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30 June 2008 : Five Trialists Arrive
With pre-season training due to start tomorrow, on July 1st, manager Russell Slade has invited five players down to Huish Park for the start of training. None of them have signed for the club, but they are as follows:

1) Pierre Antoine Martini (Goalkeeper) : 20 years old, previously on the books of French side Nice. Pierre was born in Marseille on June 27th 1988. As far as we can tell, Pierre has not made a first team appearance for the French club, although was deemed good enough to be playing for their Reserve side at the age of 16.

2) Emmanuel Francoise (right-midfield) : 21 years old, previously on the books of French side Metz. He was born on June 8th 1987 in Metz and has made three appearances for the first team, all during last season, having been on their books as a professional for the past three years.

3) Patrick Noubissie (midfield) : 25 years old, born June 25th 1983 in Bois-Colombes, France. He is a defensive midfielder who has previously played for CS Brétigny-sur-Orge, Le Mée-sur-Seine SF, CS Sedan Ardennes, US Roye Foot Picardie, Crewe Alexandra, Stockport County, Grimsby Town, Swindon Town, Hibernian, Livingston (loan) and Dundee (loan). He was released by Hibs at the end of this season, having played in just four games for them, plus a further 16 for his loan clubs. He stands at 5'11" tall.

4) Gavin Tomlin (midfield) : 25 years old, previously with Staines Town, Gillingham, Windsor and Eton, Aylesbury United, St Albans, Tooting & Mitcham United, Ashford Town and Brentford and currently playing for Fisher Athletic where of course he knows Kieran Murtagh. Gavin can play as a left-winger, right-winger or as a striker. Whilst the Glovers are describing Gavin as a midfielder, Fisher see him as a striker with plenty of pace. Gavin was born on January 13th, 1983 in Gillingham, Kent.

5) Anthony Mason (striker) : A product of Plymouth Argyle's Academy side and was given a professional contract at Home Park 12 months ago. The 18 year old has also represented the Republic of Ireland at U17, U18 and U19 level. He had a spell on loan at Bridgwater Town last December.

We'd like to wish all five players good luck with their quest to earn a contract at Huish Park.


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29 June 2008 : Stiff Minnows Excluded?
The Pontin's Holidays Combination has not had a Cup competition, unlike its Pontin's Holidays League counterpart for Northern teams, for the last two seasons. The old Combination Cup competition was scrapped from the 2006-07 season - 16th June, 2006.

For the coming 2008-09 season a cup competition has been resurrected, to be called the Invitation Cup. In the name lies its purpose, as from what can be gleaned so far invites appear to be restricted to those Championship clubs with Reserve teams in the Combination East, Central and Wales & West Divisions. We presume this is a reaction to the increasing complaints from a number of clubs that the present Reserve structure doesn't provide enough demanding levels of competition, containing as it does sides ranging from the Championship to the Conference Premier. With several of the larger clubs - and Bristol Rovers - having already withdrawn, it seems the Invitation Cup is an attempt by the authorities to provide extra competitive games for the bigger boys to try to keep them on board.


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28 June 2008 : Record FA Cup Entries
The Football Association has confirmed a record 762 entries for the 2008-09 F.A. Cup, 31 up from the 731 last season.

Details of the entries accepted, exemptions, and the draws for the Extra Preliminary, Preliminary and First Round Qualifying will be released by the F.A. on 1st July. However, courtesy of Tony Kempster's excellent site, there will be 408 teams starting out on 16th August 2008 in the Extra Preliminary Round. 128 from Step Four join for the Preliminary Round, 66 from Step 3 (Southern, Northern and Isthmian Premier) for the First Round Qualifying, and 44 from Step 2 (Conference North and Conference South) for the Second Round Qualifying. The 24 Conference Premier clubs enter at the Fourth Round Qualifying stage, the 48 League One and Two clubs for the First Round Proper and the 44 Championship and Premier League clubs for the Third Round Proper.

The dates for the 2008-09 competition can be found here.

With reference to Tony Kempster, he was diagnosed with bowel cancer and a secondary cancer on the liver earlier this month. He and his wife Annie are keeping people up-dated by blog on his progress. Tony is one of the foremost football statisticians, and his work over the years, particularly on his beloved Non-league game, has been invaluable. We wish Tony and his family all the best in the battle ahead.


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28 June 2008 : League Cup Draw Dates
The draw for the First Round of the Carling League Cup has of course already taken place - 13th June - with Yeovil Town travelling to The Valley to play Charlton Athletic on Tuesday 12th August, kick-off 7.45 p.m. (details).

The draw for the Second Round will take place on either Wednesday 13th August or Thursday 14th August. Thereafter the Football League is being more decisive :

Third Round - Saturday 30th August
Fourth Round - Saturday 27th September
Fifth Round - Saturday 15th November
Semi-Finals - Saturday 6th December

The schedule for the playing of ties in the competition can be found here.


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28 June 2008 : JPT Dates (Again)
We were right the first time - 5th June. It later appeared that the Football League had made an alteration to the Johnstone's Paint Trophy Third Round, from the week of 3rd November to the week of 24th November - 18th June. However it's now definitively (we trust) back on the date Ciderspace originally picked up on. The revision of the revised schedule for the competition now reads :

Round One, week beginning Monday 1st September.
Round Two, week beginning Monday 6th October.
Round Three, week beginning Monday 3rd November.
Area Semi-Finals, week beginning Monday 15th December.
Area Finals, two legs, weeks beginning Monday 19th January and Monday 16th February, 2009.
Final, Sunday 5th April 2009.

As in previous years the draws for the first four rounds will be held live on Soccer AM on Sky Sports.

Draw dates :

Round 1 - Saturday 9th August
Round 2 - Saturday 6th September
Round 3 - Saturday 11th October
Area Semi-Finals - Saturday 8th November

The draw for the Area Finals is set for Wednesday 17th December.


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27 June 2008 : May Heads To Bromley
Former Yeovil Town trialist Jay May has agreed to sign for Kent side Bromley. May, who guested and scored in a Reserve Team match for the Glovers will be leaving Dartford once a tribunal fee has been sorted. The Conference South side have agreed personal terms but as they couldn't settle a transfer fee with his former club Dartford, the issue will be settled via a tribunal.


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27 June 2008 : Marvin Departure Confirmed
League Two side Brentford have now officially confirmed the signing of Yeovil Town winger Marvin Williams. The former Millwall man has signed a one year deal at Griffin Park, having met with boss Andy Scott last week, and Scott told Brentford's official site that he had been a long-term admirer of the player:

"Marvin is another player that I've been tracking for a while. I watched him several times the season before last when he was at Millwall and he's quick, direct and can play either wide on the right or up front. He's a young lad with a lot of potential and hopefully he can progress with us."

Having put pen to paper, Marvin explained that one of his primary reasons for leaving Huish Park was to return to his London home:

"I met up with the gaffer last week and we had a chat - he told me his ambitions for the Club and what he wanted from me. To be honest it was a no-brainer for me to sign - he wants success and so do I. From a personal point of view it also makes sense as I'm a London boy, and was keen to move closer. I've got a baby on the way too, so it makes sense for me to be a bit closer to home. I've got some great friends at Yeovil and I can't speak highly enough of the club, but sometimes things just don't work out and I wish them the best of luck for next season. My personal targets for next season are to play as many games as I can, and to score goals. I'm quick, I can get past players and get crosses in from the right side of midfield. I just want to play football, and I'm certain I can be an asset to this team."

We'd like to wish Marvin the very best of luck at Brentford, and hope he grabs a regular place in the starting line-up.


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27 June 2008 : Marvin Heading For Brentford
Yeovil Town winger Marvin Williams is about to be sold to League Two Brentford, according to BBC Somerset.

Marvin was signed from Millwall a year ago for a nominal undisclosed fee, and made 24 appearances last season, interrupted by an ankle injury that kept him out for three months. Thereafter, by his own admission, he was struggling for match fitness and was mainly used as a bench warmer, with 15 of those appearances as a substitute. He has yet to score a first team goal for the Glovers.

The Western Daily Press also cover this story - they believe a "small fee" will be obtained as part of the sale. The WDP also state that they believe that Yeovil Town's move for midfielder Darren Way that has been ongoing since the end of the season is still in the pipeline, although with the club due to commence pre-season training next week, doubtless the club would like to resolve situations such as his, as well as the long-running saga over Marcus Stewart and Matthew Rose, within the next week or so.


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26 June 2008 : Super Gav Teaming Up With Johnson Again
Former Yeovil Town winger Gavin Williams is expected to finalise a move to Championship side Bristol City in the next few days. Ipswich Town have agreed a fee with Williams and the only major obstacle outstanding is a medical - something that given Gavin's injury record at Ipswich shouldn't be considered a complete formality.

The Bristol Evening Post believe the fee agreed to be £350,000, although neither club has disclosed the amount officially as yet. Ipswich boss Jim Magilton admits he expects to lose Williams from his squad:

"It looks as though it's going to happen. Gavin is a very good player and, at times, has looked a fantastic player, but injuries have not helped him. He's a lively lad who, if he settles down and concentrates fully on his football, can be a big asset. Gary Johnson knows him from his Yeovil days and is aware of just how good he can be."


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26 June 2008 : Pontin's Line-up For Coming Season
The line-up of teams for the Pontin's Holiday Combination Wales & West Division in 2008-09 has been confirmed at today's AGM. As recorded on 20th June Bristol Rovers have withdrawn. They will be replaced by Conference Premier side Salisbury City. Otherwise there are no changes from the 2007-08 line-up. The full list is :

AFC Bournemouth
Bristol City
Cheltenham Town
Exeter City
Forest Green Rovers
Plymouth Argyle
Salisbury City
Swansea City
Swindon Town
Yeovil Town


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26 June 2008 : Mildy Recommends Jones To Swindon
League One side Swindon Town are believed to be bringing in former Glovers loan midfielder Ritchie Jones on trial during pre-season. Jones has been back at Manchester United since the start of 2008, when the Glovers chose not to extend his loan at Huish Park, and despite a short trial spell with Championship side Burnley, nothing further developed of that.

Former Glovers goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall played in the same squad as Jones last season, and is also a resident of Swindon and so the Swindon Advertiser contacted him for some views on their potential signing. Whilst Jones never really settled in at Huish Park, gradually fading out of contention in the first team squad, Mildy was happy to heap a surprising amount of praise on the player:

"Ritchie is a good player, very technical, and he also has a great engine on him. I guess you could say he is a typical Manchester United youngster in that he is confident on the ball and knows how to play the game. He is also a very versatile player. I can remember we used him in several positions across the midfield last season and he looked equally at home in every one. For a young lad he is also quite physical. He never shirked a challenge playing for us."

Jones made just six league starts for the Glovers, and only featured in three Yeovil Town matches during his final three months at the club, two of which were from the bench. As such it was no surprise at all when the club decided not to extend his half season loan. Hence Mildy's comments on Ritchie's chances of getting into the Swindon Town squad could in theory be taken either way, even if his intention was to be positive about his chances of a deal at the County Ground:

"If he performs the way he did when he came down to Yeovil last season I think he will make the manager's mind up for him."


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25 June 2008 : Chester Able To Sign Up Barry
League Two side Chester City have claimed that they are no longer under a transfer embargo, following a meeting with the Football League yesterday.

The move means that they are now able to pass through their registration papers for former Glovers midfielder Anthony Barry, who should now be able to consider his two year deal at the Deva Stadium to be finalised.


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25 June 2008 : Collis Heading For Gresty Road
League One side Crewe Alexandra are on the edge of signing former Yeovil Town goalkeeper Steve Collis. The 27 year old was released by Southend United over the summer, but it now looks as though he will become Crewe's first choice goalkeeper with the Gresty Road side having lost both of last season's main options over the summer.

Steve has admitted to the Stoke Sentinel that they are his preferred option, and barring disasters expects to sign for them:

"It's just a matter of finalising personal terms, so hopefully a deal can be done. I have had other offers, but I'm hopeful of sorting something out with Crewe. It looks likely to go ahead, but in football you never know until it's signed."

Crewe also went after former Glovers keeper Steve Mildenhall, who ironically has become the replacement for Collis at Roots Hall. They have also been linked with numerous other targets, and so assistant boss Neil Baker admitted he would be glad to get a first choice keeper between the sticks before they commence pre-season training:

"Steve hasn't put pen to paper just yet, but we're as confident as we can be. It's been one of our priorities to sign a goalkeeper with experience at this level, so it would be a weight off our minds."


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24 June 2008 : Second Fixture Change
Where Yeovil Town leads, others follow - well maybe.

Last season the Glovers were one of just a tiny handful of clubs to switch their Easter Saturday match to the Good Friday. Ahead of the 2008-09 campaign there has been an absolute stampede of clubs doing the same. Millwall has now followed suit, and with the agreement of the visitors the fixture at Huish Park will now kick off at 3.00 p.m. on Friday 10th April 2009.


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24 June 2008 : All Change At Boundary Park
League One side Oldham Athletic will be operating with a three-sided ground during the 2008-09 season. They are currently in the process of demolishing the Broadway Stand, which is situated on the north side of the ground running the side of the pitch opposite the Main Stand. For those who have visited the ground before, this is the stand situated to your right as you look out from the Rochdale Road Away End.

At present Oldham have cleared the land behind the stand, and are now in the process of ripping out seating and other moveable items before the bulldozers move in on the stand. The objective is to entirely clear that side of the ground before the season starts, with construction beginning on a replacement stand in early 2009. The construction project is expected to last 16 months and therefore be ready for the start of the 2010-11 season.

Current plans are for a 5,200 capacity replacement stand that will ultimately become Oldham's new Main Stand. Facilities built into the plans include a new club shop, dressing rooms, conferencing and banqueting facilities and lettable office space. The wider plan is for Oldham to eventually demolish and rebuild three sides of the ground to produce a 16,000 capacity stadium that will be redubbed the 'Oldham Arena' although the current thinking is that this is merely the precursor to allow the Boundary Park land to take on corporate stadium sponsorship. Only the Rochdale Road End will survive from the current ground.
Boundary Park - Broadway Stand
The Broadway Stand - soon to be a pile of rubble.
Photo © 2008 Ciderspace

Oldham's expectation is that the main demolition of the Broadway Stand, which was built in 1971, will be complete by next week, with the site fully cleared by the time matches start to be played at Boundary Park.

For the away supporter, this is likely to mean some new arrangements to cope with the reduced capacity of 10,638 which will be in operation for next season. The Rochdale Road End holds 4,609 spectators, but is able to be split into one section of 1,620 spectators and another section holding 2,989. Thus this stand is likely to be a little more crowded than usual, with home fans allocated significant space in the stand. Oldham anticipate that for the majority of league matches, away fans will be allocated the smaller section, but provisions have been made for the allocation to be swapped around where an away side is expected to bring a significant following.

Yeovil Town travel to play Oldham Athletic on November 1st 2008, and therefore should see a fully cleared site where the Broadway Stand is currently (but not for much longer) situated.


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24 June 2008 : Charity Dance And Disco This Saturday
This coming Saturday, former player Paul Smith’s family are holding a Summer Dance and Disco in memory of him and in aid of St Margarets Hospice. The dance takes place on Sunday 29th June at Westlands, with tickets on sale at £10.

Also on the same night they are holding a raffle with first prize being a family Eurocamp holiday including a ferry crossing. Glovers club captain Terry Skiverton is doing the draw.

Tickets for the evening can be bought from the Westland Box Office (01935 848380), A Touch Of Glass (1, Church St, Yeovil, Somerset BA20 1HE Tel: 01935 411088) or from Dot Smith at the Football Club (01935-847894). Tickets may also be available on the night, although we'd advise that you check with the Westland Box Office on the day if you're making a late decision.

For those wanting to just buy draw tickets, these can be purchased from Dot at the Football club as well, or they can be bought at the event on the night. Hence even if you can't make the event, give Dot a call and purchase some draw tickets.

There will be two bands playing on the night - Shakane and Rockabilly band Memphis 56 (MySpace Page) as well as a disco. The event runs from 7.00pm until Midnight.

For those too young to remember Paul, he played for the club between 1967 and 1975, clocking up 385 appearances, making him the 8th longest serving Yeovil Town player. His brother Pete used to work as a physio at the club, whilst his wife Dot will be familiar to many inside the Ticket Office. Paul passed on after a long battle against cancer during September 2007, and the event will benefit the local Hospice that cared for him. A full article on Paul's life and career at Yeovil Town can be found here.

NB: For those football-hungry enough to want a fix of the Euro 2008 Cup Final on the night, Westland will be showing the final in their adjoining Sports Bar and those who are going to the event are welcome to make use of their facilities (whilst doubtless hoping that their 'significant other' doesn't notice where they've disappeared to for 90 minutes!)


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24 June 2008 : Starnes Cagey Over Stewart Negotiations
Yeovil Town Chief Executive Martyn Starnes has played down suggestions that striker Marcus Stewart has been offered a player-coach position at the club, although has stopped short of denying that such a position could be in the pipeline.

Yesterday's news, reported on this site as well as BBC Somerset and BBC Sport suggested that the Glovers were about to hand Stewart a second offer to include a coaching role. In this morning's Western Daily Press Starnes doesn't rule that out as a possibility, but on the other hand states that nothing is on the table just yet:

"We are continuing to talk to his representatives and nothing has been offered or agreed over and above what has already been put to him. That is not to say that something won't be in the future. I won't rule anything in or out at this stage we'll just have to see how things develop."

We'd interpret Martyn's choice of wording as implying that it is a subject that both parties are talking about at present, but that the wheels are still in motion on that subject. Stewart appears to agree, sitting firmly on the fence on the subject:

"I am just waiting to see what happens, the ball is in the clubs court."

The good news is that despite it having earlier looked as though the two parties had reached stalemate (see June 7th News Item), there does appear to be some movement now, albeit that we may have to wait a little longer for anything concrete to land on the table.


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23 June 2008 : Stewart Nets Twice In Masters Win
Yeovil Town striker Marcus Stewart helped his former club Bristol City win the first ever Screwfix Western Masters tournament in Cardiff yesterday. The striker scored in the final against Cardiff City in a series of matches played at the Planet Ice Arena in Cardiff. City won the match 3-2, with Stewart scoring the opening goal.

Stewart also scored against Cardiff in a 2-2 draw as part of the competition Group stages, with City also beating Swansea City 3-0 and Bristol Rovers 4-0.


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23 June 2008 : Early Leeds Kick-Off Confirmed
As suggested in yesterday's news, the home match against Leeds United has had a kick-off change. The match will now be played on Saturday 23rd August with a 1.00p.m. kick-off. Although the club haven't stated it as yet, we'd firmly expect this one to be an all-ticket affair. No tickets are on sale as yet.

In addition to yesterday's mention of Leeds trips to Scunthorpe United and Peterborough being switched to early kick-offs, Leeds have also had their trips to Carlisle United and Huddersfield Town switched to noon kick-offs. Leeds now have lunchtime kick-offs for four out of their first five away games, with only Swindon Town having held firm on a 3.00p.m. kick-off ... so far.


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23 June 2008 : Glovers Revise Stewart Offer
Yeovil Town have given Glovers striker Marcus Stewart a revised contract offer, despite the previous thinking that there would be no further offers on the table for the Bristolian.

The difference with this offer, according to BBC Somerset, is that it will give Stewart the official title of Player-Coach within the club. Marcus has spent the early part of the summer taking coaching badges in Cheltenham and has made it clear that this is the long term direction that he wants to take his career in. Marcus has already been coaching Yeovil Town's Under 12s in his spare time as part of the club's Centre of Excellence set-up.

With the club seemingly unable to increase their financial offer, the added carrot of an official coaching capacity is an obvious attempt to try and swing Stewart's thinking. That in itself should be applauded, particularly as many of those who have been involved in the Centre of Excellence set-up have given positive feedback on Stewart's role in the community programme.


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22 June 2008 : Leeds Cry Foul Over Fixture Changes
Leeds United Supporters Club feel that their club are being singled out unfairly following a couple of fixture changes for the forthcoming season. The Whites have already had their visits to Scunthorpe United on the opening day of the season and an October visit to Peterborough United brought forward to noon kick-offs and their press have also picked up that Yeovil Town's August 23rd match against Leeds is unlikely to kick off at 3.00p.m. on a Saturday.

Both fixture changes that have been confirmed have been as a result of police advice, and Leeds fans had to deal with around 10 rearranged fixtures last season as a result of similar procedures being brought in by clubs to deal with their supporters. Leeds Supporters Club Ray Fell feels this is excessive and cited the trip to Yeovil Town as a match where he believed there was "no good reason" for the fixture change. Speaking to the Yorkshire Evening Post he explained:

"I understand the need for rearranging fixtures when there are good reasons for doing so, but what worries me is the fact that our games seem to get moved as a matter of course. The first reaction to an away game involving Leeds seems to be to think about moving the date or the kick-off time, and the feeling is that we're getting a raw deal. There were very few signs of trouble last season and the fans get a bit fed up when they're being asked to visit places like Yeovil on a Friday night for no good reason. I think we have to accept certain games will be affected but I'd ask the police and other clubs to show common sense and a bit of restraint when considering whether a traditional 3pm kick-off time is so difficult to stick to."

Unfortunately for Mr Fell, the fact that so many Leeds fans flouted Football League Ground Regulations at last season's match at Huish Park by entering the home areas of the ground, causing significant segregation issues, is hardly likely to make the club and Avon & Somerset Police slacken their control over this season's fixture. If anything we would expect far tighter control over the fixture as a result of the problems on the night. With problems occurring in a wide range of other fixtures such as Carlisle, Northampton and Bristol Rovers, the chances are that Leeds will face even more kick-off changes as the authorities clamp down.

Whilst we fully expect some sort of change in arrangements for the August 23rd fixture, we'd hope that the Glovers will choose their wording more carefully than Peterborough United's Director of Football Barry Fry, whose club have also made home matches against Millwall and Leicester City early kick-offs, and then came up with this chestnut:

"We want to protect the city of Peterborough. Leeds, Leicester and Millwall fans have a reputation, and we want to give them less time in the pubs before kick-off."

Not too surprisingly the reaction from all three clubs would suggest that Barry Fry may find himself three Christmas Cards short this year. Various supporters associations and club officials have accused him of scapegoating and being out of touch with football, as well as potentially making a counter-productive statement. Welcome to League One, Barry!


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22 June 2008 : Dons Hunting For New Manager
Milton Keynes Dons have as expected become the second League One side to go manager-hunting this summer, having today lost manager Paul Ince to Premier League side Blackburn Rovers. Ince has signed a three year contract at Ewood Park.

Ince won the League Two title and the Johnstone's Paint Trophy during his 12 months in Buckinghamshire, after having caught the eye of Dons Chairman Peter Winkelman during the previous season whilst saving Macclesfield Town from relegation. Winkelman appears to be in two minds over Ince's successor saying to Sky Sports both that they won't be rushed but that the appointment will be made soon:

"We won't be rushed. The appointment of a manger is the most important decision to be made at a football club. We will take consideration, but then we are keen to start the new season with the momentum we have built up over the last 12 months. We will be looking to make an appointment sooner rather than later. Paul's shoes are massive ones to fill. We will look to try and continue the type of football we have played recently. We are very in touch with where we want to be. We have huge ambition and we want to grow from our success. We are not going to rule anything in or out at this time."

With the Dons about to embark upon their return to League One, it is more likely that Winkleman will look to make a relatively swift appointment, with Ince's successor likely to want to bring in a few new faces to suit the new level that they find themselves playing at.

Yeovil Town travel to play MK Dons on Saturday September 6th, subject to any fixture alterations.


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22 June 2008 : Stanley Ready To Step In For Barry
It is an ill wind that blows nobody any good, and League Two Accrington Stanley have sniffed an opportunity to benefit from the chaos of the Anthony Barry 'signing' occasioned by fellow division member Chester City being placed under a transfer embargo by the Football League (see below).

The Accy chief executive, Robert Heys, said :

We are keeping an eye on the situation at Chester. There is no doubt that we would like to bring Anthony back to our club. He played a big part in our promotion back to the Football League in 2006, so to have him back here at the club would give the fans and players a massive boost. We haven't given up the hope that he will be playing in a Stanley shirt next season.

The messy situation is of no direct relevance to Yeovil Town as Barry was released at the end of 2007-08 season after two and a half years and 73 appearances with the Glovers, and is now a free agent.


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22 June 2008 : Changes To The LOAF
Nothing of much consequence came out of the annual meeting, this year held in Scotland, of the International Football Association Board to review the Laws of the game. Any proposed amendments have to be ratified by FIFA, and this has now occurred, with changes implemented from 1st July 2008.

In regard to Law 1 - The Field of Play - the proposal to standardise the size of pitches for 'A' Internationals was deferred for further review at the 2009 AGM to be held in Northern Ireland.

In regard to Law 2 - The Ball - they changed er, the "FIFA Inspected" and "FIFA Approved" logos.

And that, apart from some minor clarifications of wording, was it as far as the LOAF was concerned. Presumably everyone was in the bar by noon.

In the area of Directions and Instructions (additional to the LOAF) the IFAB reinforced :
a) that referees should stop play if a player is in his or her opinion seriously injured, but that play should be continued in the case of minor injuries.
b) that pitchside monitors should not be placed in such a position where access to or viewing is possible by occupants of the technical area.

Two new policies were adopted :
a) That FIFA will trial the use of two additional assistant referees, making a total of four, in a forthcoming tournament of its choice.
b) All experiments involving goal line technology to be put on ice until further notice.

Sadly, the last is unlikely to stop Sky's Andy Gray boring the world on the subject every weekend throughout next season.


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22 June 2008 : Thank God It's Not Friday
This site has made no secret of the fact that it remains unconvinced by the case for Friday night football at Huish Park. It is not a case that no one will find it more convenient, but whether more will be lost than gained for any matches so switched.

Certain clubs in this division may have a clear case to make. Tranmere Rovers for example, with its proximity to the Merseyside giants Everton and Liverpool, has a long tradition of playing a number of games on a Friday night. For other clubs based in a large conurbation, with a tight geographical supporter base, or also having bigger neighbours on their doorstep, we can see some logic - though the evidence to be gleaned that a switch to Fridays is beneficial from most who have experimented is flimsy at best.

For a rural club, with a widely spread supporter base, it is difficult to believe that a rush from work on a Friday evening will suit more fans than does a Saturday fixture. It is good to see the club thinking as widely as possible about ways to boost gates, but an example from up the road may give pause for thought as to whether its recent musings on switching some games to a Friday would turn out to be a positive move.

Cheltenham Town has similarities to Yeovil in that it too will draw a significant amount of its support from a wide rural area. They have tried the Friday option for some matches over the last few years, but are abandoning the experimentation for the coming season. Their Official Site sets out the reasoning :

Cheltenham, meanwhile, are foregoing Friday night football this season. There are currently only two Saturdays on which the England national team are scheduled to have a fixture and both games will kick-off in either the late afternoon or evening following the conclusion of the domestic programme so there will be no clash of kick-off times.

The club is also aiming to work with Cheltenham Racecourse and the local police to play two matches that are scheduled to clash with smaller race meetings at Prestbury Park - on October 18 and January 24. The reason is because research has been undertaken over the past few seasons to view the effectiveness of Friday night football and the results showed that attendances were slightly down compared to equivalent Saturday games. This season it has therefore been decided to experiment with playing all Saturday matches to guage the effect upon attendances of events such as horse racing and Christmas shopping.


Patterns of consumer behaviour and the wants of football supporters will alter over time in line with changes in society, but Ciderspace does not believe that the time has yet arrived where, for the Glovers, moving fixtures away from the traditional Saturday would prove constructive.


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21 June 2008 : MK Dons Hit By Stadium Delays
League One side Milton Keynes Dons have become the second club to feel the pinch in terms of their stadium development plans. The club have announced that they are experiencing delays in the completion of the second phase of 'stadium:mk' that is designed to bring the ground up to 32,000 capacity.

The Dons moved out of the National Hockey Stadium at the end of the 2006-07 season and have been using the lower tier of the new ground that allows for just over 20,000 spectators, but original plans had been for the upper tier to be completed within a 12-18 month secondary phase.

Club Chairman Pete Winkleman has, like Bristol Rovers recently, blamed the economic 'credit crunch' for the delays that they are experiencing as well as doubt over whether one of their major retail partners - Marks and Spencers - will move into the multi-purpose site. However he denied that construction work had stopped entirely:

"We're getting on with things, we're doing it slower than we would have liked but if you come to the stadium everyday you can see work is going on. But it's not happening like it did a few years ago. The credit crunch and complete change in the economy of course effects major developments and it's definitely effecting us with the stadium. The big capital expenditure, property developments are on hold. Whether Marks and Spencers end up on the M&S site, we'll have to see in the future. That development is key to the completion of the upper part of the stadium."

As with Bristol Rovers' plans for the Memorial Stadium, much of the funding for the stadium is meant to be self-generated out of initial or parallel developments and thus if Marks and Spencers don't fulfill their side of the bargain, the Dons will find their funding will dry up. Similarly they are relying on the completion of 54 corporate boxes that are intended to open in August, which are also primed to act as revenue generation for the second phase of the project. Further plans include an indoor arena, suitable for holding concerts and other sporting activities, plus a hotel, although these two projects are not planned to complete until next year.

With the ground having now been in use for 12 months, there is no question of the Dons having problems in staging matches at their new ground next season. However, Glovers fans that go to visit 'stadium:mk' (or the Denbigh Stadium as the locals prefer to call it) are likely to be faced with a half-finished shell, and obviously with Oxford United and Darlington acting as examples of half-finished lower league stadiums, the more cynical may wonder how long the delays may turn out to be.

Yeovil Town travel to Buckinghamshire and to 'stadium:mk' on September 6th - the third away match of the 2008-09 season.


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20 June 2008 : Barry Move Hit By Chester Embargo
Former midfielder Anthony Barry's future with League Two side Chester City is in doubt after the Cheshire club were placed under a transfer embargo by the Football League.

Barry had, in theory, signed a two year contract at the Deva Stadium earlier this week. Much will now depend upon the exact point of contract signature and whether the papers were passed through to the Football League and rubberstamped before today.

The transfer embargo has been initiated following a submission made by the PFA, who reported the club to the Football League due to the non-payment of player wages, claiming that "the majority of the players currently at the club have not received any payment for two months, or more".

The PFA have issued their statement and their report to the Football League as a direct result of Chester's attempts to sign players this week, and this caused the Football League to react. Whether the League have merely shut the stable door after the event, or whether Barry is now stuck in no man's land, is not clear at this stage as Chester have yet to comment on the situation.


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20 June 2008 : Hodges Fired By Rovers
Former Yeovil Town assistant manager Kevin Hodges has been sacked by Bristol Rovers following their decision to scrap their Reserve Team.

Rovers have claimed that the decision was taken because Hodges would not relocate to the Bristol area, although this seems rather flimsy given that the decision has been made at the same time that Rovers resigned from the Football Combination league.

Rovers have denied that this is a "cost-cutting" activity, and claim that they will continue to play regular Reserve games, although it is not clear who the opposition will be. They have instead blamed their resignation on the variation of opposition Reserve Team line-ups with Director of football Lennie Lawrence claiming:

"One week we would be playing a very strong team full of first team players, and then the next week it would be a team of kids. We feel that we can better serve our players by arranging matches as and when we need them."

For the record, Rovers finished eighth in last season's Football Combination league out of ten clubs.

Rovers are also claiming that playing in the Football Combination incurred costs due to travelling outside the area. They have added that their decision was made due to their plans to move the first team out to Whaddon Road, even though their resignation letter was dated May 28th, when Rovers already knew that the Memorial Stadium development was likely to be put on hold.


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20 June 2008 : Weymouth Target Revealed
Yeovil Town may not know if striker Marcus Stewart will be playing for them next season, but he will not be joining non-league minnows Weymouth.

The Conference National side have now revealed their "one million pound" ex-Premier League striker target is Andy Campbell, who spent last season at Halifax Town and previously played for Middlesborough and Cardiff City. The bad news for them is that they may not even get him - Mansfield Town have also put in a bid for his services.

The Daily Star had claimed that Glovers favourite Marcus Stewart was set to move to the south coast, but it now looks as though they are wide of the mark. The Star also failed earlier this week with their other Yeovil-related rumourmill claim that fellow striker Lloyd Owusu would be signing for Millwall.


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20 June 2008 : Foxes Appoint Pearson
League One side Leicester City have appointed former Southampton manager Nigel Pearson as their first team manager. He has been given a three year contract at the Walkers Stadium today.

Rather ironically, Leicester find themselves playing third tier football thanks in part to Pearson, who as Southampton manager kept the Hampshire club in the Championship at the expense of the Foxes on the last day of the season. But Pearson was still fired from St Mary's and has now also found himself operating at League One level.

He replaces former manager Ian Holloway who was sacked at the end of the 2007-08 season after failing to keep Leicester up.

Another managerial move within League One is also expected shortly. Milton Keynes Dons manager Paul Ince is expected to leave the newcomers for Premier League Blackburn Rovers. However, Rovers are having to wait for clearance from the Premier League board for the appointment to go through, as Ince does not carry the Uefa Pro Licence required to manage at the top level.


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19 June 2008 : Barry's Chester Signing Confirmed
Former Glover Anthony Barry has now confirmed his arrival at League Two side Chester City by signing a two year contract at the Deva Stadium. The move allows Barry the chance to return to his north-west roots and he has said that as a consequence he already knows some of the players he will be playing with:

"I am really happy to be signing for Chester and I want to dominate this league and the games I play in. I have grown up with a number of players who are on the books here and with the staff we have I expect us to be challenging for honours next season."

Manager Simon Davies has also suggested that Barry's arrival could produce a new tactic for next season's games:

"Anthony is a great addition to our squad. It is a big plus for us to sign him. I am a big fan of 4-3-3 and Anthony will fit into that system extremely well, he is a good passer of the ball and will run for you all day."

The very best of luck to Ant in establishing himself in Chester's first team.


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19 June 2008 : Irish Duo Moving In Opposite Directions?
Chard Town of the Western League Premier Division have approached Yeovil Town with a request to loan 20-year-old goalkeeper Lloyd Irish for the 2008-09 campaign. Irish was at Zembard Lane on a season long loan in 2007-08 during which he made 34 appearances, and the Robins are hoping for the same again next term.

Manager Stuart Parris, who is a goalkeeper himself, said :

We are waiting to hear back from Yeovil whether he can stay with us for another season. If he doesn't return to us, I'll have to look for a suitable replacement. If that fails, I will have to consider playing again myself. I intend to be involved in pre-season training anyway.

Given the current lack of goalkeepers at Huish Park Chard are most likely going to have to wait for any decision.

Meanwhile there is possible movement the other way, with Parris stating that Chard centre back Owen Irish is still involved in talks with the Glovers and with Conference Premier club Salisbury City. Owen has previously made appearances in both the Yeovil Town Reserves and in the Youth U18 team.


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18 June 2008 : Line-up For South West Combination Women's League
Subject to clubs folding over the summer - not an irregular occurrence in the women's game - Yeovil Town Ladies see the following line-up in the South West Combination Women's League for the 2008-09 season -

Out have gone :
Reading Ladies, promoted as Champions to the Premier Northern Division (Reading in the North makes some of the vagaries of the JPT regionalisation look sane);
Luton Town, switched to the South East Combination;
Frome Town, relegated to the Regional South-West Premier Division;
Southampton Saints, relegated the Regional Southern Premier Division.

In come :
Reading Royals, relegated from the Premier Southern Division. The Royals lost most of their players when Reading FC refused their application to affiliate, and chose to set up the aforementioned Reading Ladies instead. They went on to have an utterly disasterous season in the PSD, losing all 22 matches and conceding 183 goals whilst scoring a mere 8;
AFC Team Bath Ladies, also relegated from the Premier Southern Division. Team Bath caused major discontent in the women's game last summer when they somehow managed to get re-allocated up two divisions. It was clearly too high a jump and only the complete collapse of the Royals prevented them finishing bottom;
Oxford City, promoted as Champions of the Regional Southern Premier Division;
Penzance, promoted as Champions of the Regional South-West Premier Division.

Full line-up :

AFC Bournemouth, AFC Team Bath, Chesham United, Forest Green Rovers, Oxford City, Penzance, Plymouth Argyle, Queens Park Rangers, Reading Royals, Swindon Town, Team Weston, Yeovil Town.

Yeovil Town Ladies Reserves will continue to play in the Somerset County League, which next term is set to comprise :

Frome Town Reserves, Ilminster Town, Nailsea United, Street, Swiss Valley Rangers, Wembdon, Winsham, Yeovil Town Reserves.


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18 June 2008 : The FA Women's Cup Dates 2008-09
Preliminary Round - Sunday 7th September 2008
First Round Qualifying - Sunday 28th September 2008
Second Round Qualifying - Sunday 12th October 2008
Third Round Qualifying - Sunday 26th October 2008
First Round Proper - Sunday 9th November 2008
Second Round Proper - Sunday 23th November 2008
Third Round Proper - Sunday 14th December 2008
Fourth Round Proper - Sunday 4th January 2009
Fifth Round Proper - Sunday 25th January 2009
Sixth Round Proper - Sunday 22nd February 2009
Semi-Final - Sunday 22nd March 2009
Final - Monday 4th May 2009

Unlike the Youth competition, exemptions aren't set by the status of the club's Men's First Team. However as members of the Combination League Yeovil Town Ladies are exempt until the First Round Proper in their own right.


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18 June 2008 : F.A. Youth Cup Dates 2008-09
Yeovil Town U18 will enter the F.A. Youth Cup in the First Round Proper.

Preliminary Round - week of Monday 8th September 2008
First Round Qualifying - week of Monday 22nd September 2008
Second Round Qualifying - week of Monday 6th October 2008
Third Round Qualifying - week of Monday 20th October 2008

Thereafter clubs are free to arrange their own fixtures providing ties are completed by the following dates :

First Round Proper - by Saturday 8th November 2008
Second Round Proper - by Saturday 22nd November 2008
Third Round Proper - by Saturday 13th December 2008
Fourth Round Proper - by Saturday 17th January 2009
Fifth Round Proper - by Saturday 31th January 2009
Sixth Round Proper - by Saturday 14th February 2009
Semi Final 1st Leg - by Saturday 7th March 2009
Semi Final 2nd Leg - by Saturday 21th March 2009

The dates for the two-legged Final have not been set.

Although last season was a disappointment, exiting to Tiverton Town in the First Round on penalties, the Youths have had a good record in the competition recently, getting to the Fourth Round Proper in both 2004-05 and 2006-07 before going out to Everton and Swindon Town respectively.


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18 June 2008 : Stewart Rumour Looks Flawed
Claims made by the Daily Star (see our News Page, June 14th) that Glovers striker Marcus Stewart was about to sign for non-leaguers Weymouth are looking rather flawed by the latest clues given out at the Wessex Stadium this week.

Assistant manager Alan Lewer has said that the mystery player they are hoping to sign has already had a medical at their club and is expecting a decision by the end of the week, and gave a bit of a clue as to the make-up of the player's family. Speaking to the Dorset Echo he explained:

"His wife and baby came down with him and they had a good look around the town and he said he would come back to us by Friday so we should have a decision then."

This comment from Lewer is rather revealing - Stewart has two children, both of whom were born before he returned south to Bristol three years ago, and we understand are primary school age now. Unless Lewer is particularly loose with his language, this would suggest that the player Weymouth fans are waiting for is not Stewart and that the Daily Star's claims are incorrect. The hot favourite currently is former Darlington striker Julian Joachim who is currently a free agent, having been released by the League Two side over the summer.


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18 June 2008 : Cup Dates Finalised
Further to our news items from June 2nd and June 5th it now looks as though the Football League have firmed up on their cup competition dates.

Dates are as per the original articles with one exception - the Third Round (area Quarter-Final) stage of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy will be played during week commencing Monday 24th November and not the date previously announced. All other competition dates remain as before.

For the avoidance of doubt, a repeat of the full list is as follows:

Johnstone's Paint Trophy:
Round One, week beginning Monday 1st September.
Round Two, week beginning Monday 6th October.
Round Three, week beginning Monday 24th November.
Area Semi-Finals, week beginning Monday 15th December.
Area Finals, two legs, weeks beginning Monday 19th January and Monday 16th February, 2009.
Final, Sunday 5th April 2009.

Carling Cup:
First Round, week beginning Monday 11th August (Yeovil will play 12th August)
Second Round, week beginning Monday 25th August.
Third Round, week beginning Monday 22nd September.
Fourth Round, week beginning Monday 10th November.
Fifth Round, week beginning Monday 1st December.
Semi-Finals (two-legged), week beginning Monday 5th January and Monday 19th January, 2009.
League Cup Final, Sunday 1st March 2009.

FA Cup:
Extra-Preliminary Round - 16th August, 2008
Preliminary Round - 30th August, 2008
First Qualifying Round - 13th September, 2008
Second Qualifying Round - 27th September, 2008
Third Qualifying Round - 11th October, 2008
Fourth Qualifying Round - 25th October, 2008
First Round Proper - 8th November, 2008 - Yeovil Town exempt until this point
Second Round Proper - 29th November, 2008
Third Round Proper - 3rd January, 2009
Fourth Round Proper - 24th January, 2009
Fifth Round Proper - 14th February, 2009
Sixth Round Proper - 7th March, 2009
Semi-Finals - 18th and 19th April, 2009
Final - 30th May, 2009


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18 June 2008 : Rovers Quit Reserves League
League One side Bristol Rovers have resigned from the Football Combination Reserve League. Today's Western Daily Press confirms that Rovers will not take part in the coming season's competition with the paper suggesting that it has been done as a "cost cutting move".

The Football Combination are not too happy about the decision, with Combination secretary Derryck Daughtery telling the paper that Rovers only told them about the resignation from the division two months after the league deadline:

"Bristol Rovers have told us that they will not be competing next season, although they did this well after the deadline date for resignations, which was March 31. Their letter to me was dated May 28."

The paper believes that Rovers' place will be taken by Salisbury City, with Rovers seeking to arrange ad-hoc friendlies for their fringe and Youth players. However, the position of Reserve Team manager Kevin Hodges is believed to be unclear as a result of this. Kevin joined Rovers from Yeovil Town in October 2006 and currently manages Rovers' Reserve Team, although he also holds the title of Head of Youth at the Memorial Stadium.


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18 June 2008 : Owusu Agrees One Year Extension
This morning's BBC Somerset sports bulletin reports the rather surprising news that striker Lloyd Owusu has agreed a one year extension to his existing contract. Lloyd was entitled to the additional year as part of his original contract, but had delayed signing the deal amidst rumours that he would be joining fellow League One side Millwall, which Lloyd did not attempt to deny.

Despite the year extension that will keep him at Huish Park until the summer of 2009, BBC Somerset still suggest that Lloyd may move on to pastures new.

Lloyd was Yeovil Town's leading goalscorer during the 2007-08 season, with 11 goals, but with him having openly admitted that he was finding it difficult to adjust to life away from London, it could well be that he has agreed to sign for his own financial security, but has agreed with the club that offers from London and Home Counties clubs can be listened to between now and the end of August.

Update: The Western Daily Press also cover this story and quote Chief Executive Martyn Starnes as saying:

"He has taken up his option. Whether that means he will stay with us for another year remains to be seen. We await developments."

The WDP also report that defender/midfielder Matthew Rose has been given a one year contract offer, but has rejected it. In addition there is no further progress or news on striker Marcus Stewart, who also has rejected an offer from the club.


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17 June 2008 : Football League Publish Survey Results
The Football League have published details of their Annual Supporters Survey for 2008. The 78 page document will obviously take some wading through to pull out some of the detail, so make yourself a large mug of your favourite tipple/brew and settle down.

Link: Football League Website : Supporters Survey 2008 Results.

You will need a free copy of Acrobat Reader installed on your machine to read the PDF file.

One caveat to note is that the survey results were collated from readers of the respective clubs official sites (or any other sites that linked through to the survey). Hence one or two of the Football League's revelations should be considered with that in mind.

Yeovil Town supporters provided 211 of the 11,979 submissions from League One clubs. From those 211 supporters that took part in the survey one highlight is that Yeovil Town come out top across the whole Football League for awareness of their club's Customer Charter, with 60% being aware of it. From that point of view, Sara Bradley at the club needs to take a bow, given that she is responsible for the Achieve By Unity Fans Partnership meetings that seek to address Charter-related issues.


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17 June 2008 : Glovers Take Side To Westbury
Yeovil Town will play Westbury United in another pre-season friendly that will take place on Friday August 1st, kick-off 7.30 p.m. The match will be played at their Meadow Lane ground in Westbury, Wiltshire.

Given Westbury play in the Toolstation League First Division and the Glovers also travel to Conference National side Weymouth the next day, we strongly suspect that this will be a mix of Reserves, Youths and trialists.


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16 June 2008 : Starnes Reacts To Fixture Lists
Yeovil Town Chief Executive Martyn Starnes has given his reaction to today's publication of the 2008-09 fixture lists. As mentioned earlier today, the Glovers open up this season with a home match against Walsall - the first time that they have been drawn out with an opening game at Huish Park for seven years, and Starnes has told BBC Somerset that he is fully aware of that fact:

"I understand from colleagues that it has been a while since we started our season with a home game. So we're delighted with that, and I think it should be a good fixture to start with as well against Walsall. They are a very well run organised club. Obviously they've had a change of management towards the end of the season. I know they've released a number of players, so they'll probably be bringing down a fairly new team. It will be a really interesting game to kick off the season with."

The Chief Executive was asked which fixtures he had looked out for when the fixtures were released at 10.00a.m. this morning and aside from the more obvious cases of big guns Leeds United and Leicester City, he admitted he had also looked to see when Yeovil would meet his former club:

"Leeds would certainly come into that category, as would Leicester because obviously Leicester haven't been down in this division before. So there will be real curiosity when we are playing them. It will be quite exciting having them down here and it will be great to go to the Walkers Stadium to watch the game there. So those are the main two, but of course having been at Swindon Town, that one is of interest to me personally as well."

On the subject of Leeds, who come down to Somerset in August, Starnes was anxious to point out that the club would be attempting to make this match a more enjoyable experience for Yeovil fans than the April game when away fans were able to gain access to the home parts of the stadium:

"We would expect to have a pretty full attendance again. Obviously the police are going to want to have discussions with us like they did last season, and we'll have to wait for the outcome of those discussions with them. We have learnt a lot from that fixture, there's no doubt about it."

Rather like the April 2008 encounter, Starnes has admitted that the fixture may not kick off on a traditional Saturday, 3.00p.m. basis, believing that the Police may be likely to step in again.


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16 June 2008 : Fans Partnership July Meeting
The next Achieve By Unity Fans Partnership meeting has been set for Wednesday 9th July at 5.45p.m. This will be a committee-only meeting.

Anyone wanting to get something on the agenda should either drop a mail to their Supporters Representative or email Sara at the club at supporter.link@ytfc.net by Monday 7th July. We'll also collate any mails sent to webmaster@ciderspace.co.uk and make sure they reach a Supporters Rep if you'd prefer that method of contact.

Another thing to note is that Sara is on holiday from June 23rd until July 7th. Hence if you do have any burning issues that can't wait until her return then we'd suggest that you phone the club on 01935-423662 and see who is about. Anything else that can wait will be picked up on Sara's return.


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16 June 2008 : 2008-09 Fixtures Announced
Yeovil Town will open up their 2008-09 season with a home match against Walsall. The game, which will be played on August 9th at Huish Park, is the first time that the Glovers have had an opening match at home after five years worth of opening up on their travels.

Matters also finish at home, with the Glovers facing Colchester United - the first team to play a competitive fixture at Huish Park and also the scene of Colchester's promotion celebrations at the end of the 2005-06 season as they headed to the Championship. That match will be played on May 2nd 2009.

The two Christmas fixtures see the Glovers at home to Cheltenham Town on Boxing Day, whilst they travel to Millwall two days later. There is no New Year's Day match this season due to the way the calendar and the FA Cup round dates have fallen.

Leeds United will make a quick return to Huish Park again as Yeovil's third league match of the season on August 23rd, whilst there is a mammoth trip to Carlisle United to negotiate the next weekend at the final weekend of the traditional holiday season - ouch!

Bristol Rovers are also an early fixture, coming to Huish Park on September 20th, whilst Leicester City will arrive on January 17th.

In terms of 'new' away grounds, the trip to the Walkers Stadium and Leicester City comes on October 11th, whilst St Valentine's Day will see a romantic trip to London Road and Peterborough United. But we have to wait until April 4th to get up to see Stockport County's ground. Of the two clubs with new stadiums since we last met, September 6th sees the trip to play MK Dons, whilst Colchester United will irritatingly be a midweeker on Tuesday 25th November.

Link: Ciderspace: Full 2008-09 Fixture List For Yeovil Town.


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15 June 2008 : 2008-09 Fixtures Launched Tomorrow
Just in case you haven't been on the internet too often in the past couple of weeks, you may not be aware that the 2008-09 Football League Fixture Lists will be released to the world at 10.00a.m. precisely. Don't hold out much hope of seeing them prior to that time unless any website drops a clanger - the fixtures are held under strict embargo up until the clock strikes ten.

In preparation for that, we've set up a shell for the 2008-09 fixtures, which currently contains a list of all of the pre-season friendlies, plus the Carling Cup tie. That shell will get filled as fast as we can after 10.00a.m.

Link: Ciderspace 2008-09 First Team Fixtures Page.

For those who can't wait, aside from the official site which gets its data direct from the PTV central database, we've found that the BBC Sport website is normally very reliable on fixtures day. They have indicated that they will have preloaded the fixtures as well so we'd expect them to automatically publish the fixtures at 10.00a.m. as well. They appear to have already set up their own shell, even if they appear to have made a bit of a pig's ear of the only pre-season friendly they've recorded for us!

Link: BBC Sport : Yeovil Town Fixtures Page.

We will publish something on here as soon as we can after 10.00a.m. ourselves, so certainly expect our own update on the fixture lists during the morning.


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14 June 2008 : Stewart Linked By Tabloids In Weymouth Move
Today's Daily Star (yes them again, and no we don't have a subscription) are once again reporting on Yeovil Town matters and made the claim that "Ex- Ipswich striker Marcus Stewart is ready to end his 17 year league career and join Weymouth."

On the one hand it seems ludicrous that a League One side's player of the year would be prepared to drop two divisions to a club that are hardly rolling in cash at the moment. However, on the other hand Thursday's Dorset Echo reported that Weymouth were chasing a striker that fits Stewart's profile, with Chief Executive Gary Calder telling the paper:

"It has been no secret that we have been looking for a top striker and we are in advanced talks with one at the moment. If we manage to get him then it would be a major coup for the club. Not only has he played at the highest level and been sold for one million pounds in his career but he also has bags of experience and would be a perfect addition in terms of how John and Alan Lewer want to move the team forward. At this moment in time we do not want to jeopardise any possible deal by revealing his identity but we will let everyone know as soon as there is any more developments. Hopefully we will have more in the next 24 to 48 hours."

Whether the Daily Star has read the same article and has done the same 'Sherlock Holmes' style deductions that our friends from the South Coast have been doing on their message board, and are simply taking a wild punt on the subject obviously can't be determined at this stage. But to be fair to the Star (for once!) their rumour concerning Lloyd Owusu's move to Millwall has at least been shown to have some legs to it.

Why Stewart would want a longer commute from his Bristol home is anyone's guess. However, if he were to choose the Wessex Stadium over Huish Park for next season, then it would raise some pretty serious questions about what sort of budget Yeovil Town are really working to. With most players out of contract likely to start making hard decisions in the next fortnight, we shouldn't have long to wait to see if the Star's claim is a scoop or a stab in the dark.


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14 June 2008 : Transfer And Loan Windows
Subject to any unannounced decisions that might impact from the Football League AGM (see item below), our understanding is that for the coming 2008-09 season :

The currently open Transfer Window will close at midnight on Sunday 31st August 2008. In practice this is likely to mean the deadline for signings is Friday 29th August as no account seems to have been taken of the Window closing on a weekend, as it has been for the January version (see below).

The Transfer Window will reopen again on Thursday 1st January 2009 (in theory, but in practice on Friday 2nd January as New Year's Day is not a working day), and will close on Monday 2nd February 2009, since Saturday 31st January is not deemed a working day.

As regular followers of the Football League will know the loan rules are a minefield of complexity. Our best guess scenario for Loan Windows is that the following will apply :

1) Standard (that's half or full season, what used to be called 'long-term') Loans are only available to be set up during the periods the Transfer Window is open, so before August 31st 2008 and 2nd February 2009.

2) Emergency - all loans other than Standard Loans (above) are these days termed 'emergency' - Loans to be set up at any time between Monday 8th September 2008 and Thursday 27th November 2008, and Monday 8th February 2009 to Thursday 26th March 2009. Emergency Loans may last from a minimum of 28 days up to a maximum of 93 days.

3) Short-term Emergency Loans (goalkeepers only for up to seven days at a time, renewable) are available to cover the gaps. So, Monday 1st September 2008 to Sunday 7th September 2008; Friday 28th November 2008 to Wednesday 31st December 2008; Friday 26th March 2009 to the end of the season.

Note that players designated as 'Free Agents' can be signed by a club at any time, providing they were not under a contract at the time of the last Transfer Window closing.

As for the additional rules and provisions and exclusions occasioned when players cross International boundaries, that affect all of the above - life is just too short to go there.


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14 June 2008 : FL AGM
The annual jolly crucial conference in Portugal that is the Football League AGM took place during the week just ending. As usual this affair is an opportunity for the Football League to promote and publicise its aims and plans for the future operate in the manner of the late unlamented Stasi of the former East Germany.

If previous years are anything to go by, some things discussed and decided will dribble and leak out randomly over the next few weeks, having to be pieced together from off-the-cuff comments by football club chairmen and odd snippets picked up by journalists. Others may not emerge for months, if ever. A ridiculously secretive and mind-bogglingly stupid way to run the self-proclaimed fourth biggest football league in the World? We couldn't possibly comment.


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13 June 2008 : Charlton Prices Set
Prices for the Carling Cup First Round match against Charlton Athletic on Tuesday August 12th are of a generous nature and have been set as follows:

Adults: £10.00; Under 21s and Over 60s: £5.00.

Tickets aren't on sale just yet but doubtless more information will be set nearer the date of the game.


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13 June 2008 : Warne Signs Year Extension
Yeovil Town winger/striker Paul Warne has formally put pen to paper on a year's contract extension today. The former Oldham Athletic player will now be with the club until the summer of 2009.

Paul had made it clear back in April that he always planned to accept the option available on his contract that would extend his stay in Somerset for a further year. However, he stated that he wanted to wait until he had recovered from a broken bone in his foot before signing the deal.

The very best of luck to Warney for the coming season.


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13 June 2008 : Charlton Date Set
The Carling Cup First Round date has already been set for the trip to The Valley. Charlton Athletic will host Yeovil Town on Tuesday August 12th, with a 7.45p.m. kick-off.


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13 June 2008 : Seven Subs Confirmed
Clubs participating in this year's Carling Cup and FA Cup will be able to name seven substitutes as part of the new competition rules. Although we've not seen any evidence of the Football League's AGM as having taken place, this was one of the items on the agenda for debate.

The Premier League have already agreed to allow seven substitutes to sit on the bench in next seasons league matches and that now has been extended to include the two other domestic competitions they appear in.

Clubs will still only be able to use three of the seven substitutes named, but Glovers boss Russell Slade hinted last season that such a rule change would be enough to persuade him to put a substitute keeper on the bench for such competitions - something he generally shies away from during league matches.


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13 June 2008 : Into The Valley .... Again!
Yeovil Town have received a positive draw in the Carling Cup First Round this morning, pulling Charlton Athletic out of the hat.

The Glovers of course met Charlton in the FA Cup Fourth Round in January 2005, losing out by a 3-2 scoreline, with goals from Paul Terry and Arron Davies giving the London side a real fright.

The full draw is as follows:

Preston North End v Chesterfield
Chester City v Leeds United
Leicester City v Stockport County
Sheffield United v Port Vale
Grimsby Town v Tranmere Rovers
Crewe Alexandra v Barnsley
Hartlepool United v Scunthorpe United
Derby County v Lincoln City
Notts County v Doncaster Rovers
Sheffield Wednesday v Rotherham United
Shrewsbury Town v Carlisle United
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Accrington Stanley
Bury v Burnley
Rochdale v Oldham Athletic
Nottingham Forest v Morecambe
Huddersfield Town v Bradford City
Macclesfield Town v Blackpool
Walsall v Darlington
Coventry City v Aldershot Town
MK Dons v Norwich City
Wycombe Wanderers v Birmingham City
Brighton & Hove Albion v Barnet
Gillingham v Colchester United
Southend United v Cheltenham
Swansea City v Brentford
Luton Town v Plymouth Argyle
Exeter City v Southampton
Watford v Bristol Rovers
AFC Bournemouth v Cardiff City
Bristol City v Peterborough United
Charlton Athletic v Yeovil Town
Millwall v Northampton Town
Swindon Town v Queens Park Rangers
Crystal Palace v Hereford United
Dagenham & Redbridge v Reading
Ipswich v Leyton Orient

All ties are scheduled to be played during the week commencing August 11th 2008.


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13 June 2008 : Owusu Wants To Go Home
Further to Tuesday's news, Yeovil Town striker Lloyd Owusu has firmly indicated that he wants to leave Huish Park, citing a wish to return closer to home as his reason for wanting to move.

Owusu is out of contract at present, but has a one year deal on the table for around another week, as part of the second year option that was negotiated when he joined the club. However, he seems increasingly unlikely to take up that option, given his latest comments in this morning's Western Daily Press.

Owusu was born in Slough and started his career with the Berkshire club and has also had two spells with Brentford and another couple of years spent at Reading, and so would clearly favour something in London or along the M4 corridor. He told the WDP that he felt his time in Yeovil hadn't worked out and admitted that Millwall would provide an ideal opportunity for him:

"I needed to experience life outside London. You take gambles and sometimes they don't pay off. But I want to be back nearer home now and it would be great to go to the New Den."

Owusu implies that he has yet to receive an offer from the London club, although the fact that he is nailing his colours to the mast so blatantly would suggest that either he or his agent have held some kind of conversation with manager Kenny Jackett. Owusu added:

"If the chance arose to come to Millwall I would definitely look at it. Kenny tried to sign me when he was Swansea boss. He is a great coach and a great manager and I would love to work under someone with so much ambition that he would leave Manchester City to be manager of Millwall. It is nice to be linked to such a big club - they are a team with great potential who should be striving to get back into the Championship."

Although Lloyd still has the right to come back to Yeovil and sign his one year option, we'd conclude that he is probably 95% certain to leave Huish Park this summer, with Millwall clearly his favoured location.


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12 June 2008 : League Cup Draw Tomorrow
With the draw for the First Round of the League Cup taking place at 10.00 a.m. tomorrow (Friday) the Football League still hasn't got around to making the rules for the 2008-09 competition public. However unofficial word is that the format for the opening round remains unchanged.

Thus Yeovil Town will be unseeded this time, having finished in the lower half of League One last season. The draw is regionalised, and of course the Glovers will be in the Southern Section. Fixtures will be played in the week beginning 11th August.

All Premier League clubs playing in European competitions are exempt until Round Three, the remainder enter at the Second Round stage.


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12 June 2008 : Pre-Season Friendly Prices Set
Yeovil Town have set the pre-season prices for their three home friendlies as follows:

19/07/08, 3.00p.m.: Barnsley : Adults: £8.00; Concessions: £4.00; Juniors: £1.00.
21/07/08, 7.45p.m.: Bristol City : Adults: £10.00; Concessions: £5.00; Juniors: £1.00.
29/07/08, 7.45p.m.: Plymouth Argyle : Adults: £10.00; Concessions: £5.00; Juniors: £1.00.

All tickets go on sale from the Huish Park Ticket Office on Monday 16th June at 9.00a.m.


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12 June 2008 : Fisher Teenager Signs Up
Yeovil Town have signed Fisher Athletic midfielder Kieran Murtagh in a two year deal today, after their Young Player Of The Year decided not to wait around to see if Premier League side Fulham would offer him a deal.

Nineteen year old Murtagh was Fisher's young player of the year, after making 21 appearances and scoring one goal for the London side, and had trialled with both Fulham and Brentford recently, with Fisher openly admitting that they were unable to hang onto the player.

Murtagh impressed Fulham enough in the trial to offer him a match in one of their pre-season friendlies, but he has chosen to come to Huish Park instead, with a firm offer on the table and a better chance of first team football. Fisher boss Wayne Burnett said at the time of the trial with Fulham that he was not expecting to hold onto the player:

"It’s a positive for the club that Kieran has impressed Fulham and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if they were to offer him a deal. There are lots of clubs interested in our players, so the only surprise for me so far has been that we haven’t had more offers. Kieran is still a Fisher player but I don’t think he’ll be with us next season. There’s so much interest in him that it looks like he will be with a Football League club at the very least."

Burnett's comment that he was expecting more offers implies that the Glovers will have had to have made some kind of compensation deal with the Conference South side, but the club don't reveal what that deal may entail.


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12 June 2008 : Site Outages
Apologies to anyone who has been finding access to Ciderspace difficult across Wednesday and Thursday. Our ISP had a server crash (thankfully not ours) that affected the ability for users to view our site. It's slightly random in that some people have been able to view the site, whilst others have been unable to view it at all. Other users have found the site cuts in and out from time to time.

Our ISP are aware of the root cause and have hopefully fixed it, but it will take a while for the site to start behaving itself for everyone. Things like a Forced Refresh on your browser (CTRL + F5), shutting down and restarting your browser and/or your PC may also help you here.

Obviously those who are 100 percent affected will not be reading this message at all! Hopefully by the end of Thursday everyone should be back though.


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11 June 2008 : Errea Acknowledges Tournament Problems
Two weeks after Ciderspace raised concerns about how the Southwest Challenge Cup Tournament 2008 was being promoted and publicised, (see News Page, 28th May), e-mailing the Press Officer, Heather Schofield, a series of points and questions, Errea has conceded there are problems.

Issued entirely in upper case, which always gives the impression of competence, or maybe not, Errea released this statement today :

"CRYSTAL PALACE PARTICIPATION.

WE ARE NOW AWARE THAT CRYSTAL PALACE ARE SENDING TWO SQUADS TO THE WEST COUNTRY FOR PRE-SEASON FRIENDLIES AND THE ERREA CUP COMPETITION.
THE LATEST INFORMATION WE HAVE IS THAT CP ARE NOW CONSIDERING WHICH TEAMS WILL FEATURE WHERE, NOW THAT THE ACTUAL ERREA CUP DRAW HAS BEEN MADE AND DATES ARE KNOWN.

AT THE EXEC COMMITTEE MEETING HELD YESTERDAY AFTER VISITS TO ALL THREE OF THE HOST CLUB GROUNDS, TO CHECK PROGRESS ON PITCH AND FACILITY DEVELOPMENT, A REQUEST RECEIVED FROM CP TO CONSIDER MOVING THE FIXTURES TO ENABLE NEIL WARNOCK AND SENIOR PLAYERS TO ATTEND THE GAMES WAS CONSIDERED. SUCH A DATE MOVE WOULD ENABLE CP TO PLAY THEIR OTHER ARRANGED GAMES IN CORNWALL.

WE HAVE INFORMED CP THAT WE ARE RELUCTANT TO CHANGE DATES AS WE HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN PROMISED BY NEIL WARNOCK THAT HE WOULD LIKE TO SEE HIS STRONGEST TEAM INVOLVED IN THE CUP COMPETITION. WE WILL HAVE A CLEARER PICTURE AND A DECISION BY THE END OF MONDAY AS TO WHICH SQUAD WILL ACTUALLY PLAY IN THE CUP AND ON WHICH DATES.

WE DO NOT WANT TO RISK LOSING CP TO THE COMPETITION AND ARE WILLING TO CONSIDER DATE CHANGES PROVIDED THAT THIS ENSURES THE STRONGEST AVAILABLE CRYSTAL PALACE TEAM PARTICIPATING.

IF CRYSTAL PALACE DOWNGRADE THEIR TEAM WE WILL REFER TO THE SIDE AS A CRYSTAL PALACE X1 SO AS TO ENSURE NO MISUNDERSTANDING WHATSOEVER BEFORE THE COMPETITION.

IN ALL OTHER RESPECTS, THE COMPETITION REMAINS UNCHANGED; ALL OTHER SQUADS HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED AND TWO TEAMS REMAIN ON STAND-BY TO STEP IN IF REQUIRED. AS A FURTHER UPDATE: ALL THREE GROUNDS LOOK IN SUPERB SHAPE AND I AM GRATEFUL TO THE HOST CLUBS FOR THE SUPERB EFFORT GOING INTO THE EVENT.
I UNDERSTAND THAT WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE FINAL, THERE ARE NOW ONLY TWO GAMES SEEKING SPONSORS, SUCH IS THE INTEREST IN THE COMPETITION.

I WILL KEEP YOU FULLY INFORMED OF ANY ENFORCED CHANGES BUT FOR NOW IT IS .... FULL STEAM AHEAD.

ROGER FODEN.
MARKETING EXECUTIVE. ERREA SOUTH WEST."

Subsequent to the item on 28th May Crystal Palace reconfirmed their take on their Friendly schedule again, on 6th June. It remained exactly the same as the initial announcement on the Palace Official Site that we had brought to Errea's attention nine days earlier.


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11 June 2008 : Chester Bid For ...
... former Yeovil Town midfielder Anthony Barry.

The League Two side have offered him a two year deal to move to the Deva Stadium along with Bradford City's Eddie Johnson. Both players are from the North-West and so Chester are hopeful that they can persuade them to sign on the dotted line.

Boss Simon Davies has told the Chester Chronicle:

"They both fit the description of how we want to play. They were two of the fittest lads at their clubs last season and that’s the way we want to go."

Chester owner Stephen Vaughan has added his own views:

"We’ve offered them both terms and it is the best we can put forward. Hopefully they’ll accept."


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11 June 2008 : Owusu Doesn't Say No To Lions Rumour
Yeovil Town striker Lloyd Owusu has refused to rule out a move to League One rivals Millwall, and has instead tipped them for promotion according to the South London Press.

Lloyd has told the paper that he is an admirer of Lions boss Kenny Jackett, suggesting that he is trying to pave the way for a move to the New Den where he would be entitled to a free transfer:

"He is a great coach and a great manager. I would love to work for him."

The South London Press state that they will be carrying a full length interview with Lloyd on Friday, presumably about the prospect of playing for Millwall next season.


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11 June 2008 : Owusu Linked With Millwall Move
This morning's Daily Star (stop laughing at the back) is claiming that fellow League One side Millwall are planning to give Glovers striker Lloyd Owusu a contract offer to try and lure him back to London.

Owusu is currently sat on a one year contract extension option with Yeovil that he has the right to sign after triggering a clause in his one year contract at Huish Park, having rather comfortably clocked up over 25 games last season. However, the nature of the option also gives him the right to walk on a free transfer.

The striker has something in the region of 10 further days to accept his contract option with the Glovers, however we are under the impression that the former Brentford player has also been touting his services amongst the London and Home Counties clubs. Whether this means he has struck gold, or whether the Star are just filling column space remains to be seen.


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11 June 2008 : Glovers Return To Badgers Hill
Yeovil Town have arranged a pre-season friendly against Frome Town at their Badgers Hill ground for Thursday 7th August at 7.30p.m.

Given the proximity of the fixture to the opening day of the season, we'd say that the match is almost guaranteed to be a Reserve Team match with the game likely to provide the final clues on which players will not start the opening match of the 2008-09 League One season.

The two sides met in the Somerset Premier Cup in March, with the Glovers winning 2-1, although the hosts put in an impressive performance on the night. Glovers fans who visited Badgers Hill were particularly impressed with the thriving Social Club that Frome had stacked out with a bingo match taking place during the football!

Admission for the match will be £4 for adults and £2 for concessions.


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10 June 2008 : Cliff Myers Operation Successful
Some of you may recall our May 27th news concerning former player Cliff Myers.

We're pleased to report that Cliff has had his heart bypass operation and this has gone well, with Cliff now out of intensive care. Naturally we hope that the good news continues.


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9 June 2008 : Interview With Steve Mildenhall
To complement yesterday's BBC Bristol interview clip transcript of a segment recorded with Chief Executive Martyn Starnes, we've also added the corresponding clip with outgoing keeper Steve Mildenhall after he signed a contract with Southend United late last week.

Steve's thoughts on why he left the club are available via the link below.

Link: Interview With Steve Mildenhall.


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9 June 2008 : Barnsley Coming To Huish Park As Potters Bar Moves Again
Championship side Barnsley will be Yeovil Town's visitors on Saturday 19th July at Huish Park, kick-off 3.00p.m., as the final missing piece in the pre-season jigsaw appears to have been added. Barnsley finished 18th in the Championship last season, securing their future on the penultimate weekend of the season.

Meanwhile the away fixture at Potters Bar has been moved again, this time to Thursday 17th July, kick-off 7.45p.m.

The home friendlies against Bristol City and Plymouth Argyle have had their expected 7.45p.m. kick-offs confirmed.

All other pre-season friendly information is as per the Ciderspace Home Page under the Forthcoming Events section, which will be updated later today with the amended information above.


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8 June 2008 : Interview With Martyn Starnes
On Saturday afternoon, BBC Bristol ran a two minute interview clip with Chief Executive Martyn Starnes in response to comments made by goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall after he departed the club for Southend United (see Friday's news page).

It's a shorter than usual interview clip, but given the importance of recording the wording correctly, we've archived the interview transcript in our site Interview section, and will hopefully add the transcript of a similar Mildenhall clip to the same section tomorrow.

Link: BBC Bristol Interview With Martyn Starnes.


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8 June 2008 : Stadium Report Due Within Two Weeks
Yeovil Town Chairman John Fry has given this week's Western Gazette a short update concerning the ongoing plans to expand the Huish Park Stadium. The Gazette reports a planned capacity of 14,000 as the latest figure although this has varied from time to time according to various reports.

The club had planned to provide a report on the back of a board meeting in late April, but it would appear that this has taken longer than anticipated. Mr Fry believes there are probably another two weeks worth of work to be done before he can report on the current situation:

"We are coming to a conclusion and I will be able to give an end-of-season report within the next two weeks. I cannot say too much at the moment because the plans are being drawn up and we are just trying too move into a position where we can get conclusions. It is very important from the point of view of the club, with the success it has had in recent years, that we develop its resources in line with our ambitions on the football side. We have got a board meeting today (sometime last week) and there are several things on the agenda to do with the developments within the club. Those things are not on the playing side."


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8 June 2008 : Leicester Badges In Pipeline
Away Travel Club person Mark Kelly is organising the sale of four different designs of badges with Yeovil Town due to play Leicester City this coming season. Mark writes:

"I will sortly be taking delivery of Yeovil Town v Leicester City badges. They are available in four different designs. The badges cost £3 each or you can buy all four for a special offer of £10 plus £1 p+p. To secure your order please send your cheques to 39 Mudford Rd, Yeovil, Somerset, BA21 4AE."

Mark can also be contacted via email at markkelly@ytisa.freeserve.co.uk

Note that the original plans to produce a badge for this summer's tournament in North Devon have been shelved.


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8 June 2008 : Supporters Bar Survey Results
Last summer (yes it really was that long ago - apologies!) Ciderspace ran a survey relating to the club's proposals to build a new supporters' social club at the stadium. At the time we set up the survey, the club had just put through the second of two planning applications through to the council, with both designs extremely different in what they could be potentially used for.

We've finally had the time to sift through the results we got from the 200+ responses that we got from supporters and have been able to split things up into three separate articles. Firstly, there is a short opinion piece extracting some of the key results from the survey and a bit of additional commentary relating to either the limitations of the survey or some of the events that have since followed that survey.

Secondly we have included an unedited set of comments from those who wanted to supply additional viewpoints as part of the survey. Bar the odd tidy-up for spelling mistakes, these are as they were received by each supporter. Finally, for those who like number crunching, we've included the summarised statistical results of each of the multi-choice survey.

Apologies again for the wait in publishing these - we'll do our best to publish the results of the more recent End Of Season Survey a little more quickly!

Link: Summer 2007 Supporters Bar Survey Results.

Link: Summer 2007 Supporters Bar Survey Participant Comments.

Link: Summer 2007 Supporters Bar Survey Statistical Results.


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7 June 2008 : Mildy Criticises Club's Lethargy
Departing goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall has extended his fire at his former club. Yesterday (see below) his attack centred on "lack of ambition" and individuals happy to remain in a "comfort zone". In today's Western Daily Press he extended his criticism to the club's lethargy on dealing with contracts. In regards to his own contract negotiations, or rather lack of them, he claimed manager Russell Slade had wanted to see discussion on an extension begun as far back as the summer of 2007. However, according to Mildenhall, the club sat on its hands :

I gave the club an opportunity. I said if the club could get the contract sorted I would stay. We could have come to some agreement and we could have got this wrapped up in January but the club didn't want to do it for some reason. By leaving it to the end of the season they allowed people like Southend to come in and then there was only one decision to make.

You can understand people running the club as a business and wanting to make sure they don't overspend, but in my experience I have had talks with other clubs and we have said if we stay up there is this contract and if we don't there is another contract.


In matters such as this each side will present their own case as they see it, however we would say that Mildenhall's account does fit with what we've observed of the club's attitude to contract negotiations over the years: a caution and slowness to move that may be understandable to some extent, but verges on the counter-productive at times.

Mildenhall reiterated his personal support for Slade, and his efforts :

The gaffer did everything he could to persuade me to stay. We had some long chats but when I went to Southend I knew I had made the right decision. It was an easy choice for footballing reasons once I met the manager and the chairman and saw their ambition.

I know Russell's ambitious and I know what he is trying to do. I just think that some people aren't as ambitious as he is. After the play-off season we lost some very influential players. We got some money in but we haven't really seen any benefit on the pitch. I understand the size of the club but you still should be ambitious.

We had great success in my first year at Yeovil. We were massively disappointed not to progress and get promoted. We wanted to kick on the next season and looking back it is disappointing that a couple of players were sold and another couple were let go.

We got off to a great start but at Christmas we hit a brick wall and after that it was a real battle to stay up. I hear rumours of budgets being cut and it's hard to think what sort of players will be brought in. The two clubs can't be compared - Southend are in a different league with their ambition.


And there, though perhaps for rather different reasons than Mildenhall, we'd also like some openness from the Yeovil Town Board. What are their plans for the club? Not 'wish lists' and vague aspirations, but clear policies and goals, backed by actual details, costed and with proposed timescales.

Of course there will be another major factor in Mildenhall's departure that he conspicuously neglects to mention, Southend United will have offered him better terms, but he has opened up an issue that has been simmering in the minds of many supporters for a while: where is this club going?


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7 June 2008 : Final Call For End Of Season Survey
A reminder that the Ciderspace End Of Season Survey is about to close. We'll give you another 24 hours or so to get in any final viewpoints and then close the poll for good. The original information we supplied at the time of the survey is repeated below.

"With the close season producing a little bit of a lull, that will probably continue for the next few weeks, Ciderspace has produced another survey for you to get your teeth into.

Our feeling is that the club is at a bit of a crossroads at the moment where it could go in a number of different directions, and that in such circumstances it is even more important that supporters voices are heard, detailing what is good and what is bad about the club as it stands today.

Questions 1-7 in the survey ask you to detail your habits during the season just gone and your likely habits for the following season. That is then followed by Questions 8 - 32 which give a list of positive statements about the club that we want you to either agree or disagree with. That is then followed by two questions asking about away matches and if you do miss any games next season what the fundamental reason is likely to be.

Finally, we end with four empty text boxes for you to write as much or as little as you like to detail anything else you want to get off your chest. If you are being critical in these areas, we'd encourage you to be as constructive as possible. If you want to say something is "rubbish", try and detail what you'd like to see done to make it "not rubbish" in the future!

To make things crystal clear, although we ask for your name and email address, these will not under any circumstances be passed outside Ciderspace - your entry will be entirely anonymous. We only ask for the details to establish uniqueness or in case we need to contact you about your submission. We will be making sure the club see the summarised results and the text comments, but all names and email addresses will be stripped off before the results are published.

Any questions or problems with the survey, please email us at webmaster@ciderspace.co.uk - otherwise fire ahead and make your views known."

Link: Ciderspace 2007-08 End Of Season Survey.


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7 June 2008 : Club Refuse To Budge On Stewart Offer
Yeovil Town have confirmed that Marcus Stewart's opening contract offer will also be his final offer. The 35 year old has been offered a 12 month deal believed to be on reduced terms on a 'pay as you play' basis, loaded heavily towards the appearances he might make in the coming season.

Stewart at the time described that offer as 'disappointing' and made it quite clear that it was not what he was looking for. The local media believe it to be a 40 percent cut in his wages. However, Chief Executive Martyn Starnes has told this morning's Western Daily Press that there will be no increase on the initial offer to Stewart:

"I am due to have a meeting with his representative in the next few days. We would certainly not be looking to increase the offer we have made."

Stewart now faces the dilemma of whether to accept a cut-price offer that would keep him in his current Bristol home, or whether to up sticks from an area that he had been widely expected to retire in. Stewart has told the paper that he had no other firm offers on the table, but expects to get some later in the summer. He said he wasn't shutting the door entirely on Yeovil:

"You never say never in football. They have told me that this is their last offer but I haven't spoken to anyone else yet. I have never been in this situation before so I haven't got much experience of it. I want to play for one more year and I understand that clubs will look at my age and be wary - but I would hope to get some offers later in the summer."


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6 June 2008 : Starnes Confirms Manager's Budget Cut
Yeovil Town Chief Executive Martyn Starnes has confirmed that the manager Russell Slade has had his playing budget cut for the coming 2008-09 season. Speaking in response to the blast from departing goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall (earlier today, below) Starnes conceded :

We have had to be careful with the provisional budget that's been given to Russell. It is smaller than last season but there may be scope to increase it if we have a successful season. It's difficult in the current economic climate to know what our income levels will be so we have to be cautious.

Starnes puts no figure on the size of the cut but, although we are always cautious about off the record sources, Ciderspace has reason to believe it to be not unadjacent to a 25% reduction. As those with experience of running their own budgets, be they commercial or domestic, would attest, a reduction of a quarter in ones spending power is no trimming of a bit of fat, but cutting into the bone.

In direct response to Mildenhall's assertion that the Glovers lack ambition Starnes came out fighting, claiming the club had made him a good offer :

We don't lack ambition at all at this football club but we have to pursue success realistically and based on what we can afford. We are confident that we can take this club forward but we have to be prudent. We made Steve an extremely good offer but if he can get a better offer elsewhere then good luck to him. Football is a short career. There are teams in this division that can afford to pay more than us.

He also revealed the club were hoping to find a replacement for the No.1 jersey through a loan, presumably a season long one :

We are interested in getting Asmir [Begovic] back and our manager Russell Slade has spoken to Harry Redknapp about him. It's no secret that we were very impressed with Asmir when he was here last season but we might have to be patient if we want to get him back. Typically with these loans it can be quite late in the day before decisions are made because Premiership clubs need to finalise their squads first.

Begovic was on loan from Portsmouth at Huish Park last season, to cover a Mildenhall injury, in March/April for a couple of games when the previous loan cover, Scott Flinders, was recalled. Begovic was in turn recalled, which is always a risk when relying on loan signings. It caused something of a crisis, with an appeal to the F.A. for special dispensation turned down and Mildenhall eventually having to return to the side early when almost certainly not 100% fit.


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6 June 2008 : Bristol City Kick-Off Set
Further to our May 28th article, the kick-off time for the pre-season friendly against Bristol City will be 7.45pm. The match takes place at Huish Park on Monday 21st July.

For a full list of friendlies, see the Forthcoming Events section on the Ciderspace Home Page.


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6 June 2008 : Mildy Claims Glovers Lack Ambition
Outgoing goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall has criticised the club for showing a lack of ambition as he departs today for Southend United. Steve has said that the Glovers are not prepared to "step out of their comfort zone" and are not backing the manager properly.

His hard-hitting words appear in an interview for the BBC Sport website and reflects various rumours about the size of next season's playing budget at the club. The club have in the past suggested that the playing budget would be based directly on season ticket sales at the point of the 'early bird' cut-off, and although no update has been given on the 1,097 figure given out towards the end of May, it is widely expected to show that it will be hard for the club to get close to the approximate 3,100 season tickets that were sold last season.

Mildy has claimed that the club's lack of ambition was a significant factor in his departure from Huish Park, but felt that lack of ambition came from areas other than manager Russell Slade, who Mildenhall had worked under for four years. He told BBC Sport:

"There seems to be a lack of ambition at Yeovil. I had to weigh up whether the club's going to make a push for promotion next season but maybe it's gone as far as it can. I don't think people are prepared to step out of their comfort zone to take a few risks to get out of the division. And I don't think some people were prepared to back the manager at Yeovil as much as they could have done. I know the manager's ambitious and he tried to persuade me to stay but I felt other people weren't pulling in the same direction."

Mildenhall is based in Swindon currently, which was part of his rationale for joining Yeovil Town when he moved from Grimsby Town, and his wife also comes from the same town. Hence he added that it was a difficult decision to up sticks again to Essex:

"It's a massive disappointment to me to be leaving because I love the area. My wife is settled and we're West country people. It's going to be a wrench to move, but that's football. You have to make decisions that you feel are best for your career. Southend have had a few years of success and made the play-offs last season. I think I'm moving to a stable club with a chairman that's ambitious and with plans for a magnificent new stadium."

Link: BBC Sport: Shrimpers Net Keeper Mildenhall.


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6 June 2008 : Mildenhall Exit Confirmed
Yeovil Town goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall has officially exited Huish Park after two years with the Glovers. Southend United's official site has confirmed that he has signed a three year deal at Roots Hall after making 85 appearances for the Glovers.

The very best of luck to Mildy at Roots Hall, apart from the obvious two fixtures, and thank you for the last two years efforts.


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5 June 2008 : Mildy A Shrimper?
A small caveat to this one - this is currently purely a product of the rumourmill. However, strong indications tonight suggest that Glovers goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall is about to pen a three year deal for League One rivals Southend United after turning down a contract with the Glovers.

There is no official confirmation of this from either club, but it would seem that Yeovil Town could be about to lose one of its prized assets. As usual, watch this space for any confirmations, denials, or simply rubbishing of the situation.

Update: 06/06/08, 8:00am This morning's WDP also report the same news, rather adding weight to the matter. They don't quote any sources, and there is no confirmation on either official site, but a deal would seem to be in the bag.


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5 June 2008 : Russell Sets Summer Targets
Yeovil Town manager Russell Slade has said that he hopes to make anything between three and five additional signings over the summer before the Glovers kick-off the 2008-09 season. Slade told BBC Somerset this week that having already sorted out the terms of three contracts this summer, he still wanted to add to his squad in significant numbers:

"As you know we've signed Danny Schofield who I think is a terrific signing for us. Aidan Downes is done and obviously Terry Skiverton has resigned. We have one or two others that we would like to re-sign and of course there are three, four or five targets that we would like at the football club."

Although that represents his target for the summer, Russell was keen to stress that any incoming players would have to be within the limitations of his playing budget, which may not be as straight-forward as he would like:

"But that is never going to be easy and obviously we will have to work with constraints as well, including financial constraints and that is not going to be easy either. There is a lot of work to be done between now and kicking the first ball of the season but hopefully we will get there."


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5 June 2008 : No Guarantees But...........
Some provisional dates for the forthcoming season. Please bear in mind that the Football League may yet change its mind, and Ciderspace takes no responsibility for any such eventuality :

The First Round of the Carling League Cup is expected to be scheduled for the week beginning Monday 11th August.
Second Round, week beginning Monday 25th August.
Third Round, week beginning Monday 22nd September.
Fourth Round, week beginning Monday 10th November.
Fifth Round, week beginning Monday 1st December.

When, ahem, we get that far the two-legged Semi-Finals are planned to be played in the weeks of Monday 5th January and Monday 19th January, 2009.
The League Cup Final will be played on Sunday 1st March 2009.

Meanwhile the provisional dates for the Johnstone's Paint Trophy are scheduled as follows :

Round One, week beginning Monday 1st September.
Round Two, week beginning Monday 6th October.
Round Three, week beginning Monday 3rd November.
Area Semi-Finals, week beginning Monday 15th December.
Area Finals, two legs, weeks beginning Monday 19th January and Monday 16th February, 2009.
Final, Sunday 5th April 2009.

In League One :

The Christmas fixtures are expected to be on Saturday 20th December, Friday 26th December (Boxing Day), and Sunday 28th December. There are no current plans for New Year's Day matches.

There should be an Easter Bank Holiday fixture this time, with matches scheduled for Saturday 11th April and Monday 13th April, 2009.

Pre-scheduled mid-week league matches are expected to number seven, and to be placed in the following weeks beginning :

Monday 20th October; Monday 27th October; Monday 24th November; Monday 26th January; Monday 2nd February; Monday 2nd March; and Monday 9th March.

Additionally the Football League is likely to schedule a full League One programme for Saturday 6th September, Saturday 11th October and Saturday 28th March, but as these clash with International fixtures expect further movement there.

The 46 match League One programme will end on Saturday 2nd May, 2009.

The League One Play-off Final has been pencilled in for Sunday 24th May, 2009.

(The F.A. Cup dates - which are not provisional - can be viewed below at 2nd June)


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4 June 2008 : Starnes States Discussions Still Ongoing
Yeovil Town Chief Executive Martyn Starnes has this week explained that as far as he is concerned, discussions are still ongoing between himself and some of the club's out of contract players or their agents.

Definitely with initial offers on the table are goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall and striker Marcus Stewart although both players have turned down those initial offers and have yet to receive anything further in writing. However, Starnes told BBC Somerset that wasn't necessarily the end of the story:

"Negotiations are continuing. Obviously we have made offers to certain players and they are probably considering other opportunities as well as the ones we have put forward to them. No final decisions have been made as far as I am aware by either the players or the club. So we will just have to see how things develop over the next few weeks."

Starnes has told the BBC that the player market is currently in a state of flux and that it will be a while before things settle down. He wasn't prepared to make any bold predictions on the future of Mildenhall and Stewart:

"I wouldn't like to say that it is more than 50:50 at the moment. That is being realistic. We have to see what other clubs are going to do. It is not just up to these players but an awful lot of other players that have been released so far, and there are not an awful lot that have signed for new clubs. So there may well be a bit of a sea change going on."

The Glovers Chief Executive also claimed that he was unaware of any offers the players may be sat on elsewhere, although he admitted he was working on the basis that they did have other offers or interest from other clubs:

"I don't know, but I am just assuming that their representatives are looking to see what else is available for their players in the marketplace."


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4 June 2008 : Russell Delight At Skivo Signature
Yeovil Town manager Russell Slade has expressed his delight that club captain Terry Skiverton has agreed a new one year deal to stay at the club for a 10th season. Negotiations have been ongoing since the end of the season and Russell admitted he only knew Skivo was staying whilst he was on holiday. Speaking to BBC Somerset he explained:

"I got a text message to say that the Terry Skiverton deal was done and I'm delighted about that. We talk about Terry's loyalty and how long he has been here and how successful he has been here. The important thing for me is that he has been successful in League One with me over the last two seasons and to get him on board again as my skipper is excellent news for the football club and for me."

Russell has added that he expects to see a lot of movement before the season starts and hinted that the eight players that have been shown the door so far may not be the last to head out of Huish Park as he continues to revamp his squad:

"There are lots of comings and goings at most football clubs and a lot of managers in the same boat. But we'll be looking to get a squad that is workable for us. If that means one or two have to go, and some already have done in the first instance and there may be one or two others that follow suit, then at the same time we are in dialog with other representatives. I have a meeting [on Wednesday] with a midfielder and hopefully we can persuade him that Yeovil is going to be a good place."

There has been some speculation elsewhere that the midfielder Russell is meeting is Swansea City's Darren Way. However, it would seem reasonable to discount that idea - after all we would assume that after having spent five years at Huish Park and still owning a house in the town that Darren would not need Russell to show him what a nice place Yeovil is!


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4 June 2008 : Beer Festival Reminder
A reminder that Yeovil Town are hosting their first ever Beer Festival during the evenings of Friday 6th June and Saturday 7th June.

Admission is £4.00 from the Huish Park Ticket Office (01935-847888) or £5.00 on the night, and the event starts at 7.00pm. Children are admitted free of charge and the High Society Jazz Men (Friday - Jazz) and The Rulettes (Saturday - 60s/70s hits centring around the Beach Boys) will be providing live music on the night.

There will be 10 different real ales available on the night, and an unspecified number of real ciders (could be one, could be many - we're not sure on this) is available from the barrel.


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4 June 2008 : Potters Bar And Weymouth Dates Moved
The two pre-season friendlies against Potters Bar and Weymouth have been rearranged to new dates:

Potters Bar vs Yeovil Town : Friday 18th July, kick-off tba.
Weymouth vs Yeovil Town : Saturday 2nd August, kick-off 3.00p.m.

The club had been looking to arrange a high-profile friendly for the first weekend in August. It looks as though that has proved problematic, as the club have said that their reason for the two fixture moves are to clear the decks for another fixture for Saturday 19th July, which has yet to be revealed/confirmed.

Update: 6.00pm The club official site have now withdrawn the Potters Bar date change without explanation. We would therefore recommend you keep open both the Friday night and the Saturday afternoon open for this match for the moment! Our guess is that if the club arrange a home match for July 19th then the Potters Bar game will move to the Friday night. If they can't squeeze one in for the Saturday then the Potters Bar game will stay where it is. We'll notify the latest picture both on the News Page and also on the Forthcoming Events list on the Ciderspace Home Page.


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3 June 2008 : Weston Friendly Under Discussion
No guarantees that anything will become of it, but the Weston Mercury is reporting that Conference South side Weston-super-Mare are attempting to bring Yeovil Town to the Woodspring Stadium. No dates are being publicly suggested, although Yeovil's pre-season fixture calendar is now reaching the stage where it is difficult to insert additional matches without them being passed over to a Reserve/Youth side.


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3 June 2008 : Potters Bar Pre-season Friendly
The pre-season friendly promised to Potters Bar Town as recompense for Nathan Smith has been set for Saturday 19th July. We'd presume a 3.00 p.m. kick-off, but have not seen confirmation of that as yet.



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3 June 2008 : Skivo Signs On The Dotted Line
Further to reports on May 29th, club captain Terry Skiverton has now formally put ink to paper on a one year contract extention to tie him to the club for a 10th year. Congratulations, Skivo!

It has also been reported by the club this afternoon that manager Russell Slade will be in talks with a central midfielder tomorrow afternoon with a view to a contract. No further detail on the mystery player is available at present.


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3 June 2008 : Memorial Stadium Development Officially On Hold
Yeovil Town will now be visiting the Memorial Stadium yet again for the 'final' time after Bristol Rovers officially confirmed today the weekend news (see June 1st) that they would spend the whole of the 2008-09 season in Bristol. Until a Rovers unofficial site broke the news, Rovers had insisted that they still on track to relocate to Whaddon Road, home of Cheltenham Town for the start of the forthcoming season. That will no longer be the case.

The catalyst has been the withdrawl from the project by the Opal Property Group, who were intended to build 95 student flats on the Memorial Stadium land and is the financial lynchpin to funding the whole project. Opal have blamed the "credit crunch" on their withdrawl from the project. The club have in the meantime pointed the finger at the Bristol Rovers Vital website for breaking the story "without referral to the club for comment" claiming it "did not help the club's negotiating position".

The Vital site news report though doubtless saved many Rovers season ticket holders from a wasted journey to Whaddon Road, with Rovers still taking coach bookings as late as Friday morning for an 'open day' at their intended temporary ground. This is despite Rovers admitting they knew of Opal's withdrawl "over a week ago". One wonders if Vital had not broken the news, how long Rovers fans would have been kept in the dark for.

The fall-out is likely to be felt far beyond the ranks of the Pirates faithful. The club now have to sort out the reallocation of season ticket sales back to the Memorial Stadium, whilst the Football League will now need to ensure that it is Bristol City's home fixtures they avoid clashes with rather than Cheltenham Town's.

In addition, this morning's Western Daily Press suggests that Bristol Rugby Club may seek compensation from Rovers after they signed a two year deal to play at Newport's Rodney Parade ground - a decision that is expected to cost them between 750K and 1.5M a season and they claim is causing them to reduce their playing budget, and as a result they believe they are losing out on their playing targets. Bristol Rugby Club have suspended all season ticket sales whilst they consider their options.

Meanwhile at Cheltenham Town, the Gloucestershire Echo believes that the decision could affect manager Keith Downing's playing budget, with what the Echo claims to be a "significant six figure sum" now curtailed for this season at least.

Only on April 3rd, Rovers Chairman Ron Craig, in response to suggestions that the development might not happen claimed:

"There's always a little bit of scepticism about whether the scheme is going ahead but everything will go full-bore from now."

It would appear that despite having Planning Permission granted at that point, Rovers were still a significant distance from having all contracts signed for the project to go ahead. Even though Rovers paint the situation as a "delay for 12 months" there will inevitably be questions from supporters in terms of the viability of the project itself.


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3 June 2008 : Mildy Ruled Out Of Crewe Move
Yeovil Town goalkeeper Steve Mildenhall will not be moving to Crewe Alexandra, according to their local Stoke Sentinel paper. Crewe have turned their attention to a far more inexperienced keeper, with assistant manager Neil Baker explaining:

"We have spoken to a young keeper and made him an offer. While he is relatively inexperienced as he has only played twice in the League, he has been on loan at one or two clubs."

Crewe are still likely to move for a more senior keeper before the season starts given that they are likely to lose both of their senior keepers this summer and so could still return for Mildenhall. However, the paper's belief is that Mildy will not come their way because "it appears he has other clubs" making offers.

Not much has changed at the Huish Park end to our knowledge - Mildy turned down the club's initial offer, although the keeper told the WDP last week that he was still in negotiations. Hopefully therefore the "other clubs" that the Sentinel speaks of include Yeovil Town.


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2 June 2008 : F.A. Cup 2008-09 Round Dates
Extra-Preliminary Round - 16th August, 2008
Preliminary Round - 30th August, 2008
First Qualifying Round - 13th September, 2008
Second Qualifying Round - 27th September, 2008
Third Qualifying Round - 11th October, 2008
Fourth Qualifying Round - 25th October, 2008
First Round Proper - 8th November, 2008 - Yeovil Town exempt until this point
Second Round Proper - 29th November, 2008
Third Round Proper - 3rd January, 2009
Fourth Round Proper - 24th January, 2009
Fifth Round Proper - 14th February, 2009
Sixth Round Proper - 7th March, 2009
Semi-Finals - 18th and 19th April, 2009
Final - 30th May, 2009


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2 June 2008 : Carling Cup Draw Date Set
The First Round of the Carling Cup will be drawn and released on Friday 13th June at 10.00am. The Glovers will enter the competition at the First Round stage, with Premier League sides not participating in European competitions joining as part of the Second Round. Those remaining Premier League sides join in the Third Round.

The date for the First Round will also be set by the time the draw is made - usually it is the first or second midweeker of the season - i.e. roughly August 12th or August 19th.


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2 June 2008 : Early Bird Final Day
A reminder to those looking to buy or renew season tickets that you have until 6.00pm today to get your tickets at the Early Bird price.

Note that the on-line discount expired over the weekend and so the only two ways you can place your booking now are either in person at the Huish Park Ticket Office, or by calling them on 01935-847888. Obviously given that an application form has to be filled in, the 'in person' method will be preferred.


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1 June 2008 : End Of Season Survey Reminder
A reminder that the Ciderspace End Of Season Survey is currently still open and available for you to add in your views. We'll keep the survey open until next Saturday lunchtime to allow for anyone who has been on their holidays, and will then get our teeth into the results. The original information we supplied at the time of the survey is repeated below.

"With the close season producing a little bit of a lull, that will probably continue for the next few weeks, Ciderspace has produced another survey for you to get your teeth into.

Our feeling is that the club is at a bit of a crossroads at the moment where it could go in a number of different directions, and that in such circumstances it is even more important that supporters voices are heard, detailing what is good and what is bad about the club as it stands today.

Questions 1-7 in the survey ask you to detail your habits during the season just gone and your likely habits for the following season. That is then followed by Questions 8 - 32 which give a list of positive statements about the club that we want you to either agree or disagree with. That is then followed by two questions asking about away matches and if you do miss any games next season what the fundamental reason is likely to be.

Finally, we end with four empty text boxes for you to write as much or as little as you like to detail anything else you want to get off your chest. If you are being critical in these areas, we'd encourage you to be as constructive as possible. If you want to say something is "rubbish", try and detail what you'd like to see done to make it "not rubbish" in the future!

To make things crystal clear, although we ask for your name and email address, these will not under any circumstances be passed outside Ciderspace - your entry will be entirely anonymous. We only ask for the details to establish uniqueness or in case we need to contact you about your submission. We will be making sure the club see the summarised results and the text comments, but all names and email addresses will be stripped off before the results are published.

Any questions or problems with the survey, please email us at webmaster@ciderspace.co.uk - otherwise fire ahead and make your views known."

Link: Ciderspace 2007-08 End Of Season Survey.


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1 June 2008 : Jumpers For Goalposts
The Bristol Rovers official message forum has gone into meltdown as angry Gasheads fulminate on the latest shambles from their club's Board. The trumpeted redevelopment of the Memorial Stadium is in a state of collapse, with fans impatiently awaiting a proper statement from the club. This has been promised for "next week".

The crisis was revealed on Friday when an Unofficial Site broke the story that the company supposedly funding the development through the building of student accommodation, Opal Property Group Limited, had withdrawn from the project. The administrator of the Vital Bristol Rovers site was rewarded by being banned from the club's Official Forum for his trouble.

Naturally fans were outraged as the news broke, as the club had given the impression that the project was signed and sealed. It now seems likely that no more than a Heads of Terms agreement had been secured, which bears about as much similarity to a binding contract as the word of a bloke in the pub on a Saturday night that he'll pop round on Sunday morning and have a look at your motor with a view to possible purchase.

Much discussion amongst fans has centred on when the Board knew the project was on the rocks, and why they were still selling season tickets, and taking bookings for a Fans Tour scheduled for the Saturday, for Whaddon Road as late as Friday.

So far the club has managed the following helpful statement, published on its Official Site on Friday afternoon :

The directors of Bristol Rovers Football Club have recently been made aware that the preferred student accommodation provider negotiating the stadium regeneration is no longer able to progress the project.

As a result the club has entered into negations
[sic] with an alternative provider.

Which brings us to a further issue. There has been no official word as yet from: Cheltenham Town, who have an agreement with Bristol Rovers for a ground share at Whaddon Road; from the Football League, who had agreed to structure the League One fixture list to take account of this ground share; from Bristol Rugby Club, who have a deal to share with Newport Rugby Club and have sold reduced cost season tickets and subsidised transport to their supporters on the strength of the move; or from Rodney Parade, Newport, from their end of the deal. One suspects, however, the word "pleased" will not be featuring from any of them.

So it currently looks like we shall be visiting the Mem next season after all. Unless............. Ciderspace has engaged in its usual award winning investigations and found the Gas may have been negotiating an alternative development project, and even have a contract to prove it :

Worth the paper it may have been written on?
Gas Board Member reveals Rovers new home


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