Tag Archives: league 2

Oldham Athletic look to push on this season and learning from the past is a must – agree?

Laurent Banide has a big first season ahead of him, as he looks to inject a higher quality of performance from his new club and avoid another bang-average season in EFL League Two.

Finishing with 7 goal difference in 15th place last season, it is clear that Oldham Athletic need to drastically up their game in order to fight for promotion and get back to League One. Where many would argue the club deserve to be.

Banide and Oldham’s first game of the season comes against Forest Green, who impressively finished 7th in the league last season. This will really put the Frenchman’s new team to the test. If they can provide a solid performance and come away with a point or even three, it could kick start a positive season under the new regime by making their mark against one of the league’s better performing clubs.

It will be a huge task for Laurent Banide to bring glory to an underperforming Oldham Athletic side, and there are high expectations on him to drag the club out of the gutter.

With this in mind, what two key things can Banide focus on to allow his side to challenge for promotion next season.

Hold on to Key Players

Bad timing. As of right now, reports suggest that the 21-year-old defender George Edmundson is undergoing a medical at Rangers. Edmundson was promoted from Oldham’s youth in 2015, where he was sent on loan on several occasions before establishing himself in the team after returning in January 2018.

In the 18/19 season, Edmundson made 54 appearances, bagging 2 goals and 5 assists.

It is clear that Oldham Athletic have correctly allowed this young defender to gain the experience and culture he needs, in order to be a crucial part in the Latics’ setup. However, it seems a terrible move to allow him to leave during a transitional era where players who understand and love the club, should be given whatever they need in order to stay.

A Fresh Start

On the flip side, Banide is the first manager from outside the UK & Ireland to be appointed with the role since the founding of the club. Clearly indicating that there will be a brand new approach, which could be a justification for losing a player like Edmundson.

In recent years, every manager at Oldham has failed to complete a full season with the club, demonstrating that the strategies and recruitment have not been up to scratch. Therefore, Banide should scrap any tactics, signings, and attitudes instilled by previous managers that does not adhere to the new approach under Laurent Banide.

Stockport County will be looking for the double bounce promotion, these 2 factors will help that

The Champions of the National League North, Stockport County, are taking a step up to the National League, but what can they do to stay there next season?

As many long-serving Stockport County fans will despise to remember, this huge club was a Championship side until 2002. Due to the club falling into administration, it’s been a downhill slope for the club which has been playing in the sixth tier of English football for the past six years, until now.

This Greater Manchester based club will take the place of its neighbour, Salford City, in the National League next season. If Stockport can follow suit of Salford, they will find themselves alongside them in the EFL League Two, presuming that Salford is capable of remaining in the division.

Stockport County clinched their first league title in 52 years by finishing 1 point ahead of Chorley, but how can they ensure a finish the fans deserve in their new league in the 2019/20 season…

Investment

A sore subject for Stockport County would be finances. However, Jim Gannon himself said “Only the best clubs that are investing well or have strong management and teams have done well. So hopefully we can replicate the likes of Salford and Fylde, Harrogate and Halifax, who have consolidated at that level.”

This suggests that Stockport County’s investment over recent years hasn’t been enough to allow the club to grow, hence how they have stagnated in the National League North. But now that they have established themselves as real contenders, it may be time to invest in the future of the club and allow them to progress even further.

Goals

Stockport County were very impressive last season, scoring 77 goals. However, in the 2018/19 National League North, teams scored an average of 55.8 goals, whereas, in the 2018/19 National League season, teams scored an average of 57.3 goals. This demonstrates the higher quality and ability of teams in the league, and Stockport needs to be able to keep up with that next season.

Fortunately, Gannon has taken this into account. Stockport recently disclosed that they have signed the striker Alex Curran from Colne, a 20-year-old who bagged 22 goals in 44 appearances last season, and 22 goals in 46 the season before. This young talent will no doubt increase the rate of fire for his new club.

And the manager has some strong words to say about him, “With Alex, we think we have got a player with an outstanding C.V. Over the last two years he’s been one of the main players, he’s a regular goalscorer, provides regular assists and I think we’ve provided a great platform for him.”

Oldham Athletic fans react to the Carabao Cup ‘We might as well have fun on our journey to the National League, lighten up’

The Carabao Cup Round One draw has been released, and here is was Twitter has to say about it.

Oldham Atheltic has drawn Blackburn Rovers away in the first round of the Carabao Cup, taking place on August 12th 2019.

It seems as though Oldham fans aren’t filled with confidence about the draw, whilst Blackburn Rovers fans seem complacent by presuming the tie will be easy for them.

There seems to be a big difference in the confidence of the fans.

If Banide’s Latics can pull off a fantastic performance against Championship side Blackburn Rovers it could signify a new era Oldham Athletic, and if they lose the tie, it seems as though nobody would be shocked.

Banide will be hoping Curacao international can flourish

Who can new manager Laurent Banide look to in his current squad to ensure a better season for Oldham than the last?

With a new manager and assistant coach in Laurent Banide and Bouziane Benaraibi. Oldham have an experienced duo at the helm of the team who have previously worked together at Umm Salal.

The French coaches will be looking to vastly improve the performances and potentially push for promotion, as many would argue that Oldham is a team who belong in the EFL League One. Most definitely not in the fourteenth position of the EFL League Two.

Gevaro Nepomuceno is a 26-year-old winger who joined the Latics in September 2017 and recently signed an extension which will take him to May of 2020. This gives him this season to prove to Banide that he should be a part of his plans.

Gevaro has already participated in 78 games for Oldham since his arrival, scoring 7 goals and assisting 13, during two very unimpressive seasons for his new English side. However, under new management, this international and very experienced player could flourish.

He is also very versatile, having played on either wing, attacking midfield and even left back throughout his career. He will be essential to the maintenance and progression of the League Two side.

If Banide furthers Gevaro’s contract at the end of the season, it will be because he sees him as part of Oldham Athletic’s future.

It would be disappointing to see ownership run Bury’s legacy into the ground

Bury have been given more time to find a buyer to save their historic club.

Owner Steve Dale, who bought the club last December from Stewart Day, has unsuccessfully paid players and staff for the past few months, despite their fantastic efforts to be promoted to the EFL League One after finishing second in the 2018/19 EFL League Two.

Bury are suffering from debt in the region of £4.5million, and are seeking a potential buyer. Of which there are currently “at least two live considerations to buy the club with both interested parties having signed NDAs [non-disclosure agreements] as part of this commitment to progress”.

It is amazing to see Bury managing to perform and get promoted under the circumstances of the club, and if they can rid the weight of debt and an insecure future, it could allow the club to progress and blossom. However, if Bury resort to selling off a large number of players, it could be an incredibly embarrassing season in League One for Bury.

Being one of England’s most historic football clubs, it would be disappointing to see ownership run its legacy into the ground. Hopefully, the Greater Manchester side can find suitable ownership which can allow them to remain in League One next season and build from there.

The 2 Salford City players who could have a major impact on the club’s league football debut season

Salford City have a big season ahead of them as they test the waters of the English Football League.

Salford City achieved a third-place finish in the National League, leading to a play-off final against AFC Fylde which resulted in a 3-0 win for the newly promoted side.

After an impressive season 2018/19 season, Salford City will be aiming to maintain and grow within the English Football League League 2. What can separate this promising side from the many clubs who failed to remain in the top flights of English football?

Here are two players to look out for in Salford City’s venture into the English Football League…

Tom Walker

This 23-year-old wide-midfielder joined the cause in January 2018 from Salford’s neighbours over at FC United of Manchester. After previously being contracted with Bolton Wanderers, and experiencing a year-long loan at Bury FC, this young man has a degree of experience in the EFL which could prove useful as they aim to stay there.

Oscar Threlkeld

Also a previous Bolton Wanderer, Threlkeld is a recent free signing of 25 years of age, whose versatility allows him to play full-back, centre-back and defensive midfield positions.

He already has a wealth of experience in the English Football League with a loan spell and a permanent contract with Plymouth Argyle. Threlkeld accumulated 97 appearances for the club and has played in both League One and League Two. Salford City gaining his signature shows their determination to build a squad suited to the top tiers of English Football.

Alexander has three key areas he needs to strengthen for Salford City to win promotion – Agree

Having just been promoted into the Football League, with the wealth currently behind Salford City, you would expect that they would want to again be competing at the right end of League Two in the 2019/20 season.

With some big names already attracted to the Peninsula Stadium while the club was playing in the Vanarama National League, we can probably expect even more making the trip to Salford during the upcoming season.

This early on in the window we have already seen Salford attract a number of good players from the National League, but they’ve also signed multiple players from teams higher up the football league pyramid and abroad. The Ammies attracted Richie Towell a midfielder from Premier League Brighton on a free transfer and, Oscar Threlkeld from Belgian club Waasland-Beveren who has spent time in League One with Plymouth Argyle.

With a number of signings already made, we took a look at where if anywhere, is left for Salford City to strengthen going into their first ever Football League campaign.

Squad Depth

The size of the squad that Salford currently have isn’t uncommon in the National League, we would expect a few of those players to leave on free transfers following the clubs promotion. Those that do stay will get game time but the quality of the squad outside of the starting XI is an area that Salford will have to improve, as at present a couple of injuries to some starters could see them struggle.

Second Striker

If Salford wants to fight at the right end of League Two, they need another goal scorer. Obviously, they currently have Adam Rooney who we imagine will keep scoring goals for fun if he stays fit. But second top scorer Rory Gaffney who does have experience in the football league isn’t what you would call a prolific goalscorer at this level, having never broken into double figures in a season in the Football League.

Full Back

Full back was a weakness for Salford last season, playing with some very attacking fullbacks that they often got away with in the National League. But in League Two they won’t get away with that, Salford City have signed both left and right backs going into the new season, maybe some more cover in what was their weakest position wouldn’t be a bad thing

Two Things Mansfield Town’s Krystian Pearce Could Bring to Salford City

Salford are reportedly interested in signing Mansfield defender Krystian Pearce. The Stags lost out in the League Two play-offs, and with Salford being a club on the rise, could Pearce be tempted by a move North?

Mansfield missed out on automatic promotion on the final day of the season, then lost on penalties to Newport County in the semi-finals of the playoffs. Salford are an exciting proposition and could provide a new challenge for Pearce to tackle.

Graham Alexander has already started the building process, to prepare his side for League Two, by signing four players. The gaffer has looked to sign experience and talent, Pearce would certainly within that bill.

I looked at the positive impacts Krystian Pearce could have on Salford…

Physicality

From experience of watching Wigan in the lower leagues, it’s important to have two physically strong centre backs. A lot of the other teams (with all respect) don’t play Guardiola football, they play the exact opposite. Lots of long balls and crosses into the box, you need to be prepared for that. Wigan had Chey Dunkley and Dan Burn who just cleared everything, it wasn’t always pretty, but it was effective. Pearce is one of the best defenders in League Two and would be a top signing for Salford.

Leadership

Pearce was Manfield’s captain last season and guided them to a fourth-place finish. The season ended in disappointment, narrowly missing out on promotion, but Pearce was a rock at the back for The Stags and one of their shining lights. Mansfield will be keen to hang onto their top defender, however, Salford seems to be able to attract players by their clear signs of ambition to rise through the EFL.

OPINION: Salford City Confirm Released List, Is It The Right Move?

Salford City had a really impressive run last season that helped them in gaining promotion out of the National League and into League Two.

The Ammies have a collective set of owners who can put their money into new players ahead of the new season, with Peter Lim having a 40% share and Phil Neville, Gary Neville, Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and David Beckham all holding 10% each. Through Salford’s club website, they revealed the players they would be letting go before the start of their new challenge in league two.

Anthony Dudley, Amine Linganzi, Danny Livesey, Gus Mafuta and Jack Redshaw have all been thanked for their hard work and wished all the best but have been released. Tyler Forbes and Dennis Politic have also returned to their parent clubs as their loan deals are over.

Now football fans are wondering what this means for the players that have been let go, some of the players on the list would be a good investment for other clubs. However, with the money behind Salford FC, the replacements for these players won’t be a problem, they’re already looking and signing ahead of the start of the 2019/20 season.

Chester FC have already answered Danny Livesey’s prayers and snapped the 34-year-old defender up before anyone else has the chance. He will officially be a part of the club on July 1st. He has previously captained Barrow AFC which is probably a reason why Chester have shown interest in the defender again.

With his age showing how much experience he’s had, he could be a perfect player to show leadership qualities, if not for the whole team, at least for the back four at Chester. It’s also been reported that the blues could also offer Anthony Dudley a move to the club. The 22-year-old was on loan with Chester last season and, ended up being the clubs leading scorer when he managed to net 11 goals. This could be a great move for him, as the club do appear to be interested and he has also is understood to be just as interested in a permanent move.

There’s some uncertainty in what will happen with Mafuta, Redshaw and Linganzi as of yet. Personally, I think any club would be silly to not show interest in Mafuta, the 23-year-old midfielder started 22 matches for the Ammies last year. He started his career at Colchester but then moved to Bristol City Academy where he captained the Under 21’s. With Gus only being 23 and already having captain experience, surely another club should have a look at signing him soon.

Amine Linganzi however, only managed to get 4 starts for Salford last season and he’s 29 years old. He’s already been around, having played for Blackburn, Preston and Portsmouth in the past. I think Salford didn’t really have a choice letting the midfielder go, as they can bring in fresh young talent but Linganzi could benefit from maybe a struggling club putting in a deal.

Then there’s Jack Redshaw. He’s got such a good stat record. He managed 17 goals out of 36 matches for Salford and he’s got football orientated family too, his brother is Mark Redshaw and his father is Ray Redshaw, all three being strikers in their career.

If you leave that information as it is, you’d be thinking, why hasn’t anyone put an offer in? But the issue the 28-year-old will have to come to terms with is that he was out of action in Salford’s last season due to an injury in preseason. Fans were gutted but now that he’s been released, he may find it hard to find an alternative club. He has played for Rochdale, Blackpool and Morecambe previous to Salford so a club are sure to see the positives in the striker.

Even though these players will be missed by Salford fans, I hope they all have great offers thrown their way.

Two Bury Players That Could Follow Ryan Lowe To Plymouth

Ryan Lowe was appointed the new manager of Plymouth this week. The 40-year-old led Bury to promotion from League Two, but the club have faced numerous off-field issues, including a winding-up petition and staff going unpaid.

He joins a Pilgrims team that were relegated from League One on the final day. Lowe will be looking for automatic promotion next season.

Ryan said: “I am thrilled to have been appointed Argyle manager and to have been given this opportunity to manage a great football club.

Although Lowe did a great job at Bury and is likely to be devastated about how his tenure had to end there, he has a new challenge at Plymouth.

The Shakers could be in for further upset if Lowe comes hunting for his old players, I look at who he might be back for…

Nicky Maynard

A proven goalscorer. Maynard scored 21 goals last season, which proved the difference between automatic promotion and playoffs. The striker has operated at a higher level for the majority his career when playing for West Ham, Bristol City and Wigan, so his experience will also be vital to Plymouth’s side. Lowe clearly knows how to get the best out of Maynard, and a similar goal tally next season could clinch another promotion.

Jay O’Shea

Another player that played a significant role in Bury’s last campaign. He finished the season with 16 goals and five assists, which is a very good return for a midfielder, and with Graham Carey departing Plymouth, Lowe will be looking to replace his creativity. With O’Shea out of contract later this month, and seemingly on the lookout for a new club, an opportunity to work with Lowe again might be the perfect move.

« Older Entries