Carl Abbott was named EUFC Manager last week, and he recently met with the Clubs Media. Here is what he said:
Q – Welcome to EUFC. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind week or so for you. How does it feel to be EUFC manager?
A – Really good. Its great progression for myself. It’s a big club with a great history. The facilities are of a high standard. There is a lot to get my teeth into, and lots to achieve here.
Q – What attracted you to the role?
A – The chance to manage a proper football club at a very competitive level. As soon as the job became available I applied. I’m just glad I had the call. I’m confident in my ability, and I want to prove I can do it at this level. There is no glass ceiling here, we can progress together. It’s very achievable to get promoted in the next few years, and I’m up for the task.
Q – Why are you right for EUFC? What sort of manager are you?
A – I’m enthusiastic, young, fresh, and energetic. I’ve got time on my hands; I’m not tired or worn out with football. I’m obsessed with it, 24/7. I come from a new breed of manager where the way my team plays is important to me. Entertaining the supporters is important. Having an identifiable brand is important. The place needs energising, and I’m confident I’m the man to do it.
Q – What is your style of play? What can EUFC fans expect to see on the pitch?
A – First of all, we need to win football matches. At the same time, I want the team to play in a style that excites the fans, and in time, more and more people will be coming to watch us because Evesham United are playing good football. I like my team to control games, be on the front foot, have lots of possession, and dominate the game. We like to play out from the back, but conditions will always dictate what type of football you play on a Saturday. Lots of work will go on the training ground, we will be well drilled, with lots of repetition, and hopefully the supporters will see the fruits of our labour.
Q – What is your expectation for the upcoming season?
A – For things to move forward dramatically from where it has been this season. To energise the club, for the fans to enjoy their team and be proud of what they watch and support. We must build, improve year on year, and work towards the promotion everybody craves. I want supporters to “trust the process”, and we will get where we need to be.
Q – How has pre-season preparation gone so far?
A – Really good. The fixtures are challenging and competitive. I want to know we are ready when the season starts. This is a new side, that needs to gel, and quickly. There’s no point in us playing sides at a much lower level than us and dusting them, and when the season starts we’re struggling. The results will be mixed, that’s normal for pre-season, but it’s important that the games relate to the standard we will be playing at. We will know exactly where we are come the start of the campaign.
Q – In terms of the playing squad, will there be lots of new players in?
A – Yes, I imagine so. We are taking the approach where it doesn’t matter what division we are in (Southern or Central). We’re cutting off the massive travel of players, because that generates problems. The geography of the players needs to be reasonable and realistic. I’m talking with the players who were here from the most recent season, to see where they are and what they want to do. I should know all their answers by next week, which is good, because we have a job to get on with, and a new season to prepare for. We are talking to players, all the time, and hopefully we have a good blend of both.
Q – What ingredients does a player need to have to play for a Carl Abbott side?
A – I do have a profile historically of going 6ft plus across the back. Technical ability throughout the side is crucial. I like my team to have lots of width and pace, and a focal point up front that can link play. I favour a 4-2-3-1 formation, or 4-3-3.
Q – We have a strong youth set up here at EUFC. Is this something you will pay close attention to, and keep a keen eye on?
A – Absolutely. I’ve spoken with Neil Hunt already at length, and we both seem excited, and I want to have a close relationship with him, and all the managers within the youth set up here at the club. Within the pre-season schedule there are developmental games which the U’18s will be part of.
Q – Backroom staff?
A – Yes, we have a really strong team forming. Paul Tomlinson will be my assistant, along with Shaun Cunnington, who I know people here know well from his time as manager. Sean Geddes will be coming in as player-coach. Simon Johnson will be coming in as a coach to work closely with Paul. Both Sean and Simon have played at a really good level, so have lots to offer. Danny Watson is coming in a GK coach. He will run mid-week clinics with the GK’s here, so that’s fantastic. Finally, we have Richard Gamble coming in as head of performance. This is the biggest backroom staff I’ve ever worked with, and we are very fortunate to have them.
Q – I know you have met the supporters club recently; do you have a message for EUFC supporters as a whole?
A – I want to form a closeness with the supporters. It’s vital. I want them to feel proud of their team on a match day. My team and I are very excited, and looking forward to the challenge ahead.