Written by Darren Daly
When Micky Mellon was appointed as the new manager of Shrewsbury Town or Salop as its known
locally on 12 May 2014, many fans were questioning the appointment but after guiding them
to promotion from league two in his first season fans were all loved up with Micky or MM as
he’s known to Shrewsbury fans.
Life in League One certainly tested his resolve last season, he wears his heart on his sleeve as any true fan, happy when we win, not happy when he loses. At times the fans questioned his ability to succeed at life in League One but he managed to keep Shrewsbury up despite having lost Connor Goldson to Brighton, Ryan Woods to Brentford and Josh Ginnelly to now promoted Premier league team Burnley.
credit Matt Churchill
Losing your captain and tough tackling star midfielder so early in trying to assemble a squad to compete in League One wasn’t ideal but that is football. Goldson and Woods were a strong spine to build around so having to replace them with most pre-season deals already done was a daunting task. But after some wheeling and dealing, more so in the January transfer window shipping out some of the club’s first team players and bringing back other faces, he managed it.
So what does the future for Shrewsbury and Micky Mellon ?
It seems rosy, selling Goldson, Woods and Ginnelly has put money in the bank, so the club is secure for now. Building has just started on a purpose built training ground. New CEO Brian Caldwell looks to continue the work Matt Williams had started. Fans are the lifeblood of the club and Shrewsbury realise that, you just have to look at Blackpool to see what narrow minded ownership and fan power and pressure can do. Our Chairmen Roland Wycherley loves the club despite what other fans think of him. Without his guidance there might not even be a club to support. You only have to look at the fate of neighbouring clubs along the Welsh border as a reminder of
just how long it can take to build a successful club.
Shrewsbury’s promotion to League One restored them to English football’s third tier, where they were in 1996 when Wycherley took over the then cash-strapped Shropshire outfit. “I’ve been chairman now for 20 years and I get reminded that we were at this level when I took over but I hope that the majority of the fans understand the infrastructure and the sustainability of the football club now. “I take time to look at clubs like Wrexham, Hereford , Chester and Telford. And you feel for their fans. “And I hope the fans see why it’s taken so long to get back to this level, with such a solid base.”
Which indeed he has and looking forward to the 2016/17 season the management team have started early bringing in proven League One players to compete such as Louis Dodds from Port Vale, Antoni Sarcevic from Fleetwood, Gary Deegan from Southend as well as Oliver Lancashire from Rochdale. It seems that this season is pivotal one for both Shrewsbury and Micky Mellon. The board have backed him and given him the chance to strengthen the team. You only have to look at other teams such as Blackpool, Port Vale who haven’t even got a manager yet to see how
proactive Shrewsbury are being. Fans are very fickle more so than ever nowadays with a good result getting glowing praise yet a bad result or two and its a call for the manager to be sacked or even the board. A club is built from bottom to top and in my opinion Shrewsbury have a long way to go but are doing a lot of things right. They need stability in the manager too which is why I’m glad they have kept hold of Micky Mellon. Since 1996 we have grown, granted its taken time but a new stadium, new training ground, community links, money in the bank, it’s a slow progress but Shrewsbury are going forwards not back.
Long may it continue!
What are your hopes for the future Shrewsbury fans? Do you share the same optimism? Let us know in the comments below!
featured image by Matt Churchill