Yeah, to say I was expecting midtable it's good to be up there in with a shout
Will always love him for his loan spells at Leeds, but nice to see him still doing well in Asia!
2 February 2016
Eight o'clock on a Saturday morning. I really didn't want to disturbed at this time as I pack my things to head to AFC Telford - our first fixture of the month.
Knock, knock, knock...
Oh for God's sakes, who is that? I really didn't need this at the moment. I was tired from the night before as I headed to the local pub called The Beulah for a couple of drinks. I say a couple of drinks, my head woke up banging like the booze was swimming ferociously around my brain the morning after.
I slumbered my way over to the door with a sigh. As I opened it I did not expect to see Micky Engwell, my assistant manager to be standing in the breezy corridor at Cemetery Road.
"Everything OK, Micky?" I asked as I tried opening my sleep-depraved eyes to look at Engwell.
"Yeah, you don't mind if I have a little chat with you do you, boss?" he said.
"Yeah, sure, take a seat," I responded as I pointed to the seat that Engwell would proceed to take.
I wandered around Micky's chair as he collapsed his bottom into the leather comfort of his seat. He looked strangely agitated as I took my seat opposite him, as if he had something bad to tell me, the sort of look a person gives you when telling you, for example, that your own father has disappeared and isn't to be seen for another ten years.
But despite the troubled look on Micky's face I asked him what he needed to tell me.
"It's Bedlington," he said suddenly.
"Who?" I asked, wondering who in the world are Bedlington.
"Bedlington?" he said once more.
"Is this some kind of wind up, because I'm really not in the mood. What or who is Bedlington?" I replied angrily.
"Bedlington Terriers. It's a team in Northumberland," he informed me.
I spat my drink out laughing, Bedlington Terriers? They're bloody dogs! I said to myself. "Alright then, Micky, who set you up for this?" I chuckled to myself.
"Mr Chabukiani, I think you have misunderstood," Engwell told me as he pulled a couple sheets of paper out of his back pocket, "Bedlington Terriers, they want me to be their new manager,"
My laugh immediately ceased as Micky said that. I was at risk of losing my own assistant manager here. "Yeah?" I said to the former Boreham Wood man. "What are you thinking about it?"
Engwell had been player/manager at Boreham Wood for two years before his ultimate retirement so I knew that he was good for the experience part. "They are offering me £275 per week to manage their first team," he stated.
I was shocked at that, I was being paid only £25 more than that! If Micky wanted to go, then there was no way of convincing him to stay because of our wage management would collapse.
"I spoke to them over the phone a few days ago, they would be willing to pay compensation to Bradford Park Avenue amounting to £1,700 - which would equal my wage here until the end of my contract," he continued.
"I'm not really that interested in the money we're getting, Micky. I'm losing your services here, you're a great bloke to have at my side and the players love you to bits. If you leave I'm going to have to look for a new assistant manager and they will have to be able to fill your boots and that is a tough job for someone as good as you," I told Engwell, most of it was true to be fair.
"I appreciate your kind words, Adam, but a managerial role is something I haven't been offered in over ten years, and even then it was a player/manager role. Not only that, but I'm earning just short of £200 more than I do here," Micky put me in a position where I simply couldn't get him to stay.
"Micky, this is your career and I don't want to be a dictator in it, but in the same way, I don't want to lose a man who has made my jobs a million times easier and better over these last few months," I told Micky.
"Thank you for everything, Adam, but I'm going to take the job at Bedlington after this match against Telford. This will be my last game under contract here," and with that, Micky swiftly departed the office.
The month started shamefully bad with the departure of my assistant manager Micky Engwell, as he made his way to begin his managerial post at Bedlington Terriers in the Ebar Northern Premier League. His send-off was a poor one, though after a 2-1 loss at the hands of AFC Telford United. At the other end of the month, though came another departure from the club but in the playing department this time. The 25-year-old midfielder Craig King
was released at the end of this month, coming to a mutual compensation of £1,000.
As you will be able to see, we gained four points out of a possible fifteen in the second month of 2016. To say at the end of January we had the best opportunity to go top, and now we find ourselves outside of the playoff places really worries me about our bottle. However, we still match the boards expectation of us by reaching midtable as we head into March, where a crop of new youngsters will arrive into our Under-18's team.
Although the month of February was an utter shambles, December signing Julio Arca
stood out from an average group of performers, and that wins him Player of the Month for February. His passing was on point for the most part and he was a shining light in a cold, dark tunnel this month.
Tough run of form for you. But there's time left and I have no doubt Adam will correct the slide!
Mate! Your match layouts are looking awesome! Add that to one of the best written stories ever & you've got something real special here. Love your work!
Yeah, got us into a bit of a slump, but hoping we can recover quickly with the season rapidly coming to a close!
You deserved it
Yeah, thought my story needed a bit of lightening up and it's working in my opinion. Thank you very much for the kind words
Disappointing stretch of results, but at least you're still in a solid enough position. Still a little ways to go so playoffs are still a possibility. Nice work with the match lay out also
8 March 2016
"Adam?!" shouted Lewis Hayes into my open office door, I could hear his footsteps banging against the carpeted floor towards me. "They're here, boss,"
It was the day of the national Youth Induction day, my first one as head coach of Bradford Park Avenue. Being a fan of the younger generation, it was fair to say I was excited about seeing the new kids on the block.
I got my coat which was hung loosely off the top of my chair in the office and followed shortly behind Lewis Hayes, the Head of Youth Development which I had hired myself upon my arrival at Horsfall Stadium.
"Do you know anything about any of them?" I asked Hayes as he sped up his walking pace.
"Not as such, I generally focus on the Under-18's and Under-14's and below in my role, I rely on the reports I get from their coaches to determine if they're any good - they're usually honest, mind," he answered.
"Any names we need to look out for?" I inquired, looking for information of the new lads arriving under my management.
"Roger Pursehouse. A striker, fifteen years of age, looks a belter,"
"Why'd you say that, Lewis?"
"The kid scored 23 goals in 21 appearances last season for the Under-16's, a top lad by the sounds of it. Had a few problems with drugs and alcohol when he was younger but it seems like he's cleared up that issue a few years back,"
"Bit of a wildcard then, ey?" I laughed.
"You could say that, anyway, Caner Dumlupinar, right-back,"
"Doesn't sound very British?" I commented on his name.
"Aye, his great grandad or something, he moved to England as a refugee during the Turkish-Greek conflict in around the 1920's, he's granted as English obviously, although he was born in Turkey,"
"Why's he good, then?"
"Pacey, can dribble a bit, stick a foot in when it's needed, just need to develop the kid and he'll be quality,"
"Listen, Lewis, I know we've got ourselves a whole youth team here, but you wouldn't mind working with Kenny Lindoe on getting some others in, will you?" I asked Lewis to work with the clubs Chief Scout. "It's just that there will be some players at clubs who are on non-contracts and are easy pickings for a club like us,"
"Certainly, boss," Hayes seemed quite excited at my plan for him.
We then met up with the group of young lads that were joining the ranks here at Horsfall Stadium before their match with the Under-18's.
The new crop of youngsters mauled our current Under-18's - who I have to admit have always been shite. Lewis Hayes was right about Roger Pursehouse, though, the kid scored one goal in the 3-0 win with a banging half-volley from the penalty spot area. Irish centre-back Maurice McGuinness also scored from a corner, with Jonny Pritchard, the left-back netting the last goal from the penalty spot.
Great update and you're doing very well with a below average Bradford PA side! Keep it up.
Nice updates as always Jack.
Sad to see Micky Engwell leaving Bradford PA, always bad to lose your assistant
February really didn't went good. Maybe some repercussions of Micky's leaving?
Well, the important is that you still very much in the fight for those play-off positions, which is the most important.
Good luck for this last matches of the league now, hope it goes well for you
I can only agree to say that I'm doing well, but my ambitions are way higher than this. Thank you for the positive feedback, mate
I agree that Micky leaving hasn't done any good for us, but we do need to buck our ideas up for these next two months if we really want to do anything!
As the team head train towards their next game against Tamworth, they will have a new face among them in Myles Wright.
Avenue Announce New Man
After a lack of appearances over his two-year professional career at Chesterfield, the 19-year-old goalkeeper has decided to accept Adam Chabukiani's offer to join him down at Horsfall Stadium until the end of the current season at least.
Wright had made just one appearance this season for the Spireites
as they sit in tenth place in the Sky Bet League One league table.
Along with the news of the young keeper's arrival came some bad news for three players, who have been subsequently released by the club prior to Wright joining the club.
Jason St Juste
, who was demoted to the Under-21's by Chabukiani earlier in February has been released by the club, followed by fellow Under-21's player Billy Priestley
on the same day. Two days after these players had their contracts cancelled by the club, former back-up keeper Jon Stewart
then had his contract terminated at the club, paving the way for Wright's arrival.
Myles was quoted saying he was 'delighted' to be snapped up by the National League North Playoff chasers in a recent interview.
"Obviously when the opportunity to join Adam here at Cemetery Road came up, I realised I couldn't miss out on working with one of the most inspirational characters I've known in football, I can't wait to get started here at Horsfall Stadium!"
the youngster said to Bradford Telegraph & Argus.
Adam Chabukiani was not available for comment upon his new signing, but is said to be 'very pleased' that he has got his man.
18 March 2016
It's been too long since Micky Engwell's departure to go and manage Bedlington Terriers. Chabukiani hadn't had an assistant since that 2-1 loss to Telford United on the 2nd February.
I'd been checking up on Bedlington's results since, and it's fair to say that the bloke has really got them going since Andy Ferrell's sacking over at Welfare Park. Despite a little dip in form to begin with, Engwell had taken the club from 13th place to 9th in Ebac Northern League Division One. Not bad at all. He had picked up nineteen points from twelve games.
However, instead of moping over how I'd lost my right-hand man at the club, I was determined to get another one seeing as though Dr John Dean had given me the green light to do so.
For me, it was time to call up a bloke I'd spoken to in the summer to complete my first transfer of the the August transfer window. Paul Murray, he was called, chairman of Winchester City.
I picked up the landline that was sat on my desk and dialed direct to Murray's office at Winchester. As the phone rang through to the chairman I drummed the edge of my desk with my fingers, as if I were counting the seconds with each tap of the wooden desk.
The ringing was cut midway through to hear the grumbling voice of Paul Murray. "Hello, this is Paul Murray of Winchester City, can I help you?"
"Now then, Paul, it's Adam Chabukiani, manager of Bradford Park Avenue," I greeted the man on the other end of the line. "I've called to inquire about something,"
"Ah, Adam! Nice to speak again, just so you know, we haven't got anymore Warren Bentley's for you!" Murray chuckled down the line.
"No, it's nothing to do with players, I promise," I laughed back at the chairman's tease. "I'm actually looking for a new assistant manager,"
"And you're coming to me to ask for the services of...?" Murray let the silence prevail as he asked Adam who the Georgian was looking for.
"Paul Wiltshire," I said. "I have a representative going down your way as we speak, he will talk to Wiltshire about contractual issues, as long as we have your permission to do so," I finished.
Murray once again let another silence deafen the call, as if he was thinking about something this time. Pondering. "Yeah. Go on then, you can speak to him, but it's his decision if he stays or goes,"
"Absolutely. Thank you for your time, Mr Murray,"
"No problem, ya thief!" laughed the chairman of Winchester City.
Nice update, a simple thing like contacting a chairman over an assistant manager turned into a tidy piece of writing, well I never