Shrewsbury Town have yet another season in the Sky Bet League One to prepare for and manager Sam Ricketts has confirmed some restructuring of some of his backroom staff.
When Sam took over the manager’s hot seat with Town, Danny Coyne moved from goalkeeping coach to coach and Academy manager Eric Ramsay moving to First team Coach. Academy goalkeeping coach Phil Smart moved over to the first team and Sam brought in Jon Pitts as Head of Performance.
Sam has now revealed that vastly experienced Graham Barrow will join the club as Assistant Manager to work alongside Sam and his staff.
Graham is someone that Sam has worked with before and has experience of coaching at all levels of the football pyramid.
“I thought it was really important for myself and for the club with what we are trying to achieve here is to have someone who has managed and coached at all levels as part of the group”, said Sam.
“Graham has experience to lean on when required as he’s been there and done it, but he is very good and very driven at being successful.
“He wants to be successful, as do I and the club and I think it will be a perfect fit with his experience and drive.”
Graham had a playing career that saw over 500 appearances for the likes of Southport, Altrincham, Wigan and Chester City. His management career has seen him take charge of Chester, Wigan, Rochdale, Bury and Wrexham.
“Graham has coached and managed from non-league through to the Premier League and he knows the game inside and out”, said Sam.
“I believe he will be a valuable asset to the team and will help to improve standards and push us on.”
Sam is a young manager and his backroom staff are also young, so the addition of Graham will add the experience and nous need to help the club continue to improve and grow.
“He will bring that experience to the group which will help the rest of the team to improve”, said Sam.
“Graham is also young and hungry in his heart and isn’t someone who is just coming in to go through the motions, he wants to be successful and will bring a lot to the club.”
Long serving coach Danny Coyne has now left the club after talks with Sam and the Club. It brings an end to nearly seven years association between Danny and the club and it wasn’t any easy decision for Sam to make.
“I have to make decisions which I think are the right ones to bring long term success to Shrewsbury Town”, said Sam.
“Not all decisions are nice decisions to have to take and ones like this are hard to make.
Eric Ramsay made the step up to first team coach last season and has become a big part of Sam’s coaching team. He is hoping that Eric will continue to develop to help the club improve.
“Eric has done very well since stepping up and I’ve been very impressed with him”, said Sam.
“His work on the training pitch was a big help last season and he is keen to continue to improve and go on this journey with us.
“He has aspirations to improve and to be as good as he can be so I’m delighted to have him onboard as we plan and prepare for next season.”
Another member of the backroom staff leaving is fitness coach Marc Lindsay. Sam explained that he is looking to strengthen this area of the side.
“It is another area where I think we can improve and we are looking to bring in someone with good experience”, said Sam.
“We have someone in mind who we think can fit the bill and hope to be able to make an announcement soon.
With Phil Smart moving back to the Academy as goalkeeping coach and with Danny Coyne leaving the club are now on the look out for a new first team goalkeeping coach.
“We are looking to bring the best people into the slots to improve us as a club and goalkeeping coach is one of those”, said Sam.
“Smarty did a great job with us when I came in and he’s now gone back to the Academy and now it’s time for someone else to come in.
“We’ve got a few people in mind who can come in and help us improve and make us better.”
Sam wanted to thank Danny and Marc for all their hard work and dedication to the club and wished them well for the future.
“All of them gave their all last season for the club and I thank them for their hard work”, said Sam.
“Smarty is still here and he will be very much involved in what we do going forward because it is very important that the Academy and first team are united.
“They all played a big part in what we achieved last season, I thank them but now we look forward at what we are trying to achieve going forward.”
Rumours of Danny’s departure broke on social media, and then the press, the weekend before last. As discussions between the club and Danny were still on going the club were not in a position to comment until now.