Keech the Bookie has completed his season preview below now all teams are in. It is based on past history (last 7 years performance in brackets with the latest first) and only looks at your original team selected this time around if you are newcomer. If your transfers and picks are imaginative and inspirational, clearly Keech the bookie cannot predict that. Hope you take it as it is, a little bit of fun and the challenge is for you to either prove me right or completely wrong !!!
Only get concerned if I predict you to win !
Latest season first:
1st Graham Jeffries (2/1F) (1st, 1st, 14th)
An incredible performance from Graham, 2 consecutive titles for the first time in MLW history. Having lower division players in can only enhance his prospect as a Bury fan. Can anyone stop him making it a hat trick? No – only me by predicting him to win it again!
2nd Ishtiaq Beg (5/2). (18th, 33rd, 20th, 23rd)
Now this may surprise a few, he took on a 2nd team last season part way through and did very well with it. I just have a feeling there could be significant improvement. Needs to start well.
3rd Tim Owen (11/4). (2nd, 2nd, 4th, 22nd, 6th, 11th, 1st)
After two 2nd place finishes it will be testing for Timitar. His lack of lower division knowledge will hit him hard but knowing the maestro by Christmas he will personally know Accrington’s top scorer and the young star coming through at Barnet! By then though it may be too late.
4th Dan Owen (11/4) (10th, 23rd, 2nd, 7th, 3rd, 9th, 8th)
After a disaster two seasons back he was back to something like the old Dan. The competition is fierce in and around the Owen household. Matt is back as well so I sense yet more improvement on the horizon.
5th Rob Bushell (3/1). (16th, 6th, 1st, 2nd, 4th, 12th, 7th)
Worst performance for along time last year and again lower division introduction will test him yet further. Saying that he is very dangerous to write off and I expect him to be there or thereabouts in the run in.
6th Andrea Howard (10/3). (29th, 26th, 33rd, 8th)
Andrea will be stunned by this prediction. Over the summer she has given positive signals to her selections and tactics. I am sure she wont let me down.
7th Wayne Moody (7/2). (7th, 7th, 7th, 32nd, 5th, no entry, no entry)
With 7th, 7th, and 7th finishes clearly a prediction of 7th cannot be far off!!
8th Jordan Watkiss (4/1) (9th)
An excellent effort for a first attempt. I can only see him getting matching this or even bettering especially with so much competition.
9th Margaret Highton (4/1) (4th)
4th place really was a shock last season so I can’t gamble on anything much different. Again I really do not know who is steering the boat here. Seeing Graham’s recent record perhaps Margaret is the chief-in-command.
10th Simon Baldwin (9/2). (5th, 10th, 27th, 26th, 17th, 13th, 2nd)
Consistent improvement for Bobby in the last two seasons. Not sure he can sustain, as he does seem to be struck down with such bad luck. I still think top 10 is well within his grasp.
11th Paul Gerrard (9/2). (3rd, 9th, 24th, 21st, 18th, 26th, 16th)
Although 3rd place was so much better than what had gone before he will secretly be gutted he did not secure his first title last season. I still cannot forget the years of misery prior to that and I suppose that is reflected in the final position overall. He will expect more than that though as he has the bug for success now.
12th Craig Frost (5/1). (11th, 20th, 3rd, 4th, 37th, 30th, 17th)
Two seasons outside the top 10 after two top 5 finishes will not do. He has high expectations and with his knowledge of League 1 should benefit. I don’t think he will though and although will probably finish above me (again!) and maybe flatter to deceive at times still think he will be outside the top 10.
13th Ian Cowburn (5/1). (20th, 3rd, 5th, 15th, 12th, 31st, 18th)
Ian’s position of 20th last season was a bit of a come down on the previous year and again he may struggle to match previous efforts because of the surprise exclusion of his main competition (Patrick Williams).
14th Royce Frankin (11/2). (13th, 8th, 10th, 33rd, 8th, 15th, no entry)
After a slight dip last season Royce in reality should have an advantage with his excellent knowledge of the lower leagues. So why have I placed him 14th………………….I really don’t know!!
15th Shaun Moody (6/1) (17th, 40th, 22nd, no entry, 2nd)
Has been nowhere near troubling the leaders apart from his first season 5 years ago. Saying that he has also only been towards the bottom once. A safe bet would be mid table.
16th Paul Keech (6/1). (21st, 19th, 9th, 11th, 22nd, 1st, 12th)
My excuse this time around…………………….too many extra players to price.
17th Russ Farnham (13/2) (36th, 12th, 17th, 9th, 14th, 6th, 3rd)
Steady decline for this once `great’ manager. 36th last season with his knowledge was just not good enough. He has started well this time hence the high prediction of 17th for this season.
18th Ben Watson (7/1). (42nd, 15th)
Season 1 was although at first glance a good attempt, the last few weeks saw him sink from about 5th. This hangover continued into last season and it was a season to forget. This season will definitely bring some improvement.
19th Colin Rigby (7/1). (15th, 16th, 18th, 19th, 1st, 33rd, 11th)
Is it really 5 years since Colin won MLW? I can’t quite believe that. Since then he consistently achieves mid-table obscurity, remarkably ranging from 15th to 19th in that period. Makes it easy to predict this again.
20th Young Gerrards (15/2), (14th, 30th, 25th, 37th, 36th, 10th, 9th)
After 4 years in the wilderness last seasons 14th could be seen as being much better, possibly dragged up further by dads much better performance. It won’t get any easier so mid table best they can hope for.
21st Keech/Frost (15/2) (33rd, no entry, 11th, 1st, 9th)
After a season away clearly the magic had all but gone last year. Too much concentration of their own teams and the final position paid for it. There needs to be much more attention paid.
22nd Graham Highton (8/1). (24th, 14th, 30th, 17th, 16th, 14th, 31st)
As someone who hovers between 14th and 31st I need to go somewhere in the middle hence 22nd!
23rd Alan Keech (17/2). (12th, 35th, 34th, 29th, 35th, 28th, 23rd)
Perhaps its time for the old man’s Indian summer. Some long awaited improvement last season and a positive start to this campaign. Lets not go too over board just yet though.
24th Andy Peaden (9/1) (27th)
Second season for Andy and will looking for something in the top half at least. May achieve it but with so much competition it will be tough.
25th Paul Leech (10/1). (37th, 25th, 38th, 10th, 11th, 5th, 6th)
Paul’s decline has been significant especially over the last 3 seasons. A regular top 10 finisher has been replaced with less spectacular performances of late. May reach the position of two seasons back but can’t expect too much more.
26th Allison Moody (10/1). (26th, 5th, 15th, 16th, 2nd, 4th, No entry).
Other than a good 5th two years ago not much positive has happened for 5 or 6 seasons now. Expecting something similar to last season although that was unusual and Allison will expect better.
27th Adrian Franklin (11/1) (25th)
Adrian’s mid table position was not bad an effort first time around. Can he improve, lets wait and see.
28th Andrew Highton (12/1) (19th, 17th)
Not much difference to the debut season so not sure there is much improvement in the locker. If he starts well he could challenge but that is a big if.
29th Chris Savage (12/1) (New)
A very interesting newcomer. He has given me glimpses of inspirational information already but mainly from the Prem. Really needs to work on his lower division knowledge before anything spectacular is predicted. May over indulge too early in the transfer market.
30th Simon Barrett (14/1). (30th, 37th)
Probably not achieved the improvement he expected in season 2 so can season 3 be any different? Much to prove.
31st Matt Owen (16/1). (Returner)
If Matt puts the work in he is certainly capable of challenging but his record suggests he is generally a poor mans Dan!
32nd Owen Griffiths (16/1). (34th, 31st)
Two very similar performances and no reason to believe a poor hat trick is not on the cards.
33rd Matt Hall (16/1) (39th, 13th, 31st, 35th, 15th, 27th, 10th)
Difficult to predict, with 3 finishes in the 30’s it’s a safe bet this won’t be too far away.
34th Nawaz 20/1 (New)
Again no knowledge, may depend on how competition is created between him and Matt.
35th Sarah Burrows (20/1) (35th)
A tricky one. Sez started like a house on fire but tailed off when she moved jobs. I suggest something similar to last years final position won’t be too far off the mark.
36th Barry Tomlinson (25/1) (NEW)
Don’t know anything about Barry. Initial team looks ok but always difficult to get the tactics right first time around.
37th Matthew Wakeman (25/1). (22nd, 29th)
Now he has lost his assistant he is like a little boy lost. I suggest a position in the bottom 10 is inevitable.
38th Jeff Miller (33/1). (38th, 22nd, 36th, 27th, 23rd, 17th, 21st)
Other than the odd good few games overall Jeff’s performance really does not break any pots. He is very keen but just can’t gather himself for any sort of challenge.
39th Chris Lyons (50/1) (45th, 4th, 35th)
Bad, good and bad covers the 3 seasons Chris has been in. Should be good now but I am going to break the sequence.
40th Steve Chaney (100/1) (40th, 21st, 19th, 13th)
A homage to Southampton is great in theory but if you can only manage to finish 40th when they run away with the league it clearly does not work. Similar expected therefore.
41st Luke Barrett (100/1) (48th)
Not quite got to grips with the game in season 1. Can’t expect me to think he will do in season 2 either.
42nd Richard Smith (200/1). (44th, 34th, 37th, 34th)
4 performances 34th or worse indicate a low final position may on the cards again this time around. With some of the real strugglers not in this time around Richard has therefore been given the wooden spoon position this season.