Monday, 24 December 2012
With Blues fans out of pocket for an ultimately pointless journey at an already expensive time of year, many have taken it upon themselves to blame various human beings for the meteorological conditions. The referee has taken the brunt of the abuse, with some stating that he is a 'disgrace' and calling for his sacking.
"The ref should have called the match off based on the weather forecast," whined one fan, who had access to the exact same forecast before choosing to travel.
In any event, you cannot call a match off based on a weather forecast, as these are notoriously unreliable. Indeed, some vaguely more sensible Blues accepted this and instead chose to criticise the match official's decision to pass the pitch fit to play at 12.30.
"I obviously wasn't there to see the pitch at that time, but it was definitely the wrong decision," frothed Henry Drainpipes, away day regular.
Meanwhile, scientists have confirmed that yes, of course a pitch can be playable at 12.30 but not at 13.40, for goodness' sake.
Others have complained that Workington's desperation to actually play the football match that they had travelled to see is to blame for the entire debacle, whilst Neil Young, who didn't want the game played, has escaped criticism.
"Obviously Youngy shouldn't be criticised, but then nor should anyone else really, so it's a bit inconsistent, isn't it?", mused Dr Gerald Breadbasket from the Royal Institute of Reasoned Voices. "Research shows that some things are just no-one's fault, however much you might want a scapegoat. You took the risk, and on this occasion, events out of anyone's control meant that it didn't pay off. If you accept this, you'll probably manage to be a bit more philosophical about things when these unfortunate events come to pass, and you'll probably have a happier life for it."
Chester's next game is against Droylesden on Boxing Day, provided the referee doesn't cause the ground to freeze half an hour before kick off.
Thursday, 20 December 2012
For those interested (and it's never clear how many people that is), there is no set date for a return. The Jestrian will merely pop up again if and when the will to Jest returns. If you need a laugh in the mean time, there's a thread on Deva Chat which started off as being about Neil Young's salary, before descending into being about whether it's ok to discuss Neil Young's salary. It was locked just before someone questioned whether it's ok to discuss whether it's ok to discuss Neil Young's salary.
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Wednesday, 19 December 2012
As it transpires, Harrogate Town are a separate entity to Harrogate Railway, a revelation which disappointed Chester manager and train boffin Neil Young.
"Thought I was gonna be able to chat choo-choos with their officials," sulked the Blue Chief. "Had a right evening planned."
With competition for places fierce, things could hot up further still with Tony Gray eager for a recall, Scott Brown recovering from injury, Professor Plum impressing in training and Colonel Mustard offering a different option on the right wing.
Manager Young is wary of the opposition and has stated that the club is in "a false position", which is his way of describing North Yorkshire.
A familiar face to Chester fans, Harrogate have Lee Elam in their squad - something that most football teams have been able to boast at one time or another.
"He's had 16 clubs now - you try taking that many on a golf course, you'd get disqualified," mused Young.
Meanwhile, Adam Bolder is considered a rock in midfield for the visitors.
"Easy, now...", warned the Pun Police.
With on field matters at an all-time high, fans are looking to get their moaning fix elsewhere, with Deva Chat controversies raging in the past week over such spectacularly dull issues as pies, players celebrating on the wrong side of the pitch, the fact that Neil Young is paid for his job and the fact that Nathan Jarman likes to play, having travelling from Scunthorpe and all.
"I don't even like pies, but the fact is I need the hormone release that comes with having a good gripe," admitted one poster. "And let's be fair now - those Racecourse monstrosities are not pies, so it's a cause worth fighting."
Furthermore, the players have considered the request that they celebrate in front of the West Stand now and then, but have ruled it out on the basis that celebrating in front of a wall of silence can be quite disheartening as it can have the effect of suddenly reminding you that football just doesn't matter.
"Besides, the West Stand has had its excitement for the year when they cheered a man throwing the ball back on the pitch on Saturday. Bizarre that they should choose that moment to break a five year silence, but each to their own I suppose," mumbled club historian Jazz Drummer.
A win for the Blues will keep them top of the tree over Christmas, before the tree is taken out and left in the yard for the duration of January.
Tuesday, 18 December 2012
In the week that the Queen was invited into a cabinet meeting at Westminster, it has been reported that Neil Young will similarly sit in on board meetings.
"We figured that if the Queen is going to be in on the government of her country, why shouldn't Youngy have a say on pies and stuff?", confirmed Gherkin, who also announced that, in order to mark the occasion, the Blues Boss has been presented with 60 Chester City coasters which were leftover stock from the old club shop.
The decision to allow Young into the boardroom had sparked major discontent amongst Seals fans earlier in the week, after Gherkin's initial statement made it sound as though the manager was going to be made a director.
"Er... nah... that woulda been stupid, wouldn't it?", spluttered Gherkin. "Never the plan, that. Honest."
The board do, however, have more decisions to make on this subject. Part of Antartica is to be named Queen Elizabeth Land after the reigning monarch, and insiders have suggested that Young is holding out for this kind of treatment too.
"At the moment, the most likely solution is to name a block of four seats in the West Stand 'Neil Young Land'," confirmed TCFU media addict Jitter Bugs. "Neil has other ideas, though. He wants an actual Youngy Land - a Neil-based theme park built in the corner of the car park. Says Merseyrail are willing to donate a ghost train, and everything."
Meanwhile, with Young now having spent almost three years at the club, preparations have started for his Leather Jubilee in 2013.
"We're gonna take him down to the Dee and let him wave from the Mark Twain Showboat," nodded Bugs.
Monday, 17 December 2012
"I reckon we'll ace the 'Pull a train with your teeth' task," enthused an excited manager Neil Young.
Chester took the lead early, as Ben Mills guided home a Dave Hankin cross.
"Studies have proven that if an infinite number of Dave Hankins, with an infinite amount of footballs, delivered an infinite number of crosses, all of them would hit Ben Mills... well, all except one which would ironically wipe out a typewriting monkey," confirmed definitely qualified statistician Dr Pete Sake from the Royal Institute of Exact Sciences.
Stortford got back level, but not before a bizarre passage of play which saw the referee give a penalty before revoking it, on the apparent basis that, if the Bishops player hadn't been fouled, the ball would have wound up with another player who was offside.
The Blues had much to thank defender Paul Linwood for, as he broke from the pack to convince the officials that if the flag had gone up before the referee had blown his whistle, the penalty shouldn't count. Linwood's powers of persuasion have grown through his foray into the world of business and the referee was ultimately satisfied that the fact that foul definitely took place in the passage of play preceeding the penalty was irrelevant, and reversed his decision.
"Some people would have played Dom Collins rather than Linners, but he's been watching lots of Derren Brown videos and I had a feeling today that we might the skills that he's picked up," smirked Young, self-satisfied with another excellent selection.
The Stortford players took the decision as a personal affront, and for the rest of the game indulged in such a sickening display of referee intimidation that even Neil Young was heard to mutter that it was "a bit much".
Several players towered over the diminutive referee, foaming at the mouth like rabid dogs. The visitors' captain Reece Prestedge was at the centre of the angry protestations. PA warbler Cleggy showed his sense of humour minutes later when the Bishops skipper levelled the game, ironically pronouncing the midfielder's name as "Prestige", following his utterly classless antics.
"In our defence, we knew there'd be a lot of kids at the game, and we saw a great chance to demonstrate to them that bullying is perfectly fine so long as a decision in a football match is at stake," said a Bishop's Stortford official who will remain nameless, just in case you can be sued for making up quotes on a blog. (No-one said that really. Shh.)
In the mean time, Chester had a bit of a giggle and attempted to play on with two match officials and three opposition players still having a ruck down by the corner flag.
"We got away with it for a good minute or so - top pranking," raved kitman Jimmy Soul, who was a permanent fixture on the side line throughout the game, presumably on the off chance that someone was going to need a new sock at some stage.
Eventually, it took a second half hat-trick from Craig Curran to give Chester the convincing scoreline with which they left the match. Following a whirlwind display whereby the on-loan wide man, along with fellow substitute Marc Williams, turned the game on its head, it was confirmed that a local company had offered to extend Curran's loan deal on the condition that the Blues develop a bell.
"Something like that, anyway," murmured an uncertain Neil Young.
Meanwhile, striker Williams has become a Deva Chat favourite, meaning that he will now have to triple his performance levels to stay in the manager's plans.
Friday, 14 December 2012
The game could still be at risk if the pitch doesn't stand up to the recent freeze, and manager Neil Young knows only too well what can go wrong in such situations.
"A few weeks ago I ate a Vienetta straight out of the freezer," recounted a haunted Young. "Cracked one of my teeth right good and got a wicked brain-freeze. The missus came downstairs to find me rolling on the floor clutching my dome. Not dignified, I can tell you."
With Sean Clancy and Luke Denson out of the door this week, Young is rumoured to be lining up more departures, and has refused to deny rumours that the decision as to who will leave the club is to be made with recourse to a half-time game of Giant Jenga.
"That's just an option at this stage," murmured the Big Blue Cheese. "We're also trying to source a Twister mat."
Bishop's Stortford face a lengthy trip north from Hertfordshire, having managed to find a company which illictly provides huskies for transport across the UK. The town is known as the home of BBC Radio 1 DJ Greg James, a fact which was of little interest to CFU media boffin Jaffa Cakes.
"Come back when you've got Colin Murray," smirked Cakes, clutching his 'I heart Fighting Talk' mug.
Meanwhile, Chronicle journotron The Tall Peacock is now right back in the swing of things.
"He's the journalistic equivalent of Ben Mills," commented Young. "Ok, he was away for a bit, but there's only so long you can keep him sidelined before you get him back in the action. The tweets that he brings to the table are first rate."
Also on the media side of things, the fifth issue of fanzine The Blue and White is now out, and editors The Bellamy Brothers are expected to take drastic action in order to get sales.
"We've received intelligence that a hostile gang has planned the kidnap of all official programme sellers, in order to take the prime selling spots for themselves," confirmed PC Repair of the Chester Constabulary.
A win for Chester will mean that they retain a startling record of only having dropped five points all season. But it still won't stop Deva Chatters starting threads about how we're playing the wrong formation or the wrong tactics.
Thursday, 13 December 2012
"I've got my observations pre-prepared and I'm ready to provide some catchy soundbites," confirmed Young. "As per usual, I've got loads to say and some quotes are going to have to be left out in favour of the stronger ideas. It's tough making those calls, as all the words want to be getting said regularly but it's what I'm paid to do."
Indeed, Young has now spoken for over an hour in his pre-match press conference for 57 games in a row, and the Blue Chief will be looking to continue the run tomorrow.
"We've not had a midweek game, so the vocal cords are fresh and hopefully we'll be good to go," nodded The King of The Seals. "There's always the danger that they may be a little slow getting going, but I'll do the right preparation - have some lemon and honey."
The piece will then move on to discuss any ongoings at the club this week.
"There've been a few ins and outs, so there should be plenty of competetion for places in this middle bit of the article," confirmed The Jestrian.
At this point, Chester's opponents will be considered, with the fact that they have a funny name likely to be the prime source of material.
"They made a pun on my name before our last game, so hopefully I'm safe this time," wished manager Rod Stringer.
With such subjects out of the way, The Jestrian is then expected to continue its promotion of Chester Chronicle journalists as micro-celebrities, with underdog Sharks Prowling carrying out his usual exercise of hoping that it might be one of those rare articles where he takes primacy over colleague The Tall Peacock. It is unknown how those musings will conclude, though early rumours suggest that a trusty cryptic implication that Dan Burns off of the Seals Podcast is the Jestrian may be due to make an appearance.
The preview will then be rounded off with a last line that says something about what will happen if Chester win, with any Deva Chat hysteria likely to be referenced here.
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
Crafty Blues players had hoped to co-ordinate a couple of bookings to allow them either Boxing Day or New Year's Day off, but a quick check of the discipline tab on chesterfc.com has left them tearing their hair out.
"I'm not sure if I'm on three or if I've picked up another since then," fretted right back Wes Baynes. "I've gotta get this timed right, otherwise New Year's Eve is down the pan. The whole community comes out for a Baynesy disco, I need to make sure I've got the day after off."
Antoni Sarcevic remains confident that he is one caution shy of sitting a match out, giving him the tricky choice of December 26th or January 1st.
"I do like to get a good fill on Christmas Day, so maybe Boxing Day is best," mused 'Sarce'. "New Year's is a bit over-rated anyway - too expensive and I don't know the words to Auld Lang's Syne."
"Might just see what opportunities present themselves though - I want to get full value for the yellow card.
The practice is nothing new around the club. Blues fans were left smarting for weeks last year when Michael Powell, incensed at his own uncharacteristic failure to be suspended for the Boxing Day clash with Northwich Victoria, acted out by waving his hands near the face of Vics defender John Disney, who hit the ground like a man who'd suddenly forgotten how legs work.
"I understand the players' frustration at having to play these games when everyone else is off work," sympathised manager Neil Young. "I'd try it myself, but last time I got a touchline ban, Gaz Powell told me I had to come along and sit in the stands anyway. Buzzkill - I'd planned to go paintballing with my friends Chopper, Big Dog and The Goose."
Meanwhile, confirmation has seeped through that Chester's home match with Harrogate next Wednesday will take place despite Harrogate's involvement in the West Ridings Cup the night before. This news was tweeted by Chronicle ink artist The Tall Peacock, who spent the rest of the day excitedly reporting on the fact that for a brief moment today, it was 12:12:12 on 12/12/12.
"Come back when you've seen 12:12:12 on 12/12/1212," scoffed William Longespée, 3rd Earl of Salisbury.
Tuesday, 11 December 2012
"I was out there all morning with a pick-axe," confirmed Blues Bar manager Raving Larry. "Got plenty of ice for the J2Os now, and I felt like one of them North Pole explorer types. Dead exciting, it was."
Meanwhile, manager and hip-hop legend Neil Young has taken a more drastic approach, setting his suede loafers on fire, before putting them on and strutting around the Exacta pitch singing "Here come the hotstepper" by Ini Kamozi.
"The boss should always do whatever it takes to get the game on," grimaced a plainly uncomfortable Young, the charred remains of his socks clinging to his feet.
Meanwhile, behind the scenes, club CEO Pet Husky has been working on ensuring that the Blues don't lose revenue during the frosty months.
"We've already linked up with Cheshire Phoenix, and now we're thinking maybe we should extend that and welcome Flintshire Freeze into the family," explained the Husky. "That way, if it's too cold to play football, we can stage an ice hockey match instead and everyone wins. There's lots of fighting in ice hockey so we'll even have the Halifax fans back for that one, if they wish."
With slippery roads and treacherous pathways, Luke Denson has decided that the journey to work isn't going to be much fun for a while and has returned on loan to Colwyn Bay.
And Young has told Chronicle scribble-man The Tall Peacock that there may be more departures.
"Yeah, there's the 18:56 terminating at Lime Street, there's the 19:07 via Rock Ferry and... no, wait I don't do the trains anymore, why are you asking me about departures?", stropped Young, storming off.
If the game does go ahead on Saturday, fans will be invited to enter into a prize draw for the opportunity to playing curling on the pitch at half-time, using Gary Powell as the broom.
Monday, 10 December 2012
The Blues are now six points clear of the next nearest challenger Guiseley, and given that they've only dropped five points all season, a third title in a row is now a foregone conclusion.
"Just gonna put my feet up now," swaggered manager Neil Young. "Might swerve the Bishop's Stortford game next weekend, and trot down to the Greyhound to do some Christmas shopping instead."
The Blues took the lead through Dave Hankin who was back in the starting line-up for the first time in weeks. The goal marked the 57th game in succession in which Chester have scored, and the players marked it by replicating Gazza's "dentist chair" celebration, but using Heinz Tomato Ketchup instead of bottled water.
"I was tasting it for the rest of the game," admitted Hankin, later. "Gave me a right craving for a hot dog."
Hankin then turned provider as his cross fell for Ben Mills in the area, and the former Macclesfield man made no mistake, leading to a sigh of relief from every Seals fan in the vicinity.
"There was a little bit of a concern that Millsy might have done a Torres," explained Young. "I didn't quite spend fifty million on him, but it wasn't far off - we figured we could stretch to it, what with all the 20p pledges on Deva Chat. So it's good that it turns out he still knows where the goal is."
Chester found a third in the second half when a Wes Baynes corner was headed in by George Horan. This is an occurence which feels like it takes place every week, but probably hasn't actually happened all that often.
With the game wrapped up, Young waved his players off the pitch, citing that they needed to rest up before next weekend's clash with The Bishops.
The move drew criticism from some, especially as Brackley's Steve Diggin netted twice to make things tense, but the Blues ran out 3-2 winners, much to the delight of their manager.
"This is a watershed moment in our season, no-one can stop us now," raved Young before breaking into an exuberent rendition of the 'Soulja Boy' dance.
With sub-zero temperatures expected, fans have been asked to help put the covers on the Exacta pitch or, failing that, everyone is asked to pick up a can of de-icer on their way to the ground on Saturday.
Friday, 7 December 2012
"We need our Chorley for the season," explained Proportionate Blue off of the Deva Chats before starting a brainstorming session. "Brackscum has a good, witty ring to it. Or Scumley. Brackley Scumtown?"
Inexplicably, Brackley currently sit third in the league a point behind the equally unlikely Guiseley in second and with a game in hand. Meanwhile, Halifax are a massive 20 points behind Chester. Yeah, that's right, twenty points. Know your place, Shaymen.
Chester are without Dom Collins and Scott Brown for the clash, with both suspended, whilst training was cancelled this week after several players called in sick.
"I just got a string of phonecalls from the lads, all with suspicious-sounding sore throats, saying they couldn't show up," mused Neil Young, talking to the Jestrian whilst he was supposed to be on the phone to the Seals Podcast. "I've heard reports that they were embroiled in a pretty tense game of High Stakes Snap at Gary Powell's house. If I find there's any truth in that rumour, people are going to be in trouble. Not inviting Youngy? Youngy's an expert Snapper. Don't leave Youngy out. Youngy."
With ice and rain sweeping the country, Brackley had confirmed that the game is fine to go ahead, with a press release stating that St James Park is perfect playing condition. However, manager Jon Brady has confirmed that this was a somewhat confused message.
"We asked the pitch inspectors to take a look at the St James Park pitch, and they went down to Exeter," despaired the former Chester City Aussie. "I wouldn't mind, but if you were going to get the wrong SJP, surely you'd go to Newcastle?"
Amongst the more notable Brackley players is keeper Billy Turley who quit the club earlier in the season, only to return after Brackley registered a heavy loss in their first game without him.
"He's basically a goalkeeping version of Steve Ashton," nodded Neil Young.
A victory for the Blues will see them strengthen their grip on the number one spot, which they've managed to maintain despite not having played all that well for about six weeks now.
Thursday, 6 December 2012
Taking advantage of a society which rather peculiarly values the defacing of clothing, so long as the grafitti is the work of someone who people might know, Blues players will congregate in the bar to scrawl all over shirts and other merchandise. Antoni Sarcevic, having been burned earlier in the week, is thought to be reluctant in his attendance.
Meanwhile, other Seals are thought to be smarting over reports that Ben Mills will have his own stall, signing his "let's all do the Milbot" t-shirt.
"I've been here since day one, why don't I have a shirt?", grumbled captain George Horan. "Just because I don't have a novelty celebration, there's plenty of slogans you could use with a picture of me... "Being 100% fit is for wusses"... "You say 'striker', I say 'climbing frame"... "Witton away was proper boss"... there's gold in there."
The event is attracting a lot of buzz from fans, but also from the wider community.
"I had Ian Howard do some plastering round my house," explained Graham Pummicestone from Upton, who knows nothing about football. "He got it all done, proper smooth, so I'm gonna get him to sign a brick for me."
It has also been confirmed that kitman Jimmy Soul will be in attendance, signing copies of his best-selling autobiography "My Journey So Far".
"I'd recommend it as a great stocking filler," advised Blues manager Neil Young. "It's a real rollercoaster ride. I don't want to give out any spoilers or anything, but his anecdote about the time he had to open a new packet of socks because he'd only packed one of George's stockings is heart-wrenching to say the least."
Attendees will also be able to sip mulled wine thanks to Bar Manager Raving Larry. This would be a novelty at most clubs, but then most clubs don't sell Rosé in the refreshment stalls at home matches.
And with good reason.
Wednesday, 5 December 2012
The news has been welcomed by fans, as The Gherkin has a good track record in business, time to devote to the cause and is also benefited by the fact that, even though his name has been bandied around the club for years, most fans have no idea what he looks like.
"It means I can basically wander about the place and I won't have busybodies coming up to me asking when we're bringing real pies back or why we still haven't signed Ben Mills," enthused The Gherkin, during his first press conference.
The Mickle Trafford-based business wizard made his name in the corporate world with QHP Ltd, a company he formed in 1987. Standing for Quality Hydraulic Power, QHP is one of Europe's leading manufacturers of gas loaded bladder, piston and diaphragm accumulators, which are words that we've all seen before, but never in that order.
"I think it sets me up well for taking a football club forward, because once upon a time footballs were made from a pig's bladder," nodded The Gherkin, sagely.
Meanwhile, former Blues chief executive Asher Ste has been elected as vice chairman. Asher oversaw Chester's successful first season before returning to his role with MBNA, which is an American basketball league or something. With the Blues posting a loss last year, Asher decided to stand for election, with a manifesto which simply read "you really can't cope without me, can you?"
Blues fans are currently delighted at the appointments, given that both characters have a solid track record in business, overlooking the fact that they have gotten to that point through skilfully maximising the profit gleaned from their customer base.
"Everyone always talks about wanting Chester to be a community club, but just at the moment there's a bit of a fad for wanting experienced businessmen in charge," explained the Chronicle's Shaving Pigs, standing in for The Tall Peacock. "Of course, to make a successful business, you explore every profit-making avenue available and make the customer pay as much as possible. And it'll only take another proposed price increase for us to see fans turn on the very concept they are currently so ferociously supporting."
Indeed, with Blues fans characteristically confused as to what they actually want from the club, the job of the new men in charge is utterly impossible, so good luck to them with that.
Meanwhile, proving that no-one can actually retire from service to Chester FC, Dumbell Lift, who stepped down from the board only a couple of weeks ago, will continue as Company Secretary.
Tuesday, 4 December 2012
The midfielder had thought that he was merely signing an extension through to the end of next season, but Sarcevic admits that he didn't actually read the fine print.
"Turns out that Youngy has slipped in some clauses on the sly," fumed the former Crewe man. "First I knew about it was this morning, when I get a call from the gaffer asking why I've not been over to mow his lawn yet. Apparently I signed up to do his grass every other Tuesday."
And the King of the Seals has shown no remorse.
"I'm always telling the lads, they need a good eye for detail," insisted Young. "Especially at this level, where the players need a second job - it's a really employable skill. I'm hoping that Sarce learns from this. Or if he hasn't already, that he does after a few weeks of coming round to put the rubbish out. Mrs Young's particularly delighted I've pulled that one off. She hates manoeuvring those wheelie bins."
Sarcevic's waste duties don't stop there. He is also charged with separating out the recycling.
"I've never got my head round that," confessed Young. "When does glass become plastic? I don't know... it's madness."
The sneaky ruse has, however, been branded short-sighted by those in the know, with insiders indicating that centre-back Dom Collins is now reluctant to sign a contract extension.
"Dom's been brilliant this year, but now his future looks in jeopardy," said an anonymous source, who looked suspiciously like Collins himself. "He was all set to sign the new contract that had been put in front of him, but then he heard about Sarce's fate and read through the document properly.
"He discovered that Neil had slipped in a condition that obliges Dom to scream 'Youngy is my hero!' every time he jumps for a header - and that's just not workable."
The practice is nothing new at the club. When Iain Howard first joined Chester, he was soon dismayed to discover that he had signed a pledge to fight for his position with a slew of left-wingers, many of whom would often be brought in whilst the plasterer was right at the top of his game. Young himself, meanwhile, fell victim to the same trap.
"I was so excited to be named Chester boss that I signed the contract without reading it through," recounted the Blue Chief. "Wound up having to wear that puffer coat for a year and a half before they'd let me have a proper anorak. I learnt my lesson, and I'm just trying to make sure the players do the same."
Monday, 3 December 2012
The Blues were 1-0 up inside 10 minutes, with Antoni Sarcevic tapping home a rebounded Wes Baynes free kick.
"I just about got to the ball in time," recounted Sarcevic. "Didn't think I was going to get there, but fortunately Movember's over, so I was carrying a tiny bit less moustache weight and so I had the agility to get in and poke the ball home."
Baynes himself had a goal struck off moments later as the linesman decided that he didn't mean it.
"Deffo a cross, that," the assistant tweeted to the referee, who duly ruled it out.
With the score 1-0 at half-time, Worcester found their way back in, as John Danby successfully managed to get beaten by yet another screamer, cranking his tally up into double figures for the season.
"Sometimes you gotta make 'em look a bit flash by getting a stylish dive out for the cameras," explained Danby. "This one was pretty good regardless, but I threw a dive into the mix anyway - proper dench."
Chester hit back with three goals in fifteen minutes, Craig Curran and Iain Howard netting headers before Matty McGinn dispatched a penalty much to the upset of Jarman, who thought that he should have been allowed to take it.
"My fault really," admitted manager Neil Young. "I forgot to tell him that Matty is Chester's penalty taker. Just figured everyone in football knew, given that "McGinn (pen)" sprang up on the scoresheet twice a week last season."
Jarman later took to Twitter to vent his frustration - an indiscretion labelled as a "one-off" by those who haven't read his Wikipedia entry. Meanwhile, rumours circulated after the game that Jarman's displeasure was based in the fact that he is due a bonus for every goal scored - a practice which has somehow yet to be stamped out of professional football.
"Goal bonuses are as bad as match-fixing," said Dr Cherrypicker from The Royal Institute of Someone Please Stop This Madness in Vicars Cross. "Paying someone a sum of money to alter how they play, possibly for the worse?
"Picture this - last game of the season, Ben Mills is square, goal at his mercy. An easy pass from Jarmo and Chester score and win the league. But wait! Jarmo needs a new Xbox controller! He takes the shot himself, dreaming of the two player game of Forza Motorsport he's going to enjoy later. Bang! Hits the outside of the post and goes wide. Suddenly, Chester go out in the play-offs, Young fails to keep the team together, a slide to mid-table follows, Young departs, fans stop coming, Chester drop back down into the Evo Stik and the next thing you know, we're all having to go to Prescot Cables. And nobody needs that ever again."
Chester now look ahead to a monster clash with Brackley Town - a sentence which is a sobering reminder of the level at which we play these days.
Friday, 30 November 2012
Neil Young has suffered a slight blip in preparation, with chief scout Alex Hay once getting the wrong end of the stick when given his orders.
"Alex has been checking out Worcester Sauce instead of Worcester City," sighed Young. "I've been planning for the fearsome strikeforce of Lea & Perrins all week."
And Young has a striker situation of his own to resolve.
"I think two games is enough for me to make my point about Ben Mills having to work his way back into the team, so I can probably play him tomorrow," admitted Young. "It's a bit like when there's one bit of pizza left - you've gotta go through the whole rigmarole of pretending you're happy for your friend to have it before you gleefully pick it up and demolish it yourself."
"It's just social etiquette, but I think Ben has spent the requisite amount of time on the bench now."
Chester go into the game with the farcical CFU elections finally over. With new faces on board, old ones wave goodbye, with Devachat head honcho Dumbell Lift tipped to be sorely missed.
"I've given all I can to the club," said Lift. "Now it's time to concentrate on my personal life - spend a bit of time with some Irn Bru, see what's next."
Lift was a great advocate of the "one person, one vote" system, cleverly defeated by three of the new board members, each of whom figured they had the right to tell everyone who to vote for. Incumbent chairman Pilsbury Doughbeard steered clear of such tactics, right up until the vote was announced, at which point he took it upon himself to tell everyone who they should have voted for instead. So that should make things nice and awkward in the boardroom.
On the pitch, Chester have still only dropped five points in the league - a remarkable feat according to AWOL journalist the Tall Peacock.
"The performances against Histon and Corby alone ought to have dropped six points between them, so goodness knows how the record is as it is," mused the Peacock, cradling his newborn Peachick.
Young is keen to continue the record, this week calling in a philosopher to assess the old adage "you can't win them all".
"It turns out that 'winning them all' is entirely within the spectrum of possibility," revealed Young. "Apparently it's bizarre that anyone would operate on the assumption that you can't. I got this philosophy guy in and he said that you don't tend to win them all, but that it's entirely plausible as a concept. So there's something we've learnt."
Thursday, 29 November 2012
On the sort of cold evening that makes you miss the days that Neil Young sported puffer jackets, the Blues raced into the lead, with Matty McGinn lashing home from the angle.
"Nice to be over that two month dead leg," sighed McGinn. "It was like that time when I had a six week nose bleed or the time I hiccupped for four years straight."
The Blues managed to stumble to half time without doing much else, and even a rendition of the Gangnam Style dance from Young and Gary Powell couldn't rally the troops.
"We kept it going for a good six or seven minutes, but the lads didn't respond," growled Young.
After the half time interval, the Seals found themselves under pressure from the pink-clad Corby, and Chronicle stand-in Twitter man Sharks Prowling turned all Yoda on us.
"Booked is Corby's Piergianni," tweeted a mystical Prowling.
The force was not strong in Chester however, and Corby worked their way back into the game through a Liam Hughes header.
"Remember those days I used to keep all those clean sheets?", reminisced a sad John Danby.
With ten minutes to go, manager Young finally caved on his bet with Gary Jones that he could win the game without bringing on Ben Mills, and the former Macc striker entered the fray, whilst the Chester boss handed a crumpled fiver to his assistant with a furious expression.
With Corby shorn of a man following a red card, it fell to Dave Hankin to give Chester the win, smashing home from close quarters.
"It was nice to see the fans go crazy as, until that point, I hadn't noticed that any had turned up," nodded Hankin.
Chester now look towards the weekend with Worcester due at the Exacta Stadium for their first game in December.
"We'll try our best for the next few weeks, but to be honest, I'm mostly going to be focussed on finding the perfect turkey in the weeks leading up to Christmas," confirmed Young.
Wednesday, 28 November 2012
Chester welcome Corby Town to the Exacta Stadium tonight, with the Jestrian keen to avoid obvious jokes about trouser presses.
The Blues enter the match having returned to the top of the table over the weekend, and manager Neil Young has been enjoying being league leaders once more.
"Having just gone full time, and with the league campaign going so well, I treated myself to a cracking packed lunch yesterday," enthused the Seal Senator. "Got myself in some posh crackers and some spreadable cheese, and wolfed 'em good in my office. Top of the league, having some Laughing Cow."
Following a goal rout at the weekend, Ben Mills may have to wait for his first start as a permanent Chester player.
"Youngy has indicated that I'm going to have to work hard to get back into the team," revealed Mills. "It's gonna mean a lot of bench time, so I've invested in Nintendo DS and that Brain Training game - I'm gonna be a bona fide genius by Christmas."
From having only two forwards a few weeks back, Chester now have five on the books. In a recent interview, Young has stated that some players need to be moved on in order to balance the books, and this may mean one or two strikers being shown the door.
"We have to fill in the financial shortfall caused by the Mills transfer, and at some point I'm probably going to want to sign another left winger, too," mused Young.
Amongst the visitors' more notable former players is Mark Lawrenson, a man who once commented that Chester is not a footballing city.
"I can't believe he said that," fumed one Deva Chatter. "I mean, he's right. He's dead right - the city has a population of over 100,000 and we can't even get 3% of that on a regular basis. In fact, half the fanbase seems to come from Deeside and surrounding areas. But he still shouldn't have said it - rude is what it is."
Following the game, fans have been asked to stick some covers on the pitch. Also, the covers cost a bit when the club bought them a couple of years ago, so if you could throw a couple of quid towards their purchase, that'd be appreciated.
Tuesday, 27 November 2012
"Remember when you all said you'd pay a fiver to get him here?", read the press release on the website. "Cough up."
"Also, buy Olly Murs's album and ignore McAfee - they're just jealous."
On the face of it, this is one of the biggest piles of nonsense to occur at the Exacta Stadium since someone said "yeah, the FLi website model is perfect for a fan-owned set up. We've had too much control over our club since the rebirth, we need to start giving it away again."
Even if the squad-builder fund idea was a good one, which it probably isn't, retro-actively putting the plan into effect is about as logical as asking fans to now pay up for the free programmes that were handed out at last season's home game versus Marine.
"Ooh, there's an idea," pondered Chairman The Pilsbury Doughbeard, who seems to be currently doing the boardroom equivalent of playing for a contract.
Upon deeper inspection, the decision to call out big-mouthed Deva Chatters may be one of the most wonderful bits work that The City Fans United ever pull off.
"I was delighted when I saw we'd signed Millsy," said one fan. "Then - the icing on the cake - watching the club, with a perfect straight face, ask for the cash off those guys who had let their football-based anger spill over into rash promises. Amazing."
The whole situation has wreaked havoc in the household of the poster known as Wallet Blue.
"I said I'd put in £200, but I was just trying to show the board up. I haven't really got that kind of money. Now they're calling in the debt," fretted WB. "I've had to remortgage the house and the kids are going without presents this Christmas. The missus is livid."
"To be fair, though, she's not seen Ben play."
For fans who refuse to cough up, CFU media mouth Jaffa Cakes has confirmed that debt collectors will be brought in.
"We'd have had them on the case already, but there was a bit of a mix-up when, instead of calling the bailiffs, we called former Chester City defender Dave Bayliss," confessed Cakes. "He was a bit confused by our demands of him."
And the precedent has now been set, with manager Neil Young today seen hanging around the Blues bar, trying to stop people buying pints, so that he could take their money himself.
"I need to sign Craig Curran - have a lime cordial instead!" Young shrieked at one punter, as he was dragged away by security.
Chester play Corby tomorrow, and the club have confirmed that if you like the look of any of their players, you can again bring them to the club by shooting your mouth off on the internet.
Monday, 26 November 2012
In adverse conditions, the Blues raced into a three goal lead within half an hour with strikers Tony Gray and Nathan Jarman sandwiching a George Horan header, causing Neil Young to send new signing Ben Mills off down the touchline to warm up whilst he made a call to Macclesfield manager Steve King.
"Can you take Ben back?", a panicked Young was overheard to ask. "It turns out we're not struggling for goals after all, and Hypothetical Blue off of Deva Chat hasn't followed through on his pledge of a fiver towards the transfer fee, so we can't really afford him."
Chester then conceded a penalty as Craig Curran blocked the ball in the area whilst wearing a guilty expression which implied that he might once have gotten away with a handball three years ago. Keen to redress the balance, the referee pointed to the spot, to the surprise of the players on the pitch who had assumed that the match official's apparently random toot of the whistle was an attempt to start a rave in the 18 yard box.
"I was busting some moves at the back stick, and suddenly the lino's coming over telling me to get out of the way 'cos someone's trying to take a penno," grumbled Antoni Sarcevic.
The resulting penalty was struck so softly, that in the time it took to get to John Danby, Curran had successfully written a strongly-worded letter to Sepp Blatter requesting the introduction of video technology.
"In this day and age, with this much at stake, these decisions need to be gotten correct," rinsed Curran. "Someone in the ground must have had an iPhone or something. NATV could help I suppose, but then the ref would have to be signed up to Blues Player, and you'd be waiting ages for a decision whilst the officials get angrier and angrier trying to get the website to work on a smart phone."
Gray added Chester's fourth just before the break, leaving Young with a selection dilemma going forward.
"We've signed Ben, so suddenly Tony starts scoring," puffed the Blues Boss. "It's like when you're at home and you order a pizza but it doesn't turn up, so you put some cheese-on-toast on the grill instead. Then the pizza guy arrives with some excuse about traffic, and suddenly you've got two cheese based treats and you're not sure which to eat. It's like that.
"It's exactly like that," a suddenly furious Young repeated quietly, eyes narrowed.
With the game wrapped up already, Chester barely bothered with the second half, and five minutes in, the back four sat down to have a game of Texas Hold 'Em, using some cards Dom Collins had smuggled onto the pitch behind his shinnies. Captain George Horan took the responsibility of checking in with the game every now and then to make sure that Histon weren't on the counter, whilst Wes Baynes set about taking everyone's money.
Histon did net a goal around the hour mark, as Danny Williams refused to fold a good hand in order to get up and close down Shane Tolley, who tapped home from close range.
With results elsewhere favouring them, the Blues found themselves back at the top of the table, but the newly full-time Neil Young isn't taking anything for granted.
"I may have left Merseyrail behind, but I'm carrying the lessons with me," confirmed Young. "One day there, we'd received some customer feedback that the toilets at Rock Ferry station were exemplery. We went out and had a good party that night. Next day, we turned up and someone had complained that the loos were clogged. That taught me - never rest on your laurels. And I never have since."
Friday, 23 November 2012
Histon have had money troubles of late, but a swift trip to a pay day loans broker has sorted them out for the moment.
"We've gotta pay it back at 7645% APR, so we're hoping Chester bring a few," fretted chairman Rusty Cans.
Histon's ground Bridge Road is also known as the Glassworld Stadium, for sponsorship purposes. The original deal saw everything is the stadium double glazed, but this stunt was abandonned after winger Theo Ola cut his leg on a smashed corner flag.
Histon almost pulled off a surprise draw at the Exacta earlier in the season, with the Blues requiring a late Antoni Sarcevic goal to win following the team's lacklustre performance.
"The lads just didn't get going, they were lethargic," said Neil Young, flicking through his thesaurus for synonyms for 'lazy'. "We've gotta make sure we've got a bit of energy about us this time out. I've stocked up on Sherbet Dib Dabs in order to give the lads a sugar rush - get 'em a bit hyper. I don't want to be there when they crash though!"
After giving his side a 1-0 win over Gloucester City on Sunday, Nathan Jarman has confirmed to the official website that he is looking to score some more goals.
"See, we're working on making the website more appealing, by bringing you these exclusives," yodelled CFU media gent Jaffa Cakes. "Tomorrow, it's 'John Danby doesn't like conceding goals'. Tune in."
Meanwhile, another trip south means more coach politics for manager Neil Young.
"Wes Baynes almost refused to play on Sunday after he didn't get a window seat, and big George had to turf a few boys off the back row," sighed the Blue Chief. "I was trying to sort that out, when Sarce got hold of the microphone and did some beatboxing. Chaos."
New signing Ben Mills is expected to miss the game with a shoulder injury caused by sheer weight of expectation.
A win for Chester will keep them in the hunt for the title, and well placed for when Brackley start behaving themselves and lose a couple of games.
Thursday, 22 November 2012
Chester FC and Basketball's Cheshire Phoenix (formerly Cheshire Jets) have announced a link up, as Neil Young resorts to desperate measures in order to get some height into his forward line.
The two outfits will become "supporting partners", a phrase which will see Chester FC chairman The Pilsbury Doughbeard wearing a Cheshire Phoenix scarf and shouting "alley-oop!" whenever the football team score a goal.
Furthermore, in games played at the Deva, teams will now register three goals for every strike netted from outside the 18 yard box.
"Like Sarce needs any encouragement," sighed coach Gary Powell.
Meanwhile, The Phoenix will take on elements on the football club, with "Northgate Arena Chat" to be set up in order to allow fans to spout overly dramatic opinions and whinge that they wish that Bradley Barnes was still playing as point guard.
The whole affair appears, however, to be a massive misunderstanding sparked by CFU media chap and chief plane botherer Jaffa Cakes.
"I heard about the 'Save the Jets' campaign and I thought it was something to do with keeping the Vulcan Bomber in the sky," admitted Cakes. "I emptied out the CFU bank account before realising it was a basketball thing. Covered my tracks nicely with this link-up idea though."
Amongst those involved in saving the Jetty Phonenix-types from extinction is local business man Andrew Donaldduck, who once managed Chester FC in a pre-season friendly.
"I'm hoping to do the same with The Phoenix. Always fancied doing that 'time-out' gesture you get and leading the huddle," raved Donaldduck.
The new look basketball outfit is expected to run for two years on a feel-good factor, before its third season when politics will take over again, and you'll get people in charge sneaking about on the internet with fake names trying to discredit their colleagues.
Wednesday, 21 November 2012
"With Young turning full time, we predict that he'll be given a crack at the Chelsea job in around 7-10 months," confirmed Dr Jerry Beltloops of the Royal Institute of Trends in Football Management.
"The dismissal of Roberto Di Matteo this morning means that there are only a handful of managers left who haven't tried their hand at the role, and with the rate they get through managers, it's only a matter of time before Young gets his shot."
With the board moved into action by the news, they are less concerned about their players, and remain confident that George Horan will remain at the club for some time to come.
"It seems that you can be centre back and captain of Chelsea and pretty much get away with anything, so we've no worries on that score," confirmed Blues chairman The Pilsbury Doughbeard.
Doughbeard is also satisfied that Chelsea will not need to recruit new fans from Chester.
"Nah, Chelsea fans are in it for the long haul. You ever seen them defending JT and talking about how great he is? That must take some will power."
In any case, Blues supporters would be unlikely to be interested, with Chester fans using the occasion as another opportunity to stick the boot into culture of the English Premier League.
"Oooh, I hate the Premier$hip," said one self-satisfied Deva Chatter, smugly switching the "s" in Premiership for a dollar sign, ignorant of the fact that the country's top division has not been called "The Premiership" since 2007.
"I hope Chester start losing soon so I can retain my mis-placed sense of pride in the fact that I support a non-league club. The day I see my club play in Europe is the day I vomit myself lengthways."
Tuesday, 20 November 2012
After Histon failed to fulfill an away game at Colwyn Bay's hilariously named Red Lion Food Stadium, the Seagulls had hoped to play the Cambridgeshire this week instead. Instead, the league decided that Histon should host Chester at their gaff, instead.
"We thought it better that Histon have a home fixture in order to give them a better chance of raising a team," said Blue Square Bet North official Jimmy Suit. "They've assured us that last week was a one off, and it was just because a few of the lads had to go to a wedding and the manager had promised to take his wife Christmas shopping before the rush, but it's best not to take chances."
Colwyn Bay chairman Bobby Pattercakes has expressed his fury at the decision.
"We can just about handle that Chester lot stealing our manager, coaching staff and Luke Denson. We got over that bizarre incident where they signed our keeper then gave him back and I've even overlooked the fact that I know Neil Young once took a Colwyn Bay branded pen home with him from the office," raved Pattercakes. "But now they're ganking our opponents? When will they be happy?!"
Sources close to Chester manager Young have indicated that the mischievous bossman is quietly intending to arrange to play Chester's next home game at the Bay's stadium, with a slated kick off time of 2.55pm.
"Youngy's been well enamoured with the idea of Colwyn Bay turning up at their ground only to find that the Blues have already kicked off on their pitch," revealed Gordon the Train, formerly of Thomas the Tank Engine fame, now working with Young at Merseyrail. "In his own words - 'it'd be a laugh riot'"
Young himself has played down suggestions that his club have ruthlessly stripped the Welsh side of their best assets, pointing out that the deal works both ways.
"Hey, look, they nicked Jamie Rainford and Luke Holden off me, you know," he pointed out. "Those boys were vital in Chester's ongoing commitment to teaching people how not to use Twitter."
The Blues are expected to take at least one away supporters coach to Histon, with CEO the Pet Husky rumoured to be keen on carjacking Colwyn Bay manager Jon Newby's Skoda Roomster for the drive down, due to it being "right spacious".
Monday, 19 November 2012
With Neil Young celebrating his 38th birthday, the team showed up at Whaddon Road in high spirits. The Blues manager was showered with gifts on the coach down, whilst Ash Williams even brought a cake.
"The missus has been watching the Great British Bake Off, and got all inspired," explained Williams. "Absolute result for me - every day is cake and fresh bread day. Living the dream."
Instead of a pre-match teamtalk, Young's tactical speech was drowned out by a rousing chorus of the happy birthday song, though many players walked out in disgust when new boy Craig Curran attempted to follow this up with a round of "For he's a jolly good fellow", with senior players declaring this "too much" and accusing Curran of "ruining the whole thing for everybody".
"It's a tough dressing room to come into," muttered the Rochdale loanee.
The match was also Young's hundredth league game in charge of the Blues, and the manager celebrated the achievement with his coaching staff by embarking upon one of their famous touchline singalongs.
"The idea came to me five minutes in," enthused assistant manager Gary Jones. "Do the ten green bottles song, but start at 100. We were late into the changing room at half time because we were still finishing the shanty, like, but it was well worth it."
Meanwhile, popular journalist The Tall Peacock was sitting out his second match in succession as he remains close to home, awaiting the birth of The Short Peacock. With usual deputy Sharks Prowling incapicated following an incident that left him transfixed by his own reflection, Seals Podcast inventorman Daniel Burns took over as the Chronicle's CFC correspondent.
"It seemed a logical choice. We've enjoyed the work that Daniel has done as anonymous blogger The Jestrian, so we gave him the job," confirmed Chronicle editor Michael Green, who was also playing in goal and in defence for Gloucester.
Chester secured their win mid-way through the second half, as Wes Baynes produced a superb cross, which was turned in on the full by striker Nathan Jarman.
"Good goal, but I still think we need a thirty goal a season striker," grumbled one fan, in response to Jarman's ninth goal of the season, which is now 33% complete.
Friday, 16 November 2012
"We'll be travelling to Bradford to play Bingley next! Am I right?!" chuckled Blues manager Neil Young when asked for his opinion on the club's midweek FA trophy defeat.
Chester have now played twelve games since the departure of Ben Mills, losing two, drawing four and winning six. One of those victories was in the Cheshire Senior Cup against Cheadle, three were scraped by the odd goal, and if you were to remove the 6-2 thrashing of Stalybridge Celtic from the equation, then you would be guilty of wilfully manipulating statistics to make a point and you ought to be chastised for such a flagrant abuse of the data. Shame on you.
Gloucester City play at Cheltenham Town's Whaddon Road stadium, which is a venue most memorable for former Chester City board member The Other One stacking a right comedy fall in the away end during the Blues' last visit, in the FA Cup in 2006.
"It was a remarkable bit of slapstick," recounted a misty-eyed club historian Jazz Drummer. "Later on that evening, it's believed that he also smashed a window with a ladder, and when he turned round to inspect the damage, he smashed another one!"
The hosts are managed by David Mehew, a man whose greatest claim to fame is having a surname that sounds like a cat sneezing.
Meanwhile Cheltenham police are responsible for the decision to move the match to the Sunday, with Cheltenham races taking place on the Saturday.
"Oh, it's just cos it'd be tricky to police both on the same day... y'know... numbers-wise..." mumbled PC Gonmad of the Cheltenham Constabulary, hastily folding away a betting slip.
Blues manager Young admits he knows little of what lies in store for his team.
"I sent chief scout Alex Hay off to check Gloucester out, but he misunderstood the instruction and went on a cheese-tasting session instead," chirruped an exasperated Seals boss.
"I didn't realise at first. His scouting report stated that Double Gloucester was harder than Single Gloucester, and I was worried they were going to try and pull some tactic where they field 22 men. Then I got to the bit about Gloucester being a nice filling in a toastie, and I figured something was amiss. Nobody wants a Neil Mustoe panini."
A win for Chester could see them back to the top of the table, depending on results elsewhere. A defeat will see a Deva Chat thread about all the strikers being too similar.
Thursday, 15 November 2012
Despite Chester missing out on a £4000 reward and waving goodbye to any dreams of Wembley for another year, some fans have moved to chastise those for expressing their unhappiness at the 2-0 defeat at the hands of Worksop Town.
"Oh, sack the manager!" said one sarcastic Deva Chat poster in response to posts that said nothing of the sort.
A hardy bunch of just over one hundred Chester fans turned up to witness The Blues pick up where they left off on Saturday and crumble in the face of an inoffensive Worksop outfit.
"You'd think the lads had just wandered out at the Ali Sami Yen Stadium or something," commented travelling hero Peter Polevault.
Likely reasons for the poor performance are the vast amount of injuries ravaging the squad and the absence of usual Tweetjockey The Tall Peacock from the stands.
"I couldn't bear another game like Saturday," muttered the Chronicle journalist. "A horrible performance, then Youngy giving it the hair-dryer after the game. I came away with a proper bouffont."
Blues players are known to be 37% less efficient when they know that their achievements are not being broadcast to The Peacock's thousands of followers.
"Strikers have been known to deliberately shank shots wide in the knowledge that The Peacock isn't there to mis-attribute the assist," nodded Club Historian Jazz Drummer. "It's just not the same."
Worksop raced into a first half lead, Matt Young and Leon Mettam netting past an enraged John Danby, who chose the aftermath of the goals to trial his Bruce Banner impression.
With the Blues lucky to go in at the break 2-0 down, Chester manager Neil Young was spotted doing some light stretching on his way into the changing room for his half-time 'chat'.
Whatever was said was of little to no consequence, however, as the Seals failed to get themselves on the scoresheet. Such an occurrence is these days rarer than a good reason to visit Wrexham, and rather summed up the miserable evening.
"At least we can concentrate on the league now," said fan Jocelyn Treeswing.
Indeed, the Blues should now walk their way to the title, having spent most of their Blue Square Bet North games so far distracted by the thought of a shiny, shiny trophy.
Wednesday, 14 November 2012
Chester continue their annoying habit of requiring two match previews for every cup tie they play tonight, as they take on Worksop in one of the most unnecessary games they'll ever play.
Having wound up drawing from the most impossible of positions on Saturday, The Blues have been punished by having to travel to Worksop this evening. They'll also have to play football again.
With £4,000 up for grabs, the game is likely to be fiercely contested with Chester boss Neil Young quick to point out the value of the competition to a fan owned club.
"We need to get as far in this trophy as possible and boost the funds, so we can continue to not buy players like Ben Mills," nodded Young. "Same with the Cheshire Senior Cup - the multipack bag of crisps that you win for coming out of that tournament victorious could come in very handy by the end of the season."
The Chester manager was so angry following Saturday's draw that he is reportedly still raging several days later.
"We fully expect Youngy to be throwing tea-cups in the pre-match teamtalk, which is pretty novel like," confirmed assistant manager Gary Jones. "A defeat tonight and he'll probably drive the team bus away before anyone's got on it. Make 'em all walk back. It'd be Neil's first coach-jacking since Nantwich last year."
Worksop is known as The Gateway To The Dukeries, due to the number of ducal residences in the area - a subject which interests Young.
"I've been informally calling myself 'The Duke' for many years now," confirmed the King of the Seals."It'd be great to buy a place around here and make it official."
The victors will enjoy a home tie against King's Lynn in the next round, with Chester Exiles hoping that if it gets that far, The Seals will land themselves yet another replay.
"Do you think there'll ever be a Queen Lynn?" mused Young. "I can't see it happening, to be honest."
Tuesday, 13 November 2012
We know you've missed him, so we sent our cat out after dark to take a look around the houses of the men up for election to the board of the City Fans United. Here's what he came back with.
By The Jestrian's Cat
The Dark Owl
Usually if there's owls about, I'm trying to get 'em with my claws, but I'm on duty so I'm acting like the model professional. Took a trip round the downstairs, which is basically just a cave full of Northern Soul records and the odd poster bearing the slogan "Blacon - not as bad as people make out."
Can't go upstairs at the moment because the Owl himself is up there. At one point, he said he was going out, but now it looks like he wants to stay after all. Make your mind up, son.
Hiding in the corner listening to Asher tell his wife all about how it was him who discovered Neil Young. Apparently it was a chance encounter. Asher had a dreadful journey between Liverpool and Hooton one day, and submitted a formal complaint to Merseyrail. Neil sent a handwritten reply, but accidentally put his tactics for Colwyn Bay's next game in the envelope too. The rest is history. I think Mrs Asher has heard this story before.
I can't find much, here. I might not even be at the right house, to be honest.
The Pilsbury Doughbeard
Sneaked in through the cat flap then skidded and slipped on a wax jacket. They're everywhere. Think I've hurt my hip. Do cats have hips? I've hurt my cat-hip. I could go for some cat-nip right now.
Had myself a cheeky play on the Chairman's electric organ. If anyone had been filming me it would have been a straight-up Youtube phenomenon. I think I've probably woken the neighbours - better get out of here before anyone realises it was me.
Six hours on a late night train down to Kent and another two hours just to find his house. Got there and he's got a bunch of people round playing darts and talking about how it's not fair that Chester only play in the North these days.
Got a taxi back north and charged it to the Jestrian. He'll be picking up the tab for the pint of milk I managed to scuffle through the self-service checkout in Tesco Metro Beckenham, too.
Tried to get in the front door, but was given a blast of some quality hydraulic power by the high tech security system. Had to hop up on the roof and walk along the ledge like I'm the Coronation Street cat or something. Got in through an upstairs window. Bedroom wall is a BFFs collage of Gherkin, Rabid Kevins, Gone Kartin' and the Dark Owl.
The Other One
Weird place this. The Other One seems to have loads of love letters from Bournemouth fans. At least, I think that's what they are. I'm a cat - I can't read all that well. Basically, there's a bunch of pictures of The Other One with big red kisses all over them. Some smothering his face, even. They must really like him.
The Other One was in when I first got here, but he appears to have gone out now because the Pilsbury Doughbeard's mate turned up and started egging his windows. Bang out of order, that - he didn't even say "Trick or Treat" first. Etiquette, yeah?
Place is crawling in nuclear waste. I think my tail has become a leg. He's still got all his memorabilia from his days as Chairman of the Supporters Club scattered about the place. There's a piece of paper with the words "I should be Honarary Life President" scrawled on it over and over again, and a signed picture from Buzz Aldrin with the message "I know how you feel, mate."
There's not a single chair in this house without a hi-vis jacket on it. The stairs are painted yellow and Grovey keeps shouting at his kids for standing up in the sitting room.
Some people from Halifax came round and smashed in the windows whilst I was there, but Grovey's a nice guy - he didn't get the police involved, just paid for them to get a taxi back to where they'd come from.
Use your vote wisely.
Monday, 12 November 2012
With Wednesday's intended opponents Corby drawing their match, thereby cancelling the clash with the Blues, Chester's players decided they wanted a midweek game after all and contrived to capitulate from a position that looked more comfortable than the backseat of a limousine made out of beanbags and marshmellows.
Worksop cleverly lulled the Blues into a false sense of security by fielding a goalkeeper who isn't allowed to play Sunday League football, because he looks "too Sunday League" and wandering around the pitch in the first half as though they were time travellers from the distant past, overawed by this unfamiliar sporting pursuit called "footballs".
Nathan Jarman took full advantage of the slow start by netting two early goals, whilst Antoni Sarcevic spent the first fifteen minutes of the match growing a comical moustache. The Seals then cruised up to the interval as the rest of the half petered out, providing about as much entertainment as those parody Neil Young Twitter accounts that you get.
There was some brief excitement as Famous Colin Murray and Famous Beth Tweddle ventured onto the pitch at half time for some business or other, known only to those in the Main Stand. The larger-than-life Murray rather overshadowed gymnast and Olympic Bronze Medallist Tweddle, later exclaiming that "you need at least a Silver to upstage big Col!"
As Chester entered the pitch for the second half, it became clear that the players had been using their smart phones to keep up with the CFU election debacle, with all eleven having visibly lost the will to carry on with the game and, indeed, with life in general. As John Danby made a complete hash of a routine clearance to allow Leon Mettam in to make it 2-1, he wore the unmistakable shoulder slump of a man who has just been logged on to Deva Chat.
The inevitable came when Ash Burbeary, a player whose main first half contribution was having a name which you can't have, pivoted to sweep home from close range, sending Blues manager Neil Young into such a rage that he briefly began to grow hair for the first time in ten years.
Chester were perhaps fortunate to hold out for the draw, securing Wednesday's replay. Young was notably infuriated by the second half display, whilst physio Will Osbourne was so sickened by the performance that he quit his role at the club altogether.
"I HOPE they get injured after that shambles," roared Osbourne, and he trudged away from the Exacta for the final time.
Meanwhile, with the latest version of Football Manager having recently come out, Blues fans have a renewed sense of grandeur regarding their own managerial prowess, with some complaining that the game went downhill for Chester after Young brought on a third striker, damaging the shape of the team. Whilst this all sounds very perceptive, it has since been noted that the substitution in question took place around about an hour after things first started to get ropey for the Blues, and the two things are therefore unlikely to be related.
Friday, 9 November 2012
"We played them last year, didn't we? Or did we? I'm sure we did. Or was it the season before? Definitely feel like we've played them before," mused Blues manager Neil Young.
The Blues did indeed twice see off the Workies (genuine nickname) last season, with the Exacta clash voted by fans as being duller than a box of boring frogs. A two nil victory that day saw a brace from Michael Powell, who sadly waved goodbye to the club this week as he joined Curzon Ashton on a long term loan.
Powell, whose quiff and tendency to pick up soft yellows were the subject of approximately 76% of the Jestrian's material for almost an entire season, played a major part in the new club's first two promotions. The midfielder overcame a sticky patch of not being Bradley Barnes to become a fans' favourite, before overdoing his card habit and getting sent off in the FA Cup tie away at Halifax for violent horseplay.
Instead, Young will hope to welcome Iain Howard back into his squad. Howard continues to be an important part of his manager's plans and, despite appearing to be irretrievably bald in his first season at the club, has even grown himself a quiff to rival Powell's, thereby helping fans to cope with the loss of their city's most famous fringe.
Young has also brought in striker Craig Curran on loan from Rochdale, but someone on Deva Chat has already checked Wikipedia, and it turns out that he's not seven foot three, so it's probably not going to work.
Worksop banged eight past Blyth Spartans a couple of weeks back with none of these goals were netted by striker Nathan Modest, who shies away from the limelight.
Meanwhile, with the AGM on the horizon, ten men have been nominated to stand for election to the board of The City Fans United, with the whole thing likely to play out like those mock elections they made you do in primary school to help you learn about democracy.
Thursday, 8 November 2012
Young continued his ploy of not letting goalkeeper John Danby play in the CSC, plumping instead to play Martin Fearon in the "Adam Judge Role".
"Danbo's a top keeper, but I don't think his game suits the Senior Cup," said the Chester boss. "It's a different tempo, the football is played at a blistering pace. Players putting themselves in the shop window for the Premier League teams who are undoubtedly looking in."
Young called up youngsters Sean Miller and Tom Peers into his side, but the teenagers were forced to sit on the bench until they'd finished their A Level History coursework.
The Blues went behind as Ben Brooks netted the first goal of the game for the hosts, whilst the 129 in attendance tried to do something about the blocks of ice forming around their ankles. Things picked up for the visitors shortly afterwards, as Antoni Sarcevic tapped one in whilst larking about in an offside position.
"I saw the lino was distracted, asking someone in the stands to get him a cup of tea from the refreshment stall. I took my chances and got the goal. Genius," grinned "Sarce".
The former Crewe midfielder doubled his tally for the night moments later, swivelling nicely to finish.
"Antoni's been watching Strictly Come Dancing on Saturday nights, and he's picked up some good tips," nodded Young. "It was an excellent pivot to hook that ball in. He did some good pirouetting and side-stepping throughout the game, and even shouted "seven!" in a silly voice at half time, which just slayed the lads in the dressing room."
Meanwhile, Wes Baynes continued his habit of only scoring goals which register a perfect 10 for technical merit, lashing one into the top corner from way out.
"Cards on the table, if a two yard tap in ever comes along, I'm gonna make sure I shank it wide," admitted Baynes. "I basically want my career to look like a Goal of the Season montage. Football's not about goals. It's about boss goals."
The Seals looked to be cruising at half time and Blues keeper Fearon sensed that the frozen fans may wind up in suspended animation if the game petered out. Spying his opportunity from a Cheadle free kick, the former Lancaster gloveman comically fumbled the ball into his own net to set up a tense finale to the game.
It was left to Tony Gray to ensure safe passage through to the next round, the striker netting his first goal in Chester colours. Gray was delighted to have silenced his doubters, before realising that the lack of noise was actually due to the low attendance.
Manager Young expressed his delight at the result, though some Chester fans continue to believe the tournament to be pointless.
"When you think about it, isn't ANY occasion where a bunch of men meet up to kick a synthetic pig's bladder about a little pointless?", mused philosopher Gunther Brainwitzer
Wednesday, 7 November 2012
"Chester always go out pretty early," explained CFU media gopher Jaffa Cakes. "We're not even sure if they keep playing the tournament once we're out - it might all be an elaborate prank on us."
Cheadle is best known for being the surname of American actor Don and also for rhyming with Weedle, which is a Pokémon.
"It's a little known bit of trivia that the much loved twins in Alice in Wonderland were originally called Cheadle Dumb and Cheadle Dee," added CFC historian Jazz Drummer.
The hosts boast Park Road Stadium as their home ground - a venue famous for containing three words that could be the final word in a stadium name, but none that should be the first word.
"For boring stadium monikers, it's right up there with Lane Street Ground - home of United City Rangers FC," nodded Chester manager Neil Young.
Confusion has been rife in the last 24 hours, as the Senior Blues supporters' group contacted Young to ask which of them he requires for the match.
"They thought it was the Cheshire Seniors Cup," sighed the Blue Boss. "They sent me a telegram outlining their recommended formation and asked if we could maybe get some boiled sweets in for half time."
Young is instead expected to delve into the opposite end of the age spectrum, and call some youth players into his squad.
"Apparently I'm not allowed to play the under 9s, though," raged The King of The Seals. "They're 'too young' or some such rubbish."
"I tell you what, when the Senior Blues were 8 or 9, they were probably down the pit whilst doing really hard O Levels about powdered eggs, or whatever it is that makes them seem to resent young people so much."
Victory for the Blues will allow players, management and fans alike to grumble about there being too many cup competitions for a bit longer, as though there's some deeper meaning to sport than playing games and winning trophies.
"Could do with getting beat tonight. Fed up of these pointless cup competitions," said fan Calvin Relevant, fresh from whining on Saturday that he didn't have a match to attend.
Tuesday, 6 November 2012
Manager Neil Young had excitedly arranged the night, but was forced to hastily buy some pyrotechnics at the last minute after discovering that Wes Baynes's right foot is not literally a rocket.
"I thought it was," grieved Young, shaking his head. "You see people talking about it so much, I just figured I could spark up his right trainer as the big finish."
"It was a nightmare trying to find something to replace it. Pet Husky [Chester CEO] offered the streamer cannons from the end of last season, which made me chuckle, but it was a serious problem for a while."
"There were no fireworks in the shop, so in the end, we just dressed someone as a ref, made them make a bad decision in front of Gary Jones and watched him lose his head. Close enough, like."
Meanwhile, midfielder Michael Powell got himself into hot water with his manager once again. The Gangly Quiffer was sent home from the party for failing to heed Young's instructions that all attendees must wear gloves when using sparklers.
"I turned my back for one minute, and there's Powelly, bare-handed, writing his name in the air with a sparkly wand," sighed the Chester manager. "He's a great lad, but he lets himself down all too often. It's a bad example to set - I had to ask him to leave."
There was also an awkward moment as the squad very nearly threw chief scout Alex Hay on the bonfire instead of the tailor-made Fawkes effigy.
"I'm rarely around when Chester are playing, 'cos I'm off watching other teams. The lads don't see me that often," explained the relieved talent-noticer. "I had a nap in the corner, you see. The boys saw someone they didn't recognise slumped in the corner with the word "Hay" written across his top, and just assumed that I was the straw-man to be thrown on the the flames."
"That's the story they've told me, anyway. It checks out though, right? Right?"
The occasion has taken its toll on Young's squad with Iain Howard and Dom Collins doubtful for the Cheadle clash tomorrow, having eaten too many toasted marshmellows and John Danby may not make the game either, after Martin Fearon sneakily tossed the number one's gloves into the bonfire.
Monday, 5 November 2012
Young, known to himself as The Supreme Seal, had planned to ditch his Merseyrail job in order to focus his attentions on football.
"There's only so long you can mess about in a pipe dream job like that before you have to settle down into a more realistic career like football management," sighed Young.
However, as things stand, the work just isn't there, with Chester FC enduring two free Saturdays out of three, causing the Blues manager to reconsider his options.
"Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the time off," cautioned the Chester Chief. "I managed to make a good dent in my Attack of the Killer Tomatoes DVD boxset this weekend."
"You do feel like you're skiving a bit though. I might have to take up a hobby. Beekeeping maybe. We get through a lot of honey in our house. I reckon I could fashion a makeshift beekeeper suit out of an old puffer coat and a cricket helmet. Something to think about."
Chester will return to some sort of action in the Cheshire Cup on Wednesday, travelling to Cheadle Town.
"Is it the Stoke Cheadle or the Manchester one?", queried Young. "Might send eleven men to each. Bit of starting line up roulette. What's not to love?"
Meanwhile, reports surfacing that Young is to finally bring in a target man have been quashed by his back room staff.
"No, no you've mis-heard," laughed an amused coach Gary Powell. "Neil just said that we're going to bring in a target, man. We've bought one of those target things you get in archery to help our strikers with their shooting practice."
Friday, 2 November 2012
Thursday, 1 November 2012
Spotting a trend in his manager's selection preferences, the former Southport card-magnet Powell has been spotted enquiring at the deed poll office as to how much it would cost to change his name to Michael Williams.
"Clearly the gaffer is all about the Williams right now," lolloped Powell. "I'm spying it as my way back into the team."
Indeed, boss Neil Young continues to pack his team with men named Williams - the squad currently containing Ashley, Danny and Marc - and the Head Seal has admitted that this is all part of his long term plan.
"I was a big fan of the Just William books growing up," confirmed Young. "And I thought, 'wouldn't it be great to manage a football team that was a tribute to Richmal Compton's greatest character?' So I set to work, with just one vision - Just Williams FC."
"I started with Chris Williams in the first season, but he was having to trek from and to Anglesey every day," recounted Young. "Given that I needed another ten Williamses at that point, we let him go for a bit. He'll be back once the target is in sight though, don't you worry about that."
Chief Scout Alex Hay is a key member of the backroom staff, though admits that his job role is a peculiar one.
"Basically, Youngy sends me out on a dual mission every time. Scope our oppoisition, and bring news of any good players out there called Williams," said Hay. "Then, when I get back with all this info of how our rivals line up, their set plays and all that, it's like he's not listening - just waiting for me to get to the important bit."
Meanwhile, as Young looks to add to his collection, the Blue Chief has even investigated the availability of pop superstar will.i.am.
"Everyone always thinks of him as the brains behind the song I Gotta Feeling," mused Young. "What they don't know is that he's also a very good left winger, and you can never have too many of them. Unfortunately he's under contract with the Black Eyed Peas at the moment, but we'll be keeping an eye out.
Wednesday, 31 October 2012
"Yeah! You No va score!" roared manager Neil Young after the game. "Viva la Chester!"
Young rang the changes in the Blues line up, dropping four of the players who had started Saturday's game against Histon after they turned up in a Vauxhall Zafira.
"No room for split loyalties on a night like this," grimaced the manager.
The 3-0 victory always looked inevitable, after a first half in which Blues Live played fast and loose with the definition of the word "live", broadcasting in delay once again. As the subscription service brought news of the kick off, Conor Roberts-Nurse was busy turning the ball into his own net.
The Vauxhall defender then aided the visitors further by picking up a red card for a late tackle.
"I was navigating the game by listening to Blues Live and thought I'd timed it perfectly," grumbled Roberts-Nurse.
Down to ten, the home side were always likely to struggle, and debutant left winger Danny Williams scored a superb volley before turning provider for Sean Clancy to acrobatically add a third.
"Told you we needed a new left winger," beamed a smug Young, who does tend to always wind up being right about these things.
The Blues now look ahead to the weekend, where they will host Harrogate Town, provided that their guests don't win their FA Cup tie tonight.
"It's a bit rude actually," grimaced Young. "We've invited Harrogate round our gaff for a kickabout and they're holding out to see if they get a better offer. What about our plans? What about our feelings?"
The fixture schedule is starting to look slightly bizarre for the Blues, who are slated to fit in five games in 15 days before a 12 day break.
"It's ok, really," said Young. "It's just a bit like when you binge on cake, so then you don't eat cake for a bit. Same concept, we can cope with it."
"Besides, we'll easily fill that gap with a bunch of FA Trophy replays and other excuses to get injured. No sweat, bro."
Tuesday, 30 October 2012
"Of Corsa, it's going to be a tricky game," said Young, a knowing twinkle in his eye. "It's a good pitch at the Rivacre, it plays almost like Astraturf."
The Chester manager is seeking to ring the changes, with Michaels Taylor and Powell expected to leave the club shortly, whilst the new signing, left sided defender/midfielder Danny Williams, will be hoping to get some minutes under his belt.
"I might want Mike Taylor to play tonight, but I wouldn't want him getting injured, as that would really put the Mokkas on his move to Fylde," sniggered Young. "On the other hand, we're very excited about Danny - he's a young lad with lots of pace and Agilaty."
The Blue Boss is aware that the motormen will be a tough nut to crack, and is preparing his side accordingly.
"We can't afford to be Cavalier in our approach, and expect to win just because we're Cresta FC," winked the Seal Commander. "We're going to make sure that the defence are well Calibra-ted, no silly Trixx on the edge of our own area."
"Our Sintra-l midfielders will have to put in a real shift too, not just daudle in the Senator circle."
The manager also had a warning for his current squad.
"If I see anyone out there on the other team doing a better job than my lads, I'll Signum up straight away," smirked the Puffer Prince.
With the Blues used to playing their midweek games on a Wednesday, the squad is thought to be discontent with the idea of turning out on a Tuesday.
"First the late kick off on Saturday, then the hour change, now this," griped midfielder Antoni Sarcevic. "It's worse than being jet-lagged - I went to bed at 3pm last night. No idea whether I'm coming or going."
Meanwhile, Chester have drawn Worksop Town at home in the first round of the FA Trophy, and as soon as we think of anything interesting to say about that, you'll be the first to know.