Laithwaite Independent Financial Advisers
3:00pm - SaturdaySat 18th OctoberOct 2014
The Laithwaite Community Stadium | Att: 1817

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AFC Telford United
AFC Telford United

Cards look to make it four in a row

Brian Caffarey
8:28am, Thu 16th Oct 2014
Woking v AFC Telford
3pm on Saturday 18 October 2014

The Cards go into Saturday’s game seeking their fourth win in a row against lowly-placed teams. So far, maximum points have been gathered. Garry Hill will not want his side to slip up against bottom-of-the-table Telford, with the Cards facing a much tougher set of fixtures in November. Come down to Kingfield and cheer the Cards on to another victory!


A last-gasp home win against Nuneaton has been followed by more convincing victories over Southport and Altrincham, both away, taking the Cards to second place in the table, three points behind Barnet with a game in hand. Although Barnet have a tough away fixture at Gateshead this weekend, their superior goal difference (eight goals) makes it extremely unlikely that Garry Hill’s side could top the table on Saturday evening even if results went in their favour.

But, as Garry has often said, no team in this league can take victory for granted. Telford, for example, defied their poor form recently to inflict a 4-3 defeat on Torquay United. Garry will be hoping that his side can grab the early goal that has often eluded them and then build on that with a convincing home display – without, we hope, the alarums of two seasons ago (see below).

In spite of the unfortunate loss again of Mark Ricketts to injury, Garry is almost spoilt for choice in pondering his line-up: few other sides could contemplate leaving Gez Sole, with his excellent goalscoring record this season, on the bench, whilst Garry has been able to ease Kevin Betsy back into action. Cards fans will be hoping that Gez, a hugely popular player at Kingfield, will at least figure at some point and that he will manage to grab his 100th goal for the Club. Another amazing free-kick might be too much to hope for!

A factor that may need to be taken into account in team selection is that Keiran Murtagh, Josh Payne and Joe McNerney have all been abroad on international duty this week. Finally, with no disrespect to Jake Cole, who was unfortunate that injury in his debut game prevented him from showing what he could do, Cards fans will be hoping that Garry has been able to extend Ross Worner’s loan. Apart from one slip-up at Southport, Ross has been almost faultless since he returned to Woking.


The Bucks, who were relegated from the Conference Premier at the end of the 2012-13 season, made a quick return, finishing last season as Conference North champions. But it’s been a torrid season so far. To date they have managed only one win (the surprising 4-3 victory over Torquay United a few weeks ago) and four draws (at home to Southport and Barnet and away to Welling and Kidderminster). In the process they have shipped 39 goals but scored a respectable 19 goals. On Saturday they lost 2-0 at Lincoln City, thus taking their away record to no wins, two draws and six defeats, with six goals scored and 19 conceded.

Watson has strengthened the side with the recent loan signing of Luton central defender Andy Parry, who played under him at Southport. Another signing is Bermudan international keeper Freddy Hall, who was released by Chester City at the beginning of the season and who has since been with Oxford City. Hall was on the bench on Saturday, with Jonathan Hedge continuing in goal. The Bucks’ best-known player is probably Andy Todd, most recently with Tamworth. Other familiar names include midfielder Godfrey Poku, formerly with Mansfield and Luton, and Sean Clancy, who has turned out for a number of Conference sides, including Fleetwood in the Conference North.


Adults: £15
Over 65s and Students with a valid NUS card: £10
U16s: £3


The Club’s stylish new matchday programme continues to attract compliments. It’s still only £3 but now has 64 pages, with a soft laminate cover, high quality ‘finish’ and stunning photos. Saturday’s packed edition includes an interview with Chris Arthur; Liam Newton’s reflections on the ups and downs of life in the Conference Premier; Malcolm Wyatt’s ‘Cardinal North’ report on the Cards’ recent trips to northern climes; Jon Woozley’s case that we should be celebrating next week the 127th anniversary of the Club, not the 125th; a celebration of Jane Spong’s recent award for her community work; and some quick-fire answers from Adam Newton; plus a round-up of all the recent Vanarama Conference games and much more, including match reports, previews and news of the Club’s community work and commercial initiatives. Make sure you try it out! If you can’t get to the game, you can order a copy from the Club Shop on


Woking 5 AFC Telford 2
16 March 2013

The Bucks came to Kingfield bottom of the table and without a win in 24 games. The Cards had just gained a hard-fought point at Macclesfield, and a win would take them past Garry’s 50 point initial target in their first season back in the Conference Premier.

The scoreline may suggest that it was an easy win but the Cards contrived to produce some nervous moments. Billy Knott returned for the suspended Lee Sawyer in midfield. Bradley Bubb drilled home in the 8th minute from an Adam Newton cross to set the ball rolling, followed by an excellent 13th minute strike from Jayden Stockley, benefiting from a rampaging run from Knott. Telford slowly re-grouped, with Steve Jones missing two good chances to pull a goal back before, just before half-time, Jack Parkinson slid Bubb in behind the defence to make it 3-0.

On 54 minutes Steve Jones flicked home a Ryan Valentine header to reduce the deficit. Bubb and Parkinson both missed gilt-edged chances to put the game beyond Telford’s reach as the Woking defence began to look increasingly nervy. Anxiety levels rose again when Aaron Williams glanced home a header in the 81st minute to make it 3-2.

However, Telford’s keeper, Ryan Young, came to Woking’s aid, inexplicably hauling down Parkinson in the box after a corner had been cleared. Bubb converted the penalty for his second hat-trick of the season before Kevin Betsy took advantage of a poor back pass to round the keeper and make it 5-2.

Woking: Seb Brown, Adam Newton, Joe McNerney, Brett Johnson, John Nutter, Mark Ricketts, Jack Parkinson, Kevin Betsy, Billy Knott (Gavin McCallum 63), Bradley Bubb (George Frith 90), Jayden Stockley (Adam Francis 68)

Unused subs: Elvijs Putnins, Mike Cestor

Goals: Bubb (4, 43, 89 pen), Stockley (13), Betsy (90)

AFC Telford United: Ryan Young, Will Salmon, Dan Preston (Michael Briscoe 33), Simon Ford, Ryan Valentine, Ian Craney (Jamie Spray 46), Phil Trainer, Nathan Rooney, Steve Leslie (Alex Meecham 57), Aaron Williams, Steve Jones

Unused subs: James O'Neil, Marco Adaggio

Goals: Jones (54), Williams (81)

Cautions: Young (88)

Attendance: 1,320


Next Saturday (25 October) the Cards are at home to Boreham Wood in the 4th Qualifying Round of the FA Cup. The Wood are having a good season in the Conference South, so this should be a very competitive cup tie. On Saturday 1 November the Cards face a tough away trip to Braintree Town. We hope that Saturday 8 November will see the Cards in the 1st Round of the FA Cup. The next home league game at Kingfield, on Tuesday 11 November, is a very attractive fixture, with Woking looking to do the double over Wrexham. Make sure the date is in the diary!

Come on, you Cards!

Cards' winning streak comes to an end

Haydn Cobb
10:46pm, Sat 18th Oct 2014
Woking 1 AFC Telford United 3
Vanarama Conference
18th October 2014

Woking were left deflated by bottom club AFC Telford United after falling to a disappointing 3-1 defeat at Kingfield.

Mike Phenix gave Telford the lead early on but John Goddard equalised before half-time. Phenix then restored the Bucks' advantage early in the second period before Sam Smith sealed the first away victory of the season for the visitors when Woking were exposed by a slick counter attack just after the hour mark.

Woking threw on Kevin Betsy and Giuseppe Sole in the hope of bringing the home side back into the match but the Telford backline stood firm to deny Woking their chance of a fourth consecutive league win.

It was a game to forget for Woking who never really got into their rhythm and two slow starts in each half cost them dearly. It will also be a worry for Garry Hill that Woking failed to get back into the game against a defence who have the worst record in the league. That said, the Shropshire side performed well, belying their position at the foot of the table.

The Cards began the game in their usual 3-4-2-1 formation, but with Mark Ricketts still out injured Joey Jones filled in defensively with John Goddard as the right-sided wingback.

Chris Arthur continued his fine start to the season, rampaging down the left flank and finding Payne in space on the edge of the box. The midfielder exchanged passes with Dean Morgan and attempted to bend the ball towards the far post but Telford goalkeeper Freddy Hall caught it at chest height.

Both teams used the opening phases to ease into the game but it was the away side who struck first on 10 minutes.

Ryan Higgins won a soft free kick from referee Stephen Ross 30 yards out on the right-hand side. Telford loaded the box as Higgins whipped in a threatening out-swinger which was met by Mike Phenix, who guided the ball beyond Ross Worner’s outstretched right arm.

For all of Woking’s good work defensively, their frailties from set pieces were exposed once again shortly afterwards, with Phenix getting in an unchallenged header in front of the Woking defenders.

The home side took the first 25 minutes to get into their stride and their second opportunity at goal came from a Payne free kick. Telford’s Andrew Parry chopped down Morgan on the edge of the box and received a yellow card. Payne stepped up and curled a fierce right-footed shot towards the top corner but Hall was equal to it, tipping it away for a corner.

The Telford 'keeper, a Bermudan international, joined up with Telford at the start of the month after they had conceded 39 goals in 16 league games. In truth, however, it was the Bucks back line which looked more assured in the first half while Woking continued to look in danger from set pieces.

In the 34th minute, Woking were saved by on-loan goalkeeper Worner after Joe McNerney lost the ball on the edge of the box. Telford worked it wide to Higgins who delivered a low cross to the far post. Telford’s Smith attempted to slot it under the diving Worner but the goalkeeper was able to block his shot and Joey Jones hacked the ball clear.

The threat of nearly falling two behind sparked Woking into life.

The Cards now started to move with pace and urgency and the equaliser came in the thirty-fourth minute. Dean Morgan latched onto a low through ball and his low, hard shot was well parried by Hall but John Goddard (pictured) was on hand to steer his shot home from six yards out.

In added-on time at the end of the first half Woking, their confidence now boosted following their equaliser, worked an inventive free kick from the halfway line. Mike Cestor’s clipped through ball found McNerney on the right-hand side of the box but his clever assist just eluded Jack Marriott at the far post.

Half-time: Woking 1 AFC Telford United 1

Telford made an electric start to the second half and on the 47th minute they again took advantage of Woking’s struggles with set pieces. A long throw from Higgins was flicked on by target man Smith and Phenix was able to slam home his second goal of the game from two yards out.

Goddard continued to sparkle on the right wing as he cut inside and unleashed a 30-yard strike which whistled just over Hall’s crossbar. His urgency began to rub off on his teammates.

From a Worner kick, Marriott flicked past and sprinted around the defence to force a smart save from Hall. The resulting corner was only inches away from McNerney’s forehead and Telford were able to clear.

Being a goal down Woking were forced to push men forward which left the defensive trio exposed against the three Telford forwards and the home side were shortly made to pay.

On the hour mark, Phenix’s snapshot was saved well initially by Worner but the ball fell kindly to Higgins who cut back to Smith who bundled the ball home to gave Telford a two-goal cushion.

With the Kingfield crowd silenced, Garry Hill made two quick changes which saw Kevin Betsy and Giuseppe Sole come on for Morgan and Theo Lewis. The Cards went all-out attack with Betsy and Arthur pushing much further forward and Sole joining Marriott and Rendell up front.

Telford’s defence stood solid despite the continual Woking pressure, however. Rendell had two good efforts ruled offside in the closing stages as the Cards were reduced to long, hopeful balls forward which the Shropshire side was able to smother.

As the game entered five minutes of injury time, Sole and Rendell combined well to draw the defence out of position and create space in a crowded penalty box. Conference top-scorer Rendell struck the ball firmly but straight into the arms of goalkeeper Hall.

Telford continued to threaten to score on the break as Woking piled men forward and Worner was required to remain alert to avoid conceding a fourth.

Overall, then, not a great afternoon for the Cards as their three game winning streak came to an end. On the balance of play, however, there was no denying that the visitors deserved their victory, although they still remain bottom of the table. The defeat drops Woking one place to third, on thirty points, ahead of Gateshead and Forest Green Rovers, by virtue of a superior goal difference.

Next Saturday, Woking host high-flying Conference South side Boreham Wood in the FA Cup 4th qualifying round at Kingfield Stadium.

Woking: Ross Worner, Mike Cestor, Joe McNerney (c), Joey Jones, Chris Arthur, Josh Payne, Theo Lewis (Kevin Betsy 62), John Goddard, Dean Morgan (Giuseppe Sole 65), Jack Marriott, Scott Rendell

Unused subs: Jake Cole, Adam Newton, James Clarke

Goal: Goddard 34

Booked: Kevin Betsy 83

AFC Telford United: Freddie Hall, Andy Parry, Rod McDonald, Neil Byrne, Sean Clancy, Ryan Higgins, Godfrey Poku, Kristian Platt, Mike Grogan, Mike Phenix, Sam Smith (Andy Todd 79)

Unused subs: Jonathan Hedge, Charlie Barnett, Sean Cooke, Jordan Deacey

Goals: Mike Phenix 10, 47, Smith 60

Booked: Andrew Parry 23, Kristian Platt 69, Andy Todd 83

Sponsor's MOTM: John Goddard

Attendance: 1817
30Ross Worner
21Joey Jones
32Chris Arthur
5Joe McNerney
3Mike Cestor
7Josh Payne
14Theo Lewis
22John Goddard
24Dean Morgan
9Scott Rendell
16Jack Marriott
23Jake Cole
2Adam Newton
6James Clarke
11Kevin Betsy
10Giuseppe Sole
AFC Telford United LINEUP

Woking 1 - 3 AFC Telford United (Garry Hill Interview)

Woking 1 - 3 AFC Telford United (John Goddard Interview)

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