sad news was announced last night of
the death of Richard Wightman, a popular
board member at the football club. Richard
passed away at the age of 33 following
a serious illness. Richard, who supported
the Blues all his life, was the Membership
Officer with City Fans United and like
many others, voluntarily gave his time
and dedication to the cause and was
instrumental with the setting up of
our new club.
A minute’s applause for Rich will
be held at tomorrow night’s match
at Leigh Genesis and at the next home
match on 12 February against Clitheroe.
END OF SEASON AWARDS NIGHT
The club have announced
details of an end of season awards night on Saturday
7 May. The event will be hosted by BBC’s
Colin Murray and will take place at the Pavilion
Suite at Chester Racecourse. All of the awards are
sponsored by Oswestry Printers and include the Player
of the Year, Players’ Player of the Year,
Goal of the Season, Golden Boot and Clubman awards.
All proceeds from the evening will go towards the
newly formed Youth Team.
Tickets are priced at £30 each, with tables
of 12 priced at £300+vat. Tickets will go
on sale from tomorrow and demand is expected to
be high as it was last summer for the 125 Anniversary
Night at the same location.
29 January 2011
Following a 10.15
inspection today’s match at Garforth Town
was postponed due to a frozen pitch. Of Chester’s
promotion rivals Chorley scored a 96th minute equaliser
to draw 2-2 at Ossett Albion while AFC Fylde were
beaten at home 3-1 by Salford City.
Chester are now seven points clear at the top of
the league and are next in action on Tuesday night
when they travel to bottom side Leigh Genesis.
28 January 2011
BLUES LOOK FOR PERFECT TEN
will attempt to chalk up their tenth successive
away league victory when they travel to Yorkshire
tomorrow to play Garforth Town. Since the opening
draw at Warrington Town the Blues have had a perfect
run of league results away from home. The weather
could still play a key role tomorrow as an overnight
frost is forecast in the area and the pitch will
be monitored in the morning though as of yet no
inspection is planned.
Manager Neil Young will make at least one change
from the team that beat Ossett Albion 6-0 last weekend,
confirming that left-back Chris Williams has been
given the week off and will not travel to the game.
Young told the official club website: “Chris
is a young lad who has so far had an excellent season
and played almost all of the games but Chris has
not played at this level before with all the expectation.
One of the reasons for resting him tomorrow is he
travels a lot further than most to games and training
so I believe by just giving him some time off will
recharge the batteries and he will be back to his
best form again.”
Chroley football club
have announced that Chester will receive a 1,100
ticket allocation for the match at The Victory park
Stadium on Saturday 19 February.
25 January 2011
FREE COMMENTARY FOR ALL
supporters who are unable to get to Chester for
home matches will be delighted to hear that all
the remaining matches this season will be broadcast
over the internet free of charge. In association
with The Exiles, Blues Live commentary will be available
for all to hear throughout
the world. The decision follows the success of the
free service available for the three home games
in January that brought a great response from Exiles
fans all over the world.
Chester FC Media Officer Jeff Banks said, “At
Chester FC we want to continue to spread the word
about the Blues, and it’s great that the high
quality Blues Live service can now be offered to
supporters in the UK and around the world, free
for the rest of the season.”
Evans who is the Exiles Liaison & Communications
Officer at the football club, said “There
is no substitute for being at the match live,
but this is the next best thing. It is great news
for our hundreds of exiled Chester supporters
all over the world that they can now listen in
and feel part of the match day experience. It
is another great example of the community ethos
of the club as the service is provided by volunteers.”
“Last Saturday there
were people from Glasgow to Brighton and as far
away as Ghana and Japan listening in. We would urge
all Chester supporters to tell any friends or family
who cannot get to the game to listen in. The Exiles
are delighted to be backing the service.”
23 January 2011
RAMPANT CHESTER HIT SIX
second time this season Chester hit six goals
without reply as Ossett Albion, like Trafford
earlier in the season, were blown away by
a rampant Blues attack.
Michael Wilde led the way with his third hat-trick
of the season, while Iain Howard weighed in
with two further goals and the was a first
goal from new striker Chris Simm (pictured)
making his debut in the Chester line-up.
It was an all-round impressive performance
from Chester and a confidence booster after
faltering slightly at home in recent performances.
The match received the go-ahead after the
pitch covers the club invested in prior to
Christmas, did their job (as did the volunteers
who put them down and removed them) to prevent
a freeze that saw other matches in the division
The win for Chester gives them an eight point
lead at the top of the division over both
Chorley who have three games in hand over
the Blues, and AFC Fylde who have one game
A delighted manager Neil Young said after
the match: “It was a thoroughly professional
performance and on another day we could have
had two or three more. All we’ve got
to do now is keep winning. If we win every
game until the end of the season we’ll
be champions and it’s as simple as that.”
table | More
© Evening Leader
21 January 2011
TWO PLAYERS DEPART
Stuart Graves (pictured) and forward Michael
Clarke have both left the club.
Graves who played 8+5 matches for Chester
and scored the winning goal at Wakefield that
secured the first league win for the club,
has made the decision due to added work commitments.
Clarke, who only joined the club recently
and made just one first team appearance, is
after regular first team football something
that couldn’t be guaranteed at Chester.
Both have moved on with the best wishes from
the club and management.
© Evening Leader
20 January 2011
SIMM SIGNS FOR BLUES
Chester manager Neil
Young has continued his team building with the signing
of Southport striker Chris
Simm. The club have followed the progress of the
player for some time and a transfer fee was agreed
with Conference side Southport today. Simm has already
appeared against Chester this season as he was part
of the Chorley team, on loan, that beat the Blues
in September. Young said: “Chris is a proven
scorer in higher leagues and provides another dimension
to our attack with his pace. Chris had several options,
but understands what we are trying to do at this
club and was keen to join.”
CLUB ANNOUNCE YOUTH PARTNERSHIP
The football club
are to team up next season with Newton Athletic
Youth Football Club
to develop a youth team for 2011/12. The new team
will consist of 16-18 year olds from Chester and
the surrounding areas, and will compete in the under
18’s division of the Houlihan’s Birkenhead
Sunday Youth League and Cheshire Sunday Cup next
season. The club will hold trials pre-season.
Chester will also run a reserve team next season
that will play in a series of non-public matches
against opposition from the north west and north
wales. This will give the fringe players a chance
to stay match-fit and will also allow the youth
players to progress and gain experience playing
with more senior players.
16 January 2011
JANUARY JINX IS OVER
recorded their first home January win for
nine years as they ran out 3-1 winners over
Wakefield on Saturday. The visitors were reduced
to ten men early in the game after top scorer
Tom Denton was shown a straight red card after
an off-the-ball incident with George Horan.
The Chester skipper saw yellow for his part
in the goalmouth fracas.
Manager Neil Young handed a full debut to
midfielder Ashley Williams, and the Chester-born
youngster turned in a man-of-the-match performance
as headed goals from Bradley Barnes, Michael
Wilde and Robbie Booth extended the lead at
the top of the table to five points with closest
rivals Chorley, who now have two games in
hand, not playing. The visitors scored a consolation
goal in the last minute.
Manager Young said: “They’ll say
the sending-off changed the game, but you
can only beat what is in front of you and
overall I thought we played quite well.”
“It was difficult as once they had the
man sent-off they shut up shop and tried to
stop us from playing and scoring, which you
can understand. But we coped with it well.
So I’m glad to put an end to the January
curse. More importantly it puts us five points
clear, although there’s a long way to
© Evening Leader
14 January 2011
BLUES HELD AT HOME AGAIN
had to settle for a share of the spoils following
last night’s 2-2 home draw with AFC Fylde.
The point edges the Blues two ahead of promotion
rivals Chorley but the Lancashire side currently
have a game in hand.
Chester were on the back foot from the start and
saw the visitors take the lead after just seven
minutes with Kevin Townson converting from close
range after good approach play by the excellent
Mike Barnes who left turned Michael Aspin before
sending in a pinpoint delivery.
The Blues clawed their back in the game and leveled
matters on 17 minutes thanks to an overhead kick
from Michael Wilde who pounced after George Horan
had beaten visiting goalkeeper Lewis Edge to a Tom
Field cross to knock the ball down.
Another stunning goal just ten minutes later gave
Chester the lead. as Jimmy McCarthy’s long
throw was met on the half volley from the edge of
the box by Bradley Barnes.
On the strike of half-time however the visitors
drew level again through hit-man Townson who couldn't
miss from ten yards after being set up by Joe Booth.
The Blues weathered a period of Fylde pressure after
the restart, with man-of-the-match Carl Ruffer having
a great game in defence, and both sides had chances
to win after the break but in the end had to settle
for a point which will have suited neither.
Last night’s crowd of 1,740 was the lowest
of the season. The Blues are back at home on Saturday
when Wakefield are the visitors, kick-off 15:00hrs.
table | Match
© Evening Leader
13 January 2011
BLUES IN ACTION TONIGHT
entertain fifth placed AFC Fylde tonight looking
to get their home form back on track after picking
up just one of the last six points available. The
Blues have had their lead at the top of the table
cut to just one point following Chorley’s
last minute win against Mossley last night. Fylde
slipped from third to fifth following last night’s
The visitors are managed by Kelham O’Hanlon
who had a stint as coach at Chester under manager
Mark Wright in what were rather difficult times.
He was full of praise for the new set-up now at
Chester and told the Evening Leader: “I found
my time as coach at Chester as a bizarre experience.
I was asked to come in and help, but I think an
appropriate slant would be to say it was a strange
and difficult time for the club.
was a lot of doom and gloom around the place at
that time, but the story since then has been fantastic
for everybody concerned at the club. I felt the
feel-good factor when I watched Chester play Trafford
this season and the differences between my time
as coach and now were clear for all to see.”
to see the Chester fans doing such a good job and
being able to see their team play in the same stadium
that Chester City used to play.”
The two sides have yet to meet this season but are
due to meet again in the Presidents Cup in February
before Chester visit Kellamergh Park on the final
day of the season.
Those supporters who can’t get to the match
tonight are able to tune into live FREE commentary
on the Blues Live network. Throughout January the
commentaries are being streamed free thanks to the
backing of the Exiles. You can listen to the commentary
form the following link http://blueslive.co.uk/wp/?cat=4
12 January 2011
TWO MORE SIGNINGS
Manager Neil Young
has made two more signings as Chester-born midfielder
Ashley Williams joins from local side from Airbus
UK and goalkeeper Adam Judge has signed from Leigh
Genesis. The club are awaiting internation clearance
for Williams before he can be selected, he is a
Welsh Under-23 semi-pro international. Judge played
in goal for Leigh against Chester earlier in the
season as the two teams drew 1-1.
Young told the Evening Leader: “I’m
pleased Ashley has decided to join Chester because
I know we were one of a number of clubs chasing
his signature. We’ve had to pay a small fee
for Ashley because he was on contract at Airbus
until the end of the season.”
he’s a Chester lad and he is keen to help
his hometown club win promotion. We’re hoping
he can bring a lot to our table and I’m
hoping the FA can give us the thumbs up so that
he can play some part in tonight’s match.”
“I firmly believe that
Ashley is not just a player for now at Chester,
but someone who can contribute over the next 18
9 January 2011
SANNA RETURNS TO BAY
Goalkeeper Chris Sanna
has been sold back to Colwyn Bay after making just
seven appearances for the Blues. The 23-year-old
has been sold for the same fee he was bought back
Chester chief executive Steve Ashton said: “Chris
wanted to return to his former club after not settling
at Chester. I am surprised that the player has not
given it more of a go, especially as Chris was so
keen to join Chester and play for a manager whom
he knows well.”
“However, we only want players who are 100%
committed to the cause. We wish Chris well, and
thank him for his efforts whilst here.”
“There is a big expectation
throughout the whole club from the fans, management
team, board and most importantly the playing squad.
As Neil Young has recently advised, we need players
who are not only good footballers but can also cope
with this high expectation.”
Richard Whiteside returned to the starting line-up
on Saturday as Chester won 2-0 at Trafford. The
Blues had a dream start with a goal from Iain Howard
in the first minute and went on to double their
lead midway through the opening period through captain
Chester are next in action at home on Wednesday
night when they can expect a tough encounter against
the third placed side AFC Fylde.
7 January 2011
There is a pitch inspection
tomorrow morning to ascertain whether the match
at Trafford can go ahead, details will appear on
the home club’s website at 11.00hrs. The pitch
is currently playable but a precautionary inspection
will be carried out at 10:45hrs.
have confirmed that defender Danny Meadowcroft
has left by mutual consent. Meadowcroft was
manager Neil Young’s first signing in
the summer and he led the team out for their
inaugural match at Colwyn Bay.
Meadowcroft faileed to command a regular spot
in the side and made a total of 4+0 appearances
for the club.
© Evening Leader
4 January 2011
There are two changes
to the fixture list. The twice-postponed home match
against Durham City will now take place on Saturday
26 February, kick-off 15:00hrs. The home match against
Salford City has now been moved from that afternoon
to Wednesday 9 March, kick-off 19:45hrs.
3 January 2011
BLUES BLOW THEIR ADVANTAGE
drew 2-2 with Warrington Town this afternoon after
the visitors scored twice in the final 20 minutes
to bag a deserved point, in fact they could have
taken all three at the death had Chris Gahgan not
missed from close range.
Manager Neil Young made no fewer than five changes
from the side that ground out victory at Prescot
on Saturday and had a dream start as Steven Beck
opened the scoring from close range on five minutes
after Kyle Wilson had seen a shot rebound off a
The Blues were unable to capitalise on their start
and it was the visitors, enjoying a run of five
straight victories, who were the better side for
the remainder of the half with Chris Sanna saving
well to deny Mike Duffy an equaliser.
Chester however doubled their advantage on 68 minutes
with captain George Horan prodding home from close
range following a flick-on from Michael Wilde.
The Wire soon reduced the arrears as the unfortunate
Stuart Jones scored in his own net under a challenge
with Gahgan. The Chester defence continued to defend
deep and invite the visitors to attack and in the
last minute the inevitable happened as Tom Hardwick
side-footed home the equaliser.
Another large home crowd, 2,609, will have left
disappointed but the Blues remain top of the league
though their lead has been reduced to five points
following Chorley’s 1-0 win over another of
the promotion hopefulls Curzon Ashton.
A disappointed Young told the Evening Leader after
the match: “I didn’t think we deserved
to be 2-0 up and I thought Warrington were the better
we’ll take the point because we’ve
played games when we could have lost. From the
first minute to the last I thought Warrington
were the better team and they had more desire
than us which is worrying.”
“At the end of the
day people here have got to stand up and be counted.
When we’re 2-0 and then 2-1 up in a game we
have to ensure that we see the game out.
“I didn’t think we turned up and we
were far from good enough. We seem to be continually
undone by late goals. We can all look for excuses,
but I am looking for answers.
table | More
Picture © Evening
1 January 2011
LATE JONES GOAL SECURES WIN
goal from Stuart Jones deep into stoppage time gave
Chester a 1-0 win at Prescot Cables. It was a scrappy
performance from the Blues on a difficult heavy
pitch but the win maintained their six point lead
at the top of the division. Jones, who had already
seen one effort rattle the crossbar, popped up at
the far post in the 94th minute to crash home a
volley following a cross from Greg Stones to the
delight of the large City following.
Chester are back in action on Monday when they entertain
Warrington Town. Town were our first ever opponents
of course at the start of the season as the two
sides drew 1-1
at Cantilever Park in August. They enjoyed a
2-0 home in over Witton Albion yesterday that seees
them now lie in eighth place.
Manager Neil Young told the Chester Chronicle: “It
was a dramatic way to do it, but it was a really
good win. Prescot were well up for the game. It
was New Year’s Day, there was a big crowd
and a pitch like a pudding. There was no quarter
given, but we matched them for effort and matched
them on the physical side, which we had to if we
wanted to win.
said to the lads at half-time that these are the
type of games that if you come away with a 1-0
win, they are the ones that when you look back
at the end of April they are the ones that possibly
win you the title.
“So although it was not
a great spectacle – and you also have to
remember that both sides had gone a long time
without playing football – we stuck at it
and because of that I always knew we would get
an opportunity. I just didn’t think we’d
have to wait that long!
“But when we did score
it was a great moment – it sounded as if there
was 5,000 people in the ground rather than 1,000.
The noise was incredible.”
© Evening Leader