In a week that has seen a change in management at two clubs in League 1, Argyle boss Derek Adams has been nominated for manager of the month once again.
Bradford City have appointed Gary Bowyer, and Rochdale have sacked their most successful ever manager in Keith Hill ,as both clubs launch a desperate attempt at staying in the league. A bold move by Rochdale: with no immediate replacement lined up, members of the backroom staff will be in charge of things until a new boss is appointed. This seems slightly harsh on Hill. With their next five opponents against teams in and around the relegation zone, they could find themselves out of danger with a few good results.
This is a familiar scenario – one which Plymouth Argyle could have found themselves in as recently as December. With disappointing results coming thick and fast, members of the Home Park faithful were calling for Derek Adams’ head. Even the most loyal and reasonable fans, myself included, were starting to think the Scot’s time was up. The home loss to Burton in October was a black mark on an otherwise good Argyle CV for Adams, as he went at loggerheads with sections of the Argyle faithful. This seemed the beginning of the end, but with the gauntlet set, Adams dug his heels in.
If he had have been sacked, or resigned, it would have likely meant relegation for the Greens. With no realistic, suitable replacement out there the job would most likely have been given to Paul Wotton until the end of the season. I grew up watching Wotts; he played with passion and desire and most importantly played for the shirt. No doubt he would have carried out the role in the same way but he is still a rookie, and being tasked with keeping us in the league would have been a steep mountain to climb. Credit to the board – whether the decision to keep Adams was financial or not – for showing faith and believing in their manager.
The management merry go round is one of the most negative aspects of football, caused by knee jerk desperation and it isn’t something we want to be part of. With Hill’s sacking at Rochdale Adams is now the 9th longest serving boss in England. We’re lucky to have a manager that wants to stay and progress and is doing a terrific job on a shoe string budget. Derek Adams has brought us some recent success and I firmly believe he can build a team capable for pushing towards the Championship, given time.
At the age of 43 the Scotsman is still young in the world of management and I’m sure he is still learning – he has made errors, whether tactical or trivial, but he has come good for us so far. However, work will need to be done to ensure we remain safe this campaign and another slow start next season will be worthy reason to give the board cause for concern.
It is always nice to see our own receiving recognition and this is the second time this year Derek Adams has been nominated for the award. Deservedly so, as the Pilgrims have only lost twice this calendar year. But with 11 games and 33 points to play for, the team need to keep the momentum to ensure we are not dragged into what is going to be a ruthless relegation dog fight. Only 4 points separate 13th place and the final relegation spot in 21st.
Next up, it’s a very tough home game against table toppers Luton which is being intensified by the return of Sonny Bradley. I feel too much is being made of his return – he was a good player across two seasons for us and decided to leave for his own reasons –financial or geographical, whichever it was I won’t boo, or clap him – he’s just another player. They’re a very strong team and will be another stern test for Adams’ side following Saturdays 2-0 defeat at The Stadium of Light. Every point is crucial, and although many won’t fancy us to get a result on Saturday a minimum of a point will be a fantastic outcome going into Tuesday, when 17th placed Shrewsbury come to visit.