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Canterbury City closing in on appointment of new manager

By Cameron Hogwood

Canterbury City chairman Tim Clark is expecting to make an announcement on the club’s search for a new manager next week.

This follows the divisive sacking of former boss Ben Smith following comments he made in a recent edition of the Kentish Gazette.

An escalating aftermath saw the club’s final Southern Counties East League game against Bearsted cancelled, which the players claimed they had only been made aware of via an update on City’s Twitter page.

Ben Smith. Picture: Chris Davey
Ben Smith. Picture: Chris Davey

On the potential appointment of a successor to Smith, Clark said: “It’s a work in progress. We hope to have some more concrete news by the middle of next week.

“We know there has been a lot of media coverage and a lot of comments but we made a decision and the board stick by it.

“As a club we’ve been formally charged by the Southern Counties East Football League.

“That’s a process we have to go through now, we have to submit our response and then it’s up to the league.”

City’s players released a statement on the day they had been due to face Bearsted calling for the reinstatement of Smith and claiming to have been misled by the club after the SCEFL denied suggestions they had received complaints about the remarks.

Mr Clark added: “With the charge coming in last Friday it would have been inappropriate to put stuff out in the public domain.

“I have been in communication with the previous team captain Laurence Harvey and have also had discussions with (goalkeeping coach) Ada Gower, who was asked to field a team for that final game of the season against Bearsted and there seems to be a difference in opinion.

“We failed to play a fixture so obviously there will be consequences.

“I’ve consulted fully with Ada who was asked to get a team out and wasn’t able to.”

Read more: Stuart Lewis on why he decided to leave Dover Athletic

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