Stand-in boss ready to hang up his boots

BERWICK’S caretaker manager Ian Little says he is preparing to hang up his boots . . . to give youth a chance.

The 38 year-old, who is hoping to land the job vacated by Jimmy Crease on a permanent basis, says a recurring knee injury has forced him to take a less active role following the departure of his ex-boss.

“It’s meant I haven’t played as much as I would have liked,” he said, “but then again I want to concentrate on the management side of things for the time being so playing really isn’t an option.

“We’re not an old side by any means, but by not playing myself I have brought the average age of the side down a bit.

“I will still do the training and will play if I have to, but for the moment I am quite happy watching from the sidelines.

“I like the idea of bringing young players through and there are one or two at the club I have a keen eye on.

“As I keep saying, I like the look of young Darren Lavery and I will continue to give him game time because I think he has a bright future. The same goes for another couple of youngsters at the club, it’s just a case of finding the right games to introduce them.

“If I can find the time I want to get out and see the Reserves and the U19s playing as often as I can.”

Little says he is also keen to continue his managerial link-up with Craig Valentine, who has been helping him out in the dug-out over the past few weeks.

“‘Vali’ is a good guy to have around. He is a football man and I have found it useful having him around,” he said.

“I am hoping he will stay on with me to the end of the year when the caretaker spell ends, and if I get the job we will talk about the future after that.”