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Making a Manager - The Story

Ryan Ferguson returns for another English LLM journey
Started on 23 October 2018 by Justice
Latest Reply on 15 May 2019 by Griffo
Looking forward to seeing how you do in the next season, hope you can go up again!
Justice's avatar Group Justice
5 yearsEdited

City Turn Pro & Fergie Signs New Deal

Oxford City Have Turned Professional As Ferguson Signs New Two Year Deal


Big news has come from National League champions Oxford City as the club has turned professional. The Oxfordshire-based club recently earned promotion to the EFL and has made the next step up in their development by moving from a semi-professional status to a professional status.

The news means the club will begin to offer full-time contracts to all players and staff over the summer, meaning players will go from training twice or three times a week to every possible day. The change in status will almost certainly increase the daily, weekly, monthly and annual spend of the club but the bonus of being in the EFL will help increase income.

The first person in Oxford City's books to receive a new full-time contract was first-team manager Ryan Ferguson. The Liverpool-born manager has received an incredible amount of praise for his exploits since joining the club two years, guiding Oxford City to consecutive league titles and promotions, as well as consecutive FA Trophy victories.

Ferguson's four-trophy haul has made him a highly-coveted manager, with a number of EFL and Scottish Premiership clubs rumoured to be interested in his services. However, Ferguson has committed his future to Oxford City by penning a new deal worth £900 per week for the next two seasons.

Ferguson's contract has a buyout clause of 70% of the remaining value, which would mean a club would currently need to pay just under £70,000 to secure the in-the-spotlight manager.

Oxford City's commander-in-chief spoke of his delight with the new deal, and of his excitement for the future of the newly-professional football club.

Ferguson Has Committed His Future As City's First Ever Full-Time Manager

Ryan Ferguson:
"I'm obviously very happy with the new deal. This is a club that has given me the opportunity to become a senior football manager and we have enjoyed a fantastic spell together to date. We have had two incredibly successful trophy-laden seasons so far and we are on the rise to the highest leagues of English football.

It is an incredible honour to become the club's first ever full-time manager and I hope to repay the club's hierarchy with more positive results on the football pitch. I wear the club's badge with pride and Oxford City's identity is one which I know I am very fortunate to represent.

It is fantastic news that the club can now operate on a full-time basis. We built a strong financial core over the last couple of seasons and we are now in a competitive place where it makes sense to be professional. Of course it would be compulsory to operate at a professional level in the EFL but it also a sign of the ambitions of the football club and a marker has been laid down. We hope to push on and reach new heights over the coming seasons."

Comment Section

Griffo, that's the plan!

Previous Update: #77 - Court Place Farm To Be Expanded (Again)
Next Update: #79 - National League 2019/2020 Awards
Justice's avatar Group Justice
5 yearsEdited

National League 2019/2020 Awards

The Awards For The National League 2019/2020 Season

With the season coming to an end, it had become time to announce the best performers of the National League since last August. Oxford City had been crowned champions, but which players and managers impressed the most? Let's have a look now.

Manager - Ryan Ferguson (Oxford City): It was no surprise to see Ryan Ferguson named as the National League Manager of the Year. The young Liverpool-born manager guided Oxford City to a very comfortable National League title. A 58% win rate was the best in the league.

GK - Scott Loach (Hartlepool United): It was a strong season from Hartlepool United's Scott Loach in goals. The former Watford shot stopper kept a league-high 16 clean sheets as he helped his side to a respectable ninth place in the league.

DR - Carl Magnay (Hartlepool United): Another Hartlepool United player, and this time Carl Magnay. The former Chelsea youth has become an integral part of Hartlepool's team since joining in 2015 and he produced a solid season at full back. His incredible defensive tenacity made him crucial to Hartlepool's ninth place finish.

DC - Charlie Clough (Oxford City): Oxford City's summer signing, and record wage earner, Charlie Clough was a star in defence. The commanding defensive veteran played a leading role as his side lifted the National League title.

DC - Tom Bamford (Oxford City): I made a typo in the above graphic, but it was Tom Bamford in this XI. The youngster formed an incredible partnership with Clough in defence. The former Huddersfield youth player used his aerial prowess to patrol his own area with supreme.

DL - Lewis Kinsella (Aldershot Town): An incredible season for Aldershot's left back. The former Aston Villa youth player showed his creative ability with a joint-leaguetopping 13 assists, all from crosses. Kinsella played a major role in Aldershot finishing in 6th place.

MR - Charlie Wakefield (Chesterfield): Chesterfield's young English winger was incredible this season. Four goals and ten assists isn't a bad return for a wide player, and his industrious performances made him a standout player throughout the season. Wakefield provided a threat from open play and from set-pieces as he produced a stunning campaign which has had him linked with a move to the EFL.

MC - Rob Sinclair (Oxford City): Oxford City's midfield general. He may not be the captain but he leads by example. Four goals and ten assists from a deep lying playmaker role was enough to cement Sinclair's place as an Oxford City icon, and he played a key role in his side lifting the National League trophy.

MC - Nathan Ferguson (Oxford City): With club captain on the sidelines with injuries too often, Nathan Ferguson played an incredibly important role. The industrious midfielder indeed earned the National League Player of the Year award as he scored twelve and assisted five more as a box-to-box midfielder.

ML - Josh Koroma (Leyton Orient): The tricky Sierra Leona international produced a splendid season for Leyton Orient. Koroma scored eleven goals and assisted five more from the left of midfield as he helped his side to a 5th place finish.

ST - Adam Rooney (Salford City): Wazza's cousin, Adam. The veteran striker picked up the Golden Boot with a league-high twenty five goals as he lead Salford City's attack with aplomb. Not the paciest of players, Rooney used his technical and tactical ability to forge chances for himself and for his team mates, and he lit up the National League.

ST - Danny Rowe (AFC Fylde): AFC Fylde's captain was superb this season. He scored twenty one goals as he led his side to a club record high fourth place finish. Rowe is AFC Fylde's all time leading goal scorer and looks set to break goal scoring records during the rest of his time at the club.

Previous Update: #78 - City Turn Pro & Fergie Signs New Deal
Next Update: #80 - Oxford City 2019/2020 Best Players
A very impressive season, looking forward to seeing how you improve the squad
Congratulations on a fantastic season. The jump to the Football League will be full of new challenges for the team and management, but after seeing how well Non-League has been tackled, I have high expectations!
Justice's avatar Group Justice
5 yearsEdited

Oxford City 2019/2020 Best Players

Oxford City's Best Players Of The 2019/2020 Season

GK | Ryan Dickerson | 19 y/o (08/09/2000) | English
45 Appearances | 58 Goals Conceded | 12 Clean Sheets | 7.04 Average Rating
A very solid season for the teenage shot stopper. He impressed with the consistency of his performances and, despite conceding a lot of goals, he helped to keep the goal conceded down in big games, including the FA Trophy Final. We will be looking for an upgrade for the EFL, though.

DR | Luke Ruddick | 30 y/o (03/03/1990) | English
32 Appearances | 1 Goal | 1 Assist | 6.91 Average Rating
Ruddick didn't hit the same level of performances as he did last season but he kept himself in the team more often than not. He did have a difficult task of dealing with the pacey wingers of the National League and he did pretty well in stopping them.

DC | Charlie Clough | 29 y/o (03/09/1990) | English
44 Appearances | 3 Goals | 3 Assists | 7.11 Average Rating
Clough came in and became a real leader for us at the back. His experience and ability made him the ultimate defender, and possibly one of the best defenders in England outside of the EFL, and he played a key role in our double-winning season.

DC | Tom Bamford | 18 y/o (09/11/2001) | English
40 Appearances | 1 Goal | 0 Assists | 6.98 Average Rating
He may have joined as a fresh-faced teenager but Bamford slotted into our defence like an experienced warrior. His aerial prowess helped us stay assured at the back from set-pieces and he formed quite the partnership with Charlie Clough in the middle of our defence.

DL | Kris Owens | 21 y/o (07/12/1998) | English
30 Appearances | 1 Goal | 5 Assists | 7.14 Average Rating
The arrival of South African international Kgosi Ntlhe knocked Kris Owens down the pecking order towards the end of the season but Owens' performances over the entire duration of the campaign were exemplary. The former Liverpool youngster provided attacking quality and defensive solidity on the left side of our defence.

DM | Elliot Moss | 18 y/o (16/12/2001) | English
33 Appearances | 6 Goals | 5 Assists | 7.15 Average Rating
Another performing teenager. Moss made the holding midfield position his own with expert defensive displays in big games. His free-kick scoring reputation also made him an invaluable asset to our team. He has an incredibly bright future ahead of him if he keeps up the good work.

MC | Rob Sinclair | 30 y/o (29/08/1989) | English
47 Appearances | 5 Goals | 12 Assists | 7.14 Average Rating
Confident, composed, reliable. Sinclair was the heartbeat of our midfield, once again, and his contribution to all facets of our game has made him rise to icon status for the club. An incredible player. A true hero.

MC | Josh Ashby | 24 y/o (03/05/1996) | English
37 Appearances | 11 Goals | 6 Assists | 7.20 Average Rating
Despite enduring a campaign blighted by injuries and a contractual nightmare, Ashby produced the goods when he was on the pitch. The captain's highlights will be two goal of the season contenders in the final of the FA Trophy, as lifted that and the National League for his side.

AMR | Nosa Iyamu | 20 y/o (28/10/1998) | Nigerian
54 Appearances | 12 Goals | 6 Assists | 6.87 Average Rating
Bright, lively and creative, Iyamu had another good season in the blue and white of Oxford City. He wasn't a standout player, by any means, but he offered great creativity in moments when we needed it. He'll never forget his goal against Liverpool either.

AML | Ryan Longman | 19 y/o (06/11/2000) | English
47 Appearances | 13 Goals | 13 Assists | 7.03 Average Rating
Another teenage star for the club. Longman was made to relearn how he played football, moving from being a natural striker to being a wide attacker. It was a tough transition for him but he started to produce the goods with Anthony Martial-like goals and assists from wide left. He has a bright future.

ST | Kabongo Tshimanga | 23 y/o (10/08/1996) | English
55 Appearances | 29 Goals | 6 Assists | 7.06 Average Rating
The mighty Kabongo. Not as many goals as last season but he scored more than enough for us to secure another trophy double. He'll go down as an Oxford City legend. Currently on 75 goals for the club, could he hit the 100 mark next season?

Comment Section

Griffo & ScottT, thank you. As always, our objective will be to win each individual game and we'll see where that gets us at the end of the season.

Previous Update: #79 - National League 2019/2020 Awards
Next Update: #81 - Season 2019/2020: Season Review
It seems everyone had a strong season. There are areas for improvement, but with that said, there are areas that have existing quality that I could see step up to the mark in the Football League. Whatever decision Ryan makes, I am confident it will be the right one.
I feel like your comment to our posts was you just pressing an option in a press conference.. Way to phone it in!
Great to see the goals have been shared out of late!
Always liked Josh Ashby in my Oxford save. You seem to be getting the best out of him. Which is sort of the point :D
Well I've just spent about an hour reading this story from start to finish. Absolutely superb and I'll contribute from now on. Being a non league football fan (Stalybridge Celtic - Evostik Premier but founding members of the Conference North) I love seeing the trials and tribulations not associated with bigger teams.
I cannot believe you drew your neighbours in the cup. What about that 5-5 eh?!

The way it's all laid out is great and I've watched your highlights clips too so don't think they are wasted, I enjoy watching them.
Quick request? Any chance you could insert an attendance column when you post the months results? Us FM fans are crazy folk!
Anyway, keep up the good work and if you can tell me how Stalybridge are getting on, I'd appreciate it!
Absolutely superb. Some of the graphics you use are simply stunning. I could only wish to find the time to replicate something of this level.
Justice's avatar Group Justice
5 yearsEdited

Season 2019/2020: Season Review

A Review Of Oxford City Football Club In Season 2019/2020

Ryan Ferguson: We produced a marvelous second season under my reign. Another trophy double, another promotion, and we had become professional. With another stadium expansion underway, we were heading into the EFL with our heads held high. Let's have a look at how the season went.


Oxford City Signed A Number Of Players In A Busy Year Of Transfers

After a whole season of my management, we had built up a strong financial base to really start working in the transfer market with. We signed many players and cleared out a lot of the deadwood from the football club.

The major signings were Charlie Clough (DC), Kgosi Ntlhe (DL), Nathan Ferguson (MC) and Ryan Longman (AML/ST). They all performed very well over the season and will certainly be a key part of the club in the future. Other signings included young goalkeeper Ryan Dickerson, striker Adam Coombes, winger Jordan Wright and plenty of midfielders, such as Ben Rowthorn, Ben Chapman and Jacob Pemberton.

The departures didn't offer much in terms of interest. Ben Rowthorn left for quite a bit of money in the same season he joined. He was toxic. He didn't play well and he trained worse. I was happy to make a significant profit on his departure.

National League

Oxford City Remained Unbeaten Until February

We were magnificent for most of the season. We were relentless in our preparation and I demanded the highest level of performance from my players at all times, while rewarding them when they performed well. It was a bit of using both the carrot and the stick to motivate them, which worked excellently.

The results began to dwindle in February, which was no coincidence. The players had become extremely tired from a long and tough season and it became a matter of surviving the remaining fixtures, which we did quite well.

League Table

Oxford City Topped The Table By 14 Points

The title race was actually quite close until the final few months. We weren't the only team to suffer a major blowout but we survived it the best. We recorded the best goal scoring record and the second best defensive recorded as we blitzed our way to another league title. Bromley would join us in EFL League Two next season.

Oxford City Won The National League

h3] FA Cup[/h3]

Oxford City Reached The Fifth Round Of The FA Cup

Our success in the league and FA Trophy may be overlooked by our run in the FA Cup. We defeated a number of high profile teams to reach the fifth round of the competition, where it took the mighty Liverpool to overcome us.

Our FA Cup campaign began with a qualifying round victory over Bognor Regis Town. We followed this up with a narrow win over Wycombe Wanderers in the First Round. The Second Round brought with it a tie against Oxford United, our cross-city rivals. A thrilling 5-5 draw was played out before we won the replay in a narrow penalty shootout.

Up next came Championship side Wigan but we dominated the game against them to claim a shock win. Defeating Colchester in the Fourth Round pitted us against Liverpool in the Fifth. They pumped us, in truth, as they scored five goals to send us packing.

Arsenal Won The FA Cup

FA Trophy

Oxford City Won A Second Consecutive FA Trophy

We did the double when we lifted the FA Trophy. We were made to battle in some games, requiring extra time against Maidstone United and a replay against Woking, to reach the final where Dover then made us work some more. An extra time victory sealed the trophy win.

Oxford City Won The FA Trophy

Comment Section

ScottT, I'll endeavour to improve the squad accordingly ;)
Griffo, I do not wish to answer that question.
mgriffin2012, indeed they have!
tenthreeleader, he's a monster in midfield!
CarlosEsDios, I'm delighted you have enjoyed the ride so far! Unfortunately I cannot see myself having the luxury of time to add much more detail in the posts, sorry.
JohnWarrington, thank you! It has taken years of practice to develop a graphic-making skill I'm satisfied with

Previous Update: #80 - Oxford City 2019/2020 Best Players
Next Update: #82 - Season 2020/2021: Kit Reveal
AT FUCKING LAST. Can't believe it's taken you more than a month to finally reach the Football League. Also, as a side note: Please keep Kabongo until the day you die.
As Jack said, it's good to FINALLY see an update! A great season review to remind us of the fantastic season you had is a nice way to get the ball rolling again. Beautiful stuff.

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