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Posts tagged ‘Edgeley Park’

Stockport into Turkey

My own book explains many of the links that relate to this blog being mainly about UK and Turkey.  I still recall also my father-in-law and brother-in-law’s first trip to Edgeley Park when the then Commercial Director, Steve Bellis, orchestrated a rousing chorus of “Turkey, Turkey, Turkey”  in the hospitality suite, post-match, to show warmth and welcoming.  A story often recited by relatives in Turkey to this date.

The family remain committed to County and Bilen Kur writes for the leading football blog in the Country, which not surprisingly is called “scarf around my neck”.  Bilen is a Co-Director with me at FC Sports Marketing LTD. Talk SPORT has recognised our knowledge in this territory.

Steve has continued his foray into Turkey, though not to my extent obviously.  His latest venture is to take the hit reality TV show there with broadcasting on channel, TRT Spor.  We played a role in early introductions to selected football contacts to help his Kickworldwide evaluate the feasibility of selected commercial opportunities.  We remain able to work in partnership and collaborate on opportunities that might require our different skills.

The show, which is called ‘Futbol Prensi’ in Turkey, is conducting auditions in Konya, Kayseri, Erzurum, Trabzon, Samsun, Ankara, Gazientep, Adana, Antalya, Denizli, Izmir, Bursa, Sakarya, Istanbul and Diyabakir. The winner will be contracted to Liverpool FC.

Our next encounter is social and a trip to The Grange to watch an England match in the Euros.  Steve Bellis took the brand of Stockport County into China and created a profile the envy of many an English Premier League club.

Gannon mania

So the head ‘lady’ has relinquished her throne. Without the Gibbons in post, the chances of a Jim Gannon return may have lessened. Not only were they his strongest advocates at Board-level, but close family friends. They even adopted his cat!

His first stint in English management was a success with League 2 survival from the ‘jaws of extinction’ – followed by promotion via a Wembley-play off against Rochdale. This time certainly heralded the development of some good young players before the financial woes and need to sell them. Remember, Tommy Rowe, Anthony Pilkington, Liam Dickinson to name but three. The latter’s boots are proudly displayed in our offices. Were these players the results of ‘JG’ or do Peter Ward (assistant) or Alan Lord (youth) deserve the credit?

But can a return to a former managerial seat work? Not always. Gannon was released by the Administrator as an immediate cost-cutting. His remuneration package at that time could most definitely not fit with a package suitable for the Blue Square Premier League hierarchy. His character has been questioned by some former colleagues. The CV and trail from latter posts at Motherwell, Peterborough and Port Vale have shown different traits. It has been suggested that he wouldn’t speak to SKY in interviews whilst at Edgeley Park, because of a dispute over his installation of satellite dish.

He remains a fans favourite. The final note has to go to our ex-Uruguayan maestro, Danny Bergara (R.I.P), when asked about the qualities of Jim Gannon by another manager:…”I hear he’s a bit volatile?”. Danny’s reply: “Oh yes, very volatile, he can play anywhere”.