McConnell now ‘acting manager’ at Rangers

Graham McConnell, the man who was never going to manage in the Amateur League again, is back in local football, in charge of 1c side Newington Rangers, writes Alan Hall.

Thursday, 15th January 2015, 6:00 am
Graham McConnell.

However, Stephen Holland, who stepped down as manager, insists: “It’s just a case of Graham coming in to help his old club out. He is acting manager just until the end of the season and then we’ll take it from there. After last Saturday, we’ve only nine matches left.

“We’ve lost our coach Ernie Wilson, so we needed to get someone in and Graham is just there as a favour to me. I’ll work with him and help with the coaching, but Graham is a lot more experienced than me at managing.

“We need to attract players and coming from Belfast, I don’t have the same local knowledge as Graham who knows where the problems lie and he’s hopeful of getting some new players in.

“I have a lot of respect for the club, I’ll do what I can for Newington Rangers and I’m doing what I think is best for the club!”

On Saturday, Newington went down 3-0 to Holywood FC at Seapark. As Holland conceded: “We were the better team, but just couldn’t take our chances. We didn’t hit the target enough – but all in all, not a good game – the weather conditions didn’t help.”

Scoreless at the break, Rangers were reduced to 10 men when Karl Johnstone was red-carded, with his Holywood opponent fortunate also not to be dispatched back to the pavilion.