(Picture: Action Images via Reuters)
By Matt Bishop
National League side Gateshead have appointed former Newcastle United defender Steve Watson as the club’s new manager.
The 43-year-old replaces former Heed boss Neil Aspin, who left the club to take over at League Two strugglers Port Vale last week – with Micky Cummins at the helm during Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Bromley.
Watson has an array of coaching experience, having been appointed as Huddersfield Town’s development coach in 2010, teaming up with former Toon teammate Lee Clark, before following Clark to Birmingham City two years later.
The pair were sacked by the Blues in 2014, before Watson finally made his return to coaching last summer, becoming John Askey’s assistant manager at Macclesfield.
Having beaten ex-Hartlepool boss Craig Hignett and Blyth manager Alun Armstrong to the job, Watson has a real task on his hands in what is his first managerial role.
Gateshead are currently languishing 16th in Non-League’s top-tier – their lowest league position since 2013 – following a brilliant 2016-17 campaign, which ultimately ended with the club narrowly missing out on the play-offs.
The Tynesiders faithful will be hoping their new boss can turn thinks around quickly in the league, but Watson’s first aim will be to steer his new side past Buxton on Saturday in the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup.
Keep an eye on our website and @NonLeaguePaper for updates throughout the day as Watson is unveiled to the media at 1pm.