Paul Stur­rock out to show Parkin­son’s doesn’t af­fect him as boss of Yeovil

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By Chris Dunlavy

NEW Yeovil Town manager Paul Stur­rock says his re­turn to the game af­ter two years in the wilder­ness will prove that he is no “slaver­ing wreck”.

Stur­rock, 58, has spent 15 years bat­tling Parkin­son’s Dis­ease, a de­gen­er­a­tive con­di­tion of the ner­vous sys­tem that im­pairs move­ment and speech.

In the past, it was no bar­rier to suc­cess. The man nick­named Luggy won two pro­mo­tions with Ply­mouth Ar­gyle, won the League One play-offs with Sh­effield United and led Swin­don Town into the third tier.

But af­ter his sacking by Southend on the eve of the 2013 JPT fi­nal, Stur­rock found that his calls went un­re­turned and his CV got lost in the post.


The Scot had even taken on an un­paid ad­vi­sory role at his lo­cal Con­fer­ence club Torquay be­fore the Glovers threw a man­age­rial life­line ahead of im­mi­nent League One rel­e­ga­tion, con­firmed de­spite a 1-1 draw with Notts County yes­ter­day.

“In terms of get­ting a job, I think my ill­ness has def­i­nitely been a hin­drance,” said Stur­rock, who will be as­sisted by Terry Skiver­ton.

“But it’s not a hin­drance in my day-to-day life. I’ve lived with this con­di­tion for 15 years and I pride my­self that it’s never af­fected me pro­fes­sion­ally.

“Parkin­son’s hasn’t done any­thing to my brain. I can still learn and I can still see the game. In terms of abil­ity, I’ve got noth­ing to prove.

“What I do want to show is that I’m not some slaver­ing wreck just be­cause I’ve got Parkin­son’s, which is what some peo­ple seem to think. There are plenty of years left in me yet.”

For Yeovil, though, time is up. A Cham­pi­onship club un­der Gary John­son last sea­son, the Glovers went into yes­ter­day’s clash with Notts County 13 points from safety and all­but con­demned to League Two for the first time in a decade.

Now Stur­rock must de­cide who will be re­tained to lead the fight­back.

“It was com­pletely im­pos­si­ble for me to keep the club up,” he says mat­ter-of-factly.

“We’d have needed to win ev­ery sin­gle game about 10-0 and hope ev­ery club above us got bat­tered for the rest of the sea­son. It wasn’t go­ing to hap­pen. “The im­por­tant thing

was com­ing in at the right time so I was able to view the games and scru­ti­nise the squad.

“Be­fore this sea­son is fin­ished, I want to know which play­ers are good enough to take us for­ward and which ones aren’t. Train­ing wise and games wise, ev­ery­one is on trial now. “The Manch­ester United FA Cup game aside, I haven’t seen Yeovil play once this sea­son.

“I’m com­ing in here with no pre­con­cep­tions or ideas. I’m judg­ing what I see now.”

And af­ter so long wait­ing for the phone to ring, Stur­rock says he will savour ev­ery sec­ond of his re­turn to the game.


“I’ve been 40 years in this game and, at the end of the day, it was in my blood,” says Stur­rock, who moved back to the south-west af­ter leav­ing Southend.

“I’ve done a bit of gar­den­ing, other bits and pieces. I had two years’ sab­bat­i­cal – for want of a bet­ter word – but the game was like a drug. I missed it and I needed it.

“So when the call came I didn’t even have to think. I’ve had my rest.

“Get­ting on the train­ing ground and work­ing with play­ers again was hugely up­lift­ing for me and I will be do­ing ev­ery­thing I can to turn this club round.”

SHRIMPER: Paul Stur­rock in his last job in charge of Southend United

PIC­TURE: Pin­na­cle

GLOVER: Paul Stur­rock is un­veiled as Yeovil Town boss

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