Season 6, Welsh Premier League, Aberystwyth.
Media Prediction: 5th
Board Expectation: Compete with the top teams
The season started with a job offer from Scotland, not the national team of course but minnows Albion Rovers. A team I have managed in FM09 and grew fairly fond of. However with the way last season ended I wanted to stay in Wales for at least another season, so I turned them down.
After a defeat in my 2nd game I was very wary of that being the start of a poor run of form. It wasn’t to be however as that would turn out to be only 1 of 3 league defeats between then and the turn of the year. In October Albion Rovers again came calling, but as the team was on a good run again I turned them down.
I would have to wait until February before I lost another game, a 2-1 defeat away to title chasing Connah’s Quay. This was followed by another defeat 2 weeks later which put a dent in my title challenge and saw me slip off the top spot, putting me 3 points behind Connah’s Quay and only 5 points clear of Welshpool in 3rd.
It would seem my services were very much in demand when Llanelli offered me the job of manager in February, but I wasn’t going to leave a title challenge to languish in mid table obscurity so I turned them down.
It was a nervy climax to the season, the penultimate game saw me 3 points behind league leaders Connah’s Quay but with a much better goal difference and 5 points ahead of 3rd place Welshpool. Welshpool had to play Connah’s Quay while I entertained Bala.
I crossed my fingers and hoped that my former employers would do me a favour and beat Connah’s quay while at the same time hoping that I managed to beat Bala. I won, and so did Welshpool meaining I would go back to the top of the table on goal difference with 1 to play. My victory also guaranteed me a top 2 finish.
Going into the last game I only had to match Connah’s Quay. We both won, meaning I won the league on goal difference.
I had great success in both cups, making it to the final of both, where I would meet Welshpool. The welsh cup was first up and I was confident going into the game of securing a double. Perhaps this confidence was my downfall as I lost the game 1-0.
The league cup final was 3 days later where I would have the chance to gain revenge on Welshpool and another chance to seal the double. I managed it this time. With the score level at 1-1 the match went into extra time. The second half of extra time saw me score that all important goal which was enough to seal the victory. I managed to win the cup and secure the double!
The end of the season saw another job offer come my way, this time from Irish 1st division side Shelbourne. I didn’t fancy going back to Ireland so I turned them down.
I’m not sure where I want to go from here. If I stay at Aber then I have champions league football to look forward to but no real progression. I wouldn’t expect to get past whichever qualifying round I start in.
They always say winning the league once is easy, it’s winning it twice that proves more difficult so I have that challenge still, but I have itchy feet and want to manage in a better quality league. I might have to see what League 1 jobs are available to apply for.
1st P34 W25 D4 L5 F87 A24 Pts79
Final v Welshpool w 2-1 aet
Final v Welshpool l 1-0
2 for £0
16 for £95k
1 Scout & 1 Coach for £9k
1 Scout for £0
Season 7, Welsh Premier League, Aberystwyth.
I was dumped out of the champions league at the first hurdle, a 9-0 aggregate defeat against Partizan put paid to that.
After a poor start to the season I see that Aue in the German 3rd division were looking for a new manager, so I decide to apply. The board get wind and gave me an ultimatum, either apologise or resign! I chose to resign.
While unemployed I was constantly at the job centre. I applied for quite a few jobs, all unsuccessfully. I thought the best I would get in England is a League 1 job, with an outside chance of getting a championship job at a team who were maybe punching above their weight. As it was, I couldn’t seem to get a job anywhere. I was trying division 3 German teams, serie C Italian teams, all without success.
Gillingham’s manager was insecure in his job, so I told the media I would like it. They promptly sacked him and offered me the job, which I duly accepted.