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Salisbury sack ex-Portsmouth, Leicester, Birmingham and Millwall striker

Salisbury sack ex-Portsmouth, Leicester, Birmingham and Millwall striker Steve Claridge after eight years in charge of the club.

He had been associated with the club since 2014, serving as both director and manager since they resurrected on 2015 after the liquidation of Salisbury City who had been removed from the Conference due to financial issues.

He departs the Raymond McEnhill Stadium after they had secured a 4-2 victory at Tiverton Town on Wednesday night, sitting 5th in the Southern League Premier South with 18 points from 10 games played.

He was a pundit for the BBC including shows Football Focus and The Football League Show, until 2014 when he became both manager and a director at newly formed Salisbury.

Claridge spent a number of periods with teams from Hampshire and Dorset, having started his career with Fareham Town in 1983.

After failing to gain a permanent contract at local league club AFC Bournemouth, Claridge spent three years at Weymouth, in his longest single spell with any club.

From 1988 till 1996, Claridge played for a number of EFL teams, before moving to Leicester City with whom he played in the Premier League and won the 1997 Football League Cup.

In 1998, he moved to Portsmouth, where he was also player manager from 2000 to 2001. After a spell with Millwall, he dropped down to the Southern Premier League to work as player-manager for Weymouth.

After this ended in 2004, Claridge played for ten different clubs in a variety of leagues, never spending more than a season with one team.

He has played at all levels of English football and has also appeared in 1000 professional or semi-professional football matches.

After formally retiring from football in 2007, Claridge moved into media work for the BBC and had experience of the Football League which was used to position him as an expert at that level, though he works across a variety of different football programmes on the BBC.

After retirement he occasionally played semi-professional football for clubs in south England, most recently in 2017 for Salisbury.

A statement on the club’s website reads: “Salisbury FC has today parted company with director and manager, Steve Claridge.

“On behalf of everyone at Salisbury FC, the club would like to place on record its gratitude to Steve during his time with the club, firstly as one of the group of five that formed Salisbury FC at the end of 2014, and then as team manager, gaining 2 promotions.

“Steve will rightly always have a place in Salisbury FC’s history.

“However, with the club no longer involved in either the FA Cup or the FA Trophy this season, it is important to look to the longer term and the ongoing development and success of the club.

“With this in mind, the appointment of a new manager to lead the club forward is seen as essential and we hope to make an announcement in the near future”.

This is what fans had to say as Salisbury sack the ex-Portsmouth, Leicester, Birmingham and Millwall striker…

@DomerSavage: Thank you Steve for your service, however I think now is the right time, and I hope the haters can now return and support the club into the future 🐼

@Ross_Martin93: Can’t fault what Steve did to help get the new club up and running. So have to thank him for that. However, hopefully see some change now and new style of football we can all enjoy. Also look forward to seeing everyone who left because he was manager return now he’s gone….

@MattCross83: Only 8 years to late

@SimonRLawrence1: Announce @MarkCollier__ Said it before, I’ll say it again. Man knows his way out of the Southern Prem! He’s local, interested I would have thought after a lengthy break, knows the region better than most and proven track record of results. No better candidate!

@coreyeaton97: Thank fuck that moany knob has gone

@marlow1992: Thank you to @SteveClaridge for his efforts since the club reformed. He helped us get our club back. But the last 2-3 seasons has seen the club stagnate. Hopefully the board appoint a new manager quickly and make a good decision on who can take the club forward! #COYW ⚽️🐼

@PrivettLife: Farewell sweet Prince 💔💔💔

@Ross_Martin93: Hopefully a new style of football will get the fans back and start enjoying football at The Ray-Mac once again. #Salisbury #SalisburyFc #NonLeague #COYW

@dan15w: End of the Killick v Claridge era. Gonna miss it now that cunts gone

@DCWressell: Shall I send my CV in lads? I’ve got previous form with you lot 👀

@lee_allinson: Gutted to see this, got so much time for Steve lovely guy speak weekly and was a great support through a tough period for us. Wish him all the very best in his next move 💚

@TheoSawyer7: Can’t believe it’s taken this long


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