Club Records - Managers - Kevin Dillon

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Born: 18.12.59, Sunderland.
Managerial Tenure: 9.11.09 to date.
First Game: v Macclesfield Town (H), League 2, 14.11.09.

Kevin was a hard-tackling, ball-playing midfielder, who possessed great vision and was an expert at set-pieces.

He began his career as an apprentice at Birmingham City, signed full pro forms in July 1977 and made his Blues debut against Leicester City four months later, a game in which he became the last player given a debut by ex-England manager Sir Alf Ramsey. Club and player experienced relegation from Division 1 in 1978-79, but bounced back immediately by virtue of a third-place finish the following season; a run to the quarter-finals of the League Cup (where they were beaten by Liverpool) was enjoyed by the Blues in the 1980-81 season along with Kevin making his sole England under-21 appearance (against Romania).

Kevin left St.Andrews in March 1983 and a few eyebrows were raised when (after making 186 league appearances) he dropped two divisions to join high-flying Portsmouth for a fee of £200,000. However, he assisted in the final push to winning that season’s Division 3 title and was then an integral part of the Pompey sides that finished in fourth place in division 2 in both 1984-85 and 1985-86 (promotion in the former season being missed by virtue of goal difference). Kevin grabbed a piece of personal glory in the 1986-87 season, when scoring a hat-trick of penalties against Millwall in a Full Members’ Cup tie in the November. He also greatly contributed to promotion to Division 1 finally being achieved that season when the Fratton Park club finished as runners-up to Derby County, thus returning to the top flight after a 29-year absence. Unfortunately, that return lasted but one season, with their nineteenth-place finish signalling relegation; in fact, they only avoided a second successive relegation in 1988-89 by two places.

Having made 206 league appearances for Pompey, July 1989 saw Kevin move back to his native north east when he signed for Newcastle United, who were managed by his ex-Portsmouth boss Jim Smith; he was appointed captain on his arrival and, in his first season there, helped them attain a third-place finish in Division 2 before succumbing to an aggregate defeat to bitter rivals (and his hometown club) Sunderland in the play-off semi-finals; the Mackems’ team that day included Gary Owers, who would become Kevin’s assistant at Aldershot nearly 20 years later.

Kevin moved back down south in the summer of 1991 when he joined Reading on a free transfer and his three years (and 100 league starts) with the Royals culminated in the winning of the Division 2 title in 1993-94. He left Elm Park in the summer of 1994 and played for Stevenage Borough, Yeovil Town (with whom he was relegated from the Conference in 1994-95) and Fareham Town (for whom he played four games) before retiring at the end of the 1996-97 campaign.

Throughout his entire career, Kevin made 549 + 15 Football League appearances, scoring 64 goals.

He returned to Reading in 1995 and held a number of roles within the club’s academy and reserve set-ups as well as gaining his UEFA “B”, “A” and youth licenses. He replaced Martin Allen as Alan Pardew’s assistant in November 2001 and the management duo guided the Royals to finishing as runners-up to Brighton and Hove Albion in the 2001-02 season, thus gaining promotion to Division 1. A fourth-place finish and a subsequent defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers followed in the 2002-03 play-off semi-finals before Pardew resigned in September 2003, with Kevin stepping in as caretaker boss; he also gained a degree in applied management from Warwick University around that time.

Following Steve Coppell’s appointment as Pardew’s successor, Kevin reverted back to his role as number two and (having gained his UEFA Pro License in 2004) ably assisted the club’s rise, with their greatest achievement being the winning of the Championship title in 2005-06 with a Football League record 106 points and, with it, Reading’s progression to the top tier of English football for the first time in their history. A phenomenal 2006-07 saw the Royals finish an amazing eighth in the FA Premier League, but the dream ended at the end of the 2007-08 campaign as they were relegated by virtue of their eighteenth-place finish. By the summer of 2009, Coppell had decided to call “time” on his tenure at the Madejski Stadium, a move that also signalled the end of Kevin’s association with the club.

Following a spell scouting for Watford, he was appointed as Aldershot Town’s manager in November 2009, with his connections with “the old enemy”, i.e. Reading, polarising the fans. Kevin instilled new-found discipline into the squad and, by way of a few minor “tweaks”, soon won over the majority of his “doubters”. By the end of the campaign, the Shots had over-achieved by finishing sixth and qualifying for the play-offs, where they lost to Rotherham United in the two-legged semi-final.

Although the first full season in charge started positively the club Kevin was unable to build on the success of the previous season and alongside his Assistant Gary Owers left the club by mutual consent on 10th January 2011.

Picture Gallery

Kevin Dillon
In the home dugout
Assessing the situation with Gary Owers
Day one as Kevin names his right hand man
The boss looks on
In the dug out at Cheltenham Town
Instructions in a must win home match versus Lincoln City to reach the play offs
Instructions in a must win home match versus Lincoln City to reach the play offs
More instructions as the Fourth Official looks on
A great draw in the FA Cup at Brentford in November 2010
Not happy with events versus Bury in 2010/11
In discussion with former Portsmouth colleague and ex Aldershot Assistant Manager Martin Kuhl when Wycombe Wanderers arrived in town in September 2010
In the sun versus Wycombe
Northampton Town at the EBB in 2010/11
In my view at Shrewsbury Town
At Accrington Stanley on the opening day of the 2010/11 season
Glen Little signs on the dotted line

Attached Documents