First Division

Croydon welcome back Giles


Croydon FC have welcomed back Liam Giles as First Team Manager.

After 2 seasons as Trams boss Giles left in the summer but following a spell with Epsom & Ewell is back at the SCEFL First Division side.

Giles Management Team has also been announced.

John Gladwin returns as assistant manager alongside Taylor Maddock.

Matt Capon will continue in his role as first team coach and Ben Gladden remains as strength and conditioning coach, plus team physio.

Following the Managerial change the Croydon FC board issued this lengthy statement.

“Firstly, the Croydon FC board would again like to thank the outgoing management team, Tyler and Joe, for their service to the club and wish them all the very best for their futures. At the same time, we are also very happy to announce the re-appointment of Liam Giles as their replacement, effective immediately.

“As Tyler alluded to, Croydon FC has been undergoing a period of significant change and re-development, aiming to create a better and more sustainable environment for players and supporters, while also working towards contributing more to our local community.

“The No1 priority for the new chairman and board when it was formed early in 2022 was financial stability, after prolonged uncertainty and even risk to the club’s existence.

“As Croydon FC enters its 70th year in 2023, preserving the club, its heritage; and crucially its presence in its historical home at Croydon Arena, remains a key challenge, especially with ongoing cost inflation.

“The club is now on a much more solid financial footing, even after considerable reinvestment both on and off the pitch. Generous support of fans and local business sponsors has been instrumental as well as hard work securing and developing new sources of revenue. This while keeping a tighter control over costs, including making tough choices and having difficult conversations with key suppliers.

“The Trams faithful remain the lifeblood of the club and have been instrumental in its survival, especially during the pandemic. Volunteers remain crucial on matchdays and for everything that happens around it – ticket sales, to programmes, to photography, to matchday announcements and reports. Positively, new volunteers with fresh talents are now also buying into the new vision.

“Repaying this loyalty with a better supporter experience is hence crucial and includes the clubhouse refurbishment; lowered season ticket prices; a new website; locally sourced quality matchday catering; a Community Fun Day and more. We continue to make improvements and hope to attract new fans.

“Beyond this, the club’s mission has extended to include longer-term aims to build something sustainable in the wider local community. The club feels it has a responsibility, where possible, to help tackle some of the difficult social challenges which many areas of London face.

“This begins with a deeper relationship with Kinetic Foundation, bringing more young players through to the first team, and the launch of a Youth initiative which now has teams at three lower age groups from a standing start, providing free football for many.

“The club has also rejuvenated links with Croydon Women, helping support their return to Croydon Arena and hopes to build on this important relationship.

“The work then extends to efforts with local charities including South Norwood Community Kitchen, who have partnered with us for fundraising and food bank donations, as well as fledgling relationships with adoption, homelessness and mental health groups which will all hopefully develop in the future.

“We remain grateful to Croydon Council and the Mayor for engaging with the chairman and board to understand the vision and consider how we can work together to achieve more.

“Every manager being considered for the role at Croydon FC has been asked to buy in and commit to this vision. Frustration with disappointing results is understandable and why there is an ongoing review process.

“This ensures the overall strategy for the club is monitored and remains correct for the long-term good of the organisation. The board is open to listening to actionable feedback supported by clear strategy, in light of the various constraints that we are working under.

“Liam Giles has demonstrated a deep connection to this mission which is tied up in his own personal connection to Croydon FC over many years and his hopes for the team and the wider club so we are delighted to have him back on board and ready to work towards our shared goals. Liam was always a popular manager with the club’s supporters and it was also important for the board to listen to their wishes in this decision.”

Croydon are currently in 15th place in the table and visit high-flying Lydd Town on Saturday.