

"But I have been in talks with the agent of a young striker from a Premiership club and he could join us this week . He's only 18 and may be a bit of a gamble but I think he could be a good signing."



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21 February 2006 : John Fry On Radio Bristol
Yeovil Town chairman John Fry spoke to Radio Bristol this morning regarding the circumstances surrounding the resignation of former chief executive David Webb. During the interview two main points emerged: Firstly, that Mr Fry has once again resumed the chief executive's role he relinquished for David Webb when Webb took over Jon Goddard-Watts shareholding at the club; secondly that Mr Webb plans to remain as majority shareholder but will not be investing money into the club - the club will have to live or die on the income the club generates. The transcript of Mr Fry's interview is as follows:

"I'd like to on behalf of the vast majority of supporters thank David Webb for what he has achieved in his short spell as Chief Executive. His vision and his inspiration has already progressed the club into the next stage of our development and we intend to continue his ideas irrespective of disruptive views of a minority of our supporters to which David has referred to within his press statement.

"The facts of life is that people have to be patient. I get this abuse all the time. I've had it for thirteen years. Yes, David Webb is a strong person and he has put his money up into this football club and he was going to support and still wants to support this football club. But when you get this abuse and innuendo from both the press and from a minority of supporters you begin to wonder what you've let yourself in for. Everyone at Huish Park is very saddened by David's decision to give up his role as Chief Executive, but extremely relieved that he intends to continue with his support and help as a majority shareholder of this club. Apart from a minority of supporters, I know our supporters will understand David's problems and his position.

"We have a club that has been extremely successful, but we have a limited amount of resources. If the fans knew what our resources were and what we have to manage with, including our financial resources, maybe they would get a better understanding. We are trying to be transparent in our football club in everything that we do. But there is an element of supporters that operate within these (internet) forums that are not transparent. They operate behind names that do not exist, and they won't come forward and face us with these criticisms through our Customer Charter Meetings. We are a club that has operated that Charter very successfully and properly and we ask our supporters to come along. We have a company to run, we have a board to run, we have strategic plans laid down by David Webb during the short time in which he was there.

"Maybe the fans didn't understand what he was trying to do. He took the role as the majority shareholder but perhaps he shouldn't have taken up the Chief Executive position. Like Jon Goddard-Watts was just our investor, he wanted to do the best for this club but he received no end of stick for what he has done. I want to give him a lot of credit here.

"David Webb is the majority shareholder - he owns the club. He has clarified his position with his press statement. The directors of the club will later today be putting out their own press statement describing how the board see that position. We have however already regrouped and I have taken back the responsibility of Chief Executive. It is a position that I have worked for 13 years, during which most of the time I have worked full time and for nothing for this football club and taken a load of stick for it along the way. That's now in the past, but I have taken back that position and I don't find that a problem.

"We still have 90 percent of our (League Two) Championship winning team at Huish Park. We have a lot of quality and talented people working at Huish Park with a limited amount of resources. Our immediate task is to get back to winning ways, starting with Blackpool this weekend. The strategic plan of bringing in young players, which David Webb was brought in to do, and through which we have already brought in a number of players who are very talented, will continue to be implemented. We do not have the financial resources, both for wages and for big transfer fees at this level to spend. Every club in football is spending more money than they can earn and it is going to take a long time before we can get proper business income streams running in football.

"It is not the job of a majority shareholder to invest money into a football club, because very few people put themselves up for that these days. Our business runs on its own two feet with its Commercial operations and the backing of our supporters. They are a wonderful set of supporters and I hope that this weekend they give us their support at Blackpool and with a bit of luck in front of goal, we can all put this distraction behind us."


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20 February 2006 : Questions For John Fry
In the wake of tonight's resignation of David Webb from his post as Chief Executive of Yeovil Town Football Club, club Chairman John Fry has offered an interview for the site to help address any future concerns. We can't guarantee all questions will be answered, but if you would like to help shape the interview and have a burning question, drop an email to ytfcbadger@ntlworld.com and we will try and slot it into the list.

The club's Board of Directors are expected to formulate their own statement in response to David Webb's resignation and this will be published hopefully at some point tomorrow.


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20 February 2006 : Webb Resigns As Chief Executive
Yeovil Town Football Club owner David Webb has today resigned his post as Chief Executive with immediate effect. Webb blames a less than luke warm reaction to his 53 days in charge of the club as influencing his decision, claiming that "personal abuse and innuendo" has forced his hand.

At present there is no mention of the status of his shareholding, meaning that for the time being at least, he remains as the club's majority shareholder and club owner. There is also no mention as to who is likely to take over the Chief Executive position, although it seems inevitable that the man he replaced, Chairman John Fry, will take back over the reins.

The full statement as issued tonight on the club's official site by Webb reads as follows:

"I am sorry to announce that as of today, I have decided to relinquish my position as Chief Executive of Yeovil Town Football Club. I will not therefore be taking up a position as a Director on the Board of the Club.

"The decision has emanated not just from the recent criticism about my actions since being involved at the Club, but also the personal abuse and innuendos that have been attached to it. Why for instance does the car I drive find its way into a match report, other than for reasons of being mischievous.

"There seems to have been, maybe only from a minority of people, a consensus that I was only intent on taking the Club backwards and not forward and upwards. There are many difficult decisions to be made by all football clubs in these troubled financial times and Yeovil Town is no exception. To put it as a simple analogy, it's like a doctor doing his best to treat a patient, only to be accused of causing the illness.

"The illness that drips through football is too high costs with not enough income. To this end the Chairman and Directors of Yeovil Town have been pioneers in the sensible management of budgets, but even a club as well run as Yeovil Town will have to be more reliant upon other income streams in the future if it wants to compete on the bigger stage. A sensible flow of talent through the Club will help it, along with the redevelopment of Huish Park, to encourage more income and not be solely reliant upon the football income.

"I came to this club with a clear vision of what needs to be done and supported that vision with my own money, whilst not taking any payments for my endeavours. Part of that vision was to search out and pursue new young footballing talent for Yeovil Town, which at some point in time might be recognised, as were the likes of Terry Skiverton, Chris Weale, Andy Lindegaard and Darren Way.

"Following my last period at Huish Park I have always felt a particular warmth and respect from this club and its supporters and I do not wish to ruin that feeling in any way.

"You only have to look around at clubs pleading for help and in a distressed financial position to understand that proper control and harsh decisions have to be made for the long term future survival of any football club.

"It is with a heavy heart that I take this decision, as I truly believe Yeovil Town has greater ambitions to achieve. I will of course give John Fry and his Board my support in their efforts to attain these for the benefit of those with the well being of the Club at heart
."


The reference to Webb's car comes in a report written for the Western Gazette which an be found here and relates to the 2-0 home defeat against Southend United. The offending text reads: "Mark Bentley, whose surname matches the make of Webb's car, grabbed his fifth goal of the season to put the visitors in front." It is difficult to see why that statement within the match report caused so much offence.

The suggestions that Webb endured abuse are also puzzling. The former Chelsea player has a reputation both on and off the field as being one of football's hard men and it is surprising that a man that held so steadfast during a rebellion at Brentford Football Club would move so quickly to leave Yeovil Town following a minor show of displeasure at the Southend United match that was afterwards condemned by many supporters as an over-reaction.

Following that incident, the club held an emergency Customer Charter Meeting of which the reports coming out of the meeting were on the whole positive, suggesting that further communication was the way to win over supporters. Since then, the Glovers have only played one home match - a mid-weeker against Milton Keynes Dons during which supporters put their full energies behind Steve Thompson's side. Hence it seemed as though any dissention within the ranks was fizzling out. Certainly it appeared as though the majority of supporters either felt appeased by the output from the Customer Charter Meeting or were at the very least more interested in the more immediate concern of supporting Thommo's side in their fight to ensure League One safety. Was that still enough to force out one of 1970s Football 'hardmen' out from his position?

For the moment at least there are still more unanswered questions relevant to the future of the football club. Does Webb intend to sell his shares, and therefore see the club change ownership once again? Does Webb's resignation as Chief Executive change the running of the club in any outward way, or in the way that First Team manager Steve Thompson is able to conduct his business? Regardless of what the club's long term plans now are, it is the immediate future and the next 14 League One games that matter.


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20 February 2006 : Skivo back in training
Good news! Club captain Terry Skiverton is back in training after recovering from the double hernia operation he underwent in January. Skivo completed his first full training session today with no problems surfacing during or after the session.

"I've suffered no ill effects after this morning's work out and naturally I am now itching to get back," Skivo told the official site this afternoon, adding: "But I think Saturday's match may be just too soon. I'd like to publicly thank Glen Schmidt [club physio] for all the work he has put in with me."

And so say all of us! Great timing, Skivo's return to the training ground and the squad will provide a big boost just at the time the team needs it the most.


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20 February 2006 : Pools splash out on appointments
League One strugglers Hartlepool United have confirmed the appointment of caretaker manager Paul Stephenson as er, caretaker manager. Stephenson, who took over from previous incumbent Martin Scott after Scott was dismissed a fortnight ago (see Feb 8th news story) has been confirmed as temporary boss until the end of the season. Pools have won 1 and drawn 2 since he began his tenure as caretaker and are currently 18th in League One on 38 points.

In addition former Pools manager Chris Turner has been appointed as 'Director of Sport', whatever one of those is. Apparently he will be involved in "negotiations over the future of Hartlepool's ground, the club's overseas participation in football tournaments, pre-season planning, conferences and Football League issues," according to the club's official site.


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20 February 2006 : Lisbie having you - or not, as the case may be
While we're waiting for this afternoon's big announcement, whatever it turns out to be, it seems that the Glovers are persisting in their efforts to sign a striker on loan and they're not aiming low either: Charlton striker Kevin Lisbie is the latest player that Glovers boss Steve Thompson has enquired about, according to Sky Sports.

Don't hold your breath waiting to see the Jamaican interntional gracing the Huish Park pitch however, it's not going to happen. "We did enquire about him but Charlton are keen to see him going to a Championship club at least," Thommo told skysports.com. "We've got four or five strikers here at the minute, so we're not desperate to bring anybody in but if we could find somebody who fitted the bill then something might happen."

Championship club Derby County appear to be favourites to sign the striker. "Kevin's got pace and has experience of playing in The Premiership," said Rams caretaker manager Terry Westley. "I worked with him as a 17-year-old at Charlton so I know what we're getting and the lad wants to play games."


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20 February 2006 : Club Announcement Put Back
Yeovil Town Football Club have delayed tonight's announcement by an hour. It will now be published at 6.00pm today.


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20 February 2006 : Club To Make Press Statement
Yeovil Town Football Club have announced that they will be making a statement to the press at 5.00pm today. The nature of the statement is not revealed at this stage.

However, just prior to the club notifying that there would be such an announcement the rumourmill also predicted that there would be a major development today concerning the future of club owner and Chief Executive David Webb.

What that future would be is not clear. Webb currently holds two positions within the club that are wholly independent of each other. As Chief Executive, he is responsible for the day-to-day running of the club which is normally a paid position that can be held irrespective of shareholding. The role of Chief Executive is normally one appointed by the company owner, board of directors or the shareholders. In the case of Yeovil Town FC, David Webb is a 90+ percent shareholder was able to select himself as Chief Executive. As club owner he also controls own his future in that role and can choose to appoint an alternative, or to dissolve the role entirely.

Webb's shareholding within the club represents an entirely different kettle of fish. Whilst a Chief Executive can resign, a shareholder can not - he has to find a buyer for his shares. Thus if such a scenario was to develop, the more pertinent question would be "who is the buyer?"

One such name that has been on a few people's lips in the last couple of weeks is former director Norman Hayward. Norman was the majority shareholder at Yeovil Town during the late 1990s but sold his shareholding to Jon Goddard-Watts in November 2001.

Officially the club did not reveal Norman's thinking, but unofficially Norman was involved in a court case involving the Lloyds TSB Bank concerning his liability towards debts incurred by AFC Bournemouth. Norman won that case after a ten year legal dogfight and his case was recently featured on BBC1 programme Inside Out. Bournemouth's Official Site recently slammed Lloyds TSB for what they saw as sizeable blame for Bournemouth's demise and used an announcement that they were switching to a rival bank as a means to heavily criticise Lloyds.

Towards the end of his case, Norman resumed connections with his old club AFC Bournemouth, taking up a position as a director of their Community Mutual Trust - the independent Supporters Trust that is currently working alongside the actual AFC Bournemouth board.

As far as FA rules are concerned there would be nothing to stop Norman taking up a director's position at another club, even if holding two positions at rival clubs may create a separate moral debate.

Norman is close friends with David Webb and was the director who introduced Webb to Huish Park in early 2000, initially as a Football Advisor and later as First Team Manager. It would therefore be no surprise that with Norman now free of such legal battles and able to devote his time to other matters, if he had some part to play in today's announcement.

As they say, watch this space! And if it turns out to be the Glovers signing a striker from Bognor Regis's Reserve Team, we didn't say any of the above!


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20 February 2006 : MK Dons MOTM result
Kevin Gall was voted YTFC Man of the Match in the 1-1 draw with Milton Keynes Dons by Ciderspace and Mailing List users.

Full results can be found at the foot of the match report.


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19 February 2006 : Forthcoming Away Matches
A reminder that remaining tickets for AFC Bournemouth away (Saturday 18th March) and Bristol City away (Saturday 1st April) go on GENERAL SALE from tomorrow, Monday 20th February. Both games are ALL-TICKET.

AFC Bournemouth : Adults £17.00, Concessions (Over 65 and Students) £9.00, Juniors (Under 16) £7.00.

Disabled fans get into The Fitness First Stadium (Dean Court) for free. One helper / carer per disabled fan is also entitled to free entry. E-mail The Cherries on tickets@afcb.co.uk or phone their Ticket Office on 01202 726303. You can have the tickets posted out, or arrange to pick them up on the day from the dedicated 'Special Needs' steward Phillip Tyrell.

Bristol City : Adults £17.00, Concessions (Over 65 and Students) £13.00, Juniors (Under 16) £6.00.

All tickets are for unreserved covered seating in the Wedlock Blackthorn Stand behind the goal. The stand has a number of pillars, so with the seating unreserved those wishing to ensure the best view should arrive early.

Disabled supporters and carers will need to ring Bristol City on 0117 9630607.

The Ciderspace guide for our next match, Blackpool on Saturday 25th February at 3.00 p.m., can be found here, containing the usual information on history, stats, travel, pubs and ticketing.

And at this point an apology to Ticket Office Manager Sue Parsons. It certainly wasn't our intention to slight the Ticket Office earlier this month. We've always found Sue courteous, helpful and extremely competent. Our concern that ticketing information on the Official Site has occasionally been in error is that although initial copy comes direct from the Ticket Office, and is therefore accurate, when there are subsequent late changes the Media and Communications Department has sometimes failed to update accordingly. If this was expressed badly at the time, our apologies. The item has been amended and we hope is now clear.

The away guides for the matches coming up in March are also now on-line for fans planning ahead :

Chesterfield : Saturday 4th March, 3.00 p.m.

AFC Bournemouth : Saturday 18th March, 3.00 p.m.

Walsall (rearranged) : Tuesday 21st March, 7.45 p.m.


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18 February 2006 : League One round-up
Results in League One today were relatively kind to Yeovil Town on their enforced day off as a result of Brentford's 5th round FA Cup tie at Charlton this afternoon - a match the Bees lost 3-1.

The Glovers dropped a place to 20th - next stop the relegation zone - in the league table with the bottom half still extraordinarily tight and all teams up to Nottingham Forest (44 points) in 10th position still looking nervously over their shoulders at each other.

Franchise FC (31) are still firmly rooted to the bottom of the table following a 5-0 thrashing at play-off chasing Huddersfield but crisis club Rotherham (36) did themselves a power of good by beating fellow strugglers Swindon at the County Ground, Martin Butler bagging a brace for the not-so-merry Millers. Managerless Walsall (37) dropped to 22nd after a depressing (for Saddlers fans, it didn't bother anyone else one bit) 0-2 home loss to Oldham and Blackpool (37) are in the final relegation spot after gaining a point at Bournemouth in a 1-1 draw, James Hayter missing an 86th minute penalty for the Cherries. Yeovil (38) are 20th, with a game in hand over everyone else in the bottom half of the table and 2 games in hand over some teams. Swindon (38) drop 3 places to 19th with Hartlepool (38) 18th - Pools also didn't play today due to Colchester's FA Cup date with destiny at Stamford Bridge tomorrow (the U's are a 25/1 touch to beat Chelsea should you fancy showing a little inter-divisional solidarity with the men from Layer Road).

The Glovers would have remained in 19th spot but for an injury-time Steve Torpey goal which gave Scunthorpe (38) a point in a 2-2 draw with promotion-chasing Swansea at Glanford Park. The Manchester United of League One (© Alan Tate) will never get the chance to become the 2nd richest club in the known universe's equivalent in the Championship if they don't stop letting in late goals like that - the unexpected point meant that the Iron moved up to 17th on goal difference. TBCUTR (39) are 16th following their 1-1 draw at Bradford City whilst Gillingham (40) lost 2-0 at an improving Doncaster to go to 15th position. Two wins in a row have done Donny the world of good, the Yorkshiremen shooting up the table to the giddy heights of 9th, on 46 points. Bournemouth (41) are 14th and Tranmere (41) , 0-1 losers at home to Barnsley, are in 13th position.

At the other end of the table Southend did it again, a Freddy Eastwood hat-trick helping the Shrimpers to come from behind to beat Chesterfield 4-3 at Saltergate to remain top, on 63 points. Colchester (59), as already mentioned, have no league match this weekend but stay 2nd despite that with Huddersfield (59) moving up to 3rd ahead of 4th-placed Swansea (57), who failed to take advantage of the U's inaction with that draw at Scunthorpe.


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18 February 2006 : Youth Match Postponed
Yeovil Town Under 18s trip to Newport County today was unfortunately postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.


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18 February 2006 : 'Kids For A Quid' At Saltergate Now On Sale
The 'Kids For A Quid' offer from Chesterfield for our visit on Saturday 4th March goes on sale from today. Whilst all other away ticketing is pay-on-the-day this offer MUST be taken up in advance. Youngsters, accompanied by an adult paying full price in any part of the ground, cost just £1.00, and 50p of that will be donated to Bluebell Wood Children's Hospice. This is a saving of £10.00 in the seating area and £4.00 on the open terrace. Phone Chesterfield Ticket Office on 01246 209765.

The Ciderspace guide to Chesterfield, with complete pricing details and all the usual information on club and town, can be found here.


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17 February 2006 : More Nominations For Football League Awards
The Football League has released further nominations for its inaugural awards night and gala dinner at The London Hilton on Park Lane on Sunday, 5 March 2006.

Despite waiting with bated breath we are sad to report that the Yeovil Town Official Site has not been nominated in the Best Club Website award, sponsored by Premium TV.

Nominees are : Ipswich Town, Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Reading, Sheffield Wednesday, Southampton, Wycombe Wanderers.

Although all these clubs have more than one website, and it doesn't specify which one has been nominated, we are taking a wild guess that they are all the sponsor's sites.

Neither are we in with a shout as Most Admired Football League Club, sponsored by Oxygen8.

Nominees : Brighton & Hove Albion, Crewe Alexandra, Ipswich Town, Norwich City, Reading, Southend United.

Nor for Best Ground, sponsored by Carling, and voted for by away fans.

Nominees : Hull City, Reading, Sheffield United.

As this writer voted for the Koveston Communications Stadium as the best he'd been to since we entered the League, COME ON YOU TIGERS!

Mickey Mouse awards anyway........


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17 February 2006 : Thommo Hopes For Gall Goal Boost
Glovers boss Steve Thompson is hoping that Kevin Gall's goal on Tuesday night against MK Dons will give the Welshman a boost for the rest of the season. Gally had scored five goals in the previous two Reserves matches suggesting that he was returning to form and Thommo rewarded him with a start up front against Port Vale and that continued through to Tuesday night when Gally scored the opener in a 1-1 draw.

Speaking to the Teamtalk website, Steve said: "It's great for Gally to be finding the back of the net again - it will give him a confidence boost. Kevin's been playing well and it's good to be rewarded with a goal when your play deserves it."


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17 February 2006 : Proof The Club Does Respond To Letters?
Inspired by chairman John Fry's exhortation in last week's Western Gazette (see below, February 9th.) to write direct to the club about issues rather than to the press, and his promotion of the Customer Services Charter as the vehicle for managing complaints and services, an administrator of this site (er, that would be me - HHH) wrote to the chairman. It was pointed out that said Customer Services Charter had not been displayed on the club's Official Site for over a year as far as I knew, and that there was no information as to who should be contacted. It had previously been the function of the Media and Communications Department run by Media Manager Adrian Hopper, but the job description of that department on the OS contained no reference to dealing with customer contacts.

Coincidence or not, but today the Customer Service Charter has reappeared on the Official Site. The Customer Charter Manager is your point of contact, and it's still our otherwise described Media Manager : Adrian Hopper.

Adrian will welcome all your communications by :

telephone : 01935 423662 Ext.273

e-mail : media@ytfc.net

letter : Adrian Hopper, Customer Charter Manager, Huish Park, Lufton Way, Yeovil, Somerset, BA22 8YF.

Adrian Hopper is committed to :
- responding to any contact from a customer within a period of 30 working days.
- normally responding by either letter or e-mail.
- if a customer requests a response by telephone he/she will receive one.
- setting up meetings with supporters by prior arrangement.

Thirty working days (which is presumably six weeks) seems an unfathomably long turn around time, and we are struggling to think of ever having come across another business stipulating that sort of period. Twenty working days is normally the upper end, and many businesses look to respond to their customers within ten or fifteen these days. However - nothing is as straight forward as it first appears at Yeovil Town - elsewhere in the Charter it states : "complaints or suggestions should be e mailed to media@ytfc.net where they will be dealt with within 14 days." Thirty working days, or fourteen days? You takes your choice, but mine would be to mail in a reminder if nothing had transpired after the fourteen.

So there you have it. That's what the club promises. Just the question of seeing if it delivers. The chairman has set a standard by sorting out this issue within seven days. An excellent marker has been laid down for Mr Hopper to aspire to in his dealings with future communications.


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17 February 2006 : Youth Team At Newport
Yeovil Town's Under 18s side travel to play Newport County tomorrow morning with an 11.00am kick-off. The game will be played at Llanrumney Sports Fields in East Cardiff.

To get there, use the following set of directions:

1) Leave the M4 Motorway at Junction 29.
2) Join the A48M signed Cardiff.
3) The A48M changes to the A48, turn off at the third exit signed Cardiff East and Docks.
4) Go left onto the A4161 stay in the left lane and turn first left at the roundabout on to the B4487.
5) Then take the 5th turning left, just before traffic lights, this is Llanrumney Avenue.
6) Then take the 4th turning left into Ball Road.
7) The ground is then 3rd left Hartland Road at bottom of the hill.

If anyone is going to the game and is able to supply a match report, brief news item, or merely just pass a mobile number where we can give you a call, please drop a line to ytfcciderspace@yahoo.com


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17 February 2006 : Fry Claims 'Misunderstanding'
Yeovil Town chairman John Fry claims he was 'misunderstood' in yesterday's item on the club's budgeting in the Western Gazette (see below, February 16th). In today's Western Daily Press he moves to clear up that 'misunderstanding', though whether he succeeds, or simply opens up a whole series of other confusions is open to question.

He now says that the club had forecast a possible loss of between £400,000 and £600,000 for season 2005-06 as a worst case scenario, but that the loss is currently expected to come in at £100,000 to £200,000.

Every season we forecast losses, and pro rata to the amount we spend, they are always between £400,000 and £600,000. When we were part-time we would forecast losses of £150,000 and it has obviously steadily increased. But we have had a few player sales and compensation for our manager going elsewhere, so this year's loss has been reduced to between £100,000 and £200,000 at this moment.

We don't know about anyone else, but this comes as something of a surprise. Why should a football club losing money come as a surprise? They mostly do. Well forgive us if we've got hold of the wrong end of the stick over the years, but there have been repeated statements that this club aims to live within its means, that we are a prudent club, that we won't spend more than we earn, won't return to the mess of the early Nineties. It has almost been a mantra from the chairman to explain why we couldn't afford this, or wouldn't be spending money on that. Now it seems the club has a policy in place that looks like the exact opposite : of budgeting for an overspend and keeping its fingers crossed that something like a cup run or a player sale will turn up.

Fry went on to (sort of) explain the loss :

It is simple: we are not earning enough income to cover the expenditure of running a football club. And that does not just apply to Yeovil, it is football's disease. You have to ask the question 'is football going broke'? Look at all the clubs that have been in administration by pushing the boat out too far. There has to be a solution and I would recommend that the Football League seriously looks at capping the amount clubs can spend on earnings. Rotherham's current financial situation should act as a powerful warning to all smaller clubs. We are being sensible, but some fans are trying to push us over the top. People think you can make money running a club but that is not the case.

Perhaps Ciderspace is mistaken, but as far as we know the Football League does have wage capping in place, John. It's called the Salary Cost Management System. The Football League reported in June 2004 that all clubs, which would include Yeovil Town, had met its initial introduction into then Division Three for the 2003-04 season at 60% of turn over. The scheme was then expanded to Division Two (now League One) for 2004-05. It is voluntary, but we are not aware of any club in these two divisions that has refused to participate. Once 'signed up' it would be possible for clubs to 'cheat', but difficult given the quarterly submissions that have to be made. Clubs close to the limit that want to take on an additional player have to apply to the League for clearance and back it up with revised costs and budgets. Clubs can supplement their income, and therefore their expenditure on players, by asset sales or new capital, but money put in as loans is disallowed from the wage cap calculation. The Championship clubs have so far refused to participate. Is Mr Fry saying this scheme is no longer in place for 2005-06?


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16 February 2006 : Pitcher Trial May Be Put On Hold
Clevedon Town striker Jack Pitcher's second trial spell with Yeovil Town may be put on hold after Clevedon manager Phil Bater expressed reservations about the timing of the trial. Pitcher was going to come back to Huish Park to work around next week's reserve team match against Bristol City

However, Clevedon face a top of the table clash against Ashford Town this weekend in the Southern League Division One West and follow that up against another home match against mid-table Bromsgrove Rovers on the following Saturday and Bater would rather the Glovers took a look at Pitcher when the two sides clash in the Somerset Premier Cup mid-way through next month (see story below).

Speaking to the Bristol Evening Post Bater explained: "It shouldn't be forgotten that Jack is still a Clevedon player and, as such, his first loyalty is to us. I'm concerned that by playing against Bristol City he may risk injury in the run-up to what is a very important game against Bromsgrove. We go to Huish Park in the county cup early next month and that will allow Yeovil's people a good look at him. That way, all parties get what they want."


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16 February 2006 : Clevedon Date Set
Yeovil Town's Somerset Premier Cup Quarter-Final against Clevedon Town has now been rearranged, following a postponement due to the first team's League One match against Brentford being moved to Tuesday March 7th. The County Cup match will now be played on Tuesday March 14th at Huish Park with a 7.45pm kick-off. The knock on effect is that the Reserves fixture away to Swansea City scheduled for that afternoon will now presumably be postponed.


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16 February 2006 : Interview With Kevin Gall
Kevin Gall spoke to the media after scoring the opening goal in the 1-1 draw against struggling MK Dons at Huish Park on Tuesday evening.

Gally admitted that he hopes to prove his critics wrong, who claim that he is not a centre-forward, by continuing to find the net: "A lot of people keep saying that I am not a centre-forward any more but I am going to prove people wrong. Hopefully I got one step forward to proving people that tonight. I have always been a centre-forward and it is where I learnt to play."

Read the full interview with Kevin Gall by clicking here or head to the Ciderspace Interviews Section.


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16 February 2006 : Forest Fire
Another League One manager has bitten the dust - this time it's Nottingham Forest manager Gary Megson who's paid the price for poor results and has left the City Ground 'by mutual consent'.

Megson replaced former boss Joe Kinnear at Forest this time last year but with the club already struggling couldn't stop their eventual relegation into League One. This season has consistently been a struggle for Megson who was expected to take Forest straight back up to the Championship. In reality they have been the epitome of mid-table mediocrity, their excellent home form masking the failings of their appalling away record. After spendng over £1 million pounds on strikers Nathan Tyson and Grant Holt in January results had to improve, but 1 win in the last 10 games tells its own story and with Forest 13th in the table with 41 points - only 3 ahead of the Glovers! - the end for Megson was inevitable. First team coach Alan Crawford has also departed.

Reserve team coach Ian McParland and Megson’s assistant Frank Barlow are expected to be confirmed as caretaker managers ahead of this weekend's L1 fixture at Port Vale.


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16 February 2006 : PT wants to sign new deal
So much for the rumours! For weeks now the rumour mill has been full of stories concerning the imminent departure of Glovers midfielder Paul Terry, unsettled at the club according to those 'in the know' and set to sign for various clubs with the names of Luton Town, Leyton Orient and even Paul's former club Dagenham & Redbridge being bandied about as possible destinations for the hard-working midfielder.

This is from the horses mouth, speaking in today's Western Gazette: "I am happy at the moment. My contract is up at the end of the season and I hope we can get something sorted soon. I am more than happy to commit myself to the club. If we can get the right package sorted I would like to stay."


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16 February 2006 : Amankwaah proving his worth, says Thommo
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has been paying tribute to defender Kevin Amankwaah, usually seen playing as a right back but pressed into action as an emergency central defender for the last two games against Port Vale and the MK Dons where he has excelled - despite playing through the pain barrier with a toe injury.

"Kevin has played really well as a centre-back in both games," Thommo told the Western Daily Press today. "I decided to keep him there against MK Dons (on Tuesday) to counter-act the pace of Izale McLeod and I thought it worked well. What most people won't know is that Kevin has played in the last three games with very little training in between. He's got a painful toe injury that requires rest to help it recover and he's done well to play through it."

Thompson has been given new options by the return to fitness of central defenders Colin Miles and Scott Guyett - both have now recovered from the different virus infections that have kept them out of the team lately. But the form of Andy Lindegaard in the 1-1 draw against Milton Keynes on Tuesday night in Amankwaah's normal position of right back may encourage the manager to stick with the defence that lined up against the Dons in future games.

"When I took over as manager Andy Lindegaard was completely out of the equation, but I knew I wanted him to be part of things," Thompson said. "He's had to be patient and wait for his chance but he's come in and done very well. I don't know whether Kevin (Amankwaah) will play in central defence in upcoming games. That will depend on the opposition and the forwards they have available. But one of the big reasons for his success as a central defender has been the improvement in his heading. He's worked really hard in training and with his height (6ft 2in) he's just got to time his jumps to make sure of winning the header."

Thommo has also been praising Kevin Gall and new signing Anthony Barry for the parts they played in the Milton Keynes game. "I was pleased that Kevin got a goal and now the challenge for him is to keep scoring. Anthony has handled the step from the Conference to League One very well and he's only going to keep improving."


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16 February 2006 : Thommo hopeful of signing striker before the weekend
Glovers boss Steve Thompson is hopeful of signing an experienced striker on loan from a Championship club before the weekend - but has been offered the possibility of signing 2 youngsters from Premiership sides instead, if his first choice falls through.

Speaking to the Western Daily Press, the manager said: "I've been on the phone again, as I have been most of the week, and there is the possibility of getting someone in from the Championship. Ideally I'd like to get him in by the weekend so he can spend a full week training with us before the Blackpool game."

"I have been offered a couple of strikers from the Premiership, but they are both very young, just 18. I may end up taking one of them, but I am concerned that it is asking a lot and not all teenagers are like Wayne Rooney was - 18 going on 25. I think that 95 per cent of teenagers aren't ready for the physical aspect of football at League One level."


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16 February 2006 : 'Staggering' Deficit Forecast By Fry
Glovers Chairman John Fry claims that Yeovil Town are heading for what he describes as "staggering losses" as part of the company accounts for the 2005-06 season. Although today's Western Gazette is not explicit in the way they report it, Fry infers that this season's losses are in the region of 600K. If true it would represent the worst accounts for the club since around the time the club moved to Huish Park.

So how have the club suddenly moved from a debt-free club over the summer of 2005 when Jon Goddard-Watts converted the whole of the club's remaining debt into shares into a club that is now carrying "staggering losses" all in a season where crowds are holding up at an extremely healthy 6,545 average for League One matches.

In the Gazette's interview, Fry does not explain why such losses have materialised except to suggest that Darren Way's 150,000 pound fee from Swansea City had been swallowed up by the need to pay compensation to players whose contracts had been severed. The only instances of that happening this season were Luciano Alvarez, who was allowed to leave a couple of weeks before his four month deal ran out at the end of 2005, and Alexandro Melono who personally asked for his four month contract to be torn up after he found himself missing his wife and young child back home in South America.

Neither should therefore have put a large dent in the incoming transfer kitty, and all other outgoings from Huish Park have resulted in Yeovil Town receiving compensation in the form of transfer fees and contract settlements - Gary Johnson, Darren Way, Lee Johnson, Efetobore Sodje, and Luke Oliver were the others departing during the season.

Fry said of that situation: "One of the other biggest hidden costs is where players do not work out and you have to get rid of them - that is substantial. The transfer of one player like Darren Way pays for getting rid of another in com­pensation. People do not un­derstand that. The departures of Lee John­son and Darren last month were not unexpected. We could not match the wages and they wanted to go. Efetobore Sodje was a one-off situation where we had too many centre-backs and he wanted to go anyway. Apart from that and Gary Johnson going to Bristol City what has changed this season? We still have 95 per cent of the resources that we had last sea­son when we won League Two."

So what has changed? Fry implies that the club actually had purposefully drawn up budgets that were likely to incur a "huge loss" - i.e. that without an FA Cup run, a player being sold or far bigger crowds that there was always going to be a significant debit against the club accounts - what he does not state is whether the projected figure of 600K is bigger or smaller than what he anticipated although reading between the lines it would appear that they are far worse than planned for.

Fry explains: "We forecasted this season a huge loss even though it was our promotion year to League One. There has been some staggering losses and no per­son is going to come in and pay for those losses. We have got to get on top of those but we are not moaning because we are in a reasonably-healthy position. When you get knocked out of the cups early, like we did this season, you have to live for the rest of the campaign on League funds and a lot of that is up front with season-ticket sales. We have got nearly 4,000 of those so if the crowd is only 6,000 then you can see what is available in cash to run a sub­stantial wage bill. Seventy per cent of your costs at a club is wages so if you are already losing £600,000 on a forecasted budget, you can ill-afford to make mistakes on bringing players in."

A letter in last week's Gazette questioned "where has that money gone" - referring to the income from the sales of players and the compensation payments for Gary Johnson but Fry said that there was no money to spend on players explaining that they had been used to offset losses: "It is not the position that some of our fans believe. When you sell a player on all you are doing is filling in debts that have been incurred by the running of the business. When the board looks at budgets and they see the losses they will always say 'Reduce them' or 'Break even' and we all know that depends on either transferring players, windfalls or winning through rounds in the cups."

The question that all Glovers will be asking is how matters have deviated so badly against the original plans. If the forecasted losses are in the region of 600,000 pounds, then once the transfer of Way, Johnson, Sodje and Oliver are factored in with the compensation payments for Johnson Senior, this equates to an additional 300-400K, suggesting that had the club not sold off those players and seen their manager poached by Bristol City that the club could have been approaching losses of up to one million pounds. No wonder Fry describes the losses as "staggering" but this still begs the question of how matters had deviated so badly from the original business plan.

Looking forward to the future, Fry explained: "Our whole objective is to stay up, maintain our status and develop the club - not put it into debt or administration. We are not in the business of buy­ing players for huge sums of money and paying them wages that are a lot higher than what is in the budget. And there is no reason why we cannot develop young players with the expert­ise that we have brought into the club."


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16 February 2006 : Club and local council needs to work together on Huish Park development, says Fry
In a wide-ranging series of interviews featured in today's edition of the Western Gazette Yeovil Town chairman John Fry has given some insight in the problems involved in bringing forward the development of the Huish Park site and stadium into something fit for a progressive League One football club - and the chairman has admitted that the complexities and difficulties involved are sometimes mind-boggling.

"There has always been complications behind the scenes as to why the stadium has not been de­veloped more over the past 16 years," Mr Fry admitted. "We are continually talking with ex­ternal sources about a whole range of things but we do not come out in public and shout our mouths off about it because it is a wholesale round of negotiations. At the end of the day the stadium is incomplete. There have been rumours that it is going to be moved somewhere else but that is a load of nonsense. It is an option but not at this stage.

"There are so many issues that have to be dealt with and that is why David Webb has sat down professionally and looked into them over the past few weeks. There are so many issues regarding work on existing buildings, existing regulations, the artificial pitch, the training pitches, car-parking or whatever. There is so much of it that it does your head in. These things will only be resolved over a process of planning and organisation.

"I have been in negotiations about the training facilities. That is key to any issues to do with player devel­opment or even squad development. Over the past 16 years the club have managed to develop the Westland Stand and have managed to develop the main pitch but there were no training pitches when we came here. The only training pitch we had was the site alongside the artificial pitch. When you are a professional club, you need those training pitches. The pitches, at the top (Top Pitch area) were originally car-parks and a building dump. We laid the surfaces ourselves at our own cost but, with no disrespect to the groundsmen who know it as well, they are not fit for what we need. There is no drains in place and the water does not get away so when we have bad weather the staff cannot go up and train, we lose time and we look unprofessional.

"The groundsmen know we are des­perate to find other training pitches and we have dealt with this issue be­fore. Thanks to the Western Gazette, a few years ago we managed to find a particular spot. Mr Webb has had a look at this issue and gone through all the motions again which takes a lot of time. However, we are not prepared to make any statements until we know everything has been firmed up be­cause we have misled too many people already over the years on things that we want to happen but cannot move forward."


The chairman then went on to comment on the generally poor sporting facilities elsewhere in the town and the ways in which the local district council and the club need to work together for the town's mutual benefit.

"There is a desperate shortage of sports facilities in Yeovil," Fry commented. "The town have got one clapped-out artificial pitch at Huish Park and I am told there are around eight at Sherborne. Look at the population of Yeovil compared to Sherborne. Why is it that they have so many more? What has gone wrong? This is the reason why we are con­tinually meeting with the council. We want to know where they are putting their proposed sports village and what they want us to do. What role do they want us to play and can they help us? If they cannot then we will have to help ourselves but we do not want to do things which will work against their own policy. I am a great believer that it is a man with his feet on the ground who de­livers. You have to deliver. You can talk forever but unless you deliver what is the use? We want to be involved in the vision of Yeovil and we want to work alongside Yeovil College who have got the same problem with regards to pitches.

"Our women's football team (Yeovil Town Ladies), which is part of the com­munity aspect which we are hoping to develop, has to go to Tintinhull to play which does not make sense. We have three or four teams who are having to scrounge pitches in villages because there is nothing in Yeovil. You can put your houses up, you can put your factories up and so on but people need leisure facilities. From our view, the number-one part of the vision of Yeovil is where do they want to put Yeovil Town PC? We want to be an important part of the town. Where do they fit us? Where do we fit into this partnership? We are an important player as the football club and we have a big site. What do they want us to do and what can we do to help? And who is going to provide the money?

"We are a club who have delivered. Maybe people did not think we would but we have. We are a League One club and what the fans can do is help us with these issues of politics. They can support us and vote for us to get these things into place. Everything we are doing is above board and genuine - and we have got good reasons for it. We want to fit into the Yeovil dream but you cannot go on developing forever with the resources we have had over the past few years.

"Bless Gary Johnson. He will forever be in my books as the best manager that we have produced at this football club in my period here and he will go on from strength to strength but he has left us with major things to resolve. I recently read about Lee Johnson going to Heart of Midlothian and how they have got all these tremendous facilities - but that will not happen here overnight. In my book we have got to provide it for the local people as well as the football club so we can produce better sports people. It is not just about Yeovil Town's first team."


Mr Fry warned that gates as they stand will not be large enough for the club to continue to progress and that if the club was to prosper and go on to the next level then the stadium capacity would have to be increased to 12,000 - and the ground would have to be filled on a regular basis as well. But he was confident that such an aim was eventually achievable:

"There is a lot of work to be done at Huish Park and I think David Webb has come in at an important stage. He has got the knowledge and the expertise to help us achieve these things. We have to start providing the re­sources to back up the levels that we have reached. We have shortages everywhere in terms of things like toilets and snack bars but we also need to look at where we are with regards to perhaps increasing stadium capacity. When we talk about that, residents say 'Hang on a minute, you have enough problems as it is and we are not going to allow you to do that'. That is why we have to get planning ap­plications. We do not want to stir up residents and that is why we have to hold our cards close to our chest. Otherwise people will take advantage of them as not everyone is in favour of football and a stadium on their doorstep. We do not want to be handicapped by the prospect that we cannot in­crease the capacity of the stadium because if we stay up or go up to the Championship, we will not be able to exist on the current gates. We have got to get up to a 12,000 capacity.

"Doom and gloom merchants will say we will never achieve that but yes we can, believe you me. If you produce the right product and get it to the right level then people will knock on your door and we will get the capacity filled. You have got to be sensible and do your research but I am convinced that if we, the only professional club in Somerset, get to a higher level we can fill the stadium. But the fact is we need a bigger stadium than what we have got at the moment. Big gates are what we need to get the money in to run the football club. The gates are holding up well. We had 6,200 at our last Saturday home game but there is no doubt that we need bigger numbers."



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16 February 2006 : No Rest For The Wicked
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has today confirmed that his side will not be getting any significant time off this weekend despite the League One match against Brentford having been postponed until March 7th due to the West London club's involvement in the FA Cup.

On Fourth Round day, Steve gave his players a special 'mid-season break' of around four days to allow them the chance to recharge their batteries - a move that made sense given that it came at the tail end of a busy Christmas fixture schedule. This time round though, the players will be in training during both Friday and Saturday, with an internal practice match planned for tomorrow behind closed doors.

Speaking to the Teamtalk website Thommo explained: "The plan is to work through. We have got a practice match among ourselves on Friday and we will be in on Saturday as well. There isn't going to be any time off. We are working as hard as we can with our sights set on Blackpool."


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15 February 2006 : Coming Soon To A Gazette Near You (Again)
Tomorrow's Western Gazette is expected to produce more revelations concerning the current state of the club and it's future direction, following further interviews with club Chairman John Fry.

Although Ciderspace has yet to see the articles concerned, the major shock news is an indicative claim that the club are looking at posting a 600K loss on this season - a staggering amount given the accumulation of transfer fees from Darren Way, Lee Johnson, Efe Sodje and Luke Oliver along with the contract payoff of former manager Gary Johnson.

Fry also looks to the future and the talked about stadium development plans and claims that he can see a day where Huish Park is full of 12,000 spectators. Fry also talks about the club's plans to forge a partnership with the town council to help push the club forward. Fry also looks to explain why club owner David Webb took his time in putting forward his 'vision' and even then only to around 6-10 supporters.

Full analysis of the interview with John Fry will be on these pages tomorrow as soon as we have had time to digest the quotes and surrounding facts.


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15 February 2006 : Ciderspace Match Report : Yeovil vs MK Dons
The Ciderpace match report for last night's 1-1 draw at Huish Park is here.


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15 February 2006 : Arron gets another international call-up
Yeovil midfielder Arron Davies has once again been called up for the Wales u-21 squad, this time for the match against their Northern Ireland counterparts at Stebonheath Park, Llanelli, Tuesday 28th February, 5.30pm kick-off. At present there are no first team or reserve team fixtures scheduled for or around that date.

Former Glover Gavin Williams, now with Ipswich, has missed out on selection to the full Welsh squad for their friendly international against Paraguay because of injury.

Wales u-21's:
Sam Pearce (Bristol City), Owain Fon Williams (Crewe Alexandra), Adam Davies (Cambridge United), Callum Hart (Bournemouth), Alex Lawless (Fulham), Rhoys Wiggins (Crystal Palace), Marc Williams (Wrexham), Mike Williams (Wrexham), Mark Pritchard (Swansea), Arron Davies (Yeovil), Robert Davies (WBA), Levi Mackin (Wrexham), Shaun MacDonald (Swansea), Ramon Calliste (Liverpool), Craig Davies (Verona), David Edwards (Shrewsbury), Dylan Hughes (Jahn Regensburg), Curtis McDonald (Cardiff).


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15 February 2006 : Port Vale MOTM result
Kevin Amankwaah was voted by Ciderspace/mailing list users as the YTFC Man of the Match at Port Vale last Saturday.

Full results are at the foot of the match report.

A reminder that you can now vote for your YTFC MOTM in last night's 1-1 draw v Milton Keynes Dons. Click here to have your say.


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15 February 2006 : Thommo's Verdict on the MK Dons Game
Glovers boss Steve Thompson couldn't hide his disappointment after MK Dons pulled the ultimate sucker punch by scoring with the last kick of the game in a 1-1 draw at Huish Park last night. Steve answered the following questions on the match after the game:

Qu: Steve, so close but yet so far.

ST: Yes, we played well tonight and created quite a lot of chances again but we had the sucker punch right at the end. They just pulled bodies into the box, it fell to one of them and he smashed it into the top corner. That is just the way things are going at the moment.

Qu: In the second half you were up against the elements as well.

ST: Yes, there was a strong wind blowing although obviously we had the benefit of that in the first half. Although that said it did seem to get a lot worse in the second half. We were just bitterly disappointed in the end. But again the positives are that I think we have been the better team and I don't think anyone would argue with that tonight but we just can't seem to get that win at the moment.

Qu: In the first half one of your best chances was when Kevin Gall got through but the keeper made a fine save early on.

ST: Yes, there were chances from a corner and from a free kick. Jevo had two chances. Yes, we've had chances in both halves but we haven't converted enough of them. It looked like the one goal was going to be enough but in the end the ball gets fired in the top corner. That is the way things are going at the moment.

Qu: It doesn't matter whether it is three minutes or thirty minutes of stoppage time - you've got to play to that whistle haven't you?

ST: Yes, you have. But there is always a chance when you pile all those bodies into the box. The ball can drop and when someone hits it like that there is always that chance.

Qu: It's difficult conditions for keepers as well in those packed areas.

ST: Yes, although there was no way Wealey could have saved that one - it flew in the top corner. From where I was sitting it looked like it flew in the top corner so I don't think you can attach any blame to the keeper for that!

Qu: No, I was more meaning that overall tonight it was pretty freaky conditions.

ST: Yes, I thought we played well and played some good football in the conditions. The pitch was still good. The conditions weren't overly bad. The wind was a bit swirly in the second half, but I'm just disappointed to have conceded right at the end there.

Qu: You got some bodies from the bench on - was that to shore up and protect a bit?

ST: Yes, although Paul Terry got a slight injury so that's the reason why he came off. But yes, you try and make changes to shore it up a bit.

Qu: This takes you into two away games now. You'd obviously like to go into those on the back of a win, especially with some difficult times on the road now. It was great support this evening at home. They did get behind you and you asked for that.

ST: Yes, I thought the support was fantastic. I thought we played well. We got the goal that we've been searching for. It looked like it was going to be enough, but right at the end the goal goes in. But there isn't an awful lot I can say there.

Qu: At the end of the day you can say it's stopped the rot hasn't it? I know it feels like a defeat but you have stopped that bad run haven't you?

ST: Yes that's one thing - it has stopped those three defeats.


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15 February 2006 : Thommo Extends Beckford Invite
Glovers boss Steve Thompson said last night that he hopes that Wealdstone striker Jermaine Beckford may visit Somerset later this week to help him weigh up the options available to him, as as many as 17 clubs chase the 22 year old's services.

Thommo explained: "I spoke to the Wealdstone manager today and he says he plans to come down. We are hoping it might be later this week. He is at Crystal Palace today so there you can see the options he may have if things are offered to him."

Steve did admit though that there had been no response to the club's offer of a contract to the player: "Nothing is moving. The lad has trained at Crystal Palace, he has trained at Wycombe and there is a lot of interest in him. He is weighing up all of his options. We are one of his options."

Steve also admitted that what may count against the Glovers is that they are more or less the only club outside the London and Home Counties area that have shown an interest in the player and that he may prefer something a little closer to home adding: "I can't read his mind - maybe he wants to get away from London, though it would be a bit surprising. But he is certainly interested and he plans to come down and have a look at the place but he seems ot have a lot of clubs interested in him at the moment."

On the plus side though as far as Steve knew, Yeovil Town were the only club to come in with a firm bid accepted by the Isthmian League club: "I don't know if anyone else has. The offer has been said to be 50,000 pounds (in the Non-League Paper and other publications) but I don't know where someone plucked that figure out of the air from. It's not the right amount - that's all I'll say about that offer."

Steve was asked whether he had more irons in the fire and replied: "Yes we do. We have other players that we are looking at and we have spoken about. We have got 10 days so something might happen. You're always looking in general (at all positions) but I do feel we maybe need a striker at the moment. A striker scored our goal today but there is also an onus on the midfield to get goals as well and they are not really contributing with goals. We look at strikers all the time but midfielders need to score as well. Even your central defenders when they come up for corners need to score as well. So the onus is on the whole team to score. It's not just a striker that I am looking for - I am looking for a goalscorer. He might be a goalscoring midfielder."

Thommo also told yesterday's Western Morning News that he may take a second look at Wolves defender Keith Lowe. The defender has been left in no-man's-land following the decision by Queen's Park Rangers to terminate his loan deal. The Glovers had tied up a similar deal with Lowe which was even announced on the official site but got gazumped by the West London club at the last minute. Thommo will either have to wait 28 days for Lowe's first month's loan to expire, or unpick the rules concerning the sub-loan of players and try and do a deal with Rangers.


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15 February 2006 : St Valentine's Day heartbreak
The Yeovil Town faithful left Huish Park stunned last night after their side was denied three valuable points by a last-minute of injury-time MK Dons equaliser. The Glovers knew nothing less than the win was required but the draw leaves Steve Thompson’s men just one point from the relegation zone.

Yeovil dictated the possession in the first half and will rue again failing to produce in the final third of the pitch. Phil Jevons twice had decent chances to score but couldn’t beat Matt Baker from a one-on-one and failed to connect to a superb ball from Anthony Barry. The home side looked the more threatening in the first period, though Chris Weale was called upon to save a Scott Taylor shot from point blank range.

To the bemusement of the 5,041 crowd, in form Dons striker Izale McLeod missed an absolute sitter on 57 minutes after rounding Weale in the penalty area but incredibly directed his shot wide of the empty net. Kevin Gall, who had an effort ruled out earlier by the linesman's flag, broke the stalemate in the 71st minute after being put through by a Chris Cohen pass for his first goal since early September and his second of the season. Just as it was looking job done, Ben Harding fired an unstoppable effort into the top corner, leaving Weale no chance in the Yeovil goal.

Match precis: George Murray

Final score: Yeovil Town 1-1 MK Dons. A full match report will be online later today.

Both Phil Jevons and Paul Terry were substituted late in the game with knocks, but neither injuries were thought to be serious and with no match this weekend they have plenty of time to recover before the next crucial game, at fellow strugglers Blackpool in ten days time. Results else where did the Glovers no favours with West Country rivals TBCUTR and Swindon both winning to move above us in the table for the first time in months. There are 4 clubs now on 38 points - Swindon (16th), Hartlepool (17th), Bristol City (18th) and Yeovil (19th). Scunthorpe and Walsall are 20th and 21st respectively on 37 points with Blackpool 22nd on 36. Rotherham are 23rd on 33 points with MK Dons still bottom after last night's draw on 31 points.


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14 February 2006 : Chairman Neither Confirms Nor Denies
Yeovil Town chairman John Fry said he could not comment on speculation that former director Norman Hayward was about to return to the club. When Hayward left his directorship at Huish Park in November 2001, selling his holding to Jon Goddard-Watts, one of the reasons given was his need to dedicate more time to his already lengthy legal battle with Lloyds TSB Bank. Five further years on and that fight has at last been won by Mr Hayward.

Hayward is an ex-chairman of local rivals AFC Bournemouth, and currently sits as a director on their Community Mutual Trust.


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14 February 2006 : Shooting The Messenger
After his attack in the Western Gazette on supposed "trouble-makers" in the crowd at the last home game against Southend United (see below, February 9th.) Yeovil Town chairman John Fry has turned his attention to the Internet in this morning's Western Daily Press.

And who were these "trouble-makers" and "those who come in and create disturbances", gentle reader? Fearsome hooligans? Vicious thugs? If so we would heartily endorse the chairman's assertion that a "tough line" would be taken. However it appears what had stirred up this statement was a bit of dissatisfied chanting in Westland Stand directed towards the new owner of the club, David Webb. As it happens this site believes those chants were misguided at this time, but branding those involved as "trouble-makers" for expressing an opinion was not a constructive response in our view.

So on to today's line from Mr Fry :

Freedom of speech is a great thing but the comments that are made on websites are sometimes libellous and damaging. Some of it can destroy the fabric of football clubs.

Most of the content on these websites is positive, but many people are getting tired of the negativity that seems to come from these faceless people. It's damaging the character of people who are trying to do their best for football clubs. And it can drive good people away from trying to help football clubs.

There are codes of practice and we may have the power to close some of these websites down.


The thrust of the article was that the chairman was referring to forums and messageboards, though the actual quotes do not appear to discriminate between different forms of Internet presence, with the Western Daily Press saying that the club was "dealing with 'a problem' related to the on-line forums".

As a site that ran a forum for six years we are well aware of their strengths and weaknesses. When people have a medium to express their views and opinions some will use it constructively, and some in ways others will consider to be negative. But the response should be by debate and argument, getting your counter views across consistently and forcefully, not by resorting to threat, veiled or otherwise. Over the years too many clubs have been happy enough to bathe in the plaudits from websites, but started throwing toys when the criticism has appeared. The term libel seems to come all to easily to club spokespeople at such a time, but we are struggling to recall many instances in the relationship between websites and football clubs where these accusations have been substantiated. People writing things you don't like and 'libel' are two entirely different matters.

We hear rumour that the club may be concerned that 'insiders' are using the forums, either directly or by proxy, to spread information and views that it does not wish to see enter the public domain. If so that appears to us to be an in-house problem. In traffic offences it is the driver who is prosecuted, not the vehicle.


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14 February 2006 : Yeovil Town v MK Dons match preview
The Glovers entertain Franchise FC at Huish Park tonight in a game that has assumed great significance after results in recent weeks. If ever a match deserved to be labelled a 'six-pointer' then this is it. A home win will give Yeovil breathing space, push us up into that clutch of clubs in and around the 40 point mark and will make this coming weekend without a match slightly more comfortable. An away win could well see the Glovers in the relegation zone tonight and in crisis after 4 defeats on the bounce. A draw is no real use to either side.

So, no pressure then! The Dons come to Huish Park with the worst away record in League One: 7 points from 15 games and with only 1 win away from home all season. The sides drew 1-1 at the National Hockey Stadium a month ago, a game the Glovers should have won - a refrain we've heard a little too often for comfort so far this season. The visitors are expecting to name an unchanged side from the team that unexpectedly beat Blackpool 3-0 on Saturday, with speedy striker Izale McLeod the man to watch out for, with 14 league goals already to his name this season and the scorer against the Glovers in January.

As for Yeovil, Colin Miles appears to have recovered from the illness that kept him out of Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Port Vale and will be available for a recall to the centre of defence, though Glovers boss Steve Thompson may be tempted to keep faith with Kevin Amankwaah in the central defenders role, as a means of counteracting Izale McLeod's pace. Scott Guyett however has still not completely recovered from the virus that has laid him low this last fortnight and is not expected to be available for selection. Terry Skiverton is of course still unavailable. The most important decision Thommo will have to make however is who will partner Phil Jevons up front. Daniel Webb impressed coming on as a substitute at Port Vale on Saturday and is expected to be on the bench again tonight, with Kevin Gall and Matt Harrold competing for the vacant starting spot.

"Matty has done superbly but I felt he looked a bit below par in the last couple of games," Thompson said today. "Sometimes players need to come out so that they can come back in strong again. We are not in a position to keep players in when they are a bit below par, and you have to show faith in the players in your squad as well. Kevin Gall did quite well on Saturday so there is every chance he might be in again. But that's not to say that Matty won't play a part."

"We played quite well on Saturday and I was happy with the general performance, but you have to score goals, and we didn't,"
Thompson admitted. "If we play as well as we did on Saturday we have a very good chance of winning on Tuesday night. But we do need that goal, from anyone. I know there has been a lot said about the forwards not scoring, but I'm not going to complain if a defender or midfielder scores. It is there for everyone to rise to the challenge and score goals."

Selected betting odds: Yeovil win - 10/11; draw - 23/10; MK Dons win - 5/2. Our recommendation: No messing around tonight, we need the points! Fiver on the home win. Record so far this season: +£5.80p


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13 February 2006 : Good Sport Award
Fans are being asked by the Football League to e-mail in their nominations for a "Good Sport" Award, one of the almost endless list of gongs to be handed out at the inaugeral Football League Awards ceremony on Sunday 5th March. For reasons that are completely unclear this one is sponsored by Wash & Go, which is some sort of shampoo if memory serves from the days we had hair.

Stewart Regan, Director of the Football League Championship, said :

As the oldest league competition in the world, The Football League has given its supporters some of the best and most enduring football memories. We're delighted that Wash & Go presented us with the idea of a 'Good Sport' category and we're hoping fans will back their clubs by putting forward nominations. It should give the judges some sleepless nights over the next couple of weeks!

The only requirement is that the nomination must relate to a player. Entries must be submitted by Monday 20th February.

E-mail as much detail of your nomination as possible to goodsport@powell-pr.co.uk. As a minimum the following is required :

Date of the match and teams playing
The player(s) involved
A description of the moment

The panel of judges will draw up a shortlist of three and the winner will be presented with a special trophy on the night.

Shame the Argyle match was a season too soon.........


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13 February 2006 : The Search Goes On
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has admitted today that he is currently no closer to being able to bring in new blood into the side, and is therefore unlikely to do so before tomorrow night's match against MK Dons.

The loan transfer market has been extraordinarily quiet in League One since the window re-opened for loan transfers last Wednesday and Thommo last week failed in his attempts to bring midfielder Kevin Horlock in on loan.

Speaking to the official site, Thommo explained: "Over the weekend I have spoken to many managers from the Championship and a couple from the Premiership about possible loans. It just seems they are not available or that everyone being offered is very young and it would be a gamble to take them. Maybe it's a gamble we have to take in the not too distant future, but for the moment I am hoping one of the strikers we already have at the club can start to find their scoring boots."


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13 February 2006 : Officials For Tuesday
Andy Penn from the West Midlands will be the man in the middle tomorrow night. Mr Penn's last appearance in a Yeovil game was at Huish Park in the tie against Oldham Athletic in late November. It was a relatively low key performance by the official, the main incident being the sending off of Oldham's Paul Edwards on 87 minutes for a second bookable offence.

The Assistant Referees, Martin Cassidy and Richard Palmer, are both from Somerset, whilst Fourth Official Brendan Malone couldn't be considered a local boy, coming all the way from er, Wiltshire.


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13 February 2006 : Glover Duo Make Team Of The Week
As if in a deliberate attempt to counter the theory a few fans hold dear, that any defeat proves everyone was rubbish and no one was trying, two Yeovil Town players have been selected for the Coca-Cola Football League Team Of The Week on the back of the loss at Vale Park on Saturday.

Congratulations to Adam Lockwood and Anthony Barry who are selected in the eleven top performing players in League One for the week just gone. For Barry, making his debut for the club and at this level of football, this is a particularly impressive accolade.

The full list is :

Nick Colgan - Barnsley
David Wheater - Doncaster Rovers
Sam Sodje - Brentford
Stephen Purches - AFC Bournemouth
Adam Lockwood - Yeovil Town
Chris Brandon - Huddersfield Town
Anthony Barry - Yeovil Town
Shaun Cooper - AFC Bournemouth
Tommy Black - Gillingham
Andy Robinson - Swansea City
Danny Cadamarteri - Bradford City


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13 February 2006 : Lowe Down And Out
Sometimes you just make that wrong decision in life. And sometimes it comes back to bite you remarkably quickly. On January 31st defender Keith Lowe was so close to concluding a three month loan at Huish Park that the club's Official Site chose to announce it as a 'done deal'. (See Ciderspace News Page.) Shortly afterwards it had to withdraw the news as Lowe changed his mind and went off to Queens Park Rangers for a similar period - or so he thought.

Since then of course much has changed at QPR, with manager Ian Holloway sent on "gardening leave". Caretaker Gary Waddock has chosen to end three of the four loans Holloway brought in. Lowe made one start, on the losing side away at Leeds United, and has now been packed off back to Wolverhampton Wanderers. Not only is he stuck at a club where the manager clearly has no plans for him, but he's actually ineligible to play until the first month of the curtailed loan expires. Meanwhile Yeovil Town looked elsewhere and brought in an alternative defender, Jamie Vincent.

Good call, Keith.


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13 February 2006 : Interview With Adam Lockwood
Defender Adam Lockwood considered that his team-mates were very unlucky to come away with nothing from the 1-0 away defeat against Port Vale when he spoke to the press immediately after the game.

Locky, who has recently returned to the side following a loan spell at Torquay United believed the Glovers should stick to their beliefs in order to work their way out of their bad run: "The lads have worked really hard today but we just haven't come away with what we wanted. We've just got to carry on doing what we are doing now and not give up on our beliefs."

Read the full interview with Adam Lockwood by clicking here or head to the Ciderspace Interviews Section.


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13 February 2006 : Hayward On The Box
Ex-Yeovil Town director, and close friend of current owner David Webb, Norman Hayward features in the BBC1 series Inside Out (content may vary by region) to be broadcast at 7.30 p.m. tonight. The programme looks at Hayward's ten year legal battle with Lloyds TSB dating back from his time as chairman of AFC Bournemouth. After his spell on the board at Huish Park Hayward is currently back with the Cherries as a director of their Community Mutual Trust.


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13 February 2006 : Wilbraham Stays With Franchise
Aaron Wilbraham has turned down a loan move to Peterborough United. Although the two clubs had reached agreement Wilbraham decided he wished to remain with the Glovers next opponents Milton Keynes Dons and fight for his place. The forward started the match at the National Hockey Stadium last month againt Yeovil Town but was replaced by Izale McLeod, who had been left on the bench after the drama of the non-move to Wolverhampton Wanderers, on 54 minutes. McLeod scored the equalizer for the home side twenty minutes later.


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13 February 2006 : Vale Vow To Ban Muppet
Port Vale have promised to ban the idiot who made a one man pitch invasion at Vale Park on Saturday. It is not clear what initiated the act of stupidity, as a youth ran on to the turf and approached Kevin Amankwaah, though claims on the OneValeFan messageboard are that it was a £50 bet from his mates to headbutt the Yeovil defender.

Words were exchanged between Kevin and the 18-year-old, who then ran off to boos around the stadium, easily evading a series of stewards seemingly selected as part of an O.A.P. job creation scheme. However as he looked to make his escape and vault the barriers into the Railway Stand a Valiant fan stuck one on the muppet, knocking him back pitchside where he was at last grabbed by security and frogmarched out of the ground.

He was arrested by police and later released on bail pending further inquiries. Port Vale chairman Bill Bratt later said :

It is illegal to run on to the pitch and it should not have happened. It does the club no good at all. He will be banned from watching the side play, but I can't say for exactly how long. Fans just can't run on to the pitch. There is just no reason for it whatsoever.

Perhaps anxious to play down the matter, with the possibility such incidents bring of sanctions against the club, Bratt went on to praise the stewarding, though that hasn't been the reaction of most fans commenting on events, with home supporters particularly critical in the main :

It just came out of the blue and there was nothing to suggest something like this was going to happen. He just seemed to come out of nowhere. Most people were concentrating on the game and it was completely unexpected. I don't think there was a problem with the stewarding at the match. I thought the stewards reacted quickly to get him out of the ground and straight to the police.

The chairman then went on to support the action of other fans :

I was very pleased with the fans at the Railway Stand as they pushed him back on to the pitch as he tried to get away from the stewards. Those are the real fans of the club, who know something like this only has a negative effect and they don't want to see it.


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13 February 2006 : Colin Back But Scott Still Doubtful
Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson is confident Colin Miles will have recovered from the bout of food poisoning that laid him low at the weekend in time for the visit of Milton Keynes Dons to Huish Park on Tuesday. The illness, which struck Miles down on the Friday night, saw an emergency switch of Kevin Amankwaah into the central defence as the Glovers ran out of centre-backs. Kevin turned in a very good performance at Vale Park in the unaccustomed role, though it was a good job he has the speed, as his positioning was a little bit 'wing-and-a-prayer' at times - well in this writer's opinion anyway.

The availability of Scott Guyett, recovering from a virus, is not so certain, with Thommo saying that further medical advice will be sought :

I'm confident Colin will be OK, but we might need the doctor's advice about Scott. But Kevin and Adam [Lockwood] were excellent on Saturday, and I've got a few things to mull over before what is going to be a very important game indeed. We need a result as soon as possible to turn things around.

The meeting with Franchise FC, 24th in the table but boosted by a 3-0 win over another relegation haunted side, Blackpool, has assumed huge importance as the Glovers try to kick-start a move away from the danger zone. The last point Yeovil Town picked up was against the franchise a month ago on January 14th.


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13 February 2006 : Thommo Confirms An Offer Made For Beckford
Responding to press speculation that Yeovil Town are chasing the signature of Wealdstone striker Jermaine Beckford Glovers manager Steve Thompson has confirmed that club Chief Executive David Webb has been in negotiations for the 22-year-old and an offer has been made. Yesterday's The Non-League Paper claimed £50,000 was on the table (see item below, 12/02), and the Western Daily Press, to whom Thompson was speaking, picks up on that, though there's no direct confirmation of that figure from the Yeovil manager. Likewise the circumstances, with the transfer window closed, of the offer made were not revealed.

We have watched him a couple of times, as have quite a few teams. We have made Wealdstone an offer and now the lad has to decide what he wants to do. He has a full-time job and would have to give that up if he wants to go into professional football. He has spoken with Dave Webb and the ball is in the player's court now really.

Wealdstone were a power in the Conference during the Eighties but these days find themselves in the Isthmian League Premier Division. Beckford has scored 28 times for The Stones this season, most recently in their 1-0 win over Leyton on Saturday.


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12 February 2006 : Youth Team Beat Bristol Rovers
Yeovil Town's Under 18s side edged out their Bristol Rovers counterparts yesterday on the Huish Park Top Pitch by a 2-1 scoreline, with Dale Williams and Craig Alcock the scorers. Rovers ended the match with 10 men after they had Ryan Paddock dismissed for directing 'foul and abusive language' towards a linesman.

The Glovers took the lead just 10 minutes into the match when Rovers player Cai Yin Juan fouled inside the box allowing Dale Williams to strike the ball home from the penalty spot. Five minutes after the restart, Tom Godsall equalised with a header from a Tom Parrinello free kick.

But the game disappeared out of Rovers grasp with Paddock's sending off. With the visitors still reorganising, Alcock burst forward on the flank and got on the end of a cross, heading towards goal. Rovers keeper Martin Horsell saved the first attempt, but Alcock reacted to the loose chance and bundled the ball home. Rovers could have equalised through Lewis Powell in the dying minutes but the incoming cross fell behind him and he failed to convert the chance.

Yeovil Town: Scott Vine, Jake Smeeton, Gary Bowles, Matt Pitcher, Craig Alcock, Dale Williams, Jamie Underwood, Richard Cullingford, Gavin McCallum, Phil Ormrod, Tom Clarke. Subs to be confirmed.

Bristol Rovers: Martin Horsell, Tom Godsall, Alex Kite, Ryan Paddock, Tom Parrinello, Cai Jin Yuan, James Palmer, Kuang Bin (Theo Tonkin 81), Sean Rigg, Lewis Powell, Matt Groves (Jason Burt 72). Unused Sub: Charles Reece.


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12 February 2006 : Interview With Terry Skiverton
Club captain Terry Skiverton gave his views from the sideline on the 1-0 away defeat against Port Vale immediately after the game when he spoke to the press.

The 30-year-old believes that despite the result, the performance on Saturday enables his side to go into the all-important Tuesday evening clash with MK Dons with confidence: "We are not that disappointed today because our performance was really good. I think the lads bounced back really well from the Southend game. We feel confident going into the game on Tuesday."

Read the full interview with Terry Skiverton by clicking here or head to the Ciderspace Interviews Section.


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12 February 2006 : Ciderspace Match Report : Port Vale vs Yeovil Town
The Ciderspace view of yesterday's game is here.


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12 February 2006 : Thommo's Verdict On The Prt Vale Game
Despite losing 1-0 at Vale Park yesterday, Glovers boss Steve Thompson praised his side's spirit for refusing to give up as they battled for a late equaliser against Port Vale. Speaking immediately after the game, Steve answered the following questions:

Qu: Steve, I'm sure that the last 20 minutes of the game were highly encouraging for you. What more do you think your side could have done to have earned a point today?

ST: Actually I thought the whole 90 minutes were pretty encouraging apart from the one mistake that we made for the goal. I thought we were the better team and deserved to win today - and not suffer a defeat. I saw a lot of things out there that I liked today. The spirit of our play was probably one of the biggest things that I liked, particularly after we had gone 1-0 down. I am pleased with a lot of things but I am obviously very disappointed with the result.

Qu: Any of those chances that you had should have been tucked away today?

ST: It isn't going in at the moment, is it? There was a penalty appeal, although I'm 50 yards away so I can't tell. There was Lockwood's header off the line. Nathan Jones had a shot in the top corner which the keeper saved, and that was all in the last 10 minutes I think. There were a lot of goalmouth scrambles, so it shows that the spirit of our play was very good. Things just aren't going for us at the moment which is frustrating. But there you go, you've got keep going, and when it turns you've got to take advantage of it. Let's hope that it can turn on Tuesday night. We created a lot of chances in the first half as well I thought. David Poole had two good chances and we had a couple more. I felt we edged the chances in the first half and in the second half I thought we were the dominant team. As I've said there were a lot of things I liked about what we did today. Obviously I don't like us not scoring a goal and we've got to try and end that barren patch of not scoring goals.

Qu: You mentioned all those chances but apart from one that fell to Phil Jevons I don't think a single one of your chances fell to your strikers. Does it matter that the chances are falling to the other players?

ST: You want your strikers to have chances but your chances for the team are very important as well. As I have said to them in there, it might just be that we have to do more and more work to try and get those strikers into those finishing positions. Sometimes it doesn't work out that way. You have to look at the game in general. How many teams have a Lee Trundle that can go and score a goal off his own back. Most strikers have to be put in. Not many teams have a Rooney that can go and create that chance on their own. They need that service so they are dependent upon others. The onus to score does fall principally upon the strikers but it does fall upon the whole team to score the goals.

Qu: You had a look at pretty much all of them across the 90 minutes today what with all the changes.

ST: Yes, I think I had about five strikers on at the end didn't I?

Qu: Who has impressed you the most? Do you know who you are going to have on at the start for Tuesday night?

ST: No, it's too early to say. I've got to pick the bones out of that one. We're just not quite getting that final finish. Even when we do it, the opposition keepers seem to be making saves against us.

Qu: Well he was the Man of the Match for Port Vale today wasn't he?

ST: Yes he was Man of the Match and I think that the Bradford keeper was probably Man of the Match two games ago. Donovan Ricketts - I remember him well! That's the way it goes in football. You have to get on with it. We have got to get on with it on Tuesday - we've got to try and turn it around. Hopefully we can create another 10 chances like we did today on Tuesday.

Qu: And you've just got to believe that the law of averages will turn it around for you if you keep playing like that?

ST: Well you have got more chance of turning it around if you play well, than if you play poorly haven't you? I don't know if you'd call that logical! It might just need someone to scuff one in or a 30 yarder to fly in the top corner. It just needs someone to just change our luck in front of goal at the moment.

Qu: And what about in terms of personnel on Tuesday night? Colin Miles will have presumably got over his problem?

ST: I hope so. I hope Colin is going to be over his problem. I thought Amankwaah and Lockwood were outstanding again today in the centre of defence. Scott is a possibility but we've got to be very careful because we are going on medical opinion. Terry Skiverton is obviously not going to be back. Thereafter there are not that many more we can bring into the defensive positions where we are missing a lot of people at the moment. But we need to score goals as a team as well and there will be a lot of work on Monday in trying to achieve that. Defensively we have looked pretty solid again today.

Qu: What was the issue with Colin Miles?

ST: Colin was in the team. He was there last night but overnight he had sickness and diahorreah in the hotel and he is still in the hotel now. He's been sleeping all morning and feeling very bad. I don't know, we'll just have to see on that one how he is.

Qu: A word about Kevin Amankwaah - at times he was playing like Rio Ferdinand in the centre of that defence there.

ST: Yes, I thought he had a great game there and he played with the kind of spirit that the team played with. He epitomised that spirit today.

Qu: What was that incident about when that fan came on and confronted him?

ST: I don't know. Does anyone know? Why would he confront him? I didn't see him kick anyone and even if he did, the supporter shouldn't be anywhere near the player. Port Vale will deal with that. I don't want to get involved in any politics - I'll let them deal with that because that is their problem to deal with, isn't it?

Qu: Anthony Barry did well.

ST: I thought Anthony Barry had a very good debut. He looks to get on the ball. I remember Lee Johnson arriving as a 19 year old and I think that Anthony as a 19 year old is every bit as good.

Qu: Are you surprised he's come in and settled so well as a young man?

ST: No, he seems a very well-rounded person. Obviously in stepping up two divisions you wonder how is he going to go, but I thought he was good and that he had a very good debut.

Qu: Do you think that in playing a couple of leagues higher that he is able to get a little bit of extra time on the ball?

ST: No, he got that time at Exeter when I saw him. He makes time for himself and good players do, don't they?

Qu: Daniel Webb came on and he just seemed to upset their back four.

ST: Yes he did. He put himself about well and he caused some problems. I think that all three substitutes got into the game and they all added to those last 20 minutes where we were so unlucky not to get an equaliser.

Qu: Any chance of getting anyone in before Tuesday or is that something you'll be looking at during the 10 day break after that?

ST: There is always a chance but I imagine there would be more chance during the 10 days after the MK Dons match. But there is always a chance that someone will come in.


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12 February 2006 : Glovers linked with Wealdstone hotshot
Yeovil Town have been linked with 22-year-old Wealdstone striker Jermaine Beckford by several national newspapers today. That ever reliable organ of truth, The Non-League Paper, claims :

The Wealdstone striker is mulling over a £50,000 move to Yeovil Town.

Remember The Non-League Paper? Never knowingly accurate.

Beckford, who's come up through the youth team ranks at Wealdstone, has hit 30 goals in all competitions this season and has recently completed trials with Queens Park Rangers and Wycombe Wanderers. Don't hold your breath at the prospect of seeing him in the green-and-white hoops any time soon however - he's training at Crystal Palace next week and with a reported total of 17 clubs maintaining an interest, mainly from in and around the London area, it doesn't seem very likely that he'll be gracing the turf at Huish Park anytime soon. Not unless he's playing for the away team at any rate.


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11 February 2006 : Vale of tears
A 52nd minute Leon Constantine goal was all that separated hosts Port Vale from visitors Yeovil Town at Vale Park this afternoon, the home team winning 1-0 in a game that the Glovers will feel they should have got something out of. Yeovil spurned some good chances to score, with David Poole, Adam Lockwood and Phil Jevons all coming close and Vale keeper Mark Goodlad announced as Man of the Match over the tannoy at the ground.

Final score: Port Vale 1 - 0 Yeovil Town.

Injury news: Not really an injury as such, but Colin Miles missed today's game after being up all night with sickness and diarrhea - it remains to be seen if he'll be fit for Tuesday night's match against Franchise FC. Scott Guyett has now recovered from his particular virus infection but was not considered match fit enough for today's game - he should be back in contention for Tuesday night.

Lucky or unlucky, the fact remains that the Glovers have now lost 3 matches on the spin and have also failed to score in those 3 games. Results today leave Yeovil only 2 points away from the relegation zone. Tuesday night's opponents Franchise FC continued their recent revival with a 3-0 win over fellow strugglers Blackpool. TBCUTR lost 1-0 at home to Brentford to remain deep in the mire and Swindon keep fighting, a 90th minute equaliser earning themselves a point at Bradford. The bottom half of the league table has tightened up still further tonight, with only 10 points between bottom club MK Dons (30 points) and 11th placed Tranmere (40). Yeovil (37) are 18th and desperately need a win in the six-pointer against the Dons on Tuesday night to provide some breathing space. Blackpool (36) and managerless Walsall (36) are 19th and 20th respectively with 21st-placed Swindon (35) in the final relegation spot, leap-frogging TBCUTR (35). Crisis club Rotherham (30) are 23rd, with only the MK Dons (30) currently below them.

Southend (60) are still top after their win over Rotherham on Friday night. 2nd-placed Colchester (58) lost 2-0 at Huddersfield while Swansea (55) beat Nottingham Forest 2-1 at the City Ground to go 3rd. Brentford (54) are 4th, with Huddersfield (53) in 5th position. There's a full programme of fixtures coming up in in League One in midweek, with 10 games on Tuesday evening and a further 2 on Wednesday.


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10 February 2006 : Jevo Looks To Put The Worst Behind Him
Stand-in team captain Phil Jevons is hoping that at the end of the season, last week's second half performance against Southend United will be labelled as a "one-off" for the season. Speaking to the Western Daily Press Jevo freely admitted that the Glovers put in their worst show of the season so far after a bright opening. He put the collective blame down to what happened when Southend's first goal went in.

Jevo explained: "The Southend performance was a one-off, although we played well for the first half an hour. But after they scored, we got a little bit downhearted and didn't react as strongly as we should have. We are aware of that. It was a bad reaction and it was probably the worst we've played this season. But now we cannot wait until the weekend (against Port Vale) to put that right."

The Yeovil striker pointed out that the majority of the Glovers other defeats had not happened in such circumstances adding: "There have been many times this season when we've played well but not picked up as many points as we should have done - in games against Oldham, Huddersfield and Bradford for example. It has often happened at home when teams have sat back, but that means it's up to us to break teams down and be a bit cleverer around the box."

Phil admitted he could see why supporters showed concerns at last week's match, but believed the quality of the Glovers squad was still high explaining: "The fans know we have decent players in the squad, but they have the right to ask where the money has gone and what's happening with the future. But as footballers we are professionals and we have to focus on our jobs - and we know we have enough quality to do well. Morale is still good, the dressing-room banter is as good as ever and we are all positive. We have had a couple of defeats but we can bounce back - just look around the dressing and you can see we have good players and good characters."

Jevo's boss Steve Thompson has a striker at the top of the list which could see the ex-Grimsby player's position in the side or his partnership with Matt Harrold come under threat, but Jevo says he would welcome it adding: "As a player you always welcome competition and any new signings will be made welcome by the lads."


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10 February 2006 : Not All Pools Wins Are Wanted!
Yeovil Town slipped one more notch in the League One table tonight as managerless Hartlepool United nipped above them on goal difference thanks to a Friday night 1-0 win over promotion chasing Chesterfield. Pools scored with their first shot on target and managed to hold on for all three points.

League leaders Southend United did Yeovil a welcome favour though by defeating 23rd placed Rotherham United who have endured the week from hell with the threat of a winding up order hanging over their heads. Two first half goals saw them land in deeper trouble, still five points from safety but having played more games than all of those around them. The Shrimpers meanwhile return to the top of the League One table for the next few hours at least.

The Glovers lie in 17th place in the table - the full table can be found here.


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10 February 2006 : Gall Sticks His Foot In The Door
Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson believes striker Kevin Gall is showing the right attitude to win a place back in the first team's starting line-up. Kevin has not started a first team game since the 2-1 win over Rotherham United in mid-December.

The form of David Poole has kept Gally out of the team and he has struggled to get a foothold in games when coming on as a substitute, but the last two Reserve Team matches have pointed to an up-turn in Gally's fortunes, with the Welshman scoring a hat-trick in the 5-0 win over AFC Bournemouth's Reserve side.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol Thommo admitted such performances did influence his thinking, explaining: "Yes, I think you have to sit up and take notice for sure. He (Gall) took his chances very well and he was a constant threat running behind the defence. Now I know it was against a young Bournemouth team but you have to take notice of what he did the other night and Kevin has every chance of being involved (at Port Vale)."


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10 February 2006 : Action Photos From Yeovil Town vs Southend United
The action photo gallery for the League One match at Huish Park last weekend that saw a 0-2 home defeat against Southend United is now on-line. Access all 63 photos by heading here or by accessing the main Photo Gallery Index page.


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10 February 2006 : Hitch Becomes Dead End
Back to the drawing board. Any interest Yeovil Town had in Kevin Horlock has come to an abrupt halt with the news the experienced Ipswich Town midfielder has signed today on an initial month's loan for the Glovers League One rivals Doncaster Rovers. He is expected to make his debut for Rovers in the Yorkshire derby against Barnsley tomorrow.


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10 February 2006 : Horlock On Hold
Glovers boss Steve Thompson's plans to bring Ipswich Town midfielder Kevin Horlock in on loan to add experience to the young Huish Park squad have hit a hitch because Kevin is still out with an ankle injury.

Thommo had planned to send a Yeovil scout to see him play against Leicester City Reserves in midweek but had been unable to do so due to the 33 year old pulling out of the match as a result of an ankle injury. That injury still stands although Thommo says the door is in no way shut.

Talking to BBC Radio Bristol Steve explained: "Yes, we've enquired about Kevin Horlock. We were going to send someone to watch him play the other night. Obviously we know about Kevin but we haven't seen him play recently. Unfortunately he was out due to an injury so that put it on the back burner a little bit. But he is certainly somebody we have considered. Experience could well be important at a time like this when every point is valuable."

Thommo has told today's Western Daily Press that his efforts to bolster his squad in general have so far drawn a blank and that he does not expect to make any more signings until next week at the earliest.


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10 February 2006 : Port Vale v Yeovil Town preview
The Glovers travel to fellow strugglers/comfortable mid-tablers/possible play-off contenders (delete as appropriate depending on whether your glass is half-full, half-empty or merely in need of a shot of vodka) Port Vale this weekend, our first visit to Vale Park for a competitive or indeed any other sort of game. For those travelling the Ciderspace guide to all things Port Vale, or Burslem if we're going to be geographically accurate, can be found here.

Our hosts tomorrow are 2 points and 3 places ahead of us in the league table with a slightly better goal difference, -4 compared to our -10. The sides have met already this season, the Glovers coming out on top of a frankly awful game by a single Matt Harrold goal in the 85th minute. Our excuse for being so poor on the day was that we'd lost our manager to TBCUTR 24 hours previously; Vale, on the day, were just poor. The, er, frank exchange of views in the away dressing room afterwards could apparently be heard throughout the Yeovil College Stand to the amusement of those not actually involved in the punch-up discussion. Back to the present and Vale have taken 8 points from their last 6 games - exactly the same return as the Glovers. Their current home form, interestingly, is even worse than our current home form - they've lost 3 out of their last 4 home games, though they did enjoy an excellent 3-2 win over high-flying Barnsley last time out at Vale Park.

As far as injuries are concerned Vale manager Martin Foyle has a whole gaggle of players fit again after recent and more lengthy lay-offs and for the first time for a while has the luxury of choice both in his first XI and on the bench. His doubts are midfield pair Chris Birchall and Sam Togwell (hamstring and calf, respectively), but winger Jeff Smith is fit as is striker Nathan Lowndes, taken off with concussion last weekend. On-loan TBCUTR defender Clayton Fortune has recovered quicker than expected from a hamstring injury and will be available as well.

Manager Foyle is hoping that his side will be able to get revenge for last September's 1-0 defeat but has warned against the threat that Phil Jevons in particular provides: "He has scored a lot of goals and is one player that I did like last season and did inquire about, but he chose to go to Yeovil," he told the Staffordshire Sentinel today. "He is a decent player and has a good pedigree and can score goals, so that is something that we are going to have to be wary of. Amankwaah down the right will be a threat. I thought he was magnificent down at their place. I liked Harrold up front as well - he is a good build for a striker, but they are also busy in midfield. They may not be the biggest in the middle of the park, but you don't need to be in order to bring the ball down and play. It is going to be a hard game as they defend deep and it is down to us to be patient while we try to break things down. We do want revenge as we didn't deserve to lose down there and it was a disappointing result. We dominated the whole of the second half, they had a player sent off and they only had one shot. The longer the game went on, though, you could just feel it. When things aren't going right, you tend to lose games like that."

Tell us about it, Martin! For the Glovers, defender Scott Guyett is training again after recovering from a virus but (see news story below) will probably have to be content with a place on the bench this time around. Skipper Terry Skiverton is recovering well from his double hernia surgery but is obviously still some weeks away from full fitness; otherwise Glovers boss Steve Thompson has a full squad to choose from, including new signing's Jamie Vincent and Anthony Barry who impressed in the Reserves 5-0 win over their Bournemouth counterparts on Tuesday night; as did Kevin Gall, scorer of a hat-trick on the night.

Selected betting odds: Port Vale win - 6/5; draw - 11/5; Yeovil win - 2/1. Our recommendation: Enough of the gloom and doom! Taking our overall away record and Vale's home form into account the odds on the draw or the away win are generous - you pays your money and you takes your choice. And being natural optimists (despite appearances) our fiver this week is going on the away win. Come on lads, the club needs the points and we need the cash! Record so far this season: +£10.80p.


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9 February 2006 : Locky Predicts It Will Go To The Wire
Central defender Adam Lockwood is convinced that the final placings in League One will go down to the last few matches. Currently just five points separate 13 clubs between the mid-table slots and the relegation slots meaning that well over half of the division is theoretically involved in a relegation battle, whilst those at the top half of that pack can not rule out the possibility of a playoff place yet. But Locky believes that it is important that the Glovers focus on their own results and not those of other teams.

Speaking to today's Western Daily Press, Locky stated: "League One is tight and will stay like that right to the end so we have got to focus on ourselves. We all need to stick together and believe in our own abilities. Everyone has to stay positive. It is also important to point out that this is not a crisis. We have had a couple of defeats but most teams experience that."

Glad to be over an 18 month period where he was either out injured, recovering from injury or playing on loan for Torquay United to regain his match fitness, Locky said of his full comeback last weekend: "All I have wanted to do for a long time is get back playing for Yeovil so I was delighted. I hope I will play a big part now."


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9 February 2006 : Guyett Unlikely To Start
Central defender Scott Guyett is looking likely to be fit enough to travel with the squad to Port Vale this Saturday, but may not be fit enough to start the game. Scott has been out for three weeks with a virus, although has only missed one game during that time. Glovers boss Steve Thompson now believes he is on the road to recovery but has doubts that Scott will be quite ready for a full 90 minutes.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol, Thommo explained: "Terry Skiverton is obviously out because he has had his double-hernia operation. Scott Guyett has returned to trainingbut probably won't be fit enough to start. Whether he gets a place on the bench will depend on how he reacts to his first two days training and how he manages tomorrow. A virus is something that you've got to be very careful with. We are trying to do what's right for Scott as well as what is right for the team and sometimes it doesn't always match up equally. But you have to be careful with things like that and Scott's medical welfare has to be our first priority."


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9 February 2006 : Poole And Cohen On TV
Yeovil Town winger David Poole and loan midfielder Chris Cohen are appearing on HTV's Soccer Night programme tonight. The coverage starts at 11.00pm.


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9 February 2006 : Youth Keeper Gets Regional Call-Up
Yeovil Town Youth Team goalkeeper Jamie Jenkins has been called up to the South West Counties Youth representative side for a Youth Counties Championship match against Berkshire & Buckinghamshire at Beaconsfield SYCOB on Saturday (2pm). There is a Jack Adams in the team as well who is presumably the player that was part of Yeovil Town's Under 18s side earlier this season.

The full squad, courtesy of the Western Gazette is as follows: Jack Adams (Bishops Lydeard), James Marshall (Weston St Johns), Ben Curtis, Tom Whadcock (both Odd Down), James Clough, Tim Legg, Shaun Locke (all Taunton Tn), Dan Fowler, Ben Thompson (both Portishead), Lee Wajtknecht, Jack Quinn (both Radstock Tn), James Bisgrove, Ben Treloar (both Street), Jamie Jenkins (Yeovil Town), Ashley Barnes, Ross Presley (both Paulton Rovers).

Congratulations to Jamie and hope he gets selected in the starting eleven.


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9 February 2006 : Ticketing News For Chesterfield
Yeovil Town's trip to Chesterfield on March 4th is a pay on the day match with one important exception. Juniors can be admitted to Saltergate for just one pound when accompanied by an Adult or Senior but these must be purchased in advance. Telephone 01246-209765 to make your reservation.

Otherwise you have a general choice of standing on the uncovered Cross Street Terrace or making use of the 450 seats the club offer to away supporters in the Main Stand. The ‘seats’ are in fact wooden benches. Standing prices are 15 pounds for adults, 8 pounds for seniors and 5 pounds for juniors. Seated prices are 17 pounds for adults with Seniors and Juniors priced at 11 pounds. Disabled supporters can gain admittance for 8 pounds with carers admitted free of charge.


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9 February 2006 : Southend MOTM result
Adam Lockwood won the vote of Ciderspace and mailing list users as YTFC man of the match v Southend last Saturday. Full results can be found at the foot of the match report.


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9 February 2006 : Millers in financial crisis
Rotherham United chairman Peter Ruchniewicz has warned the club could fold in weeks if they fail to close a funding gap. The League One club, currently losing a reported £140,000 a month, need to raise £1 million to complete the current season and, it's claimed, a further £1 million over the summer to enable them to compete next season in order to survive as a club. The chairman has further warned that the club as a business does not have enough assets to go into administration and that liquidation would be the only viable option for the club's board: "If we cease trading the club is likely to go straight into liquidation and go out of existence," the Millers chairman told a press conference at Millmoor this morning.

Mr Ruchniewicz said: "We're sorry to have to tell fans that the club's financial position has reached a critical phase. If the club does cease trading, it is unlikely to go into formal administration given its limited resources and level of funds and assets required. We're being advised by licenced insolvency practitioners and are in consultation with the Football League on a regular basis to try and find a solution. As a board we have statutory duties not to allow the club to trade beyond a point we believe it cannot recover from. That point in time is fast approaching.

"We realise how difficult this must be for everyone concerned with the Millers, but without in any way playing down the seriousness of the situation, we sincerely believe there is a good chance we can save the club providing anyone with some sort of link with the club gets behind us. We the board have already contributed substantial personal funds and are continuing to work very hard on a number of initiatives including approaching potential investors. Indeed we are prepared to transfer with no personal payment our controlling interest to people of substance who could put the necessary investment into the club."

Of course it wouldn't be the first time that a club chairman has cried wolf, but this time there does appear to be substance behind the headlines. A recent rights issue flopped, season ticket sales and gate receipts generally are substantially down on the last few seasons in the Championship, as is commercial income; and the Millers have yet to receive payment from Southend for the disputed sale of Jamal Campbell-Ryce. They no longer own the ground, having sold Millmoor last summer to stave off immediate collapse then. One does have to wonder however why Rotherham are in the middle of building a brand new main stand - it's not as if this crisis could have crept up on them unexpectedly.

Rotherham have set up a Save Our Millers campaign to coordinate fundraising efforts and have kicked things off with a '£10 To Play Again, £25 To Stay Alive' Appeal. Anyone wishing to help or contribute can contact the Save Our Millers campaign hotline on 01709 512434; send a donation to the club with cheques made payable to R.U.S.T (Rotherham United Supporters Trust); or email stmc@rotherhamunited.net for more information.


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9 February 2006 : Thommo confirms Horlock interest
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has confirmed his interest in signing on loan Ipswich playmaker Kevin Horlock - but ironically the prospect of the 33-year-old midfielder playing in the green-and-white hoops has receded with the news that the player has an ankle injury, which caused him to miss a reserve team fixture on Tuesday night. Thommo will wait now for the player to prove his fitness before moving for him.

"We are certainly looking to strengthen but it might not happen before the weekend. There is certainly no reason to panic," the gaffer told the Western Daily Press today. "I have spoken to (Ipswich manager) Joe Royle and to Kevin Horlock's agent and that could still be a possibility. But at the moment he is injured."

The Tractor Boys have confirmed that they have had an offer to pay part of Horlock's wages while he is on loan, but have so far turned it down. They have not named the club making the offer.

Thommo has again praised reserve team winger Gavin McCallum. The young Canadian has impressed with a string of good peformances for the reserves and youth team lately, but the manager has warned him to be patient in his quest for a first team place, saying that the club's proximity to the relegation places makes it difficult to blood young players at the moment.

"No Yeovil Town player has improved more over the last year than Gavin," said Thompson. "At the moment the situation is very tight and it would asking a lot to give someone a debut under that pressure."


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9 February 2006 : Positive thoughts only - or else!
After yesterday's carrot of a Customer Charter Meeting, here comes the stick: Club chairman John Fry has warned that the club will 'take a tough line' with 'trouble-makers' in the crowd on matchdays at Huish Park - and if you were one of those on the Westland Terrace who joined in with the anti-David Webb chants last Saturday then the chairman is talking about you.

Speaking in today's edition of the Western Gazette Mr Fry was asked for his reaction to the brief outbreak of chanting against the club's owner/chief executive and asked if it was important for everyone to stick together in the light of the current league position. "There is always going to be an element of trouble-makers," Fry responded. "There is always going to be an element of people who are disappointed because they have not got what they wanted or what they expected. There is also always going to be an element of people who are going to be disappointed when we are not pushing for the play-offs or top three. It is not good for the future of the club if people have certain attitudes and we will take a tough line with those who come in and create disturbances.

"We are well equipped on that front to talk and communicate with people and that is why it annoys me when people write to the Press with letters that could quite easily be sent to us. We have a customer-services charter which manages customer complaints and services. All people have to do is pick up the phone and speak to us or come to one of the meetings and participate.

"There are things we can do and things we cannot do but in whatever walk in life there will always be people who cause you trouble. We are not going to be pushed into a corner. We will manage the club as best we can with the resources we have got. We have achieved before and we will do it again. What we do not need people to do is put more pressure on the manager and players at such a critical time. We have all got to keep cool heads or we will be blown off course."


In Ciderspace's opinion it's a shame that after the relatively positive messages coming out from the meeting of the selected groups of fans with the chairman and chief executive on Tuesday that Mr Fry has now taken this line. In our view labelling fans who show dissent as 'trouble-makers' - whether that is in the printed media, the online media, or at games - is not only counter-productive but also unfair. The club have taken the fans' money, they are entitled to their say. It also begs the question of what the club's 'tough line' with such people will be? In our view the chanting last Saturday was the direct result of the club's poor communication with supporters over the last 7 weeks of the new chief executive's tenure. In view of the the hastily-arranged supporters' meeting this week the club would appear to agree with that, so it's doubly unfortunate that the headline on the back of the town's local newspaper this week is again a negative one when it could and perhaps should have been more positive. A self-inflicted wound.


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8 February 2006 : Broad Strategies Outlined By New Owner
Of course any devils are always in the detail, and detail was in relatively short supply as club owner and Chief Executive David Webb and chairman John Fry addressed an invited group of supporters at Huish Park last night. However, having had about seven weeks to look at his purchase, Mr Webb had decided the time had come to begin explaining his general philosophy and aims for Yeovil Town F.C.

Seemingly stung on hearing reports of the mutterings of discontent escalating into a smattering of openly antagonistic chanting at Huish Park last Saturday a Customer Charter Meeting was hastily arranged to start getting the message out and quell any potential mutinies.

So how does Mr Webb see the future? Firstly he wanted people to see he is here for a duration. A 'Five Year Plan' was mentioned several times. And the purpose of that plan is to allow the progress of the club to be sustainable. He expressed the view that the success on the pitch in recent years had outstripped the infrastructure of the club. Although he sees the club as financially sound he is looking to develop the stadium and facilities, both to enhance the profile of the club and to generate the revenue needed to provide the best possible team on the pitch.

With a declared intention not to take out loans or put the club into debt here we have the crux of the matter. To use a favourite analogy of a recently departed manager : can the juggler keep enough quality plates on the pitch spinning in the short term whilst the facilities that will eventually pull in the revenue streams to pay for them in the longer term are being developed? It is a circus act many a club has got badly wrong.

Mr Webb went on to give an indication of his thoughts on one area of development: the stadium. Here he sees the enhancement of the Copse Road End, possibly becoming the home end, and a new creation of a shop, bars and banqueting suite in the corner between that end and the Yeovil College Stand, as a way forward.

Ciderspace most certainly welcomes this example of dialogue between those who run the club and those who come to support it. Our quibble would be: apart from the stadium development ideas what was said that couldn't have been said some weeks ago? It's generally better to be pro-active rather than reactive. Plenty of communication is the best way to keep the troops on side.


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8 February 2006 : Donny Enter Horlock Chase
League One side Doncaster Rovers are apparently sniffing around Ipswich Town midfielder Kevin Horlock with a view to a loan deal, according to Ipswich's Rivals.net website. Although there has been no confirmation within the Glovers camp, Steve Thompson is believed to be chasing the player as a means of adding much needed experience to the Glovers midfield (see yesterday's story) but may have to beat off the advances of Donny's Dave Penney to do so.

Donny have recently been shuffling their midfield pack, having recently released former Morecambe midfielder Adriano Rigoglioso from the payroll after he had gone 11 months without a game due to injury. Penney has also been trialling Stoke City midfielder Anthony Pulis and Aberdeen midfielder Gary Dempsey giving a very strong pattern as to where he sees the need to strengthen.


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8 February 2006 : Warning: Playing For Your Country Can Harm Your Career!
Most footballers would view playing for their country to be the pinnacle of their career. New signing Bradley Thomas believes that it has been a distraction where his call-ups for his country have stunted his progress as a player at club level. The 21 year old central defender is a Jamaican Under-23 International, although most of his time on call-up came whilst he was with his one and only previous Football League side Peterborough United.

Speaking to the Western Daily Press Bradley explained: "I didn't really get my chance too much at Peterborough. I was often away with Jamaica, playing for the under-23s. When the chances did come I was always away on international duty, so it was a bit of a killer really. I wouldn't mind being involved (with Jamaica) again but the club has to come first. Hopefully if I am playing well with my club I will get another chance."

Bradley was signed from Conference South side Eastleigh during the January transfer window and he said he had no hesitation in accepting the Glovers offer.

"When it all came about there was no decision to make," Bradley explained. "You just have to say yes. It was always my aim to get back with a pro club and I thought it would happen maybe next season, so I am just delighted it has happened before. I was at Peterborough for six years and I went to Weymouth for a year and ended up at Eastleigh in a semi-pro league. I worked hard there and hoped I would get my chance and now we will see what happens."

Bradley, who has also played for Kettering Town, Heybridge Swifts and Aldershot, has signed an 18 month deal at the club. The WDP reveal that the youngster is using club captain Terry Skiverton as his mentor during his early days at the club.

Thomas said of the Yeovil skipper: "I will just have to learn as much off him as I can. He has already had a couple of chats with me and he has been there, seen it and done it so hopefully I can do the same thing. I am hoping the fans will take to me. A couple of the lads who play at Weymouth used to play at Yeovil - Roy O'Brien and Kirk Jackson. They have always said what a good club this is so hopefully I can do well and say the same thing really."


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8 February 2006 : Matt Looks To Learn His Way To The Top
Yeovil Town striker Matt Harrold kept himself busy during the club's recent weekend off - watching his old team-mates dump Premiership side Sunderland out of the FA Cup. As a result he saw Dudley Campbell - the striker who replaced him at Griffin Park - score both goals in the shock win, and then seal a move to Premiership side Birmingham City.

However, speaking to BBC Sport, Matt admitted he was more than prepared to watch and learn from 'DJ' in order to improve his own game: "It's good to watch the movement of other forwards. I watch a lot of football on television to see the way different strikers move inside the box, get in front of people and lose their markers. But you can also see so much on television, it's hard to detect the whole movement. DJ's move to Birmingham shows how much talent there is the non-league game. There are lots of players who can definitely play at a higher level. I'm only 21, but I think I've got the potential to be a Premier League player, though obviously luck plays a big part as well as hard work."

Matt has always been willing to learn new things - from the 'A' Level in Sports Science he possesses, to the degree he started but never completed due to Brentford snapping him up on a professional contract as a 17 year old whilst he was playing on loan for Harlow Town as a Grays Athletic player. He worked under current Bees boss Martin Allen who he praised heavily for his coaching methods, but believed that having top class forwards ahead of him held him back in West London.

Matt explained: "In my first year with Brentford it was a case of trying to break into the team. Then Isiaih Rankin and Deon Burton signed and it's hard when you don't feel you are first- choice striker. But Martin Allen taught me things I will always be grateful for. He helped me with the dirty side of the game you have to do as a forward, such as closing down players and dropping back to help the team. He is a very good manager. He did a lot of working with us as regards our shape to shut the other team down and that is why Brentford didn't concede many goals."

Matt of course has recently earned himself a regular place in the Glovers starting line-up although that presents its own challenges that he is learning to deal with such as the two recent home defeats against Bradford City and Southend United that saw the club begin life without three of its most experienced players.

Matt explained: "You can't expect morale to be that great after losing two successive games. Lee Johnson, Darren Way, Efe Sodje have all gone and we haven't really been able to replace them. We're a young team, but I think we will be OK. We've dropped points and I just can't believe how it has happened."

The target-man who has scored six goals this season also revealed some of the bizarre lengths that he had gone to in order to try and break his current barren run which stretches back nine games to the mid-December win at Rotherham United.

Harrold revealed: "I can't tell you the amount of things that go through your head you think might help you end a run like that. When I last scored I had eaten a banana in the morning. So I kept trying that but after not scoring in the fifth game I've gave up on that idea. I've scored six goals this season, but if you look at my first-team starts, it's probably a goal in every three games. The thing is I'm playing well and the manager is happy with me, though obviously I'm disappointed I've haven't scored recently."


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8 February 2006 : Not So Great Scott !
One of the least surprising sackings departures by mutual consent occurred today as Hartlepool United and manager Martin Scott parted company. Both parties had little concrete to say, but rumours have been rife that a bust up and actual fighting in the dressing room after the 3-0 defeat at home by Blackpool two Saturdays ago provided the excuse Pools were looking for. With Scott having a record of 10 wins in 40 games since his appointment, and Hartlepool dropping like a stone down the table into the relegation zone after making the play-offs last term, it didn't take the greatest cynic to see that the club might regard this as a heaven sent opportunity. Scott was initially suspended whilst internal investigations were carried out. Few doubted which way today's disciplinary hearing would go.

In an official statement the club trotted out the well worn 'spending more time with the family' line :

It has now been agreed that Martin will no longer be first-team manager and will leave the club to pursue his Uefa Pro Licence coaching badge, spend time with his family and move forward with his career and other interests.


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8 February 2006 : Good Fortune For Vale?
Saturday's opponents Port Vale have some better news on the injury front after the problems for Chris Birchall and Sam Togwell (see below, February 6th).

Clayton Fortune, on loan from Bristol City, could make a much swifter return than expected and be available this weekend. The 23-year-old defender has been sidelined for two weeks since limping out of Vale's F.A. Cup defeat at Aston Villa with a hamstring injury, but is in possible contention for the fixture against Yeovil Town. It had been feared he would be out for up to two months.

Manager Martin Foyle said :

He is coming on strong and doing a lot better. He might have a chance for this weekend, it will be close. He has not started running yet, but he says he is pain free, so that is good news for the club.


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8 February 2006 : Reserves pushing for first team place, says Thommo
Glovers boss Steve Thompson was pleased with the way reserve-team strikers Kevin Gall and Daniel Webb scored all 5 goals between themselves in the 5-0 win over Bournemouth reserves last night and is hoping that their example can rub off on first-choice strikers Phil Jevons and Matt Harrold at Port Vale on Saturday.

"The reserves have given me something to think about and they have staked a claim with their goals," Thompson told the Western Daily Press last night.

"It is always good to win any game and, hopefully, that can push the first-team a little harder. When you see people playing well and scoring goals it might make you work harder to keep your place. Admittedly, it was a young Bournemouth team, but we had a young team playing as well."


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8 February 2006 : Guyett Returns To Training
Central defender Scott Guyett returns to training this morning after several weeks out with a virus. The Aussie did not feature in last weekend's match against Southend United and the previous blank weekend means that Scott has not played in a competitive match for almost three weeks. Because of that Yeovil manager Steve Thompson believes he needs to assess Scott's match fitness before assessing him for Saturday's match at Port Vale.

Speaking to the Team Talk website, Thommo explained: "We will assess how Scott is over the next three days. He's been out for two and a half weeks so it depends how fit he is. Hopefully he will be available for Saturday, even if he cannot figure for all 90 minutes."


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8 February 2006 : Youth Team vs Swindon Rearranged
Last weekend's postponed Youth Team match against Swindon Town will now be played in Swindon (venue to be confirmed) on Saturday 18th March, kick-off 11.00am.


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8 February 2006 : Lindy In Stitches
Yeovil Town wide-man Andy Lindegaard needed four stitches in a leg wound last night following a hefty challenge by an AFC Bournemouth player in the 5-0 win in the Pontins Holiday Combination match at Huish Park.

Lindy limped off an hour into the match and was replaced by Gary Bowles, but the injury is not believed to be serious enough to keep him out of Saturday's squad for the trip to Port Vale.


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8 February 2006 : Loan System Re-Opens
The Football League's loan system re-opens this morning with Glovers manager Steve Thompson setting his priorities for either a striker, or a midfielder who can create and score goals.

Speaking to the Teamtalk website Thommo revealed: "I am looking to bring in a loan signing before the weekend. We haven't scored in the last couple of games so a goalscoring midfielder or striker is my priority. I am enquiring about a few players and looking at all the options at the moment."

See yesterday's story on Kevin Horlock for one of Thommo's possible options.


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8 February 2006 : Ciderspace Match Report : Yeovil Town vs AFC Bournemouth Reserves
Robin Evans gives his view on last night's 5-0 win here.


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7 February 2006 : Colchester Win Continues Battle Of The Essex Boys
Colchester United won tonight's only League One game tonight, thanks to a Chris Iwelumo goal right on the stroke of half time that sealed a 1-0 victory. Their opponents Scunthorpe United reportedly put up a strong fight but came home pointless, in a result that means they remain one place below Yeovil Town in 17th place in the league table. Colchester's win meant they leapt over Essex rivals Southend United with the pair now establishing a five point gap over third placed Swansea City.

All teams below the Glovers now have played either the same number of games or one game more, and only Doncaster Rovers of the pack immediately above have played a game less. The gap between the Glovers and the relegation watermark remains a meagre three points.


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7 February 2006 : Ciderspace Guide To Port Vale
The travel guide for Saturday's trip to Port Vale is now complete. Find all the directions, ground information, club history, ticketing and pub options by heading here.


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7 February 2006 : Glovers Thrash Bournemouth Reserves
Yeovil Town's Reserve side thrashed AFC Bournemouth Reserves 5-0 tonight at Huish Park in a Pontins Combination match that saw Kevin Gall grab a hat-trick and Daniel Webb weigh in with two more.

The team got off to a dream start, opening the scoring within 60 seconds of the match opening. Andy Lindegaard, who was captaining the side, put a ball up the right channel to Kevin Gall, who beat the Bournemouth full-back, got to the by-line then launched an excellent cross to an incoming Daniel Webb who headed home for an early lead.

Left-winger Gavin McCallum crashed a long-ranger against the crossbar but just past the half-hour mark the Glovers doubled their lead with a great finish from Kevin Gall. Pablo Bastianini and Dale Williams linked up well and Gally finished with a superb volley that flashed past the Bournemouth keeper. Three minutes before the break the same player made the half-time scoreline 3-0 as he grabbed the ball with his back to goal, turning and shooting in one movement to double his tally for the night.

A slightly less fluent second half still saw Yeovil grab two more goals, with both catching out the Bournemouth back line through the use of long balls over the top. On the hour mark, Kevin Gall grabbed his hat-trick when he raced onto a lobbed pass, hitting the ball on the half-volley for an excellent goal. Then with five minutes remaining, Daniel Webb got his second of the night as he received a similar through ball, this time choosing to lob the advancing keeper for Yeovil's fifth goal of the night.

Scorers: Daniel Webb (1 min, 1-0), Kevin Gall (32 mins, 2-0), Kevin Gall (42 mins, 3-0), Kevin Gall (60 mins, 4-0), Daniel Webb (85 mins, 5-0).

Line-Up: (4-4-2)
1 Chris Weale
2 Andy Lindegaard, 5 Bradley Thomas, 6 Stephen Reed, 3 Jamie Vincent
7 Dale Williams, 4 Pablo Bastianini, 8 Anthony Barry, 12 Gavin McCallum
10 Daniel Webb, 11 Kevin Gall

Subs: 14 Tom Clarke, 15 Richard Cullingford, 16 Gary Bowles, 13 Scott Vines.


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7 February 2006 : Horlock On His Way?
The East Anglian Daily Times is reporting today that Kevin Horlock may be on his way for a loan spell at Huish Park. Horlock was unavailable for the Ipswich Town Reserves fixture against Leicester City Reserves tonight with an ankle injury. The paper gives no further details other than he might be with Yeovil Town by this weekend if he regains fitness in time.

Back in January when Horlock was told by manager Joe Royle he would be released at the end of the season, he said :

It is disappointing for anyone to be told they are no longer needed in a job and it is no different for me. It gives you a big boost when you hear clubs are interested in you and it is a good lift but I have not spoken to anyone about Oldham as yet and it is a bit premature for people to be saying I will be going anywhere. It could be that I go now or at the end of the season but I will not be rushing into any decision.

This is a big one for me and it will probably be my last. It is not fair on the kids who have just settled here and my family is the most important thing to me. When I go it would have to be the right club and in the right area so it is a very important decision for me.


The Oldham Athletic interest in signing him ended with Ronnie Moore saying he was just out of their price range, though whether Horlock was ever really interested in that move isn't clear. Barnsley also made some enquiries, but nothing came of those either.

Horlock started his career as a trainee at West Ham United. He broke into first team football after signing for Swindon Town in 1992. After four and a half years there he made a big money move to Manchester City for £1.25 million in 1997. He clocked up over 200 starts for The Blues before moving back to The Hammers for £300,000 for the 2003-04 season. Released on a free he has been with the Tractor Boys since.


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7 February 2006 : Steve Tilson's View On The Southend Game
Southend manager Steve Tilson believes his team's second half performance won them Saturday's game comfortably after they had to endure some early pressure from the Glovers during a far tighter first period.

Tilson said of the match: "I thought it was a good professional performance today. We probably scored against the run of play for the first goal but without Yeovil having any really good chances but that just seemed to settle us down. I thought we came out for the second half and during that first 20 minutes I thought we were tremendous. I felt that we could have got two or three goals then. But it wasn't to be. I felt we carried on playing some decent football and then Shaun Goater came up with a second and I thought that in the end we probably looked comfortable."

"In the second half and especially during that first 15 minutes we pinned Yeovil back and probably could have got another couple," Tilson added. "But obviously at the end of the day I'll take 2-0 any time. Yeovil worked hard but they seemed to lack that cutting edge up top. In the end I thought we got on top and that wasn't just in midfield it was throughout the whole team."

Tilson did half-admit that his side had got lucky by obtaining a free kick for the first goal that looked harsh on the Glovers, but he claimed it mattered little as Yeovil failed to react to Southend's quick free kick explaining: "The free kick was halfway in our half. If they can't defend that, then that is down to them."

The Southend boss still remained cautious when talking of his side's chances of promotion: "We're going about it the right way but there is still a long way to go. All the sides around us won. Obviously it was a good result but we haven't picked up too many points on other teams as a result. We're 12 games unbeaten now and hopefully we can carry that form into the rest of the season."

Former Glover Efe Sodje failed to complete the game, but Tilson said the injury was not serious: "Efe Sodje is just a shoulder injury. He did it playing in his first game for us and it is just a reoccurance of that. He should be OK for us this Friday, with a bit of luck, given that Adam Barrett has got sent off."

Tilson blasted referee Clive Penton claiming that his team had all the decisions go against them: "We had two certain penalties and I cannot believe Adam has been sent off, it was never a red card in a million years. The first tackle for the yellow, the lad was nowhere near him and for the second one he has just got his body between the winger and the ball. That is never in a million years a sending off. We never got anything (from the referee) today. We are now going to now be missing a natural winner through suspension."

Southend winger and goalscorer Mark Bentley believed his side had done well to survive some of the early pressure before the visitors took over. He explained: "Yeovil worked hard as they always do and for 15 minutes put us under a bit of pressure. They had a lot of good movement at first and Jevons as we know is a good player and he was lively. Their two wide players pushed on really tight along with their full-backs as well. So it was a very different game to what we have been used to over the past couple of weeks because Yeovil are a very attacking side. Yeovil sides always like to play like that. They get the ball back in play very quickly and they make good use of the multi-ball system. But we kept our concentration and came up with a result."

Bentley believes the main reason why his team have raced to the top of the table is down to habits formed during the latter half of last season, explaining: "We just seem to have hit the ground running again straight from last year. We have kept our winning mentality where we believe we can win every game. We have brought in some good experienced players. Shaun Goater has just come back for us and he has been brilliant and held the ball up for us. We have just got this belief that we can win. We were saying before the game that we hadn't beaten Yeovil before this season. But we beat them 4-1 at home and we have now come to their place and we have done them 2-0 and so we are delighted with that."


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7 February 2006 : Officials for Saturday
Clive Oliver from Northumberland will be the referee on the Glovers first ever visit to Vale Park this coming Saturday. The last time we saw Mr. Oliver was when we broke the Glanford Park mini-hoodoo with a 3-4 win over Scunthorpe United back in October. We don't recall him much - always a good thing where referees are concerned - though hardly surprising in a ding-dong seven goal thriller when there are more interesting things to think about than the man in black. And that's the end of our experience of Oliver whilst in the Football League.

The Assistant Referees will be Gary Hilton of Lancashire and Nigel Smith of Derbyshire. Patrick Keane from the West Midlands is the Fourth Official.


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7 February 2006 : Interview With David Poole
Yeovil Town winger David Poole gave his views on the 0-2 home defeat against Southend United immediately after the game when he spoke to the press.

David blamed a poor start to the second half for the defeat and gave an honest reflection of the game when he said: "I think at the start of the first half the lads performed really well and we had a few chances. But I think that Southend got on top of us when they got the goal. At the start of the second half I just don't know what happened. Southend came out just flying and we couldn't cope with it."

Read the full interview with David Poole by clicking here or head to the Ciderspace Interviews Section.


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7 February 2006 : Pitcher injury ko's trial chance - for now
An head injury suffered while playing for Clevedon Town at Beaconsfield on Saturday has ruled Seasiders striker Jack Pitcher out of tonight's reserve team game v Bournemouth. The 22-year-old, who the Glovers are monitoring (see news stories 2nd and 3rd Feb), again trained with Yeovil yesterday but will now play in another reserve team fixture instead - probably against Bristol City later this month.

"I travelled back (from Beaconsfield) with ice on the eye and went to the minor injuries clinic at Southmead on Saturday night," Pitcher told the Bristol Evening Post today. "They glued the cut, but the area above the eye has come up like a balloon. Yeovil's club doctor had a look at it and reckoned it would be too big a risk for me to play. I'm only allowed two trial games and I've had one already. If I played against Bournemouth and the eye opened up after a few minutes, that would be my chance gone."

The 22-year-old striker trained with Yeovil again yesterday after his employers allowed him time off to travel to South Somerset. "Work have been brilliant and they're trying to allow me as many days down at Yeovil as possible. I went in on Monday and did some fitness work followed by a six-a-side game," Pitcher revealed. "Yeovil have promised me another game and I'm really hoping it will be against (Bristol) City. It's encouraging to know they are still interested and I'm going to make the most of this opportunity."


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7 February 2006 : Customer Charter Meeting Tonight
The club have announced that there is a Customer Charter Meeting tonight at Huish Park. It's not clear if this is being held before or after tonight's Reserve Team match, but Chief Executive and club owner David Webb, Chairman John Fry and First Team manager Steve Thompson are attending.

The minutes for the last meeting held in October 2005 can be found here. Attendance is by invite only.


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7 February 2006 : AFC Bournemouth Reserves Preview
AFC Bournemouth Reserves are expected to field club captain Karl Broadhurst in tonight's Pontins Holiday Combination fixture at Huish Park, kick-off 7.00pm. The 25 year old defender has been sidelined for 12 months with a back injury but got as far as being an unused substitute in the Cherries 1-0 defeat at the Liberty Stadium against Swansea City last Friday night. Tonight's game will be Broadhurst's first bit of competitive action, although the Bournemouth Echo speculates that he will only be given around 45 minutes worth to ease his way back in.

Broadhurst told the paper: "It was great to be involved again on Friday. Of course we were all disappointed with the result, but it was pleasing for me to be around the squad again after being out for such a long time. I haven't been able to go to many away games this season because of my back, but I'm at the stage now where my back is feeling good and I can start doing things I used to do a year ago."

The Cherries line-up has been announced as : Michael Jordan, Liam Moseley, Liam Crook, Adam Griffiths, Karl Broadhurst, James Coutts, James Rowe, Aiden Sainsbury, Brett Pitman, Liam Winzar, Peter Smith. Subs : Jack Cleverly, James Rae, Jamie Whisken, Billy Franks.

The line-up for the Glovers will as predicted yesterday feature the five January contract signatures of striker Daniel Webb, central defender Bradley Thomas, left-back Jamie Vincent, midfielder Anthony Barry and winger Gavin McCallum. The full line-up predicted by the official site is as follows:

Chris Weale, Andy Lindegaard, Jamie Vincent, Richard Cullingford, Bradley Thomas, Stephen Reed, Dale Williams, Daniel Webb, Kevin Gall, Gavin McCallum, Tom Clarke, Pablo Bastianini, Gary Bowles, Scott Vine.


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7 February 2006 : Vincent keen to make his mark
New signing Jamie Vincent has been explaining the circumstances behind his move to Huish Park from Championship outfit Derby County, and the reasons why he wasn't fit enough to be included in the squad in Saturdays defeat at home to Southend.

The left-sided defender began the season on a 6-month loan deal with Millwall and actually played for the Lions - and was booked for a foul on Efe Sodje - in their somewhat fortunate 2-1 win at Huish Park in the League Cup in September. He was a regular starter in the Millwall side until he picked up a calf injury: "I tore my soleus (calf) muscle and it took a while for Millwall to diagnose what was wrong," Vincent explained to the Western Daily Press today.

"I had an ultrasound scan but that didn't pick up anything and it didn't show up until I had an MRI which was three or four weeks after I had done it," he said. "If they had picked it up earlier on I would only have been out for a month, so it was frustrating. That kind of ruined any chance I had of signing there on a permanent. Once I was back from injury their priorities had changed and they were in the market for a centre forward."

"I sorted out things with Derby and then more or less after that happened my agent, Phil Purnell, said Yeovil would take me until the end of the season. They have had a few injury worries and I was happy to come and see how things went. I have signed a short-term deal here (until the end of the season) and if I prove my fitness and play a few games and hopefully do well for the club then maybe we could extend it if the manager was happy to do so. I want to do well here - my aim is to stay injury free, provide cover at the back and try to help get some results.

"I have only been here for a week but I do like what I see. I like the training and I like the lads and I just want to get some games in now," Vincent said.

The defender will make his first appearance in the green-and-white hoops tonight at Huish Park, in the reserve team fixture v Bournemouth. "I haven't played (a competitive game) for three months so it will take a week or two to get back the sort of fitness I had before I got injured," he explained, adding: "I have been training for a month so I am fit - it is just match fitness I need. The only game I have played since (the calf injury) was behind closed doors at Millwall in December."


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7 February 2006 : Central defender injury updates
Club captain Terry Skiverton has resumed running after undergoing surgery for a double hernia operation last month, though it's still too soon to say when the central defender will be fit enough to resume playing.

"The sooner he gets back the better, although our two centre-backs on Saturday (Adam Lockwood and Colin Miles) did very well," Glovers boss Steve Thompson told the Western Daily Press. "But it will be great to have a leader like Terry back with us," he added.

Fellow central defender Scott Guyett, who missed Saturday's 0-2 defeat at home to Southend with a virus, was expected to return to training today - he's rated at 50/50 for Saturday's match at Port Vale.


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7 February 2006 : Loan signings on their way
The transfer window may have closed but that doesn't mean the end of new players at Huish Park as the emergency loan system becomes active again from tomorrow, and Glovers boss Steve Thompson is hoping to take full advantage by bringing in new players - including a striker - as soon as he can, perhaps before Saturday's six-pointer at Port Vale.

"We will not necessarily rush things through this week but we are looking to bring someone in," Thommo told the Western Daily Press last night.

"It's not fair for me to divulge too much," he added, "but I've been calling managers this afternoon about three or four players. A striker is one of the positions I have inquired about but it might just be a case of getting one player in before Saturday."

As Ciderspace understands the emergency loan rules, the club can make three more loan signings before the end of the season.


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6 February 2006 : Poole Wants Players To Stay Close
Yeovil Town winger David Poole believes the first team's spirit and togetherness is key in order to put things right in the next few weeks following the disappointment of Saturday's 0-2 home defeat by Southend United.

Speaking to the Western Daily Press, Poole has said of the way forward: "We will pick ourselves up and work extra hard in training to put things right at Port Vale next week. It's always disappointing when you lose key players, but the lads have got to dig deep and become that little bit closer together. We have to do that in order to fight our way back up the table, and we will do that. We are well capable of putting a good run together that will allow us to start looking up again, rather than down."

More from that interview with Pooley should follow later in the week on Ciderspace.


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6 February 2006 : Gall Refuses To Consider The 'R' Word
Yeovil Town winger Kevin Gall is refusing to consider the possibility of relegation - despite Saturday's 0-2 home defeat at the hands of League One leaders Southend United.

Speaking to the Western Daily Press Gally believes the Shrimpers league position should be factored into the equation explaining: "It's not like all of a sudden we have become a bad team - Southend are a very good side and they showed why they are top of the league. We just have to get on with it now and work hard towards the next game. There is no point in thinking about relegation - we just need to focus on the next game and getting three points."

Gally also responded to concerns that the club may see out the season with a weakened squad adding: "I can understand the fans' worries - of course they are going to be concerned that we've lost some important players. Darren, Lee and Efe were a big part of Yeovil, but we have brought in some good players as well. Players come and go at every club and you just have to be positive and get on with it."


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6 February 2006 : Shortlists For Football League Awards
The inaugural Football League Awards, detailed on Ciderspace on December 21st, have moved forward to the next stage, with a press release as to nominations. Don't waste too much time looking for us, we're not there.

The Football League has announced the nominees for a number of the categories in the snappily named Football League Awards incorporating FourFourTwo's Top 50 Football League Players. The winners be announced at a gala dinner at The London Hilton on Park Lane on Sunday, 5 March 2006.

Community Club of the Year, sponsored by Asda

Nominees: Brentford, Burnley, Colchester United, Millwall, Norwich City, Notts County, Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Best Club Sponsorship

Nominees: Gillingham, Leeds United, Norwich City, Nottingham Forest, Stoke City, Walsall.

Best Club Marketing Campaign, sponsored by Marketing Magazine

Nominees: Derby County, Leeds United, Nottingham Forest, Preston North End, Reading.

Best Kit Design, sponsored by Ted Baker

Nominees: Ipswich Town, Leyton Orient, Norwich City, Reading.

Match-day Programme of the Year, sponsored by Ryman

Nominees: Barnet, Colchester United, Crystal Palace, Derby County, Hull City, Ipswich Town, Preston North End.

The judging panels included representatives from The Football League and FourFourTwo Magazine, senior figures from Football in the Community, The League Managers Association, The Professional Footballers' Association and Supporters Direct, alongside several further key partners - it says here.

In addition supporters have nominated candidates for the Fan of the Year Award and voted for the club with the Best Ground. Nominations and votes were gathered via the Football League's and FourFourTwo's Official Websites.

The Director of The Football League Coca-Cola Championship, Stewart Regan said:

The inaugural Football League Awards will recognise the most outstanding achievements of our unsung heroes, as well as honouring our most talented players. Selecting names for the shortlists was a huge task, while significant numbers of supporters had their say in the categories awarded by fans. We look forward to unveiling the winners on the night.

And a long night it could be too, with the list of awards going on, and on, and on.........

FourFourTwo will announce their 'Top 50 Players In The Football League', at the Awards Dinner, to coincide with the publication of its April edition.

And further awards will be :

Best Club Website, sponsored by Premium TV - so we're guessing a PTV site might just sneak this one. We're confident it won't be www.ytfc.premiumtv.co.uk though.
Best Ground, sponsored by Carling and voted for by away fans.
Contribution To Football Award, sponsored by BT and voted for by listeners of BBC Five Live.
Fan of the Year, sponsored by FourFourTwo.
The Wash & Go Good Sport Award.
Football League Championship Top Apprentice, sponsored by Wickes.
Goal of the Year, sponsored by Sports TV.
Most Admired Football League Club.
Championship Player of the Year, sponsored by Coca-Cola.
League 1 Player of the Year, sponsored by Coca-Cola.
League 2 Player of the Year, sponsored by Coca-Cola.
The Football League Young Player of the Year, sponsored by Dodge.

Nominations and winners in these categories will be revealed on the night of the awards. The Player of the Year awards will be made to the highest ranked player in each division in FourFourTwo's Top 50 Football League Players.

Should be all wrapped up by about two in the morning.......


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6 February 2006 : Will Merson Have Gone?
Yeovil Town could be facing a new man at the helm when they meet Walsall at the Bescot Stadium on Tuesday 21st March. The fixture should have been played on January 28th, but the Saddlers were otherwise engaged in the F.A. Cup. Although Walsall spent most of the first half of the season looking fairly comfortable in mid-table, and got to the Fourth Round of the Cup (defeating the Glovers on the way), their away form has been consistently poor. With home form dipping to meet it Paul Merson was one of the busiest managers in League One during the transfer window, but the fans have not seemed too impressed with the mass of outs and ins. Matters came to a head with a 5-0 drubbing at Brentford on Saturday, with repeated chants for the manager's exit. Merson has responded by saying he will resign if Walsall lose their next match, a potential six-pointer at home to Scunthorpe United :

We have had five away games on the trot - judge me at home. We have Scunthorpe on Saturday and if we lose that, I will go. The fans were singing 'MERSON OUT!'. Maybe they are right, but I would say keep behind the team next week because if we lose, I will go.

Update : And the answer is - yes. The give away clue was his chairman, Jeff Bonser, in the Birmingham Mail today :

We all need to get behind Paul and the team. If they want to shout names, let them shout mine. Don't get at the players - they are doing their best. I'm still immensely supportive of Paul because I know how hard he works and how much he wants Walsall to succeed. I've seen how hurt he is when Walsall FC lose. We all need to pull together now and salvage this season so that we can go forward again next year.

Ah, the good old vote of confidence from the chairman in the morning = sacked in the evening.

Walsall have called a press conference for 9.00 a.m. tomorrow morning when the club is expected to confirm the story as reported on Sky Sports.


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6 February 2006 : Vale Injuries
Yeovil Town's next opponents, fellow strugglers Port Vale, pulled off their first away victory against Oldham Athletic since 1969 at the weekend, a result that had Latics manager Ronnie Moore locked in the dressing room with his players for fifty minutes after the final whistle. However the Valiants win came at a cost, with injuries to Chris Birchall and Sam Togwell, who both failed to finish the match. Nathan Lowndes also had to be taken off with concussion.

Birchall has a recurring hamstring injury, while Togwell has pulled his calf. Both midfielders are doubtful for the visit of the Glovers according to manager Martin Foyle.

He said: Birchy is nowhere near right. He is very tight and very stiff - that's why I am looking after him. Everybody else is on the razzmatazz about Chris Birchall and Trinidad and Tobago, but nobody has thought about the lad on his own. It is my job to protect him and I will.

Sam might just have pulled his calf and he could be out as well. But that just gives somebody else a chance - I already have players coming and knocking on my door, which is nice.



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6 February 2006 : Prior Makes Team Of The Week
Whilst it will not surprise anyone to note that no Yeovil Town players featured in this week's Football League Team Of The Week, what is surprising is that Saturday's opponents Southend United only landed one player in the League On XI. Defender Spencer Prior is the only Shrimpers representative to be given the nod. One other name of note in this week's selection is Blackpool midfielder David Fox, who the Glovers failed to attract during the transfer window.

The full selection is as follows:

Donovan Ricketts (Bradford)
Shaun Barker (Rotherham), Jerel Ifil (Swindon), Danny Cullip (Nottingham Forest), Spencer Prior (Southend)
Marcus Bean (Blackpool), Jamie O’Hara (Chesterfield), Jay Tabb (Brentford), David Fox (Blackpool)
Richard Garcia (Colchester), Andrew Keogh (Scunthorpe).


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6 February 2006 : Reserves vs AFC Bournemouth
A reminder that Yeovil Town Reserves will be talking on their AFC Bournemouth counterparts at Huish Park tomorrow (Tuesday) night at 7.00pm.

Only the Yeovil College Stand will be open with payment accepted through the turnstiles. Prices are two pounds for adult season ticket holders with concessions free of charge. Non-season ticket holders are admitted for three pounds with concessions available at two pounds.

Team news will appear here tomorrow, although the expectation is that this will be the first chance to see on home soil the club's four January signings. Striker Daniel Webb, central defender Bradley Thomas, left-back Jamie Vincent and midfielder Anthony Barry should all be making their Huish Park debuts. Youth team winger Gavin McCallum who represents the fifth contract signature of the month should also be on display. This is therefore a great opportunity to see some of the new faces in action.


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5 February 2006 : Thommo's Verdict On The Southend Game
Glovers boss Steve Thompson spoke to the press following the disappointing 0-2 home defeat at the hands of league leaders Southend United. Steve answered the following questions after the game:

Qu: Steve you said before the game you thought it was going to be tough. Did you feel the 2-0 scoreline was justified there?

ST: Yes I thought Southend deserved their victory. In the second half they dominated the game and deserved their victory. In the first half things were very even. I think both teams had one chance - Matty Harrold's was cleared off the line and then they had the chance just before half time. It was an even first half but Southend dominated the second half so I have no arguments about losing the game.

Qu: It was one of those games where it was important to get the first goal. You had a great first ten minutes but then Southend probably took their first clear-cut chance.

ST: Yes it is always important to get the first goal but I think you have to be good enough and brave enough to come back when you go a goal down. Of course getting the first goal is important but that should not determine winning or losing a game. You play for the 90 minutes and we really only played for the 45 minutes today. In the second 45 minutes we didn't look dangerous. They looked very dangerous and I have got no arguments about the defeat.

Qu: What do you think was different about the second half? Why didn't you look dangerous?

ST: Because we were second to the ball in nearly every department. I wouldn't have said that about our central defenders or our defence as a whole because some of them got in some fantastic blocks or it certainly could have been more. In midfield and up front we were second to the ball and didn't create anything because we were always second to the ball. That is the first time I have seen that really this season. Over the last five games certainly we have been the better team on every occasion. MK Dons was a very even game but in the other four games I thought we were the better team. In some cases we won the game but in Bradford's case we lost it right at the end. But today we weren't - we were second best - and Southend were by far the better team in the second half.

Qu: That's the second home game in a row where you haven't scored a goal. Is that fairly worrying?

ST: It's very worrying. We are not creating enough chances and we are going to have to work very hard to rectify that.

Qu: What are the players like in the dressing room?

ST: Well obviously everyone is very down. To lose at home always looks bad, so yes everyone is down but on the other hand I'm glad they are not jumping about and looking happy. I would hope that they won't smile until they get in their homes and then maybe they might find something that is worth smiling about. Certainly not at the moment as it's not very nice losing games. That's how they should feel and so it's obvious that they are going to feel down. But what we have got to do is to make sure that we all work together to get ourselves out of this sort of situation because you don't want to slip into that bottom four.

Qu: League One is still fairly close, particularly the bottom half.

ST: Yes, it's very close and every point that you pick up and every win that you pick up is obviously very vital. We have to go to Port Vale next Saturday and try and get that win. That's obviously very important to us.

Qu: How did you rate Southend to the other teams you've seen this season?

ST: Over the two games I would say they are the best team that we have played for sure.

Qu: Bradley Thomas and Jamie Vincent weren't involved today. Was there any particular thinking behind those two?

ST: Jamie Vincent hasn't played for a while. He is regaining fitness and we will have to work very hard with him for a week or two to get his fitness levels back up. Bradley was suspended today.

Qu: Was your boss away scouting a game again?

ST: Yes, he was away out watching a game today.

Qu: So you are still hoping to bring in someone else by the end of the week?

ST: Yes, we would hope to bring in other people when the loan window re-opens.

Qu: Adam Lockwood did very well on his return to the side.

ST: Yes I thought Adam Lockwood played very well and made some crucial blocks and made some great headers.

Qu: There were some comments that people thought the free kick that led up to Southend's first goal wasn't a free kick.

ST: No, it wasn't a free kick, but there you go - so be it. It was given for a foul by Chris Cohen but he had won the ball. But you then have to defend that situation and we didn't. You can argue over every decision made on a football pitch and if the referee got it right every time it would be amazing. He certainly got that one wrong and yes it did lead to a goal but we have to defend that situation better.

Qu: It was a very clever flick by Freddy Eastwood wasn't it?

ST: He is a very clever player and he showed that today. He is showing that regularly now and he is a very clever player. So I'll be making a bid for him on Monday!

Qu: Southend thought they had a cast iron penalty in the second half.

ST: I don't know. They had a few appeals in the second half, including a few for handball.

Qu: They were thinking of the David Poole one.

ST: Yes, from where I was it did look as though he clipped his heels - albeit accidentally. But it was all about whether the referee thought the ball was staying in play, because the ball was rolling out. If he thought the ball was staying in play then I suppose he should have given a penalty but the referees are there to make those decisions. We have to look at the general picture and not those single decisions because I don't think that one referee's decision has cost us the game today. I wouldn't want to use that as an excuse.

Qu: You said you weren't too happy in the second half. Did you have to give them a bit of a blast?

ST: Yes we did because that wasn't up to the level that we have played in previous weeks, by a long way.


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5 February 2006 : Shrimpers net easy win
Yeovil Town lost their second home game on the spin at Huish Park yesterday afternoon, league leaders Southend United looking a class apart as they cruised to a comfortable 2-0 win.

The Glovers were forced into making one change from the team that had played so well - and lost - against Bradford City a fortnight ago, Scott Guyett's illness meaning a welcome return for Adam Lockwood. And for 20 minutes it seemed like business as usual as the Glovers started where they had left off a fortnight ago, playing attractive, passing football and creating decent chances with Arron Davies, Matt Harrold and Adam Lockwood all coming close in quick succession. Gradually however the Shrimpers began to assert themselves physically, with several hard challenges being punished with yellow cards; and then with the ball, an incisive move cutting open the Glovers defence allowing Mark Bentley to beat Steven Collis in the Yeovil goal on 36 minutes. It could have been even worse at half-time, Collis making a good save low down at the near post from a Mark Gower effort on 45 minutes.

The crowd were looking for a response from Yeovil in the second half, but it never came. Southend dominated utterly and could easily have added more than the one extra they managed - a Shaun Goater effort on 75 minutes - and had two very good penalty appeals turned down as well. There was no lack of effort from the Glovers - there never is - but there was a worrying lack of guile, nous, and sheer physical strength, the team seeming to be well beaten both physically and mentally by a Southend team that has made great strides forwards from last season.

Full match report: Yeovil Town 0 - 2 Southend United.

Yesterday's results leaves the Glovers slipping another place down the table to 16th on 37 points, only 3 points away from the relegation zone. TBCUTR (35 points) lost 2-0 at Barnsley to remain in 20th position but Swindon's (34) revival continues, winning 2-1 at home to Doncaster, to move up to 21st. Walsall are the latest club in crisis, losing 5-0 at Brentford yesterday to drop to 19th on 35 points. It's still extremely tight in the lower two-thirds of the table and any run of results, good or bad, can easily yet make - or break - a club's season.

At the other end of the table Southend remain top on 57 points with the admirable Colchester 2nd on 55 after their 3-1 win over Bradford. TMUOL1 (© Alan Tate) are 3rd on 52, with Barnsley and Brentford 4th and 5th on 51 apiece. Next week's opponents, Port Vale enjoyed a good 1-0 win at Oldham to move above the Glovers to 13th place, on 39 points.

Ex-Glover watch: Lee Johnson played the entire 90 minutes in Hearts 3-0 Scottish Cup win over Aberdeen yesterday, as did Michael Rose in Scunthorpe's 2-0 home win over Franchise FC. Darren Way's injury hit season has been jinxed again - the midfielder is out for a month with a thigh injury sustained last week; and Gavin Williams returned for Ipswich in the East Anglian derby v Norwich today, but only lasted 20-odd minutes before being taken off with a recurrence of the knee ligament damage that has kept him out of the Ipswich side recently.


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4 February 2006 : Locky Back On Centre Stage
Glovers defender Adam Lockwood hopes to finally get his Yeovil Town career back on track tomorrow when he is expected to be restored to the starting line-up following his return from a two month loan spell with League Two side Torquay United.

After being a near ever-present during his first three seasons with Yeovil Town, clocking up 139 first team appearances during that time, his fourth season was a miserable one, watching from the sidelines as a knee injury put him out of football for virtually the whole season. Adam has only made seven first team league starts since the end of the 2003/04 season but looks to make his second start of the season against league leaders Southend United later today.

Adam only gets his chance because of the injury to Terry Skiverton and the illness of Scott Guyett but in speaking to the Western Daily Press he admits that he has sympathy for his team-mates.

"I was out for seven months last season with a knee injury so I can sympathise with how they feel - you wouldn't wish it on anyone," Adam explained. "But this is what the squad is here for. Everybody has to support each other and that's how you get through these periods. Everybody has to work hard all the time and be ready when their chance comes up. Obviously things have not gone quite the way I would have liked this season, for one reason or another. So I have had to bide my time and hopefully I'll get a chance to impress on Saturday. It has always been that if you impress at Yeovil, you keep the shirt, and I think that's the best way to do it."

Adam has made it clear in previous interviews that he enjoyed his loan spell at Plainmoor, and admitted he was glad to get back into playing regularly again adding: "As a player all you want to do is play football and that's why I went to Torquay. I enjoyed my time there and got a good run of games there, and that was the whole reason why I went there. It was not difficult for me to play for a side that was struggling down there, because I'm the kind of person that likes a challenge. It was a battle there but they have a good squad, and sometimes you just don't get the rub of the green. But I cannot see any reason why they won't get out of the situation they are in, and results have started to pick up already."

Adam is well aware that he is being chucked in the deep end, with the Shrimpers on top of League One but he was looking forward to it, adding: "The table doesn't lie - Southend are on top on merit and they are obviously a good side. So it will be a tough test for us but that's something we welcome."


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3 February 2006 : Thommo Looks For That Familiar Feeling
Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson hopes that he was able to give his team a few pointers today to try and stop a team that are no strangers to him, with league leaders Southend United set to play their sixth match against Yeovil Town tomorrow inside three years.

Whilst the Southend squad has only been marginally tweaked since the last meeting between the two clubs at Roots Hall in September, the Glovers starting line-up has altered significantly and it is likely that only four players from the September starting line-up - Kevin Amankwaah, Arron Davies, Nathan Jones and Phil Jevons will stand a realistic chance of being in the starting line-up for tomorrow's game.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol, Thommo admitted that he hoped the Yeovil camp's knowledge of the Essex side, in particular former Glover Efetobore Sodje, would help them in their planning admitting: "Yes, you do try and look and people's strengths and weaknesses and part of the work that we will be doing up there today (on the training pitch) will be geared towards maximising our strengths and also playing on any weaknesses we feel they may have."


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3 February 2006 : Jevo Up For The Captain's Challenge
Yeovil Town top scorer Phil Jevons says he is enjoying the challenge of acting as a stand-in captain for the Glovers whilst club captain Terry Skiverton recovers from a groin and double hernia operation. With Darren Way and Lee Johnson now having left Huish Park, Jevo has assumed an unofficial role as vice captain which he told BBC Radio Bristol he is happy to do.

"It's something that's new to me but I'm up for the challenge," Jevo explained. "I'm not going to change my game and I'm not going to go shouting and bawling people. I do all my talking on the pitch anyway. I just try and play my own game and hope that I get the respect from the players so they jump on the same bandwagon. I don't have to worry about that too much anyway because I know the sort of players they all are."

The Glovers take on Southend United at Huish Park tomorrow but Phil admitted that the majority of pundits did not expect the Essex side to be coming to Huish Park in February as league leaders: "At the start of the season it was very much a case of Bristol City and Nottingham Forest being the big hitters that were going to be up there. The likes of ourselves and Southend were supposed to struggle. But they've done really well. They are really good and strong at home and they are one of the best teams we've played against so far. They scored four goals against us in one half when we were away from home. The fact that they are top of the league goes to underline that they are very strong, so we are going to have to be up for it on Saturday and I'm sure we will."


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3 February 2006 : Cheat Watch Update
For those, like Ciderspace, who like to keep a distant but beady eye on the fortunes and misfortunes of football cheat Steve Evans, the wheels of justice grind slow. The last time we reported on the cheating Boston United manager on 22nd September, 2005, it was with the news that he'd been charged with defrauding the Inland Revenue, along with four other ex- and current Boston officials. The case was then adjourned until January 2006. With nothing further we could find in the media, and January having run out, we felt it our duty to discover how the cheat's case was progressing. A quick phone call, and our Boston contacts reveal the case has been further adjourned, until September 2006. We'll be back then to follow his twisting and turning triumphant dismissal of all the charges.


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3 February 2006 : Bristol Rovers Youth Game Rearranged
Yeovil Town's Under 18s match against Bristol Rovers has been rearranged to take place on Saturday 11th February, with an 11.00am kick-off. The match is due to be played on the Top Pitch at Huish Park.


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3 February 2006 : Youth Match At Swindon Postponed
Tomorrow morning's Youth Team match against Swindon Town has been postponed due to a frozen pitch in Wiltshire. No new date has been arranged yet.


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3 February 2006 : Thommo plays down Pitcher speculation
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has ruled out making an immediate move for Clevedon striker Jack Pitcher but has suggested that he may take another look at the prolific goalscorer in the summer:

"Jack is under contract at Clevedon and certainly has something there that we like, but whether we can sign him at this moment is another matter," Thompson told the Western Daily Press today. "We can't do anything right at this moment, but he is certainly one we would like to have train with us. If we do nothing before the end of the season we would hope he could do a month with us in the pre-season, and then we'd get a far better idea of whether he could do a job for us."

Pitcher is under contract at Clevedon for a further 18 months and the Southern League side will demand a fee for his services - which reading between the lines may be the stumbling block to the Glovers offering the 22-year-old a deal before the summer and why they want the chance to have an in-depth look at the player first.

"I think Jack deserves this chance and I'm delighted for him. I don't want him to go, but he has to if there's a decent offer on the table," Clevedon boss Phil Bater admitted to the Bristol Evening Post. "Goalscorers are a scarce commodity in the game and I'm not surprised Yeovil have decided to have a look at Jack. He's scored a lot of goals over the past year and he's still improving. Whenever he has stepped up a level, he has coped with it, and I honestly believe he has a chance of making the grade as a full-time professional. He has pace, is brave and good in the air, works hard and has a great attitude."


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3 February 2006 : Yeovil Town v Southend United match preview
It seems a long time since the last match preview and that's because it is - a fortnight to be precise since the Glovers last played and somehow contrived to gift Bradford City all 3 points in a match that Yeovil totally dominated in all but one aspect - scoring goals. Since then various players have come and gone and the squad has been away for a mid-season break, hopefully coming back to training this week refreshed and raring to go.

League leaders Southend United provide the opposition tomorrow, a team we've become used to playing over the last 2-3 years and generally with a fair bit of success too, the Glovers winning 4 out of 5 games played between the sides since we've come into the Football League. The Shrimpers have enjoyed an excellent season up til now as their position in the league indicates and with 25 points from 15 away games played have the best record away from home in the division. Added to that they are unbeaten in 11 league games, so it's evident that Yeovil have a job on tomorrow.

Southend will be without Wayne Gray on Saturday, the striker is out for 3 weeks with a hamstring strain. Former Oxford striker Lee Bradbury, a transfer window capture, is liable to replace him. Shaun Goater completed 90 minutes for the Shrimpers reserves in midweek so is also available, but Freddy Eastwood is expected to keep his place up front. Midfielder Carl Pettefer has returned to training after a shoulder injury but is not yet match fit. Defender Efe Sodje returns to Huish Park for the first time since his surprise and sudden move to Roots Hall at the beginning of January.

"It's always a difficult game at Yeovil because for some reason we seem to struggle down there," Southend boss Steve Tilson admitted to his club's official site today, adding: "But we'd previously not done as well as we could at home against them up to when we beat them 4-1 this season. Hopefully that is a good omen for us to go to Yeovil and get three points on Saturday. The second half against Yeovil earlier this season we played really well, probably our best 45 minutes this season, so they probably feel they owe us one but we just have to make sure we don't lose."

As for the Glovers, club captain Terry Skiverton is definitely out while he recovers from his double hernia operation and fellow central defender Scott Guyett will also miss the match after picking up a mystery viral illness, Adam Lockwood is set to replace him: "Scott is out for Saturday's match," Glovers boss Steve Thompson told the Western Daily Press. "He was ill all of last week. He is a little bit better this week but is still feeling very poorly. We have had all the tests done and the results are a bit inconclusive, but he's certainly not well enough to play. Adam Lockwood is likely to start and it helps that he went to Torquay for two months and is match-fit. Adam has always been a very good player for the club and I'm sure he'll do well for us."

New signings Anthony Barry, given the vacant no.8 shirt, and Jamie Vincent, no.6, are likely to start on the bench. "It's going to be a very important match with Southend sitting on top of the table," said Thommo. "We are going to have to be at our best as Southend are not only top of the table, but also in a rich vein of form at present. We shall be welcoming back our old friend Efe Sodje who made such an impact at Huish Park when he joined us last year. Our pitch will be hard but as things go it is looking superb at the present, especially in comparison to some Premiership grounds."

Selected betting odds: Yeovil win - 7/5; draw - 9/4; Southend win - 13/8. Our recommendation: We can't get very excited about the odds on offer for the win/lose/draw, therefore we're going to split our usual fiver bet tomorrow. Adam Lockwood has been scoring for fun whilst on loan at Torquay (well, he's got a couple) and is reasonable value at 9/1 to score at anytime. Phil Jevons has never failed to score against the Shrimpers since he's been at Yeovil and he could be worth a punt at 5/1 to be first scorer or 11/8 to score at anytime. For those that like to forecast the correct score a Glovers win of 2-1 is available at 17/2 and if you're really feeling optimistic a 4-1 Yeovil win will pay out at 66/1. We're going for £2.50 on Locky to score at anytime and £2.50 on a 2-1 Yeovil win! Record so far this season: +£15.80p.


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3 February 2006 : Guyett Out For Southend
BBC Radio Bristol are reporting this morning that central defender Scott Guyett has failed to recover from a virus that he picked up last weekend. Guyett has not trained all week, and his position in Saturday's team appeared to be in increasing doubt. Scott's place in the side is likely to be taken by Adam Lockwood, with new signing Jamie Vincent likely to be standing by on the substitutes bench.


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2 February 2006 : Transfer Day Signings May Not Be The End
Yeovil Town manager Steve Thompson has not ruled out the possibility of making further moves into the transfer market by using the "emergency" loans system. Football League managers can apply for loan moves from February 8th (see story below). With Steve having missed out on Chester City's Ben Davies and having suggested on Tuesday that he was looking at a loan striker, those would appear to be his most likely target positions when the loan system opens next Wednesday.

Speaking to today's Western Gazette, Steve explained: "I am happy with the players that we have brought in but I would still not say that I have the numbers that I want to go with. The loan window reopens in eight (now six) days time and we have to be ready to bring in players if we need them."


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2 February 2006 : Bradley Move Came Out Of The Blue
Glovers defender Bradley Thomas admitted that he had not foreseen the telephone call that led to him leaving Conference South side Eastleigh and heading up three leagues to join Yeovil Town last week. The centre-back was brought in on a free transfer, with Peterborough United having been his only previous experience of a professional club.

Speaking to the Western Gazetee Bradley admitted: "The move came out of the blue. I am absolutely over the moon and I hope I will be able to take this chance. It is a great club and moving here did not take much thinking about."

Glovers boss Steve Thompson said one factor in the thinking to bring Bradley into the club was his pace. Having seen Liam Fontaine complete his loan period with the club and Efetobore Sodje depart for Southend United, there is not as much pace in the centre and Steve hopes Bradley will help provide that attribute to the Glovers defence.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol Steve added: "Bradley is a very fit athletic centre half. We are short on centre-halves now. It is a chance for Bradley to come in and show us what he has got."


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2 February 2006 : Vincent Experience Was A Factor
Glovers boss Steve Thompson believed bringing Jamie Vincent's experience into the club was vital to blend in with the other relatively inexperienced signings the club has purchased during the transfer window. Having lost the multi-club experience of Efetobore Sodje along with Lee Johnson and Darren Way who had knocked up close to 500 appearances between the pair at Huish Park, Thommo wanted to ensure that the balance between youth and experience in the Yeovil Town squad was maintained.

Speaking to BBC Radio Bristol this afternoon, Steve explained: "We've got a very young squad here now and we just felt that we needed a little bit of experience and Jamie has got the chance for the rest of this season to come in and make his mark."

One of those young arrivals is midfielder Anthony Barry, but far from holding him back, Thommo is adopting the 'if you're good enough, you're old enough' adage and is challenging Anthony to hit the ground running.

The Glovers manager said of the midfielder: "Watching him the other night (at Exeter vs Accrington), he was very much like Lee Johnson was at 19, when Lee first came to the club. But hopefully Anthony can come in and have an immediate impact so he can have that impact at 19. Chris Cohen has shown he can do that, and he did that at 18 and he's just turned 19 now and we hope that Anthony can have the same impact as Chris."


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2 February 2006 : 02V issue 18 on sale Saturday
The new issue of the Glovers fanzine On To Victory is available for purchase this Saturday at Huish Park, before, during and after the home match v Southend Utd. O2V co-editor and part-time Ciderspace match reporter Jer 'Fab' Gear writes:

"O2V issue 18 is released this Saturday, the cover is a picture taken of a Yeovil game in the forties against Bath; on page two we have a lovely photo taken by...er Badger, of Matt Harrold; underneath is a white box asking Matt to sign it, so kids take your pens (sorry Matt!)

"We then have an an article sent in by a supporter who watched the Sunderland game in 1949; author Michael Bromfield tells us about "watching Yeovil around the world" and how he may have acted if he knew Jon Goddard-Watts was going to sell!! Very interesting!

"Many other things as usual, but the bit that will interest all of the older Glovers the most is "Scoops" exclusive interview with the one and only John Clancy, was he the best winger Yeovil ever had? [Yes! - Ciderspace Ed.]

"On sale this Saturday, outside the ticket office, in the programme shop, and around the ground at half time...only £1.00.

"If you can't get to the game...email ontovictoryfanzine@yahoo.co.uk and we'll tell you about the mail order opportunity!"

On To Victory - at only £1 better value than the entire W*ymouth side.


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2 February 2006 : Spring Emergency Loan Dates
Tuesday night's closure of the transfer window means that Premiership and Football League clubs can not sign players until the summer. The only exception to that rule concerns goalkeepers - for example if a club should find themselves without an available keeper.

However, the "emergency" loan system commences next Wednesday 8th February and from that moment onwards loan deals are permitted until 23 March at 5:00pm. The transfer window system does not apply to clubs below Conference National level - local league rules apply in those circumstances.


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2 February 2006 : Thommo Hopes For Lengthy Vincent Stay
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has said today that the door is open for former Derby County left-back Jamie Vincent to earn a longer contract at Huish Park. Vincent joined Yeovil Town from the Rams on Tuesday evening and Thommo also sites his versatility as a factor in why he went after him.

Speaking to the Teamtalk website, Thommo explained: "When I heard Jamie was available I was happy to get Jamie here. I know he is a left-back but he can also play in the centre of defence if needed there and that is a big bonus for us. He's initially here until the end of the season but there's no reason why he cannot be here longer."

Vincent could get an earlier foothold into the Yeovil Town back four than perhaps he may have expected. Today's Western Gazette report Scott Guyett as a doubt for Saturday's game (see our story on Tuesday 31st January) with his virus still proving troublesome. The most likely scenario in Guyett's absence though would be for Adam Lockwood to move up the pecking order.


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2 February 2006 : Thommo running the rule over Pitcher
Clevedon Town striker Jack Pitcher, who featured fora half in the Glovers reserves match at Cheltenham on Tuesday evening, is being assessed by Glovers boss Steve Thompson this week on the recommendation of his assistant Kevin Hodges, Pitcher's former manager at Clevedon - and it seems that Thommo likes what he sees, comparing the 22-year-old to former Town hitman Adam Stansfield.

"Jack Pitcher played a half and he is training with us for three days this week - Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday," Thommo told the Western Daily Press today. "Kevin (Hodges) knows him well and Stuart (Housley) has also had a look at him. We don't have to make a quick decision on him - he is really enjoying training with us. I feel he has got some very good attributes - as a player he reminds me a lot of Adam Stansfield."

A prolific scorer for previous clubs Winterbourne and Mangotsfield, Pitcher, an hotel kitchen cleaner by trade who works all over the country, has hit 23 goals already this season for Clevedon and is hoping to earn a professional contract with the Glovers.

"I try not to let the job get in the way of playing, but it's really tiring work," he told the Bristol Evening Post today. "We travel all over the place and sometimes have to work through the night. It's not an ideal situation and I often get my head down and catch up on my sleep while we're on the road in the van."

Pitcher played for 40 minutes as a second half substitute for the Glovers reserves at Cheltenham. "I really enjoyed it," he said. "Playing with better players helped and the surface was outstanding. It wasn't that much harder than playing in the Southern League for Clevedon, but the conditions were better. I did get one chance to score, but let it slip by. Even so, Kevin Hodges told me I'd done well and said there might be a chance of coming back for a second week's training next week."

"I'm determined to work really hard and make a good impression. If Yeovil were to make me an offer, it would be a dream come true. I've been fortunate enough to play with, and for, some very good people," said Pitcher. "Andy Black (former Mangotsfield manager) was brilliant and gave me my chance in senior football, and working with Beads (Peter Beadle, ex-Clevedon manager) was great. Kevin Hodges and Phil Bater (current Clevedon manager) have helped me no end and I feel I'm a much better player now."

The Clevedon striker has trialed for a Football League club before - Bristol Rovers 3 years ago, but was rejected then by the Gas to the bemusement of current Clevedon manager Phil Bater. "If Yeovil sign him, they will have pinched him right from under Rovers' noses," said Bater. "I've long thought the kid can make it in the Football League and I cannot for the life of me fathom why Rovers didn't take a chance on him."

Former Mangotsfield manager Andy Black is another to sing Pitcher's praises: "I decided to take a gamble on him after several different people recommended him," said Black to the Evening Post. "When I first set eyes on him, I saw a raw talent with the biggest asset in the game - pace. Jack is an athlete and a brave player; he also has a great attitude and works very hard. Without doubt, he's one of the best discoveries I've made."


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2 February 2006 : Barry Contract Length Confirmed
New midfield signing Anthony Barry's contract length has been confirmed as running until the summer of 2008. The midfielder signed on transfer deadline day from Accrington Stanley (see Tuesday's story).

Speaking to the Teamtalk website, Glovers manager Steve Thompson explained: "We've signed him on a two-and-a-half year deal and have high hopes for him. He is a passing midfielder in the Lee Johnson mould and we feel he had got a very bright future ahead of him."


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1 February 2006 : Transfer Window Round-Up : No. 10
With no less than 19 final day transfers involving League One clubs, the transfer window closed in frantic fashion with some deals being struck close to midnight as the Football League relented and kept their offices open for extended hours.

The big deal of the day was undoubtedly Dudley Campbell's 500,000 pound move to Birmingham City. The West London side did manage to buy enough time though to get in a replacement striker with Callum Willock moving to Griffin Park from Peterborough for an undisclosed fee.

Whilst there were plenty of "undisclosed" transfers being made, the Campbell transfer represented the only deal of the day where the respective managers were willing to quantify how much money was changing hands.

League leaders Southend United and Saturday's opponents have made one change with Oxford United striker Lee Bradbury arriving on loan having fallen out with the management at the Kassam Stadium over a contractual issue. Amazingly Southend have still not sorted out a row with Rotherham United over Jamal Campbell-Ryce with the winger having been taken on loan in September with supposedly a permanent deal planned to go through in January. Southend have backed out of the deal leaving the winger currently unable to play for either club.

The full list of deadline day moves affecting League One clubs, courtesy of the BBC, are as follows:

Michael Symes [Bradford - Stockport] Loan
Stuart Anderson [Blackpool - Ross County] Loan
David Barroway [Birmingham - Walsall] Free
Anthony Barry [Accrington - Yeovil] Undisclosed
Lee Bradbury [Oxford - Southend] Loan
DJ Campbell [Brentford - Birmingham] £500,000
John Doolan [Blackpool - Rochdale] Free
Steven Gillespie [Bristol City - Cheltenham] Undisclosed
Marc Goodfellow [Swansea - Grimsby] Free
Lee Grant [Derby County - Oldham] Loan
Colin Heath [Man Utd - Chesterfield] Free
Dean Keates [unattached - Walsall]
Richard Kell [Barnsley - Scarborough] Loan
Kyle Lapham [Swindon - Cirencester Town] Loan
Gary Mulligan [Sheffield United - Gillingham] Loan
Ben Rix [Crewe - Bournemouth] Loan
Jason Talbot [Mansfield - Port Vale] Free
Jamie Vincent [Derby - Yeovil] Free
Callum Willock [Peterborough - Brentford] Undisclosed.

The emergency loan system will now kick in. When the last transfer window ended at the end of August, there was a "dead week" during which no loans could take place. It is not clear at this stage whether such a format is in place now, or whether clubs can apply for loans immediately from today.


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1 February 2006 : Forthcoming Away Ticketing
With several ALL TICKET matches coming up fans will need to ensure they get their away tickets organised in advance.

However the first is nice and simple. Port Vale on Saturday 11th February is pay-on-the-day only. All accommodation is covered seating.

Adults £18.50, Seniors (Over 60) £11.00, Juniors (Under 16) £8.50. Students can get a £12.00 concession but must use the Vale Park Ticket Office and show a valid NUS card.

Wheelchair users can gain admittance for £5.00. Carers pay the relevant price above. Ring Port Vale on 01782 655800 and ask for Estelle.

Next up is Blackpool on Saturday 25th February. Here you have a choice of buying in advance from the Huish Park Ticket Office or pay-on-the-day at Bloomfield Road.

Our general policy, if there is disagreement between the Yeovil Town Official Site and any other source on a particular matter, is : go with the other source. You'll be right much more often than you're wrong. In the case of ticketing the OS is usually correct because if gets its copy direct from the Ticket Office, which is run very competently. Where the system can fall down is when there are subsequent late changes the Media and Communications Department sometimes fails to update. Here we have a range of ticket prices every one of which disagrees with the general price list on the Blackpool Official Site, as well as with all the main football guides around the Net. However we'll presume Yeovil Town has the correct version and Blackpool are doing special offers.

Adults £14.00, Over 60 £10.00, Under 18 - £1.00, Under 8 free.

The YTFC OS makes no reference as to whether Blackpool are maintaining their usual policy of a price differential between pre-purchased and on-the-day tickets, just giving the above single set of prices.

Further ahead there are two ALL TICKET games coming up. AFC Bournemouth have announced today they expect a sell out for this match. In fact they claim interest is so great they are only selling tickets to their own non-Season Ticket Holders if they also buy for the prior games against Oldham Athletic and Blackpool. You've only come to watch Yeovil.......!

Tickets for away fans are only available through the Huish Park Ticket Office. Season Ticket Holders have priority from Friday 3rd February to Friday 17th February. Any remaining tickets will go on General Sale as from Monday 20th February. Prices are :

Adults £17.00, Concessions (Over 65 and Students) £9.00, Juniors (Under 16) £7.00.

Disabled fans get into The Fitness First Stadium (Dean Court) for free. One helper / carer per disabled fan is also entitled to free entry. E-mail The Cherries on tickets@afcb.co.uk or phone their Ticket Office on 01202 726303. You can have the tickets posted out, or arrange to pick them up on the day from the dedicated 'Special Needs' steward Phillip Tyrell.

Full details of the ALL TICKET match against Bristol City on Saturday 1st April can be found on this page under January 27th. As a quick reminder of the main points :

Season Ticket Holders only from Friday 3rd February to Saturday 18th February. Thereafter any remaining tickets will go on general sale from Monday 20th February.

Prices are - Adults £17.00, Concessions (Over 65 and Students) £13.00, Juniors (Under 16) £6.00.

All the above can only be purchased from the Huish Park Ticket Office.

Disabled supporters and carers will need to ring Bristol City on 0117 9630607.


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1 February 2006 : Match Officials For Southend Game
Saturday's home match against Southend United will be controlled by Sussex-based referee Clive Penton. The match official actually made these news pages only last week after he took charge of the match between Bristol City and Swansea City, producing 10 yellow cards and one red card in a bad-tempered match.

Penton has taken charge in three Yeovil Town matches in the past. On the minus side, he was the man who sent off Jake Edwards at the Memorial Stadium in December 2003 as the Glovers won 1-0 against Bristol Rovers, despite the man disadvantage. The next day saw Sky Sports plead with the match referee to rescind the red card after video replays showed Rovers full-back Ijah Anderson stamping on the Yeovil striker, but Penton refused to budge.

A game involving Penton also grabbed the headlines last season. He was the match referee for the 3-2 win over Plymouth Argyle in the Carling Cup that saw Lee Johnson score the first of three goals in a bizarre fashion - knocking a 'backpass' into the Pilgrims net past a surprised Luke McCormick in the Argyle goal. In fairness there was little the match referee could have done within the laws of the game to legislate for that, even if it did provoke much debate.

To complete a trio of matches in which the Glovers have won, Penton also dealt with the 4-1 win over Wrexham in the FA Cup in November 2003. No-one notices the match referee when you thrash higher league opposition like that though!

Mr Penton is assisted by the familiar names of Keith Buller of Bridgwater and Andrew Turner of Devon. This will be Mr Buller's fifth visit of the season, with the most recent having come in the 2-0 win over Hartlepool United last month.

Meanwhile Mr Turner will be making his second visit of the season to Huish Park having acted as an assistant in the 2-1 win over Barnsley.

The fourth official will be Kevin Barnes of Wiltshire, who is making his second appearance of the season as fourth official following his role in the 2-1 win over Walsall last September.


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1 February 2006 : Phil Jevons is January's Internet Player of the Month
Striker Phil Jevons is January's Ciderspace Internet Player of the Month. Jevo won the MOTM vote outright in the 2-0 win over Hartlepool, scored 3 goals in the 4 games played in January and became the stand-in captain following the injury to club captain Terry Skiverton, who himself finished 2nd in the voting. Third-placed Chris Cohen was the other main contender for the accolade.

Phil Jevons scores with a spectacular effort against Hartlepool.
Phil Jevons scores with a spectacular effort against Hartlepool.
Photo © 2005 Martin Baker / Ciderspace


Full results are as follows:

Phil Jevons - 417 points
Terry Skiverton - 369
Chris Cohen - 337
David Poole - 159
Scott Guyett - 157
Matt Harrold - 145
Nathan Jones - 108
Kevin Amankwaah - 63
Paul Terry - 52
Stephen Collis - 38


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1 February 2006 : League One round-up
Three matches played in League One last night and the results of all three games leave the table tighter than ever, particularly at the wrong end of the table where all three relegation-threatened teams in action picked up three points apiece.

TMUOL1 (© Alan Tate) were desperate to improve on their current record of only 1 win in 9 games and to revive their faltering promotion challenge and were at home to a Gillingham side in 18th place and without an away win all season. At the end of 90 minutes the Gills had picked up 7 bookings and a red card as well as all 3 points and had moved up to 12th position on 38 points, 1 point ahead of the Glovers. The Jacks, now on 1 win in 10, were booed off the pitch by their loyal supporters. Former Glover Darren Way began the game for Swansea, but was replaced at half-time. What a waste!

Bottom club Franchise FC gave themselves reason for hope by beating under-achieving Nottingham Forest 1-0 at home, that man Izale McLeod notching his 12th goal of the season. The Dons are still bottom on 27 points, 2 behind Rotherham on 29, and are by no means cut adrift as yet. Swindon did themselves a huge favour by beating fellow strugglers Walsall 1-0, a Jamie Cureton goal the difference between the sides. The Robins leapfrogged Rotherham to go to 22nd on 31 points, Hartlepool (33 points) currently reside in the final relegation place. The Glovers (37) drop a place to 14th following Gillingham's win at the Liberty Stadium.


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1 February 2006 : Thommo pleased with new signings
Glovers boss Steve Thompson has been commenting on the rash of new signings taken on in the run-up to the closure of the transfer window last night, explaining what each individual player will bring to the existing squad, as well as bemoaning those that got away - and he has hinted that he might well go back for one of those in the summer.

Speaking to the club's official site Thommo began by praising former Accrington midfielder Anthony Barry: "We have been looking for a player who is a passer in midfield, kind of in the Lee Johnson mode," he said. "Anthony is only 19 and we are hoping he will have an immediate impact, he is certainly a good passer of the ball. We are hoping we may have found another Lee Johnson." No pressure there then!

Regarding the 11th hour signing of former Derby defender Jamie Vincent Thommo said: "Jamie is an experienced defender with lots of qualities. He has played for some big clubs, including Crystal Palace, Huddersfield, Walsall, Bournemouth and Portsmouth. He is still only 30 and we are hoping his experience and quality will prove invaluable in the coming four months."

Gavin McCallum is of course a familiar figure to regular reserve/youth team watchers and his consistently good performances had earned him a contract. "Gavin has been here for over a year now, he has worked very hard and has progressed as much, if not more, than any of Stuart Housley's youth team," said Thompson. "He has been getting man of the match nearly every game and we are pleased to have signed him on an 18 month contract."

The club had brought in Bradley Thomas as a player to develop, Thommo explained: "Bradley has come in following the departure of Luke Oliver to Stevenage Borough. We heard that he was available and we believe that with full time training he can improve and push for a place in the team."

There were disappointments yesterday as well. Chester City rebuffed the Glovers undisclosed offer for midfielder Ben Davies as 'derisory' but with the player out of contract in the summer and available for free under the Bosman ruling Thompson has hinted that a satisfactory outcome there may have been delayed rather than prevented by Chester's rejection of the Yeovil offer. The main disappointment however was the abrupt about turn of Wolves defender Keith Lowe,who had agreed a 3 month loan deal at Huish Park only to change his mind at the 11th hour, preferring to head to Queens Park Rangers instead.

"I thought we had done a deal with Keith Lowe but at the very last moment he choose to go to QPR." Thommo explained. "Jean Cotton (club secretary) was doing the paper work at the time. I was really disappointed as we had watched Keith play for Wolves against WBA and he played well. When we found out we could have him on loan we jumped at the chance. Unfortunately we lost out to QPR but I can do nothing about that now."


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1 February 2006 : Pitcher On Trial
Yesterday's substitute for Yeovil Town Reserves in the 1-0 defeat at Cheltenham Town was Clevedon Town striker Jack Pitcher and not Youth Team centre-back Matt Pitcher as first thought!

Jack is Clevedon's top scorer this season with 23 goals from 34 appearances and overall he has scored 48 goals in 81 appearances for the Somerset club. He is of course well known to Yeovil Town assistant manager Kevin Hodges who managed the striker whilst Kevin was Clevedon's manager.

Jack signed for the Somerset club from Mangotsfield United in July 2004, having originally joined them from Hellenic League side Winterbourne United. Jack was voted last season’s Player of the Year and Supporters Player of the Year at the Hand Stadium.

There is currently no word as to what Glovers boss Steve Thompson's likely future plans are for the striker, who played 25 minutes of last night's match.


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1 February 2006 : Rose Extends To End Of Season
Yeovil Town left-back Michael Rose has been given an extension on his loan at Scunthorpe United until the end of the season. After being a near ever-present at Huish Park last season, Rose has been restricted to a single substitute appearance for the Glovers during this season.

Having gone on loan to Glanford Park at the start of the year, he has been highly rated there and has so far made five appearances including an FA Cup match against Manchester City. Now Rose has been allowed to extend his stay for the remainder of the campaign. The fact that left-back Jamie Vincent has yesterday joined Yeovil Town for the rest of the season is surely no coincidence in giving Rose the green light to stay in Lincolnshire. It is not clear whether Michael will be allowed to play against Yeovil Town on April 14th at Huish Park when Scunthorpe are due to visit.


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