It's RED all over
A new format for the matchday programme was seen in full for the first time on Tuesday, we will today review the programme.
Remaining the same size as last season, just a bit bigger than A5, the programme called "Red all over" has a glossy red cover with a player picture on the front. Yet the price remains at £2.50, for the 48 pages provided. Sixteen of these pages are lost to advertisement, a necessary evil these days and since these are weighted towards the back of the programe they are not too intrusive.
The quality of pictures is great with two pages given up to "action replay "photos of a previous game (v Man Utd xi in this issue), a full page picture of the saddler in profile (Clayton Ince in this case)as well as a centre fold picture of a current Saddler (Hector Sam). Also with a whole page of photos from the sponsors from previous games. This is not all there are plenty of insert photographs supporting the various articles which also maintain a high standard.
Articles include the usual, Manager comments page-"Money Talks" and The Chairmans page and a two page "whats on" and "Roy Whalley news" items. A two page player interview (plus picture) including a fans question section and the common whats your favorite food, music etc type questions. The reserves and the youth team get a page each. Ex saddler Bret Angell gets to pick his team team, whilst another page is given to a profile of ex foreign players, Kyle Lightbourne. Saddlers TV and Saddlers world share a page. Whilst the start of a Saddlers player A-Z gets another.
The opposition get a whole five pages including head to head stats, classic campaigns, memorable matches, and interview with a player who played for both teams and player profiles on the ones to watch as well as team photo and a half page history.
Further on the community programme is spread on two pages, followed by Away daze where fans get share away day photos etc. Ticket and away travel fills another page. Whilst remaining 3 pages have another interview and Barmy Army features as well holiday club and commercial news. The fixtures and results and stats take another two pages before the final article gives a taste of our next visitors to Bescot,with of course the team news on the back page.
All in all a much better production than last year, with the quality of the printing and pictures a noticible improvement. Last year where excessive handling could cause the print to smudge, I see no evidence of the same issues this time around.
I would give this programme 8/10 overall, although for a saddlers fan it would be near to 9/10. The only draw back is that to be top of the class programme perhaps more articles that would appeal to both home and away fans would be nice. However it is perhaps a tad harsh since 80% of its market would be saddlers.
My suggestion would be to all those who have long since stopped buying programmes to give this one a go. In the days of spiraling costs this represents good value for money compared with some of the other League two fare.