This is one episode of a wider series. To instead start at episode one, please click here.
I don’t often open with videos (writer’s note – they are gifs, you moron), but I had to present these two moments that typified us this season.
It’s the final run in.
I look around my lovely little apartment in Oslo, have a final sip of coffee and head downstairs for the e-Golf. Did I tell you I eventually had to charge it?
I can see Jakob across the road in the restaurant, peering out into the sleepy Norwegian morning. I think to myself that it’s very early for him to be at work already, but then as I go to give him a wave, I realise he has arrived so early, solely to scowl at me through the restaurant windows he is clearly pretending to painstakingly clean as I leave for work. I’ve let Lillestrøm down.
This could be it. Could we silence the media and hit our stride in the final weeks of the season, unveiling my true quality as a top tier coach rather than that of my spirit animal Alan Partridge?
Gordo and I tried to explain to Mr ChriJo (Lillestrøm chairman) that the fact that the first Kristiansund goalscorer’s name was “Bye” on the day that we might have to leave the club for good was hysterically ironic. He didn’t see the funny side. I tried to then say that for the goal he “Bendik like Beckham.” He laughed even less at that.
On a lighter note, the Varbergs party continues back over in Sweden as they smash records and gain promotion.
Back to business, I have a job to keep.
I was let off the last time, surely I would need to either win this match or that really would be that?
Again I visit ChriJo and tell him how much of pivotal moment gaining a point will be. How this is the turning point. It doesn’t impress him, so I try humour again and mention the below.
In an incredible shock to absolutely no one, the media are again reporting that I am perched on the edge of a cliff wearing John Terry’s boots from the Moscow Champions League Final.
We see out the 30 game league season with more losses, morale continuing to plummet.
The curtain comes down on the final game, and an absolutely exhausting campaign draws to a close. I joined part-way through the season remember. Would the board possibly give me my contracted chance to bring the mighty Lillestrøm back up again? My 15% win percentage and rock bottom 16th place finish would not suggest so. What a horrible season.
I keep my job!
What a relief. I truly hoped I’d get a full season to sort these boys out and get them playing better football. I stand by my decision to come to Norway, and even though my old team have just been promoted to the top tier in Sweden as I experience relegation to the second tier here, I am convinced it was the right move at the right time.
Well, you’ll have to excuse me, I have a iconic Norwegian footballing establishment to rebuild to go again for another season. By the skin of my teeth.
In the next post, I have a feeling that the winds of change at the club will have blown fairly strongly, and we might need a “transfer special.” How exciting.
Thanks for reading.