Welcome back Warno-brothers! Our Kidderminster side have crawled into second place, and have 10 games to catch leaders Watford and haul in the six points needed. Alternatively, we have a five point cushion to hold off the chasing pack!
You may remember I was tinkering with tactics last time out… Freddy Leon is currently up front on his own, supported by Robbie Savage on the right. It’s unconventional, but has so far been effective!
At the end of the last episode Freddy Leon managed a ‘triple-double’, by scoring twice three games running. He starts this episode with a hattrick against Chester to take his tally to 9 goals in 4 games. 🧨
The lads then hit Hull for five – this time Savage getting a double. They’re really enjoying the creative freedom here!
Swindon are next, and Freddy continues his scoring run. There was a lot of action from 20-21 minutes it seemed.. we manage to secure a solid 4-1 win and keep the run of form going.
31st March 2000 marks deadline day. I ignore a flurry of offers for our starlets McClair junior [Wilkins], McGrath junior [McAteer] and Laughlan. I would normally consider them got longterm gain/planning but we’re on season 2 all or bust so I keep them.
I do, however, sign a back up center half on loan [Arsenal’s Matthew Wicks], sign young Argentine Esteban Cambiasso from Real Madrid as a holding midfield option, and raid Blackburn once again, this time splashing £1.3m on an unnecessary back-up to Our Fred.
This is the squad to take us through the close-season. A few ‘fgn’ players in there – that I don’t need to worry over (as I’ll be offski at the end of the season).
We lose our first game in what seems like forever at Crewe. With the game poised at 3-3 our striking marvel Freddy misses a chance from the penalty spot… Crewe score on 70 minutes, and as I got all-out attacking for the final 10 mins, we concede again.
We bring up 40 games, and despite our great form – Watford manage to pull a further point clear of us! Unbelievable, Jeff!
Despite the need for points, we fall 1-0 to Grimsby at Aggborough. Grimsby, occupying 8th, managed to do the double over us this season, without us scoring a goal. Grim indeed.
We get back on track – and back on the Orient Express – with a win at Brisbane Road. Ole, playing in behind Fred gets us underway with Robbie Savage settling the win.
The win means we cannot fall below sixth, though remain 7 points adrift of Watford with four games to play.
Back at Aggborough, Fred and Ole combine again to see off Wycombe and edge us closer to automatic promotion.
Bradford try to derail the party with a hard-fought win at Vally Parade. Watford are confirmed as Champions, as they go 10 points clear with 2 games to play.
Results elsewhere mean that we cannot be caught, and have secured a double promotion!
The lads are in a party mood against Oldham. The 6000 fans in attendance won’t mind seeing ten goals fly in, with our lads scoring six.
Freddy Leon enters the record books after scoring 23 goals. Not bad for a player who joined mid-way through the season!
Ole is at the double as Bristol Rovers are swept aside. It’s good the lads keep going despite nothing further to play for.
Here’s the final league table – Watford ran away with it in truth. We did will to pick up some form in the middle-third of the season and put us in a good place to challenge for promotion.
With that, the 1999-2000 season draws to a close, and part two of our Warnock challenge #completed.
Join us next time as we leave Kidderminster behind to rejoin Division 2, and our next adventure. I’ve no idea yet where that’ll be! I’ll leave you with the end-of-season stats.
Pick of the players, of course, our Fred.
Ole made an impact since joining scoring six in seven.
Fred leads the way in the average ratings. Brad Friedel certainly showed his safe hands when arriving.
Goals. Goals. Goals.
Arrows. McClair junior led the way.
Final screenshot is my managers’ player of the year, and our consistent performer, Nick Barmby. Barmby played in 53 of the 56 this season. Whether up front, AMC or even left winger cutting in, Barmby did a shift and helped chip in with 19 goals and 15 assists. A bargain free transfer signing – and zero interest from bigger clubs!
Until next time, Colin!