Football Managers

John Askey

John Askey is a former professional footballer and is now a Manager, currently in charge at Port Vale. He began his playing career with Port Vales youth team, however left before ever breaking into the first team. It was at Macclesfield Town where Askey made his name, spending 19 seasons there as a forward. He played 490 times for the Silkmen, scoring 106 goals in the process and cemented himself as a Macclesfield legend. His final game came on the last day of the 2002-03 season against Rochdale, and after this Askey moved into his role as assistant manager for the Silkmen. In 2003, manager at the time David Moss was sacked, and John Askey was appointed as his replacement. Whilst his time in charge started well, results began to slip before John was replaced by Brian Horton, however John returned to his roll as assistant. Once Paul Ince was appointed John took charge of the youth team. In 2013, John had a second chance to take the Management role for the Silkmen following the sacking of Stephen King. His second spell was much more successful, with key moments including a 6th place finish in 2014-15, and a FA Trophy Final appearance in 2017. However the 2017-18 season was the most successful of Johns reign. Macclesfield Town finished top of the National League, 10 points ahead of 2nd place Wrexham, and John received the Manager of the Season accolade. The success of his time with Macclesfield opened up the opportunity to climb up the Football League, with John signing with Schrewsbury Town on the first of June 2018. John and Shrewsbury parted ways in November 2018. At the start of 2019, John was appointed as Neil Aspins predecessor at Port Vale.

Steve Watson

Steve Watson is a former professional footballer turned manager, currently in charge at National League club York City. Steve’s career started at Newcastle United, where he made his debut in 1990 in the old second division as the youngest ever player to play for Newcastle at the time. He played a prominent role in Newcastle’s rise to the first division and was an integral part in their subsequent seasons in the Premier League, making 208 appearances during his eight years with the club. In his final season with Newcastle Steve featured in their FA Cup Final, coming on in the 76th minute, however he was unable to prevent a 2-0 defeat to Arsenal. In October 1998, Steve was sold to Aston Villa for £4m. He spent two seasons at Villa, making 41 appearances. Steve joined Everton in the summer of 2000, for a fee of £2.5m. His time with Everton was blighted with injury, however he did manage 125 appearances over the five years with the club, with a highlight being a game against Leeds in September 2003, where Steve became the first Everton player since 2000 to score a hat-trick. In 2005 Steve joined West Bromwich Albion, making 42 appearances over a two-year period. Midway through the 2006-07 season, Steve joined Sheffield Wednesday on loan and made an instant impact. His form during the second half of the season convinced Wednesday to sign him permanently. In 2008, Steve was named as the new club captain for the 2008-09 season, his final season before retirement. Upon his retirement Steve went into coaching, starting off as the new Development Coach for Huddersfield Town in 2010. On August 24 2012, Steve was appointed as coach at Birmingham City, a position he would keep until 2014. In 2016, he was appointed as assistant manager to Macclesfield Town under John Askey, and just over a year later Steve was named as Gateshead manager. In his first season in charge he guided Gateshead to a 17th place finish. Steve left his position at Gateshead to take charge at York City in January 2019.

Matt Jansen

Matt Jansen is a manager and former professional footballer, most recently managing Chorley F.C. Matt’s playing career started at his home town club of Carlisle United, he spent 3 years there until Crystal Palace signed him for £1 Million in 1998. In Matt’s first season with Palace scored 3 times in 8 games. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to save Palace from relegation. He began the next season in the First Division extremely well, scoring 7 times in 18 games, and these impressive performances earned him a move to Blackburn the half way through the season. Matt played for Blackburn from 1999 until 2005, and he was instrumental in their promotion back to the Premier League in 2001, scoring 23 goals in 40 games. His form continued into the next season, scoring 10 goals in 35 games. Matt had spells with Bolton, Wrexham, Leigh Genesis before hanging his boots up at Chorley. It was here he began to transition into a coaching role and was named assistant manager. Matt was present during the 2013-14 Premier Division win, and his work behind the scenes didn’t go unnoticed. In July 2015, Matt was named as Chorley’s first team manager. During his tenure, Matt guided Chorley to an 8th, 6th and 6th place finish, including a play-off final place during the 2016-17 season. Alongside his league success, Matt also guided Chorley to the First Round Proper of the FA Cup for the first time in 27 years. In 2018, Matt decided to resign from his role as manager of the club.

Danny Whitaker

Danny Whitaker is a former player and current assistant manager for Macclesfield Town FC, playing a major part in the Silkmens return to the Football League in the 2017-18 season. Danny started his career with the Manchester United youth team before moving to Macclesfield for the first time in 2002. His first spell with Macclesfield resulted in 23 goals in 172 appearances. After his release from Macclesfield in 2006, Danny moved up to League One, joining Port Vale. He made 86 appearances over 2 seasons with Port Vale, scoring 13 goals. At the end of his two year contract, Danny chose not to renew his deal with Port Vale and instead joined Oldham Athletic. Danny stayed with Oldham for 2 seasons, making 80 appearances for the club. However at the end of the 2009-10 season Danny was released. Now a free agent, Danny could not turn down the chance of re-uniting with his former Oldham manager John Sheridan, and joined him with League Two side Chesterfield. His first season with Chesterfield was a massive success, scoring 15 goals in 51 games and helping Chesterfield to the League Two title. He stayed with Chesterfield until 2013, when he decided to re-sign for Macclesfield Town, now in the Conference Premier. Whitaker has made over 200 appearances during his second spell at Macclesfield, but it was the 2017-18 season in which he really proved himself as their key man. Over 44 appearances, Danny scored 8 goals and led the Silkmen to the National League Championship. He earned himself a spot in the Vanarama National League Team of the Season, and won the Mark Harrod Player of the Year accolade from the National League. In the summer of 2018 it was announced Whitaker would take up a Player/Coaching role and has stepped in to manage The Silkmen on a temporary basis alongside Neil Howarth. Danny Whitaker became the Assistant Manager when Sol Campbell was appointed Manager at the end of November 2018.