THEY say you shouldn’t change a winning team, but the very successful management trio at Amateur League side Larne Tech Old Boys will this season be cut from three to two, with Jeff Russell taking a back seat.
“I’ve taken a big step back,” he revealed to the Times. “I’m not going anywhere, I’ll still hopefully be at most of the matches, but I’ll be standing from behind the fence. Stuart Pike and Stevie Adair have shown last season they’re more than capable and we’re just going to let them get on with it. They’re young, enthusiastic, have been good at attracting players and the team spirit at the club really is fantastic. This season, too, they’ve got Darrin Crawford in there to help them as the new coach.
“Admittedly, Gary Haveron going to Carrick Rangers is a massive loss, not just for what he gave as a player but his experience and leadership qualities on the field – but they’ve got Adam Black in from Shankill United, and he’s looked very impressive so far in pre-season, and so has another new boy, Taylor Kirk.
“And of course, there’s the signing that everyone is talking about, Andy Waide from Islandmagee. Andy has always been a quality player and, hopefully, he’ll be scoring the goals that matter this season.
“It will be tough up in the Premier Division, but I think the squad is more than capable. The football committee have hinted they would like me to stay involved in some capacity, but what they will be, or when it will be, I don’t know yet. But certainly, I’m no longer manager or joint-manager. I’m just be an ordinary supporter like everyone else – and I’m looking forward to the new season – watching the matches!”