15 years ago
1 day ago

Almost five years to the day I began the ambitious journey known as ‘Climbing Jacob’s Ladder (Part Deux) in attempts to work my way through the lowest and most obscure Europe nations all the way to the greatest of great powers. Over half a century of thrills & spills, glories & relegations, cinderella stories and ravenous rivalries til the very end. While it has been one of my most successive and engaging stories I’ve produced for Sortitoutsi, there were times where the story became exhaustive and content grew stale – we would have never envisaged the world as it is now in 2021. As time progresses, we long for something newer, fresher and more inticing.

The third chapter is set to be written.

You can read through my previous Climbing Jacob’s Ladder (Part Deux) here: https://sortitoutsi.net/content/30294/climbing-jacobs-ladder-part-deux

Just as the British Empire conquered the four corners of the world, I attempt to conquer the English pyramid with my depleted skillset, rising through the ranks from grassroots to moneyballing across ten tiers, fifty-two divisions, fourty-eight ceremonial counties.

What’s on offer?


Premier League


EFL Championship


EFL League One


EFL League Two

TIER 5 (Non-league Step 1):

Vanarama National League

TIER 6 (Non-league Step 2):

Vanarama National League North
Vanarama National League South

TIER 7 (Non-league Step 3):

Northern Premier League Premier Division
Southern League Central Division
Southern League South Division
Isthmian League Premier Division

TIER 8 (Non-league Step 4):

Northern Premier League Division One East
Northern Premier League Division One Midlands
Northern Premier League Division One West
Southern League Division One Central
Southern League Division One South
Isthmian League Division One South Central
Isthmian League Division One North
Isthmian League Division One South East

TIER 9 (Non-league Step 5):

Combined Counties League Premier Division North
Combined Counties League Premier Division South
Eastern Counties League Premier Division
Essex Senior League
Hellenic League Premier Division
Midland League Premier Division
North West Counties League Premier Division
Northern Counties East League Premier Division
Northern League Division One
Southern Combination League Premier Division
Southern Counties East League Premier Division
Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division
United Counties League Premier Division North
United Counties League Premier Division South
Wessex League Premier Division
Western League Premier Division

TIER 10: (Non-league Step 6)

Combined Counties League Division One
Eastern Counties League Division One North
Eastern Counties League Division One South
Hellenic League Division One
Midland League Division One
North West Counties League Division One North
North West Counties League Division One South
Northern Counties East League Division One
Northern League Division Two
South West Peninsula League Premier Division East
South West Peninsula League Premier Division West
Southern Combination League Division One
Southern Counties East League Division One
Spartan South Midlands League Division One
United Counties League Division One
Wessex League Division One
Western League Division One


FA Cup
Community Shield
FA Trophy
FA Vase


Isthmian League Cup
Northern Premier League Challenge Cup
Southern League Cup
Combined Counties League Cup
Eastern Counties League Cup
Essex Senior League Cup
Hellenic League Cup
Midland League Cup
North West Counties League Cup
Northern Counties East League Cup
Northern League Cup
Southern Combination League Cup
Southern Counties East League Cup
Spartan South Midlands League Cup
United Counties League Cup
Wessex League Cup
Western League Cup
South West Peninsula League Cup

Ceremonial Counties List:

City of London
County Durham
East Riding of Yorkshire
East Sussex
Greater London
Greater Manchester
Isle of Wight
North Yorkshire
South Yorkshire
Tyne and Wear
West Midlands
West Sussex
West Yorkshire
Isle of Man *
Channel Islands (Guernsey, Jersey) *

* - not official ceremonial counties but have clubs within the English domestic football league pyramid.

Rules for this challenge:

- Must start at a club in the tenth tier of English pyramid.

- You cannot manage in the next tier until a minimum of half the leagues (or subsequent county cups available) have been won (e.g. you must win 10 out of 20 leagues in tier 10 before proceeding to tier 9).

- Must win an honour with a club located in each ceremonial county (including Isle of Man, Channel Islands).

- All national domestic cups must be won at least once in the career (FA Cup, EFL Cup, Community Shield, EFL Trophy, FA Trophy, FA Vase).

- Regional domestic cups are optional but qualify as an honour to move up to next tier.

- Can only move to a club located in the same county as current club or in a county that shares a border (exceptions to this are Isle of Man, Channel Islands).

- Cannot manage a team listed as preseason favourites.

This will be an insanely difficult challenge to complete, but is one I’m willing to pursue for years to come. There’ll no doubt be major obstacles to overcome.

Credits must go to ‘lionel messi’ from the SI forums who put in an amazing amount of effort into providing this Level 10 database for said challenge.

Make sure you support him here where you’ll also find the download of the database: https://community.sigames.com/forums/topic/559279-fm22-england-down-to-level-10-now-available-for-download/

So, let’s start at the beginning shall we?

A team full of either semi-pros who had trials at West Ham (supposedly), or in most cases amateurs rounded up from the local five-a-side astroturfs. Training under the floodflights on cold Tuesday nights.

The piss soaked, delapatated away dressing rooms full of broken tiles and no hot water for the showers.

The deluged, mudbathed or rock-hard frozen pitches during the winter periods.

The season ticket holders and the local characters, knowing each on a first name basis; travelling to each outing with their soft caps full of pinned crests, a can of Carlsberg in one hand, a lukewarm steak & kidney pie in the other shouting “you’re f***** s***” when the opposition lump a ball into the car park.

The unbelievable sitters squandered, the outrageous screamers, the crunching slide tackles, the two footers, the half time Jaffa cakes.

We wouldn’t have it any other way. Never forget where you came from.

This is the final chapter of Climbing Jacob’s Ladder.
9 years ago
11 hours ago
12 years ago
1 month ago
15 years ago
1 day ago
First post has been updated. First update soon to come!
14 years ago
18 hours ago

Absolutely insane challenge ahead! Love reading your stories, and they inspire me massively! Let's get on with it!!

15 years ago
1 day ago
By tongey 19 December 2021 - 13:55 PM UTC

Absolutely insane challenge ahead! Love reading your stories, and they inspire me massively! Let's get on with it!!

Cheers bud, hopefully it can take off the ground like my previous story!

The First Job:


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Trefew Park (Capacity: 1000)
Media Prediction (Odds): 3rd/18 (25-1)
Expectations: Challenge for top three


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Pennygillam (Capacity: 1000)
Media Prediction (Odds): 6th/18 (33-1)
Expectations: Top three finish


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Penlee Park (Capacity: 5000)
Media Prediction (Odds): 5th/18 (33-1)
Expectations: Midtable finish


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Gala Parc (Capacity: 1500)
Media Prediction (Odds): 15th/18 (50-1)
Expectations: Midtable finish


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Poltair Park (Capacity: 6000)
Media Prediction (Odds): 17th/18 (50-1)
Expectations: Midtable finish


County: Cornwall
Division: South West Peninsula League Premier Division West (10th Tier)
Stadium: Bodieve Park (Capacity: 1500)
Media Prediction (Odds): 13th/18 (33-1)
Expectations: Midtable finish




Two offers on the table to consider, one's expectations greater than the other yet tendered with the same odds by the bookies. Both at amateur level with squads lacking senior numbers, although that is to be regular at this level. A lot to ponder heading into the first season.
15 years ago
1 day ago




Nickname(s): The Magpies
Founded: 1888
Club colours: Black & white stripes
Stadium: Penlee Park (capacity: 1,100 – 550 seated)

Ahoy there! The first stop of many scattered around the length and breadth of England takes us to the town famous for pirates and uh..*checks notes*..more pirates. Tucked away secretively along the most south-western arm of the nation, Penzance AFC are one of the older clubs at a lower league standard. Established in 1888, the same year of the formation of the Football League, this Cornwall based amateur team helped pave the way for recognition of a footballing association in the county and a founding member of the South Western League.


The Magpies flew highest between 1955 and 1957, securing back to back SWL titles and again in 1975 pipping Saltash United by a single point. Recent success came in the form of winning the newly formed South West Peninsula Division One West division, gaining promotion to the 9th tier for the first time in 2009...only to be relegated four years later, securing 2 points and conceding an eye-watering 166 goals in the process.



Penlee Park is Penzance’s fortress and one of the more ‘picturesque’ stadiums down at this level. Info may have been exaggerated in the previous post about their capacity - which is now believed to be 1100 with one stand seating 550. Opened in 1952 by the former referee Sir Stanley Rous it welcomed an exhibition game between them and Luton Town. Stadium also accomodated its biggest attendance of 7,000 as West Ham took on Swansea - not to mention special outings with both Liverpool and Celtic in 1988 to celebrate 100 years of Penzance AFC’s existence, both ending in 6-0 defeats.

Fun fact about Penlee Park; Penzance were one of several teams refused into any FA competitions in 2012 due to the lack of toilet facilities in home/away dressing rooms and the referee room. Thankfully this was addressed with haste.

Penlee Park also featured in an article titled 20 Glorious Non-League Grounds posted by 'The Itinerant Football Watcher' aka Peter Miles which you can find here: https://peterrmiles.wordpress.com/2013/01/11/20-glorious-non-league-grounds/




Understandably the chairperson doesn't consider me a miracle worker given my skillsets, or lack thereof. Going in blind on basing off the bookiematics, mid to top half finish is well within our sights. Would it be fair to say we have no chance in challenging Bodmin Town, one of only a handful of sides who can offer wage packages to former forgotten football leaguers? FA Vase I'm hoping can rake in a bit of dough, if all else fails the South West Peninsula League Cup might be the only way to go.



With the lack of an assistant manager, I've to go purely on instinctive evaluations of what level this squad is like compared to others. Spoilers, they're not the most gifted bunch I've inherited. With help of the key player widget on the club overview, I can narrow it down to our goalkeeper.

KEY PLAYER: Glenn Davies (GK)


Tall presence to win the aerial battles from corners, relatively agile and solid on the reflexes, there are certainly a lot worse players I could pick from. Let's just say I wouldn't favour him in a sprint race - would rather him staying well inside the six yard box.



First few fixtures on paper seem like winnable games however tactics will be tested, tweaked, establishing our best XI - we can consider them throwaways. End of October into November will likely be our rough patch with away trips to Bodmin & Falmouth either side of a home fixture to Launceston (the team I turned down). Not sure what to expect if this experiment will be a success or a complete dud.
14 years ago
18 hours ago

Never thought I'd find myself rooting for the ‘Penzance Pirates’ as they will now be forever known as. Got to have that American flair to the name! 

If all else fails you could have Glen running down that right win and latching onto long balls right? It's a risk, but could reap massive rewards from it? 

Love your little bits of info, and a fantastic write up! Certainly looking forward to this one.

10 years ago
4 hours ago

Glad to see you back bro. Insane challenge, but for me it seems a bit counter productive to win a league in level 10, and gaining promotion, just to go back to level 10 and win another local league. If it was me I'd just say win the cup in the level and promotion clears that level.


Certainly looking forward to seeing how to get on though!

9 years ago
11 hours ago

Should be good.  I always have time for some Pirates!


15 years ago
1 day ago
@tongey - I'd rather Glenn setting down cones than having him run! Thanks again bud, glad you're enjoying the writing style.

@bigmattb28 - I did consider that, however it might make things more interesting and build a portfolio before stepping to Level 9. Thanks for the feedback!

@Skinner_ - Well they're known for pirates but nicknamed the Magpies if you read the description!










To the surprise of nobody, lower league clubs can easily get cleaned out of players on amateur level contracts. Our two starting centre backs Newman & Price were the bigger losses. Ashby & Radcliffe's departures left us without a midfield spinal cord and on top of that divisional rivals. Nicky Scott was a second choice forward so no great loss, while Rowlands caused a right stink due to the lack of gametime so I happily waved him off to Axminister.



Fear not as reinforcements arrived despite the absence of a scouting network, but trusted myself to bring them in on face value or how they performed against us.

Kurtney Austrie - M(C)/AM(C) - free transfer from Dobwalls


Signed moments after our battle with Dobwalls in the league, I was highly impressed with his midfield movement and getting the ball forward. Strong bravery decent flair to help in attacking phases. Eligible for Dominica too, perhaps a call up in the wings if he improves?

Matt Ward - M(C)/AM(C) - free agent


A signing sealed with a chef's kiss. Very exciting prospect who'll undoubtedly give us an elevated creative dimension to our game. Technically very well rounded, excellent mental stats all round for his age at this level. I do fear this will be a short term signing as I'd be shocked if larger stature clubs don't sniff around this season or next.

Tom Potts - D(C)/D(L) - free transfer from St. Blazey


I know nothing jumps off the screen and the fans hammered me on social media for what on paper looks a shambles, but hear me out. With no centre backs I had to rush somebody in, a tall figure with leadership qualities to take the position by the scruff of the neck. Nothing fancy, no bells no whistles, just your average lank to win direct and route one aerials. Tom Potts to me seems like the answer.

Abu Bah - D(LC) - free transfer from St. Dennis


Tit for tat in poaching a player from St. Dennis, another left sided centre back with similar properties as Potts. Slightly better tackling, marking and even heading but will be responsible as the second line behind him if all goes wrong. If lower league football has taught me anything, they'll always float one long so to have two capable CBs to extinguish any long ball threats. Lack of pace does concern me.

Bradley Coutts - D(C) - free transfer from Liskeard Athletic


But if all else fails, we have a third option at centre back who is also tall but physically and technically more potent who can actually play on his right foot. That's our centre back issue sorted, right? RIGHT?


Not quite. My smooth brained self overlooked a basic pitfall. I can already hear the Curb Your Enthusiasm theme tune.





Polar opposite form guides as Camelford came in with a 100% record to our three defeats so we knew the odds were stacked against us. That said we started with confidence and applied early pressure to their goal, Hinkson coming closest with a low shot inches from breaking skin. Cardoso's screamer from the edge of the box undid our solid work to which we caved in ourselves, Alistair Allen doubling the lead towards the end of the half. A fresh perspective failed to turn the tide, Hinkson missed a glorious one on one and conceded a penalty moments after for a third. The ill-disciplined affair wasn't over when Camelford gave away their own penalty to which Euan Liddell made no mistake. The visitors began to crumble as the third pen of the afternoon fell our way again, Scott's spot kick was saved but thankfully Hinkson sunk the rebound. Too little too late, falling to a horrible fourth defeat on the bounce.



With form making a massive U-turn, so did taking massive scalps. I'll admit we were blessed that Reuben Collum's rash red card 50 seconds in left Bodmin extremely rattled and vulnerable, but to take full control of the match without a whisper from the home fans was testament to how well we handled the circumstances. Nothing went right for the overwhelming favourites when they sacrificed a clumsy penalty with Austrie stabbing home. While there were few clear cut chances created, it was all worthwhile when substitute Dave Austin unleashed one of the goals of the season, a goal that would go viral on social media. A stunning goal to cap off a stunning victory.


Without question. (Thanks SI for removing the export highlight feature, I'll have to look into screen capturing).




Don't you just love a last minute winner? League leaders Falmouth only lost once before bursting onto the scene, Kurtney Austrie kept up his strong penalty record after a handball in the box. Harry Pierce somehow couldn't double our lead with his header from three yards denied by the crossbar. Falmouth's pressure would eventually pay off as Andre Whiteman headed in from an inswinging free kick. It only spurred us on to dust ourselves off and fight back, Hinkson latched onto Ward's through ball and beat the offside trap to restore our advantage. The home side delivered another wave of pressure and despite having a goal chalked off for offside, another set piece caught us out with their top scorer Brian Kizza heading in with keeper completely out of position. Settling for a draw would be nice, but retaliating quickly for all three points tasted all the sweeter; straight down the other end with 16 year old midfielder Chris Tyler etching his name in the Penzance record books. Another fantastic win on the road.



Ended the calendar year strongly with a tight win at home to Godolphin Atlantic. Rickson Hinkson started getting more comfortable in front of goal to coolly finish under their keeper in a 1v1, however should have finished more as the game progressed. The visitors were no slouches and Glenn Davies saved us with vital fingertips onto the post from a free kick and save our skin from an equaliser. Instead we made use of the momentum to fire into a two goal lead, Hinkson doing the hard work to set up Matt Ward at the near post for his first Penzance goal. Praise suddenly turned to criticism when Davies ended up spilling the ball to Godolphin who fought back to 2-1. Thankfully it was in vain even with another effort denied by the crossbar, we saw the match out with points intact.





Drawn to a side in the SWPL East equivalent, Ivybridge didn't have too far to travel (86 miles) to Penlee Park but sadly they weren't arriving for a memorable game. Scrappy game, keepers rarely threatened. The goal however was met with excellent technique, Hinkson deftly catching a long through ball off his boot on the volley before the keeper rushed out, off the underside of the bar and in. Second qualifying round locked in.




While we outfoxed them in the league, penalties were our foe as Falmouth advanced to the next round. Pinned down in the first half, we looked helpless with Glenn Davies being our saviour until Bastick deflated us heading into half time. That was until a bolt from the blue as Harry Pierce smashed home a cross from the edge of the box to leave Falmouth on unsteady legs. Typical us we have a habit of giving away soft penalties and with 20 minutes left Falmouth converted to nudge back ahead. On comes debutant Kurtney Austrie for his first whack in a Penzance shirt and made immediate impact with a lovely weighted pass and a fine finish from Hinkson to boot, ensuring a penalty shootout. Hinkson may have goalscoring abilities but his penalty was left bouncing in the car park. On the cusp of heading out Glenn Davies saved Troy French's effort to take the shootout to sudden death, however when it got to the stages of defenders taking spot kicks - it was inevitable Euan Liddell's confidence was low, gave away the penalty and failed to put away his own to crash out.





Attention turns to the SWP League Cup and overcame the first hurdle away to St. Austell, having lost to them in the league revenge was on the cards. Much like the Ivybridge game it was far from a classic, the odd half chance here and there with mostly pot shots forcing keepers into routine saves. The difference was supplied by Brad Prior's curling free kick from the edge of the box, evading Austell's keeper and sending us forward to the second round.




Job done in the second round courtesy of two late goals. Largely in control we struggled to break the door down, Harry Pierce came closest twice but failed to nail the target. With time dissipating we knew it would only take one mistake to unbalance Liskeard's rearguard, and on cue their goalkeeper fluffed a routine aerial catch falling to the feet of Dave Austin whose effort ricocheted off Hinkson who cheekily took the credit. The domino effect took place and Brad Prior's daisy cutter put our minds at ease. Rare chance of silverware first season?



Fate is in hands of Brixham from the Eastern division.



So the save didn't start as anticipated with a trio of defeats in August and quite convincing ones at that, showing little fight in the Newquay, St. Austell and Porthleven games. It was clear that controlling possession in a 4-2-3-1 formation wasn't going to cut it.

Fresh perspective come September; despite losing to Camelford our 'width spreader' philosophy we knew we were onto something, using the pace of our wide players to stretch the opposition and open up the subsequent central areas as buffers. Although it was a penalty that sealed the Dobwalls game, Penryn, Callington and of course Bodmin* fell in the same manner once October hit. The four game winning streak was abruptly ended in shameful circumstances by winless Wendron before concluding the month drawing blanks to Launceston.

November started seeing the best of us; two injury time winners to sink Falmouth and St. Dennis, comfortably seeing off Liskeard betwixt the league cup affair taking us to four straight wins, until St. Blazey quite literally sent us up in flames with a poor home display.

Our players obviously stressed about Christmas shopping during December as we completely took our eye off the ball in the league, having to fight from 2-0 down to rescue a draw with a team named Sticker - which is a new low even for me. Complacency consumed us in the Wadebridge game, switching off in the 88th minute after looking comfortable to drop two more points. The Godolphin win added much needed sheen to leave the year behind on a high.



Falmouth setting a strong pace to give them a headstart over a hiccupping Bodmin Town who as odds on favourites should have trailblazed the league at this stage. We're well out of reach of going up this year, fourteen points to make up doesn't seem feasible unless we have a monstrous 2022. Cup run may have to be the focus.
9 years ago
11 hours ago
By DNZY 09 January 2022 - 22:15 PM UTC 

@Skinner_ - Well they're known for pirates but nicknamed the Magpies if you read the description!


I was referring to the place itself, given you are now living there so shall be seeing pirates 😉 (and wanted to shoehorn in an early POTC mention, because why not)


Referees having a field day with the yellow (and even that red) cards. Here's hoping you can string some prolonged consistency together, only a few points off the early media prediction though.

15 years ago
1 day ago
@Skinner_ - If you think refs are bad in the Premier League, imagine how tough they have it in the non league!





Not only did we tie down more players, we went a step further and acquired a player/assman to finally grace my eyes with star ratings and a proxy to evaluate the litter of youth we have decomposing in the underage squads. If that wasn't juicy enough I hired a decent director of football to trawl through the local regions around level 9/10 and cast net...with the final decision in my control as he tried to con me making offers for about four goalkeepers. Six new faces in total.

Chris Reski - Assistant Manager/AM(RLC) - free transfer from St Blazey


The classic non-league swiss army knife every club strives for. Six months of painfully finding a single candidate for the assman role, Chris is our man. Doubles up as a versatile winger or number 10 behind our striker. Adds that touch of experience a young side like ours needs to grow and yearn to improve. Those attributes don't jump off the page, but a handy option to either start or bring off the bench.



Ash Oliver - GK - free transfer from Plymouth Parkway


The countdown timer for Glenn Davies' imminent exit is well in motion with numerous clubs trying to pull the rug from under us. This is where Ash comes in. Sure there are a few disparities in some key areas; Ash is quicker, more agile, more reliable closing down a ball and has years on his side whereas Glenn is taller, stockier, quick reflexes and coming into his prime years. Might have to round robin our goalkeepers for a bit.

Adam Wilson - D(R)/WB(R) - free transfer from Barnstaple Town


Football has evolved into this lust for attacking wing backs and I'm not gonna lie it tickled my interest too. DoF lodged a bid for this guy and was an instant win in my book. Excellent pace for this division with crossing, dribbling and technique to boot - I don't even care if this lad is 17 driving around in a Honda Civic and can't tackle a toddler. Suits our wide play philosophy to the ground to be on the overlap if needed.

Stephen Reed - D(L)/WB(L) - free agent


No LLM save would be complete without a journeyman figure. Remembered him from his Yeovil Town days before stinking out of Huish Park to jump to a new club every season. Staring down the wrong side of forty, Stephen has that wealth of intelligence around these divisions to more arrows to our bow. Set piece merchant to tidy away some dead ball situations.

David Mills - M(L) - free transfer from Wellington


My DoF doesn't exactly have the best instincts when it comes to signing players. Ignoring his star rating all I see is a bog standard left winger with pace and leadership. Regardless it adds depth to the wide areas.

Rhodri John - ST(C) - three month loan from Taunton


On the eleventh hour of transfer deadline day, I decided to pursue another striking option on the off chance we climb up the league table or should we progress further in the SWP league cup. Not sure if his finishing stat will be a false dawn like many statpadded strikers have been down the years playing this game but whats life without taking risk-free risks.



I'll level with you guys...it was a pretty underwhelming litter - not one worth showing. Excellent intake my backside.





No repeat of our heroics in Priory Park as Bodmin's iron grip of the first half was the tale of the game. If we managed an unscathed first half I'd have argued we could turn over a new leaf and catch them by surprise, that turned out to be wishful thinking as we clumsily conceded a penalty duly converted, followed by a soft near post finish by Cleal to add security to the lead. Spirit wasn't there, fight wasn't there. Amazing what happens when the best team in the league have 11 men on the pitch!



It was a Reski rendezvous as he saw his former employers St Blazey combust (in more than one way) in a blaze of glory for us. In fact not only did one former Blazer get involved, two landed on the scoresheet as Reski remorselessly stuck two daggers in with Tom Potts heading in to complete a rout. Dave Austin also weighed in against the then nine men, however Brad Prior stole the show with three lush assists from the right hand side. Sometimes I love watching the world burn.




We're absolutely cruising right now. This victory was testament to how evolved this team was become compared to when I first adopted them; Hinkson in the goalscoring form of his life with two ice cold finishes, midfield liquidous when moving the ball, playmaking outstanding even from set pieces where a bit of head tennis lead to Harry Pierce finding the net and Brad Prior nearly netted a free kick of the year contender. Little miffed we switched off in added time to lose a clean sheet but in the grand scheme of things it meant microscopic difference to the outcome.



It completed an A1 month. Hinkson claiming POTM with MOTM accolades going to yours truly.



All our efforts would go in vain. Leaders Falmouth knew they'd grab an upper hand in the race for the crown with victory here, in the most cliché of FM clichés the slimy bastards won it with their only shot on target - but you know what? It was my fault. Brian Kizza's powerful header from a corner nodded the ambers in front with the first half concluding. A second half penalty for us would change the landscape of the game...for all the wrong reasons. Matt Ward was geared up to take it until I elected Hinkson to take it instead, this turned out to be the greatest mistake of the save so far as he struck it straight at the keeper. The confidence disappeared, no end product, a sore lesson in superstition.



Curtain closer failed to deliver thrills nor spills, but a positive way to cap off the first season. Hinkson firing on all cylinders again taking his final goal tally to 23 with a fumbled gift from Godolphin's keeper Lewis Clark. In fairness he redeemed himself with excellent stops to deny Hinkson and Pierce from extending the advantage. The high xG was just about ratioed in the end when Rhodri John scored his only goal of his loan spell to double the spoils...yes, it was his only goal. Burned again.


It also left a sour end to proceedings with Wilson needing most of the summer break to recover from injury. Timing couldn't be more perfect.




I've never been more disappointed at a performance at Penzance up to this point. Good God, this was infuriating to watch. Whatever about going 2-0 down in the opening ten minutes through criminal defending, we could at least find time to fight back with Hinkson and get into half time with a fresher, more switched on approach to the second half. Not a chance. This lad Rhys Tucker paraded around Penlee Park like his own back garden with some of the worst displays of defending I've witnessed (and I've watched United this season). Trailing by three defending was no longer a concern, we had to splurge on direct attacks and to our credit responded quickly...until we shat the bed again, lethargically giving Brixham a penalty ruin our chances. Chris Reski's baptism of fire debut clawed some dignity back before Matt Ward left things on a knife edge 5-4 scoreline. Disappointingly we failed to complete an unthinkable comeback to knock us out of the cup. I could honestly scream.



2022 greeted us like a slap from a wet fish, failing to get the better of Launceston & Bodmin. The Bodmin defeat really injected character into the camp with much improved league outings with clean sheets to bag away at St. Austell and St. Blazey, some might say it was a 'holy epiphany'.

February was the month of Rickson Hinkson; 9 goals in 5 games, the lad trailblazed us to a perfect green month. Newquay, Sticker, Liskeard, Callington and Wendron all falling to the wayside. The signing of experienced Chris Reski doubling up as player/assman has proven sensational too, showing how dangerous we are now going forward.

March followed the same theme, stretching our winning streak in the league to nine as Dobwalls & Porthleven bent the knee to our superiority. Suddenly we looked like a team on an unthinkable mission to gatecrash the title race. But with Newton's third law simplified "what goes up, must eventually come back down". Face down in the mud. St. Dennis shocked us all to deny our consecutive win tally breaching double figures and put the damp finger on our candlewick. Falmouth also piled on afterwards.

April turned out to be a dead rubber run in, however the defeats did us the world of good to take the pressure off and replenish our winning lust. Although the goals dried up for Hinkson, others began to contribute with six different scorers in another perfect 100% month. Narrower scorelines against Penryn, Camelford, Wadebridge and Godolphin but were in cruise control for the majority. Credit to our defence not shipping a single goal in the process.



I'm not going to lie, subconsciously I felt we could've gone toe to toe with Bodmin for the title. Fourth position is definitely a sign of overachievement and heading in the right direction. Bodmin ended up running away as champions towards the end as Falmouth's early pace had them running out of steam. Feels somewhat ironic that Launceston who also offered me their managerial post ended up snatching third from us, but thats football I guess. Overall a good first spell, we go again next season.
17 years ago
2 days ago

You're a f*cking mad man @DNZY but I'm on board. Obscure league specialist.

15 years ago
1 day ago
@KEZ_7 - You never get anywhere by playing it safe! Love me an obscure league.





You know you've done your business right when the selected signing of the season Stephen Reed doesn't even make it into the top six on the leaderboard. Reed's CV may stand out among them all and we thank him for his services as he sails into the sunset, calling time on his playing career.

The fans 'greeted' Tom Potts with major skepticism to the point where they slated me on social media, all I can say is who's laughing now? Man was a consistent aerial commander with a launchpad of a left foot to go route one. Abu Bah also chipped in to create this centre back camaraderie to add layers to an ironclad defence. Only 16 goals conceded in 22 league games? Bargain.

Chris Reski was Reski business that easily paid off. He was the master key to unlock Hinkson's potent goalscoring form to make that late promotion push. My managerial wingman when it comes to analysing the squad was a massive relief off my shoulders too. Probably my personal favourite signing.

Austrie and Ward, the midfield crimefighting duo. I signed both on a whim, no scouting just a stab in the dark and boy did they both turn out phenomenally. To be harshly ultra critical I expected more from Ward given his playmaking qualities at face value, so with low returns I don't think I've quite found the right role for him yet. While Austrie jockeys off his partner to be that second outlet for attacks, the lad finishes well too. Penalty merchant with 6/6 - a trusted choice.

Ash Oliver didn't get a huge amount of exposure during the round robin rotation between him and Glenn Davies but showcased a safe pair of hands during his appearances for what will soon be an inevitable departure to our number one.



I find it somewhat ironic how Reed was voted as signing of the season, yet failed to get involved in the best XI but with only 10 appearances makes a bit more sense. Regardless it highlights we need better fullbacks, the return of Adam Wilson from injury will be key on the right but left needs some work. Brad Prior was the unsung hero behind the scenes with 12 assists from right wing, while the lion share of goals went to the lone striker Ricky Hinky breaking 20 but just shy of that quarter century.



Ricky stood out among the rest to claim the personal accolade of player of the season for the year with his lust for goal but fell short of finishing as top scorer to Sticker's McGivern.


As for me I also fell second best in the manager of the year award, slightly harsh considering the winner almost bottled the easiest job of the entire league.


I did make my way onto the coaching ladder to tap in a standard National C.

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