Tony Evans reviews the matchday programme from Chester FC
CHESTER FC V TRANMERE ROVERS
Saturday 7th April 2018
As everybody knows, Chester FC are having a season to forget both on and off the pitch, but one department in which they can once again take great pride is their excellent match programme. Congratulations to all responsible for producing a lively, colourful and largely original publication, which should at least give the long-suffering home fans something to enjoy each match day.
Goals for their side have been in short supply for Chester supporters this season, so the front cover shot of Wirral lad and former Rovers fan, Ryan Astles, celebrating a successful strike would have been most welcome. It should also have served as a warning to Rovers that there could be no sign of complacency, given the tall defender's two fine goals against us last season, particularly his spectacular last-ditch equaliser in the 2-2 draw at Prenton Park.
Inside, in “The Big Interview”, Ryan looked back fondly on those happier days, while still relishing the prospect of renewing rivalries with his boyhood club.
That positive attitude was echoed by Marcos Bignot, who, at the time of our visit to The Swansway Stadium, was still, nominally at least, in the manager's seat. He praised his players' honesty, which had been much in evidence in the narrow 0-1 Easter Monday defeat at table-topping Macclesfield and also thanked the fans for their loyal support to the team in the face of so much adversity and, even more importantly for the future existence of the club, for their tremendous fundraising efforts.
The “Blues News” column praised the efforts of two fans who had spent their Easter Saturday selling assorted merchandise from a stall on Chester Market to help to push the total raised to date close to £150k.
In spite of expressing their surprise and disappointment at the recent resignations of former Chairman, Simon Olorenshaw , and fellow board member, Mark Howell, the remaining directors, representing City Fans United, remained very upbeat about the club's future in their “From the Boardroom” column. We wish them well and hope the next meeting between our two great clubs is in the EFL.
In a sign of the times, it was interesting to note that the informative “On the Road” page includes the sub-heading “Pitch Type”! Essential information in the National League, of course, with the number of clubs using 4G surfaces seemingly increasing each year.
ON THE BALL
- The Cestrian's match reviews are by far my favourites in all the programmes we have put under the spotlight. The comic-strip style photo compilation together with humorous captions is cleverly supplemented with tweets of the key action from the match in question alongside all the essential stats. Simply genius!
- I also enjoyed “The Spotlight” where a home fan has the opportunity to give his/her opinion on various footballing topics, such as cheating and VAR, as well as matters concerning Chester themselves.
- “A Blast from the Past” gave an entertaining look at a memorable game mainly through photos. Memories of a 4-0 victory over Guiseley in 2012, capped by a Ben Mills hat-trick, hopefully brought some smiles to Chester fans' faces.
THE NUMBERS BOARD
Home Club News 18/20
Away Club Coverage 12
Other Features 19
Layout and Design 17
Value for Money 19