Latest Sports News

From play off drama to a relegation palaver, where its gone wrong for Gloucester City FC

Just six months ago, Gloucester City reached the National League North playoffs, after a thrilling 4-3 win over Chorley on the final day.

Roll it forward to the present, and they are eight points off safety in the same division, having seen a summer of change from top to bottom.

The club has new ownership, in husband and wife duo Patrick (below, left) and Nicky Chambers, with the two deciding it best for the club to move to part time status, a decision that is yet to bear fruit.

City have won only two games all season, were knocked out the FA Cup at the first attempt and now face a Braintree side 10th in the National League South in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

There are many issues, but none more than the instability of the coaching setup. Tim Flowers was appointed as a big name manager, but was sacked in September after a 3-0 loss at home to lower league Totton in the FA Cup.

Chants of ‘We want our Kingy back’ In honour of Jeff King who took them to the play offs last year were vocal for months as the toxicity took over, after allowing a manager who got them play offs to leave. King himself is struggling at the foot of the National League South with Havant & Waterlooville at the moment.

Coach Stuart Fleetwood soon followed as he took charge of Swindon Supermarine, leading to a complete reshuffle across the backroom staff.

Mike Cook was bought back in for a second spell in charge, performances improved but results are still not up to scratch, with only a sole win over Alfreton so far.

The fans have stressed their disappointment, and sometimes anger, at the Chambers’ and their handling of the club, having got relegated as owners of Hungerford last season.

Plenty of players from last seasons success were told to leave, with the owners wanting to bring in players who lived more locally as they moved to part-time.

Some were always going to go, such as top goalscorer Kieran Phillips who went to Kidderminster, but others were either snapped up by rivals or are still available.

They did bring in some high quality players, such as Jamie Reckord, Elliott Durrell and Ben Richards-Everton, the latter coming in thanks to funding given by the Gloucester City foundation.

But on the contrary, players have come and gone, like Ethan Freemantle, who is now at bitter rivals Hereford, some of whom were certainly good enough to make an impact on the teams performances.

Loans haven’t provided much joy either, with Freemantle’s being cut short by Tim Flowers, with the one positive has been Harry Leeson on loan from Bristol City.

The fans have voiced their discontent on many an occasion, but not much can be done to change the situation, the previous owners left the club in debt, and with the Chambers’ being the only ones willing to clear debts they were given the club.

As unfortunate as the circumstances are for the fans, they continue to back the team anywhere, with away attendances never dropping below 25 in the sixth tier with the distances involved its fantastic support.

Fan account, The VOTTE, often voice to support, not berate the players, and travel home and away to get behind them. They went to the most recent game against Scunthorpe and came away with pride:

“We came to one of the big dogs in the league and gave them a right old game. We gave 100% that’s all we can hope for sometimes.”

“The club is a mess at the moment, everyone knows it, and its affecting players fans and everyone at the club. It just feels as though all the effort put in while while we didn’t have a home has just been lost and we are sinking fast.”

Gloucester moved back into the new ground after 13 years much to the delight of fans.

“But I will always get behind them, they are my club, I will follow them in the Southern Premier Division again if i have to.”

At the moment it seems almost a certainty that Gloucester will be going down a division, but with rumours circulating the Chambers are putting the club up for sale, brighter times may be on the horizon for the fans.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *