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TAMWORTH
Sat. 29.4.2017
Away 3pm

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CURRENT NEWS IN FULL



ALTY HEADLINES
  • 29 April 2017: ALTRINCHAM FC APPOINT PHIL PARKINSON...More
  • 29 April 2017: TAMWORTH v ALTRINCHAM: LIVE MATCH COVERAGE...More
  • 29 April 2017: FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL...More

OTHER HEADLINES

  • 29 April 2017: NEXT OPPONENTS: TAMWORTH...More
  • 29 April 2017: VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH FIXTURES...More
  • 29 April 2017: EVO-STIK NPL NEWS...More

29 April 2017

BEST WISHES TO TONY SANDERS

The Club has learnt that Tony Sanders, who is arguably Altrincham's most successful manager of all-time has sadly suffered a heart attack. This has necessitated a triple-bypass operation and Tony is now recovering in hospital on Merseyside. All at Altrincham FC wish him a full and speedy recovery.

Under his management, (from 1976-84), Altrincham established themselves as FA Cup giantkillers and he also led the club to become twice winners of the top-flight division of non-League football.

ALTRINCHAM FC APPOINT PHIL PARKINSON AS MANAGER

It was announced on Friday (28th) that "Altrincham Football Club have appointed Phil Parkinson as the man to turn the club’s footballing fortunes around, following successive relegations that have seen the club fall from the Vanarama National League to the Evo-Stik League Premier Division.

The thirty-six year-old Sports Science Lecturer has been in charge at Nantwich for just over two years, achieving a consistent track record of improvement throughout his tenure. The Dabbers were in the relegation zone of the Evo-Stik League Premier Division when he took over in February 2015, but went on to finish fifteenth, with a fifty per cent win ratio in the remaining two and a half months of that season. In Parkinson’s first full campaign in charge, Nantwich finished in eighth position, whilst grabbing national attention with an FA Trophy run to the semi-finals. Having progressed through seven rounds, including victories over Salford City, Stockport County, Bradford Park Avenue and Dover Athletic, they were eventually knocked out, over two legs, by FC Halifax Town, who went on to lift the Trophy at Wembley.

The campaign that has just ended saw Nantwich qualify for the play-offs, where they were beaten 2-0 in the semi-finals by a very impressive and experienced Spennymoor Town side on Tuesday night.

Parkinson’s playing career started as a junior at Crewe Alexandra, followed by a spell as a YTS at Reading, before spending a year at Port Vale. He went on to make two hundred appearances for Nantwich as a player, where he captained the team that won the FA Vase in 2006, as well as leading the Dabbers to promotion from the North West Counties League and UniBond League First Division.

Parkinson brings the Nantwich coach and former Macclesfield Town and Crewe Alexandra midfielder, Neil Sorvel, with him to the J.Davidson Stadium. Sorvel is also a work colleague of Parkinson.

The board were very pleased with both the number and calibre of applicants for the job and from a shortlist of five interviewees, we were unanimous in coming to the conclusion that Phil Parkinson is the right man to turn things around at Altrincham, following the massive blow of relegation in each of the last two seasons. This has been one of the most important decisions we have ever had to make and our supporters should know we have not taken it lightly. We feel that we are appointing a manager with a proven track record of improvement over a statistically significant period, both in terms of results and player development.

The Robins' new supremo is likely to take a watching brief as his new team play their final game of the season at Tamworth on Saturday and he will then set his sights on putting together a squad capable of gaining promotion from the Evo-Stik League Premier Division back to the Vanarama National League North at the first attempt".

TAMWORTH v ALTRINCHAM: LIVE MATCH COVERAGE

You can follow this fixture via this website's minute by minute text updates by clicking on the icon below. Alternatively, Radio Robins' coverage of the game is outlined below as well.

updatesPC updatesMOBI radiorobins

Brian Flynn announces that "Radio Robins, sponsored by Ashley Mowers Garden Machinery, is providing full live commentary of Saturday's game.

The match commentary sponsor is 'Ivy Feckett is Looking for Love: A Birmingham Romance' by award-winning novelist Jay Spencer Green.'

The commentators are Mark Simpson and Brian Flynn and the match summariser is John Edwards.

Coverage starts at 2.55pm and you can listen to Radio Robins on the internet at http://www.radiorobins.com/".

NEXT OPPONENTS: TAMWORTH

Altrincham's final game this season takes them to Tamworth. Altrincham last visited The Lamb on 18 January 2011 for a game under floodlights in the Blue Square Bet Premier (Football Conference). Playing in all white, Alty's line up was 21. James COATES, 2. James SMITH, 4. Marc JOSEPH, 5. Robbie WILLIAMS, 19. Mark BEESLEY, 6. Shaun DENSMORE, 7. Robbie LAWTON, 8. Damian REEVES, 9. Michael TWISS, 17. Wes BAYNES, 20. Sam HEWSON, Subs: 11. Nicky CLEE, 1. Stuart COBURN, 15. Ryan BROWN, 16. Anthony DANYLYK, 10. Chris DENHAM.

Damian Reeves headed Alty ahead in the seventh minute, the fifth successive game in which he had scored. But in the second half, Alty defender Marc Joseph was sent off after being provoked by Kyle Perry, who later joined Alty. And then Perry netted a late equalizer for The Lambs. In a parallel with today, Alty were to be relegated at the end of that season.

Above Alty line-up before the game at The Lamb in January 2011.

According to NL Pitchero, "Tamworth have announced that manager Andy Morrell has signed a new contract. The new two-year deal comes into effect immediately, and replaces the manager's existing contract, which was due to expire at the end of this month...

Chairman Bob Andrews said... 'During his time here, there has been clear progress both on and off the field. We are keen to keep moving forwards, and continuity is key at the moment. It was very important that everything was agreed before the end of this season, so we are delighted everything has been signed'.

Morrell added, 'I’m delighted to have signed a new two-year deal. I want to continue and see the benefits of all of the hard work put in by myself and the rest of the staff during my time here so far. Thanks to the chairman’s investment, we now have a fantastic facility. We are equally as proud of our growing youth development structure, which is now a proven pathway for first team football. We have been very close to achieving our aim in the last three seasons, and I strongly believe that with a few adjustments and improvements, the club can become even more successful on and off the pitch'".

FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL

VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH FIXTURES

Sat. 29 April
  • AFC Fylde v Worcester City
  • AFC Telford Utd v Harrogate Town
  • Alfreton Town v Nuneaton Town
  • Brackley Town v Stalybridge Celtic
  • Chorley v FC Halifax Town
  • Curzon Ashton v Boston United
  • FC United of Manchester v Gainsborough Trinity
  • Kidderminster Harriers v Bradford Park Avenue
  • Salford City v Darlington 1883
  • Stockport County v Gloucester City
  • Tamworth v Altrincham

EVO-STIK LEAGUE NEWS

The following matches all take place at 3pm on Saturday 29 April.

Premier Division Promotion Play-Off Final

  • Spennymoor Town v Stourbridge

First Division North Promotion Play-Off Final

  • Farsley Celtic v Ossett Town

First Division South Promotion Play-Off Final

  • Witton Albion v Spalding United

EVO-STIK NORTHERN PREMIER LEAGUE

The Evo-Stik League reports that "Mickleover Sports star Lewis Belgrave has signed a new contract to play in the EVO-STIK Northern Premier League next season only weeks after being named 2017 NPLFA Player of the Year...

In his second year at the club's NPLFA academy, the teenager made history back in October when he stepped up to skipper John McGrath's first team to victory in the Buildbase FA Trophy victory over... Leamington.

Founded with the backing of the Football Association at five pilot clubs in September 2014 to provide career pathways into the football industry, and still the only league wide academy in English football combining sport with education, the NPLFA is expanding to 13 clubs catering to more than 400 students for the 2017-18 season in September.

The NPLFA's tutors and coaches are currently recruiting their third intake of students after recent trials at all 12 NPLFA clubs for ambitious students either leaving school this summer or coming to the end of their first year in college".

VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH NEWS

Confirmation comes from the National League that "Danny Rowe has been voted as Player of the Year for the Vanarama National League North. Votes were cast in mid-April from each North club, with Rowe claiming the prize in convincing style. Rowe, 27, scored twice last week as AFC Fylde were confirmed as champions... with a game to spare. The striker will be presented with the Player of the Year trophy before tomorrow’s final match at home to Worcester City."
28 April 2017

DABBERS' ANNOUNCEMENT

For their part, Nantwich Town announced "that following an approach from fellow Evo-Stik Northern Premier Division side Altrincham, manager Phil Parkinson has decided to take up the vacant position of first team manager with the Robins.

The Robins were recently relegated from the Conference North but, following their decision not to extend the interim spell of Matt Doughty, they have been seeking a replacement as manager. Phil Parkinson was approached by them and has elected to take up their offer to become manager.

Everyone at the club would like to thank Phil for the tireless work he has put in over the two and a half years he has been manager with the Dabbers. He has helped turn the club into a promotion contender in a very short space of time, guiding us to our highest position in eight years, not to mention making the it to the 4th Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, the final of the Cheshire Senior Cup and the semi-finals of the FA Trophy. We wish him all the best in his new role with the Robins".

FOOD & DRINK FESTIVAL GETS UNDER WAY

Above: Altrincham FC official caterer, Richie Bentley prepares his wide range of pizzas for the Food and Drink Festival which started at the J Davidson Stadium on Thursday evening. You can even design your own Margherita!

The Altrincham FC Food and Drink Festival got under way on Thursday evening and runs over the weekend till Monday.

SUPPORTERS' TRANSPORT TO TAMWORTH

TASC will be operating supporters' transport to Altrincham's final game of the season. This is away at Tamworth on Saturday, 29 April (3pm). Details of fares and times are on the Away Travel page. You can book your seat by ringing the Club during weekday office hours on (0161) 928-1045.

GOALLESS DRAW FOR YOUTH TEAM

Altrincham Youth drew 0-0 at home To Chorley on Tuesday evening. Next Sunday they travel to Chester FC for their next league fixture.

NEXT OPPONENTS

Altrincham are away at Tamworth on Saturday. According to the Tamworth Herald, "Tamworth FC boss Andy Morrell says it was vital the Lambs got the 'monkey off their back' after recording an emphatic 4-0 win at Stalybridge Celtic on Saturday. Victory was Tamworth's first on the road in 2017, coming courtesy of a hat-trick from Danny Newton and one from Ben Fox.

'Looking back over the season, that away form is where we have fallen short,' said Morrell. 'We stressed to the lads it was vital we got the monkey off our backs before the end of the season. We didn't want to be going into August with no away win this year. You don't want that kind of thing to be playing on your mind so I was delighted to get the result.'

Morrell felt his side had been impressive in their victory over Stalybridge, who were relegated from the National League North as a result. 'It was a hard pitch but the lads showed a great attitude,' said Morrell. 'They had a right go. It obviously helps to score a couple of early goals but... we defended well when we needed to as well. It was a great win.'

Morrell admitted that striker Newton's hat-trick will again have caught the attention of clubs looking for a new striker over the summer. 'He's not going under the radar is he!?' said Morrell, who expects to sign a new Lambs' deal shortly. 'He was fantastic to be fair. It was the perfect hat-trick. Every time the ball goes into the box at the moment, Danny is threatening to score. He is on fire. He has got 12 goals in ten, or something like that, which is phenomenal.

'He's unlucky that this season Danny Rowe has scored 40 plus goals. In any other year, 28 would put him in line for the Golden Boot'.

Whether Newton remains with the club next season remains to be seen as the striker prepares for Jamie Vardy's V9 Academy. 'We just have to wish him all the best and have our fingers crossed that, if things don't work out in terms of the academy, we can bring him back,' said Morrell".

Meanwhile, "Jack Lane has expressed his desire to remain with Tamworth next season and continue his developing defensive partnership with Luke Jones. Ex-Mansfield Town defender Jones is already signed up for the 2017-18 campaign. And ex-Nuneaton Town defender Lane admits he would like to follow suit.

'I have really enjoyed my time at the club,' Lane said. 'There's a great set-up here and I get on with Mike (Fowler) and the gaffer (Andy Morrell). It's near to my home, so it's ideal and I think we have done okay this season. We have tried to play the right way and, although we are disappointed not to make the play-offs, we have challenged towards the top. So I would like to be a part of things next season and see if we can push on further.

'The National League North is a very competitive league and is constantly improving. Each year now, I'd say there are ten teams who have ambitions of the play-offs. I'd like to think next year, Tamworth could be in that top five... I missed a couple of games midway through which gave me a kick up the backside because you can get comfortable. But I got back into the team, got in the right frame of mind and I feel I have done well.

'It's been good working alongside Jonah (Luke Jones). As a defender, it's nice to have someone alongside you who is a steadying influence. You know what you are going to get with him and I think, the more we have played, we have started to get to know each other and understand what we are both going to do. It gets to a point where you can become almost telepathic and I'd like us to build on that'.

'We have won a lot of games this season,' he said. 'I think the key for us is to try and turn some of the last-minute defeats into draws. You look at some of the games recently, FC United of Manchester, Stockport and Kidderminster. We lost those games late on and, had we picked up draws, it could have been different'".

OLD BOY MAKES GOOD IN MUSIC WORLD

Altrincham FC youth graduate Jake Barnabas, a team-mate of Duncan Watmore's at Alty, is now making good in the music world. He tells us that "I played under George Heslop in the youth team and came through to the first team at the same time as Duncan Watmore, playing under Lee Sinnott. I injured my knee which forced me to retire at 19. I'm in a band now called the Luka State. Our song 'Bring this all together' was played on the Europa League highlight show and has been named Radio X 'track of the week'".

Above we see Jake, far left, in the first-team match in July 2011 against a Manchester City XI which included Craig Bellamy and Michael Johnson. With Jake are, left to righ, James Smart, Astley Mulholland and Sam Langford making up the wall against a Manchester City freekick, which is being lined up by Kieran Trippier.


27 April 2017

ALTY TRAINING AND THE MANCHESTER DERBY TONIGHT!

As previously announced the Premier League "derby" between Manchester City and Manchester United is being screened "live" in the Community Sports Hall at the J Davidson Stadium tonight. Kick off at The Etihad is at 8pm.

Before that televised game, Altrincham's first team will be training on the pitch so why not come along for the opening of the Food & Drink Festival (7pm) and enjoy a drink and some food whilst the lads prepare for the fixture at Tamworth on Saturday?

During the Food & Drink Festival there will be matches on the pitch at Moss Lane including...

  • Altrincham Ladies will play a friendly against an Altrincham & Hale XI at 7.30pm on Friday evening.
  • An Independent Schools' international match between England and Scotland kicks off at 2pm on Sunday.
  • Monday sees the Juniors' annual football tournament involving sixty teams (8.45am to 6.30pm). Ten of the teams are Altrincham FC Juniors' teams, in U9/U10/U11 age groups, and the games are aranged in three sessions kicking off at 8:45am, 12 noon and 3:15 pm.

FOOD AND DRINK FESTIVAL STARTS

"This weekend, Altrincham FC is holding its annual 'Food & Drink Festival' at the J.Davidson Stadium, from Thursday, 27th April to Monday, 1st May.

We have arranged for some children's entertainment to take part in the Community Sports Hall on Saturday 29th April, between 12.00 and 4.00pm. This includes local entertainer, Spikey Mike, along with various characters from children's TV and films (Spiderman, Else & Anna - Frozen, Marshall - Paw Patrol).

THIS SEASON'S SPONSORED SHIRTS

Altrincham FC thanks everyone who sponsored one or more players' shirts this season. The shirts will be available for collection from the Club from next Tuesday. By then both the home and away shirts will have been signed by the players concerned.

If you need the shirt(s) posting to you, please contact Karen Rowley at the Club (0161 928-1045), or via e-mail, to arrange this.

FROM THE J. DAVIDSON STADIUM TO WEMBLEY

Probably the first match that Altrincham supporter and Premiership referee, Anthony Taylor, refereed this season was the Altrincham v Manchester United XI friendly at the J. Davidson Stadium, Moss Lane on 22 July, 2016 (pictured above). And the last of his season may well be the Emirates FA Cup Final between Arsenal and Chelsea, on 27 May, which the Altrincham-based referee has been selected to referee.

All at Altrincham FC send their congratulations to Anthony who for a number of years has refereed friendly games at his local club Moss Lane as well as supporting other events at the Football Club.

NEXT OPPONENTS: TAMWORTH

Alty's hosts on Saturday, Tamworth report that the "The 2016/17 season will end this Saturday, as we prepare to welcome Altrincham to The GST Gas Services Stadium at The Lamb. Players from our U7 to U21 age groups are all invited to the game, so we are hoping for a large crowd, and a positive result to end on.

The Lambs have collected seven points from the last nine available, after securing a first away win of 2017 against Stalybridge Celtic last time out. The reverse fixture back in December was in fact the last away victory before the recent Stalybridge game, as Louis Briscoe's first half double was enough to secure a 2-1 win at Moss Lane.

Boss Andy Morrell has a fully fit squad to choose from as it stands and, with contracts still up for grabs ahead of next season, competition for places is likely to be fierce.

As always, tickets start from as little as £12 for adults, £7 for concessions, and just £2 for juniors. We need as much support as possible to help us try and secure the victory, and end 2016/17 in style!"

VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NEWS

The National League reports that "At a hearing of an FA Board of Appeal held today (26th April), appeals lodged by the following clubs against exclusion by The National League to participate in 'End of Season Play Offs' were rejected.
  • Darlington 1883
  • Hungerford Town
  • Poole Town
  • Wealdstone"

This means that in our division, Chorley, in fifth place, now occupy a play-off place ahead of the final round of fixtures on Saturday.

The National League also confirms that "The final day of the Vanarama National League regular season draws to a conclusion this coming Saturday (29th April), with all [national level] matches kicking off at 12.15pm. With the championship trophy already safely lifted by Lincoln City, there is still much to play for, particularly at the bottom of the table.

The BT Sport cameras will be arriving at Bootham Crescent for relegation-threatened York City's all-important clash with Forest Green Rovers. The Minstermen, who will be looking to avoid back-to-back relegations, are one of six sides who could potentially join Southport and North Ferriby United out of the Vanarama National League. Manager Gary Mills must encourage players and fans to rise to the challenge facing them as York City currently occupy one of the two remaining places in the relegation zone with Braintree Town, and sit just one point behind Guiseley and Torquay United.

There is also plenty at stake for visiting Forest Green Rovers. A win for Mark Cooper's men would confirm third spot, which secures a home second leg in the play-off semi-finals. It is going to be a tough afternoon for the losing sides in the battle to avoid the drop, so make sure you join Matt Smith and the rest of his team from 11.45am on BT Sport 1. They will also provide goal updates from the other key matches on what promises to be a nail-biting afternoon."

Also from the National League we read that "There wasn't much riding on Tuesday night's Vanarama National League North encounter between Stalybridge Celtic and Harrogate Town at Bower Fold. However, despite the fact that Celtic have already been confirmed as plying their trade back in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League next season and that Town are to finish in mid-table after flirting with the top five for long periods of the season, this was an entertaining match.

The visitors took the lead after 11 minutes through Danny Ellis's powerful header. But Stalybridge were level just past the half-hour mark as Luke Shiels diverted the ball into his own net. Twenty minutes from time, the hosts went ahead as Gary Gee finished at the far post. Nine minutes later, sub Dominic Knowles equalised when he took advantage of keeper Grant Shenton’s poor clearance to head into an empty net. Knowles then made it 3-2 with just 3 minutes to go as he ran clear of the defence and rounded Shenton to score. Simon Ainge made it 4-2 with a header 3 minutes into stoppage time to earn Simon Weaver`s side a first win in seven games."


26 April 2017

RESERVES' REPORT

There is a report on Altrincham FC Reserves' win over Congleton Vale on Monday night, here.

BUCKET COLLECTION

The Club's thanks go to those who gave £38.61 to the half-time bucket collection on Saturday and thanks are also due to the collectors.

TUESDAY VANARAMA NATIONAL NORTH SCORE

In the Vanarama National League North... Stalybridge Celtic 2-4 Brackley Town

EVO-STIK PLAY-OFFS

On Monday night, Stourbridge beat Workington 3-2 to reach the EvoStik Premier promotion play-off final, for a place in the Vanarama National League North. Should they be unsuccessful, they will be one of Altrincham's opponents in 2017-18. They share their three-sided ground with Stourbridge Cricket Club who have the primary rights, which means that the Football Club do not have home games on Saturdays until late September.

From the other side, the Cumbrian News & Star tells us that Workington "Boss Dave Hewson pays tribute to Reds squad after play-off defeat...

'It was just really hard to take, and the dressing room is hurting at the moment,' said Hewson.... 'I just don’t think we deserved that. We’ve dug in and come back so many times and never stopped believing... But we can take credit from the fact that we have come down here and put on such a good show..

'I just thought in the second half we were on top, once we settled we started to believe in ourselves'...

Goals from Dave Symington and Dan Wordsworth brought Reds level twice and forced extra-time. But, despite a superb showing, they could not get past a battling Stourbridge. Hewson said they would be back to fight again next season and use this experience as motivation".

In Tuesday night's First Division play-offs, the results were...

  • First Division North Promotion Play Off Semi-Final, Farsley Celtic 4-0 Colne
  • First Division North Promotion Play Off Semi-Final Scarborough Athletic 1-3 Ossett Town
  • First Division South Promotion Play Off Semi-Final, Spalding United 3-2 Stocksbridge Park Steels
  • First Division South Promotion Play Off Semi-Final, Witton Albion 1-0 AFC Rushden and Diamonds - Hopley goal after 58 minutes; Rushden reduced to ten men by a red card shortly afterwards
  • Premier Division Promotion Play Off Semi-Final, Spennymoor Town 2-0 Nantwich Town - Spennymoor meet Stourbridge in final; Nantwich play in same division as Altrincham next season

VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH NEWS

The National League reports that "Boston United manager Adam Murray has started shaping his squad for next season by informing four players that they will not be offered new contracts.

Goalkeeper Michael Emery, wingers Marcus Marshall and Jason St Juste and striker Waide Fairhurst are all free to find new clubs. Emery has made only four first-team appearances since joining his home-town club last summer following spells with Heanor Town, Skegness Town and Gainsborough Trinity. The experienced former Blackburn, Rotherham, Bury and Grimsby Town man Marshall has made thirty-one appearances but only managed one goal.

St Kitts & Nevis international St Juste leaves the Jakemans Stadium after appearing twenty-four times this season, also scoring just the once, having arrived in June 2016 following spells with AFC Fylde and North Ferriby United. Fairhurst arrived as the Pilgrims' star summer signing after spells with Torquay United and FC Halifax Town. But he managed just eighteen games for Boston, scoring once, and had a spell out on loan with Frickley Athletic in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division".

The Worcester News tells us that "Chairman Anthony Hampson praised caretaker manager John Snape and his players for 'putting the pride back' into Worcester City. Hampson admitted Snape stepped up to take temporary charge of the Vanarama National League North strugglers in a 'very difficult situation' following Carl Heeley’s decision to end his seven-year reign as manager.

Shortly after Heeley’s departure in late January all the players were put up for transfer as part of the club’s bid to 'protect the remaining funds'.

Leading scorer Lee Hughes left for AFC Telford United before striker Colby Bishop, winger Connor Hughes, forward Micah Evans [now at Alty] and experienced frontman Steven Craig followed him through the exit door. Worcester have struggled for results, registering only one win in more than five months, and dropped into the bottom three following Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Salford City.

But Hampson, speaking at the club’s end-of-season awards, insists... 'We call him Snapper. He has motivated the team back from a very difficult situation and I am very grateful to the players for the work they have done to put the pride back into Worcester City'...

Snape said it had been a 'pleasure' managing his crop of players and insisted he was determined to finish what he described as a 'horrible season' on a high. City are one point adrift of safety and need to better Gainsborough Trinity’s result at FC United of Manchester on Saturday to stay up. 'When I came in, I think there were a lot more outgoings than incomings which probably didn’t help but had to happen', Snape said.

'I have had the pleasure of being the caretaker manager of this football club. It was lonely and still is lonely as I do miss Carl. But, after a rocky couple of weeks, every player has given their all, never given up and I would like to thank them all for that. It has been a tough, horrible season but I want the supporters and the players to realise that together we can go to Fylde and get something'.

Snape also hailed the work of... captain and caretaker assistant boss Danny Jackman... 'It has been frustrating for him as he wants to play all the time and I keep leaving him out. But, on and off the pitch, he has always been positive and gives his lot'".

At the other end of the table, the Daily Mail confirms that "Leicester City have looked to non-league for talent once again by giving a trial to Kidderminster Harriers' striker Andre Brown [who scored against Alty recently]. The 20-year-old started for Leicester's U23 side at Reading on Monday night, but failed to score in their 2-2 draw.

Brown, who hails from Walsall, started his career with Crewe Alexandra but was released a year ago. He has now returned to Kidderminster ahead of their weekend game against Bradford Park Avenue."

NW NEWS

In the Hallmark Security League, (NW Counties), "Atherton Collieries clinched the Premier Division title with a 1-0 win over Abbey Hey at the Kensite Stadium.

Founder members of our League in 1982, Colls have experieced some tough times over the years and only won promotion back to the Premier Division two years ago after a six year spell in Division One, but now they can look forward to competing in the Evo-Stik League Division One North next season.

Before the game began, Colls knew that they needed two points from their last two games to top the table, and in the end they picked up the trophy with one game to spare.

In front of an expectant crowd of 545 spectators, Colls had to work for their victory against a stubborn and determined Abbey Hey side, who proved to be tough opponents...

Colls' manager Michael Clegg said, 'In pre-season we set out to have the best defence in the league, we really worked on that, and that is what has seen us through... A lot of people have compared us to Jono and Bernard's Rammy (Ramsbottom United, who won the League title in 2012). They did similar to what we did in terms of team spirit and people who want to play for you, and that's the great thing about this team. I've got a group of lads who I believe in, and they believe in me, and our fans are like our family. We are all in this together, and we all want to play for one another'...

Colls' captain Brad Cooke, 'To get to 100 points is brilliant. Fair play to Bootle, Joe Doran is a top manager, they've got some great lads and they have pushed us all the way...

Colls' Secretary Emil Anderson added, 'I'm gobsmacked, I don't know what to say. What a three years it's been... a crowd of over 500 here to watch Atherton Collieries win the league, it's unbelievable'".

Elsewhere, "1874 Northwich are looking to end the season on a high by capturing some silverware, as they prepare to face Northwich Victoria in the final of the Mid-Cheshire Cup at the St Luke's Barton Stadium on Tuesday night. The Greens are the present holders of the trophy, winning it for the first time last season with a memorable 3-0 win over Witton Albion at Wincham Park... Now, they have the chance to retain the trophy at the expense of their old rivals, having already struck a psychological blow earlier in the season when they beat Vics 2-0 in the Cheshire Senior Cup, [ex-Alty youth and reserve] Tom Bailey scoring both goals".


25 April 2017

ALTY RESERVES 3 CONGLETON VALE 0

Above: Alty line-up before kick-off against Congleton Vale.

Altrincham Reserves, including six players from the first-team squad (Andrew Jones, Sam Heathcote, Laurence Taylor, Harry Cain, Darius Palma and Andy Owens) defeated Congleton Vale 3-0 at the J Davidson Stadium on Monday evening. Trailing 0-1 to a fine Sam Heathcote freekick, the visitors' left-back was shown a straight red card just after the hour mark to leave them with ten men. Harry Cain netted the second Alty goal after Callum Jones's excellent long-range shot had come back off the post and Heathcote completed the scoring with another impressive freekick in the closing stages.

Brief match report to follow...

ALFRETON VIEW

After Saturday's draw at Altrincham, Alfreton Town report that "Everyone at Alfreton Town FC breathed a collective sigh of relief at the final whistle after drawing 1-1 with already relegated Altrincham on Saturday and, although the draw in itself wasn't enough to guarantee National League North survival, the failure of both Gainsborough Trinity and Worcester City to win certainly was.

Furthermore the awful run of defeats, amidst an ever increasing injury list, ground to a halt and the Reds can now look forward to another season at step two of the Pyramid, which will be their tenth at that level including that memorable four year adventure in the Conference National.

The game itself shoud have been wrapped up by Alfreton, who had taken a 39th minute lead through Andy Monkhouse after a concerted spell of pressure, typified by amassing five corners in the opening thirteen minutes...

Altrincham's first corner on 30 minutes led to former Alfreton midfielder Jake Moult's effort being saved by Fabian Spiess. Another ex-Red Damian Reeves shot tamely at Spiess before heading over from a left wing cross...

Four minutes later Altrincham failed twice to clear a Westcarr corner, allowing Callum McFadzean to return the ball to Westcarr with his subsequent cross headed home firmly by Monkhouse six yards out at the near post...

The second half began... [and] the hosts made notable inroads into contention. However they were gifted a 59th minute equaliser when sub Shaun Densmore sent an innocuous curling cross towards goal from 25 yards that Spiess fumbled and allowed to squirm through his legs, once again cancelling out all the good work that he had done in much the same way that he had at Tamworth five days earlier.

With the wind in their sails Altrincham threatened to score again, but Clee wasted a great run with an overhit cross, Laurence Taylor's header was held by Spiess and Micah Evans blazed over when a goal looked inevitable".

LADIES' NEXT MATCH

Altrincham Ladies' next fixture is on Thursday, 27 April, away to Merseyrail Bootle at the Delta Taxis Stadium of Bootle FC.

VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE NORTH NEWS

Darlington 1883 confirm that "Darlington FC Supporters' Group (DFCSG) have launched their fundraising drive to upgrade the Blackwell Meadows facilities to enable promotion to the National League when the opportunity should arise.

The plans include the installation of 224 covered seats adjacent to the existing seated stand which will raise the overall seated capacity to over 500 together with a brand new pitch and drainage. Both of these works were intended to have taken place during the initial move to Blackwell Meadows but weren’t viable due to the increased cost of the move home.

The total cost needed to push forward with the developments stands at £193,000 and is structured into four phases:

  • 1) Pitch and drainage: £42,000 by 15th May 2017.
  • 2) 224 additional covered seats: £150,000...

The above timelines, if met, will allow the Club to have the infrastructure in place to fit the criteria for promotion. In the event of promotion the Club would then have until 31st March in the year after promotion to bring the ground up to Category A which would mean additional demands in order to raise the capacity to 4,000 from the current 3,299. It is envisaged a terrace built part way across the West End would achieve this although design and planning are not yet finalised...

The fundraising will be targeted using the previously successful Community Share scheme which allows supporters of the Club and local community to invest into the project by way of a long-term loan. Community Shares can be cashed out provided funds are available from year 5 onwards and also attract a small investment payment. The first Community Share offer which raised £100,000 towards the move back to Darlington is currently being accrued for at £5,000 per year — year one funds are in place.

In addition to upgrading Blackwell Meadows the Group have launched a 'Boost The Budget' scheme designed to allow manager Martin Gray to retain the squad which has performed well this season... as income for the 2016/17 season has fallen short of the required amount to sustain the playing budget set unless there is additional non-operational revenue... 500 fans committing to £3 a week would raise £75,000 over the course of the season and ensure that Martin could be given a similar budget to this season".

From the Brighouse Echo, we learn that "‘Sickening’ violence at FC Halifax Town matches must stop before someone is killed, said the club’s chairman in a desperate plea to fans.

David Bosomworth’s comments follow an incident at the Shaymen’s home defeat to AFC Fylde on Good Friday when a brick and bottle smashed the windows of an away supporters’ coach and minibus... Mr Bosomworth said, 'Words cannot describe the frustration and disbelief that anyone or a group of people associated with Halifax can be so less caring towards other people. We have some mindless souls who think that it is acceptable to come to a football match and use a game hosted by FC Halifax Town to be their focus for causing serious vandalism and not least damage to property but, worse still, risking serious injury to adults, children, ladies, elderly or disabled. This cannot be right.

'Throwing items at people or transport is mindless thuggery and creating such a risk, which is just not on. It has got to be stopped before someone loses an eye, is seriously hurt or even killed by such action'...

He said the recent violence, which also included an attack on an away supporters’ coach at Town’s home game against Gloucester and a brawl at the away match at Bradford Park Avenue, was damaging the reputation of the club and discouraging away supporters from coming to games at The Shay...

He reiterated a comment made last month that home fans could be kept behind after matches if the behaviour continues... Two Town fans have been issued with banning orders and several more are currently under investigation".

In the Gainsborough Standard, we read that "Nathan Jarman’s goals could be enough to keep Gainsborough Trinity in National League North. His finish on Saturday earned a point against Kidderminster Harriers to take Trinity out of the bottom three. On Good Friday he hit the only goal as Trinity won their first match under manager Dave Frecklington.

The boss said after the Kidderminster draw... 'When everything you have worked on in the week comes to fruition it pleases you even more. Nathan is sharper as the training we do is quite intense. He has been brilliant for us and the reason he has played in the last couple of games is because he can bring quality out of nowhere...

'Since the Chorley game (a 4-0 defeat on 1st April) these boys have worked tirelessly on shape out of possession. We needed to be better in possession today and we were, we were superb'”.

From fellow relegation contenders, the Worcester News tells us that "Veteran defender James Chambers has been ruled out of Worcester City’s final day survival showdown with AFC Fylde at Mill Farm... The former Leicester City, Watford and West Brom star was forced off with a hamstring injury in Worcester’s 2-1 defeat to Salford City at the weekend.

Caretaker assistant boss Danny Jackman said it was a 'big blow' to lose the 36-year-old... Chambers has struggled with injuries since coming out of retirement to play for City this season...

'I think it is a bad hamstring injury,' Jackman said. 'He may have torn it so that’s a big blow for us as he is a big player... Injuries are mounting up, but that’s the way it goes when you are down there'.

Tom Sharpe is expected to replace Chambers at right-back... The experienced Junior English’s right leg was heavily strapped for the game against Salford as he continues to 'nurse' a hamstring problem... Attacking midfielder Ebby Nelson-Addy also has an issue with his knee... But Jackman insists it is case of 'patching people up' as they aim to make one final effort to avoid relegation.

Worcester are third from bottom, one point behind Gainsborough Trinity who travel to FC United".

EVO-STIK LEAGUE PLAY-OFFS

  • Monday 24 April, Premier Division Promotion Play Off Semi-Final, 7.45pm Stourbridge 3-2 Workington after extra time, so Workington will be one of Alty's opponents next season..


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