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Adam Chabukiani: Defying All Odds

The story of a young Georgian refugee, born through the chaos of the Abkhazia War to find his feet in the footballing world.
Started on 5 October 2015 by Jack
Latest Reply on 5 July 2019 by Justice

It's been a busy month for us in terms of people coming and going in the club, with a new assistant manager in Paul Wiltshire coming into the club, and Myles Wright signing up until the end of the season with an option to extend to 2017, and the departures of Billy Priestley, Jason St Juste and Jon Stewart. I am reasonably impressed by March's events considering results against Harrogate Town and Curzon Ashton, but disappointed in the loss to AFC Fylde.



We have made our way into the Play-Off places once again this season, but only just, with the threats of Boston United and Telford United only a win away from stealing 5th place from us, yet on the other hand we are simply a draw away from taking fourth spot from Stockport County. The next month - April - is the last official month of our season, and we will play five games in it, with a match against Boston highly anticipated for our second match of the month.


This month, the award for Player of the Month for March goes to Adam Pepper. The attacking midfielder grabbed three goals for himself this month, as well as assisting another two. The lad has been brilliantly consistent as well as amazingly fit to go through this season without missing a single game. He has been a true servant for us throughout 2015/16.
Absolutely amazing so far. Great to see you in the play offs! Love the graphics too.
A great undefeated month but shame you couldn't turn a few draws into wins but doing great and hopefully promotion is on the cards come the end of the season bud.
Nice to know Micky is doing well. And glad you're getting another assistant for yourself, hopefully he can be helpfull, ya thief. ;)
Glad to see the improvment of form this month helping you to reach your goals for the season. Now is almost done, this game against Boston definitely looks decisive at this stage. Time for decisions, good luck :)
9 April 2016

As the team packed up ready to depart York Street after an entertaining 3-3 draw with the seventh placed side, I was relishing the thought of finally getting home, cracking open a bottle of Carlsberg, lying down on the creme suite.

It was Manchester City vs Swansea tonight at a 5:30 kick-off, so that should be alright to kick back on. Pellegrini's boys were flying high, four points above Arsenal who had won 2-0 against rock bottom Sunderland earlier today. City had a chance to go seven points clear at the top, and put the Premier League title beyond all doubt with a win over Garry Monk's Swansea City.

I found it interesting how I was so intrigued by all this Premier League nonsense nowadays, I was a manager, and I had no reason to be watching Premier League games other than for entertainment purposes. All the other leagues around the world were just boring, Juventus five points ahead of Lazio, Bayern Munich dominating Bundesliga. I suppose the biggest surprise this season was Barcelona drifting 14 points behind league leaders Atlético Madrid in Liga BBVA!

It was nice to see Bradford City chasing the Playoffs in League One after Phil Parkinson departed for Rotherham, as much as I hated them for forcing me out of the club, its the fans that will keep the club in my heart, not forgetting the day Park Avenue played City in a friendly at the start of this... What was that?

My phone was vibrating.

I delved down into my pocket so the on and off vibration hit the palm of my hand. I looked down at the screen on my new iPhone 6S, the caller was nobody in my contacts list. It was just a number calling me.

I slid my finger to the right to accept the incoming call before placing the speaker next to my ear.

"Mr Chabukiani?" said the man, wondering if he had got the correct number.

"Yes. Who is this, may I ask?" I asked quietly.

"It's Lee Payne here, I'm from Full Contact," the man introduced. "We are a footballing agents firm based in West London," he explained.

"And why am I subject to one of your calls?"

"Because we realise that you could be a big talent one day in the managerial area," he said. "Me and my team here have been studying your decision-making, progress, tactics and whatever the skills of a manager is based on,"

"So, what? I asked you a question and you haven't answered it, Mr Payne," I reiterated to Payne.

"Adam, I want to call a meeting with you some time in the next week or so," he told me.

I fell silent for a few seconds. For fuck sake I thought to myself, I wanted to go golfing this week and be able to chill watching the end of a series on Netflix, but oh no, the big money-men want to meet me. And then it hit me that I was talking to a man who could make me money. Someone who could make things happen not only for my career, but my personal life.

"We've seen your name being banded around the press for top jobs at clubs like Oldham Athletic, Burton Albion, Bolton Wanderers, you name it,"

I hadn't even realised. I don't read the papers usually, unless I'm bored and in a café and I want to look a bit more sophisticated than my bald head and blank expression shows. But I didn't want to leave here? This was my home now, I wanted to grow this club into something big.

"Lee, I'm not being funny or anything, mate, but I love my job here and I don't think moving clubs would be good for me. I'm too loyal to the role I hold here and now," I finally said, voicing my inner thoughts.

"No, that's what I'm saying, Adam, the rumours are the key to money wherever you want to be. 'This bloke offered me £2,500, give me a reason to stay' kind of stuff, Adam. Trust me, you've got two months left on this contract here and it's about time you hit them with a key decision. Meet me on Wednesday at Cody's Café, I'll be there and we can talk about terms," he named the date, I couldn't cancel now. "Just be there, Adam,"

"Sure," I replied cautiously. I hope this bloke doesn't talk my way through the exit door here at Horsfall Stadium.
Nick_H: Detail is everything, brother ;)

Bensons: Cheers mate, I'm quite happy in the Playoffs as well :P

walkinshaw: Have to agree that we need more wins on the table, cheers mate :)

Murtagh: The only way is up, surely?! But seriously man, your comments are the best, great to receive such praise from yourself :D
This agent really ruined your week with all his money - first world problems. :D
Crazy how Atlético his going so much over Barça, and it's nice to have this little details of your story.

And is always my pleasure to come here man, this story is seriously one of the best I have ever read, really amazing ;)

In the same month that I bagged my first deal with a footballing agent, it means that contract renewal talks are very close for me at Bradford Park Avenue. We finished the season on a high in that we didn't lose a single game throughout the final month of the season, but we still have the Play-Offs to come still. We will play North Ferriby United in the Semi-Finals of that, with Stockport vs Fylde being the other fixture.



As the initial season has come to an end, we finally bagged that Play-Off place that we so deserved at the end of this season. As previously stated, third placed North Ferriby United will be our challengers in the Play-Off Semi-Finals. Alfreton Town are the lucky ones, though, as they bag top spot and go up automatically as champions. At the other end of the table came a shock as Worcester City finished rock bottom, despite being predicted a 2nd place finish at the start of the season. FC United of Manchester staved off relegation on the last day with three points from a 4-1 win over Solihull Moors, who swapped positions with FC United on the last day because of the loss. Curzon Ashton will also be relegated from National League North.


The April Player of the Month definitely has to be our striker Matthew Fletcher once again. The kid has finished the clear top scorer in the league this season with 35 goals in 42 games. The boy has been absolute magic and he is definitely a favourite for the Player of the Season. Fletcher scored in every single game this month, including a hat-trick against Hednesford Town.


Bradford Park Avenue have continued to push their promotion chase to the final stage, with an 8-4 aggregate win over North Ferriby Town in the National League North Play-Off Semi-Final.

In terms of league performance, Bradford were one place behind North Ferriby as the season came to a close on 30th April. In the other Play-Off fixture, AFC Fylde played 5th placed Stockport County.

Both fixtures were played on the 4th of May for a Wednesday evening kick-off, a record attendance of 1,520, the highest for this season turned up at Horsfall Park to watch the First Leg of the Semi-Final. They were left delighted, though, as Adam Pepper, the 24-year-old attacking midfielder sprung into life with two goals and one assist.

Pepper opened the scoring in the 11th minute of the game. Matthew Fletcher squared the ball to his left to Pepper for the youngster to stroke home the opening goal past North Ferriby's Nicholson.

Adam's next goal was not far away, either, as the midfielder struck again in the 22nd minute with an absolute screamer from thirty yards out which sailed effortlessly over the keeper's head.

For the third, and final goal, Adam Pepper took a break from scoring to assist the league's top scorer Matthew Fletcher in the 23rd minute. The striker played the ball to Pepper on the halfway line before darting forward for Fletcher to complete the one-two on the edge of the box, polishing off the move with a near-post finish.

North Ferriby's Ryan Kendall scored what was only a consolation goal in the 68th minute as a cross came in from the left, making it an easy tap-in for the striker.

In the other fixture between Stockport and Fylde, it wasn't short of goals either, with Stockport leading 4-2 going into the Second Leg just three days after.

The away tie at North Ferriby's Grange Lane was a tale of two hat-tricks for the teams involved. Curtis Bateson grabbed three for North Ferriby, with left-winger Jack Hallahan also bagging three for Adam Chabukiani's men.

The goalscoring began as early as the sixth minute, as Hallahan attempted what seemed like a cross-cum-shot, the ball ricocheted off of the North Ferriby keeper before hitting the post, and then hitting the keeper and going into the net. 4-1 Bradford Park Avenue on aggregate, 1-0 in the match.

Ten minutes after, North Ferriby brought one back, with Bateson netting his first of three goals. The celebrations were short-lived on behalf of the home fans, as Jack Hallahan bagged a goal three minutes later to make it 2-1 (2-5 agg.)

Hallahan then took it upon himself to get on the scoresheet for the second time with another goal in the 34th minute of the match. Top scorer Matthew Fletcher then thought it was time for him to get involved with the goalscoring affairs, by adding to North Ferriby's misery just before half-time.

It was 4-1 (2-7 agg.) as the teams went in for the break.

As they came out though, it was just another barrage of attacks by Chabukiani's overloading style of play, as Bradford were awarded a penalty, which Jack Hallahan finished off his hat-trick with in the 49th minute, making it 1-5 (2-8 agg.)

Although all hope was lost in the North Ferriby camp, there was still time for Curtis Bateson to cap off his hat-trick as well with goals in the 51st and 57th minutes.

The Semi-Finals finished 8-4 in favour of Bradford Park Avenue, who will play Stockport County, who beat Fylde on aggregate 5-4. The match will take place at Horsfall Stadium due to Avenue holding the higher seed in the league, meaning they have the home advantage on the 14th May.
nice! That's a hefty aggregate win man, well done!
Murtagh: Those damn agents ;) Thanks a lot for your support, really means a lot man :D

InfraRed: Yeah, almost caught me by surprise to be honest! Great performance but it's worthless if we're not starting next season in the National Conference!
Let's hope you can get promoted! Great write-up again.
13 May 2016

"Mr Chabukiani, are you ready yet?" Gareth Roberts shouted impatiently. Gareth was a director at Bradford Park Avenue, like a sidekick to Dr Dean in the boardroom. But when he wasn't doing what directors do, he was the stand-in Press Manager.

"Yeah, I'll be two shakes of a lamb's tail, Gareth!" I shouted back.

Roberts had called the local and national press interested in tomorrow's match in today to cover the pre-match presser at Cemetery Road, the club's training ground.

Tomorrow's game against Stockport County would go down in history as one of the biggest matches in the club's history, and it was only right that we should win it. We've been away from the Conference too long, Stockport were in it only three years ago now. It was our turn.

I made my way out of the gents bathroom to meet Gareth Roberts outside the door, with his face red with embarrassment knowing we were late. The conference was supposed to be at 2 o'clock on the dot. It was 2:05 p.m. now.

"Washed your hands?" he said sarcastically. I didn't have to answer - I wasn't that unhygienic!

Gareth burst his way through the door before taking his seat behind a table with a bottle of Harrogate Spa Water sat full in front of him. I followed him to take my seat beside him.

"Sorry for the delay, ladies and gents, our man here just wanted to flash his appearance up for you lot," he gave a smirk towards me, to which I returned.

What did I have to flash up? My hair? I don't have any hair! I thought to myself.

"So, we might as well get on with it since we're late! Fire away!" the director commanded once the laughter to his previous joke subsided.

The first journo stuck his hand high into hair. Roberts gave him the nod of approval which released his question to me. "Adam, we'll start off simple, how are you feeling about tomorrow's match?" he asked.

Starting off simple? That's probably the most difficult question I'm gonna get! I'm actually going to have to think for myself! I thought to myself. "Well.." I stuttered, "Obviously we're all aware of the scale of this match ahead of us, me and the staff here have got the team working their socks off so they're in perfect shape to win us promotion, I'm feeling pretty good about it to be honest!" I finally answered much to my relief. I'd said most of that without even thinking!

Before I knew it, another question was floated through the air, landing at my ears. "What are your thoughts about Worcester City parting company with Neil Young?"

What sort of question was that? Why do I give a fuck about Neil-shitting-Young from Worcester City? I thought. "Well, Worcester were one of the best sides in our league, at least that's what most of you lot thought, he deserved getting the sack - he got them relegated!" no bullshit from me today, just the sour truth.

"What changes will be made ahead of this game compared to the team that faced North Ferriby United?"

I didn't have much to think about for this. "I don't think any changes will be made, I'm confident that the team that beat 3rd place can beat 5th place. If it's fitness you're asking after, they've been training rigorously all week. That shouldn't be a problem."

"This game is one of the very biggest games in Bradford Park Avenue, and the fans will be watching on anxiously, being the underdog for this tie. Is that anxiety passing onto you ahead of tomorrow's match?

"Absolutely, this is my first job in senior football management. It'd be wrong if I wasn't nervous for this game."

"How important is it to the club to win this final and secure promotion?"

I can either tempt fate or ignore this... I said to myself. "I don't want to tempt fate before the game, therefore making no comment about the future." I laughed under my breath.

"Stockport will be without Sean O'Hanlon for this game due to injury. His absence is a massive boost for your chances isn't it?"

Fucking hell, that's great news! I thought, those exact words almost came it out in speech, luckily I held them back, though. "Obviously, any loss in players is a help to us, but I believe if we are to win this game, it will be through grit and determination - the elements that has brought us to this stage.

"Jean-Michel Fontaine will no doubt be starting for Stockport tomorrow, he's a top player, isn't he?"

Fontaine was the league's 2nd top scorer, behind our very own Matthew Fletcher who was on 37 goals, 12 more than Fontaine's 25 goals. "Everyone knows how talented Fontaine is. But we have Matthew Fletcher, he will outclass Fontaine tomorrow." I said confidently.

At that point, Roberts checked his watch, before taking to the crowd of journalists gathered before myself and him. "Thank you, everyone, but I think that'll be all for today," he said to all of them.

Now that's out of the way, it's all about tomorrow.
Perfect! Love your updates.
Bensons: Cheers mate! Much appreciated :D

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