We are the Champions
e just needed a single point in the game against Gillingham FC
to secure promotion. It was not pretty but the team came away with the needed 1-0 win. I had reached my first goal as a manager and we would play in the Sky Bet Championship
Much of the excitement surrounding the promotion was lost the day after when The Daily Mirror
ran a story about the possible stepping down by team president Barry Hearn
. No sources we quoted and Barry did not take any calls.
I was worried.
Considering how I had taken over the manager position from Russell Slade
I knew that my spot was not secure in any way just because I had helped the team to a promotion.
I guess that part of being a football manager is always looking for the worst case scenario.
The weekend after we could take home the league title with a win against Crawley FC
. The play was uninspired and we fell behind by two goals before 30 minutes were played. I failed to get the players to respond in the second half and we lost the game but as the results started to come in from around the league it became clear that we could no longer be caught and Leyton Orient
were the winners of the 2013-2014 Sky Bet League 1
Just three days later the team had to play Wolws at home in front of 8.330 people. It was the undefeated streak at home on the line. Team had probably celebrated a little too hard after the win. We gave up a hat-trick to Kevin Doyle
. Our home win streak was over and we had lost two league games in a row for the first time all season.
We had now lost three of the last four games but to be perfectly honest, I didn't care.
We are the Champions.
To the last home game of the season over 7.000 showed up for a meaningless game and were treated to a rollercoaster ride. We took the lead on the penalty already after 11 minutes. Then gave up two goals in three minutes before the half and after a thunder speech in the halftime break, the team stiffened up and scored another two goals for the win in the second half.
Before the final game of the season against the MK Dons
we just needed 1 point to get to the milestone 100 points for the season. After another shootout we got away with the three points and finished the season with a 31W-9D-6L record for a new league record 102 points.
In front of the home fans we could lift up the first trophy Leyton Orient FC
had won since the year I was born.
When we had played our last game I didn't waste any time starting to prepare for the next season. Even before it was decided who would move up to the Sky Bet Championship
together with us and who would go down, I started the process of overhauling the back office. Our clueless Hd. Scout was the first to go and a few of the coaches soon followed.
The day it was decided that Colchester
(who finished 5th and 28 points behind us in the league) would be the last team to follow Wolverhampton
and us up to the Sky Bet Championship
, we had already gathered the scouting and coaching team we wanted for next season.
I was not the only one sacking people. Another person that found himself in the unemployment line was a guy with the name of David Moyes
. In his first season as the manager of Manchester United
the team failed to finish in the top-4.
and Manchester City
took the first four places and qualified for the Champions League
That left United on the outside and they would have to play in the Europa League
together with Newcastle
That was apparently more than what the American owners could accept and David Moyes
was shown the door after less than one year after he was hired to replace Sir Alex Ferguson
The new manager leading them into that battle would be Jürgen Klopp
who joined the red devils after winning the German league six points in front of Schalke 04
and Bayern Munich
Klopp didn't get off to the best of starts with is new club as he lost the FA Cup
final to Newcastle
in his first game in charge.
I didn't feel the slightest sorry for David Moyes
but one person I was feeling a bit sorry for was Russell Slade
. After he was squeezed out as Leyton Orient
manager when I was handed the team before the start of the season he had found a new job as manager of Oldham Athletic
. He had very little to work with and the Oldham Latics
finished last in the league and were relegated but for once Russell Slade
got to keep his job.