New Leiston boss Steve Ball takes charge with Rob Bate at Victory Road

Steve Ball

Steve Ball - Credit: Archant

New Leiston first-team boss Steve Ball is looking to put a ‘turbulent few seasons’ behind the Victory Road club and lead them to future success.

New Leiston first-team boss Steve Ball is looking to put a ‘turbulent few seasons’ behind the Victory Road club and lead them to future success.

Ball, 44, the former Colchester United midfielder who made almost 70 appearances for the Essex side, was announced as first-team boss last night – taking over from Steve Pitt, who left the club after just six weeks in charge.

Ball, who was brought to Leiston three seasons ago by former boss Mark Morsley before leaving in May 2012 to take up a job with Colchester United’s academy, will be assisted by former Stanway manager Rob Bate, with Adam Tann player-coach.

“It’s been a turbulent few seasons at Leiston and I must admit when I left 18 months ago to go to the Col U academy, I didn’t expect to return,” Ball said.

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“It’s an exciting challenge though.

“Leiston is what I would call a proper football club. They have progressed from the Ridgeons League to the Ryman Premier.

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“You don’t do that by being all over the place as a club.”

Ball re-joined Leiston with Steve Pitt after Danny Laws left the club. He was assistant to the former Wivenhoe boss before Pitt got the sack two weeks ago.

“I’ve known Pitty for a long time,” Ball said.

“But I think we were rather brought together, the coach and the manager. I don’t agree that ‘player-power’ got Steve the sack.

“Player-power doesn’t exist at Leiston and I should know, I’ve been in a few dressing rooms in my time.

“What I will say is that there are some opinionated players. But nothing wrong with that. That doesn’t faze me.

“Other people have had their say on the club which did surprise me a little. I learned years ago to keep my silence on matters involving other clubs.”

Ball, who was part of the Arsenal side that won the FA Youth Cup in 1988, knows his number one aim is to secure Leiston’s Ryman Premier future this season

Although not officially first-team boss on Saturday, he was in charge as Leiston, who sit two places off the relegation zone, hammered fellow strugglers Enfield Town 6-1.

After a League Cup clash at AFC Sudbury last night, Leiston have the more important task of a league clash at another team in the relegation mire, Thamesmead Town, on Saturday.

“It was a bit of a dream game against Enfield and I’m not naive enough to think that’s the way it is going to be,” Ball added.

“But we have some very good players, we played 4-3-3, a bit more attacking and it paid off.”

Ball has signed a two-and-a-half year contract with the club.

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