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Forest Green Rovers

The New Lawn Founded 1890 Rovers

Over the last three campaigns Forest Green Rovers start out as one of the favourites only to finish in the same position. Rovers are currently the longest serving club in the Conference Premier and will take part in their seventeenth consecutive season. The Gloucestershire club have branded themselves as environmentally friendly which is no surprise when their owner Dale Vince founded Ecotricity. Twice runners up in the F.A Trophy and former F.A Vase winners meant Forest Green Rovers became the first club to have appeared in both finals. Considering the number of season’s Rovers have spent in the Conference Premier they have yet to reach the playoffs.

fgrfcLast Season

Conference Premier: 10th

F.A Cup: 4th Qualifying Round

F.A Trophy: 2nd Round

County Cup: Quarter Final

Top Scorer: James Norwood

Average Attendance: 1195

An opening day 8-0 win against Hyde set the tongues wagging in favour of a title challenge. Once again Forest Green Rovers fell short, not just for automatic promotion but also for the playoffs. Dave Hockaday thought he had assembled a squad capable of reaching the clubs ambition and on paper it looked strong. Three months into the season and the manager departed after three wins in 24 games. Rovers considered employing Steve Burr who had impressed at Kidderminster Harriers the year before, however he turned the offer down and in came Adrian Pennock. The Gloucestershire club knew how to find the net with only champions Luton Town and FC Halifax Town scoring more. The problem was at the other end where they conceded twice the amount on their travels than at the New Lawn. An inconsistent season with a consistent placing, Forest Green Rovers finished tenth for the third consecutive campaign.

The Manager – Adrian Pennock

A former central defender, Adrian Pennock made his name at AFC Bournemouth and Gillingham where he made almost 300 Football League appearances between both clubs. Pennock retired when injuries started to get the better of him and he finished his playing career in Kent at Gravesend and Northfleet. To kick start his managerial career Pennock remained in Kent moving the short distance to Welling United. In 2005, he guided the Wings to their highest finish for six years in the Conference South when he took over in January. He stayed at Park View Road until the end of the 2006/07 campaign until Tony Pulis came calling. Pulis, who signed Pennock whilst at Gillingham appointed him as coach at Stoke City until he left in 2013. Following a run of poor results Forest Green Rovers announced their new manager on 12 November 2013 so although Pennock hasn’t had a full season in charge yet, he has had some time to shape his squad for his first full campaign.

The Summer

Adrian Pennock has taken advantage of Salisbury City’s demotion signing three from the Wiltshire club. Clovis Kamdjo made 34 appearances last term as a midfielder but is equally adept in defence. Winger, Elliot Frear appeared in all but three Conference Premier matches last season and also signs a two year deal. Completing the trio of midfielder’s on two year contracts is Rob Sinclair. Sam Wedgbury could play alongside the former Salisbury City players in the middle of the park as he joins from Macclesfield Town. Up front, 21 year old promising Kurtis Guthrie moves from Welling United where he was part of the promotion winning side. Forest Green Rovers have snapped up former Stevenage goalkeeper Steve Arnold to provide competition for Sam Russell. In defence two full backs have been captured in James Jennings from Mansfield Town and David Pipe from Newport County.

Moving in the opposite direction across to Wales is Yan Klukowski. The midfielder spent four years at the New Lawn scoring a club record 48 Conference Premier goals, the 27 year old joins Newport County. Striker James Walker reached the end of his contract and left the club whilst Jared Hodgkiss, Ed Asafu-Adjaye, Stephen Brogan, Reece Styche, Paul Green, Saul Williams and Adam McHugh were all released.

Last Meetings vs The Darts

Dartford 0 Forest Green Rovers 1 – Conference Premier – 12 April 2014

Rovers completed three wins from four fixtures against the two sides adding to their successes last term. Dartford had the opportunity to move out of the relegation zone, which was denied to them when Danny Wright won the match seven minutes from time.

Forest Green Rovers 1 Dartford 0 – F.A Trophy First Round Replay – 3 December 2013

Matthew Barnes-Homer recorded the all important strike that made sure Forest Green Rovers progressed to the next round. Defeat for the Darts meant they couldn’t repeat their previous run to the last four whilst Rovers fell at the next hurdle.

Dartford 1 Forest Green Rovers 1 – F.A Trophy First Round – 30 November 2013

Danny Harris scored Dartford’s only goal against Forest Green Rovers last season which came in the F.A Trophy. Yan Klukowski spoiled the party with an equaliser but at least the Darts ended a seven game losing streak. The draw meant the Kent club needed to travel to Gloucstershire three days later.

Forest Green Rovers 1 Dartford 0 – Conference Premier – 2 November 2013

By the time the Darts met Forest Green Rovers in the league Dave Hockaday had gone. The mangerless club grabbed three points early on when James Norwood headed the winner after just five minutes. There wasn’t much to choose between the two sides with Max Cornhill and Ryan Hayes coming the closest for the Darts.

Next Meetings

Saturday 20 September 2014 at Princes Park

Saturday 29 November 2014 at the New Lawn

League Performance Last Ten Years

fgr 10 years

Best Performances

8th Conference Premier (2007/08) F.A Cup 3rd Round (2008/09) F.A Trophy Runners Up (1998/99 & 2000/01)

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