Monday, August 31, 2009

Preview: Bulls vs Bristol Rovers

The Bulls entertain Bristol Rovers on Tuesday night for a Johnstones Paint Trophy match.

The two sides will meet in the Trophy for the first time since 1987, when teams would be drawn into three team groups. The Bulls won at Twerton Park 2-0, progressing to the quarter final stage that season. It was also that season that the Bulls recorded their last victory over the Pirates, taking an aggregate win in the League Cup with a 2-0 win at Edgar Street. But recent reading is not so good with the Bulls losing four of the five matches in the last three years, scoring just two goals to the Pirates' twelve.

The Bulls have been drawn at home in the Trophy in each season since returning to the Football League, and lost the lot. Their last victory was in the final Conference year, with three League sides being sent out before the Bulls fell to Macclesfield in the Northern area semi-final. The injury to winger Jonny Godsmark is likely to rule him out for Tuesday night, if only as a precautionary measure, meaning that Bristol City loan winger Marlon Jackson may make a first start with Matt Done seemingly out of favour.

Despite the Pirates' sale of star striker Rickie Lambert, they have made a decent start to the season. Currently lying seventh in the League One table they lost to struggling Wycombe on Saturday after beating Huddersfield the week before. Jo Kuffour, who scored twice in pre-season at Edgar Street, and Daryl Duffy have two goals each so far this season.

Hereford United vs Bristol Rovers, Edgar Street, Tuesday September 1st, 7.45pm.

News Round Up

Morecambe have signed veteran striker Paul Mullin from Accrington. The 35 year old spent nine years at the club, playing more than 400 games. Ex-Bull Nicky Nicolau is on trial with Maidenhead United of Conf South. Crewe have signed midfielder Simon Walton on a season long loan from Plymouth. The former Leeds trainee cost Charlton £500,000 as a 19 year old.

Barnet have turned down a six figure bid from Blackpool for winger Albert Adomah. Accrington are planning a £1.2million overhaul to their ground despite their financial problems. The improvements include new changing rooms, and a roof on the away end. Aldershot have rejected a bid from Swindon for striker Marvin Morgan. The former Woking man has scored three times in six games this season.

In today's Conference games Oxford lead the table despite only getting a goalless draw with Forest Green, who remain second bottom to Chester. AFC Wimbledon are up to third after a 4-2 win at Grays, while Kidderminster remain in mid-table after a 2-1 loss at Tamworth.

Trollope pre Paint Game

Bristol Rovers manager Paul Trollope has been talking about tomorrow's Paint Trophy game against Hereford United at Edgar Street.

"It figures high in our priorities. We were disappointed to go out at the First Round stage last season at Bournemouth, and we want to get through against Hereford tomorrow," Trollope told the Rovers OS.

"The competition was very kind to us a few years ago, and we would like another run in it. Getting to the final really boosted us, and added a lot of confidence and belief to the side. I think we went through to the final without conceding a goal, which was a fantastic achievement.

"We did it by tweaking the side as we went along, though we didn't rest a large number of players, and it worked very, very well for us. It's a tricky tie and we go into it after a disappointing performance at Wycombe and wanting to get the troops going again and get back to the performance level that we know we can produce, so it's a big game for us.

"Certainly there are a few players, who were on the bench on Saturday, who are first team players so there will be changes.

"Naturally Steve Elliott and Dominic Blizzard will come into contention. They made their first starts for us in last week's Carling Cup tie at Cardiff, and it was a difficult first game for both of them because Cardiff were right on top of their game.

"It's unlikely that Andy Williams will feature as he's been suffering from a virus. We will assess him through the day, but he won't be training with us this morning. However if he can make a suitable recovery over the next 24 hours he may feature but, as we speak, he could be struggling."

Rovers are struggling with goalkeepers at present. Rhys Evans will probably be in goal tomorrow evening but Trollope is hoping to sign another keeper as soon as possible.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

News Round Up

Notts County are claimed to be on the verge of signing Kanu from Portsmouth by the Mirror, while the News of the World says Freddie Ljungberg and Christian Vieri are to be offered a final payday. Shrewsbury boss Paul Simpson will strengthen his squad before the deadline after midfielder Terry Dunfield dislocated a shoulder in training. The former Macclesfield man will miss three months.

Port Vale have loaned transfer listed midfielder Danny Edwards to Altrincham for a month. Torquay have loaned reserve keeper Martin Rice to Truro for the season, and are to sign another keeper before the deadline. Former Bulls loanee Darren Blewitt has joined Ryman premier side Aveley from first division Brentwood Town.

Wayne Jones joins Shots

Former Hereford United physio Wayne Jones has joined Aldershot.

Jones has been working at the Recreation Ground since previous physio Jim Joyce moved to Brighton.

"It is good news to have Wayne on a permanent basis. I am pleased to have him on board and he brings plenty of experience to the club," commented manager Gary Waddock.

Jones left Edgar Street in late August 2008 and moved to Yeovil but left Huish Park at the end of last season.

Hereford United travel to Aldershot for a League Two match next Saturday.

No Bank Holiday Game for Bulls

Once again this season there are no August Bank Holiday Monday fixtures in the Football League. Yet Hereford United have a Paint Trophy tie on Tuesday evening.

When the Bulls were in the Conference August Bank Holiday fixtures were eagarly awaited and often the gate was one of the highest of the season.

For example 4,985 watched the match against Aldershot on Monday August 25th 2003.

On Tuesday evening Bristol Rovers are the visitors in the Trophy. A sub 1,000 crowd is likely.

From an ecomonic point of view surely it makes sense to play a League game on this Bank Holiday. Bringing forward the Shrewsbury game from a Tuesday evening in late November might have been one possibility. Or, should the police felt unable to cope, the home game against Bournemouth on a Tuesday evening at the end of September.

The Trophy game could have then been played a week or so later.

In the present economic climate an extra 500 or so on the gate should be a consideration.

Sheldrake to referee Paint Game

Darren Sheldrake from Surrey is set to referee Tuesday evening's Paint Trophy game at Edgar Street where Bristol Rovers will be the visitors.

Sheldrake has not officiated a Hereford United game to date. He has just been promoted from the Conference and this will be his third game at this level.

High and Mighty ESG slammed by Civic Society

There's little doubt that the Edgar Street Grid organisation is not flavour of the month with Hereford United chairman Graham Turner. He has, in effect, suggested that they have included potential clients, who might have become tenants as and when the football ground is redeveloped, in their own plans leaving the football club struggling to find partners for space around the two ends of the Edgar Street ground.

This weekend another organisation, the Hereford Civic Society, has accused the ESG of failing to listen to others and has therefore decided to withdraw from the ESG stakeholder forum.

Their letter is addressed to Mike Ashton of the Chamber of Commerce:

ESG Stakeholder Forum

On behalf of the Hereford Civic Society, I am writing to you in my capacity as chairman, to request the removal of the HCS from the ESG stakeholder forum with immediate effect.

I should like you, the forum’s stated chairman, to understand the reasons why HCS no longer wishes to be involved:

•The forum is no longer widely representative
•Attendance continues to be very poor; often just ESG and Council Officers are present
•Those others that do attend have no control of meetings or agenda
•ESG officers do not record minutes or return with comments, evidence, or follow up
•Nothing changes as to project detail despite much discussion
•It is quite apparent that external group involvement is tokenism merely to give credibility to ESG statements as to widely conducted consultation about the project – when in fact no effective consultation is actually taking place
•The forum adds to confusion as to the project delivery phase and the project consultation phase
•Despite the significant gravity of this project, leaders of council and chief executive of the JVC routinely fail to turn up to meetings. They do not engage in consultation with the public, preferring the counsel of their own wisdom rather than that of the forum
•The role of the Chamber of Commerce remains unclear as to the Chambers own objectives
•The Civic Society cannot see where decision-making or the ESG project has changed as a result of attendance
•A request that the HCS should add subjects to meeting agendas, on distinctiveness, characterisation and wider linkages within the city as a whole, has been summarily dismissed

Given the above, I am sure you can understand the reasons why the HCS wishes to disengage from the ESG Stakeholder forum. In summary we believe it is not an effective tool for influencing a significant city project.

I trust that the above clarifies the position of the Civic Society and that the stakeholder forum makes no further reference to HCS involvement. We would request specifically that no further reference to HCS membership be made either in the forum's written material or on its web site. Please make this letter available at the next meeting of the Stakeholder Forum to record the formal withdrawal of our organisation.

Kind regards

Yours sincerely

Garry Thomas
Chair, HCS

For reference there were ten people at the last stakeholders forum meeting. Apologies were received from 15 people including the ESG chief executive. No one connected with Hereford United, or any other sporting organisation, appears to have attended any of the stakeholder meetings. Perhaps they were not invited despite the importance of the football club and its proximity to the ESG.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Ex-Bull Watch

Theo Robinson scored the opener as Huddersfield beat Yeovil, with Lionel Ainsworth providing the cross for the winner. Steve Guinan scored the first of two Northampton goals, but they were already three down by then at Burton. Brian Smikle scored twice for Kidderminster as they beat Altrincham.

Godsmark taken to Hospital

On loan winger Jonny Godsmark has been taken to Hereford Hospital to have an injury, which occured in this afternoon's match, looked at according to the Official Site.

Godsmark appeared to go down on on his wrist after a challenge. He was attended to by physio Jamie Pitman who called on Dr Frith, the club doctor, for assistance.

The wrist was bandaged and Godsmark returned to the field, but within a minute or so he requested to come off and was replaced by Lee Morris.

Bulls blag point against Port Vale

After taking the lead against the run of play with a fine Marc Pugh finish, The Valiants struck twice through Dodds and Taylor before Triston Plummer converted from the spot to give The Bulls a somewhat fortunate home point.

Manager Trewick had shuffled his pack giving a midfield starts to Sam Gwynne and Jamie Tolley leaving captain Kenny Lunt without a place even on the bench. Ryan Green took the armband. The flanks were occupied by Jonny Godsmark and the returning Marc Pugh while Triston Plummer partnered Constantine up front. For Vale, both Lee Collins and John McCombe started in a central back three but Kris Taylor missed out having incurred a thigh strain during midweek training.

The game started with Hereford defending the Meadowend and under early pressure from a Vale team fresh from their midweek Carling Cup victory. Richards forced a corner off Dennehy, which was taken by Frazer and met with a firm Gareth Owen header that crashed off the crossbar. Shortly afterwards, Richards blazed over from 15 yards when well placed. Dennehy then conceded a free kick on the right edge of the box but Bartlett was quickly off his line to collect Frazer’s cross. Jonny Godsmark landed awkwardly damaging his right arm and was replaced by Lee Morris on the quarter hour mark. Vale continued to boss the proceedings but in a rare Hereford attack, Pugh released Morris who found Tolley on the edge of the box but his effort flew over the bar. A Vale free kick from their right found it’s way to McCombe but the former Hereford player’s shot was deflected for a corner. Corner after corner rained in on the Bulls goal and McCombe came close again when his header thumped off the crossbar. Then, against the run of play, The Bulls took the lead. Leon Constantine worked the ball wide to Marc Pugh who turned his marker one way then the other before cutting in from the left and firing into the far top corner from 18 yards with fifteen minutes remaining of the half. The goal brought some impetus to what had been a lacklustre Bulls performance and Hereford continued to give a good account of themselves up to the break as the game see-sawed from end to end. Pugh fed Morris on the eighteen-yard line, the striker turn his marker and fired just wide as the first period drew to a close.

HT HUFC 1 Port Vale 0

With a half time lead and the opportunity to attack down the slope, fans must have been hopeful that the first League victory was on the way. However, not for the first time this season, it was the visitors who took the initiative after the half time cucumber sandwiches. The noticeable difference between the respective defences was the quality of clearances. While the resolute Vale defenders managed to find their own players, all to often The Bulls back division’s efforts were collected and returned by the Valiant’s midfield. Just five minutes into the second period, a hacked ball upfield was fed back into Louis Dodds who rounded Dennehy and fired home across Bartlett into the far corner of the net.

Just minutes later, Vale took the lead. Rob Taylor who had impressed down the left moved towards the edge of the Bulls box unchallenged before curling a delightful shot passed Bartlett to give the visitors a deserved lead. Port Vale continued to control matters and The Bulls had Bartlett to thank for two fine saves from Richards and Loft. Meanwhile, Constantine was withdrawn and replaced by young Marlon Jackson. However, Hereford still struggled to produce any real chances but as the sub-2000 home crowd must have been fearing the worst, Lord Richard Rose set off on a rampaging run towards the opposing goal. With Pugh expecting to be released on the left, Rose cut into the box and was felled by McCombe’s outstretched leg to provide an equalising chance. Triston Plummer stepped up and dispatched the spot-kick firmly to the keepers right to level the score with his first League goal with ten minutes left on the clock.

Vale responded with more attacking play and Loft, Taylor and Frazer all brought saves from Bartlett as The Bulls hung on earn a less than deserved point in front of 2434 including 445 from Vale Park

FT HUFC 2 Port Vale 2.

This was, yet again, a game that left Bulls fans wondering where a victory would come from. The transfer window swings shut on Tuesday with little sign at this time of any incomers. Fortunately, it’s only a week or so before the emergency loans can be made and it must be hoped that John Trewick’s contacts can produce something special to add to his beleaguered squad.

HUFC - Bartlett; Green, Dennehy, D Jones, Rose; Godsmark (Morris, 16 min), Gwynne, Tolley, Pugh; Constantine (Jackson, 76 min), Plummer.
Subs not used: Adamson, Valentine, Lowe, Southam, Done.

PORT VALE - Martin; Yates, Collins, McCombe, Owen, McCrory; Dodds (Jorgensen, 86 min), Fraser, Loft; Taylor (Horsfield, 86 min), Richards.
Subs not used: Stockley, Griffith, Weston.

Disappointed says Adams

Not surprisingly Port Vale manager Micky Adams was disappointed not to take all three points at Edgar Street this afternoon.

"We should have won the game," Adams told the press.

"There were two lapses of concentration, with one in each half costing us a game we should have won quite comfortably.

"We didn't take our chances at the Hereford end and certainly we've got to be disappointed with the two goals we've conceded.

"So, all in all, we're disappointed."

Tribute to Sjt McAlleese

Just before the start of this afternoon's match two wreaths were laid in the centre of the Edgar Street pitch in memory of Sjt Paul McAleese who recently lost his life whilst serving in Afghanistan.

The wreaths were laid by members of his family,

A one minute silence was observed by both sets of fans.

Bucket collections were held both inside and outside the ground on behalf of the Help The Heroes Fund and Sjt McAleese's young son.

Many supporters contributed to the cause.

Update Sunday: Thousands of pounds were raised yesterday by the collection in the centre of Hereford and at the football ground according to the BBC.

Half of the money will go to a trust fund set up for Sjt McAleese's baby son, Charley.

The rest will go to Help for Heroes, a charity that supports wounded soldiers.

Results Round Up

Dagenham head the table on goal difference after their 3-0 win over Lincoln. Rotherham and Bournemouth are level on points with the Daggers after the Cherries beat Crewe 1-0, and the Millers won 3-1 at Macclesfield. Barnet are a surprise fourth after beating Notts County 1-0. Aldershot are up to seventh after winning 2-1 at Grimsby. Burton are just behind them after a 3-2 win over Northampton. Rochdale beat Bury 3-0, and Bradford beat Torquay 2-0.

Down the bottom Darlington are rooted to the foot of the table after a 1-1 draw with Cheltenham gave them their first point. Four teams, including the Bulls, are immediately above them with Accrington losing 3-1 at home to Shrewsbury and Morecambe drawing 1-1 at Chesterfield.

In the Conference Oxford lead the table by a point after a 1-0 win at AFC Wimbledon. Mansfield are second following a 1-0 win at Chester, now 29 points adrift, with Luton slipping to third with a goalless draw at Kettering. Forest Green lost 2-0 at home to Wrexham, with Kidderminster beating Altrincham 3-0.

We should be winning home games - Trewick

In a post match interview with Trevor Owens for BBC Hereford and Worcester, the Hereford United manager said he was disappointed only to draw with Port Vale.

"After not starting particularily well in the first twenty minutes we got ourselves into the game and Marc Pugh got himself a really good goal. Fanastic individual effort.

"From there we were hoping to build on it and it was important we got off to a good start in the second half but we didn't.

"They were naturally going to come out and try to put us under more pressure and increase the tempo of the game which they did.

"In the end we got a point but we've got to be looking to win the home games especially against teams like Port Vale.

Owens asked Trewick about the penalty.

"He (Rose) drove that from the back, committed people and won us the penalty. He could do that more often."

And about potential signings?

"I've got to really start thinking now about what might need to be done. We'll see.

And before the window closes?

"On a permanent basis I think it is unlikely. Loan signings are the more obvious route - that we might go down"

Stats from Edgar Street

This afternoons stats from Edgar Street:

Possession: Bulls 48% Vale 52%

Shots on Target: Bulls 3 Vale 6

Shots off Target: Bulls 1 Vale 8

Corners: Hereford 0 Vale 11

Fouls: Fouls 9 Vale 16

Attendance: 2434 with 445 from Port Vale

No Hereford player was booked, however Jonny Godsmark had to be subbed on 15 minutes with what looked like an injury to his wrist.

Bottom of League Two:

19 Macclesfield 5 -4 5
20 Hereford 5 -3 3
21 Morecambe 5 -5 3
22 Grimsby 5 -6 3
23 Accrington Stanley 5 -7 3
24 Darlington 5 -5 1

Bulls Scrape Vale Point

The Bulls earned another grateful point against Port Vale in today's League Two match.

The 2-2 final score didn't do justice to a Vale side that should have been three up, with two hitting the crossbar, before Marc Pugh's mazy run into the box saw him free to curl a shot past the keeper. Louis Dodds and Robert Taylor put Vale ahead before a decisive run by Richard Rose into the box was ended unfairly by ex-Bull John McCombe, with Tristan Plummer slotting home the resultant penalty.

With 445 Port Vale fans, there were less than 2,000 Bulls in the crowd of 2,434 - and if the Bulls continue to remain only goal difference away from the drop zone then they can expect the low attendances to continue.

Full report later.

Bulls Youth Squad Addition

Bridgend based young footballer John-Paul Budd has signed for Hereford United.

Budd, aged 16, will play for Hereford’s youth team and continue his education as he takes up a two-year course in Sports Science.

The team is set to play at Swindon this morning in a Youth Alliance league game.

Three Former Bulls in Vale Squad

Three former Hereford United players are expected to start for Port Vale this afternoon at Edgar Street.

The three players are Lee Collins, John McCombe and Kris Taylor.

Collins was a young loanee from Wolves when he came to Edgar Street in November 2007 and made 13 appearances for the Bulls. Graham Turner was short of defenders at the time with both Karl Broadhurst and Dean Beckwith out through injury, and Trent McClenahan playing for the Olyroos.

McCombe joined Hereford United in July 2007 and made 29 appearances before a hand-ball in a match against Chester appeared to put him out of favour with Turner. He was released at the end of the season.

Taylor also joined the Bulls in July 2007 and made 40 appearances in his first season. Kept on for a second season he made another 43 appearances. Although offered a further deal he decided to leave Edgar Street.

All should receive a decent reception this afternoon.

Meanwhile Vale now have a 'permanent' manager as Micky Adams signed a deal with the club yesterday.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Supporters Initiative Launched at Yeovil

For whatever reason or reasons Hereford United have dropped open days and fans forums. Even the liason committee meetings have been few and far between. Yet down the road at Yeovil they are about to launch a Supporters Liason Group.

Yeovil already have a Supporters Liason Officer, Sara Bradley, and she has outlined the aims of the new group which are "to develop and improve the club/supporter relationship".

The SLG will meet bi-monthly with Sara for the course of the year with the first meeting arranged for next month. The group's main aim will be to purely focus on matters that directly affect the supporters and their experience at Huish Park.

The SLG will discuss general agenda items rather than specific questions as this will ensure a more concentrated approach on key areas within the club. Ideas generated from the meetings will be presented to the Executive Committee for consideration at their next meeting. An article regarding the meeting will appear on the club's official website within 48 hours.

"I feel that the SLG will provide the perfect opportunity to highlight any issues or put forward any new ideas that may benefit both the club and its loyal fans," said Sara.

Update Saturday: Yeovil has a 'journey from hell' yesterday when their team coach was held-uo on the M5 near Avonmouth because of a possible suicide attempt. The coach had left Yeovil at 11am and arrived near Huddersfield, their opponents this lunchtime, at 11pm.

They will face two formers Bulls, Lionel Ainsworth and Theo Robinson who both start for Huddersfield.

HUISA announce Aldershot and Grimsby plans

Tickets for the HUISA coach to Aldershot (5th Sept) will be on sale in Radford's before tomorrow's game against Port Vale.

Seats are priced at £15 (non-members £16) and departure is set for 9.30 am.

The trip to Grimsby on September 12th is £21 (£22) with an 8.30 am start.

Both games kick off at 3.00 pm.

Trollope Eyes JPT Success

Bristol Rovers boss Paul Trollope is eyeing success in this season's Johnstones Paint Trophy, starting at Edgar Street on Tuesday night.

Speaking to their official site, Trollope said: "The Johnstone's Paint Trophy served us well a couple of seasons ago, we had a disappointing exit at Bournemouth in the first round last year, and we want to go as far as we can in the competition. It is important to win games to breed confidence in the group.

"At the moment we are concentrating on Wycombe, but when it comes round we will be fully focussed on it and it is a tie we look forward to and look to progress through. When we went through to the final three years ago we were a mid-table League Two side, now we look at ourselves as a top half League One side, and that means you have to be one of the favourites to progress quite far in the competition, and we will try and do that.

"We know it does build confidence in the group when you win games, it also brings some extra revenue for the football club, which is always handy, and we will be going to Hereford to win. There are some big clubs in our division, but within the initial rounds in the Southern cluster, we would consider ourselves a strong outfit.

"It is a competition we will take seriously and we want to progress through to the next round."

Gwynne doubtful for Vale Game

Sam Gwynne is unlikely to feature for the Bulls tomorrow against Port Vale as it is has been reported by the Worcester News that he might have damaged medial ligaments.

On the brighter side manager John Trewick is hopeful that both Lee Morris and Marc Pough could be available again after they both missed the Carling Cup game at Portsmouth with groin problems.

Concerned but not distressed - Trewick

In an interview published on the Football League site John Trewick says he is enjoying his new job as manager of Hereford United. And whilst he admits he's concerned about the Bulls lack of points he's not distressed.

"When I was assistant to Graham," said Trewick, "he gave me a lot of leeway in areas like player recruitment as well as coaching, so along with my previous jobs I've had a good grounding.

"What I'm doing now isn't massively different to what I was doing before. There are obviously one or two adjustments and, of course, the buck now stops with me. But I'm thoroughly enjoying it - I've still got as much enthusiasm for football as I've ever had and to be honest, if you don't enjoy the game you shouldn't be working in it.

"We've not done too badly so far after the disappointment of last season," said the 52-year-old manager.

"Clubs like Leeds and Leicester in League 1 are massive compared to us, so it was a struggle to compete with them because our income basically didn't allow us to do so.

"We also had an extraordinary amount of things that worked against us. Just one example is the fact that for one reason or another we had to use seven different goalkeepers over the course of the season - I'd never experienced anything like that before and it certainly affected us.

"Now we're working to get some results together, and although we've not got the number of points we'd like on the board at this stage the players are in a positive frame of mind, we're finding out week to week about the strengths and weaknesses of the teams in League 2 and I'm very hopeful of having a decent season."

Collins: Trewick Is Great Guy

Ex-Bull's loanee Lee Collins has spoken highly of Bulls boss John Trewick ahead of tomorrow's match with Collins' Port Vale.

Speaking to their official site, Collins said: "I had a brilliant time at Hereford United and a couple of the boys are still there from my time at the Club. I have a lot of respect for John Trewick - he's a great guy, a fantastic coach and someone I know well. Hereford United like to play good passing football and we have to make sure we match them in every area on Saturday. I am obviously looking for a Port Vale win."

Meanwhile Kris Taylor, talking to the Sentinel, hopes for a decent reception tomorrow: "I don't feel I have anything to prove, although obviously it's nice to go back to teams you've been at and do well. I don't think I left on bad terms, so I wouldn't expect to get hammered by the supporters or anything like that. I enjoyed my time there – I did my best and won promotion. Getting relegated last season was obviously disappointing, but I gave my all – it was just a case of moving on.

"There are not many lads left from my time with the club. The way the manager (John Trewick) wants to go about the game will be similar to the way we used to play. But I don't think the team will be anything like the same as it was last year."

News Round Up

Bournemouth's transfer embargo remains in place after the Football League refused to lift it. A statement from club chairman Eddie Mitchell says the club lost £1million last season after exiting Administration, including over £400,000 in tax. The statement continues that they have cleared some of last season's debt, and are keeping up with current bills. Mitchell, who sold his stake in previous club Dorchester to his sons, has also confirmed that they have sold that club after the Football League expressed concern at the link.

Northampton accepted a six figure bid from Swansea for striker Adebayo Akinfenwa, but the Swans opted to sign Craig Beattie and Lee Trundle instead. The Cobblers have signed Sheff Weds midfielder Luke Boden on a months loan. Rochdale striker Jon Shaw has joined Barrow on a months loan. Crewe have opted not to offer trialist defender Carl Martin a contract after three seperate trials at the club.

Bradford have signed winger Scott Neilson on a three year deal. They have paid a small fee for the 22 year old from Cambridge City. Macclesfield have signed Leicester striker Ricky Sappleton on loan until January. The 19 year old had spells with Oxford and Bournemouth last season, scoring twice in six games. Chesterfield have signed winger Wade Small on contract until the summer. He played for Charlton against the Bulls in the Carling Cup, but was released earlier in the week.

Barnet assistant boss Gary Breen will miss another month with a leg injury.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Adams previews Hereford Game

Port Vale are the visitors to Edgar Street on Saturday and there are likely to be three former Hereford United players in Micky Adam's squad.

"It's another game for us and we need to be focused on the job in hand," Adams told the Valiants OS.

"Hereford United will be doing all they can to get a result on the back of three consecutive defeats so we need to make sure we will be fully prepared. We've been very positive in training so I know we will be.

"Tuesday's result has given us all a bit of confidence but the league is our bread and butter and we know what we need to do on Saturday. We are looking forward to the game and we want to get a result at Edgar Street.

"I'm sure the three of them - Lee Collins, Kris Taylor and John McCombe - will receive a nice reception there but they are Port Vale players now. They know what they have to do.

"We've had Hereford United watched and they were unlucky not to get a result in their last league game - I know John Trewick would have been disappointed with that.

"They have a number of players who are capable of doing well at this level and I am certain Leon Constantine will want to have a good game against us. He had a fantastic scoring record during his time at Vale Park, so we hope he won't continue that against us at the weekend."

The Role of Supporters

The role of supporters at Hereford United has diminished in recent years. HUISA, the Hereford United Independent Supporters Association, has just 68 members and hasn't got the influence it once had despite owning 2276 shares.

And the Vice-Presidents club has recently been taken in house which, in effect, means it has lost some of its freedom and perhaps importance.

But it wasn't always so.

In John Williamson's book, the Hereford United Story, there is a chapter written by Ted Woodriffe, about how over the years the supporters have played a vital role in the development of Hereford United.

Ever since the club was formed there have been men to organise and direct the activities of a flourishing Supporters Club and in recent years a progressive Vice-Presidents' club has emerged. Both organisations enter the club's Jubilee Years with ambitious plans to provide bigger and better amenities for their members in the future.

In August 1974 - exactly fifty years from the day United played their first match at Edgar Street, the bulldozers moved in to clear the site for a new £120,000 Social Club.

"It is an ambitious project but we are planning for generations to come and not for next year," said Supporters Club chairman, Phil Godsall.

The original supporters club was built in 1964 with money raised by then chairman Frank Miles and a few years later a Club Shop was opened.

Another venture started in April 1971.

A meeting was held at the Salmon Inn when it was agreed to form the Vice-Presidents Club 'for the purpose of furthering the aims and ambitions of Hereford United'. Mr John Jackson was appointed the first chairman.

The first pint was officially pulled in the new club lounge underneath the Merton Grandstand on September 1st and by the end of the first financial year the club had covered the cost of conversion work and had money in the bank.

After Jackson, Mr Duncan Heins took over and then in June 1974 Mr Graham Rivers became chairman with the 'job of planning future expansion to provide more spacious premises'.

The Hereford United Grandstand Fund Committee has also played an important role in club affairs since United were elected to the Football League. They set themselves the task or raising the money to pay for the £31,000 Len Weston Grandstand.

Jackson still training with Burton

Full back Richard Jackson, who was released by Hereford United at the end of last season, has been training with Burton Albion but hasn't been offered a deal so far.

"Richard is a quality defender who I have known since my days at Derby," said Brewers manager Paul Peschisolido as reported by the Burton Mail.

"He came to train with us because he had a few injury problems, but he has worked really hard and is now near to full fitness.

"I told him a while back that we would continue to monitor his progress and, really, the situation has not changed.

"He'll continue to train with us and hopefully he'll have another game in our reserves next week, but I've discussed things with him and told him I can't promise a contract.

"Richard is a really good player, but there are lot of really good players in his situation who are still looking for a club and still trying to get a contract."

News Round Up

Rochdale have signed defender Matthew Flynn on a permanent deal from Macclesfield for a small fee with a sell-on clause. The 20 year old joined Dale on loan two weeks ago, playing three times. Macclesfield admit they may lose midfielder John Rooney, brother of Wayne, after a string of Premier League scouts watched the teenager over the last two weeks. Bournemouth defender Jason Pearce is being linked with a move to Plymouth.

Cheltenham have signed Bristol City midfielder Frankie Artus on a months loan after a similar spell last season, and signed Kosovo born defender Ajet Shehu on non-contract terms. Shehu was previously with Spurs' Academy. Crawley boss Steve Evans faces having a suspended ten game ban imposed after he was sent from the dugout on Saturday during their 4-1 loss to Gateshead. He received a 12 games ban, with a further 10 suspended, for last season's antics.

Rotherham's pitch is to be partially returfed in the wake of the U2 concert at the Don Valley stadium. Notts County have failed to persuade Pavel Nedved out of retirement after talks, but will be paying £250,000 for Derby full back Jordan Stewart.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Gowling joins Gills

Josh Gowling has joined Gillingham on a two year deal. The defender, who had a successsful loan spell with Hereford United last season, has just completed a one month loan from Carlisle.

"You bring players to the club to play to their strengths and play in their positions but sometimes, like Josh, they have to move across and do the best they can," said Gillingham manager Mark Stimson.

"That's happened to Josh but he has come in and done his best in that role and it's hard to criticise him."

McCombe Concentrates On Three Points

Ex-Bull John McCombe has spoken to Port Vale's official site ahead of his return to Edgar Street on Saturday.

After last night's win over Sheff Weds, McCombe admits the League is their priority: "I had a good year down there but I'm looking forward to going down there and hopefully getting three points. It's the league that matters for us - that has to be our main priority. That's what we are all focussing on."

McCombe, who played 32 times in his single season with the Bulls, also spoke about Kris Taylor's strike: "When Tayls had the ball and had a shot, I shouted a few expletives because I wanted him to cross it, but I was so glad when it hit the back of the net."

Nerves may have contributed to defeat

Hereford United manager John Trewick admitted that nerves might have affected some of his squad last night at Fratton Park.

"We never got off the ground really with our passing, and some of our players looked a bit nervous," said Trewick as reported by GiveMeFootball.

"Possibly some of them looked around the pitch at some of the names and faces and didn't quite have enough belief to get at them.

"It was disappointing - we lost our shape a little bit as well in the centre of the pitch. When you allow Kranjcar to have a free run at your centre-backs from a deep position, you know you're going to get into trouble.

"We lost it in the first 20 minutes of the game I thought, and once they were two or three up, it was damage limitation."

Minute Silence for Sgt McAleese on Saturday

Hereford United will hold a minutes silence prior to Saturday's match against Port Vale in memory of Sgt Paul McAleese who was killed by an explosion in Afghanistan.

Members of Paul’s family will be in attendance as will a number of his colleagues from the 2nd Battalion Rifles. It is expected that during the minutes silence a member of the family will lay a wreath on the centre spot.

There will also be a bucket collection at the stadium on behalf of the Help The Heroes Fund and his young son.

Sgt McAleese leaves a widow, Jo, and a son, Charley, who was born a week before his deployment to Afghanistan.

Paying tribute after his death, Jo said: "Mac, my husband, my best friend, my hero. You were an amazing Daddy to Charley and the best husband I could have ever asked for. We will love you and miss you for ever. We will always be so proud of what you achieved in your life and I am so, so proud to be your wife."

The Cost of Policing around West Ham

Last night's problems outside the West Ham football ground must have cost the police many thousands of pounds. A Helicopter, 20 horses, and hundreds of police, including 200 riot police, were involved in an effort to keep order between so-called West Ham and Millwall fans.

Whatever the rights and wrongs of the evening's events the police costs will be picked up by the London taxpayer unless the club contributes to the cause.

At a guess those costs might be at least £250,000 and possibly a lot more.

It will be interesting to see what costs are paid by West Ham. Obviously they will pay for the police inside the ground just as any other club. But they may well argue, just as Hereford United chairman Graham Turner does, that the cost of policing outside the ground is not their responsibility particularily if it is proven that the majority of those involved were not genuine supporters of either club.

Meanwhile the Football Supporters Federation has issued the following statement:

The FSF opposes all forms of violence and we hope an appropriate investigation finds out what happened and takes the proper action,” said FSF chair Malcolm Clarke. “This is a serious incident and, like the vast majority of West Ham and Millwall supporters, we condemn the scenes we have seen which were entirely unacceptable.”

“However the last four years of Home Office figures show that violence is decreasing, you are safer at football than at any time for decades, and we should not forget this.”

This story will be big news, which in itself shows how rare these incidents now are, and the overwhelming majority will find the scenes as depressing as we do. The latest Home Office figures showed that 37 million fans attended football matches in England and Wales last year with only 3,842 arrests made – one in every 10,000 fans.

Most arrests at football tend to be related to alcohol consumption, pitch incursions and public order offences with only one in 10 made for acts of violence. The majority of offences take place away from stadiums meaning less than half a fan per game, per stadium was arrested inside a football ground on last year’s figures.

The FSF does not tolerate violence and in no way condones the actions of the mindless few who spoil things for the many but we shouldn’t forget - violence is society’s problem too, not just football’s.

Are You Watching Dickie Davies?

Probably not hard enough, given his reporting from Fratton Park last night.

Reporting to Sky Sports live Davies (the younger one) told the watching viewers, including Bull HUFCSteve, "Hereford are back in the game - it's 2-1."

But just a minute later he had to admit "Apologies to Hereford fans. It went up the other end. Couldn't get my bearings. Niko Kranjcar, fierce shot. Pompey three up. It's all over now."

Maybe the Bulls should get themselves something more distinctive than a bright orange kit...

News Round Up

Notts County's signing of Kasper Schmeichel was delayed, forcing him to miss last Tuesday's loss to Chesterfield, as the club had to prove to the Football League they wouldn't be breaking their wage rules over his reported £15,000 a week wages. If that figure were to be true, new owners Munto Finance would have to be putting £25,000 in a week just to meet the 60% rule for a single player. With Sol Campbell claimed to be on a £10million five year deal, they would have to plough an additional £6million in to stay within rules. Manager Ian McParland is said to be on an £80,000 a year contract.

Shrewsbury have signed Bristol Rovers keeper Steve Phillips on a months loan. Phillips is surplus to requirements at the Memorial Ground, with a move to Turkey falling through earlier in the month. Rotherham's landlords have defended the state of the Don Valley pitch on Sunday. Rochdale claim they found nails and glass on the pitch prior to the match, but the stadium owners say their claims are 'strange'.

Morecambe have confirmed an interest in signing Accrington's veteran striker Paul Mullin.

Preview Bulls vs Port Vale

The Bulls entertain Port Vale in a League Two match at Edgar Street on Saturday.

It is 24 years since the two sides shared the same division in the football pyramid, with Port Vale winning promotion from Division Four back in the summer of 1986. Since then the clubs have met only twice, with the Bulls winning on both occasions. Ryan Green played as the Bulls won in the then LDV Trophy 2-1 in November 2005, while Leon Constantine lined up against his future employers 13 months later when the Bulls were 4-0 winners in the FA Cup.

The Bulls second half display at Portsmouth, with Jamie Tolley and Sam Gwynne giving food for thought as a central midfield pairing, gave the Bulls some heart from a disappointing start to the season. The lively Tristan Plummer has given a spark to the forward line, and his goal on Tuesday night was some reward for his work over the last two games. With Graham Turner confirming that there is still money in the budget to bring more new faces in the existing squad will have to be on their toes and prove their worth over the next week to prevent their replacement.

While the Bulls were at Fratton Park, Port Vale were at home finishing off a Sheffield double. After beating the Blades in the First Round of the Carling Cup, the Owls were despatched last night with a cracking goal from ex-Bull Kris Taylor. The former Walsall man remains on a short term contract with the Vale Park finances stretched to breaking point. Outside of their cup exploits they have struggled for goals in the League, with just two goals coming from four games. Striker Marc Richards has scored both, with the first coming from the penalty spot.

Hereford United vs Port Vale, Edgar Street, Saturday 29th August, 3.00pm.

Dennehy In Irish u21 Squad

Darren Dennehy has been called into the Irish u21 squad for their trip to Estonia.

The September 9th game means that Dennehy will miss out on the first blank midweek for the Bulls since the season started. It would be his ninth u21 cap, with ex-Bull Stephen Gleeson also being named in the squad.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Trewick pleased with Plummer's Penalty

John Trewick has praised the second half performance of his side at Fratton Park and was pleased that Tristan Plummer was able to get his name on the score-sheet.

"I'm pleased for him getting himself a goal," Trewick told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"I'm not wholly convinced about the penalty decision but hopefully that might be the start of a little bit of luck for us.

"I thought the character of the players was very very good in the second half, credit to them for that."

The Hereford United manager also had a few words for the supporters.

"I thought the supporters were fanastic. They've come down here to enjoy the evening. We're just sorry we didn't really give them a massive amount to shout about because of the goals we conceded fairly early in the game.

"The noise level, the support they gave the team, I just thought it was exceptional tonight"

One of the better chants heard after Adam Bartlett had brought off a decent save was 'are you watching David James'.

Another was 'That shirt's from Matalan' aimed at some young Pompey fans.

The Stadium looked as though it had seen better days.

The new orange kit is certainly eye-catching.

Disappointing turnout from the Pompey supporters.

Bulls bow to Premier Pompey

Portsmouth cruised into the third round of the Carling Cup with a 4-1 home victory over Hereford United. The hosts took the lead mid-way through the first-half when Frederic Piquionne struck whilst soon after John Utaka doubled the lead. A third goal from Nico Kranjcar put the game beyond doubt towards the end of the first-half before Richard Hughes hammered in early in the second period. The Bulls’ fans had something to shout about towards the end of the game when a soft penalty was awarded, which Tristan Plummer converted.

Despite the 1-0 loss to Crewe at the weekend, and the availability of Ryan Valentine, John Trewick opted to keep the same team which included youngster Craig Jones starting on left-wing. Pompey fielded a fairly strong team, including loan signings Anthony Vanden Borre and Piquionne, whilst there was also a host of Premiership experience in Younes Kaboul and Aaron Mokoena.

Portsmouth’s first chance of the game fell to Utaka when a deep Kranjcar free-kick was headed back into the danger area by Kaboul, and Utaka attacked the ball but his powerful head fell past the post. Adam Bartletet showed his credentials when a ball over the Hereford back-line was controlled by Piquionne, but his initial shot was well stopped with a strong hand whilst a follow up effort was superbly blocked by Bartlett again. Soon after, Bartlett made another fine double save to deny Piquionne although the linesman had raised his flag for offside. At the other end, a cross from the right by Ryan Green was controlled by Plummer, and he turned inside the box but saw his flying shot stopped by a defensive block. The hosts provided a warning to Hereford when Piquionne again threatened, coming in on the left, the striker on loan from Lyon went past Darren Jones as if he wasn’t there and struck a powerful shot against the post.

United didn’t have the luck of the woodwork minutes later when Piquionne scored from a similar position. A break from the back saw Kranjcar find the Frenchman, and he fired through the legs of the defender and into the net from a wide left position inside the box. Minutes later, Pompey were celebrating a second soon after the opener when another break down the left saw Piquionne drift out of his central position and he expertly picked out Utaka, who side-footed home from eight yards. An overlapping run on the right from Vanden Borre saw him smash a shot from a tight angle past the near-post, whilst his defensive duties were suspect, as a long diagonol ball from Green wasn’t cleared by the Belgium international and C. Jones bought the ball down before shooting goal wards but his shot was pushed away by ‘keeper Asmir Begovic. Pompey added a third just before half-time when Kranjcar picked the ball up inside the Hereford half and he moved goal wards, unchallenged, before unleashing a powerful shot which beat Bartlett at his near-post, despite the ‘keeper getting a decent hand to it.

At half-time, Jamie Tolley replaced Kenny Lunt and Paul Hart bought on David Nugent for Utaka. Leon Constantine had a good opportunity to pull a goal back when he met a Glen Southam corner, but he took his eye of it and the contact which saw the ball diverted over the bar was made with his shoulder. Pompey made it 4-0 when a pass into the feet of the striker was closed down by D. Jones, but it fell to Hughes whose first-time shot from 20 yards beat Bartlett with its sheer power. Hereford, sporting their orange kit for the first-time, gave reward to the travelling fans when Andy D’Urso awarded a dubious penalty decision. Southam’s nut-meg and through ball was chased down by Plummer, and he went in for a challenge with Begovic; the ‘keeper cleanly won the ball but D’Urso awarded a penalty in front of the away supporters. Plummer took it, and despite Begovic going the right-way and getting something on the ball, it ended up in the back of the net.

Nwankwo Kanu replaced Piquionne for Portsmouth but it was the Bulls who were pressing with a quick-free kick into Plummer, allowing the Bristol City loanee to find Constantine, who sent a shot into the arms of Begovic. Kranjcar’s placed shot was off-target, after he was set up by Nugent whilst at the other end, a switch of play from Plummer found Godsmark, who went close to the top far corner with a powerful effort.

Sam Gwynne came on for Southam late on, to add a little bite to the Hereford midfield whilst Gautier Mahoto replaced Hughes for Portsmouth. Marlon Jackson was also bought on for United, replacing Godsmark, who appeared to have tired. Nugent should have made it 5-1 when through on goal but his shot was straight at Bartlett. Kanu toyed with the Hereford defence on the left-hand side, and eventually composed himself to pick out Mahoto inside the area who saw a close-range effort parried by Bartlett. Mahoto then flashed a shot past the far post after playing to the crowd’s shouts of shoot whilst in stoppage-time, a deep cross from C. Jones was guided goal wards by Constantine at the back-post but his effort went over the bar.

Few fans out of the 6,645 attendance would have truthfully thought United could have come to Fratton Park and pulled off a huge shock. It’s a case of the same old, same old though as Hereford’s failure to close-down in midfield and defence caused their downfall in the game. A midfield pairing of Gwynne and Lunt may be the way forward, with the local lad doing the hard-work allowing Lunt to show his full potential when on the ball. Next up for Hereford is the visit of Port Vale on Saturday.

Hereford: Bartlett, Green, D. Jones, Dennehy, Rose, Godsmark, Lunt, Southam, C. Jones, Constantine, Plummer.

Subs: Adamson, Valentine, Lowe, Tolley, Gwynne, Done, Jackson

Portsmouth: Begovic, Vanden Borre, Ward, Kaboul, Belhadj, Basinas, Mokoena, Kranjcar, Hughes, Utaka, Piquionne.

Subs: Ashdown, Hurst, Mullins, Richie, Mahoto, Nugent, Kanu.

Stats from Fratton Park

Below are the main stats from last night's Carling Cup game at Fratton Park:

Possession: Pompey 52% Bulls 48%

Shots on Target: Pompey 6 Bulls 3

Shots off Target: Pompey 8 Bulls 3

Corners: Pompey 3 Bulls 4

Fouls: Pompey 10 Bulls 2

Offside: Pompey 3 Bulls 2

Cards: No Hereford United player was carded

Attendance: 6645 with about 450 from Hereford

Pompey Show Premier Class

Despite being relegation favourites, Portsmouth still showed their class as they beat the Bulls 4-1 in tonight's Carling Cup match.

Tristan Plummer's penalty was scant reward for a decent Bulls showing, but Pompey's first half dominance proved decisive. A minimal crowd of 6,645 will not be a financial boon, but the Bulls can take a solid second half showing into Saturday's League match with Port Vale.

Full report later.

Hereford has a Dedicated Analyst

Goal! The ball hits the net and seconds later your mobile phone, favourite website or TV sports show is telling you who scored for which team and when.

Ever wondered how the information gets there so quickly? Well here's how. Every club, including Hereford United, has its own dedicated analyst - all former players registered with the Professional Footballers' Association - who relay every action of the game to the headquarters of Press Association Sport in Yorkshire.

The Press Association recently won the competitive tender process for the seasons 2010-11 to 2012-13 with Football DataCo, the company owned by The Football League and Premier League, giving it the official rights to provide that highly-prized information.

And so each season millions of vital statistics and facts from around the grounds are recorded in detail by a network of 230 staff. Every action - from goals and fouls to free-kicks and corners - is recorded and sent in seconds to broadcasters, websites and newspapers throughout the UK.

"Our data operation is accurate, fast and highly efficient," said Simon Boynton, Executive Director, Press Association Sport.

"A blow-by-blow account of every game is relayed back by analysts - all former players registered with the PFA - to 80 staff in our production centre in Yorkshire who then produce data-driven text commentaries via their computers.

"The words are punched in by mouse as the operators click on various actions. The information is then saved in a database before being delivered via feeds to our customers."

Ian Campbell, Managing Director of Press Association Sport said: "We put everything into our results service; it is a responsibility we take very seriously because of the need to get it right. The DataCo relationship is at the heart of our business and we are privileged that football has placed such faith in our ability to collect, manage and monetise its data worldwide."

For the 2008/9 season, across the Premier League, Football League, Scottish Premier League and Scottish Football League, Press Association Sport recorded that 34 million fans attended the matches, 7164 goals were scored, and 530 red cards were handed out.

News Round Up

Notts County are to complete the signing of former England international Sol Campbell later today as player coach. The Daily Mail claims he is to sign a £60,000 a week deal. Meanwhile the club have been awarded a measly £25,000 for former striker Myles Weston, who joined Brentford in the summer. Further payments could put the deal up to almost two weeks of Campbell's reported wages.

Accrington striker Paul Mullin believes a win in their Carling Cup match at QPR tonight could cure their current financial problems. Boss John Coleman cannot sign new players as they have no money, and they have a number of injury problems. Port Vale are trialling midfielder Malvin Kamara and Bristol Rovers forward Lewis Haldane. Kamara was released by Huddersfield in the summer, while Haldane is available on loan.

Bournemouth are giving a trial to ex-Liverpool youngster Ryan Crowther. The right winger was plucked by the Reds from Stockport's youth side but he was released last week. Crewe are giving a third trial to Wealdstone full back Carl Martin. Shrewsbury striker Omer Riza will miss three months after chipping a bone in his foot. Dagenham midfielder Solomon Taiwo is to have a medical at Cardiff over a move that could be worth up to £250,000.

Northampton have agreed to sell want away captain Danny Jackman to Gillingham for an undisclosed fee. He lodged a transfer request earlier in the month.

Taylor becoming Fans Favourite at Vale

Former Hereford United defender Kris Taylor is already becoming something of a fans favourite at his new club Port Vale and manager Micky Adams appears keen to extend his initial three month deal.

"Kris is a player we would like to keep, but we don't have to make a decision yet," said Adams.

"His performance on Saturday was excellent.

"Defensively, he was sound and when he got the ball his distribution was great."

Taylor will make a return to Edgar Street next Saturday when Port Vale are the visitors. He should receive a good reception from the Hereford fans.

Full Commentary from Fratton Park

BBC Hereford and Worcester will have full commentary of this evening's Carling Cup second round tie between Portsmouth and Hereford United.

As ever this commentary will only be available around Herefordshire on 94.7FM.

Reporter Keith Hall will have Ricky George to help him at Fratton Park.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I'd rather play Hereford than Arsenal - Hart

Portsmouth manager Paul Hart has told his local press that he will put out a strong side for ther visit of Hereford United this eveing.

"The Carling Cup is very important to us this season. The game against Hereford is an opportunity to win a football match again and it gives us a chance to progress in a cup competition," said Hart.

"I will be putting out the strongest side I possibly can.

"You always want a home draw and no disrespect to Hereford, but you would rather play them than Arsenal.

"The early rounds of the Carling Cup are generally very low key, but not when you get nearer the final.

"I hear people say that the Carling Cup is not that important, but I think it is."

Meanwhile Hart has signed Ivory Coast striker Aruna Dindane for £4million from Lens.

According to the Sun 'Dindane, Didier Drogba's international strike partner, passed a medical at Fratton Park after agreeing a three-year deal and the 28-year-old should be unveiled to fans before tonight's Carling Cup game with Hereford'.

Great Challenge for Us - Trewick

In advance of tomorrow's Carling Cup tie against Portsmouth at Fratton Park the Hereford United manager has been speaking about the game.

"It's a break from the League and we can go there with no fear," John Trewick told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"I watched them against Birmingham City on Wednesday.

"It's a great challenge for us and we should relish that so I'm looking forward to it."

Several other sites have pre-match quotes from Trewick

"We're looking forward to it, we're playing against a Premier League side at their ground. We hope to give them a good game and we go there in a positive frame of mind," said Trewick as reported by ITV.

Meanwhile the Hereford United office will close at 12noon tomorrow as all the staff are off to Portsmouth.

Bulls 100/1 For Title

The Bulls slow start to the season has seen the bookies write off their chances this season, with two now going 100/1 on a top placed finish.

The Bulls are now one of eight sides to have three figure odds against them, along with the likes of Barnet, Burton, and Grimsby. Notts County are a best priced 6/4 after just four matches, while Shrewsbury have drifted out to 28/1 after an indifferent start.

The Bulls are 16/1 with Skybet for promotion, and 11/1 BlueSq for relegation with nine sides still predicted to be below them at the end of the season.

For tomorrow's game at Fratton Park, the Bulls are 17/2 outsiders with Portsmouth 2/5 and the draw 4/1. You can get 3000/1 on the Bulls winning the Carling Cup, which is slighly better odds than the 10000/1 offered on Portsmouth winning the Premier League. Johnny Godsmark is 7/1 with bet365 to repeat his efforts of the last round and score anytime tomorrow night.

News Round Up

Aldershot chairman John McGinty has died at the age of 72 after a battle with cancer. He was one of those that resurrected the club from the ashes in 1992, and became their chairman in the season they won promotion to the Football League. The Shots will hold a minutes silence before their home match with the Bulls on September 5th. Port Vale are to sign Plymouth youngster Damien McCrory on loan for a month. The midfielder had a spell at Vale Park last season, with the club thanking Plymouth for their 'financial assistance' in doing the deal.

Aldershot are claimed by Tiverton Town to have signed their midfielder Bobby Hopkinson. The former Plymouth trainee is said to have joined for a small fee. Lincoln boss Peter Jackson has accepted the criticism of fans after his side was booed off after their home loss to Burton on Saturday. Rochdale boss Keith Hill has blasted the state of Rotherham's pitch after their loss to the Millers yesterday. It is another ground damaged by U2, with Hampden Park and Wembley also reporting major damage to their pitches.

Shrewsbury's shiny new stadium suffered a major failure on Saturday when the PA system packed in. The club have blamed a localised power cut. Crewe will wait until the end of the week before deciding on their keeper situation. They are still waiting on Spurs over whether David Button will be allowed back, but have no midweek game to force their hand. Ex-Bull Josh Gowling has agreed a second month on loan at Gillingham.

Preview: Portsmouth vs Bulls

The Bulls travel to Fratton Park on Tuesday night for a Carling Cup second round match with Portsmouth.

It is 26 years since the two sides were paired in the then Milk Cup as Second Division Pompey narrowly beat the Fourth Division Bulls 5-4 on aggregate. The first leg 3-2 win at Edgar Street is the Bulls' only victory over Pompey in nine attempts. The Bulls failed to score in the six League matches between the sides in the Fourth Division around 30 years ago.

Portsmouth's start to the season has been overshadowed by their financial problems. Despite banking around £27million through sales this summer they remain deeply in debt, with stories over the weekend that they owe agents millions in unpaid commission that is seriously overdue. Manager Paul Hart has been reduced to trialling the likes of Moses Ashikodi in an effort to boost his weakened squad, while Kanu agreed a month long contract with the club as that was all they could afford. They have lost all three of their Premier League games, scoring only once, and a string of injuries means the Bulls will likely face a second string side at a deserted Fratton Park.

John Trewick says his squad will have no fear this season, and it should be the case on Tuesday night. While the side has showed poor form in the League, their performance against higher graded opposition in the First Round should mean a competitive game at Fratton Park. With Bristol City pair Tristan Plummer and Marlon Jackson both allowed to play in the cup competition, Trewick may choose to give further rest to his bruised front line so that he can take his side fully armed into Saturday's more important League match with Port Vale.

Portsmouth vs Hereford United, Tuesday 25th August, Fratton Park, 7.45pm.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Keeper James to miss Hereford Game

Portsmouth and England goalkeeper David James is set to miss tomorrow evening's Carling Cup game against Hereford United. He limped off after 75 minutes at the Emirates last Saturday and will have tests today to discover whether any damage is related to knee surgery which he had last May.

Asmir Begovic is expected to take his place.

Manager Paul Hart has several other injury worries.

As well as James, Marc Wilson hobbled away in the second half on Saturday and Frederic Piquionne received treatment.

Three other players, Papa Bouba Diop, Hermann Hreidarsson and Steve Finnan, have hamstring injuries and Linvoy Primus has a knee injury.

For Hereford United manager John Trewick may decide not to risk either Marc Pugh or Lee Morris after both missed Saturday's match at Crewe.

Long time doing nothing - Portsmouth manager

Portsmouth manager Paul Hart must feel frustrated at the way his club is going both on and off the pitch. Last Saturday they lost 4-1 at Arsenal and tomorrow they face Hereford United in the Carling Cup. The Bulls defeated Charlton 1-0 in the first round.

Off the pitch there are rumours that certain players want away and the proposed takeover of the struggling club by long-time prospective buyer Sulaiman Al Fahim seems to be losing momentum. However there was speculation at the weekend that Chief executive Peter Storrie may launch a bid perhaps with Al Fahim involved.

"We can dwell on bad things, bemoan our luck, or you can dust yourself down and get on with it," said Hart.

"There is no point moping around and feeling sorry. You can get on with it or walk away.

"I work for a good football club, with good people, but one which is just having a bad time.

"There has been no problem from the application in the players. While we have this kind of spirit, we can make progress.

"Until all that (the takeover) takes place, I am working on the basis I have been for a few months - which is not a lot.

"It has gone on far too long.

"I was hoping the needed investment was going to take place, but it does not seem to have worked out. It has been a long time doing nothing."

Trewick has good record at Fratton Park

During his playing days at West Bromwich, Newcastle and Oxford, John Trewick has seen his teams compete against Portsmouth at Fratton Park on four occasions.

While he was at West Brom, they visited Fratton twice winning 3-1 and 1-0. Both meetings were in the old Second Division. Later, when he was at Newcastle, The Magpies came away with a 4-1 victory again in the Second Division.

Trewick joined Oxford United in 84/85 and in his first season featured in every game, one of which included his only reverse at Pompey when The U’s fell to a narrow 2-1 defeat.

All his previous meetings with the south coast outfit have been on level terms so the visit of League 2 Hereford United to Premiership Portsmouth on Tuesday evening in the second round of The Carling Cup will provide a fine opportunity for an upset.

Suits not Tracksuits help beat Bulls

It wasn't only the penalty but the wearing of suits before the game that helped Crewe to defeat Hereford United yesterday according to their captain Billy Jones.

He's given his team-mates a 'makeover off the pitch to smarten up their act on it.'

"We always turned up in tracksuits and I think that can make you a little bit too relaxed," Jones told the Sun.

"Being smart shows that you mean business."

The Bulls squad from the promotion season, pictured, were all kitted out in Asda suits but there hasn't been any news of new suits so far this campaign.

Meanwhile Hereford United manager John Trewick played a part in the pre-match warm-up yesterday. In previous games recently he has left the warm-up to assistants Jamie Pitman and Tony Ford.

Pompey Travel – Tuesday

Portsmouth FC V Hereford United
Carling Cup (Round 2)
Tuesday August 25th 2009 KO 7.45 pm.
Fratton Park
Frogmore Road
Phone 02392 731204

Pompey have played at Fratton Park since their formation in 1898 but hope to make the move to a new ground within the next couple of years. This is therefore probably the last opportunity for Bulls fans to visit a true traditional top-flight football stadium.

Visiting fans are accommodated in part of the covered Milton End. The "Milton" is a former terrace, which provides a good view as well as the usual catering outlets. Admission at the turnstiles is by ticket only so those travelling without a ticket must purchase one from the ticket office at the opposite end to the visitors stand. Adults £15, Seniors (60+) and Students (NUS card required) £10 and Juniors (16 and under) £5.

BY CAR - Travel south via Gloucester, Birdlip, Cirencester, Swindon to join the M4 eastbound (sign London). Leave the M4 at J13 then at the roundabout, take the third exit onto the A34 (sign Newbury, Southampton, M3). Continue on the A34 for around 30 miles. At the roundabout, take the third exit onto the M3. After a further 10 miles (M3 J14) join the M27 (sign M27 East, Portsmouth). Continue along the M27 (ignoring the M275 turn off for Portsmouth City Centre) and join the A27. At the junction with the A2030, turn right towards Southsea/Fratton. Continue along the A2030 and eventually, you will see the ground in front of you. Distance is around 150 miles and should allow at least three hours fifteen minutes. Postcode PO4 8RA.

Parking is mainly street parking but Miltoncross School in Milton Road offers parking for £6 (Postcode PO3 6RB)

By Rail - Travel to Fratton Station. Leave the station via the footbridge and turn left into Goldsmith Avenue. Continue for about half a mile passing Pompey Centre and Frogmore Road is on your left. Fratton Park is at the end of Frogmore Road.

COACHES - HUISA departs from Radford's at 2.30 pm. Tickets (£18) can be booked through The Club office (08422 761939).
FUNBUS departs Wetherspoons (Hereford) at 1.45 pm. There will be a comfort stop approximately 35 miles from the ground at a Pub.

ALEHOUSES - (from "the Good Companion pub is on the main A2030 about a five-minute walk away from the ground. It is a large pub serving Gale real ales and had a good mix of home and away support. I also noticed that it was doing a brisk business in food. Martin Hewitt recommends the Harvester, but advises away fans to avoid the Milton Arms and the Newcome Arms. Whilst Ian Pratt suggests the Brewers Arms which is 'always popular with away fans'. Steve Yeoman a visiting Manchester United fan informs me; 'just outside the ground at the northeast corner a large enclosed white marquee has been erected for away fans. It has a bar, televisions and was free to enter. There is a handy burger van located outside'."

Chip Shop – The nearest chippy appears to be "Chip Busters" at 2A Rodney Road. Rodney Road is opposite the junction of the A2030 and Milton Road.

Play Up You Bulls

Saturday, August 22, 2009

No Permission from Richardsons - Yet

Hereford United chairman Graham Turner has given a short update about how the Blackfriars End development is going on.

The initial investigations will finish shortly said Turner and there are no bats in the roof.

"Then we will start on the archaelogical digs so we hope there are no Roman remains down there and we can move on to applying for planning consent," Turner told the Official Site.

"We've also still got to get permission from the Richardsons who are our landlords.

"It always takes a long time at this stage but we are making some progress slowly."

Jones' joy as Crewe take points

Hereford United fell to their second successive league defeat at the hands of Crewe Alexandra at Gresty Road this afternoon. As was the case with last season's encounter, Billy Jones was the match-winner as he followed up his own penalty to score, after his initial effort was saved by Adam Bartlett. The attendance of 3,731 was well down from the relegation battle match last year, which attracted some 5,195 supporters.

After the mid-week defeat at home to Bury, manager John Trewick was forced into changes. Ryan Valentine missed out due to suspension with Richard Rose taking his place at left-back. Darren Jones replaced Keith Lowe whilst in midfield, Craig Jones was preferred to Matty Done as a replacement for the injured Marc Pugh. New loan signing Tristan Plummer started up front, with Lee Morris also missing due to injury. Marlon Jackson and Gavin McCullum had to be content with places on the bench. The opposition included highly-rated right-back John Brayford in their team whilst Anthony Elding was left to warm the subs bench.

Early link up play between Leon Constantine and C. Jones saw the youngster fire over with his weaker right-foot. At the other end, defensive indecision from D. Jones nearly resulted in the opener, as he failed to clear a long-ball and Calvin Zola nicked in but was thwarted by the reactions of Bartlett at his feet. Constantine should have opened the scoring for United when a deep corner by Kenny Lunt was headed back towards goal by Darren Dennehy where Constantine was placed just a few yards off the line but his header was straight at Adam Legzdins, who made a close-range save to deny the former Port Vale striker. A soft free-kick conceded by Rose allowed B. Jones a strike on goal, forcing Bartlett to push the ball beside the post; from the corner that followed, Zola rose highest but couldn't hit the target with his header.

Glen Southam dragged a shot wide following a quick throw-in and pass in-field from Johnny Godsmark. The best move of the match for the Bulls mainly involved Constantine and Plummer as they worked their way up the right, and after exchanging a number of passes, Constantine struck goalwards from inside the area but he was foiled by a save from Legzdins. Zola headed straight at Bartlett after meeting a Joel Grant cross whilst Stephen Schumacher was off-target with a long-range effort. Crewe took the lead in the 37th minute when a long-ball up the right channel was superbly controlled by Zola, who span away from Dennehy on the touchline. He continued his run towards the corner before cutting in at the by-line and again showed supreme strength to get past Dennehy, who tugged back at Zola, not for the first-time, inside the area and the linesman adjudged it a foul. The referee pointed to the spot and B. Jones took it on himself to take the penalty. The initial shot was well-blocked by Bartlett but B. Jones reacted quickest to nod in past the helpless Bartlett.

Hereford started the second-half with an early change as Southam received a boot in the face; Jamie Tolley took his place on the pitch. A Lunt corner wasn't fully cleared and D. Jones fired wide at the near-post with a shot which lacked power. At the other end, a deep free-kick was met by an un-marked Mat Mitchel-King, whose head across goal narrowly missed the far corner. Zola nearly nodded in Crewe's second after meeting a cross from the left by Byron Moore although the move started with a clear use of the hand by Grant on the right-wing. A break by the Bulls ended with Tolley ambitiously shooting from 25 yards but failing to hit the target. Jackson was introduced for Constantine, as Trewick looked for the Bristol City pairing to get United back into the match. It could have been game over for sure had Zola not spurned another opportunity when on the edge of the area as his toe-poke whistled past Bartlett's near-post.

Aman Verma nodded wide at the back-post after a B. Jones corner before Zola again caused more problems for Hereford's back-line. In a similar move to the one that led to the penalty, a long-ball was controlled by Zola, who this time shrugged off D. Jones on the by-line and saw a near-post shot blocked by Bartlett from close-range before a follow-up effort by Grant was again blocked by the former Kidderminster 'keeper. A break from the hosts down the right-wing saw Grant wait for Brayford to overlap before feeding the Derby County target who fired a powerful shot across the face of the goal.

C. Jones and Plummer linked up on the left-hand side as they exchanged passes which led to the former youth-team player dragging a soft right-foot shot past the near-post from inside the area. McCullum came on for Godsmark, as Hereford searched for a spark in the final third whilst Crewe opted for pace, bringing on Clayton Donaldson for Moore. The former York City man was soon involved as he battled his way past D. Jones before sending a placed finish just shy of the far-post. Elding came on for the final few minutes, taking the place of Grant and he also had an early impact when D. Jones mis-kicked a long boot forward but Elding couldn't find the power in his shot to trouble Bartlett. In stoppage-time, Ashley Westwood replaced Schumacher as Alex looked to sure up their team for the closing moments, which they saw out without any real threat.

Two points from a possible twelve was not the start that Trewick, nor the supporters would have been looking for and on today's performance, the points are not going to be easy to come by. The defence still looks unsettled and shakey whilst the attacking threat is limited. The performance of Bartlett again was one of the only positives to take out of the match; last season Peter Gulacsi was inspirational in a narrow defeat at Gresty Road and Bartlett this time made a number of important saves to keep the score 1-0. Next up for Hereford is that tasty looking trip in the Carling Cup on Tuesday to Portsmouth, before an important league encounter against Port Vale at Edgar Street the following Saturday in which nothing but a win will be good enough for the home supporters.

Hereford: Bartlett, Green, D. Jones, Dennehy, Rose, Godsmark, Lunt, Southam, C. Jones, Plummer, Constantine.

Subs: Adamson, Gwynne, Lowe, Tolley, Done, Jackson, McCullum.

Crewe: Legzdins, Brayford, Mitchel-King, Ada, Worley, B. Jones, Schumacher, Verma, Grant, Moore, Zola.

Subs: Collis, O'Donnell, Westwood, Davis, Miller, Donaldson, Elding.

Today's Stats from Gresty Road

Below are most of the stats from Gresty Road where Crewe defeated Hereford United by the only goal of the game.

Possession: Crewe 48% Hereford 52%

Shots on Target: Crewe 7 Hereford 3

Shots off Target: Crewe 12 Hereford 7

Corners: Crewe 6 Hereford 7

Fouls: Crewe 12 Hereford 16

Attendance: 3731 with about 300 from Hereford (to be confirmed)

Cards: Craig Jones and Tristan Plummer received yellow cards.

Bottom of Leage Two:

18 Rochdale 3 0 4
19 Bradford 4 -6 4
20 Grimsby 4 -5 3
21 Accrington Stanley 4 -5 3
22 Hereford 4 -3 2
23 Morecambe 4 -5 2
24 Darlington 4 -5 0

Trewick: Dominated First Half

John Trewick spoke to BBC Hereford and Worcester after the game: "I thought the performance was pretty good, especially in the first half - we dominated the game and unfortunately went 1-0 down from a penalty. The Linesman decided to get involved, may have been in the box I don't know, but it looked harsh from where I was sat.

"I've just said to the lads in the dressing room we've pretty much dominated the first half and played well, and in the second half they came into it a bit more. We've lost a game we should never have lost."

When asked about the new signing Trewick added: "I thought Tristan (Plummer) was bright and lively from the start and the other two boys showed a lot of energy and spirit when they got onto the pitch. Unfortunately we just couldn't find the breakthrough. At the end of it scoring goals is what counts."

Meanwhile Crewe boss Gudjon Thordarson told the press he was happy that his side got the fans behind them after being booed off on the opening day: "That makes a massive difference. I don't know what would have happened at half time if we hadn't have been ahead, but the fans were behind us and kept going. It was a great feeling to have their support."

Results Round Up

Notts County are top of the table after beating previous leaders Dagenham 3-0, with Crewe now third in the table behind that pair. Bournemouth slip to fifth after a 2-0 loss to Northampton. Burton beat Lincoln 2-0, Aldershot beat Accrington 3-1, and Barnet won 1-0 at Torquay, while Shrewsbury and Chesterfield drew 1-1.

Darlington remain the only side without a point after they lost 1-0 at Port Vale, while Grimsby got off the mark with a 1-0 win at Bury. Bradford beat Cheltenham 5-4 for their first win of the season, while Morecambe slip into the bottom two after their 2-2 draw with Macclesfield. Only the Shrimps, Quakers, and Bulls are waiting a first win.

In the Conference Oxford continue to lead the table after a 2-1 win over Stevenage. Luton's goalless draw with Chester dents their early hopes and means Chester earn their first point of the season, but are now 28 points adrift. Kidderminster won 3-1 at Grays, while Forest Green lost 4-2 at Rushden.

Railwaymen On Track Against Bulls

The Bulls slumped to a 1-0 loss at Gresty Road in today's League Two match against Crewe.

Boss John Trewick gave a start to Tristan Plummer, with fellow newboys Marlon Jackson and Gavin McCullum coming off the bench in the second half, and surprisingly included Craig Jones in place of Matt Done but the Bulls failed to find the net to leave Gudjon Thordarson's prophecy of a 1-0 win being sufficient to come true. Billy Jones' penalty was initially saved by Adam Bartlett, but he converted the rebound to seperate the two sides.

Full report later.