Manager Stewart Larter on why he left Gorleston to complete a Wroxham return
PUBLISHED: 09:35 28 May 2014 | UPDATED: 09:48 28 May 2014
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Boss Stewart Larter is heading home to Wroxham – less than a year after turning down the chance to make a Trafford Park return.
Last season’s Norfolk Senior Cup winning manager has decided to leave Thurlow Nunn Premier Division Gorleston to take the reigns at the higher-level Yachtsmen. It was an opportunity he spurned last summer after David Batch left the villagers but now Larter feels the time is right to make his Wroxham comeback.
The former Ipswich Town youngster, who made more than 500 appearances during the 1990s for the club he will now manage, said: “Last summer wasn’t right for them (Wroxham) or myself, having discussed it with them.
“I’m more ready now than I was then and I feel as a club they are in a better place. I just wanted to try and better myself, which is the same in any job. It’s a chance to go up the ladder that I feel I’d have been disappointed to turn down again. The main reason is not Gorleston withdrawing their application for promotion (to Ryman League set-up where Wroxham play).
“Off the pitch Wroxham are in a good place. They have their Academy, the under-21s, the under-18s and a lot of young players. On the pitch needs a bit of work, you only need to look at the results from last season, to improve but in the short term that excites me. I want to make the club get back to where it belongs in the upper tier of Norfolk football, rather than being on a slippery slope.”
Pawel Guziejko was the shock choice to become Wroxham’s manager last summer but saw his team finish in the bottom three of Ryman Division One North and lose the recent county-cup final to the side Larter managed. Only a relegation reprieve saved the Yachtsmen from dropping back down to the same level as Gorleston.
Now the Yachtsmen legend is determined to bring some happier times back to his spiritual footballing home after enjoying four successful years at Emerald Park.
He said: “I had 11 years at Wroxham as a player and had some great times and some great successes. That played a part in me taking the job. I know the club as well, even though I’ve been away from it for a little while, and a lot of people that were there then are still there now. The first thing I need to sort, if you look at the stats, is that Wroxham conceded a lot of goals last season.
“We need to focus on that in the close season and look at bringing in a bit more experience. But the number one aim is to make sure we don’t need an FA decision to help us keep our Ryman League status next season.”
Larter took charge of the youth team at Gorleston before becoming joint first-team boss with Richard Daniels. He took sole charge of the Greens in October 2012. A close working relationship with chairman Alan Gordon helped him flourish and Guziejko’s replacement admits it wasn’t easy to walk away from the east coast outfit.
“As a manager and a chairman our relationship could have been made as a blueprint for others,” said Larter.
“He gave me great support and let me get on with the football side of things. It’s a great club, with great people and it is a wrench to leave. I told Alan he won’t be short of offers with people wanting to fill the post.”
Ex-boss Daniels appears to be the early frontrunner to fill the managerial vacancy at Gorleston.