Former defender joins our backroom staff...Walsall FC can today confirm the appointment of Ian Sharps as the club’s new First-Team Coach.
A compensation settlement has been reached with Chester and the former defender will now join Jon Whitney’s backroom staff following Dean Holden’s departure earlier this month.
“I feel very privileged to have been offered the job and I can’t wait to get started,” said the highly-rated Sharps, who has received interest from a number of other clubs.
“I’ve known Jon a couple of years and I got to know the club well when I worked here about two years ago with the young professionals before John Ward's appointment. I've kept in close contact with the club ever since.
“I spent six months at Chester as their assistant manager and have coached in a number of academies, working with young elite players.
“I enjoyed my time at Chester but this was too good a prospect to turn down. I’m an ambitious man and I want to continue to progress here.”
Whitney added: “His philosophy fits the way I want to coach and the way I want to bring players through.
“The fact he worked here, I got to see what he can do first hand and I also liked him as a person.
“He was a leader as a player and he’s got a really good reputation now as a coach. I feel we’re very lucky to get him in as part of our backroom staff.”
Warrington-born Sharps made over 500 appearances in the Football League having made his debut for Tranmere Rovers in 1998.
The 36-year old enjoyed a career spanning nearly two decades, playing for the likes of Rotherham United, Shrewsbury Town and Burton Albion, before turning his attentions to coaching. A qualified A Licence coach, he has been an integral part of Jon McCarthy's backroom staff at Chester and arrives at the Banks's Stadium with immediate effect.
The club would like to thank Chester for their co-operation and wish Ian every success for his time here.