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Jambo_

[FM19] (One of) the biggest English towns to never have a team in the English football league

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Pre-Season 2020/21

Transfers

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Lots of players left at the end of their contracts, leaving space for some new signings but the squad probably still isn't good enough to compete at this level. Definitely won't be the same kind of season as the last two.

Squad

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This team has a lot of potential but needs more current ability. I'm hoping we can surprise a few teams and stay clear of relegation. Big squad means players can stay fresh and get rotated a lot.

Friendlies

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Some friendlies to make money mixed in. Great result against Wycombe, and good performances against Wolves and West Ham. Maybe we won't struggle as much as I think...?

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August

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Been as difficult as I imagined it would be, we're hugely behind the top teams in this league. Good to get points away at Hartlepool and Barnet, 2 of the better teams in the league. Dagenham & Redbridge and Leyton Orient completely outplayed us.

Table

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End the season now! I'd be delighted to finish 20th and escape relegation. Hopefully we can get a few wins in the next month.

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September

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A superb month. 3 very important victories, especially against Tranmere where we played very defensively and managed to sneak a goal from a penalty to win the game. 10 points from 15 every month will definitely do it for me.

Table

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6 points clear of the drop and looking strong, hopefully we can build on this and be safe. Closer to play-offs than the relegation zone... surely not again?!

Transfers

4 new signings this month as we try and build a squad capable of playing at this level. The squad is currently far too big so looking to offload a few.

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Sam Westley joined as a free agent as a backup option across the back 4. Came on as a sub against Aldershot and started against Lincoln, has been an unused substitute ever since.

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Kingsley James joined on loan from fellow VNL side Macclesfield to beef up the midfield. Played every game of the month until being left out against Tranmere.

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Jay Lynch joins as our best goalkeeper to hopefully keep teams out. Played all 5 games in the month and only conceded 3, so has had a positive start.

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Jack Evans joins as a very good CM who can hopefully control the game for us. Not yet made his debut.

 

One player has left, with Liam Langford joining Barrow on a free transfer.

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October

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Superb unbeaten month. Starting to come together now and I'm feeling much more positive about surviving. Through to the FA Cup 1st Round away at Dagenham & Redbridge, which will be a good way to see how far we've come in a few months.

Table

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Sitting in 13th and safely mid-table. 8 points clear of relegation and only 3 points off play-offs...

Transfers

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Just the one new signing this month, as Anthony Glennon joins on a free transfer. Made his debut against Macclesfield.

Outgoings - Theo Wharton and James King have been released on free transfers, while Fabio Tavares has been loaned out to Whitby and Ross White has signed for Merstham for £5k.

Edited by Jambo_

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November

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Awful in the league, good in the cup. Definitely need to step up the league form. Through to the FA Cup 3rd round where all the big boys enter...

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And we face Championship side Birmingham City at home. Hopefully can get a lot of money from it again and who knows what could happen if we perform well!

Table

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Sliding down due to our poor league form but hopefully we can win a few and make a bit of a gap between us and the relegation area again.

Transfers

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1 more player joins the team - 24 year old goalkeeper Jake Eastwood. Played against York and Bromley.

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December

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The month started well, unbeaten in 3 but then fell apart. Never won in the FA Trophy in the 3 seasons which is strange. Next game is the FA Cup 3rd round game against Birmingham...

Table

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Hanging just above the relegation zone. Need better form in the league.

Transfers

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Ethan Wassall joins on a free loan from Macclesfield until the end of the season.

Adam Hughes has left to join Hyde on a free transfer, while Jacob Carney has joined Workington on loan until the end of the season.

Edited by Jambo_

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FA Cup 3rd Round

As it's the biggest game in the club's history (so far!), I thought I'd do a post just for the FA Cup 3rd round game at home against Championship side Birmingham City.

Our temporary home of Hilton Park, Leigh had a sell out crowd of 7,500 for the big occasion including over 1,000 travelling Birmingham fans.

I decided to play defensively and look to try and score on the counter as they had a much higher quality team than us, as you'd expect with them being 3 leagues above.

So onto the match:

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A brilliant performance and a brilliant result. Caolan Lavery with 2 goals from counter attacks, and only the post denied him of a hat-trick. Was a very nervy last half hour at 2-1, and I really panicked when Lukas Jutkiewicz was through 1 on 1 in stoppage time... and punched the air when he was given as offside.

Through to the 4th round with many of the country's biggest teams involved, can we get a fairytale tie?

 

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Not quite. Another Championship team at home so I'll definitely fancy our chances again and who knows what could happen.

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January

1801723999_January2021results.thumb.png.b3fdc38a74357481f5c2ad4e403076f7.png

So our FA Cup run is over for another year, but we gave it a good effort against Huddersfield. Our league form is now our only focus and it desperately needs to turn around otherwise we'll be in deep trouble. Up next is Solihull Moors at home who are also in the relegation area so a very important one.

Table

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Need to start getting some results together and try and escape from the relegation battle. Going to be a nervy end to the season!

Transfers

No incomings this month, but 2 outgoings - Udoka Chima has joined Spezia in Italy for an initial £7k, and Joe Green has joined League 1 Doncaster for £3k. Some good profits from these free transfers.

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19 hours ago, Nobby_McDonald said:

You need to turn things round Jambo.

Things seem to be improving, just can't get any consistent form together!

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February

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A superb unbeaten month. The win against Solihull Moors was hugely important as they are another team around the bottom of the table. We've now beaten Lincoln 3-1 in both games against them this season, and good to get a point against Boreham Wood and Tranmere who are both going for promotion.

Table

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Sitting 17th in the table but only 2 points clear of relegation. It's so tight at the bottom of the table, only 5 points between 17th and 24th. The next month is crucial as we play Bromley, Macclesfield, Halifax, Torquay, Wrexham and Stevenage - 5 of the 6 we play are below us in the table. Big finish to the season coming up!

Transfers

Nobody joining again, but disappointed to lose Jamie Thornton to Boreham Wood on a free transfer right at the end of the month. The search is on for another centre back  quickly as it's a position we're now low on quality for.

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March

1634959075_March2021results.thumb.png.dad7804266742818f54252f498752c99.png

Unbeaten again but far too many draws. Hoping we'll have enough to pull us through but if we go down we'll rue drawing to teams around us here, especially Torquay at home who are now all but relegated.

Table

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4 points clear of the dreaded drop zone, hoping we have enough to keep up. Too many draws and not enough wins, turn 2 draws into wins through the season and we're all but safe! Just need to make sure we do better than the teams below us.

Transfers

Two of our players on non-contract deals left the club to join other National League teams. Louis Walsh scored in the 2-2 draw to Halifax then joined Tranmere 3 days later, and Elliot Goldthorp joined Aldershot.

We did have three players join the club:

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Ethan Kershaw joined on a free transfer from Marine as cover for CM and RM.

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Kasom Shah joined from Accrington Stanley (who are they?) on a free transfer as an option at centre back.

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And Blaine Hudson joined on a non-contract agreement as a back up centre back.

Youth intake

I nearly forgot to mention the youth intake... mainly because it's not worth mentioning.

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Precisely zero of these players will make it to the first team.

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End of season

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We limped our way to the end of the season. Superb time for Bradley Reid to get his first and only goal of the season to give us a 1-0 win over Gateshead. Was it enough to keep us up...

Table

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The point from the Ebbsfleet draw was enough to make us safe. A very successful season and I'm delighted to stay up. Tranmere shocked the play-offs by getting promoted from 7th.

Stats

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Squad needs a major overhaul for next season if we want an improvement on our position from this season.

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Rob Evans wins the fans vote for the second season in a row.

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On ‎07‎/‎02‎/‎2019 at 21:06, Nobby_McDonald said:

You stayed up though Jambo. Nicely done.

Just about! Hoping for a bit more breathing space next season

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Pre-Season 2021

Transfers

Transfers.thumb.png.cec45559a2adf6d4a9a26be22bd50561.png

Released.thumb.png.8493f925292159096c2f8f9a2e086548.png

Some good signings coming in and some players leaving who wouldn't make the cut. Still have a few who could leave if the right offer comes in. Right back Matthew Gibbins coming in from Man City was our best signing of the summer, but improvements all across the field which is good.

Squad

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Better squad than I started the season with last season and strong in defence. Still looking for a left midfielder to strengthen that area but the market is a bit dry on that one.

Friendlies

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Some great results here, drawing against Kilmarnock and somehow hammering an Everton team that included Mario Gotze, Jordan Pickford, Ander Herrera, Layvin Kurzawa, Ademola Lookman… what a result.

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On 09/02/2019 at 14:28, Jambo_ said:

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Some great results here, drawing against Kilmarnock and somehow hammering an Everton team that included Mario Gotze, Jordan Pickford, Ander Herrera, Layvin Kurzawa, Ademola Lookman… what a result.

Niall Huggins... I hate him! He's scored 10 in his last 3 games against us. :ackter:

He's playing for Shaw Lane in 2031 and has scored 265 league goals for them. Hopefully he's showing same kind of consictency for you as well!

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20 hours ago, erik45 said:

Niall Huggins... I hate him! He's scored 10 in his last 3 games against us. :ackter:

He's playing for Shaw Lane in 2031 and has scored 265 league goals for them. Hopefully he's showing same kind of consictency for you as well!

He's scoring a lot of goals for me so long may it continue!

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August 2021

1998029530_August2021results.thumb.png.e4a53270789f935593ee02089994c794.png

A rough start with 2 difficult fixtures against Dag & Red and then away to recently relegated Carlisle, but some good results elsewhere including a last minute winner against newly promoted Hemel Hempstead Town. Came back from 2-0 down against Ebbsfleet to draw 2-2 and then beat Maidstone 1-0 to cap off a decent opening month.

Table

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Some good teams in this league this season, I'm just hoping to pick up some wins and finish safely mid table and stay away from any relegation battles.

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September

1225844095_September2021results.thumb.png.5531ed51ef63af9a476cc3ccaad749a1.png

A very poor month, but Lincoln, Fylde and Sutton are the top 3 so defeats against them was kind of expected.

Table

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Still 6 points clear of relegation but need to pick up more results.

Transfers

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Centre back Denzel Williams joined on a free transfer. Still on the hunt for a left midfielder, especially as Josef Pastorek has torn a hamstring so is out for 3-4 months. Now desperate for a left midfielder but there isn't any anywhere. Have set up an affiliation with Stoke City, but there's not really anybody decent to loan from them. We shall keep looking!

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October

303635554_October2021results.thumb.png.4a57b37649d83a5558786529a1770f05.png

Not getting quite as many results as I would like in the league, there's still a lot of improvement before this team can really try and be anything but a struggling team at this level.

Table

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Still 6 points clear of relegation but hoping for better results soon, I don't want to be dragged into a relegation scrap again.

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November

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Was looking like a terrible month until the last 2 fixtures. Important wins to get us out of the relegation zone.

Table

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5 points clear of the relegation zone in 17th. Looks like top spot is between Lincoln and Boreham Wood.

Transfers

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Kaine Felix joined from Guiseley for £5k to try and help the winger situation, but still lacking on both flanks.

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Almost guarantee whichever of Lincoln or Boreham Wood don't win the league won't win the playoffs. That normally happens when one team finishes clear of the others.

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December 2021

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A fairly decent month, with 3 wins out of 5 in the league and a mental FA Trophy tie. We were 3-0 down at half time and looked set to be heading out again, but turned it round to be leading 4-3 only for Chorley to score a late equaliser. We made no mistake in the replay. We have a tough draw in the next round - away to Carlisle.

Table

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Doing well in mid table and hoping to stay safe all the way through. A drop in form could see us dragged down into a battle so hoping to keep picking up results.

Transfers

Only transfer news this month is that reserve keeper Jacob Carney has left on a free transfer to join fellow VNL side Aldershot. That leaves us with only 2 senior goalkeepers so I'll be looking to add a 3rd.

Edited by Jambo_

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January 2022

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Quite a disappointing month in the league, drawing against Hemel and Maidstone in games we really should have won. Through to the FA Trophy Quarter Final where we will play Lincoln at home, who we put in a good effort against in the league but came up short. Hoping we can beat them in the FA Trophy.

Table

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Need to start picking up wins to increase the gap between us and the relegation zone.

Transfers

One player joined and one player left in January. Edon Pruti left for an initial £11k to join Bosnian side Olimpik. 

1287760395_ZachHemmingstats.thumb.png.132a270e4cf396a255c75c611395a23c.png

Goalkeeper Zach Hemmings joined the club to become our no. 1 goalkeeper.

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February 2022

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A very disappointing month, lost every game except a Niall Huggins masterclass against Barrow. Also out of the FA Trophy after losing 2-0 to Lincoln in the quarter final.

Table

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5 points clear of the relegation zone with 12 games to go. Hopefully we can pick up form and finish the season without having to look over our shoulder.

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On 21/03/2019 at 21:51, Nobby_McDonald said:

Another nervy season end coming...

VERY nervy...

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March 2022

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A dreadful month, picking up only 1 point out of 18. Huge April coming up where we definitely need to pick up some results. The annoying thing is we haven't been miles away in any of the games, getting narrowly beaten in most.

Table

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In the relegation area now and very much in the battle I was trying to avoid. Some huge games coming up, including against Stockport, Eastleigh and Gateshead who are all in the battle too...

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April 2022

893821352_April2022results.thumb.png.a0cb292e64a02c2a207661ac74c05030.png

Some good results and a hugely important win against Stockport. Mad game against Eastleigh that was 3-3 after 31 minutes and that's how it ended. Would it be enough?

Table

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Just. Was a much harder ending to the season than what I wanted but we were able to just about limp over the line to escape relegation.

 

My contract is up at the end of June 2022 and with the board unwilling to offer me an extension just yet, I'm not sure if I'll be here for the next season to go through it all again.

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