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Conference Fans Must Back Grassroots Petition – nearly 18k have heard MP Crausby’s Call Already

STMI urge fans of Aldershot Town, Alfreton Town, Barnet FC, Braintree Town, Cambridge United, Chester FC, Dartford FC, FC Halifax, FGR, Gateshead FC, Grimsby Town, Hereford United, Hyde, Kidderminster Harriers, Luton Town, Macclesfield Town, Nuneaton Town, Salisbury City, Southport FC, Tamworth FC, Welling United, Woking FC, Wrexham FC, to back the petition to ensure grass roots football gets 7.5% of the from broadcasting rights. MP David Crausby’s petition already has 17,700 signatures so please get on board before the 20th September. Please get this on your forums.

Thanks for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs

HM Government

The petition, to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, calls on the Government to ensure that grassroots football receives financial support from the Premier League. At a time when Government cuts mean that many Local Authorities are no longer able to fund grassroots football transfer fees and players wages are spiralling to obscene levels and, very much wasting the bounty.  Similarly fees for basic facilities are climbing to the point where ordinary people are being priced out of our national sport.

The Premier League continues to grow in popularity around the world. Domestic broadcasting rights for 2013-14 to 2015-16 have been sold for £3bn, combined with global rights the Premier League could bring in as much as £5bn over the next three seasons.
This cash boost must not be wasted on ever-increasing wages for players when grassroots football is struggling. Just 34% of the starting line ups during the Premiership’s opening weekend were home-based talent
The Government must encourage the FA to ensure that 7.5% of money from broadcasting rights goes to fund grassroots football. If the FA and Premier League are unable to do so voluntarily the Government must be willing to take further action to make this compulsory.
Sign this petition and pass it on to everyone you know.
Current Number of signatures: 17,700
Created by: David Crausby MP
Closing Date : 20/02/2014 10:21
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The Big Fat Conference Premier Guide

For fans of Aldershot Town, Alfreton Town, Barnet FC, Braintree Town, Cambridge United, Chester FC, Dartford FC, FC Halifax, FGR, Gateshead FC, Grimsby Town, Hereford United, Hyde, Kidderminster Harriers, Luton Town, Macclesfield Town, Nuneaton Town, Salisbury City, Southport FC, Tamworth FC, Welling United, Woking FC, Wrexham FC,  here is the STMI Skrill Premier guide.  Nearly 30,000 of you have read your own team’s now you can have a nosey at the rest.

Thank-you for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs – this labour of love has kept me sane (ish) through a foot crush injury this summer

The guide comprises transfer ins and outs, the squads, typical formation, last years position and crowd, tickets, ground guide (thanks Duncan Adams) and plus a gander and forecast for the coming season. Notice no side is foretasted to go down because everyone starts with a clean sheet in a league where everyone can beat anyone. Why, because every big stage is seen as a giant killing opportunity with ex-League giants viewed as scalps. Get your beer-goggles out, Believe, be pure, be vigilant and behave.

STMI looks forward to seeing you all in 2013/14, although you will not bump into me at Sincil Bank as I am still denied the ability to watch my community team. But enough of that to cut to the chase just CLICK ON A NAME, below the badge our heroes kiss.

BSP Away Support 12/13 Hatters, Mariners Stags & Imps deserve Medals!

The belated away support stats 2012/13 for Luton Town, Grimsby, Wrexham, Stockport, Mansfield, Newport, Cambridge, Kidderminster, Hereford, Dartford, Lincoln, Macclesfield, Nuneaton, Telford, Woking, Southport, Tamworth, Ebbsfleet, Alfreton, Forest Green, Hyde, Barrow, Braintree and Gateshead. Outstanding support as ever from the Hatters – Luton that is and Stockport who have both had another shocker given their fabulous support ……but there is always next Saturday.

apologies for the delay, been writing a book in memory of Richard Butcher for charity and the broken heel has had me hanging like a bat at times! thanks as ever for stopping by and reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs 

As usual we give both the average and the total turnstile clicks of the travelling fans. Once again you were loud and should be rightly proud considering the prices and the climate. The average taken away in the BSP was 195 plus the shrapnel down by 15 on the previous season. The Mighty Imps recovered from 183 to 228 after another shocker.

Team

Ave

Total

Games

Luton

496

11,399

23

Stockport

479

11,019

23

Grimsby

429

9,869

23

Wrexham

363

9,678

23

Mansfield

396

9,103

23

Newport

263

6044

23

Kidderminster

241

5,549

23

Cambridge

230

5,306

23

Lincoln

228

5,253

23

Hereford

214

4933.5

23

Dartford

151

3,475

23

Macclesfield

147

3,374

23

Nuneaton

130

2,999

23

Woking

102

2,337

23

Telford

91

2,102

23

Southport

90

2,082

23

Tamworth

88

2,022

23

Alfreton

77

1,769

23

Forest Green

71

1,644

23

Ebbsfleet

70

1,592

23

Barrow

68

1,407

23

Hyde

60

1,362

23

Gateshead

40

913

23

Braintree

39

722

23

Wrexham Deserve 3 Promotion Places For Conference Clubs

For 3 promotion places to have any chance, Luton, Grimsby, Wrexham, Alfreton,  Braintree,  Cambridge,  Chester FC,  Dartford, Forest Green, Gateshead, Grimsby,  Hereford,  Hyde, Kidderminster, Lincoln,  Macclesfield, Nuneaton, Southport, Tamworth, Welling United and Woking fans need to act now.  Wrexham have for the second year failed to go up, something their flowing football deserved.  Luton have a budget League 2 & 1 clubs would envy, yet they too are marooned.  STMI urge all BSP, Championship and League 1 teams to back us, surely asking League 2 clubs would be like asking Turkeys to vote for Christmas. Please sign our petition  here and copy and paste this article onto your forums – we have 1250 we need 10k so ask your clubs to put it on their official sites. This is a call to arms, a fair and just fight for the right, nothing more, nothing less from, one fan to every other (and any League fans too, if you have a sporting sense of right and wrong)

Please help, please sign and thanks for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs

Ahead of a scheduled Football League full vote this summer, this is Football’s chance to be seen as a shining light in an unfair world – to be fair and willing to share. Give that right to fans and teams who dare to dream. You, the fans and the Football League, are the gateway and the custodians of the people’s game in so many ways. Please, surely there has to be at least one more set of golden keys?

Urge your members to give the Conference one more promotion spot. Is it so much so ask with the new TV deal just about to shower your members with even more cash? We are not asking for the cash handout, just give our teams the right to play our way onto the table.

BSP fans, believe we can do this together and rest assured The Football League will get an email every time someone signs.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

Akin to the economy, we are starting to become stale and starved down here, through a two up two down system that blights – is that fair in the peoples game?  No its Feudalism football, an increasing reflection of life designed to stop the dream, kill the passion. Once again the enterprise dies. That may be shaping up to be Modern Britain but surely Football can be seen to send out the right message? We are not asking for your money just the right for 3 teams to join the party each season. Let us increase the natural flow of money through the game for the benefit of all, especially grass roots football. Its like quantitative easing  but without the inflation, it wont affect the nation because those who aspire can achieve higher.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

The more noise we fans make the more they will listen. The football League vote is laden towards the top and it will cost them nothing. 5 Leagues plus two regional feeders could see dreams fulfilled, enticing investors into the game.

Let us force the League and the Blue Square Premier around a table and do what is fair.  In the current climate the last thing we need is to perpetuate ‘Feudalism Football’ – because that is what it is when the few shut out the millions who try to play the game on every park and pitch throughout the land.

Please sign our petition  here

3 up 3 down from League 2 to the BSP would allow passage up and down the pyramid, which could put more of an incentive into lads wanting to play the game now we are in a depression with £400 a week and the chance of getting spotted even though you slipped through the net at 16.

A more affordable football experience, the chance to have a friendly beer with other fans.  That extra place, or two would really fire the imagination fuelled by ambition and local pride and allow people to dare to dream without the fear of failure. 2 up 2 down is not fair is it Mr Clegg and it is most certainly not  British.  Everybody deserves a second chance. 3 up and 3 down will give us a sporting one at least.

Conference Petition Breaks 1k – Come Aboard!

Come on  Alfreton,  Telford, Braintree,  Cambridge, Dartford, Ebbsfleet, FGR, Gateshead, Grimsby, Hereford, Hyde, Kidderminster, Luton, Macclesfield, Mansfield, Newport, Nuneaton, Southport,  Stockport, Tamworth, Woking and Wrexham fans, please join sign the petition for 3 promotion and 3 relegation places between the BSP and The League  here  – Red Passion, Luton Outlaws, Bulls News, BAFC + HSN, Stagsnet, Harriers On Line and We Imps  already pushing it

Alfreton Town FC.svg     Telford United.png   Braintreefc.png   logo     Logo  Gravesend and Northfleet F.C. logo Forest Green Rovers FC logo  Gateshead FC Logo   Grimb Badge.png   Hereford United  Hyde Logo.pngKidderminsterbadge.png    Luton Town F.C. badge Macclesfield Town FC.svgLogo Badge of Newport CountyBadge of Nuneaton Town SouthportFC.png logo Logo Woking.png Wrexham FC.png

Massive thanks to  News Now, Red Passion, Luton Outlaws, Bulls News, BAFC + HSN, Stagsnet and Harriers on-line, for already coming on board. 

Feel free to copy and paste this article onto your forums and even ask your clubs to put it on their official sites. 

*****

To cut to the chase

Ahead of a scheduled Football League full vote this summer, this is Football’s chance to be seen as a shining light in an unfair world – to be fair and willing to share. Give that right to fans and teams who dare to dream. You, the fans and the Football League, are the gateway and the custodians of the people’s game in so many ways. Please, surely there has to be at least one more set of golden keys?

Urge your members to give the Conference one more promotion spot. Is it so much so ask with the new TV deal just about to shower your members with even more cash? We are not asking for the cash handout, just give our teams the right to play our way onto the table.

BSP fans, believe we can do this together and rest assured The Football League will get an email every time someone signs.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

BSP Basement Battle: The Holker Street View

As Stockport County, Southport, Gateshead, Barrow, Nuneaton, Hyde, Alfreton, Tamworth and the Imps bid to avoid two relegation slots STMI takes a look at the Barrow perspective courtesy of Ralph Sheppard, chewing his nails to the quick in New Zealand.

A staggering 53 points could be needed for safety this season.

Thank you for reading Ralph Sheppard 

logo Lincoln City F.C. badge.png SouthportFC.png Gateshead FC LogoBarrow AFC Logo No Background.png

Badge of Nuneaton Town Alfreton Town FC.svg Hyde Logo.png Logo

HOLKER STREET NEWSLETTER 3087 – 9 APRIL 2013

Talking to BBC Radio Cumbria after the Mansfield game, Dave Bayliss
scratched his head about the penalty given to the visitors: “To be honest,
when the referee blew (for the penalty) I thought their lad was getting
booked for diving, I don’t know what I did in a former life as, both
penalties aside, we’ve now hit the woodwork seven times in seven games –
it’s ridiculous. We miss one to go ahead then he dives, scores the penalty
and it’s a huge task at 2-0 – it just sums up the season. People say that
when you’re at the bottom you don’t get the decisions and it’s true, that
one is really hard to take,” he continued. Our lads took it personally and
then lost their discipline for a short while after that too. It was a bad
decision but the other goals were avoidable as we’ve just given the ball
away cheaply. So in some ways, we’ve no one to blame but ourselves when you
do that and you miss a penalty. Still, I don’t know what I did in a former
life as both penalties aside, we’ve now hit the woodwork seven times in
seven games – it’s ridiculous.”

Dave Bayliss put down his book of Churchill speeches long enough to talk to
the Mail, and refusing to believe “Barrow AFC’s floundering bid for survival
is not a mission impossible following their latest spanking by Mansfield
Town:, he told the Mail: “I’ve never given up because we don’t need to give
up, we’ve got to keep going because there are points to be had and we
believe that if we keep playing the way we have done, but cut out the silly
mistakes which I’ve said 43 times this season, and do the basics well, then
we’ll win games. Nothing is mission impossible at this level because every
player in this League is a non-League footballer because for that reason
alone they’re not good enough to play in the Football League. That’s what
they’ve got to realise. The pitch is bobbly and bone hard and we’re still
trying to take extra touches when we don’t need to. You’ve got to make the
right decisions. Every player who was on the pitch on Saturday has got
ability, but it’s good decision-making that makes a footballer. We’ve just
got to do what we try and do every week, which is to go out and win a game.
That’s what we’ve got to do tomorrow. We’re under no illusions how hard it
will be (to stay up) but we’ll keep going and keep fighting. We’re all
disappointed but we’ve got to roll up our sleeves up and dig out a result
tomorrow.”

And I did like this on the excellent blog at http://www.twohundredpercent.net
“Finally, if you heard the sound of champagne corks popping at the weekend,
the chances are that these were either coming from the vicinity of
Gillingham or Chester. Gillingham’s 1-0 win against Torquay United – who
themselves remain in deep trouble at the other end of the table – was enough
to ensure their return to League One after an absence of three years, while
Chester made it three League titles in a row at the weekend in securing the
Blue Square Bet North championship. They will start next season in the Blue
Square Bet Premier, the same Division that the club’s forerunner, Chester
City, was in when it folded during the 2009/10 season. Proof, as if it were
needed, that getting the Vaughan family the hell away from The Deva Stadium
no matter what the short-term cost was definitely a price well worth
paying”.

BSBP BASEMENT BATTLE – NINE CONTENDERS 53 POINTS NEEDED
By Neil Gentleman-Hobbs, from the Lincoln City blog at
https://savethemightyimps.wordpress.com

Nine bid for BSBP salvation with Stockport County, Southport, Gateshead,
Barrow, Nuneaton, Hyde, Alfreton, Tamworth and the Imps scrambling for seven
lifeboats. Realistically two look set to join, all but down, Ebbsfleet
United and relegated AFC Telford United, with the next eight days seeing
some huge head-to-head confrontations. Incredibly, a herculean task of 53
points could be needed for safety this season.

The Road Ahead
This week is simply massive. Tuesday sees three head to heads involving the
nine plus the Imps game at Luton. A win for Barrow (at Alfreton) and
Nuneaton (at Gateshead) would put real pressure on the Imps (at Luton) and
Stockport would return to the drop zone. Poor Alfreton play Tamworth on
Thursday in another basement-battle that will see the loser sweating going
into the weekend. Stockport County will have to wait until Saturday to make
amends, with their Tuesday catch-up game next week at Gateshead.

Saturday sees Ebbsfleet play Telford in a game they could have done with two
weeks ago. The Imps play Tamworth, who could be tired from Thursday’s trip
to Alfreton, in a game that could yet be pivotal for both clubs futures.
Alfreton could have done without the trip to play-off bound Newport.
Nuneaton face Hyde in another key battle. Stockport will be well backed as
they seek to beat Dartford. Southport will not be relishing the trip to
big-spending Forest Green.

TUESDAY’S BLUE SQUARE BET PREMIER PREVIEW
From http://www.bluesqfootball.com

Mansfield Town could overtake Kidderminster Harriers at the top of the Blue
Square Bet Premier standings with a win on Tuesday night. With the Harriers,
who have played two games more than Paul Cox’s side, not in action until
Saturday, a victory over Macclesfield Town could propel Mansfield Town two
points clear with the season drawing to a close.

Only Harriers, Southport and the already relegated AFC Telford United have
played 44 matches with everyone else playing catch-up with midweek matches.
And while the Stags, on 86 points, have won all but one of their last 14
matches, the Silkmen, in eighth with 60 points, are without a win in their
last five outings.

Wrexham, meanwhile, in third and ten points adrift of second position, are
at home to 13th-placed Cambridge United. The Dragons will be looking cement
a play-off spot ahead of Newport County and Grimsby Town – who complete the
top-five teams in the Division. A run of poor form has seen Andy Morrell’s
side fall off the pace of late while the U’s have drawn their last three
ties with their last win coming seven games ago.

Elsewhere, Newport County host Braintree Town as Grimsby Town travel to
Dartford. One point behind Wrexham and without a defeat in their last five
matches, the Exiles will be mildly confident of their place in the
play-offs. The eleventh-placed Iron will provide stern if erratic test,
however, as a look at their results shows a team with three losses and three
victories from their last six games. The Mariners are a further two points
down the standings with the Darts in ninth on 59 points.

Forest Green Rovers, on 65 points in sixth place, have an outside chance of
making up the eight-point gap on Grimsby and will need a win over Hereford
United in seventh, who are on 63 points. Rovers lost 2-1 to Tamworth last
time out with their last win coming against Southport midway through March,
while the Bulls defeated Macclesfield 1-0 following a 5-2 defeat of
Tamworth.

Moving down the table and Luton Town in twelfth, host 19th-placed Lincoln
City. The Hatters will have all but given up on promotion this season,
following four winless matches and a heavy 5-1 thrashing by Gateshead last
time out. The Imps, meanwhile, are very much fighting for survival, just two
points off the drop zone. They lost 3-0 to Harriers on Saturday after a 0-0
draw with Cambridge United.

And finally, 15th-placed Alfreton Town host 22nd-placed Barrow, Gateshead in
18th, face off against 21st-placed Nuneaton Town, while 14th-placed Hyde FC
host 23rd-placed Ebbsfleet United. The Reds lost 3-2 to Stockport in their
last match after a 2-0 defeat of Southport, while the Bluebirds, without a
win in four, were 4-0 losers to Mansfield this past weekend. The Tynesiders
followed up their 4-0 defeat by the Stags with a 5-1 victory over Luton as
Boro where held by Ebbsfleet last time out – while the Tigers lost 2-1 to
Braintree.

BARROW 0 MANSFIELD TOWN 4
From http://www.bluesqfootball.com

Mansfield Town compounded Barrow AFC’s relegation woes with a 4-0 win to
ramp up the pressure on Kidderminster Harriers in the Blue Square Bet
Premier title race. The Stags remain a point behind league leaders Harriers,
who have 87, and with two games in hand should certainly fancy themselves
for automatic promotion. The Bluebirds, on the other end of the standings,
are 22nd on 46 points, three adrift of safety with three fixtures remaining
in the season.

Matt Green scored twice for the visitors, once from the penalty spot, in the
first half, before John Dempster and Lee Stevenson wrapped up the victory in
the second stanza. Even though it was all Mansfield with Green leading their
attack, the hosts had the first chance to score. Defender Luke Jones handled
the ball in the 18-yard area and Richie Baker stepped up to spot only for
Alan Marriott to deny him the opener. A minute later and Green found the
back of the net after receiving an excellent pass from Colin Daniel to
stroke the ball home from inside the area. Green troubled the Barrow defence
and was hastily brought down in the penalty box by Danny O’Donnell, giving
the referee no option but to point to the spot. The striker took the penalty
himself and made no mistake as Mansfield went into the half-time break two
goals to the good.

The Bluebirds’ defence watched Green closer in the second period and hardly
gave the striker room to move, while also catching him with the offside trap
when he was allowed space. Daniel too troubled the hosts and was fouled
outside the area, with the resultant free-kick from Adam Murray bringing
Town’s third goal as Dempster rose highest to meet the set-piece and make it
3-0. Baker tried to reduce the deficit but was again denied by Marriot, and
even though victory was assured, Stevenson scored in the 92nd minute to send
a stern warning to Kidderminster.

Barrow bookings: Hessey.
Mansfield bookings: Briscoe.

Ref: Backhouse.
Att: 1114.

RELEGATION STILL REAL DANGER FOR ALFRETON AFTER RIVALS CLAIM A CRUCIAL
VICTORY
From The Derby Telegraph

Alfreton Town missed the chance to put more distance between themselves and
one of the clubs struggling below them in the Blue Square Bet Premier.
Defeat by Stockport County at the Impact Arena was not enough for the
Hatters to jump above the Reds on the fringe of the drop zone but means that
Alfreton are still far from safe with four games left to play in the final
fortnight of the season.

MANSFIELD TOWN LOOKING TO TURN THE SCREW AFTER FINE WIN AT BARROW
From The Nottingham Post

Mansfield Town bounced back from seeing their winning streak brought to an
end with a comfortable 4-0 win away to Barrow. Having lost 2-1 at
third-placed Wrexham on Thursday night to see their 12-game winning run come
to an end, the Stags bounced back in fine style to see off the struggling
Cumbrian outfit. Two goals each from Matt Green, one a penalty, and Lee
Stevenson at Holker Street helped them to victory – while Alan Marriott also
saved a penalty from Richie Baker. The result meant they stay a point behind
leaders Kidderminster – with two games in hand – after Harriers also tasted
victory, 3-0 against Lincoln City.

Kidderminster only have two games left this season and can reach a maximum
points tally of 93. Paul Cox’s men, meanwhile, sit on 86 points and have
four games to play – meaning three wins will see them return to the Football
League thanks to automatic promotion as champions. The first of these four
games starts tomorrow night when they host Macclesfield Town – who have
nothing to play for in eighth – at the One Call Stadium (7.45pm). Trips to
mid-table Braintree and Hereford – who look to be out of contention in the
race for the play-offs – follow this before ending the season back on home
soil against the team that beat them last week, Wrexham. Two wins and a draw
from these four games could even be enough depending on goal difference –
which currently stands at plus 37 for both teams.

But with Kidderminster having to travel to Wrexham next Saturday, it is not
a foregone conclusion they will win away and also beat Stockport at home on
the last day of the season. Victory over Macclesfield will be Cox’s first
aim and that would send them top of the League – still with one game in
hand. Cox said: “Kiddy are still in the driving seat as they’re still top.
We’ve achieved nothing yet, but hopefully we can win our midweek game and
start to turn the screw.”

FURNESS FOOTBALL PERFORMANCE CENTRE (FFPC) FIXTURES
Thanks to Dan Myles

Tuesday 2 April        Morecambe U11 3 FFPC U11 7
Thursday 4 April        FFPC U15 2 Morecambe U15 4
Wednesday 10 April    FFPC U13 v Morecambe U13, Holker Street, 6.30pm
Wednesday 17 April    FFPC U14 v Morecambe U14, Holker Street, 6.30pm
Wednesday 24 April    FFPC U12 v Morecambe U12, Holker Street, 6.30pm
Wednesday 1 May        Morecambe U16 v FFPC U16, Globe Arena, 6pm

BLUE SQUARE BET PREMIER
Tuesday 9 April: Alfreton Town v Barrow, Dartford v Grimsby Town, Forest
Green Rovers v Hereford United, Gateshead v Nuneaton Town, Hyde FC v
Ebbsfleet United, Luton Town v Lincoln City, Mansfield Town v Macclesfield
Town, Newport County v Braintree Town, Wrexham v Cambridge United.
Thursday 11 April: Alfreton Town v Tamworth, Dartford v Braintree Town,
Newport County v Macclesfield Town.
Friday 12 April: Luton Town v Grimsby Town, 7.45pm (live on Premier Sports).
Saturday 13 April: Braintree Town v Mansfield Town, Cambridge United v
Barrow, Ebbsfleet United v AFC Telford United, Forest Green Rovers v
Southport, Hereford United v Gateshead, Lincoln City v Tamworth, Newport
County v Alfreton Town, Nuneaton Town v Hyde FC, Stockport County v
Dartford, Woking v Macclesfield Town, Wrexham v Kidderminster Harriers
(5.15pm – live on Premier Sports).
Tuesday 16 April: Ebbsfleet United v Tamworth, Forest Green Rovers v
Dartford, Gateshead v Stockport County, Hereford United v Mansfield Town,
Luton Town v Newport County (live on Premier Sports), Woking v Grimsby Town,
Wrexham v Braintree Town.
Thursday 18 April: Luton Town v Ebbsfleet United.
Saturday 20 April: AFC Telford United v Hereford United, Alfreton Town v
Forest Green Rovers, Barrow v Braintree Town, Dartford v Nuneaton Town,
Gateshead v Ebbsfleet United, Grimsby Town v Newport County, Hyde FC v
Lincoln City, Kidderminster Harriers v Stockport County, Macclesfield Town v
Cambridge United, Mansfield Town v Wrexham, Southport v Luton Town, Tamworth
v Woking (all games kick-off at 5.15pm).

BARROW’S RESULTS AND FIXTURES DURING APRIL
Monday 1 April    Barrow 1 Hyde FC 1
Wednesday 3 April    Barrow 1 Ebbsfleet United 1
Saturday 6 April    Barrow 0 Mansfield Town 4
Tuesday 9 April    Alfreton Town v Barrow
Saturday 13 April    Cambridge United v Barrow
Saturday 20 April    Barrow v Braintree Town

FAN POWER IS ALIVE AND KICKING – JUST ASK CHESTER FC
From http://footballblog.co.uk

Saturday 6 April saw one of the most studied football turnarounds completed
in record time and I for one was delighted to see Chester FC “return” to the
Conference just three years after going out of business. Cast your mind back
to March 2010, Chester City, as was, were in the Conference, unable to
complete fixtures, fans were boycotting games which in my opinion is the
death knell for start.! At the same time, the club were financially wrecked
with players going on strike and the future looked non-existent. It was a
difficult time for a club that had realistically been struggling for 20
years since they left their Sealand Road ground, then had to play for two
seasons at Macclesfield Town’s Moss Rose ground, a 70-mile round-trip as the
crow flies. Yo-yoing between the Football League and Conference did not do
them too many favours, as perhaps people expected too much from a club and
read too much into their potential at a time when they should have
consolidated and built on what they had.

The club went out of business and had to start from scratch, a bunch of
die-hard supporters refused to let the game die in the town and hastily got
a collective of supporters, professionals, businessmen and ex-players alike
to get a team name registered and raise funds to get a club restarted again
but without the baggage of its previous regime. The club successfully
applied to the Evo-Stik League and was admitted to Step four, the Evo-Stik
League Division One North, featuring sides such as Lancaster City, Cammell
Laird, Clitheroe and others.

In a way they were lucky to get admitted to such a high level as most new
clubs would have to apply at Step six or lower, just as Wimbledon, Maidstone
and Aldershot did. They secured the lease of the former club’s ground, The
Deva Stadium and backed by a tremendous amount of goodwill and support the
club gained three successive titles.

The game this weekend which saw Chester win 1-0 at home against Boston at
the Deva Stadium was watched by 3685 people, higher than several League Two
home games that took place on the same day and shows what potential they
will bring to the Conference Premier. A total of 33 wins and an unbeaten run
of 30 games shows that Neil Young’s team will not be any pushovers either.
Whoever takes on the sponsorship of the Conference levels of football will
surely be rubbing their hands at the prospect of a Conference Premier that
looks just as strong, if not stronger than its League Two counterpart. The
progress through the Leagues was swift but effective, yes they swept all
before them, but they re-learned their trade and have made friends
throughout the non-League pyramid, not to mention boosting the coffers of
many clubs with much-needed away gate revenue. Last season when I was at
Marine FC, Chester fans came to the game at the Arriva Stadium, they were
respectful to the level of football that they were at, knew their football
and contributed to the club’s Floodlight fund collection and that effect was
probably similar at lots of clubs at that level.

For me though, the “return” of Chester to a high level of football shows a
lot more than a club being able to steamroller through Divisions on a
momentum of support and results, it shows eternal hope to fans of many clubs
who are struggling or out of touch, or just living on borrowed time. It
shows that however much a business or owner can get their hands into a club,
the power of a club’s support can ultimately decide whether a club lives or
dies. It provides credence to the belief that fan power still exists and
that whatever situation a club finds itself in, in this modern age of
football there is always hope. I’m not for one minute saying that fans of
clubs in severe trouble should start AFC clubs or abandon their own to
re-start for the sake of re-starting but it does show that fans of clubs
like Darlington 1883, Scarborough Athletic, AFC Halifax Town and so on are
not joking when they say that they will be back. Chester provide a prime
example of what a well run fan orientated and operated club can achieve.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT
By Ash Hoskin, Barrow AFC assistant-manager, from the Barrow v Mansfield
Town programme

Games don’t come any bigger than this afternoon’s match. Mansfield are
flying and have their sights on the Conference title and a place back in the
Football League. For us it is all about survival at this level.

We definitely owe them one for what happened at their place. Looking at
their match programme, they are strong from 1 to 30 and could select a
couple of very good sides. But the good thing is we tend to do better
against teams at the top of the table. Our great fans will be behind us and
we have got to put a shift in. The one thing me and Dave won’t put up with
is the lack of desire that we showed in the first half against Ebbsfleet on
Wednesday. We got bullied because they were a big team and we couldn’t cope
with the physical side of it. Without the great saves from Danny Hurst we
would have been thumped. But what hurt me and Dave most was that lack of
desire. The Ebbsfleet players had been on a bus for ten hours yet came out
of the traps flying. They wanted it more than us and when that happens in
football you have got to start asking questions.

Our supporters turned out again and I thought it was a great crowd
considering we had had a home game two days earlier. They were patient
waiting for the delayed kick-off – and then we put up that showing in the
first half. Totally unacceptable. I am not a shouter or a screamer, I like
to be more constructive over what we are not doing and what we can do to
make ourselves better. So at half-time I spoke about desire. If you get
beaten by a better footballing team, you have to hold your hand up. But it
is unacceptable when your failing is because of desire. We obviously felt
down in the dressing-room but we changed our shape and got amongst them. I
was pleased with the reaction. We came to grips with things and played a
higher tempo.

Danny made a couple more good saves but Boyesy had two one-on-ones and the
keeper saved one and in the other his first touch let him down. On top of
that there were two or three scrambles in their box and at the end of the
day we could have finished with a win. Against Hyde I thought it was two
points dropped but the way the game with Ebbsfleet panned out, I thought it
was a point gained considering Danny made save after save. So we kick on
from here. Our fate is still in our hands and if we all pull together we
will finish clear of that bottom four. So some more of your great support
and encouragement please. Stick with us. and keep the faith.

AROUND THE PREMIER
By Phil Yelland, from the Barrow v Stockport County programme

There is plenty of news to catch up on from around the League since our last
home game.

AFC Telford: It’s all change in the hot-seat again at AFC Telford, manager
Mark Cooper resigned after just thirty days in charge to take up a post as
assistant to newly-appointed Swindon Town boss Kevin McDonald in League One.
Cooper’s tenure had not seen a win for the Shropshire side but performances
had improved. He will be replaced by former caretaker Graham Hyde, who is
likely to take charge for the rest of the season. Cooper’s last move when
with the club was to sign former Kilmarnock defender Simon Ford on loan from
title-chasing Grimsby Town for the rest of the season, Ford joined the
Mariners last summer from Chesterfield but has not appeared in the first
team since.

Alfreton Town: Boss Nicky Law faced a keeper crisis last month when
first-choice Phil Barnes picked up an injury. Law has therefore brought in
teenager Jordan Pickford on loan from Premiership Sunderland. Pickford has
performed at this level before as last season he spent a spell on loan with
Darlington and they fought for their very existence.

Braintree Town: The latest addition to Alan Devonshire’s squad is teenage
midfielder Steve Smith who has signed initially on a one-month loan from
Leicester City of the Championship. Smith can also play in central defence.

Cambridge United: It seems as if England “C” international goalkeeper
Jonathon Hedge’s time at Cambridge is coming to a close as manager Richard
Money has made it clear he is looking for either a new number one or cover
for Craig Ross. Hedge seems to have lost form and it seemed as if the
problem had been solved temporarily with a deal to bring in young Finnish
keeper Jesse Joronen from Premiership Fulham but that deal fell through when
the Finn indicated he was not prepared to start life with the U’s on the
bench. Striker Michael Gash has been loaned to title-chasing Kidderminster
Harriers until, the end of the season – that might yet become a permanent
move and as a result, Harriers striker Nathan Blissett, who signed a new
deal not long ago, has joined United on a one-month loan.

Forest Green Rovers: It’s a case of one in and one out for Rovers as they
continue their push for the play-offs. It’s a case of an old face returning
in experienced midfielder Lee Fowler after an absence of just over twelve
months. He left the club to join Fleetwood Town in their quest for the Blue
Square Bet Premier title last season and in the summer, he joined Doncaster
Rovers in League One. He has been loaned to Rovers for the rest of the
season. One player who will not feature again this season is striker Rhys
Styce. He has got seriously damaged knee ligaments and may be ruled out of
action for up to nine months.

Ebbsfleet United: The off-the-field challenges for the Kent side seem to be
continuing as membership of the club has dropped below 1000 for the first
time – when the ambitious fan-ownership scheme commenced several years ago,
they attracted 32,000 members. The challenge is how the club goes forward
with reports suggesting that there seem to be few potential investors and a
possible sale to the Supporters Trust at the stage of impasse.

Gateshead: It is going to be a very tough end to the season after the
decision was reached that their home ground the International Stadium would
not be fit to play again this season. They had arranged to play a number of
home games at the ground of Hartlepool United of League One, but last
Tuesday’s home game against Kidderminster Harriers was played at York, and
on Saturday, they entertained Hyde at Blyth Spartans Croft Park ground.
Whilst other games are scheduled for Hartlepool, there are three more games
which will need to be played elsewhere. Gateshead Thunder Rugby League club
are also affected by the pitch problems and they are to play their first
home game of the season at Hull KR’s ground!

Grimsby Town: The only change to the Mariners squad in recent weeks has seen
the departure of experienced defender Simon Ford. Ford had played virtually
no part since joining the club last summer and he has now joined AFC Telford
on loan for the rest of the season.

Hereford United: Boss Martin Foyle has added one player to his squad at this
stage by bringing in versatile Joe Connor on loan from League rivals
Stockport County. Connor returned to Stockport last season after a spell in
the USA and can play in central defence or attack.

Hyde FC: Tigers boss Scott McNiven is continuing to work with his young
squad to try to find consistency. His first new player is also a return of
an old face. Yong striker Danny Broadbent was allowed to join Mossley of the
Evo-Stik First Division North in late January but one-month on, he has left
Seel Park and returned to Ewen Fields. He scored on his return as a
substitute in the 5-1 defeat at Alfreton Town. The second signing is
experienced midfielder Jamie Milligan, who has spent most of his career with
Fleetwood Town, but has not been in the first-team picture recently. He
joins on loan from the League Two side for one month.

Kidderminster Harriers: Just one change to the Harriers squad in recent
weeks sees the arrival of the experienced striker Michael Gash who has also
played as this level for Ebbsfleet United and York City joining on loan for
the rest of the season. At the same time, young Harriers striker Nathan
Blissett has moved to Cambridge United on loan for a month to boost their
squad.

Lincoln City: The Red Imps battle for survival is to be spear-headed by
former Macclesfield Town boss Gary Simpson who has been appointed for the
rest of the season. Simpson has no experience at this level, but when he was
with Macclesfield, he was use to scrapping it out for Football League
survival. Simpson also had a spell as assistant manager of City in their
Football League days when the late Keith Alexander was their manager. One
player he will have available to help him is midfielder Jake Jones whose
loan from League One side Walsall has been extended for the rest of the
season. Simpson’s first signing for the club was experienced defender Nat
Brown who previously had a loan spell at Sincil Bank. He joins on loan again
from Macclesfield Town for the rest of the season. He has been joined at
Sincil Bank by Macclesfield colleague midfielder Tony Diagne who will also
be on loan for the rest of the season. One player leaving the Red Imps is
former skipper Gary Mills. He has been released having not appeared in the
first team this year due to injury.

Luton Town: If the departure of Paul Buckle as manager of the Hatters was a
surprise, the appointment of long-serving Dagenham & Redbridge manager John
Still to take over on a two-and-a-half year deal was even more of a
surprise. Still had been in charge at Victoria Road for over nine years and
having led the Daggers into the Football League, he managed to keep them
there on minimal resources and took them to League One for a season. Still’s
immediate aim looks to be to get Town into the play-offs and to do that they
will need to start scoring goals again. That may explain his first signing
as he has brought in the highly-rated twenty-two year-old striker Alex Wall
on loan from Maidenhead United of Blue Square Bet South on loan for the rest
of the season with a view to a permanent move. Teenage defender Jake Goodman
has also joined the club for the rest of the season on loan from Millwall of
the Championship.

Macclesfield Town: Boss Steve King has allowed one player to leave the club
on loan. Skipper Nat Brown who has been a regular all season has been
allowed to join one of his former clubs Lincoln City on loan for the rest of
the season. In addition, midfielder Tony Diagne has also joined Lincoln City
on loan for the rest of the campaign.

Newport County: The main news from the Welsh side comes from off the field.
The club have agreed a ten-year lease with landlords Newport Gwent Dragons
Rugby club which will allow them to play their home games at Rodney Parade
for the next ten years. I think that deal would allow then to enter the
Football League if they were to win promotion. The arrangement this season
has clearly worked well and better than their previous home ground Spytty
Park where waterlogging was a problem.

Nuneaton Town: Boss Kevin Wilkin has taken steps to stabilise his squad for
the rest of the season by extending the loan deals of two young players from
League One neighbours Coventry City for the rest of the season. They are
twenty year-old goalkeeper Lee Burge who was so impressive against us last
month and defender Aaron Phillips. Meanwhile striker Kyle Patterson has
returned from a loan spell with Blue Square Bet North side Worcester City
and has now been loaned to Hednesford Town who are chasing promotion from
the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division.

Southport: There is a single new face in Liam Watson’s Southport squad but
the player has plenty of experience. Signing on non-contract terms is
midfielder Sean Clancy who was a member of the title-winning Fleetwood Town
squad last season. Over the summer Clancy joined Chester in Blue Square Bet
North, but having fallen out of favour, he was released before Christmas and
joined Kidderminster Harriers where his short spell included being sent-off
after coming on as a substitute.

Stockport County: There are two new young faces in the Stockport County
squad for the run in to the end of the season. The first is twenty year-old
midfielder Greg McDermott, son of former Liverpool, Newcastle United and
England midfielder Terry. He joins having previously been on the books of
Newcastle United. Another midfielder, Paul Marshall also joins following his
release by FC Halifax Town of Blue Square Bet North. At the same time,
former club skipper Joe Connor has been allowed to join League rivals
Hereford United on loan for a month.

Woking: Manager Gary Hill has added one new face to his squad with striker
Adam Francis joining on loan from Queen’s Park Rangers of the Premiership
for the rest of the season. Young Francis is the son of former England and
QPR star Gerry who recently completed a one-month loan with Staines in Blue
Square Bet South.

Wrexham: The Red Dragons player/boss Andy Morrell has signed two
battle-hardened veterans to help his squad for the League run-in and FA
Trophy Final. The first is thirty-seven year-old striker Dele Adebola who
has featured down the years for something like twenty senior clubs. Adebola
joined Rochdale of League Two last summer but his game time has been
restricted by the departure of manager John Coleman and the return to the
club as boss of Keith Hill. He will stay on loan for the rest of the season.
Defender Dave Artell was injured earlier in the season playing for
Northampton Town in League Two. He still lives near Wrexham and it has been
agreed he will join the Welsh side for a month, initially to gain fitness
and game time.

Barrow AFC, Wilkie Road, Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, LA14 5UW. Telephone and
fax +44 (0)1229 823061, Mailto:office@barrowafc.com
Official Barrow AFC home page: http://www.barrowafc.com
Barrow AFC unofficial home page: http://www.barrowafc.net
Barrow AFC statistics page: http://www.barrowfc.com
Another Barrow AFC site: http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/furnessnet/index.htm
Barrow AFC blog: http://ascarisbrick.blogspot.com/
Bluebird Development Fund fundraising site: http://www.buy.at/bdf
BDF section on the club’s website: http://www.barrowafc.com/newsite/club/bdf.php
BDF contact email address: Mailto:bdfbafc@googlemail.com
National Supporters’ Club contact email address:
Mailto:daveleitch@btinternet.com
Furness Cavaliers: http://www.furnesscavaliers.co.uk
Askam United: http://www.askam-united.co.uk
Dalton United: http://www.daltonunited.co.uk
Furness Premier Football League:
http://football.mitoo.co.uk/News.cfm?LeagueCode=FPFL2010
The Evening Mail’s web site: http://www.nwemail.co.uk
The National Football Archive: http://www.enfa.co.uk
Lancashire Football Association: http://www.lancashirefa.com
Official Conference site: http://www.footballconference.co.uk
Conference grounds: http://www.footballgroundguide.com/conference/index.htm
Walney Island: http://www.walney-island.com and http://www.walneyisle.co.uk
Barrow Council’s events website: http://tinyurl.com/cqqxr6o
Official Barrow Rugby League site: http://www.barrowrlfc.com
BBC Radio Cumbria: North, east and west 95.6FM, south 96.1FM, Whitehaven and
Keswick 104.1FM, Kendal 95.2FM and Windermere 104.2 FM. AM; north 756 AM,
south 837 AM and west 1458 AM:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cumbria/sport/barrow_afc/index.shtml
Live broadcast: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/bbc_radio_cumbria/
Barrow Sports Council: http://www.barrowsportscouncil.org.uk
Links to the above and other Barrow and Furness related sites:
http://www.holker.st/linkpage.htm
The weather in Barrow: http://news.bbc.co.uk/weather/forecast/2070

BSP Basement Battle – 9 Contenders 53 Points Needed

Nine bid for BSP salvation with Stockport County, Southport, Gateshead, Barrow, Nuneaton, Hyde, Alfreton, Tamworth and the Imps scrambling for seven lifeboats. Realistically two look set to join, all but down, Ebbsfleet and relegated Telford, with the next 8 days seeing some huge head-to-head confrontations.  Incredibly, a herculean task of 53 points could be needed for safety this season.

Thank you for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs 

logo Lincoln City F.C. badge.png SouthportFC.png Gateshead FC LogoBarrow AFC Logo No Background.png

Badge of Nuneaton Town Alfreton Town FC.svg Hyde Logo.png Logo

The Road Ahead

This week is simply massive. Tuesday sees three head to heads involving the 9 plus the Imps game at Luton.  A win for Barrow (at Alfreton) and Nuneaton (at Gateshead) would put real pressure on the Imps (at Luton) and Stockport would return to the drop zone.  Poor Alfreton play Tamworth on Thursday in another basement battle that will see the loser sweating going into the weekend. Stockport County will have to wait until Saturday to make amends, with their Tuesday catch-up game next week at Gateshead.

Saturday sees Ebbsfleet play Telford in a game they could have done with 2 weeks ago. The Imps play Tamworth, who could be tired from Thursdays trip to Alfreton, in a game that could yet be pivotal for both clubs futures.  Alfreton could have done without the trip to play-off bound Newport. Nuneaton face Hyde in another key battle. Stockport will be well backed as they seek to beat Dartford. Southport will not be relishing the trip to big-spending Forest Green.

Tuesdays Games
Alfreton Town v Barrow 19:45
Dartford v Grimsby 19:45
Forest Green v Hereford 19:45
Gateshead v Nuneaton 19:45
Hyde v Ebbsfleet United 19:45
Luton v Lincoln City 19:45
Mansfield v Macclesfield 19:45
Newport County v Braintree Town 19:45
Wrexham v Cambridge Utd 19:45
Thursdays Games
Alfreton Town v Tamworth 19:45
Dartford v Braintree Town 19:45
Newport County v Macclesfield 19:45
Saturday 13 Apr
Braintree Town v Mansfield 15:00
Cambridge Utd v Barrow 15:00
Ebbsfleet United v AFC Telford 15:00
Forest Green v Southport 15:00
Hereford v Gateshead 15:00
Lincoln City v Tamworth 15:00
Newport County v Alfreton Town 15:00
Nuneaton v Hyde 15:00
Stockport County v Dartford 15:00
Tuesday 16 Apr
Ebbsfleet United v Tamworth 19:45
Forest Green v Dartford 19:45
Gateshead v Stockport County 19:45

BSP Standings 6/4/13

POS TEAM P W D L F A GD PTS
1 up 12 Kidderminster Harriers 44 26 9 9 76 39 37 87
12 down 10 Luton Town 41 15 11 15 59 58 1 56
13 down 3 Cambridge United 43 14 14 15 65 65 0 56
14 down 14 Hyde FC 43 15 7 21 60 67 -7 52
15 down 15 Alfreton Town 42 13 12 17 60 71 -11 51
16 No Change Tamworth 42 14 9 19 51 62 -11 51
17 down 17 Southport 44 13 12 19 70 83 -13 51
18 up 2 Gateshead 42 12 14 16 54 57 -3 50
19 down 19 Lincoln City 43 13 11 19 59 68 -9 50
20 down 20 Stockport County 43 13 10 20 56 70 -14 49
21 down 21 Nuneaton 43 11 15 17 49 62 -13 48
22 down 7 Barrow 43 11 13 19 44 76 -32 46
23 down 1 Ebbsfleet United 41 8 14 19 53 80 -27 38
24 down 24 AFC Telford United 44 5 17 22 49 74 -25 32

BSP 3 Up 3 Down Petition – Have you signed Yet?

For 3 Up 3 Down Luton, Grimsby, Wrexham, Stockport, Mansfield, Newport, Cambridge, Kidderminster, Hereford, Dartford, Lincoln, Macclesfield, Nuneaton, Telford, Woking, Southport, Tamworth, Ebbsfleet, Alfreton, Forest Green, Hyde, Barrow, Braintree and Gateshead fans must unite and act now.   Please sign our petition  here and copy and paste this article onto your forums – even ask your clubs to put it on their official sites. This is a call to arms, a fair and just fight for the right, nothing more nothing less from one fan to every other (and League fans too, if you have a sporting sense of right and wrong.

Massive thanks to  News Now, Red Passion, Luton Outlaws, Bulls News, BAFC + HSN, Stagsnet and Harriers on-line, for already coming on board.  

To cut to the chase

Ahead of a scheduled Football League full vote this summer, this is Football’s chance to be seen as a shining light in an unfair world – to be fair and willing to share. Give that right to fans and teams who dare to dream. You, the fans and the Football League, are the gateway and the custodians of the people’s game in so many ways. Please, surely there has to be at least one more set of golden keys?

Urge your members to give the Conference one more promotion spot. Is it so much so ask with the new TV deal just about to shower your members with even more cash? We are not asking for the cash handout, just give our teams the right to play our way onto the table.

BSP fans, believe we can do this together and rest assured The Football League will get an email every time someone signs.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

Akin to the economy, we are starting to become stale and starved down here, through a two up two down system that blights – is that fair in the peoples game?  No its Feudalism football, an increasing reflection of life designed to stop the dream, kill the passion. Once again the enterprise dies. That may be shaping up to be Modern Britain but surely Football can be seen to send out the right message? We are not asking for your money just the right for 3 teams to join the party each season. Let us increase the natural flow of money through the game for the benefit of all, especially grass roots football. Its like quantitative easing  but without the inflation, it wont affect the nation because those who aspire can achieve higher.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

The more noise we fans make the more they will listen. The football League vote is laden towards the top and it will cost them nothing. 5 Leagues plus two regional feeders could see dreams fulfilled, enticing investors into the game.

Let us force the League and the Blue Square Premier around a table and do what is fair.  In the current climate the last thing we need is to perpetuate ‘Feudalism Football’ – because that is what it is when the few shut out the millions who try to play the game on every park and pitch throughout the land.

Please sign our petition  here

3 up 3 down from League 2 to the BSP would allow passage up and down the pyramid, which could put more of an incentive into lads wanting to play the game now we are in a depression with £400 a week and the chance of getting spotted even though you slipped through the net at 16.

A more affordable football experience, the chance to have a friendly beer with other fans.  That extra place, or two would really fire the imagination fuelled by ambition and local pride and allow people to dare to dream without the fear of failure. 2 up 2 down is not fair is it Mr Clegg and it is most certainly not  British.  Everybody deserves a second chance. 3 up and 3 down will give us a sporting one at least.

BSP 3 Up 3 Down Petition – 985 & rising

For 3 Up 3 Down Luton, Grimsby, Wrexham, Stockport, Mansfield, Newport, Cambridge, Kidderminster, Hereford, Dartford, Lincoln, Macclesfield, Nuneaton, Telford, Woking, Southport, Tamworth, Ebbsfleet, Alfreton, Forest Green, Hyde, Barrow, Braintree and Gateshead fans need to act now.   Please sign our petition  here and copy and paste this article onto your forums – even ask your clubs to put it on their official sites. This is a call to arms, a fair and just fight for the right, nothing more nothing less from one fan to every other (and League fans too, if you have a sporting sense of right and wrong.

Massive thanks to  News Now for their RSS assistance as ever, without them my blog would be a gin palace without a road….  I Neil Gentleman-Hobbs am proud to write about the Imps & BSP either side of the realities of minimum wage working and time demands.

Ahead of a scheduled Football League full vote this summer, this is Football’s chance to be seen as a shining light in an unfair world – to be fair and willing to share. Give that right to fans and teams who dare to dream. You, the fans and the Football League, are the gateway and the custodians of the people’s game in so many ways. Please, surely there has to be at least one more set of golden keys?

Urge your members to give the Conference one more promotion spot. Is it so much so ask with the new TV deal just about to shower your members with even more cash? We are not asking for the cash handout, just give our teams the right to play our way onto the table.

BSP fans, believe we can do this together and rest assured The Football League will get an email every time someone signs.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

Akin to the economy, we are starting to become stale and starved down here, through a two up two down system that blights – is that fair in the peoples game?  No its Feudalism football, an increasing reflection of life designed to stop the dream, kill the passion. Once again the enterprise dies. That may be shaping up to be Modern Britain but surely Football can be seen to send out the right message? We are not asking for your money just the right for 3 teams to join the party each season. Let us increase the natural flow of money through the game for the benefit of all, especially grass roots football. Its like quantitative easing  but without the inflation, it wont affect the nation because those who aspire can achieve higher.

*****

Please sign our petition  here

*****

The more noise we fans make the more they will listen. The football League vote is laden towards the top and it will cost them nothing. 5 Leagues plus two regional feeders could see dreams fulfilled, enticing investors into the game.

Let us force the League and the Blue Square Premier around a table and do what is fair.  In the current climate the last thing we need is to perpetuate ‘Feudalism Football’ – because that is what it is when the few shut out the millions who try to play the game on every park and pitch throughout the land.

Please sign our petition  here

3 up 3 down from League 2 to the BSP would allow passage up and down the pyramid, which could put more of an incentive into lads wanting to play the game now we are in a depression with £400 a week and the chance of getting spotted even though you slipped through the net at 16.

A more affordable football experience, the chance to have a friendly beer with other fans.  That extra place, or two would really fire the imagination fuelled by ambition and local pride and allow people to dare to dream without the fear of failure. 2 up 2 down is not fair is it Mr Clegg and it is most certainly not  British.  Everybody deserves a second chance. 3 up and 3 down will give us a sporting one at least.

Can 500 Imps Witness 3rd Win In 3

‘Tis on a knife edge then, just five points divide Hyde, Tamworth, Alfreton, Gateshead, Lincoln, Southport, Stockport, Nuneaton and Barrow. Two wins separate 14th and 22nd in the most exciting BSP basement battle ever.  The Imps have found form at just the right time,  but all could be undone with everyone capable of beating anyone in this League.

A warm welcome to Alfreton fans visiting the site for the first time, thank you for reading the Form of the Foe courtesy of Neil Gentleman-Hobbs 

Alfreton Town FC.svgLincoln City F.C. badge.png

Saturday  30th March K.O 3pm

GROUND GUIDE

Away Fans Prices Adults £18 Cons £11 U16 £11 Alma Terrace (Cap 1200)

After the heroics of Tuesday night our Imp heroes  go into this weekend knowing both games to be pivotal, given our tough April.  Confidence is high however and, this can be another big step in the right direction with another fantastic following of 4-500 set to travel.

Alfreton Town FC.svg

The Reds sit 16th, by virtue of goal difference, just behind Tamworth and in-form Hyde, whilst the Imps sit 18th.

Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 up 12 Kidderminster Harriers 41 23 9 9 69 37 32 78
14 down 14 Hyde FC 40 14 6 20 56 64 -8 48
15 up 1 Tamworth 39 13 9 17 47 55 -8 48
16 down 16 Alfreton Town 39 12 12 15 56 66 -10 48
17 up 3 Gateshead 39 11 13 15 47 50 -3 46
18 down 18 Lincoln City 40 12 10 18 57 65 -8 46
19 down 19 Southport 40 12 10 18 63 76 -13 46
20 down 20 Stockport County 40 12 9 19 51 65 -14 45
21 down 21 Nuneaton 40 10 14 16 44 59 -15 44
22 down 7 Barrow 39 11 10 18 42 70 -28 43
23 down 1 Ebbsfleet United 37 8 12 17 50 73 -23 36
24 down 24 AFC Telford United 41 5 16 20 49 69 -20 31

Alfreton Town FC.svg

Likely Team & scheme

Law favours 4-4-2

***

13 Pickford

2 Law 16 Rose 5 Quinn 3 Franklin

7 Brown 10 Bradley 8 Soares 18 Hewitt

21 Tomlinson 9 Clayton

Alfreton Town FC.svg  Alfreton’s Form

Alfreton’s home record is the 22nd worst in the division, although that has improved to 6th on current form.   Then again overall the Reds are the 6th most in-form side in the BSP, despite 3 postponements in a busy March that could still see them sucked into a dogfight if they suffer a second defeat on the trot. Not as unlikely as it seems given the form of the sides around the relegation trapdoor. It’s so tight an agents bank notes would blink if they were lucky enough to see sunlight. 

Recent Results (last game 1st) Results breakdown
Braintree 2                    
Alfreton 1   G W D L F A GD Pts Position
Alfreton 3 Home  18 6 5 7 30 33 -3 23 20
Gateshead 2 Away  21 6 7 8 26 33 -7 26 7
Alfreton 3 Overall  39 12 12 15 56 66 -10 48 16
Ebbsfleet 0 The last 5′s
Tamworth 1   G W D L F A GD Pts Position
Alfreton 1 Overall 5 2 2 1 9 6 3 8 6
Wrexham 1 Home  5 2 2 1 12 8 4 9 6
Alfreton 1 Away 5 0 2 3 4 8 -4 2 21
Alfreton 5 Form By Month
Hyde 1   G W D L F A GD Pts Position
Kidderminster 3 January 5 1 2 2 7 10 -3 5 14
Alfreton 1 February 7 2 0 5 12 14 -2 6 15
March 5 2 1 9 6 3 8 12

 Alfreton Town FC.svg Ker-ching £££

Highest Home Gate 1537 Mansfield
Lowest home gate 459 Ebbsfleet
Average Home Gate 726  
Total Turnstile Clicks 12,346  

Alfreton Town FC.svg Heroes & Villains

       
Heroes Goals   Assists
Clayton 14 Law 9
Tomlinson 11 Arnold 9
Bradley 4 Bradley 4
3 lads on 3 Clayton 4
       
Villains Yellows   Reds
Tomlinson 8 Streete 2
Kempson 8 Denton
Franks 8    
Streete 7    
       
YELLOWS 66  REDS 3

Alfreton Town FC.svgKeeper corner – Jordan Pickford

The 19 year-old has grasped the his first team opportunity and made the position his own for the last 6 games.  A good away following could unsettle the tall yet sleight lad who has one clean sheet to his name but relatively little experience.

Games Sub Conceded Saves Mins Played Clean sheets Mins per goal Yc’s Rc’s
6 0 7 29 540 1 77 0 0