DEVA NEWS
DEVA DIARY
FIXTURES AND STATS
MATCH REPORTS
DEVA STADIUM
PLAYERS
EXILES, ISA, TRAVEL GUIDE
CLUB HISTORY
ePOSTCARDS, LINKS, POLLS
Back Home
HELLO ALBERT, HELLO SPION KOP!
Issue 22 | Issue 23 | Issue 24 | Issue 25 | Issue 26 | Issue 27 | Issue 28
HELLO ALBERT • ISSUE 28

[Albert Badge]

Editorial
Fans or Supporters?
Goran Who?
A View From The West Stand
Culture Clash


[Albert Cover 28]EDITORIAL

They say that history of warfare is written only from the perspective of the winners. Either a winning or a losing perspective on this season of football would be helpful but at the time of writing everything hinges on the last match. Whatever happens on the 6th May 2000 will determine whether this was indeed, for Chester, a season of The Great Escape or an end to their sixty-nine year stay in the Football League while we go on loan to the Conference. The threesome reel we’ve had with Shrewsbury and Carlisle over the last few weeks has been compelling for the neutral but absolute agony for the committed. You don’t need me to tell you. The fact that we have any sort of chance of staying up on the last day of the season is in itself a remarkable achievement given our position a few months ago. Ian Atkins’ friends thought he was crazy to take the job on – even he looked on saving Chester’s League status as “The ultimate challenge”. For the way in which he has turned our fortunes round – even if, in the end, we are unsuccessful – he deserves our heartfelt gratitude. So too do the players, both those who Atkins has recruited since Christmas, but more especially those who have stayed the course right through the season. Let’s record our thanks also to Terry Smith for appointing Ian Atkins when he did and for rescuing the club in the first place.

I hope that the enclosed proves to be a fitting souvenir of a successful Great Escape. The momentum gathering as survival seemed to be attainable has been tremendous. The level of support City have generated has been superb. The ISA should be congratulated once again for their part in galvanising the fans. Even if City prove unsuccessful it has been a valiant effort to survive and one which has gathered some of our lost sheep supporters back into the fold.

And if the worst comes to the worst then look out for a Hello Albert guide to the Conference next season. Whatever happens I intend to be back next season – and hope that you will be too.

THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT

Messages of support and solidarity have been coming in on the internet from all over the world and from the fans of other clubs – even our rivals for the drop to the Conference. Perhaps the most touching one of all though came in the teletext message from a Wrexham fan. It said that most of their fans want Chester to stay up – “We couldn’t care less about Shrewsbury.” Perhaps for the fans of Wrexham, if Chester did not exist (as a league club) it would be necessary to invent them after all.

IT’S NOT OVER ’TILL IT’S OVER

Even if Chester ensure survival as a League club on 6th May they have an important date with destiny only two days later. That’s when the Football League will hear Kevin Ratcliffe’s case against the club for settlement of the contract he claims to have been given under the previous regime. Ratcliffe is claiming that his contract allowed him to leave within six months of a change of ownership and promised him a year’s salary times the number of years he had been at the club. The figure being bandied about is £200,000. It would appear that this was a contract that the previous chairman, with the club heading for administration, had no intention of honouring.

A sense of reasonable justice would say that there is no way that Terry Smith and the present club should have to pay a penny of what Ratcliffe is claiming. If Terry wasn’t told about the contract when he bought the club are not administrator David Acland and Begbies Traynor liable in some way? But we will have yet another anxious wait – City fans are quite attuned to hearing about their club involved in legal disputes by now – can it be more nerve-wracking than the last few weeks?

It seems the bitterest of ironies that Chester’s win at Shrewsbury back in November paved the way for Kevin Ratcliffe to eventually be appointed manager at Gay Meadow and that the end of the season sees us locked in a tussle for relegation. Kevin has made no secret of his dislike of Terry Smith. It would be a huge pity if it clouds his memory of the club he served so well. Let’s hope Monday 8th May brings an amicable end to the matter for all concerned. We can then take a well deserved rest from it all.

Albert


ISSUE 28 Editorial
Fans or Supporters?
Goran Who?
A View From The West Stand
Culture Clash
 
© 1997-2008 Steve Mansley | User Stats | Technical | Webmaster
Back | Top
search this site»
email this page
LATEST NEWS
FIXTURE CHANGES
The home fixture with Barrow and away match at Southport later this month have both been rearranged.
more »
LAST MATCH
BLUES SLUMP TO ANOTHER DEFEAT
A dreadful first half from Chester who concede four goals at relegation threatened Maidstone.
more »
NEXT MATCH
SOUTHPORT
Chester travel to Southport on Saturday, kick-off 15.00hrs.
First Team fixtures
Latest table 2016/17
Chester weather
 
CLUB HISTORY
Everything you need to know about the club’s history, honours, records and kits. Complete list of fixtures from 1885 and much more.
more »
SUPPORTERS
EXILES BLOG
The Exiles have set up a blog to provide away match information and articles for Blues fans living away from Chester. You can read it here
Exiles » | ISA »