Before we start this is an overview of the playing staff:
So I had already started this save before writing this thread and didn’t realise I couldn’t go back and take screenshots of the league table standings (unless someone can tell me different). I have played until the start of December and haven’t got screen shots of the league standings, but I have worked out what they would have been and have commented where Stockport would have been at the end of each month.
Stockport County v FC United
The season kicked off with a home game against FC United, which I was hoping we would win. However it ended 0-0. It was not for the want of trying though as we dominated the game, having 65% and a total of 13 shot (5 on target and hitting the woodwork 3 times). FC United created 2 shots (1 on target hitting the woodwork once).
So there were positives to take from the game.
York City v Stockport County
Next we travelled to York. York were favourites for this one and it would prove to be a tough game. York took the lead on 40 minutes, before our right back Sam Minihan was sent off for a second bookable offence on 61 minutes. The lads didn’t give up and Frank Mulhern equalised on 77 minutes and the match ended in a 1-1 draw.
In terms of stats it was an even game, both teams had 6 shots, 2 on target for York and 4 on target for us, both creating 1 clear cut chance each. We had slightly more possession with 54%.
Southport v Stockport County
The next game saw us away again to Southport. We went 2-0 up before half time, Frank Mulhern (30) and Jake Kirby (45+1). Connor Dimaio picked up an ankle injury on 60 minutes (which resulted in a 4 week layoff) and Southport grabbed a late consolation goal on 82. The game ended in a 2-1 win. Stockport bossed the game once again enjoying 60% possession and having 14 shots (3 on target, 1 clear cut chance, hitting the woodwork once). Southport had 5 shots (4 on target).
Stockport County v Guiseley
The next game was at home to Guiseley. The game didn’t start well and we went 1-0 down on 14 minutes. It didn’t take long to equalise with Jake Kirby making it 1-1 on 27 minutes. The lads huffed and puffed, but the game would end 1-1, once again failing to win at home.
Stockport had 18 shots (11 on target) and enjoyed 60% possession. Guiseley had 6 shots (scoring with their only shot on target).
Bradford PA v Stockport County
Back on our travels for the next one away to Bradford PA (the Bradford teams tend to be my bogey teams and I seldom get a result against them). The Hatters broke the deadlock through Sam Walker on 12 minutes and it wasn’t long till they were 2-0 up through Jake Kirby (19) with his 3rd in 3 games. Bradford pulled a goal back on 29 minutes before Matthew Warburton (41) bagged a third before half-time. The game would end in a 3-1 away win, although Bradford were probably the better team. Stockport had 51% possession and 9 shots (4 on target, 3 clear cut chances, hitting the woodwork once), whereas Bradford had 13 shots (7 on target).
Stockport County v Alfreton Town
Stockport entertained Alfreton next, looking for their first win. It wasn’t to be with the game fizzling out into a 0-0 draw. Lots of possession for Stockport again, 60%, but unable to break down a stubborn defence. Stockport had 10 shot (5 on target) compared to 2 (both on target) from Alfreton.
Kidderminster Harriers v Stockport County
Kidderminster away was next and it took until the 74 minute, Matthew Warburton, to break the deadlock for Stockport, and that was how the game ended, 1-0 to Stockport. Possession was pretty even, with Stockport edging it with 54%. Stockport had 13 shots (4 on target, 2 clear cut chances) and Kidderminster had 5 (1 on target). A vintage away performance.
Stockport County v Leamington Spa
A home game against Leamington rounded off the month of August. FINALY the Stockport County fans saw a win at Edgeley Park. Captain Paul Turnbull opened the scoring on 57 minutes, before Matthew Warburton (76) added a second. Warburton could have made it 3, but missed a penalty on 78 minutes. The game ended in a 2-0 win. Another pretty dominant display. 61% possession for Stockport, 14 shots (3 on target, 3 clear cut chances, 3 hit the woodwork). Leamington ended with 3 shots (0 on target).
So a mixed bag for August, 4 wins and 4 draws, however we were the only unbeaten team left in the division, sitting 4th in the table on 16 points, 3 points off the early leaders Hereford. Seem to be creating chances, but perhaps lack the quality to finish them off.
Despite reservation from the fans and the board, we’ll stick with the formation and see how we get on.
September saw the start of Stockport’s FA Cup campaign, but before that there was the small matter of two league games
Stockport v Boston United
Another home game and a chance to build on our first home win last time out. The match came to life toward the end of the first half, with Matthew Warburton scoring a 6 minute double (36,42). The scored stayed that way and Stockport won 2-0. Plenty of possession again for Stockport with 62%. Stockport had 15 shots (3 on target, 2 clear cut chances). Boston had 3 shots (1 on target).
AFC Telford v Stockport
We’ve been brilliant away from home, but Telford are unbeaten at home thus far, winning 2 and drawing 2. This was a tough game, but the good news was the return of Connor Dimaio to the match squad following his injury and he earned a place on the bench.
An even game for the most part, but we took the lead just before half time, Matthew Warburton (44) with his 5th game in his last 4. Darren Stephenson got a bruised ankle on 68 minutes and had to be substituted (only a slight injury out for 3 days). The game was wrapped up when Frank Mulhern (73) made it 2-0 with his first goal in 5 games.
Overall a very good performance away from home and a deserved win. Stockport had 54% possession and 11 shots (5 on target), Telford had 7 shots (3 on target).
Stockport v AFC Rushden & Diamonds
FA Cup day, 2nd Qualifying Round. A lower league side, with no players suggested that should have been a walk over.
We got a penalty and on 37 minutes, Matthew Warburton missed that penalty, meaning the game went to half-time 0-0. Second-half was much the same as the first-half, plenty of possession and shots, but no end product. Frank Mulhern had to go off injured with twisted ankle on 57 minutes (this would keep him out for 3 weeks).
Finally the breakthrough came through when Connor Dimaio (74) scored on his first start since his injury. The second goal took a long time coming and Nyal Bell (90+2) scored his first goal for the club to seal qualification to the next round.
A dominant game from start to finish with Stockport enjoying 60% possession. We managed 17 shots (6 on target, 2 clear cut chances). Rucshden managed just 3 shots (2 on target).
Darlington v Stockport
Another tough away game, but we do like playing away! Stockport took the lead on 13 minutes through Jake Kirby. Darlington pegged us back on the stroke of half-time. Connor Dimaio (57) made it 2-1 and the game ended that way.
Stockport dominated the possession with 61%. We managed 16 shot (5 on target, 1 clear cut chance). Darlington managed 6 shots (3 on target).
September saw the Hatters win all four games and remain unbeaten. With that we gain top spot in the league with 25 point, 3 points above second place Hereford. The draw for the FA Cup 3rd Qual. Rnd took place, with Stockport given an away tie against lower league side Marine.
September also saw a first Manager of the Month award for me.
SEASON REVIEW SO FAR
I’m pretty pleased with the way things have gone remained unbeaten in my first 12 games winning 8 of those. The positives are definitely the defensive solidity of the team using this formation, having only conceded 5 goals and keeping 7 cleansheets. Also the amount of possession and pass completion is very pleasing.
58% per game
PASS COMPLETION (avg)
74% (456/612) per game
The team doesn’t score loads, not sure if this is down to the tactics or the quality of the playing staff, I guess time will tell. I thinking it may be the later as the stats suggest I’m creating chances and 38% of the teams shot are on target.
SHOTS FOR (avg)
13 per game
SHOTS ON TARGET (avg)
5 per game
CLEAR CUT CHANCES (avg)
2 per game
1 per game