City netted a 93rd minute equaliser for the second game in a row in this afternoon’s 1-1 draw at Hemel Hempstead Town. And the unlikely source of the last-gasp strike was Dan Bowman, with a first goal for the club in his 95th appearance. City’s ongoing issue of conceding early goals was again evident as Hemel went ahead after just five minutes, Montgomery turning in Oli’s cross from close range. Despite looking dangerous from almost every attack the home side could not add to this lead during a one-sided first half. However, the introduction of Chas Hemmings at the break saw City neutralise the Tudors attacking threat and slowly they began to pose problems of their own going forward. Chances came and went though, with Hemel now reduced to time-wasting as much as possible, and when, on 90 minutes, Dave Pratt could only direct a firm header straight at keeper Butler it looked as if their efforts would go unrewarded. Justice was done though, with just one of the four additional minutes left, when Hemel failed to deal with a high ball into their area and Bowman fired the ball high into the net.
Centre-back Jack Batten has returned to Bristol City following the completion of his three-month loan spell with City. The 20-year old made eleven starts for the Romans, culminating in a man of the match performance against St Albans City last Saturday, and the club thanks him for him time at Twerton Park and wishes him all the best in his future career.
And in further loan news, Cheltenham Town striker Eliot Richards has agreed to stay at Twerton Park for a third month.
For City’s Vanarama National League South game against Gosport Borough on Tuesday 1 March (ko 7.45pm), as our long-standing tenants, the Bridge Club, use Randall’s every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, we can allow car parking only for those who have Bath City car park season tickets in the numbered spaces. There will be no car park spaces for sale on that night.
An Andy Watkins header three minutes into stoppage time earned City a deserved point at Havant & Waterlooville this evening to maintain Gary Owers unbeaten start in his second spell as City manager. The hosts struck first after just 12 minutes when the impressive Ciardini shot home from a narrow angle and, as they adapted to the heavily sanded and uneven playing surface much better than City, they could have been out of sight by half-time. Ex-City midfielder Swallow shot narrowly over before Ciardini crashed another effort against the crossbar. After the break City began to pose more of a threat as the Hawks seemed content to sit back and try to hold on to their slim lead. A coupld of last-ditch blocks kept City at bay then Watkins forced an excellent save from Young in the home goal. City thought they had equalised with eight minutes to go when Richards’ back-heel appeared to cross the line but the officials waved away their protests. However, from City’s ninth corner of the second half (against Havant’s two) Dave Pratt flicked on Frankie Artus’ cross for Watkins to head the ball home at the far post, for his second goal in as many games, and secure the point City throughly warranted on their second 45 minutes performance.
There are several unclaimed prizes from Saturday’s Community Day free ticket draw. They are:
Wolverhampton signed shirt – ticket number 2261
Bath City signed football – ticket number 0303
Voucher for a meal for 2 at the Bird In Hand Saltford – ticket number 1914
City missed two penalty kicks for the third time this season but still came out on top against St Alban’s City at a wet and windy Twerton Park this afternoon. With both sides struggling to come to terms with the strong, gusty wind blowing toward the Bath End of the ground, the 757-strong crowd, boosted by the annual Community Day events, were not provided with great entertainment but it was the City fans who went home happy thanks to Andy Watkins’ neat finish midway through the first half. Playing into the gale during the first half City did suffer a few nervous moments, mainly from set-pieces and long throws, but they struck first on 22 minutes when Watkins latched onto a Nick McCootie flick to slide the ball under Welch into the net. And three minutes later it should have been 2-0 after Frankie Artus was upended in the box only for Eliot Richards to slip as he took the penalty and sky it over the bar. Then 14 minutes into the second half Richards burst through and was brought down by Welch for the second penalty of the game. This time McCootie took the duties and, whilst he got the kick on target, it was comfortably saved by Welch. The visitors failed to take advantage of City’s continuing penalty woes and had the crossbar to thank for keeping City out when Liam Kelly’s dipping 25-yard shot crashed against the frame of the goal with ten minutes left. Despite their narrow advantage City saw the game out after this with little difficulty to record a first home win since October and open a four point cushion to the Vanarama National League South drop zone ahead of another vital match at Havant & Waterlooville on Tuesday evening.
This coming Saturday it is the annual Bath City FC Community Day when the Romans play St Albans City in a Vanarama National South League game at Twerton Park (3pm). This is a “Pay What You Want” fixture with 10% of the money taken on the gate being donated to Dorothy House Hospice Care – the charity that the club are supporting this season.
There will be live music before the game provided by New Orleans brass band Horning Glory, face painting by Hannah from fantasyfaces, so why not get your face painted up in Bath City colours, guess the number of balloons in the Domino’s Pizza Smart car with the nearest guess winning Pizzas, the opportunity to experience Subbuteo table football, Bladud the club’s mascot will be there plus see “walking football” for the over 55s, on the pitch at half-time. The team will be greeted with a guard of honour when they enter the pitch by a group that are involved in the Foundation football coaching scheme, led by former City favourite, Charlie Griffin.
Over 2000 tickets have been distributed to local schools and businesses. So, if you have a ticket, bring it along to the game, or get a ticket at the turnstiles. Then just PAY WHAT YOU WANT to watch the game. Fans will then keep the right hand section of ticket as it will be entered in to a free draw, with the winners being announced at half-time. Prizes include at least one shirt signed by the players from a Championship club, a football signed by the Bath City players, two match day tickets, a Bath City scarf and a meal voucher for the Bird In Hand, Saltford.
The club would like to thank a number of local businesses who have sponsored the Community Day – Anthem Publishing, Curo, Domino’s Pizza, Lidl, Moore Stephens, Sitec, Thrings Solicitors plus the Bath City FC Community Sports Foundation and a group of Bath City Exiles.
This is your chance to have an afternoon out and support YOUR local football club, so bring along family and friends to see this vital fixture against St Albans City and welcome back Gary Owers in his first home game in charge since being appointed manager for a second time.
City have rearranged their home match against Whitehawk for Tuesday 19 April (ko 7.45pm).
After two false starts Gary Owers second spell in charge of City began with a hard-fought 1-1 draw against play-off chasing Sutton United at a damp Gander Green Lane this afternoon. Little appeared to have changed when City once again conceded an early goal – former City winger Stearn heading a corner past Steve Phillips with just two minutes on the clock. Boosted by the goal Sutton pinned City back in the opening 20 minutes, Stearn twice testing Phillips and firing a shot narrowly wide. However, City began to get into the game after this, Andy Watkins forcing U’s keeper Worner to turn away a shot with his foot, and two minutes before the break they levelled. Watkins reached a long ball forward ahead of Worner and he was sent tumbling by the keeper inside the box. After lengthy delay for treatment to the keeper, and a yellow card, Eliot Richards drilled home the spot kick. An early effort from Nick McCootie, that was well blocked by a defender, gave City hope of completing the turnaround but the home side looked the more likely to grab a winner after this. City stood firm though, producing several great blocks, and just once did Sutton open them up, Wright shooting home but only after the ball had gone out of play in the build-up. The point keeps City five points clear of the drop zone ahead of the massive home game against St Albans City next Saturday.
City have signed attacking midfielder Liam Kelly on loan for a month from Championship side Reading. The 20-year old has come up through the youth ranks at the Madejski Stadium and has also represented the Republic of Ireland at Under-17 and Under-19 level. He will go into the squad to face Sutton United tomorrow.
Matt Coupe has played his last match for the club having decided to retire from football. Matt returned to Twerton Park just before the start of the season to assist the club, came off the bench in our first league match and played his part in our excellent start to the season. Now, with increasing work commitments in his business, he considers it fitting to end his career at Bath City and we thank him for all his has done for the club in his two spells here and wish him well for the future. In total Matt played 336 games for City, scoring eight times.
City have rearranged their away game against Truro City for Tuesday 15 March (ko 7.45pm).
City’s players and supporters endured a long, wasted journey to Truro City this afternoon after the game as postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at around 6.30pm as they were arriving at the ground. The Truro website confirms that the pitch was playable at 4.30pm but the forecast heavy rain left the referee no option but to declare it unfit on his arrival at Treyew Road. The date for a third attempt to play the fixture will be announced in due course.
In further Truro City related news midfielder Ben Adelsbury has signed for the Cornish club for an undisclosed fee. The club would like to thank Ben for two and half seasons at Twerton Park – during which time he made 86 appearances and scored nine goals – and wish him well for the future.
The club is pleased to announce the signing of centre-back Matt Taylor as a player coach. His registration with the Vanarama National League has been completed and we await international clearance following his move from Newport County. The 34-year old is no stranger to Twerton Park, having played for Team Bath during the 2006-07 season, before going on to make over 200 Football League appearances for Exeter City, Charlton Athletic, Bradford City, Colchester United, Cheltenham Town and Newport County.
John Freegard is leaving the club and we would like to thank him for many years of service since being brought back to Twerton Park by John Relish. We are sure we will continue to see John supporting the team from the terraces.
Gary Owers will have to wait a little bit longer for the first match of his second spell in charge of City after today’s match against Whitehawk at Twerton Park was postponed due to a wterlogged pitch. A new date for the game will be announced in due course.
New manager Gary Owers has brought in his first player since returning to City with the loan signing of William Murphy from Bristol City. The 20-year old central midfielder will go straight into the squad to face Whitehawk at Twerton Park tomorrow (ko 3pm).
We are pleased to announce the appointment of Gary Owers as the new manager of Bath City FC. Applications were received from a number of excellent candidates and following the interview process we decided that Gary, who is an excellent coach with extensive managerial experience, and has contacts within the game both locally and nationally, was the stand out candidate.
He will work alongside Jim Rollo, who is to remain at the club as assistant manager. Additionally the club would like to place on record its thanks to both Jim and Steve Philips for stepping in and looking after the team in the interim period.
In a previous spell, Gary both played and managed the club before moving on to manage and coach a number of clubs at a higher level. He returns to the club with extensive experience which will be of enormous benefit as he begins the immediate task of improving results and retaining the club’s National League status. Gary joins us at a very busy time with a number of important fixtures coming up, starting this Saturday at home to Whitehawk, so we ask all supporters to get behind Gary and the team and look forward to welcoming him to Twerton Park.
On accepting the appointment, Gary said ”I am very pleased to be back and believe I can help the club in its current situation. I will look to strengthen the squad, spend time on the training ground and accumulate points. We need everybody’s help and support to quickly turn around the club’s fortunes.”
We thank all those who applied for their interest in the Club and wish them well for the future.
With the interview process for a new manager on going, Adie Britton has decided it is an appropriate time to depart from the Club. The Club would like to thank Adie for his ten years of service which has seen two promotions, winning the Southern League Championship and Conference South play off final against Woking. In addition, the most successful FA Trophy run in the Club’s history and memorable FA Cup ties including the victory at Grimsby and two matches against Dagenham. Adie’s involvement has been fully committed, including a period as Chairman, and we wish him all the best for his future career.