Holt FC name new management team
Holt United have announced a new management structure which they hope will take the club forward at all levels.
The Owls have named former Reserve boss Stephen Simmons as new first team boss, with Robert Crowley his assistant. Meanwhile Eden Rudling will take charge of the second string while having a close eye on the club's long-term future in his new role of director of youth development.
Rudling will also look after the new under-18 side the club are forming along with assistant David Frosdick, with everyone now looking forward with excitement to the new campaign.
Simmons and Crowley have been handed the task of moulding a successful side after the disappointments of last season, when the Owls failed to build on a promising start that saw them reach the third round of the Norfolk Senior Cup and only avoided relegation to junior football by the skin of their teeth.
After losing unluckily at Ridgeons League outfit Thetford Town Holt struggled for points in Division One of the Anglian Combination and following the exit of manager Jim Blandford it needed favourable results from elsewhere to keep them up on the final day. Simmons knows the club well having made 59 youth appearances before playing 229 games for the club's senior teams. His assistant Crowley, who hails from the United States, will also act as the team's physiotherapist and fitness coach as he puts his specialist skills to good use.
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'The idea behind these appointments is to help develop the club by bringing in young local players,' explained secretary Charlie Todd. 'Stephen knows the club well so I am sure he will do well. We are also pleased that Eden agreed to stay with the club after missing out on the first team manager's position.
'He did a good job last season as caretaker when Jim left and I am sure he will do well with the reserves and the under-18s. With his extra role as director of youth development I am sure he will be a very busy man next season!'
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As for the targets for 2012-3, Todd said consolidation was the main aim. 'Obviously it would be nice if the first team was challenging at the top of the table but with all the new faces it would be good if we got a nice mid-table finish.
'We just want to take the club forward – and that means all the teams. We cater for a lot of different standards and like to think there is place here for all local footballers.'
With the first team, reserves, A team and Colts now being joined by an under-18 side there is certainly no shortage of opportunties with the Owls these days and anyone wishing to get involved should simply turn up at one of the Tuesday or Thursday training sessions at Holt Sports Centre (7pm).
The new Combination season gets under way on August 17 and the club's preparations will gather pace in early August with friendly matches against Crowley's former team in Leicestershire, Highfield Rangers, who play in senior football. The Reserve teams will be meeting on Friday, August 3 with the first teams coming face to face the following day.