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Issue 037. February 5, 2021.
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The daily email newsletter serving York City fans since 1997

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Malcolm Long (NSW, Australia)

I like Jon King’s (TOOAB Issue 036) thinking on a mini competition of sorts with promotions to the National League; unlikely it will happen but worthy of consideration.

I was also of a similar mind recently thinking on the line of combining clubs from the north and south that were willing to see the season to its conclusion.

But I thought better of it at the time. Logistical nightmare came to mind.

I was wondering why some clubs were so determined not to play on and can only come to one conclusion.

Players might be on a pay if you play contract, unlike City and others where its players get paid regardless of whether they play or not, or maybe those that do play receive more ...

I don’t know and am only guessing.

Without sizeable or meaningful revenue it must be incredibly difficult for part-time and even more so for full-time clubs in these trying times.

The clubs that don’t want to continue are possibly trying to force the government's hand by saying “if you don’t support the club then you can support its unemployed players instead”. 

Whatever the outcome let's hope the National League’s board gets a complete overhaul.
Donald Horsfield (York)

The level of criticism over the Guiseley programme is in my opinion a little over the top.

Like many who are managing to continue to work in these very difficult times, I am sure those staff left at the club are doing their best in trying and uncertain times. 

Postponements of games, uncertainty over the move to Huntington and a general feeling of unease must make their days very difficult. We’ve got a programme and it has a commemorative cover – indeed the same picture that appeared on the cover of the first home programme back in 1932.
 

We’ve all ‘saved’ a bit of cash by not being able to go to matches – although I was lucky enough to get in to the games v Spennymoor & Guiseley so didn’t sign off after 56 years with that miserable defeat to Hereford.

£4.00 for this programme is not untoward surely. 

When some sort of normality returns I am sure that a publication will be issued which has more detail in every way.

The history of our time at our old home isn’t going to change other than with demolition. 

Andrew Leathley’s publication is excellent and I would recommend it to everyone – but let’s cut the staff at Bootham Crescent some slack on this and wait until they do a fitting tribute to our home for 88 years.
Malcolm Clarke (Midlands)

Given the challenges of the Covid crisis, I will be grateful if the club survives, and would give it considerable slack on a lot of things, and certainly on the final BC game programme.

But for me, the different argument is even more persuasive. In normal times the final game would have been known in advance and a special programme produced for sale on the day and afterwards.

But in this crisis, no-one knew in advance that the Guiseley game would turn out to be the last.

A different match programme produced after the event, would feel artificial to me, not the 'real' programme for that game. It doesn't stop the club producing a brochure commemorating BC at a later date.
Steve Crawshaw (Staffordshire)

In response to Patrick Crowley (TOOAB Issue 036) it is not a tirade, simply expressing disappointment.

City had a long time to prepare for the what would be the last match at BC regardless of the date or opponents.

We knew it was going to happen so why not have stories, memories, photographs etc in place?
John Uttley (Howden)

There is a worldwide pandemic, race issues, Brexit problems etc ... And the York City matchday programme crisis!

Priorities?

Weekend fixtures in turmoil as more clubs refuse to play

This weekend's National League North fixtures are in tatters after more clubs refused to play.

Of the 11 scheduled fixtures, only two appear likely to go ahead, including York City's match at Alfreton Town.

Of the 11 fixtures:
  • Two are set to proceed
  • Two are postponed because Leamington and Hereford are involved in FA Trophy games
  • Seven are not going ahead because one or both of the participating clubs have said they won't play

The fixtures

AFC Fylde P-P Guiseley
AFC Telford United P-P Spennymoor Town
Alfreton Town v York City
Blyth Spartans P-P Leamington
Brackley Town v Chorley
Bradford Park Ave P-P Farsley Celtic
Curzon Ashton P-P Boston United 
Darlington P-P Gloucester City
Hereford P-P Gateshead
Kettering Town P-P Chester 
Southport P-P Kidderminster Harriers

Consequences

The National League has insisted that clubs play their fixtures and those that refuse risk a fine and loss of league points.

It's unclear whether penalties can be applied if both clubs in a fixture decline to play.

Some clubs say they won't play until results are known for the vote on the future of the season. Some say they'll only resume if they are given financial grants.

Spennymoor Town say they do not plan to resume their season regardless of the vote or decision on grants.

This issue of TOOAB tries to bring together stories from the NLN that help show the differing approaches of the clubs.

Bradford refuse to resume National League North season

By Rowan Newman 

"I HAVE had more pleasurable ones!" It has been another week full of frustration and mixed messages for Bradford (Park Avenue) director of football Martin Knight as his club's league's fate is still up for debate.

Bradford will not be playing their scheduled home fixture with Farsley Celtic tomorrow after both clubs, along with five others, agreed to take the same stance that they cannot financially afford to progress without grants.

It is understood the National League has threatened fines and the three points going to the other side for clubs refusing to play. Luckily for Avenue, the latter should not be the case if both teams say they will not play.

February started with each National League club being issued options for how they would like to see the outcome of their season.

Avenue replied on Wednesday adamant that null and void had to happen so they do not jeopardise their future, which a loan would do.

The big problem with this is the lengthy 28-day period clubs have got to return their vote.

With the two-week suspension of National League North/South expiring today, clubs are expected to play until the verdict from all 66 clubs is finalised.

"We don’t want to play until we know the outcome of the vote," Knight said. "The longer that takes, the harder the position we are going to take.

"The league are highlighting the 'failure to fulfil a fixture' rule, but it does say as long as there is no reasonable reason. Well, the reasonable reason is that we didn't know whether the league is going to continue.

"We take the players off furlough so that cost then comes back to you as a club.

"What happens if the league is abandoned in 28 days? You have incurred those costs for no reason.

"Why would any business incur costs that in four weeks' time might have been a complete waste if the league becomes null and void.

"They have got to speed up the voting without question because it just leaves everybody in limbo."

After the previous grants expired at the end of December, Avenue funded January off their own back, and simply cannot afford to do the same for rest of the season.

It would total well over £100,000, without even considering the cost of Covid-19 testing.

Knight must put Park Avenue's future first, despite all those involved desperate to play on.

"The league should suspend our fixtures until they know the outcome of the vote or leave the other clubs to play on," he insisted.

"The players, manager and club want to play but we can’t financially. This is a pure economic decision. We just want to be here next season.

"We don’t think we will get relegated or promoted so it is a nothing league. We would be worsening our financial position for no upside.

"My job is to make sure the club is still here next year. Not playing is the best option for us."

Chester vote to end season despite being in second place

By Michael Baggaley

Chester FC joint-boss Anthony Johnson completely supports his club’s vote to declare the season null and void.  

The National League has asked its clubs whether they want to play on or scrap the season after it emerged that grants wouldn’t be guaranteed to play out the campaign behind closed doors.

Chester are second in the National League North under managers Johnson and Bernard Morley but the board have reluctantly voted to end the season rather than put the club at risk.

Clubs have technically been given 28 days to vote, having been asked on Monday, but the results are expected to be made clear well before that.

Johnson and Morley were targeting a promotion challenge this season, having been building towards that since they took over in 2018.

Johnson said his club has made the right decision. He said: “From a manager’s point of view, I am gutted and that is an understatement.

"I am as gutted as I have ever felt in football. As I have said in the past, I have taken a lot of pride in what we have done as a team and a club to get to where we are.

“To be where we are after what we have had to go through has been phenomenal. After the sacrifices made by every single member of the squad, the staff, the board and the volunteers, I am genuinely gutted.

“From mine and Bernard’s point of view, this has been two-and-a-half years in the making. This isn’t something that has happened overnight, this has been going through pain in our first season and through pain in our second season to get to where we are now.

“So for the season to end again in February – and I know it hasn’t ended yet but you understand my point – is heartbreaking.

“But as I have said in the past, the only thing that matters is the club surviving. It’s not about Bern's and my ego to want to win promotion, or the players wanting to win promotion, it is about the football club still being there for the next 100 years.

“The reason people are elected onto the board is to make sure they look after the best interests of the football club.

“So, I can be devastated and gutted but also in total agreement and understanding of it. That is where we are at.”

The league is waiting for the votes of its clubs before announcing what will happen with the season. The National League has continued while leagues North and South have been suspended for the last two weeks.

That suspension was due to end this Saturday when Chester were scheduled to play at Kettering, but that game was postponed after the hosts said they wouldn’t be playing.

Chester are due to host Fylde on Tuesday but the votes from clubs could be in by then.

Clubs received grants from a National Lottery fund to play for the first three months of the season and Chester and other clubs have said they only agreed to start the campaign because they understood there would be grants available to finish it.

But it emerged last month that funding from January onwards would be in loans.

The Chester board say they can’t jeopardise the future of their supporter-owned club by going into debt to finish the season.

The board made their position clear in a statement today: “This has been an extremely difficult decision but one that has been taken solely to ensure the continuation of the club our supporters have worked so hard to build since 2010.

“While the overwhelming desire of the Board was to complete the season given the efforts and sacrifices of our players, management, staff, volunteers and fans, it is with regret we no longer believe this is possible without the grants that clubs were assured would be in place until it was safe for crowds to return.

“As the custodians of the football club, we must act responsibly to safeguard its future and ending the season is the only certain way to do this given the options available to us and will help us recover from the unprecedented financial challenges of the past 12 months.”

Club statement: game off

Following discussions with AFC Fylde and the National League this week, we can confirm that we will not be taking part in tomorrow’s scheduled fixture away at Mill Farm.

Although we appreciate AFC Fylde’s offer to provide Covid testing for our players and staff, we feel that the vote against the leagues resolution and the exact details around any financial support need clarification before we can participate in further fixtures.

Carrying on playing whilst incurring further costs and exposing our staff, players and volunteers to potential risk for a season that could be null and voided in the next 24 days is irrational and unreasonable.

We hope to hear the results of the vote ASAP and implore our counterparts to vote as soon as they can.

AFC Fylde accuse rival clubs of 'hypocrisy'

By Andy Moore

AFC Fylde's return to action on Saturday is now in doubt after the club stated that opponents Guiseley had declared themselves 'unable to fulfil our fixture'.

The dispute over the continuation of the three National League competitions took an acrimonious turn last night, with Fylde accusing some clubs of 'hypocrisy' in seeking to 'cherry-pick' which fixtures to fulfil.

Fylde's division, National League North, is due to resume tomorrow after a two-week suspension, though clubs are in the process of voting over whether to abandon the season and declare it void because of funding concerns.

Some clubs are reluctant to play until the outcome of the vote is known but have been instructed to do so by the National League.

On Wednesday 17 National League clubs, including half of those in NL North, issued a joint-statement expressing a willingness for matches to resume, though only if both clubs wished to play and fully funded Covid-testing was made available. Guiseley were among the clubs to sign up to the statement.

The West Yorkshire club have, at the time of writing, made no official comment about Saturday's game at Mill Farm.

Last night Fylde, who are strongly opposed to scrapping the season, issued the following statement.

"On the morning of Wednesday, February 3, we were informed by Guiseley AFC that they would be unable to fulfil our fixture this Saturday.

"We received this news in light of a Zoom meeting between all member clubs of the National League North and South on the evening of Tuesday, February 2.

"A joint-statement signed by Guiseley AFC was published on Wednesday, February 3 that stated clubs were in support of the recommencement of the season, ‘but only when there is a fully-funded Covid testing programme in place and the safety of their players is guaranteed’.

"At no point during Tuesday’s call did any of the 17 clubs express their concerns around Covid testing nor did they voice any issues regarding the safety of players.

"After being made aware of the joint-statement, AFC Fylde Football Club reached out to Guiseley AFC to understand their position regarding our fixture this weekend, to which they confirmed they were not able to fulfil the fixture.

"We then made further contact to provide reassurances around safety and diminish any concerns by offering to fund an in-house lateral flow testing programme for all Guiseley AFC players and staff.

"After further discussion, Guiseley AFC informed us that the decision to withdraw from Saturday’s fixture was unrelated to safety and was, in fact, for financial reasons.

"As it stands, two of the teams who are signatories to Guiseley’s joint-statement are prepared to play in their FA Trophy fixtures this Saturday but have the hypocrisy to declare themselves unavailable to fulfil their league fixtures on the following Tuesday.

"We are astounded that when prize money and an opportunity to progress in an FA competition is at stake, those clubs deem it safe to compete.

"We strongly believe the picking and choosing of which fixtures to fulfil is a slap in the face of those fighting to continue.

"Clubs, such as ourselves, are doing everything in their power to overcome each obstacle that presents itself, while others aren’t.

"We sincerely hope that the National League take a tough line on those taking this stance, as we believe cherry-picking which fixtures to fulfil is bringing the game into disrepute and severely damaging the integrity of the competition. "

Hereford FC league games in doubt after opposition pull out

By Ben Goddard  

HEREFORD'S league games against Curzon Ashton and Bradford (PA) look in doubt after the opposition said they would not fulfil the fixtures.

Hereford's game against Leamington in the FA Trophy on Saturday is going ahead.

This week National League North clubs were given 28 days to decide whether to null and void the season amid financial pressure.

"A detailed review of the resolutions and the potential implications of the possible outcomes for our club is currently underway," said Hereford in a statement. 

"We recognise the urgency of the situation and intend to respond as quickly as possible but not before full consideration has been given on reaching the best decision for our club. 

"We confirm, however, that we plan to fulfill our forthcoming league fixtures in the meantime.   

However, Hereford's opponents on Tuesday night Curzon Ashton have said they will not travel to Edgar Street.

"The safety of our players, staff, volunteers and directors is of primary concern and until we are able to confirm how we can comply with current

Covid-19 testing requirements for Elite clubs, we do not want to put anyone at risk," a statement on their website said.

Hereford are then due to travel to Bradford (Park Avenue) on Saturday, February 13.

Bradford have said they will not play any further matches until all the votes are counted and a final decision is made.

AFC Telford United fixture with Spennymoor Town postponed

By Liam Keen

AFC Telford United's fixture with Spennymoor Town, due to take place tomorrow afternoon, has been postponed.

The Bucks recently voted to declare the National League North season null and void after a row between clubs and the league over Covid testing and funding.

Gavin Cowan's side were set to end a two-week break tomorrow at home to Spennymoor but after voting to end the season they did not want the game to go ahead.

The league had ordered all fixtures to take place while clubs are still voting on the resolutions, despite there being just under a month's gap until the result of the vote is announced.

Spennymoor also voted for the season to be declared null and void and in a statement earlier today said they would not travel to Telford for the fixture.

It read: "It is the decision of the club’s ownership and board that we cannot expose either our people or our club to the considerable risks outlined, and as a result this is for all intents and purposes the end of the 2020/21 season for Spennymoor Town FC.

"The club will not play tomorrow’s fixture vs AFC Telford United and does not intend to play again this season."

As a result, the fixture will now not take place, despite the league ordering all games to go ahead.

It remains to be seen what stance the league will take and whether a statement will be issued.

More Step 2 clubs will not fulfil this weekend's fixtures

By Jacob Kilbride
   
THREE more Step 2 clubs have said that they will not fulfil this weekend’s fixtures as the row over continuing the season intensifies.


Vanarama National League South sides Bath City and Dulwich Hamlet and Curzon Ashton, of the North division, have said that they will not compete this weekend, further throwing into question the sporting integrity of the National League at present.

Clubs have until February 28 to vote upon the National League’s resolution, which could end the season.

Spennymoor Town, Chester, King’s Lynn Town, Southport, Tonbridge Angels and Blyth Spartans have all confirmed that they will back a null and voiding of the season.

Meanwhile, Hartlepool United, Notts County, Ebbsfleet United, Hungerford Town, Sutton United, Eastbourne Borough and Dartford have all given their backing to the continuation of the current campaign.

Elsewhere, Billericay Town have said they will field under-23s players and non-contracted players in order to keep playing.

York City players "relishing" return to action, Micky Cummins believes

By Joe Richardson 
   
YORK City’s opposition on Saturday are yet to kick a ball in anger this year - and so the emphasis falls on the Minstermen’s preparation, Micky Cummins believes.

Alfreton Town’s last outing came on December 28, 2020, when they drew 3-3 with Kettering Town at their Derbyshire home.

By the 3pm kick off at the Impact Arena, the Reds will have gone 39 days without a fixture - though with their most recent game falling on January 5, York are not much further ahead.

The City coaching duo of manager Steve Watson and assistant Cummins, therefore, do not have much recent research to base their assessment of Alfreton on.

“There are loads of considerations,” Cummins said when asked his expectations for the game. “How their pitch is, how it’s playing - it’s been difficult for a lot of teams to get on grass - the formation they play.

“I think they’re very physical and very direct. Whether they play the way they usually do for the full 90 after such a long period - that’s where the way we set up and start will be important.

“Also who we choose on the bench to change things or shore things up if needs be.

“We’re expecting a physical challenge and a good battle. They’re very strong on set pieces so there are things we can work on.

“It will be a challenge but I’m the sure the lads are relishing it and looking forward to it.”

Owen Gamble is back in training, as is Harry Bunn, who looks “strong and fit” Cummins reported.

The high-intensity period akin to pre-season has taken its toll, however, and there have been a few soft tissue problems. Akil Wright (hamstring) will be assessed ahead of the weekend and Tuesday’s trip to Darlington while on-loan striker Gabby McGill picked up a slight groin strain but is back training. Harry Spratt had a tight hamstring.

Long-term injury concern Josh King has returned to straight-line running this week and is “probably a week or two away”.

South Shields, meanwhile, have agreed to a loan extension for Jason Gilchrist and Cummins has said York will “get at least a month” out of the striker.

York City's last normal matchday - 11 months ago at Alfreton Town

By Joe Richardson 

IT is often only with hindsight that epochal moments are realised to be anything but ordinary. Saturday, March 7, 2020 is one such day for me.

That was, of course, the last time York City played at Alfreton Town - a fairly unremarkable date and fixture, in the grand scheme of things.

But it was the last time York would play in front of a crowd whose limits were prescribed by a ground's capacity and not the Government, and I have found myself thinking a lot about that day in the build-up to tomorrow afternoon's fixture.

Reports of a new disease were trickling over from China in late December, 2019. By January 29, York had become the first recorded city in the UK with a case of what we learned was the novel coronavirus. The global toll started to rise into March.

Still, football went on. The deadly virus appeared ephemeral to many.

With no mask on or hand sanitiser in my pocket, I took the train down to a ground with fans intermingling on all four sides. I sat shoulder-to-shoulder in the press benches and conducted the post-match interviews in the small outhouse just behind, not two feet away from the Alfreton media - never mind the York interviewees, Micky Cummins and Sean Newton.

I stopped off in a small micropub on my way back to the train station and thought nothing of standing around a table and debriefing with a group of travelling City fans, nor sipping a pint talked over by the barman.

Six days later, it became a bit more real. I received a text at 10.33pm on Friday to say the next day's match at home to Altrincham was not going ahead because people at both clubs had shown coronavirus symptoms.

Following a period of indefinite suspension, the remainder of the National League's three division's seasons were cancelled on April 22.

Tomorrow's fixture will have a very different feel to it. I for one won’t be travelling down to the Impact Arena this season.

I deliberated on the matter for a while before the Telford game - being at the ground, after all, allows for easier, more reliable and more incisive reporting than covering the action from streams.

The decision that weekend was eventually taken out of my hands but for today - and likely away games for the foreseeable future - I have resolved to stay in York for the sake of not putting my family and myself at additional risk. I will do my utmost to provide the best coverage I can, but I wanted to let you know in case something does go awry.

I think I speak for all of us when I say let's hope the stream holds up tomorrow, and that the days of us all travelling together return as soon as possible.

City travel to Alfreton tomorrow

By Dan Simmonite

Steve Watson's men are scheduled to travel to Alfreton Town tomorrow after the two week National League lay-off.

Kick-off is 3pm at the Impact Arena with the game to be played behind closed doors. 

How to Watch

Alfreton's Livestream will be available to purchase at around 10am following an early morning pitch inspection. 

Click here to find out more.

A Digital Matchday Programme will also be available to purchase tomorrow. 

Injury News

Harry Bunn and Owen Gamble are expected to be ready for selection after recovering from injuries. With Harry Spratt, Akil Wright and Gabby McGill doubtful after minor injuries in training. 

Form

Alfreton currently sit in the relegation zone after 15 games and just two victories. The Reds haven't won a game since November when they beat Farsley Celtic 3-1. Striker Elliott Reeves is their top marksman, scoring five goals this season.

Alfreton Town: DLDDL

City go into the game with the second-best defensive record in the league. A win could propel the team up to fourth in the table and narrow the gap with five games in hand over top club Gloucester. 

York City: DWLDW

Head to head

Alfreton Town 1-3 York City (7th March 2020)
York City 1-0 Alfreton Town (30th November 2019)
Alfreton Town 2-3 York City (2nd February 2019)
York City 1-2 Alfreton Town (11th August 2018)
York City 1-1 Alfreton Town (24th February 2018)
A round-up of news from York City's rival Vanarama National League (North) clubs.
Gloucester City

Gloucester City have signed Swiss forward Gold Omotayo (27) who has been a free agent since leaving FC Halifax Town in October. Former clubs include Whitehawk, Bury, Maidstone United (loan) and Yeovil Town.

The former Yeovil Town man left FC Halifax Town in late-October following a short stint with the National League side.

Hereford

Hereford manager Josh Gowling is hoping to sign a new striker before Saturday's FA Trophy tie against Leamington. He says he's looking at free agents because the uncertainty about the future of the season is restricting the possibility of loan deals.
Please check with the club's official website for late changes to fixtures before committing to travel.
Pre-season friendlies

September
Sat 5 Newcastle United U-23 1, York City 4 (Trialist, Olly Dyson, Rob Guilfoyle (2))
Tue 8 South Shields 3, York City 0 
Sat 12 Whitby Town 2, York City 0
Sat 19 York City 0, Stockport County 1
Sat 26 Notts County 0, York City 3 (Wright, Cassidy, Wollerton)

2020-21 season

York City joined the FA Cup in the 2nd qualifying round and the FA Trophy in the 2nd round proper.

Note: Midweek fixtures are 7.45pm kick off unless stated otherwise.

October
Sat 3 Warrington Rylands 0, York City 1 (Newton) - Emirates FA Cup 2Q (City receive £3,375 prizemoney)
Tue 6 York City 3, Chorley 1 (McLaughlin, Barrow, Woods)
Sat 10 Farsley Celtic 1, York City 1 (Newton)
Tue 13 Chorley 1, York City 0 - Emirates FA Cup 3Q (Losing club receive £1,875)
Sat 17 York City 0 Brackley Town 0

November
Tue 10 Southport 2, York City 3 (Newton (2), Bunn)
Sat 28 Leamington 2, York City 1 (Dyson)

December
Wed 2 Blyth Spartans 0, York City 3 (Woods, Bunn, Cassidy)
Sat 5 York City 2, Chester 1 (Bunn, Wright) 
Tue 8 York City 2, Kettering Town 0 (Newton (2)) 
Sat 12 York City 1, Spennymoor Town 1 (Woods)
Tue 15 Ashton United 3, York City 3 (City lose 3-2 pens) - Buildbase FA Trophy 2R (Dyson, Woods, Redshaw)
Sat 26 Bradford Park Avenue 4, York City 2 (Redshaw, Guilfoyle)
Mon 28 York City 1, Guiseley 0 (King)

January
Tue 5 Kidderminster Harriers 2, York City 2 (Woods, Newton)
Tue 26 Hereford (a) - postponed

February
Tue 2 Bradford Park Avenue (h) - postponed
Sat 6 Alfreton Town (a) 
Tue 9 Darlington (a)
Sat 13 Farsley Celtic (h)
Tue 16 AFC Fylde (h) - 7pm
Sat 20 Chorley (a)
Tue 23 Boston United (a)
Sat 27 Hereford (h)

March
Tue 2 Gloucester City (h) 
Sat 6 Brackley Town (a)
Tue 9 Gateshead (h) 
Sat 13 Southport (h)
Sat 20 Chester (a)
Tue 23 Gateshead (a)
Sat 27 Kidderminster Harriers (h)

April
Fri 2 AFC Fylde (a)
Mon 5 Leamington (h)
Sat 10 Spennymoor Town (a)
Tue 13 Blyth Spartans (h)
Sat 17 Kettering Town (a)
Sat 24 Darlington (h)

May
Sat 1 Guiseley (a)
Mon 3 Boston United (h)
Sat 8 Gloucester City (a)
Tue 11 AFC Telford United (a) 
Sat 15 AFC Telford United (h)
Tue 18 Curzon Ashton (h) 
Sat 22 Curzon Ashton (a)
Sat 29 Alfreton Town (h)

June
Promotion play-off series
Sat 5/Sun 6 NLN play-offs 1R
Sat 12/Sun 13 NLN play-offs semi-final
Sat 19/Sun 20 NLN play-off final
CLICK HERE to check out our collection of classic York City match programmes at the TOOAB archive >>>>
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PLEASE CLICK HERE
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About TOOAB

There’s Only One Arthur Bottom was first published as an almost-daily email newsletter in July 1997 and has been distributed continuously since. Subscriber numbers peaked at more than 1,100 when the club’s future was threatened by potential closure in 2001 but more than 800 subscribers, living in more than 30 countries, will receive this edition. Editor Josh Easby started the newsletter from New Zealand (where he lives today) but has variously produced and distributed it from the United Kingdom, Australia and (briefly) Italy.
 
Over the years, TOOAB subscribers have variously supported the club in many different ways, using the newsletter at times to share ideas that have helped the club and to raise money which has been used to buy much-needed equipment (for the physio room), sponsor members of the youth team and to sponsor senior players’ kit. Subscribers (who often call themselves ‘Arthurites’) often meet up for pre-match/post-match drinks and have arranged functions together.

Editorial policy

The opinions expressed in There's Only One Arthur Bottom do not necessarily represent the views of the publisher, nor is this newsletter endorsed in any way by York City Football Club.  Wherever possible, the contributions by subscribers are published unaltered.  However submissions will be rejected or amended if they are potentially defamatory or contain language likely to offend other subscribers. Unless good reasons are given, anonymous submissions are rejected. The publisher reserves the right to reproduce contributions to this newsletter on any website associated with the newsletter.



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