When the news of Ben Chenery being appointed manager at Bury Town came through on Wednesday morning, there was no great shock or surprise — and after the last few months at Ram Meadow, that’s almost certainly a good thing, writes Derek Bish.
After a turbulent 2013/14, the Blues crave the stability that has made them one of the most successful clubs in Suffolk over the last decade.
Despite the future direction of Bury being unclear while applications were taken for the manager’s post, Chenery managed to persuade 12 players to sign or re-sign for next season — including players of the year Marcus Garnham and Seb Dunbar, and former star Connor Hall.
Speaking to the players, it’s clear Chenery was the man they wanted — to such an extent that the appointment of anybody else risked unravelling all of his good work since Richard Wilkins’ departure at the end of last month.
Even José Mourinho may not have been as gladly accepted as Chenery after the strong bonds he formed with the players before and during his time as interim manager.
Before the appointment was made official, injured midfielder Billy Clark, left-back Seb Dunbar and goalkeeper Marcus Garnham spoke of the trust they had in Chenery that Bury would be competitive again next season, not just a side to make up the numbers in the Ryman League Premier Division.
As you would expect of a former professional who racked up more than 100 appearances in the Football League, Chenery is a football man.
He oozes enthusiasm about the game and it’s that attribute — above any of the many other qualities he possesses — that appears to have set him apart from the field of 17 who set out to become the next boss of the Blues.
There is a long way to go — Wilkins’ shoes are big to fill after all following five trophies and two promotions — but Chenery was on the right foot before he even started on Wednesday.