Why I’ve gone with Noakes – Moneyfields boss Turnbull delighted at naming AFC Portchester stalwart Joe as his new assistant

Glenn Turnbull has hailed the arrival of Joe Noakes as Moneyfields’ new assistant manager.

By Simon Carter
Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 11:32 am

The AFC Portchester stalwart has swapped Wessex League Premier Division clubs to be part of Moneys’ new era at the John Jenkins Stadium currently under development.

Noakes replaces Fraser Quirke, who resigned his role a couple of days after being involved in a touchline spat with goalkeeping coach Karl Watson during a game against Bashley which resulted in the latter being sent off for violent conduct.

Noakes has been running Portchester’s Under-23s in 2021/22 alongside Lloyd Kelly after reluctantly calling time on his own playing career due to injuries.

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Joe Noakes, right, in action during his playing days at AFC Portchester. Picture: Ian Hargreaves (143214-2)

Moneys boss Turnbull said Noakes had contacted him before the club had a chance to advertise the vacancy.

‘I’m really chuffed, it’s a real coup,’ Turnbull told The News. ‘He will be an exceptional link to the players.

‘He will have a real affinity with them - he will understand them as much as they understand him. That will be really important.

‘It’s what they call a no-brainer - I can’t see any negatives from it.

‘I was surprised to get the call, but delighted.’

Turnbull has mainly surrounded himself with his former USP colleagues since arriving at Moneys last May. The appointment of Noakes - very much a Portchester stalwart - therefore represents a notable change of direction.

‘It will be good to have a different train of thought,’ said Turnbull. ‘Myself and Barto (coach Paul Barton) met Joe last week to talk about philosophies, what we want to do and how we want to do it.’

Prior to Noakes showing interest, Turnbull had talked with Gosport Borough’s Ben Kneller about a potential link-up between the Southern League club’s centre of excellence and Moneys. Turnbull was considering Pat Suraci and Joe Lea as potential reserve bosses, but the pair’s appointment as joint managers of Wessex League club Petersfield Town scuppered that idea.

Moneyfields have also confirmed the appointment of Simon Hayes and Robbie Fowler as the reserves’ new management team, alongside Ash Clarke.

Hayes and Fowler assisted former boss Lee Mould, who has stepped down after just one season in charge of the Hampshire Premier League side.

Clarke, meanwhile, is known to Turnbull having been a youth coach at US Portsmouth during his time at the Victory Stadium.

Alex Hards - son of Winchester City’s FA Vase winning manager Neil Hards - has also come in as goalkeeping coach, a role he previously held at Baffins.

‘I felt I needed to get the backroom staff sorted before the players’ merry-go-round began,’ Turnbull remarked.

‘Having Joe will be a selling point (to potential new players). Barto will be a selling point. The reserve set-up will be a selling point. The new facilities will be a selling point.’

Some of Noakes’ Portchester U23s have been gaining adult football experience in recent weeks with Paulsgrove in the Hampshire Premier League - the likes of Finn Bello, Ollie Complin and Max Connolly.

The most promising of Noakes’ young Royals could now follow him to Moneys. Turnbull also believes Noakes’ friendship with Hawks skipper Joe Oastler – heavily involved in the Academy at Westleigh Park – could also benefit his club.

‘The reserve team is a selling point,’ said Turnbull. ‘Rather than young players turning out in the under-23 league, they can play against Paulsgrove’s first team.

‘From a footballing education point of view, they are going to learn more from playing against (Aaron) Fennemore at Paulsgrove than by winning 10-0 in an under-23 game.

‘If Portchester had a reserve team in the Hampshire League, Joe Noakes might not have wanted to join us.

‘He’s come here to help his coaching enhancement rather than just because he likes Glenn Turnbull. He’ll be thinking there’s progression for himself.’

The appointments of Hayes and Fowler as reserve team managers was also a simple decision to make, even though Moneys had received numerous applications.

‘Some people probably see a team that just missed out on the league and think they can bring in a few players and win it next season,’ said Turnbull.

‘But I couldn’t care less about winning the Hampshire League. It would have been nice for Lee if his team had done it this season, but if they had finished 10th it wouldn’t have changed my outlook.

‘I have made it clear to the board what I think the reserve team is for. I don’t want anyone bringing in players to make the reserves better, the reserves are there to make the first team better.

‘I appreciate that’s a mindset some people might find hard to understand. But Simon and Robbie understand it, they have got it from the get go. They worked with Lee - why wouldn’t they get it?’