First, I have to apologies to Jim Davis, who has assured me in the past that supporters do actually read this forum, even though only a few contribute. Seeing that my last two 'controversial?' opinions received over 800 'hits' each. I thought I would try to beat this with another view, and hoping that you will offer your opinions.
We are nearing half-way through the season, and I thought it a good time to find out what us (the fans/supporters) thought of the performance of the management of the team.
To recap, the way I see it, the Town have had a couple of good seasons prior to the current season, under local lad Aidy Fuller. With his experience at this level, and over 400 games for Banbury United. His local knowledge was beyond doubt. But even he must have been surprised to get the Town job, as he hadn't been that successful at Woodford.
He built up a squad of good steady local players, mainly from a 15 mile radius of Daventry. To lose out to Hitchen in the play-offs was a disappointment, but truthfully I could not see that squad being strong enough overall for the Central Division.
Our esteemed chairman (Mr Ian Humphries), decided that we needed a more experienced manager for the higher division, with contacts outside this area. This is where it all went wrong? . . . Ian, discussed this with Aidy, and asked him to step down to assistant, to Mark Kinsella. Initially, he accepted, but after having a holiday and time to think about it, he returned to say he was not taking up the position. Consequently, he left the club and many of the players (under misguided loyalty) left the club to look elsewhere.
Many of the players have since asked to return - when they found that they were not guaranteed places at their new clubs, or the clubs ran out of money, so couldn't pay them. But Ian's instructions were that none of the players who left would be welcomed back (with the exception of Berwick, who left with Ian's blessing to improve himself . . . no comment), he has since relented and let O'Grady return, but others have been turned away.
This left Mark with the poisoned chalice of a club without a team. I have no doubt that if he had been aware of this from the start, he would not have accepted the post. But like a 'true pro', he buckled down to pull a team together. There have been a huge turn-around of players during the first part of the season. Some have settled, but others have been moved on.
I think, in the circumstances, he has done a fantastic job, and now it seems there is a more settled squad. The players like him, and openly talk about how enjoyable his coaching is, and how accessible a person he is . . . hence the players who have left, want to come back.
My main concern though, is that I am sure he sees Daventry Town as just a stepping stone to a higher level, I even had a call from a friend in Northampton, who said that Mark's name was on the short list for Northampton Town FC . . . but I told him, that if Mark moves, I am sure he would want to improve himself. It is obvious that with his vast club and international experience, some one will come along with an offer, which he will find hard to refuse. But then again, on the plus side, he has a day-job with Ian, so security is a good thing in these financial troubled time.
So what do you think? Is Mark good for the Town, or was it a wrong move?
Incidentally, as the half-way of the season approaches, it is difficult to pick out a 'Player of the Season', at the moment. But I am particularly pleased with the attitude and form of Joe Mellins. If there was a medal for loyalty, he would get it. Having been on the bench all of last season, he was getting back into form only to have a bad injury early this season. He battled his way back, and is now performing at the top of his game. I have always thought that as a one-on-one keeper, there are little better. He has in the past suffered - because of his size - from deep crosses from free-kicks and corners. But he has been quite positive with this part of his game since his return . . . so keep at it Joe, and who knows, you could be the second keeper on the trot to win the Supporter's award.
Any views on the above, will be appreciated . . . let's beat 800 again!
Up the Town!
[Post Edited Wednesday 30th of November 2011 04:17 PM]