Friday, 30 December 2011


It’s a welcome return for Haik-blu – the feature where CFC’s finest turn their hand to Haiku, the Japanese poetry-form where each short poem is comprised of just three lines, the first with five syllables, the second with seven, and the last with five.

Here are today's submissions.


One year or two years
What contract does he deserve?
CEO Pat Cluskey on Neil Young's proposed contract extension


Obviously two
Give me some credit won't you?
Neil Young responds


Oh come off it guys
Stop doing this in public
It's very poor form
The Jestrian on the unprofessional nature of Neil Young's contract discussions


I did raise my arms
But he went down as though shot
He should be ashamed
Michael Powell refuses to accept full responsibility for his red card vs Northwich


Listen To Me Now
Start Each Word With Capitals
This Is How You Tweet
Antoni Sarcevic on the art of Twitter


Title contenders?
Excited by a home draw!
Not winning a thing.
Northwich Victoria


Thursday, 29 December 2011

They've all gone Christmas Crackers

Whilst Chester FC are sitting pretty atop the Evo Stik Northern Premier or whatever it's called, there are signs of unrest in the camp.  The management, board members and players have all been involved in some peculiar goings on over the Christmas break, Neil Young has revealed.

"It was horrible," whimpered a usually buoyant and unfazed Young as he recalled his Christmas Day.

"Pat Cluskey and Chris Pilsbury called me in.  Said it was urgent.  When I arrived, they tied me to a chair and dressed me as Santa.  Then Cluskey said 'we're giving you the sack' and they both ripped up laughing.

"I was bewildered enough, but then Jeff Banks burst in and said they couldn't sack me because there was a Claus in my contract.  They all fell about laughing again.  I didn't know what was going on.  In the end, they untied me and said 'see you tomorrow'.  I didn't know what to tell the missus when I got home.  In the end I told her the truth and she slapped me cos she didn't believe me.  I got no turkey and extra sprouts."

The Jestrian sought an explanation from Cluskey, who excused the board's actions, saying;

"Come on, those are two very solid puns."

Young has also had to deal with some antics from his players.

"I thought I'd sorted the board game problem in the camp by banning Pop-Up Pirate, but Liam Brownhill got a Lego "Shave a Sheep" game for Christmas and challenged Wes Baynes and some others to a game on Boxing Day morning.  It was all going well until Liam sent the Scary Wolf in the direction of Wes's sheep when it was fully loaded with wool.  Liam saw it as revenge for the Pop-Up Pirate incident earlier in the season, but Wes was so incensed that he wound up flying into a bone-shattering challenge towards the end of the Northwich clash that afternoon.

"The weirdest bit of the whole sorry affair was that the Lego Shave a Sheep thing is actually a real game you can buy with money."

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Christian Smith "a medical mystery"

Doctors at the Countess of Chester have described Chester centre back Christian Smith as the most perplexing patient they have ever come across.

"It turns out that Smith is so cool, his heart beats just once every hour, on the hour," remarked a bewildered Dr James Wilson.

"This, we think, accounts for Smith's ability to remain calm under the most intense of pressure and is the reason that he has never booted a ball aimlessly out of play."

Dr Wilson was referring to Smith's insistence on playing himself out of trouble, rather than launching the football as far away as possible, like most centre backs at this level would.

"Ah, I don't mess about with that garbage," grinned the former Wrexham man.

"I have a mantra by which I play my football - 'if in doubt, mess about.'  I'd far sooner do a Zidane spin or a rainbow flick than kick the ball into the stands."

Whilst Smith's stylish, if lackadaisical, approach tends to pay off more often than not, it does have the unfortunate side-effect of leaving some people in distress.  On one occasion, after the former Clyde defender opted to do a few step overs on his own goal-line, two fans were hospitalised, having suffered panic attacks.

It's not only the fans who have suffered.  Neil Young himself was admitted to hospital earlier in the season, requiring his heart surgically removing from his mouth after Smith chose to nutmeg an onrushing striker on the edge of the 18 yard area.

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Northwich Victoria vs Chester FC - Match Caricature

Following weeks of tiresome posturing and smack talk, from the boardrooms down, Northwich and Chester finally locked horns yesterday, yielding a dramatic, if low quality, 1-1 draw.

Chester were missing George Horan and Matty McGinn, but took the lead early on, following a comically deliberate handball by the Vics goalkeeper. He was dispatched and replaced in goal by an outfielder, who immediately demonstrated that he was not an appropriate deputy by letting the resulting Wes Baynes free kick slither through his mate's gloves, and into the back of the net.  The Chester fans' roar of delight was tempered slightly by the audible "awww" that followed it, as the Blues faithful took pity on the hapless stand-in.

Meanwhile, a few really cool Chester fans ran on the pitch in celebration, 'cos that's dead ace and not at all the kind of thing you should grow out of wanting to do at five years old.

If Chester had thought that this would signal the start of a rout, they were mistaken - the new keeper found his feet, and Vics shut up shop, only attacking on the counter.  However, Michael Powell, who had already been haring about the place like a violent and hungry dog, clearly still considered the game to be too uneven.

Having failed to get himself banned for the occasion, Powell decided he could at least cut his day's work short, taking umbrage at an innocuous tackle by the Northwich right back and needlessly raising his arms.  The Vics number two also waved his arms aboutat head height like a nervous windmill, before hitting the deck clutching his face.  Given that there was minimal to no contact between the two, one can only imagine that this was a ploy by the player to conceal his identity, given that he was acting like both a girly-girl and a heinous cheat.

Though neither the referee nor his assistant, who had been two centimetres from the incident saw any reason to produce a card, the ref took a trip over to the assistant referee on the other side, who, despite having been about 80 yards away from what had happened, took it upon himself to advocate Powell's dismissal.  Meanwhile, the Northwich man returned to the field without so much as a yellow, and the kids in the stadium who were just yesterday enjoying festive cheer, were treated to the harsh life lesson, that sometimes, in the short term, cheats can prosper.

Northwich switched keepers at the break, and despite the new guy seeming even less suitable than the first one, Chester refused to test him, maybe through decency, lack of interest or possibly just plain bad tactics.  At one point the new goalie had a go at lobbing himself, and that was as close as Chester came for the rest of the match.

And so, inevitably, Vics got their equaliser.  Substitute Ryan Wade lashed the ball home at the back post in a crowded area, and the entire team ran and celebrated in front of the Chester bench.  There was no reaction from Neil Young and company however, as they were all perplexed as to why a supposedly title-challenging side would celebrate an equaliser at home against a team shorn of its captain, top scorer and set-piece specialist quite so exuberantly.

Having proven themselves an unpleasant, petty, tinpot club playing in their cup final, Northwich then went on to prove themselves incapable of winning against nine men after Wes Baynes got himself ejected from the field by flying in for a horrible tackle that had so many things wrong with it that, if it was a horse, it would have been shot.

As the full time whistle blew, the Jestrian considered how much there was to say about the game, and placing this against Neil Young's tendency to talk for hours on the blandest of games, bolted before the manager could do his press conference.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Christmas Break

No match report for Marine.  Chester won, we're top of the league, not much funny about that.  All in all, a success.

Anyway, we've been uploading articles daily for weeks on end, but we're going to take a break over Christmas, if only to allow Jeff Banks to enjoy the holiday period.

Do come back once Christmas is over, and I'm sure there'll be a suitably withering report of the Northwich game.

A couple of points of order for those of you who enjoy the Jestrian.  You can follow our Twitter feed, here.  This is updated daily with single headlines for those of you too busy to read the full articles.

You can like the Jestrian on Facebook, here.  This will give you updates to your news feed whenever the Jestrian uploads an article.

You can support the Jestrian by buying some merchandise, here.  Anyone who buys anything can also get a free MP3 of the MC Neil Young by emailing me their order number.  This also includes anyone who's already bought.

Finally, here is the MC Neil Young song again, to keep you going whilst we're away.


The Tall Peacock & Daniel Burns off of the Seals Podcast

Neil Young vs Notoriously Big Lupus - Merseyrail Hardnut by TheJestrian

Friday, 16 December 2011

Marine FC vs Chester FC - Match Acknowledgment

Chester return to Evo Stick action on Saturday as they make the short trip to Merseyside outfit Marine FC.

Marine have crept into play-off contention and currently lie in 6th place, suggestion that Kevin Lynch’s men will be a tough nut to crack for the hardest nut of them all, Neil Young.

Blues fans are expected the travel in their droves, news which has delighted Blues boss Young;

“Yeah I know they are coming to support us, but more importantly Merseyrail will make a right profit from this,” beamed the rail enthusiast.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to remind fans not to put their feet on the seats because we have cameras and you will be punished. I haven’t decided what the punishment will be yet but I’m aware Gary Jones’s house is in a bit of a state at the moment and he’s whispered about getting a cleaner on board so maybe it''ll be that. Or possibly compulsory attendance at our Cheshire Senior Cup games next season."

Chester are expected to have a near-full squad to choose from apart from long term absentee Ash Williams (remember him?) and suspended captain George Horan.

“It’s frustrating not being involved, but on the plus side this Christmas should be a belter now, I’ll definitely be having a few scoops,” cackled the skipper.

Marine will go into the game with confidence following an impressive sequence of results, and boast plenty of pace and creativity up front with former Barbados star Neil Harvey and the lively Aaron Rey. The Lilywhites can also call on ex-Chester triallist Carl Gargan to spearhead the attack.

“Ah, yeah I remember Gargsy...,” said Young, in a way that suggested he really didn’t remember him at all.

Recent studies have confirmed that the playing personnel on the day will be roughly 83% scouse, leading to fears that phrases such as “boss” could creep in. Officials have already warned that being a deemed a “wool” will result in an immediate dismissal.  Neil Young has tried to play down these fears by confirming that there has been a widespread crackdown on unnecessary scouseness at the club recently, leading to speculation that Jamie Rainford was actually shown the door after he passed comment on the number of “bizzies” at the FC United game.

In the interests of equality and diversity, travelling fans have been urged to show tolerance of their scouse hosts and Merseyside police have issued a warning to politely remind fans that waving £10 notes in a degrading manner will not be tolerated, and neither will lightly bouncing whilst saying “calm down, calm down,” in a way no Scouser ever actually has said it. Meanwhile, any mockery of Jimmy Corkhill or Ron Dixon could result in a caution.

Whilst the on-pitch battle will be fierce, there’s also off-the-field scores to be settled in the transport industry. Merseyrail supremo Neil Young is keen to prove that his company dominates Arriva, and what better place to prove it than the Arriva Stadium itself?

“I feel a bit dirty going to that place, but even though we didn’t think it was necessary to install toilets on our trains in this day in age, I’m still confident that we’re well better than that rabble. Me and the Garys have got a few chants lined up, and I’m asking fans to join in. When we sing “we hate Arriva too”, I want the fans to chime in with “they’re slow!”.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Programmed to Disappoint

Marine's decision to only print 320 programmes ahead of Chester's away trip to Rossett Park on Saturday has led to calls for a boycott from certain sections of the Blues support.

The Crosby-based side has announced an apparently overly-frugal intention to only print a limited number of programmes, despite the fact that they received a tidy sum for Halifax's Jamie Rainford in pre-season.

"Basically, we've decided that if an opposing team does something we're not happy with, we're not going to go," said Carlos Pick-a-Battle, who is already planning to boycott the Northwich clash.

"Until they cave and print 500 programmes, I won't be attending."

Scientists at the Royal Institute of Defining What a Boycott Is in Hampshire have admitted that it's hard to draw a distinction between people who boycott and people who just plain can't be bothered turning up.

"It seems likely that people who didn't want to spend their money on going to Northwich are glad of the excuse not to attend.  Given that you could phone and book tickets, it wasn't exactly made difficult for Blues fans, so it's actually a clever bit of spin from those who don't want to go, but still want to be considered a good fan," commented Dr Gerald Scaffolding.

Meanwhile, hardened boycotter Lenny Hurrah from Newton has found ways of using the power of the boycott to his advantage in other areas of his life;

"It started with the boycott to get rid of Terry Smith.  It was such a rush.  I boycotted the first game of the new club at Warrington 'cos The CFU Members didn't get to vote on the design of the badge.  I boycotted the home game against Radcliffe last season, 'cos I'd had a bad pie the game before.  Before you know it, I'm boycotting everything!

"My wife made Goulash for dinner one night, so I boycotted the snot out of that meal.  Taught her a lesson.  Boycotted my son's Nativity Play last year 'cos he only got the part of a shepherd.  He cried when I didn't go, but you gotta play hardball with these people.  I even boycotted a court appearance because I considered the charges to be bogus.  Turns out they can punish you for that though.  Those cells are rough, man."

Former England cricketer Geoffrey Boycott was unavailable for comment.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Commission Impossible

Getting into the Boxing Day clash between Chester and Northwich at Victoria Stadium looks certain to be an utter fiasco thanks to a hastily arranged posturing contest between board members.

CFC refused to sell tickets for the clash to their fans after Northwich rejected their request for 6% commission.

"It's disgusting that Northwich expect our staff to work for them for free," mused Chester's volunteer co-ordinator Carol Bennett.

Meanwhile, CFU rent-a-quote River Banks was in less-than-high spirits.

"There's no backing down on this one," growled Banks

"No-one will treat our club like this.  We deserve respect these days.  In the past, it was all about money, but now it's about fans and the community.  That's why, unless we get our 6%, we'll make it as awkward as possible for our own fans to attend."

Banks was later admitted to The Countess of Chester, requiring a nose-reattachment following a heated argument with his own face.

Meanwhile, Northwich Victoria's board stated their refusal of Chester's request of 6% was based on the fact that this rate of commission is "as far as we are aware unprecedented at this level."

This sounds a convincing statement, until you realise that "The Encyclopaedia of things which the Northwich Vics Board are unaware of" spans 63 volumes and when we tried to download the PDF version, the file was so large it broke our nineties laptop.

The not-at-all stupid compromise that Northwich, hilariously docked three points in the week for signing Tom Field, have come up with is that Chester fans can now buy tickets on the day, then trot over to the turnstile, making the whole process twice as long as it needs to be and rather destroying the point of making it all-ticket to begin with.

With this in mind, kick off is expected to be delayed until New Year's Eve, and a potentially great day out for all concerned will now probably end up being a greater logistical nightmare than making Christmas Dinner the day before.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Fans unwittingly "exiled"

After resolutions passed overwhelmingly by both the Chester FC Exiles and The City Fans United, the Exiles are now fully part of The CFU.  This means that all members of The City Fans United who live away from the immediate Chester area are automatically also members of the Exiles, leading to irritation from certain sections of support.

"I only want to be a member of The CFU," grumbled Essex-based Teddy Whippersnapper.

"I don't play darts, so I'm not sure what benefit there is to me in being a member of the Exiles.  What other clubs am I being signed up to against my will?  If I find myself in the gardening club, The WA, the Conservative Party or that club for people who like a lot of chocolate on their biscuit, I am going to be an angry young man."

The Chester FC Exiles is a group of fans who didn't care enough about their club to stay in the area, then gave themselves a name like they're Syrian dissidents or something.  Their main roles include harbouring a sense of entitlement that allows them to declare Ebbsfleet away in the FA Trophy as a 'great draw' whilst bemoaning the difficulties of getting a ticket for a Boxing Day game in the hyper-regional seventh tier of English football.

"Our main vision is for Chester to play their home games in London," admitted Exiles spokesperson Barry George.

"It should be as easy for us in the South to follow our local football club as it is for those who are local to the football club."

As part of its responsibility to the community, The Jestrian recently approached the government, lobbying them to allow Chester's non-Cheshire based fans back into the city, but it was discovered that they've actually chosen to live elsewhere, and there's nothing stopping them from returning.

Monday, 12 December 2011

North Ferriby United vs Chester FC - Bitter-Sweet Report

Chester's FA Trophy dreams were cruelly shattered on Saturday as their 5-1 thumping of North Ferriby United wasn't enough to ensure Wrexham's safe passage to Round Two.  Despite moving within a few minutes of a Wembley final and pocketing thousands of Euros in prize money, the competition is now as irrelevant as the Evo-Bond Prime Minister's Shield to Blues fans who crossed their fingers for a distinctly losable tie when the draw for the last 32 was made today.

Eventually, Chester drew a grim away tie at that weird Gravesend/Ebbsfleet side they have in the south.

"I hope we play the kids that I'm so excited about us bringing through - and then I hope they get roundly beaten.  We need to concentrate on the league now, no silly distractions like a big piece of silverware," said East Stand die-hard Mick McMock.

Club officials had hoped that the very outside chance of drawing the Blue Square Premier pace-setters in the next round would provide a welcome distraction from the controversy over Boxing Day's trip to Northwich Victoria, but quote-happy media king Jaffa Cakes confirmed that Wrexham's unceremonious dumping from a competition that could have aided their financial woes is as big a blow to the Blues as it is to their hilarious neighbours.

"We know the fans were desperate for an all-ticket trip down the A483 at the crack of dawn on a Sunday morning to find the pubs closed and riot police herding them around the streets like cattle before a damp squib of a defeat.  Now all we're left with is an all-ticket trip down the A54 at a sociable hour on a Bank Holiday for a pulsating top of the table clash.  Everyone's gutted.  Gutted."

Blues boss Neil Young was more upbeat, admitting after the match that the opportunity to get knocked out without anyone caring was a welcome relief as he "gets a bit nauseous" when venturing out of Radio Merseyside's broadcast radius;

"Just between me and you, I was dreading the idea that we might actually end up getting to Wembley.  It would've been on TV and everything - I'm just not comfortable with that level of exposure.  Next thing you know, I'm a style icon and everyone's wearing puffer jackets like it's the 90's again.  No thanks."

The game at Grange Lane was a straightforward win for Young's men, Michael Wilde and Matty McNeil netting before half time, allowing attentions to be turned to events elsewhere, in much the same way as at Garforth last season.  Chester scored a further three in the second half but were visibly deflated by the news filtering through from North Wales that Comical Wrexham were being beaten like they stole something.

Details of Chester's goals are somewhat sketchy since Chronicle word-smith The Tall Peacock opted to finish his Christmas shopping instead of making the journey to Humberside, leaving Chester fans pondering the question "If Chester score a goal and The Tall Peacock isn't there to Tweet it, does it actually count?"

Friday, 9 December 2011

North Ferriby United vs Chester FC - Likely Postponement Preview

Banned: No more Pop-Up Pirate on the coach,
says Neil Young
Neil Young’s men take a break from Evo Stick action this weekend, as they lay down the kitchen sealant and head to North Ferriby in the next round of the FA Trophy.

Ferriby were dismantled to the tune of six goals at the Exacta Stadium earlier in the season but have improved since then and have proved a tough nut to crack at Grange Lane. The Villagers manager Billy Heath was in an upbeat mood when questioned about how his side will approach the game.

"To be honest, we will try and beat them,” revealed Heath, shockingly.

Neil Young still has skipper George Horan sidelined through suspension and whilst nobody really knows anything about Chris Simm’s injury, Young should have a near full compliment of players to choose from.

“It’s a long trip but the lads are well up for it,” disclosed Young.

"Boredom is an issue on these coach journeys though. Some of the lads play cards, others play games on their phones. I’ve got Chris Pilsbury singing opera on my iPod which should help pass the time, just hope I don’t sing along loudly without realising everyone can hear me.

"Simmo usually does a bit of quilling - he loves it and produces some lovely stuff to be fair. I’ve had to ban Pop-up Pirate though, I’m not having that again.  Almost derailed the season last time, that did.”

Stand in skipper Michael Powell added that should the team win, Christmas songs will be played on the journey home.

“Mistletoe and Wine is a classic, and everyone likes The Darkness Christmas song. Gaz Jones is gonna dress up as Santa too, it’s gonna be a right hoot,” shrieked Powell.

“I’m not doing Christmas cards this year, although I am hoping to get a yellow one at the North Ferriby game in order to have Boxing Day off," added the midfielder.

The FA Trophy never fails to send The Devachat into meltdown with the repeated cries for Wrexham away in the next round, which rate as infinitely less tedious than the politcal debates in the Off-Topic Forum, but well below the standard of the recent and surprisingly interesting threads about space travel.

Popular Chronicle journalist The Tall Peacock, who revealed on the latest Seals Podcast that he sounds nothing like he looks, has confirmed he will be missing the game, with colleague, The Hairy Porcupine standing in on Twitter-duty.

"Oh what's even the point then?!" groaned a disappointed Michael Wilde upon discovering any goal he scores will not be covered in slightly more detail by The Peacock, thirty seconds after the official club Twitter feed first breaks news of the goal.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Sort it out, Young!

Following "Mis-Quoted Attendance-Gate" last Saturday, The City Fans United has launched an investigation into other areas of the club to ensure things are run smoothly, uncovering some alarming results.

The professional manner in which the club is run has won many plaudits this season, but after digging deeper, some cracks have begun to appear.

Due to an administrative error, rather than facing lower league Burscough on January 14th, Neil Young’s men will now take on a Zumba XI at the Exacta Stadium, whilst the entire Burscough squad has been booked in for a free session of the Latin-inspired, weight-loss dancing craze.

“It’s a little unfortunate but we have to treat the opposition with respect,” commented Blues boss Neil Young.

“I’ve had them watched and they’ve got a couple of big girls up front who can trouble defences at this level so I’m expecting a hard fought game. I think my missus is on the bench actually, and she’s got a cracking left foot on her.  Bosh!”

And further issues have been unearthed as it emerges that the refreshments stalls are desperately trying to rectify an order in time for the Zumba game.

“We’re not sure if we can change the order with it being so close to Christmas, but we accidentally ticked quiche instead of pies,” growled matchday co-ordinator Barry Hipkiss, pacing round the Exacta pitch last night.

“It raises all sort of logistical problems. How do we serve it? How much do we charge? Oh, and vegetarians confuse me too.  Do they like quiche?  Does anyone like quiche? I don’t know."

Meanwhile, police were called to the Exacta Stadium last night following reports that the Jestrian had broken into the ground.  Cheshire Constabulary found the culprit with his head in a very large barrel, scraping the bottom of it vigorously.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Oh it's all gone quiet over here

Following a second criminally dull game in succession at the Exacta Stadium, discussion has again turned to the lack of 'atmosphere' during Chester's home games this season.

And it seems a discussion doomed to fail, as most Chester fans demonstrate a basic misapprehension of the term.  Rather than realising that an atmosphere is formed via a shared rapport between everyone in the venue, it appears that most Cestrian teenagers equate 'atmosphere' with 'noise', considering the Exacta to be at its most atmospheric when a bunch of kids boorishly chant the refrain to Bob Marley's reggae classic "Three Little Birds" whilst someone smashes a snare drum in 4/4 time.

"I went to a restaurant with a great atmosphere the other day," said Harry Mac regular Roger Kidney-Stones.

"There was a group of young lads in the corner incessantly chanting 'Neil Young's Blue and White Carbonara' over and over."

Another frequenter of the Harry Mac, Gareth Ponyhorse, had this warning;

"It's important to create atmosphere by making regimented, often unpleasant noise.  Have you ever seen a replay of that snooker final between Dennis Taylor and Steve Davies?  One of the greatest snooker matches ever, but you could hear a pin drop as Taylor stepped up to sink that final black.  No atmosphere at all."

Meanwhile C-Blocker Terrence Guffaw boasted that his section outsang the Harry Mac during the Worksop game, showing that it's not just the kids who have failed to grasp the concept.

Scientists at The Royal Institute of Handy Soundbites About Atmosphere in Hastings have offered alternative explanations as to why the atmosphere at the Exacta falls so flat.

"It's mostly the fact that Chester fans are pretty chilled out and don't get all angry about little things like, for example, them Burnley fans you get," mused Dr Gerry Juicebar.

"It means that if you stand on the terrace at Chester, you can have a chat about what's going on in Neighbours at the moment or have a cheeky flick through the Guardian.

"In conclusion, it seems to me that most Chester fans don't really care about football until they're on a computer."

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Well, that was a miscalculation

Chester FC yesterday admitted that they had calculated Saturday's attendance wrongly, giving a revised figure of 2225, a total almost 400 greater than the figure originally quoted of 1850.

The amended figures have wide-reaching consequences, including rendering a perfectly good Jestrian article where we'd come up with reasons for the poor attendance entirely redundant.

And further controversy has arisen, as information found on a club pen-drive, accidentally left on a Merseyrail Train à Grand Distresse, has revealed that a the club used a similar counting method for tallying the votes of anyone who ran against Jeff Banks and Mark Howell for election to the board of The City Fans United.

Almost as disastrous, it means that dullard fans will now have a new, ill-founded confidence when they disagree with the attendance announced.

"I knew it was more like 2225," nodded Jimmy Anorak-Toggles, of the Harry Mac Terrace.

"I can count far better than automated machines, and this proves my narcissism right.  Now, whatever attendance is quoted, I'm going to take my ridiculous guess as the official figure, because clearly the club can't be trusted.

"What do you mean my brain can't compute numbers of that size just by looking?  2225, baby!  Read 'em and weep."

Chief Executive Pet Husky has also confirmed that other previous announcements have been made in error;

"We actually appointed Dave Challinor as manager, not Neil Young," admitted the Rugby League expert.

"Bit awkward, that one.  Youngy turned up on the first day and we realised we'd got the press release wrong.  Fortunately, he's done a decent job and hasn't noticed that the Direct Debit is set up to pay his salary into Challinor's bank account."

Monday, 5 December 2011

Chester FC vs Worksop Town - Match Twaddle

Chester ensured they remain top of the pile with a hard fought 2-0 over Worksop Town.

For the second home game running, the crowd was stunned by how quickly the grass grew.
The Blues best early chance came as Alex Brown was hauled down in a dangerous position. Most of the home crowd missed the incident as they were watching Barry Hipkiss doing his customary lap around the ground, and speculating as to how many games the legendary crack-a-smile coach organiser has actually seen. A club spokesman confirmed that whilst Hipkiss spends a lot of time doing laps of the Exacta, he does “occasionally glance at play”.

The deadlock was broken in the 33rd minute. Robbie Booth, with his worryingly receding hairline, whipped a dangerous delivery in the box which bounced off Michael Powell, who has enough quiff for both he and Booth, and into the net to give Neil Young’s men a lead that was perhaps harsh on the visitors. Powell celebrated near the touchline as coach Gary Powell applied some emergency product to the stand-in skipper's quiff, that had taken some damage in the windy conditions and had noticeably lost some of it’s renowned bounce.

Young himself was losing interest and sent Wilde on much earlier than usual, "just to spice things up". The lovable media-addict gave the Blues an added dimension with some physical front play and the second man up front proved a wise tactical move by the Merseyrail Hardnut. After 72 minutes the lead was doubled after some impressive hold-up play by Old McNeil (the Chester striker rather than a novelty Irish pub) resulted in a lay-off to Powell who made no mistake from close range.

That was just about the end of any footballing action as the remaining twenty minutes turned even more scrappy than the previous seventy. The referee decided to make the affair just a bit more tedious by a issuing a string of silly bookings and taking his sweet time about it. The fussy nature of the official appeared to cause some friction between both sets of players which spilled over into the tunnel after the final whistle, with Worksop keeper Jon Worsnop particularly keen to ensure he is more well-remembered after he departs the Exacta this time, by brawling with Michael Taylor - a man who you just wouldn’t mess with.

The game also saw the launch of a new initiative by the club, as they planted undercover agents around the ground, posing as frail old men in an attempt to gauge whether or not the fan base is really buying into the community ethos. Media gent Jaffa Cakes was known to be beaming after CCTV captured a fake elderly chap, who had conveniently dropped his walking stick at the final whistle, being immediately assisted by a young female, thus proving that we really are the Flanders family of the footballing world.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Chester FC vs Worksop Town - Match Pre-Mortem

Chester return to Evo Stick North action tomorrow as they entertain Worksop Town at the Exacta Stadium.

The in-form Tigers lie in mid-table and are spearheaded by manager Martin McIntosh who took over from the man with the best name in non-league, Peter Rinkcavage, in 2010.  Whilst Rinkcavage's reign wasn't particularly remarkable, we'll take any chance to name-check the guy.

Notable former Worksop players include Spurs legend Chris Waddle - one of the finest players of his generation who played in one of the most successful England teams of recent times, and Leo Bertos.

Former Chester City goalkeeper Jon Worsnop is set to take his place in goal for The Tigers and is a new man these days, having recovered from the psychological damage wrought by getting shouted at by Paul Carden whenever he fumbled a cross.

“Cardy had a problem with me but did you see me attack him for annoyingly booting the ball out of play every time we kicked off?” argued a not-at-all bitter Worsnop.

Worsnop's name also looks a bit like the name of the team he plays for, which is fun.

Worksop currently boast striker Massiah McDonald amongst their ranks and journalists The Tall Peacock and Tennis Ball have reportedly become increasingly excited as the week has drawn on.  Rumours have emerged today that the pair have offered a bribe to the match referee, asking that he sends McDonald off so they can use the headline ‘he’s not the Massiah, he’s a very naughty boy’.

Young will have to plan for the absence of skipper George Horan who unsurprisingly faces a four match ban for that silly sending off in that silly cup competition. Michael Powell will have to be uncharacteristically cautious as he sits only two bookings away from suspension, meaning that in two games time it’s more than likely that he will induce a suspension. Powell has been asked to get any frustration out of his system by instead committing fouls against club staff rather than the opposition and was recently pretend cautioned by Neil Young for a tug on Barrie Hipkiss’s tie, and penalised for a cynical challenge on Volunteer Co-ordinator Carol Bennett.  As she lay face-down on the tarmac of the Exacta car park, Powell sprinting off into the sunset, Bennett was heard to mutter "gotta take one for the team, I s'pose."

The Blues have fully stocked the club shop in anticipation of doing a roaring Christmas trade, and are hoping that business will be swift with tomorrow’s match likely to be the last home game before Santa arrives. New in stock are Chester FC cuff links, that you’d never be allowed to wear in any respectable office, and even if you were, you’d be mercilessly ribbed by colleagues. You can also get your hands on a trendy beanie hat, which no doubt will be modelled by Michael Wilde at some stage if it hasn’t happened already.

'Buy a Player as a Gift' is another initiative being promoted by the club, although a club spokesman was quick to dismiss fears that Joe Ormrod could spring out of a box in your living room on Christmas Day, confirming that it is indeed just a sponsorship opportunity

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Elves in Santa's Worksop

Neil Young faces revolt this weekend, as several players have indicated their intention to swerve Saturday's match in favour of going Christmas shopping.

Chester play host to Worksop in two days time, but with many players working through the week, Saturdays represent their only real chance to buy gifts.

"I've just had a kid, so I've gotta do that thing that parents do where they shower their new-born child with presents, even though they're too young to grasp the idea of gift-giving," explained Popular Michael Wilde.

"I'll try and get it done real quick so I can play the second half."

Meanwhile, right back Liam Brownhill is anxious of leaving his shopping too late;

"Last year I played for Droylesden every Saturday in the lead up to Christmas and couldn't do any shopping.  Suddenly, it's Christmas Eve and I find myself getting the missus a model of the Fat Controller from that weird toy section they have in petrol stations.  I got away with it, cos we've always had a laugh about the fact that the Fat Controller is called Sir Topham Hat these days, 'cos of political correctness, but it was a close call."

Whilst sympathetic, Neil Young has insisted he expects all players to be available for selection come Saturday.

"We've all got shopping to do.  We've even got a Secret Santa at the club.  I got Jeff Banks.  Dunno what I can get him for a fiver.  Maybe another one of those suits he wears?

"The fact remains that we are a football team, and anyone who calls me to tell me they're picking up their Christmas Tree and can't make the match is going to get locked in a Merseyrail Bullet Tram overnight."