MANAGER MIKE WALTHER LEAVES CLAPTON

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Mike Walther in the dugout at the Old Spotted Dog (pic: Newham Recorder)

MORE than a dozen potential managers have already applied to replace Mike Walther within 24 hours of the Clapton manager’s shock resignation.

Walther has quit to take the assistant manager’s job at Essex Senior League rivals Stansted after a successful two years in charge of the Tons.

The news was announced to the stunned players in the dressing room after the 2-0 FA Cup Preliminary Qualifying Round defeat to Sporting Bengal on Saturday.

However, Walther is said to have informed the Clapton Chief Executive Vince McBean on Friday that he was leaving, having delivered two top 10 finishes, three cup finals and the first silverware for 25 years.

Assistant manager Andre Thomas is set to be in caretaker charge for Tuesday night’s clash versus Wadham Lodge – themselves managed by former Tons assistant Neil Day.

Thomas is likely to be in charge at the weekend too, for the home game against Eton Manor, as the interview process continues.

Names being linked on the rumour mill include former Basildon United manager Craig Gillam and ex-Sporting Bengal boss Anwar Uddin.

Current and former Clapton players have also had their say, with interim boss Thomas and ex-Clapton assistant Peter Harrington both being championed.

Thomas tweeted his thanks to the former manager, posting: “Had a very good working relationship with Mike & now consider him as a good friend. Wish him all the best in his new role at @FCStansted.

“There’s a lot of questions that have been asked, unfortunately I don’t have answers right now.”

A club statement said: “On Friday 19 August, we received a text from Michael Walther, the senior team manager, saying ‘Have decided I am going to move on after the FA Cup game’.

“Although surprised at this decision, we would like to take this opportunity of thanking Mike for his contribution over the past years and wish him well at Stansted FC.

“Andre Thomas, the club’s assistant manager, will be stepping up as interim manager and will continue to push the Tons ahead in their endeavours to finish further up the table this season, in spite of the two recent losses.”

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