The Busy Fan’s Guide to Ten Eventful Years… for those of us who have trouble distinguishing one season from another in the last decade…
2002-03 An Atletico Bilbao friendly opens new stadium after proposed new name Bowl rejected by fans. New (old) club name Fosse also binned. Promoted back to Premier with Micky Adams second behind Portsmouth. Dickov and Deane share 30 goals. Muzzy Izzet plays for Turkey in World Cup finals. The club goes into administration in October.
2003-04 A disastrous Premier League season sees early relegation with three home wins and 33 points. Players tangle with prostitutes in La Manga to delight of national press and dismay of club and fans. A mentally drained Adams resigns in October, replaced by Craig Levein. Theo Zagorakis lifts Euro Cup for Greece. Best ever home league attendance of 32,148 for Newcastle visit.
2004-05 Celtic are pre-season guests. New FA ‘points deduction’ rule introduced for administration. Secret talks with Tigers on ground share. Finish 15th with 6,500 average disappearing off gate. David Connolly is top scorer with 13 goals.
2005-06 Poor start sees Craig Levein sacked by January. After weeks of searching, assistant manager Rob Kelly sees out season to finish 16th. Hume top scores with 9 and attendances slump to under 22,000 in a pretty forgettable twelve months.
2006-07 Financial stagnation sees the club sold to Milan Mandaric. Rob Kelly gives way to Nigel Worthington who does enough to preserve second tier status. It’s not enough for Mandaric who appoints Martin Allen to general puzzlement. Iain Hume top scores with 13+1.
2007-08 Despite a good win over the league leaders, Watford, Allen is sacked after a handful of games with Mandaric saying ‘it wasn’t working out’. Gary Megson comes, looks round briefly and goes, making way for Ian Holloway. Loanee Clive Clarke recovers from a dressing room heart attack. Holloway, having arrived in November, cannot arrest slide to avoid relegation to third tier for first time, sacked in May. Replaced by Nigel Pearson as club reaches lowest ebb ever. Topps Tiles replace Alliance and Leicester as shirt sponsors.
2008-09 Pearson escapes the third tier with some panache as League One Championship is won. Club achieves longest unbeaten league run, 23 games from November to March. Fryatt (who wins Best Player in Division award) and Howard share forty seven goals. Lowest Walker’s average league attendance of 20,253 includes stadium’s lowest league gate of 16,378 for Stockport visit.
2009-10 Promotion impetus continues for best finish in years as fifth place wins play off place but painful experience of failure in play off semis after penalty shoot out in Cardiff. Here surely is the man to get the club going again but Mandaric again screws up by forcing close season departure of disillusioned Pearson. Matty Fryatt again top scorer with 11+2 goals but Martin Waghorn hits twelve in league.
2010-11 Mandaric, despite (because of?) seeking a new buyer for club, recruits (another) puzzling choice, Paulo Sousa, who is club‘s first non British manager. But only one win in first nine condemns season to catch up struggle. As team hit the bottom of the table Sousa is sacked as new owners, a Thai consortium, have seen enough of Mandaric’s last appointment. They demonstrate their ambition by appointing club’s biggest ever name, Sven Goran Eriksson in October to general approval. Having missed the transfer season he brings in several eye catching loan signings. After a steady rise up the table, a late slump ends promotion challenge. Welcome new investment in training facilities and pitch. Shirts rebranded KingPower
2011-12 Thais enable Sven to spend big to assemble a likely looking squad but expectations dwindle as inconsistent results fail to impress. Dismayed owners shock all by dismissing Sven in October. Nigel Pearson is coaxed back from Hull as ‘man who can get us promoted‘. Again the poor start to season proves impossible to overcome and Pearson vows to rebuild squad with different ethos. King Power rename stadium. Pre season guests Real Madrid draw record crowd for Filbert Way of 32,188.
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