Wednesday 30 June 2004
AFC Wimbledon gardening appeal
The club is appealing to its fans to help with some gardening work.
First, there is a big clear up planned at the stadium (as occurred last year) this weekend - from 9.30am on Saturday and Sunday. As many people as possible would be great, with whatever equipment they can muster to aid the process - please contact the office to let them know what you can bring.
Furthermore the club needs someone or some people to look after the gardening work outside the stadium and in the car park on a regular basis. This should take no more than a morning a week - please contact the office if you are interested in offering to assist.
Wednesday 30 June 2004
first team news
Ten games confirmed in pre-season
The pre-season fixture schedule has now been completed, with ten games in total.
You can see the full list of pre-season fixtures here
The first game will be the trip to Dagenham and Redbridge on Saturday 10 July. Our man in the London Transport Office has this advice for fans planning to use public transport:
"On 10 July, there will be no service on the District Line between Earl's
Court and Whitechapel and no Circle Line at all. There will NOT be a
replacement bus service in operation and fans travelling to the game will
need to seek alternative routes.
"The advice to those travelling from South West London is take a overground
train to Waterloo and then take the Jubilee Line to West Ham. You will then
be able to connect with the District Line to Dagenham East."
Dagenham have also advised us that their sizeable bar will be open. Remember that the gate receipts from this game will be shared between the two clubs.
Following trips to Banstead and Horsham YMCA, either side of the Supporters Direct Cup and first ever match on a League ground at Griffin Park against Brentford, the first team will play their first home game of the pre-season campaign at TFS-KM on Saturday 24 July against Barnet.
Fans are also asked to note the addition of a trip to Harrow Borough on Saturday 31 July.
Tuesday 29 June 2004
We've got five on it
The second annual AFC Wimbledon Fundraising 5-a-side tournament held last Saturday was once again a roaring success both on and off the field, with Dave Wager?s boys bringing the trophy home to Kingsmeadow for the first silverware of the season.
The tournament, held on Prince George's Playing Fields in Raynes Park, attracted 32 entries from all over the South East and despite the inclement weather helped to raise almost £2,000 for the Dons Trust Stadium Fund.
The tournament was organised and run by AFC Wimbledon supporters and volunteers, headed by Mark Lewis. After breaking his ankle in last year?s tournament, Mark sensibly opted this time to stay on the sidelines and cheer on the AFC Wimbledon team. The hosts Raynes Park Vale FC provided a tasty BBQ and refreshments.
With the main first team squad busy at their first pre-season training session, AFC Wimbledon?s assistant reserve manager Dave Wager brought a promising crop of his reserves to represent the club.
Scoring 15 goals in the process, the AFC Wimbledon team made it to the knockout stages and a final clash with the Raynes Park Vale ?Over 25? team.
Nothing could separate the sides in normal time and it took penalty kicks to find a winner. When RPV?s keeper Ed Cornwall saw his spot kick saved by AFC Wimbledon?s Micky Fernandez, it left the hosts runners up for the second year running and AFC Wimbledon popular and deserved winners.
The winners then enjoyed a quick lap of honour spinning around Prince George?s Playing Fields in Andrew Trefry?s soft top convertible !
The AFC Wimbledon squad, coached by Dave Wager and Lee Dobinson, consisted of:
Jones Bamfo, Ken During, Sam Elliott, Micky Fernandez (keeper), Marc Skinner, Lewis Taylor, Andrew Trefry.
The tournament organisers would like to thank all the teams for turning out and the AFC Wimbledon fans for helping out as gatemen, car park attendants or referees, as well as Raynes Park Vale FC for the BBQ and use of their facilities.
Wednesday 23 June 2004
Watch the England quarter-final at The Fans' Stadium
If you can't make it to the Estadio Da Luz on Thursday evening, why not try the next best thing - an evening of football including a top-class barbecue at Kingsmeadow?
England v Portugal will be on the big screen at 7:45 pm, but to make sure you have time to eat before kick-off, the on-site barbecue will be opening at 6:45. With burgers, steak sandwiches, hot dogs, veggie burgers and more, there's sure to be something to suit your taste buds.
The bar will open at 5:30 pm and the Foster's promotion, which ran successfully through the England group matches, will be continued for the quarter-final, so each pint bought between kick-off and the final whistle will cost only £1.50.
Wednesday 23 June 2004
The Second Annual AFC Wimbledon 5-a-side Tournament
This Saturday, 26 June, sees the second annual AFC Wimbledon 5-a-side tournament, at Prince Georges' Playing Fields, Grand Drive, Raynes Park, London SW20.
The tournament starts at 10 am and features 32 teams, including representative sides from AFC Wimbledon and Raynes Park Vale FC. Games are expected to last until around 4 pm.
Raffle tickets will be on sale, with an England shirt signed by Ashley Cole and Steven Gerrard as the top prize. A limited range of club merchandise - champions t-shirts, caps, keyrings and umbrellas - will also be available.
All proceeds from the tournament and raffle will go to the Dons Trust Stadium Fund.
Car parking is available on site at £2 per car, and refreshments & a barbecue are being run by Raynes Park Vale FC.
Tuesday 22 June 2004
dons trust news
Dons Trust Bond progress report
In early May Tom Adam, Chairman of the Dons Trust, wrote to all members, season ticket holders and shareholders in the PLC to invite them to subscribe to a bond. Money raised from the bond will be used to repay the loan from Mr Khosla that arose at the time we bought Kingsmeadow.
By Friday 18 June, lump sum investments in the bond amounted to £127,200. In addition, there was approximately £14,000 per annum in commitments from standing orders. Investors can nominate the rate of interest they wish to be paid up to a maximum of 4%, although they are urged to invest the money interest free. At 18 June, the average interest rate payable on the lump sums is 2.06% and on standing orders it is 1.51%.
We have been repaying the loan in £20,000 instalments. To date we have used £126,000 of bond money which, taken with a further £14,000 from Dons Trust fundraising, means we have paid off £140,000 from the loan from Mr Khosla. The amounts now owing are:
Mr Khosla £935,000
Total debt £1,061,000
On September 25, the interest rate on the loan from Mr Khosla will rise substantially. By then, we aim to have raised enough from investments in the bond to ensure that the total amount of interest paid to bondholders and Mr Khosla together is no more than we were paying when the bond was launched. To achieve this, we need to raise about £300,000 before September 25. In practice, we would like to raise much more that £300,000 but this is our minimum target.
A campaign to help us to achieve our target, or more, will be launched at our first home game of the season and possibly also at our friendly games as well. In the meantime, if you want to know more about investing in the Dons Trust bond, please click here
or email email@example.com
Saturday 19 June 2004
dons trust news
Fundraising reduces the debt
The Dons Trust has made a £14,000 donation to AFC Wimbledon to help reduce the debt to the Khosla family for the purchase of Kingsmeadow. This follows the success of the Boxing Evening, Golf Day and Bikeathon fundraising events and receipt of income from Golden Goals, raffles, donations, the Family Fun Day and Weird and Wonderful World tag holders. The current debt now stands at £935,000 owed to the Khosla family and £126,000 owed to bond holders; £1,061,000 in total.
Friday 18 June 2004
first team news
Ashford come to town
Another pre-season friendly has been confirmed. Ashford Town (Middlesex) will be the vistors to The Fans' Stadium - Kingsmeadow on Monday 9 August for an evening kick-off.
Friday 18 June 2004
Try out for the ladies
AFC Wimbledon Ladies kick off their 30th anniversary season with a trial day for both their first and reserve teams on June 27. All players of a reasonable standard are invited to attend between 10.30 and 14.00 at Kingston University Playing Fields (five minutes from Tolworth Station).
Friday 18 June 2004
dons trust news
Wimbledon Village Fair
Both the Dons Trust and AFC Wimbledon will be present at the Wimbledon Village Fair, this Saturday, 19 June. We have had a very successful presence there for the last two years, promoting the Trust and the club and raising money as well. As in the last two years, the Trust will have a stall and will be running some games, probably in a separate area. However, this year, the Community Football team will also have an area where they will be coaching youngsters in football skills.
In addition, at 2.30pm the league and cup trophies will be presented to Kris Stewart (hopefully with a player or two) to show the people of Wimbledon that they have a successful football team in their midst.
In the past two years, the Fair has provided a good day out for supporters. It is always well attended, so it's an excellent opportunity for supporters to wear their colours and remind people that the Dons are back in the locality. We have season ticket fliers to hand out, while others may well be promoting fund-raising events, the corporate evening on 8 July, the Dons Trust Bond and Trust membership.
There are already quite a few volunteers helping on the day, but there is always room for more. If you can help, even just for an hour or so, contact Roger Dennis at firstname.lastname@example.org or see Roger on the day.
The Fair is held on the part of Wimbledon Common at the top of Wimbledon Village, between the War Memorial and Rushmere pond. The nearest roads are Southside Common and The Green.
Monday 14 June 2004
first team news
Anderson confirms second signing
DAVE Anderson announced today that the club has signed 25-year-old goalkeeper Danny Naisbitt. Danny, who made more than 60 appearances for Barnet FC and played for Dagenham and Redbridge last season, opted to join AFC Wimbledon despite interest from other clubs up to and including Conference level.
"I am really pleased. This is a massive signing for us. He's not someone who has played one or two games and says he is a Conference keeper, he has done it at that level for some time. And at 25, he is not even in his prime yet. He had at least one Conference club still chasing him, but has decided to join us - it really shows the quality of players we can bring in here now.
"I had him on loan at Hendon and I had been aware of him for a while at Barnet. He could still be in the Conference now but he can go all the way with us. With the two signings in the past week, things look good for pre-season. You never say never in football, but I don't expect to make any more signings between now and then."
A delighted Danny Naisbitt told the official site why he'd decided to join the Dons:
"I'd obviously been aware of Wimbledon and seen all the stories in the papers. I worked with Dave before at Hendon and thought he was superb as both a manager and a person, so he was a major factor in me signing. The club is going to move on at a rapid pace and I wanted to be onboard. There's lots of exciting times ahead and the opportunity to take Wimbledon back into the Football League where they belong. I think I can be part of that, and the chance to do that in front of 3,500 fans every week was too good to turn down, despite the interest from other clubs."
Last seasons' Double-winning goalkeeper Ross Standen has been released. Dave explained:
"I spoke to Ross and explained that I can't afford to have two keepers on the payroll. It's nothing personal because he is a smashing bloke, but I felt to be fair to him we had to let him go - he's a first choice keeper not a back-up. I know I said everyone would get a chance, but sometimes you have to make the hard decisions for the good of the club. It's my job to have the strongest squad possible and to give us the best chance of promotion next year and this signing enables us to do that."
Saturday 12 June 2004
first team news
I'll get you, Butler
DAVE Anderson has confirmed the signing of 19-year-old striker Richard Butler from Ashford Town. The player has elected to join the Dons despite interest from several higher ranked clubs.
A delighted manager told the official website:
"I'm glad to be able to announce that we have signed Richard Butler, so you shouldn't believe everything you read in the newspapers! I think that Richard Butler and AFC Wimbledon have at least one thing in common - they're both heading for the Football League. I suspect Richard might get there first, but it's excellent news he's decided to join us. I have been tracking him for more than a year.
"He is a player the fans will like - he's a strong, honest, hard-working centre-forward with plenty of goals in him. He's also a great signing because he's already ready to play at a level higher than where we will be next season. He's not the finished article yet, but when he works with us, and we work on him, he will get better and better and be an important asset for the future of the club.
"He also had offers from two Ryman Premier clubs and one Conference South side. He has been at QPR on trial and another Second Division side have been keeping a close eye on him, so it's easy to see that he's one of the most highly rated and promising youngsters in Ryman football.
"This signing has been ongoing for two weeks and I'd like to thank Trevor Williams and Erik Samuelson for their work to make it possible - and also to say a word for the five fans who kept me sane on Thursday night. I popped into the bar and was able to have a drink and a chat with them while negotiations were going on, even though they didn't know what was driving me mad. So the secretary, directors and fans have all been instrumental in making this signing happen, a signing I feel is great news for the future of the club."
Thursday 10 June 2004
Sunday BBQ and game
DON'T forget that the Fans' Stadium - Kingsmeadow is the place to be this Sunday to see England take on France. Not only do you get to enjoy the game in the company of fellow Dons, you'll know that your eating and drinking will be supporting the ground fund. There will be a barbecue (including vegetarian options) running from 4pm and Fosters is just £1.50 a pint. So get on down to see if England can be as successful as the boys in yellow and blue were this season.
Thursday 10 June 2004
DAVE Anderson has confirmed his coaching staff for the start of next season, as Jon Turner and Warren Kelly will be following him from Hendon to act as assistant manager and first team coach respectively.
He has also released Paul Braham from the club, while goalkeeping coach Geoff Clayton will work with the reserves, ladies and U18 side from now on.
The manager explained:
?It?s certainly nothing personal with Paul, because no-one I spoke to had a bad word to say about him. But the fitness side of things will be looked after by my coaching staff now, while John Harris will pick up more responsibility for players? rehabilitation. I had a chat with Paul and he understood that it was just a case of a new manager wanting to use his own people. I?d like to take this opportunity to thank him for all his work for the club and wish him all the best.
?I?ll be working with the first team goalkeepers now in training and on matchdays, while Geoff will continue to have a role at the club and work with the other teams.?
Wednesday 09 June 2004
Anderson answers back
DAVE Anderson has spoken out against claims that there was a misunderstanding in his contract discussions with Kevin Cooper. The Dons manager said:
"Getting involved in bickering really isn't my style, but with some of the things I've seen and heard since Coops left to join Carshalton, I thought it would be a good idea to explain what happened clearly for the fans.
"About ten days ago, Coops and I actually agreed a deal for next season on the phone, involving a basic fee and a bonus structure. As far as the offer of a contract was concerned, that was always a case of wait and see. That was the second or third time we'd spoken about next season and he'd always made it clear he wanted to sort things out, because he had other offers on the table. I thought that was it until pre-season, and told him he could tell anyone he wanted, although I noticed it didn't appear in any of his newspaper interviews after that.
"Then, last Thursday he phoned me to say that the Conference South side he had spoken to before had upped their offer and wanted to know if I would up mine. I took that to mean he must have gone back to speak to them after our original agreement. I said, 'Coops, if I agree to up it this week, how much will it be next week?' Although we hadn't shaken hands, I had thought the matter was settled. He then wanted less of the money in bonuses and a higher basic. I said I would talk to the board and have a think about it myself to work out where the money could come from to see if it was possible.
"Then he phoned back ten minutes later and said, 'Never mind about that, what I really want is a one year contract.' We talked for a while and I tried to get him to take the original basic and bonus deal. He asked if he could have that deal on a one year contract. My exact words were: 'OK, Coops, you want the original basic and bonus deal on a one year contract? Let me go away and think about it and talk to my staff and come back to you before midday tomorrow.'
"I thought about it and felt it would be the wrong thing to do. I then spoke to my staff about it, and that confirmed my feelings. I phoned him back the following morning before midday, as I'd said I would, and told him that I couldn't give him a contract at this stage. That wasn't to say there would never be one, but that I couldn't give him one blind. He said he wanted a contract for security and without one he'd be off. I told him I understood his reasons and wished him luck.
"I never said he could definitely have a contract and I never said it was out of the question, just that he would have to come in and impress to get one, because I don't tend to give deals with contracts to players over 25. There was no misunderstanding in what I said. I don't mind that Kevin wants to leave the club, but I don't want him to hide behind me to do it.
"I'm a straightforward guy and looking at my past dealings and actions will show people that. Kevin Cooper has done a great job here and is now part of AFC Wimbledon's history. No-one can take away his achievements and he'll always be a part of the story of this club, but I won't be commenting on him again. I'd like to wish him all the best at Carshalton and thank him for what he's done for the club. But we move on."
Wednesday 09 June 2004
A Fans' Club - the musical
Tickets are selling fast for A Fans? Club, a brand new play by Matthew Couper based on the true story of the formation of AFC Wimbledon.
The show runs between July 6 and 24 at The Studio in the New Wimbledon Theatre (on the Broadway in Wimbledon) and, with over a month left to the first night, almost half the tickets have been sold.
A Fans? Club follows Wimbledon supporters as first they battle to save their club moving to Milton Keynes and then defy the footballing authorities to set up AFC Wimbledon.
The play was written by AFC Wimbledon fan Matthew Couper, with original music from London based musical composer Chris Barlow, and features one of Britain?s leading actors, Alun Armstrong.
Tickets cost £10 for adults and £8 for concessions ? they are available from the Box Office on 0870 060 6646 or Ticketmaster on 0870 060 1827. Further details are available at http://www.afansclub.co.uk
As Alun Armstrong says: ?We?re the fans, we?re back and we?re doing what they said was impossible. Come and join the celebration.?
Tuesday 08 June 2004
first team news
It's fun to stay at the YMCA
Two more pre-season friendlies have been confirmed. On Thursday 22 July the Dons will travel to play Sussex County Division One side Horsham YMCA in an evening kick-off. And on Saturday 7 August there will be a home fixture against Bognor Regis Town, of the Conference South, with a 3pm kick-off.
Further details and ticket prices will follow.
Monday 07 June 2004
Get with the programme
Fans may be interested to learn that the AFC Wimbledon programme has added another piece of silverware (well, metal-and-wood-ware) to the trophy cabinet by being presented with a shield for CCL Programme of the Year at last week's Awards Dinner. The CCL committee also wished the club all the best and said they would watch our future progress with interest.
The programme also finished fifth in the national Wirral programme awards with 218 points on a highly complicated and slightly arcane mark scheme, just nine behind runners-up Hoddesdon Town.
Work has already started on next year's programme - if you have any suggestions for inclusion or comments, please email the club journalist on email@example.com
Monday 07 June 2004
AFC Wimbledon Ladies, celebrating their 30th anniversary this season, have
accepted an invitation from AVC Sexbierum to play in their 10th anniversary
international pre-season tournament in North Holland.
The Dons and their hosts will be lining up alongside Dutch sides ONS Sneek,
The Knickerbockers, SC Buitenveldert and Belgians RSC Anderlecht on Saturday
7th August. The following day the ladies are planning to play a friendly
against a local select XI.
There are still several places on the executive team coach for supporters
who wish to attend. The coach leaves Friday morning and arrives back late on
Sunday and will cost £30. Cheap hotel accomodation can also be arranged
through the club.
For further details and bookings contact Rob Dale at
Saturday 05 June 2004
U18 trials announced
U-18 MANAGER Nicky English is delighted to be able to confirm that the club's new U-18 side has been accepted into the Southern League for next season. And trials will be held on the weekend of June 26 and 27.
If you will be under 18 on 31 August 2004 and are currently playing at a good standard of football, or think you have what it takes to come for a trial, then please send your footballing CV to:
The Fans? Stadium ? Kingsmeadow
Jack Goodchild Way
422a Kingston Road
Kingston upon Thames
"We want to have the best kids in the area joining us - the potential is there for this side to grow and take on some of the best players in London who don't make the cut at pro clubs. I've got a few boys lined up already from various places, but I know there must be many more interested players out there. So I'd encourage everyone to get their letters in and details of the trials will follow soon."
Friday 04 June 2004
first team news
Kevin Cooper leaves for Carshalton
KEVIN Cooper has left AFC Wimbledon. The striker told new manager Dave Anderson of his decision today and revealed that he has agreed terms with Carshalton Athletic in the Conference South. Dave himself said he was ?gutted? that the club?s top scorer has decided not to stay and fight for a place next season, but added that he did not feel he could have done any more to keep him at the club.
?Personally I?ve had the best two years of my footballing life at AFC Wimbledon. It was a hard decision to make, the last two years have been brilliant. I?m gutted to be leaving the fans and I want to thank them all for their support, but I felt that I had to take the offer from Carshalton and move on.
?It?s not about fighting for my place, because I?ll have to do that at Carshalton, but they?ve offered me a contract and after talking to Dave Anderson I didn?t feel he was offering me the security I need. The offer to play in the Conference South was there, so I?ve taken it. I?ll never forget the club and I hope they get promotion this year. I?ll be down to watch when I can and I?d like to wish everyone all the best.?
Dave Anderson said:
?Of course I?m gutted Coops is leaving, I wanted him to stay at the club, but I wasn?t prepared to be held to ransom to do so. I tried to keep him ? I offered him a pay rise and a new bonus structure. On a good week, that would have been a rise of about 80%. But I wasn't prepared at this stage to offer him a contract. I told him that we would start like that with a new deal and see how he did before thinking about a contract and that wasn?t good enough for him.
?But he, and the fans, have to understand that I can?t come in and give contracts blind here. I have a responsibility to this football club and he wanted a contract before I was able to offer him one. No matter how big this club is, we can?t afford to pay people more than they?re worth for the division they?re in. When people come in from two or three leagues above, of course they have big money and more money than we can offer.
?For what it?s worth, I am very unlikely to sign many contracted players over the age of 25. You tend to keep your contracts for 18-23-year-olds you think can go on up to the conference or even Division Three with the club. 80% of players in non-league, certainly as this level, are non-contract, so that?s just standard.
?Of course I?d like to thank Kevin Cooper for everything he?s done for this club and wish him all the best in the future, but the important thing to remember is that if Kevin Cooper wanted to stay at Wimbledon, he?d still be here.?
Kevin Cooper made his Dons debut against Sandhurst in the first ever league game and totalled 105 appearances, including 96 starts, He scored 107 goals and broke Eddie Reynolds? Wimbledon record for a single season in 2003-4, notching 66 in all competitions.
Wednesday 02 June 2004
Volunteer accountant needed
Merchandise sales in the current season will be in the range £80,000 - £90,000. The merchandise team are looking for an accountant to help to manage and monitor these sales. The role involves:
The continuing role
The role is likely to involve 3 ? 4 hours work a week during the season and rather less in the summer. There will be a need for more time at the beginning, possibly as much as a day a week between now and the start of the season.
The ideal volunteer will:
If you are interested, please apply to Erik Samuelson by Friday 18 June.
Please note that, due to holidays, you may not receive an acknowledgement of your application before 18 June.
Tuesday 01 June 2004
first team news
K's friendly announced
Another pre-season friendly has been confirmed. AFC Wimbledon will be away to Kingstonian at The Fans' Stadium - Kingsmeadow on Tuesday 3 August, with a 7.45pm kick-off.