Shrewsbury Town can confirm that first-team coach Eric Ramsay has departed the club to join Chelsea’s Academy set up where he will become Assistant Coach of the U23s.
Eric joined Shrewsbury Town's Academy in 2017, initially as Head of Coaching, before replacing Andy Jones as Academy Manager six months later. He raised the Academy system to a new level whilst helping to nurture several young talents into the first-team.
Eric stepped up to become first-team coach halfway through last season’s campaign where he and Danny Coyne took temporary charge of the club before Sam Rickett’s arrival in December. Sam was impressed with Eric’s ability and presence in the first team and was keen to keep him on a permanent basis.
Eric Ramsay spoke to Shrewsweb about his departure and explained what a tough decision it was for him given how much he had invested in the club.
“It was a really difficult decision because I’ve got a strong connection with Shrewsbury and the Town itself. It was my club as a kid and it’s a club I’ve always followed.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time working here. I’ve taken a lot from all of the staff that I’ve worked with and each of the experiences I’ve been lucky enough to have here have hopefully stood me in good stead for my next step which is a really exciting one. It’s a club that are doing really good things in terms of youth development and it’s something I unfortunately felt I couldn’t turn down.
“I’ve known Sam only about 18 months now, slightly before he came in here. I feel like I’ve clicked with him really well and I feel like the management staff that are there at the moment all compliment each other with their different skill sets.
“I think there’s a lot of good work that's been done from what’s been a really good start to pre-season so again it’s with a really heavy heart that I leave the current set up because I felt like I was taking a lot from them and hopefully giving a lot back as well.
“It’s disappointing but at this point in my life and my career, I felt like it was the right decision to make.
“The work that I’ve done with the first team in the last however many months has been challenging and has definitely developed me as a coach. However the chance to go and work in one of the most renowned Academies in Europe, it was a chance I couldn’t turn down and I think it’s something that will help me develop professionally and personally and I hope can add to what I’ve taken from my time at Shrewsbury.”
Eric took a moment to reflect on his time at Town which had filled him with pride.
“I like to think across first-team and the Academy I’ve done some work that has contributed to the club moving forward. I’ve left the Academy in a good place under David Longwell with plenty of players knocking on the first-team door.
“That’s not my work, of course, that’s thanks to a lot of people behind the scenes as well.
“Also the very intense 9 months or so I’ve had working with the first-team. It’s had its ups and downs but it’s a time I’ll look at really favourably.
“It’s difficult to say goodbye to some of the people in the first-team and people at the club who have given me some really good opportunities and lots of people who I feel some really strong connections with.
“I was pleased this week when I spoke to the Chairman, he said he’d always welcome me back and the door is always open to return at some point which is exactly what you want to hear when you leave somewhere.”
Sam Ricketts also spoke on Eric’s move away from the club and explained how he was disappointed to see Eric leave but could understand why he had decided to move given the stature of the club.
“It’s mixed emotions really,” said Sam. “Eric has been great since I’ve been here and he’ll certainly be missed by myself, the staff and the players.
“He was a big part of what we’re trying to do here but an opportunity has come up for Eric that he feels is too good to turn down, so unfortunately as a club, we’re going to let him pursue that next step in his career.
“He leaves with fondness from everyone and we’ll still be in contact with everything that’s going on over there as well.
“We wish him well and thank him for what he has done here.”
Sam was asked how Eric’s departure might alter the dynamic of the squad.
“I don’t think it changes anything too drastically. The situation is that we’re losing a coach, Eric did more than just coach, he was doing a lot more behind the scenes as well.
“We’re going to monitor the situation and see what’s best going forward in terms of the club and how we go about things.”
The club would like to thank Eric for all of his hard work and endeavour during his time with the Academy and the first team. We wish Eric all the best in his new venture and will be keeping track of his progress.