News from the SC
November 19, 2008
50’s night success
As part of the football club’s 125th anniversary this year the first of several evenings commemorating our past was held last Friday at the Memorial Stadium.
Mike Jay’s informative talk of this era incorporated lively discussion, a visual slide show and artefacts from this time. Footage from Pathé News and regional television included highlights of Rovers’ epic FA Cup run when the Pirates only succumbed to the mighty Newcastle United in the quarter finals after a replay at Eastville Stadium.
There was also rare footage of Rovers’ pre-season training camps under canvas in Weston-super-Mare. It provided an excellent insight into the life of Rovers players at the time.
Former players from the 50’s, John “Josser” Watling a winger who later converted to full-back, and forward Bill Roost answered questions from the audience.
Some super stories were told and details of these will appear in a future programme.
It was a delight for me to compère, thanks to those of you who came and even thanked Mike Jay and I for our efforts. I would equally like to thank those who made Friday possible; Simon and Robert Laurence at the Stadium, Mike Jay for great preparation, Alan Lacock, Ron Cox, Dave Hewett, Steve Burns and of course our living legends Josser and Bill. Without them there it would have been like a museum-like experience, their first-hand tales brought our evening to life.
The numbers who attended were more than double, and almost triple what we expected so we hope to host another event, “Rovers in the Sixties” in the first two months of next year as part of the ongoing 125th birthday celebrations.
BRSC (Match Day Chairman)
From the chair
What a difference a year makes! Twelve months ago, although of course we didn’t know it at the time, Rovers were setting out on a great F.A. Cup adventure that was to last the best part of five months, most of which was spent in the spotlight of national media.
This time round we are out of football’s greatest knock-out tournament at the first time of asking. Typically it just had to be at the hands of AFC Bournemouth yet again and we have now fallen victim to the struggling ‘Cherries’ no less than FIVE times in the last two seasons. One of the other defeats they inflicted on us was in the JPT earlier this season and in so doing Bournemouth have beaten Rovers in each of the three cup competitions during that short period. Talk about having the Indian sign over us!
This latest failure in the Fitness First arena means that Rovers have exited all this season’s cup competitions at the very first hurdle without conjuring a single goal – a bizarre statistic considering our scoring exploits in the League. So, no cup revenue this term and the loss of yet another defender with the very much in-form Byron Anthony receiving his ‘marching orders’ for two bookable offences. You knew it wasn’t going to be our day when a ‘stone wall’ penalty was turned down by a far from impressive referee. This was during a period when Rovers’ ten men were well on top but not providing much of a cutting force. Once the interval came and went so did Rovers’ chance and, just to make things worse, our old mate Sammy Igoe turned in a second half to compare with ‘man-of-the-match Darren Anderton and that was it. I’ll await next season’s cup draws with much trepidation because at least we won’t have to return to Bournemouth in the League for some time to come, barring a major change in fortune over the next six months or so!
What made the Bournemouth result worse of course was that it came on the back of a very unfortunate reverse at the Walkers Stadium where Leicester City stole all the points with two goals in the last four minutes. The Manager-of-the-Month ‘curse’ had struck Paul Trollope before the October award had even been announced and likewise for the Player-of-the-Month won by Rickie Lambert who has failed to score in either game since after grabbing a bucketful in the previous four weeks. However sincere congratulations are due anyway to Paul and Rickie for a great turn-round during October. Let’s hope we aren’t going to revert to September’s form and luck for the rest of November – losing no less than three defenders to injury at the hands of a somewhat ‘robust’ Leicester was not a good start!
There was another dark side to the Leicester game with a return to some ugly, albeit pathetic, crowd disturbance when large numbers of morons collected either side of the dividing net between home and away areas. Whilst this is very much a thing of the past in general both Bristol clubs, like most big city teams, attract these imbeciles when there are big games on offer. Some grounds have better division between home and away areas than others and a piece of old goal net is the best separation that many can come up with in the typical single tier bowls of which the Walkers is just one. There was an over-reaction by the Police who donned all sorts of riot gear to protect themselves (?) and I suppose why not rather than run the risk of getting injured. Many of them seem to enjoy dealing with ‘aggro’ as much as the hooligans and the whole thing turned into a complete nuisance for the rest of us who just wanted to watch a very good game of football. Whilst many of the ‘protagonists’ on Rovers’ side of the netting were complete strangers to me there were a couple thrown out whom I recognised from before. Whether they were guilty of anything at all is difficult to say bearing in mind the Police’s tactics but the Supporters Club will continue its policy of banning anyone convicted of hooliganism. There were also issues surrounding the Police policy of dealing with supporters’ coaches, including our own official travel, that we are still investigating and I hope to report back on this in due course.
Tonight we have a very difficult game against high-flying ‘Scunny’. We need to get back on a winning tack so get behind those boys in blue and let’s grab some valuable points!
Organised Juniors Matchday Parties
This project has again been a massive success and all matches to the end of the season have now been booked up. Should you want to put your club on a reserve list please get your applications to [email protected] or (07765) 254110.
Many thanks again to Eagle Coaches
Today we welcome Mangotsfield under 12’s Junior Football Club. Mangotsfield play their home games at Pomphrey Hill, Mangotsfield and are in Division 3 of the Avon Youth League.
50/50 draw v Southend United
David Kennington of Hanham won £885 in our 50/50 draw with his winning ticket 45532 at the Southend United match. His winning ticket 45532 was sold by Pete Collins in Filton Avenue.