From journeyman to title-winning coach - Chesterfield's Danny Webb opens up on football life

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‘Journeyman’ Danny Webb has spoken about his deep connection with Chesterfield as a town and football club following promotion back to the Football League.

The 40-year-old has been on the coaching staff at the Spireites for almost three years and he feels very much at home in north Derbyshire despite being a southern boy.

During his 14-year playing career he played for as many as 19 clubs but was never able to establish the same connection as the strong bond he has with Town fans.

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He told the DT: “I will be the first to admit that I was an absolute journeyman as a player. I never really built a rapport up with supporters - I wasn’t anywhere long enough. I probably didn’t do myself any favours as a player to earn that fans’ favourite tag as a player.

Spireites assistant manager Danny Webb. Picture: Tina JennerSpireites assistant manager Danny Webb. Picture: Tina Jenner
Spireites assistant manager Danny Webb. Picture: Tina Jenner

“It is my fourth season here, three play-off heartaches, especially last year. I think in that time I have grown to become an adopted member of the community. I love the place, love the town, and I have become friends with a lot of the supporters. I thought I had a great relationship with the supporters at Leyton Orient, but this is another level for me.”

Webb, who has now won the National League twice as a coach, much prefers coaching to playing and he gets a lot of enjoyment out of developing youngsters. And he’s got the perfect person to lean on when it comes to management in his dad David, who won two promotions with Southend United and managed Chelsea for a brief spell.

“I am lucky that my dad was a manager in the Premier League so every time I have got a question I can ask him,” he explained. “He has never told me the answer, if that makes sense, he has always given his opinion. I have learnt about the toughness and how thick-skinned you have got to be in football. You have got to be able to take the stick while also taking the pats on the back.

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“One thing my dad taught me was to always try to take lessons from negative situations. When I wasn’t playing as a player I was always trying to learn from different managers and environments and things I would do differently if I got into coaching and managing. That is your advantage when you have played for so many clubs, you have played for loads of different managers, as opposed to just one person for your whole career.”

Webb’s dad has also found himself attracted to the town, which he calls ‘unique’, because of how passionate the people are about their local area and football club.

As well as his dad, ‘Webby’ says that Paul Cook has taught him so much in the two years he has been his assistant at the Blues.

He added: “The biggest for me, along with learning from my dad and Justin Edinburgh at Leyton Orient, is how much I am learning from the manager here. I am not just saying that. He has opened my eyes up to a different style, different philosophies and different ways of playing along with Gary Roberts, Kieron Dyer and Paddy Byrne. As coaches, we learn off each other every day.”

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Chesterfield have got three more games in the National League, starting this weekend at Wealdstone, to tick off before they start life back in the Football League in August.

The Spireites got their hands on the champions trophy and winners medals last month and Webb joked that he would be wearing his every day on his sun lounger over the summer. And who could blame him.

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