Russ O’Neill Appointed Sporting Director

We are delighted to announce the return to the club of Russ O’Neill in a Sporting Director/advisory role.

The former manager’s role will see him work with the first team management team and the club’s Board of Directors across all aspects of football operations.

Going forward Russ will be supporting both the Directors and the club staff with his experience and expertise. He will be utilising his contacts within the game to strengthen links with Football League clubs and developing long term relationships.

He has been on hand to assist the first team management team in recent weeks, providing reports on upcoming opposition and potential transfer targets.

Fledgling manager Danny Ellis, along with his assistant Danny Forrest, took over managing the team at the start of the current season.

Ellis welcomed the appointment of O’Neill saying: “I have always had a tremendous respect for Russ over my playing career, competing against his teams several times. These were always tough battles but post-match conversations were always respectful.

“I was aware of the reputation he has within the game and upon taking the management job at Guiseley he was one of the first people I called to tap into his experience. He has helped us with several opposition reports recently, alongside advising with recruitment and I look forward to his continued support.”

Club Chairman Gary Douglas said: “As a club we were hugely impressed with the knowledge, contacts and honesty that Russ brought to our club. Russ took charge as joint manager alongside Marcus Bignot in 2018, following the club’s relegation from the National League.

“He was massively influential in the very survival of the club, clearing several contracts off the books whilst remaining competitive on the field.

“Success in reaching the FA Cup Second Round and the finances involved helped balance the books in his first season in charge. This is something that Russ sees as one of his greatest achievements in football.

“His second season saw The Lions just outside the play-off positions when Covid first struck. We were well set for a strong finish to the season and in a rich vein of form when the season was suspended.

“The following two seasons saw the club’s resources hit hard by the pandemic, with rebuilds taking place in both seasons. Unfortunately 2021/22 ultimately saw the club relegated to the Northern Premier League with significant injuries to key players impacting the side. However, we did make it to the First Round Proper of the FA Cup where we lost out to League One opposition AFC Wimbledon.”

Fellow Director Stuart Allen commented: “Russ did a great job previously in challenging circumstances and our desire to retain his services is not only testament to the job we feel he carried out but credit to his character and work ethic. We feel that he will continue to be an incredible asset to the club.

“He has received significant interest from other clubs since leaving Nethermoor but has always been at the end of the phone for us over the last few months. We are delighted he has rejected all other interest to formalise a role with us and continue his work here at Nethermoor.

He added: “Danny Ellis has had a good start to the season, although Russ’s role is wide ranging and incorporates all areas of the club, we hope having Russ as someone for Danny to tap into whenever he feels necessary will help him and the team go from strength to strength.”

Next Up:

3:00 pm
Pre-Season Friendly

Guiseley vs Huddersfield Town