‘I have put the club before myself’ – Driver on his Leiston departure
- Credit: Archant
Glenn Driver has revealed that there are “no hard feelings” following his shock departure from Leiston last night
Driver had presided over two-and-a-half successful seasons as manager at Victory Road, taking the Blues to the play-offs last season after narrowly missing out on the top five the previous year.
And the fact that Leiston have enjoyed another good start to their current campaign, and were as high as fourth in the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Central only last weekend, before suffering a surprise 5-1 home defeat to King’s Lynn on Tuesday night, makes Driver’s sudden exit all the more perplexing.
“This was a decision made by me for the good of the football club,” explained Driver this morning.
“No manager and no player is bigger than the football club. I could have stayed, and the club wanted me to stay, but in the end I have put the club before myself in making this decision.
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“We had a very professional meeting, on Thursday morning, and it took me five hours to come to the conclusion that the football club had a different philosophy to certain things to that I had.
“There were things said to me across the table that I did not agree with, and things that I said that they (board of directors) did not agree with.
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“We had a choice to either sort it out, or not, and in the end I think it’s the right time for me to call it a day.
“I spoke to my wife first, and also some professional people in the game, and it was certainly a very tough decision, although I think it’s the right thing to do.
“They wanted to keep me, and they did everything in their power to keep me at the club, but I had the final say and Andy Crisp (chairman) finally agreed to let me go.
“Sometimes things go on in a football club that should always be dealt with, within house, and that’s where I want to leave it.
“But I will always be grateful for the opportunity that Leiston gave me to prove myself at this level, and it’s very important for me to place on record what a fantastic club Leiston is, and that I will continue to follow them as a fan.
“I wish whoever comes in every success, and I hope that they continue with my philosophy of bringing boys through the youth system.
“We missed out on the play-offs by just four minutes in my first season, and last season we lost 1-0 to Dulwich Hamlet in the play-off semi-finals in a match that I felt we could have won.
“We won the Suffolk Premier Cup, and I think I have really built this football club up, over the last few seasons.
“The reserves are a lot younger and fresher now, and there wasn’t an under-14s, under-15s or under-16s side before I arrived.
“I certainly think that I have left the football club in a far healthier position than when I first arrived.
“Looking forward, I’m not interested in a rest or a break from football. I want to get out there again, as soon as possible.
“Finally, I’d like to thank the board of directors, the chairman, the players and the supporters for all their support,” added Driver.
Leiston are in league action at Stratford Town tomorrow afternoon, when head coach Tony Kinsella will be in charge on a caretaker basis.