Aidy the winner out to do it again

NEW Colchester United boss, Aidy Boothroyd, is a winner. He proved it at Watford, and he is out to replicate it at the Community Stadium.

Carl Marston

Colchester soccer, main story

By Carl Marston

NEW Colchester United boss, Aidy Boothroyd, is a winner. He proved it at Watford, and he is out to replicate it at the Community Stadium.

And Boothroyd is not fazed by the stigma of favouring a long-ball style, which he accrued during his three years at Vicarage Road.

The 38-year-old was a respected coach before his appointment as Watford boss, helping to nurture the passing credentials of West Brom and Norwich City. So he won't suddenly be changing the U's style of play.

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“It's horses for courses. You have to play to your strengths,” insisted Boothroyd, who was officially unveiled as the new U's boss yesterday lunchtime.

“I'm not bothered by the stigma (of the long ball). That happens when you win matches. And I'd rather win first than entertain.

“A lot of it had to do with Watford's past, under Graham (Taylor). I take it all with a pinch of salt.

“I have to assess every individual's strengths, because first and foremost I'm a coach. You can't just put a style on a team; you've got to get the best out of what you've got.

“I won't be making too many changes, or doing too much too quickly. It will take two or three months to get the right style, and for everyone to know what everyone is doing,” added Boothroyd.

The Yorkshireman is the third new manager to be appointed by the U's since Robbie Cowling became the club's owner and chairman three years ago. He follows in the footsteps of Geraint Williams and Paul Lambert, who are now the managers at Leyton Orient and Norwich City respectively.

Boothroyd, who has signed a year's rolling contract, takes over a club currently fifth in League One. He is relishing the challenge ahead.

“There are a number of reasons why I wanted to become the manager of Colchester United. The first reason is the chairman (Robbie Cowling). You can be very fortunate or unfortunate with chairmen, because you hear horror stories these days about chairmen and chief executives picking the team!” continued Boothroyd.

“But I immediately liked Robbie. He wants to move this club forward. It's a new project, and a new training ground is going to be built for next year.

“And even if the club was still at Layer Road, rather than this new stadium, then I would still have taken the job, provided that this chairman (Cowling) was here.

“There's also a nice balance in the squad, with youth and experience. It's not often that a new manager comes in when the team is fifth in the table, but strange things happen in football.

“In fact, I haven't been this excited for a long time! I'm delighted to be here,” added Boothroyd.

During his successful era at Watford, which included promotion to the Premier League in 2006, Boothroyd worked alongside an experienced assistant in Keith Burkinshaw.

But that partnership will not be renewed at Colchester.

Boothroyd confirmed: “We worked well together at Watford, but every club is different. Keith was the right man for Watford, but it's different now. I will be bringing in someone (an assistant) in the next few days.”

Chairman Robbie Cowling said: “I always see an opportunity in every problem (Lambert's departure). We had some very good applicants, as you can see from the man who has got the job.

“The void left at the club by three people going (Lambert, assistant Ian Culverhouse and football operations manager Gary Karsa) could have been devastating, but we have all gelled together as a club.

“My initial meeting with Aidy (Boothroyd) went exceptionally well, but I still wanted to go through the strict interviewing process.”

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