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FOOTBALL: Assistant manager leaves champions

Allan Ross and Ian Dunn
Allan Ross and Ian Dunn

Allan Ross has resigned as Pinchbeck United's assistant manager after three seasons.

He played a key role alongside Ian Dunn as the Knights claimed successive promotions from the Peterborough and District League into the United Counties League's Premier Division.

In their first-ever season in UCL Division One, Pinchbeck were crowned champions with a 28-match unbeaten run.

But the partnership is over as Ross looks for a fresh challenge - and Dunn is also set for a decision next week over his future.

Ross explained: "I decided to step down and I let all the players know today.

"What we have achieved is incredible. As a club, I don't feel that we can do any more now.

"All credit goes to the squad and Ian for what we've done but I'm looking for another project.

"It looks like a fight for survival at Pinchbeck now because it's a small village club. Even with a financial backer, it would be difficult to compete for promotion again.

"I haven't spoken to any other clubs at all but I would welcome offers. If nothing comes up, I want to enhance my coaching qualifications and I will continue to support Pinchbeck.

"I want to help a club to make progress. I'm a winner and I don't mind working at any level. But I feel this project is complete."

Player-boss Dunn admitted: "I wasn't really shocked because we both came close to walking away last summer after promotion.

"It has been a tough year. We've enjoyed the results but I can understand the reasons with so much going on in the background.

"I'm devastated because we've done everything together. At the moment, I'm unsure what to do next.

"I've got some thinking to do because we were successful as a pair. This is a body blow.

"The club are nowhere near being ready for the next level and it's difficult to take this any further.

"The players will cope in the UCL Premier Division - no doubt about that. The team are running and the club are walking when it needs so much support.

"A lot of well-established clubs in the UCL have volunteers and committee members. Off the field, we haven't got that.

"Allan and myself were doing some of those jobs so it's been draining and tiring. The last couple of weeks have been nice to have time away from the club.

"We've worked non-stop for two years because we had a cup final in the middle of May then we started pre-season five weeks later and the first UCL game was at the end of July.

"It has been difficult and we both felt shattered at the end of the season. I have to decide what's best for my family as well but nothing is decided yet."

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