Robins management team step down... Pompey Legend to present awards

Bosham manager Andy Probee has called time on his four-year reign in charge of the Robins.

Thursday, 11th May 2017, 4:30 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 6:15 pm
Andy Probee, Grahame Vick and Neil Redman / Picture by Nicki Webb

The 37-year-old player boss – alongside assistant Neil Redman and head coach Grahame Vick – are all stepping aside because of various family and personal commitments.

The management trio have led the village side to the most successful period in their recent history, with four trophies in their four years managing together, culminating in the Southern Combination division-two title this season.

Probee said: “It’s with a heavy heart that I’ve taken this decision as I love the club, but it’s become increasingly difficult to juggle family life, work and managing the side. As any manager will tell you, it’s so much more than just picking the squad, and I need to take a break from it.

“Our preparation all season has been so meticulous – meetings before big games with Grahame and Neil sometimes went on for two or three hours, and while I’m proud of the success we’ve had, I can’t continue to give it the level of commitment needed.

“None of us likes doing things by half and between the three of us, felt it right at this time to step aside.

“We’ve had four really good years managing a great set of lads, and the club has progressed so much in that time, with some good people running it.”

Probee took over at Walton Lane in November 2013, immediately winning the West Sussex premier-division title, with a run of 13 wins from their final 16 league games.

The following season, back in the Sussex League, he guided much of the same squad to the division-three cup, with an impressive 3-0 victory against Sidlesham at Pagham before repeating the feat in 2015-16 in what was then the Southern Combination division-to contest, with a 2-0 win against champions AFC Varndeanians at Storrington.

Probee is set to continue his long affinity with the Reds, where father Bob is club president: “I’m sure I’ll manage again in the future, but feel like I’ve got a few years playing left in me and want to enjoy my football here.”

Probee doubles as club groundsman, leaning on his landscape business experience. It’s a role he enjoys in his spare time, and will continue to share with Vick alongside other off-field support. The club have once again nominated for the Sussex FA Groundsman of the Year award for Step 7 clubs.

Bosham officials thanked the trio for their efforts over the past four years and while disappointed to lose such a talented management team, they respect and support their decision. The club are delighted they will stay with the Robins in other capacities.

Bosham are now inviting applications for a first-team manager role to lead the Southern Combination division-two campaign next season. All interested parties should email [email protected] in the first instance, outlining their experience, no later than Sunday, May 14.

* Pompey ambassador Alan Knight will be the special guest at Bosham FC’s end-of-season presentations.

The former shot-stopper – who amassed 801 appearances for the Blues in a career spanning 22 years – will be handing out individual player awards as the club bring the curtain down on another successful season.

Andy Probee’s first team memorably lifted the Southern Combination Football League division-two title – his fourth trophy in as many years as manager of the club.

Meanwhile, Rick Kennett’s under-16s also lifted silverware, with an emphatic 19-0 victory in their last game to take the Arun & Chichester Youth League Division C crown.

The season finale takes place at Southbourne Club, New Road, Southbourne on Saturday, May 20, from 7pm to 11pm.

Knight is a friend of the club, having formally re-opened their clubhouse following Sport England funding three years ago, in addition to helping arrange a fundraising friendly against the Pompey Legends side. He also oversaw last season’s awards ceremony.

Tickets are available on the door on the night, priced £5 individually, or £10 for a family (two adults, two children max). The event includes a season-review programme on entry, buffet, raffle and disco.

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