Jimmy Ball is ready to become the next Forest Green head coach on a permanent basis, but will “respect” any decision made by chairman Dale Vince.
On the eve of Rovers’ play-off semi-final second leg at the innocent New Lawn against Newport County, interim head coach Ball insists his side can overhaul a 2-0 deficit, reach Wembley and enhance his own job credentials.
Ball, who is a highly regarded coach and liked by the players, has handled himself well since replacing the sacked Mark Cooper and has taken 11 points from six games, showing just the right amount of steely ambition when asked if he would like the job full-time while dealing diplomatically with some searching questions.
And Ball feels ready to step up to the managerial plate, he said: “I’ve been ready for a few years now. I believe I can bring success to this football club, but that’s somebody else’s decision to make.”
Ball admitted discussions beyond Sunday have yet to take place but was magnanimous enough to concur with whatever comes his way.
He revealed: “I’ve not had any talks (with Dale Vince), but I am extremely grateful – and I will be forever – of the knowledge and belief that Dale Vince and Richard Hughes (director of football) have given me. What I mean by that is the knowledge that I’ve gained from this experience and the belief I now have that I can be a great manager. I will forever be grateful for that, and if Sunday proves to be it, or if we get to Wembley and they decide to go a different way, I will respect the decision because it’s their prerogative. But they’ve given me knowledge and belief which are wonderful things to be given, and also the fact that I’ve been trusted to achieve something.
“I’m happy with my record – 11 points from six games, which over the course of a season is a promotion-winning team.”
Watch Jimmy Ball’s press conference in the video above.