Ramsbottom United welcome back former managers Bernard Morley and Anthony Johnson as they bring their new club CHESTER FC to the Harry Williams Riverside Stadium for a pre-season friendly on Tuesday 10th July.
Surprisingly shown the door at “Class of ‘92”-led Salford City having delivered three promotions in 4 years, the former Ramsbottom players and managers joined relegated Chester this summer with the aim of transforming the struggling former Football League club, a target which should be within their reach considering their successful time in football management.
Appointed by Rams Chairman Harry Williams in time for the 2009/10 season whilst the club was still in the North West Counties league, the duo, dubbed “The Morecambe and Wise of football management” by Williams, looked like proving him right when they lost their first game in charge 0-5. But from such a disappointing start to life in the dug-out, two promotions soon followed with the Rams playing in Evo-Stik Premier when the ambitious Salford club came calling in January 2015.
Morley and Johnson dropped down a division but three promotions followed as the unfashionable Ammies matched the clubs ambitions off the pitch by racing through the leagues to gain promotion to non-league’s top flight in April.
At this point the duo were jettisoned by the hierarchy at Moor Lane, much to the disgust of many within football (a scant reward for all the success they had brought to the club), but as expected they were not out of the game for long as Chester came calling, looking for them to reverse the fortunes of the Deva Stadium outfit after some trouble-some years.
Never ones to forget their roots, Bernard and Jonno are regular visitors to the Harry Williams Riverside Stadium, and keep in constant touch with their mentor and former Chairman.
As such, they were instrumental in arranging this pre-season game, and their return to their “home” will be warmly welcomed by the Rammy supporters, who forever hold a place in their hearts for the local duo.
Meanwhile on the same evening, Ramsbottom United will also be sending a strong team over to former rivals Burscough, currently plying their trade in the North West Counties League.