Steve Tilson opens up on Imps’ spell ahead of Southend Utd clash

Courtesy Graham Burrell

Steve Tilson has revealed what he believes to be one of the key factors in the Imps 2011 relegation, after discussing his future with the Echo News today.

Tilson is a self-confessed Southend fan who is widely regarded as one of their best-ever managers. Imps’ fans find it odd he’s held in such high regards at Roots Hall, having become one of our worst-ever managers.

He’ll be rooting for his hometown club this weekend when they visit Sincil Bank, but the last time they came he was in the dugout plotting their downfall. The 2-1 victory in March 2011 proved to be our last win in the Football League that season as we endured relegation on the final day.

Tilson believes that both him and assistant Paul Brush worked as hard as they could, but blamed loan players leaving for the eventual drop into the Blue Square Premier.

“I went up with Paul (Brush) and everyone knows how hard we work and we tried everything we could but it just didn’t work unfortunately,” said Tilson.

“We brought in some loan players who did really well but once they went back we had to bring others back in who were a bit disgruntled they hadn’t got a chance ahead of the loan players. There wasn’t the money there to pay up players and people didn’t want to go there to play at that point so it was tough.

Delroy Facey v Southend in 2011 – Courtesy of Graham Burrell

“We ended up getting relegated and there was just nothing we could do because we really did try everything.”

Whilst one can see the issues Tilson faced; he lost the likes of Trevor Carson and Stephen Hunt after successful loan spells, his comments also dodge a few other questions.

For instance, why was he still a failure after the relegation, when his own players were brought in to bolster the squad? Also, who is he talking about when he mentions disgruntled players? He didn’t have Scott Kerr in the side, Delroy Facey had played most of the season and Danny Hone was kept on for the following campaign.

In addition, Clarke Keltie and Joe anyon didn’t come back into the squad, Adam Watts was kept on, even Paul Green had been injured and returned immediately when fit.

It’s hard for us to feel sympathy for the former boss, even though our spell out of the league has led to unprecedented success now. Tilson does address this, saying he expects the Imps to be around the top six this season.

“They have new people in charge now and the investment is there. Danny Cowley is doing a great job to be fair to him and I fancy them to be in and around the top six this season.”

1 Comment

  1. It looked a good appointment at the time but his inexperience in the Blue Square was there for all to see.
    Why has he not managed since?
    And they didn’t try everything, as the loan players would have had some pride if he had had the management skills.
    It was embarrassing to watch and a day I will never forget.
    The worst feeling in all my 50 odd years of watching!
    Thankfully now we have brothers who have real integrity and an abundance of management skill.

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