Jump to content

Scottish League Cup

Sunday 10 July 2022 - kick-off 3pm

Peterhead v Aberdeen

Stand Free!

P&J: Nicholl recalls his days with a team in the mire


mizer
 Share

Recommended Posts

http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/887396

No Millwall malaise at Pittodrie

nicholl recalls his days with a team in the mire – but insists no such ills exist at lowly aberdeen

 

By Paul Third

 

Published: 15/10/2008

 

Jimmy Nicholl has enough experience to spot the danger signs of a team in the relegation mire – such as players blaming each other and some simply not trying – but the Aberdeen assistant manager insists there are no such worries at Pittodrie.

 

Former Northern Ireland international Nicholl has experienced the highs and lows in football management from winning the League Cup with Raith Rovers to being relegated with English side Millwall.

 

Nicholl was manager of Millwall in 1996 when the London side was relegated to the third tier of English football – and he never wants to take the drop again.

 

He can recall the dark days of 300 angry supporters waiting outside the ground to vent their fury at him in what was undoubtedly his most difficult season as a manager.

 

But he insists there is no comparison between the mood at Millwall in those days and the one at Pittodrie now as the rock-bottom Dons prop up the SPL table.

 

Nicholl said: “I have seen it at Millwall when a team is bottom of the league and players go into their cliques.

 

“I’ve seen those who travel together in cars to training and distance themselves from what is happening.

 

“Some want to roll their sleeves up and get on with it. Some are not bothered and some are quick to blame others.

 

“But I don’t see it here. The demands from the manager are still there and the appetite is still there.â€

 

Nicholl’s Millwall tenure was a difficult one, with severe financial difficulties which resulted in players being sold and the club sliding from promotion contenders to relegation.

 

Constant speculation about his position and interest in the club from potential investors did little to help his plight.

 

He recalled: “I was sacked at Millwall and I know when the players don’t want to fight for you anymore.

 

“There comes a time as a manager when you think the players just aren’t doing it for you and your time is up.

 

“I still enjoyed my work at Millwall but we were relegated.

 

“There were other people coming in to take over the club and the players knew it. They knew I wasn’t going to be there much longer and the fight wasn’t there.â€

 

With the Dons at the foot of the table, Jimmy Calderwood is in new territory in his managerial career.

 

But Nicholl reckons that Aberdeen will soon climb and insists the players will get the club moving quickly.

 

He added: “I know we are bottom of the league at the moment but we will be fine.

 

“The players have to stick together. During a game they have to focus on what they are doing, their opponents, their team-mates and the ball. Nothing else matters.

 

“I am surprised at the position we find ourselves in but we are only eight games into the season.

 

“There is a way of losing a game and if you lose 2-0, 3-0 or 4-0 regularly then you can tell something is not right.

 

“We’re not covering over the cracks here but there is no getting away from the individual mistakes which have cost us.

 

“We haven’t won at home, which is a worry, but the away performances – with the exception of Kilmarnock – have been very good.

“We are confident we will turn it around.

 

“If we were in this situation with eight games to go I would be worried, but I really can’t see that situation happening.â€

 

If we still haven't won a game at home with 8 to go.........  :o

 

----

Very good performances? Are you sure? Lets ask the manager!

 

Motherwell

We can play a lot better than we did' date=' but it's a vital win." [/quote']

 

Ayr

We can play better than that. It's about digging results out at the moment

 

StMirren

Jimmy Calderwood has told fans their team's quality of football will improve after they ground out another one-goal away victory.

 

Killie - As Jimmy Nic says above, oh hang on

Footballwise' date=' I thought we did well[/quote']

 

Celtic -

Performance-wise' date=' I am delighted[/quote']

 

So according to the manger we have played not that well in all but our two last away games, whicle our assistant manager thinks we have done in all our games except Killie............. :-\

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some more stuff raked up by Aberdeen journals

 

Lovell is ready to haunt his old club

Hughes backing hitman

 

By Ross McTavish

 

Published: 15/10/2008

 

 

FALKIRK boss John Hughes says Steve Lovell can come back to haunt the Dons by scoring against them on Saturday.

 

The striker will line-up against his former employers in great form.

 

Lovell has scored in each of his last three appearances for the Bairns.

 

Aberdeen let the Englishman leave in the summer after three injury-hit years at Pittodrie.

 

Now Hughes reckons he has profited from Dons boss Jimmy Calderwood’s decision not to retain Lovell’s services.

 

He said: “If I can keep Steve fit, healthy and enjoying his football, then I will get the rewards.

 

“He was injured at Aberdeen and not always in the team.

 

“Jimmy Calderwood decided to go a different way and I got the benefit of it.

 

“Sometimes ex-players come back to haunt you, so hopefully the luck will be on our side this weekend.

 

“Aberdeen have Mark Kerr, Lee Miller and Lee Mair in their team who have all been at Falkirk.

 

“I have a couple of their former players at my club, in Steve Lovell and Jackie McNamara.

 

“So I hope it falls my way on Saturday.â€

 

Lovell did not start a game for Falkirk until September 23, in the Co-operative Insurance Cup victory over Queen of the South.

 

But the 27-year-old showed what he can offer Hughes as he hit the winning goal in a 2-1 success.

 

The forward has since gone on to find the back of the net against Hamilton and Motherwell in the Premier League.

 

Hughes admits he has been delighted with Lovell’s performances since forcing his way into the first team.

 

The Bairns’ boss also revealed Lovell has settled in well at the club and has been a joy to work with.

 

Hughes said: “We had to get Steve fit because he probably hadn’t played 90 minutes for two or three months.

 

“He didn’t do a pre-season either, so we all had to be patient.

 

“Steve had to work hard to get into the team.

 

“But he’s scored three goals in three games and I’m delighted for him.

 

“He gives us something different in terms of his pace and power.

 

“He’s also forming a good partnership with Michael Higdon.

 

“Steve’s settled in well at the club, which is credit to him and the players.

 

“They have taken to him and I enjoy working with him.â€

 

Jimmy: Even my wife is suffering!

Dons boss’ pain at poor league position

 

By Charlie Allan  :wave:

 

Published: 15/10/2008

 

 

JIMMY Calderwood has been a nightmare to live with since the Dons went bottom of the SPL.

 

The Dons boss sympathises with his wife, Sue, who has been forced to put up with his dark mood over the last week or so.

 

But Jimmy is confident the clouds will start to lift when the Dons visit Falkirk on Saturday.

 

Q How do you feel about being bottom of the SPL?

 

A When I look at the table it’s painful reading, it really is. I’ve never had that experience before, as a manager or a player, and I’m hating every second of it. My wife is the one I feel sorriest for. I’m at my grumpiest when the team isn’t doing well. I know I shouldn’t be like that, but football is my life and it hurts when the team isn’t getting the results we want. Someone has to suffer for that and sadly it’s the wives of the managers who end up in the firing line. You throw newspapers away because you feel sick when you look at the league tables. I also sit staring out of the window trying to figure out what has gone wrong. My wife will serve a nice meal in an attempt to cheer you up and gets annoyed when you respond that you can’t be bothered with eating and would prefer to be left alone. It’s wrong but sometimes you just can’t help yourself. I took her down south for a few days last week in an effort to cheer the both of us up. I don’t think she was too pleased that I took her in past the Motherwell v Falkirk game on the way. I kept that as a surprise until we got a bit nearer to Fir Park. But I would love it if we won this weekend because it would put a smile on her face, as well as mine. She deserves more than to see another weekend going down the tubes.

 

Q Do you see any positives at the moment?

 

A The only comfort is that I can look up the table a little and see that we are actually still just six points off third spot as well. My own mood has been lifted after attending the SPL manager’s meeting in Glasgow at the weekend. Everton boss Davie Moyes was there as well. The two of us were moaning like old women. Everton haven’t started well either and we were both talking about how it was doing our heads in. Walter Smith came to the rescue by stepping in and telling us both not to be so daft. Walter says things will improve if we continue to have faith and keep doing the right things. That weekend also helped me remember that we’ve been in tough positions at other times during my spell as manager. I’m thinking more about the weeks after the defeats by Queen’s Park and Queen of the South. There was also a spell during one of my seasons when we went from October to the beginning of December when we hardly won a game. I didn’t panic then so won’t be doing it now.

 

Q So what has gone wrong so far?

 

A The biggest problem is that we keep kicking ourselves in the teeth in games we are doing well in. We did it at Celtic, losing after starting well because we made daft defensive errors. It was the same in the Hibs game. I don’t think they would have won if they hadn’t been given that controversial penalty. Charlie Mulgrew was unfortunate with the handball but if we had defended better before that the incident would never have happened. It baffles me at times because the players never do those things at training. They always defend properly and admit themselves that the sort of mistakes they have made just should not be happening. I also don’t think we’ve had the rub of the green in certain situations. You need that at times in football. The penalty incident against Hibs is a prime example. Our luck will change A lot of rival fans will be laughing and making life hard for the Aberdeen supporters at the moment. But I promise them, we will have the last laugh.

 

Q How do you feel about the personal criticism being fired at you?

 

A I’m big enough and old enough to take it. No-one loves to read the sort of stuff I’ve seen in the Evening Express or hear the comments made on radio phone-ins. But I put that up against the fans who have met me face to face and offered nothing bit support and encouragement. I was at a fundraising event on Friday, where Denis Law was the main speaker, and every person I spoke to was encouraging. It was brilliant and gave me a big lift. It’s been the same with any fans I’ve met in the street or in the supermarket. In all the years I’ve been at Pittodrie I’ve never had a fan come up and say nasty things to my face. They will express hurt and disappointment if results haven’t gone right, which I understand. But they’ve always ended things by wishing me well and I appreciate that.

 

Q What part can the fans play now?

 

A I would ask that they do all in their powers to back the players as they work to get us off the bottom of the table. I would even be happy if they chose to have a go at me if it meant giving extra backing to the players.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/887396

If we still haven't won a game at home with 8 to go.........  :o

 

----

Very good performances? Are you sure? Lets ask the manager!

 

Motherwell

Ayr

StMirren

Killie - As Jimmy Nic says above, oh hang on

Celtic -

So according to the manger we have played not that well in all but our two last away games, whicle our assistant manager thinks we have done in all our games except Killie............. :-\

I think he just meant still being bottom of the table Mizer.

 

At least the football has improved, hopefully the results will too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Of course thats unacceptable, but on Saturday if we play the way we apparently did in the last two games against a team as open as Falkirk i can see us scoring a bucketload.

 

I'm pretty confident we can, don't know about the scoring a bucketload, but i'm feeling a lot better about the Dons now after the games against HIV's and Tim's. I've even gone as far as saying I think we'll be 3rd by December  :thumbsup: Its more tongue and cheek, but I don't see why we couldn't do it if our strikers actually start scoring a goal every so often.

 

Anyway, COME ON YOU REDS!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm pretty confident we can, don't know about the scoring a bucketload, but i'm feeling a lot better about the Dons now after the games against HIV's and Tim's. I've even gone as far as saying I think we'll be 3rd by December  :thumbsup: Its more tongue and cheek, but I don't see why we couldn't do it if our strikers actually start scoring a goal every so often.

Anyway, COME ON YOU REDS!

 

WOA!! Calm down there! I do wonder where you get these crazy ideas from sometimes!  :thumbsup:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

WOA!! Calm down there! I do wonder where you get these crazy ideas from sometimes!   :thumbsup:

 

My optimism is usually unjustified, rash and short lived, but I don't care ;) I've just seen in the past two games there has been a big improvement in movement and approach to the games. The teams around us are no better and there isn't much between us and them. As I said, I've had dogs abuse at people for us being bottom, but I don't care, we will be back. We can do it. A good result on Saturday will help everyone  :thumbsup:

 

P.S. I don't know where I get these crazy ideas from either  ;D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My optimism is usually unjustified, rash and short lived, but I don't care ;) I've just seen in the past two games there has been a big improvement in movement and approach to the games. The teams around us are no better and there isn't much between us and them. As I said, I've had dogs abuse at people for us being bottom, but I don't care, we will be back. We can do it. A good result on Saturday will help everyone  :thumbsup:

 

P.S. I don't know where I get these crazy ideas from either  ;D

 

Crazy Stu, are you down this neck of the woods again in Decemeber?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...