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Folkestone Invicta boss Neil Cugley holds talks with managerless Margate

By Alex Hoad

Neil Cugley admits he is flattered and proud to be linked with the vacant manager’s job at former club Margate but insists it’s business as usual at Cheriton Road.

The 56-year-old Folkestone Invicta boss, now in his 16th consecutive season in charge at Invicta, emerged as an early favourite to replace Chris Kinnear after the Thanet club’s board were granted permission to talk to him.

Cugley said: "Margate did things 100% right and I chatted to the people there earlier in the week but apart from that, it’s business as usual for me.

"I am flattered by the approach and proud to be linked with the job, Margate are a good club. What will be will be but at the moment, I am just getting on with my own thing."

Margate looked set to make a swift appointment at one stage, following Kinnear’s return to Dover at the weekend.

However, they had received around 50 applications by yesterday (Wednesday) and have now appointed goalkeeper Craig Holloway as caretaker manager, working with coaches Simon Osborn and Danny Hockton.

Invicta chairman Mark Jenner said: "Margate asked to speak to Neil on Saturday, which they didn’t have to do because he is not under contract.

"We don’t want to lose him because he is the best non-league manager in Kent. He gives us stability on and off the pitch and runs half the club bringing in a lot of income during the close season (through commercial activities)."

A tweet from Folkestone Invicta yesterday (Wednesday) said Cugley would not be moving to Hartsdown Park but Mr Jenner said it did not represent an official statement on their behalf.

Cugley takes charge of his  650th league game in charge when Crawley Down Gatwick visit on Saturday.

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