Branston on his pride at leading Town, why managers should want the job and how the players have responded to him

Guy Branston speaking at the launch of Chesterfield FC's new Emerging Talent Centre (Pic: Tina Jenner)
Guy Branston speaking at the launch of Chesterfield FC's new Emerging Talent Centre (Pic: Tina Jenner)
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Guy Branston admits it will be a proud moment to stand on the touchline as Chesterfield manager, but insists he doesn’t want the job permanently.

The caretaker boss, who says he’s part of the process to bring in a replacement for Gary Caldwell, held his first press conference this afternoon since stepping into the breach.

He will lead the Spireites into a tough game at Luton on Saturday and more than likely the Tuesday night visit of Yeovil Town.

If that’s as far as his managerial stint will take him, he sounds happy enough with that.

“I just don’t think it’s the right time for me,” he said.

“What puts me off? Getting sacked after five games, not being a Chesterfield legend, not getting the support of the fans, joining the merry-go-round and then never getting back on.

“I think there’s an opportunity for the football club to employ the right person, I’ll be helping them find that person.

“I’m already in discussion with shortlists, a collection of applicants, I’ve had phone calls from people I know, I’ve had phone calls from people I’d want to put forward.

“I want to work with the next person and if I can push a certain person to Ashley (Carson, company secretary) I will do because I believe he’s the right person for Chesterfield Football Club.

“At this time I don’t think it’s me.”

Branston believes his experience of working with 40 managers in his career as a player will benefit the club as they try to recruit a man to send them back up the League Two table.

And in his view, it’s an attractive job for someone.

“Why is it attractive? The chairman (owner Dave Allen), financially secure, doesn’t worry too much about finances because he knows he’s got a big pot of money, which is true. The big thing for me about him is that he wants to keep the football club, that’s why I wanted to work for him,” he said.

“He wanted to look to sell it and then got out of it pretty quick because he saw it going hopefully in the right direction.

“A manager comes in, looks at this stadium, the training ground, the squad, the area itself and then you’re in a position to start to look at the potential of the place.

“If you’re 45, couple of promotions under my belt, 400 or 500 games under my belt as a manager, I’m knocking Ashley’s door down at his house, make me the manager, make me the manager.”

It became known on Saturday night, not long after Caldwell’s departure was announced, that Branston would be the club’s caretaker boss.

He then set about the task of getting the squad together and preparing them for the trip to Luton.

His preparations included an invitation to a pair of scouts he knows and trusts to come and watch training and give their views on what they saw.

“I rang the staff and said as far as I’m concerned don’t walk because we need you, take it until whenever, we have to carry on,” he said.

“They stood by me which is fantastic, Mike (McBride) and Gareth (Piper) have been brilliant, Dukey (Matt Duke) and Ducky (Lewis Duckmanton) too.

“I got the lads in Sunday morning, spoke to them and said right the lads who had played, you’re with Mike, the lads who haven’t played show me what you can do.

“I tried to have a laugh with them, tried to get them going.

“Monday we got them all together and I’ve kept them all together, young lads back in the fold, the Ricky Germans, all the names are all in with us.”

When he stands in the technical area for the first time as a manager, even if he knows it’s a temporary post, he’ll be a proud man.

But there will be other emotions and thoughts too.

“Proud, yeah. Emotional, yeah. This sort of thing doesn’t happen, it’s an amazing opportunity. This could affect me for the rest of my life.

“Gary brought me in so that makes it harder.

“There’s no one else at the club and I’ve got an A License so we’ve got to use it.

“The selfish side of me looked at the squad and thought if you win a couple of games and the new manager comes in it looks good on you.

“I don’t think I can apply for the job because I think the interview process needs to take place this time, take their time to do the right thing for the club.

“Things have gone wrong in the past and it starts from the top all the way down and you have to attack that and keep fighting to get back up to where we need to be.

“Since Cooky, winning football matches constantly, it never matters what’s happening behind the scenes if you’re winning matches - no one is interested.”

And with the club having decided to make a change, it’s an opportunity for some players to come back into the limelight.

Branston has been impressed by the likes of Reece Mitchell in training, a winger with just two appearances to his name this season.

The reaction of the players to the events at the club since Sunday morning have made the 38-year-old believe he’s done the right thing in taking charge.

“I’ve been in this situation as a player, you want a breath of fresh air sometimes. There’s lads who haven’t been involved who want to show what they can do.

“People have been really highlighting who they are to me, which is great for me.

“It keeps me up all night trying to think what team to pick.

“I want to see something I haven’t seen.

“They’ve done that.

“Whatever happens Saturday I honestly believe I’ve made the right decision to step in because they’ve taken on board what I say.

“If we’ve anything about us it’s going to be good Saturday afternoon.”