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Steve Kittrick still burning with desire for battle after Gladiators exit

Steve Kittrick Matlock Town

Steve Kittrick is burning with desire to return to management and make a swift return to the dugout after his Matlock Town exit.

Experienced boss Kittrick, pictured, left the Gladiators in January and has since seen Paul Phillips take the reins as his successor.at the BetVictor Northern Premier League’s Gladiators.

Having only take over last summer and recently seen his side run National League Eastleigh close in the FA Trophy, Kittrick admitted to The Non-League Paper on Sunday that he was frustrated to leave the NPL Premier Division club in the circumstances.

But with a fine CV and promotions under his belt with the likes of Guiseley and Scarborough Athletic – winning promotions with both – the 61-year-old told this week’s paper he’s determined to find success again elsewhere.

“I won’t lose my fire for football – I love it,” said Kittrick, the former Ossett Town boss, who had a spell in Non-League’s top-flight with AFC Telford United.

“I’ve been managing 30 years, a lot of games, but when you look at it I haven’t been to loads of clubs. I haven’t gone from club to club.


“I’m looking forward to getting back. I want somebody with a plan to get from A to B and not think it will happen in six months.

“Managing is about managing people. I like to have a good dressing room, I like people to come with a smile on their face, play football and enjoy it win, lose or draw.

“That’s what it’s about. Success comes from that. I think Matlock were hasty, I think they will finish in mid-table with a trophy.

“I’m keen and eager to get back in as soon as I can but it’s got to be the right thing.”

Kittrick says he felt sure he was building for the long-term at Matlock and was convinced a fully fit squad would have quickly climbed the table.

“I’ve been quite lucky to be successful in a lot of things I’ve done,” he said. “I feel I’ve left every club in a better place than I found them.

“That’s the way you’ve got to look at it but some clubs are short-minded in what they’re wanting. Football is not a quick-fix.

“Where I’ve just been, I had a long-term plan but they had a short-term plan to push the button if it wasn’t going right.

“I think they’ve overreacted. We had a great FA Cup run, a great FA Trophy run and they’re still in a couple of cups.


“But football is circumstances. At the end of the day – injuries, suspensions. Jack Rea was injured long-term, Spencer Harris, Dwayne Riley got injured, Adam Yates.

“It’s a lot of things, which is football, and people don’t see that. They get very impatient.

“It’s alright when things are going good, when you’re putting money in the till from FA Cup games and FA Trophy games. But once things start falling off in the league, and, to be fair, it didn’t make for good reading.

“Once we got everybody back fit – some games I only had two subs because there’s no point spending the club’s money when you’ve got players waiting in the wings – you could see it turning a corner.”

Kittrick has been out watching games but it doesn’t quite have the same buzz.

“Usually on a Saturday my day starts at 10am and you don’t get home until, eight, nine, ten o’clock,” Kittrick added. “You miss that and you miss the phone calls.

“There isn’t such a thing as a part-time manager. You take calls, you make calls, speak to players, the chairman – it takes a lot of your time up. I miss all that and hopefully it will come back.”

Make sure you get your copy of The Non-League Paper on Sunday for the latest news and action from across Non-League over the last seven days, whatever the weather brings!

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 Non-League Paper’s live coverage extends all the way to Steps 5 and 6.

Image courtesy of  Richard Parkes

This article was brought to you by The Non-League Paper, the UK's best-selling football title on the newsstand, on-sale every Sunday.
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