New Wisbech Town boss Brett Whaley is hoping to bring some stability by to the rock bottom Fenman whether he rescues them relegation or not.
No stranger to fans after managing the BetVictor Northern Premier League club in 2015-16 before leaving for Yaxley, Whaley has already moved swiftly to improve his relegation-threatened side’s chances since replacing interim manager Kevin Ward on Tuesday.
Pictured, defender Beckham Kennelly, 20, committed his future to the Cambridgeshire club on Thursday while former Fenman Sam Murphy was persuaded to return and add to his 170 appearances after half a season in the United Counties Lgeaue with Deeping Rangers. The 27-year-old also played for Spalding United.
Whaley stood down as manager of Eastern Counties League March United at the start of the week to return and is under no illusions about the task he is facing with Carlton Town first up at home on Saturday.
He told the club’s website “I know we’ve got a tough task between now and the end of the season, but the opportunity to manage at this level was one I felt like I needed to take. I’m not approaching this as a 13 game job, hopefully this is the start of progression and stability for the club.
“I’ve always felt that I didn’t do myself justice last time, so the approach from the club has given me the opportunity to prove myself. I’m more experienced now and feel better prepared to accept the challenges ahead.
“I hope the club and supporters can pull together and give the lads all the support they need to turn things around. I will do everything I can to make this a success and can’t wait to get started.”
Wisbech Town chairman Paul Brenchley is backing Whaley to revive their fortunes at the NPL Division One South East club’s Elgoods Fenland Stadium whether he can pull off the great escape or not.
“Following a disappointing January during which we failed to pick up a single point, something needed to change, and Brett has been appointed to hopefully lift us off from bottom of the table and keep us away from it.
“Although our goal in the next three months is to avoid relegation, this is not a short-term ‘quick fix’ solution.
“Brett’s appointment is done with the knowledge that whatever happens between now and the beginning of May, next season will see us playing much more locally.
“If things don’t go well, that could potentially be back at Step 5 but if we do stay up, the new Northern Premier League Step 4 division will give us many more games within an hour’s drive of Wisbech which should help with player recruitment and encourage more away supporters to make the journey.
He added: “The club would like to place on record its thanks to Kev Ward for his time with Wisbech Town FC and wishes him well for his future endeavours.
Ward replaced Seb Hayes in December when he called time on his six month reign claiming he’d learned of plans to sack him.
The 43-year-old had taken charge at Step 4 for the first time last June as the successor to Gary Setchell following trophy-winning spells in the United Counties League Premier Division with Huntingdon Town, Peterborough Northern Star and Holbeach United.
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As well as exclusive match reports and pictures from all of Saturday’s fixtures in the Vanarama National League, the BetVictor-Sponsored Isthmian League, Southern League and Northern Premier League, the paper’s live coverage extends all the way to Steps 5 and 6.
Images courtesy of @wisbechtownfc/Twitter