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Story posted: Tuesday, 13th February 2001

Phil Barber
Phil Barber

Phil Barber

Gresley fans could be forgiven for thinking 'Phil who?' when Phil Barber arrived at the Moatground along with John McGinlay. In fact no one was more surprised at the appointment than Phil Barber himself.
The pair have hardly worked together in the past although both were involved in the same club in Cincinnati. Phil went over to the states to coach in 1998 but lasted only three months and McGinlay was appointed player-coach of the same club but lasted just two months, the owner of the Club was Head Coach, and brought a new meaning to hands on!

Phil's playing career took in Manchester City and Stockport before he was forced to retire with an ankle injury. Six months later he decided he could sit around no longer and took up coaching. He's now been at it over 24 years!

His coaching experience is extensive and includes a 10 year spell with the Manchester County FA but says the most demanding session he ever took charge of involved mentally and physically handicapped young people.

Whilst John McGinlay goes looking for new signings Phil Barber is much happier staying behind and training with the rest of the squad. Barber along with many of the Gresley supporters would like to see the former Bolton and Scotland striker pulling on a Gresley shirt on a regular basis. So far he's started just one game.

Barber says John was keen to have an assistant he could trust and it's getting to the stage where their relationship has developed sufficiently for McGinlay to marshal the troops on the field.

Phil has had to learn to control his true feeling as he says he could be described as a volatile person but he will never criticise a player in public. An aspect of the modern game that annoys him is the seemingly non-stop way players and officials come under fire from managers.

Phil is about to celebrate 31 years of marriage but jokingly says that just recently he has slept with John McGinlay more often than his wife! As the pair spend a couple of hours in the same car travelling too and from South Derbyshire they have discovered that their views are very similar. Barber summed up their commitment to Gresley by saying it's a long-term situation and neither of them is used to loosing.
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  Team P GD Pts
12 Peterborough Sports 42 -8 51
13 Spalding United 42 -10 50
14 Loughborough Dynamo 42 -17 49
15 Sheffield FC 42 -19 45
16 Belper Town 42 -44 45
17 Gresley 42 -42 43
18 Kidsgrove Athletic 42 -20 42
19 Carlton Town 42 -10 41
20 Newcastle Town 42 -24 39
21 Market Drayton Town 42 -46 39
22 Romulus 42 -37 35

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