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Matt Holdup steps down as manager of Peterborough League Premier Division side Ketton

Departing Ketton boss Matt Holdup is hoping his replacement can bring consistency and continuity to the Peterborough League club after announcing his decision to step down this week.

Holdup has decided to end his one-year reign as first team boss of the Premier Division club following several seasons of running the reserves.

He took over permanently at the start of last season following the resignation of Ian Abbott, but family commitments mean he will be stepping back from his management role at the Pit Lane club.

Manager Matt Holdup.
Manager Matt Holdup.

Holdup admitted it had been a ‘heart-wrenching’ decision but is aiming to return to the game again at some point.

He said: “It’s something that I would have done forever and a day, but I got married last year and we’re expecting our first child together so I can’t be away all week with my job and then out all day on a Saturday at football.

“Football will have to give for a season or two.

“It was a heart-wrenching decision because I’ve loved it and it’s been great. Football is something that I’ve been involved with all my life.

“I shall be back one day though, but do need to take a bit of time out. There is always plenty of time left in life to get back involved again.”

Ketton were second-from-bottom of the Peterborough League Premier Division table when the coronavirus pandemic curtailed their campaign.

They had also recently withdrawn their reserves from Division Two, but Holdup feels there is plenty of potential at the club for a new manager to work with.

He added: “We’ve had a tough season and I won’t sugar-coat that when you look at our league position, but I strongly believe that we’ve got a great nucleus of

“It just needs a handful of players to come into the mix and help us out to push us over the line.

Keith Gray. (33552071)
Keith Gray. (33552071)

“We’ve got a good goalkeeper and centre-half, plus a couple of very good centre midfielders and some good players in and around it, but we just need some in key positions to help us get onto that next level.

“We’ve got a lot of young lads there and others who very reliable so the basis is there. A new manager will not be turning up to an empty shell.

“There are some good clubs out there, but I think we’ve probably got one of the best set-ups around. The clubhouse is brand spanking new and we’ve done a lot of work on the pitch.

“We’ve been using this time to put the pitch through its paces by scarifying and re-seeding it.

“We’ve got a great place to come and play football, but we just need that little bit of continuity and someone who is going to come in with a few contacts.

“I can’t help my personal circumstances, but it’s another manager who has only lasted a season. We haven’t got that continuity again.

“We lost the reserve side last season after taking the decision to knock it on the head, but we’re perfectly capable of pulling one up and doing it again if needs be.

“We just thought that with the way it was going that it was better to stay on the right side of it rather than stretch ourselves.

“Once we had made that decision towards the end of the season, I was actually quite excited because it left us with a reliable 20-man squad of varying abilities.

“We were starting to put in some performances and get some results. We spanked ICA Sports in our last game and it was nice to have that bit of consistency for a change.”

Holdup and assistant Keith Gray will continue to prepare for next season until a new manager is appointed.

Holdup continued: “I will be doing everything I can behind the scenes until we get someone new on board.

“Myself and Keith are going to continue to plan pre-season as normal so we’re ready to go once the coronavirus ban is lifted.

“Keith has especially helped me no end and wants to stay involved. He’s not keen on being the main man otherwise it would have been an obvious transition.

“But he’s happy to continue as player-coach and help out as best he can if required by whoever comes in.

“I also want to thank the chairman Stephen Pearce for giving me the chance in the first place and all the lads who have stuck at it through a difficult season.

“We’ve also got a full committee in place and there is no reason, with a couple of players here and there, why we can’t challenge for a more sustained position in mid-to-top of the table where we were a couple of seasons ago.”

Anyone interested in applying for the vacant managerial post at Ketton should e-mail their CV to matt@manorroofing.co.uk

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