Gleeson appointed first team coach at Lowestoft Town
- Credit: Nick Butcher
Lowestoft Town skipper Dan Gleeson will take on a first team coach role at Crown Meadow in the wake of Craig Fleming's departure for Southampton.
Gleeson will join the management duo of Micky Chapman and Ady Gallagher for the rest of the season and chairman Gary Keyzor hinted it could become permanent if the former Luton man can help Lowestoft avoid relegation from Conference North.
Keyzor also revealed that a decision is yet to be made whether Fleming will be replaced as director of football.
'Mick and Ady will carry on and Dan Gleeson will take over as first team coach for the rest of the season,' said Keyzor, who has bankrolled the club's rise from the Eastern Counties Premier Division to the Conference in five years.
'Dan is a very well respected figure in the dressing room and I've got total confidence he can do the job. We will see how it works between now and the end of the season and make a decision then.
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'Do we need to appoint another director of football? I'm not sure. Gleese (Gleeson) is very enthusiastic and he has already taken some coaching sessions with the lads. We certainly aren't looking (to appoint anyone) at the moment.'
Fleming will adopt a more hands-off role with the Trawlerboys before he officially joins Southampton later this month to allow the new management team to settle in.
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However, Keyzor hopes to convince the former Norwich City defender to make an appearance at Lowestoft's next home game so fans get a chance to say farewell.
'Flem is quite a quiet character in some ways but we want to give him a proper send-off against Stockport,' said Keyzor. 'A lot of people don't really appreciate how much he has given to us but he has been brilliant in transforming us into a more professional club.'
Fleming came close to leaving Lowestoft for a first team coach role at Blackpool earlier this season and Keyzor admitted the club knew they wouldn't be able to satisfy the 43-year-old's ambitions forever.
'I suppose in some ways we have been victims of our own success – Craig knows a lot of people in the game and has got a lot of contacts,' said Keyzor. 'It was inevitable there would be interest in him. Jobs like this one at Southampton do not come round very often – we are going to miss him... we know that.
'But all we can do is be grateful for what he's done and wish him the best of luck.'
The new management team must hit the ground running as the Blues look to preserve their Conference North status in their remaining nine games. Keyzor is confident the Trawlerboys can amass enough points to steer clear of the bottom three.
'We're in safe hands,' he added. 'We've got enough about us in the squad to get the points we need. I think we've been very unfortunate with injuries and decisions in some games. But when everyone is available we're a match for anyone in this division.'