It started with so much optimism – but the 2019-20 season did not go according to plan for Boro’. And that was true in many more ways than one. Dino Maamria prepared for his second full season at the helm by making more changes than perhaps expected; out went 12 players from the previous campaign’s squad – including Alex Revell, who was hanging up his boots. The recruitment process, however, suggests it was part of a bigger plan.
As far as the league goes, there was only one new face to contend with; Salford City up from the National League. And it would be at Salford that we’d start our campaign live on Sky. We’re not sure if it was ‘cos our kit design choice got tongues wagging. Or was it the somewhat famous owners that Salford had at the time?
Both in the FA Cup and League Cup, Boro’ fell at the first hurdle – though, in the former, we went to a replay with an in-form Peterborough United side before our run came to its end. There was, to be fair, some joy in the Leasing.com Trophy. For the first time, Boro’ made it through to the knockout stages. Which is something, isn’t it?
It kinda has to be, given our awful run of form in the league that had seen us win fewer matches than we’d had men in charge by the start of March. A relegation dogfight was unavoidable and it seemed, for much of the second half of the campaign, that a return to non-league action was inevitable. Except that second half of the 2019-20 campaign came to quite an abrupt end; a global pandemic curtailing the season and forcing the authorities to find a solution to settle on-pitch affairs. It’d have a major impact on us.