Christian Appleford waves goodbye to Mildenhall Town after almost five years in charge of the Suffolk club
- Credit: Archant
Christian Appleford waved an emotional goodbye to Mildenhall Town this week after more than four-and-a-half years in charge of the Suffolk club.
The highly-respected 36-year-old boss was hoping to take charge of Hall for one last time tonight in a Suffolk Premier Cup quarter-final clash at AFC Sudbury, but the tie was called off late on Monday evening because of a waterlogged pitch.
After already agreeing to leave his position weeks earlier, Appleford has now stood down from his role at the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division club with immediate effect, citing a new challenge as his next ambition.
“It’s the right time for me to go,” Appleford said.
“Five years at the same club is a long time and I felt it was time to go. I told the club and there has been no falling out over it – in fact I believe they are interviewing for the job next week.
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“I’ve enjoyed my time with Mildenhall. OK, we are not doing as well as we would like at the moment and I think the club would benefit from a fresh face in charge.
“I have commitments at work and I have always been a manager who put a lot into the non-league manager’s job.
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“I have no plans although I’ve had a few phone calls. But you never know what is around the corner.”
After assembling a strong playing squad in the summer, Appleford made no secret of wanting his side to challenge at the top end of the division this season, but has found results and performances hard to come by.
The west Suffolk side sit 14th in the table at present, having won six and lost eight of their 16 league games so far, with Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Haverhill Rovers rather typical of his side’s underachieving season as he explains.
“It was a game that summed up our season a little to be honest,” continued Appleford, an assistant headteacher at Mildenhall College.
“We dominated most of the game, missed loads of chances, and conceded two goals from defensive errors, very frustrating.”
Director of football Alan Alsop is expected to take over from Appleford in the short term, with Hall at home to Thetford Town in an important league fixture on Saturday, as the club start their search for a permanent replacement.