July 2021

Darren Sarll said he hopes Yeovil Town supporters can see the work the squad has been doing in pre-season training.

Speaking after the 1-0 defeat at home to Forest Green Rovers, the manager said he believed there were “a lot of positives” to take from the performance against a side which were in the League Two play-off places last season.

A first half goal from visiting striker Jamille Matt was the difference between the two sides, but the Glovers’ did carve out a number of opportunities to score with frontman Reuben Reid

Sarll and Skiverton
Terry Skiverton, right, alongside Yeovil Town manager Darren Sarll.
Picture courtesy of Mike Kunz.

having two strikes ruled out.

Sarll said: “Hopefully people can see the work we have tried to do and I thought the fitness levels were incredible.

“Our focus has been on making sure we are not easy to play against and I thought most of our problems came when we were in possession.

“I can almost stomach that at this stage (of pre-season) but we made eight or nine very good chances and we were disappointed not to score.

“In fact, we were probably disappointed to not win the game because apart from their goal, Grant (Smith) did not have a shot to save.”

The boss gave home debuts to goalkeeper Grant Smith, defenders Mark Little and Jordan Barnett and  midfielders Dale Gorman and Charlie Wakefield, and opportunities to impress to trialists Deshane Dalling, Harlain Mbayo and Jack Bodenham.

Sarll said: “I was really pleased with some individuals and it was good for them to show the supporters why they have been signed.

“I think we are developing a very good foundation to go and compete. I think with three weeks to go (until the opening National League fixture at Wrexham), we definitely look fit and we look organised.”

Yeovil Town right-back Mark Little will have an x-ray on an injury which saw him limp off in the second half of the 1-0 pre-season friendly defeat to Forest Green Rovers.

The former Bristol City and Bristol Rovers man, who arrived at Huish Park in the summer, was substituted ten minutes in to the second half.

Speaking to the club’s YouTube channel after the game, Glovers’ boss Darren Sarll said both he and the defender were “worried” about the injury.

The manager said: “That is a worry, when you get to 32 you know when something is not right, so I am worried about that one.

“Mark is worried about that one, so we will have to see. It was an innocuous one, but that is our first problem in three-and-a-half weeks now.

He will probably need a few days now, get it x-rayed and once we know the outcome, we will adapt.

The manager saw said that summer signing defender Morgan Williams missed the game because he was “adapting to his new footwear that allows him to not have one leg longer than the other.”

The 21-year-old has yet to appear since he joined on a permanent deal following his release by Coventry City.

Three unnamed trialists appeared for Yeovil Town in today’s 1-0 pre-season friendly  defeat against League Two Forest Green Rovers.

However, we have positive identifications on QPR forward Deshane Dalling and former Aberdeen central defender Harlain Mbayo who both appeared in the win at Stratford Town last weekend.

That leaves a left-back who came on after 70 minutes as one of five changes made by boss Darren Sarll – which the Gloverscast understands is Jack Bodenham, a defender recently in the youth set up at Cardiff City.

The unnamed trialist, right of picture, warming up.
Picture by Chris Fox.
Tom Bodenham – confirmed ID.

We’ve attached a picture taken by Glovers’ supporter Chris Fox of the player in question, who was being called “Jack” by his team-mates throughout the game.

And then, courtesy of Jack Bodenham’s own Twitter account is a picture of the player himself – which we can assume is a pretty positive identification!

The Welshman has been in Cardiff’s youth set-up since he was 14 and captained the club’s under-23s in the 2019-20 season.

He has had spells on loan at League of Wales side The New Saints in January 2019 and then again at National League North side Hereford in 2019-20.

He was released by Cardiff in the summer.

Bodenham is listed as playing centre-back on many of the online references to him, but was definitely playing down the left against Forest Green.

Yeovil’s first friendly at Huish Park ended in defeat at the hands of Forest Green Rovers this afternoon.

A 14th minute strike from Jamille Matt was enough for Forest Green although Yeovil put in a decent performance against the League Two side and had some good opportunities.

Forest Green Rovers kick off the EFL campaign next Saturday and will probably be a little disappointed with the performance against the Glovers, given it was only the second friendly of the Glovers season preparation.

First Half                                

The Glovers should have had the lead when Reuben Reid set Charlie Wakefield through on goal, but Yeovil’s new signing couldn’t get the ball under control as he was closed down by Rover’s keeper, Luke McGhee.

Reid had the ball in the net for Yeovil in the 11th minute, but it was disallowed after he pretty much caught the ball before finishing.

Jamille Matt gave Forest Green the lead in the 14th minute with a simple finish from a cross on the right hand side. Matt snuck in front of his marker to leave Grant Smith rooted to the spot.

Reid another effort ruled out in the 38th minute. A signature Tom Knowles strike drew a good save from McGhee and Reid was given offside after putting the rebound away.

Half Time: Yeovil Town 0 – 1 Forest Green Rovers

Second Half

Yeovil were forced into a 55th minute change as an injury to Mark Little saw him make way for Alex Bradley.

Reid should have equalised for Yeovil just after the hour. Luke Wilkinson’s pressure on McGhee saw the Forest Green keeper spill the ball to the feet or Reid who could only find the Thatchers stand.

Jordan Barnett very nearly lobbed his own keeper with a sensational effort in the 64th minute. Grant Smith saved his left back’s blushes, heading the ball wide.

Glovers’ boss Darren Sarll made 5 changes in the 70th minute with three trialists entering the fray. Two of the trialist Harlain Mbayo and Deshane Dalling also played against Stratford Town last weekend.

Yeovil did have a late opportunity to equalise after a good cross from Wakefield found Dalling in the box. He laid the ball off to Simper whose shot was charged down.

Full Time: Yeovil Town 0 Forest Green Rovers 1

 YTFC: Grant Smith, Mark Little (55, Alex Bradley), Luke Wilkinson (Trialist – Mbayo), Max Hunt, Jordan Barnett (Trialist), Josh Staunton (Lewis Simper), Charlie Wakefield, Dale Gorman (Matt Worthington), Tom Knowles, Joe Quigley, Reuben Reid (Trialist – Dalling)

Subs: Max Evans

Forest Green Rovers: Luke McGhee, Kane Wilson, Dominic Bernard, Ben Stevenson, Jack Aitchinson (Young), Allen (Sweeney), Jamille Matt (March), Jordan Moore-Taylor, Hendry, Udoka Godwin-Malife, Sadio Diallo (Stevens)

Our next pre-season opponents Taunton Town have called off their latest pre-season friendly following a positive COVID-19 result in their squad.

The Peacocks, who host Darren Sarll‘s men at Wordsworth Drive on Tuesday night, called off their game against Chippenham Town

Chairman Kevin Sturmey said: “In the interests of the safety of players, management, and match and club officials, and the uncertainty as to how many of our squad may be affected, we felt it appropriate to ensure we do our utmost to contain and prevent the spreading of the virus in the circumstances.

There is no suggestion that the game against Yeovil is in doubt, but our advice would be to check before you travel.

Summer signing midfielder Charlie Wakefield has been named in place of Alex Bradley in the only starting XI change for today’s pre-season friendly with Forest Green Rovers.

The former Chelsea youngster appeared as a second half substitute at Stratford Town seven days ago.

Three unnamed trialists are on the bench for the Glovers after appearances from forward Deshane Dalling, midfielder Richard Afrane-Kesey and defenders Robin Dempsey and Harlain Mbayo last weekend – see here.

There is still no sign of Morgan Williams, the central defender who arrived on a permanent deal in the summer after two loan spells at the club from Coventry City. He was watching from the stands at Stratford.

AWOL midfielder Albi Skendi is a more unsurprising absentee after boss Darren Sarll confirmed the Albanian was in the United States and had not returned for pre-season training.


Yeovil Town: Smith, Little, Wilkinson, Hunt, Barnett, Staunton, Wakefield, Gorman, Knowles, Quigley, Reid. Substitutes: Evans, Worthington, Bradley, Simper, Trialist A, Trialist B, Trialist C.

Forest Green: McGee, Wilson, Bernard, Stevenson, Aitchison, Allen, Matt, Moore-Taylor, Hendry, Godwin-Malife, Diallo. Substitutes: Thomas, Sweeney, Stevens, Evans, Young, Covil, March, Hallett, Baxter.

The sound of Yeovil Town supporters chanting his name is a memory which still lives with former Glovers’ goalkeeper Josh Wagenaar more than a decade after leaving Huish Park.

The Canadian played 28 times in the 2008–09 season which began under Russell Slade and ended under the stewardship of Terry Skiverton and his assistant Nathan Jones.

The spell at Huish Park was actually the most games Wagenaar, now 36 and living in the United States, played in a career which spanned eight years and saw him capped for his

Josh Wagenaar who played 28 times in the 2008-09 League One season for Yeovil Town.


He told the Gloverscast: “The fans were great, I will always remember them singing ‘Ooooh-ahhhhh Wagenaar!”, that will live long in my memory. To have my chanted by football fans was a dream come true.
“I still have all my jerseys. As far as playing goes in professional teams, I made some of my closest friends whilst I was there.
“Nathan Jones, Terry Skiverton, Andy Welsh, just great guys and always had time for me. I have nothing but good things to say about Yeovil.”

Wagenaar did also recall some slightly less kind chants from Leeds United supporters after he conceded four in a midweek defeat at Elland Road in March 2009.

He chuckles: “I still remember the Leeds fans behind me singing “3-0 and your keeper’s shite!” – so that felt good!”

But, the gloveman does have positive memories of his performances including pulling of great saves in the 1-0 win at Southend United and the draw at Millwall around Christmas 2008.

Loanee Asmir Begovic, who arrived from Portsmouth as a 19-year-old in the summer of 2008, kept Wagenaar out of the side for much of the first two months of that season.

Josh recalls he had been first choice ahead of Begovic for Canada at youth level, including in the CONCACAF Men’s Pre-Olympic Tournament in 2008 where their country finished third.

Begovic was born in Bosnia before his family moved to Edmonton, Canada when he was 10 years old and played for his adopted country at youth level before choosing to play for the country of his birth at senior level.

Asked about his memories of the now-Everton goalkeeper, who has commanded more than £15m in transfer fees, Wagenaar told the Gloverscast: “It was awesome to have Asmir there at Yeovil , we ate lunch a bunch at the Pizza Hut downtown together, get the nice salad bar there.
“His girlfriend at the time, who is now his wife, would come up and visit him from Portsmouth and it was fun to reminisce about Canada and what we missed about our home and native land.
“I don’t know where Asmir would consider to be his home country, but I think a lot of his growing up was in Canada even though he decided not to play for us.”

He adds: “Asmir was always a good goalkeeper, he always had good fundamentals but you just never know that people that get the opportunity and take it.
“He was a good pro, he was committed, so it was surprising but I was not thinking he was going to be a Premier League goalkeeper in the future.”

Yeovil Town Under 18s are starting to ramp up preparations ahead of the new season.

It was confirmed recently that the Young Glovers are entering a new division this season and will take on new opponents in the South West Counties league.

Training will commence in “early August” and two friendly fixtures have now been confirmed.

vs Paulton Rovers on Saturday 7th August
vs Priority Football Academy on Wednesday 18th August

At the time of writing, no kick off times, venues or ticketing details have been confirmed, stay across the YTFC Academy Social Media for more details and we here at the Gloverscast will endeavour to keep you up to date as well.

Darren Sarll has told Yeovil Town supporters to expect a different style from the “young, hungry” squad he has put together for the upcoming National League season.

The manager was speaking as his new-look Glovers prepare for their opening pre-season friendly at Huish Park against Forest Green Rovers on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

It will be an opportunity for new signings goalkeeper Grant Smith, defenders Mark Little and Jordan Barnett and  midfielders Dale Gorman and Charlie Wakefield to make their first appearances in front of the home supporters.

Morgan Williams, who had two spells on loan at the club before joining permanently this summer, could appear after sitting out last weekend’s opening friendly at Stratford Town.

Darren Sarll
Yeovil Town manager Darren Sarll.
Picture courtesy of Mike Kunz,.

Speaking to the club’s official YouTube channel, Sarll said: “We have tried to put together a young, hungry squad with good experience.

“(Josh) Staunton at 25 is a experienced footballer with over 200 games now, (Dale) Gorman is an experienced footballer, so experience is not just defined chronologically.

“They are very competitive this group in a different way (to last season’s side) and it has been a really encouraging three and a half weeks and their commitment to the cause and the new way has been incredible.
“We are going to have to be different, you are not going to see the same product because there are different ingredients and we are going to come out the other end in a completely different style.
“So everyone has got to be open minded, but I am guessing as long as we are winning  everyone will go home happy on a Saturday

We will have to wait and see whether any of the trialists who appeared in the 1-0 win at Stratford last weekend appear again against Forest Green.

Defenders Harlain Mbayo and striker Deshane Dalling are understood to have still been training last week, but we will wait and see whether defender Robin Dempsey and Richard Afrane-Kesey get another chance to impress.

Yeovil Town supporters have taken to social media to send their best wishes to former player and backroom staff member Stuart Housley who is in hospital.

The 72-year-old played nearly 400 times for the club in two spells between 1969 and 1980 before returning  as youth team manager and then in various backroom roles under a succession of managers.

He was a major part of the club’s most successful period which saw them win the the FA Trophy, promotion to the Football League  in Gary Johnson’s first spell at Huish Park and then promotion to the Championship under Johnson again in 2013.

In 2016, he spoke publicly to the Yeovil Press about his battle with leukaemia.

Everyone here at the Gloverscast send our best wishes to Stuart and his family and friends and hopes for a speedy recovery.