Phoenix Sports re-appoint Steve O'Boyle after mutually parting company with boss Paul Bryon after 11 straight defeats

Monday 01st November 2021

PHOENIX SPORTS chairman Andrew Mortlock has mutually agreed to part company with manager Paul Bryon after a poor run of 11 straight defeats in all competitions and has re-appointed Steve O’Boyle as the man to get them out of relegation trouble.

The Barnehurst based club are sitting at the bottom of the Isthmian League South East Division table, having collected one win and a draw from their opening 11 league games and suffered a 4-0 defeat at Ramsgate at the weekend.

“Unfortunately a poor run of 11 straight losses has contributed to us both making this difficult decision,” said Mortlock in a statement.

“I have been the chairman for 19 years and changing the manager is not a thing we have done often.

“Paul was not only the manager but is also a close friend of mine and many others at the club.

“I would like to personally thank Paul for all of his hard work as first-team manager for the past four years plus as assistant manager and coach for three further seasons and prior to that a junior team manager for five seasons.

“Paul has not only dedicated his time voluntarily, he has also funded many other projects at the club.

“I know Paul is gutted by our recent form and he was working very hard to try to turn the tide.  He has been very unlucky with injuries, coinciding with a lack of form of some of the players in a highly improved and competitive league.

“The board at Phoenix had been monitoring the situation closely and after discussions with Paul we have agreed that we need to make changes now to try and avoid relegation.

“I know Paul will continue to remain a good friend and supporter of the club and I repeat my thanks to Paul for all of his hard work.”

O’Boyle has recently departed their league rivals Faversham Town, where he was assistant manager to James Collins, but has made an emotional return to a club where he had great success during his first spell in charge.

“We knew that time was not on our side and we needed to sort this situation out quickly,” added Mortlock.

“Therefore, we are pleased to announce Steve O’Boyle as our new first-team manager.

“Steve returns to Phoenix after leaving us four seasons ago.

“Boylee’s record when he was the manager was fantastic.  Two promotions in three seasons is a record that speaks for itself.

“Boylee has remained a friend of Phoenix since he left us. When we parted before there was no massive fall out. It was mainly due to the fact we could not keep up with his ambitions at the time.  But that is in the past and Boylee would be the first to admit that he regrets his decision to leave.

“When we realised that Phoenix needed to make a change, we could have advertised the vacancy and probably have had many applications.  But in my mind there was only one man who truly understands our unique club and can get us out of trouble – and that is Boylee.

“I think he has some unfinished business to do at Phoenix and I know that he is very keen to get back to doing what he does best.

“I am upset about Paul leaving but also now excited about the future for Phoenix with Steve O’Boyle as the manager.”

Speaking after Faversham Town’s 2-1 win over Leatherhead in The FA Trophy Third Qualifying Round at the weekend, Collins said: “We’re very good friends and he said ‘I’m not a number two.’

“He’s played a part in getting us where we are.  I said to him he gave me my first job in football (reserve team manager at Erith Town) so I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for him.”

Phoenix Sports last tasted victory back on the 4 September when Chipstead were beaten 2-1 in The FA Cup First Qualifying Round but they have  since lost their last eight league games and have also been knocked out of The FA Cup (by Redhill), FA Trophy (by Harlow Town) and the London Senior Cup (by Glebe).

Phoenix Sports welcome 12th placed side Whitehawk to Mayplace Road East on Saturday, 6 November (15:00), with O'Boyle back in the home dug-out.

The club has also confirmed that joint-assistant managers Ross Baker and Danny Joy have also departed Phoenix Sports.

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