In the latest of our feature pieces profiling one of the key figures in and around Hallam FC, Ian Jones and John Wiseman from www.hallamfc.co.uk spoke to our new Assistant Manager Danny Cardwell, who made his debut in the Technical Area for the 1-0 home win over Armthorpe Welfare over a week ago. Danny explained how the switch to S10 came about, reflected on a glowing playing career, and shared his hopes for the future.
Danny, welcome to Hallam FC., How did the move come about?
“Out of the blue to be honest! I had always suggested to close friends and mutual friends between Steve, Ryan and me that one day I would love to get involved with the management side of things. Now I’m older -and a bit fatter- but I never expected it so soon. I’ve always loved my football , and so I wanted to stay involved now that I don’t play as much , so although was shocked at first when Steve (Whitehead) got in touch , the belief he showed in me that I would do a great job meant that I could not turn it down - so here we are!”
“It will be good learning for me and I’m loving so far. Everyone has been brilliant”
You've had an impressive career in the NCEL. Tell us a little about who you've played for, honours won, and what your best achievement as a player was?
“I played academy football in my youth days, then moved on to Sunday League football with mates. I never really got into any sort of Non-League playing until a good friend, Doug Shelley, took the Manager’s job at Parkgate when they were in the NCEL Premier Division; so I went from Sunday League football to the NCEL To be quite honest I excelled playing at right back and occasionally -back when I had a bit more pace- on either wing. We took Parkgate from relegation battles every season to a few years of gunning for promotion, coming 2nd in our first season to Farsley Celtic (who dropped from the Conference), getting into the Sheffield Senior Cup Final at Hillsborough Stocksbridge; a season in which I was in both the NCEL and the late Brian Bradley’s Team of the Year”.
“After injury, I struggled to get back into football for a while. I finished playing at Maltby Main, but more recently was in a successful side here at Hallam -under our very own Ryan Hindley”.
Having looked in on Hallam from outside, what do you hope to add to the Technical Area?
“As I said, it will be a learning curve so I’m hoping to pick a lot of things up from Steve and Ryan while I’m here ; it’s such a great opportunity, and right now I will hope to add that extra bit of knowledge and thoughts on players ,both at the club and the potential of players outside of the club”.
“I know most of the lads here, and they have been fantastic with me, and I would like to think up to now that I’ve brought a lot of encouragement and positivity to both the dressing room and whilst standing at the side of the pitch. It’s key that we make sure they all enjoy it, as this will have a big impact on how they perform on the pitch”.
What do you think the team can achieve over the rest of the season?
“With the squad I can see on paper, with what I see in training and from what I’ve seen over the last two games there is absolutely no doubt we can get a good run together- which we will need -and fire us up that table where we should be. Having said that, nobody has the god- given right to be at the top of the table, so only hard work from both the Management and the Players will that happen”.
“ There are some good teams in this League, so it will be hard; but with the right attitude we can do it!”
Danny Cardwell was talking to www.hallamfc.co.uk