News & Star column 28.11.19

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New head coach Chris Beech may not be a Blues legend yet – but the omens are good.

The ex-Rochdale assistant boss is following in the footsteps of two of Carlisle’s most successful managers.

Bob Stokoe, in 1968, and Paul Simpson, in 2003, both arrived at the Blues immediately after spells at Rochdale and they didn’t do too badly, did they?

CUOSC want to wish Beech a warm welcome and every success. He has come through a rigorous interview process led by Director of Football David Holdsworth and was appointed unanimously by the club’s Holdings Board.

Billy Atkinson, CUOSC’s representative on that Board, said: “I hope fans will be happy we haven’t gone on the usual managerial merry-go-round. I am pleased the club have given a young, enthusiastic and ambitious manager the chance to show his worth.”

Beech, 45, has a proven track record in developing young players and we hope fans get behind him as he tries to steer us up the table.

First, he has a tough baptism this weekend when the Blues travel to Forest Green in the second round of the FA Cup.

We are certain to have a good following and with the chance of earning a money-spinning third round tie, it is a game everyone is looking forward to.

The CUOSC board will answer questions from fans at a members’ meeting next month.

With so much conjecture about affairs at Brunton Park, both on and off the pitch, we have decided to hold the meeting before the home game with Grimsby on December 14.

With no set agenda we hope as many members as possible will attend. It will start at 11am in the Sunset Suite and finish when the questions run out or no later than 12.30pm.

Atkinson and Jim Mitchell, CUOSC’s representatives on the club’s boards, will both be in attendance.

The meeting is on the same day as CUOSC’s and the club’s combined Christmas foodbank appeal.

Previous collections, on behalf of Carlisle Foodbank, have always been well supported. Members can use the meeting to bring along any donations.

If you are non-member or cannot make the meeting the collection point for donations will be our pre-match supporters’ surgery in the study centre, next to the club shop between 1.30 and 2.30pm.

It costs adults £10 to join CUOSC for a year and £5 for seniors and Under-16s.