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Boston United Football Club News

Here is some news about the club received in the 1998/9 season, in date order with the latest news at the top.


The Cor Harting International Youth Tournament 1999

28th May Boston United's results in the tournament were:

Pool B Under 15 11 a side 2 x 25 minutes

Saturday 22 May

Boston United 4 v 1 MD Halen

VV Aalsmeer 3 v 12 Boston United

Sunday 23 May

Boston United 2 v 4 NFC

Boston United 1 v 5 Legmeervogels

Boston United finished third.

Pool E Under 12 11 a side 2 x 20 minutes

Saturday 22 May

Boston United 0 v 2 Legmeervogels

VV Aalsmeer 7 v 0 Boston United

Sunday 23 May

Boston United 0 v 6 NFC

Boston United 0 v 2 MD Halen

Boston United finished fifth.

Pool F Under 10 8 a side 2 x 15 minutes

Saturday 22 May

VV Aalsmeer 3 v 0 Boston United

Boston United 0 v 0 FC Ierpeldeng

Sunday 23 May

Boston United 0 v 5 MD Halen

Boston United 0 v 7 NFC

Boston United finished fifth

 


Matt Carmichael

27th May As reported on Non-League News Matt Carmichael has signed for Grantham Town.


The Cor Harting International Youth Tournament 1999

20th May Boston United's matches in the above tournament are scheduled for the following times:

Pool B Under 15 11 a side 2 x 25 minutes

Saturday 22 May

12.40 to 13.30 Boston United v MD Halen

14.40 to 15.30 VV Aalsmeer v Boston United

Sunday 23 May

11.00 to 11.50 Boston United v NFC

12.40 to 13.30 Boston United v Legmeervogels

Pool E Under 12 11 a side 2 x 20 minutes

Saturday 22 May

14.25 to 15.05 Boston United v Legmeervogels

15.35 to 16.15 VV Aalsmeer v Boston United

Sunday 23 May

11.55 to 12.35 Boston United v NFC

14.25 to 15.05 Boston United v MD Halen

Pool F Under 10 8 a side 2 x 15 minutes

Saturday 22 May

11.00 to 11.35 VV Aalsmeer v Boston United

14.00 to 14.35 Boston United v FC Ierpeldeng

Sunday 23 May

12.00 to 12.35 Boston United v MD Halen

15.00 to 15.35 Boston United v NFC

We hope to have results of the matches at the end of each day's play.


Margate's Appeal

18th May As reported on Non League News Margate have won their appeal regarding their ground facilities. They are now expected to join the Dr Martens League Premier Division next season, with Cambridge City being relegated. Hastings Town are expected to join the Southern Division.

Former Pilgrim Devon White has joined Ilkeston Town from Shrewsbury.

Nick Thompson, the Promoter of the Alphabet Forecast, is retiring from the position. Nick has worked for the Alphabet Forecast ever since it started in August 1988, but new commitments mean that he may not be available on future Monday evening's.

Club Chaplain Reverend John Moore is to be promoted to the Institution of Vicar from his present rank of Curate tomorrow Wednesday 19 May. The ceremony will be carried out by the Bishop of Grimsby, The Right Reverend David Tustin MA DD, with an Induction by The Archdeacon of Stow and Lindsey, The Venerable Roderick Wells MA. The ceremony will take place at 7.00pm at The Collegiate Church of the Holy Trinity, Tattershall.


The Cor Harting International Youth Tournament 1999

17th May Below are brief details of some of the other clubs taking part in the tournament.

VV Aalsmeer

This year VV Aalsmeer are celebrating their 80th anniversary after being formed on 15 September 1919.

Originally VV Aalsmeer played at Sportlaan but in 1972 the club moved to their present location at De Dreef in Aalsmeer. The present ground is a high standard with four football pitches, two training pitches and a main pitch, which is at Division level. Many representative teams of the K.N.V.B. have played official matches at VV Aalsmeer.

For several years VV Aalsmeer played in the top amateur league in Holland, the highlight was when they won the K.N.V.B. League Cup for amateurs. The Saturday and Sunday First Teams are presently playing in the third division of the K.N.V.B amateur league. VV Aalsmeer has teams playing on Saturdays and Sundays; the youth teams all play on Saturday.

Both sections are thriving; especially the healthy youth section where 13 teams in all age groups are playing. In 1989 a Youth Development plan was instigated, which has resulted in seven young players being selected for the first team this year.

VV Aalsmeer is working with qualified and licensed trainers for all age groups, thus giving optimal assistance and support to all the players of the club.

Sponsors, advertisers and all the volunteers who support the club are of the greatest importance and without all these people the club would not have been so successful over the past decades.

N.F.C. Amstelveen

The first time the name NFC was recorded dates back to 1917, but officially NFC was founded in November 1942 as VV Nieuwer-Amstelsche Football Club.

In the beginning the club played in the third division of the Amsterdam Football Association and was later promoted to the fourth division of the KNVB. In 1955 NFC reached the third division of the KNVB and moved to their present location near the centre of Amstelveen, where in 1963 a clubhouse and a new stand was built by volunteers. From 1963 to 1975 NFC played in the third or fourth division if the KNVB. In 1975 NFC moved up to the first division and finally reached the premier division of amateur football in 1986. At present NFC are playing in the third division of amateur football.

NFC has senior teams playing on Saturday and Sunday, which is common in Holland. NFC also has an enthusiastic youth department with a total of 160 youth players who are playing successfully in the youth divisions of the KNVB.

NFC is known for organising its annual youth tournaments during the Easter weekend and on Ascension Day.

MD Halen

The club started in 1916 under the name of Moedig Vooruit and was officially listed a member of the Belgium Football Association in 1927.

During the Second World War a club was founded in a nearby town called the Green Devils. Soon afterwards on 21 July 1942, both clubs merged to form a new club called Mediate Drivels. During 1977 they celebrated their 50th anniversary, they were granted the title "Royal", and changed their name to Koninklijke Moedige Duivels Halen, which they are known as today.

From 1965 to 1970 they played in the fourth division of the National League, their highest ever position. Presently MD Halen play in the third division of the Provincial League.

In July 1967, the club started its own youth development scheme, which has resulted in a thriving department within the club. In 1995 MD Halen invited youth teams from VV Aalsmeer to play in their annual tournament and in 1996 youth teams of MD Halen played successfully in Aalsmeer.

FC 72 Ierpeldeng

FC 72 Ierpeldeng started on 13 September 1971, when on a lazy afternoon several enthusiastic people decided to play a football match against each other, on a meadow near their village. This match resulted in the foundation of FC 72 Ierpeldeng on 8 October 1971. In 1972 they moved from the meadow to their first official ground. They moved again in 1983 to a sports accommodation, which is still in use today.

Since 1979 FC 72 Ierpeldeng have been working on a youth development scheme. They regularly organise youth tournaments and often invite teams from other countries.

FC 72 Ierpeldeng's senior players are playing in the second division of the National League, and hope to be in the first division next season.

In 1977 FC 72 Ierpeldeng celebrated their 25th anniversary with a youth tournament to which they invited VV Aalsmeer.


Tommy Lowder Obituary

15th May Tommy Lowder 1924-1999

Tom W. Lowder was born in Worksop on 17 October 1924; he played for Crystal Palace as an amateur in 1946 but made no appearances in the first team. He signed professional forms for Rotherham in August 1948 and played on the left wing for the first team in eight games and scored five goals, so it was surprising that it was allowed to leave and sign for Boston United in July 1949. He played in the first nine games of that season and scored five goals playing on the left wing, before being transferred to Southampton in October along with Bernard Elliott for £2000. Tom played for Southampton for three seasons making 39 appearances and scoring two goals before joining Southend United, where he stayed for one season scoring three goals in 21 games.

During season 1954/55 Ray Middleton signed Tom to play in what up to that time was to be the best ever Boston United side, he appeared mostly at inside left, and his lethal left foot accounted for the majority of his 19 goals in 45 games. He played in all seven FA Cup matches and scored six goals.

The 1955/56 season, which was to be outstanding with the FA Cup win 6-1 at Derby County (see Classic Games) before defeat at Tottenham Hotspur, saw Tom playing all his games at left half. 40 in the league with four goals, all four FA Cup matches with one goal.

In season 1956/57 Tom played in every first team game for the club, 46 league with six goals, two FA Cup and two Lincolnshire Senior Cup.

1957/58 43 league matches 6 goals 3 FA Cup matches.

1958/59 33 league matches 11 goals 6 FA Cup matches 2 goals.

1959/60 30 league matches 7 goals 1 FA Cup match.

Tom played for Skegness Town after he left Boston United, but returned in season 1961/62 and played four matches. He was one of the most exciting players ever to pull on a Boston United shirt and a great favourite with the large crowds that attended matches in that era.

Away from football Tom ran a General Stores in Tattershall Road, Boston.

Tom is survived by his wife Joan and three sons.

Tom's funeral will take place at Boston Crematorium at 11.00am on Thursday 20 May 1999.

The above information was supplied by Barry Pearson and John Blackwell.

More information can be found in the Archive.


The Cor Harting International Youth Tournament 1999

14th May Boston United Academy is entering teams in the above tournament next weekend, the tournament is divided into six pools:

Pool A Under 15 11 a side 2 x 25 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, FC Ierpeldeng (Luxemburg), Sutton Rovers, MD Halen (Belgium), NFC (Holland).

Pool B Under 15 11 a side 2 x 25 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, Boston United, MD Halen, NFC, Legmeervogels (Holland).

Pool C Under 12 11 a side 2 x 20 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, FC Ierpeldeng, MD Halen, Legmeervogels, NFC.

Pool D Under12 11 a side 2 x 20 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, East Coast Juniors, MD Halen, FC Ierpeldeng, NFC.

Pool E Under12 11 a side 2 x 20 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, Boston United, MD Halen, NFC, Legmeervogels.

Pool F Under10 8 a side 2 x 15 minutes

VV Aalsmeer, Boston United, FC Ierpeldeng, MD Halen, NFC.

Boston United are being represented at Under 15 level by: Jack Williams, Kyle Huskisson, Ronnie Goddard, Jason Peterson, David Whalley, Martyn Pick, Scott Martin, Michael Stones, Chris Spilller, Luke Brittain, Peter Brady, Stephen Skinner, Benn Houghton, Leroy Medina, Thomas Fielding. The Under 12 and Under 10 representatives are: Craig Barwick, Ben Ruck, Tom Ruck, Sam Brewster, Sam Withers, Scott Bray, Ben Charlton, Stuart Smith, Matthew Charity, Adam Cartwright, Jo Pleass, Nathan Cook, Matthew Taylor, Ricky Drury, Lee Drury, Josh Brason, Aaron Woods, Rob Snaith and Sam Ruck.

The Boston United party is staying in accommodation at Herberg Elst Youth Hostel, which is designed for sports teams and is one hour away from Aalsmeer.

Tournament Regulations

  1. The matches are to be played under the regulations of the K.N.V.B. Division West 2.
  2. Playing time of the matches: E Juniors: 2 x 15 minutes without resting; D Juniors: 2 x 20 minutes without resting; C Juniors: 2 x 20 minutes without resting; B Juniors: 2 x 25 minutes without resting.
  3. Protests against referee's decisions are not allowed.
  4. Teams playing have to appoint a linesman for each match.
  5. A player who is sent off may be removed from the tournament.
  6. During each match three substitutes may be used.
  7. The team captain of each team must report to the tournament organisation 30 minutes before the start of the first game.
  8. A list of players with their date of birth must be handed over to the organisation.
  9. The organisation will hand over a tournament schedule and lunch packages.
  10. The group winner will be the team with the most points out of the games. There are 3 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a defeat.
  11. When 2 or more teams end equal on points. Goal difference will decide the winner. If teams have the same goal difference then goals scored count and if necessary the matches won decide.
  12. The winners ceremony will be held on the main pitch for all groups at approximately 4.00pm on the last day of the tournament.
  13. VV Aalsmeer will play in its home colours: blue/white vertically striped shirt, white shorts and blue socks.
  14. If the teams are playing in the same colours or when the referee decides, the first team listed must change colours.
  15. VV Aalsmeer cannot be held responsible for any loss or damages to belongings of the players nor can it be held responsible for any personal injuries to players or visitors to the tournament. DO NOT LEAVE ANY PERSONAL BELONGINGS OF VALUE IN THE CHANGING ROOMS.
  16. As a participant of this tournament help to keep the grounds clean.
  17. Where these regulations do not foresee an incident, the tournament committee will decide.
  18. Be a true football supporter, be fair and behave.

 


Tommy Lowder

13th May Tommy Lowder has died in Boston's Pilgrim Hospital, he had been ill for two weeks and had appeared to be getting better, but he collapsed earlier today. Tommy leaves his wife Joan and three sons.

Tommy Lowder played for Boston United from 1955 to 1959 and appeared in the famous FA Cup matches with Derby County (see Classic Games) and Tottenham Hotspur in the 1955/56 season. More information can be found in the Archive. After his playing career finished Tommy settled in Boston.


Golf Tournament

13th May This years Boston United Golf Tournament to be held in July will be sponsored by Lindisposables.


Cup Final Referee

13th May Peter Jones of Loughborough, has recently been appointed to referee this years FA Cup Final between Manchester United and Newcastle United on 22 May, through football connections Peter has been a friend of Boston United General Manager John Blackwell for many years. Away from football Peter is employed by British Telecom and he visits Boston United's office whenever he is in Boston.

Peter has also become friends with Jason Hatfield, Boston United's Kit Assistant, he sends Jason postcards whenever he has travelled abroad to officiate in football matches and sends other gifts such as pennants from Real Madrid and Barcelona. Apart from Boston United Jason supports Liverpool and through Peter he has acquired a signed photograph of Michael Owen.

Jason (24) has been with Boston United for three years, he works on Monday, Thursday and Friday and assists the team on matchdays including travelling with the team to away matches. When Jason is not with Boston United he attends BOSCAT , a training centre for people with learning difficulties on Lealand Way Trading Estate in Boston.

Earlier this week Peter Jones visited Boston when Jason wasn't at the club and he asked to see Jason. John Blackwell then took Peter to see Jason at BOSCAT, where he spent 45 minutes talking with Jason and the other trainees, who all greatly appreciated his visit.


Going Dutch

12th May Next weekend (Friday 21 May to Monday 24 May) a contingent from Boston United Academy travel to Aalsmeer in Holland to take part in a tournament. This is a return fixture following VV Aalsmeer taking part in a tournament at York Street in May 1998. The trip includes a two-hour of Ajax's stadium near Amsterdam.

Chris Cook, Roy Hackford and Tim Ruck from Boston United will accompany the Academy players.

More details will appear when they are available.


Reserves, Academy Player of the Year

11th March At an Awards Ceremony on Saturday night in the Boston United Social Club, attended by Steve Evans and Trevor Quow, the following awards were presented by Chris Cook, Mark Shackleton and John Luffman.

Reserves

Managers Player of the Year sponsored by Boston Anorak Company: Neil Featherstone

Players Player of the Year: Joe Vaughan

Most Improved Player: Ryan Collingwood

Top Goalscorer: Neil Featherstone

Academy

Mangers Player of the Year: Ricky Southwell

Players Player of the Year sponsored by Michael Small Electrical: Andrew Markham

Most Improved Player: Dane Thornton

Top Goalscorer: Kieran Kelly


Sponsorship

10th May Even though the 1998/99 season only finished 7 days ago, people are already coming forward to take up sponsorship deals for the 1999/2000 season. There is already a sponsor for Steve Evans' kit. The money received is being used to help Steve Evans with his plans to build a squad for next season.

Amongst the forms of sponsorship available are programme advertising, ground advertising, players kit sponsorship, match sponsorship, match ball donors, etceteras.

If you can help Boston United with sponsorship, or you know someone who can, please contact John Blackwell on 01205 364406 for more details.


Reserves, Youth Players

10th May On Saturday the Reserves beat Grantham Town Reserves 2-0 in their final league fixture of the season. Gary Walters and Anthony Elding scored the goals. The result meant the Reserves scored 18 goals in the final week of the season and finished third in the Deejays Lincolnshire League behind Limestone Rangers and Barton Town.

Yesterday Lincolnshire U18 beat Norfolk U18 in the Final of the East Midlands Football Combination Cup 4-1 at Fakenham Town's ground. Andrew Markham, Kieran Kelly, Robbie Barker and Ross Nicholls from Boston United represented Lincolnshire, Ricky Southwell was also selected in the squad but was unable to play as he had not recovered from the ankle injury he suffered at Merthyr Tydfil on his first team debut. Robbie Barker and Ross Nicholls scored for Lincolnshire. After the match Andrew Markham was awarded his County Cap for making 10 appearances for Lincolnshire.

There are two local cup finals at York Street this week. On Wednesday in the Fishtoft Cup Wainfleet play Swineshead Institute and on Thursday in the Sports Cup Cowbridge Rangers play Croft United, both matches kick off at 7.00pm.

This Sunday Boston United are holding a Car Boot Sale on the pitch. More details are in an earlier item.


Victory for Reserves

6th May Last night the Reserves beat Nettleham Reserves 11-2. Danny Dack (5), Joe Vaughan (2), Mark Melson, Gary Walters, Leigh Taylor and Anthony Elding scored the goals.

The Reserves play their final fixture of the season on Saturday at York Street against Grantham Town Reserves, kick off at 2.00pm.

On Saturday the Reserves and Academy Teams hold their Player of the Year Awards Evening in the Boston United Social Club. Nickel and a Karoake will provide the entertainment.


Players Released

4th May As reported in tonight's Lincolnshire Echo, Matt Carmichael and Richard Mason have been released by Boston United.

Steve Evans said: "Matt came in last season and did a brilliant job for us between October and February. But then he suffered with injury problems and we probably now need someone with a greater level of fitness to lead the attack.

"Richard has done well down the left, but I have a couple of people in mind who I want to bring in to add extra quality in the same sort of area. However I wish them all well and hope they can find new clubs quickly.

"I can now hopefully start to bring in extra people with the backing of the directors. We want to get our squad settled and sorted out as soon as possible.


Victory for Reserves

3rd May Earlier today the Reserves beat Wyberton 5-0 at York Street. Neil Featherstone, Leigh Taylor, Ryan Collingwood, Joe Vaughan and Mark Melson (penalty) scored the goals.

The Reserves could finish second in the Deejays Lincolnshire League.

Uriah Rennie watched the match after being referee for Martin Hardy's Benefit Match on Sunday. On Saturday Uriah was fourth official at the FA Carling Premiership match between Newcastle United and Middlesbrough.


Promotion and Relegation

2nd May At the completion of the 1998/99 season Welling, Leek Town and Farnborough occupied the bottom three positions of the Nationwide Conference. It is expected that either Welling or Farnborough will replace Nuneaton Borough in the Dr Martens Premier League for the 1999/2000 season.

Rothwell Town, Cambridge City, Gresley Rovers and Bromsgrove Rovers occupied the bottom four positions of the Dr Martens Premier League. In the Midland Division Clevedon Town were champions and Newport AFC runners up. In the Southern Division Havant and Waterlooville were champions and Margate runners up. It is not yet known whether two, three or four clubs will be relegated from the Premier Division as the outcome of Hastings' resignation from the league and the ground grading of Margate's ground has still to be decided. More details will follow when they are available.


Runners Up, Player of the Year

1st May Following today's 3-1 victory over Worcester City (details will appear later) and a favourable sequence of results elsewhere, Boston United have finished Runners Up in the Dr Martens Premier League for the 1998/99 season.

After the match the following trophies were presented:

Town End Supporters Player of the Year, sponsored by Michael Small Electrical: Martin Hardy

Away Supporters Player of the Year, sponsored by Michael Small Electrical: Paul Bastock

Press Player of the Year: Paul Bastock

Supporters Player of the Year, sponsored by Johnsons Seeds and presented by Becky Thompson: Martin Hardy.

Thank you to everyone who voted.

The first team have now completed their fixtures for the season, but the reserves have the following fixtures at York Street this week.

Wyberton on Monday 3 May, kick off 12.00 noon

Nettleham on Wednesday 5 May, kick off 7.45pm.

Grantham Town Reserves on Saturday 8 May , kick off at 2.00pm.

Leigh Taylor celebrated his 18th birthday yesterday.


Youth Team Win Cup

30th April Tonight the Youth Team have won the Jackson Workwear Charity Cup by beating Sleaford and District 1-0 in the final at Lincoln United's Ashby Avenue ground. Alan Ross scored the goal in the fourth minute and Ross Nicholls was sent off after 80 minutes.


Martin Hardy Testimonial

30th April The admission prices for Martin Hardy's Benefit Match will be £3.00 for adults with a concession price of £2.00 for juveniles and pensioners.

It is now doubtful that Greg Fee, Steve Adams and Darren Munton will take part in the match.

Danny Seager has been approaching businesses in Boston to sell advertising for the Match Programme.


Worcester City Match

30th April For tomorrow's final Dr Martens League match of the season against Worcester City Joby Gowshall and Lennie Curtis return to the squad after recovering from a back injury and a broken nose respectively. Martin Hardy will play his last league match for Boston United. Andrew Stanhope will have a fitness test on his head injury. The following players will miss the match: Steve Charles (hamstring), Darren Clyde (ankle ligament) and Matt Carmichael (back).

With the right sequence of results Boston United could finish second in the Dr Martens League Premier Division.

The Player of the Year awards will be presented after the match.


Andrew Stanhope

29th April After returning from Atherstone on Monday Andrew Stanhope went to Pilgrim Hospital to have treatment to the cut near his eye, Six Butterfly Clips were used to hold the cut together and he left hospital at 1.10am. There were no hospital facilities near Atherstone.

Last night the Reserves beat Lincoln Moorlands 3-0 in an entertaining game at York Street, the goals were scored by Ross Nicholls, Leigh Taylor and Mark Melson.

Ricky Southwell, Andrew Markham, Ross Nichols, Robbie Barker, and Kieran Kelly have been selected for the Lincolnshire U18 squad to play Norfolk U18 in the East Midlands Youth Cup Final at Fakenham Town FC on 9 May 1999, kick off at 3.00pm. Ricky Southwell is doubtful for the match due to the injury he picked up on his first team debut at Merthyr Tydfil on Saturday.

Former manager Greg Fee won the Nationwide Conference Golf Tournament last week at Telford Country Club. Greg is leaving Telford United is now looking for another club for next season.

It is reported in today's Daily Telegraph that St Albans manager, Garry Hill, is to leave them at the end of the season and is expected to become manager of Dagenham & Redbridge.


Martin Hardy

29th April Below is an extract from an interview with Martin Hardy carried out by Rob Singleton, which appeared in tonight's Lincolnshire Echo:

Hardy (36) is among a rare breed of footballer, having devoted 10 of the past 11 years to the Boston cause. The one-year exception came in 1993-94 when then manager Peter Morris decided he was surplus to requirements. But the centre half quickly resumed his links with York Street 12 months later when Morris moved on.

He said " I have had a terrific time at Boston and have always got on well with the supporters. But next season, due tot my own work commitments and the fact that there is a lot of travelling in the Dr Martens League, I have decided that my footballing future will have to be elsewhere- probably in the Unibond League if at all possible. I think I have another year or two left in me, but I feel I need to play for a club whose matches are based more in the northern part of England. It will still be a huge wrench to leave Boston. I have made so many good friends since I first joined United. Over the years I have probably become part of the fittings and furnishings. But thatís the way I have liked it. Loyalty and commitment to one club don't seem to common in football these days, but I have never really wanted to move around to play for different teams. I have always been happy at Boston. And hopefully it will be a special and memorable day for me on Sunday.

"This season's match at St Albans will live with me for a long while, not least for the way our supporters gave us such magnificent backing. I just wish we could have got the result such backing deserved. It was also a similar story when we played at Chester City in the FA Cup in 1996 and in the Unibond League Cup final against Gainsborough later that same season when again the fans were terrific despite the fact that we narrowly lost both matches.

Looking to Boston's future even without his presence, Hardy said: "I am certain that United can achieve success, not least because of the way the team have performed in the past six months or so. Boston are still a much-respected club at non-League level and basically deserve to be higher in the pyramid. And wherever I play next season, I will still look out for United's results and stay in touch with what's going on at York Street.


Player Leaving

28th April Martin Hardy has decided to leave Boston United after his Benefit Match on Sunday. Martin has been given increased responsibility at work and has found the travelling to and from his Worksop home more difficult. Steve Evans said he has tried to keep Martin at the club and he will be a big loss, he would also like all supporters to come to Martin's Benefit Match and give him a big send off.


Atherstone Injuries

27th April During the first half of last night's match with Atherstone Steve Charles suffered a hamstring strain and is expected to miss the last match of the season. Also, Andrew Stanhope suffered a cut to his head and was taken to Pilgrim Hospital upon his return to Boston to have stitches inserted in the cut.

Last night the Youth Team beat Lincoln United on penalties 7-6 to win the semi-final of the Jackson Workwear Charity Cup. The score after 90 minutes and 120 minutes was 2-2; Kieran Kelly had scored in the 89th minute to take the match into extra time, Andrew Markham scored Boston United's first goal. The Youth Team now meet Sleaford and District in the Final on Friday 30 April at Lincoln United's Ashby Avenue ground with a 7.30pm kick-off. Last year the Youth Team lost the final 2-1 to Lincoln City after conceding a last minute penalty.

In the Dr Martens Premier League the runners-up and relegation positions are still to be decided in Saturday's final fixtures of the season. The relevant matches are:

King's Lynn v Ilkeston Town

Gloucester City v Salisbury City

Boston United v Worcester City

Cambridge City v Bromsgrove Rovers

Gresley Rovers v Bath City

Rothwell Town v Dorchester Town

In the Southern Division the following fixtures will decide who finishes in the top two positions:

Havant & Waterlooville v St Leonards Stamcroft

Newport IOW v Folkestone Invicta

Margate v Brackley


Martin Hardy Testimonial

26th April The referee for Martin Hardy's Benefit Match is scheduled to be Uriah Rennie of Sheffield, who normally officiates at matches in the F. A. Carling Premiership.


Atherstone, Ricky Southwell

26th April For tonight's match with Atherstone Martin Hardy and Richard Mason return to the side following suspension and illness respectively, however Joby Gowshall misses the match due to a back injury.

Ricky Southwell, who was carried off the pitch on Saturday at Merthyr Tydfil with a leg injury, has had his left leg put in plaster due a suspected stress fracture of his ankle. He is expected to be in plaster for 10 days. This is a big disappointment for Ricky as he had performed well on his first team debut and may have been considered for tonight's match. Ricky is also doubtful for Lincolnshire Under 18 for their fixture with Norfolk in the final of the FA Youth Cup next month; he has been an ever present in the team for two years.

On Saturday Andrew Borg, Head of Communications for Dr Martens, presented the League Championship Trophy to Nuneaton Borough in front of 2000 spectators.


Martin Hardy Testimonial

25th April The following additional players have now confirmed their appearance in Martin Hardy's Benefit Match on Sunday 2 May: Paul Casey, Martin Filson, Leroy Chambers and Phil Brown. The Manager of the Old Boys team will be Ronnie Reid.

More details will be provided when they are available.


Directors for the Day

25th April Yesterday the supporters who assist with the Alphabet Forecast were treated as Directors of the club, they used the hospitality of the Boardroom and watched the match from the Directors Box at Penydarren Park. Boston United thank Merthyr Tydfil for their assistance.

Lennie Curtis travelled with the team yesterday following a successful operation to repair his broken nose.

Newport AFC have secured second place in the Dr Martens League Midland Division. In the Southern Division the two promotion places are still to be decided, the teams in contention are Margate, Havant and Waterlooville, and Folkestone Invicta.

Yesterday in a Deejays Lincolnshire League match the Reserve team drew 3-3 with Limestone Rangers, with Mark Melson scoring all three goals. Limestone now need one point to become champions of the Lincolnshire League.

The venue for tomorrow 's Jackson Workwear Charity Cup semi-final has been changed. The Youth team will now play Lincoln United at the Lincolnshire Police Head Quarters at Nettleham with a 7.30pm kick off.

On Wednesday 28 April the Reserve Team is playing at home to Lincoln Moorlands Reserves in the Deejays Lincolnshire League.

A regular visitor to Boston United is Peter Jones the F. A. Carling Premiership referee from Loughborough, he is to referee this years FA Cup Final and he telephoned John Blackwell within a hour of receiving the news to pass on the information. When Peter is on European duty he brings a memento of the match (such as a match programme) to Kit Assistant Jason Hadfield. This season Peter took John Blackwell as his guest to the FA Cup match between Tottenham Hotspur and Watford. In addition to the FA Cup Final Peter has also been awarded the Moratti Cup between Guernsey and Jersey, which will take place in Guernsey at the end of May.


Works Outing

23rd April The Alphabet Forecast has been successfully raising funds for Boston United for over 10 years. Every Monday evening a team of supporters checks the books to find each week's winning entries. As a gesture of appreciation for this assistance the club have invited these supporters to go with the team on the coach to the match with Merthyr Tydfil on Saturday 24 April.

The supporters are Richard Burton, Ron Butler, Mick Gooderson, John Harrison, Cyril Howard, Ray Parker, Frank Riches and Nick Thompson.

For tomorrow's match Boston United will be without the services of Martin Hardy (suspended), Lennie Curtis (broken nose), Darren Clyde (ankle ligaments) and Matt Carmichael (back injury). In addition the following players are doubtful starters: Joby Gowshall (torn back muscles), Peter Costello (hamstring) and Ian Stringfellow (shoulder). Andrew Stanhope is available again after serving a one-match suspension and the aforementioned injury problems may necessitate that Trevor Quow is pressed into service.

Yesterday the Youth Team beat RAF Wittering 2-1 to win the Lincolnshire Services Cup, the goals were score by Leigh Taylor and Danny Harrison.


General News

22nd April Steve Evans is desperate to transform the present potential into reality, he believes Boston United need to attract gates in excess of 2000 in next seasons campaign for the League Championship. Steve is looking forward to a week on Sunday when he can begin to strengthen the squad significantly, when asked what will happen if the right results are not achieved he said he will change things very quickly as he won't stand by players who aren't getting us results.

Last night the Reserves beat Lincoln Moorlands 1-0 in a Deejays Lincolnshire League match with an inexperienced team which included three 15-year-old players. Danny Dack who has recently had a trial with Sunderland scored the goal.

On Monday 26 April the Youth Team are playing Lincoln United in the semi-final of the Jackson Workwear Charity Cup at Lincoln United's Ashby Avenue ground with a 7.30pm kick off. Boston United were due to play Brigg in the quarter-final but they gave the match to Boston United.

Tonight Boston United are hosting the Boston and District Sunday League Cup Final between Inter Wyberton and Five Lamps.


Player of the Year Update

21st April Johnsons Seeds (sponsors of the Player of the Year Trophy) plan to select a supporter who has voted for the Player of the Year to present the Trophy. The closing date for votes is Saturday 24 April, make sure you vote for your choice by sending an e-mail to richardburton@msn.com stating your choice as Player of the Year, and your own name and e-mail address. Each supporter is entitled to one vote.


Injuries, Fixtures, General

21st April Lennie Curtis goes into hospital in Sheffield on Friday, he will be put under anaesthetic to have his nose re-set and examined to see if his collision with Andrew Stanhope caused any other problems. The operation has been left until now to allow the swelling to go down.

Tomorrow (Thursday 22 April) the Youth Team are playing in The Lincolnshire Services Cup Final against RAF Wittering at RAF Cranwell Stadium, kick-off 3.00pm. They were due to play RAF Waddington in the semi-final but RAF Waddington had to forfeit the match due to the problems in Kosovo, which meant they were unable to raise a team.

Tonight the Reserves play away to Lincoln Moorlands and are likely to field a very inexperienced team due to injuries and first team call ups. On Saturday they are at home to Limestone Rangers, if Limestone win they will become champions of the Deejays Lincolnshire League for 1998/99.

Andrew Stanhope is available for Saturdayís match at Merthyr Tydfil after serving a one-match suspension, but Martin Hardy has one more match to serve, he will be available for the match with Atherstone on Monday 26 April.

Carlisle United have expressed an interest in Paul Watts.

The managers and players are entering the Alphabet Forecast every week, this weeks prize of £936.60 was won by 18 year old Ross Nicholls.

The referee, Bob Desmond, at last nights match with Bath City (also Salisbury City on 10 April) hopes to officiate at a match at York Street next season, he has already posted a message on Pilgrim's Patter (see 15 April).

Even though last nights match was a long distance for a midweek match there was a representation from Boston supporters; Roy Noble, Richard Collins and Alan Lane were spotted amongst the spectators.

After last nights match with Bath City the team arrived back in Boston at 2.50am, General Manager John Blackwell and Director Roy Hackford were then injured when they fell over the Kit Box when they got out of the coach.

When Bath City visited Boston on Saturday they were impressed with the sausages in the Boardroom (supplied by Reg Dunmore & Sons of Vauxhall Road, Boston) and asked for 2lb to be taken to last nights match, Bath City then supplied the visiting Boston United officials with 2lb of their sausages.


Car Boot Sale

20th April Boston United are holding a Car Boot Sale on the pitch at York Street on Sunday 16 May 1999 between 9.00am and 1.00pm (gates open at 8.00am for booters), the proceeds are for Boston United Youth Development. Pitches are £5.00 if booked in advance or £6.00 on the day (No Traders). Admission is 20p each, refreshments will be available.

For more information and to book a pitch call the club offices on 01205 364406.


Martin Hardy Testimonial

18th April As part of Martin Hardy's Testimonial a Benefit match has been arranged for Sunday 2 May with a 2.00pm kick off. The match is likely to take the form of the current Boston United team taking on a Boston United Old Boys side. The following Old Boys have already agreed to play: Kevin Blackwell, Steve Adams, Chris Withe, Brendan Phillips, Jim Kabia, Gary Simpson, Ged Creane, Keith Alexander, Trevor Quow, Greg Fee, and Darren Munton. It is hoped other players will confirm their appearance over the next few days, together with the possibility of star guests.

Martin and his Testimonial Committee hope there will be a good turnout to see some favourite faces from the past and to show their appreciation of Martin's tremendous service to Boston United.

More details will be provided when they are available.


Lennie Curtis Injury Update

18th April Lennie has not fractured his cheekbone, but his nose is broken, the injury is to be left a week before treatment to allow the swelling to subside. Lennie was released from hospital at 6.30pm and taken home by members of his family who had attended the match.


Lennie Curtis Injury

17th April During the second half of today's match with Bath City, there was a clash of heads between Lennie Curtis and Andrew Stanhope during an attack on the Bath City goal. Lennie Curtis suffered a broken nose and a suspected fractured cheekbone; he was taken to hospital in an ambulance for treatment. Andrew Stanhope was able to continue with the match, at that stage the score was Boston United 3 Bath City 2.

It appears that Lennie Curtis will miss the rest of the season. Andrew Stanhope will miss Tuesday's match at Bath City through suspension.


Bath City Match

17th April Martin Hardy is serving the second of a four-match suspension. Matt Carmichael is almost certainly ruled out with a back problem. Peter Costello and Steve Charles are troubled by minor niggles. Lennie Curtis will have a fitness test after suffering another blow to his recent head injury.


Steve Evans Notes

15th April Below is an extract from Steve Evans' notes in the Programme for the match with Tamworth:

"Over the next couple of weeks I will be meeting with each of the players to discuss my plans for next season. You the supporters should expect and in fact will get first news on who I intend to keep with us for next year. All I can ask is that you do not listen to rumour but only facts. Everyone is aware that we need to get better and therefore new players will arrive in the Summer. However on the other hand there will be no mass clear out of players but there might be the odd couple of surprises. We have some talented youngsters at the club and they will also have a big part to play. I know personally how much the Chairman and his Board of Directors want success here at Boston United and I know we will have a squad of players good enough.

As for the supporters, - well I have said it before, you deserve Football League."

From other sources:

Steve Evans is striving to bring in seven or eight new players in the close season. He hopes they will be a mix of players who have had either Football League or Conference experience along with one or two lesser-known players who have the potential to be first team players.

Steve has said, " I want to win the League championship more than the Lottery. And I mean that. This is my first season in four years as a manager I haven't won a trophy, and I don't want to repeat that."

Mark Rawle has attracted attention from Lincoln City and Ipswich Town.


Paul Watts on Trial

15th April Paul Watts, Boston United's 20-year-old striker, has recently had tials with three Nationwide League clubs. He has played for Bolton Wanderers in a closed doors match with Swedish giants Gothenburg, and also with Northampton Town and Bristol City.

Steve Evans has attached a £70,000 price tag to Paul and has said he will only release him if a deal is right for him and the club.


League Sponsorship

12th April At an Extraordinary General Meeting the Southern Football League was dissolved in fifteen minutes, 105 years of history was completed. Immediately afterwards, however, the Southern Football League Limited was formed.

Later at the same meeting Andrew Borge, the Head of Communications & Corporate Affairs of the R Griggs Group announced that Dr Martens had agreed to extend its sponsorship of the League for a further four years.

The Management Committee than announced that a three year Match Ball sponsorship had been agreed with James Gilbert Limited and Vandanel had proposed to supply each club with a 'bench kit' comprising coats, jackets, track suits, sweat shirts and T shirts. The total sponsorship deals are almost three-quarters of a million pounds over the next four years.


Player of the Year Update

11th April Votes are coming in for Player of the Year (including a vote for Gary Germaine), make sure you vote for your choice by sending an e-mail to richardburton@msn.com stating your choice as Player of the Year, and your own name and e-mail address. Each supporter is entitled to one vote.


Feeder Leagues

11th April Below are the top five positions in the feeder leagues to the Dr Martens Premier Division after yesterday's matches. The top two clubs in each league are promoted if they meet the ground grading criteria and financial criteria. Clevedon Town are already champions of the Midland Division. If the clubs are in these positions at the end of the season Boston United may have further to travel to away matches next season.

Southern Division

P

W

D

L

F

A

Pts

Havant & Waterlooville

35

26

5

4

73

22

83

Margate

36

25

7

4

76

26

82

Folkestone Invicta

37

23

7

7

79

43

76

Chelmsford City

37

18

11

8

83

46

65

Newport IOW

36

17

7

12

54

38

58

Midland Division

Clevedon Town

37

27

6

4

76

29

87

Newport AFC

38

23

6

9

77

43

75

Bilston Town

39

18

11

10

76

65

65

Redditch United

36

18

11

7

69

40

62

Stafford Rangers

38

18

7

13

82

57

61

 


Salisbury Match

9th April Steve Evans will hold a fitness parade before tomorrow's match, the following players are either ruled out or doubtful due to injury: Darren Clyde (ankle ligament), Lennie Curtis (gashed head), Matt Carmichael (back), Peter Costello (hamstring), Gary Childs (recovering from illness), Mark Rawle (knee).


Steve Evans and Gary Mills

8th April The crisis between Boston United and King's Lynn has been averted. John Blackwell and King's Lynn chairman, John Scales, both wished to maintain good relations between the two clubs.

Steve Evans and Gary Mills have exchanged their respective views on the incident and decided to retain their professional mutual respect for each other; they have 'agreed to disagree' about the incident.

During the remainder of the season Steve Evans is expected to give opportunities to members of the Reserves due to injuries to regular first-team squad members.


Steve Evans in Trouble?

7th April Reproduced below is an article from tonight's Lincolnshire Echo by Rob Singleton:

Boston United manager Steve Evans could be in trouble over alleged remarks made about a rival football boss.

The Pilgrims' supremo is understood to have questioned the actions of King's Lynn player-manager Gary Mills after the teams met in a Dr Martens League match at York Street over the Easter holiday period.

Mills was the victim of what referee John Appleyard saw as an apparent elbowing incident by Boston skipper Martin Hardy. He was sent off as Mills clutched his face.

But in a post-match radio interview, Evans reportedly accused his counterpart of over-reacting to get his player red-carded. Officials from King's Lynn heard details of the interview and are considering what course of action to take- including the possibility of reporting Evans to the FA and/or Dr Martens League.

Lynn chairman John Scales today said: "We understand Mr Evans accused Gary Mills of play-acting over the incident in question. And we have had reports from our management team that Mr Evans was abusive towards them on the touchline throughout the match.

"Gary is a highly professional person both on and off the field and he seemed to be clearly elbowed by the Boston player. We will await a copy of the referee's report and find out all the facts before we have a director's meeting to consider what action we want to take.

"I would make it clear that we have no argument with the Boston club, but this sort of thing does football no good at all. If Mr Evans were to furnish our manager with a written apology, then we would probably accept that and let the matter lie.

Evans said: "I have no reason to question the integrity of my player who said that he never touched Mills. Martin is an honest and experienced player who would have admitted striking out if it had been the case.

"I said on the radio that I felt Mills had possibly over-reacted and I know there were other independent sources who said there appeared to be no contact.

"I don't know whether or not I am going to be reported. But what I will say is that I am going to explore every avenue of appealing against Martin's sending-off."


Dave Venables

7th April The recent Dr Martens League Bulletin reports that Dave Venables has joined Stamford AFC.


Player of the Year

6th April The time has come for supporters to select their choice for Boston United Player of the Year for the 1998/99 Season.

Once again Johnsons Seeds sponsor the award, and the club is appreciative of a nationally known company being involved at its local roots. The sponsorship was inaugurated in 1982/83 when Arthur Mann won it. Since then it has been won by: Paul Casey, Chris Cook (Twice), Bob Lee (Wembley Year), David Gilbert, John McKenna (twice), Paul Shirtliff, Paul Cavell, Gary Jones, Paul Bastock, Neil Grayson, Steve Appleby (twice) and Chris Withe. More details can be found in the Archive.

Voting started on Monday 5 April and closes on Saturday 24 April.

The award will be presented on Saturday 1 May after the final match of the season with Worcester City, together with the Players' Player of the Year.

Ballot boxes and voting slips will be in the Social Club and Club Offices, alternatively you can vote by sending an e-mail to richardburton@msn.com stating your choice as Player of the Year, and your own name and e-mail address. Each supporter is entitled to one vote.


Lennie Curtis Injury

5th April During the second half of today's match with Grantham Town, Lennie Curtis incurred a head injury during a goalmouth incident and was carried off the pitch on a stretcher. He was taken to hospital and had 6 stitches inserted in a cut. The hospital considered detaining him overnight but were able to release him at 7.30pm, as members of his family who had attended the match were able to take him home.


Sponsorship Deal

5th April Stantons Timber of Boston have agreed a deal whereby they will refurbish the Main Stand and in return the stand will be re-named The Stantons Timber Stand.

Stantons Timber also supplied the materials for the recent refurbishment of the Boardroom; Roy Hackford, Dick Carrington, Keith Elkington and Ray Parker carried out the work.


Player Released

4th April It has been reported that striker Dave Venables has been released, during his time with the Pilgrims he made 12 appearances and scored 4 goals.


Steve Evans Notes

3rd April Below is an extract from Steve Evans' Notes in today's Programme for the match with King's Lynn:

Two weeks ago I stated in my programme notes that the fans at Boston United could not surprise me anymore. How wrong you can be was put to everyone at this club when we witnessed some very special scenes at St Albans last Saturday. Not only did you travel in massive numbers but the backing you gave the team and myself during and after the match was magnificent. I can honestly say I have never seen a dressing room in such a sad state afterwards. Every player and official just could not hold back the tears. What I do know is that we will be better and stronger for the experience.

We must finish as high up the League as possible and build on this for next season. I know at this stage we have some quality players arriving in the summer and if we add these to the present squad then we will be there or abouts come next May.

 


Easter Matches

2nd April Steve Evans has said that the players really appreciated the support they received at St Albans and are desperate to repay the fans with good performances this weekend. The team has been through a lot of emotions over the past week and they are now aiming to recover, however there are several injury problems to contend with. Darren Clyde incurred severe damage to a knee ligament at Sutton Coldfield which is likely to prevent him playing again this season. Peter Costello has a problem with a hamstring. Matt Carmichael has a back problem and is unlikely to play this weekend. Richard Mason has recovered from a thigh strain picked up at Worcester on Monday.


League Cup Final

31st March Sutton Coldfield will play Cambridge City in the final of the Dr Martens League Cup following their victory over Boston United; the aggregate score was Sutton Coldfield 3 Boston United 2. The date and venue for the final is still to be decided.


Easter Matches

31st March The York Street ground will be segregated for the visit of King's Lynn on Saturday, with King's Lynn supporters using the Town End. The match at Grantham on Easter Monday is all ticket for Boston United supporters.

Steve Evans has declared that the players are now playing for their places for next season, as in the Summer he will decide who to retain, who to release and who to bring in, and he predicts Boston United will be stronger next season.


St Albans Reaction

29th March The following reaction from Saturday's match has been reported in tonight's Lincolnshire Echo:

Boston were cheered on by a huge following of 1347 fans out of an overall attendance of 2723.

Steve Evans said "The result and the fact that we lost to such a late goal made it one of the most traumatic experiences of my life.

"But that was almost certainly a shared emotion. In the dressing room after the match the players were devastated. There were a lot of tears and broken hearts. It was no different for the directors and in particular our magnificent supporters.

"They cheered us throughout the game and were still singing their praises for the team out on the terraces for 20 minutes after the final whistle. I was gobsmacked by their support. They never cease to amaze me.

"Quite clearly there were hundreds of people deeply distressed at seeing us miss out on the chance of going to Wembley. But their backing was brilliant and to travel so far in such numbers was unbelievable.

Skipper Martin Hardy was equally full of praise. He said "The fans were magnificent. All the players were upset that we didn't get the result such tremendous support deserved."


Supporters

28th March A St Albans' official after yesterday's match commented on the marvellous supporters of Boston United (apart from from the minority who damaged the fence behind the goal) for the number of supporters and the way they supported their team and cheered the team and management at the end of the match even though they had lost.


Steve Evans Interview

28th March Reproduced below is an interview with Steve Evans conducted by David Tavener, which appeared in the Programme for yesterday's match with St Albans City:

Having led Stamford into the Dr Martens League last Summer on the back of successive United Counties League championships, Steve Evans was always likely to attract interest from farther afield and in October of last year he accepted an offer to take charge of Boston United with the club displaying a somewhat different ambition to what he has been used to in recent years.

Avoid the drop

"The brief the club gave me was to keep them in the Premier Division" said Evans' shortly after Wednesday's 2-2 draw with Sutton Coldfield in the semi-final of the Dr Martens League Cup. Such a modest target seem almost laughable as the Pilgrims now stand just two rounds from Wembley in the FA Trophy and are regularly attracting gates in excess of 1300 to their fine York Street ground, in fact 2573 saw Altrincham defeated in the 5th Round of the Trophy.

Great Expectations

Since the time of Evans' arrival, Boston have lost just three of 21 league games and the manager knows that expectations have changed greatly in a very short space of time. "The club have not set any aims but I put aims on myself. Boston has the potential to go beyond the Conference but talk is easy, it is cheap but I know that the Conference would welcome Boston United with open arms."

Any hopes of Boston clawing back lost ground from earlier in the season have been dashed by the sheer consistency of runaway league leaders Nuneaton Borough but had the season started when Evans joined the club then the Pilgrims would now be three points clear of the current leaders.

"Boston is a big club but the more we have achieved the greater the expectations have become. I knew I could improve on what they had here before I joined but I had to bring in 6-7 new signings and since then the support has been brilliant. The fans are the best in non-league football, that has been told to me from people outside of the club, and there can't be many clubs who would bring 1600 with them for this game."

"We are looking to win the Dr Martens League next season but there are probably four or five other clubs thinking the same way." Looking at how Boston's crowds have climbed dramatically this season there is a temptation to think that the former Budweiser and Virgin employee may be handed an open cheque book to go out and sign whoever he wants in an effort to help the club regain its place in the Conference. "The board have never said no to me, they have always backed me and have never put any pressure on me to sell but the club has to make ends meet. With the gates we get the club should be able to self finance a good team but where as we get regular support of 1300 I believe the actual potential is around 2500." The Boston boss also believes that the City faithful will have tough job on their hands to make themselves heard this afternoon. "It may be a home game for St Albans but it probably won't seem like that for them, but despite our support we have no divine right to win."

Selfish England

The switching of this afternoon's match to a 1pm kick-off has understandably caused some consternation in the visitors camp given that it is them and not the saints who have to travel to today's game and Evans wasted no time in firing a broadside at the English F.A. "We prepare all season for matches at 3pm then suddenly a game gets changed to 1pm because England want to play at 3pm, this means that you have to alter all you eating habits and other normal matchday routines. We are the poor relations but we have to live with it and we will be at the ground by midday."

Family are all Pilgrims

By leaving Stamford to take charge at Boston, Evans ensured that he would have few problems at home. "My wife has been a Boston supporter for years and it is an honour for me to take the job. I felt that maybe I had taken Stamford as far as I could while at Boston there is phenomenal potential, had today's match been at Boston there would have been 7000 people there to see the game." By their own admission the Pilgrims accept that the club has dropped down a step or two in recent years after a time when it was above both Lincoln City and Wycombe Wanderers in the Conference. Evans is determined to bring back the good ol' days. Boston has slipped back and I will do my level best to get the club back where it was before. I believe that Kidderminster and Telford were asking about my availability but I told the club that I was not going anywhere and they offered me a new two-and-a half year contract that I took all of three seconds before deciding to sign, I feel very fortunate to be manager of Boston."

Football For Life

Part of the set-up at York Street includes a scheme called "Football for Life" which has 19 youngsters who are attached to the football club and Boston College. Eight members of the scheme, which is run by Boston legend Chris Cook, were in the side that drew with Sutton Coldfield on Wednesday, all of which suggests that the future for Boston is very bright indeed.

May the best side win

Today's game is likely to be a highly charged affair and the United manager believes that it will be a game to remember. "I hope it is a good game and the important thing for us is that when we leave St Albans at around 4pm we are still in the competition. But if we are beaten by a side that on the day is genuinely better than us after we have given it our best shot then we will be able to hold our heads up high when we have our post-match drink."

 


St Albans Match

26th March Joby Gowshall has recovered from a head injury incurred last week against Weymouth.

St Albans' first choice goalkeeper Paul Newell and leading scorer Steve Clark will both miss the match through suspension. Paul Newell was sent off (his third dismissal of the season) during St Albans 2-1 win over Dagenham & Redbridge in the previous round of the FA Trophy. As reported in an earlier item, Steve Clark was dismissed for violent conduct in a Rymans League match with Heybridge Swifts, which finished 1-1. Both of them would also miss a replay if it were required. Club Captain Kevin Mudd faces a late fitness test on a leg injury.


St Albans Match

25th March Boston United supporters should enter the Clarence Park ground using turnstile block C, which leads into the Hatfield Road End, supporters with seating tickets should them transfer to the seated area of the ground. There are NO bar facilities in the ground for Boston United supporters.

Boston United have injury doubts over Lennie Curtis, Ian Stringfellow, and leading scorer Matt Carmichael.

Manager Steve Evans is hoping the FA Trophy fixture is decided on the day to prevent further fixture congestion. United are due to play Worcester City in a Dr Martens League match on Monday 29 March and Sutton Coldfield in the second leg of the Dr Martens League Cup on Wednesday 30 March, both these matches will be postponed if a replay of the FA Trophy match is required.


Unbeaten Record

25th March According to information I have received from Steve Grist Boston United have gone 18 matches unbeaten at York Street. We need to go back 16 years to the 1982/83 season to find a similar unbeaten sequence.


The Academy

25 March The Academy lads took part in a ten-team tournament last Thursday in Manchester, organised by Mark Locking of Bedford College.

The tournament was primarily for "Football for Life" Schemes, with a few guest teams to make up the ten. The participating teams were Boston United Academy, Premier Soccer from Canada, Sutton United, Morecambe F.C., Mirasaki High School A & B from Japan, Priestley College from Manchester, Bury F.C., Yeading & Manchester C.F.A.

Chris Cook thought the lads were the best footballing side there, they drew 0-0 in their first game against the Canadian side, won the second 2-1 against Sutton United, lost the third 0-1 to the eventual winners Morecambe F.C. and finally won 2-0 against Mirasaki High School from Japan. Unfortunately they lost out on qualifying for the semi-finals on goal difference to the Canadian side. The lads were disappointed but had performed very well as they had played a League game the day before and they were a credit to Boston United.

The 16 players were: Nick Maddison, Gary Pawson, Ricky Southwell, Danny Seager, David Milner, Simon North, Ryan Collingwood, DJ Wright, Ross Nicholls, Danny Harrison, Andrew Markham, Ben Pell, Dane Thornton, Glen Kill, Kieran Kelly, and Leigh Taylor. Steve Taylor and Alan Southwell assisted Chris Cook, and Director Tim Ruck provided a mini-bus for the two days.

For more information on The Academy or possible sponsorship, please contact Chris Cook on 01205 350144 or cookie@ccps.freeserve.co.uk.

THESE LADS ARE THE FUTURE OF BOSTON UNITED


St Albans Tickets

23rd March Boston United have been allocated an additional 100 seat tickets at £9.00 each for Saturday's FA Trophy quarter-final, if you would like a ticket contact the club office on 01205 364406. Over 1250 tickets have already been sold.


Transfer Deadline

23rd March The transfer deadline for the Dr Martens League this season is 31 March.


St Albans News

22nd March Garry Hill, St Albans' manager, is rumored to be leaving them in the Summer to become manager of Dagenham & Redbridge, he was also manager of Heybridge Swifts when they defeated Boston United 3-0 in the 3rd Qualifying Round of the FA Cup on 8 October 1994.

Robbie Reinelt is cup-tied, as he has already played for Stevenage Borough in the FA Trophy, he his also the player who scored the goal for Brighton last season which meant Hereford were relegated to the Football Conference.

St Albans' last Rymans League victory was at home to Purfleet on 13 February 1999.

Rob Haworth and Paul Turner were left out of St Albans' match with Aldershot on 13 March because a yellow card would have meant they would be suspended for the FA Trophy match.


Weymouth Match

19th March Matt Carmichael and Paul Watts are available for selection after serving a one-match suspension last week against Crawley. Ian Stringfellow will have a fitness test on a back injury he picked up last week.


Football for Life Scheme

18th March The Football for Life Scheme, run jointly by Boston United and Boston College, is now planning its recruitment for people wishing to join in September 1999.

The scheme enables students to develop their football skills and commence a career in football whilst working towards a nationally recognised BTEC Diploma in Sports Science.

Football trials will take place in Boston on Saturday April 3 1999. Anyone who is interested in joining the scheme (applicants need to be between 15 and 17 years old) should contact either Chris Cook on 01205 350144 or cookie@ccps.freeserve.co.uk or Boston College's Head of Sports Studies John Rees on 01205 365701 ext 430.

The United Academy is taking teams for U14, U15 and U16 players to a tournament in Aalsmeer, Holland at the end of May 1999. If you would like to join the trip contact Chris Cook, as above.


Managers Contract

18th March Steve Evans hopes to sign his contract before the match with Weymouth on Saturday.


Possible Signings

17th March: Manager Steve Evans is negotiating with Julian Capone (a wide player with Rushden & Diamonds) and Adey Hayes (a midfield player with Kettering Town) with a view to signing them. Both players are not cup tied for the FA Trophy.


League Cup

17th March: Boston United will play Sutton Coldfield Town in the semi-final of the Dr Marten's League Cup following their 1-0 victory over Burton Albion last night.

Due to instructions from the Dr Martens League the first leg will take place at York Street next Wednesday (24 March) at 7.30pm.


St Albans News

16th March: According to a report in the Herts Advertiser dated 11th March 1999 St Albans' striker Steve Clark will be suspended for the FA Trophy quarter final after being sent off for an off the ball incident in a match with Heybridge Swifts on Monday 8th March. Clark is St Albans' leading scorer with 34 goals so far this season. St Albans' left back Peter Risley is also doubtful as he was stretchered off with suspected knee ligament damage during the same match.

The Clarence Park ground has a capacity of 6000 but the actual maximum is 4500, because the ground is allowed to hold a certain number of people per turnstile of which Clarence Park has seven. If there were more turnstiles the capacity could be increased.

The segregated end of the ground holds the number of tickets which have been allocated to Boston United. St Albans are unlikely to be able to allocate any more tickets to Boston United supporters. Because of the segregation there will be no access to the bar for away fans.

In earlier article we reported that St Albans had a gate of 861 for a FA Cup match with Kingstonian, however, 1500-2000 had been expected to attend but the gate was hit by torrential rain in the London area that day, which made it possible the match would be called off.


Thursday Match

16th March: Boston United could have a match this Thursday (18 March) in the semi-final of the Dr Martens League Cup. Sutton Coldfield Town play Burton Albion tonight in the quarter-final, which has been delayed due to inclement weather. If Burton Albion win they are willing to come to Boston on Thursday to play the semi-final.


Referee Recovering

15th March: Mike Webb, the referee for the match with Crawley Town collapsed after the match in his dressing room. He was taken to Pilgrim Hospital for tests. Mr Webb is expected to be allowed home tomorrow.


St Albans Tickets

15th March: The tickets for the FA Trophy match with St Albans arrived at York Street on Saturday 13th March and went on sale at the match with Crawley Town, over 800 tickets were sold by the end of the day. By 6.00pm today over 1000 tickets had been sold and six buses have almost been filled. Boston United will play the match in their emerald green away strip.


Contract For Manager

15th March: Manager Steve Evans has agreed to sign a contract, which will run until May 2001.


League Cup Draw

15th March: The Pilgrims have been drawn against the winners of the match between Burton Albion and Sutton Coldfield Town in the semi-final of the Dr. Martens Football League Cup. The semi-final is two-legged, the first game being at United's York Street ground. The dates of the ties have not yet been fixed. The other semi-final is between Dorchester Town and the winners of the match between Cambridge City and St. Leonards.


Problem with the web site

13th March: I have been having a few problems with the Web Site. Due to a hardware problem I was not able to update it for a few days. Everything is now back up and running.


Posh Friendly Off

10th March: The friendly match against Peterborough United arranged for Wednesday night was called off due to a waterlogged pitch. Manager Steve Evans had hoped the match would provide excellent practice for the upcoming FA "Umbro" Trophy tie, as he thinks that the "Posh" play in a very similar style to St. Albans.


New Signing On Trial

7th March: Mark Rawle, the new signing from Rushden & Diamonds, is reported to be on trial with a Nationwide League club.


St. Albans ticket prices

5th March: The FA "Umbro" Trophy Quarter Final match at St. Albans City has been made all ticket. Boston have only been allocated 1425 tickets, of which 125 are for seating. Tickets will cost £9 for seats (no concessions) and £7 for standing £5 concessions). They will go on sale at United's home league game against Crawley Town on Saturday 13th March. St. Albans City's Clarence Park ground has a capacity of 6,000 with 904 seats. The "Saints" average home gate this season is about 900. Their biggest cup game at home so far this campaign has been a fourth qualifying round FA Cup match against Nationwide Conference side Kingstonian, which ended in a 1-1 draw and attracted a gate of just 861. The Trophy game will kick off earlier than usual, at 1 o'clock, to avoid a clash with the England vs Poland Euro 2000 match on the same date. With this early kick off, it has been decided that the team will travel to St. Albans the night before the game. The club are therefore looking for a business sponsor for the game to help out with the extra accommodation and travel expenses. If you can help then give John Blackwell a call on 01205 - 364406. For supporters wishing to travel to the match, coaches are being run by the club, costing £ and leaving York Street at 9.15am on the Saturday morning. For further details contact John Blackwell on the phone number given above.


Reported abuse not reported

5th March: Reports of racist abuse by Boston "fans" towards Altrincham's coloured players have appeared in the Manchester Evening News this week. However, Boston's General Manager has said he had not seen or heard any abuse, and that there had been no complaints made to him or the club. Boston Police Inspector Martin Hinchcliffe also said no complaints had been made to him. He stated that "Obviously there are some undesirable elements in all parts of society, and if United become more successful then crowds will go up and there may be one or two instances. But to say that Boston people are not used to coloured players is not true. We have not had any sort of complaint from Saturday."


The Pilgrims?

2nd March: A fan has just sent in a question. They want to know when Boston United started using the nickname the "Pilgrims"? I have no idea myself. Does anyone else know? If you do, drop me an E-Mail. (K.A.Fox@leeds.ac.uk)


FA "Umbro" Trophy Draw

1st March: Boston United's 100th FA Trophy game will be an away tie against Ryman League side St. Albans City. The quarter final matches are scheduled to be played on Saturday 27th March. The full draw is as follows:

Emley               v Cheltenham Town
Forest Green Rovers v Southport
Northwich Victoria  v Kingstonian
St. Albans City     v BOSTON UNITED

 


Segregation for Trophy game

26th February: After consultation with the police and the FA and at the request of Altrincham FC it has been decided to segregate the fans for the FA "Umbro" Trophy game on Saturday. The Altrincham fans will use the Town End terrace. The gates will open earlier than usual, at 1:30pm, as a large crowd, possibly as much as 4,000, is expected for this game which has all the ingredients of a classic cup tie.


Chris Waddle turns down the Pilgrims

25th February: It has been confirmed that former Newcastle, Tottenham, Sheffield Wednesday and England international forward Chris Waddle has changed his mind about signing up with the Pilgrims. After initially agreeing to play on a match-by-match basis for the club's FA "Umbro" Trophy games he has decided to concentrate instead on his coaching role with Sheffield Wednesday. He said he was worried about picking up an injury which would jeopardise his coaching prospects. He must have heard about the two former Gainsborough defenders in the Altrincham side!


Dr. Martens League Cup Draw

17th February: The draw for the fourth round of the Dr. Martens League Cup has become clearer after this week's games. After overcoming Rothwell Town, the Pilgrims face a trip to Stourbridge (it's 4 miles west of Halesowen (see map), south of Wolverhampton), of the Midland Division, who beat Solihull Borough 2-1 on Monday night. The match is due to be played on Tuesday 23rd February, kick off at 7:45pm.


Two players released

10th February: Recent signing Lou Donowa and veteran defender Chris Withe have been released by the club. Boston manager Steve Evans explained that he felt that Donowa wasn't pulling his weight, whilst Withe had failed to force his way back into the first team squad following injury.


FA "Umbro" Trophy Draw

8th February: The Pilgrims have been drawn at home against Altrincham in the fifth round of the FA "Umbro" Trophy. The match is due to be played on Saturday 27th February. Altrincham currently top the Unibond League Premier Division and have won their last seven league games. They disposed of Aldershot Town 2-1 away from home in the previous round. The game will bring back memories of the dramatic semi-final win back in 1985 when Bob Lee scored a last minute winner to take the Pilgrims to Wembley. It will also give United's fans a chance to see ex-Pilgrim Leroy Chambers in action again as he is now top scorer (with 19 goals) with Alty.


Arthur Mann has died

4th February: I have just received the tragic news that former Pilgrims' player manager Arthur Mann has died following an accident at work earlier in the week. He was aged just 51. He will be remembered best by Pilgrims' fans as the man who led the club to Wembley for the FA Trophy Final in 1985. There will be a minute's silence before the FA "Umbro" Trophy game against Redditch United at York Street on Saturday.


Honours for Bastock, Gowshall and Stanhope

3rd February: The Pilgrims' goalkeeper Paul Bastock, December's Player of the Month Joby Gowshall and midfielder Andrew Stanhope all played for an FA XI who beat the British Universities 4-0 at Soham Town Rangers FC on Monday evening.


Trophy Premium Charge

2nd February: Fans will have to pay a bit more than usual to get into York Street for the FA "Umbro" Trophy match against Redditch United on Saturday. A minimum entrance fee for fourth round matches has been set by the Football Association and it exceeds the usual charge. Therefore it will cost £5.00 for Adults and £4.00 for Juveniles and OAPs to get into the ground, with a further £1.00 required for access to the seats in the stands.


Evans eyes new striker

23rd January: Ex-Norwich, Ipswich, Bristol City and Birmingham striker, Lou Donowa has been training with the United squad this week, with a view to a possible move from his current club Northampton. He has scored 11 goals in his last four games for Northampton Reserves.


Trivia Night

23rd January: The club will be holding a football quiz night in the Social Club from 8.00pm on Thursday 28th January. The entry fee is £5 for each team of four, payable on the night. The top three teams will win prizes and a raffle will also be held. If you would like more information, contact John Blackwell on 01205 - 364406.


It's Rothwell in the League Cup

20th January: The many times postponed second round replay between Rothwell and Grantham, to decide who would be meeting the Pilgrims in the next round was finally played last night. It resulted in a 1-0 win by Rothwell. Both league matches with Rothwell resulted in draws.


A home draw in the Trophy

18th January: The Pilgrims have been drawn against Dr. Martens Midland Division side Redditch United in the fourth round of the FA "Umbro" Trophy. The match is scheduled to take place at York Street on 6th February. Redditch knocked out Hucknall Town 3-1 in the previous round, thus reaching the last 32 of the FA Trophy for the first time in their history. They have recently signed four new players from Conference clubs. The last time the two teams met was back in 79/80 when the "Reds" were one of the original members of the newly formed Alliance Premier League. The Pilgrims did the double over them that season, winning 2-0 both home and away. Redditch finished bottom of the table and were relegated back into the Southern League, where they have been ever since. The only other time that Boston have faced Redditch was during their short two season sojourn into the West Midlands League in the late 60s. The Pilgrims won the league title in both seasons and knocked Redditch out of the West Midlands League Cup at the semi-final stage on their way to a League and Cup double in 67/8.


FA rejects Conference Second Division

18th January: The Football Conference's plan to create a new second division next season has suffered an almost fatal blow. The Football Association has accepted the recommendation of the National League System Committee and turned down the proposal. The decision is subject to formal ratification by the full FA Council at their meeting on 29th January.


Another success for the "Football for Life" scheme

14th January: The cup match against Stamford saw the debut of another member of the "Football for Life" scheme, when rising star Keiron Kelly took to the pitch for the final few minutes of the game, and he almost scored in a goalmouth scramble at the end. He joins Leigh Taylor, Ross Nicholls and Danny Seager as players who have shown sufficient promise to appear for the first team. In addition, twelve of the boys have also made it through to play for United's reserves.

Since September the Boston United "Football for Life" scheme has been housed at Boston College. More than twenty youngsters were accepted on to the scheme after competitive football trials in the summer. All the lads train five times a week under the tutelage of local soccer legend Chris Cook and they all study for a BTEC Diploma in Sports Science. They play for Boston United in the Lincolnshire Services League on Wednesday afternoons and you can follow their progress on the Boston College web site.

With others such as Gary Pawson and Ricky Southwell pushing hard for a place in Boston United's Dr Marten's League team the future of the club and of the scheme looks secure.

Any youngsters aged 15 to 17 who think they might be good enough to take part in this scheme next season should contact either Chris Cook on 01205- 350144 or Boston College's Head of Sport - John Rees on 01205 - 365701 extension 430.


Ken wins the Tote!

12th January: Wow, I've won something. My letters came up on the Alphabet Forecast this week, so I'm now £228-93 richer (at least until my wife finds out!). It's certainly a lot better than I've been doing on the National Lottery. I've only been doing it for about fifteen weeks, so I'm well in profit. I don't think it will change my lifestyle and no begging letters please :-)


On the move?

8th January: The latest transfer news sees Simon Bailey joining Boston Town after failing to break into the first team on a regular basis. Scouts from Division Two side Oldham Athletic and Division Three side Peterborough United have been observing Joby Gowshall over the Christmas period. Paul Bastock is also attracting attention from Nuneaton Borough, but Paul is happy at the club and manager Steve Evans is also not prepared to let him go. Gareth Jelleyman's loan period finishes with the game at Hastings. Evans is also considering the possibility of signing defender David Rennie from Peterborough.


Trouble at York Street

5th January: The game against Grantham was marred by an outbreak of violence amongst the "supporters" at the Town End of the ground. Three arrests were made, one man has been charged and the other two have been released on police bail pending further investigation.


Steve Evans is Manager of the Month

31st December: Four wins, a draw and only one loss were enough to guarantee Steve Evans the Dr. Martens League Premier Division Manager of the Month Award for December. This was despite the fact that he was also "sent off" twice during the month, in the matches against Bromsgrove and Grantham!


Another plum draw

22nd December: After their first round against local rivals King's Lynn and their second round opponents Stamford AFC, the Pilgrims could meet up with Grantham Town in the third round of the Dr. Martens League Cup. The draw pits them against either Grantham Town or Rothwell Town away. First the Pilgrims have to beat manager Steve Evans old club Stamford at York Street in a match now scheduled for Wednesday 6th January. Grantham take on Rothwell tonight.


New assistant manager

19th December: Steve Evans' has brought in an associate from his old club Stamford to fill the Assistant Manager's slot vacated by Chris Cook. The new man is Trevor Quow, a 38 year old midfielder who played over 350 League games for Peterborough, Gillingham and Northampton Town before moving on to Hong Kong. He returned to England in 1995 and signed up with Sudbury Town, but soon moved on to Stamford where he was a member of the club's title winning sides.


Chris Cook relinquishes post

14th December: Chris Cook has relinquished his role as assistant manager at the club. He has also announced his retirement as a player. He remains as Youth Development Officer and could also be taking on board another role within the club.


Casualty Corner

12th December: Here is the latest news on the club's injured players. The cast will be taken off Steve Appleby's broken leg next week, indicating that he could be fit enough to play again by the end of February. Richard Mason has been having problems with a hamstring injury, but hopes to be fit again in time for the match against Bromsgrove Rovers. Loan signing Gareth Jelleyman picked up a strain whilst playing for the Youth Academy, but should be able to make his first team debut within a week.


Bid turned down

12th December: After much consideration, the club have turned down a £12,500 bid for midfielder Andrew Stanhope from a Conference club.


Midfield Veteran Signed

4th December: The club have signed up 34 year old midfielder Gary Childs following his dismissal as player manager at Wisbech Town. Childs took the "Fenmen" to the Second Round Proper of the FA Cup last season and was Dr Martens Midland Division Manager of the Month for August at the start of this season, but the club's good form was not maintained resulting in Childs' departure. Childs started his footballing career with West Bromwich Albion before moving on to play for Walsall, Birmingham City and Grimsby. In total he made over 400 League appearances and scored 45 goals. He has already played one trial game for the Pilgrims, putting in a creditable appearance in the 5-1 pre-season defeat against Lincoln United last season.


Comings and Goings

2nd December: The desire to reduce the wages bill has resulted in the club releasing striker Darren Munton and defender Brian Horseman. Seventeen year old Welsh Under 21 international wingback Gareth Jelleyman has been signed up on loan for a month from Peterborough United. An attempt to sign up ex-England star Chris Waddle, who is currently playing for Torquay, has failed. Manager Steve Evans is also confident of signing a new midfield player, but is not prepared to name him yet. The club has put out a plea for fans to help raise funds to bolster the team by entering the Alphabet Tote.


Dr. Martens Cup Draw

2nd December: If Boston manage to overcome King's Lynn in the Dr. Martens Cup then they will meet up with manager Steve Evans' old club Stamford AFC at York Street. The Pilgrims are 5-0 up after their first leg game, whilst Stamford lost their first match 0-1 at Corby, but won the second leg 3-0 to go through 3-1 on aggregate.


FA Trophy draw

23rd November: If the Pilgrims overcome Worksop Town in their FA Trophy replay on Tuesday night, then they will be travelling to local rivals Gainsborough Trinity in the next round. The match is scheduled to be played on January 16th.


Ask the club

18th November: The club are holding a novel fund raising event at the Social Club on Thursday evening (19th November). A football forum is being held where you can ask the questions you have been dying to ask for years! It starts at 8pm and costs £2 for entry or you can send your questions via the net to Chris Cook at cookie@ccps.freeserve.co.uk.


Chris Withe injury

12th November: Defender Chris Withe is out of action for a month with a knee injury. He is due to have a minor operation on it in the next few days.


Possible new defender

6th November: Steve Evans hopes to sign up Peterborough United central defender Ashley Neal on-loan in time for Saturday's clash with Nuneaton Borough.


Player released

5th November: After failing to become a first team regular, Danny Marshall has been released by the club.


Appleby stretchered off

4th November: Steve Appleby was carried off the field on a stretcher half an hour into the game against Halesowen Town. An X-Ray has revealed a broken fibula and a dislocated ankle. He will therefore miss the match against League leaders Nuneaton Borough on Saturday. It will be the first game he has missed since August 1995.


Another signing

31st October: Steve Evans has signed up England semi-professional international midfielder Dave Venables from Cambridge City. Venables started his career with Eastbourne United, before moving on to Crawley Town, Wealdstone and Stevenage Borough. He helped Borough to promotion to the Conference and then a Conference title before signing up with Kettering Town for £9,000.


Apps turns down Alty

31st October: Team captain and last season's "Player of the Year", Steve Appleby has turned down a lucrative offer to sign up with Unibond League big spenders Altrincham. Appleby said he was flattered to think that a big club like Altrincham were willing to pay a lot of money for him, but he really didn't want to leave Boston. After having talks with United to receive assurances about his position with the club he has now pledged himself to the Pilgrims.


Horseman Ire

31st October: Gresley Rovers have been told by the FA that they will not be allowed to make any new signings until they have paid out money they owe to former players. United's summer signing Brian Horseman is one of the players that the Derbyshire club will need pay off before they can have the ban lifted.


FA Trophy Draw

27th October: If Boston United manage to overcome Stocksbridge Park Steels in their rearranged first round tie, then they will play Worksop Town at home. The tie is due to be played on Saturday 21st November. Worksop currently head the Unibond League Premier Division and have already beaten the Pilgrims 3-1 in a pre-season friendly.


Stocksbridge match off

24th October: The FA Trophy match against Stocksbridge has been called off due to a waterlogged pitch. The match has been rescheduled for Tuesday night (27th October).


Boston Win Mather Cup

22nd October: The Pilgrims won the Mather Cup by beating Jim Smith's Derby County 3-1 last night. New signings Matt Carmichael and Ian Stringfellow were both on the scoresheet again. The Derby side included former England full-back Tony Dorigo, Jamaican World Cup player Dion Burton, Italian international Stefano Eranio and Argentinian international Horatio Carbonari. A rather disappointing turnout of just 630 watched the game.


New signings

17th October: New manager Steve Evans has kept his promise to bring in new players by signing striker Matt Carmichael and midfielder Ian Stringfellow. Carmichael started his career playing for Basingstoke Town whilst in the Army, but was bought out to sign up with Lincoln City. He made over 100 League appearance for the Imps before moving on to Scunthorpe United, Barnet, Preston North End and Darlington. He then moved into Non-League football by signing for Aylesbury United, but soon switched to Ilkeston Town, then Stamford. Pilgrims' fans will remember him as the striker who scored both Ilkeston's goals to knock United out of last season's FA Cup! Ian Stringfellow joined Mansfield Town as an apprentice and soon earned a first team place. After making over 160 League appearances for the Stags he was transferred to Kettering Town for £5,000 in 1994. He only stayed with the Poppies for a year before going to Dagenham and Redbridge, then King's Lynn, where he was top scorer in 96/7.


Coach to Stocksbridge / Meadowhall

16th October: The Pilgrims will be running a coach from Boston to Stocksbridge for the FA Trophy match against Stocksbridge Park Steels on 24th October. The cost is £5 and the coach will leave York Street at 11.30am. As Stocksbridge is close to Sheffield, they will also drop off anyone who would rather get in some early Christmas shopping at Meadowhall than watch the match! Anyone interested should contact John Blackwell on Boston (01205) 364406.


Youth Extravaganza and Playscheme

16th October: Boston United are organising two events for local young footballers. The first is an Extravaganza, where Boston United's Young Pilgrims (under 9s, 10s and 11s) teams take on corresponding sides from Peterborough and Grimsby. This takes place at York Street on Monday 26th October, starting at 6:30pm, admission £1.50. A half term playscheme is also being held at York Street for the 28th-30th October at York Street. The cost of joining this scheme is £15. For full details of the playscheme contact CMS Sports on Boston (01205) 366730.


New Manager

9th October: Steve Evans has been appointed as the new manager of Boston United. The thirty-five year old Scot, was previously manager of Dr. Martens Midland Division side Stamford AFC, where he enjoyed huge success. He is regarded as a very pro-active, go-ahead young man with ambitions. His playing career started with Bolton Wanderers, but he soon moved back north of the border to play for Clyde and then Ayr United. He was forced to give up playing football at the age of twenty eight, by a cruciate knee-ligament injury. Chris Cook will be his number two.


Grantham Chase Bazza

9th October: John Blackwell has received seven days notice that newly promoted, full time side and local rivals Grantham Town want to talk to the Pilgrims' goalkeeper Paul Bastock. However Paul has confirmed his intention to remain a Boston United player despite the approach.


Hunt for New Manager Widens

25th September: At the board meeting on Thursday night, the first such meeting attended by the five new directors, it was decided to advertise the vacant managerial post nationally.


Local Lads Wanted

25th September: In an expansion of their youth team setup, Boston United are looking for youngsters between the ages of 13 and 16. Trials will be taking place on Monday 28th September (under 16s), Tuesday 29th September (under 15s) and Thursday 1st October (under 14s) at St Bede's Secondary School, Tollfield Road, Boston at 5.45pm. The plan is for the youngsters to represent United at various age levels against other youth teams. Matches would be played in midweek and some Saturdays. For further information contact Chris Cook on Boston (01205) 350144.


FA Cup Draw

20th September: Boston United will be travelling to Cheshire on the 3rd October to play Congleton Town in the 2nd Qualifying Round of the FA Cup. Congleton play in the Unibond League First Division and they disposed of Dr. Martens Midland Division side Bilston Town 5-3 in the previous round.


Wealdstone Centenary Appeal

16th September: Wealdstone, Boston United's opponents in the 1985 FA Trophy final, will be celebrating their centenary in 1999. A history of the club is being produced and the author is trying all possible means of getting in touch with former players, officials and opponents from 'key' matches etc. A WWW site has been set up to help with this task (http://www.roge.dircon.co.uk). So if you have any memories of our encounters with Wealdstone which you want to share then get in touch with Roger Slater via the WWW Site.


Club nearly folded in the summer

11th September: General manager John Blackwell has confirmed that the club nearly folded in the summer after being presented with a £40,000 tax bill. The bill was eventually paid off by the Malkinson family, who are major shareholders in the club. The financial problems of the club are the reason cited by Greg Fee for resigning. He said he could not take the club any further in view of the constraints imposed on him.


New Manager Speculation

11th September: Names associated with the vacant management post at the club include Boston Town's Bob Don-Duncan, Gary Mills who took Grantham Town to the Dr. Martens Midland Division title last season, Ilkeston's manager and ex-Pilgrim Keith Alexander and Stamford's manager Steve Evans. Chris Cook has ruled himself out of the running, but is still keen to remain as part of the set up at the club.


Additional Goalkeeper

9th September: United have signed up goalkeeper Matt Dickins from Altrincham as cover for injured Paul Bastock. Dickins began his career with Sheffield United before signing up with Lincoln City in 1991. He was transferred to Blackburn for £250,000 in March 1992, but only made one first team appearance for them. Had loan spells at Blackpool, Rochdale, Grimsby and Stockport before joining Altrincham at the start of the 96/7 season.


Gareth Price Has Died

5th September: Former United player Gareth Price, who gave up football when he discovered he had a brain tumour, lost his fight against the disease on Monday. He was just 28 years old and leaves a wife and a two year old son.


Greg Fee Resigns

4th September: Greg Fee has resigned as manager of the Pilgrims and signed up as a player with Conference side Telford United. Chris Cook has taken over for Saturday's game.


Manager of the Month Awards

4th September: Two of the Dr Martens League Manager of the Month Awards for August went to ex-Pilgrims! The Premier Division Award went to Nuneaton manager Brendan Phillips, following their 100% winning start to the season, including a 3-2 win at York Street. The Midland Division Award went to ex-Grimsby defender Gary Childs, who had a game for the Pilgrims in the Lincs Senior Cup last season and is now manager at Wisbech Town.


Time Warp

26th August: Here are a couple of items for those who like co-incidences. The last time United switched to the Southern League was exactly 40 years ago in 1958. They drew their first game, then played Nuneaton at home on 28th August. In the current season they have also drawn their first game and now play Nuneaton at home on 29th August. The Pilgrims will be hoping for a similar result. Back in 1958 they won 6-1 with goals from Johnny Garvie, Andy Graver(2), Arthur Hukin, Tommy Lowder and Eric Lister, in front of a crowd of 5718. The Pilgrims went on to finish in third place, behind Hereford United and Kettering Town. They also had a good run in the FA Cup, going all the way from the Preliminary Round to the First Round Proper, where they went down narrowly to Chester. As can be seen from the Nuneaton game, the crowds were much bigger then. The reserve side were also well supported, with 888 watching them play on the same day that the first team travelled to Sheffield in the FA Cup to play in front of just 901. It cost much less to get into a match back in 1958. The admission price was only two shillings (10p) and a twelve page match programme cost 3d (1p). (Taking inflation into account these are equivalent to £1.30 and 17p respectively.) One similarity the Pilgrims will be trying to avoid is the fact that it was felt that the 1958 team was short of a good striker, and much of the season was spent in a fruitless search for a partner for top scorer Arthur Hukin.


Radio Times

21st August: Radio Lincolnshire (94.9 FM) will be giving live updates from United's matches, both home and away, every Saturday throughout the season. After the games a live phone-in will open for fans' comments on the day's performance. The number to call, from 4.50pm every Saturday, is 01522-511-219. Through the week you can also E-Mail the station's Sports Producer, Michael Hortin at Michael.Hortin@bbc.co.uk, with your views.


Pre-season games update

18th August: The Pilgrims had mixed fortunes in their recent pre-season friendlies. They started with a 2-1 win against Unibond League First Division side Eastwood Town, with two second half goals from Paul Watts. They then lost 1-3 against newly promoted Unibond League Premier Division side Worksop Town. But they were soon back to winning ways however, with a 3-1 win against Boston Town. After going down a goal after nine minutes they bounced back with two goals from Joby Gowshall and one from Steve Appleby. They rounded off their pre-season program with a loss to Barnsley and wins against Wroxham, with two more goals from Watts, and Stamford. The complete set of pre-season results is as follows:

Sat 25th Jul Boston United 0-1 Grimsby Town (LSC)
Wed 29th Jul Boston United 1-1 Peterborough United
Sat  1st Aug Boston United P-P Doncaster Rovers
Wed  5th Aug Boston United 2-1 Eastwood Town
Fri  7th Aug Worksop Town  3-1 Boston United
Sun  9th Aug Boston Town   1-3 Boston United
Wed 12th Aug Boston United 0-1 Barnsley
Sat 15th Aug Wroxham       0-2 Boston United
Mon 17th Aug Stamford Town 0-2 Boston United


Five New Directors

17th August: The overhaul of the way the club is run has resulted in the appointment of five additional directors. These are: Michael May - a chartered accountant from Skegness, Roy Hackford - who is from Fishtoft and works for Johnsons Seeds, Dick Carrington - a self employed Boston joiner, Colin Woodcock - a teacher at Haven High School and regular contributor to these pages and Tim Ruck - who runs an agricultural labour supplies firm in Boston.


Doncaster Game Off

31st July: The friendly game against Doncaster Rovers has been called off as Rovers have been unable to put together a full team.


Draw with the Posh

30th July: The Pilgrims drew 1-1 with Peterborough United in their pre-season friendly last night. Greg Fee put the Pilgrims ahead with a deflected free kick on the half hour, but Guiliano Grazioli equalised with a header soon afterwards. (Thanks to Colin Woodcock for the details)


New Sponsors

24th July: Boston United have announced that they have just sewn up the biggest sponsorship deal in the club's history. After six months of negotiations the new sponsors have been announced as the Sheffield based Wards Brewery, part of the Vaux Group of breweries. Batemans, the previous sponsors, will still be associated with the club as sponsors of the directors' and hospitality room at the club. Wards beer is now available in the social club.


Coach to Dorchester

24th July: If demand is great enough, (40 fans required) United will be running a coach to their first Dr. Martens League match at Dorchester on Saturday 22nd August. The cost will be just £9 return and the coach will leave Boston at 8am. For further details contact John Blackwell on Boston (01205) 364406.


Boston United Golf Tournament

24th July: One of the most popular golf tournaments in Boston, the annual Boston United Invitational, recently took place at Boston Golf Club. Greg Fee, Chris Cook and Paul Bastock all took part in the event, involving teams of four golfers. Pre-tournament favourites Lenny's Lions, captained by Andrew Malkinson, took an early lead but dropped away to ninth place to win four tickets to the "Anthology of Beatles" concert at the Gliderdrome! The final result was 1. Nature's Choice (W. Vaughan, R.Hardy, B. Tunnard, W. Edwards), 2. Four Woods (B. Sheriff, B. Betts, R. Woods, S. Emery), 3. Michael's Marauders (M. Haq, C. Edwards, M. Whitehead, J. Whitehead), 4. George's Dragons (M. Willgoose, C. Smith, T. Dixon, J. Lee), 5. Woody Woodpeckers (J. Woodcock, N. Woodcock, G. Willis, P. Kelly).


FA Trophy Draw

23rd July: Boston United start their FA Trophy campaign with a visit to Unibond League First Division side Stocksbridge Park Steels on Saturday 24th October.


Opening Fixtures

18th July: Boston United start their Dr. Martens Premier Division campaign with a gruelling 500 mile round trip to Dorchester Town on Saturday 22nd August. This is followed by home games against Rothwell Town on Wednesday 26th August and Nuneaton Borough on Saturday 29th August and an away game against Ilkeston Town on August Bank Holiday Monday.


Stars of the Future Wanted

17th July: Boston United's new Youth Development Officer, Chris Cook, is looking for young footballers to join the new Youth Development Scheme. Talented youngsters aged between 8 and 14 can attend an open evening on Wednesday (22nd July), where they will be put through their paces by United's coaching staff between 7 and 8.30pm at the York Street ground. Further details can be obtained from Chris Cook on Boston (01205) 350144.


Squad Latest

17th July: So far, of last season's first team regulars, goalkeeper Paul Bastock, defenders Lenny Curtis, Joby Gowshall and Martin Hardy, midfielders Andrew Stanhope, Steve Charles and "Player of the Year" Steve Appleby have signed up for the coming season. Fringe players Paul Watts, Neil Featherstone, Joe Vaughan and Mark Melson have also signed up. However, assistant manager Chris Cook says the rest of the players seem quite enthusiastic about continuing with the club. Richard Mason, who missed most of last season with a recurring ankle injury, looked very sharp in the Pilgrims first pre-season training session on Saturday. Manager John Blackwell is very hopeful that he will sign up for the Pilgrims shortly. Other hopefuls spotted at the training session included former United defender Darren Clyde, Chris Withe, Simon Armstrong and a midfield player from Dr. Martens League rivals Gresley Rovers. Ex-Pilgrim Simon Armstrong, who has given up full time football after failing to break into the first team at Port Vale, will now be going to college in Leeds and is being chased by Gainsborough Trinity as well as the Pilgrims. Top scorer Steve Charles had been approached by Leek Town, Grantham Town, Emley, Guiseley, Winsford United and Stalybridge Celtic, but he chose to stay with the Pilgrims.


Stand Sponsor Sought

17th July: The club are looking for a commercial sponsor for the Main Stand, which will then be named after the sponsoring company. Anyone interested should call General Manager John Blackwell on 01205-364406.


Top referees at York Street

17th July: The crowds at non-league games often complain about the standard of refereeing. Boston United's fans will soon be getting a chance to see what top class refereeing is like as Premiership referees will be officiating at two of their pre-season friendlies. The matches against Peterborough (29th July) and Barnsley (12th August) will be refereed by Peter Jones and Uriah Rennie respectively.


Munton Returns

10th July: Darren Munton has been signed up by United for the coming season. The former Pilgrims striker was top scorer for Lincoln United in the Unibond League Division One last season.


King's Lynn in Cup

3rd July: United have been drawn against King's Lynn in the first round of the Dr. Martens League Cup. The tie will be decided over two legs.


Talented Youngsters Sought

26th June: The "Football for Life" scheme is recruiting new players for the upcoming season. The young trainees will spend 15 hours each week training and 12 hours studying at Boston College for a Diploma in Sports Science. The 16 and 17 year olds will also play in Lincolnshire Services midweek league. Some of last season's intake made it into the United reserve side in the Lincolnshire League and two have gone on to sign up with the first team. Thirteen of the fifteen trainees have passed the First Diploma and have been asked to carry on to take the National Diploma. There will be a trial and training day on Sunday 12th July at 11am at York Street. If you are interested in joining the scheme then get in touch with Chris Cook on 01205 - 350144.


Dr Martens League Latest

26th June: United will be officially accepted into the Dr. Martens League at the league's annual meeting on Saturday. Slough Town have applied to join the league following their expulsion from the Conference. Hastings Town have also said they want to remain in the league, after they were originally moved into the Ryman League when it was thought that Telford United were to be relegated from the Conference into the Dr. Martens League.


Admission prices for 98/9

20th June: There will be a 50p increase in ticket prices for the coming season, but the Pilgrims will still be one of the cheapest in the Dr Martens Premier Division.

Season ticket prices are reduced by £5 if bought before July 18th. Season tickets give entry to all Dr. Martens Premier Division, Lincolnshire League and Lincs Senior Cup matches.

The "Kids go Free" scheme will also be in operation for all United's home games giving free admission to under 12's on production of vouchers from the Boston Standard.

The Dr. Martens League fixtures will be released by July 17th at the earliest.


Pilgrims collect Trophy

20th June: At the Annual meeting of the Unibond League, last weekend, Greg Fee and Chris Cook were presented with the Unibond League Runners-up Trophy.


Barrow promotion confirmed

5th June: Unibond League champions Barrow have been invited back into the Vauxhall Conference after it was confirmed that they have met the strict criteria for entry. Slough Town have also made the shock announcement that they have withdrawn from the Conference as they are unable to ensure their committments, therefore Telford United will not now be relegated into the Dr. Martens League.


Anglo-Dutch Tournament a Great Success

5th June: The Anglo-Dutch youth tournament, played over the weekend of 29th May - 1st June between local youth teams and youngsters brought over from Holland by Dutch club VV Aalsmeer has been declared a great success. Nortoft Boys and East Coast Juniors won the under 12 sections, Sleaford won the under 14 section and United's Football for Life youngsters won the under 17 section.


Shake-up at the top

29th May: Following criticism from supporters, Boston United have announced a major overhaul of the way the club is run.

Greg Fee's budget for the new season has not yet been set, but Mr Burgess has predicted that it will not be less than last season's. It will be based on the expected gate revenue and how much money off-pitch fundraising and the pre-season friendlies brought in.


Old youngster sought

22nd May: Simon Armstrong has been released by Port Vale at the end of his one year contract and could possibly return to play for the Pilgrims. Manager John Blackwell said that the club had spoken to two young players, one believed to be Armstrong, the other a young striker released by a Third Division club, with a view to signing them up for next season.


Greg in charge for another season

16th May: Greg Fee has been asked by the club board to stay in charge for another campaign. One of his first actions has been to release Paul Cavell and Martin Filson. Cavell failed to score many goals after returning to the Pilgrims at the start of last season and Martin Filson, who is based in Liverpool, would have had trouble travelling to the matches in the Dr. Martens League next season. Commenting on the actions Greg said: "We struggled up front last year. We need to bring in new players to build up that area and it was felt that Paul needed to explore other avenues".


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