Category Archives: conference

Three is the Magic Number as Rooney Helps Salford Ease Past Maidenhead

The last time I visited Moor Lane was for the 2016 Northern Premier play off final against Workington, Salford won 3-2. I remember going in the Moor lane entrance and standing on the hill. Behind the goal all the kids played football while the dads had a cheeky pint or two.

How three years can make a difference to a club. The stadium was impressive, giving the whole place a unrecognisable revamp to what I remember. The crowd had certainly grown and the level of football is far more professional.

Salford had the midday kick off, knowing a win would put Leyton Orient under pressure hours later. The Maidenhead fans were giving themselves a decent day out in front of the cameras, with them all turning up in fancy dress – a real sea of colour behind the goal.

Within the first 10 minutes Salford scored to spoil the away fans day trip with some decent work down the right from Adam Rooney, playing in Dieseruvwe to slot home.

15 minutes later Salford doubled their lead with Rooney again from the right with his second assist of the game, crossing the ball across the goal to Touray who power home. This caused Salford fans to start to singing ‘Are you watching Orient’ as the Ammies were marching towards the top of the National League.

Salford looked Dominant down their right hand side through Hogan and Wiseman, and it was causing the opposition some trouble.

One minute before half time, following a goalmouth scramble. Salford were awarded a penalty.

Upped stepped Rooney to cap his own glorious first half performance with a cooley taken spot kick, sending the goalkeeper the wrong way.

The home side led comfortably 3-0 and never seemed in danger of letting the lead slip. They seemed to cruise through the second half at a canter, although manager Graham Alexander never stopped demanding more of his players and barking orders all game.

Alexander even had the luxury of bringing off Rooney , who’d had a hand in all three goals.

Personally I feel Salford have it in their locker to go up as Champions with them hitting form at just the right time following a rocky patch at the start of the year. However, with only three games to play and two points behind they need Orient to have a very timely rocky patch of their own.

Final Score 3-0

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Bury Stave Off Administration for Now, Curzon Ashton Boss Mark Bradshaw Talks Cup Chances, Rochdale Making Improvements

This is the EFL and Below Show, your look at all the footballing action in Greater Manchester that doesn’t come from Old Trafford or the Etihad.

Manchester Football Social’s Niall McCaughan is joined by Ian Foran and Aaron Benson of the Football Manc Cave for this week’s podcast.

Bury have struggled off the pitch in recent weeks as financial worries surround the club – is there a light at the end of the tunnel at Gigg Lane?

Curzon Ashton manager Mark Bradshaw chats to us as the Nash chase Manchester Premier Cup success for the first time since 1990.

We reflect on Salford’s promotion ambitions and Rochdale’s chances of safety in League One.

Subscribe to the podcast now and never miss a show.

Acast – https://play.acast.com/s/eflandbelowshow/manchesterfootballsocial-eflandbelowshow-burystaveoffadministrationfornowcurzonashtongaffermarkbradshawtalkscupchances-rochdalemakingimprovements

Itunes – https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/manchester-football-social-efl-below-show-bury-stave/id1449475076?i=1000434701033

Bury join Bolton in being on the brink of administration, Salford back in form and Rochdale appoint Brian Barry-Murphy

This is the EFL and Below Show, your weekly look at all the footballing action in Greater Manchester which doesn’t come from Old Trafford or the Etihad.

Manchester Football Social’s Niall McCaughan is joined in the studio by Ian Foran and Aaron Benson from the Football Manc Cave, where Bolton and Bury’s financial turmoil is a big talking point.

The lads also chat Salford’s chances of National League promotion and Brian Barry-Murphy’s appointment as new Rochdale manager as they look to stave off relegation.

Catch the latest episode here >> https://play.acast.com/s/eflandbelowshow/manchesterfootballsocial-eflandbelowshow-buryjoinboltoninbeingonthebrinkofadministration-salfordbackinformandrochdaleappointbrianbarry-murphy

Improper Owners, a Look Back at Some of the Worst Owners in Football League History

There have been many examples of football chairmen who have devoted their lives and their money to the club’s they love. For many years, clubs were often financed by local entrepreneurs who had made good with the Edwards family at Old Trafford and Jack Walker at Blackburn being the most obvious examples.

Sadly, it is the improper owners who make the news at present with Bolton Wanderers’ Ken Anderson being the latest target of supporters wrath, due to his lack of investment and mismanagement.

Bolton face an uncertain future despite managing to avoid being liquidated in the High Court this week following a breakdown in talks to sell the club. The Championship club should be enjoying similar success to the likes of the two Sheffield clubs and, Leeds given the size of their ground and support base but they lie next to bottom of the league, eight points from safety.

Oldham fans currently believe that they are hard done by with owner Abdallah Lemsagam apparently interfering with team selection, however, he is a veritable saint compared to some of these rogues.

Owen Oyston – Blackpool FC

Oyston’s ownership is a staggering tale of neglect going back to 1988. He sued Blackpool supporters who had dared to criticise his regime and, he paid £26.77m out of the club with his son Karl after the club’s promotion to the Premier League.

Late in 2017 Owen Oyston and Karl Oyston were ordered to pay £31m to minority shareholder Valeri Belokon for his shares due to their “illegitimate stripping” of the club. Oyston was removed from the Blackpool board in February.

Francesco Becchetti – Leyton Orient

Italian Becchetti managed to steer the East London club from the verge of the Championship to National League football after 112 years of existence. Worse still, Orient’s free fall wasn’t caused by mismanagement but by the spite of the owner.

The waste-management magnate’s reign featured one expensively funded relegation, an unsuccessful reality TV show, a failed attempted extradition of the owner to Albania as part of a fraud and money‑laundering investigation, a six-match ban for Becchetti for kicking his then assistant manager Andy Hessenthaler, 10 managers, persistent reports of meddling in team affairs, a chaotic player-recruitment policy and a general sense that no one senior at the club has the first idea of how to run it.

Orient are now on the brink of returning to league football from the National league.

Ken Richardson – Doncaster Rovers

When the Doncaster Chairman’s plans to build a new stadium came up against objections from the local council, he decided to take matters further and paid someone £10,000 to burn the stadium to the ground so he could claim on the insurance. The hired arsonist left his phone at the scene however, which had a text message on it to Richardson saying “Job’s done”. The law caught up with him and he was sentenced to four years in prison.

Roland Duchatelet – Charlton Athletic

The Belgian millionaire has become the focus of the fans fury with his asking price for the club of £40m. The apparent lack of buyers is blamed on the protests of the fans. An uneasy impasse exits in South London.

SISU Capital – Coventry City

Being taken over by a hedge fund should have raised alarm but they saved Coventry from administration and a points deduction. However, they then showed that their knowledge of how to run a football club was severely limited. With one scheme being to allow supporters to text a premium rate number to vote on which player should be substituted. The manager would then have to abide by the decision!

Salford Defeat Leaves Alexander With Much to Ponder

At Salford City’s Peninsula stadium Inspirational quotes are never far from view. So much so on the steps leading into and out the stadium’s entrance, a final message for fans to take solace off on their Moor Lane exit is scripted on the concrete front.

It reads ‘There is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs’.

For this particular quote seems highly appropriate at present. Saturday’s 3-1 loss at home to relegation-threatened Dover was a rather bitter pill to swallow for the home support.

Because by the time Dover’s Jai Reason had put the final nail in a very sorry Salford coffin, a large majority of Ammies fan had seen enough and ploughed towards the exits. All this after Dennis Politic had started what looked to be a rather promising afternoon with a goal which mirrored David Beckham’s against Wimbledon in 1996. So appropriate  The ex-Manchester United man was in the stands in his first match since becoming co-Chairman and the memories of that sunny day would surely have come flooding back.

Yet Becks would have watched what happened after and wondered where the next three points may come from. For while he and the rest of the ‘Class of 92’ squad will be a key part to Salford for their future success, Graham Alexander looked a man in need of a quick turn around in form to prove he’s the right man to continue Salford’s speedy climb up the English Football ladder.

After Alexander’s predecessors Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley guided Salford to three promotions in four seasons, it has left Alexander with big shoes to fill. After swapping League One football for non-league last summer, the Salford manager was left perplexed on the touchline as his second-half substitute tweaks failed to make the required impact as his side stumbled to their third straight defeat.

Now without a win since the mid-January, this hasn’t been a Happy New Year at The Peninsula Stadium. Yet only a year into the job, Alexander only looks to be starting what appears to be an ongoing ‘project’ at Salford, something Beckham is obviously dying to get his teeth stuck into.

Not that he would have been impressed with his new side against Dover, who climbed out of the relegation places in a well fought out display. Salford who were lucky the visitors didn’t increase their advantage after wasting two golden chances at the death, but due to other results going their way, they remain in 5th place and most importantly still in the driving seat for a playoff position.

Although things of recent weeks look grim reading, things could be a lot worse. Take Barnet and Chesterfield for example who were only relegated last season, but show more signs of going down a league rung than up one. Yet in comparison with the teams in and around them, their New Year slump couldn’t have occurred at a worst time. At seven points behind leaders Solihull Moors, their chances of becoming champions decrease every game.

Right now Salford are digging deeper into a worrying hole, but the need for realism right now is greater than ever. The doubting fans taking a look at the message on the ousted stairway should do the trick just fine.

AWAY FANS SERIES: The Class of 92 Inspired Danish Jens to Create an Online Community

As part of our away fans series, I spoke to Jens, a Salford City fan from Denmark who has recently created a website to connect with fellow Ammies fans around the world…

Ian: How long have you been a Salford City fan?

Jens: I have been a fan since 2015 when a friend who is a dedicated Manchester United fan told me about the club. The story of the club fascinated me

Ian: It certainly is a great story, have you managed to get to the ground?

Jens: Not yet no, but I will be travelling later this spring. I will go there with my friend to see a Man United game, and then spend a few days in Salford meeting up with other Ammie fans to see them play, of course!

Ian: How did the Danish Supporters club come about?

Jens: Well, as I told you, the whole story of the team fascinated me. I have been a fan of UK football since the late 70s when Danish national television broadcasted one match per weekend. I always loved the atmosphere of the matches there.

I remember being hooked on West Bromwich Albion in those days. So when my friend told me about Salford City FC… it kind of took me back to those days – back to the community feeling.

At the time I became a fan, the whole team was in a big transition, and I really felt the whole Class of 92 buzz.

Ian: I bet you’ve been surprised about the quick rise through the leagues?

Jens: I know that when they took over, the whole game changed. I know that some fans were against money coming into the game at the volume it did. But the class of 92 were not just rich guys wanting to direct a team.

They had a history with the area, and I feel that they genuinely wanted to give something back to the place that gave them great careers. Salford City is, in spite of the money, still a team that is very much about the community.

Yes, for sure. It blew everyone away, that they could get 3 promotions in 4 years. I guess it also bred a lot of envy in the fan world of sub-Premier League teams although there are no local players left, the team is still all about Salford. It gives Salfordians something to be proud of. Which team would not love to have more money on thier hands?

Ian: Yeah I bet, what are your thoughts on this season so far?

It has been a bit rocky so far, late 2018 proved to be a bit of a challenge, but they caught up nicely in the end. However, we should still be happy to get into the playoffs for promotion, and sometimes you need to let things settle before you make the next big leap.

The team as such is still finding it’s feet

Ian: Do you think another promotion is on the cards?

We are now spending time and energy in the FA Trophy, and there are some strong teams in the National League, and nothing is set in stone. I applaud their latest signings, and they may provide the energy and extra talent, that it would take to get promoted directly but honestly, I would love to see them get promoted again. It would take Salford City FC into a whole other game.

Ian: You say you have created the Redammies website, tell me more?

Jens: Sure…

Living so far from the team, I wanted to do the next best thing, which would be to get involved with other Ammie fans. So I wanted to network with them and that is the main reason I created the site. Redammies.club is an alternative site for fans, with networking features on its own proper domain. I did not want to create yet another group on Facebook. There is already one great community of Salford City fans running a group there.

Redammies.club is a networking site for fans and supporters of Salford City FC. I started it a couple of weeks ago (mid-January 2019), and we have 50+ active users within three weeks in!

That may not seem a lot to you, but starting a brand new (and unofficial) site is an extremely steep curve to climb. I am confident that we will grow quickly and my first aim is to reach 100 active users by the end of February, and 500 users by Summer 2019. I don’t aim for the number of users as much as I aim for the quality of the user base. I sincerely hope my enthusiasm and dedication will inspire other supporters to join redammies.club

Ian:Brilliant, where can fellow Ammies find it?

Jens: They should go to https://redammies.club, and sign up. The procedure is extremely simple and user-friendly – Salford City FC Red Ammies Supporters Site – This is the new home for the fans and supporters of Salford City FC, also called the Red Ammies. Fan site with forum groups, networking and more.

Join us, and make it happen!

Ian: Excellent, I wish you all the best for it Jens.

The Ups and Downs of Supporting Your Local Team

If I am being a) somewhat facetious b) trusting of google maps, my local team is Manchester United.

Apologies to any Reds reading this article – it won’t be about them.

When I think local football I don’t think Manchester United, I think West Didsbury and Chorlton, who play a shade over a mile away from Old Trafford.

I think teams who probably aren’t the only team you follow, teams you might not have heard of outside of the local area and teams who are totally based and dependent on the community around them.

I have followed “local football” for a long time and there are some dizzying highs and some fairly flat moments too.

I think for everyone the biggest high you will ever get supporting a lower level “local” team is that of a giant-killing. I’ve made no secret of my fondness of Curzon Ashton who have had some good FA cup runs in the past. It’s a real buzz and the atmosphere around the club and local area is tangible. Just think of the build-up to Sutton’s FA cup fixture with Arsenal a few seasons ago. You simply don’t have that anticipation around watching Manchester City play Arsenal.

The community around the clubs is incredible, match days are staffed by volunteers, I’ve been to several games where the players know a few of the fans either as they are regular faces, or because they work together (seriously).

The football isn’t as pretty as “Sari ball” or tippy tappy Guardiola football, it’s often hard and physical and can often make for great watching for very different reasons.

There are of course lows, as there are with following every team, and I sometimes find following watching National League and National League North football frustrating. Money is as big a factor here as it is in the top echelons of the game, and these are tough leagues to get out of. If you support a team who seem to get stuck at a level and simply cannot afford to invest in a squad that other clubs do (here’s looking at you Salford City). It can be tedious to watch your team nearly make the playoffs or finish mid-table when they could have done better.

However as much as I do moan at games that I’m cold or that the Tameside stadium is a tedious walk from Ashton train station, I try not to dwell on the odd frustration. I love football at this level, the rising stars leaving to go to bigger and better things, the old stalwarts who have been playing at this level forever and a day, the die-hard fans, or the locals who popped in for a game to see what all the fuss is about.

The very best thing about football at this level, that watching Premier League, or even EFL football can never give you is, you feel you are a part of it all.

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