“I am absolutely gutted”.
Those were the words of Daren Young after it was confirmed he has resigned as manager of Stewarts & Lloyds just four days before the new ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League Premier Division campaign kicks off.
Young returned to Occupation Road during last season and eventually helped the Foundrymen escape from relegation with a good run of form in the latter stages of the campaign.
But S&L’s plans for the new season, which starts with a trip to Yaxley on Saturday, have now been thrown into chaos after Young chose to step down.
And he cited a “lack of ambition” as the main reason for his departure.
“For the record, I want to say that I am absolutely gutted,” Young said.
“It got to the stage where I had enough. Everyone knows that in the UCL you need financial support. It got to the stage where I was banging my head against a brick wall and you can’t do that forever.
“I thought we did exceptionally well to stay in the division last season and there was a lot of character shown by the players to get us out of trouble.
“But there doesn’t seem to be any ambition. And it was getting to the stage where there was no money being provided for something as simple as water bottles for the players.
“There are some fantastic people at S&L and it has a very strong tradition but I just got to the stage where I didn’t think it was worth the headaches.
“I am glad I went back there. Corby is my hometown and I am pleased we managed to keep the club up.
“I was working with Lee Duffy who is a great friend of mine now but even that friendship was being tested. It just wasn’t worth it any more.”
Duffy, meanwhile, insists he has no intention of taking on the first-team manager’s job at S&L following Young’s departure but he insists he will help keep things going for the time being, although there is already plenty for him to deal with.
“I am the reserve team manager this season,” Duffy said.
“We have three teams, including the under-18s and I am the only manager at the moment because our youth team one is away at the moment.
“So we have asked Rothwell Corinthians to switch our reserve fixture from Saturday to Friday night so that I can take that game and then take the first team to Yaxley. And it may be the case that a lot of those who play on Friday will play on Saturday as well.
“Daren is a good friend and I can understand things from both sides. The budget the club had was mainly being provided by him. But that isn’t really for me to comment on. I will just do what I can to keep things going until a new manager is appointed.”
Glynn Davies is also set to help Duffy with first-team duties going into the new season and S&L have confirmed they have already begun their search for Young’s replacement.
Chairman John Davies said in a statement: “I can confirm that Daren has left the club with immediate effect I would like to wish him well wherever he goes.
“In the interim period Lee Duffy and Glynn Davies have agreed to stand in until an appointment has been made
“Anyone wishing to apply for the position please do so by emailing me at Foundrychairman@hotmail.co.uk
“I would ask that only serious applicants apply due to the timing as we will be looking to appoint in the very near future.”