Another Year Passes

Last updated : 01 February 2004 By Andy Burton
For me, the plus points have been our promotion via the play-offs back in May, the fact that our home matches back in Division 2 have seen a +2000 increase of attendances on a match by match basis. All of which means a good £16000 extra in gate receipts (assuming an average £8 per ticket to enter Dean Court). We’ve seen two crowd records broken so far. First for the Sheffield Wednesday match and more recently the Boxing Day visit of Plymouth Argyle. I am sure that on January 24th, the record will be broken again when QPR visit Bournemouth. I’d be great to see a 9000 crowd for the first time.

With the opening of the banqueting/conference facilities, the finances will hopefully improve in the coming months, and may even return a small operating profit this season and in turn help the current management team so they can buy some players!!

On the playing front, although the first part of the season was a dream, peaking in second place so far. I am concerned with the way in which December has panned out. Being knocked out of the FA Cup was not good, especially to non-League Accrington Stanley, and on penalties, and then not actually scoring a League goal either for the entire month. Whether it is a loss of confidence, or good defending, or a combination of both is something which can be debated at length. Up at Wycombe, I felt it was lack of confidence. I say that because when we reached the edge of the penalty area, we passed it sideways rather than have a go at goal, even though the latter was better option. On the other hand, lady luck deserted us against Plymouth when we had an absolute hatful of chances and missed all of them – including many one-on-one situations with their keeper (who pulled of several great saves). All credit to Plymouth though, they were one of the better sides we’ve seen at Dean Court this season. With our dismal run during December, I cannot make my mind up how the rest of the season will pan out. I recall that 2 years ago, we had a dismal December and were relegated. Twelve months ago, the same happened again, and we were promoted!! But at least we were scoring goals and winning Cup matches. That has not been the case this year.

No matter how the rest of the campaign pans out in 2004, I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a happy and prosperous New Year.

I’ll be producing the next edition, so any articles/comments etc etc etc will be most welcome.

Please email them to, or feel free to write me at 6 Forton Road, Fratton, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 5HT.

Andy Burton - Chairman of the AFC Bournemouth Exiles Club