Home > Football, Previous clubs > My time at Northampton Town…Part 3 Dipping form and nearly sold

My time at Northampton Town…Part 3 Dipping form and nearly sold

 

 

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

As the season progressed it became evident that the club were having some financial problems. They had stretched themselves with the recent signings after winning promotion and the collapse of ITV Digital was hitting all clubs hard.

The form of the team was alarming to say the least. A promising start ended up by us looking over our shoulders at the wrong end of the table. My own goal scoring form deteriorated. The first half of the season saw me scoring freely but after Christmas was a stark contrast. I am not sure if the clubs form was due to my lack of goals or my lack of goals was because of the team’s poor form. Probably a bit of both.

On the whole though my season personally was a success. This brought about interest from a few clubs. I had heard that Hibs were watching me, as well as Wigan Athletic and also Millwall. Millwall were in our division that seaon but were on the verge of promotion.

Deadline week in March saw them try to sign me on a permanent basis. There was a lot going on which I didn’t find out about. It turned out that they offered £325,000. A lot of money considering they paid a club record £150,000 for me less than a year ago. They said that they valued me at £1 million. I had had a good season but that valuation was ridiculous. I thought at one stage that it would be accepted but Kevin Wilson really dug his heels in. He told me that he would have been sacked if he would have allowed me to go. He thought that the fans would have turned on him if I had been allowed to leave.  A very selfish point of view in my opinion.  It would have given me the opportunity to play in a higher league but it didn’t happen. During the same week Steve Howard went to Luton Town. The club didn’t want to lose both of us on the same day and his contract was due to expire that summer so they would maybe have lost him anyway so in the end they received £50,000 for him. It doesn’t seem much now considering the career he has had but they could have lost him for nothing.

As the season finished I had a few issues to contend with off the pitch. My wife was pregnant with our second child and she had to spend the last 12 weeks of her pregnancy in hospital full time. Although most of that time was during the close season we did begin pre-season training for the following season while she was still in hospital. There were quite a few complications so it was a tough time. The pre-season tour was over in Dublin as it was the previous year. I needed to come back a couple of days earlier than the rest of the squad as my second child Frankie was due to be born by caesarean section. He was to be 4 weeks premature which required him to begin life in the special baby unit.

A week before the season was to begin I was told that Wycombe Wanderers had offered £200,000 for me. It would have been their club record transfer so a big move on their part. Only four or five months after the club had turned down £325,000 for me they accepted £200,000 from Wycombe. It was all down to the finances at the club. They couldn’t wait to get me out. It was incredible.

I went for talks with Lawrie Sanchez who was their manager at the time. Most of the meeting was about him and how good he was as a player and about how good a manager he was. He didn’t really convince me that I should sign there to be honest. He also asked me to take a wage cut from my Northampton Town salary. He asked me to make a football decision and he argued that Wycombe were a bigger club than Wycombe.  All in all it wasn’t right so I turned it down.

That season started off poorly and Kevin Wilson left the club. I was pleased when Kevan Broadhurst was brought back in. There were rumours that he came back because he was still on the payroll following his exit as assistant and the club couldn’t afford another wage. We were in a relegation battle at the time and looked like we were destined to drop down to the basement division.

I had been playing poorly up to that point under Kevin Wilson. Broads came in and gave everybody a kick up the backside.  My form returned and we began to string a few positive results together.

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

 

This blog is kindly sponsored by ASDA who have an electronics sale on at present

 

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