Friday, February 29, 2008

Full Programme of League Two Matches

This afternoon League Two has a full fixture list of twelve games, all starting at 3pm.

Amazingly all the top five clubs, MK Dons, Peterborough, Hereford, Darlington and Rotherham play at home. Of the five the Bulls probably have the toughest looking game against current away specialists Stockport County.

Barnet v Shrewsbury
Bradford v Dag & Red
Darlington v Brentford
Hereford v Stockport
Lincoln City v Wycombe
Macclesfield v Notts County
Milton Keynes Dons v Chester
Morecambe v Grimsby
Peterborough v Bury
Rochdale v Chesterfield
Rotherham v Accrington Stanley
Wrexham v Mansfield

Stockport are expected to bring a good following with perhaps as many as 600 to 700supporters.

Last Saturday they had more supporters at Accrington than the home team - the gate was 2,576 of which 1,348 were following Stockport.

For those unable to watch the game live, there will be updates on BBC Hereford and Worcester.

Meanwhile the latest League Two stats show that Hereford United have had 173 shots on target and 174 off target in their 33 League Games to date this season. That's an average of just over five shots per game.

Out of the 173 on target 57 have gone in the net or roughly one in three.

Peterborough are the topshots so far with 214 on target and 254 off target. They've scored 63 goals, the highest in the League.

Lastly despite having seven loan players at Edgar Street, Hereford have only used 24 players in League games. No club has used less - Shrewsbury for example have used 28 to date.

We start again says Turner

In advance of tomorrow's game against Stockport and in the wake of Tuesday's surprise defeat at Dagenham, Hereford United manager Graham Turner says it's time to start again.

"It's one of those - we don't throw everything to one side, we don't go overboard with the criticism," Turner, reflecting on the defeat, told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"We let ourselves down, we let our 300 supporters who travelled down there, to some extent, down.

"We start again and it couldn't be tougher than Stockport.

"I think they will provide us with a real stern test."

News Round Up

Chester have loaned Stephen Vaughan Jnr and Sean Newton to Conference strugglers Droylsden. Vaughan recently returned to the club owned by his father but has not featured after supporters derided his return. Shrewsbury have loaned defender Darren Kempson to Accrington for a month.

MK Dons have signed Spurs midfielder Jake Livermore on loan for a month. The 18 year old is eligible for the Johnstones Paint Trophy final if selected. Ex-Bull Jimmy Quinn has been named Conference Manager of the Month for February. It is the second award of the season for the Cambridge United boss.

Halifax's latest winding up petition, brought by former chairman Raymond Moreland, is for the princely sum of £7944.86. Stafford are expecting their biggest gate of the season for Steve Bull's first official game in charge. They have been selling tickets all week and expect a near capacity crowd.

Leeds have agreed to the Football League's offer of arbitration. The hearing will be heard in private at the FL's request. Rotherham have had four inquiries of investment following their notice of Administration last week.

Tom will never forget the Shrewsbury Game

Ten year old Tom Skittery from Much Marcle will always remember last Saturday's match at Shrewsbury because of an unfortunate incident before the kick-off.

Hereford United's two goalkeepers were warming up and Mike Ingham had kicked the ball towards Wayne Brown. Tom was sitting close to the goal when he was hit by the ball.

"Tom was knocked back against his seat, his nose was bleeding and he was as white as a sheet," said his father, James, as reported by the Malvern Gazette.

An alert Ingham realised what had happened and rushed to see if Tom was alright. His nose was bleeding and he was treated by the St John's Ambulance team.

Ingham told Tom he could have his gloves and Brown later promised him his shirt.

"We got back for the kick-off. Tom was dazed for the first half, but he got better," said his father.

After the game the two keepers went back to see Tom and presented him with the gloves and top.

"Tom will never forget it. He's written a letter to thank the players.

"He's been a season ticket holder for the last three seasons and he is a fanatical supporter."

Threlfall expected to start for Hereford tomorrow

Stockport County are on a run of six straight away wins and will be hoping to make it seven tomorrow at Edgar Street. On the other hand Hereford United will take stock after their disappointing performance at Dagenham last Tuesday and will be going all out to keep their promotion campaign on target.

The Bulls will be without defender Dean Beckwith through suspension for having amassed five yellow cards and manager Graham Turner will have to re-jig his defence. It is expected that Robbie Trelfall will be given a start tomorrow.

Also missing from the Hereford squad will be Toumani Diagouraga, Steve Guinan and Luke Webb.

For Stockport few, if any, changes are expected to their side which defeated Accrington Stanley 2-0 last Saturday.

"I am really looking forward to this game," said manager Jim Gannon as reported by the Manchester Evening News.

"It will be two really good football teams, young and skilful. There's pressure on them to beat us after they lost at Dagenham in midweek. Before that they had won five on the trot. I think there will be a lot of goals.

"It's very nice for the lads to be considering breaking any record. Away from home we've showed great spirit among the players and the fans who've followed us have shown a similar spirit."

Graham Turner will be hopefull of a return to winning ways.

"It is not going to be easy against Stockport but we must make sure that we don't lose two on the trot," Turner told the Worcester News.

"They are up there in the play-off places so we have to make sure that we are ready for them.

"We are at the business end of the season. There are no second chances and maybe there was that little bit of extra pressure on Tuesday when we had the chance to go top.

"We have to start again because we are at the stage where every point counts."

So a good game is in prospect which, hopefully, will draw the fans to come and watch.

Hooper Nominated For Monthly Prize

Gary Hooper has been nominated for the Powerade Player of the Month for League Two in February.

The on loan Southend man scored in five of his six games during the month, and faces competition from Peterboro's Joe Lewis, Dagenham's Ben Strevens, and MK Dons' Mark Wright.

The winner will be announced on Sky Sports on Monday evening.

MK Dons game on April 15th

As predicted on Bulls News last Monday after MK Dons won their Paint game, Hereford United's away game at Mk Dons will take place on April 15th at 7.45pm.

The date which is a Tuesday will be a disappointment to Bull's supporters as up to a thousand would have been expected to travel to their new stadium had the game been played on the original date of Saturday March 29th.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

News Round Up

Ex-Bull Neil Grayson is one of the nominees for the player of the month in the Conference. The uber-veteran striker scored three times in four games along with co-caretaker managing the Stafford side. Steve Bull has pulled the first strings of his managerial career at Stafford, borrowing striker Liam Hughes from Wolves, who recently spent a spell at Bury.

Macclesfield's new boss Keith Alexander has made his first decision in recalling defender James Jennings from a loan spell at Altrincham. The 20 year old played nine times for Alty after just five starts in two years at Moss Rose. Millwall's chairman has threatened to quit after a flare was thrown onto the pitch after Tuesday's draw with Luton. The club face disciplinary proceedings that could see a points deduction.

Stockport striker Matty McNeil will miss several more weeks after finding tendonitis in his knee. He had hoped to be fit for the Edgar Street match. Weymouth have required a £500,000 cash injection to continue their season. The stadium ownership has been transferred to Wessex Park Limited as a result. Any Bulls fans feeling Deja Vu?

Early Travel News for Accrington

HUISA have provided details for next Saturday's trip north.

Depart 9.00am Fare £16.00. Bookings can be made in Legends before the Stockport game this Saturday or through the Club office (01432 276666).

FUNBUS departs at 9.30 am. Fare TBA. Contact Oxo.

Stanhope chosen as ESG Developer

Hereford Council and the Edgar Street Grid board have announced this afternoon that Stanhope PLC has been chosen as the main developer for the 12.5 acre area around the livestock market which will be transformed into the city's retail and leisure quarter.

The area is close to the Hereford United football ground.

According to the Herefordshire Council work will start on the retail and leisure quarter in the spring of 2010, after the relocation of the city's livestock market to a new site to the north west of Hereford. The plans include Hereford's first multi-screen cinema, a host of cafes, bars and bistros, a department store and high quality retail outlets, all helping to generate a thriving new evening economy. A new link road is planned to help ease the city's traffic congestion.

Stanhope beat off competition from two other developers to become the main developer. The company 'creates and delivers major commercial and mixed-use developments in London and the south-east have more than 20 years' experience as developers, development partners and development managers'.

Council leader Roger Philips told BBC Hereford and Worcester that Stanhope's committment was 'really very impressive'.

Hooper Extends Stay

The Official Southend United Website has confirmed that on loan striker Gary Hooper will stay with Hereford until the end of the season. The former Grays man has impressed since making his debut against Barnet in late January, and has scored six times already. He has formed a good partnership up front with Sherjill Macdonald, another loanee, who Graham Turner is surely hoping to sign up until the end of the season along with Hooper.

Rochdale offer supporters a free pint

There is little doubt that efforts are being made by some League Two clubs to try and increase support through the turnstiles.

Today Rochdale have announced an initative that will reward some supporters with a free pint.

Daniel Thwaites Brewery have joined in the recent initiatives at Spotland and the official club brewer has joined forces with the Dale Trust to coincide with the club's Centenary Season to give out 100 beer vouchers.

The Dale Trust are backing SUPERFAN (the fan who brings the most new supporters to a particular match) and would therefore like to offer the 100 fans who bring the most people versus Chesterfield a pint before the Accrington match in Studds Bar on Sunday 16th March.

Perhaps Hereford United should join up with Westons, the cider makers, and offer a free bottle of Weston's Organic to every supporter who buys a season ticket!

Jackson - League Two Manager of the Month

Lincoln manager Peter Jackson has been made the League Two manager of the month.

Although Hereford's Graham Turner was shortlisted and had won five of his six games in February, Jackson was chosen over him.

Lincoln have climbed to 16th in the table recently.

Jackson will manage his last game on Saturday against Wycombe before he begins his treatment for throat cancer.

News Round Up

Halifax have been slapped with another winding up petition. Former chairman Raymond Moreland has issued the petition to be heard in Manchester on March 17th. The club are to make a statement later. Their protracted takeover is now nearly 18 months in the works, and still shows no sign of completion.

Peterboro keeper Joe Lewis is attracting the attention of several of the Premiership heavyweights. Man Utd and Liverpool have sent scouts to recent matches to watch the 20 year old who has played just ten games since his £400,000 transfer. Mansfield have extended the loan of Will Atkinson from Hull for a second month.

West Brom have told striker Craig Beattie he can leave following Luke Moore's arrival. The move suggests that manager Tony Mowbray is happy with his four strikers that remain with the club and will not need Sherjill Macdonald back too soon. Dagenham have loaned Marlon Patterson to Grays for a month. He has played just six times since arriving in the summer.

Bury director Iain Mills has quit the club after complaints over his preference to wear shorts to games. Barnet are trying to land former MK Dons striker Izale McLeod on loan. He scored 25 times last season before a £1.1million move to Charlton brought only two League starts and one goal this season.

Darlington have signed full back Ben Parker from Leeds on a months loan. The 20 year old was part of the Leeds side beaten by the Bulls in November. Boston are to hold talks with the Football League and Inland Revenue in a bid to save their CVA. The FL are retaining their payments for last season to pay off football creditors in full, in breach of a clause inserted by the IR into the club's CVA.

Another club freezes season ticket prices

Yesterday it was Barnet, today it is Bristol City who have decided to freeze season ticket prices for the next campaign.

And Bristol City might even go up a League if their present form continues.

One of the sweetners with the City offer is the ability to pay by instalments for a season ticket.

Supporters who apply for a Barclaycard Football Card will be given the chance to pay off their season ticket in interest-free instalments.

Whilst the Hereford United fan-base might not be high enough to have a club credit card, the principle of interest free, or low interest, ways of paying for season tickets could be one way of lifting sales.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Barnet to freeze season ticket prices

Another League Two club is to freeze season ticket prices for next season.

Barnet have announced they have decided to freeze the prices for the third season running.

They point out that one of their best deals is for the under 12's who can become a Bees member for just £18. This allows them to watch all Barnet's home agames for under £1 per game.

Barnet are currently building two new stands at Underhill one of which will house away fans. The stands are part of a new project costing about £1m to upgrade the ground.

Turner shortlisted for Manager of the Month

Hereford United's Graham Turner is one of four managers shortlisted for the February League Two manager of the month.

The others are Peterborough's Darren Ferguson, Stockport's Jim Gannon and Lincoln's Peter Jackson.

The winner will be announced on Sky Sports News at around 12.30pm tomorrow.

Until last evening's slip-up at Dagenham, Turner's Hereford United had been undefeated during February and took a creditable 15 points out of a possible 18.

Daggers sharper than blunt Bulls

Hereford lost their unbeaten run and the chance to go top of League 2 when losing out to a single Danny Foster goal on the stroke of half time at Victoria Road last night against a resurgent and resilient Dagenham & Redbridge.

Manager Turner had named an unchanged team and The Bulls started brightly enough and probably shaded the possession for the first twenty minutes or so while creating some decent opportunities in front of goal. At the other end, Strevens just failed to get on the end of a John Nurse cross before Gary Hooper was unlucky with an overhead effort which was narrowly wide of the mark. There was some familiar Hooper/Johnson interplay down the right flank with one particular Hooper cross just evading the onrushing MacDonald before the Dutchman was cruelly denied a shooting opportunity when through on goal. Referee, Mr Singh, pulled play back for free kick in favour of The Bulls when allowing the clear advantage could possibly have seen Hereford take the lead. Other opportunities fell to Johnson who screwed his shot wildly wide of the target and MacDonald who was defeated by an excellent block tackle from Anwar Uddin.

As the half progressed, The Daggers began to show glimpses of why their form had improved so dramatically since the comprehensive beating they received at Edgar Street a fortnight earlier. The strikeforce of Strevens and Nurse were a constant threat with their movement off the ball causing problems and space for the supporting midfielders, Foster and Southam. The latter part of the first half saw the hosts assume control, particularly in midfield where they frequently seemed to have a spare man. Foster had already come close when he was narrowly off target when meeting a cross from Strevens' low cross. Just before the interval, Clint Easton was penalised for a foul 25 yards from goal and although Southam's free kick was partially cleared, it was into the path of Foster who headed home from 12 yards.

The restart saw Graham Turner throw on Theo Robinson in place of Easton with the dangerous MacDonald moving to a wide position. However, despite some tidy, passing movements The Bulls continued to fail to test the Daggers keeper Roberts as the home side's midfield retained a grip on the vital central territory. Ben Smith worked his socks off but was constantly thwarted by a bobbly pitch as he tried desperately to conjure the required scoring chances. McClenahanahan managed to release Hooper as he got away from his marker but the Southend man's crossed was blazed wide by Gleeson when well placed. As the game was drawing to a close, Turner introduced Trevor Benjamin in place of Johnson and later replaced the industrious Ben Smith with Kris Taylor. However, having four strikers on the pitch is fine…so long as the midfield is in control and producing chances. It wasn't, and John Still's team got to the whistle without keeper Roberts having to make a single noteworthy stop in the second period.

With hindsight, it may have been better to use Taylor as an additional midfielder rather than a replacement. Wayne Brown brought off a couple of typical blinding stops in the second period which helped make up for his first half error when Johnson had cleared off the line following a miss-handling.

Defensively, The Bulls looked OK although Big John McCoooooooombe collected a late yellow for what looked like a well considered obstruction. The midfield grafted with Smith in particular looking to produce but the second half attacking formation looked toothless. Robinson seemed lightweight and did not produce the enthusiastic performance expected of a player looking to win back his starting place, whereas Big Trev was just one throw of the dice too many in an overloaded attack that lacked supply from an outnumbered midfield. Don't get me wrong, this was not a bad display. It was more to the credit of The Daggers organisation and workrate against a side that was just a fraction off-colour and off-balance. A crowd of just under 2000 attended with 326 reportedly supporting The Bulls.

Dagenham & Redbridge: Roberts, Southam, Nurse, Rainford, Griffiths, Uddin, Strevens, Foster, Smith, Gain, Arber. Subs not used: Hogan, Sloma, Saunders, Taiwo, Baidoo.
Hereford United: Brown, McClenahanahan, McCooooombe, Beckwith, Rose, Johnson (Benjamin 78), Smith (Taylor 87), Gleeson, Easton (Robinson 46), Hooper, MacDonald. Subs not used: Ingham, Threlfall.

Onwards and upwards.

Brightwell Departs Macclesfield

Manager Ian Brightwell and assistant Asa Hartford have left Macclesfield Town with immediate effect.

A statement from the club has announced Keith Alexander as the new manager on a contract until the end of the season. Brightwell was offered the opportunity to stay as manager with Alexander as his new assistant, but rejected the offer. The former Man City midfielder, in his first managerial role, won only seven of 38 games in charge.

The club have won only two of their last 18 matches, losing 3-0 to Peterboro at the weekend and slumping to just two points off the relegation spots. Alexander recently left Bury where he held the Director of Football role but was sacked along with manager Chris Casper after a poor run of results.

More from Turner about the Daggers Defeat

Graham Turner spoke to the press after last night's defeat at Dagenham.

"We've had a great run, five consecutive wins and I thought we dominated the first 20minutes and looked right on song," said the Hereford United manager.

"There's a number of times we've given away silly free-kicks. We've preached about discipline and we've preached about the number of times we allow the opposition to get the ball into our area.

"There's always a risk and we never reacted to the knock down and we've paid a heavy penalty. We've got to learn from this and start again against Stockport on Saturday."

However Dagenham assistant manager Terry Harris paid the Bulls a compliment even though his side had deservedly won the match.

"They are an excellent side and I can see why they are where they are, but we matched them and our organisation was first class.

"I was delighted to come in at half-time with the lead, and then in the second half we had to dig deep, keep trying to turn them, and although they put us under pressure our goalkeeper Tony Roberts didn't have too much to do."

Preview: Bulls vs Stockport

The Bulls will want a quick return to winning ways when they take on Stockport on Saturday.

A pattern is emerging in games between these two sides, with the away team winning each of the last four encounters. The Bulls have recorded two victories at Edgeley Park, the most recent in November when a Lionel Ainsworth hat-trick was sufficient for a 3-2 win, while Stockport beat the Bulls at Edgar Street 2-0 twice - in a League encounter last season and a FA Cup match the season before.

The Bulls will be scratching their heads how they lost to Dagenham after smashing four past them only a couple of weeks before. They will hope to extend the loan of Gary Hooper after it expired following the Daggers match. Hooper has scored five times in seven games, with the Bulls only losing when he has not scored during his stay.

Stockport will travel to Edgar Street looking for a seventh successive away win to equal a 57 year old club record. While the run has included several struggling teams they did win 4-1 at Rotherham a couple of weeks ago before winning at Accrington this past weekend. Their good away form, with just four losses all season, is the main reason they have clawed their way back into play-off contention.

Hereford United vs Stockport County, Edgar Street, Saturday 1st March, 3.00pm.

Gannon looks forward to Hereford Match

Stockport County manager Jim Gannon has told the Manchester Press that he is 'relishing the challenge' of playing Hereford United at Edgar Street on Saturday. His team are looking for their seventh straight away victory.

"After four straight defeats, going to MK Dons earlier in the season was a huge test for us and we got a magnificent result there," said Gannon.

"Going to Rotherham the other week was also a huge test, and we weren’t found wanting in that match either.

"But Saturday is clearly another big test. Hereford are in great form. Over the course of the season they are the best team, but our away form matches theirs at the moment, so it is going to be a cracking game.

"Last Saturday galvanised positions at the top and the bottom, all the top seven sides won, so that does mean that we’re going to have to take our form from the last two months into the next two months if we are going to break into that top three or four.

"Hereford, MK Dons and Darlington are setting the standards at this level, so we have to beat those teams now.

"We’ve got them all to play, so that’s the challenge for us.

"But the most important thing right now is that we go and get a result at Hereford this weekend.

"A result will certainly help consolidate our play-off position."

News Round Up

Lincoln have loaned midfielder Jamie Hand to Oxford for a month and taken Scunthorpe's Cameroonian u-23 international Alex Morfaw on a similar spell. Bury are to extend the loan of midfielder Elliott Bennett from Wolves for another month. The winger will now be eligible to face the Bulls in March.

Morecambe are to give a trial to prolific Retford United striker Neil Harvey. The Barbados international has scored 50 times in the last season and a half and has also played in goal during that time. Luton's takeover by the group headed by Nick Owen has been accepted by the Administrator. The deal now needs to be ratified by the Football League.

The Football League have offered Leeds arbitration in a bid to end their battle over the 15 point deduction. The offer would see a Court of Appeal judge hear the case rather than the matter being taken to the High Court.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Disappointing says Hereford Manager

Graham Turner, the Hereford United manager, admitted he was disappointed with his team's performance at Dagenham last night. He said it was very important that the team rebounds from the defeat and doesn't lose to Stockport on Saturday.

"I thought we dominated the game for the first twenty minutes. We needed to score in that good spell and gradually they started to cause us a few problems with their direct style," Turner told the Official Website.

"There were a number of times we gave silly free kicks away. We never reacted to the knock down from the free kick and we paid a heavy penalty for it.

"Second half there were a number of occasions when we broke very well but we over-elaborated with the last ball or failed to pick out the right option."

The silly free kick that led to the goal was given away by Clint Easton who had lost the ball moments earlier. Easton was subbed at half time.

Asked about an extension to Gary Hooper's loan, Turner said that he has had conversations with Southend and the 'vibes seem very positive'.

Meanwhile Trent McClenahan wants the side to continue trying to play the passing game.

"That's what we are all about. We been playing like that all year. I don't see why we are going to change now. Even if we're one nil down, two nil down," he told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"Play the way we like to play and what we are good at and I think that's the way we've got to do it.

"That's why we are where we are."

Finally Daggers assistant manager Terry Harris:

"I was absolutely delighted to come in at half-time certainly against the wind.

"It's been the end of a great couple of weeks. I have been saying for a while I thought Hereford would see a different Dagenham."

Bulls News apologies for the delay in publishing a match report from last night. Our reporter's internet connection has failed.

Stats fail to reflect Performance of Bulls

Whilst the stats suggest that Hereford United had the larger share of possession (54%) at Dagenham last night they failed to do much with it having just five shots on target.

Too many passes went astray and there wasn't the amount of excellent link-up play seem in recent games.

However the front pair of Gary Hooper and Serjill MacDonald both received an eight for their performances. All the other player were awarded a seven except Wayne Brown and Dean Beckwith who both received a six.

For Dagenham Tony Roberts had an seven given to him, Gall had a nine and for all the other player an eight.

Bulls defender John McCombe was booked for unsporting behaviour late in the game.

The attendance was 1929 with an excellent turnout of 326 supporting the Bulls.

As reported earlier the Bulls drop to third in the League Two table:

1 Milton Keynes Dons 33 31 66
2 Peterborough 33 30 65
3 Hereford 33 22 64
4 Darlington 32 29 62
5 Rotherham 34 11 57
6 Wycombe 34 10 57
7 Stockport 33 9 53

Results Round Up

Peterboro move up to second place after beating Wrexham 2-0. The Dragons stay bottom, while Mansfield drew 1-1 with fellow strugglers Bury. Bradford beat Rotherham 3-2, and Accrington beat Brentford 1-0 - a match watched by a record low attendance for the season of just 1,149.

In the Johnstones Paint Trophy, Grimsby take the advantage into the second leg after beating Morecambe 1-0 at Christie Park. In the Conference Neil Grayson scored for Stafford as they drew at Histon in his final match as caretaker before Steve Bull takes official charge, and Chris Zebroski scored for Torquay as they slipped up at home with a 1-1 draw with Altrincham.

Marcus Palmer had a good debut for Gloucester City scoring a hat-trick in their 5-0 win at Rugby in the 14th, 37th, and 57th minutes.

Bulls Fall To Daggers

The Bulls lost tonight's League Two match at Dagenham 1-0.

A Danny Foster goal right before half time was enough to end the Bulls' five match winning run and give the Daggers swift revenge after the 4-1 reverse at Edgar Street. Peterboro's 2-0 win over Wrexham mean the Bulls drop to third in the table.

Full report later.

Turner wary of the Daggers

Hereford United manager Graham Turner has said that he fears a Dagenham backlash this evening when the two teams meet. Dagenham were defeated 4-1 at Edgar Street just over two weeks ago.

"They have done really well since we beat them - they have scored 12 goals in three games," Turner told the Worcester News.

"We would have expected a tough game down there anyway but, with the way that they have been playing, we have been making sure that we are prepared.

"The good thing is that everything is in our own hands.

"Hopefully we will get the three points at Dagenham and then we will look at the league table.

"There is still a lot of football to be played and there are four teams close together who are capable of putting together a good run and breaking into the top three."

Hereford came from behind to defeat Shrewsbury last Saturday.

"Of course it is a concern that we are conceding goals. It would be nice to cut that out all together.

"However, the manner in which we have been responding is very pleasing. With the type of football that we play it will leave us vulnerable to concede goals."

Meanwhile a young midfielder from Tooting, who is to have been of interest to Hereford United, is to join Charlton.

19 year old Dorian Smith is said to have what it takes to make the grade at Championship level according to a report in the South London press.

Bradford To Give Away 9,000 Season Tickets

Bradford are to give away 9,000 season tickets - if they can sell the 9,000 adult season tickets they sold this season.

Of the 12,000 season ticket holders this season, 9,000 were adults paying £138. If the club can match that figure at a slightly increased rate of £150 they will give every season ticket holder a second book, effectively making each season ticket worth just £75.

The offer would give the Bantams gate income of £1.35million for the season, putting them in the top three of the division on income, and also increase dramatically the spending on programmes and food.

News Round Up

Altrincham have revealed a £70,000 profit for last season at their AGM last night. The profit was mainly down to a £75,000 sell on clause received from Accrington's sale of Ian Craney but also included costs of erecting new floodlights and turnstiles. The club have ruled out turning full time, citing players moving between Conference clubs for wages of £1,700 a week. It is some time since Alty turned in any significant losses.

Just hours after scoring the winning penalty at Stadium:MK, Drewe Broughton will almost certainly finish his MK Dons career. Having spent the last month on loan at Wrexham he is expected to return there for the bulk of the rest of the season. Ex-Bull John Grant may miss the rest of the season after being stretchered off during Saturday's win over Tamworth. A broken leg has been ruled out but there is heavy ligament damage and the club are waiting on test results.

Accrington have signed Charlton defender Paulo Montiero on loan for a month. The Portugese former u-21 international signed for the Addicks at the start of the month on a short term contract from Romanian football and needs match fitness to prove his worth to the Championship side. Macclesfield have lost goalkeeper coach David Rouse to QPR.

Wrexham could be back in Europe after the FAW opened talks with UEFA over their policy of not allowing clubs competing outside their own FA to enter European competition. UEFA's rules forced six 'exiled' clubs to abandon hopes of Europe in 1995.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Hoopers' Loan expected to be extended

Gary Hooper will play his last game of his current loan deal for Hereford United this evening at Dagenham.

However it looks as though the loan will be extended and an announcment to that effect should happen in the next day or two. If agreed it is thought he would be able to take part in every game for the remainder of the season except, perhaps, the last one which is at Edgar Street against Grimsby on May 3rd. A loan can run for 93days and much will depend on the exact timing of the paperwork. Hooper was reported to have joined the Bulls on January 28th.

Hooper's Southend have won four of their last six games including a 3-0 win at Yeovil last Saturday. They are currently seventh in League One.

Hooper's first game for the Bulls was against Barnet when he failed to hit the back of the net. His second was at Rotherham when he scored the only goal of the game. And he has gone on to score in every game since including two last Saturday at Shrewsbury.

Last Thursday manager Graham Turner told BBC Hereford and Worcester he would like to extend Hooper's loan.

"The vibes are quite good although I've not spoken to Southend yet."

Hereford United can go Top Tonight

A few weeks ago this evening's game at the Glyn Hopkin Stadium looked an away banker but Dagenham's form has improved recently and the Bulls may need to be at their best to take all three points.

The latest odds reflect the situation:

Hereford 5/4, Dagenham 7/4, Draw 9/4

Dagenham have defeated Chester, Grimsby and Morecambe in their last three games and manager John Still is expected to keep to an unchanged starting eleven which will include former loanee at Edgar Street, and Dagenham captain, Anwar Uddin.

In those three games the Daggers have scored twelve goals and moved out of the relegation area. However they are still without striker Paul Benson who recently fractured his leg.

In fact Dagenham haven't looked back since their 4-1 defeat at Edgar Street on February 9th.

However Hereford's recent run of victories is even better than Dagenham's. The Bulls have defeated Rotherham, Dagenham, Rochdale, Chesterfield and Shrewsbury in their last five outings scoring 13 goals in the process.

It now looks as though last month's defeat at Chesterfield and defeat at Edgar Street by Barnet were nothing more than a temporary set-back to manager Graham Turner's asperations of taking the Bulls up to League One.

Since those couple of League defeats Turner has used the loan system to real advantage with the arrival at Edgar Street of Gary Hooper and Sherjill MacDonald. Both have scored six goals since joining.

The Bulls have an excellent record away from home this season - they have won eleven out of their sixteen games - and if they can take all three points will go top of the league as MK Dons are without a League game this mid-week.

Meanwhile there are five League Two matches this evening in which several of the top teams are involved.

However should Hereford draw, or even lose, then Peterborough could move into second place assuming they defeat bottom-placed Wrexham.

List of Fixtures:

Accrington Stanley v Brentford
Bradford v Rotherham
Dag & Red v Hereford
Mansfield v Bury
Wrexham v Peterborough

Top Four In League Two:

1 Milton Keynes Dons 33 31 66
2 Hereford 32 23 64
3 Darlington 32 29 62
4 Peterborough 32 28 62

There will be reports from Dagenham on BBC Hereford and Worcester which will also be on-line. BBC London will also have updates.

Palmer goes to Gloucester on loan

Hereford United's young striker Marcus Palmer is to join Gloucester City on a months loan according to their official website.

"He is lightening-fast, so will give us more options over the coming month as we look to push back into the play-off positions. He has been on the fringes of the first team this year, being named as a substitute on several occasions, and getting onto the field of play on a couple of occasions," said Gloucester manager Tim Harris.

Palmer has only had limited opportunities at Edgar Street and the loan will give him the chance to get some games under his belt. He is expected to play for Gloucester against Rugby tomorrow evening.

The Tigers are currently 7th in the British Gas Premier, four points short of a play-off shot at the Conference South.

Dons win means date change for Bulls game

Mk Dons defeated Swansea City on penalties this evening in the Southern area semi-final of the Paint Trophy. After the two legs the teams were level 1-1.

The final of the Trophy is at Wembley on Sunday March 30th.

Hereford United were due to play MK Dons at their new stadium on the Saturday (29th). This game will have to be re-arranged.

One possible date for the game is Tuesday April 15th.

Latest Accounts Due Next Month

It is understood that the Hereford United accounts for the year ending May 31st 2007 are nearing completion and are expected to be released to shareholders next month.

The twelve months covered by these accounts run from June 1st 2006 which co-insides with Hereford United's first year back in League Two.

They are expected to show an increased turnover which will include a much higher share of TV rights income compared to that received in the Conference.

Gate receipts should be somewhat higher because of price increases.

When the last set of accounts were published they showed a profit of £7,914 and an overall deficit of £814,758. The two previous accounts showed profits of just over £290,000 each year.

HUISA seats still available for Dagenham

A HUISA spokesman has this lunchtime confirmed that some seats are still available for the trip to Dagenham tomorrow. "The coach is filling nicely but we could do with a few more to help cover the cost". Seats can be reserved by calling the Club on 01432 276666. It is thought that a limited number may still be available right up to the time of leaving so even a call as late as 1.00 pm tomorrow could secure you a place. A win on Tuesday evening would see The Bulls go top of League 2.

HUISA travel tickets are £18 with a departure time set for 2.00 pm.

News Round Up

Chesterfield have released player-coach Wayne Allinson by mutual consent. The 39 year old journeyman striker played 878 times in a 20 year career, scoring over 200 goals. Morecambe have extended the loan of defender Michael Howard to Oxford until the end of the season.

Rumoured transfer target Stefan Moore is having a trial at Walsall. Dagenham have loaned out of favour striker Jamie Taylor to Grays for a month, and sent defender Magnus Okuonghae to Weymouth for a similar spell.

Brentford have signed Wayne Brown (no, not that one) from Fulham on loan until the end of the season. The 19 year old midfielder recently made his first team debut at Craven Cottage. Shrewsbury have been given the famous coracle that used to fish balls out of the river. The craft, believed to be 100 years old, was sold by the club in a charity auction in 1989. It comes complete with a paddle, something that the team appear to be missing.

Gleeson In Team Of The Week

Loanee Stephen Gleeson has been named in this week's Team of the Week for League Two.

He is the ninth Bull to be honoured this season. No side had two nominations this week, with tomorrow's opponents Dagenham getting striker Ben Strevens into the XI.

It has also been confirmed that Dean Beckwith will miss next Saturday's home game against Stockport as he picked up his fifth yellow card of the season last Saturday at Shrewsbury.

In other news Andy Penn will referee the Stockport match. To date he has given out 54 yellow and 6 red cards in 27 games.

He last officiated in a Hereford match in December 2006 when Peterborough were the visitors to Edgar Street. However he will probably be remembered for the home game against Port Vale in the Carling Cup the previous season when he doled out six yellow cards.

As reported last week Jarnil Singh will be tomorrow's referee at Dagenham.

The Return of The King?

Seventies legendary centre forward Eric Redrobe is to return to Edgar Street as a guest of "The Forum" for their sponsorship game against Bury on Saturday March 22nd.

Redrobe joined The Bulls in October 1972 when signed from Southport by then Manager Colin Addison. He made his debut in the home 2-0 defeat of Northampton Town on 21st of that month. Although not finding the net, Redrobe immediately impressed the fans on that day with his "all action" display. Eric only had to wait a few days before opening his goal scoring account for The Bulls in a Wednesday evening win over Mansfield when he notched the second of three goals scored on the night. His somewhat robust approach made him a firm favourite with the Edgar Street crowd while the Meadowend choir were often heard to be singing endless renditions of "Redrobe Redrobe, Redrobe Redrobe, born is the King of Edgar Street".

Anyone who would like to join the Forum Sponsored day should contact Chris Powis at The cost is £
50 to include pre-match hospitality with buffet lunch and half-time refreshments. Also included along with your Grandstand seat is a complimentary copy of the Matchday programme, credits in the programme with a mention over the PA system, acknowledgement on the electric scoreboard, before the game and at half-time and a framed photograph of the group on the pitch as a memento of the occasion.
Confirmation of bookings and payment in full is required by the 8th March.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Relive the Goals at Shrewsbury

Highlights showing the goals at the New Meadow last Saturday on now on Virgin Media.

Hereford United defeated Shrewsbury 2-1, the first time the Bulls have won at Shrewsbury in a league game for many many years (1935/36 season when Hereford played in the Birmingham League).

Meanwhile anyone thinking of going to Dagenham is reminded that slightly cheaper tickets are available from the club office up to 12 noon today.

Also there are a few places on the HUISA coach. More details 01432 276666.

Life On Mars?

"My name is Sam Tyler. I had an accident, and I woke up in 1973. Am I mad, in a coma, or back in time? Whatever's happened, it's like I've landed on a different planet. Now maybe if I can work out the reason, I can get home."

Or at least it's that long since we've been looking at promotion from the Football League basement.

Way back in 1973 the Bulls last escaped through the right end of the League's basement division. That season it was strong home form that carried us to second place in the table. A solitary home defeat that year was not echoed on the road, with just 17 goals being scored in 23 matches and just five wins being secured by the Bulls on their travels. At least it was only two points for a win, securing second place with just 58 points.

Every one of the top five that season, with Southport, Cambridge, Aldershot, and Newport, fell into the non-league abyss, with only the Bulls so far regaining their status. Three more of the table also are no longer League sides, with three more clambering out of the chasm in the intervening years, while Reading are now a Premier side. Ambitious Darlington spent the season as the worst team of the 92, while 'big club' Bradford were 16th and Peterboro 19th. Seven of the division are now League One, with only Barnsley now a Championship side.

The Encyclopedia Parrottica records that the Bulls dropped only one point from their last 17 home matches, and recorded an average home gate of nearly 9,000. "The King" Eric Redrobe scored nine in 26 games that season (and returns March 22nd for the Forum sponsorship) while Brian Owen scored eleven.

Regular goalie of 1973 David Icke may now think the world is run by lizards, but he kept clean sheets in his last six Edgar Street appearances. Mr Brown: We'll forgive any sight of a turquoise tracksuit for a similar record in our last six home games!

Fire up the funbus!

Preview: Dagenham vs Bulls

The Bulls travel to Dagenham on Tuesday night looking for a quickfire double over John Still's men.

It'll be little more than two and a half weeks since the first game between these sides. A debut double from Shergar helped demolish a side that was widely regarded as the worst seen at Edgar Street all season.

Dagenham's transformation since that 4-1 drubbing has been rapid. Like the Bulls they have won all three games since and the usually blunt Daggers have bagged twelve goals in the process after manager Still made five changes to the sorry side that rolled over at Edgar Street including the arrival of defender Mark Arber from Stevenage.

The Bulls will be looking to record their sixth successive win, with Gary Hooper looking for his sixth successive scoring appearance. With none of the injured players expected back, Graham Turner's only problem will be to pick the five out of his seven loanees.

Dagenham and Redbridge vs Hereford United, Tuesday 26th February, 7.45pm.

Tuesday Travel To Dagenham

Dagenham and Redbridge v Hereford United
Tuesday 26th February 2008 KO 7.45 pm.
Football League 2
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Stadium
Victoria Road
Essex RM10 7XL

Our Tuesday night return to Victoria Road will no doubt bring back memories of the "Wilderness Years" and one game in particular. Not a Friday and no Sky cameras this time but any sort of win will be well received by a Bulls team looking to go top of League 2. Whilst a midweek trip to The Daggers may not be the most attractive of propositions, it is hoped that a decent following can make the journey and provide the vocal backing that is so much appreciated by the players.

Visiting fans are normally accommodated on the uncovered Pondfield Road Terrace. Admission is via gates 10 and 11 and costs £15 for adults and £10 for concessions (inc U16's). Alternatively, visitors can purchase tickets for seats in The Barking College Stand through gate 9. Admission to the seated area is £18 for adults and £12 for concessions. Refreshments inside the ground are reputed amongst the best in the division.

HUISA - Coach departs The Street at 2.00 pm with a fare fixed at £18. Seats are understood to be still available and can be reserved through the Club office (01432 276666).

FUNBUS - Will depart at the slightly later time of 2.30. Fare is expected to be in the region of £15 but will ultimately depend, as usual, on numbers. Contact Oxo (Rodders on the forum) ASAP on 07872 344712.

TUBE - From central London take the District line to Dagenham East. Exit left out of the station and Victoria Road is on the left after about 500m.

CAR - From Hereford, my advice is to go via Gloucester then straight on at the top of Birdlip towards Oxford using the A40. Then take the M40 (sign London) before joining the clockwise M25 (sign Watford). Continue on the M25 around north London towards the Dartford Tunnel. Leave the M25 at Junction 27 and take the M11 towards London. At the end of the M11 continue onto the A406 towards Docklands (A13) and London City Airport. At the intersection with the A13, turn onto this road towards Dagenham/Dartford Tunnel. As you near Dagenham, you will see a cinema complex on your left. At this point you leave the A13 and join the A1306 towards Dagenham. At the third set of traffic lights turn left at the McDonalds into Ballards Road. At the end of this road you will come to a large roundabout, (known as the Bull roundabout, after the public house of the same name) at which you turn left, into Rainham Road. Proceed up Rainham Road passing Dagenham East tube station on the left and Victoria Road is a quarter of a mile further on, on the same side of the road. There is a fair sized car park at the ground, which is free, but is normally full 45 minutes ahead of kick off. Otherwise street parking. Distance is just short of 175 miles and you should allow at least four hours. POSTCODE RM10 7XL.

ALEHOUSES - The social club at the ground generally allows entry to visitors for a small fee. Otherwise, there are three Pubs within walking distance of the ground with The Eastbrook being the closest. It can be found by walking down the hill towards Golds Gym. Next is The Railway which is down the road beside the station. A ten-minute walk away is the Bull, which is down Rainham Road (going past the Jet Garage), by a large roundabout.

Cooeeeeeee Mr Roberts……it’s behind you!

And he missed it

Taking the michael out of other team's supporters is nothing new but a Shrewsbury supporter went the whole hog yesterday by getting the PA man at the New Meadow to wish a certain Hereford United supporter a happy birthday.

The announcement was made at half-time but unfortunately the recipient missed it as he was otherwise occupied.

Ratcliffesghost, a well respected Shrewsbury supporter, organised the scam which wished a certain Hereford United supporter, Mr Powis, a happy 69th birthday. It also wished him all the best in his 12 month sabatical from alcohol.

Chris Powis, pictured on the FunBus yesterday, is understood to be somewhat younger than 69.

It is also thought unlikely that he will partake in any sabatical.

Hereford Liberals were at Shrewsbury

Hereford Liberal MP Paul Keetch and Terry James, the Leader of the Liberal Group on Herefordshire Council, were both at the Shrewsbury match yesterday.

It is understood they were invited by the editor of the Hereford Journal who thought it was a good chance for the politicans to look around Shrewsbury's New Stadium.

Meanwhile the Conservative candidate for Hereford, Jesse Norman, recently met with Bulls News for a general discussion about Hereford United and how it might fit in with the Edgar Street Grid. Another meeting is planned towards the end of the season.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

More Reaction From Shrewsbury

Shrews sub Chris Humphrey spoke to their official site after the game:

"If you look at it I think we've played well even with the changes the gaffer's made so you can't blame the changes, it just didn't go our way today. Even the weather conditions you can't say affected things. The wind was all over the place but it was the same for both sides. I thought we tried to get the ball down and play, I thought our passing was a lot better so there are some positives to take from the game even though we're all gutted in there.

"It's always difficult to defend pace. Their lads have come on and they're quick and he's brought them on late as well to try and get the third goal. We're pushing hard for an equaliser so it's left them really dangerous breaking on us. So it was hard when they came on but we've tried our best to save the game and it just wasn't to be."

Humphrey also noted the demoralising effect of the Bulls support: "It's really annoying when the whistle goes and you look up and see all those Hereford fans celebrating like that on your ground. It's hard for the staff and the fans too, when you play so well but don't have anything to show for it at the end. We haven't won, we haven't even drawn so everyone's going to be down, we just have to pick ourselves up and stay positive for next week and try to win that one."

Turner hits back at Peters

Graham Turner has hit back at Gary Peters, the Shrewsbury manager, after he poured scorn on Turner's loan policy.

"I had nine registered players in pre-season and if we go up we will have to make changes. But when you've got the manager of Wolves and West Brom ringing you up and offering you players it shows we're regarded as a good club who play football," Turner told the Daily Mail.

Meanwhile Richard Prime of the Hereford Times has reported that despite all the media suggesting that Simon Johnson scored the first goal it may have been Gary Hooper who had the last touch.

"I'm claiming the first goal and I got the last touch," said Hooper.

Shrewsbury's New Stadium

Today will have been the first visit to the New Stadium for virtually all Hereford United supporters.

The general reaction seems to have been positive but it's position and the lack of 'corners' have proved talking points.

From the outside, with it's large car park, it looks impressive. In fact, despite publicity saying there wouldn't be any room for Hereford supporters to park, there was quite a lot of empty bays. Getting in was easy, getting out was slow. The coaches ferrying fans to the station or park and ride had preference. One good idea was an area for supporters to leave their bicylces.

Being cashless the turnstiles worked well with few delays.

The club shop appeared a little small but there was plenty of stock including easter eggs in Shrewsbury Town mugs.

Shrewsbury have included various extras in the stadium including conference facilties and entertainment areas for supporters and clients to enjoy their day at Shrewsbury.

There is a small practice pitch to the east of the stadium. And at the back of the stadium was the railway line. To have had a small station for use on match days has been suggested but ruled out, at least at present.

Inside the stadium didn't look quite finished as it still had large open corners which seemed to make the stadium cold and prone to gusty winds.

The seating, which was well laid out and quite comfortable, gave supporters a good view of the game. The refreshment area was equipped with Sky TV. The catering was done by a local company but probably needed a little more room and a few more staff and there looked to be a need for a few more waste bins around. However the food was deemed an improvement on the regular fayre sold at many grounds.

In essence the New Stadium is perfectly adequate for its needs.

And as Brucie would say: So much nicer than Chester's!

More Reaction from Gary Peters

In a long interview on BBC Radio Shropshire Shrewsbury manager Gary Peters continually contrasted the difference in the make-up of the two teams this afternoon.

"So, who were we playing out there? Were we playing Hereford or were we playing an amalgamated team from the Premiership and the Championship loan players?"

Asked about Hereford striker Sherjill MacDonald, Peters though he was the main difference between the sides.

"The fellow is brilliant. Absolute quality. He's magnificent. He's a great player. He's going to play for West Brom.

"If you want to make the team better with someone elses players it's a different thing. Loan players at your club when it's going well - they love it."

Shrewsbury's loan player scored their goal

"That's the difference between Hall, our loan player who wants to join us and can join us at the end of the season in comparison to going and getting the best players from the Championship who can't join you.

"We tend to have one loan player at a time that we can turn into a permanent signing. Our lads are all going to be with us next year.

"They (Hereford) are a good side at the moment. What do they do when the seven go back?"

Talking about MacDonald and the Hereford goals Peters said:

"It was just that bit of magic, bit of quality from MacDonald that opened it up. He's the best player in our League by a mile. The sooner he goes back to the Championship the better."

Peters thought Shrewsbury were on top most of the second half.

"We pressured them more. We were the better side in the second half.

"We done better than them today. They won the game because they've got that little of quality. The substitutions they made were just bringing on other signings from the Premier League.

"That's not building anything - we're trying to build something here."

Had to pass it today said Smith

Ben Smith told BBC Hereford and Worcester that the windy conditions meant the Bulls had to try and pass the ball at the New Meadow this afternoon.

"It was a bit of a hard fought game. The pace was probably a lot quicker than the games we've had of late.

"Even after going a goal down I felt confident we could win the game.

"It was really windy. It's a lovely stadium but because of the corners it leaves it quite open to gusting wind. We knew that we had to pass it really because if we didn't and played it long it would probably would have been playing into their hands. More up their street than ours."

Smith talked about new loan signing Stephen Glesson who started in mid-field alongside him.

"I think he grew into the game as it went on."

As regards Shrewsbury Smith thought they were destined for mid-table obscurity.

Bulls Triumphant at New Stadium

Hereford United came from behind for the second successive away game to claim a priceless away victory at local rivals Shrewsbury town. Asa Hall had blasted Shrewsbury into the lead after breaking from midfield, before Simon Johnson's close-range rebound levelled proceedings. Gary Hooper, pictured, grabbed the winner mid-way through the second half when he nodded in to send the away following of 1,655 into raptures.

Two changes were made from last weekend's home victory over Chesterfield with both coming in central midfield. Kris Taylor was demoted to the bench, despite impressing in recent games, with Ben Smith making a return. Sam Gwynne was out altogether, with new loan signing Stephen Gleeson joining Smith. Former Conference hotshots Guy Madjo and James Constable started up front for The Shrews, whilst under pressure manager Gary Peters handed a debut to left-back James Meredith.

The Bulls mustered up the first opportunity of the first half, with Sherjill Macdonald shooting over after linking up with Hooper on the edge of the box. Moments after, Shrewsbury took the lead with Hall netting in the sixth minute. Madjo turned Beckwith in the middle of the park, and played a sidewards pass to the onrushing Hall, who had burst from midfield in acres of space. The former Birmingham youngster struck powerfully past Wayne Brown from 18 yards to hand first blood to the hosts. Smith tried his best to bring things level against his old club, but a low long shot went wide. The half passed with some neat football, but little in the way of goalmouth action until Hereford got the equaliser.

It came following a fine flowing move, involving the likes of Macdonald, Hooper and Clint Easton on the edge of the area, with Macdonald bursting into the box. His low cross was met by Hooper, who saw his initial shot blocked, and second shot be pushed away by Glyn Garner, before Johnson finally found the back of the net by smashing in from close-range. The half ended with a series of half-chances; firstly Smith shot from a Macdonald lay-off, but again it went wide, whilst Kelvin Langmead's header went over from a Marc Pugh corner. Finally, Macdonald shot weakly at Garner from outside the area, before Uriah Rennie blew up for half-time.

The second half started with Hooper trying his luck, following again some good attacking football, and close knit passing. The ball fell to the on loan Southend striker from the left-hand side of the box, but his low shot was held by Garner. At the other end, Ben Herd's long shot was routinely held by Brown before Constable neatly turned on the edge of the area, but his end shot was woeful and nearer the corner flag down the goal. Steven Leslie replaced Darren Moss for the home side, as they continued to probe with some half-chances. Madjo directed the ball goalwards after a deep cross from Herd wasn't fully cleared, but the ball fell past the post.

Then the moment came when United grabbed the win. It came following some fantastic football, with Macdonald the star. He won the ball on the half-way line, before turning and running at the defence, using his strength and pace to good effect. Hooper collected a low-pass from his strike partner, before feeding the ball out to Johnson on the right-wing. The goalscorer crossed to the back-post where Macdonald headed down and Hooper nodded in past Garner in front of the away end. A fantastic end to a fine move. Hooper's confidence was shown minutes later, as was Johnson's as they linked-up once more, but the end product from Johnson let him down as he sent a half-volley into the arms of Garner.

Chris Humphrey came on for Pugh, as Shrewsbury injected some pace to their wing and they came mighty close to equalising when McIntyre went forward. A deep cross to the back-post was headed back to McIntyre who sent a flying volley inches past Brown's post. Andy Cooke came on in place of Meredith, as Shrewsbury added another attacking option, whilst Theo Robinson replaced Macdonald. The Watford loanee was soon in the action, setting up Gleeson for a sliced half-volley, before shooting himself into the advertising boards from an acute angle. Easton didn't finish the game, as Threlfall took his place, as Hereford looked to see out the closing stages but Shrewsbury came close to snatching a point. Again, a deep-cross to the back-post caused problems, and this time Madjo rose well to head down, but the ball fell just past the near post. Trevor Benjamin came on for Hooper for the final few minutes, and after the three added minutes were filled with whistles from the away end, Uriah Rennie did the honours and blew the all important whistle.

The result now means Hereford have won five on the bounce, and are looking good in the automatic promotion places. 7,402 were present at Oteley Road as United edged a close-game. Again, Macdonald and Hooper did well up front together, with the latter now scoring in his last five games. Gleeson made his debut in central midfield, and looked tidy, without being spectacular. Up next for The Whites is a long trip to Dagenham on Tuesday night; after the 4-1 victory against The Daggers in early February, United must be confident they can complete their third double of the season following previous doubles over Bradford, and Shrewsbury today.

Hereford: Brown, McClenahan, Beckwith, McCombe, Rose, Johnson, Smith, Gleeson, Easton, Hooper, Macdonald.

Subs: Ingham, Threlfall, Taylor, Benjamin, Robinson.

Shrewsbury: Garner, Moss, Langmead, Tierney, Meredith, Herd, Hall, McIntyre, Pugh, Constable, Madjo.

Subs: Bevan, Hunt, Leslie, Humphrey, Cooke.

Beckwith to miss Stockport Game

Dean Beckwith will miss Hereford United's home game against Stockport County after receiving his fifth yellow card of the season this afternoon at the New Meadow. His was the only Hereford United booking.

The stats show that Hereford United had 52% of the possession and Shrewsbury 48% in a game that was spoilt by a gusty wind.

The Bulls had eight shots on target and Shrewsbury four. Unusually Hereford did not have one corner throughout the ninety minutes, whereas Shrewsbury had six.

All the players in both teams had ratings of either six or seven. Perhaps surprisingly Hereford's Sherjill MacDonald was only given a six despite Shrewsbury manager Gary Peters suggesting he was a class above the rest of the players.

As reported earlier the attendance was 7402 with 1655 from Hereford. However there was room for perhaps another 100 fans in the away end.

There is little change in the League Two table:

1 Milton Keynes Dons 33 31 66
2 Hereford 32 23 64
3 Darlington 32 29 62
4 Peterborough 32 28 62
5 Rotherham 33 12 57
6 Wycombe 34 10 57
7 Stockport 33 9 53

There was little trouble during the game other than a handful of Bulls' supporters running onto the pitch when the equaliser went in. However the one of the Shrewsbury stewards appeared to get in a discussion with other stewards and fans and promptly walked away from his job in an almighty sulk throwing his ear piece and yellow jacket to the ground. He (pictured) took refuge in a Shrewsbury stand.

However some damage was reported in the toilets below the away stand. Why some 'fans' feel the need to damage excellent facilities and therefore give Hereford United supporters a bad name is beyond belief.

Turner: Resilient Once Again

Speaking to the Hereford United website, Graham Turner admitted that the performance wasn't entirely up to scratch even though the result was what was needed:

"Shrewsbury have played well and passed it well. Once again we've been resilient, once again we've come back from the setback of a goal behind and I've always thought we look very lively going forward.

"It didn't quite go as well as it has been recently in terms of our passing and movement but, none the less, it was still sufficient to get us the goals."

Peters: Shergar Was The Difference

Speaking to the Shrewsbury website after the game, Gary Peters felt his side had the better of the game but lacked a cutting edge:

"I thought we passed the ball a lot better and competed well but didn't quite have the quality they had in front of goal. They've got 7 players on loan from the Championship or Premier League so who were we playing, Hereford United or a team amalgamated of players from the Premier League.

"Sherjill MacDonald was the difference, he is absolute quality and the fella is brilliant, he's going to play for West Brom and he'll go on to play for Holland. They have a lot of players on loan but none will stay, that's not building for the clubs future but they are getting success with it at the moment.

"Glyn Garner made couple of great stops before their second goal went in, but again it came from that bit of magic and quality from MacDonald that opened it up."

Bulls Stamp Out Shrews Season

Goals from Simon Johnson and Gary Hooper were enough to beat Shrewsbury 2-1 in today's League Two derby match.

A crowd of 7,402 - with 1,655 Bulls - watched the Bulls record their first league double over their neighbours at the eighth attempt, effectively ending the Shrews' hopes of a play-off charge with them now 13 points adrift of seventh place. Hooper's goal was his fifth sucessive scoring outing. The Bulls remain second in the table.

Full report later.

League Two Results Round-Up

MK Dons retain their two point lead at the top after beating Barnet 2-0. Darlington hold onto third place after a 2-1 win at Bury but their goal difference advantage is down to just one goal after Peterboro beat Macclesfield 3-0. Rotherham beat Lincoln 3-2 for their first win in six. Wycombe beat Rochdale 1-0, and Stockport beat Accrington 2-0 to keep their play-off spots. Chesterfield beat Brentford 2-1 to stay within two points of the play-offs.

Down the bottom, Wrexham could only draw 0-0 with Grimsby to remain six points adrift of safety. Mansfield remain in trouble after losing 3-1 to Chester - their first win in thirteen thanks to two goals from the returning Kevin Ellison. Dagenham eased their troubles with a 2-0 win over Morecambe. They move above Macclesfield, Bury, and Notts County, who lost 3-1 at home to Bradford. The Magpies' only wins in the last 14 games are a double over Chester.

Full Programme of League Two Matches

There is a full programme of League Two matches this afternoon.

Pick of the day is the local derby at Shrewsbury where Hereford are the visitors but there are several other games the results of which will be of interest.

Leaders MK Dons travel to Barnet (18th) and third placed Darlington play at Bury (20th). The leaders play again on Monday evening against Swansea in the second-leg semi-final of the Paint Trophy. The Dons won the first leg at the Liberty Stadium 1-0 and no doubt will have the possibility of playing in the final on their minds.

Should the Dons lose and the Bulls win then Hereford United will top League Two by 5pm this evening. If the Dons draw they will stay top whatever happens elsewhere.

Accrington Stanley v Stockport
Barnet v Milton Keynes Dons
Bury v Darlington
Chesterfield v Brentford
Dag & Red v Morecambe
Macclesfield v Peterborough
Mansfield v Chester
Notts County v Bradford
Rochdale v Wycombe
Rotherham v Lincoln City
Shrewsbury v Hereford
Wrexham v Grimsby

Meanwhile twenty years ago this week 'Peterborough boss Noel Cantwell issued a public apology in the wake of a 2-1 defeat by lowly Hereford, witnessed by just 2,065 hardy souls on a harsh winter night at London Road. Mick Gooding gave Posh the lead but things soon turned sour.'

The Hereford goals were scored by Phil Stant and Steve Spooner. The win kept them 18th in Division Four.

Up The A49 We Go

Up the A49 will go the majority of the 1400 Hereford United supporters expected at the New Meadow this afternoon for the League Two derby between Shrewsbury Town and Hereford United.

Other Bulls fans will arrive from different directions but all will be hoping that Graham Turner's side can make it five wins in a row.

Hereford United failed to defeat Shrewsbury Town in a League or Conference match whilst the home side played at the Gay Meadow. Another reason to win at the New Meadow this afternoon.

Meanwhile several prominent Hereford politicians are expected to be at the ground this afternoon. As well as backing the Bulls, it is thought that they will be interested to see what the new stadium looks like and whether any of its features could be used at or incorporated into an updated Edgar Street.

Finally both BBC Hereford and Worcester and Radio Shropshire will have reports from the game. However there is no commentary on H&W.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Baggies loan Moore from Villa

West Bromwich Albion have completed the loan signing of Luke Moore from Premeirship side Aston Villa until the end of the season. The 22 year old could then join The Baggies on a permanent deal in the summer.

With the striker's arrival at the Hawthorns likely to push Sherjil Macdonald further down the pecking order, the Dutchman could well have his loan extended at Edgar Street.

Turner and Peters in advance of Tomorrow's Derby

Both Graham Turner and Gary Peters have been talking to their respective web-sites in advance of tomorrow's local derby at Shrewsbury's New Meadow.

The Hereford United manger said that he had already looked around the new Shrewsbury stadium.

"With trying to get things done at Edgar Street, I thought it would be interesting to go and see how they've done the new ground and what could be incorporated.

"There should be a good crowd, a good atmosphere. The players are looking forward to going there on the back of four straight wins. We go there with a lot of confidence.

"So far this season the away support has been absolutely outstanding - when you think of Leeds, Bradford, Tranmere.

"I don't think there will be quite 1,700. They have reduced the amount to around the 1,400 mark. But the vocal support we get away from home has been absolutely first class. It's important we out shout them, it's important we get behind the players.

"I keep putting in my programme notes that sometimes things don't go quite to plan and it is then, more than ever, that we need that vocal support."

Whilst Turner has some injury problems he should be able to put out a strong side. Shrewsbury manager Gary Peters has both injury and suspension troubles.

"Both Dave Hibbert and Colin Murdoch are suspended for the Hereford game. Then we've got Ben Davies and Cookie and Darren Kempson as well now. We can't say we are in better shape for Hereford than we were with the game at Morecambe," said Peters.

"Let's hope there is no wind this week, we definitely know we have a nice flat pitch, so its whether the quality that they have obviously got, with all the loan players they've got from clubs in the Championship and the Premiership, shows.

"The good thing with this stadium is that we can have a good crowd here, they can all have good facilities and be seated well. I think everyone is expecting so much from the season that a lot of time they're feeling disappointed but the last game (MK Dons) here, no-one was disappointed with that display and fightback. We should show that spirit all the time and maybe we've got to pretend we are 3-0 down before we get out there, see if that works. If people come to enjoy themselves then they usually do but we've got to make sure that everybody keeps that atmosphere going. I think there was doubts that we would get the atmosphere we did at Gay Meadow, because of the corners being open and things like that but certainly, when we have raised our game, the supporters have raised their game and its a chicken and the egg situation with who's going to be first. If it were really volatile in the crowd with everybody really getting behind the team, maybe that would set us off, rather than us setting them off with a second half fightback."

Chester Not Paying Wages?

Rumours have circulated for some time that Chester City are on the brink of Administration.

Few solid facts have come from the club in regards to their financial status since Stephen Vaughan quit as chairman in December but it is now understood that players wages are not being paid on time, if at all.

Speaking to the press before the weekend game with Chester, Mansfield boss Billy Dearden became the first to 'go public' with the problems at the Deva Stadium: "It is a shame they are having problems. At times players' wages have not been paid which shouldn't happen but does happen."

Dearden himself is a former Chester player, and a friend of Chester boss Bobby Williamson. Since Vaughan's decision to quit the club has won just one of 14 games, and have cut six players off the wage bill. Former players Phil Bolland and Gavin Ward, both now at Wrexham, acknowledged in a radio interview that there were problems with wages.

Vaughan faces a summer court case over two cars he purchased in 2005. He is alleged to have fraudulently obtained finance deals on the cars and insured them under false pretences, and there are also theft charges over the vehicles.

All we want to do is win says Trewick

Hereford United coach John Trewick is aware that given results elsewhere the Bulls could top League Two tomorrow tea-time but he has told the Worcester News they must not get carried away with the possibility of promotion.

"We have just put a little run together where we have picked up four consecutive wins, which is pleasing. We have scored a number of goals and hopefully we can continue that.

"Regardless of who is top tomorrow all we want to do is win our match.

"We are not looking at the promotion issue. We can see the league and we understand where we are but we also know what we have done to achieve that. We are looking at the short-term.

"We have broken the season down into six-match mini leagues and we have tried to achieve our points target within that period. So far this season we have achieved that and that's all we are doing at the moment and not looking beyond that goal.

"It's very much centred on what's happening now.

"We need to go there (Shrewsbury) and make sure we continue our progress and keep them where they are.

"But it will be a diffiuclt match, they are a decent side and will be going out for the win.

"As far as we are concerned it's another game that we can get three points out of."

News Round Up

Stockport have signed Man City full back Shaleum Logan and Everton goalie John Ruddy on a months loan. Logan was previously on loan at Grimsby, and has played in the Carling Cup for his parent club. Ruddy had a previous loan at Stockport last season. Notts County defender Austin McCann has signed a pre-contract agreement with Scottish side Dunfermline.

Brentford have announced that the land for their proposed new stadium has been purchased. Developers Barratt Homes have bought the land to build the new ground before turning Griffin Park into housing. Rochdale goalkeeper Sam Russell will miss six weeks of the run-in with a broken finger. They will recall youngster Lloyd Rigby from loan to cover.

Peterboro defender Tom Williams has been banned for an additional two matches and fined for his recent sending off at Chesterfield. He admitted charges of abusing match officials and Chesterfield staff. Bournemouth's former boss Harry Redknapp will invest in the club to keep it alive, but FA rules will prevent him from being a major contributor until he quits management.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Smith has a chance of playing at Shrewsbury

Hereford United's mid-fielder and stand-in captain Ben Smith has a chance of playing against Shrewsbury Town tomorrow.

Smith missed the Rochdale game after picking up a groin injury in the warm-up. Subsequently he could not take part in the Chesterfield game. He is expected to have a late fitness check before manager Graham Turner decides whether to play him.

Turner gave BBC Hereford and Worcester an injury update:

"Toumani Diagouraga is not going to make the weekend. Ben Smith has got a chance. Steve Guinan and Luke Webb are long-term absentees and not making a lot of progress at present."

New loan signing Stephen Gleeson may start alongside Kris Taylor if Smith is unable to play.

Turner talks about Gleeson

Graham Turner has told BBC Hereford and Worcester that had it not been for an injury new on-loan signing Stephen Gleeson, pictured, would have joined the Bulls sooner. He had been due at Edgar Street before the game against Barnet at the end of January.

"The paperwork wasn't done quickly enough for Barnet so he played in their (Wolves) reserves and got injured on that night. So you can imagine the feeling immediately after we had lost to Barnet - a phone call from Mick McCarthy.

"Graham, sorry, the lad's got injured, Can't join you tomorrow.

"So we've waited a couple of weeks but we're pleased to have him in."

H&W reported that the loan was for an inital month 'although there's a chance it could be extended for the rest of the season.'

Turner also spoke about extending the loans of his front pair of Gary Hooper and Sherjill MacDonald.

"The vibes are quite good although I've not spoken to either West Brom or Southend yet.

"The players have indicated they would like to stay, and we would like to keep them until the end of the season."

Macmillian Renton Appeal Reaches Target

The appeal to raise a £1.5 million share of £3.4 million needed to build a cancer unit at Hereford County hospital has been accomplished.

"It is truly amazing. We asked people to raise £1.5 million to build something they would never want to go near themselves, and they did so," said Ron Davies, fundraising manager for Macmillan Cancer Support as reported by the Hereford Times.

"We asked the public to raise the money. We were never disappointed or ever let down. No-one ever said no. It has been truly amazing and it is wonderful to have been associated with it..

"There were some big donations but ordinary people raised the majority of the money. I think nearly everyone in Herefordshire and parts of Powys did something to make sure we get a new cancer unit in Hereford."

Bulls News was pleased to support this appeal by running a car park at the Hay-on-Wye festival. With the help of several young Hereford United supporters over £21,000 was raised for this excellent cause.

Shrewsbury Captain to miss Hereford Match

Ben Davies, the Shrewsbury captain, will miss Saturday's local derby with Hereford United.

He picked up a ham-string injury in their game against MK Dons and has told the Shropshire Star that the Hereford game will be too soon for him.

Meanwhile Kelvin Langmead will take over as captain, while Davies recovers from injury.

Defender Darran Kempson is also likely to miss the game.

Gleeson To Be Loan No.7

Graham Turner has confirmed to BBC Hereford and Worcester that Wolves midfielder Stephen Gleeson should join the club.

The Dublin born 19 year old playmaker is a full Irish international but has had limited chances in the Molineux first team, making only one start in this season's Carling Cup and four sub appearances last season. He did get good experience from sixteen games for Stockport during a loan spell last season, his last game being at Edgar Street as the Hatters won 2-0.

Turner said: "We've had our problems with both Toumani Diagouraga and Ben Smith being injured. Stephen will give us a little bit more balance in midfield." The deal is expected to be completed tomorrow.

Below is a short profile of Glesson edited from Wolves Official Website.

The loan system served Stephen Gleeson well during 2006/07. The Academy graduate spent a period on loan at Stockport, where he won plaudits from the County fans.

He returned to Molineux and made his first team debut for Wolves, as a substitute, against Hull in April, also going on from the bench in the second leg of the play-off semi-final at West Brom.

Having thought his footballing year couldn't get any better, Stephen was called into the full Irish squad in May and earned his first cap in a friendly against Ecuador.

He further established himself at international level in the early weeks of 2007-08 when, in his debut for Ireland's under 21s, he scored both goals in a 2-2 friendly draw against Germany in Furth.

UPDATE: In an article this afternoon confirming the deal the Wolves site says that Gleeson has joined Hereford United 'on an initial one months loan'. It also mentions that 'injuries have restricted his opportunities'.

Bull Confirmed As Stafford Boss

Steve Bull has been confirmed as the new boss of Stafford Rangers this morning.

The former Bulls player-coach will be initially assisted by caretaker pair Neil Grayson and Kevin Street. Grayson told the press: "It will be a big boost for the club and he will get my full backing."

Bull will continue his work at Molineux as and when his new job allows, and wants some Wolves fans to follow him to Marston Road: "If Wolves haven't got a game and Stafford has then it would be good to see some fans from Molineux coming and giving me a bit of support."

News Round Up

Chester have been told they cannot re-sign loanee Craig Lindfield from Liverpool after their wage cap figure was reassessed on recent lower gates. The Football League blocked their attempts to extend his loan, leaving them with just two fit strikers and youth team players for the forseeable future. The club originally budgeted for 3,300 gates but have averaged only 2,488 so far with recent attendances struggling past the 2,000 mark.

Chesterfield have signed Sunderland pair Peter Hartley and David Dowson on loan for a month. Defender Hartley and Striker Dowson, both 19, are both regulars in the reserves but have only a solitary substitute appearance between them. Grays have parted company with manager Justin Edinburgh, with Chairman Mick Woodward taking control of the team.

Stuart Fleetwood was the only ex-Bull on show as England's 'C' team beat Wales 2-1. The summer Four Nations tournament, taking place in Rhyl, Colwyn Bay, and Oswestry during May 20-24th will feature Gibraltar instead of the Republic of Ireland. Gibraltar are the Island Games football champions, beating the likes of Anglesey, Jersey, and Bermuda.

Wrexham have agreed to let loan pair Conall Murtagh and Levi Mackin stay at Droylsden for the rest of the season. Peterboro have formally acknowledged the signing of Cambridge striker Scott Rendell after he pulled out of the England international to complete talks. A sixth group has entered the race for Mansfield Town. An American consortium has joined five other interested parties, but there remain only two actual bids on the table.

MK Dons' goalscoring midfielder Mark Wright will miss several weeks after being diagnosed with a partial tear of a hamstring. He has scored 13 times this season, including five in their last three league matches.