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Issue 373. December 31, 2020.
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The daily email newsletter serving York City fans since 1997

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Peter Thorndyke (North Yorkshire)

Reading all these memories of significant players who have played at Bootham Crescent brought to mind a certain Derek Dougan.

I’m convinced that I saw him play at the Crescent when I was a schoolboy, so early 60’s probably. The record books show that we played Blackburn Rovers in the League cup in October 1960, whilst he was on their books, but I can’t find any record of the teams.

Can anybody confirm that he played?

If I’m right he must be added to the list of great players who played here - he went on to have a great career with Aston Villa, Leicester, Wolves and played in world cups for Northern Ireland. An unforgettable character!
George Davidson (Bolton)

Great idea for the best players to play at BC.

Leaving aside Ian Botham, I have to say Sammy Lee was like a brick wall for Liverpool probably because every attempt to wind him up just made him better.

I never got him before that but he was great for them.  
Stuart Newstead (Oxford)

Kenny Dalglish would have to feature on any list of the best opposition players ever to have played at Bootham Crescent - even though he was harangued with the chant of "you're worse than Charlie Nicholas" on that freezing FA Cup Round 5 day in 1985.
Matthew Moran (Stockport)

Re the best players to play at BC, from Wiki:

Bryan Robson - He made his first team debut away at York City on 12 April 1975 at the age of 18, helping Albion to a 3–1 victory.
Clive Parker (Glasgow)

Well, two items in TOOAB Issue 372 instantly invoked memories from the 80's.

Firstly, congratulations to my friend Paul Bowser on his appointment as Club Historian.  

I remember giving Paul a lift to an away mid-week game in Wrexham, in my beat-up Mini. As we approached North Wales, we drove through alternate bands of foggy weather, then clear weather, and so on.

We pressed on, with the usual optimism of anyone supporting a club other than the so-called "Big Six".

I recall Paul explaining to me that he always buys two copies of the away programme - one to use at the match, the other to keep at home in pristine condition - no doubt sealing his early credentials as a historian.

When we got to the ground, fifteen minutes before kick-off, the fog was swirling about.

In those days the rule was that the ref had to stand on the centre spot and as long as he could see both goals, the match would be played.

Sadly, the match was called off. No surprise really.

Paul went to "scout around" as he put it while I nervously kept watch on my dodgy parking spot. He returned with an armful of meat pies - which had to be given away as they'd been warmed up and couldn't be put back in the fridge.

A wasted journey but at least we got home with full stomachs!

The other memory invoked was, of course, the FA Cup win against Arsenal.

Several writers in TOOAB 372 listed great players they'd seen at Bootham Crescent. Well, the Arsenal team we knocked out included one Charlie Nicholas, of dubious Glasgow fame! He must have had a massive hangover, as he received a lot of barracking from the Enclosure (where we stood) from a group we referred to as "the choir".

For several months afterwards, any visiting forward who played badly was greeted by the choir with "You're worse than Charlie Nicholas" (repeated numerous times, of course). 

Some years later, after I had moved to Glasgow, I would sometimes see Charlie Nicholas in his bar, the Cafe Cini in Renfield Street, but I never mentioned that chant to him!

I believe Guy Mowbray was a member of the choir, but couldn't swear to that.

I hope the LNER stadium provides us with some equally happy memories, given time. Happy new year to you all.
John Uttley (Howden)

Absolutely delighted that Paul Bowser is the new Club Historian.

I cannot think of a better person for the role. 

I have known Paul for years and his knowledge of the club is immense, and to anoraks like myself is much appreciated. 

I'm looking forward to the second volume of his Bootham Crescent History book, as his first along with the late Dave Batters Complete Record are "bibles" for every York City fan.

It would be great for Paul to compile an up to date version of the City Who's Who book that was released a few years back (Citizens and Minstermen) unless the original authors have something planned.

I am so pleased that Paul has taken this role on as the Club's history should never be overlooked or forgotten. 

'It's my job to make the lads make the most of it' says Steve Watson as York City prepare to leave Bootham Crescent

By Joe Richardson

YORK City manager Steve Watson has said he wants to make sure his players savour the last games at Bootham Crescent.

Following the completion of the LNER Community Stadium at Monks Cross earlier this month, the Minstermen have been projected to move into their new home around the middle of January.

In two days’ time, York host Bradford Park Avenue at their city centre home of 88 years before back-to-back away games, at Kidderminster Harriers and Boston United.

On January 12, City host Fylde, and then Gloucester City the following Saturday. Either of these could be at the new ground.

The move is an exciting prospect for the club, but one tinged with sadness for those who have formed such strong connections with Bootham Crescent over the years.

“I’ve been here long enough as a manager and I’d like to think I’m somebody who listens to people, so I know what Bootham means to people,” Watson said. “I’ve also been here as an opposition coach and I’ve played here.

“I know the history and I know it’s going to be a tough time for people to move but it’s also exciting. You have to embrace going forward and you have to embrace the future.

“One thing this year will tell you is that you’ve got to live life to the full and enjoy every scenario.

“As disappointing as it is for people to be leaving Bootham, it’s also very exciting to be getting going in the new place.

“The players will be very excited about playing on a new pitch and in a brand-new stadium which is fantastic.

“My job is to make them very aware of how much the last games at Bootham mean to everybody and to make the lads make the most of it.”

'It's difficult for everyone' says Micky Cummins as York City go back behind closed doors

By Joe Richardson  

YORK City players will be looking to create their own atmosphere against Bradford Park Avenue on Saturday, Micky Cummins has said, in the "disappointing" circumstance of playing behind closed doors.

With York now in Tier 3 following the latest coronavirus tier review, spectators will not be allowed in at Bootham Crescent for the National League North fixture.

Playing in front of empty stands is something York know all too well from this season. Eight league games thus far have gone ahead under the coronavirus restrictions which have hit elite football.

Spectators were first allowed in this season for the Spennymoor Town game in December. Monday's win over Guiseley was watched by 627 fans.

"It's very disappointing, obviously," Cummins said. "They made a difference against Guiseley, certainly.

"It's difficult for everyone - it's not a nice situation.

"We know they'll be watching on the live stream so we've just got to try and perform.

"Whether it is the last game or not, we're not sure where we're at with that - leave that to the hierarchy of the club. We'll just try and focus and get the lads prepared for the game on Saturday.

"It is going to be surreal again but we've been in that situation before. We'll have to create our own atmosphere and start the game quick, fast and bright and try and nullify their threat.

"But it is disappointing (fans) aren't in."

Harry Bunn is "50-50" for Bradford. He came off in the second half against Guiseley and did not train on Thursday.

Michael Duckworth did some work in the gym and is available for Saturday, reported Cummins, after being left out of the side to face Guiseley.

York City to play Bradford Park Avenue behind closed doors

By Joe Richardson

THERE will be no fans allowed into Bootham Crescent on Saturday following the latest tier review.

York has been placed in Tier 3, which will mean that spectators cannot attend 'elite' football matches.

The Minstermen will thus return to playing behind closed doors for their January 2 National League North home game against Bradford Park Avenue.

Spectators were first allowed in this season for the Spennymoor Town game in December, and Monday's win over Guiseley was watched by 627 fans.

talkSPORT reporter Adrian Durham - 'A Love Poem to Bootham Crescent'

By Joe Richardson

TO mark York City’s impending ground move, talkSPORT presenter Adrian Durham has written A Love Poem to Bootham Crescent.

Durham’s reported on York for Viking Radio between 1989 and 1991. John Murray, now a well-known figure at 5Live, was a broadcasting contemporary at the ground.

He covered John Bird and John Ward teams, with players such as Nigel Pepper, Andy McMillan, Wayne Hall, Jon McCarthy, Ray Warburton and Glenn Naylor on the pitch. 

I feel sad when the old football grounds go
Tales they could tell, stories they know.
Another one going is Bootham Crescent
York City’s home: 1932 to the present
 
It’s seen Harvey Barnes’ dad score goals galore
Late pen to beat Arsenal, Keith Houchen scored
Peter Reid’s brother Shaun, Dean Kiely in goal
Up to the present when Ben Godfrey was sold.

It’s where as a young journalist I learned my trade
Radio reporting - would I make the grade?
York City home games, sat behind John Murray
Who crossed for that goal? The nerves - the worry. 

And just across the way the veteran York fan,
Been going for years, a proper Minsterman.
Always turned up, even when it wasn’t pretty.
And he’d make us all jump when he shouted: “Come On City!” 

So farewell Bootham Crescent, you’ll be missed.
That Jon McCarthy cross - that Tony Canham assist
That magical stadium will stay deep in my soul
Every tackle, every foul, every miss, every goal.

Weekend preview of National League North fixtures

Gloucester City will still be at the summit of the National League North whatever happens this weekend, but Paul Groves’ team have a demanding trip to Leamington to negotiate.

LV BET have picked the five games to watch - here’s your match-by-match guide to the action!

AFC Fylde v Chorley

AFC Fylde
Form: L-L-D-W
Last time out: Chorley (A) 1-3
Did you know? The Coasters have now won only once in six, letting in eight goals in three games.

Chorley
Form: W-W-D-W
Last time out: Chester (A) 2-1
Did you know? Chorley are undefeated in nine and have 13 points from a possible 15.

Kidderminster Harriers v Hereford

Kidderminster Harriers
Form: L-W-L-W
Last time out: Hereford (A) 1-3
Did you know? Harriers have failed to score just once in their last ten games.

Hereford
Form: D-W-W-L
Last time out: Leamington (A) 0-0
Did you know? Hereford have let in a goal in just one away match so far this season, a 5-3 defeat at Chester.

York City v Bradford (PA)

York City
Form: W-L-D-W
Last time out: Guiseley (H) 1-0
Did you know? City are nine points adrift of leaders Gloucester, but have four games in hand.

Bradford (PA)
Form: L-W-L-D
Last time out: Curzon Ashton (A) 0-3
Did you know? There has been 23 goals scored in Avenue’s last five matches.

Alfreton Town v Boston United

Alfreton Town
Form: D-L-D-D
Last time out: Kettering Town (H) 3-3
Did you know? The Reds have just one home win in seven attempts this term.

Boston United
Form: W-W-D-W
Last time out: Farsley Celtic (A) 0-4
Did you know? Boston the best away record this season in the league - but at home they have won just twice.

Curzon Ashton v Southport

Curzon Ashton
Form: W-D-L-L
Last time out: Bradford PA (H) 3-0
Did you know? Curzon average only one goal every home game this season - even after their recent 3-0 win against Bradford (Park Avenue).

Southport
Form: D-L-D-L
Last time out: Curzon Ashton (H) 2-2
Did you know? Liam Watson’s Port have won just once in nine National League North outings.
A round-up of news from York City's rival Vanarama National League (North) clubs.
Blyth Spartans

Spartans have signed striker Dan Wilson on loan from North Shields for whom he has scored 15 goals in 16 games this season. The loan is subject to FA approval and follows the suspension of the Northern League, in which North Shields play, until further notice.

Gateshead

Gateshead have recalled forward Paul Blackett (22) from his loan at Blyth Spartans. During his loan spell, Blackett has scored six goals in 10 appearances.

Kettering Town

Town have signed striker Khaellem Bailey-Nicholls (23) from Gloucester City. He scored Gloucester's final goal in their 3-1 win against Kettering in the season opener. Former clubs include Wrexham, Rushall Olympic, Nantwich Town and Buxton. Meanwhile, Kettering have extended the loan of defender Jevan Anderson (20) from Burton Albion until January 29.
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 will join the FA Trophy in the 2nd round proper.

Please note: No replays for FA Cup ties in the 2020-21 season.

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
Sat 2 Bradford Park Avenue (h)
Tue 5 Kidderminster Harriers (a) (7.45pm)
Sat 9 Boston United (a)
Tue 12 AFC Fylde (h) (7pm)
Sat 16 Buildbase FA Trophy 4R (winners receive £7,500, losers receive £2,000)
Sat 16 Gloucester City (h)
Tue 19 Gateshead (h) (7pm)
Sat 23 AFC Telford United (a)
Tue 26 Hereford (a) (7.45pm)
Sat 30 Curzon Ashton (h)

February
Sat 6 Buildbase FA Trophy 5R (winners receive £7,500, losers receive £2,000)
Sat 6 Alfreton Town (a)
Tue 9 Darlington (a)
Sat 13 Farsley Celtic (h)
Sat 20 Chorley (a)
Sat 27 Buildbase FA Trophy QF (winners receive £7,500, losers receive £2,000)
Sat 27 Hereford (h)

March
Sat 6 Brackley Town (a)
Sat 13 Southport (h)
Sat 20 Chester (a)
Tue 23 Gateshead (a)
Sat 27 Buildbase FA Trophy SF (winners receive £15,000, losers receive £5,000)
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 Buildbase FA Trophy Final (Winners receive £60,000, losers receive £30,000)
Sat 8 Gloucester City (a)
Sat 15 AFC Telford United (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 >>>>
FOR THE CLUB  -   FOR THE FANS  -   FOR THE COMMUNITY
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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