Welcome back to life in the South West under the leadership of Niall Warnock. We’re in Season 8!
“I’ve decided to have a rest. A bit of rest. Do a bit of shopping as you do. I’ll take the dogs walking. I’ve been on my bike. An electric bike by the way.” Neil Warnock was happy to have an enforced break.
It’s been a few months since Dave put us all on hold for the World Cup. [What a Final BTW!]. If you can’t remember what this World According to Warnock serial feature is all about you are welcome to start from the beginning;
Oh, too lazy for that? Sure. In summary, I’m Neil Warnock’s kid brother, Niall, and am trying to emulate his longevity over the course of the 9798 30 season cycle. Here are the challenges –
- Win double promotion from Division 3 to Division 1 with the newly promoted team (replicating Warnock’s success with Notts County from 1989-1991). Complete.
- Get promoted again from Division 2 with a new team. (As per Huddersfield 1995). Complete.
- Drop back to Division 3 and get promoted with an unfancied team (See Plymouth Argyle 1996). Complete.
- Get three teams promoted to the Premier league (as per Sheffield United 2006, QPR 2011 and Cardiff 2018). Ongoing.
- Take over a Division 1 team at the foot of the table post-Christmas and perform a Houdini escape act (See Rotherham 2016)
- Manage a total of 1603 games in 29 in-game seasons.
- Sign same player for 5 different clubs (like Paddy Kenny).
I made an excel spreadsheet to track the various scenarios and achievements.
Where you join us, in Season 8, is with Niall Warnock at Plymouth Argyle about to embark on a promotion challenge in Division 1. Let’s Go!
First order of business is to remove as many ‘big club’ release clauses as possible; All my regens and starting players agree to improved terms and all forego the clause. Beautiful! Daniel Valentine is the twinkle-toed Strictly disaster Tony Adams and Ali Bull is the gilet-wearing Tim Sherwood.
I forgot to screenshot a squad list, but here’s the line up for our first league game of the season against Coventry. So far as regens; Nagbe is George Weah, Wilkins is Brian McClare, McClare is Gazza, Warnock is Craig Short, Wilding is Razor Ruddock and the others are a mystery!
Andy Cole is strutting his stuff at Highfield road and puts us to the sword. Despite having ten players for most of the second half, we cannot equalize so lost 1-0.
We welcome an old friend to Home Park after the game. Tony Cascarino (same name, no relation) did well for me at Kidderminster, though failed to get game time after I packed my bags for Forest. He’ll slot in in the midfield right position.
League Cup time and a tight game a Stockport is safely navigated.
We add a 9798 legend to the roster after seeing him unused on the bench for our game. Coventry’s loss is sure to be our gain!
We get off the mark in the league against an old foe, Oldham.
We qualify for second round of the League Cup despite a missed Weah penalty.
Nicolas Anelka finally breaks his Argyle duck with a double against Port Vale. Argyle favorite Geroge Ndah is dropped to the bench and may not be back in right away…
Nagbe scores and misses a penalty against Palace. I think we should change taker…
Wimbledon splash £1.4m on central defender Regis Warnock – which is no loss as Rob Page is now available for cover. Against Ipswich Riccy Schimeca started algonside Tony ‘Valentine’ Adams and lasted 44 minutes. We grind out a 1-0 win.
No idea how Spurs ended up in Division 1. It’s a third clean sheet in a row.
Villa fans rejoice as the Blue-noses are stopped with a last-minute winner at St. Andrews. Central midfielder Paul Lynch is repaying the faith after time out on loan last season.
Sheffield United are the next ex-Premier League club to come to Home Park and leave empty handed, Nagbe the match winner once again.
The win puts us top after 8 games.
A fast start against bottom-half Colchester is undone by sloppy defending and a lackluster attacking display. It’s not the ideal time to lose our discipline.
Back in the League Cup, two own goals gift us a win after falling behind at Peterborough. We’re in a strong position for the return leg at Posh stadium, London Road. Thankfully.
The update below is for @mattcwills – you’re welcome.
Tenth-placed Crewe show they are no push-overs as we have a mini-wobble in the league failing to win for the second week. Le Sulk though is finally starting to show his pedigree.
That brings up our 10th League game, and the search for a George Ndah goal will have to continue into another episode. Stoke City assert themselves at the top of the league after our dip in recent form.
Next week will be a bumper-episode as we play through 20 league games and continue our League Cup run. Until next time.