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30 August 2006

Ricky Ravenhill has returned to Doncaster Rovers followig his loan spell at Chester. Midfielder Ravenhill made 1+2 appearances in a City shirt and was currently under suspension having been sent-off in the home match with Wrexham. The club wanted to sign the player on a permanent basis but this has been refused by the Football League as City are currently over the 60% income wage cap ruling and as such need to lose players before any more can come in. Both Graham Allan and Jermaine McSporran are currently available for transfer.

Chairman Stephen Vaughan confirmed: “We have a meeting with the Football League on Thursday but the reality is until we move players out of the club, we cannot register any others. We basically have less than 48 hours before the transfer window closes, and we are working hard to try and make room in the squad, in order to bring players in.”

29 August 2006

The reserves lost 1-0 to rivals Wrexham last night at Buckley Town.

28 August 2006

A last minute strike by Roberto Martinez brought City a well deserved point from Plainmoor on Saturday. City dominated possession in the opening periods without really troubling Abbey in the home goal, Jamie Ward gave the Gulls the lead with a goal from nothing just before the break, lobbing John Danby but Chester were level through substitute Drewe Broughton ten minutes after the restart. Ward restored the home lead and it looked like City would suffer a fourth straight defeat before Martinez popped up to salvage a point.

City remain in 12th position in League Two and entertain top side Swindon Town on Friday (19:45hrs). The Robins have won all five of their opening fixtures. This will be Swindon's first-ever trip to Deva Stadium, the last time the sides met was back in April 1987 with City running out 2-0 winners at Sealand Road on that occasion thanks to goals from Ricky Greenough and Stuart Rimmer.

League Two table

25 August 2006

Defender Sean Hessey is available for first team duty the first time this season at Torquay United tomorrow following his five match suspension. Hessey turned out for the reserves in their 1-1 draw with Manchester City in midweek and was taken off at the break.

Manager Mark Wright said: “We took him off because we didn’t want him injured. He knows me inside out and he knows what I’m about. Sean knows he gives me that depth as a sweeper and he’s committed and can play in a number of positions. I think we’ve actually missed him because Laurence Wilson can play further forward and we haven’t had Kevin Sandwith available.”

Torquay, managed by former City boss Ian Atkins, lie two places above the Blues in tenth spot with seven points having beaten Barnet (A), Rochdale (H) and drawing at Hartlepool United. They were dumped out of the Carling Cup in midweek at Plainmoor 2-0 by Norwich City. The Gulls are expected to welcome back both Martin Phillips and Craig Taylor from injury for the game which kick’s-off at 15:00hrs.

Picture © Evening Leader
Membership fees for this season are as follows.
Full member £12.00
Student/Under 16/OAP/Unemployed £9.00
NEW Family (any number at the same address) £20.00
Overseas (outside Europe) £15.00

Membership Form (PDF)

You can download the new Competition form from below. As usual the guaranteed first prize is £100. All entries must be received by the end of September.

Competition Form (PDF)

24 August 2006

Two players signed by Mark Wright in the summer have been told they have no future at the club. Jermaine McSporran and Graham Allan can leave as City attempt to cut their wage bill which they need to do should they make the Ricky Ravenhill loan signing permanent, or take on any more players before Thursday’s transfer deadline. Enquiries from Nationwide Conference clubs have already been received for the out of favour pair.

City have been warned that they are near to or over the current salary level, which permits no more than 60% of turnover can be spent on wages. A meeting has been arranged with the Football League next Thursday to discuss the situation.

23 August 2006

The Blues’ run on the Carling Cup ended at the first hurdle after they were knocked out by Leeds United last night. City’s defence, with David Artell and Laurence Wilson magnificent, held Leeds United at bay until the 56th minute when Eirik Bakke scored the only goal of the game to send the 1,000 travelling fans home disappointed. City looked comfortable at the back for long periods but struggled to make any headway up front for most of the 90 minutes, the best chance of the evening fell to Gregg Blundell who, after receiving a superb through ball from Roberto Martinez, opted to pass wide to Drewe Broughton instead of testing goalkeeper Neil Sullivan from ten yards. The introduction of Paul Rutherford and Chris Holroyd in the latter stages of the match did spark some urgency.

Manager Mark Wright was pleased with the response from the side following the disappointment of Sunday. He said: “Overall I thought we could have got something out of the game, but I was pleased and proud of what my players did, considering we conceded two bad goals against Wrexham at the weekend. The centre halves have had a telling off since the Wrexham game, but they played the way they should against Leeds - strong, organised and at it. Probably on another day we would have sneaked something.”

Wright went on the praise City’s two young substitutes: “Chris Holroyd didn’t look out of place again when he came on, he’s only a youngster, but he held the ball up, wants to get at people and showed some nice touches.

Our other substitute Paul Rutherford, was maybe a little overawed, but it’s hard to come on that late in a game. He did show a lot of good touched, he wants to get on the ball, and he wants to get forward so I was really pleased with our two youngsters.”
21 August 2006

City suffered their second League two defeat of the week on Sunday with rivals Wrexham winning 2-1 at Deva Stadium. Goals either side of the break by Neil Roberts, from the penalty spot, and Mark Jones gave City a mountain to climb after they’d been reduced to ten men on 25 minutes following the sending-off of Ricky Ravenhill who was adjudged by referee Uriah Rennie to have followed- through on goalkeeper Michael Ingram.

Parity was restored after a red card for Wrexham’s Steve Evans 13 minutes from time. This signaled a fightback for City who’d just brought on Chris Holroyd, for a League debut, and Drewe Broughton in attack. Jamie Hand pulled a goal back nine minutes from time and both Broughton and Paul Linwood had chances for an equaliser but time ran out for the Blues.

Manager Mark Wright was less than impressed by the performance of referee Rennie: He said: “I have spoken to the officials and made a number of points. As video evidence has proved, Ingham was a yard and a half outside his area. When he collected the ball, why did he chest it before catching it? Simply because he realised he was outside his area. It was just common sense. How the linesman missed it I will never know.”

City have a break from league action tomorrow night when they visit Championship side Leeds United in the first round of the Carling Cup. Kick-off at Elland Road is 19:45hrs.

Picture © Evening Leader
Ricky Ravenhill has received a three match ban after his sending off for violent conduct yesterday. He will miss the games against Leeds United (A), Torquay United (A) and Swindon Town (H).

19 August 2006

Manager Mark Wright should have both Kevin Sandwith and Drewe Broughton available for selection ahead of Sunday’s all-ticket home clash with Wrexham, kick-off 12:00hrs. Sandwith has yet to feature in the opening three matches after suffering a hamstring injury prior to the opening fixture with Accrington Stanley.

City’s opponents currently lie 10th with one win and two draws from their opening fixtures and visited Deva Stadium only four months ago with the Blues running out 2-1 winners on that occasion thanks to goals from Ben Davies and Derek Asamoah. Wrexham welcome back defenders Shaun Pejic and Lee Roche both of whom missed the start of the season while Midfielder Darren Ferguson is likely to be fit following an injury last week.

Tickets for the match are still available and will be on sale from 10:00-12:00 on Saturday morning.
On Sunday Cheshire Police will be working with forces from the North Wales Police, British Transport Police and Merseyside Mounted Officers to ensure a trouble-free occasion.

Action from the derby game played at Sealand Road in October 1953. Chester won the game 2-1 with goals from Johnny Thomas and Don Travis. There were 14,627 fans at the game with many sitting on the wall at the Sealand Road End.
Membership fees for this season are as follows.

Full member £12.00
Student/Under 16/OAP/Unemployed £9.00
NEW Family (any number at the same address) £20.00
Overseas (outside Europe) £15.00

Membership Form (PDF)

You can download the new Competition form from below. As usual the guaranteed first prize is £100. All entries must be received by the end of September.

Competition Form (PDF)

16 August 2006

The reserves, under new manager Simon Davies, kicked-off their Pontins Holiday League Division One West season this afternoon with a 4-0 defeat at Accrington Stanley. In goal for Chester was Phil Palethorpe a trialist from Tranmere Rovers.

Chester City:
Palethorpe (trialist GK), Marples, Potter (Newton 68) Cadwallader, Allen, Kelly, Wade, Rutherford, Holroyd, Barnes, McSporran. Subs not used: Vernon, Rule, McManos.

Both Phil Bolland and Kevin Sandwith have returned to training. Bolland dislocated a shoulder in pre-season and Sandwith picked up a hamstring injury on the eve of the new campaign. There is more good news for City fans as Drewe Broughton has also resumed training following a head injury sustained at Hereford and looks likely to be fit for Sunday’s clash with Wrexham.

15 August 2006

Two defensive lapses cost City dear as they suffered their first defeat of the season at newly-promoted Hereford United on Saturday. The Blues failed to creat any great chances of note in a fairly forgettable encounter but were undone at the back by the pace of Stuart Whittaker who scored the first goal and laid on the second as the midfield and defence went awol with 20 minutes remaining.

City manager Mark Wright was critical of his sides defending: “I don’t think we turned up all afternoon. Both goals should not have happened in a million years. They should have been stamped out. It was bad defending. Hereford played football as we know they could and they deserved to win. However, I don’t think they troubled us in the first half and it did look as though it was going to end up as a goalless draw.”

The Blues are not in action again until Sunday when neighbours Wrexham visit Deva Stadium for an all-ticket 12:00 match. Tickets are on sale at the ground this week from 10:00-16:00 Monday-Friday. In the event that any tickets remain unsold they will go on sale from 10:00-12:00 on Saturday morning.

The youth team kicked off their new season with a 4-1 victory at Accrington Stanley thanks to goals from Paul McManus, Jack Rowlands, Sean Newton and Jordan Barnes.

Match report | Fixtures | Table | Stats

11 August 2006

City could be unchanged for the third match of the season as they prepare to play Hereford United at Edgar Street tomorrow (15:00hrs) looking to continue their winning start. Kevin Sandwith who injured a hamstring on the eve of the season may not recover in time for the game against last season’s Conference runner’s-up. Missing from the Bulls line-up is ex-City goalkeeper Wayne Brown who was injured in the opening day 2-0 victory at Stockport County. This is the first visit back to Hereford since the Blues ended their championship season with a 2-1 defeat in May 2002.

The last time we met

9 August 2006

Manager Mark Wright named an unchanged starting line-up last night as City continued their fine start to the season with a 3-1 win over Bury. An own goal from Colin Woodthorpe ten minutes from the break gave City the lead at rain swept Gigg Lane after Roberto Martinez had headed goalwards from a corner. The home side equalised on the stroke of half-time after City lost possession in midfield. Jon Walters restored the lead five minutes after the break and wrapped the points up in the last minute with his second goal of the night.

Assistant manager Graham Barrow back on the ground where he managed this time last year said: “I thought we were full value for the win, particularly in the second half.”

The win moved Chester into second place in League Two behind Darlington on goal difference.

The Youth Team begin their 2006/07 campaign in the Puma Youth Alliance with a visit to Accrington Stanley on Saturday morning, kick-off 11:00hrs.

8 August 2006

Chester take to the road tonight when they make the short journey to Gigg Lane to play Bury in their second League Two fixture of the season. Manager Mark Wright will have Ricky Ravenhill available for selection after the midfielder served a one match ban at the weekend and defender Kevin Sandwith should also be available following a hamstring injury. The Shakers kicked-off their campaign with a 2-1 defeat at Milton Keynes Dons at the weekend and are expected to have striker Matthew Tipton available after injury forced him to miss Saturday’s defeat.

7 August 2006

Manager Mark Wright was satisfied after seeing his new-look City side defeat Accrington Stanley 2-0. City gave debuts to no fewer than nine players at Deva Stadium on Saturday and one of those, Drewe Broughton, opened the scoring on 15 minutes with an unmarked header following an inswinging laurence Wilson corner. The Blues dominated the opening period and should have gone in at the break leading by a bigger margin. The result was put beyond doubt four minutes from time as Gregg Blundell converted a penalty after he’d been brought down in the box.

Wright said: “I think Accrington will realise that they have been in a tough match and that there are no easy games in this league. It is completely different from the Conference because it is a real physical league.
From our point of view it was a good start. For the first half hour we did well and maybe should have been more than one up. I think we have got a strong team and there is at least 30% more to come from us. It was also good to keep a clean sheet and we looked strong defensively.”

City are next in action tomorrow night when they travel the short distance to face Bury at Gigg Lane (19:45hrs).

Picture © Evening Leader
4 August 2006

It’s been all change at Deva Stadium this summer and tomorrow the new-look Chester City welcome Accrington Stanley back to the Football League following a 44 year absence. Stanley, crowned Nationwide Conference champions in May have played at Deva Stadium before as the two sides met in the 2003/04 Conference season with the game at Chester in November 2003 ending 3-3 before the Blues won the return match 2-0 on their way to the Championship.

Manager Mark Wright can’t wait for the action to start. He told the local press: “If you don’t get excited and experience that special feeling, when a new season gets under way, you really shouldn’t be involved. Everybody involved feels the anticipation and should be raring to go and that's exactly how I feel as this campaign gets even closer. Besides being the opening game, the match has an extra dimension as it’s Accrington’s first game back in the Football League. There is tremendous media interest and from our perspective we have virtually a new squad, which creates more interest and anticipation. There is bound to be a large crowd, and the atmosphere should be fantastic.”

There should be a big crowd at Deva Stadium for tomorrow’s historic match that will kick-off at 15:00hrs. City will be without two players as new signing Ricky Ravenhill (1 match) and defender Sean Hessey (5 match) miss out through suspension. Also missing will be Phil Bolland who has a shoulder injury and Glenn Cronin and Rob Marsh-Evans who both have broken foot bones.

The last time we met in the Football League
Chester v Accrington Top 10 matches

The Blues have been informed by the Football League that that their current wage bill exceeds the salary cap. As a result it may be that some players have to be loaned out or even transferred to reduce the current wage bill. Meanwhile City are still on the look out for a second goalkeeper with Caernarfon player Paul Pritchard a possible target. Chairman Steve Vaughan is wary of the current wage situation though: “We have to be careful because we have exceeded our permitted salary capping limit, but I understand that emergency goalkeeping cover can be excluded from the current legislation.”
1 August 2006

The search is on for the loudest and most passionate supporters in The Football League, with the launch of the ‘Real Football Roar’ award.

With The Football League being the sole focus of attention for the first fortnight of the new season, the award has been developed to encourage fans to play an active, and vocal, role in welcoming back the return of Real Football.

‘The Real Football Roar’ award will see The Football League measure the decibel levels at every Coca-Cola Football League match played during the opening two weekends of the season – with the club whose supporters generate the most noise, as the teams emerge from the tunnel, winning the honour of being named the loudest fans in The Coca-Cola Football League.

In launching the ‘Real Football Roar’ award Football League Chairman Lord Mawhinney said: “The start of the new season is an exciting time for all supporters and the atmosphere they generate is vital to the spectacle of League football.

“The ‘Real Football Roar’ award is something that all fans will want to win for their club and I encourage everyone to make themselves heard as the big kick-off approaches.”

The findings of The Football League Supporters’ Survey 2006 – which featured the views of more than 43,000 fans – show that, on matchdays, ‘It is good match atmosphere that the supporter is looking for above anything else’.

Coca-Cola Football League Ambassador, Chris Kamara, has also welcomed the new award: “I think this is a great idea” he said “and I would encourage all supporters to get along to their local club’s ‘Real Football Roar’ match and sing their hearts out for the lads.”

The measurements at each ground will be taken from the centre-circle as the teams emerge by a representative of PA Sport. They will be using sound meters provided by Cirrus Research – a leading developer and producer of noise measurement instrumentation.
The youth team traveled to play a friendly match against Scunthorpe United U18 at Bottesford Town this afternoon and came away with a 3-1 victory thanks to goals from Paul McManus, Jordan Barnes and James Owen.














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