Exeter City boss hails ‘good problem to have’ as ex-Leeds United manager signs contract extension until 2026

Portsmouth’s promotion rivals have put out a statement of intent by extending their managers contract
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Portsmouth have hit form at the perfect time with a league high 16 points from their last six league matches.

John Mousinho’s men will hope to continue that tremendous winning run in a home clash against relegation strugglers Reading, who themselves have made huge strides in recent weeks - climbing from the relegation places in December to 16th in the table since the turn of the year.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Pompey will need to be at their best to secure three points and are determined to maintain their lead at the summit with promotion rivals Bolton, Derby and Peterborough all playing at home this weekend. Ahead of what promises to be an action packed weekend of League One action we take a look at all of the main headlines surrounding Portsmouth’s third-tier rivals.

Exeter City boss hails ‘good problem to have’ after sensational run of form

Exeter City boss Gary Caldwell was once regarded as one of the most under-pressure managers in the division after a dreadful run of form between October and November. However, that has all changed in recent months and his side are now emerging as one of the most in-form teams in the division with 12 points from their last six games - including impressive victories over Portsmouth’s promotion rivals Peterborough and Barnsley.

The Devon outfit were one of the most active teams in the winter window with six signings, while they were also able to extend the contracts of several key figures. Caldwell claims that this has left him with more selection dilemmas than ever before, adding that it is a good problem to have.

The former Wigan Athletic boss explained: “Since I’ve come to the club I’ve never had to leave good players, good people, out of the squad. I’ve never had big decisions on who starts or plays, so to have the options and quality we have now is really good. The key is the profile of the player against the team we were playing.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Caldwell added that while it can be difficult to leave players out; he hopes that the squad depth will improve the standard of his team.

He added: “It’s the worst part of my job by a mile, because I see how hard the players work every single day and see how much it means to them. I’ve spoken to the group about how everyone has to be ready because you never know when your moment is going to come. I hope the numbers and quality drive up the standard of football.”

Promotion winning manager signs contract extension as he aims to repeat the feat this season

Stevenage boss Steve Evans has agreed to sign a new and improved contract at the Lamex Stadium which runs until June 2026.

The 61-year-old former Leeds United manager is approaching the second anniversary of his appointment in March 2022 and has already helped the team achieve promotion to League One for the first time in a decade. His team are currently seventh in the table and are outside contenders to achieve back-to-back promotions. Chairman Phil Wallace lauded Evans for his efforts so far, adding that the longer term deal gives the club further time to have a recruitment policy that is sustainable and successful for years to come.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Wallace told the club website: “The results since Steve joined us in March 2022 speak for themselves. This isn’t about the result of the last few games - or even this season.

“We’ve moved from being a League Two struggle to a League One side challenging for promotion to the Championship.”

He added: “I enjoy working with Steve and his experience of so many players, over so many levels, is a great asset to us. This improved deal creates time to plan for a longer term and allows us to have a recruitment policy that provides for both success and sustainability for years to come.”

Stevenage face a challenging test against second place Derby in their next match. The Rams are six points behind leaders Pompey having played one game less in the league.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.