Harrop puts the record straight over his departure from Rovers as Duguid takes over at The Hawthorns

Angelo Harrop

Angelo Harrop

Outgoing Stanway Rovers boss Angelo Harrop says he has no axe to grind over his departure from Stanway Rovers.

Harrop quit the Essex club on Monday night, as Rovers appointed former Colchester United legend Karl Duguid as the club’s new boss today.

While speculation surrounded Harrop’s sudden departure and Duguid’s rapid appointment, Harrop made it clear the reason behind his decision.

“There is only one reason I resigned and that’s because I want a new challenge,” Harrop said.

“I would like to say a huge thanks to everyone at Stanway Rovers. They gave me my first chance in management three seasons ago. They took me on when I had never managed before, so for that I’m hugely grateful.

“I’m happy with the decision I’ve made.

“I have faith in what I do and I come from a professional environment, so I know how things work and how to operate.

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“But it’s a new chapter I’m looking forward to now.”

The reason there was so much conjecture about Harrop’s departure from The Hawthorns was the fact that Rovers are currently sitting in second place in the table – a position most clubs would give their eye-teeth to be in. Why would their boss quit?

There was also with some strong words from Stanway Rovers club secretary David Prior in the Rovers home programme on Saturday – an article shared on social media - where, among other comments, he said: “It is known the management is not happy with the criticism of the tactics, but we are all entitled to voice our opinion”, and further on, commented: “It is also noted that there is a large amount of bickering between the players when things are not going to plan.”

Prior stated the thoughts were his, not necessarily Stanways.

Rovers lost 2-1 to Newmarket on Saturday.

But Harrop batted that away.

He said: “I resigned, simple as that. If I wanted to be Stanway boss today, I still could be. This is about me wanting to move on to other challenges.

“Yes, I did see the programme notes and personally I don’t really think that is good enough.

“I’m happy for people to voice their opinions, but perhaps not committee people in that way. By all means one to one with me is fine. But these things happen. I certainly didn’t resign because of them.”

Appointed in October 2013 and having taken over Rovers in a precarious league position, Harrop guided them to safety and an eventual 13th place finish in his first season in charge in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division.

He then led Rovers to their most successful-ever season in 2014-2015 finishing third in the League, as well as reaching the fifth round of the FA Vase.

“I’ve had three successful years at the club and again I thank them for all their help, especially the excellent players I’ve worked with,” Harrop added.

“I definitely want to stay in football and have had a few calls already. It would be good to manage at a high a level as possible. We’ll see what the future holds.”

Stanway Rovers said via Twitter: “The club would like to place on record its thanks to Angelo, Alex Drennan and Danny Slatter (joint assistant managers) for their huge contribution to the club in recent years.”

Duguid, who made more than 400 appearances for the U’s, will take charge from January 1, with former assistant boss Michael Pulford taking the reins on a caretaker basis over Christmas.

Pulford will be in charge for the Thurlow Nunn match at Brantham on Tuesday, December 27. Duguid’s first game in the will be at home to Saffron Walden on January 7.

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