Page 1 of 9 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 205

Thread: [STORY] MEDWAY FC – and a mission to put Kent in the Premiership…

  1. #1
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500

    [STORY] MEDWAY FC – and a mission to put Kent in the Premiership…

    In 1998, the towns of Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, and Rainham formally became a single ‘super-town’ when the City of Rochester-upon-Medway amalgamated with Gillingham Borough Council and part of Kent County Council. The new town was called Medway. And the people of Medway (250,000 of them) shared a naval history and an uncertain future.

    What they didn’t share was a football club. Gillingham FC, the only Kent-based team in the football league, had just been relegated back into League Two without winning a single away game all season. The club was founded in 1893 as New Brompton FC and introduced to the football league in 1920. It had a rich history and belonged firmly to Gillingham.

    In the summer of 2010, local millionaire Paul Tucker bought Gillingham FC from Paul Scally and became Chairman. He had a bold vision for the club: to become the team of the county; to take a place alongside the nation’s elite. His first decisions were far from popular. He changed the club’s name (for the second time in its history) to Medway FC, changed its colours to red (being the colour of Kent) and blue, and changed the crest. The only thing that endeared him to supporters was his commitment to keeping the club in Medway, after years of speculation about a move elsewhere. Most fans still thought he was a prick… but it could have been worse… at least he hadn’t tried to rename them ‘Medway Seahorses’…



    After a start like that, the team would need quick results on the pitch. Mark Stimson, the manager, had left by ‘mutual consent’. Finding a new manager was at the top of Tucker’s to do list…

  2. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Join Date
    02-03-12
    Posts
    6,745
    vCash
    28870
    Now we're talking!
    Are you a local lad 442?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fourfourtwo View Post
    In 1998, the towns of Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, and Rainham formally became a single ‘super-town’ when the City of Rochester-upon-Medway amalgamated with Gillingham Borough Council and part of Kent County Council. The new town was called Medway. And the people of Medway (250,000 of them) shared a naval history and an uncertain future.

    That is the first time I've seen Medway called a super-town'!
    As someone living in the middle of Chatham, there would be a hell of a lot of adjectives used before I thought of Super Town!!

    Looking forward to this though!
    Good Luck!

  4. #3
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Hi ebfatz - yep, I'm from Medway. And you're totally right - 'super' isn't quite the word!!

    Love the Harry Bow story by the way...
    Last edited by Fourfourtwo; 16-06-14 at 10:19 AM.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    Join Date
    05-03-12
    Location
    Ribble Valley
    Posts
    3,886
    vCash
    19400
    Miserable Medway
    Mediochre Medway

    Better start winning or the headlines will write themselves
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

  7. The Following User Says Thank You to Kingsley For This Useful Post:


  8. #5
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    'Mundane Medway mauled by Mansfield'

    We're a sub-editor's dream

  9. The Following User Says Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  10. #6
    Join Date
    05-03-12
    Location
    Ribble Valley
    Posts
    3,886
    vCash
    19400
    Does the story end with Magnificent Medway murder Madrid ?
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

  11. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Kingsley For This Useful Post:


  12. #7
    Join Date
    04-03-12
    Posts
    4,190
    vCash
    1000
    "Mid-table Mediocrity for Medway"

    This looks like fun

  13. The Following User Says Thank You to BobMem For This Useful Post:


  14. #8
    Join Date
    18-09-13
    Posts
    170
    vCash
    500
    Good luck 442! Will be following!

  15. The Following User Says Thank You to JohnnyBee82 For This Useful Post:


  16. #9
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    As a player, Sam Shaw had been a decent squad man up to the Conference. A solid defensive midfielder, he’d run the show at a couple of small clubs before being exposed by his lack of pace further up the leagues. Not tall enough for a centre back, not quick enough for a midfielder: he’d found his level. He was smart though, and completed his badges at the same time as playing part time in his mid 30s. When a knee injury ended his playing career at 38, he started to seriously think about coaching. He had a wife and two young daughters, a bank balance that could have been healthier and nothing he knew how to do except kick a ball. He had to wait so long for a job that he got convinced it’d never happen. But eventually one of the part time clubs in Kent took him on and he started carving out a reputation for well-organised, hard-working sides. Sam Shaw was a football man from Kent. Paul Tucker was a football man from Kent. It was only a matter of time...

    Sam had just celebrated his 44th birthday when the call came on 8 July 2010. “Sam Shaw? It’s Paul Tucker here… I’d like to talk to you about being Medway FC’s new manager.”

    Still in a state of shock, Shaw turned up to the Priestfield Stadium the next day. Tucker came barrelling out of his office to meet him. He must have been 20 stone with a double-breasted suit straight out of the 70s and tinted bifocals perched on the end of his nose. He gave Sam a business-like smile and a handshake like an act of war. In his office, Tucker explained himself: “This team needs to have a Kent identity. We need to pull in fans from all over the county. And I believe that means promoting talent within the county too. I’ve seen your teams play – and I think you’re exactly what we need... but I’m not a patient man, and I want promotion this year... and to be in the Premiership within five... think you can do it?”

    Sam nodded uncertainly.

    “Good, I knew I wasn’t wasting my time with you... at the moment a lot of people have got it in for us and not many believe we’re heading in the right direction... we need to change that. Today’s Friday, we’ll announce your appointment tomorrow and you can start on Monday.”

    Shaw went home, told his wife what had happened. She asked what the money was like. He hadn’t even asked. He felt like a dick.
    Last edited by Fourfourtwo; 29-10-14 at 08:40 PM.

  17. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  18. #10
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    I’m using:
    - SI Games Official Patch v3.9.68
    - June 2010 ODB Data Update
    - Tapani 2.19 Patch

    The main limitation I’ll be putting on myself (aside from starting with Gillingham!) is that I won’t use wibwob tactics.

    I don’t know this database at all (this is the first time I’ve played with the patches and a data update) so I have no idea if I’m signing cheat players or not.

    I’ll take this through at least two or three seasons (assuming I don’t get sacked)... hope it provides some entertainment... wish me luck!

  19. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  20. #11
    Join Date
    02-03-12
    Posts
    6,745
    vCash
    28870
    Good luck indeed.

    C'mon Medway!!

  21. The Following User Says Thank You to ebfatz For This Useful Post:


  22. #12
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500

    10 July 2010

    Shaw takes over as Medway FC manager amid fan protests

    Sam Shaw was today announced as Medway FC’s new manager as fans continued to vent their anger over Chairman Paul Tucker’s rebranding of the club. Shaw has previously coached at Maidstone United and managed a number of part-time sides across the county, but has no top level experience.

    His appointment has been seen by fans as a further indication of the club’s decline. Don Carver, Chair of the protest group Gills Forever said: “First relegation, then a senseless attack on the club’s heritage, and now the appointment of a nobody as manager. What else do they plan to throw at us?”

    Paul Tucker, Chairman, defended the appointment: “Sam is a young manager with loads of potential. He’ll bring a fresh approach and I have every confidence in his ability to take us back into League One. We’re trying to build a successful club here – people need to get behind us.”

    A protest over the renaming is scheduled for Tuesday’s pre-season friendly, when Southampton visit the Priestfield Stadium. Kent Police are planning a strong presence at the match and have urged fans to remain calm.
    Last edited by Fourfourtwo; 18-06-14 at 06:43 AM.

  23. #13
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Before leaving the ground on Friday, Sam had picked up the files on each of his staff. On Sunday night he sat looking through them in between answering a stream of well-meaning abuse from his mates... the club’s press release had done the rounds by then.

    In his mind, he wanted an experienced second to back him up as assistant manager, together with two high-quality coaches. On top of that he needed a decent physio and, given he was likely to be working off a limited budget, a couple of scouts – ideally some really good talent spotters who could find players with unrecognised potential.

    At first glance, Jim Stannard and Paul Hilton (the two current coaches) looked solid enough. Neither of them had the experience to step up to assistant manager, but as long as they made a decent impression they could both could stay on – for the season at least. In Ken Steggles and George Johnson, the club already had two physios, both of whom looked well-qualified. They could stay too. The scouts were a much bigger issue. He was pretty sure neither of the current staff, Alan McLeary and Grant Watson, were up to the task. He wasn’t willing to compromise on this – scouting was too important. They’d have to go.

    He could do without that job. He could do without the looming friendly with Southampton (one division above them and only two days away). He could do without a war over the club’s name. But he was a manager in the football league. He’d have to deal with it...

  24. #14
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Paul Tucker met him outside the Beechings Cross training ground on Monday morning. “Usual first day stuff” he said, “meet the staff, watch the players train, drop in at the stadium and let me know what you think before you go home.” “Fine” said Shaw, “but I’ve already pretty much decided I need new scouts”. “Fine, get rid of them if you want... lets the rest know who’s boss too... see you later.”

    He talked to Stannard and Hilton first, reassuring them they’d play a part in his plans. They both seemed pretty relieved. So did Steggles and Johnson. McLeary was on site, but Watson was off watching a youth team somewhere. He spoke to them each in turn, McLeary in his office and Watson on the phone. They told him what they thought of him (not much it seemed). He didn’t care too much. They were history now.

    Next up was training. He watched Stannard and Hilton take the players through some light fitness work, skills practice and a couple of five-a-side games. Shaw spotted that everyone seemed to have the same regime and made a note to work on that later – as far as he was concerned, centre backs and centre forwards needed different training schedules. At the end, he asked the coaches to call the players over...

    “Determination, work rate, professionalism. Give me those three things and we’ll get along fine. I know the club’s not going through a great time at the moment – but I’m here to change that. I’m going to give as many of you as possible some game time tomorrow – and I won’t be making any judgements until after that. Impress me.”

    He hoped it sounded convincing...
    Last edited by Fourfourtwo; 19-06-14 at 10:06 AM.

  25. #15
    Join Date
    02-03-12
    Posts
    6,745
    vCash
    28870
    I used to player/manage a Sunday League side (Rainham Eagles), who played our home games at Beechings!

    This is going to be great.
    I'll be able to picture everything that is going on in the story.

    KUTGW!

  26. The Following User Says Thank You to ebfatz For This Useful Post:


  27. #16
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Thanks ebfatz - small world huh?!

    If there are any places, players, events you'd particularly like to see featured, just let me know - I'll do my best!

  28. #17
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    After lunch, he asked Stannard and Hilton to talk him through the current squad...

    Goalkeepers – there were two keepers on the books. Alan Julian was now the number one, having forced Simon Royce out of the team the previous season, and Chris Kiely his young understudy. Both were Irishmen. Neither had been wholly convincing in training.

    Full backs – on the right, both Josh Gowling and Barry Fuller were decent, with Gowling probably edging it on work rate and stamina. On the left, John Nutter was a fan favourite and had been a fixture through the previous season. But new signing Danny Jackman was pacier and a better attacking option. Marvin Hamilton, at 21, had time to improve but could struggle to get game time. Stannard suggested listing him for loan, which Shaw said he’d consider.

    Centre backs – Simon King, good in the air and strong in the tackle, was a recognised performer and the club’s top paid player. His partner the previous season, Garry Richards, was less capable but probably good enough for now. Gowling could cover at centre back, but after that options were thin on the ground. Youngster Connor Essam was definitely not ready.

    Midfield – Curtis Weston could run all day on the right wing or in the centre. Mark Bentley was a decent player, though past his best... as was former Southend midfielder Kevin Maher. Chris Palmer was an average left winger. Dean Rance and Jack Payne were promising kids. Luke Rooney and Charlie Howard were less highly rated.

    Forwards – Simeon Jackson was the club’s star player and looked to have the class to thrive in League Two. Dennis Oli was a good supporting option, but the coaches were less convinced that Mark McCammon or Adam Barcham could play a major part. 21 year old Andy Pugh had some improving to do.

    Once the coaches had left, Sam chewed all of that over. An immediate problem was the absence of a defensive midfielder, Shaw’s old position. He’d really wanted to play with someone in the holding role, but that would have to wait for now. On top of that, he reckoned he at least needed a keeper, a centre back and another attacking option. But would he have the cash to do it? His meeting with Tucker was looming, but he had one call to make first.

    Gareth Wilson was a scout Shaw had met a few years ago. He’d been working for Swansea at the time and had come down to Kent to check out some of the grassroots teams, Shaw’s included. They got talking and hit it off. Wilson even shared a couple of his reports, helping Shaw recruit some decent local talent. They’d not kept in contact, but Shaw still had his number... no answer... he left a message: “Gareth, it’s Sam Shaw, they’ve just made me Medway FC manager and I’m looking for a scout... call me if you’re interested.”

    Back at the stadium, he was shown into Tucker’s office.

    “Well, what do you reckon?”

    “I need to add an assistant manager to the staff team – someone to manage the reserves and organise the training schedules better; ideally someone with a lot of experience. I also need a couple of new scouts. Player-wise, the squad seems okay, but I think we need a new keeper, a central defender as back-up, a holding midfielder and probably one more forward. That should do me. I haven’t thought about who to sell or loan out yet, but I can probably let a couple of players go – I’d like a bit longer to assess the squad before deciding that though.”

    “Sounds reasonable enough. There’s a transfer budget of £625k if you need it, which should be plenty. You’ve got a month before the start of the season and I’d like us to get our business done before we travel to Macclesfield.”

    “I’ll do my best...”

    On the way home he got a call from Ken Steggles. Garry Richards had strained his neck and would miss the Southampton game. Shaw hoped that wasn’t his luck changing...

  29. The Following User Says Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  30. #18
    Join Date
    05-03-12
    Location
    Ribble Valley
    Posts
    3,886
    vCash
    19400
    Sounds like a pretty average team. A bit of work required, but no immediate wholesale changes.
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

  31. The Following User Says Thank You to Kingsley For This Useful Post:


  32. #19
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    By kick-off, the atmosphere at the Priestfield was pretty hostile. There were plenty of ‘Tucker out’ and ‘Gills Forever’ banners. When the stadium announcer tried to rouse the fans to get behind the team, there was a chorus of boos. There were twice as many police as you’d expect for a pre-season friendly and, despite it being his first game in charge, Shaw had told the girls to stay at home.

    He’d picked his first team based on what he’d seen in training and what the coaches had told him. With the players at his disposal, he’d opted for a 4-4-2 formation with one forward slightly withdrawn. He’d asked Dennis Oli to pick up this role behind Simeon Jackson initially. Kevin Maher would be captain – Shaw had been impressed by his leadership qualities. Danny Jackman would take a midfield role at first, though Sam was worried about the quality of his crossing. And young Chris Kiely got the nod in goal, much to Alan Julian’s irritation.

    The full team was: Kiely, Nutter, King, Gowling, Fuller, Jackman, Rance, Maher, Weston, Oli, Jackson. There were 9 subs available, and Shaw planned on using most of them so he could get a look at as many players as possible.



    Southampton put out a strong team, including Ricky Lambert, Adam Lallana and Rahdi Jaidi marshalling the defence. This wouldn’t be easy...

    All the early pressure was from Southampton, with Lambert and Lee Barnard both going close and Chris Kiely making a number of fine saves. Medway were under constant pressure for the first 15 minutes but then, out of nothing Jackson picked up the ball from a sloppy Southampton pass, took a touch and tried a pot-shot... which went in off the post! That seemed to give the team confidence, with Jackman in particular causing all kinds of problems down the left. On 26 minutes it got even better, as Jackman intercepted a stray pass and knocked the ball down for Jackson – who scored with an easy finish. By half-time, Medway were having the better of the play and were 2-0 up. A dream start for Shaw and even some muted applause from the fans.

    He made a number of changes, as promised, with Barcham and McCammon coming on up front, Payne taking Jackman’s place on the left wing and Marvin Hamilton getting a run-out at left back. The second half was largely uneventful, with Medway less dynamic up front, but Southampton offering little threat. There was one further change with Chris Palmer coming on for Curtis Weston on 72 minutes as the game fizzled out.

    Final score: Medway FC 2 – Southampton 0
    Man of the match: Danny Jackman


    Shaw was pleased with the performance. As well as Jackman, Kiely had impressed in goal, as had Gowling and Jackson, with two fine poacher’s goals. The biggest let-down was Curtis Weston on the right, but Sam was inclined to give him another chance. He was also concerned that they had looked toothless up front with McCammon and Barcham on.

    Tucker slapped him on the back as he left the stadium that night. “A few more like that and we’ll win them over” he said. Maybe, but Shaw doubted it’d be that easy. The next game was the season-opener at Macclesfield on 14 August – and there was lots of work to do before then...

  33. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  34. #20
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    With the Southampton game over and done, Shaw’s big priority was sorting out his staff team. Gareth Wilson had finally returned his call on Thursday and, to Shaw’s delight, accepted a scouting role. With Wilson on board, they could start to think about player recruitment... he was immediately dispatched to look for potential signings across the UK and Ireland.

    Shaw had also made an offer to Alan Murray for the assistant manager role. Murray had great experience from managing Darlington and Hartlepool, as well as being on the coaching team at Newcastle. But he had a number of offers on the table and ended up going to Leeds. After a couple of weeks searching fruitlessly, Shaw finally approached Steve Wignall. A former manager of Aldershot, Doncaster and Southend, he could bring the experienced voice Shaw needed to steer him through his football league initiation. Wignall signed on the dotted line on 9 August and immediately started working with the coaching team on new training schedules.

    Meanwhile, player recruitment was going slowly. Wilson had been recommending some decent players, but none that really captured the imagination. Liam Hatch arrived as a back-up striker from Peterborough for £100k. Shaw had to admit he wasn’t 100% convinced about him, but Wilson was enthusiastic and they needed more options up front.



    Moves for Dietmar Hamann and a keeper, Gerard Hanley were swiftly rejected. And Tucker was becoming frustrated by the lack of action.

    In terms of players out, Marvin Hamilton requested a move and, as Shaw had no real plans for him, was duly listed. He’d also listed Andy Barcham – especially with the arrival of Hatch, he looked surplus to requirements. He was quickly offloaded to Huddersfield for £100k.

    The Macclesfield game rolled around in no time and, though Shaw was happy with his staff team, he was concerned he hadn’t been able to add quality to the squad. And he’d pissed off the Chairman already. But for now at least, he’d have to go with what he had...
    Last edited by Fourfourtwo; 30-10-14 at 08:10 PM.

  35. The Following User Says Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


  36. #21
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Next post will be after the weekend, covering the away game at Macclesfield... I promise goals... lots of goals...

  37. #22
    Join Date
    02-03-12
    Posts
    6,745
    vCash
    28870
    Come on The Gills!!!

    Er, I mean Come On Medway!!


  38. The Following User Says Thank You to ebfatz For This Useful Post:


  39. #23
    Join Date
    05-03-12
    Location
    Ribble Valley
    Posts
    3,886
    vCash
    19400
    Interesting choice of the Palace colours. I thought they might be the last ones you would choose.

    Liam Hatch. I don't think that the fans are overly impressed.
    The artist formally known as The Eejit

  40. The Following User Says Thank You to Kingsley For This Useful Post:


  41. #24
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Was inspired by the Medway Queen - I guess one of the most famous ships to regularly serve on the River Medway - she brought a lot of our boys back from Dunkirk. This was her flag:



    Thought it might help to generate a bit of Medway pride.

    Let's hope I can come up with some more impressive signings once the season has begun.

    Thanks for following!

  42. #25
    Join Date
    24-04-14
    Posts
    358
    vCash
    500
    Saturday 14 August – first match of the season, away at Macclesfield

    Shaw felt under pressure, but at least the first game of the season being away from home reduced the attention on him. Given the impressive nature of the performance, he stuck with the same formation as the Southampton game. He dropped Weston to the bench, moved Oli to the right wing and introduced Hatch in the role behind Jackson. He hoped the former Peterborough man would live up to the billing Gareth Wilson had given him. The travelling fans were the die-hards and there was clearly a divide between those who wanted to get behind the team and those more focused on protesting against the Tucker regime. Once again, both he and Tucker needed a result to keep the wolves at bay.

    Macclesfield had the better of the early exchanges, forcing a good save from Kiely and then hitting the post. On 25 minutes Mukendi, their young Welsh striker, scored and four minutes later things went from bad to worse as Medway gave away a penalty that Brown converted. All of a sudden, they were 2-0 down. That’s how it stayed until half time.

    Shaw had been pretty calm with the players up until then. But now was the time for them to learn what happened when they let him down. “What the fuck was that? Where was the pressing, where was the quick passing, where was everything we’ve been doing in training? I’ve got a good mind to list the whole fucking lot of you.” Wignall cut in: “The boss is right boys, that was shit. But we can turn it around in the second half.”

    At least Shaw had a plan B. He packed the midfield to try and get hold of the ball more, with Weston coming on for Hatch. Maher would play in the more withdrawn role, with Weston venturing forward to support Jackson...

    It didn’t help. Macclesfield scored three more in the second half, with a solitary goal from Weston all there was to cheer the travelling fans. It was a nightmare start to their league season. Shaw felt sick.



    Final score: Macclesfield 5 – Medway FC 1
    Man of the match: Vinny Mukendi (Macclesfield)

  43. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Fourfourtwo For This Useful Post:


Page 1 of 9 12345 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •