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Showing posts from 2017

Financial deja-vu by Carol Vorderman

So what do we know of the current crisis at Penydarren Park?
Not a lot really as the current Board still remain silent on the financial reality at Merthyr Town FC – we’re owned by the fans by the way so it’s even more frustrating.
We've had a further 4 directors resign this week which makes 9 in twelve months, it’s hard to keep tally so I may be wrong there but I’m sure we’ll have 4 more friendly faces co-opted to agree with the Chairman very soon.
Any debts though will surely be due to the simple failure to tackle the issue of no income but increased costs (mostly due to staff) at the amazing new facility. We’ve covered the lack of fan engagement many times so why bother again? But are we really employing someone to set up events such as Bands at the ground when our town has more musical talent than at any time in our history?
The staffing levels at Merthyr Town will surely be reviewed now which although long overdue will be a shame as there is still a lot to be proud of at Penydarre…

Return Journey by Chairman Mao

This relegation battle thing could go all the way to the wire, which is quite tiresome to be honest, we face the possibility of returning from whence we came. We spent about 17 years in the Southern League North, then Midland, toiling away quietly in what was even then a decent non-league ground.
Penydarren Park had the small seated stand with the infamous but smaller Wank Bank opposite for the serious Martyrs fans. The big grass bank at the Theatre End was where I spent my Saturday afternoons either watching the Southern League boys under Dougie Rosser or the reserves in the Welsh League. Opposite at the Chapel End was the open car park where Nuneaton fans once threw me over the fence behind the goals. In those days there would always be a football match going alongside the real thing. Way up at the back of the bank would be about a dozen boys playing away whilst the drama unfolded on the pitch, to be honest the boys match was often better than the main fayre.
Visitors to the Park in…

The day Roger should have been sacked... From 1999, author unknown

14th September 1999 - the day Roger Gibbins, as soon as he stepped onto the team bus after the game away to Newtown in the FAW cup, should have been sacked as manager of Merthyr Tydfil FC. Basically the performance at Latham Park that evening was shocking. A 1-0 defeat against a Newtown side who, on the night were the better team even though they played most of the game with ten men and the majority of the second half with nine players. That was bad shit. It was also evident from that match how totally inept Haydn Fleming was as a 'footballer'; this guy was a professional once, he's now with Maesteg Parc. Enough said I think.
But the big pisser of the night was the non-appearance of the Merthyr players & officials in the Newtown clubhouse after the game. The only excuse I can think of on their behalf is that they were embarrassed that they had been outplayed, outfought & were found wanting tactically against a LOW side. If Gibbo had any bollocks at all he would hav…

Where's my bed?

Where's my f**king bed? We were out, in fact we'd been out since we'd lost in Croatia the previous October - Now that was a trip!!!. But it was nothing new, Wales were nearly always out, come the last game of the group. Belgium on the other hand had won away in Zagreb three days before therefore qualifying for the finals in Brazil. So we knew that there would be a party in Brussels, little did we know it would be us celebrating at the full time whistle. We'd booked the trip months in advance and the planning committee had done some sterling work. A Sunday morning departure from The Pearl on the 11.38 from Platform one, would be a great start to my £96 all in four day beano to Flanders field. On the train I was the elder statesman, being joined by the junior Dial M posse of The Flipper, Lager and Terret. Moppy was already up in Landan and Richie Will had to join us the next morning as he had an afternoon shift to skilfully negotiate pre-trip. Talk on the train was of Merth…

Former player and secretary Ken Tucker nominates Maldwyn Davies for the MTFC Halll of Fame

One of the most colourful Chairman of Merthyr Tydfil Football Club was Maldwyn Davies.
A local born Man, he did not play himself, but his elder Brother, Stan, was a member of the famous Merthyr team, that played in front of huge crowds  in the late 1940/50's.
After a short period on the Board of Directors, he became chairman, and also Manager of the Club in 1971, but the playing record of the Club deteriorated, and he signed the great John Charles as Manager, paying his wages himself.
Maldwyn owned three very successful Bingo Halls throughout South Wales, when Bingo was a very popular pastime.
He was a most generous man, and built a Social Club on the Ground, calling it "The Martyrs Club ", and provided the transport of the Club, all at his own expense.
The Football Club at this time were in serious financial trouble, and he paid the entire wages of the Club for a whole season, without any restrictions on the Club.
Without any doubt, were it not for the generosity of this man,…

No Tea Party at Boston. by Suntan Sammy

Last Saturday (29-Jan) the Martyrs travelled to Lincolnshire to meet the DML league leaders Boston United. Today's fixture, at home to Burton Albion, will be the first game MTFC will have played since the 4-1 trouncing at York Sheet. But do not be too disheartened, my friend, last Saturday was not as bad as the scoreline suggests.
For the DMFM crew this was the away fixture of the season. League leaders at their excellent York Sheet home coupled with the prospect of a major Saturday night SESH in Peterboro' afterwards. Quiet roads and some manic driving from Dai Jizz softened the journey up. Nottingham was reached in just over two hours but it took another 2 hours to get to Boston from this point, mainly due to the various tractors/combine harvesters/road sweepers that we got stuck behind on the A~2. Boston was reached at around midday. It was good to see another car full (Julie Martin's gang) arrive just after us as, due to a lack of numbers, the Supporters club were unab…

Humble Pie Administered! author unknown

In a few years time when people turn around and say "remember when we went down to Barry in March '98 and showed them who was best", I will turn around and say "I know, 'cos I was there!" And judging by the size of the Merthyr crowd that night, so will everyone else!"
Not since our Welsh Cup and European adventures have I seen such passion and fanatical support given to the team. We had waited weeks for the game, and it certainly was to live up to all expectations.
The scene was set…. Hundred's of Martyrs, black and white everywhere, flags blowing in the wind, our voices at fever pitch. God I love this team!
However, the home fans did not see it that way, and feeling totally swamped by the events which were surrounding them, decided to begin throwing bottles, cans and several other objects in our direction. We must have appeared a fanatical bunch. The roles has been reversed, suddenly Barry were no longer the invincible force they proclaimed to be.…

Bowen… What's the score? From the late 90s. Author Unknown

It was the game that just couldn't arrive quickly enough. The return to the Green Green Grass of Penydarren park, for one Sam Bowen, probably the most controversial player to don a Martyrs top and recently sold to Worcester City for £5,000. This game was always going to be a tough one but the return of Bowen and mark Kelly and the fact that the Martyrs had suffered a 3-0 reverse the previous day at Bath, certainly spiced up this top of the table clash.
The club house was full, prior to the match, with a good turn out by the tractor numpties from over the border. All the talk in the clubhouse was of course about Bowen - would he get sent off, would he score a hatrick, would he react to the abuse? The Worcester boys seem to have taken to Sam a little better than us but then again we thought he was a God after his 5 goal debut. Only time will tell on that one! The smart money was on David Barnhouse to kick Sam into next week but there was even money on Dean Clarke and Graeth Abraham …

Chairman Mao featured on Bandy and Shinty

GONE FOR A BURTON by Wandering from Issue 32

I've lost count of the number of times that I've actually travelled to Eton Park and couldn't find the ground. So this season armed with the directions from THE MARTYR we set off in confident mood. Even a detour to collect a poor impoverished University student at the British Rail terminal at the NEC en route didn't deter our confidence that this would be the year……..that we finally cracked the formula and found the ground without stopping to ask directions on the one-way grand prix circuit around the outskirts of the town.
And guess what? Yes, once again the 'corner shop' routine worked a treat! We passed the Derby Turn pub without a glitch but when we were faced with a set of traffic lights at a junction with roads leading everywhere the consensus of opinion became the wrong outcome.
But fortunately we had only turned in the wrong direction and we were soon back on track. Phew. The next mistake was entering the ground to partake of the hospitality in the soci…

LIFE IN THE SOUTHERN LEAGUE SECOND DIVISION DURING SEASON 1911-1912

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The season 1911-12 was certainly a successful one for Merthyr Town as they finished champions of the Southern League Second Division. This was no mean feat as, over the course of the season, they had to contest local derbies with Cardiff City, Pontypridd, Ton Pentre, Treharris, Aberdare, Mardy and Cwm Albion. The biggest ‘name’ in the division was, current Premiership side, Portsmouth, who had been relegated from the Southern League First Division at the end of the previous campaign. Not surprisingly, the south coast club were hardly enthusiastic about the number of visits which they would have to make to the South Wales Valleys.
   In an attempt to avoid travelling to the Valleys in the winter months, new Pompey Manager, Bob Brown, shrewdly arranged the bulk of his Club’s away fixtures for the first half of the season. Even so, the facilities and pitches at many of the South Wales grounds could, at best, be described as basic. What follows is the views, comments and experiences of …

The Samuel Wightman tragedy by Chairman Mao

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Samuel Wightman (1887-1912)
The pen-pics for the fledgling Merthyr Town team before the 1909/10 season. The team includes Sam Wightman who is described as a left-back. Sam was born near Whitehaven in Cumbria at the end of 1887. Little is known of Sam’s early career and within twelve months he was at Luton Town playing in derby matches against Watford over Christmas 1910. Sam seems to have settled in Bedfordshire as he is still at Luton the following season. Tragedy strikes though in April 1912 at Brighton & Hove Albion as a late challenge by Fred Goodwin for the home side catches Sam Wightman in the stomach. Sam died from peritonitis and shock following a rupture to his small intestine. At the inquest Goodwin was exonerated from all blame as the Coroner stated “that the kick was done purely accidentally”.

Sex and The Town from around 2012 - by Konrad Bartelski

The terraces remain empty. Look around you, the barren wastes of Penydarren Park lie before you. Where has everyone gone? Is the new Cyfarthfa Retail Park that exciting? We’ve tried everything; free tickets, happy hours, even winning a few games and getting a promotion or two but to no avail.
It’s time for action!
The Dial M For Merthyr Central Committee has discussed the matter at length, mainly over an illegal steamed pie in a down-town café, and we’ve come to the conclusion that the answer lies with SEX!
Quite simply, if we want more fans then we’re going to have to make them.
Volunteers are required to step forward and take the challenge of shagging for the Martyrs, when the final game is played at Penydarren Park and our crowds are too small to support a team in the Hellenic League what will you tell the grand-kids when they say “what did you do Grand-dad to save the Martyrs?”
We urge all supporters, men and women, to lie back and think of Merthyr. Now is not the time for false inhib…

BLIND FAITH by Jimmy Flack from Issue 31

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Blind Faith or just pessimistic about the Pre-Season? Don't be so silly! Everyone views the start of a new season in entirely different ways. Mutterings at Carmarthen of 'We're rubbish' after just twenty minutes by individual's who should know better, give way to serious pessimism about our chances of staying up. Well are we about to struggle against relegation or will you be dismissed as a deluding lunatic for thinking aloud "this could be our year". Why not?
That well known social commentator Mr Anthony Hughes, wrote in the final programme of last season "should we avoid relegation, as I'm sure we will, then the beauty of it is we will all start on a level playing field once more come August. Finishing 2nd this time around or even 18th, will mean nothing and it's up to us to take advantage of that."
So, it's prediction time again, and lets make sure that we prove Mr Hughes right. Top ten or another fight against relegation? FA Cup g…

SHEEP FARMING IN THE FALKLANDS by Dai Pest from 2000

The new wrongly named Millennium was barely upon us and already games were being played throughout the British lsles. For the Mighty Martyrs it was a short trip across the border to Clevedon, for the fans it was a chance to show Welsh dominance over the English. This for me was a game that Jimmy Mullen's boys needed to win to boost morale after being on the wrong end of a seven goal thriller, seven days earlier, against those plastic Welsh bastards Newport County.

For myself and the rest of the DMFM entourage it was our last piss-up of the Christmas festivities. The rendezvous point was to be the Park View for a quick beverage before departure. The Ginger Giant was the first on the scene, although I don't know why because the old man can't drink much these days. He was accompanied by his boy who in two years time will be able to drink more than his old man. By the time Wingnut and l arrived, Wolvsey and Nathan had been joined by Typey, who may I add was a little worse for …

Bath = 3 points by Chairman Mao from issue 30

It's my favourite trip of the season, the one you look for when the fixtures start in August. And that's the best way to describe going to Bath usually, a good trip. For the Dial M for Merthyr boys, Bath means the train taking the strain.

So the omens weren't good this season when the numbers going began to drop almost as quickly as the Martyrs down the table. It was Wingnut's birthday but the thought of Twerpton Park wasn't exactly adding to the party spirit. Let's be honest Bath has never been a great hunting ground for the Martyrs, I can only recall winning once there in the last decade or so (perhaps 1'm wrong but it feels like that). Although the 0-6 defeat there against Bristol Rovers in the FA Cup must go down as the most enjoyable hammering ever. Peter Jones whacking their goalscorer up the arse as their player was wheeling away to celebrate is surely the best way to get sent off in the history of football. Chris Williams's penalty save sparked …