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South Shields Bosses Sign New Two-Year Deals

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Ebac Northern League First Division club South Shields have announced that joint-managers Lee Picton and Graham Fenton have signed new two-year contracts.

The duo have now committed to the club until at least the end of the 2018/19 season.

Picton and Fenton have led the Mariners on a record-breaking run of twenty-five consecutive victories, and also into the finals of the Buildbase FA Vase, Durham Challenge Cup and Northern League Cup.

They remain well in contention for the title, and currently sit second in the table, seventeen points behind leaders North Shields with five games in hand.

South Shields managing director Michael Orr said: “I am delighted to announce that the club has concluded negotiations with Lee and Graham over new contracts to cover the next two seasons.

“Since their joint appointment in early September 2016, the club’s results have been excellent, with only one defeat in their forty-two games in charge, and remarkably thirty-three wins in our last thirty-four matches.

“During this time, the club has reached three cup finals and still have the league title within their own hands.

“Although no silverware has been won yet, this is the ideal time to recognise their efforts with new contracts.

“Their methods, professionalism and work ethic are, I believe, unprecedented at our current level and they share the club’s goal of moving up the football pyramid at the earliest opportunities.

“I know the playing squad have fully bought into their coaching methods, and that is borne out in the solidarity and camaraderie within the dressing room.

“Having signed new contracts, discussions can now follow with the playing squad over plans for next season and beyond.

“No matter what happens between now and May 21, it has been a brilliant year for South Shields FC and I am sure today marks the start of even more exciting times to come.”

Picton said: “We’re over the moon to sign the new contracts.

“Anybody that has been near this football club can see what progress has been made, and hopefully will continue to be made on and off the field.

“It’s a fantastic place to be and be a part of.

“Myself and Graham are incredibly excited about the next two years ahead, which is what we’ve signed up to, and hopefully we can go beyond that.

“The initial focus is on the next two years. We’ve had a lot of success so far this season and hopefully that will continue.”

Fenton said: “Geoff Thompson and Michael Orr have been really supportive since we came into the club, and have backed every decision we’ve made.

“We’re delighted to be working with them and everyone involved at the club for another two years.

“It has been a fantastic six or seven months, and we’re really looking forward to the next couple of years.

“The ultimate goal is to go promotion, promotion, promotion within the three seasons, including this one.

“With that, there’s a lot of pressure and expectation.

“We set high standards, and we’ll be setting targets at the start of next season.

“That’s the ultimate goal, but we have to see what happens this season first and then take it from there”.

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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