Law oversaw major changes at Fortwilliam Park

TOBERMORE United were dealt a huge blow last week when manager Johnny Law announced that he was leaving the club to join Oran Kearney and join his backroom staff at Coleraine FC.

Law first joined the Fortwilliam Park outfit in January 2009 and admitted at the time that his sole objective was to keep the Tobermore in the Championship 1.

Johnny Law left Glebe Rangers to take over the reigns from Aidy McLaughlin.

In what was the inaugural season of the newly formed Championship, Tobermore failed to stay up despite the best efforts of Law. Tobermore were joined by Dergview and Mid Ulster rivals Killymoon Rangers in dropping down to the Championship 2.

Law set about revamping his squad and by the time he eventually left Tobermore, every single one of the first team squad had been brought in by the former Glebe Rangers manager.

The disappointment of relegation continued to linger around United in 2009/2010 season as they finished in a mid table position. Nonetheless Law led United to Craig Memorial success, which made up for the disappointment of not making a swift return to the second tier.

However, the 2010/2011 was a major turning point for the club. United finished the season in second place behind newcomer Warrenpoint Town and on their way to promotion scored 67 goals and conceded only 36.

A point gained on the last day of the season at home to Armagh led to celebrations at Fortwilliam Park, as they celebrated their return to the Championship 2. However, United were unable to defend their Craig Memorial title as they lost out to Limavady in a tense final.

After an intensive pre season campaign which included a visit from Linfield, Tobermore got off to a rip roaring start in the Championship 1. On the opening day they hammered Limavady United and followed it up with an impressive win away to Banbridge.

Their winning start to the season came to an abrupt halt as Ballinamallard left Fortwilliam Park with all three points.

Law once again lead Tobermore to the Craig Memorial Cup final where for the second season in a row they were defeated. This time they lost out on penalties to Institute.

Johnny Law saw Tobermore lose his final game in charge as they bowed out of the Intermediate Cup to Cliftonville Olympic at Solitude.

The former Glebe manager admitted that the attraction of being involved with his boyhood club was too much to resist and he accepted the role as Reserve team manager at the Coleraine Showgrounds.

Law is also heavily involved with Coleraine youth side Bertie Peacock Youth and stated that he would be hoping to help players from the youth teams in the area progress into the senior ranks of Coleraine FC.

Despite the obvious disappointment of his departure, Tobermore wasted no time in placing his charge one of his coaches, Oliver McAuley in control of the first team at Fortwilliam Park.

The supporters of Tobermore United will no doubt look upon the era of Johnny Law has a hugely successful one at the club. He over saw a transformation in the first team as he totally revamped the squad with a mix of youth and experience. In addition Law was at helm for their famous Craig Memorial Cup win and helped to get the club back into the Championship 1.