NEXT HOME GAME - BIGGLESWADE TOWN ON SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 20th AT 3.00PM
NEXT AWAY GAME - CHIPPENHAM ON SEPTEMBER 30TH AT 7.45PM
NEXT FANS GAME - WALSALL AT PEGASUS ON OCTOBER 5TH AT 2.00PM.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

News Round Up

Ex-Bull Simon Osborn is to leave his first managerial post at Bromley with the club up for sale. The former Wolves midfielder played only once for the Bulls on their return to the Football League but rejected terms due to travelling, moving to Bromley shortly after. He became manager in January, steering the club to a reasonable 11th place in Conference South.

Bristol Rovers fans are being warned that if they act like terrorists, they will be treated like terrorists. Police have issued a warning after fans suggested going to their last game at Leyton Orient dressed as terrorists. The Pirates are looking for an Italian send-off to the Memorial Stadium, with a Serie A side being lined up for the final game there.

Tranmere are yet to comment on speculation that a Portugese group are looking to invest in the club. Best Holdings are the same group that failed in a move for Swindon earlier in the season, backing off when monies were due. Danny Carey-Bertram is one of six players to be released by Forest Green. He scored a reasonable 14 times in 45 games across 18 months at the club but, like at Edgar Street, his performances were few and far between.

Rotherham expect to start next season with a points deduction after talks with the taxman failed to reach a compromise where a CVA would be acceptable. This means a new company will be formed to take the Millers' place, incurring a deduction under League rules. They will also leave Millmoor with talks with the ground's owner also stalling to reduce the massive rent.

Wrexham have extended their shirt sponsorship deal for a further two years. The deal, with a local commercial finance company, is worth £250,000 according to the club. Chester will be looking for a new sponsor after courier company UK Sameday, run by former director Paul Baker, chose to pull out. Baker's increasingly poor relationship with owner Stephen Vaughan is believed to be behind the move.

Ex-Bull Paul Parry will play in Sunday's final Championship game to prove his fitness for the FA Cup final after missing the last six matches.


Handful of Bulls Fans to attend Reception

Just a 'few' Hereford United supporters have been invited to the Council Reception on Sunday to celebrate the promotion of the Bulls.

Tha Assembly Hall isn't very big and there was never any likelyhood that more than a handful or so supporters would be asked.

It is understood that after talks between the club and the council, manager Graham Turner has 'approved' those who have been invited.

Understandably some supporters will be disappointed to miss out but it must stressed that only officially invited guests will be allowed into the reception.

Meanwhile Councillor John Stone has added his congratulations to the Bulls on their promotion.

"The Bulls have done us proud," he told the Hereford Times.

"I've been following their progress with interest in recent years and I'm delighted we're able to lay on such an event to give them the congratulations they truly deserve."

Finally the Hereford Times have produced a another excellent video. This one contains interviews with the Hereford United players on their return to training on Tuesday.

And Steve 'Nibbo' Niblett now has a complete set of pictures from last Saturday on www.hufcinaction.com. Well worth a visit.


News Round Up

Mansfield have closed their ticket office after dozens of fans demanded refunds on tickets for Saturday's now meaningless match at Dagenham. The Stags claim they are unable to give refunds as the money is Dagenham's and not theirs. Bradford are targeting a new spine to the side following their dismal season. A central defender, midfielder, and main striker are their big targets with Michael Boulding high on the list.

Peterboro defender Claude Gnapka, the only player out of contract at London Road, wants to be the highest paid player at the club or he will leave. The 24 year old Frenchman has held talks with Aberdeen and Sheff Weds over a move. Kidderminster have confirmed their participation in the Errea South West Challenge Cup, and could face the Bulls if they confirm their entry, but Grimsby have decided not to enter opting instead for friendlies with Barnsley and Scunthorpe.

Yaaaaayyy! Stockport boss Jim Gannon says something we agree on. Summing up Mr. Woolmer's performance last night, Gannon said: "The referee was weak and incompetent but you are going to get that in a game. The referees are amateurs, they are car park attendants turning up at a professional game and trying to manage professionals." Forest Green say they have had no approach for Jimmy Harvey, and that he is under contract for two more years.

Morecambe are hoping to get planning permission for a new ground soon. The 6,800 capacity stadium is hoped to be open in time for the 2009/10 season. Oldham took £65,000 in their first day of season ticket sales. Nuneaton's debts have been revealed as close to £1million, mostly in taxes, building costs, and loans from Directors. Worcester are expected to switch from Conference North to South to accomodate the four northern sides relegated from the Conference.


Hooper sees his future at Southend

Gary Hooper hopes his future lies with Southend despite his excellent loan spell with Hereford United.

"Things went really well at Hereford," Hooper told the Official Southend Website.

"I scored 12 goals in 19 games and the spell away really helped me develop as a player.

"I played every game during my three months, most of them were for the full 90 minutes and it was great to get promoted, hopefully I can make it two promotions with Southend.

"I signed a new contract here before I went out on loan and I see my long term future at Roots Hall, hopefully that is in the Championship."


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

News Round Up

Shrewsbury are to release five players to start their summer clearout. Youngsters Luke Jones, Jimmy Ryan, and Martin Riley - all hailed as the future of the club by loan hating ex-boss Gary Peters - join Colin Murdock and Michael Barnes out of the door. A number of players under contract are expected to also be offloaded in the summer.

Bradford are to release thirteen players after a dismal season. Only five out of contract players are being offered new terms. Rotherham's Administrator has accepted an offer for the club from local businessman Tony Stewart. The club may not be playing at Millmoor next season following threats from ground owner Ken Booth, and have played up the potential of Saturday's game being the last at the ground.

Bournemouth chairman Jeff Mostyn is the club's preferred bidder after again being the only one to put his hand into his pocket to bail the club out. He handed over £80,000 more to fund the months wages after two bidders failed to deposit funds with the Administrator. Port Vale have released seven following their relegation, signing Anthony Griffith from Doncaster and Rob Taylor from Nuneaton.

Cambridge United have sold the naming rights for the Abbey Stadium in a five year deal. The Trade Recruitment Stadium will be the new name of the ground, with the sponsorship deal helping to pay the excessive rent the club find themselves paying. The club sold all their 1,600 allocation for their play-off match at Burton in just over four hours today.


Stags Down As Chester Get Point

Mansfield Town will play Confernce football next season as Chester earned the point they needed with a 0-0 draw with Stockport.

Stockport rested several key players with one eye on the play-offs, with ex-Bulls Michael Rose and Stephen Gleeson both named on the bench. Rochdale remain in fourth place as a result on goal difference.


AND NOW ARE YOU GONNA BELIEVE US? THE WHITES ARE GOING UP!

Glynis Wright watched last Saturday's promotion winning game at Brentford.

The weather was absolutely delightful, and the pre-match musical entertainment equally good too. Stuff from Manfred Mann, David Bowie, Blondie, Wizzard, Norman Greenbaum, Duran Duran, Eddystone Lighthouse, and many, many more. And, as the number of away supporters increased, I could just picture the Brentford groundsman having a bit of a dicky fit. Balloons, loads of ‘em, all yellow, and breeding like bacteria around the 18-yard box, and right-hand corner-flag. Must have been well in excess of three figures, that lot, because the kick-off was delayed for someone with a big spiky things to go round busting the lot! “Ah, I can picture the headlines now,” said I, “‘BRENTFORD KICK-OFF DELAYED AS HUNDREDS OF RAMPAGING BALLOONS INVADE PITCH!’ ”

The game? The cider-slurpers’ playing style, a microcosm of our own, almost, saw them 2-0 in front by the break, and deservedly so, the goals coming courtesy Gary Hooper after 18 minutes, and the second, Kev Phillips imitator Theo Robinson, some nine minutes from the interval. But the Robinson effort was preceded by pure farce. The ref, spotting Brentford skullduggery inside their box, awarded the Bulls a penalty. Which Theo Robinson duly potted – but the ref spotted an infringement of some kind going on, so it had to be retaken – with the inevitable happening, i.e. Robinson making a complete dog’s ear of the effort second time round! Great cheers from the home support, of course. Not that it mattered a dingo’s kidney’s, mind: within the space of a mere minute, the Bulls netted again, this time from open play.

“AND NOW ARE YOU GONNA BELIEVE US? THE WHITES ARE GOING UP!......”

“Oh bugger,” said I, “Does that mean I’ll have to pay more for me knickers in future?....”

Meanwhile, back at Barnet’s ground, where promotion rivals Stockport were playing, the news was pretty splendiferous; the visitors were losing by the odd goal, which, from the Herefordian point of view, was ‘double-plus good’, as George Orwell’s ‘1984’ would have undoubtedly put it. Not that I heard it: other things were pressing, like the need to ‘powder my nose’. Mind you, even that had its amusing side: while ‘performing’ in a cubicle, I could hear several female Bulls (yes, I know the biology, but it’s my ball, and I’m playing with it, OK?) trying to work out the repercussions of various results involving both their own lot and their Cheshire-based cousins playing just 15 miles across the capital, and having to employ ‘fingers-on-hands’ maths to do it!

But back to the story…. Only minutes into the second sitting, it was becoming abundantly clear that The Bees, playing for nowt save pride, weren’t about to bust a gut to retrieve the situation: probably preoccupied with pleasant thoughts of distant European beaches, calorie-laden cuisine, anatomically-impossible sex, and crazy-coloured cocktails already. And it didn’t half show. Apart from one nerve-tingling rattle of the woodwork fairly late on, they largely stuck to the script helpfully provided by Messrs Turner and Trewick. And, just to help things along, Simon Johnson added Hereford’s third, right at the end. Not that it would have mattered: word had already seeped though, via some form of osmosis, that Stockport had well and truly blown it. And no sooner had the man in the middle brought the proceedings to a satisfactory conclusion, that was when the promotion party really began!

One obligatory broadcast for the visitors to cease and desist invading the pitch later – err – a sizable pitch invasion occurred, shifting all the players back inside like a dose of salts! As I said to a manically grinning ‘Im Indoors, “You might as well try to stop Niagara falling….” Then, remembering his clearly evident pride at seeing his ‘other’ lot do the biz, finally, “It’s your day, you go and enjoy yourself….”

Mind you, as pitch invasions go, it was a pretty civilised affair, compared to some I’ve witnessed over the years. So why did the Met consider it necessary to produce their Mounted Branch, and in cavalry-charge quantities, too, all strung across the pitch? Honestly. Then, after a few minutes getting everyone back, out came the players once more, led by the (very soggy, by then!) Turner-Trewick managerial combo. And, much to my complete surprise, when Tucker looked upwards, not only did he spot us in the front row, he waved to us as well! Blimey, talk about ‘notorious’!

But the best bit was still to come. The players, having divested themselves of most of their kit by then, chucking the stuff right into the midst of their massed faithful, as per usual, then took things a stage further. At least one nearly ended up getting completely ‘debagged’ on the spot, underpants, the lot. Whether the Met would have turned a blind eye, or invoked decency laws to stop it, I know not. Mister Plod can be a capricious beast, at times.

Then, for me, the ‘climax’ of the entire performance. As Turner and Trewick, plus supporting cast, took richly-deserved deserved plaudits from their massed admirers, unbeknown to both, a sneaky plot was being hatched elsewhere, hence the sight of two of their charges running from the Players’ Tunnel, carrying between them what appeared to be a large ice-container, ominously sloshing to the brim with water, instead. Suddenly, everything became clear as to who would be on their receiving end! “Oh, blimey – I know EXACTLY where that lot’s gonna end up…..” And it did – and if Mr. Turner had considered himself saturated before, after several gallons more of the wet stuff landing on him full-face, the strong urge to ring Jacques Cousteau for advice must have rapidly crossed his mind….”


Follow the Bulls in Hereford on Sunday

More news have been released about Sunday's events to celebrate Hereford United's promotion to League One. Please note some details and timings are yet to be finalised.

The day will commence with an open-top coach parade starting at Edgar Street. Manager Graham Turner, coach John Trewick and the whole squad are expected to be on board.

The coach will leave Edgar Street at 11.15am and travel through the streets of Hereford to arrive opposite the Town Hall at 11.45am.

The squad will be met by the Mayor of Hereford Chris Chappell and the Chairman of Herefordshire Council John Stone.

Standing of the steps of the Town Hall, the Mayor will say a few words and then present the City Coat of Arms to Graham Turner.

A reception in the Assembly Hall will follow. As space is limited this will be by invitation only but it is hoped that as many Hereford United supporters as possible will be able to attend. The reception is expected to finish about 1pm.

Then at 1.30pm the gates will open at the Allpay (Westfields) ground for a charity football match between a Hereford United team and a West Bromwich Albion team. Lots of well known former players from both clubs are expected.

Those due to turn out for Hereford include Jamie Pitman, Neil Grayson, Ian Rodgerson, Gareth Davies, Phil Stant, Jimmy Harvey, Colin Addison, Stewart Phillips, Steve Emery, Steve Spooner and many more.

Amidst those playing for West Brom should be former Hereford United coach Richard O'Kelly and Cyril Regis.

It is hoped that Ricky George and Ronnie Radford will be present to support the Hereford team.

The game will kick-off at 2.30pm. Admission will be £3 with the proceeds going to the Mayor's charity, the Alzheimer's Society.

There will be a raffle at the game with one of the prizes being a signed West Bromwich shirt.

The Mayor would like to thank Colin Addison and Andy Morris for their help in organising this match. Also the many sponsors who have backed it.


Sarah Carr salutes the Bulls

Sarah Carr, the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate, has spoken of her delight that Hereford United have been promoted to League One.

"Congratulations to the players, Directors, and all staff on a fantastic season – a good cup run and promotion! The Bulls promotion to League One is the talk of the town and county and brilliant news for all fans," Carr told Bulls News.

"The Bulls wonderful away supporters have been treated to some particularly superb performances. Promotion to League One will bring more local derbies and we all look forwarding to seeing some big name clubs playing at Edgar Street next season. Many congratulations again!"


Automatic Promotion - Fantastic says Turner

Hereford United manager Graham Turner has been looking back at the promotion campaign in an interview by Tony Leighton for the Football League.

"We only had 12 players when we started pre-season," said Turner "but we quickly brought new faces in and by the time the season started we had a reasonable squad.

"We topped it up with loan players and put together a nice blend of experience and youth, some of the younger lads having been discarded by bigger clubs and so they came to us feeling they had something to prove.

"What surprised me was how quickly the squad gelled together. Sometimes when you have so many new faces it takes time to get a real understanding, but that wasn't the case with us this season and we soon had a great spirit and togetherness among the players."

Leighton reminded Turner that in the last few weeks the Bulls had to play most of the other top teams.

"That 15-day spell started with three very difficult games in a week. We had to play Darlington, Peterborough and MK Dons and we knew the pressure was on us because of the form of Stockport and Rochdale.

"But we kept our nerve and came through it, although I was delighted that it didn't go to the last match of the season to get the job completed - now we can go into our final game (at home to Grimsby) and enjoy the day.

"It took us a long time to get back out of the Conference, but two promotions in three years is a tremendous achievement. I have to say I went into this season quietly confident of reaching the Play-Offs, but to end up with automatic promotion - fantastic!"


Hooper back at Southend

Gary Hooper will re-commence training with Southend this morning after his excellent loan spell with Hereford United.

"Gary has done superbly while with Hereford and I'm sure it's done him the world of good going there," said Steve Tilson, the Southend manager, speaking to the Southend Echo.

"His confidence will be sky high and it's going to be good having another striker in form with us.

"He will be back training today and it will be good to see him."

Hooper scored eleven goals for the Bulls in nineteen starts.


Congratulations from the Mayor of Hereford

Chris Chappell, the Mayor of Hereford, has offered his congratulations to Hereford United on their promotion.

Congratulations to Hereford United. No words can express the delight of even those Herefordians who do not follow football at this result. This is a great result and I am extremly proud to be the Mayor in the year 'United' did so well.

Graham Turner and all his backroom team need special congratulations for the work they have put in to make 'United' what it is today. This promotion did not happen over night and the non playing team need thanks too.

Next season we will see some great teams play at Edgar Street. I hope that fans will continue to follow our Champs, who knows where we might be this time next year!

Congratulations

Chris Chappell
Mayor of Hereford


My Second Club is Hereford

Various commentators will mention Hereford United over the next few days even if they are not their first club. Frank Keating, who writes for the Guardian, is one.

A fan is lumbered for life with one club. Neither devotion (nor exasperation) can ever waver. But you are allowed to watch out for a few other fond family favourites and, in my case, anxiety about Fulham has been calmed a tad by Hereford's nervelessly assured march into League One. Graham Turner's exemplary long stewardship at Edgar Street is almost knighthood-deserving.

Half a century ago, I cut my teeth reporting for the Hereford Times on the Bulls' away matches in the old Southern League. Home games were covered by the sports editor, crabby old-timer "Polly" Parrot, who had a spittoon beside his desk and would stamp his gammy leg in a self-harm fury every time I forgot the three semi-colons dividing the primeval 2-4-5 team formations, and when I invented the post-match loser's phrase "sick as a parrot" he'd violently excise it from my copy before hobbling to the editor's room again to demand my sacking.


Bishop Adds Praise

The Bishop of Hereford has added his praise to the Bulls' promotion, according to the Worcester News, even if he appears to have no idea about recent Bulls history.

Bishop Anthony Priddis told the reporter: "It is really exciting for the whole of the county that the Bulls have finally got the promotion they deserve. Over the last few years they have been so near yet so far. So we have a story of resurrection and persistence!

"I will be dropping a line to Graham Turner as I believe his faith in the team and his management has brought them to the new position they find themselves in. It's not always easy being in charge when things are not going well.

"I hope I can find time next season to fit in a trip to Edgar Street, and perhaps we should devise a special prayer for the Bulls too."

The other spiritual leader of the Bulls is yet to issue statements. Parka is believed to be still riding the sacred armchair back to Barnet.


Halifax Braced For Conference Expulsion

Haxifax Town are braced for expulsion from the Conference, just two years after missing out on promotion to the Football League.

The club have been set a deadline by the Conference committee of May 10th to settle their ownership issues and deal with creditors, with current losses estimated at up to £30,000 a month. Even the Adminstrator of the club admits the date is 'a big ask'.

The proposed owners, and only bidders, are offering to sustain the club whilst they strive for profitability - but have offered only 2.5p in the pound for existing creditors for a CVA. The taxman is owed a sufficiently large figure to be able to scupper any CVA offering almost on their own and with a massive creditors list a failure of any deal is very likely without the taxman's approval.

The Shaymen have spent the bulk of the last 15 years living hand-to-mouth. Their first relegation to the Conference, in 1993, saw them bounce around aimlessly in non-league until they won a return in 1998 to most people's surprise. They returned just three years later after flailing around the wrong end of the basement throughout their second FL tenure. Aside from their narrow miss in 2006, they have fleeted with relegation almost continuously ever since.

It is only two years ago that Ryan Green's decider seperated the Bulls and Shaymen at Leicester. It is now only two weeks until four divisions may seperate the sides.


Monday, April 28, 2008

News Round Up

Simon Travis' current employers Nuneaton may enter Administration over their financial problems after missing out on the Conference North play-offs. Once side that did manage the play-offs is AFC Telford, who include ex-Bulls Michael Husbands and Richard Teesdale in their ranks

Another ex-Bull Jimmy Harvey has denied speculation linking him to the now vacant manager's post at Stevenage, saying that he is committed to the task at Forest Green. Rotherham's Administrator has continued talks with potential buyers despite threats from the ground's owners. Mansfield have only 101 tickets left of 1,442 tickets for their final game at Dagenham.

Bournemouth's rival bidders are set to join forces to eke out a deal to save the club, after two accepted bids fell apart within days. Stockport fans have left 700 vouchers unclaimed for free entry to Chester on Tuesday night after their automatic hopes were dashed at the weekend. The tickets are free to anyone who wants them from their ticket office, with no expectation for them to all go.


Pirates Take Whaddon Road

Bristol Rovers will share with Cheltenham Town for the next two seasons after rejecting moves to Swindon and Yeovil.

Pirates officials chose the Gloucestershire club for the playing surface according to a joint statement. The 7,136 capacity stadium will operate a park and ride system to clear local roads of traffic after objections from residents.

They had originally agreed to groundshare for the current season, before delays left the Pirates still at the Memorial Ground. They will still play two 'high-profile' friendlies there before decamping to Cheltenham for the season.

It is yet to be decided whether the Bulls will visit Cheltenham twice next season, with the Robins requiring a win in their last game to guarantee safety. They face Doncaster at home on Saturday with the Yorkshire side also needing the win to guarantee promotion.



Turner and Trewick on Midlands Today

Both Graham Turner and John Trewick were featured on BBC Midlands Today earlier this evening. The players had been given the day off but the work to prepare for League One had begun.

"The work is only just getting underway," said the Hereford United manager.

"But it's a pleasant feeling to be sat there having been promoted. Tasks seem a lot easier now."

Coach Trewick looked back at the season.

"It was only probably three or four games into the season when we started to feel we'd got something a little bit special on the move," he said.

"And we watched the squad grow together over a period of time. They then started to have a bit of belief in themselves. I'm extremely proud of what they've achieved this season."


Ferrell And Smikle Offered Kiddy Deals

Ex-Bulls Andy Ferrell and Brian Smikle have been offered new deals by Kidderminster boss Mark Yates.

Ferrell started 35 times for the club in his first season at Aggborough, while Smikle has become a first team regular in recent weeks after 18 months of fringe action.

Meanwhile, former loanee Stephen Jennings was named Tranmere's Players Young Player of the Year. He was also second in the voting for fans' Player of the Year.


Player of the Season Awards at Saxty's

This is an update of an article originally published two weeks ago.

HUISA, the Hereford United Independent Supporters Association, have released details of their 'Player of the Season' award evening.

This year's event will be held at Saxty's in Hereford on May 3rd after the final home game of the League Two season.

Doors open 7pm

Hot Buffet served 8pm

Presentation of Awards 9pm

There are a limited number of tickets remaining for this event. They cost £10 and can be obtained from members of the HUISA committee such as Keith Dodd, Richard Burkin and David Weaver. No tickets will be available on the night.


Broadhurst in Team of the Week

Karl Broadhurst is the only Hereford United player in last weekend's League Two team of the week.

Meanwile Neil Swarbrick will referee Hereford United's last game of the season which will also be their last game in League Two.

It is thought that it will be the first time Swarbrick has officiated at Edgar Street.


Club expected to reduce prices for Saturday

Both Graham Turner and Joan Fennessy have hinted that admission prices on Saturday for the last game of the season could be reduced.

In an extended video interview with Richard Prime of the Hereford Times, Turner said he hoped for a good turnout next Saturday.

"We look likely to reduce prices slightly for the weekend and we hope it's a nice carnival party atmosphere.

"The players deserve it. The supporters that follow us the length and breadth of the country deserve it. So let's make it a good day."

Joan Fennessy, the club secretary, also spoke about Saturday.

"We are hoping to do a little bit of an offer on the prices for Saturday. It will be nice to have a real good atmosphere."

The ten minute video contains interviews with Graham Turner, John Trewick, Wayne Jones and Joan Fennessy. Go to www.herefordtimes.com

UPDATE: Hereford United has confirmed the following prices for Saturday. The match is NOT all ticket.

Seated:

£13 adults
£10 concessions
£6 children

Terrace:

£11 adults
£8 concessions
£5 children

Children under 10 will be admitted free of charge if a ticket is collected before Saturday. They can be reserved by telephoning the club on 01432 276666.


Turner looks forward to League One

Looking forward to playing in League One, Hereford United manager Graham Turner has said that it will hold no fears for the club.

"We've stabilised the finances. We haven't got too many worries about paying our bills. We will continue to live within our means.

"It's a great prospect to look forward to - life in the First Division.

"There are going to be some big clubs in there. There's going to be a big championship club come down, whether it is Leicester or Southampton or Sheffield Wednesday remains to be seen.

"The prospect of going in there on a level basis is one to relish."

(Turner's quotes are from an Official Website interview)


Turner has answered everybody - Addison

Former manager Colin Addison has heaped praise on current manager Graham Turner for achieving two promotions in three seasons.

"I'm absolutely delighted for Graham Turner and staff and players and all the supporters," Addison told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"All clubs have their ups and downs. This have been a great upper. For Graham to come up with two promotions in three seasons - absolutely magnificent.

"It seems a long long time ago when Hereford dropped out of the League but he has stayed with it and turned it all around and got them back into the League and then two years later another promotion.

"He had his critics over the years but he has answered everybody this time."


The Ultimate Clean Sheet

There is an excellent video interview with Hereford United coach John Trewick and photographer turned interviewer Steve Nibbo on the Official Website.

Nibbo presents Trewick with a clean sheet especially purchased from Dunelm.

Click the OS link on the left.


A few more Pics from Saturday

Another look back at the celebrations from Saturday at Griffin Park:






Civic Reception For Bulls?

Plans are being put in place for a civic reception for Hereford United at some stage this weekend.

"I have asked the Chairman of the Council and the Mayor to host a civic reception this weekend," said Roger Phillips, the leader of Herefordshire Council, told Bulls News this morning.

He added this tribute.

"Herefordshire can be rightly proud of our team and their supporters not only for promotion this season but the high standards displayed in previous years."

The Mayor of Hereford, Chris Chappell, is involved in the discussions and is currently talking to officials about how best to recognise the success of Hereford United.


News Round Up

Accrington boss John Coleman will follow the Bulls and make more use of the loan system next season as he looks to trim his squad and get 'quality not quantity'. Darlington boss Dave Penney has more problems for the play-offs after striker Pawel Abbott lasted only 18 minutes of Saturday's loss to Dagenham. They finished the game with no strikers on the pitch with Tommy Wright also being subbed before the hour mark.

Shrewsbury boss Paul Simpson will offload a series of contracted players in the summer to get his squad back into the promotion hunt: "At home we've been held by Chester and Notts County and lost to Bury, and we lost at Mansfield. That tells you this squad is not good enough and needs to be changed."

One man has been arrested following the assault on Mansfield owner Keith Haslam. Up to three people are now alleged to have kicked down a locked door to assault the unpopular owner. Barnet have transfer listed midfielder Neal Bishop after he rejected a new contract. The former York midfielder, another poached by Paul Fairclough from the non-league England side, picked up a knee injury on Saturday and will not be fit for a couple of months.


Celebrations in Hereford

The leader of Herefordshire Council, Councillor Roger Phillips, told Bulls News late last night that he has already spoken to other councillors about how to celebrate Hereford United's promotion to League One. He has offered his congratulations to all involved.

Further details are expected later.

Meanwhile local political figures have also spoken about the promotion. This from Jesse Norman, the Conservative candidate.

"What an epic achievement. Graham Turner, John Trewick, the staff and of course the team have done a phenomenal job. A great cup run and a second promotion in three seasons in the league ... amazing.

"Now we need everyone to get behind the club and together find some way to turn Edgar Street into the stadium which the fans, the club and the city deserve."

More to follow.


Goals and Celebrations from Saturday

Virgin Media have a few minutes from Saturday's game at Brentford.

All three goals and the celebrations are shown.

Meanwhile the Hereford United Official Website have a six minute video of the after game activities.

Plenty of pictures from Steve Nibbo on www.hufcinaction.com


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Twas in the season 07-08

Hereford United supporters have many and varied talents but until this evening they were thought to be without an outstanding poet. Until Larfabull penned the following:


Twas in the season 07-08
In the county of Weston’s and England’s Gate
That a miracle happened, foreseen by so few
And Hereford United went up from League Two

But back in the summer, before the season began
It seemed that Turner was lacking a plan
Players were leaving, oh what a pity
And no-one was coming to our fair city

“Sort it out Turner” was the cry from the forum
If it’s goals we want we need players to score ‘em
Of course the situation was never so dire
That we needed Tim Sills to stay in the Shire

Trial players came and trial players went
From Devon and Derby, and even from Kent
And little by little, with the help of some loans
Turner was able to quieten the moans

And so to the season, would we be flops?
Oh please God let us at least beat the Slops
And Accy and Jester, that would be nice
But please God no Conference, please God not twice

And then we saw Lionel, who could bloody well caper
Pass him the ball, then light the blue touch paper
Theo was quick, and could certainly score
And Big Trev was there, in case we need more

It soon became clear that we were quite able
To take on the best and climb up this table
And then came a break from our everyday deeds
Along came the cup – and Dirty Leeds!

Not for the first time in this legendary season
The nation could think of no good reason
Why little Hereford could do the deed
But they reckoned without Lionel’s great speed

Hartlepool next for the famous giant killers
Then on to Tranmere for a couple of thrillers
If not quite dreaming of Wembley’s arch
Please let us stay in the cup until March

Cardiff ensured that it was not to be
But we gave them a game and now we could see
That against higher opponents we had little to fear
And started to wonder, ‘Could this be our year?’

In the league we kept winning when out on the road
But could our squad cope with a well heavy load?
Lionel was gone, what would we do?
Then Turner unveiled the now-legendary two

From Sarf-End came Hooper, with talent, with speed
A great football brain, a legend indeed
Alongside him the man with the pedigree name
Shergar McDonald, we’re so glad you came

From playoff contenders we started to dream
Of auto promotion for our little team
As team by team were brushed to one side
Then along came the matter of local pride

As off to the New Gay the hordes did travel
And our brave boys did Shrewsburies season unravel
And Gary Peters whined like a pup
As cries rang out – The Whites Are Going Up!

Thanks for the six points you miserable shrew
Now it’s off down the social with a P45 for you
And unlike the slops and their stadium so bright
The future is Hereford – the future is white

With a chance to go top in Dagenham’s fair city
We blew our chance, not that we want any pity
But over the next few games we looked a bit fragile
While Gannon’s County looked more and more agile

At Accy and Mansfield we rode our luck
Were we doomed for playoffs? – Were we ****
The week of death began with a win
Then a point at Franchise, but oh what a sin

To let Posh and their wife-beater party at the Street
The solution was obvious – Brentford to beat
First Wrexham were dispatched to the land of Blue Square
Then Gannon mouths off, but what do we care?

And so to the day when we’d invade the Smoke
‘The Mutha of Invasions’ – Parka has spoke!
And right on cue, out came the sun
To shine down on the righteous in the bus of so-called fun

Our leader had spoken – it’s yellow today
We’ve 800 balloons to fans to give away
Add in the hundreds of shredded yellow pages
And the kick off was delayed for ages and ages

Till roared on by the travelling hordes
The Bulls were soon reaping their deserved rewards
As a move sublime from our reliable trooper
Saw a goal from who else? – Super Gary Hooper

A penalty given, Deano pulled from behind
And up steps Theo, scoring on his mind
He puts it away with clinical ease
Then has to repeat it, oh referee, please!

This time it’s saved, but a goal Theo will get
As two minutes later he hits the back of their net
Dare we hope? Oh please God, please?
And cries ring out for the north London Bees

The second half has hardly begun, were Stockport having a nap?
As Barnet score to shut Gannon’s trap
The joy is unbounded in Griffin Park
This repeated promotion looks a right old lark

And though County score, Barnet’s own Bees
Score again, our promotion to ease
And when Trenty breaks, and Johno scores
The noise, the emotion, out it pours

As the whistle blows and the celebrations flow
It’s up the football league we go!
So as your landlord your next pint pulls
Raise it to Hereford United – The Mighty Bulls!


No Bulls In Team of the Year

No Bulls have been named in the League Two Team of the Year at tonight's PFA Awards.

MK Dons had four players named, with Peterboro getting three. The full nominated side is:

Joe Lewis (P'boro), Craig Pead (Brentford), Stephen Foster (Darlington), Danny Swailes (MK Dons), Dean Lewington (MK Dons), Jason Puncheon (Barnet), Keith Andrews (MK Dons), Lloyd Dyer (MK Dons), George Boyd (P'boro), Jack Lester (Chesterfield), Aaron McLean (P'boro).

In the League One Team of the Year Swansea had five players named, the most of the night, with Carlisle and Nottm Forest getting two each. West Brom got four players in the Championship side, with three from Stoke. Ex-Stockport loanee Wayne Hennessey was also named for Wolves.



Stockport Named Play-Off Favourites

Stockport have been named as play-off favourites by the bookies, who more or less appear to be following current form.

Stockport's ten match unbeaten run has been followed by back-to-back defeats by MK Dons and Barnet but they are a best-priced 9/4 for promotion. Rochdale, top of the division on current form, are 5/2 with Wycombe 16/5 for their tenth placed form. Darlington, with the second worst current form, are 33/10 outsiders.

Stockport are also favourites on previous meetings of the four participants having earned 13 points from the games, only losing once to Darlington and drawing once with Wycombe, with the rest of the sides earning seven points each.


PFA Awards Tonight

The PFA Awards dinner is tonight, with most pundits expecting the League Two side to consist mainly of MK Dons and Peterboro players.

While the Milton Keynes press is predicting five Dons players in the side, the Peterboro Evening Telegraph is naming six with three from the Posh. Trent McClenahan is the only Bull claimed to be in the side, with Wayne Brown, Dean Beckwith, and Toumani Diagouraga also given high chances of being honoured.

The actual League Two Team of the Year will be announced later.


Stevenage Target Harvey

Stevenage are to target ex-Bull Jimmy Harvey as their next boss with Peter Taylor expected to resign in the morning, according to the Non-League Paper.

Taylor will accept the blame for Stevenage's failed promotion campaign after earning only one win in their final four matches to finish two points short of the play-offs. Harvey, on the other hand, guided Forest Green to their highest Conference place just two places short of their big spending rivals.

Taylor's dismal tactics and unattractive football has seen gates fall despite the constant promotion challenge throughout the season, with constant fan gripes about the quality of football. Harvey, and Torquay chief Paul Buckle, have been named as targets with more attractive football the aim.

Buckle would be unlikely to move from the Gulls for another Conference side, especially with a play-off campaign on the horizon, while Harvey faces a rebuilding job with several of his out of contract start likely to be poached in the summer. Both Anthony Tonkin and ex-Bull Stuart Fleetwood have already expressed their intentions to move on, and several others have been targeted by wealthier clubs.


Barnet Apologise To Stockport

Barnet have apologised to Stockport. Not for ending their automatic promotion hopes, but for announcing the Bulls' scoreline over the tannoy system!

The announcement of the Bulls leading 2-0 midway through the first half led to the 993 Hatters fans being 'upset', and prompted assistant boss Peter Ward to storm into the stands to remonstrate with Bees officials even though boss Jim Gannon later admitted that it gave the players and fans a fresh determination. A statement from Barnet reads:

"We correctly dealt with the matter and made sure that it didn't happen again and it is a shame that the announcement was pursued at the post-match Press conference, on websites and on phone-ins and has tended to overshadow a cracking game of football.

"The announcement had no bearing on the result. Barnet, minus six injured first teamers, completed a fine double over a top side with two stunning goals.

"Barnet has always enjoyed a good relationship with Stockport and it is regrettable to read disparaging remarks from their manager saying that we are an unprofessional club who are going nowhere as their directors accepted our prompt action and apologies."

Hatters boss Gannon was quoted as saying, of the incident: "It's unprofessional of Barnet. They're celebrating a season of mediocrity and I think the fans summed it up - they're a club going nowhere. If the highlight of their season is purely about gloating about other people's demise then they've got to remind themselves we're in the play-offs and we're a club that's made progress every year, not mediocrity."

Meow!


Onwards and Upwards Part Two

It's probably fair to say that few, if any, Hereford United supporters would have thought that their club might have been celebrating automatic promotion by 5pm yesterday. The odds on both the Bulls winning and the Hatters losing seemed pretty unlikely as supporters set off for Griffin Park.

Some of those travelling from Hereford and the surrounding area must have wondered whether it was going to be one of those days when reports on Five Live revealed a lorry had overturned on the M4 and there were delays. Phone calls and a quick look at the map suggested a detour along the A4 might be a good idea.

However the traffic on the A338 to get to the A4 was very slow and nobody realised the A4 went through several small towns with as many traffic lights as in the whole of Herefordshire. It took over an hour to get back on the M4 at junction 12.

It wasn't too long before the floodlights of Griffin Park came into view just a few hundred yards away to the right. Shouldn't be too long now.

Nobody had factored in the Chiswick roundabout. We just made it in time. A few were late.

Although the away end looked uninspiring from the outside, once inside the view from the upper tire was excellent. The stand had been built close to the pitch and is one of the better away ends, at least upstairs, in League Two. It did help that it nearly full of Hereford United fans many who had found yellow shirts from various seasons to wear. And there were yellow baloons.

Straight from the kick-off the supporters became the twelveth man. Wayne Brown was in the goal below us and could be seen smiling at several of the chants from the 1400 or so behind him.

But many supporters only had one eye on the game, the other looking at their phone waiting for news from Barnet where rivals for automatic promotion Stockport were playing.

The biggest cheer so far came in the 18th minute when Hooper scored and then another massive cheer on 36 minutes when Robinson made it 2-0. And that was the score at half-time.

It was still 0-0 at Barnet then on 47 minutes Puncheon put the Barnet Bees ahead. It didn't take long for news to travel across the capital. A hugh cheer from the away end. Lots of fans checking their phones to ensure the information was correct.

Then a few minutes later another cheer until it was realised that the Hatters had equalised through Rowe. It least it wasn't former Bull Micheal Rose who was subbed at half-time. 2-0 to Hereford and Stockport drawing 1-1.

We had to wait another 30 minutes for more goal action. Akurang had put the Barnet Bees ahead. Is this right? Let's hope this isn't a wind up. It wasn't. The realisation that the Bulls could be promoted by 4.50pm was beginning to sink in.

And the there was the icing on the cake to come with a goal from Simon Johnson on 90 minutes. An emphatic victory for the Bulls. Now what's happened at Underhill?

It seemed an age for the Stockport result to come through. It was probably no more than a minute or so after referee Scott Mathieson had blown for full time at Griffin Park.

We've done it. Stockport have lost. Hereford go up automatically. No play-offs for the Bulls. Three weeks extra holiday for Wayne Brown - just what he had asked for several weeks ago.

Fans on the pitch but the stewards and police, even a few on horseback, were well prepared. They formed a line and all the celebrations were good natured. Players not involved with the game came on and joined their team-mates as did Graham Turner and the rest of his staff.

After a while back to the dressing rooms and then out for an encore. And perhaps something many would never have dreamed might happen.

As manager Graham Turner was in the middle of a group of players and fans, two other players, Kris Taylor and Trevor Benjamin, emerged with a container of water and tipped it over GT's head giving the Hereford United manager a real soaking. He took it well.

Whilst all this was going on, the press both local and national were interviewing whoever they could and there were cameras everywhere. Jubilation.

Slowly all involved with Hereford United returning to the dressing rooms and the supporters began to leave the stadium. But to which pub?

There is a pub at each corner of Griffin Park and soon there were Hereford fans in each of them. Some said their aim was to celebrate in all four. A few probably did.

Brentford supporters wished us well next season. A friendly bunch.

The journey back to God's Country was straight forward compared with the outward journey.

Alan Green was on 6-0-6. Several Hereford voices came over the airwaves. One in particular asked when Green might come to Edgar Street and commentate on a Hereford game.

And one of our party was interviewed by Steve Claridge for Setanta TV. Claridge was reminded how Graham Turner had taken Hereford to League One on next to nothing. Just one transfer - that of Ben Smith from Weymouth for £20,000. Hadn't Claridge been manager there?

On reflection it doesn't get much better. It's not long since the Bulls were playing at, for example, Leigh RMI, Margate and Farnborough. Next season there's places like Northampton, Crewe, Leyton Orient and Yeovil.

Onwards and Upwards part two has been completed. Can we hope for part three?


Scott did not like Hereford celebrating at Griffin Park

Brentford manager Andy Scott wasn't too keen that Hereford United celebrated promotion at his ground yesterday but he has admitted to letting his players hear what was going on.

"I’ve got to be honest, I left the door open in our changing room so they could hear Hereford celebrating. They deserved to celebrate. They are a strong unit and over 45 games Graham has put together a side that deserved to be promoted.

"And I hate it; I hate people celebrating on my patch. It is not good. I don’t want it to happen again. But I think we can reflect on their celebrations at some stage next season and it will trigger things in the mind that we want it to be us. We will use it to our advantage."

Last week Scott was given a five year deal to continue to manage Brentford.


Championship Clubs target Beckwith


Dean Beckwith, who is the running for player of the season, has been scouted by three Championship clubs recently.

It is believed those clubs are Wolverhampton, Stoke and newly promoted Swansea City.

Beckwith, pictured with a blonde admirer, is out of contact at the end of the season and one of a nucleus of players Graham Turner will be trying to keep at Edgar Street.


Ex-Bull Watch

Lionel Ainsworth managed a rare half hour for Watford, but their poor form continues with one goal and one point from the last four games leaving them struggling to hold onto even a play-off spot. Paul Parry was again missing for Cardiff in their 3-3 draw with Burnley, but is back in full training and hopes to make the FA Cup final.

John Grant scored for Aldershot as they earned their 101st point of the season with a draw at Rushden. Tim Sills scored a late consolation for Torquay as they lost at home to Crawley. Adam Stansfield scored one of the goals in Exeter's 4-4 draw at Burton. Stuart Fleetwood scored Forest Green's first equaliser as they drew 2-2 with Histon in what was his last game for the club. He scored 32 times in 44 games for Jimmy Harvey's men. Neil Grayson scored to help Stafford to a rare win over also relegated Droylsden.

One ex-Bull not enjoying yesterday was Graham Evans. The striker saw his Caersws side relegated from the Welsh Premier yesterday after a 1-0 home loss to Caernarfon. Evans did finish top scorer for his side with 10 goals from 32 games, but they lost their Premier status after 16 years.


News Round Up

In the Conference, Torquay will face Exeter in the play-offs after their final day games yesterday. Cambridge meet Burton in the other game, while Altrincham were relegated after failing to beat Weymouth. Halifax, one goal shy of the Football League two years ago, were one goal shy of the Conference South yesterday after losing at home to Stevenage but Alty's draw saw them go down instead.

Mansfield owner Keith Haslam was attacked after supporters invaded the directors box at Field Mill following their loss to Rotherham. Two men assaulted the unpopular owner, who was taken to hospital with 'minor injuries'. Fans have again accused the Stags stewards of over agressive tactics, with one needing hospital treatment.

Brentford boss Andy Scott signed a five year contract as manager prior to yesterday match with the Bulls. The Bees are to sign teenage striker Moses Ademola from Croydon for an undisclosed fee. York have released club captain Emmanuel Panther. The influential midfielder rejected a new deal in January, and turns 24 in May so would be a free agent. The club have handed a new deal to ex-Bull Mark Robinson, but have released a total of nine players after a poor season.



It's a fanastic achievment - Trewick

Hereford United coach John Trewick spoke to various media including BBC Hereford and Worcester and the Hereford Times after the game.

"This is what football is all about," said Trewick pictured with Keith Hall of BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"It doesn’t happen very often and we have got to savour two promotions in three seasons.

"It is a fantastic achievement.

"People talk about Jose Mourinho being ‘special’ and all that nonsense but they ought to look a bit closer to home at what has actually been achieved here.

"We have very limited resources at our football club and, even if I say it myself, two promotions in three years is absolutely phenomenal.

"The supporters have been brilliant – let’s hope that next year we can do them proud again."


The Team Celebrates Promotion

Hereford United players and staff pictured celebrating promotion yesterday.






Celebrations at Griffin Park

A few pictures showing the celebrations at Griffin Park yesterday. Click any pic to enlarge.





A Terrific Day For Us - Graham Turner

Speaking to BBC Hereford and Worcester after yesterday's game at Griffin Park an elated Graham Turner said it had been a terrific day.

"It's been a terrific day for us, it's been a terific season," said Turner

"We've had a group of players that have worked tremendously hard for the club.

"We've had a fair bit of talent in there, a fair bit of experience and it's culimated on a day like today.

"We've had a good following come down here. The support has been terrific."

Turner also spoke to the Hereford Times.

"We would ideally have liked to have done it at home but there is relief now because we have been in contention for some time and sometimes that tension can get to players.

"The supporters have suffered a lot over the years and to be going up again in our second season back in the league is terrific.

"This rates very highly in my career achievements but it’s freshest in the memory.

"Going up at Leicester was a terrific day for us to finally get back up into the League but this is a great occasion.

"You can’t put these days into any sort of order, but this is fantastic."


Our picture shows Turner giving an interview to Sky Sports.


Gary and Theo given a Nine for Their Efforts

This weekend the stats do not take on too much importance, after all the main news is that Hereford United have gained promotion to League One.

However below are a few stats from Brentford just as a reminder.

Beleive it or not the Bees had 51% of possession against 49% to the Bulls. They also had more shots on target than the Bulls, eight as against five. But the Bulls scored three goals whereas the Bees only managed to hit the woodwork once.

The gate was 6246 with 1418 supporting Hereford.

Both strikers, Gary Hooper and Theo Robinson, were given a nine for their hard work. Wayne Brown and Karl Broadhurst received an eight.

The Top of League Two:

1 Milton Keynes Dons 45 45 96
2 Peterborough 45 43 92
3 Hereford 45 29 85

4 Rochdale 45 23 79
5 Stockport 44 17 78
6 Darlington 45 25 75
7 Wycombe 45 13 75


Saturday, April 26, 2008

An Apology from Bulls News

We apologies to all our readers that our usual mix of stats and comments from this afternoon's game will not be posted until later tomorrow.

More pressing matters this evening.


Promotion Party aided by Bees

Hereford United sealed promotion to League One after a comfortable 3-0 victory at Brentford this afternoon. With the one side nicknamed The Bees losing, the other, Barnet managed a 2-1 win over Stockport County to ensure third-tier football for United next season. Gary Hooper and Theo Robinson scored in the first-half to make things comfortable, and a vocal away support of 1418 saw Simon Johnson finish proceedings off with a late tap-in.

Graham Turner went with the same team than overcame Wrexham in mid-week, with one change being made on the bench; Trevor Benjamin departed leaving Steve Guinan to take his place. The Bees started Alan Connell up front against his former employers, whilst Glenn Poole played on left-wing; the tricky winger was a team-mate of Hooper's at Grays Athletic.

Gary Smith shot well wide in the early stages as Brentford made the more impressive start, but it was United who took the lead, when Hooper netted another vital away goal. After 18 minutes, Robinson flicked to his strike-partner Hooper whose quick touch took him clear of the back-line before striking past the helpless Ben Hamer in goal. Advantage Hereford and chants of "We are going up" were ringing around Griffin Park. Ben Smith's volley tamely went into Hamer's arms, whilst Clint Easton went closer, with a superb touch and shot following a Hooper switch of play bringing out a fine save from Hamer, as he threw himself to his left to tip over.

Ryan Dickson sent a placed shot past the post from the left-hand side, whilst a mistake from Toumani Diagouraga allowed Ricky Shakes to break but his pass to G. Smith deserved better, as he smashed over from 18 yards despite being in a promising position. Then came two minutes of action; firstly United won themselves a penalty after Dean Beckwith was held in the box. Robinson took it and rolled it home from 12 yards, but encroachment from Easton meant it had to be re-taken. It was second time unlucky for Robinson, as he went the same way but Hamer guessed correctly and palmed the powerful penalty clear. It didn't matter though, as a minute after, Robinson netted to double the advantage. A weak back-pass allowed Robinson to race on to the loose ball and round Hamer. The Watford loanee steadied himself before firing into the middle of the goal to the delight of the away support.

Hereford were in control and this continued into the second half, with Hooper's acceleration taking him into the area after being found by Easton but a poked effort was blocked by Hamer. Connell headed a poole free-kick straight at Brown before John Mousinho replaced G. Smith. Fine interplay up top from Robinson and Hooper allowed the latter to chest down a chipped pass from the former, but his placed effort was inches past the far post. Shakes looked lively with his running, but couldn't find an end product, with one shot deflected through to Brown and a header being caught by 'Superman'.

An excellent over-head kick from Connell landed on the roof of the net, but Hereford were rarely troubled, instead, they looked like adding to the score they had accumulated so far. Superb counter-attacking football which started in their own penalty box, allowed Hooper to run 60 yards before sending Robinson through, but the striker's shot trickled past the far corner after beating Hamer. Shakes sent a powerful effort past the post, whilst Connel's chest set up Poole but his volley was wild and harmless. Matthew Heywood came on for Craig Pead, whilst another snapshot from Shakes again proved harmless as it flew well over Brown's bar.

Hooper left the field of play with ten minutes remaining to an excellent and deserved ovation, with Guinan taking his place. Brentford continued to press but to no avail, as a Dickson free-kick was curled past the post. Minutes from time, Brentford's very own Wayne Brown tested his name-sake with a rising half-volley but 'Superman' won the name battle by pushing the ball over the bar. Johnson replaced Robinson with a minute remaining and finished the game off in stoppage time. The final goal followed a magnificent free-kick from Poole which rattled the bar from 25 yards, but after Broadhurst had smashed clear, Trent McClenahan ran onto it, and was away. The Aussie got his head up as he raced into the box and passed across the goal to Johnson, who finished despite scuffing his shot. The referee soon blew up, and within minutes of full-time at Griffin Park, news filtered through about the final result at Underhill; the outcome? Hereford were up.

The scenes that followed were estatic reactions from players and fans alike. There was a pitch invasion by the majority of Bulls' fans on the terrace, whilst the players and coaching staff returned to the pitch to be greeted by cheers and songs of "Going up". It's been a fantastic season, and Hereford can now say a long goodbye to the days of Canvey Island and co, and now look forward to trips to Tranmere, Huddersfield and maybe even Leeds and Nottingham Forest.

6246 people were attracted to Griffin Park for a season best attendance, with Hereford coming out on top. The game itself was pretty routine, with all of United's players contributing to a good performance. In particular, Robinson and Hooper again linked up-well, whilst the defensive duo of Broadhurst and Beckwith were solid as ever, and the protection that Diagouraga gave them cannot be under-estimated.

So it's onto League One next year; there's going to be some sore heads in Herefordshire tomorrow!

Hereford: Brown, McClenahan, Broadhurst, Beckwith, Rose, Igoe, Diagouraga, Smith, Easton, Hooper, Robinson.

Subs: Esson, Collins, Taylor, Johnson, Guinan.

Brentford: Hamer, Pead, Bennett, Osborne, Dickson, Brown, O'Conner, Poole, Shakes, Connell.

Subs: Sankofa, Reid, S. Brown, Heywood, Mousinho.


Goodbye Accrington, Hello Brighton!

We'll be losing a number of long standing rivalries next season with promotion to League One, but we'll reacquait ourselves with a number of old 'friends'.

Gone are Shrewsbury, Chester, and Accrington. In come Bristol Rovers, Swindon, and ... Brighton. While the Robins and Pirates have been off the radar for only a year, it'll be eleven years to the day next Saturday that the Seagulls condemned the Bulls to Conference football.

Back then, the two sides tussled as the worst teams in the Football League. Next season the Seagulls will be one of the favourites for promotion while the Bulls can be expected to be underdogs yet again in a division where nobody expected them to be in the first place. The Seagulls will still be squatting at Withdean Stadium, a converted athletics ground, with their new ground not expected to be ready until the season after.

The Pirates will be another bunch of squatters, but their 'home' ground for next season is not yet decided. They were due to share Cheltenham's Whaddon Road ground this season until delays moved the redevelopment of the Memorial Ground until August this summer. They may yet be sharing with Swindon, who are another looking for promotion next season.

The Robins have gone off the rails somewhat since Paul Sturrock departed for Plymouth. A mid-table finish under new boss Maurice Malpas has not been well received by fans enthused by the seven figure takeover earlier in the season. They will certainly expect better next season.

Hello, as well, to Yeovil and - possibly - Cheltenham. Both have been at the wrong end of the table this season with the Glovers safe by only a few points while the other Robins need a win next Saturday to secure their status ahead of Gillingham and Bournemouth.

We could yet be seeing Southampton as a League One side rather than a pre-season friendly. Or Leicester. That'll bring back some memories.


League Two Results Round-Up

Mansfield need miracles to stay up after virtually all of their rivals won as they were being beaten 1-0 by Rotherham at Field Mill. Dagenham secured their status with a 3-2 win over Darlington, who surrendered a two goal lead and had a man sent off. Notts County are also safe after a single goal win over Wycombe, while Chester only require a point from their last two games to send the Stags down after they drew 0-0 at Shrewsbury.

At the top MK Dons are champions after a 2-1 win at Bradford. Peterboro thumped Grimsby 4-1, the Mariners' seventh loss on the trot. Stockport lost 2-1 at Barnet to end their automatic promotion hopes, Rochdale drew 1-1 at Bury to keep third place, and Chesterfield lost 1-0 at Macclesfield but will end the season in eighth place. In other games Lincoln beat Morecambe 2-1, and Accrington recorded their biggest win of the season in beating Wrexham 3-1.


Bulls Stride Into League One

1418 Bulls fans travelled to Brentford to cheer the Bulls into League One football.

A season best 6246 attendance at Griffin Park watched the Bulls take a fairly comfortable 3-0 victory with goals from Simon Johnson,Theo Robinson, and the departing Gary Hooper. The Bulls obtained promotion as Stockport lost at Barnet.

Full report later.



News Round Up

Leeds will make the League One play-offs regardless of their tribunal outcome after beating Yeovil on Friday night. The result means that Brighton will remain a League One club next season after missing out on the play-offs. Darlington have agreed a fee with Fulham for goalkeeper David Stockdale. The former York man is expected to cost the Cottagers £350,000 in the summer plus clauses.

Mansfield boss Paul Holland will be wired up to a heart monitor during their crunch match with Rotherham. Rotherham themselves are expecting to complete the season despite threatened legal action from stadium owner Ken Booth. Their supporters trust is expected to cover the cost of any legal fight, leaving the club able to complete their final games.

Crawley boss Steve Evans has admitted he should have 'kept his mouth shut' after collecting five seperate FA charges this season. Rushden boss Gary Hill has slammed Conference chiefs for forcing his side to play eight games in sixteen days. An assortment of postponements, abandonments, and entry to the final of the tinpot Setanta Shield saw him field a side every two days.

Altrincham will only survive relegation from the Conference in tomorrow's live Setanta game if they win and Halifax lose their match. It would be the third successive time on the trot that the only profitable part-timers in the division have finished in the drop zone, but they were condemned/saved on the last two occasions by Conference shenanigans. More random tomfoolery is not expected this time round.

Cardiff have been blasted as having no relevance to Welsh football by power mad ex-FAW secretary Alun Evans after the FA rubber stamped their qualification credentials for Europe. It was Evans, and his masterplan of a Welsh Premier League and subsequence Welsh dominance over Europe, that put paid to the Bulls' own European chances after winning the Welsh Cup in 1990. Bluebirds chief Peter Ridsdale has said they will consider quitting the FAW for a total affiliation with the FA.


Friday, April 25, 2008

Turner talks about Brentford

Graham Turner has spoken to BBC Hereford and Worcerster about the Brentford game and what a win could mean to the Bulls.

"Brentford don't particularly bother me, it's the way we perform," said the Hereford United manager.

"It's the same thing away from home. If we play and play as well as we've done at places like Darlington recently then we should be capable of taking the three points.

"I've got reports on Brentford. We know what the threats are. Alan Connell our former player is obviously there and has got a few goals for them this season but it's our own performance that concerns me.

"If we play well enough we should be capable of taking three points.

"If results work out we could be in a great position.

"If we won and Stockport and Rochdale both lost, what a great position we'll be in.

"And it would just take that little bit of extra pressure off us, that tension off us.

"It's a great finish to the season and one it's great to be involved in."


Brentford Coach Departure Times

HUISA (3 coaches) Depart outside Legends at 9.30 am. £12

HUMADS (2 coaches) Departs Malvern (Coach Depot) 8.30, Legends 9.15, Monmouth (Dixton Road) 10.00 am. £15

FUNBUS Departs Legends 9.30 £12/13

LEDBURY Departs Ledbury 9.15, Legend 9.45.

There are still seats available on HUMADS (01684 572945) and LEDBURY (01531 634387). Anyone who makes a late decision to travel is advised to turn up at Legends in the morning and take their chance. There will almost certainly be some seats available on the Ledbury coach.


Plenty of Room for Hereford Supporters

Brentford Football Club have confirmed that there will be room for just over 1900 Hereford United supporters in the away end for tomorrow's match.

There are 635 seats and room for 1285 in the terrace in the 'Len Weston type stand' meaning up to 1920 can watch the game.

This afternoon Hereford United reported that 'in the region of 800 tickets' had been sold at Edgar Street. Tickets have not been available in advance from Brentford so there are about 1100 tickets still to be sold.

Of the 800 sold by Hereford it is thought about 350 are for the seated area. So it might be advisable to get to Griffin Park in reasonable time if requiring a seated ticket. The turnstiles will be open from 1.30pm.

Hereford supporters are being encouraged to wear something yellow for the game. This week the yellow away shirt has been 'on offer' from the club shop and yellow balloons supplied by the club will be available for supporters at the game.

So with the weather likely to be both dry and quite warm at Griffin Park, there should be plenty of support for the Bulls for their last League Two away game this season. It will also be an opportunity to thank striker Gary Hooper for his excellent contribution to the Hereford cause over the past three months. He returns to Southend after the game.

UPDATE: Supporters going by car or bus are advised that there are a number of road works in the vicinity of the junction of Ealing Road and Brentford High Street. There is also rugby on at Twickenham Stadium which will also cause major delays.


Full Commentary from Brentford for Herefordshire

BBC Hereford and Worcester have confirmed that there will be full commentary on tomorrow's game between Brentford and Hereford United from Griffin Park.

Regular reporter Keith Hall will be joined by Ricky George.

The commentary will go out on 94.7FM in and around Herefordshire.


Everyone is ready for action says Ben Smith

Hereford United midfielder Ben Smith has been telling the Worcester News that he thinks Stockport will chase the Bulls until the end of the season for the third automatic promotion place.

"Of course we are confident. We have had an excellent campaign and we know that all we have got to do is keep doing what we have done all season," said Smith.

"There's a little bit of added pressure but good players, and we have got plenty of those in our team, thrive on that.

"We had three really tough games a few weeks ago and came through them still a point ahead of everyone else which is the best we could ask for.

"Depending on results, we can get promoted at the weekend. But my personal feeling is that, with the way the season has gone and the run Stockport are on, it will go to the end of the season.

"However, a win puts us in a great position.

"Stockport have got 48 points out of their last 60 so they are more than capable of winning their last three games but there is a bit of pressure on them.

"Everybody is fit and ready for action if called upon."

Meanwhile manager Graham Turner has said that he has plenty of options for the last game of the League season despite Gary Hooper having to return to Southend afer tomorrow's game against Brentford.

"It was nice to see Theo Robinson coming back and getting his goal. I've got combination possibilities with Trevor Benjamin coming in or Steve Guinan coming back in.

"So it will be a blow to lose Gary but I feel I've got replacements that can come in and take his place."


Gannon: Pressure On Hereford

Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Stockport boss Jim Gannon was adamant that the pressure was still on the Bulls despite holding a four point lead over the Hatters:

"It was a good result for Hereford, but I was more disappointed for Wrexham going out of the league. But Hereford can't afford to drop any points in their last two games. The pressure is still very much on them, they won't want to lose a top-three position after being up there so long. We, on the other hand, can still enjoy the excitement of being up there chasing that third spot.

"We know we've got a tough game at Barnet, who are always decent at Underhill. There's a lot of talk about them not having anything to play for, but they've got enough good professionals to make it hard for us. They'll definitely be wanting to finish with a win in their last home game of the season."


800 Sold For Brentford

Hereford United have confirmed that they have sold 'in the region of' 800 tickets for tomorrow's game with Brentford.

That leaves around 1,000 spaces available in the Away End, although it is believed that there is limited seating places remaining, so there should be no trouble getting into Griffin Park tomorrow. The turnstiles will be open from 1.30pm and fans are advised, as always, to get there early to avoid queues.



News Round Up

Lincoln face a fight to sign trialist Neil Harvey. The Barbados international scored in an all-trialist Imps reserve side in the week, but Morecambe, Oldham, and Hartlepool have all shown interest in the 24 year old free agent who has scored 34 times for Retford in the Unibond League. Former Darlington Chief Exec Jon Sotnick, previously with Boston, is heading a group trying to buy Sheff Weds.

Mansfield fans have named former Kidderminster man John Mullins as their player of the year. Bradford have named winger Joe Colbeck as their player of the year. Halifax will offer creditors just 2.5p in the £ to settle their £2million debt. The offer means they will pay around £50,000 and form a new company. 16 pages of creditors include the Football Trust, Police, kit manufacturers, and coach companies.

Darlington boss Dave Penney has slammed negative fans: "The area has to get real and realise we've had a good season. It's eight years since this club got into the play-offs and we've managed to do it. It just seems that there's a negative feeling about the club and there has been for quite a bit." Shrewsbury have announced a small increase in match day prices, but are keeping season ticket prices the same as the current season.

Wrexham have axed 14 players following their relegation. Four, including Phil Bolland and Jeff Whitley, are released. Five more, including top scorer Michael Proctor and Trinidad international Silvio Spann, are transfer listed while five loan players will not be offered permanent deals.


Scott Wants Big Finish

Brentford boss Andy Scott want so see how far his side have come, using the Bulls as the measuring stick.

Speaking to the local press, Scott said: "I would like to win. They gave as a walloping at their place and I think it will provide a good indication of how far we have come and how much further we have to go.

"When you start next year, you always remember the end of the previous season and it will be better to start on the back of two wins."

Brentford will be without striker Nathan Elder, after he underwent knee surgery, and Ross Montague with a back problem. Craig Pead, a former teammate of Kris Taylor at Walsall, is expected to return after a knee problem forced him to miss last weekend's game. Loan striker Rueben Reid, released by Plymouth yesterday, is looking to feature in the last game of his loan spell at the club.


Addison reflects on what might be

Former Hereford United manager Colin Addison has been reflecting on the season so far and what might be if the Bulls can clinch promotion.

"I fancy them to do it. I really do," he told BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"They've worked very hard this season, played a lot of attractive football both home and away. I've been most impressed.

"Graham (Turner)has taken criticism over the years. When you consider they dropped into the Conference some ten, twelve years ago and it taken a long long time to get back. But he's stayed with the club and worked very very hard. He's going to take all the credit and he will deserve this promotion.

"Going up to League One will mean more attractive fixtures both home and away. We're going to see bigger grounds. Another promotion will add to the interest in terms of sponsorship. All around Hereford United will benefit.

Asked how Hereford would survive in League One Addison said:

"I think they would do okay because of the way they play. Graham and John Trewick have got them playing passing the ball, keeping possession well and that is what this division is all about.

"A lot of good sides in that League. I've watched Swansea play twenty times this year playing a lot of good football, kept possession well and scored goals

"I think the present side would cope although I expect Graham will have some signings in mind for the future.

"Graham and his players will be concentrating on getting this result tomorrow. Such a big big game."