Next Game: Darlington Away on Saturday 17th November at 3pm

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Club Silent Over Monday's Plan

Despite several fans requesting news about plans for tomorrow's High Court date, Hereford United have so far remained silent about plans to tackle the winding-up petition.

Proceedings yesterday gave the impression that it was very much business as usual despite the axe hovering over the club. Today, the official website updated the fixture list that had been broken for several days.

Two weeks ago, Director John Edwards was "100% certain" that the club had a product to sell, on the back of renewed investment, and that season tickets and advertising would now be sold. However few of the advertisers from last season have been contacted since, and season ticket sales are understood to be a tiny fraction of those last season.

Wednesday's words from Joel Nathan that the 'Judge would look at several options' were a far cry from Andy Lonsdale's 'won't have any problems satisfying the petition' comments of the week before, giving the impression that the impending investment had either not arrived - or was not of the quantity that was previously expected.

No movement has been made either on the capacity issues at Edgar Street. In the last statement by the club on the matter, they were confident that the issues would be resolved after last Monday's match with Redditch and that further statements would be issued - but nothing has been mentioned at all.

The last news article on the official site was on August 22nd, nine days ago, which - in answering various questions - promised better communication.

Both BBC Hereford & Worcester and the Hereford Times are expected to have reporters at tomorrow's Court hearing.

Norman On BBC Non-League Show

MP Jesse Norman was interviewed on the BBC's Non-League Show about the problems at Edgar Street and his debate on football governance.

BBC Hereford & Worcester's Trevor Owens was also interviewed, and asked by host Caroline Barker if yesterday's loss to Burnham was the club's last match:

"I wish I knew to be honest, it's all still shrouded in a great deal of mystery. It's smoke and mirrors really. Ten days ago, the Hereford United chairman Andy Lonsdale told H&W the situation was looking much brighter. But since then we haven't heard any concrete news."

They played Keith Hall's comments, published on BN earlier today, then Barker and Owens discussed the potential of a phoenix club and the leases of Edgar Street. 

Barker then moved on to MP Norman, whose Parliamentary debate on the future of non-league football is this coming week. Barker asked what the future for football in Hereford was:

"Herefordians deserve their football and if they can't get it at Edgar Street because Hereford United are letting them down as badly as they are then they are going to go to other places and see football where they can. 

"What we really want is a club that can go back to Edgar Street, play there, attract more supporters and start to make progress up the leagues."

Barker asked about the content of his debate: "You don't get a lot of time in these debates. I'll only get 10-15 minutes or so and I want to pay tribute to all the good things that are happening in non-league football in Herefordshire. There are 120 clubs for young people, 40 Saturday and Sunday teams playing, it's a very vibrant scene here.

"But, as regards Hereford United, it's perfectly clear that if we can get past the current situation we're going to need to have a club that is based, grounded, and supported by the local community.

"It might be a community structure, it might be a co-op structure, but you need that balance between supporter engagement and bringing some money to the table so you can start to build it. 

"There's a balance to be struck between those two elements, but it's got to be locally led and driven, I think. "

Asked whether MPs should be more involved, Norman added: "The key point is the authorities that run the regulatory bodies, in our case the FA, Football League, Southern League, those folks. They need to understand more that football teams are public institutions as much as they are private institutions and you've got to have regulation that reflects that. 

If you just have regulation that thinks that these things are just in the private playthings of a few rich individuals then you are not giving proper justice to the fans who turn out every week, buy the season tickets, club merchandise, and keep the club moving forward. It's that balance I really want to focus on."

"We want to know how we can make the leagues better run, better regulated, more attune to fans' interests, less forgiving of some of the behaviour of some of these owners.

"The truth of the matter is that it took the footballing authorities a heck of a long time to wake up to the situation at Hereford United, and their behaviour has not been ideal by any means. I'll be talking about that on Thursday during the debate."

Barker then asked if the Owners and Directors Test was inadequate at non-league level: "The trouble with the test is that it relies purely on compliance by the Directors and Owners themselves.

"What I would like is a much more closer interrogation, energetic scrutiny, so you can detect these people that, in some cases, have some serious criminal records and majority shareholdings in football clubs. That's a very bad thing."

Salisbury Stadium Owners Begin Eviction Procedure

Salisbury City have been told by the owners of their Raymond McEnhill ground that they have breached the leases and covenants on the ground, the first step to evicting the club.

With Moroccan businessman Medi Outail Touzar still owning the club, the consortium trying to regain control say that the McEnhill Trust have begun proceedings to move the club out of the ground.

The Whites are expected to be wound up in Court tomorrow due to HMRC debts. Mark Winter, the man who originally partnered with Touzar and is now part of the new consortium, told the press: 

“What we struggle to believe is, how easy it is for somebody with a variety of names, who is of no fixed abode, has no finances, and apparently no morals, to work our British legal system and the authorities to the extent he has."

Smokescreens And Mirrors

Media reporter Keith Hall has been following Hereford United for more years than most. Yesterday he gave his view on the current situation to BBC Hereford and Worcester.

"It's a question of smokescreens and mirrors," said Hall

"We've been in this senario so many times now and we just don't know what's going to happen.

"I question the lack of communication, transparancy.

"We don't know who the actual owners are anymore.

"There's no liason with the club.

"It's all about honesty and integrity and it's just not happening.

"I think the supporters would like more information but it's clouded in secrecy.

"We're all here waiting and saying if you are going to pay it off, how are you going to pay it off, who are the investors, where is this money coming from, how are you going to manage the budget, the budget and the CVA were completely out of kilter with the actual turn of events.

"The amount of money that is supposedly going to come in from the 'suite' it just didn't add up.

"Alledgedly all of the creditors will be paid off, HMRC is going to be paid off.

"If that was the case there would have been a band-wagon, there would have been such a ferver around the ground this afternoon with the new owners on the pitch saying we are going to take this club forward.

"It's the secrecy level, we don't believe anything that is said any more."

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Trip To Ellistown & Ibstock In FA Cup

Hereford United are set to face Ellistown & Ibstock United in the First Qualifying Round of the FA Cup.

The merged side beat Kirby Muxloe 1-0 in today's Preliminary Round match in front of 88 at the Terrace Road Ground.

Two other Herefordshire sides crashed out of the competition today. Westfields lost 2-0 at home to Rugby Town, and Wellington lost 3-2 to Stourport Swifts.

£3,000 is on offer to the winners of First Qualifying Round ties, which are due to take place on September 13th.

Seven Goals But Not a Thriller

Spectators who watched this afternoon's game at Edgar Street saw seven goals but the game couldn't be classed as a thriller.

Hereford United made seven changes to their starting eleven after last Monday's defeat at the hands of Redditch.

The Bulls played towards the Blackfriars End in the first half and started quite brightly.

However Burham struck first with a goal from Tom O'Reilly on 21 minutes and just six minutes later Paulton put them two ahead.

Haslet Safely Gathers A Header From Griffiths
More problems for the Bulls when referee Smart pointed to the spot after Williamson was brought down. Paulton easily converted.

However just before half time Hereford got one back, an own goal from Williamson.

On 62 minutes it's 4-1 to Burnham as Lockhart Adams scores with a header.

Six minutes later Paulton scored his third after the ball had hit the cross-bar and came back towards him.

With six minutes of full-time remaining Onyeike pulled one back for the Bulls.

Final score Hereford United 2 Burham 5

Hereford United: Williams (Gk), Onyeike, Mahony (O’Neill 63), Bobes-Gilroy, Morrison (Capt), Gregory, Roberts, Yafai (Traore 82), Griffiths, Bakar-Kone (Eubanks 63), Vetier. 

Subs not used: O’Neill, Viner.

Attendance: 486 with just a handfull from Burnham

Hereford United have dropped to 21st position with five points from seven games.

After the game BN spoke to the Burham keeper Brendan Haslet and suggested it had been an easy victory

Haslet Collects
"I think it was probably harsh to say it was easy," said Haslet.

"The scoreline was a bit flattering towards us but very happy with the result.

"It's great to see a club like Hereford taking on youth and giving them a chance to develope and push on."

Second Half Pictures From Edgar Street

A selection of pictures from the second half of this afternoon's Southern League match at Edgar Street between Hereford United and Burnham.

First Half Pictures From Edgar Street

A selection of pictures from the first half of this afternoon's Southern League game at Edgar Street where visitors Burnham ran out 5-2 winners.

Burnham Hit Five At Edgar Street

Burnham beat Hereford United 5-2 at Edgar Street in today's Southern League Premier game.

On the day of the 90th anniversary of the club's first competitive match the home side were 3-1 down at half time, scoring only through an own goal, and were 5-1 down before a late goal drew some respectability to the scoreline.

The teamsheet included another new face, with Leroy Griffiths listed as starting up front. The veteran forward has been playing for Grays and is understood to have signed on dual registration terms.

486 watched the game, which included Tommy Agombar who made his way out onto the pitch at half time:

Also viewing the game was Joel Nathan:

While the programme had a mistake over the date of the next game rectified by hand:
Pics by Squinny

This Afternoon's Game At Edgar Street Expected To Go Ahead

This afternoon's game at Edgar Street is expected to go ahead despite earlier rumours that it had been called off.

Calls to Hereford United from BN to ascertain what was happening were unanswered.

However the chairman of Burnham, this afternoon's opponents, said that their coach had left at 10.30am on route for Edgar Street and they had not heard anything to suggest the game was to be called off.

Update 1.15pm: Hereford United advisor Joel Nathan has contacted BN and said the game is 100% on.

Viv Gregory - The First Prolific Bull

Although not with the club at the start of competitive life, Viv Gregory arrived at Edgar Street in November 1924 and scored at a prolific rate, netting 16 times in 16 games in the Bulls' first season:

Gregory, Viv
Born Aston Manor 1900
Viv was just a nickname and his real Christian name was Clarence. He won an England Schoolboys’ cap and his first club was Wellington Town from where he joined Sunderland in 1920. He made just one solitary League game for the Rokermen before joining QPR in 1922, where he made 24 League appearances and scored his only Football League goal. He moved to Yeovil & Petters United and Wellington Town for the 1923/24 season before joining United in late November 1924. 
Viv was a prolific goalscorer and a great favourite with the Edgar Street crowd. He spent three seasons with Hereford and made a total of 95 appearances and scored an unbelievable 122 goals. Viv was highly thought of represented the Birmingham Combination against the London Combination at the end of the 1926/27 season and it came as a great shock when it was announced that Viv had signed for Leamington Town in the summer of 1927. Goalscorers of his undoubted calibre were few and far between and he was sorely missed. Viv made just one more move after Leamington, playing with Rugby Town until his retirement.

Appearing in the first Bulls match was Jack Wooton. Although he netted only eight times in the first season, he added 22 the following year:

Wooton, Jack
Born Walsall 1895, died 1960 St. Asaph.
Jack was a left-winger who played as a guest for Walsall during the First World War before joining Port Vale as a guest amateur in October 1916. After four goals in 17 games in the War League, he was unavailable from March 1917 until resuming his career with Leek Alexandra before rejoining Port Vale in 1919. He stayed at Vale Park for three seasons and made 49 League appearances, scoring three goals. He moved on to Nelson in January 1922 and made a further 14 League appearances before dropping out of the League and joining Nuneaton Town, from where he joined Hereford for their first ever season. 
Jack spent two seasons at Edgar Street and made a total of 66 appearances, scoring 30 goals. After leaving Hereford, Jack turned out for Rugby Town, Oakengates Town and finally ending his career with Walsall Early Closers in August 1932.

A Few Thoughts On Monday

The 'Southman' has a few thoughts on what could happen on Monday when, once again, Hereford United are back in the High Court.

On Monday Hereford United will face a winding up petition in the High Court.

One thing is certain the club do not have in place sufficient funds to see off the petition otherwise they would have done so. Hence the working behind the scenes spoken of by  (advisor Joel) Nathan. It is of course funds in place rather than funds full stop that will be important.

1986 Insolvency Act gives a number of reasons as to why a company may be involuntary wound up by the High Court. Those reasons pertaining to the football club are:
(f) the company is unable to pay its debts,
(g) the court is of the opinion that it is just and equitable that the company should be wound up
Under the provisions of said act a company is deemed unable to pay its debts, and therefore insolvent:
(a) if a creditor (by assignment or otherwise) to whom the company is indebted in a sum exceeding £750 then due has served on the company, by leaving it at the company’s registered office, a written demand (in the prescribed form) requiring the company to pay the sum so due and the company has for 3 weeks thereafter neglected to pay the sum or to secure or compound for it to the reasonable satisfaction of the creditor,
(e)if it is proved to the satisfaction of the court that the company is unable to pay its debts as they fall due.
(2)A company is also deemed unable to pay its debts if it is proved to the satisfaction of the court that the value of the company’s assets is less than the amount of its liabilities, taking into account its contingent and prospective liabilities.

Under provisions of the same act
Section 125 Powers of court on hearing of petition.
(1)On hearing a winding-up petition the court may dismiss it, or adjourn the hearing conditionally or unconditionally, or make an interim order, or any other order that it thinks fit; but the court shall not refuse to make a winding-up order on the ground only that the company’s assets have been mortgaged to an amount equal to or in excess of those assets, or that the company has no assets
(2)If the petition is presented by members of the company as contributories on the ground that it is just and equitable that the company should be wound up, the court, if it is of opinion—
(a) That the petitioners are entitled to relief either by winding up the company or by some other means, and
(b) That in the absence of any other remedy it would be just and equitable that the company should be wound up,

The options facing the football club are:
• Pay the debt and costs in full
• Reach an agreement with the creditor to settle the debt or repay over a period of time
• If there is a genuine dispute, contest the petition. A witness statement in opposition must be filed in Court no less than five business days before the date fixed for the hearing
• Placing the company into an alternative insolvency procedure, such as a Company Voluntary Arrangement or Administration, which may allow the directors to retain control of the business and maximise realisations
• Placing the company into a Voluntary liquidation
• Allow the company to be wound up and to cease trading.
The question facing the judge is therefore simple enough. Is Hereford United insolvent yes or no? Except of course it is not that simple. It has nothing to do with jobs on the line or any kind of sympathy for a community asset. Those ideas will play no part in any order given or not given by the judge. The judgement is a legal judgement and will be based on argument about the points. It does not matter if the debt has been restructured. The only thing that matters is the ability to pay the petitioners their dues.
Given that a winding up order has been issued there is a presumption of insolvency by the petitioners. Certainly HMRC only go down the involuntary insolvency route with this presumption. It means that the onus is on the club to refute this presumption.

The difficult petitioner for the club is HMRC. They will not budge by as much as a single penny and although they are open to delayed payment and such, they do, usually look for at least a 50% down payment because of presumption. However the amount to be paid over time will be the full amount. One option for the club would be to pay off HMRC, remove them from the equation and then try to manoeuvre with the other petitioners.

After liquidation the OR will attempt to salvage as much in the £ as possible for the petitioners. For HMRC insolvency is more about a principle as the monies will not be unduly missed. For other creditors the loss of monies through insolvency could be significant.

The order of priority for the OR will be
1) Secured debt
2) Fees for the OR – paid in full before
3) Any other creditors

Therefore creditors do stand to lose a lot of money if the club is dissolved. So an option for the club here is to play to that fact and seek an agreement to pay off the arrears. It does not have to be a formal arrangement like a CVA. Any arrangement would remove some (significantly so) of the risk of being wound up.

It is worth noting that the CVA did not fail. It was not accepted (therefore it is NOT a failed CVA. A failed CVA is one where the obligations of the debtor to the creditors were not met) and therefore would play a very minimum role in any judgement of insolvency.

One thing that might cause a problem is if somebody like the council ‘piggy back’ onto the petition. Adding a significant debt like that would test the argument of the club.

Case Number 19 On Monday

Hereford United (1939) Limited are back in the High Court on Monday.

They are listed as case number 19 on the Companies Court Winding Up List.

The hearing will take place on the first floor of the Rolls Building at sometime after 10.30am. Salisbury City are also on the list, as case 126, to be heard 'not before 11am'.

The last time Hereford United were in the High Court the case was adjourned to allow the club to produce a CVA. However creditors turned down the CVA at a meeting on August 14th.

A vote of 75% by value was required to pass the CVA but only 59.3% voted for it and that included £466,369 from Alpha Choice Finance Ltd who had taken on Tommy Agombar's 'claim' which accounted for about 34% of the Yes vote.

It's difficult to predict how Monday's hearing will go.

On the one hand it's claimed that the club is so short of money that some current players and staff are not being paid on time. If correct that would suggest they've run out of day to day money.

On the other hand the 'prize' of the leases could mean that the directors and/or ultimate owners might find enough cash from somewhere to pay off both Martin Foyle and Revenue and Customs.

However what is not certain is whether any other creditors might have attached themselves to the original winding up petition.

If so, even if Foyle and HMRC are paid up, then the directors might need to find another sum of money to pay out further creditors.

In these circumstances it's not out of the question that the Judge might allow a further adjournment.

There again he might have lost patience with the club and liquidation will be on it's way.

90 Years Of HUFC

Club historian Ron Parrott has provided BN with a scan of the earliest programme he has in his vast collection.

The programme comes from Hereford United's second home match, against Bromsgrove Rovers, on Saturday, September 13th. The game was drawn 3-3, earning the club their first league point.

Facing his old side that day for HUFC was defender Dick Smith:

Smith, Dick
Previously with Bromsgrove Rovers, Dick was a strong-tackling, no-nonsense full-back and could be relied upon to give 100% every time. He was the only ever-present in United’s first ever season and became the recognised penalty taker. In three seasons at Edgar Street, Dick notched up 109 appearances and scored four goals.

Friday, August 29, 2014

90 Years Since First Competitive Match

Saturday is the 90th anniversary of the first competitive Hereford United match.

The club took on Atherstone Town in the Birmingham Combination on August 30th, 1924, at Edgar Street - losing 3-2. The club's first goalscorer was Billy Hann - 

Hann, Billy
Born Abertillery, died 1998
Billy was one of the most popular players ever to don a Hereford United shirt and was a member of the very first team that turned out in the Birmingham Combination in 1924. His tremendous pace, nifty footwork and pinpoint crossing endeared him to supporters and made him a target for much bigger clubs. Wolverhampton Wanderers courted him throughout that first season but in March 1925 he rejected their advances and to the immense pleasure of fans, he committed himself to Hereford. Wolves wouldn’t take no for an answer and pursued him throughout the following season until he finally relented and headed off to Molineux in February 1926. 
Billy spent the whole of the next season with the Wolves and played in 14 Second Division games, scoring two goals but he was released at the end of the season. He had many other offers but to the delight of United fans he decided to return to the Edgar Street fold but not many supporters could have dreamt just how long his relationship with the club would last.. He played regularly from 1927/28 right through until 1934/35 when he joined Cheltenham Town but even then he returned for one final season in 1938/39, making a further 17 first-team appearances. His remarkable career record amounted to 354 first-team games with a more than healthy yield of 89 goals.

The Birmingham Combination was roughly at the same level of the pyramid as the Southern League Premier is today, although the league structure was not so well defined back then. The club finished 11th in the 18 team league, netting 71 goals in their 34 games.

The Atherstone side that played that day went bust in 1979, being replaced by Atherstone United before that in turn was replaced by the new Atherstone Town that currently plies it's trade in the Midland Combination.

Also in that first team was Captain Cec Morris, who played for United forebear Hereford City and played part time in 1924 for the equivalent of £74 a week:

Morris, Cec
An ex-Hereford City centre-half, Cec had represented the Army at outside-left and played regularly for Ebbw Vale before joining United for £1 8shillings a week in 1924. He was United’s first ever captain and landlord of the No. 5 Hotel in Widemarsh and commented at the time “I never do any training, there’s enough hard work to do in the pub to keep me fit”. Cec was highly enough thought of to represent the Birmingham Combination against the London Combination at the end of the 1926/27 season and he served Hereford United faithfully for seven seasons and notched up 175 first-team appearances, scoring a total of 18 goals. When he finally hung his boots up, the Club gave him a benefit match against his old club Ebbw Vale and although the gate money was £84, all that Cec collected after expenses, was £25, which he used to buy his wife a diamond ring. Cec finally ended his association with Hereford when he emigrated to Australia in 1958.

Club historian Ron Parrott, who has provided the pen pics, is still working on a book of the club's history and is looking for information on a player known as "Rubberneck" Stone from that opening season.

Burnham Boss Eyes Victory

Burnham boss Gary Meakin believes their trip to Edgar Street is one they can get three points from.

He told the Slough & South Bucks Observer:  “Hereford are a very young side who like to play football and will keep going for 90 minutes. They’re training full-time.

“If we take our chances we can kill the game off but, with their never say die attitude, they will always be in the game. It’s not going to be easy, but Hereford are in the league of teams we need to beat and we need to start picking up points.”

The Blues are relegation candidates according to the bookmakers, after four points so far this season. They have lost four matches by at least two goals, beating Frome Town and drawing with Hungerford last time out.

Bookies are again declining to offer odds on a Hereford United match with the future of the club still up in the air.

Harriers Looking For New Investment

Kidderminster say they are looking for new investment to carry on at the budget levels they have set this term.

The Aggborough outfit needed a £21,500 donation from KHIST to cover a summer shortfall, and have now issued a statement calling on new investment 'if the playing squad assembled is to remain together for the remainder of the current season'.

The statement says that 'monies we believed were available to us when setting this year’s budgets have not as yet materialised' and that four Directors, including former chairman Mark Serrell, have left in 2014.

The statement also notes that the club has no 'substantial' debt and is up to date with payments to the taxman.

News Round-Up

Departed Dorchester boss Phil Simkin was dismissed after criticising fans following their loss to Weymouth. The veteran took abuse from supporters after the game before telling BBC Radio Solent: "They're either completely ignorant of the situation we're in or they just don't care, I don't know which it is." Simkin told the radio station in the wake of his dismissal he didn't regret the comments, and that the club were no longer the side it used to be. Assistant Manager Stuart Heath will take temporary charge of the side.

Former Bull Alan Connell has left Grimsby after just three weeks. The 31 year old failed to score in their first three games, in which the club scored just once, then was on the bench for their Bank Holiday double as they netted 13 goals in emphatic wins over Gateshead and Alfreton. 

UITC Launch New Website

United In The Community have launched their own website.

The site will contain news, fixtures, and information on UITC's eleven different sides from under 9's to under 18's. 

F-Tomlinson Signs For Bulls

Despite the continuing uncertainty around Edgar Street, a young player has announced he has signed for the Bulls.

Bradley F-Tomlinson has tweeted that 'I'm delighted to announce that I have signed for Hereford United.

'Excited to for the season ahead and gettin the club back where it belongs.

'Full time first team football was something that attracted me hugely to the club and can't wait to get started Saturday.'

Bradley Fortram Tomlinson appears to have been at St Johnstone last season.

Reported to be a striker, he is 19 years old.

Also announced as a signing is Louis Cutajar. He played for Diss Town before time in Maltese football.

Hereford United have used 24 players already this season.

A Moment Of Clarity

A number of fans have questioned the continued presence of Andy Lonsdale and Joel Nathan at the club, given Tommy Agombar is no longer involved in the club.
A comment left on the Hereford Times website
The pair were brought to Edgar Street to advise Agombar, but have remained since his apparent departure with Nathan still referred to as an adviser and Lonsdale insistent that he is only chairman of the club rather than the company.

With John Edwards and Elke Thuerlings out of the country, and the other directors listed at Companies House apparently taking no day to day involvement in the club, it seems down to Lonsdale and Nathan to conduct the day to day business of the club at present.

The wording of the statements from the club about the investment due in to clear Monday's winding up petition has changed significantly, going from Edwards' triumphant "100% certain" through Lonsdale's confident "We won't have any problems satisfying the petition" to Nathan's less certain "the judge will look at several different options for the way ahead".

With the main phone lines to Edgar Street again unavailable, several of the football creditors still await payment for sums going back as far as March, and even some of the current staff claimed to be owed wages according to friends and relatives, doubt remains as to the club's ability to continue. On the eve of the 90th anniversary of the club's first competitive match the fans demand clarity - and honesty - as to the future of the club after months of uncertainty.

After 90 years they deserve that much.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Clucas Stays At Mansfield For Now

The talks between Chesterfield and Mansfield over the possible transfer of former Hereford United winger Sam Clucas have broken down.

It appears the two clubs couldn't agree on how much Clucas is worth.

"Sam will be staying here," said Mansfield manager Paulo Cox. "They couldn't meet our valuation so we now draw a line under it and move on.

"I think we were close at times and we did as much as we could in a professional manner. But I think this is brilliant news for everyone associated with the club and for the lad himself as he knows what is happening now.

"I am not ruling out the other 91 clubs that could come in for him before the window closes. But this was dragging on and not doing either club or the player any good.

"Sam knows I haven't picked him in the last couple of games as we thought he could be gone within 24 hours. Now he is very much in contention for a starting place on Saturday."

Should Clucas move Hereford United would be entitled to 15% of any fee after taking account of the fee Mansfield paid Hereford.

Purdie Distances UITC From Club

Rob Purdie After His Last Home Game For Hereford United
Former Hereford United utility player Rob Purdie has become involved with United In The Community.

Purdie will help coach the senior players.

In an interview in today's Hereford Times Purdie stressed that the new set-up is independent from Hereford United.

"We are not Hereford United's youth team anymore after the club decided to end their youth system due to financial reasons," said Purdie.

"But we are giving people from Hereford a chance to progress in football.

"Our under-18 team would have been the Hereford United youth team had that continued but I think we have a good bunch of players.

"Nick Nenadich, who is our chairman, wanted me to use my experience of playing for Hereford United and to get that across to the lads.

"I want us to do well in the leagues so we can get publicity to help more people from Herefordshire understand the work we do in the community."

Salisbury Hopes Of Late Entry Dashed

Salisbury's application to join the Wessex League has failed after a meeting of clubs last night.

The Whites had applied to join the league despite it having started several weeks ago, with their top division running a club short after summer changes.

A league statement reads:

“The Sydenhams Football League (Wessex) was approached by Salisbury City Football Club with the agreement of the Football Association, with regard to the Club joining the League, despite the season having commenced, to assist the Club in playing competitive football.

The League has met with the Club but cannot see that the Club has a structure in place, on or off the pitch, to compete in the League, whilst the on-going Court Cases place a question mark over any long term involvement with the League.

The League has therefore rejected the Club’s application.”

The ownership of the club remains in the hands of Moroccan businessman A.S.Otail M.Touzar, who retained control after the latest failed attempt to wrest control from him in the High Court.

HMRC are now expected to wield the axe on the club on September 1st, the same day that Hereford United are next due in Court.

Pay Up And We'll Meet Says HUST

The Hereford United Supporters Trust have pledged to meet directors of the club as soon as specific payments have been made.

"As HUST, we would be happy to meet with the club once the assurances of payments have been met," HUST vice-chairman Martin Watson told the Hereford Times.

"The club needs to clear up the outstanding winding-up petitions, clear the outstanding payments to Herefordshire Council and settle the football creditors.

"Once they have met the terms of the boycott them we will be happy to talk to the club."

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Dorchester Axe Manager Simkin

Dorchester boss Phil Simkin has become the second managerial casualty of the season after just six matches.

The Magpies beat Hereford United 3-0 just 11 days ago but have lost all three games since to leave them 16th in the table after relegation from Conf South in the summer.

Dorchester suffered substantial financial problems last season, transfer listing their entire squad and needing to register Simkin, then 60, as a player to make up the numbers. Early in the season, he saw his main target was the finances rather than results:

“I have accepted the financial restraints that come with this club - but I couldn’t tell you where we will finish. My main target is making sure everyone gets paid and we stop the tumble down the divisions.”

Lee Symonds Joins HFA

Lee Symonds has joined the Hereford Football Association as Football Coordinator (Schools) following a long career in professional football administration with local side Hereford United.  Lee joins the Football Development team at the HFA and will be working from the office on a Wednesday.

Lee, who has a strong interest in football after having been associated with local side Westfields at both junior and senior level, is keen to help develop the football programme that is currently implemented in local schools and provide them with the necessary support.
The role that he undertakes is a step away from the day to day running of a football club however he brings plenty of experience with him to the HFA, which will help him to get to grips with schools football administration.

Lee commented “When the opportunity to join the HFA came up, it was one that I knew I would relish, as it was a chance for me to stay connected to the football world and learn a different side to football administration and get closer to grass roots football.”

Jim Lambert, Chief Executive, commented "We are delighted that Lee has joined the team to support the work the HFA have been doing in supporting schools football.  The ‘post’ will be jointly financed by the Herefordshire Schools and the HFA and will create yet another string to the bow of support that the County FA provide for grassroots football."

The Original Ice Bucket Challenge

Thanks to Len Rohde, who reminded us of the original Ice Bucket Challenge back in 2008.

Turner was drenched by Kris Taylor and Trevor Benjamin during the celebrations at Brentford in 2008. 

On Sunday, former Director Dave Preedy took up the challenge - getting drenched by Fans Team organiser Chris Oleksy, who enjoyed it a little too much:

Nathan: "Judge Will Look At Several Options"

Speaking to the Hereford Times, Hereford United advisor Joel Nathan says that work is still going on to sort out the club's future.

With several people this afternoon telling BN that the main phone lines had again been disconnected at Edgar Street, Nathan told the paper that: “There are a lot of things going on behind the scenes and, unfortunately, I can’t say too much about that at the moment."

However his words suggest that, rather than settling the outstanding amounts, the club will offer options to the Court: “I think the club will go into court on Monday and the judge will look at several different options for the way ahead. The club will survive."

Nathan's words are less positive than John Edwards who told the paper nine days ago that, after talks with investors, he was '100% certain' that the club would carry on. Edwards and Elke Thuerlings are currently away from the club until mid-September, while sources told BN at the weekend that 28 season tickets had been sold.

Creditors Still Waiting For News

Football creditors are still waiting for payment as the club nears Monday's deadline for payment.

A number of creditors have confirmed to Bulls News that they still have not received outstanding amounts, despite some being promised at the CVA meetings two weeks ago by John Edwards that the matter would be rectified shortly.

It is understood that neither HMRC nor Herefordshire Council have seen the money due to them, with Andy Lonsdale having told the Council twelve days ago that they would be paid.

Meanwhile, a handful of fans were disgruntled at the club's PR on Monday after it incorrectly advertised the kick off time of the Redditch game.

With few national newspapers covering the Southern League, leaving those wishing to attend games relying on accurate information from the club, the matchday programme for the Banbury game on Tuesday gave the incorrect kick off time:

The error saw a small number of people take to Twitter to express their disappointment. The programme has been beset with problems this season including naming the wrong visitors squad for the second game, leaving the names in place from the first visitors.

FA Youth Cup-Tie At Malvern

Hereford United's youth team travel to the Langland Stadium on Monday September 8th for a FA Youth Cup-Tie against Malvern Town.

Langland Stadium is the ground where the Fans team recently played Worcester.

The youth team, who are not connected to the football club as in the past, are managed by Rob Purdie.

Admission to this game will be £2, and it's just £1 for concessions.

Malvern Town will be producing a special programme for the game, priced at £1.

As the game is a 7.30pm kick-off Hereford based supporters might consider travelling by train to the game.

Currently a Super Off-Peak Day Return is just £3.50 to either Great Malvern or Malvern Link.

Hfd 17.40 - Malvern 18.09

Malvern 21.54 - Hfd 22.29 

'The Beast' Joins Walsall

Former Hereford United striker Mathieu Manset has signed a one year deal with Walsall.

Manset had trialled with the club and scored a goal against Leicester in a friendly but terms were not agreed and Manset was reported to have returned home.

However Walsall manager Dean Smith kept in touch and last night it was revealed that 'The Beast' had put pen to paper.

Meanwhile another former striker with Hereford United is in the news.

Alan Connell has left Grimsby after being left on the bench for both Bank Holiday matches.  

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Clucas Nearing Stags Exit

Ex-Bull Sam Clucas is nearing the exit door at Mansfield - but a big money transfer is unlikely at present.

Despite a string of high profile suitors - including Nottm Forest - it appears that League One Chesterfield are in pole position, with Stags manager Paul Cox admitting they are showing the most interest:

"We haven't had a firm bid, but there has been talk about money – and that's really as far as it's gone so far. We've had enquiries from a number of clubs, but Chesterfield have been the only one who have been serious.

"I think either things will develop quickly or they won't happen at all."

Clucas was Cox's top scorer last season with 13 goals, but has started only one game this season with his future up in the air. With the fact that Clucas turns 24 in a month and is out of contract at the end of the season, Cox added: 

"I always want to keep my best players, but I also understand football and what the game is about, as does the chairman. I think he and the board know Sam's valuation and they are aware that will be affected by the fact he is out of contract and a free agent at the end of the season."

Hereford United hold a 15% share of any profit the Stags make on the £20,000 paid so far. 

Taylor Annoyed With Errors

Hereford United manager Jon Taylor has said that he was disappointed with losing 2-1 to Redditch yesterday.

"We were in the ascendancy and created quite a few chances, but for me you've got to eradicate the mistakes" Taylor told the Western Daily Press.

"But when you lose the ball in silly areas of the park, you are going to get punished and that is what happened today. 

"Possibly a lack of experience, but we're very naive and too nice at times – some of the players were also pulling out of tackles which is not acceptable."

Council: Encouraging To Know Options Available For Football

Herefordshire Council have issued the following about today's meeting with Jon Hale and representatives:

At the request of Jon Hale, a second meeting has taken place today (Tuesday 26 August) between Councillor Tony Johnson, representatives from Jon Hale's business group and the Hereford United’s Supporters Trust.

Whilst the meeting discussed the group’s proposed business plan, it must be stressed that the council is not actively looking for a new tenant at this time as we already have a tenant in place.

In the event that our current tenant is unable to continue operating, the council would need to go through a due process before making any confirmed decision on the future of the ground and its leases.

However, it is encouraging to know that there are options available, which would see football remain at Edgar Street.

Business Group Would Hand Development Responsibility To Council

The following is a press release:


Businessman Jon Hale has held a second meeting with Herefordshire Council Leader Tony Johnson about the future of football at Edgar Street.

Giving an insight into one of the key issues he discussed with Mr Johnson this morning, Mr Hale, who is one member of a group which has put together a detailed business plan to launch a phoenix club at Edgar Street should Hereford United (1939) Limited be liquidated, said:

"As a group we felt it was important to meet with Mr Johnson for a second time so we could emphasise that we continue to consider ourselves a serious and viable alternative option for Herefordshire Council should the opportunity arise. 

"However, we also felt it was important to once again state categorically that our business plan is all about ensuring there is a long term future for football at Edgar Street.

"With that in mind, we have told Mr Johnson that, should the worst case scenario occur and the current club fold, we would initially be willing to take on one, single lease at Edgar Street on the area currently covered by three separate leases. This would enable the Council to take responsibility for the development of the two ends subject to negotiation. “

"We are willing to do this to make it absolutely clear that our proposals are centred on building a successful football club and are in no way about making money for personal benefit as we have seen suggested in certain quarters.

"We have also reassured Mr Johnson that the investors we already have in place expect no return on the significant investment they're willing to offer a phoenix club and therefore they are more than comfortable for us to agree to a variation of the current leases."

For clarity, the individuals who attended this morning's meeting with Herefordshire Council Leader Tony Johnson were Jon Hale himself, Phil Eynon, Phil Pratt (who is from Alder King and is offering the group advice on Landlord and Tenant procedures), and HUST Board member Richard Howard.

Stein Leaves Banbury After Pointless Start

Manager Edwin Stein has left Banbury United after failing to win a single point so far this season.

Stein, who was brought to the club by Jed McCrory in 2012, had seen his side lose all six games this season culminating in a 5-0 home loss to Cirencester yesterday.

His temporary replacement will be Paul Davis, who had a brief spell at Hereford United when he arrived with Jon Taylor at Edgar Street in early June. Davis previously coached the Puritans with Taylor.

Banbury are currently 1000/1 rank outsiders with all three bookies offering odds for the Southern League title. St Neots remain favourites at 11/4, with Hereford United 100/1 alongside Biggleswade Town and Paulton Rovers.

News Round-Up

Bristol Rovers have issued a High Court writ against Sainsburys over claimed breaches of contract in their agreement to develop their current Memorial Ground stadium. The Pirates claim to be £340,000 out of pocket according to the Bristol Post, with the supermarket claimed to be "dragging it's heels" over the development which it does not "sincerely wish" to go ahead with. Several supermarket chains have switched focus from large stores to their smaller local 'metro' style convenience chains. The club have refused to comment on the news.

Slough Town fans held a red card protest against their local Council, with the club still seeking a new home in the town. They left their old Wexham Park home 12 years ago, and first made the red card protest 10 years ago. The Council committed to finding them a new home seven years ago with the club currently playing in nearby Beaconsfield, where they have been since 2007.

Forest Green are looking at a possible site for a new stadium next to the M5 motorway and on the outskirts of Gloucester. The Javelin Park site is planned to be used for a controversial incinerator but the Gumpers could pounce if it fails to get planning permission.

Ex-Bull Watch

Nicky Featherstone signed a week to week deal at Scunthorpe on Thursday, however he was left out of their squad on Saturday. He joins Jennison Myrie-Williams at the Iron. Sam Winnall netted for Barnsley as they beat Gillingham. Andy Williams scored for Swindon as they beat Crewe.

Richard Brodie scored twice as Southport drew 3-3 at Telford. Will Evans netted for Eastleigh as they beat Welling. Luke Graham was sent off on Saturday for two yellow cards, missing Alfreton's 7-0 loss at Grimsby yesterday. Waide Fairhurst netted for Macclesfield as they drew at Wrexham. 

Danny Pilkington scored for Barrow as they won 4-0 at home to Chorley. 
Marley Watkins' Inverness are top of the Scottish Premier League after beating Celtic 1-0 at the weekend. Jake Jervis scored for Ross County as they lost at Dundee United. Jervis started the match alongside Yoann Arquin