Plans for the start of the new season were well laid before Motherwell and Celtic took centre stage at Hampden in May. Developments on and off the field were revealed as the summer sun shone on Fir Park.
In June five arrivals were announced (Mark Gillespie, Liam Donnelly, Danny Johnson, Alex Rodriguez-Gorrin and Aaron Taylor-Sinclair. Later Christian Mbulu signed on for a year while Conor Sammon and Tom Aldred would join on loan. The significant departure was that of Cédric Kipré. The big defender had been transformed in a season from an ungainly trialist to a transfer target and he joined Wigan for a fee reported to be close to £1M. It was a terrific piece of business for the club.
Lots more posters here.
Gone was the old season book as we played catch-up with technology. Eticketing had arrived along with a revamped website. The media boys continued to impress as they increased the visibility of the club with every tool at their disposal.
As the year ended the financial windfall from the previous season was revealed. The cup runs together with player sales produced a profit of £1.7M for the year ended May 2018. This was by some margin the best year’s trading in the history of MFC. At the AGM in December Jim McMahon explained that the board was undertaking a root and branch examination of every aspect of the club’s operation to ensure the future sustainability of the fan owned enterprise.
A new scoreboard shone its light over the renewed pitch complete with a new irrigation system. Astroturf run off areas were installed and the perimeter wall in front of the Phil O'Donnell stand disappeared.
Business on the pitch started with a Betfred Cup win over Edinburgh City and the league season opened with a loss at Easter Road. The first point of the new campaign came with a stirring 3-3 draw against Rangers at the end of August. It was a reminder of the spirit show often shown earlier in the year.
A win against Dundee followed before we produced a horrible run that saw us knocked out of the League Cup at Tynecastle and drop into the relegation zone with only one point from five attempts. Back to back wins over fellow strugglers St Mirren and Dundee offered respite but a 7-1 thrashing at Ibrox halted progress.
An unexpected home win over Aberdeen led us into a busy December. Eight games tested the squad almost to breaking point but a win in Perth and a joyous win at New Douglas Park had us almost comfortable in ninth place at the year end. It turned out that Dundee, St Mirren and Hamilton were poorer than us.
Heads up v Livingston
Stephen Robinson has spoken much about the need to strength our attack. We will watch with fingers crossed that the opportunity offered in the forthcoming transfer window delivers a few more goals in 2019.