Tag: Notts County

Notts County Start, Presumably, As They Mean To Go On

The summer is traditionally known as “the silly season” in the press, but Notts County have pushed the silliness up by at least a few notches with the news that they are in negotiation with Sven Goran Eriksson over him taking over as their Director of Football. Whether a manager with such a high profile is necessary for a club that will be starting this season in League Two, but what is more concerning is that here again is a club with new ownership apparently making a decision that the best solution to the matter of how to get out of this league is to throw money around like it’s confetti. Eriksson, of course, will go anywhere if the price is right, which goes some way towards explaining why his last two managerial positions were at Manchester City and in charge of the Mexican national team. In recent years, however, holes have started to become apparent in the argument that he is one of the best coaches in Europe. After a degree of lionisation after he took the England job, he was ultimately found to be wanting. England’s turgid performances at the 2006 World Cup undid much of the goodwill that he had earned with the 5-1 in Munich against Germany in 2001 and a surprisingly swashbuckling display at the 2004 European Championships. Since then, however, his reputation has...

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Tied Up In Notts

“The Oldest Football League Club In The World” is the proud boast of Notts County, and this fact is one of those that gets lodged in the head of every schoolboy like a piece of stray shrapnel. Notts’ glory days may well be long gone, but they have this week voted to end six years of Supporters Trust ownership in favour of… well, no-one seems to be completely sure at the moment. One might think that Notts would be wary of outside ownership. They ended up coming perilously close to extinction thanks to the mismanagement of the likes of Derek Pavis and Albert Scardino at the turn of this century. This was how the club’s Supporters Trust came to be the majority shareholders in the first place. Now, though, the club is likely to pass back into the hands of private owners, and the Trust itself has voted for this. Notts haven’t had a particularly happy time of things on the pitch over the last few years. They were spared relegation from the Football League (of which they were, of course, founder members) 2006 and have fared little better since then. The Trust is said to have been riven with in-fighting (although finding actual concrete evidence of this is considerably more difficult than finding people on forums that bang on about unspecified in-fighting), and it can be seen very...

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In Praise Of… “The Beautiful Game? Searching For The Soul Of Football”, by David Conn

In November 2001, I (as was my wont at the time) made the short journey from my flat in the centre of St Albans to Clarence Park to watch The Saints play Basingstoke Town in the Ryman League Premier Division. It was an uninspiring match – a flattering 3-1 win – but more concerning was that, rather than being able to settle down to watch the results come on Sky TV afterwards, we were stuck with the BBC’s coverage. The club hadn’t been paying its bills, and the satellite TV had been cut off. Two months later, the sky fell in. The club failed a CVA that it had entered into and the chairman put it up for sale for £1. The Ryman League suspended the club until it secured new ownership and got its house in order. For five long weeks, with no match day revenue to sustain it, St Albans City slid towards what seemed like an inevitable winding up order. On the clubs message board, tentative discussions were held over what we would do when the inevitable came, but none us really understood very much about what we could do as supporters to save the club. At the last minute, a new owner was found and the club was rescued, but St Albans City sailed very, very close to the wind during those five, dark weeks...

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