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It’s nine years since John McGreal left Burnley and hung up his boots. Injury ruled him out at the end of the 2006/07 season after he’d been forced off early in our 1-0 defeat at Southend that season. He’d been Steve Cotterill’s first signing for Burnley and had been an outstanding player for us just as he’d been for his previous clubs Tranmere and Ipswich.

He moved into coaching and joined Colchester seven years ago, firstly coaching within the youth academy and then becoming the manager of their under-21s.

But yesterday he was confirmed as the new manager at the club following the exit of Kevin Keen after their relegation to League Two had been confirmed.

As a centre half he has settled into his new job well and said: “First and foremost I want to win games of football. I think getting a couple of clean sheets early on will breed that belief and give us the confidence to go forward.”

McGreal played a total of 106 games for the Clarets in three years at the club. He made his debut on th opening day of the 2004/05 season in a 1-1 home draw against Sheffield United. During his time at Turf Moor he scored just one goal which was in a 3-0 home win against Crewe in his first season.

Always hugely popular with the Turf Moor crowd, I’m sure Clarets will be keeping a keen eye on his progress with Colchester next season.

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