Alan Buckley

Alan Buckley made a sensational return to Grimsby Town to help bring through the next generation of young Mariners in June 2012.

Buckley is among the select band to have passed 1,000 games as a league manager.

He has power to add to the prestigious achievement, having started in the trade at the young age of 28. Since taking charge of Walsall while still a player, Buckley's feats include winning three promotions with Grimsby Town.

His three spells at Blundell Park spanned over 10 years - and the Mariners were never relegated during that time.

Striker Buckley was Walsall's record goalscorer - with 202 in all competitions - and also their most expensive signing when he returned to the club for £175,000 after a stint with Birmingham.

He took over the Saddlers' reins in 1979 following a spell as caretaker and subsequently led them to the semi-finals of the League Cup with Arsenal beaten along the way.

After a brief tenure with Kettering, Alan was appointed by Grimsby. He lifted the unfashionable Cleethorpes outfit from the basement, winning successive promotions in 1990 and 1991.

Buckley moved to manage West Bromwich Albion before being invited back to Blundell Park in the summer of 1997. The team had just been relegated to the third tier but he delivered promotion in his first season - via the play-offs in the second of two Wembley appearances. Grimsby also won the Football League trophy (sponsored by Autowindscreens) that year.

Alan was dismissed in 2000 but, after short stays with Lincoln and Rochdale, he rejoined Grimsby in November, 2006 to stave off the threat of relegation from the Football League.

The Mariners made another Wembley trip under Buckley's command in 2008 when they were beaten by MK Dons in the final of the Johnstone's Paints Trophy. He left the club later that year but is keen to extend a football journey that started as a youngster with Nottingham Forest and saw him pass the 1,000 game managerial mark as early as 2003.

Honours (2)
  • personal-awards
    • Rochdale:
      • Inducted into LMA Hall of Fame 1000 Club, (2003-01-01)
  • domestic-trophies
    • Grimsby Town:
      • Auto Windscreen Shield Winners, (1998-04-19)
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