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Former EFL players placed in temporary charge of Southport after reshuffle

Two former EFL players have been placed in joint temporary charge of Southport after a reshuffle at the club this week.

Liam Watson becomes the first managerial casualty of the 2023/24 season following an awful start losing big at Warrington and Spennymoor along with a 3-1 defeat to Alfreton.

Southport are bottom of the National League North, having lost all three games, scored two and conceded twelve, so change was needed.


The club confirms that a re-structure of its management team will take place with immediate effect.

As part of this, Liam Watson will concentrate fully on his role as a Director of the Club, which will as a consequence result in the appointment of a new first team manager in due course.

In the meantime, player-coach David Morgan and assistant manager Andy Burgess will take temporary charge of first team affairs from today.

Ian Kyle said, “I would like to thank Liam for the huge contribution he has made as first team manager over many years, however we have both agreed that the time is now right to make a change. Looking ahead though, I see this as a massive gain for the Board. In recent years, the Club has taken positive strides forward in terms of its infrastructure, Academy, junior sides and relationships with sponsors, and Liam has been a huge part of that.

I am extremely happy that he will now be able to put more time and effort into helping Steven Porter and myself in continuing that growth”.

Burgess tweeted: “Liam has been & will continue to be a massive part of this football club & his achievements as its manager will, I’m sure, be remembered forever. It has been a real pleasure working with him. Now we all have to regroup & refocus – hard work, responsibility & togetherness 🟡⚫️”


Youth career
–2008 – Ards
2008–2012 – Nottingham Forest

Senior career
2012–2014 – Nottingham Forest
2012 → Lincoln City (loan) – 10 games (0 goals)
2013 → Dundee (loan)
2013–2014 → Tamworth (loan) – 14 games (1 goal)
2014–2015 – Ilkeston – 50 games (3 goals)
2015–2017 – Nuneaton Town – 75 games (4 goals)
2017 – AFC Fylde – 8 games (0 goals)
2017 – Harrogate Town – 2 games (0 goals)
2017–2021 – Southport – 136 games (22 goals)
2021–2023 – Accrington Stanley – 34 games (0 goals)
2023– Southport

International career
2010–2011 – Northern Ireland U17 – 5 games (2 goals)
2011–2014 – Northern Ireland U19 – 4 games (0 goals)
2012–2013 – Northern Ireland U21 – 4 games (4 goals)


Senior career
1999–2006 – Rushden & Diamonds
2006–2007 – Oxford United
2007–2009 – Rushden & Diamonds
2009–2010 – Luton Town
2009 → Mansfield Town (loan)
2010 – Mansfield Town
2010 – Chester
2010 – Corby Town
2010–2011 – Droylsden
2011 – Woking
2011 – Corby Town
2011–2012 – Stamford
2013 – AFC Liverpool

International career
2007–2009 England C

Managerial career
2009–2010 – Sheffield Wednesday Womens
2010–2011 – Preston North End Women
2012–2013 – Leeds United Ladies
2014 – Barnton
2015–2016 – Barnton (assistant)
2022 – AFC Rushden & Diamonds
2023- Southport (assistant)

Fans reacted with the former EFL players placed in temporary charge of Southport after a reshuffle…

@thatmonokid: Gutted his time as a manager ended like this, but it was becoming undefendable. Im sure he has left a decent set of players if someone else can change the mindset and get them going.

@dean95raw: A decision which should’ve been made at the end of last season. Better late than never, look forward to seeing who comes in

@CheltenhamDJ: Saw this coming end of last season but least now we can try and move forward. Thanks Liam

@pjsnash: Needed for a very long time….

@kie_richards4: Sad to see it end that way but the right decision taken before it got really ugly

@peggers595: Ultimately it’s the right decision. I don’t think it should necessarily be celebrated. Liams a good bloke and has done a lot for the club. Step in the right direction though. Up the port

@Groundsman77582: Inevitable I guess but regardless of anyone’s personal thoughts on Liam he has no doubt put his heart and soul into the club and everyone owes him a huge debt of gratitude. Hopefully a new manager is appointed asap and we go from strength to strength #UpThePort

@PaulBarton1973: Finally, Board have been far to slow taking this decision. Let’s hope they bring someone in with a bit of fight and spirit.

@JamesPope10: Should have happened at the end of the last season. But it is the right move.

@joe1999benno: I’m so happy he’s decided to concentrate on the club at board level one of greatest managers of my time, he will be a key influence on the club off the pitch which is what majority want, still a legend in my eyes, no matter what’s happened in recent games,only one Liam Watson 💛

@PortDan1121: Thanks for all the hard work Liam. But the correct decision that will benefit the club has been made.

@jordandavies09: Fair play to Liam. As an outsider he is Southport Football Club. Incredibly successful under unfavourable conditions.

@Domfinnigan: Wether people agree he should of been in his position is irrelevant, some of the comments from Southport “fans” have been unbelievably abusive, in a time we’re we all agree how prominent mental health is. What a way to treat the most successful manager in the clubs history

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