May 1999

Swindon Town head pre-season friendly list (25/5/99)

City’s pre-season friendly list is headed by games against the West’s three Nationwide League sides. The full list is as follows:

Mon 19 Jul Swindon Town H   Sat 31 Jul Forest Green Rovers H
Wed 21 Jul Bristol City H Tue 3 Aug Mangotsfield United A
Sat 24 Jul Bristol Rovers H Wed 4 Aug Highworth A (reserves)
Tue 27 Jul Paulton Rovers A Sat 7 Aug Weston Super Mare A
Wed 28 Jul Melksham Town A (reserves) Wed 11 Aug Caldicot A (reserves)

All the Saturday games kick off at 3pm and the midweek games at 7.45pm (home) or 7.30pm (away). Thanks to Phil for this information.

1999-2000 season ticket prices announced (19/5/99)

City have announced what it will cost to watch their march back to the Conference next season, and it’s as follows:

As is probably clear, all season tickets bought before 30 June recieve the customary discount. Also available, for the younger City fan up to the age of 11, is a £10 season ticket, of which £5 is paid to the child’s school for books and equipment.

The draw for the 1st and 2nd round of next season’s Somerset Premier Cup has been made with City facing a trip to either Glastonbury or Bridgwater in the 2nd round after receiving a bye in the 1st. One other tie of note is Y**v*l’s chance to revenge their embarrassing exit last season with another clash against Paulton Rovers.

Margate appeal success sends Cambridge down (14/5/99)

The Dr Martens promotion/relegation picture became clearer last night after Margate won their appeal to claim their place in the Premier Division. They had initially been refused promotion, after finishing runners-up in the Southern Division, due to their ground failing an April 1 deadline but the successful appeal sees them promoted at the expense of Cambridge City. This means City face another long distance trip next season as the idea that they play in a regionalised league becomes more fanciful.

Hervin gambles as he holds out for league move (12/5/99)

Mark Hervin may find himself squeezed out of City as he refuses to sign a new contract, preferring instead to continue the search for a move to a league club. The holdout, coming after his latest trial at Crewe Alexandra came to nothing, has forced Paul Bodin into beginning a search for a new keeper, with two possible replacements, both with Football League experience, already contacted by the City boss. Despite the Crewe disappointment Hervin’s agent (!) has told him two other league clubs are interested and a move is still a possibility, hence his reluctance to commit himself to City. However, with Bodin wanting to avoid a situation where he finds City without a keeper as the season approaches, this decision may force him into replacing Hervin sooner rather than later.

Bodin adds Fraser to the retained list (7/5/99)

Jimmy Fraser, the midfielder signed by Paul Bodin at the beginning of last season, has been offered another one year deal despite failing to hold down a regular first team place. Another of Bodin’s signings Dave Elsey has been given a chance to earn a new contract in pre-season after struggling with his fitness through the season. One player definitely released is Rob Wadsworth after making just one start last season. This almost completes the retained picture, which is as follows:

  • Existing contract: Paul Bodin, Steve White, Scott Walker.
  • Retained: Colin Towler, Peter Tisdale, Lee Vickerman, Rob Skidmore, Jimmy Fraser, Mark Harrington, Stuart James, Martin Paul, Graham Colbourne, Mike Davis, Fidell Richards.
  • Released: Garry Wotton, Dave Elsey, Rob Wadsworth.
  • No decision: Mark Hervin, Alex Masson.
  • And Bodin has outlined his plans for next season as he looks to bring in 3 or 4 new, more experienced players. He already has 3 targets, a centre-back, full-back and midfielder, lined up and hopes to have deals done by the beginning of June.

    Birdy double gives City winning finish (2/5/99)

    Two more goals, his 10th and 11th in the last 6 games, from Martin Paul (left) gave City a winning finish to the season in a 2-1 victory over Gresley Rovers. The result lifts City to a final position of 4th place, and relegates the Derbyshire side. The first goal came in the 3rd minute when Fidell Richards was tripped in the box and Birdy dispatched the penalty. Twenty minutes later he got his second, and 30th of the season, turning and firing home from a Graham Colbourne cross. Gresley pulled a goal back 7 minutes into the second half when a Rob Skidmore foul gave the home side a penalty, sub Pitt sending Mark Herin the wrong way, but, unlike in recent games, City never looked in danger after this and came closer to increasing the scoring, Jimmy Fraser firing wide and Colbourne missing when clean through.

    As already said the result leaves Gresley facing Midland Division football next season but who joins them is still unclear. They join Bromsgrove, Cambridge and Rothwell in the bottom four but with Hastings resignation appeal looking doomed Rothwell look to be safe. Further complications come with Margatefinishing runners-up in the Southern Division as they have been refused promotion due to their ground failing to make a April 1 deadline. If their appeal fails Cambridge will receive a last minute reprieve. Definitely coming up are Clevedon Town, Newport AFC and Havant & Waterlooville. And coming down from the Conference are Welling United, assuming Barrow don’t go bust in the summer and save the Kent side. If this happens and no side comes down it could, theoretically, save Gresley. This should be sorted out by mid-May at the Dr Martens League meeting.

    Keeper Mark Hervin may have made his last appearance in City colours as he is given another chance to earn a move to 1st Division Crewe Alexandra. Dario Gradi’s side, who all but assured their 1st Division survival yesterday, have given Hervin another weeks trial.