Connect with us

English Football League

Notts County confirm head coach has left for Forest Green

Notts County confirm that head coach Ian Burchnall has left for Forest Green Rovers after giving his permission to hold talks.

The 39-year-old comes into the Gloucestershire club as they move up to League One for the first time in their history.

He replaces Rob Edwards, who led the club to promotion and the League Two title before being controversially appointed Watford manager earlier this month.

Burchnall was head coach at Notts County since March 2021 and guided the them to a fifth place in the National League this year.

This season was the second successive time he had taken them to the National League playoffs, although they were defeated by Torquay United in the semi-finals last year and by Grimsby Town at the same stage this season. 

Head coach Ian Burchnall today agreed to join Forest Green Rovers.

The recently-promoted League One side made a formal approach after Monday’s play-off eliminator defeat to Grimsby Town and, following internal discussions, we gave them permission to negotiate terms with Burchnall.

Those terms have today been agreed and the move has now been formalised.

A statement from our board of directors reads: “We would like to place on record our appreciation to Forest Green Rovers for the way they have conducted themselves throughout this process.

“The same applies to Ian, who departs with our very best wishes for the future.

“While it is of course disappointing to be losing a head coach of Ian’s calibre, we feel it pertinent to remind supporters that, while the head coach is clearly an important part of our structure, a change in personnel does not lead to a switch in overarching philosophy.

“Ian’s replacement, while no doubt having their own style and characteristics, will be tasked with building on the foundations we have laid over the last three seasons and operating in line with the club’s core values and beliefs.

“When we appointed Ian we had huge confidence in his ability as a coach and were always aware this day may come once his qualities became more apparent to other English clubs.

“As with players, we are constantly monitoring head coaches and managers who we feel may be of interest to us in the future.

“As a result we have a ready-made shortlist of exciting potential replacements, with whom we look forward to discussing the role in due course.

“We would also like to take this opportunity to assure supporters that today’s news does not hinder our player recruitment plans for the coming campaign.

“Negotiations are progressing well with a number of targets and we expect to bring you some good news on this front soon.”


We can today confirm the appointment of Ian Burchnall as new Head Coach.

The former Notts County coach joins the club with immediate effect, as it prepares for life in League One – following promotion as League Two champions last month.

Burchnall started his coaching journey aged 22 at the University of Leeds – and has coached internationally at Norwegian clubs Sarpsborg and Viking – where was Head Coach.

He also spent time at Sweden’s Östersunds FK in the country’s top division. Most recently, he led Notts County into the National League Play Offs.

Ian Burchnall, Head Coach, Forest Green Rovers, said: “I’m really delighted to sign at FGR and be part of what is an exciting chapter in the club’s history. I am grateful for the opportunity to come and lead the club and the challenge of football in League One was just too good to turn down, especially at a progressive and forward-thinking club.

“I want to thank Dale and Rich for bringing me in, and to Notts County for the time I spent at the club. I’m looking forward to getting started!”

Rich Hughes, Director of Football, Forest Green Rovers, added: “It’s great to have Ian on board – he plays a fantastic style of football which our fans will love, and he has the skills to establish the club as a League One outfit.

“Ian’s teams have all played with a well-defined style, he’s an excellent communicator, great character and good bloke – we’re all looking forward to working with him.”

Dale Vince, Chairman, Forest Green Rovers, commented: “We’re all pleased and excited to welcome Ian to the club and look forward to our first season together in League one.

“Big credit to Notts County for the way they handled this – between us we’ve shown how moves in football can still get done properly and above board.”

Twitter users reacted as Notts County confirm their head coach has left for the new League One club…

@adamjamesred: Helped us to produce some amazing, easy on the eye football at times for which I’m grateful to him for. However, there was always a brittleness in his squad & the style we played that meant we were out-muscled in the big games. Good luck to Burchnall as he’s a genuinely nice guy.

@SpaffNCFC: I genuinely believe he will get you play offs anorl, his style of football suits a ball playing league instead of a fight, but the only thing is that soon as a team presses he hasn’t got a plan B

@ForeverOUFC: He’s a good manager dont get me wrong but no way is he League One standard yet, would liked to have seen what he done and how he’d cope in League Two. Could be a stroke of genius this, but I really can’t see Forest Green saying up, but will give a valiant effort imo

@noahw_17TUFC: Will be amazed if hes there this time next season

@Turkey_Twizzler: Look after him 😢

@K_Motson: Best of luck Ian, he’s the best coach we’ve had in years imo. Ridiculously underrated by a very vocal section of our fanbase. He will get you playing beautiful football

@_KieranGuy: Nice football but expect to bottle big games

@SamGuideDogTra1: A big shame. Not unexpected, but did retain a tiny bit of hope that he wanted to complete a project. But it was going to happen one day. Good luck Ian, and excited to see who comes next. At least we aren’t doing the firing for once.

@darkoparko11: Best of luck Ian. Think he will do a good job at FGR. Still young and learning but I’m certain he has a really bright future in the game. Think we’ll miss him at Notts tbh. Great guy too, proper intelligent interviews.

@FGRVlogs: Finally let’s gooooo

@chogger5: I understand the opportunity for him but Disappointed by him to be honest first sign of something being a bit tough and he jumps

@diamondgeeezer: Gotta say I’m disappointed with Ian. I know loyalty is pretty rare these days but this guy said time again he’s in for the long haul and apart of the project.

@sampacey1: Goodbye 👋🏻

@kazmorgz001: Good appointment, very sorry to see him leave 😕

@karlb24: You’ve got yourself a very good manager who’s style of play will work even better in league 1 than national league. Wish we could of kept him but wish Forest Green and Ian all the best.

@Ryannn_NCFC: He’ll do you well lads. Enjoy it

@kencar66: We were never going to get promoted under IB. I enjoyed his football when it worked but we were too predictable, as shown last Monday. Good luck to him though.

@magpies_history: Not saying I’m surprised as it’s a good step up for Ian but I’m also feeling slightly disappointed with him ☹️

@NottsCounty101: Good Luck Ian Burchnall with your new job at @FGRFC_Official. has a big future in English football. Now it’s time to get behind the new man whoever he may be. 🖤🤍🖤🤍🖤
64 Matches
32 wins
14 draws
17 losses
1.72 PPM
Goals 114
Conceded 80

@toffeehaz: Think that’s a bad move. Would have liked him to stay. Fgr Small club over achieving more likely to go backwards than forward after a manager moves on. Think he might regret that in 6 months.He could have been linked with much better opportunities than that if he stayed a bit longer

@wiltufc: How has he blagged this one 🤣🤣

@Westy0991: Gutted. Good luck Ian. The lack of patience so called ‘supporters’ now have for managers is ridiculous. I’ll remember Ian for the best/most entertaining football we’ve seen down the Lane in my 25 years of watching the pies.

@peruzzi_16: This only proves that if you do a good job you will get recognition for that. Keep grinding. From National League to League One. Good luck!

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in English Football League