‘We had some great moments’ – Dave Dempsey reflects on Widnes tenure as fans sent message

Widnes manager Dave Dempsey

Former Widnes manager Dave Dempsey says he won’t jump into anything following his exit from the DCBL Stadium.

His time at the Whites came to an end last weekend after parting ways following a year in charge.

Dempsey’s exit makes his the fourth managerial change in the league this season following the departures of Brian Richardson at Bootle, Michael Ellison at City of Liverpool and Paul McNally swapped Skelmersdale United for the Purps.

Speaking to Off The Park on his time as Widnes manager, he said: “I’ve reflected quite heavily over the last couple of days, I feel last season especially we turned the club upside down and made sure we were competitive.

“We took over early on in the season, after nine days but things weren’t great – through no fault of anyone in particular just needed a change. We come in, hit the ground running, we were massively safe with plenty of games to go, we built a really strong squad then we wanted to kick on this year albeit results haven’t been amazing.

“I felt the tide was changing and we could’ve gone on and done well this year. Widnes is a club that has massive ambitions, quite rightly, there’s things that get in the way of ambitions at times in terms of what other clubs are doing around you so it has been tough this season but all in all, my time there has been enjoyable.

“I’ve met some really good people within in the club and outside the club, in and around this league, it was definitely a learning curve, learnt a lot of things in and out of football that’ll make me a stronger manager moving forward. A really enjoyable time, great club, some very good people within it so thoroughly enjoyed.”

Discussing the good times on and off the pitch, he added: “I did a lot behind the scenes that people don’t see, the management team and the players were taking sessions with the juniors, we got involved with the wider club.

“It wasn’t just a case of being just the first-team manager and looking after that first-team, it was the club on the whole that I got my teeth into and I think that’s what it needed. It needed a sort of different approach, the fans grew quickly, they’ve been incredible, had lots of nice messages and that’s a credit to ourselves and the lads for creating that. We’ve had some good moments and that helped.

“We’ve had some good games, good performances, good results, the lads have been a massive part of that but the fans have bought into what we were doing, it’s a shame it got cut when it did. I felt like that hadn’t gone, it was still there and one good result at home you’re never far away from getting them fans back onside and part of the club.

“Very pleased with the fanbase, what we did on the whole, we had some great moments, it was a good place to be around.”

Michael Ellison has since been appointed the new manager to succeed Dempsey and he has called for fans to rally around the side.

“I think my message to the fans is keep doing what they’re doing and keep supporting the club,” he continued. “They’re a very young group, the club has massive ambitions and as a fanbase, they’ve had a massive part in what we did last season, without them we would’ve have got half the results at home.

“We had three sendings off in the last six games and didn’t lose one of them, that was with the fans behind them. They need to keep supporting and backing the manager that’s going in, the players and I’d just like to say thanks to them all.

“It’s been a ride, a journey, massive journey and they’ve been a part of that. Big thanks from me and my staff.

“I’m going to take a bit of time, reflect, learn from what’s gone on. I’m not out of the game by any stretch, I’ll be looking for the right job, I’m only going to go if it’s the right move for me,” he added on the next steps.

“I’m not going to jump into anything, it needs to be the right opportunity, right vision for a football club which his parallel to what we want to do as a management team. I’ll certainly be looking, I won’t be out the game too long, if it takes a year or a week, as long as it’s the right opportunity, I’ll be patient, I’ll wait.

“I’ll get my golf clubs out in the meantime and dust them off, we just need to be patient, learn, reflect and make sure the next club we go to we’re better for our experiences at Widnes. Hopefully it won’t be too long and the right club will come calling.”

[Featured image: 617 Photography]

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