Philliskirk role secure — Johnson
Reporter: MATTHEW CHAMBERS
Date online: 21 March 2013
TONY Philliskirk will remain with Athletic under new manager Lee Johnson.
Johnson told the Chronicle the former caretaker boss is a “massive part” of the future of the club.
Philliskirk has returned to focusing mainly on the club’s youth section on non-match days, with Cliff Byrne and Paul Gerrard assisting Johnson in first-team training sessions.
Philliskirk was in the dug-out assisting the rookie manager against Hartlepool in midweek.
But the main way in which he will help once Johnson has found hisown assistant manager is in preparing youth prospects for the first team.
“Without a doubt, Tony Philliskirk is a massive part of the future of the club,” said Johnson.
“It’s a fact with managers that they are probably not going to stay very long, either way. If you don’t do well, you get the boot. If you do well, you probably move on anyway.
“I am not saying I want to move on. But it is important to have stability at a club on the recruitment side, which incorporates bringing youth through.”
Johnson wants his side to produce bold, attacking football - of the sort that emphatically beat Hartlepool 3-0 on Tuesday.
His first goal is to side-step relegation, then to look carefully at building a squad capable of challenging the other end of the table.
“We have got to score goals,” Johnson added. “I want my team to go for it.”
“We have to get out of relegation trouble. But for me, even next year starts now.”
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