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Sheridan wants Plymouth Argyle to make most of potential

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: January 09, 2013

  • Plymouth Argyle chairman James Brent watches John Sheridan (left) address the media yesterday picture: Paul Slater

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It did not take John Sheridan long before he uttered the 'p-word' – potential – as he was officially introduced as Plymouth Argyle's new manager. It took 58 words, to be precise.

Sheridan was introduced to the media by Argyle owner and chairman James Brent in the boardroom at a rain-swept Home Park yesterday.

The potential of the Pilgrims to be a football force, with a vast catchment area across Devon and Cornwall, has been highlighted by many of Sheridan's predecessors when they have taken over at the club, and he was no different.

He opened the press conference by saying: "First and foremost, I would like to thank the chairman for giving me this opportunity of managing Plymouth Argyle.

"I have been told lots of things [about the club]. Even though I have been based in Yorkshire for most of my football career, as a player and a manager, you always get feedback that Plymouth is a really big club with potential.

"I played here when the crowds were 15,000, so I know what they can attract. I'm really looking forward to the job. It's going to be a big ask. Unfortunately, the club are in a position they don't want to be, but there is still plenty of time to get ourselves out of the position we are in."

Sheridan, the 48-year-old former Oldham Athletic and Chesterfield manager, took his first training session with the Argyle squad at Harper's Park yesterday morning. He continued: "I have spoken to the players and I want them to believe more than anything else that we can get out of the position we are in. Hopefully, with a new manager coming in and one or two new players, it will give them the pick up they need."

Sheridan, who was capped 34 times by the Republic of Ireland and appeared in two World Cups during a long and successful playing career, had been out of management since leaving Chesterfield in August. He was relieved of his duties after the Spireites failed to win any of their first four competitive games this season.

Sheridan said: "I would rather be a player than a manager any day, but my time has gone as a player. I love managing now and it's something I want to do. This is the first time I have been out of football in 32 years since I left Chesterfield, so I'm biting at the bit to get back in."

Sheridan wore a black Argyle tracksuit for his introductory press conference rather than a suit, shirt and tie. It indicated he was focused on getting to work on the training ground as he starts his quest to steer the Pilgrims out of relegation trouble.

Sheridan said: "Every day, I'm out on the training pitch. I like to be involved and pass on my knowledge to the players.

"Hopefully, they will take it on board. I'm there to help them. I've said to the players this morning: 'I don't want to manage at this level, I want to manage as high as I can'.

"Luckily enough, I have done the next division with Oldham and Chesterfield, so I want the players to think like that. I want them to improve as players and improve as a team and go higher. That's just the way I am.

"I feel as though I'm a winner and I don't like losing. They are very privileged to be footballers and it's a great job to be in so I want them to come in and work hard every day."

When the Argyle vacancy came about, after the sacking of Carl Fletcher on January 1, it immediately grabbed the attention of Sheridan.

He said: "I know what can be achieved if you can get the right results and get the crowd coming back in. Potentially, it's a very good club.

"Being out of work, you obviously want to try to get back in, but there were one or two jobs I didn't go for because I just didn't think they would suit me, or it would be what I wanted.

"As soon as Plymouth came up and, like I said, a lot of people had told me how good the club is, I thought I would go for it. I've been in Yorkshire for the majority of my career, and it's a change for me.

"It's a big upheaval for me to come to Plymouth, but I'm really excited. It's something I want to really have a good go at, and I'm confident I will get them out of the position they're in and keep them in this division. That's all I'm thinking of at the moment."

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