Belfast Telegraph

'I regret not going to Glentoran': Sacked Ards boss Colin Nixon opens up about chance to take charge at The Oval

Colin Nixon.
Colin Nixon.

Glentoran legend Colin Nixon says he regrets not taking up the chance to manage his former club.

The 40-year-old is the east Belfast side's record appearance holder with over 700 games in his 18 years at the Oval as a player.

As the Glens searched for a permanent replacement for Gary Haveron in April 2018, they made two approaches for the then Ards manager.

Despite wide expectations that he would seize the chance to take charge of his beloved club, Nixon opted to remain with Ards, penning a three-year deal with the club that had given him his break into management.

However, fast forward one year and Nixon is out of management after being axed at the end of a run of 17 defeats in 20 matches and with Ards three points adrift at the foot of the table.


Meanwhile, Glentoran is set for a new wave of optimism as former Colombia and Iran assistant manager Mick McDermott has been installed as manager with major investment expected to follow very soon.

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“I regret not going to Glentoran,” Nixon told this week's edition of Cool FM's Football Show.

“People say you shouldn't regret decisions you make, but I did. We're talking about people who've been with Glentoran a long time. I was with Glentoran a long time and I absolutely love the club, as everyone knows."

New Ards manager Warren Feeny has inspired a revival with the club now off the bottom of the table after picking up five points from his first four games in charge.

Nonetheless, Nixon is adamant he would have been able to shepherd the club to survival in the top flight had he been given the chance after performing 'miracles' since taking the job in December 2016.

“Getting sacked hurt me,” he said. “We had given the most time to teenage players. I felt something was building and it's another reason I stayed loyal. I managed to do two miracles in two years, but unfortunately I lost key players at key times. This year, I'd have kept them in the league, I firmly believe that. But it just got tougher and tougher."

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