Tooting & Mitcham United FC- Season 2016/17- League One
The season in Jan 2016, with the capture of three expiring players from outside of England, two Welshmen; Waters and Holmes and a Northern Irishman in Martin. All three would have important roles to play in T & M's League One campaign.
A fantastic start to the season saw us leading after the first game and after winning our first six in a row we were brought back to earth by a rampant QPR, losing 8-1 in what will probably remain as the club's worst loss of all time. Despite this, we recovered well and were still holding on to top stop midway through December.
At the same time, despite dropping out of the JPT in the 2nd round, we were having a strong League Cup run, starting with a 2-1 win on the road to midtable CH team Charlton. This was followed up with home wins in the 2nd and 3rd rounds to CH team Sheffield Utd and then our first Premier League scalp, a 2-0 win over West Ham. An even better performance in the 4th Rd saw us destroy CH team Norwich on the road 4-0, setting up a Qtr final away to CH Bolton. This time we met our match, getting outplayed convincingly and finally losing 2-0.
Meanwhile, in the early stages of the FA Cup we needed home replays to beat BSP York and L2 Walsall, putting a huge strain on the squad, so come mid December, we lost hold of top spot in L1. With the even nature of the league, we dropped from 1st to 6th after only managing 7pts from 7 matches in our yearly down patch. In this patch we also faced PRM team Wigan at home in the FA Cup 3rd Rd and were soundly beaten 1-3.
With the cups out of the way, we finally had some more rest between matches as we stormed our way back into the promotion places, hitting top spot again, going unbeaten through 9 matches, with 7 wins in there for good measure. Once we were finally beaten by Everton though, Leeds had taken the top spot back and never let it go, running away with the league and leaving about 8 clubs fighting it out for 1 automatic promotion slot.
Despite some fluctuations in form, we held our nerves as those around us starting dropping off the pace, first QPR, then Plymouth and finally Oldham and whilst Everton made a late dash, they had started too far back and a 1-0 win on the road over MK Dons in the penultimate round brought on celebrations after Leeds had beaten QPR at the same time, meaning, for the fourth season in a row, we were going up!
We don't have the best squad that's for sure but we have winners. Of our 26 league wins this season, 15 of them were by 1 goal, they score 'em when it counts.
Leading Scorer: Zak Ansah His attributes aren't that good but he scores, more consistently than any other striker so far.
Earlier in the season we were finally taken over by a fans' consortium, unfortunately, it was done during the Jan transfer window and I missed out on most of the players I was after at the time. This made GK Andrews annoyed as I had promised to improve the squad to keep him and then finally towards the end of the window, with the embargo lifted, I brought in Harper from fellow L1 promotion contenders, Plymouth for £5k. He's not that good although he is better than what I have there but most importantly, he was enough to make Andrews quit whining and play football (for the moment).
News post season that the stadium will have to be improved to meet CH requirements. No loan, just a big hit to the finances, we go from being 329k up to 166k in the red. Will make next season very difficult. The new stadium will still only be 8,000 but will be an all seater it appears. In the meantime, we will be playing at the 10,000 (650 seat) Feltham Arena which has synthetic grass.
Goals for 2017/18:
- Mid-table Championship finish
- Improve squad with players from Europe which I can now scout
- Good money making cup run
Season Division Position Achievements
2012/13 BSS 7th FA Trophy-3rd Rd
2013/14 BSS 3rd Promoted via Playoffs, FA Cup-4th Rd
2014/15 BSP 4th Promoted via Playoffs, FA Cup-3rd Rd, FA Trophy Winners
2015/16 L2 3rd Automatic Promotion, JPT South Winner, JPT Finalist
2016/17 L1 2nd Automatic Promotion, League Cup-Qtr Final, FA Cup-3rd Rd