Looking for Gas – Oct & Nov 2019

With your wonderful armchair traveller, Keith Brookman.

As the title suggests, this is an attempt to track down as many former Rovers players, who are still involved in the game, as possible.

Most will have played first team football for Rovers in the past, while others are still contracted to the Gas, but either out on loan or work experience.

The latest instalment lives on the main page HERE, and the rest of the season will be archived in chunks.

October and November 2019 are archived below, right in front of your very eyes.


Chapter 15 – Week commencing 3rd November 2019

SUNDAY 3rd NOVEMBER

Tom Lockyer and Billy Bodin featured in the televised SKY match between Charlton Athletic and Preston North End at The Valley. Lockyer completed 90 minutes for the hosts, while Bodin was close to being called on from the Preston bench on two occasions, but after appearing on the touchline his manager decided not to use him. Preston were 1-0 winners, a result that saw them take over at the top of the table.

In Scotland Rangers won the second League Cup semi final of the weekend and will face Celtic in the Final following their 3-0 win against Heart of Midlothian. Michael Smith started this game for Hearts but had to go off in the 53rd minute.

TUESDAY 5TH NOVEMBER

Portsmouth were 4-1 home winners against Southend United in their League One clash at Fratton Park. Lee Brown and Ellis Harrison both started this match and Ellis scored twice; ‘Harrison doubled the hosts’ lead five minutes into the second half, crashing home off the underside of the bar….Harrison restored Pompey’s two goal cushion from the penalty spot two minutes from time after Sean Raggett had been fouled by Rob Kiernan.’

Ellis Harrison, who scored twice for Portsmouth against Southend United. Photo courtesy of Neil Weld, Portsmouth FC
Ellis Harrison, who scored twice for Portsmouth against Southend United.  [Photo courtesy of Neil Weld, Portsmouth FC]
Shrewsbury Town were 1-0 home winners against Peterborough United. Ollie Norburn was in the Shrews’ lineup, while Aaron Chapman was again an unused Peterborough substitute.

In the Leasing.Com Trophy Wycombe Wanderers, with Joe Jacobson on the bench, were beaten 2-1 by Fulham U-21’s at Adams Park.

In the same competition Cambridge United lost 4-3 in a penalty shootout against Arsenal
U-21’s, after a 1-1 draw, at the Abbey Stadium. Reggie Lambe started for Cambridge and scored one of their penalties in the shootout, while Matt Macey was in goal for The Gunners.

Moving on to the National League, where there was one game played and that saw Hartlepool United suffer a 1-0 home defeat at the hands of Solihull Moors. Luke James completed 90 minutes for Hartlepool.

In National League South Hampton & Richmond Borough lost 2-1 in their home game against Dartford. Jefferson Louis and Louie Soares were both named on the Hampton bench.

In the FA Trophy First Qualifying Round replay Merthyr Town were beaten 5-4 at home by Cinderford Town after extra time. Eliot Richards started for Merthyr and scored their third goal after 40 minutes. At that point Merthyr were 3-0 up. Gavin Williams, named on the Merthyr bench, went on in the 109th minute.

Gavin Williams - Merthyr Town manager and some time substitute! Photo courtesy of Mackenzie, Merthyr Town FC
Gavin Williams – Merthyr Town manager and some time substitute!  [Photo courtesy of Mackenzie, Merthyr Town FC]
In the FA Vase Bitton were 4-0 home winners against Fairford Town. They won 4-0, though Matt Groves wasn’t among the scorers and, as there was no lineup on their Twitter feed, he might not even have played! Bitton host Cribbs in the next round after their win against Thornbury Town on Sunday and I did manage to ascertain that Joe White was missing from the Cribbs lineup!

Andy Gurney’s Roman Glass St George are also through to the next round following their 2-1 away win at Petersfield Town.

WEDNESDAY 6TH NOVEMBER

In the First Round Qualifying replay of their FA Trophy tie, Paulton Rovers were 3-1 winners at Phil Bater’s Larkhall Athletic. Jack Camm, Dale Evans and Lewis Powell started for Larkhall, while Neil Arndale was on the bench. Nuno Felix was in the Paulton starting XI but went off injured in the first half.

In the other replay Yate Town drew 3-3 at Tiverton Town (after extra time) but went through to the next round after winning the resulting penalty shootout 4-1. Sam Kamara started this one for Yate, while Ollie Mehew was on the bench though he appears to have been the star of the show! His 85th minute penalty made the score 1-1 and ensured that extra time would be played. Tiverton scored twice to make it 3-1 in time added on but Mehew scored another penalty in the 114th minute to make it 3-2 before Yate equalised in the 117th minute. To cap an eventful night, Mehew scored another penalty in the shootout!

Ollie Mehew - scored a hat trick of penalties for Late Town. Photo courtesy of B East Photography
Ollie Mehew – scored a hat trick of penalties for Yate Town.   [Photo courtesy of B East Photography]
In the Southern League Premier South Division Farnborough, with Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis in their lineup, were 4-0 home winners against Hendon. Scott McGleish was missing from the Hendon bench on this occasion.

STOP PRESS

It turns out that there was a very good reason why Scott McGleish was missing from the Hendon lineup last night; he’s now left them, after playing in four games and spending quite a bit of time on the bench.

FRIDAY 8TH NOVEMBER

The first game in the First Round of the FA Cup saw Carlisle United win 4-1 at Dulwich Hamlet in the Friday night televised fixture. Jeffrey Monakana was in the Dulwich starting lineup.

SATURDAY 9TH NOVEMBER

Oli McBurnie stayed on the Sheffield United bench as they stretched their unbeaten Premier League away record to six with a 1-1 draw against Tottenham Hotspur.

Kelle Roos was again between the posts for Derby County, beaten 1-0 by Nottingham Forest in their local derby match at the City Ground in the Championship.

There was a rare start for Jake Clarke-Salter in a Birmingham City shirt. He was in the side that slipped to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Fulham at St Andrews. He also picked up a yellow card.

Another former Gas man to collect a yellow card was Tom Eaves who stepped off the Hull City bench for their home game against West Bromwich Albion. However, his side lost 1-0 against the league leaders.

Tom Lockyer was in the Charlton Athletic side beaten 1-0 by Millwall at The Den to continue their 23 year wait for a win against The Lions.

Second placed Preston North End were 3-1 winners against Huddersfield Town at Deepdale and Billy Bodin was again unused substitute for North End.

Joe Lumley was recalled to the Queens Park Rangers side for their game against Middlesbrough at Loftus Road. There was no win bonus for him, though, as the game ended in a 2-2 draw. Marc Bola was missing from the Boro squad.

Joe Lumley, who returned to the QPR side for their 2-2 draw against Middlesbrough. Photo courtesy of Matt Webb, QPR FC
Joe Lumley, who returned to the QPR side for their 2-2 draw against Middlesbrough.  [Photo courtesy of Matt Webb, QPR FC]
Reading continued their push away from the lower reaches of the league with a 3-0 home win against Luton Town. Goalkeeper Sam Walker took up his customary place on the Reading bench and that’s where he spent the afternoon.

Connor Roberts did, though, get some game time. He was sent on in the 77th minute of Swansea City’s 2-2 draw against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough, a game where both sides scored goals in time added on.

Connor Roberts who, after his short spell with Rovers, has gone on to become a regular for Swansea and for Wales. Photo courtesy of of Chris Barney, Swansea City FC
Connor Roberts who, after his short spell with Rovers, has gone on to become a regular for Swansea and for Wales.   [Photo courtesy of Chris Barney, Swansea City FC]
Goalkeeper Luke Daniels was again an unused Brentford substitute and watched his side record a 3-0 away win at Wigan Athletic, a result that sees them up to ninth place just two points off the play off places.

FA Cup first round ties saw a number of former gas players in action; Jack Bonham was in goal for Gillingham, who drew 1-1 at Sunderland, while Alex Jakubiak was an unused Gills substitute. Both goals came as a result of goalkeeping errors; ‘Aiden McGeady’s low shot from the edge of the area seemed to be routine for keeper Jack Bonham, but he misjudged the roll of the ball and it slowly went under his body’…’Olly Lee’s firmly struck free kick was straight at goalkeeper Jon Mclaughlin. The Scottish international had the ball in his grasp but inexplicably he spilled it and it apologetically trickled over the line.’

Plymouth Argyle were 1-0 away winners at Bolton Wanderers. Gary Sawyer started for Argyle, as did Byron Moore who was substituted by the returning Dominic Telford, though it was the 92nd minute when he was sent on!

Cambridge United and Exeter City will need a replay to determine which of them goes through to the second round. Cambridge, with home advantage, equalised in the 93rd minute and had Elliott Ward and Daniel Jones in their starting XI and sent on Reggie Lambe in the 63rd minute. Tom Parkes started for Exeter and Jordan Tillson was a 78th minute substitute.

There was another 1-1 draw played out between Cheltenham Town and Swindon Town at Whaddon Road and Cheltenham secured a replay with a 93rd minute goal. Ryan Broom started this one for Cheltenham while Gavin Reilly was an unused substitute. Tom Broadbent stayed on the Swindon bench all afternoon.

Matt Lund collected a yellow card as he and his Scunthorpe United side were dumped out of the competition, losing 4-1 at Crawley Town.

Ipswich United and Lincoln City drew 1-1 at Portman Road where John Akinde was an unused Lincoln substitute. They must be wishing he had been on the pitch when they were awarded a second half penalty. Akinde, Lincoln’s regular penalty taker, would surely have scored. Tyler Walker’s spot kick was saved, so the two sides will have to do it all again! Interesting stat from this match was that both goalscorers have famous fathers; Andrew Dozzell’s father Jason also used to play for Ipswich while Walker’s father is former England and Nottingham Forest player Des. Tyler played against Rovers for Lincoln earlier this season.

Goalkeeper Sam Slocombe was on the winning side, though, as he and his Notts County side were 3-2 away winners at Ebbsfleet United. County also scored a 93rd minute goal to seal their victory…it was a popular minute to score, it seems!

Bernard Mensah was an unused Maidenhead United substitute and watched as they were beaten 3-1 at home by Rotherham United.

Conrad Logan and Ryan Sweeney were in the Mansfield Town side that just avoided a shock result. They were 1-0 home winners against Chorley but scored the only goal of the game in the 81st minute (better than the 93rd minute, I guess!)

MK Dons, under new management (Russell Martin) are out, though, beaten 1-0 by Port Vale at Stadium MK. Lee Nicholls was in goal for MK while Hiram Boateng was sent on in the 70th minute. Cristian Montano completed 90 minutes for Vale.

Nathan Blissett returned to the Solihull Moors squad for their tie at Oxford City. Named on the bench, he was sent on in the 71st minute of their thumping 5-1 win.

John-Joe O’Toole completed 90 minutes for Burton Albion, who drew 1-1 at Salford City, while Chris Beardsley was an unused substitute for The Brewers.

Shrewsbury Town and Bradford City will need a replay at Valley Parade following their 1-1 draw in deepest Shropshire. Ollie Norburn was in the Shrewsbury side for this one.

There was another 1-1 draw at Stevenage where Peterborough were the visitors and, once again, goalkeeper Aaron Chapman was an unused Posh substitute.

Eastleigh also drew, 2-2 at Stourbridge where Scott Rendell, who started the game, scored their 86th minute equaliser (he had earlier missed a penalty). Joe Partington was named on the Eastleigh bench and was sent on in the 58th minute.

It also finished 2-2 at Prenton Park between Tranmere Rovers and Wycombe Wanderers. Stefan Payne was an unused Tranmere substitute, while Joe Jacobson scored Wycombe’s first goal in the 26th minute.

Darrell Clarke’s Walsall are still in the competition following their 2-2 draw against Darlington. Trailing 1-0 at the Banks’s Stadium, they had a man sent off in the 82nd minute then went ahead with goals in the 86th and 89th minutes. Darlington had a man sent off in the 90th minute, then equalised in the 97th minute. Rory Gaffney was in the Walsall squad, though James Clarke and Stuart Sinclair were both missing.

In the FA Trophy Second Qualifying Round, Kieran Preston was in goal for Basford United who were beaten 3-1 at FC United of Manchester.

Yate Town, though, went goal crazy at Lodge Road, where they beat AFC Totton 6-3. Sam Kamara started this one for Yate while Ollie Mehew came off the bench in the 60th minute and scored the home side’s sixth goal.

Dave Martin was in the Whitehawk side that drew 2-2 at Hastings United and it was from his 75th minute corner that his side equalised to take the game to a replay.

Salisbury are through to the next round following their 2-1 home win against Kings Langley. Darren Mullings was a 67th minute Salisbury substitute.

Also through to the next round are AFC Hornchurch, who hardly needed to break sweat as they recorded a 6-1 away win against Basildon United. Chris Dickson was named on the Hornchurch bench for this one.

Gloucester City gained a National League North point from a 2-2 draw at Farsley Celtic. Harry Hodges and Luke Russe were both in the Gloucester lineup.

In National League South Bath City were 3-1 winners against Concord Rangers at Twerton Park. Ryan Clarke was in goal for The Romans, while Ryan Brunt entered the fray as a 79th minute substitute. Jerry Gill’s side are in fifth place.

The game between Havant & Waterlooville and Slough Town was abandoned after 70 minutes, because of a waterlogged pitch, with the home side 2-0 up. Scott Davies was in the Slough side.

Hemel Hempstead Town suffered a 3-0 home defeat at the hands of Braintree Town, though they are still in sixth place with the same number of points as Bath City. Adam Cunnington started for Hemel and Alex Wall went on from the bench in the second half.

Weymouth moved up to second place following their 2-1 home win against Hampton & Richmond Borough. Josh Wakefield and Abdulai Baggie both started for them, while Jefferson Louis and Louie Soares were in the Hampton & Richmond starting XI and Louis scored their goal in the 59th minute.

Louie Soares, who holds the joint record for the shortest Rovers career (one minute) with Kayne McLaggon, is now playing for Hampton & Richmond Borough. Photo courtesy of Ben Harrison-Hyde
Louie Soares, who holds the joint record for the shortest Rovers career (one minute) with Kayne McLaggon, is now playing for Hampton & Richmond Borough.   [Photo courtesy of Ben Harrison-Hyde]
In the Northern Premier League North West Division Andy Monkhouse was named on the Ossett United bench for their game at Trafford. His side were beaten 1-0 and they are bottom but one in the league standings.

In the Southern League Premier South Division Martin Horsell was in goal for Swindon Supermarine who came from two goals down to win their away game at Harrow Borough 4-2, a result that sees them up to fourth place.

In the game between two teams who have Bed in their name, Bedworth United played out a 3-3 home draw against Bedford Town. Tom Hitchcock netted the first Bedford goal from the penalty spot.

Danny Greaves named himself on the Frome Town bench for their away game against Barnstaple Town in the Southern League Division One South. I imagine he then sat back and enjoyed his side’s 2-0 win which saw them maintain their place at the top of the table.

Mangotsfield United returned to winning ways as they beat Bideford 4-2 at Cossham Street. Trey Anderson was again in the Mangotsfield side.

Moving on to the Isthmian League Premier Division and Jamie Cureton named himself in the Bishop’s Stortford starting lineup for their home game against Corinthian Casuals. However Casuals, bottom of the league, recorded their first win of the season and took all three points with a 3-1 victory.

Managerless Heart of Midlothian claimed their first home Scottish Premiership win since March with a 5-2 victory against St Mirren. Michael Smith was in the Hearts side.

In Scottish League Two Stirling Albion, with Darryl Duffy in their side, lost 1-0 at Cove Rangers and Darryl collected a yellow card.

Barry Town United, with Kayne McLaggon in their side, suffered a 4-0 home defeat at the hands of Connah’s Quay Nomads, but they remain second in the table just three points behind the team that beat them.


Chapter 14 – Week commencing 27th October 2019

SUNDAY 27TH OCTOBER

There was an all Welsh affair in the Championship, and it was Swansea City who came out on top as they beat Cardiff City 1-0 at the Liberty Stadium. Connor Roberts warmed the bench for The Swans while Neil Etheridge was in goal for The Bluebirds.

In the Scottish Premiership Celtic were 4-0 away winners against Aberdeen, so it was a clean sheet for goalkeeper Fraser Forster and another afternoon spent on the bench for Scott Sinclair.

Motherwell, with Peter Hartley in their side, lost 2-1 against Rangers at Ibrox, a result that leaves them fourth in the table nine points adrift of the two Glasgow sides who lead the way on 25 points.

In the Scottish Cup second round replay Lochee United, with Garry Kenneth in their side, were beaten 2-1 at BSC Glasgow.

Over in Sweden Ostersunds FK suffered a 2-1 home defeat against Hammarby. Charlie Colkett was in the Ostersunds starting lineup.

MONDAY 28TH OCTOBER

In the West London derby at Loftus Road Queens Park Rangers were beaten 3-1 by near neighbours Brentford. Two former Gas goalies, Joe Lumley of QPR and Brentford’s Luke Daniels, spent the evening watching from their respective club benches.

Luke Daniels has been on what seems like permanent bench warming duties for Brentford this season. Photo courtesy of Chris Wickham, Brentford F
Luke Daniels has been on what seems like permanent bench warming duties for Brentford this season.  [Photo courtesy of Chris Wickham, Brentford FC]
TUESDAY 29TH OCTOBER

It was the first of two fourth round Carabao Cup nights and Burton Albion’s run ended as they suffered a 3-1 home defeat at the hands of Leicester City. John-Joe O’Toole was in the Burton side for this one.

Oxford United beat Sunderland 4-2 in a penalty shootout following a 1-1 draw and extra time at the Kassam Stadium. It’s the first time they have reached the quarter finals of the competition for 32 years. Matty Taylor started this one for Oxford but was substituted in the 81st minute.

Gary Sawyer and Byron Moore were in the Plymouth Argyle side beaten 1-0 at Home Park by Chelsea U-21’s in the EFL Trophy. The result leaves Argyle waiting for the outcome of the Rovers v Swindon tie to determine whether or not they progress to the knockout stages. Chelsea are definitely through and Rovers need a win or an extra point from a penalty shootout to join them. A win, of course, would also do it!

There was, almost, a full programme of National League matches and Aldershot Town claimed a point on their travels, playing out a goalless draw at Boreham Wood. Danny Woodards was an unused Boreham substitute, while Alefe Santos remained on the Aldershot bench.

Joe Partington and Scott Rendell started for Eastleigh, beaten 3-1 at Dover Athletic, though Partington was substituted in the 43rd minute.

Bernard Mensah was an 81st minute substitute for Maidenhead United who were held to a 1-1 draw at home against AFC Fylde.

Sam Slocombe kept a clean sheet for Notts County, 4-0 winners at Woking. The result saw County move into the final play off position.

National League North leaders York City were in action and extended their lead at the top of the table to eight points thanks to a 2-1 home win against Boston United. Andy Bond was once again in the York side.

In National League South Weymouth took a point from their 1-1 draw at Eastbourne Borough and moved up to third place. They had a player sent off in the 71st minute but equalised, from the penalty spot, following a foul on Abdulai Baggie. Josh Wakefield was also in the Weymouth side.

Slough Town moved into fourth place, on the same number of points as Weymouth. Scott Davies was in the Slough side while Theo Widdrington started for Welling. Bradley Goldberg was missing from their squad for this one.

It was also FA Trophy night, with replays and games postponed at the weekend all taking place.

Merthyr Town drew 2-2 at Cinderford Town, which means a replay for them. Eliot Richards started this one for Merthyr and Gavin Williams was on the bench though once again there was no sign of Ben Swallow.

Salisbury won their replay at Dorchester Town 3-0 where Darren Mullings, named on the Salisbury bench, was sent on in the 61st minute.

Jamie Cureton and his Bishop’s Stortford side are out of the competition, losing 4-1 after extra time in their replay at Enfield Town. ‘Curo’ named himself on the bench for this one.

Hayes & Yeading United are through to the next round thanks to a 2-1 home win against Wingate & Finchley. Lyle Della-Verde was on the Hayes bench.

Paulton Rovers and Larkhall Athletic will need a replay following their 1-1 draw. Nuno Felix was in the Paulton side while Dale Evans, Geraint Bater, Lewis Powell and Jack Camm all started for Larkhall and Neil Arndale was on the bench. No surprise that Lewis Powell scored the Larkhall goal, from the penalty spot on this occasion.

Nuneaton Borough went out of the competition as they were beaten 2-1 at Stourbridge. Craig Stanley started for Borough while Alex Henshall was named on the bench and sent on in the 70th minute.

Swindon Supermarine are also out. They suffered a 4-1 home defeat at the hands of Thatcham Town. Martin Horsell was in goal for the Wiltshire side.

Yate Town and Tiverton Town will need a replay after they shared six goals at Lodge Road. Sam Kamara started, and scored Yate’s second goal, while Ollie Mehew was again named on the bench for the home side.

In the Midland League Premier Division Highgate United, with Sam Oji again skippering the side, drew 1-1 at home against South Normanton. It was only their second drawn game of the season and the point gained saw them move out of the relegation places.

Craig Disley was in the Barton Town side that lost 2-1 at Goole Town in their Northern Counties East Premier Division game. The home side scored the winning goal in the 90th minute.

WEDNESDAY 30TH OCTOBER

Goalkeeper Matt Macey was an unused Arsenal substitute for their Carabao Cup tie at Anfield where Liverpool won 5-4 on penalties after an amazing 5-5 draw.

In the Scottish Premiership Fraser Forster kept a clean sheet for Celtic, 2-0 home winners against St Mirren.

With Peter Hartley in their side, Motherwell moved into third place following their 2-1 home win against Kilmarnock.

Heart of Midlothian lost 1-0 at bottom club St Johnstone and dropped into the bottom two. Michael Smith was in the Hearts side for this one. It proved to be the last game for manager Craig Levein, who was sacked the next day.

SATURDAY 2ND NOVEMBER

Oli McBurnie, the only former Gas man playing regularly in the Premier league, was a 75th minute substitute for Sheffield United in their 3-0 win against Burnley at Bramall Lane. Shame he didn’t score or we might have seen headlines with Oli McBurnley in them!

In the Championship Swansea City, courtesy of their 2-1 win at Wigan Athletic, moved into second place in the table, their winning goal being scored in the 92nd minute. Connor Roberts was a 70th minute substitute for The Swans.

Luke Daniels was again an unused Brentford substitute but his side, after winning three games in a week, were beaten 1-0 by a resurgent Huddersfield Town at Griffin Park.

Cardiff City goalkeeper Neil Etheridge conceded twice against Birmingham City but his team mates scored four at the other end and although they are in 14th place they are only four points outside the play off places. Once again Jake Clarke-Salter warmed the Birmingham bench all afternoon.

Kelle Roos kept a clean sheet as Derby County were 2-0 winner against Middlesbrough at Pride Park. Middlesbrough’s winless run was extended to eight and on this occasion Marc Bola was missing from their squad.

Kelle Roos, who kept a clean sheet for Derby County last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Olivia Sefton, Derby County FC
Kelle Roos, who kept a clean sheet for Derby County last Saturday.    [Stunning photo courtesy of Olivia Sefton, Derby County FC]
Tom Eaves was on target for Hull City, scoring their third goal in a 3-0 win against Fulham at Craven Cottage. He was named on the bench and sent on in the 54th minute.

Joe Lumley spent the afternoon warming the Queens Park Rangers bench and watched his side lose 2-0 against Leeds United at Elland Road, a result that saw the home side move back to the top of the table.

Another bench warmer was Reading goalkeeper Sam Walker who watched his side win 2-1 against Millwall at the Madejski Stadium.

In League One Lincoln City, still missing the suspended Cian Bolger, drew 1-1 at AFC Wimbledon who scored their equaliser in the 92nd minute of the game. John Akinde came off the Lincoln bench in the 78th minute.

Goalkeeper Aaron Chapman spent the afternoon on the Peterborough United bench for their game at Blackpool. At least he was entertained, as he saw the home side win a seven goal thriller 4-3!

John-Joe O’Toole was in the Burton Albion side that earned themselves a point from a 2-2 draw against Doncaster Rovers at the Keepmoat Stadium.

MK Dons were beaten 3-1 by Tranmere Rovers at Stadium MK, a result that cost manager Paul Tisdale his job. Lee Nicholls was in goal for MK and Hiram Boateng was an unused substitute for his side who had to play the second half with ten men following Kieran Agard’s dismissal on the stroke of half time. Stefan Payne was missing from the Tranmere squad.

Rotherham United made it three away wins on the bounce with a 3-0 victory against Gillingham at the Priestfield Stadium. Jack Bonham and Alex Jakubiak were both in the Gills’ starting XI.

There was a little bit of a Gas reunion at Fratton Park where Portsmouth and Oxford United played out a 1-1 draw. Lee Brown was in the Portsmouth side and Ellis Harrison was sent on in the 91st minute, presumably in an attempt to get his side back in front after Matty Taylor had scored Oxford’s equaliser a minute earlier!

Wycombe Wanderers are now three points clear at the top of the table following their 1-0 win against Shrewsbury Town at Adams Park. Joe Jacobson was in the Wycombe side while Ollie Norburn started for Shrewsbury.

Exeter City dropped down to fifth place in the League Two standings after their 2-0 defeat against Bradford City at Valley Parade. Three players were sent off in this game. Exeter’s Jake Taylor was red carded on the hour mark, Bradford’s Callum Cooke followed him to the dressing rooms two minutes later and Tom Parkes received his marching orders in the 82nd minute.

Daniel Jones returned to the Cambridge United squad and was sent on from the bench in the 71st minute of their 2-1 win against Crawley Town at the Abbey Stadium. Elliott Ward and Reggie Lambe were in the Cambridge starting XI.

Cheltenham Town’s 17 match unbeaten home run was ended by near neighbours Forest Green Rovers who were 2-1 winners at Whaddon Road. Ryan Broom and Gavin Reilly were in the Cheltenham side beaten by the new league leaders.

There was another derby match at Gresty Road where Crewe Alexandra were beaten 1-0 by their close neighbours, Port Vale. Cristian Montano was in the Vale starting XI.

Ryan Sweeney scored a 45th minute goal for Mansfield Town in their home game against Colchester United and Conrad Logan was in goal. He saved a 48th minute penalty but was beaten three times as Colchester were 3-2 winners. After a long time out through injury Harry Pell returned to the Colchester squad and was named on the bench. He was sent on in the 90th minute…talk about easing him back gently!

Harry Pell, who returned to the Colchester United squad last weekend. Photo courtesy of Colchester United FC

Harry Pell, who returned to the Colchester United squad last weekend.   [Photo courtesy of Colchester United FC]

Bottom club Morecambe, who lost manager Jim Bentley in the week leading up to this game, were 1-0 home winners against Leyton Orient for whom Matt Harrold completed the 90 minutes.

Oldham Athletic scored twice in the final five minutes of their 2-2 draw against Northampton Town at Boundary Park. Andy Williams scored Northampton’s second goal after being sent on as a 58th minute substitute, while Chris Lines completed the 90 minutes.

Swindon Town made it three games unbeaten with a 2-1 home win against Darrell Clarke’s Walsall. Rory Gaffney scored his first goal for the Saddlers, but James Clarke and Stuart Sinclair were missing from the Walsall side that now sits 22nd in the league, just two points clear of bottom club Morecambe. Tom Broadbent, signed by Clarke for Rovers, was an unused Swindon substitute.

Aldershot Town returned to winning ways in the National League. With Alefe Santos in their lineup they were 2-0 home winners against Maidenhead United. Bernard Mensah was a 69th minute Maidenhead substitute against his former club.

AFC Fylde don’t boast any former Gas players in the lineup, but they now have a former Gas goalie as their goalkeeping coach. When Jim Bentley moved 30 miles or so down the road from Morecambe, to take charge of the National League side, he took a number of his staff with him and they included Lee Jones. I’m sure Jones would have been delighted that his new club kept a clean sheet in his first home game with them as they drew 0-0 against Dover Athletic.

Scott Rendell scored a hat trick for Eastleigh who brought Harrogate’s nine match unbeaten run to an end with a 4-2 win. Joe Partington, though, was missing from the Eastleigh squad. Rendell’s performance earned him a place in the Non League Paper’s National League Team of the Day.

Notts County had to settle for a point following their 2-2 draw against Hartlepool United at Meadow Lane. Sam Slocombe was in goal for County, while Luke James started for Hartlepool and scored their second goal in the 42nd minute.

Boreham Wood picked up a point from a 1-1 draw away at Yeovil Town. Danny Woodards returned to the Boreham starting lineup but only completed the first half. Ricky Shakes was again missing from the Boreham lineup.

National League North leaders York City were held to a 1-1 draw by Kidderminster Harriers at Bootham Crescent, but they remain eight points ahead of second placed Chester. Andy Bond was again in the York City side.

Gloucester City were held to a 2-2 home draw against Curzon Ashton, with Luke Russe in the side as well as Harry Hodges who was making his debut for Gloucester.

In National League South there was no game for Weymouth, whose game at Billericay Town was called off because of a waterlogged pitch. So, a blank day for Abdulai Baggie and Josh Wakefield.

Chippenham Town were held to a goalless draw by Welling United at Hardenhuish Park. Will Puddy, Chris Zebroski and George Rigg were all in the Chippenham side, while Theo Widdrington was a 67th minute substitute for Welling. Bradley Goldberg was missing from their lineup, though.

George Rigg spent a long time on trial at Rovers before being released. Now playing for Chippenham Town - Photo courtesy of Richard Chappell, Chippenham Town Official Photographer
George Rigg spent a long time on trial at Rovers before being released. Now playing for Chippenham Town  [Photo courtesy of Richard Chappell, Chippenham Town Official Photographer]
Alex Wall started for Hemel Hempstead Town who were beaten 3-1 at Concord Rangers while Adam Cunnington went on for them at the start of the second half.

Ryan Clarke was missing from the Bath City lineup for their visit to Dulwich Hamlet through injury, while Ryan Brunt was named on the bench and was sent on in the 85th minute. Jeffrey Monakana was missing from the Dulwich Hamlet squad.

Slough Town, with Scott Davies in their side, were 2-1 home winners against Chelmsford City and are now in second place in the league, seven points behind leaders Wealdstone.

Hampton & Richmond Borough made it four league wins in a row with a 2-1 home win against Maidstone United. Jefferson Louis and Louis Soares both started for the winning side.

In the Northern Premier League Premier Division Kieran Preston was in goal for Basford United, 3-1 away winners at Atherton Collieries. The three points sees them in second place in the league standings, just two points behind leaders South Shields.

No joy for Andy Monkhouse and his Ossett United colleagues, though, as they lost 3-2 at home against Kendal Town, a result that leaves them in 18th place in the 20 team division. They are also searching for a new manager as first team boss Andy Welsh resigned following this defeat.

Josh Klein-Davies and his Widnes team mates had to endure a blank Saturday as their scheduled game at Dunston was called off because of a waterlogged pitch.

Moving on to the Southern League Premier Central Division and Nuneaton Borough registered a home draw against Royston Town. They opened the scoring in the third minute but conceded the equaliser in the 90th minute. Craig Stanley was in the Nuneaton side, but it was his last game for the club. He has left because of the distance he had to travel from his home to turn out for Borough, so I guess he’s now looking for his third club of the season! Alex Henshall, by the way, was missing from the Borough squad for this one.

Craig Stanley, who bid farewell to Nuneaton Borough after last Saturday’s game - Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC
Craig Stanley, who bid farewell to Nuneaton Borough after last Saturday’s game  [Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC]
Tyler Lyttle is still missing from the Rushall Olympic matchday squads and was absent again as they were beaten 2-1 at Tamworth.

In the Premier South Division Walton Casuals, with Rene Howe in their lineup, were 2-1 away winners at Beaconsfield Town.

Darren Mullings was named on the bench for Salisbury’s trip to Farnborough, while Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis was in the home side’s starting XI. The game ended 0-0.

Martin Horsell kept a clean sheet for Swindon Supermarine as they recorded a 1-0 home win against Gosport Borough and are now in sixth place, just one point outside the play off places.

Sam Kamara started for Yate Town, while Ollie Mehew was named on the bench, for their game at Wimborne Town. Yate lost this one 2-0 and are just one place and one point above the relegation places.

All other games in this division were called off because of waterlogged pitches.

Tom Hitchcock scored both Bedford Town goals in their 2-1 away win at Kempston Rovers in Division One Central and they now occupy the final play off place in this division.

In Division One South Trey Anderson was in the Mangotsfield United side that lost 3-1 against Cinderford Town at Cossham Street.

Steve Kingdon and Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist were both in the Bristol Manor Farm side that played out a goalless draw at Melksham Town. The result sees Farm in eighth place while Melksham are down in 17th.

Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist has been in excellent form for Bristol Manor Farm of late. Photo courtesy of the Bristol Post
Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist has been in excellent form for Bristol Manor Farm of late.   [Photo courtesy of the Bristol Post]
Paulton Rovers, with Nuno Felix in their side, were 4-2 home winners against Basingstoke Town, a result which keeps them in third place in the league standings.

Waterlogged pitches caused five postponements in this division and Bitton’s home game against Fairford Town, in the second round of the FA Vase, was also postponed because of the weather.

Jamie Cureton’s Bishop’s Stortford suffered a 1-0 home defeat in their Isthmian Premier League game against Leatherhead. The manager named himself on the bench and sent himself on in the 39th minute!

Midland Premier League Premier Division side Highgate United, with Sam Oji again taking the skipper’s armband, were 1-0 away winners at previously unbeaten Heather St John’s.

Motherwell’s 2-1 home win against Livingston in the Scottish Premiership saw them move up to third place behind the Glasgow giants, Celtic and Rangers. Peter Hartley was again in the Motherwell side.

Celtic, meanwhile, won their 30th consecutive domestic cup tie as they beat Hibernian 5-2 in the Scottish League Cup semi final. They have won this competition for the last three seasons. Fraser Forster was again in goal for Celtic but Scott Sinclair was missing from their squad.

Darryl Duffy scored the opening goal in Stirling Albion’s 3-0 win against Albion Rovers in their Scottish League Two clash.

Lochee United, without the services of Garry Kenneth, beat Hermes 3-1 to go through to the fourth round of the Scottish Junior Cup.

Over in Ireland Jeff Hughes scored a fifth minute penalty for Larne to set them on the way to a 3-0 away win at Ballymena United.

Jeff Hughes, who scored from the penalty spot for Larne last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Chris at Larne FC
Jeff Hughes, who scored from the penalty spot for Larne last Saturday.   [Photo courtesy of Chris at Larne FC]
No joy for Seanan Clucas, though, as he was in the Dungannon Swifts side that lost 2-0 at home against Coleraine.

Barry Town United, with Kayne McLaggon in their side, lost their unbeaten record and their place at the top of the Welsh Premier League following their 4-1 defeat at Caernarfon Town. Kayne did score his side’s consolation goal, from the penalty spot. That brought the scores level at 1-1, but everything seems to have gone downhill from then on!


Chapter 13 – Week commencing 20th October 2019

SUNDAY 20TH OCTOBER

There was one game played in the Scottish Premiership and Heart of Midlothian, with Michael Smith in their side, drew 1-1 with Rangers to earn a point against the Glasgow giants for the first time since 2017. Smith was named Man of the Match; ‘He may well be edging towards the latter stages of his career, but wherever the Northern Ireland international is asked to play, he just gets on with it without any fuss.’

MONDAY 21ST OCTOBER

Oli McBurnie was named on the Sheffield United bench for their Premiership game against Arsenal at Bramall Lane. He managed to get on the pitch in the 85th minute of a match won 1-0 by The Blades.

In the Danish Superliga league leaders FC Midtjylland were 2-1 home winners against Randers FC, though Mikkel Andersen was missing from their squad.

TUESDAY 22ND OCTOBER

In the Championship Jake Clarke-Salter was again an unused substitute for Birmingham City and watched on as his side were 1-0 home winners against Blackburn Rovers.

Adam Barrett’s final game in temporary charge at Millwall, before he handed over to Gary Rowett, ended in a 2-2 draw against Cardiff City at The Den. Neil Etheridge was between the posts for Cardiff.

At Loftus Road, where Queens Park Rangers and Reading shared four goals, there were two former Gas goalies on the bench, both wearing their club’s squad number one. Joe Lumley of QPR and Reading’s Sam Walker are the two custodians in question.

There was another former Gas custodian on the Brentford bench at Swansea where Luke Daniels saw his side win 3-0. Connor Roberts was back in the Swansea side and picked up a yellow card.

Wycombe Wanderers stayed in second place in League One following their 1-1 draw at Blackpool. Joe Jacobson was in the Wycombe side and he also collected a yellow card.

Burton Albion, with John-Joe O’Toole in their side (he was also yellow carded) were 1-0 home winners against AFC Wimbledon.

Lee Brown was in the Portsmouth side, and Ellis Harrison was an unused substitute, as they beat Lincoln City 1-0 at Fratton Park. The suspended Cian Bolger was missing from the Lincoln side, but John Akinde started this game for them.

A 2-0 defeat at Rochdale leaves MK Dons just a point above the relegation places. Lee Nicholls was in goal for MK and Hiram Boateng was a 62nd minute substitute.

Three former Gas players were on view at Shrewsbury who played out a 1-1 draw against Gillingham. Ollie Norburn was in the Shrewsbury side, while Jack Bonham and Alex Jakubiak were in the Gillingham starting XI.

Another former Gas player who has been a manager in a caretaker capacity recently, Gary Waddock, ended his spell as Southend boss by overseeing a 7-1 home defeat at the hands of Doncaster Rovers. Southend, who appointed Sol Campbell as their new manager an hour before kick off, had two players sent off.

Phil Parkinson’s first home game as Sunderland manager ended with an emphatic 5-0 win against Tranmere Rovers. Stefan Payne was in the Tranmere side and he was another former Gas man to collect a yellow card.

League Two side Port Vale, with Cristian Montano in their side, were surprise 2-1 winners against Bradford City at Valley Parade.

Elliott Ward and Reggie Lambe were in the Cambridge United side held to a goalless draw by Grimsby Town at the Abbey Stadium, though they should have had three points as they missed a first half penalty.

Carlisle United suffered a fourth straight defeat as they went down 2-0 to a Northampton side managed by their former boss Keith Curle at Brunton Park. Andy Williams started this one for Northampton, while Chris Lines was a 63rd minute substitute.

Cheltenham Town are up to second place in the table following their 3-0 home win against Macclesfield Town. Ryan Broom and Gavin Reilly both started this one for Cheltenham and Broom scored his side’s third goal of the evening (his sixth of the season).

Conrad Logan and Ryan Sweeney were both in the Mansfield Town side that suffered a home defeat at the hands of Salford City.

Darrell Clarke and his Walsall side suffered another defeat, this time losing 2-0 against Oldham Athletic at Boundary Park. The Saddlers had Mat Sadler sent off in the 52nd minute when the score was 0-0. James Clarke, Stuart Sinclair and Rory Gaffney all started for Clarke’s side.

Gary Sawyer was in the Plymouth Argyle side and faced another of his former clubs, Leyton Orient, at Home Park. Argyle came out on top in this one, winning 4-0 with all the goals arriving in the first half. Byron Moore was a 68th minute substitute for Argyle, while Matt Harrold started for Orient.

Matt Lund returned to the Scunthorpe United side after suspension and played his part in a 3-1 home win against Exeter City. Tom Parkes was in the Exeter side and was yet another former Gas player to be yellow carded.

At the County Ground, Swindon Town scored a late goal to beat bottom of the table Stevenage 1-0. Tom Broadbent was again an unused Swindon substitute.
It was FA Cup replay night and Eastleigh were 4-2 home winners against Welling United. Scott Rendell hadn’t scored for Eastleigh before this game but slotted home two penalties to get himself off the mark. Joe Partington was missing from the squad, though. Bradley Goldberg was in the Welling starting lineup while Theo Widdrington was named on the bench.

Hayes & Yeading United won their replay 3-2 at Poole Town where Lyle Della-Verde was again named on the bench for the winners.

Maidenhead United also won away from home, beating Wealdstone 2-0. Bernard Mensah stepped off the Maidenhead bench in the 52nd minute of this one.

Rene Howe celebrated his birthday by appearing for Walton Casuals in their away fixture against Hendon in the Southern Premier League South. It wasn’t a happy one, though, as his side lost 2-0.

Eliot Richards was on target for Merthyr Town, scoring after only three minutes to give his side the lead. However, visitors Salisbury equalised in the 95th minute to claim a point. Ben Swallow was missing from the Merthyr squad and there was no Darren Mullings in the Salisbury squad.

Sam Kamara was named in the Yate Town starting lineup for their home game against Farnborough and Ollie Mehew was on the bench. Yate, though, lost their second successive game as they were beaten by a Farnborough goal scored in the 54th minute.

Frome Town returned to the top of Southern League Division One South following their 2-1 win at Cirencester Town. New signing Lewis Ellington made his Frome debut when going on as a 76th minute substitute.

In the Isthmian Premier League Merstham were beaten 2-1 at Margate and while there was no sign of Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis in the Merstham squad, Barry Hayles was named on their bench.

Jamie Cureton, manager of Bishop’s Stortford, saw his side win 2-1 at Wingate & Finchley. The former Gas striker named himself on the bench and entered the fray in the 79th minute.

Up in the North East Luke James was in the Hartlepool United side for their away tie against Shildon in the Durham Challenge Cup and they safely made it through to the next round by winning 4-2.

Luke James was recalled to the Hartlepool starting lineup last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Mark Fletcher (Shutter Press)
Luke James was recalled to the Hartlepool starting lineup last Saturday.    [Photo courtesy of Mark Fletcher – Shutter Press]
In the first round of the Bedfordshire Senior Cup Bedford Town, with Tom Hitchcock in their lineup, were 2-0 winners at Leighton Town.

Highgate United were also in cup action and, with Sam Oji in the side, they lost 1-0 at Leamington in the first round of the Birmingham Senior Cup.

WEDNESDAY 23RD OCTOBER

Tom Lockyer returned to Bristol and was in the Charlton Athletic side beaten 2-1 by Bristol City at Ashton Gate. The winning goal arrived in the 98th minute.

Kelle Roos kept a clean sheet as Derby County were 1-0 winners against Wigan Athletic at Pride Park, a result that sees Derby up to 18th.

Tom Eaves was an unused substitute for Hull City, who were 2-1 winners at Nottingham Forest in spite of finishing the game with ten men after Josh Magennis was sent off in the 68th minute

There are new leaders of Division One as Peterborough United moved into top spot following their 4-0 demolition of Accrington Stanley at London Road. All goals arrived in the second half and were watched by goalkeeper Aaron Chapman, again an unused Posh substitute.

Jamie Cureton, player/manager of Isthmian Premier League side Bishop’s Stortford, turned out for Enfield FC (he has dual registration that enables him to do this), the Essex Senior League side that shares the Stortford ground at Woodside Park. Enfield were 3-1 winners against Woodford Town and, needless to say, he scored, netting the third goal six minutes into the second half. In doing so, he created a new record by becoming the first player in English football to score in nine different divisions, from Premier League down to Essex Senior League.

Jamie Cureton - the records keep coming! Photo courtesy of Nathan Cracknell, Bishop’s Stortford FC Official Photographer

Jamie Cureton – the records keep coming!   [Photo courtesy of Nathan Cracknell, Bishop’s Stortford FC Official Photographer]

Bitton lost 2-1 at Bradford Town in the Western League but trying to find out their lineup for the game has proved to be impossible. I can only assume that Matt Groves was in their starting XI.

THURSDAY 24TH OCTOBER

It was Europa League night and Fraser Forster was in goal for Celtic who were 2-1 home winners against Lazio in Group F. Scott Sinclair was an unused Celtic substitute.

FRIDAY 25TH OCTOBER

In the League of Ireland Premier Division Derry City were 4-0 home winners against Finn Harps. Mark McChrystal was named on the bench for this, their final league match of the season and their fourth placed finish ensures they qualify to take part in next season’s Europa League competition.

Mark McChrystal and Derry City will be playing in next season’s Europa League. Photo courtesy of Kevin Morrison (Event Images and Photography)
Mark McChrystal and Derry City will be playing in next season’s Europa League.   [Photo courtesy of Kevin Morrison – Event Images and Photography]
SATURDAY 26TH OCTOBER

In the Premiership Oli McBurnie was an unused Sheffield United substitute for their game at West Ham United in which they collected a point from a 1-1 draw.

Dropping down to The Championship and Jake Clarke-Salter was again an unused substitute for Birmingham City who were 2-1 winners against Luton Town at St Andrews.

Tom Eaves was another former Gas player to be named as a substitute. He was on the Hull City bench but was called on in the 72nd minute of their 2-0 home win against Derby County. Kelle Roos was again in goal for Derby.

Another unused substitute was Middlesbrough’s Marc Bola, who watched his side play out a goalless draw against Fulham at The Riverside Stadium. Although Fulham goalkeeper Marek Rodak was sent off after 17 minutes Boro were unable to take advantage and this result saw them slip into the bottom three.

Yet another former Gas player, Billy Bodin, spent the afternoon on the bench where he watched his side, Preston North End, beat Blackburn Rovers 3-2 to move into second place.

Charlton Athletic, with Tom Lockyer in their side, picked up a point from a 2-2 draw against West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns and remain just a point outside the play off places.

Gillingham recorded a 1-0 away win at Accrington Stanley in League One. Jack Bonham was in goal for The Gills and Alex Jakubiak was sent on as a 63rd minute substitute.

Two former old boys returned to BS7, namely Lee Brown and Ellis Harrison. Brown played the 90 minutes for Pompey who took a point against a battling Rovers who were 2-0 down at one point but hit back to claim a point from a 2-2 draw. Ellis Harrison was also in the Portsmouth squad and was sent on in the 91st minute. Too late to make an impact, but in time to see a 93rd minute Rovers equaliser!

Lee brown who returned to BS7 last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Neil Weld, Portsmouth FC
Lee Brown who returned to BS7 last Saturday.  [Photo courtesy of Neil Weld, Portsmouth FC]
Burton Albion, with John-Joe O’Toole in their side, played put a goalless draw against Blackpool at The Pirelli Stadium.

MK Dons conceded an 85th minute goal at Fleetwood Town, the only goal of the game. Lee Nicholls and Hiram Boateng both started for MK.

Goalkeeper Aaron Chapman was again an unused substitute for Peterborough United whose home 2-2 draw against Coventry City saw them drop from first to third.

Joe Jacobson was in the Wycombe Wanderers side that moved back into second place following their 1-0 away win against Rotherham United.

Shrewsbury Town were also 1-0 winners, against Sunderland at their home ground, now known as Montgomery Waters Meadow. Ollie Norburn was in the Shrewsbury side and picked up a yellow card in this match, which saw his side move up to 12th place.

Tom Parkes scored Exeter City’s second goal in their 4-0 home win against Devon rivals Plymouth Argyle in League Two. Gary Sawyer was in the Argyle side and Byron Moore was sent on as a 52nd minute substitute.

Swindon Town’s 4-0 win at Crawley Town saw them move up to fifth place in the table. Tom Broadbent again spent his afternoon on the Swindon bench.

Matt Harrold started for Leyton Orient in their 1-1 draw against Carlisle United at Brisbane Road, or the Matchroom Stadium to give it the correct title.

Northampton Town moved into eighth place following their 2-0 home win against Cambridge United at Sixfields. Chris Lines and Andy Willimas were both named on the Northampton bench but went on in the second half, Lines in the 69th minute and Williams in the 73rd minute. Elliott Ward and Reggie Lambe were both in the Cambridge starting XI.

Port Vale, with Cristian Montano in their side, played out a goalless draw against Oldham Athletic at Vale Park while Scunthorpe United, with Matt Lund in their side, also claimed a point from a 1-1 draw at Salford City.

Darrell Clarke’s Walsall side dropped down to 21st place following their 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Mansfield Town. Stuart Sinclair and Rory Gaffney were in the Walsall side, while Conrad Logan and Ryan Sweeney were in the Mansfield lineup.

In the National League, Boreham Wood lost 2-0 at home against AFC Fylde. Danny Woodards was an unused Boreham substitute, though Ricky Shakes was missing from the squad.

Dagenham & Redbridge recorded their first win in five games with a 2-1 home victory against Wrexham. Angelo Balanta scored their first goal two minutes into first half stoppage time. Balanta’s performance earned him a place in the Non League Paper’s National League Team of the Day.

Angelo Balanta - on target for The Daggers last weekend. Photo courtesy of Lewis McKean, Media Officer, Dagenham & Redbridge FC
Angelo Balanta – on target for The Daggers last weekend.   [Photo courtesy of Lewis McKean, Media Officer, Dagenham & Redbridge FC]
Alefe Santos was an unused Aldershot Town substitute and watched his side lose 1-0 at Harrogate Town, a result that leaves them just one place outside the bottom four.

Luke James started for Hartlepool United who recorded a 2-0 home win against Barnet to make it three wins out of three for caretaker manager Anthony Sweeney.

Yet another Gas player remained on the bench all afternoon; Bernard Mensah, on loan at Maidenhead United, saw his side claim all three points with a 1-0 home win against Solihull Moors. The winning goal arrived in the 90th minute.

Joe Partington and Scott Rendell were both in the Eastleigh side that drew 1-1 at Woking. Rendell scored the Eastleigh equaliser in the 98th minute, three minutes after Woking had taken a 95th minute lead!

Notts County, with Sam Slocombe in goal, were beaten 1-0 at Chesterfield, a result that saw County slip out of the play off places and Chesterfield pull further away from the bottom four.

National League North fixtures were few and far between, as the weather caused a number of postponements. However, York City and Gloucester City did manage to complete their games.

Gloucester will probably wish their game had been called off, though, as they lost 5-1 at Spennymoor Town. Luke Russe started for Gloucester, who ended the match with nine men following the issue of two red cards.

York extended their lead at the top of the table to five points following their 1-0 away win at second placed Chester. Andy Bond was again in the York midfield.

There was a full programme of National League South fixtures and Bath City moved back into the play off places with a 1-0 win against Dorking Wanderers at Twerton Park. Ryan Clarke was in goal for Bath and Ryan Brunt was sent on in the 91st minute. Manager Jerry Gill said this of his Bath side; ‘I’m over the moon with the win. Dorking are a very good side and Ryan Clarke had to pull off two very good saves in the first half.’

Bath City manager Jerry Gill saw his side return to a play off place last weekend. Photo courtesy of Simon Howe, Bath City FC official photographer
Bath City manager Jerry Gill saw his side return to a play off place last weekend.  [Photo courtesy of Simon Howe, Bath City FC official photographer]
Chippenham Town picked up a point on their travels, drawing 1-1 at Dartford. Will Puddy and Chris Zebroski started for them and George Rigg was called on as a 67th minute substitute.

There was another 1-1 draw at Hemel Hempstead Town where the home side shared the spoils with Eastborne Borough. Adam Cunnington started the match for Hemel and made way for Alex Wall on 70 minutes.

Hampton & Richmond Borough were 2-0 winners at bottom club Hungerford Town. Both Jefferson Louis and Louie Soares started this one for the victors.

Scott Davies was on the losing side as Slough Town were beaten 2-1 at Oxford City, though they remain in fifth place in spite of this defeat.

Bradley Goldberg started and Theo Widdrington was sent on as a 46th minute substitute for Welling United, who suffered a 1-0 home defeat at the hands of St Albans City.

Josh Wakefield and Abdulai Baggie were both in the Weymouth side that won 3-0 against Braintree Town. They have adapted well to life at this level following last season’s promotion and are in fourth place.

It was FA Trophy First Round Qualifying Day and while many ties were called off because of the adverse weather conditions, there were some former Gas players involved in the games that did go ahead.

Kieran Preston was one of them and he and his Basford United side are through to the next stage of the competition after a 3-0 home win against Mickleover Sports.

Kieran Preston - into the next round of the FA Trophy. Photo courtesy of Craig Lamont, Basford United Official Photographer
Kieran Preston – into the next round of the FA Trophy.  [Photo courtesy of Craig Lamont, Basford United Official Photographer]
Barry Hayles was named on the Merstham bench for their tie at Carshalton Athletic and joined the match in the 67th minute. He scored in the 90th minute, but it was merely a consolation as his side were beaten 3-1.

Jamie Cureton left himself out of the Bishop’s Stortford side and they played out a 1-1 draw at home against Enfield Town. Wonder if he will select himself for the replay?

Dave Martin scored a 73rd minute penalty for Whitehawk as they beat Hendon 4-1. Scott McGleish was an unused substitute for Hendon.

Tyrone Tucker-Dixon was named on the Melksham Town bench for their home tie against Basingstoke Town, which they won 1-0.

Frome Town manager Danny Greaves named himself and Lewis Ellington on the bench for their tie at Thame United. The manager saw his side score a 93rd minute goal to win the game 2-1 to go through to the next round.

Salisbury and Dorchester Town must do it all again on Tuesday after their 3-3 draw. Dorchester were ahead on three occasions during this match. Darren Mullings was named on the Salisbury bench.

On loan Rovers youngster Harry Warwick made his Gosport Borough debut in their home tie against Farnborough and scored their third goal in a 3-1 win in the 96th minute.

No cup progress for Rene Howe and his Walton Casuals team mates, though. He was in the side that lost 2-1 at Worthing.

The inclement weather caused many postponements across the country and many of the scheduled games involving former Gas men were called off.

In the Southern League Division One South the only game played was between Highworth Town and Bristol Manor Farm. Darren Jefferies was named on the bench for Highworth while Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist and Steve Kingdon started for Manor Farm who were 5-1 winners on their trip to Wiltshire. Kingdon scored the first Farm goal, after 13 minutes.

In the Scottish Premiership Michael Smith was in the Heart of Midlothian side that played out a goalless draw at Livingston.

In the Irish Premiership Seanan Clucas was in the Dungannon Swifts side beaten 5-0 at Cliftonville FC, but there was no sign of Jeff Hughes in the Larne squad held to a 1-1 home draw by Institute.

Barry Town United are back on top of the Welsh Premier League following their 2-0 home win against Airbus UK Broughton. Kayne McLaggon scored his seventh goal of the season for the league leaders, a 58th minute penalty.

 


Chapter 12 – Week commencing 13th October 2019

SUNDAY 13TH OCTOBER

For the second time in a matter of days Tom Lockyer started a competitive game for Wales. He was in the side held to a 1-1 draw by Croatia at the Cardiff City Stadium in a Group E European Qualifying match. Connor Roberts was also in the Welsh side. Unfortunately, Welsh hopes of qualification now lie in the hands of other teams and as well as having to win their two remaining matches they will be relying on Slovakia dropping points.

From the valleys of Wales to the Vally of Charlton via the Memorial Stadium, Tom Lockyer. Photo from the man himself!
From the valleys of Wales to the Valley of Charlton via the Memorial Stadium, Tom Lockyer.  [Photo from the man himself!]
In the televised game in League One Tranmere Rovers pulled off a surprise 1-0 win against Coventry City at St Andrews. Stefan Payne completed 90 minutes for the winners.

MONDAY 14TH OCTOBER

Michael Smith, who had played in Northern Ireland’s European Qualifying match on 10th October, remained on the bench for their friendly match against the Czech Republic, which they won 3-2.

TUESDAY 15TH OCTOBER

Current Rovers goalkeeper Anssi Jaakkola was again an unused Finland substitute and watched his side win 3-0 in their home game against Armenia in their European Championship qualifying match. Finland are second in in Group J, five points clear of Armenia and Bosnia-Herzegovina with just two games to play.

Rogvi Baldvinsson was signed for Rovers by Mark McGhee back in the summer of 2012. He then returned home, citing personal reasons, just a few weeks later but is still playing football and representing his home country, the Faroe Islands. He played in their 3-0 defeat against Romania on 12th October but scored the winning goal in a 1-0 defeat of Malta on this occasion. Both games were in Group F of the European Qualifiers.

Hands up if you remember Rogvi Baldinsson! Scored for the Faroe Islands last week. Photo courtesy of Neil Brookman
Hands up if you remember Rogvi Baldvinsson!  Scored for the Faroe Islands last week.  [Photo courtesy of Neil Brookman]
In the Northern Premier League Premier Division Kieran Preston was in goal for Basford United who recorded a 3-1 away win at FC United of Manchester in front of a crowd of 1,402.

Nuneaton Borough suffered a 2-1 away defeat at Peterborough Sports in the Southern League Premier Central Division. Craig Stanley was missing from the Nuneaton squad (work commitments according to his Twitter feed) but Alex Henshall was named on the bench.

In the Southern League Premier South Division, Merthyr Town picked up a point from a goalless draw at Dorchester Town. Eliot Richards was in the Merthyr side, and Gavin Williams on the bench but Ben Swallow was missing from the squad.

Scott McGleish was named on the bench for Hendon’s visit to Hayes & Yeading United and went on in the 78th minute. His side were beaten 3-2 though. Lyle Della Verde was in the Hayes & Yeading side for this one.

Swindon Supermarine, with Martin Horsell in goal, were 3-2 away winners at Metropolitan Police, their winning goal arriving in stoppage time at the end of the game.

Darren Mullings was a 77th minute substitute for Salisbury who recorded a 2-1 home win against Taunton Town.

Rene Howe was in the Walton Casuals side that had to settle for a point from their home game against Gosport Borough. The match ended 1-1.

In Division One South Bristol Manor Farm, with Steve Kingdon in the side and Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist named on the bench, were 2-0 away winners at Bideford.

Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis was in the Merstham side for their home game against Cray Wanderers in the Isthmian League Premier Division and was on the losing side as they were beaten 2-1.

In the FA Vase, Bitton were 6-1 home winners against the delightfully named Tadley Calleva. I managed to find out that there were 135 people at the game, but have no idea if Matt Groves was in the Bitton side.

WEDNESDAY 16TH OCTOBER

Yate Town made it three Southern Premier League South wins in a row as they beat top of the table Tiverton Town away from home. Sam Kamara was in the Yate side and Ollie Mehew was named on the bench.

Yate Town’s Sam Kamara - Photo courtesy of B. East Photography
Yate Town’s Sam Kamara  [Photo courtesy of B. East Photography]
FRIDAY 18TH OCTOBER

Neil Etheridge was back in the Cardiff City side for their home game against Sheffield Wednesday in The Championship. However he and his team mates had to be content with a point as the game ended 1-1.

There were two games in League One and both ended in draws. Lincoln City and Shrewsbury Town drew 0-0 at Sincil Bank where Cian Bolger started for Lincoln and collected an 80th minute red card, while John Akinde was a 69th minute substitute. Ollie Norburn was in the Shrewsbury side and he also collected a card but his was of the yellow variety.

Stefan Payne was in the Tranmere Rovers side for their game against Southend United at Prenton Park, where it finished 1-1.

Although he previewed the game on the club’s website, Jeff Hughes was missing from the Larne side that suffered a 3-2 home defeat at the hands of Glentoran, a side they last beat in the league on New Year’s Day 1987. Larne are currently seventh in the Irish Premiership.

SATURDAY 19TH OCTOBER

There was almost a full programme of Premier league games, but the only Premier League player formerly with The Gas, Oli McBurnie, wasn’t in action as Sheffield United don’t play until Monday.

Straight on to The Championship in that case, and Connor Roberts, following his two games for Wales in the Euro qualifiers, spent the afternoon on the Swansea bench watching his side draw 1-1 against Barnsely at Oakwell.

At Griffin Park Brentford, with Luke Daniels taking up his customary place on the bench, were 3-2 winners against Millwall. Losing 2-0 with six minutes to go The Bees scored three late goals to defeat The Lions who still have Adam Barrett in temporary charge of their team.

Charlton Athletic were 3-0 home winners against Derby County at The Valley and moved into seventh place in the table. Tom Lockyer, on his return from international duty with Wales, was in the Charlton side while Kelle Roos was in goal for Derby.

Two penalties, both scored by Ebere Exe, secured a 3-2 win for Queens Park Rangers at Hull City. Tom Eaves started the game for Hull, while Joe Lumley was an unused QPR substitute.

Marc Bola was also an unused substitute and he watched his Middlesbrough side suffer a
1-0 home defeat at the hands of league leaders West Bromwich Albion.

There was another 1-0 scoreline at the Madejski Stadium where Reading beat Preston North End to give new manager Mark Bowen a winning start, though they left it late as the goal was scored in the eighth minute of stoppage time. Sam Walker stayed on the Reading bench and Billy Bodin was missing from the Preston squad.

Jake Clarke-Salter was an unused substitute for Birmingham City, beaten 1-0 by second placed Leeds United at Elland Road.

AFC Wimbledon won a second successive League One match, beating Portsmouth 1-0 at Kingsmeadow thanks to a 93rd minute goal. Lee Brown was in the Portsmouth side and Ellis Harrison was sent on in the 57th minute.

Fleetwood Town were 4-1 home winners against Burton Albion who had John-Joe O’Toole in their starting lineup.

Jack Bonham was in goal and Alex Jakubiak a 58th minute substitute for Gillingham who suffered a 2-1 home defeat against Peterborough United at The Priestfield Stadium. Aaron Chapman was an unused substitute for Peterborough who recorded their seventh win in 10 games and are in third place.

MK Dons played out a goalless draw with Coventry City at Stadium MK and had goalkeeper Lee Nicholls to thank for a point as he saved a penalty (mind you, he had conceded it, so he had to make amends!). Hiram Boateng was also in the MK Dons side.

Matty Taylor scored the winning goal for Oxford United, who moved up to fifth place following their 2-1 win at Rotherham United, a victory that saw them extend their unbeaten league run to seven.

An Adams Park crowd of 8,395 saw Wycombe Wanderers beat Sunderland 1-0 to stay in second place. Joe Jacobson was in the Wycombe side that made it an unhappy day for new Sunderland boss Phil Parkinson.

Exeter City’s 4-0 defeat at Cambridge United saw them drop down to fourth place in the League Two standings. Elliott Ward and Reggie Lambe both completed 90 minutes for the victors, as did Tom Parkes for The Grecians.

Tom Broadbent was again an unused substitute for Swindon Town who lost 4-1 against Crewe Alexandra at Gresty Road. League leaders Crewe now have a two point lead over second placed Bradford City.

Forest Green Rovers were held to a 2-2 draw by Mansfield Town at The New Lawn. Conrad Logan was in goal for The Stags, but Ryan Sweeney was missing from the squad.

Leyton Orient, with their newly appointed manager Carl Fletcher watching, were 4-0 winners at Grimsby Town. Matt Harrold started this one for Orient.

Newport County, once again without Daniel Leadbitter in their side, were 2-1 home winners against Scunthorpe United who were still missing the suspended Matt Lund.

Northampton Town ended their four game winless run with a 2-0 win against Salford City at Sixfields. Chris Lines and Andy Williams were in the Northampton side, though Joe Martin wasn’t in their squad.

Plymouth Argyle were 2-0 winners against Carlisle United at Home Park. Gary Sawyer was in the Plymouth side and Byron Moore went on in the 68th minute. Still no sign of Dominic Telford, though.

Cristian Montano started for Port Vale who drew 1-1 with bottom of the table Stevenage at Vale Park.

Darrell Clarke saw his Walsall side lose again, this time against Cheltenham Town who were 2-1 winners at The Banks’s Stadium.  Walsall, who started with James Clarke, Stuart Sinclair and Rory Gaffney in their side, are down to 19th. Cheltenham, though, with Ryan Broom and Gavin Reilly starting, are up to fifth and extended their unbeaten run to seven.

Walsall manager Darrell Clarke saw his side slip to 19th in the table - Photo courtesy of Tom Heslop, Walsall FC
Walsall manager Darrell Clarke saw his side slip to 19th in the table  [Photo courtesy of Tom Heslop, Walsall FC]
It was FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round day and several former Gas men were involved in the competition at this stage.

Alefe Santos was one of them as he was in the Aldershot Town side beaten 4-3 at fellow National League side Bromley.

Angelo Balanta was also involved as he was in the Dagenham & Redbridge side involved in the upset of the round as they were beaten 2-1 at Carshalton Athletic, a club 42 places below them in the grand scheme of things.

Hartlepool United were 1-0 home winners against Brackley Town and Luke James was sent on as a late second half substitute. The crowd of 2,506 included 39 Brackley Town supporters.

Maidenhead United and Wealdstone will have to do it all over again as they drew 1-1 at Maidstone where Bernard Mensah was introduced as a 90th minute substitute by the home side.

John Still, Director of Football at National League South side Maidstone United, saw his side ease through to the next round with a 4-1 home win against Kings Langley.

Maidstone United’s Director of Football John Still - Photo courtesy of Ian Tucker & Steve Terrell Maidstone United FC
Maidstone United’s Director of Football John Still  [Photo courtesy of Ian Tucker & Steve Terrell Maidstone United FC]
Formerly the country’s oldest Football League club, Notts County just about got through to the First Round. With Sam Slocombe in goal, they were 2-1 winners against Belper Town at Meadow Lane. The attendance of 5,729 included just over 1,700 travelling supporters.

In another all National League clash at Plainmoor Torquay United were 3-2 winners against Boreham Wood. Ricky Shakes was an unused Boreham substitute, while Danny Woodards wasn’t in their squad.

National League side Eastleigh travelled to face National League South outfit Welling United and will get to know them pretty well over the next few days as a goalless draw means a Tuesday night home replay for the Hampshire side. Bradley Goldberg started for Welling while Theo Widdrington was named on their bench and went on late in the 87th minute. Scott Rendell started for Eastleigh, in place of Joe Partington who wasn’t involved on this occasion.

Abdulai Baggie made his 100th appearance for Weymouth, who were beaten 2-1 at home by Dover Athletic. Josh Wakefield also started for the home side.

Chippenham Town reached the First Round of the competition for only the third time in their history with a 3-0 away win at Whyteleafe. Will Puddy and Chris Zebroski were in the Chippenham side.

York City are also through to the First Round. With Andy Bond in their side they were 2-0 winners against Stockport County at Bootham Crescent.

Hayes & Yeading United will have to do it all over again following their 1-1 home draw against Poole Town. Lyle Della-Verde was named on the Hayes bench and was sent on in the 79th minute. Hayes played with ten men for most of the game, having had a player red carded after only three minutes, and then scored their equalising goal in the 94th minute.

Jeffrey Monakana was named on the Dulwich Hamlet bench for their tie at Havant & Waterloovile and saw his side reach the First Round for the first time since 1998 with a 2-1 win.

The FA Cup meant that there were fewer league games played in National leagues North and South.

Gloucester City, though, were in National League North action and were 1-0 home winners against Bradford PA. Luke Russe was in the Gloucester side for this one.

In National League South Bath City were 1-0 away winners at St Albans City. The two Ryan’s, Clarke and Brunt, were both in the Bath side and the three points sees them up to eighth place, just two points outside the play off places.

In the Northern Premier League Premier Division Kieran Preston was in goal for Basford United who recorded a 3-1 home win against Stafford Rangers to stay in second place, five points behind leaders South Shields.

Andy Monkhouse was in the Ossett United side that picked up a point from their away game at Tadcaster Albion in the Northern Premier League North West Division.

Moving on to the Southern League and, in the Premier Central Division Nuneaton Borough recorded their first away win of the season, as they beat Bromsgrove Sporting 3-1. Craig Stanley and Alex Henshall were in the Nuneaton side and Henshall scored their second goal on 54 minutes.

Alex Henshall, who scored for Nuneaton Borough last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC
Alex Henshall, who scored for Nuneaton Borough last Saturday [Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC]
In the Premier South Division Merthyr Town collected a point from a goalless draw at Beaconsfield Town. Eliot Richards was in the Merthyr starting lineup while Gavin Williams was named on the bench.

Yate Town’s recent winning run came to an end at Dorchester Town, where they lost 2-0. Sam Kamara was in the Yate lineup, while Ollie Mehew was named on the bench.

Darren Mullings was an 80th minute substitute for Salisbury, who were 3-1 home winners against Harrow Borough.

Swindon Supermarine, with Martin Horsell in goal, lost 2-0 at the home of league leaders Tiverton Town. In spite of their defeat, though, Supermarine are in eighth place and just two points outside the play off places.

Scott McGleish was again named on the Hendon bench for their game at second placed Truro City. However, his side were beaten 2-1 and remain in the bottom two.

Rene Howe was in the Walton Casuals side beaten 5-1 at home by Taunton Town, who are up to sixth. Rene scored what proved to be the home side’s consolation goal in the 37th minute.

Rene Howe - scored a consolation goal for Walton casuals last weekend - Photo courtesy of Steve Daddy, Walton Casuals FC
Rene Howe – scored a consolation goal for Walton casuals last weekend  [Photo courtesy of Steve Daddy, Walton Casuals FC]
In Division One Central Tom Hitchcock scored twice for Bedford Town, 6-0 home winners against Wantage Town, a result that sees them up to seventh place.

In Division One South Steve Kingdon was in the Bristol Manor Farm starting lineup while Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist came off the bench to score the only goal of the game in the 74th minute of their home win against Moneyfields.

It wasn’t the best of days for Mangotsfield United who were beaten 5-0 at Cirencester Town. Liam Armstrong was in goal for The Mangos and Trey Anderson was named on the bench.

Larkhall Athletic and Frome Town drew 2-2. Inevitably, Lewis Powell was on the scoresheet for The Larks. Dale Evans also started for them, while Geraint Bater, Jack Camm and Neil Arndale were named on the bench. Frome manager Danny Greaves named himself on their bench.

Paulton Rovers stay in second place in spite of their 1-0 defeat at Slimbridge. Nuno Felix was in the Paulton starting lineup.

Moving into the Isthmian League Premier Division and Merstham were on the wrong end of a 4-0 scoreline in their game at Horsham. Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis was a 68th minute substitute for Merstham while Barry Hayles was an unused substitute.

In the same division Chris Dickson was in the Hornchurch side that lost away at Leatherhead, a result that sees them still in fourth place.

Sam Oji skippered Highgate United who lost 2-0 at Stourport in their Midland League match and their website report was less than complimentary; ‘Who on earth than a loyal supporter of either team would have given up following Saturday’s Brexit debate to watch this tepid excuse for a football match…’

Craig Disley was another former Gas man skippering his side, only he was on the winning side as Barton Town were 4-3 away winners at Bottesford Town.

I’m still not sure if Bitton’s Matt Groves was involved, or scored, in Tuesday night’s game, but he definitely played for Bitton in their Western League win against Bridgwater Town and he scored their winning goal 13 minutes from time to clinch a 3-2 victory.

Cribbs, with Joe White leading their attack, drew 2-2 at home against Bradford Town, who had been top of the league going into this match. In goal for Cribbs was former Rovers trainee/scholar Kieran Hodges.

In the Scottish Premiership Fraser Forster kept a clean sheet for Celtic who were 6-0 home winners against Ross County.

Peter Hartley started for Motherwell, who suffered a 3-0 home defeat at the hands of Aberdeen, but he was substituted after only 16 minutes with a head injury. By that time his side had missed a penalty and went a goal down whilst he was receiving treatment on the sidelines.

In the Second Round of the Scottish Cup Stirling Albion were 2-0 home winners against Strathspey Thistle. Darryl Duffy went on at the start of the second half for Stirling.

Garry Kenneth was in the Lochee United side that drew 1-1 against BSC in their second round tie in the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Over in Ireland Seanan Clucas collected a yellow card for his efforts for Dungannon Swifts in their 1-0 defeat at Carrick in the Irish Premiership.

In the League of Ireland Premier Division Derry City, with Mark McChrystal an unused substitute, were 2-1 away winners at Sligo Rovers.

Welsh Premier League side Barry Town United were knocked off the top of the league as they failed to collect three points from their game at Bala Town. However, they maintained their unbeaten record with a 1-1 draw and are only a point behind league leaders Connah’s Quay Nomads with a game in hand.

In Sweden Charlie Colkett was in the Ostersunds side that recorded a 2-0 home win against Sirius. They are currently 11th in the Swedish first tier.

With Charlie Clough in their lineup Brunei DPMM recorded a1-0 away win against Hougang in the Singapore Cup and they currently sit top of their group of four with four points from their two games in the competition.

 


Chapter 11 – Week commencing 6th October 2019

SUNDAY 6TH OCTOBER

In the Scottish Premiership Celtic lost their first game of the season, going down 2-0 at Livingston. A 26th minute red card for Ryan Christie didn’t help their cause and defeat saw them drop to second place in the league. Fraser Forster was in goal for Celtic and Scott Sinclair an unused substitute.

In the Danish Superliga FC Midtjylland were 2-1 winners at Silkeborg and, once again, Mikkel Andersen was an unused substitute.

Charlie Colkett was again in the Ostersunds side for their 1-1 draw at BK Hacken in the Swedish first tier.

MONDAY 7TH OCTOBER

Gloucester City lost their FA Cup replay against Whitby Town, going down 3-1 at their temporary Evesham home. Luke Russe was in the Gloucester side who played all of the second half and the latter stages of the first half with ten men following the dismissal of Josh Thomas. The attendance was 273.

Former Rovers loan striker Tom Hitchcock signed for Southern League Division One Central side Bedford Town, currently in ninth place in the league standings just two points away from the final play off place. Tom was registered in time to play in Tuesday night’s Southern League Cup tie against Biggleswade Town.

TUESDAY 8TH OCTOBER

It was EFL Trophy night for many League One and Two clubs and some former Rovers players were involved in this competition which, in the early rounds, fails to catch the imagination of football supporters… everywhere!

Matty Taylor was in the Oxford United side that drew 2-2 against Portsmouth at the Kassam Stadium and scored their first goal. Portsmouth sent Ellis Harrison on from the bench in the 61st minute, and he scored their second penalty in the resulting shootout that saw Pompey claim the extra bonus point as they were 5-4 winners on spot kicks.

Matt Harrold was an unused Leyton Orient substitute as they lost 3-0 at AFC Wimbledon. Attendance for this tie was 642.

Cheltenham Town recorded a 4-3 home win against West Ham United’s U-21 side. Gavin Reilly was an unused Cheltenham substitute for this one.

Tom Parkes and Jordan Tillson were in the Exeter City side that won 2-0 at Newport County in front of an even lower crowd than watched AFC Wimbledon. There were just 635 fans inside Rodney Parade and 47 of those travelled to South Wales from Exeter.

Tom Broadbent was a 40th minute substitute for Swindon Town, beaten 3-0 by Plymouth Argyle at The County Ground. Gary Sawyer skippered the Argyle side and they now top the group which also includes Rovers and Chelsea U-21’s. Swindon, whose final group game is against The Gas at The Mem, can’t now qualify for the next stage of the competition.

Joe Jacobson started for Wycombe Wanderers, beaten 1-0 by Stevenage at Adams Park and there was another 1-0 scoreline at The Abbey Stadium where Cambridge United were beaten by Northampton Town. Elliott Ward was an unused Cambridge substitute while Andy Williams started for Northampton.

Stefan Payne was an unused Tranmere Rovers substitute and saw his side beat Aston Villa’s U-21 side 2-1 at Prenton Park.

Ollie Norburn was named on the Shrewsbury Town bench and saw his side win 3-0 against Newcastle United’s U-21’s.

Ryan Sweeney was in the Mansfield Town side that drew 1-1 against Crewe Alexandra, but it was Crewe who claimed the additional point on offer as they won the penalty shootout 4-3.

Ryan Sweeney who was in the Mansfield side that scored six last weekend - Photo courtesy of Mark Stevenson, Mansfield Town FC
Ryan Sweeney who was in the Mansfield side that scored six last weekend  [Photo courtesy of Mark Stevenson, Mansfield Town FC]
Jack Bonham and Alex Jakubiak were both named on the Gillingham bench for their game against Ipswich Town at Portman Road.  The home side were 4-0 winners and while Bonham remained on the bench Jakubiak was sent on by The Gills in the 68th minute.

There was a full fixture programme in the National League and we begin with Aldershot Town who moved clear of the bottom four with a 4-0 home win against Dover Athletic. Alefe Santos scored the fourth Aldershot goal on 58 minutes.

Boreham Wood, with Danny Woodards starting and Ricky Shakes entering the fray on 90 minutes, were beaten 3-1 at Barrow who registered their seventh consecutive league win and moved into fourth place.

Danny Woodards, now playing for Boreham Wood. Photo courtesy of Charlie Hunter, Boreham Wood FC
Danny Woodards, now playing for Boreham Wood.  [Photo courtesy of Charlie Hunter, Boreham Wood FC]
Joe Partington started for Eastleigh and Scott Rendell was sent on in the 85th minute as they were 2-1 home winners against Maidenhead United. Bernard Mensah came off the Maidenhead bench in the 76th minute.

Sam Slocombe kept a clean sheet for Notts County, 2-0 winners against Dagenham & Redbridge at Meadow Lane where a crowd of 3,670 saw County move up to eighth place. Angelo Balanta was in the Dagenham side.

Smith’s former goalkeeping rival at Rovers, Adam Smith, was between the posts for Yeovil Town who were 3-1 winners against Woking at Huish Park. The three points leave The Glovers in third place, just a point behind leaders FC Halifax Town.

In the FA Cup third round replay, Chippenham Town made it through to round four with a 3-2 win at Slough Town and they will face Whyteleafe to determine who goes through to the first round proper. Will Puddy, George Rigg and Chris Zebroski all started this one for Chippenham.

Chris Zebroski now playing for Chippenham Town - Photo courtesy of Richard Chappell, Chippenham Town FC
Chris Zebroski now playing for Chippenham Town  [Photo courtesy of Richard Chappell, Chippenham Town FC]
No FA Cup joy for Bristol Manor Farm, though as they lost their replay 4-0 at Wealdstone. Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist and Steve Kingdon were both in the Manor Farm side.

Martin Horsell kept a clean sheet for Swindon Supermarine, 3-0 home winners against Blackfield & Langley in the Southern Premier League South Division.

In the same league Yate Town won their first home game of the season, scoring the winning goal in the 93rd minute to beat Hartley Wintney 2-1. Sam Kamara and Ollie Mehew were both in the Yate starting lineup.

Tom Hitchcock made a goalscoring debut for Bedford Town, but it was only a consolation as his new club were beaten 3-1 by Biggleswade Town in the Southern League Cup.

In the GFA Senior Challenge Cup first round tie at Cossham Street Trey Anderson and Toby Rennie, both former Gas trainees/scholars, were in the Mangotsfield United side that lost 5-2 against Bishops Cleeve.

Paulton Rovers went through to the next round of the Somerset Premier Cup with a 5-3 win at Odd Down. Nuno Felix was in the Paulton side.

In the same competition Bath City were 5-1 winners at Shepton Mallett. The two Ryan’s, Clarke and Brunt, were unused Bath substitutes.

Sam Oji was in the Highgate United side for their home game against Heather St John’s, which ended in a 2-0 defeat.

In the Northern Ireland League Cup Seanan Clucas was in the Dungannon Swifts side that exited the competition following their 4-1 home defeat by Linfield.

WEDNESDAY 9TH OCTOBER

In the evening’s only game in the National League Hartlepool United, with Luke James in their starting XI, were beaten 2-1 at Edgeley Park by Stockport County.

Larkhall Athletic went through to the second round of the Somerset FA Premier Cup, beating Street 5-4 in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw. Jack Camm started for The Larks while Lewis Powell, Dale Evans, Geraint Bater and Neil Arndale were all named on the bench.

Former Rovers striker Adam Cunnington signed for Hemel Hempstead Town, of the National League South, from Dartford who play in the same league.

THURSDAY 10TH OCTOBER

Former Rovers defender Stuart Taylor, the club’s record appearance holder, died after along illness.  He was 72.  Our tribute to the great man can be found here.

Wales were in action in Slovakia in a qualifying match for next year’s European Championships and there were two former Rovers players in the Welsh back four, namely Tom Lockyer and Connor Roberts. Lockyer made his first competitive start in a Welsh shirt and his side drew 1-1 to keep alive their hopes of qualification.

The Darlington website carried the news that Jonny Burn had left the club by mutual consent.

SATURDAY 12TH OCTOBER

Rovers goalkeeper Anssi Jaakkola was on the bench for Finland who were beaten 4-1 by Bosnia-Herzegovina in their European Championship Qualifying match in Group J.

His stand in for Rovers, Jordi van Stappershoef, had a relatively easy afternoon as Rovers comfortably saw off MK Dons at the Memorial Stadium. There were two former Rovers players in the MK lineup, in goalkeeper Lee Nicholls and midfielder Hiram Boateng. It was Rovers fourth consecutive league win.

Peterborough United were 2-0 home winners against Lincoln City and Aaron Chapman was an unused Posh substitute. Cian Bolger was in the Lincoln side while John Akinde was sent on in the 89th minute. Both Peterborough goals arrived in the final eight minutes of the game.

Portsmouth and Gillingham played out a goalless draw at Fratton Park where four former Rovers players started. Lee Brown and Ellis Harrison completed ninety minutes in a Portsmouth shirt, while Alex Jakubiak and Jack Bonham started for The Gills. Jakubiak was substituted in the 76th minute while Bonham was the star of the show; ‘Bonham pulled off three good saves and was the hero as Gillingham held Portsmouth and denied their hosts a third league win in a row.’

In a League Two top of the table clash at St James’ Park Exeter City were 1-0 winners against Forest Green Rovers and remain in second place with the same number of points as leaders Crewe Alexandra.

Two former Rovers players were on the scoresheet at Brisbane Road. Stuart Sinclair opened the scoring for Walsall on 21 minutes, but his side were beaten 3-1 with Matt Harrold scoring Leyton Orient’s second goal after 60 minutes. James Clarke, winner of the EFL September Player of the Month for League Two, was in the Walsall side as was Rory Gaffney.

Mansfield Town scored six goals in a league game for the first time since 2002 as they thrashed Oldham Athletic 6-1. Oldham had two players sent off in a minute in the first half but still managed to score their consolation goal with only nine men on the pitch. Conrad Logan and Ryan Sweeney were both in the Mansfield side.

Elliott Ward was the only former Gas man in the Cambridge United side that lost 1-0 at Salford City, a result that leaves both sides on 16 points.

Scunthorpe United, still missing the suspended Matt Lund, were 3-0 home winners against Northampton Town to make it a miserable afternoon for Cobblers boss Keith Curle and his three ex Gas players. Joe Martin had to be substituted in the 24th minute, Andy Williams was sent on at the start of the second half, while Chris Lines remained on the bench all afternoon. Northampton were reduced to ten men in the 53rd minute following Vadaine Oliver’s red card for a foul on Scunthorpe keeper Rory Watson.

Keith Curle, Northampton Town Manager - Photo courtesy of Pete Norton, official Northampton Town photographer
Keith Curle, Northampton Town Manager   [Photo courtesy of Pete Norton, official Northampton Town photographer]
Swindon Town and Plymouth Argyle drew 1-1 at the County Ground, where Tom Broadbent was an unused Swindon substitute and Gary Sawyer was in the Argyle side.

Aldershot Town suffered a 3-0 home defeat at the hands of Hartlepool United in the National League. Alefe Santos completed another 90 minutes for Aldershot, while Luke James was a 65th minute substitute for Hartlepool who had sacked manager Craig Hignett earlier in the week.

It was the usual story for Eastleigh, with Joe Partington starting and Scott Rendell coming off the bench in the 85th minute (think I’ve written that sentence quite a few times already this season!). The result? A goalless home draw against Chorley.

It would be nice to report a goal for Bernard Mensah but, alas, it’s not possible. He was named on the Maidenhead United bench for their 2-1 win at bottom club Ebbsfleet United and did get a brief taste of the action, being sent on in the 92nd minute.

There was another clean sheet for Sam Slocombe, his fifth on the bounce, who was in the Notts County side that beat Torquay United 2-0 at Meadow Lane in front of a crowd of 5,265.

Slocombe’s erstwhile Rovers team mate and rival, Adam Smith, was in goal for Yeovil Town and finished on the losing side for the first time since joining The Glovers. They lost 2-1 against Harrogate at Huish Park.

Boreham Wood, with Danny Woodards and Ricky Shakes in their squad, were 2-0 away winners at top of the table Halifax Town. Woodards had to come off after 31 minutes, while Shakes was sent on in the 65th minute.

In National League North Andy Bond was in the York City side that drew 1-1 at AFC Telford United and are now three points clear at the top of the table.

Luke Russe, though, was on the losing side as he and his Gloucester City side lost 1-0 at Gateshead. James Spruce was an unused Gloucester substitute.

In their first home game for more than a month, Bath City were held to a 1-1 draw by Maidstone United. Ryan Clarke was in goal for The Romans and it was Ryan Brunt who scored their equaliser, from the penalty spot, in the last minute of time added on.

Welling United, with Bradley Goldberg and Theo Widdrington in their lineup, suffered a home defeat at the hands of Hampton & Richmond Borough. Jefferson Louis started for Hampton and Louis Soares came off the bench in the 71st minute.

Weymouth, with Josh Wakefield and Abdulai Baggie in their side, picked up a point from their 2-2 draw at Dulwich Hamlet and sees them in fifth place in the league standings. Jeffrey Monakana was missing from the Dulwich side.

Hemel Hempstead Town now have two former Rovers strikers in their ranks. Adam Cunnington made his debut for them in their 2-1 away win at Havant & Waterlooville and he was replaced by Alex Wall in the 61st minute.

Chippenham Town also won away from home, beating Concord Rangers 1-0, the winning goal arriving from the penalty spot in the 80th minute. Will Puddy, George Rigg and Chris Zebroski were all in the Chippenham side for this one.

Scott Davies was in the Slough Town side that registered a 3-1 home win against Billericay Town, a result that sees them up to third place.

In the Northern Premier League Premier Division Kieran Preston was in goal for Basford United who drew 1-1 at Morpeth Town to stay in second place.

Moving on to the Southern League, and in the Premier Central Division Nuneaton Borough were 3-0 home winners against Redditch United, thus registering their seventh consecutive win on home soil. Craig Stanley was in the Nuneaton starting lineup for this game, while Alex Henshall was named on the bench and entered the action in the 50th minute.

Craig Stanley - Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC
Craig Stanley  [Photo courtesy of Simon Kimber, Nuneaton Borough FC]
In the Premier South Division Scott McGleish was an unused Hendon substitute and saw his side lose 3-0 in their home game against Salisbury. Darren Mullings was missing from the Salisbury side.

Merthyr Town were 2-0 home winners against Blackfield & Langley. Both goals arriving in the first seven minutes and the second scored by Eliot Richards. Ben Swallow was also in the Merthyr lineup.

Eliot Richards scored after just seven minutes for Merthyr Town last weekend. Photo courtesy of Mackenzie, Merthyr Town FC
Eliot Richards scored after just seven minutes for Merthyr Town last weekend.  [Photo courtesy of Mackenzie, Merthyr Town FC]
Swindon Supermatine recorded their third home win in a row as they overcame Farnborough 3-2. Martin Horsell was again between the posts for the Wiltshire side who are up to seventh in the table.

Taunton Town, with no ex Gas representatives in their squad, were 2-1 home winners against Hayes & Yeading United. Lyle Della Verde was named on the bench for the visitors and was sent on in the 60th minute.

Sam Kamara and Ollie Mehew were in the Yate Town side that beat Metropolitan Police 1-0 at Lodge Road. The winning goal arrived in the 93rd minute and the three points sees Yate move out of the bottom three.

Walton Casuals, with Rene Howe in their side, were beaten 1-0 at Hartley Wintney and stay in 13th place in the league standings.

Jamie Cureton won his first game in sole charge of Bishop’s Stortford. His side were 2-0 home winners against Horsham and Jamie didn’t select himself for this one. Is he going to concentrate on managing rather than playing? Watch this space!

In the same league Charlie Ten-Grotenhuis and Barry Hayles were both named on the bench for Merstham who suffered a 4-1 home defeat at the hands of Leatherhead.

It was FA Trophy first round day and Ossett United, with Andy Monkhouse in their starting lineup, went out of the competition after a 3-2 defeat at Dunston UTS.

Bedford Town, with Tom Hitchcock in their side, also suffered a 3-2 away defeat. They were beaten by Northern Premier League side Carlton Town who currently lead the South East Division.

Larkhall Athletic recorded their first ever win in the competition, as they won 2-0 at Didcot Town. Geraint Bater, Dale Evans and Wayne Powell were in the Larks’ starting lineup, while Jack Camm and Neil Arndale were on the bench.

Bristol Manor Farm went out of the competition, losing 2-1 at Sholing. Lewis Leigh-Gilchrist and Steve Kingdon were in the Manor Farm side.

Dave Martin skippered the Whitehawk side in their home tie against Romford and scored their opening goal, from the penalty spot, in their 2-1 win.

Darren Jefferies was in the HIghworth Town side held to a 1-1 home draw by Cinderford Town and the teams meet again in the replay on Tuesday.

Craig Disley skippered Barton Town in their Northern Counties League match away at league leaders Staveley Miners Welfare and ended up on the losing side as the home side netted a late winner to seal all three points.

In Scotland Lochee United went through to the next round of the Quest Engineering Cup after a convincing 4-0 away win at Dundee Violet. Garry Kenneth was a 64th minute substitute for Lochee.

In the Northern Irish Premiership Larne, with Jeff Hughes in their side, were beaten 1-0 at Cliftonville FC with the only goal of the game arriving in the 87th minute.

For the second time in four days Seanan Clucas and his Dungannon Swifts team mates faced Linfield at home, this time in a league match. Once again, they conceded four goals though they did better than on Tuesday and scored one themselves to go down 4-1.