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League 1 Spotlight: Shrewsbury Town

Tom Hancock profiles the Shrews.

31 July 2018

Last season’s beaten play-off finalists are settling into life after their inspirational manager Paul Hurst, who’s stepped up a division to take over at Ipswich. That said, the appointment of John Askey – who led unfancied Macclesfield to the National League title in 2017/18 – as his successor might give Shrewsbury hope that they can punch above their weight once again.

Realistically, though, 2018/19 could prove to be a case of back to reality for the Shrews. That’s not to say that they’ll find themselves in a relegation dogfight as they did the season before last, but Hurst’s departure is bound to have a marked effect.

Add to that the the fact that some of their standout performers in their run to Wembley were loanees – most notably Manchester United ‘keeper Dean Henderson – and that there have been several other changes in first team personnel, and it's fair to expect at least a little adjustment time, even if they seem to have recruited well again this so far.

Last season: 3rd in League One

In charge: John Askey
Appointed in June, Askey arrived after spending an incredible 34 years at Macclesfield as a player and coach. His two spells as first team manager came during the 2003/04 campaign – his only previous League managerial experience – and between 2013 and this year. Last season's National League title win saw the Silkmen return to the EFL after six years away. A striker in his playing days, he spent almost his entire career at Moss Rose, netting 106 goals in 490 appearances.

Star player: Jon Nolan
Nolan starred in his first campaign with Shrewsbury, capping it off by taking home two player of the season awards. With ten goals and seven assists in all competitions, the 26-year-old made a significant contribution from the heart of midfield, with his spectacular strike against Charlton sealing victory in the first leg of the play-off semi-finals. His performances have caught the attention of a number of Championship clubs, but the Shrews will be keen to keep hold of him.

Key ins: Centre-back Kieran Kennedy has followed Askey from Macclesfield, while goal-scoring winger Fejiri Okenabirhie has come in from Dagenham & Redbridge. Chelsea midfielder Charlie Colkett has come in on a season-long loan, with winger Alex Gilliead signing permanently from Newcastle. Former Wycombe forward Aaron Amadi-Holloway has arrived from Oldham following their relegation to League Two; left-back Ryan Haynes has made the switch from Coventry.

Key outs: Defensive midfielder and captain Abu Ogogo has moved to Coventry, along with left-back Junior Brown. Winger Alex Rodman has joined Bristol Rovers.

EFL head-to-head:
Meetings: 22
Wycombe wins: 8
Shrewsbury wins: 1
Draws: 13

First meeting: 30/10/1993 (League Two): Wycombe 1-1 Shrewsbury (Wycombe scorer: Keith Scott)

Last meeting: 14/03/2015 (League Two): Wycombe 1-0 Shrewsbury (scorer: Sam Wood)

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