This season we’re widely predicted to fail again and be relegated by the media despite making it to the playoff final last season. To be honest I’m targeting to be there-or-thereabouts regarding the playoffs this time around, whether we get there will be determined by how much we can strengthen the team, and how much more our promising young squad can develop during the season.
ExpectationsThe expectations are realistic for the cups but as I’ve already said I’m really aiming higher for the league. We started with an £11m budget but this is what remains after our initial transfers.
I’m really happy with our transfers, and the prices we paid for the players. Pimenta and Pernes will cover at RB and DM respectively, and Pernes’ transfer fee is so low because (I didn’t realise it at the time – wasn’t paying full attention) his contract was about to expire, and we could have got him for nothing!
Bernardo is our new record signing, who will take over from Luke Bruno at CB alongside Baldvinsson.
Dean Bailey was a bargain at £450k, he was transfer listed at West Ham for less than half his value!
Daniel Shepherd will slot straight in at LB and is a big improvement on Abdulkareem, who’ll now be Shep’s deputy.
Roberto Peláez was transfer listed at Valencia, and comes straight in as our new No1. I would have happily spent our last £7m on a quality keeper, so to pick him up for only £875k is fantastic!
Everyone bar Higginson and Whetton were players who I couldn’t sell from previous years so I let them run their contracts down to leave on frees. Higginson needs game time, and Whetton has been a good servant for the club through the last six seasons, but he wasn’t really going to cut it any more so when Southend came in with a bid I let him go for the good of his career. He became our record sale, too.
Piece of cake! We won the division setting records for number of wins and also for most points – a record we broke by 6! We scored 26 more goals than the next leading competitor (Fulham) and also conceded the least by 5 from the closest competitor. (again Fulham)
WE WON THE EFL CUP! The FM gods were looking over us during the draws for sure, with us only facing one Premier League team on route to the final, and despite a tight first leg in the semi-final, we showed them a thing or two at home! In the final, Mourinho put us down, saying how easily his side would crush us… Then he put out a team mostly consisting of u23 players! We played it tight at the back, and what proved to be the winner came after 25 minutes, with centreback Baldvinsson powerfully nodding home from a corner.
No-one signed. But our facilities and searching abilities are improving steadily, especially our Junior Coaching which is now at an ‘excellent’ level – hopefully we’ll find another Luke Beale soon!
Next season will be a big one. Premier League action, which brings a £90m bounty of TV money per season, European football in the Europa League thanks to our EFL Cup win, and also a big announcement was made by the board at the end of the season…
WE’RE MOVING BACK TO HACKNEY – WITH OUR OWN BRAND NEW STADIUM!
The stadium will be named Kasanga Park after the club’s legendary founder, player and Director of Football Bobby Kasanga. Construction will take one season, so we’ll be in it in time for the 2030/31 season, hopefully still in the Premier League too! Whilst under construction, we will move into QPR’s new stadium ‘The Stan Bowles Arena’ as our current rented home at Brisbane Road isn’t up to Premier League standards.
To celebrate these achievements we’ll be using brand new kits designed and made by @FMacidphire21 – thanks mate!
As a club with a strong community and charitable ethos, we’ll be supporting Hackney Giving, who provide grants to the elderly and needy, and also host a scheme allowing small charities and community groups the opportunity to pitch for funds from a live audience of benefactors.
Wish us luck!