FOOTBALL: Town will take stock
CHAIRMAN Pete Russell and reserve team boss Andrew McFerran will take caretaker charge of Warminster Town for the foreseeable future after the club sacked manager John Phillips and his assistant Robbie Simmonds last week.
Phillips took over at Weymouth Street in the summer but was axed last Friday, with the club citing dressing room unrest and the use of players from outside the local area as the trigger for his departure.
Former Bradford Town Reserves boss Phillips says he was gutted to see his reign come to a premature end.
“I was very surprised – we’d lost the last three but last season’s manager went 11 games without a win,” said Phillips “I think the club may have just panicked. I have to say that I wasn’t too happy with the statement put out because I really didn’t feel that there was ‘unrest’ among the players.
“When I was interviewed, I explained to the committee that I wanted to play the kind of football where we passed it around a bit and that everyone would start with a clean slate.
“A few of the local lads moved on and a few even retired so when we brought players in to the football club, they were ones we felt could improve the squad.
“It did sometimes seem that there was pressure on team selection from the committee but when I spoke to chairman, he agreed that it was down to me as the manager.
“I also had a sit down with my captain, Paul Farrell, the week before myself and Robbie got the sack and he said that most of the squad were happy with how we were playing and thought that we were going in the right direction.
“This was always a good opportunity for us and it was difficult not having football to be involved in on Saturday.
“But I’ve got to wish Warminster all the best for the future because it’s a lovely club with some great people that put a lot of time and effort in.”
Warminster Town secretary Chris Robbins said: “The chairman has previously been the manager of Warminster Town and has done very well with Andrew McFerran as his assistant so far so they’ll carry on for the time being.
“As it stands, we haven’t begun looking for a new manager but we’ll take our time and see what happens.”
Meanwhile, Robbins says that chairman Russell has made a positive start to his latest reign as caretaker as Warminster outfit look to move on with their Toolstation League First Division season.
“The chairman has done very well so far and he and his assistant (Andrew McFerran) have already brought in a few players,” said Robbins.
“It’s very much a fresh start for the club and we’re looking forward to getting on with our season.
“John Phillips was a nice guy and his assistant Robbie Simmonds was very able too, and when the committee decided to relieve him of his duties, it was very amicable. He’s welcome back any time at the club.
“Unfortuantely, results had been disappointing and there was a bit of a split between the players in the dressing room, which can happen when there isn’t as much local talent in the squad as the club would like.
"The club had to make a decision and hopefully we can move on now.”
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