Kidsgrove Athletic part company with manager Ryan Austin



KIDSGROVE Athletic have parted company with manager Ryan Austin, claiming recent results had all but ended their hopes of winning a spot in the BetVictor South East Division play-offs.

In a brief statement released by the club this afternoon, they say: “Following a meeting, it has been agreed by all parties that the club is to part company with manager Ryan Austin.

“The decision is not one taken lightly, but after three years at the helm the club’s hierarchy felt it was time to review the team’s management. Despite what now seems to be a premature end to the current season, recent results had all but ended the club’s play-off ambitions.

“As a club we would like to acknowledge Ryan’s achievements in what was his first managerial role. In particular, the club’s FA Cup runs along with cementing the club in the league after years of relegation scraps.

“We would like to place on record our thanks to Ryan and wish him every success in the future.”

The club have not revealed who will replace Austin.

Austin, a former Burton Albion centre-back who played 191 games for the Brewers, was brought to the club by former manager Peter Ward in August 2016 as a player, but when Ward was sacked by the club, Austin took over the reins as player-manager.

Kidsgrove finished 18th in the 2017/2018 season in the Evo-Stik South table and 10th in the BetVictor West Division the following season.

This season Austin was aiming to clinch one of the play-off places and were sitting 10th again this season with 11 games to play when the season was halted prematurely due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Perhaps his most memorable moment as manager was taking the club to the fourth qualifying round of the FA Cup in October 2018 before they bowed out with a 1-0 defeat at National League Club Hartlepool United, thanks to a goal from Niko Muir eight minutes into the tie.

Austin said after the game: “We had to keep our shape and be well drilled and I thought we did that. “It’s just disappointing that we conceded a sloppy goal that they haven’t had to work for and that is the overriding thing that we look back on that we have conceded a poor goal and they haven’t created a lot apart from that.

“I don’t think there was a lot in the game and we might have had the better of the chances, especially in the second half.”





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