Eastleigh appoint ex-Man City, Pompey, Oxford, B’mouth player Lee Bradbury as their new first team manager, who leaves Crawley Town.
Bradbury, 46, succeeds Ben Strevens, who departed the Spitfires in January after three straight league defeats.
They are without a win in 10 games overall but sit 15th, 12 points clear of the relegation zone.
🗣 “Eastleigh’s always been a club that has been on the up… that’s been a big attraction for me here. I’ve been very impressed with what I’ve seen so far.” 👊
Watch the full interview with Lee Bradbury as he sits down for the first time as #Spitfires manager! 👇
— Eastleigh FC (@EastleighFC) February 28, 2022
CRAWLEY TOWN STATEMENT:
Crawley Town Football Club can confirm that Lee Bradbury has left the club to take the managerial role at National League side Eastleigh after his contract was mutually terminated.
Lee Bradbury joined the club in December 2019 alongside John Yems as Assistant Manager. Lee has played a pivotal role in the club’s recent success, which includes the infamous Emirates FA Cup run and victory over Premier League Leeds United.
In light of this news, Lewis Young has stepped up to take the Assistant Manager role, which he will begin from tomorrow evening’s game against Oldham Athletic.
Manager John Yems said: “We are sad to see Lee go, but we can all see his reasons for wanting to take the opportunity. We have had some very good times here together, and he is a very honourable man that deserves a lot of credit for what we have done here. I class Lee as a friend, not just an acquaintance, and there are not many people in football you can say that about.”
Chief Executive Erdem Konyar said: Lee has served the club well and leaves us having made great memories that we will always cherish. This is a loss for the club, but we have to show the understanding for Lee to move on and take on a new challenge. I thank Lee for his honest, dedicated and loyal service to the club.
Everybody at the club wishes to thank Lee for all of his efforts during his time at The People’s Pension Stadium and wishes him all the best for the future.
Eastleigh Football Club are delighted to announce the appointment of Lee Bradbury as the club’s new First Team Manager.
The 46-year-old makes his return to first team management with the Spitfires after leaving his role at SkyBet League Two side Crawley Town, where he has spent the past three years as Assistant Manager to John Yems.
Bradbury is well-known locally, having spent time with Portsmouth and AFC Bournemouth as a player and in various coaching roles before spending seven years as manager of Havant & Waterlooville.
In seven years with the Hawks he boasted a win percentage just shy of 50%, and oversaw their first ever promotion to the National League in the 2017/18 season.
More recently, Lee has played a pivotal role in Crawley Town’s recent success, which includes their infamous Emirates FA Cup run and victory over Premier League Leeds United in the 2020/21 season.
Upon joining the Spitfires, Bradbury said:
“I’m really pleased, it’s been a tough decision to leave Crawley but it’s one I’m pleased that I’ve done and I’m looking forward to the challenge.
“I felt like I was ready for a new challenge as a manager again and it was exciting to come to a club like this to get that opportunity.
“Eastleigh has always been a club on the up over previous years, as I know from my time at Havant. Even though the clubs have been local rivals I knew that Eastleigh were always looking up and I believe that is still the case, which was a big attraction for me.
“There’s a good fanbase and good club here, and things have really improved behind the scenes around the ground too. I’ve been really impressed with what I’ve seen so far.
“In terms of what I want to bring to the table , it will be organisation, hopefully excitement for the fans, and I want to let the players play with freedom. I want us to play aggressive, attacking football – working hard high up the pitch but not forgetting those vital clean sheets that good teams are built on.
“There’s good people here behind the scenes and I think the whole club is set up ready to move up the divisions, and I hope I can be the one to give them that in the near future.”
With Lee Bradbury signing as manager, we can confirm that Jason Bristow will remain as part of the first team coaching staff whilst still keeping his role as Head of Youth Development at the club.
Further details of Lee’s backroom staff will be confirmed in due course.
Twitter users reacted as Eastleigh appoint the ex-Man City, Pompey, Oxford, B’mouth player as their new manager…
@Leestevens1983: Welcome! Good luck to him! We needed something asap! The last 10 games or so haven’t been the best. Hopefully get those wins on board ⚽️⚽️⚽️
@patharper09: Good luck Lee you will be missed at Crawley but understand you wanna be a first team manager
@Cantell36: Welcome to the Spitfires and look forward to watching the team’s progress 🔵⚪️
@madhousehusband: If he is good on his word and gets the team playing at their best. Just need to mix it up and not resort to constant direct/long play. ⚽️🔵⚪️
@Charlie19407442: Hope he gets us to League two of playoffs this or next season
@Chris_Cooper_92: In my opinion Lee is a top bloke and a superb manager. Eastleigh have done well here!
@bargeyisalion: Brilliant appointment, all the best to Lee and the club 👏👍👌
@ForeverAYellow: Wishing him and the club all the best, will be tough but he getting appointing at Eastleigh and being assistant at Crawley shows he’s got what it takes
@whatstusaying: All the best Lee and good luck. Crawleys loss is eastleighs gain. Gutted to see u go.
@mjfjo: Congratulations and best of luck Lee.
@CTFC_Ben: Loved his energy at the club, good luck