We burst out of the blocks with three wins, which set the tone for a season during which we were never out of the top four. We rode our luck through some injuries and general poor play to take our chances when they came, and by Christmas we were well and truly in the ascendancy as far as the title race went. Seven points in the three games between Boxing Day and NYE only reaffirmed this.
2020 started with a 0-3 home loss to Premiership high-flyers Newcastle in the third round of the FA Cup (they finished 4th), but we got the cash and eradicated any further fixture congestion, having exited all other cups early on. We established a double figure points lead over 4th place and by this point, anything less than promotion would be a massive choke.
By the time the choke did come, it was already March and all that was threatened was the title itself. When we beat Coventry 2-0 on the 7th, we held an eight point gap over them in second. Five games later they were on top by a point, as we were insipid. They still held that margin going into the final three fixtures, but we won the lot and them only two, crowning us league winners for the third consecutive season and giving me manager of the season honours.
Goal of the Season
The goal that secured the title, fittingly scored by the skipper. A fair goal too.
Ramon Phillips - He ran hot and cold, but still ended up with 20 goals, and a call-up to the Euros as a result, in addition to the L2 player of the season award. Has plenty of development left in him.
Marcus Hewlett - He was underwhelming in a loan spell last season, but upon joining permanently and being given a starting role, he proved a more than adequate replacement for Rooney. His 19 goals included a hat-trick on his "second debut" for the club.
Nicolai Risvig - Re-united with my captain at Supermarine and he didn't disappoint, notching nine goals and 17 assists in a seamless transition to league football.
Kenny Coton - A very solid campaign for the teenager, and his consistency showed a maturity beyond his years. Earned an England under 19s cap too.
Bo Nĝhr - Kept a clean sheet in nearly half of his appearances, and a 6.91 average rating for a keeper is excellent.
From experience, the jump from League Two to League One is greater than from the Conference, so I think we'll need some more quality to avoid a relegation dog fight. A couple of quality central midfielders are at the top of my shopping list. Will get my scouts looking closely at youths released by Prem clubs because we're at a point where the better ones may consider the club now.
2011/12 - Evo-Stik Southern Premier - 1st (promoted as champions)
2012/12 - Blue Square South - 2nd (lost in play-off semis)
2013/14 - Blue Square South - 2nd (lost in play-off semis)
2014/15 - Blue Square South - 4th (play-off and FA Trophy finalists)
2015/16 - Blue Square South - 1st (promoted as champions)
2016/17 - Blue Square Premier - 9th (resigned)
Forest Green Rovers
2017/18 - Blue Square South - 1st (promoted as champions)
2018/19 - Blue Square Premier - 1st (promoted as champions)
2019/20 - League Two - 1st (promoted as champions)