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STONES UPDATE: Veteran manager John Still returns to crisis-hit Maidstone

Thursday 24th January 2019

RELEGATION threatened Maidstone United has turned to an old friend in its time of crisis.

Former Stones boss John Still has come out of retirement with an 18-month deal as Head of Football and will be in charge in the crunch match against Leyton Orient this weekend.

Mr Still, 68, retired the game last month after leaving Barnet FC but senior management at Maidstone persuaded him to take on the challenge retaining the club’s position in the highest tier of non-league English football.

He was the man in charge of the Stone when they briefly entered the football league 30 years ago.

His career spanned more than 40 years, 2,000 matches and has won the National League title a record three times – firstly with Maidstone and then with Dagenham (2007) and Luton Town (2014).

Club chief executive Bill Williams said: “I am absolutely delighted John has agreed to join us. He’s one of the best managers to ever grace the non-league game and his record speaks for itself.

“For those who followed the Stones in the 80s, John’s place in our club’s history is assured and now a new generation of our supporters will get to see the enthusiasm, passion and skill this man has for the game.”

Joining Mr Still at the Gallagher is Hakan Heyrettin who joins as first team coach.

The pair worked together at Luton Town for two and a half seasons, during the time when the Hatters secured promotion back into the Football League in 2014.

A midfielder in his playing days, Mr Heyrettin has spells at clubs including Barnet, Cambridge United and Wycombe Wanderers. He moved into management in 2003 and, either side of his time at Luton, managed at Waltham Forest, Thurrock, Grays Athletic and Braintree Town.

Completing the managerial trio is Simon Walton, who takes up a player/coach role within the new set-up.