PAUL COX has revealed that he rebuffed interest from Football League clubs and Asia to take over the reins at Guiseley.
The former Barrow and Mansfield manager leads out the Lions for the first time at home to Eastleigh tomorrow afternoon – just 16 days after stepping down from his role at Holker Street.
In the interim, Cox fielded offers from home and abroad, but the ambitious plans of Guiseley’s chief backer Steve Parkin and chairman James Ferguson helped quickly tempt him back into the National League with the Lions.
This week, the go-ahead club outlined plans to reach the Football League within a three to five-year time frame, with a new stadium being among the ground options being considered as Guiseley look to establish themselves in the National League and then push onto the next step, aided by the financial backing of Parkin.
Cox has been enticed by that vision as he embarks on his latest project following impressive stints in non-league circles with Barrow, Mansfield and Eastwood.
Cox told the YEP: “I spoke to clubs in the Football League and abroad in Asia and other clubs at Conference National level.
“But just speaking to Steve, it was apparent that there were a lot of good people who want to see the club progress.
“It seems a nice time to come in and I see a little bit in Guiseley in all the other clubs I have managed; the Eastwood’s and Mansfield’s.
“It is nice to go into a football club and I look back at the likes of Mansfield and Barrow with an incredible sense of pride in helping them to a position where they are a lot stronger and that is a motivational factor for myself.
“I knew when I was speaking to Steve and James, that the thing that thrilled me was the ambition of the club, but in a logical timeframe.
“We have an understanding of where we are now, but there’s a plan along the way.
“Looking at the table and where we stand at the minute, I know what a major challenge it will be. But it is something that motivates me. And I am going to enjoy it.
Cox confirmed that Ben Marvin, who worked with him at Barrow and Mansfield, will come in as a coach, initially.
An assistant manager – possibly a player-assistant – is also likely to be appointed somewhere down the line.
Cox said: “There will be no more than that and that will be it, then. We don’t need masses of staff and all of us are multi-functioning in terms of scouting and we will try and implement a lot of sports science within the club and try and bring some new ideas in as well without upsetting the status quo too much.”
MANAGER Simon Weaver urged for calm after his Harrogate Town team slipped to their first defeat of the season at home to the bookmakers’ title favourites, Salford City on Tuesday.
Sloppy marking in the second half handed Salford a 2-1 victory at the CNG Stadium as Town lost their grip on top spot in Vanarama National League North.
Town travel to AFC Telford United tomorrow before another away trip to Southport on Tuesday.
“It’s not rip it up time,” Weaver said.
“We’ve had a cracking start, we are where we want to be in the table and played another good game of football.
“They [Salford] are a good team and one that has been tipped for the title. It’s how we react now. There was no kicking and screaming in the changing room. We knew this moment would come. We tried to delay it as long as possible.
“But we will keep calm, stay true to ourselves and and try to win the game on Saturday.”
Elsewhere in National North tomorrow – fresh from their 3-0 victory at Gainsborough Trinity on Tuesday – 10th-placed Bradford Park Avenue host Nuneaton Town.
In the Evo-Stik League Premier Division, third-placed Farsley Celtic play at second-placed Warrington Town in the game of the day.
Following their remarkable 5-4 victory over Stalybridge Celtic in midweek – in which the Celts came from 3-0 to claim the spoils – Farsley will be looking for another victory which could lift them to the top of the league, should leaders Shaw Lane fail to win at Lancaster City.
Celts boss Adam Lakeland said: “We have to learn from the first 20 minutes against Stalybridge, but also must take great confidence and belief from the last 70 minutes and take that into what will be another tough game at Warrington on Saturday.”
In Evo-Stik North tomorrow, Tadcaster Albion travel to struggling Radcliffe Borough, Brighouse Town host Scarborough Athletic, Ossett Town play at Atherton Collieries and Ossett Albion host Glossop North End.
In Evo-Stik South, sixth-placed Frickley Athletic travel to second-placed Basford United.
THe first qualifying round of the FA Vase takes centre-stage tomorrow with seven of our local teams taking part.
NCE Premier Division leaders Pontefract Collieries head to Manchester to face Maine Road in good heart following their 5-2 midweek victory at Clipstone when Eli Hey, pictured right, netted a hat-trick and Kane Reece a brace.
Hemsworth Miners Welfare are also have a tricky trip on their hands at St Helens in the Vase.
Other ties see Garforth Town host Holker Old Boys, Liversedge play at Prestwich Heys, Selby Town entertain Charnock Richard, Glasshoughton Welfare travel to Widnes and a Railway derby sees Harrogate Railway Athletic play at Darlington Railway Athletic.
In the NCE Premier Division, Pickering Town – who currently sit in seventh place in the table – host Staveley Miners Welfare.
Division One leaders Knaresborough Town will be looking to make it nine wins out of nine when they host sixth-placed Ollerton, while struggling AFC Emley travel to East Yorkshire Carnegie and Nostell Miners Welfare host FC Bolsover.