With Bernard Morley and Anthony Johnson’s appointment as the Club’s joint-managers confirmed this week, ChesterFC.com discovers more about he former Salford City managerial duo.
The Ammies’ outstanding win ratio under the new Blues management duo calculated a win percentage of 62.25%. An impressive record which began in their inaugural fixture at Moor Lane whilst in the Evo-Stik North to their final game as National League North champions last month.
‘Bern’ and ‘Jonno’s’ first taste of management came in rather bizarre circumstances whilst playing with Ramsbottom United aged just 25 and 26 respectively! The pair approached chairman Harry Williams for a chance to the turn the club’s fortunes around whilst playing in the North West Counties Football League, and subsequently led Rammy to a double promotion over a six-year spell.
A move to the league below in January 2015 saw them win 15 out of their 17 games in charge of Salford, owned by the ‘Class of 92’ and Valencia CF stakeholder Peter Lim. These vital victories in the business end of the season snatched the title off Darlington, who became a rival of Bernard and Anthony’s side over the years.
2015/16 proved to be yet another successful season for the Greater Manchester-based side, which included both notable victories in the FA Cup and a promotion winning league campaign. Salford overcame Notts County in the first round proper after overcoming higher placed sides in the qualifying rounds, but lost out to Hartlepool United in the second round replay after extra time.
The Ammies never say die attitude paid dividends in their play-off final that season, with a 3-2 victory over Workington. Despite going behind on two occasions, Bernard and Anthony’s side scored twice in the final five minutes to secure promotion to the sixth tier of English football.
More drama followed in the next season after a fantastic debut campaign in the National League North. Defeat on penalties in the play-off semi final to eventual winners FC Halifax Town meant the management duo had to regroup for another shot at promotion in the 2017/18 season, and extremely successfully, their mission was accomplished last month.
A total of five promotions in seven seasons of football management highlights the success and passion Bernard and Anthony have for the game.
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