3rd March 2012 Macclesfield Town
January 1, 2000
From the BRSC Chairman: JIM CHAPPELL
Welcome all to the Memorial Stadium for the next episode in the Mark McGhee revival story!
Whilst the boss would not publicly agree there is now little danger, in my mind, of Rovers failing through the trapdoor of relegation from League Two, thanks to the continuing improvement of the team under his expert guidance.
A string of difficult games against play off chasing opponents has generally gone well with the previously porous defence now looking decidedly solid, with-only four goals conceded since the departure of Paul Buckle. One of those came late on, at Shrewsbury, to produce the only defeat so far in the McGhee reign. Subsequent clean sheets here, against Oxford, and last Saturday at the Don Valley Stadium have more than redressed the balance. Of course we deservedly scored our own injury time winner to end Rotherham’s recent good run and secure another three valuable points. It was good to see such large contingents of ‘Gas’ both at Shrewsbury and in the strange environment that is the Don Valley, the visitors section there being a cross between the Withdean and the old
Muller Bank at Eastville!
With a biting cold wind blowing into our faces, it was certainly difficult, to see what was going on at the opposite end of the pitch but the main thing is that Andy Dorman opened his Rovers account by thumping in the winner, not exactly under 0ur noses but only about a hundred yards away!
Strange toilets (gents) and hopelessly chaotic and inadequate catering facilities added to the odd feel of playing in the athletics stadium, but at least it was all under cover unlike the ‘football in the park’ atmosphere hitherto enjoyed at Brighton!
The Don Valley is only a temporary home for the Millers, although it was my second visit as I was also present when Rovers won a pre season friendly there in 2008. Two games, two wins, no goals conceded – my type of ground! On that previous occasion I was a guest of Ken Masters in the boardroom and there met up with the Rotherham Council’s Planning Officer, who happened to be an exiled Gashead.
He told us that he watched Rovers up north whenever he had the chance, so I guess he was there again last Saturday when the match programme contained a photo feature on United’s new stadium that will be completed in time for next season.
The New York Stadium, (apparently NY is a district of Rotherham]), looks like another decent new ground for the travelling ‘Gas’ to visit next term as Mr.
McGhee seems to have made us look much safer whilst dealing a big blow to the ‘Millers’ promotion hopes this time round.
It was a timely reminder that Rovers’ own plans for a super new stadium at the University of the West of England should be up for consideration by South Gloucestershire Council in the next few weeks. At the same time Sainsbury’s plans for their new supermarket, (which will provide the funding), on this site will go into Bristol City Council.
Both schemes have the backing of both councils planners, and even local residents seem to be generally in favour so, all going well, Rovers should be next with a new stadium. As I have said before, we supporters will need to back the plans when they come up for consideration and the club will advise us when action has to be taken. When that time comes, make sure you make your views known – don’t leave it to someone else!
Rovers’ only goalless away game this season took place at Moss Rose, way back last August in a hard fought battle. I’m sure it won’t be much easier this afternoon, but we need the extra points so get behind Mark’s boys and let’s have another win to celebrate! Up the Pirates!
Jim Chappell, BRSC Chairman
Veronica Richards of Horfield won £864 at the Oxford game with ticket 52186 sold by Jackie Chapple on the Clubhouse Terrace.
A special welcome to Macclesfield supporters who have made the trip from Cheshire and other parts to be with us in BS7; enjoy your football – we wish you safe journey home after the game.
We come into today’s game on the back of an away win up at Rotherham United. The Millers are a club keen to make progress up the pyramid, but all the talk from the home directors and fans was about the almost built New York Stadium. We told them about our plans for UWE and they shared our excitement, as we did theirs.
It was the second away trip on the bounce that we talked new stadia. Shrewsbury Town are equally convinced that a new stadium with all of the associated facilities for spectator comfort and additional income streams can be the making of a football club in the current climate and times.
We share that view completely; now is the time to give the Chairman all the backing we can muster over the coming weeks and months as we enter the most critical phase of the project.
Many thanks to all Rovers fans who have turned out and supported the team on the road in recent weeks. We consistently take 450/500 fans to away games; it makes a difference and it is much appreciated.
Please take note of branch meet ups, where travel is always high on the agenda. Severn Vale (RATS) run mini buses to all away games so check in with Ivan (Bagger) Stinchcombe in the Bristol Room before the game today. Our official Bristol based Supporters Club transport is also represented in the Bristol Room on matchdays.
The next meeting of Gloster Gas is at the Double Gloucester, Longlevens on Wednesday March 13th. David Miller is working very hard to make the branch a success, with travel to home and away games high on the list of priorities. Norton Radstock is running a coach to Plymouth for the midweek away game down there. I understand the interest is heavy, so contact the organisers if you live in NE Somerset very soon if you are not to be disappointed.
Weston super Mare is a very active and well established branch; always well represented on the road. Check out the Supporters Club Website for all branch organiser contact details.
You may have read about our support for St Peters Hospice, the local charity that we have adopted this season. We are holding an official fund raising day for the charity today. You can help hospices by texting GOAL33£3 to 70070 to make a £3 donation. To play my part I am walking for three hours prior to the game, starting at 11.30am and finishing at 2.30pm so that is sponsoring me at £l per hour. I expect to cover between 10 and 12 miles around the pitch during the three hour period. Help the Hospices Football Week is a chance for all Football League clubs to come together and raise money for The League’s national charity 2011/12.1f you can please text, please help the Hospices including our own St Peters; thank you.
Ken Masters, BRSC Director
ORGANISED JUNIOR MATCHDAY PARTIES
We welcome Keith Fine and the children of Longwell Green Junior Football Club, which has more than 40 youngsters here today.
They are a friendly, but competitive, club running teams from U-5 through to U-18 and U-8 to U-17 for the girl’s section.
With 22 teams, Longwell Green is now one of the largest clubs in Bristol, but always welcomes newcomers. Why not check them out on their website: longwellgreensportsjfc.co.uk
In 2003 the juniors and seniors amalgamated and formed Longwell Green Sports (replacing the FC) and also incorporating netball teams and girls football. Longwell Green Sports JFC has enjoyed a long standing association with both Bristol clubs. Players from both City and Rovers are actively involved with their grassroots junior football. Longwell Green has also supplied several players to both Academies, some of them are still playing with both Rovers and City.
Organised Junior Matchday parties have again operated successfully this year and we are now fully booked up to the end of this season. We are however keeping a reserve list and taking expressions of interest for 2012113.