Herd excited about Hertford manager role as right-back ends three-year stay at City

Ben Herd in action for St Albans City against Hungerford Town earlier this season. Picture: Karyn Ha

Ben Herd in action for St Albans City against Hungerford Town earlier this season. Picture: Karyn Haddon - Credit: Archant

Ben Herd says the chance to move into management is something he has wanted to do “for a long time”.

The vastly-experienced right-back was named as Hertford Town manager after a tumultuous year at Hertingfordbury Park that saw a succession of people in the club’s hotseat.

And it is the promise of developing the club’s youngsters that gives Herd, who runs his own highly successful performance academy, the biggest thrill.

“Management is something I wanted to do for a long time,” said the 33-year-old.

“I feel I can make a real difference to young players. If you look at the Premier League there are not many young English players getting their chance.

“But if you can get it right, then you mould a good brand of players.

“Hertford feels like a good fit. They are the county town and have a reasonable fan base.

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“I want to play an attractive brand of football. I just need to galvanise them.”

He feels the job won’t hinder his day-to-day involvement with his academy, already based in the town at Simon Balle School, and he hopes it will actually give it a boost.

He said: “It allows me to give the boys a pathway to them into senior men’s football, if they work hard enough of course.

“Just because I’m the manager it doesn’t mean they will get straight into the team.

“There is lots to do but if you believe in something, you can achieve it.

“I’m sure I’ll make a million mistakes as you do but it’s a great opportunity.”

His decision to move to the Bostik South Central Division club ends a three-year stay at Clarence Park for the former Aldershot and Shrewsbury Town man.

And that is the one bittersweet part.

He said: “It may sound like nostalgia but apart from playing for the glorious and mighty Tottenham Hotspur, St Albans City was always the club for me.

“They were always one of the first scores I looked out for.

“It’s just a shame I didn’t leave on a better note.

“Injuries curtailed my season, I never played since Gloucester, and I never got the chance to say goodbye.

“I’ll be playing at Hertford though. I’ve still got miles in the legs and I’m really looking forward to playing how I want to play.”