3:00pm - SaturdaySat 7th SeptemberSep 2013
| Att: 628

Alfreton Town
Alfreton Town
3 - 1


Cards look to bounce back

Brian Caffarey
11:23pm, Thu 5th Sep 2013
Alfreton v Woking
3pm on Saturday 7 September 2013

The Cards go into this match on the back of three successive defeats, including two at home. Garry Hill knows that a good result at Alfreton would be important not just for any points gained but also to boost confidence. Alfreton, however, have a 100% home record so far, so the Cards are almost certainly going to have to perform considerably better than in recent games to achieve their aim.


Garry will at least have a full squad to choose from barring any injuries. Josh Payne has now served out his suspension and could be valuable in shoring up a midfield/defence which is still prone to conceding early goals.

It appears that the squad will include two new strikers, Brazilian Rodrigo Branco, whose most recent club was Floriana in the Maltese league, and Kema Darboe, who had a trial at Norwich City earlier this year.


Alfreton’s manager, Nicky Law, believes that he has strengthened the side with some summer signings that are mainly marked by plenty of experience. Perhaps the most interesting, from a Woking point of view, is that of striker John Akinde ( or Jo Bayo Akinde, as he is called on the Reds’ website), who was on trial here just before the season started. He has clearly made an excellent start at Alfreton, notching four goals so far, including a hat-trick. Akinde has played for Ebbsfleet, Bristol City, Crawley and Portsmouth amongst other clubs.

John McGrath, with over 200 appearances for Burton plus a good stint at Tamworth, is another experienced hand, as is central defender Nick Fenton with masses of League experience, most recently with Morecambe, and Chris Shaw, Wrexham’s ‘player of the year’ last season. Midfielder Tom Shaw looks a very good capture, with a full-time background at Rushden, Kidderminster and Cambridge United. Another new face is that of Danny Wishart, a young striker recently signed for an undisclosed fee from Hayes and Yeading. Keeper Ross Atkins is on a season-long loan from neighbours Derby County. The latest signing is that of full-back Lathaniel Rowe-Turner, signed on loan from Luton Town till 2 January 2014.

Among existing ‘old hands’ are long-serving full-back Josh Shaw, captain Darren Kempson and striker Paul Clayton.

The Reds’ results so far have been:

Dartford 1 Alfreton 0
Alfreton 3 Kidderminster Harriers 1
Alfreton 3 Salisbury 2
Grimsby 3 Alfreton 1
Alfreton 2 Hereford 1
Forest Green Rovers 3 Alfreton 1


The Impact Arena
North Street
DE55 7FZ

Official website:

By coach
The Cards Trust coach leaves Kingfield at 10.00am. The cost is £17 for members and £22 for non-members. Ring or email the Club Shop ( to book your place.

By car
From M1: Turn off at junction 28 onto the A38 towards Derby. Follow for two miles then take the slip road onto the B600. Turn right at main road towards the town centre. After half-a-mile, immediately after Catholic Church on left, turn left into North Street. The ground is 150 yards down on the right.

By train
Alfreton Station is about 15 minutes’ walk from the ground. You’d need to take a train from St Pancras International to either Nottingham or Chesterfield and then catch a train to Alfreton. For example, the 11.15 to Nottingham arrives there at 12.58, with a train to Alfreton leaving at 13.15 and arriving at 13.39. Or you could catch the 11.55 to Chesterfield, arriving at 13.46, and then the 13.53 to Alfreton, getting in at 14.03. Look up or for options and prices.


£18 for each adult (aged 16 upwards)
£12 for senior citizens (persons aged 65 and over) and children 15 and under who are non Junior Reds members
£12 for students upon production of a student card at the turnstile on the day of the game
£3 for Junior Reds members (up to and including 15 year olds) provided they are accompanied through the turnstile by a paying adult. 

Cheaper tickets can be purchased in advance by credit card by telephoning the Early Bird Match Ticket Administration Office on 01773 830277 Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm each day.


It was the away side which was in the ascendancy last season when these two teams met. In November 2012 the Cards were defeated 1-2 at Kingfield in spite of being on top for much of the game. They went behind to a Paul Clayton header from a set piece, with Brett Williams equalising after the Reds’ keeper had spilled a shot. But Clayton netted a second after the break and the Cards couldn’t break down an obdurate Alfreton defence. John Nutter and Jayden Stockley made their debuts for the Cards.

In the away encounter in February this year, the Cards notched up a 0-3 win, their fourth win in a row. An ‘out of sorts’ Alfreton side could have taken an early lead as Kempson’s header smashed against the bar but it remained all square at the break, although Elvijs Putnins had had to come on to replace the injured Aaron Howe. Bradley Bubb put Woking ahead soon after the interval, poking a shot under the keeper, before setting up Kevin Betsy for Woking’s second. Billy Knott rounded off a pleasing afternoon, dispossessing a dawdling defender and firing home.


The Cards are at home to Tamworth next Friday evening. Make sure the date is in your diary!

Come on, you Cards!

Shaw looks easy for Reds as Cards fail to capitalise

Ray Avards
2:54pm, Sun 8th Sep 2013
Alfreton Town 3 -1 Woking
Skrill Conference Premier
7th September 2013

The Cards contrived to lose yet another game in which they had plentiful spells of possession, failing to make their mark at the Impact Arena by taking any points away with them this time.

Joe McNerney replaced the unavailable Adam Newton in a 4-4-1-1 set-up that looked flexible enough against Alfreton’s orthodox 4-4-2 formation, apart from the pressure upon Gez Sole coming in to displace Gavin McCallum at the point of the attack. Sadly, they were behind again as early as the 9th minute when McNerney was easily bypassed on his outside by former Cards trialist Akinde, looking lively and dangerous throughout, to pull back from the byline and find Tom Shaw stabbing home between Howe and Parkinson.

Within a minute, Gavin Williams, played in on the left deep in the penalty area and without much angle, had his marker going down early and handling without obvious intent. This did not deter referee England throwing the Cards a lifeline by pointing to the spot immediately. Williams coolly drove home the other way as capable keeper Ross Atkins, a Derby County loanee, dived left to make it 1-1.

Soon Brett Johnson was sacrificed, seemingly tactically for the price already paid. This allowed John Nutter on at right back with McNerney switched to partner Jack Parkinson in central defence.

Williams shot wide trying his luck out on the right. Mike Cestor, full of energy and willingness to support Kevin Betsy on the left, was frustrated with himself for an unfortunate mis-control for a corner, typical of the Cards' uncertainty in decisions at the back. It enabled the Reds’ skipper Nick Fenton’s back-post header from the corner, to set up an overhead kick blocked by Jack Parkinson, always getting a foot or a shoulder there for the cause.

It could so easily have been 2-1 to the Reds when Akinde broke the Cards’ line for a straight through pass and Cestor appeared to half pull him back in the box, slide tackle and smuggle the ball away.

Woking gathered in attack. First, Mike Cestor found space after good work from Lee Sawyer and Betsy, but his angled drive was way over. Gez Sole ought to have done better one-on-one when put inside deep in the left of the area, but Atkins was out to smother the shot.

Josh Payne had gripped the midfield, despite getting booked for thwarting an Alfreton break-out in their own half from a corner, and he put Gavin Williams in the clear with time, 15 yards out. He hammered his shot against the underside of the bar. Betsy, following up, could only get the top of his head on the rebound and the goal shout died in the throats of the few Cards fans.

Alfreton were carving out chances too as Fenton, again, headed onto the roof of the net and Clayton’s beautifully struck free-kick from 30 yards shaved almost the same spot on the rigging. A corner had beaten Aaron Howe but Parkinson was on hand to head out from under the bar. Sole conceded another free-kick when he appeared to beat his man on the attempted break-out but was penalised. Penned in by set pieces, Wood’s long throw was only half punched out by Howe and, although Parkinson blocked one shot, the bounce favoured Shaw and he again did not miss close in to see the hosts retake the lead.

Alfreton flared into life again but could not create a decisive opening before the half closed.

Half-time Alfreton Town 2 Woking 1

A familiar pattern ensued in the second half, once Woking settled down, after early Alfreton inroads. Corners were conceded to the Reds as they attempted to get round the back of the defence with a vital interception by Jack Parkinson from Wood’s cross, linking well with Bradley, to stretch Cestor.

Betsy probed willingly and for Cestor to cross but no one was on hand and Atkins punched clear. Williams also launched another unmet cross. He tried his luck from just inside the Alfreton half with an extravagant chip but Atkins was alert enough to backpedal and clutch on his line.

Woking’s prompting and probing had urgency as Alfreton concentrated on the break. Sole was replaced by McNamee with 25 minutes left and he went wide left for Betsy to try his luck up front.

Frustration for the home fans too as Bradley was way over the crossbar from well outside Woking’s area. Closer in, Parkinson had to head over his own bar as Wood, set up by Clayton, combined on the Cards’ left.

Betsy got so close with a twisting run into the heart of Alfreton’s box and placed a shot across Atkins, who just got a hand to push around his post for a corner. At the other end Howe was forced to rush out and thwart Akinde on the edge of his area.

McNamee crossed without reward and then curled a shot clutched by Atkins. Mark Ricketts shot over left-footed. McCallum joined in as Payne made way, and McNerney was pushed up with Betsy as the clock ticked down. Nutter too, but he could find no one on the end of a move with Sawyer. Another scare for Alfreton and a genuine handball shout when the ball was clawed away from the line but ignored by referee England this time.

Danny Meadows joined the action for Clayton and was well rewarded. The inevitable breakaway and Bradley contrived to shoot straight at a defenceless Howe, but Akinde was on hand to reset for Meadows, who fired neatly inside Woking’s right-hand post for the coup de gras.

In truth, Woking got through three centre forwards, as Sole, Betsy and McNerney tried to provide a point for their attacks. By obvious comparison, John Akinde exercised the skill and muscle up front for Alfreton that the visitors' approach play lacked. This was a skilled and committed performance with superior technique in midfield, but again the Cards failed to score in open play, despite the more discerning locals recognising them as the better side.

Woking: Aaron Howe, Joe McNerney, Jack Parkinson, Brett Johnson (John Nutter 19’) Mike Cestor Mark Ricketts, Lee Sawyer, Josh Payne (Gavin McCallum 85’) Kevin Betsy, Gavin Williams, Gez Sole (Tony McNamee 65’)

Unused subs: Sam Beasant, George Frith

Booked: Josh Payne, Mike Cestor

Goals: Williams 10 (pen)

Alfreton Town: Ross Atkins, Dan Bradley Nick Fenton (c) Michael Wylde, Lathaniel Rowe–Turner, Tom Shaw, Dan Bradley, John McGrath, Josh Law, Paul Clayton (Daniel Meadows 87’), Job Akinde.
Unused subs: Connor Franklin, Kristian Ramsey-Dickson, Danny Wishart, Alastair Taylor.

Booked: Job Akinde

Goals: Shaw 9 & 43, Meadows 90+3

Attendance: 628

Referee: Darran England

My MotM: Josh Payne - when he pulled the strings in the first half Woking should have capitalised.
Alfreton Town LINEUP
1Aaron Howe
4Joe McNerney
15Mike Cestor
8Jack Parkinson
6Brett Johnson ('19)
4Mark Ricketts
7Lee Sawyer
20Josh Payne ('85)
11Kevin Betsy
9Gavin Williams
10Giuseppe Sole ('65)
18Sam Beasant
3John Nutter ('19)
16George Frith
14Anthony McNamee ('65)
29Gavin McCallum ('85)

Alfreton Town 3-1 Woking (Garry Hill Interview)

Interview with Joe McNerney

David Holmes
6:50pm, Sat 7th Sep 2013
Interview with Joe McNerney

Joe McNerney:

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