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Factfile: Our new boss

26 March 2013

Nigel Adkins profiled

Our new boss in bullet points:

- Born in Birkenhead on 11th March 1965.

- As a player, Adkins was a goalkeeper who, after learning his trade as a schoolboy at Liverpool during the Bob Paisley era at Anfield, began his professional career with local side Tranmere in 1983.

- He became Rovers’ youngest goalkeeper at the age of 17 and played 86 times for Rovers before moving to Wigan three years later, where he made a total of 155 more appearances as the Latics’ number one.

- His playing career was hindered by injuries and cut short when he suffered a double spinal fracture. 

- Adkins had ambitions to become a manager from a very young age, having first coached a Sunday league side at the age of 16, leading Renbad Rangers from the fourth Division to the Premier Division of the Birkenhead Sunday League. 

- Having gained a degree in physiotherapy from the University of Salford at the end of his playing days, Adkins joined Scunthorpe United as a physiotherapist in 1996. In that position he remained for ten years.

- He began goalkeeping coaching alongside his role as physiotherapist at Scunthorpe United.

- As a manager, Adkins earned his first role as boss of League of Wales outfit Bangor City in 1993, leading the Welsh side to back-to-back title wins and a League Cup Final in his first two years at the Farrar Road – helping the club qualify for Europe on each occasion.

- In November 2006, he took over from Sheffield Wednesday-bound Brian Laws at Glanford Park, handed the permanent role the following month after leading the Iron to two wins and a draw during his caretaker spell.

- His attractive brand of high-tempo, possession-based football saw the Scunthorpe fans swiftly warm to Adkins. United lost just three league matches that season and, after an Adkins-inspired 19-game unbeaten run, they ended the 2006/7 campaign as League One champions with 91 points. He had ended Scunthorpe’s absence of more than 40 years from the second tier.

- Forced to sell his star striker Billy Sharp for a record £2million the following season, Scunthorpe’s stay in the Championship was short-lived. But the chants from the Glanford Park stands continued to ring out…”Who needs Mourinho? We've got our physio!” and Adkins took Scunthorpe to Wembley twice the following year, once for the Football League Trophy final and secondly to take his sixth-placed side back up with a 3-2 play-off final win over Millwall in 2009. 

- Adkins proved he was capable of a survival fight the following season, keeping Scunthorpe in the second tier.

- He beat Brian McDermott’s Reading at Madejski Stadium on the opening day of the 2010/11 campaign.

- He replaced former Royals boss Alan Pardew at Southampton on 12th September 2010.

- He brought through Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain at St Mary’s and, in the final two months of the 2010/11 season, the Saints won  nine of their last ten to secure automatic promotion back to the Championship with a 3-1 win at Plymouth on 2nd May 2011.

- In the process, his Saints side achieved a club record number of clean sheets, previously set by at 19 by a defence marshalled by Peter Shilton in the early 80s.

- He signed a new four and a half year contract and in his first full season as Southampton manager he earned a successive promotion, returning the south-coasters to the top flight.

- That success included a win against Hull on 29th November which saw the club earn its 21st consecutive home win and set a new record, levelling Bill Shankly’s 40-year-old record for consecutive home wins whilst in the top flight with Liverpool.

- Only Rotherham United, with 22 in 1947, and Bradford Park Avenue with 25 in 1928, have ever recorded more home victories on the bounce, and both those clubs played in the old Third Division North at the time. Incidentally, Jose Mourinho only managed a mere 13 straight home wins whilst with Chelsea, while Sir Alex Ferguson has only mustered 19 on the trot.

- Southampton occupied a top two position from start to finish that season and sealed promotion the Barclays Premier League with a 4-0 win over Coventry City on the final day of the season – back-to-back promotions for Adkins.

- Has won four promotions in total in his six and a half seasons as a manager in English football.

- Has managed in 323 Football and Premier League matches in total, winning 150 matches in total to earn a win percentage of 46%.

Managerial record:
 - Bangor City P116 W74 D18 L24 Win 64%
- Scunthorpe United P199 W83 D44 L72 Win 42%
- Southampton P124 W67 D25 L32 Win 54%

- Since leaving Southampton, he has been travelling around a host of European clubs observing training methods at clubs such as Thorsten Fink’s Hamburg.

- He is 6’1”. He has also earned a diploma in psychology.

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