Braintree Town chairman happy with calibre of candidates to replace Danny Cowley.

Danny (left) and Nicky Cowley have left Braintree to join Lincoln City

Danny (left) and Nicky Cowley have left Braintree to join Lincoln City - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

A manager with international pedigree is amongst the applicants for the vacant Braintree Town job, chairman Lee Harding has revealed.

Harding drew up a shortlist of candidates yesterday and has started the process of finding a replacement for manager Danny Cowley and his brother, and assistant, Nicky.

The Iron chief remained tight-lipped on how many candidates were going to be interviewed, but is happy with the interest in the job and hopes to make a decision by the end of the week.

“We hope to have the process completed on Friday,” said Harding, who has a good track record when it comes to appointments at Cressing Road – Cowley following successful predecessors such as Alan Devonshire and Rod Stringer, the latter who was approached by Harding about the job, before plumping for the Chelmsford City hot-seat.

“I am happy with the standard of candidates and we have had the usual extremes, from international managers who are prepared to drop down from trying to qualify for the World Cup to attempting to guide Braintree into the Football League, to youngsters that have done well on Championship Manager.

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“It’s about sorting the wheat from the chaff and we are looking for a manager who knows the National League top-flight and maybe the league above.”

Meanwhile, Town have received a windfall from reaching the National League play-offs and the money will go towards pitch and training ground improvements and also the playing budget.

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“It’s a nice little windfall for us at the end of the season,” admitted Harding.

“Some people were saying we have been lucky, but we had our highest home crowd for 64 years (against Grimsby) and that’s helped us in terms of investing in our pitch and training ground.

“It’s not a silly amount, but it’s something we feel helps us a bit.”

Braintree, while still having dreams of reaching the Football League, also have ambitions to move into a new stadium within the next two to three years.

“Cressing Road (Braintree’s current ground) is our home but is expensive to maintain,” said Harding, who confirmed the club would be looking to deal with the drainage problems on the pitch, which has caused several postponements in recent times..

“We might be moving in two or three years time and ultimately we will be going to an area that will be very well drained in terms of the gardens at the new houses around it.”

With Braintree’s move to their new stadium still in the pipeline, the club would be unable to secure grant aid for their current ground, given they would not be able to guarantee staying at Cressing Road for the next decade.

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