Well, our pleading has been in vain. I think every single Notts County fan in the world wanted to see Steve Cotterill sign on the dotted line and lead us into the new season. I know I did. However, it clearly was not meant to be.

Now I can understand Cotterill wanting a little time to make his mind up. Indeed, he’d been out of the game for a little while before he got the Notts job, which clearly put his name back on the map. It is a testament to just how well he has done since returning to the game that so many clubs were apparently interested in his services. However, I can’t help but feel a little ‘strung along’ by his antics the last couple of weeks.

By constantly requesting ‘more time’ from Mr Trew and co, it seems like Cotterill was trying to give himself a back up in case the Portsmouth job did not come his way, but that is very disappointing. Let’s be honest here, I was desperate for him to stay, absolutely desperate. However, I was getting sick of him stalling, so in the end I’m glad Mr Trew made the decision for him.

Now we have to wonder who is lined up as a replacement. I’m certain that the club have not been sat on their hands for the last few weeks, and the longer Cotterill has played for time, the more this day will have been expected. Now who do I want for manager? I’ve heard several names mentioned. Indeed, the main one I’ve heard is Paul Ince, who wouldn’t be a terrible appointment.

However, there are many others out there. Alan Curbishley is still out of work. Alan Pardew is rumoured to be on a tightrope down at Southampton, and Chris Coleman is currently out of work, too. As much as I’m surprised at myself saying this, even Tony Mowbray would be interesting. There are many good quality managers out there and I’m confident that whoever Ray Trew appoints will be a success.

Just please don’t let that appointment be John Barnes.

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Please don’t go!

May 23, 2010

Well, there’s not too much I can say about Notts right now, so this will be a short post. I’m sure I’m not alone with my fingers and toes crossed in hope that Steve Cotterill signs on the dotted line.

The man who guided Notts to the League Two title was linked to Coventry before they appointed Aidy Boothroyd, and has now been lined up by both Plymouth and Portsmouth, if the papers are to believed. Now, I know Portsmouth will be in the Championship next year, which might appeal to him, but a move to Plymouth will be a strange one. They have been relegated to League One, and have a major rebuilding project on their hands.

Still, eventually it is Cotterill’s choice. We knew it was a short term deal when he came in, but it would seem Ray Trew has offered him a decent contract and an ambitious budget for the new year. I’m desperate for him to take it.

In other Notts news, the players released a couple of weeks back didn’t contain any major shocks, although it was disappointing to lose Delroy Facey (yes Notts fans, I actually mean it!) I do hope that the manager situation is sorted by this time next week so we can get about building up our squad. Fingers crossed for some more exciting signings if Mr Trew’s vision of another promotion is to come true.

Either way, my season ticket has been ordered, so roll on August!

An update

April 14, 2010

Once again, please accept my apologies for the delay in posting. I’d like to say that the major reason was due to work commitments, but if I did I’d be lying. Other than a few games worth of commentary, I haven’t really got an excuse other than my addiction to Football Manager 2010 (but don’t tell the wife!)

So a lot has happened since I last posted, at both Celtic Park and Meadow Lane. Since I’m feeling optimistic today, I’ll start with Notts.

Steve Cotterill’s appointment has quite simply been inspired. The side seem to be much more secure at the back, and have only conceded in two of his games (Bournemouth and Lincoln) and have scored 24 goals. After a long, controversial and emotionally draining season, promotion is all but assured. Good times.

Now, we have to hope that the players can keep the run going and secure the championship, although if I’m honest that’s just a bonus as far as I’m concerned. Promotion was the only thing that really mattered. However, I’m sure we would all be disappointed if we missed out on the trophy after coming so far.

My eyes are already drifting towards the Summer, where I’m certain we will see the new chairman look to address the club’s bank balance. The sale of Kasper Schmeichel will go a long way towards this, as will getting his £18k a week off the wage bill. That being said, I am pleased with the news that both Hughes and Davies will be staying at Meadow Lane. I’m also certain Steve Cotterill will have his eyes on several targets once the embargo has been lifted, so overall I think we’re in for an exciting few months, before we even consider the World Cup!

All I will say is that if my contact near to the chairman is to be believed, we may see a couple of ‘ambitious’ summer signings. Anyway, I’ll worry about that in a few weeks, as we have a party to enjoy first.

As always, I will see you on the Kop.

Again, apologies for the delay on this post. My time last week was spent researching for my Asian Champions League commentary, and although I was following the Notts news closely, I never quite got a chance to blog on it.

Like most Notts fans, I was absolutely delighted by the news that we have avoided administration. Even though I have a contact close to Trew, when the news broke we were as much as £6m in debt I was fearing the worst. However, last week’s news really did bring a smile to my face, and I was also greatly heartened by the appointment of Steve Cotterill. Although Cotterill has been out of the game for a couple of years, he has pedigree at this level, having earned promotion with Cheltenham, and already I’ve been impressed by his enthusiasm.

The best thing about this appointment is that it allows Dave Kevan to go back to his number two role, something he was adamant he wanted to do, and also provides the squad with a real lift. The effects of this lift were there to see for us on Saturday, and the 5-0 victory over Hereford was greatly deserved.

Even without Hughes we never looked in danger of getting beaten, and this spirit should galvanise us for the rest of the season. It is of great credit to the players and the coaching staff that Notts are in the position we are despite the troubles of the season, and now I am extremely hopeful that Cotterill will see us over the finish line.

With up to five games in hand on some of the clubs around us, plus most of the sides around us still to come to Meadow Lane (Rochdale, Bournemouth, Bury, Rotherham and Chesterfield are the ones that stand out) we’ve got a hell of a chance at automatic promotion.

I’m also going to take this opportunity to talk again about Ray Trew. Despite a few ridiculous comments I’ve read on the Nottingham Evening Post site, I feel Trew deserves real credit for his stance. His actions not only benefit the club on the pitch as we don’t lose the 10 points, but they benefit the businesses who have supported us in the past.

I’m personally pleased that a deal with the rugby club has been reached, despite the potential damage to our pitch, too. The last thing I wanted were for the actions of Notts to kill off Nottingham Rugby Club, so the news that the Green and Whites will share Meadow Lane is good news all round. Not only does it settle one of Notts’ many debts, but it also allows the rugby club to build for the future.

I also read a few comments criticising the fact we will undoubtedly sell off some of the top-earners in the Summer, in particularly Kasper Schmeichel. Depending on what paper you read, Kasper is on up to £18k a week, and despite how disappointed we will be to lose him, that his just not sustainable at League 2, or even League 1 level. Indeed, £18k is probably the entire wage-budget at many clubs in this division, so to spend it one player is quite simply frightening.

I’d suggest we just enjoy having him at the club until the summer, hopefully thank him for his part in achieving promotion, and then wish him all the best for the rest of his career.

However, fingers crossed that Cotterill will be able to keep the likes of Hughes and Davies with promotion, and the promise of stability. But I’m not going to get ahead of myself, we have to win promotion first. Instead, I’d like to wish Cotterill all the best in his new job, and get right behind the boys.

Hopefully, we can roar the team up the league, starting against Macclesfield tomorrow night. Once again, I’ll see you on the Kop.