31st December 2011 Crewe Alexandra
January 1, 2000
Happy New Year
I hope you all had a great Christmas and that we can look forward to better times in the New Year.
These notes are written before that game and follow on the back of a disappointing defeat at Gillingham, particularly so as there had been something of a mini revival beforehand thanks to the big televised cup win at Totton, sandwiched between very creditable draws against promotion chasing Southend and Swindon. Gillingham proved to be a step too far, with three of the four goals conceded at Priestfield having been gifted to the ‘Gills’ whilst the other came from a lucky rebound following a good reflex save by Scott Bevan.
So, Rovers remain a lowly 18th in League Two, a position we seem to have been in for weeks with no win outside the FA Cup for a couple of months. Just a year ago Rovers fell into the League One relegation zone for the first time in a decade and things have not improved much since.
Five managers, and not many more League victories later ,and we are still struggling to get some real points on the board so it has not been a good 2011. Perhaps it will all come right in 2012 and at least we have a big cup tie coming up next Saturday when we are on the ‘telly’ again for the match against Aston Villa. I hope that all our members have been able to secure a ticket for what promises to be the highlight of the season to date. Certainly Villa are going to provide us with a very stern test, and are bound to be red hot favourites, and that’s why the cameras will be here of course. We have had some great games against the ‘Villains’ in the past, especially at Eastville in the 1970’s, and it will be great to see them back in Bristol again. A shock win is not an impossibility, if only because of Villa’s own inconsistent form, but Rovers will really have to step up a gear to stay with one of the Premiership’s top ten teams.
However, before we can give too much thought to the Cup again we have the small matter of getting some League wins but to achieve one today it is likely we’ll have to get the ball past one of our heroes from the promotion
winning team of 2007. Steve Phillips kept loads of ‘clean sheets’ as we climbed the League Two table from the very position we have returned to today so perhaps Steve’s welcome return might prove to be a lucky ornen, for a much needed climb back up the table!
Back to the cup, the FA Youth Cup this time, and our youngsters did themselves proud in only going down 3-2 to a strong Coventry City side. The Supporters Club are big backers of the youth set up so please keep buying our 50/50 half time draw tickets, the profits from which go into financing the running of the side who are the stars of Rovers’ future!
Get behind the boys in blue today and let’s have a happy end to 2011 and better prospects for 2012.
Happy New Year!
Jim Chappell, BRSC Chairman
Barbara Kelly of Westbury on Trym won £48 with ticket 55501 at the Coventry City youth team game sold by Phil Draper in the J & G Stand.
A warm welcome to Alex fans who have made the trip down from Cheshire and other parts to be with us today.
A special welcome also to the many Pirate exiles who will be home in the West Country for the New Year celebrations with their respective families and friends and taking this opportunity to support the team.
By everyone’s admission, the first half of this season has fallen short of where we want to be. The FA Cup run has brought us some cheer and we look forward to a full stadium when we entertain Aston Villa on Saturday. Before then we have three League points up for grabs and we know that come the end of the season we will be judged on our position in the table. For many the New Year presents a fresh start. A good second half to the season will do much to lift our spirits and to raise our hopes and expectations for next season at the very least. Let’s hope so.
on the Monday afternoon in the build up to Christmas.
Many more would have taken in the game if we had been able to rearrange for an evening kick off, but those at the stadium were witness to a very good performance from our boys and an exciting second half display. A Coventry outfit who are known to be one of the best this season were fortunate to go into half time with a three goal advantage. The
well taken goals came in a spree late in the half. Our younger team refused to lie down and a fine second half display brought two goals and the hopes of extra time and pens. In the event a headed goal line clearance denied us in added time.
The U-18 Youth side were a credit to our football club on this occasion and indeed have been so right from the very first kick of the ball in August. They deserve every ounce and every penny of support from the Supporters Club and our branches. Have a look at the fixtures at the AXA Ground and take in some Youth Alliance games. You will be pleasantly surprised by the standard of football and the desire and commitment of our student players. The pitch side coaching skills of Jamie Fullarton are also something not to miss.
The Christmas Carol service at St James, Lockleaze was again a touch alternative and very enjoyable.It was good to see so many first team players at the Church. One thing which made Gill and me really smile was the picture of Jesus in the entrance to the Church looking very holy and clad in period robes which made us look a second time to realise that it was indeed a Rovers shirt. Well done Rev!
So with Him in the line up we seem to have a positive advantage like no other; Come on Rovers, Come Gas, together we can. Happy New Year everyone: see you around the ground before and after the game today, safe journey, have fun and take care tonight.</span>
Ken Masters, BRSC Director
ORGANISED JUNIOR MATCHDAY PARTIES
Today we welcome Warmley Rangers U-12’s who play in the Avon Youth League Division One. Warmley’s progress in the league is
exceeding expectations, and they are firmly holding their position around mid table with games in hand over their rivals above them. If you would like to visit Warmley’s web site the address is www.warmleyrangers.com, for information about their friendly club. Warmley have teams from U-5 up to U-16 and also have an adult team. The club was formed in 1976 with their motto ‘Winning isn’t everything, but wanting it is’.
This scheme is for schools and organised Junior teams who can apply for up to 50 free matchday tickets in the Becks Stand or Family Enclosure. It will include for some parents to supervise them. Eagle Coaches provide a free bus within the Bristol area and will go further a field for a subsidised cost.
We are now booked up until, and including, the home game against Crawley Town on Saturday, January 14th. Of the remaining nine games only Oxford and Morecambe are booked, but there has been a lot of interest shown in the other matches so please submit your applications early to avoid disappointment. The next game available is Bradford City on 28th January.
Please email your applications to [email protected] or phone on 07765 254110. There will only be one coach per game, so priority will be given on a first come first served basis.