Swan and McDonald make a ‘dream team’

Redditch Advertiser: Redditch chairman Chris Swan Redditch chairman Chris Swan

REDDITCH United chairman Chris Swan says his relationship with Liam McDonald is the one of the best he’s had with a manager.

McDonald defied expectations when he was handed the reins at the Valley Stadium last summer.

Despite making the leap from player to boss, the 29-year-old steered United to tenth in the Calor Southern League and also guided the club to the Worcestershire Senior Cup.

Since taking over the club in the summer of 2011, Swan had had a number of managers at the helm, including two stints by Simon Redhead and also employing Martin Sockett, Graham Hyde and Mark Fennemore to take the helm.

However, so far McDonald and his backroom staff of Nick Green and David Bridgewater have proved to be a success.

Swan said: “Liam has done extremely well and there’s no doubt he and the coaching team have been a great success.

“It’s important to have a strong relationship with your manager and Liam and I have a very good one.

“Without that a club cannot go forward and flourish.

“Since I took over the club we’ve tried to put in a number of things into place and Liam has been able to get the best out of youngsters such as Jermaine Hylton and Leavie Oshungbure, to name just a few.”

McDonald has yet to reveal his plan for next season’s squad, although he will be keen to hang onto the talents of top-scorer Hylton, the highly-rated Omari Sterling James and others such as Jim Mutton.

Hylton scored 21 goals in all competitions and has already attracted a host of scouts, but the manager remain confident of holding onto him.

Meanwhile, the chairman has said there is no chance of the club’s hopes of a move to a new stadium being revived.

The chairman had hoped to persuade Redditch Borough Council to sell their traditional home and use the proceeds to build a purpose-built £3.3 million ground in Washford.

Council chiefs had rejected the proposal, which was finally dashed when an overview and scrutiny committee did not recommend it in April. Swan has previously warned he would sell the club if there was no progress, but all plans have been put on hold while his wife, Sallie, battles serious illness.

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