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Last Updated: Friday, 20 April 2007, 09:47 GMT 10:47 UK
Crewe insist Gradi will stay on
Dario Gradi
Gradi has been Crewe manager since June 1983
Crewe chairman John Bowler insists Dario Gradi will remain as manager next season despite a change of job title.

Gradi, who has spent 24 years at Crewe and is the longest serving boss in the Football League, becomes the club's football technical director on 1 July.

He will be responsible to the board for all of Crewe's football activities.

Steve Holland has been appointed first team coach and will play a pivotal role in training, team selection and management of the first-team squad.

Holland will also stay on as manager of the club's academy.

Neil Baker continues as assistant manager and continue his direction and management of the club's scouting activities, along with Glyn Chamberlain.

I'm actually very excited about the situation. I think it will be good for the club and Steve deserves this opportunity

Dario Gradi

Gradi says the move was decided after talks with Bowler and feels it will "be good for the club".

He will stay in charge of team selection but intends to gradually hand over responsibility to Holland.

"I didn't want to be a 75-year-old manager working seven days a week, 52 weeks a year," Gradi told Crewe's website.

"That is not healthy for the future of the club. I will probably drop dead doing the job at some point but I wanted to put that day off a bit.

"This is a better way to do things, to introduce this gradual transition because it will take some of the workload off me.

"I'm actually very excited about the situation. I think it will be good for the club and Steve deserves this opportunity.

"We have discussed things with the chairman and we knew eventually that Steve would become closer involved with the first team.

"He will have more responsibility with that but I will still oversee the football side of things."


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