Gerry's Ready


It`s all-change on and off the field as Mossley gear up for a new-look UniBond League Division One North campaign.

Manager Gerry Quinn has succeeded Jason Beckford, who stood down at the end of last season after the Lilywhites were relegated from the Premier Division.

There has been a massive upheaval off the pitch as well. The Rigby family stepped aside after a decade in chrge at Mossley and handed their shares to five fans. The quintet have become directors of the club, which remains a limited company.

Quinn’s greatest managerial triumph was masterminding Emley’s run to the FA Vase Final in 1988 — they lost 1-0 to Colne Dynamos — while he has also been in charge of Altrincham and Ashton United, where he spent five years.

He had a two-year break from management after leaving Ashton before returning towards the end of last season to help out Liversedge in the Northern Counties East League.

Schoolteacher Quinn believes Mossley can achieve top marks in the current campaign.

He is also relishing the challenge having been forced to build a team from nothing.

He said: “The reason I took the job was that I knew I could get the players together and I had an idea of the players I wanted.

“I had a group of them before so I knew I had the nucleus of a team and it has been a case of getting the rest.”

Quinn has been delighted with the way the squad is taking shape. He has used his contacts in Yorkshire to capture some of the hottest talent in junior leagues.

He said: “We have a lot of experience as well as young players who are just starting out in non-League. It is an ideal mix.

“There is also a good spirit in the dressing room, where we have a number of leaders. That will make my job easier.

“I would like to think we will be a good position by Christmas and not scratching around at the bottom.”

While Quinn has brought in a nucleus of his squad from across the Pennines, including three from NCEL side AFC Emley in defender Joe Pinnock, winger Leevan Simeon Brown and striker David Wallace, there are a couple of more local new faces.

And none is more local than Lee Blackshaw, who lives just a stone’s throw from the ground on Seel Street. The striker was captured from Glossop North End, where he was named North West Counties League player of the year.

And another player who needs no introduction is Darren Royle, son of former Oldham and Manchester City manager Joe, who has a wealth of experience at non-League level.