2008–09 Oldham Athletic A.F.C. season
|Manager|| John Sheridan
(until 15 March 2009)
(15 March – 2 May 2009)
(as of 30 April 2009)
|Football League One||10th|
|Carling Cup||Second Round|
|FA Cup||First Round|
|Johnstone's Paint Trophy||First Round|
Lee Hughes (18)
Lee Hughes (18)
|Highest home attendance||8,901 vs Leicester City
(18 October 2008)
|Lowest home attendance||3,936 vs Walsall
(25 November 2008)
|Average home league attendance||5,636|
- 1 Review
- 2 Squad statistics
- 3 Transfers
- 4 Awards
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Pre-season and friendlies
Oldham Athletic was originally scheduled to play their first pre-season friendly versus Belgian First Division side, Cercle Brugge, on 15 July 2008, but the game was cancelled due to disputes between the two clubs. On 16 July, the Latics played their first friendly versus Rhyl of the Welsh Premier League at Belle Vue. Oldham won the game 3–0 as new midfielder Danny Whitaker scored in the 71st minute. The club's next pre-season friendly was a 2–1 victory over Grimsby Town three days later. Oldham included many new transfers in the line-up, as well as Demar Phillips who was on trial from Premier League club Stoke City. Deane Smalley won the match for Oldham with a goal just five minutes before the final whistle. On 23 July, Oldham faced former-Premier League club Derby County at Boundary Park. Following a John Oster goal for Derby in the 16th minute, new striker Chris O'Grady put the Latics back level just six minutes later, with the game finishing in a 1–1 draw. Oldham once again faced Premier League competition on 29 July, as Hull City visited Boundary Park. The Latics would once again finish with a 1–1 draw, following goals from Caleb Folan for Hull and Lewis Alessandra for Oldham. The following day, Oldham faced Barrow at Holker Street. After two early goals, new midfielder Dale Stephens pulled Oldham back to 2–1 in the 17th minute, though Jason Walker scored his second of the game as Oldham lost their first match of the pre-season. Oldham's final pre-season friendly was on 2 August versus Bradford City. Omar Daley of Bradford City scored the only goal of the game, giving Bradford City a 1–0 victory over Oldham in both clubs's final pre-season games.
|Date||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|16 July 2008||Rhyl||A||3 – 0||Davies 31', Whitaker 71', Alessandra 82'||672|
|19 July 2008||Grimsby Town||A||2 – 1||Davies 31', Smalley||N/A|
|23 July 2008||Derby County||H||1 – 1||O'Grady 22'||1,745|
|29 July 2008||Hull City||H||1 – 1||Alessandra 70'||N/A|
|30 July 2008||Barrow||A||1 – 3||Stephens 17'||480|
|2 August 2008||Bradford City||A||0 – 1||N/A|
Oldham was at home to face Millwall for their first league game of the 2008–09 season. Oldham found themselves down within 1–3 early into the second half. After Andy Liddell scored from a penalty kick in the 74th minute, Lewis Alessandra and Chris Taylor scored twice in the final ten minutes to earn Oldham a 4–3 victory after being down by two goals. In mid-August, Oldham traveled to Elland Road to face Leeds United. Following a 0–0 halftime draw, Chris Taylor scored after a little more than five minutes following the restart. His second came in the 65th minute when he scored from a curler from 18 yards out from goal—giving Oldham 2–0 victory. Following a 2–0 victory over Leeds, Oldham was back at Boundary Park to face Cheltenham Town. Lee Hughes would give Oldham their first of the game shortly before halftime whistle. Shortly after the restart, Hughes would score his second of the game before netting his third in the 62nd minute. Danny Whitaker added Oldham's fourth of the game in the 85th minute for a 4–0 victory, sending Oldham to top of the table. After an impressive 4–0 rout of Cheltenham Town, Oldham was set to face middle-of-the-table Colchester United at Weston Homes Community Stadium. Mark Yeates gave the home side a 1–0 lead heading into the break, before grabbing his second in the 63rd minute. But in less than 60 seconds, Chris Taylor scored his 4th of the season to bring Oldham back to 2–1 down before Deane Smalley grabbed a goal shortly before full time—giving Oldham a 2–2 draw.
Oldham dropped to second place in League One following the 2–2 draw to start September, and was again on the road as they faced Tranmere Rovers. The only goal came in the 35th minute, when Reuben Hazell headed in a goal after a cross from Neal Eardley. The game was played at a quick pace for most of the day as a total of 10 yellow cards were shown, but Oldham held out for a 1–0 win. On 13 September, Oldham was back at home to face 2007–08 League Two champions, Milton Keynes Dons. Lee Hughes didn't wait long to get the scoring started as he gave Oldham a 1–0 lead by scoring in the 8th minute. Despite seven shots on target, MK Dons could not get a goal past goalkeeper Mark Crossley before Mark Allott grabbed Oldham's second and final goal in the 95th minute. Oldham battled Hartlepool United on 20 September for their seventh league game of the season. Lee Hughes and Chris Taylor gave Oldham a solid 2–0 lead heading into the halftime break. Hartlepool battled back hard in the opening moments of the second half, scoring three times in first ten minutes of the second half with goals from Andy Monkhouse, Antony Sweeney, and Joel Porter. In the 58th minute, Taylor scored Oldham's third of the game as the two teams finished the game with a 3–3 draw. Again at home, Oldham faced off against 15th-place Huddersfield. Ian Craney scored his second in five games, giving the visitors an early 1–0 lead in the 29th minute. An Andy Liddell free kick early in the second half would be enough, as the game ended with a 1–1 draw.
The Latics began the month of October in first place, where they had remained for most of the season. Oldham played a Friday night match versus local rival Stockport County, who sat in 7th place at the time. Oldham controlled the first half of the match, as an Andy Liddell goal in the 24th minute gave them a 1–0 halftime lead. However, Stockport dominated the second half, scoring three goals en route to giving Oldham their first defeat of the season. An 82nd minute goal from Stockport defender Michael Raynes secured the victory, as the Hatters defeated Oldham 3–1. After dropping to third place, Oldham looked to regain the top spot in the league versus Hereford United. Lee Hughes got the action started quickly, scoring his fourth goal in the fifth minute of the game. Oldham continued their early pressure against the Hereford defence, which included Hughes earning Oldham a penalty kick after he was taken down in the area by Frenchman Bruno N'Gotty—with Andy Liddell converting on the penalty to give Oldham a 2–0 advantage. Wolves loaned defender Daniel Jones netted in the 36th minute for the Latics, giving the home side a 3–0 lead at the halftime break. Stephen O'Leary picked up a yellow card in the 81st minute for taking down Jones with a bad challenge, and was sent off only a minute later, forcing Hereford to play out the final minutes with only ten men. Danny Whitaker took advantage of the sending off, netting the final goal in the 90th. Oldham played their third game of the month on 18 October against Leicester. A lackluster first half of action led to scoreless action until the 54th minute, when a Steve Howard header gave the visitors a 1–0 lead. Danny Whitaker equalised a quarter hour later, earning a 1–1 draw as Oldham maintained an unbeaten home record. Three days later, Oldham traveled to Memorial Stadium to face Bristol Rovers. A solid attack was stifled by Rovers goalkeeper Steve Phillips, who stopped all seven shots that were on target. Rickie Lambert netted his 11th goal of the season in the 16th minute, which led the way to a Chris Lines goal in the 35th minute. Phillips and Oldham's Mark Crossley both kept out the opposition for the remainder of the match, as Oldham dropped their second consecutive away match. For their second straight away match, Oldham faced Swindon Town who sat in 18th place in League One. Oldham looked to be in control in the first 20 minutes of the match, putting pressure on Swindon's net without any success. Shortly after their barrage on the goal, defender Sean Morrison scored for Swindon. A handball in the penalty area by Lee Hughes gave Swindon the opportunity to net another in the 34th minute, which was converted by Jack Smith to double Swindon's lead. The ball was bogged down in midfielder for second half, as neither side put pressure on goal—letting Swindon wrap up their third home victory of the season. A Lewis Alessandra assured that Oldham would end October on a high note, as the striker scored his first hat trick in a 3–0 victory over Scunthorpe United. The 19-year-old led Oldham struck first in the 26th, before quickly earning his hat trick in the second half with goals in the 50th and 60th minutes. Oldham's 3–0 win over the Iron was Scunthorpe's first loss since 16 October, and helped the Latics move to 4th place in the league to end October.
After struggling through October, Oldham started November at home against Yeovil Town who was coming off consecutive scoreless draws. It appeared it could have been three consecutive scoreless matches for Yeovil when the two teams were left without goals at halftime. Aaron Brown capitalised from a deep free kick, ending his side's goal drought to give the visitors a 1–0 lead. Ex-Oldham player Paul Warne grabbed another goal for the Glovers three minutes later from hesitant play by Neal Eardley. Oldham was unable to get a ball past goalkeeper Asmir Begović, who secured a 2–0 victory for Yeovil and gave the Latics their first home loss since March 2008. After a 2–2 draw in the FA Cup, the Latics faced Northampton Town on 15 November. Oldham had several chances in the first half including a shot by Lee Hughes which was an apparent early goal, though he was flagged by the official for offsides. With a quarter of an hour left in the match, Hughes was cut down in the box to give Andy Liddell a chance to give the Latics a lead. Liddell easily converted on the spot-kick, sending Frank Fielding the wrong way. Despite the 1–0 victory, the game ended on a bad note as Hughes was sent off with his second yellow card. At Roots Hall, Southend United was just once beaten in their previous thirteen home games. James Walker tried to help him side continue the streak as he smashed the ball past Mark Crossley from point-blank range for a 1–0 Southend advantage. Chris Taylor pulled Oldham back on level terms with a 67th minute header, before Hughes scored his seventh of the season to give Oldham a 2–1 victory. Three days later, Oldham faced off against Walsall at home. Mark Allott started the scoring early, grabbing an early 1–0 lead for Oldham from a deflected shot. Michael Ricketts, a former Oldham striker, struck back in 23rd minute with a goal before Alex Nicholls gave the visitors a 2–1 advantage. Shortly before the halftime whistle, Hughes scored his 8th goal of the season which put the two sides on level terms at the break. With the game looking like a sure draw, Hughes grabbed another goal in the 89th minute as Oldham moved up to 4th place to end November.
To begin the final month of 2008, Oldham was at home to play Brighton & Hove Albion. Oldham started the match quickly when Adam Virgo brought down Chris Taylor in the penalty box, allowing Andy Liddell to covert a spot-kick for a 1–0 Latics advantage in the 9th minute. However, Steven Thomson slid a ball past the Oldham defence to Glenn Murray who fired a shot into the roof of the net, putting the Seagulls back level at 1–1. Adam Virgo, who received a yellow card for his tackle of Taylor, received a second in the 48th minute and was sent off. Despite having only ten men, the Brighton defence frustrated the Latics, holding on for a 1–1 draw. A week later, the Latics traveled to face Peterborough United at London Road Stadium. This game was again off to a quick start, however, it was the opposition who struck first. A shot from Aaron McLean in the 12th minute deflected off Latics defender Stefan Stam, giving Peterborough a 1–0 lead. Eight minutes before the halftime break, McLean extended the lead with another goal with a rebound from a spot-kick, shortly after having another spot-kick saved by Oldham goalkeeper Greg Fleming. After several comebacks throughout the season, Oldham again showed their intentions when Lee Hughes poked the ball into the opposition's net for a 2–1 halftime lead for Peterborough. Just before the hour mark, Hughes again scored when he put a loose ball into the net. With several more chances for both sides, the game ended with a 2–2 draw. After two consecutive draws, Oldham was set to face Leyton Orient. Despite early efforts from Danny Whitaker and Darren Byfield, Oldham was unable to net an early goal. A Leyton Orient goal looked possible when Adam Chambers got a rebound twelve yards out, but the midfielder sent the ball high over the net. After Byfield was pulled down in the penalty area by Tamika Mkandawire, Andy Liddell struck his 8th goal of the season via a penalty kick for a 1–0 halftime advantage. Near the midway point of the second half, Greg Fleming gave Orient a chance to get back on level terms when he fouled Ryan Jarvis in the box. Fleming saved the penalty, but Jason Demetriou scored from a rebound, earning Leyton Orient a 1–1 draw—Oldham's third consecutive. Oldham was away to face Crewe Alexandra under new manager Gudjon Thordarson on Boxing Day. Despite struggling with an illness just days before the match, Darren Byfield was named to the starting lineup. Just before the hour mark in the match, Byfield scored his first for the club from a through back from Kelvin Lomax. The win was secured when Lee Hughes curled a ball past Stuart Tomlinson, before Hughes grabbed another five minutes before the final whistle for a 3–0 win. Two days after the Boxing Day victory, Oldham faced off against Carlisle United for the final match of 2008. Terrific play from Carlisle goalkeeper Tim Krul kept Oldham out of goal, despite giving the Latics nineteen corners. Neither side had an attacking threat until 17 minutes in when a Reuben Hazell header forced Krul into a saved shot. With nineteen total shots for the Latics, manager John Sheridan was surprised when the game ended in a scoreless draw.
|Date||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|9 August 2008||Millwall||H||4 – 3||Liddell (2) 3', 74' (pen.), Alessandra 80', Taylor 85'||5,367||5th|
|16 August 2008||Leeds United||A||2 – 0||Taylor (2) 51', 65'||24,631||2nd|
|23 August 2008||Cheltenham Town||H||4 – 0||Hughes (3) 45', 50', 62', Whitaker 85'||4,673||1st|
|30 August 2008||Colchester United||A||2 – 2||Taylor 64', Smalley 88'||4,708||2nd|
|6 September 2008||Tranmere||A||1 – 0||Hazell 35'||6,802||1st|
|13 September 2008||MK Dons||H||2 – 0||Hughes 8', Allott 95'||5,530||1st|
|20 September 2008||Hartlepool United||A||3 – 3||Hughes 23', Taylor (2) 44', 58'||4,507||1st|
|27 September 2008||Huddersfield Town||H||1 – 1||Allott 50'||7,418||1st|
|3 October 2008||Stockport County||A||1 – 3||Liddell 24'||8,360||3rd|
|12 October 2008||Hereford United||H||4 – 0||Hughes 4', Liddell 15' (pen.), Jones 36', Whitaker 90'||5,468||3rd|
|18 October 2008||Leicester City||H||1 – 1||Whitaker 69'||8,901||4th|
|21 October 2008||Bristol Rovers||A||0 – 2||6,379||5th|
|25 October 2008||Swindon Town||A||0 – 2||6,756||7th|
|28 October 2008||Scunthorpe United||H||3 – 0||Alessandra (3) 26', 50', 60'||6,057||4th|
|1 November 2008||Yeovil Town||H||0 – 2||5,318||7th|
|15 November 2008||Northampton Town||A||1 – 0||Liddell 76' (pen.)||5,067||7th|
|22 November 2008||Southend United||A||2 – 1||Taylor 67', Hughes 71'||7,041||7th|
|25 November 2008||Walsall||H||3 – 2||Allott 15', Hughes (2) 38', 89'||3,936||4th|
|6 December 2008||Brighton||H||1 – 1||Liddell 9' (pen.)||4,803||6th|
|13 December 2008||Peterborough United||A||2 – 2||Hughes (2) 40', 59'||6,219||6th|
|20 December 2008||Leyton Orient||H||1 – 1||Liddell 32' (pen.)||6,839||6th|
|26 December 2008||Crewe Alexandra||A||3 – 0||Byfield 57', Hughes (2) 68', 85'||5,780||5th|
|28 December 2008||Carlisle United||H||0 – 0||6,254||5th|
|3 January 2009||Huddersfield Town||A||1 – 1||Liddell 6'||10,950||5th|
|12 January 2009||Hartlepool United||H||2 – 1||Hughes 21', Smalley 52'||4,211||3rd|
|17 January 2009||Hereford United||A||0 – 5||3,342||5th|
|24 January 2009||Stockport County||H||3 – 1||Whitaker 3', Hughes 18', Taylor 55'||7,605||3rd|
|27 January 2009||Scunthorpe United||A||0 – 2||4,447||6th|
|31 January 2009||Swindon Town||H||0 – 0||4,712||6th|
|7 February 2009||Leicester City||A||0 – 0||22,328||5th|
|14 February 2009||Northampton Town||H||2 – 1||Hazell 8', Windass 60'||4,629||5th|
|21 February 2009||Yeovil Town||A||2 – 2||Smalley 12', Forbes 39' (o.g.)||4,130||4th|
|24 February 2009||Bristol Rovers||H||0 – 2||3,745||5th|
|28 February 2009||Millwall||A||3 – 2||Smalley 5', Hughes 10', Taylor 90+2'||8,551||4th|
|2 March 2009||Leeds United||H||1 – 1||Hughes 51'||7,835||4th|
|7 March 2009||Colchester United||H||0 – 1||4,591||5th|
|14 March 2009||Milton Keynes Dons||A||2 – 6||Maher 4', Hughes 40'||10,621||8th|
|21 March 2009||Tranmere Rovers||H||0 – 2||7,489||8th|
|24 March 2009||Cheltenham Town||A||1 – 1||Whitaker 90+4'||2,992||8th|
|28 March 2009||Leyton Orient||A||1 – 2||Whitaker 34'||4,034||9th|
|4 April 2009||Peterborough||H||1 – 2||Taylor 43'||5,083||9th|
|11 April 2009||Carlisle United||A||1 – 1||Eardley 89'||6,635||10th|
|13 April 2009||Crewe Alexandra||H||1 – 1||Hazell 41'||4,334||10th|
|18 April 2009||Brighton & Hove Albion||A||1 – 3||Alessandra 62'||6,618||10th|
|25 April 2009||Southend United||H||1 – 1||Eardley 51' (pen.)||4,830||10th|
|2 May 2009||Walsall||A||2 – 1||Smalley 44', Brooke 74'||4,807||10th|
||Qualification or relegation
Source: The Football League
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished:
(Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.
Oldham's 2008–09 Carling Cup campaign began at near neighbours Rochdale. Craig Davies picked up his first red card of the season in the 45th minute following a clash with Nathan Stanton. Though Rochdale had a one man advantage for the second half, the game was still level at 0–0 following regular time and extra time. Neal Eardley, Chris Taylor, and Danny Whitaker converted on penalties to put Oldham up 3–1 before Lee Hughes scored the fourth to give Oldham the victory over Rochdale. For their second game, the Latics were once again away—this time to Burnley at Turf Moor, and Greg Fleming made his debut for the club in goal. The visitors found themselves down 1–0 early to Burnley after a Chris McCann goal in the 12th minute. After just over an hour played, Martin Paterson extended Burnley's lead to 2–0, before getting another in the 79th to secure a 3–0 victory.
|Date||Round||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|12 August 2008||First Round||Rochdale||A||0 – 0
(4 – 1 p)
|26 August 2008||Second Round||Burnley||A||0 – 3||5,528|
Johnstone's Paint Trophy
Oldham faced League Two side Morecambe in the first round of the 2008–09 Johnstone's Paint Trophy. Though both sides had numerous chances to take the lead in the first half, the two sides were scoreless at the halftime break. A little over ten minutes after the restart, Danny Whitaker gave Oldham a 1–0 lead in the 56th minute before Stewart Drummond equalised for Morecambe in the 65th. The two teams ended regular time level at 1–1, and after neither side could get a winning goal, they went into a penalty shootout. Following Lewis Alessandra's miss in "sudden death", Andy Parrish sent Oldham goalkeeper Greg Fleming the wrong way to give Morcambe a victory.
|Date||Round||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|2 September 2008||First Round||Morecambe||H||1 – 1
(4 – 5 p)
In the first round of the 2008–09 FA Cup, Oldham was paired against League One side Cheltenham Town. Five minutes into the opening half, Scott Murray for Cheltenham opened the scoring with a strike, getting past goalkeeper Mark Crossley. The Robins gained a 2–0 halftime advantage when Lloyd Owusu earned and converted a penalty kick, getting it past the fingertips of Crossley. The Latics got a goal back when Chris Taylor's free kick was deflected by Cheltenham goalkeeper Shane Higgs, with the rebound falling immediately back to Taylor. In the 76th minute, Danny Whitaker equalised the game at 2–2 when a deflected shot crept into the corner of the net. A late robins shot from substitute Damian Spencer hit the post at the end of the match, but Oldham held on for a draw—forcing a replay at Boundary Park. In the replay, an early 22nd minute shot from Lewis Montrose proved enough for Cheltenham to advance to the second round, and knock out Oldham for the fourth time in FA Cup history. Despite 17 shots to Cheltenham's three, Oldham could not muster a goal against Scott Brown. Shortly before the halftime break, Oldham was dealt a blow when Deane Smalley picked up an injury—giving Matthew Wolfenden his first senior appearance of the season. Shortly before the final whistle, Kieran Lee almost equalised with a diving header, but the ball rolled past the far post.
|Date||Round||Opponents||H / A||Result
F – A
|8 November 2008||First Round||Cheltenham Town||A||2 – 2||Taylor 49', Whitaker 79'||2,585|
|17 November 2008||First Round
|Cheltanham Town||H||0 – 1||2,552|
|No.||Pos.||Name||League||FA Cup||Carling Cup||FL Trophy||Total||Discipline|
|16||MF||Sean Gregan (c)||37(2)||0||2||0||1||0||0||0||40(2)||0||6||1|
|2009-05-26||MF||Jon Worthington||Huddersfield Town||Free|
|2009-06-18||DF||Joe Jacobson||Bristol Rovers||Free|
|2009-02-02||FW||Craig Davies||Brighton & Hove Albion||Undisclosed|
|Date From||Date To||Pos||Name||Loaned from|
|2008-10-16||2008-11-16||FW||Brett Ormerod||Preston North End|
|2009-01-10||2009-03-16||FW||Dean Windass||Hull City|
|2009-02-02||End of 2008–09 season||DF||Daniel Jones||Wolverhampton|
|2009-02-14||2009-03-16||GK||Jan Budtz||Hartlepool United|
|2009-03-18||2009-04-18||GK||Shane Supple||Ipswich Town|
|2009-03-19||End of 2008–09 season||MF||Ian Westlake||Cheltenham Town|
|Date From||Date To||Pos||Name||Loaned to|
|2008-10-17||2009-01-03||DF||John Thompson||Notts County|
|2008-10-30||End of 2008–09 season||MF||Jean-Paul Kalala||Grimsby Town|
|2008-11-01||2008-12-30||FW||Craig Davies||Stockport County|
|2009-01-02||2009-02-03||FW||Chris O'Grady||Bradford City|
|2009-02-02||End of 2008–09 season||FW||Chris O'Grady||Stockport County|
|2009-03-26||End of 2008–09 season||FW||Lee Hughes||Blackpool|
League One Team of the Week
The following Oldham Athletic players have appeared on the official Football League One team of the week.
- 18 August 2008: Chris Taylor, Reuben Hazell
- 26 August 2008: Lee Hughes
- 16 September 2008: Mark Crossley
- 6 October 2008: Chris Taylor
- 13 October 2008: Andy Liddell
- 20 October 2008: Sean Gregan
- 17 November 2008: Chris Taylor, Kelvin Lomax
- 29 December 2008: Lee Hughes
- 26 January 2009: Chris Taylor
- 9 February 2009: Sean Gregan, Dean Windass
- 2 March 2009: Deane Smalley
League One Team of the Year
Each season, the club allows fans to vote on several awards, including Oldham's Player of the Year and the Colin Shaw Memorial Trophy, which goes to the Young Player of the Year.
- Fans' Player of the Year: Reuben Hazell
- Colin Shaw Memorial Trophy: Deane Smalley
- Goal of the Season: Mark Allott v Huddersfield Town, 1–1, 3 January 2009
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