Pinchbeck manager Ian Dunn leaves club after six years in charge
Pinchbeck United will kick off their pre-season on Saturday without a manager after the resignation of Ian Dunn.
Knights chairman Gary Coomes broke the news yesterday lunchtime, nearly five months after the first team’s season came to a sudden and premature end with a 2-1defeat at United Counties League (UCL) Premier Division title challengers Shepshed Dynamo.
Player/manager Dunn had led the Knights to some of the greatest achievements in the club’s history, including the UCL Division One title in 2018 and a fourth-placed finished in the Premier Division a year later.
Coomes said: “Ian contacted me on Tuesday night and said he just didn’t think he could carry on anymore.
“He’d been unable to attract a number two who could help him and it was becoming more difficult to recruit the kind of player we’d need this season.
“In the end, Ian just felt it was time for someone else to pilot the plane.
“It’s really sad but all good things come to an end.”
Dunn’s association with Pinchbeck actually began in 2011 and, together with assistant manager Matt Hocking, he led the side to a Peterborough District Football League Premier Division/Peterborough Senior Cup double the following year.
Then, after rejoining the Knights from Boston Town in 2014, Dunn found the Midas touch again, this time with popular assistant Allan Ross.
Back-to-back PDFL President’s Premier Shield victories in 2016 and 2017 were followed up with promotion to UCL Division One, which they became champions of in 2018.
More success followed with an astonishing fourth-placed finish in the Premier Division in 2019.
But an exodus of star players, including central defender Nick Jackson, full back Luke Wilson and midfielder Harry Vince, led to a nightmare 2019-20 season when the Knights faced relegation before the coronavirus outbreak led to the abandonment of the entire season.
Speaking to the Spalding Guardian in May, Dunn said: “I had to completely rebuild the squad last summer because my budget wasn’t as good as the previous season.
“That had attracted some of the area’s better players, but unfortunately during the off season they were offered good money elsewhere and one by one they left.
“I could have walked away like others had but was determined to build a new squad and try to start again.
"I saw it as a challenge but with many players leaving just before, or during pre-season, a lot of my signings were last minute and late on.
“I had a very young, energetic side, but lacking in step five experience.
“We were only ever hammered by a very good Quorn team away from home and in many other matches we were in the game.
“But we lost by the odd goal here and there, with individual errors proving very costly on many occasions.
“We didn’t score anywhere near enough goals and that was the main reason we were where we were.
“We only lost 2-1 away to Shepshed in our final league game and that showed we weren’t a pushover, but confirmed to me we needed more firepower at the top end of the pitch.
“We are fortunate to have stayed up so we have to make the most of it whenever next season begins."
. An official statement from club chairman Gary Coomes, released on Wednesday, said: "Ian Dunn has left his role as manager of Pinchbeck United.
"The club would like to put on record its gratitude for his efforts over his long tenure with the team.
"Together we made memories that many village clubs can only dream about and for those memories we will always be grateful.
"On a personal note Dunny has and always will be welcome at our club and I am saddened the journey has come to a conclusion."