Home > Football, Previous clubs > My time at Notts County..Part 1 The last new challenge.

My time at Notts County..Part 1 The last new challenge.

 

 find-me-a-gift Over 2000 Gifts and Gadgets

Towards the end of the 2008-0 season  was a very nervous time for me. I was out of contract at Lincoln City,  was 33 and really not sure what the future held. Peter Jackson, the current Lincoln City manager  was recovering from his cancer treatment which meant that there would be no decisions made to any of the out of contract players at Sincil Bank until after the season had finished.

I was one of the fortunate ones to be offered a contract. To be honest there were a few scenarios that could have occurred. I could have been released, offered a contract on significantly less money or offered a contract on the same terms. There was little chance of a pay rise seeing as though I was 33. So the outcome was as good as could be expected, a 1 year offer on the same terms. I was very happy with that although there were a couple of other stipulations relating to my off the field activities. I was running a soccer academy at the time and Lincoln City were concerned that there was a conflict of interest between my academy and the club, who have their own coaching  . It was a shame but it forced my hand a little bit. The dilemma I faced was to play for Lincoln City under restrictions or move under no restrictions. I was 33 and knew that there were not too many years in the tank remaining so I had to choose for the sake of my future.

Ian McParland rang me in the summer and was very keen to sign me once I had met him face to face. He didn’t want a repeat of the previous season where Notts County were close to relegation. I agreed the deal within a few days and was looking forward to my new start. I travelled in with Richard Butcher Paul Mayo and Kevin Pilkington from Lincoln which certainly helped. I thought it would only take an hour or so but the traffic between Nottingham and Lincoln was a nightmare in the mornings so I had to give myself a good two hours or more.

I liked the odd prank so I if one of the other lads in the car ever fell asleep I would slam on the brakes to scare them. One day we got Richard Butcher on my phone. It’s only a 4 second clip but it used to liven the journey up

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIngqxMO9ro

There were a few new faces as well as some established names who were already there. I was very confident that we would have a good season. We had some very good footballers who had been successful in higher divisions. Pre-season went well. We had a trip to Austria which was not your average lower league tour. It was at a very plush training camp in the mountains and the facilities were excellent. The training was good and we had a couple of good matches out there. A few beers on the last night to finish off an effective few days. Still, I never enjoyed pre-season trips away too much and this was none was no different. I just liked my home comforts too much during pre-season but this was as good as any.

As I always felt when I joined a new club, there was much expected of me. I had had a very successful goal scoring record at Lincoln City. Notts County had missed a goal scorer in previous seasons so I was to be one of the missing pieces of the jigsaw. Notts County fans were hopeful of a good season, just as everybody is at the beginning. The club had changed the seating at Meadow Lane and everybody was expecting a better atmosphere than what had gone before. As an away player I always enjoyed playing at Meadow Lane. It is a magnificent stadium and had more memorable days playing there as an away player than as a Notts County player.

The season began with a tough match away at Bradford City. We played OK but were well beaten.  We were 2-0 down. Richard Butcher pulled one back late on but there was not enough time left to equalise. That was to be the story of our season too many times though. We played OK in a lot of games throughout that season.

 

find-me-a-gift Over 2000 Gifts and Gadgets

 

 

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