The Cumbrians had a predictably average season in League One last term and finished 12th behind Brentford. Carlisle however, did win the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and it was Brentford that they were able to defeat by a single goal. The goal was scored by Peter Murphy, Carlisle’s longest serving player, who’s foul gave away a penalty in the previous final defeat a year ago. Does manager Greg Abbott have what it takes to gain promotion from League One this season?
We speak to Carlisle fan Aidan Baxter (@AidanBaxter1) about how he feels Carlisle will fair next season.
What would be a dream season for you?
A dream season for me would have to be another trip to Wembley (making 3 trips to the national stadium in as many years would be quite an achievement), and stability in the league. Over the past few seasons we’ve made progress under the manager Greg Abbott but after some of our performances during pre-season so far a push towards the play-offs may not be too much to ask!
What would be your worst nightmare?
Obviously getting relegated! Early exits from all the cups or even another trip to Torquay in the 3rd round of the F.A Cup to watch the worst CUFC performance I can ever remember.
What do you think of your club’s summer transfer activity?
There’s not been a vast amount of action but the signings we’ve made seem to be very promising. J.P McGovern, Andy Welse and Steve O’Halloran Although, a prolific striker is certainly something the squad is lacking and I can see it being our downfall (once again) this season unless the problem is addressed before the season begins.
Who will be your most important player/s this season?
Unanswered by Aidan :O
Any players you would happily see the back of?
None at all to be honest, we have a nice stable squad at the minute, there’s healthy competition for pretty much all the positions in the squad and that may see us through the season with a team which performs week in week out.
Do you have the best manager for the job?
The CUFC fans seem to be split about Greg Abbott, and I must admit I wasn’t a fan for a couple of seasons. But after watching him keep our team in League 1, take us to two Wembley finals and win a trophy all whilst steadily progressing in the league each season, he’s managed to win me round! So in my eyes, he’s the man for the job, especially with some of the contacts he has at higher clubs which can pay off when it comes to making loan signings during the season (albeit a few too many at times..).
Opposition players that you respect?
Kieren Westwood (now at Sunderland), not so much opposition obviously but he managed to get his career back on track whilst with Carlisle and the time he spent with the club were my favourite years of supporting us and it’s brilliant to see him playing at the highest level which is certainly where he belongs, a class act!
Opposition players that you despise?
Nicky Bailey (Middlesbrough), obviously another team we won’t see much of this season but my sheer hatred for Nicky Bailey will never subside. He’s in the wrong game that bloke, twining to the ref all game, diving around, winding folk up and getting decent players sent off for nothing! It was around 3 seasons ago he got David Raven sent off for us when he played for Southend and there was only around 5 games off the season left to go and our season was turned on its head as soon as the ref produced the red card. Scum bag, and I’m sure that won’t be the first or last time his name will pop up in this question…
Best away fans/ground in your league?
Out of all the away fans who made the Long trip to Brunton Park last season I think Sheffield Wednesday had the highest number and probably made the most noise, although it wasn’t much to write home about. Also, the away game at Hillsborough was easily one of the best away games of the season, thoroughly enjoyable, 2,000 blues singing for the full 90 during our 1-0 win against them which sent us to the top of the league for a week, it’s definitely one i’ll remember for a long time!
Which teams do you really want to beat this season?
Preston, I’ve never seen us play them lot before, I think it’s around 15 years since we last played and after hearing about the rivalry between us in the past I’m looking forward to putting one over on them! I’m also looking forward to us taking the scalp of Sheffield United to have alongside the scalps of Nottm Forest, Norwich, Leeds, Sheff Wed, Charlton and Millwall which we’ve taken over the past few seasons!
Finally, where do you honestly think you will finish?
My heart says play-offs but my head says anywhere between 12th – 15th.
As I’ve said, it all depends on whether or not we get a decent striker in or the ones we’ve already got tie their boots nice and tight…
Carlisle fans, do you agree/disagree with Aiden? Let us know and sign up to have your say in the comments section below!!!