Former Kidsgrove Athletic player Will Ryder has returned to the club, this time as a professional coach, and believes he has unfinished business with the club, as he looks to help the team rise up the table.
Speaking ahead of Saturday’s game against Basford United, Ryder told StaffsLive how after retiring at the club, he felt when called upon, he had to take the job.
“It was the last club I played for before I retired through injury. When I got the call from the club, I felt it was a bit of unfinished business and a good opportunity.
“It’s an ambitious club, that want to go higher, want to try and progress from where they are currently. So I’m going to try and offer my services the best I can, and try get ourselves up the table.”
After his retirement from football, Ryder turned to coaching. Starting in 2009 at Manchester City, he has since worked for Stoke City, Wigan Athletic, and Morecambe, as well as various other non-league sides.
His experience working for these clubs seem to be paying off, as since joining the club last week, Kidsgrove have yet to lose a game, drawing to Sheffield FC in the league on Saturday, then beating Romulus in the Northern Premier League Challenge Cup on Tuesday.
Ryder is now urging the side to build on those two games, and has picked out the key area in their game that needs improving.
“I think that what we’ve got to bring now is some consistency into out league form, and I think Saturday and Tuesday night against Romulus has given us a platform to build on.
“I think now the aim is to shut up shop and be more solid and compact defensively. From what I have seen so far, the team have got goals, so our job now is to try and be nice and compact, stop shipping goals, and be more consistent in the way we play.”
The club now face their biggest challenge of the season, as they travel to unbeaten Basford United this weekend. With the team on the up, Ryder is now hoping Kidsgrove have enough to halt Basford’s unbeaten run.
“We go into every game trying to get three points. We understand Basford have been on a great run since the start of the season. But hopefully we can be the team to halt that, and take three points from them.
“They are on a great run, so if we can go and frustrate them on Saturday, then who knows, we’ll see at ten to five.”
Manager Ryan Austin, who brought Ryder back to the club, has said that he is pleased with the difference that Ryder has provided to the club, and is now hoping that he can keep seeing an improvement.
“He’ll bring a wealth of experience when it comes to coaching, he’s been around the game,” he told StaffsLive
“It’s what he does, he lives and breathes coaching. He’s a highly qualified coach. In the short time that he has been here, I can see that he brings that to the training sessions, and I hope to see an improvement.”