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Country calls as Guiseley’s Marcus Bignot joins England

CALLED UP: New England U18s assistant manager Marcus Bignot

Guiseley’s Marcus Bignot has been named in the England set-up as part of the Football Association’s programme to boost the numbers of black, Asian and ethnic minority coaches.

One of six coaches to join the England set-up to solve the challenge of BAME under-representation, the National North club’s joint boss alongside Russ O’Neil was unveiled by The FA on Monday as an assistant to new U18s head coach Ian Foster.

Former Three Lions defender Chris Powell will join Gareth’s Southgate’s senior men’s staff until after next summer’s UEFA EURO 2020. Aidy Boothroyd will have his U21 set-up strengthened by Michael Johnson, who recently guided Guyana to the finals of the CONCACAF Gold Cup for the first time.

Elsewhere, Jason Euell will work alongside Keith Downing at U20 level and Omer Riza and Matthew Thorpe with Justin Cochrane’s U16s and Lee Skyrme’s U15s respectively. The FA also expect to confirm further BAME placements later in the season.

Bignot’s playing career in Non-League and the Football League spanned nearly 20 years and included a single England C appearance in 1997.

Playing primarily as a right-back, the 45-year-old turned out for a host of clubs including Telford United, Kidderminster Harriers, Crewe Alexandra, Bristol Rovers, Millwall, Oldham Athletic, Queens Park Rangers and Rushden & Diamonds before hanging up his boots in 2012 at Solihull Moors.

Guiseley could move to within a single point of National League North leaders York City tonight (Tuesday) by ending their 100 per cent away record and claiming all three points against the Minstermen at Nethermoor.

A late goal from Kaine Felix was enough for the Lions to see off Curzon Ashton 1-0 on Saturday but joint-boss O’Neill knows his side are facing their toughest test of the season yet tonight.

O’Neill told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “We have put a good young group together who are hungry and eager to do well. We have started well, let’s see what Tuesday brings it will be a massive test.

“They have the backing, the stature and everything, it looks like the manager has got it right with a lot of experienced signings. We are going into it with a lot of confidence and really looking forward to it.”

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