Foley throws his hat into ring

FORMER Ipswich Town coach Steve Foley is gearing himself up to make one of the biggest decisions of his footballing career.

He confirmed today that he has officially applied for the vacant manager’s job at Colchester United.

But he has been offered the job as assistant manager of Tampa Bay Rowdies - and a three-year contract in the USA.

“I could be put in a bit of a dilemma,” said Foley today.

“I have written to Colchester confirming my interest in the job.

“I’ve heard nothing back yet, but having started my career at Layer Road and coached the club before moving on to Norwich and Ipswich it would be great honour to be asked to manage.“

Although acting as caretaker manager with the U’s, Foley in his 40 years in football has never managed on a full time basis.

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“Now is the time for that perhaps,” he said. “I’m ready for that role and feel sure I can bring something to Colchester.

“But I’ve been offered the assistant manager’s job at Tampa and we’re down to the finer details.

“I’ve just spent a couple of weeks coaching with them and enjoyed it greatly. They want me to start straight away - after my contract with Ipswich Town ends on May 31.”

Lawford-based Foley would have to decide whether to achieve a boyhood dream and manage Colchester if offered the job - or take up the offer of three years in the Florida sunshine.

“Football is all about ups and downs, and I’m looking forward to carry on working,“ added Foley.

“I wish Ipswich well, but that chapter of my career is about to end, and I can’t wait to get started again.”

Jim Magilton, the former Ipswich player and manager, has been linked with the job as successor to Aidy Boothroyd at Colchester.

There were reports he might link up with Foley at the League One club after Foley acted as technical skills coach during Magilton’s three years in charge at Portman Road.

But Foley says that he has heard nothing from Magilton and the two have not spoken for some while.

Paul Dalglish, the son of Kenny, is head coach at Florida-based Tampa, who are currently second in the USL Conference, which is one tier below the MSL.

He played for Norwich City for a while and is keen to get former Carrow Road coach Foley onboard.

While playing for Houston Dynamo in Major League Soccer, Dalglish won MLS Cup titles in 2006 and 2008.

After he retired from playing Dalglish spent time studying coaching techniques and match strategy at Liverpool with manager Rafa Benitez and at Blackburn with manager and former Rowdies player Sam Allardyce.

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