Striker Ross Hannah, one of the heroes of Gainsborough Trinity’s fine result on Saturday, has spoken of the “weight off my shoulders” after losing the assistant manager’s job.
The irony was not lost on Trinity fans that Hannah, who was relieved of his duties alongside Liam King last month, scored one of the goals that helped new boss Curtis Woodhouse make an excellent start in the league in a 2-2 draw at high-flying FC United Of Manchester.
But the frontman, who netted within seconds of going on as a substitute, revealed that he was only too happy to be concentrating solely on playing again.
“I found it very difficult to keep up my standards on the pitch and concentrate on everything else I had to do as assistant manager,” Hannah told Gainsborough Trinity TV.
“After my experience, and after speaking to a lot of people in the game who have done the same thing, playing and being a manager at the same time doesn’t work.
“I still have the hunger to play football, and to play for this club.”
That hunger was visibly evident when Hannah pounced on a mistake by the FC United ‘keeper to convert a terrific cross in the 43rd minute to put Trinity 2-1 up.
Hannah said: “The ‘keeper should have caught it, but I was Johnny-on-the-spot and tapped it in. I don’t think I have scored a quicker goal than that in my career, so I was delighted, especially for our fans.”
United equalised for a second time in the second half, and Hannah said he was disappointed that Trinity weren’t able to hold on for the win.
But he felt they would have taken a point before the game, and thought the result might trigger what could still be a successful season for the Holy Blues.
He added: “We have a hell of a lot of games to play and points to play for, and we still have a good set of players in that changing room. We just needed someone to come along and lift us, and the gaffer did that from the off.
“With the injection of new players that we have had, we now have a strong, competitive squad that can only breed better performances and players wanting to keep their place in the team.”