GARY HAVERON: I’m proud of my time at Carrick Rangers

Gary Haveron, club physio Steven Luney and assistant boss Steven Mills with the Steel and Sons Cup trophy.
Gary Haveron, club physio Steven Luney and assistant boss Steven Mills with the Steel and Sons Cup trophy.

Gary Haveron says he’s proud of his achievements at Danske Bank Premiership side Carrick Rangers.

As exclusively revealed by the Times on Monday afternoon, Haveron quit Taylor’s Avenue after he and the board ‘were unable to establish a mutual agreement on the best way forward’.

Gary Haveron has quit as boss of Carrick Rangers.

Gary Haveron has quit as boss of Carrick Rangers.

Haveron said the decision to leave Carrick was a tough one to make.

“We worked incredibly hard to get to the Premier League and we worked incredibly hard to stay there,” he said.

“The decision to leave the club has been very difficult. But I’m glad we have left on good terms with the people at the club. It was just a difference of how we see things moving forward.”

Haveron won the Championship title, the Steel and Sons Cup and the Intermediate Cup during his two years and eight months at the helm. But perhaps his biggest success was keeping Carrick in the Premiership thanks to a dramatic last-day win over Ballinamallard United.

The former Ballymena United skipper now says he’s hungry for the next challenge, stressing his undiminished appetite for the game.

“I’ll look for the next project and see what comes up and I’ll take the time to reflect on what we’ve done at Carrick and what we have achieved,” he commented.

“We didn’t get everything right, but we’ve had great success and I would deem staying up this year as a greater achievement than the treble. That’s because of the level we were playing at and the lack of resources we had in comparison to other clubs.

“But we worked incredibly hard to try and take a team that was essentially a Championship side to the Premier League. We added three or four players but the basis of my team was the same as the one which got us promoted.

“I owed it to them to give themselves the opportunity to play in the Premier League and they grasped that. I’m proud that I kept faith in the people who got us there.

“My overall highlight was working alongside Steven Mills (assistant-manager) who has been my best friend since I was five years of age.

“The Steel and Sons was fantastic because it was our first major success and winning the league was brilliant because we worked so hard for it. The Intermediate Cup was the icing on the cake, it capped off what was an amazing season.

“People forget we also got to two Irish Cup quarter-finals and reached the semi-final of the County Antrim Shield.

“Getting the opportunity to manage the club was fantastic and I’ll always be grateful to Michael [Hughes] and the board for seeing something in me.”

He added: “The fans and the players were fantastic and I’m just really pleased with the work I’ve done.”