Month: August 2011

Just Another Ordinary Week In Wrexham

As ever, it was down to the supporters of the club to get to what looks like somewhere near the bottom of what has been going on. It was probably too much to hope that, after a unanimous vote at their SGM last week, the Wrexham Supporters Trust would merely be allowed to get on with the job of completing their due diligence and purchasing Wrexham Football Club, but the way in which the story has continued to expand out over the last six days is enough to start to cast doubt over whether several of the key players in this ridiculously distended story – and not, as we will make clear, players from the side of the trust organisation itself – have an agenda which is intent on torpedoing the bid for their own ends. The story’s new direction began at the end of last week with a leaked email. The email was sent from one member of the WST board – Rob Parry – to another. Or, at least, that was the intention. The email, which stated that “I suspect we should expect DS [manager Dean Saunders] to resign or threaten… the team’s form isn’t our ally here!!!” (possibly in relation to the possibility of budget cuts at some point in the future when the WST takes over the running of the club or because Saunders is understood...

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Scotland’s Non-League Clubs Given a Non-Chance

With this week’s focus properly set to the non-league game, it seems appropriate to also delve into Scottish non-league football. Perhaps unfairly at times, the Scottish game generates comparisons in several footballing matters to that of the game conducted in England. It must be said, though, that often those comparisons originate from the nation’s own prominent football authorities, with success or failure being approximated in English measurements. From its top flight split with the Football League to the money–or lack thereof in the case of Scotland–generated from its television revenues, player transfers, etc., there will apparently never be a moment when the Scots do not look south and gauge themselves against representative sides of the Auld Enemy. Regarding treatment of Scottish non-league football, though, there exists a recommendation to imitate but as of yet a desire to bring about such emulation, causing further stagnation at the lower levels of the Football League. Recommendations from the McLeish Report sparked ample discussion going back to its release in December, but most of the axes grinded pertained to the top flight and Football League in general. Mention the number ten or the word “colt” and expect a furious debate these days. Beneath these hot topics, though, lies the further call for Scotland to create a pyramid system wherein non-league clubs have a more regular path to gain entry into the Football League....

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Non-League Week: 10 Potential Trips For The Undecided

Over the rest of this week, we’ll be giving up more space on Twohundredpercent to non-league football. As many of you will already be aware, this weekend sees Non-League Day taking advantage of a gap in the Premier League and Championship schedules to try and promote the cause of the semi-professional game. With this in mind, we have taken the opportunity to pick out ten non-league grounds which may, amongst many others, be worthy of a visit from you on Saturday. Architecturally speaking the Premier League and the Football League have changed almost beyond over the last two decades. Dozens of clubs, some because they were forced to, but the majority through choice, have left their ancestral homes, for better or for worse. There have also been many non-league clubs which have done likewise, but we have chosen this list to give a sense of the extent to which the non-league game can still offer something that isn’t seen at bigger clubs any more. We haven’t selected these grounds on the basis of anything related to the clubs themselves – these are ten of the football grounds that time forgot, which have remained largely unchanged in at least some ways as time has come to pass. Perhaps more importantly than this, each of the ten that we have picked out is a venue that will be hosting a match...

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The Decline Of Terrace Wit

We’ll be giving over a lot of time to the non-league game over the next few days on Twohundredpercent out of deference to Non-League Day, which is to be held this Saturday. We’ll have more on this later in the week, but first of all here’s NLD’s co-founder, Mike Bayly, on the decline of terrace wit. As a child of the 1980s, I was cocooned from the problems of a troubled decade: debt, worry and dwindling job prospects were just things other people talked about. Football – in particular football grounds – occupied a similar rose tinted part of my social education. Although plagued by hooliganism and appalling facilities, they represented the zenith of my supporter experience. There were occasions when matches were genuinely frightening, like the violence tinged Sherpa Van Trophy clash between Hereford United and Wolverhampton Wanderers, but it did little to dampen my interest in this fascinating parallel world. If anything it merely reaffirmed it. On occasion, we even mimicked the more ‘sinister’ elements of crowd behaviour. I still vividly recall climbing the cages at Shrewsbury Town’s Gay Meadow like a rabid baboon when the home side scored a rare goal of beauty against Peterborough United. It wasn’t an act of petulance or a response to draconian segregation methods, and I certainly didn’t fit any sociologist’s troublesome demographic. What I did feel was utter elation, the...

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Non-League Videos Of The Week 2: Bank Holiday Monday

This Bank Holiday Monday saw a round of non-league matches scheduled with no interference from the Premier League, and our three matches for you this morning come from this schedule. Our first match is the Blue Square South match between newly-promoted Tonbridge Angels and title-chasing Woking. Next up is a match from the Ryman League Premier Division between Billericay Town and Bury Town, and finally we have a match from the Combined Counties League between Farnham Town and Badshot Lea.       You can follow Twohundredpercent on Twitter by clicking...

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