He's won two promotions and been bought an Aston Martin for thrashing a rival... now Paul Cox turns his attention to Boston United

Duncan Browne takes a look through the colourful managerial career of the Pilgrims' new manager

Paul Cox in the dug-out for Kettering at York City earlier this season. Photo: Peter Short
Paul Cox in the dug-out for Kettering at York City earlier this season. Photo: Peter Short

Football moves fast. According to reports in Northamptonshire, Paul Cox was putting Kettering Town's squad through their paces on Thursday evening, preparing for an away trip to Bradford Park Avenue.

Twenty-four hours later pictures of him holding up a Boston United shirt emerged as the Pilgrims announced him as their new manager, but not before the Poppies' announcement of his resignation sparked wild speculation.

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Cox's day will now be spent a little further up the A1, watching from the stands and making mental notes as United take on Spennymoor Town.

A scroll through the smartphone suggest Boston fans are more than happy with the incoming gaffer.

Equally as encouraging is the fact that some Kettering fans sought out United's social media accounts to brand Cox a snake and make snide digs about a 'balls in the air' style of football. A good sign for Boston as the announcement of a manager who wasn't highly thought of at his previous gig gets nothing more than a 'good luck with that' or the internet's greatest insult, a laughing-while-crying emoji.

Cox arrives at Boston with a reputation for getting the best out of players, assembling squads with a tough, combative approach and speaking his mind.

Just as importantly, he arrives with a CV that has two promotions on it.

Paul Cox is the new Boston United manager. Photo: Boston United

Cox is yet to take a club up from the National League North, but he's done it at levels above and below.

In 2009 he took Eastwood Town into step two by winning the Northern Premier League, less than three years into his first managerial job.

The work he did with the Badgers caught the eye of fellow Nottinghamshire club Mansfield Town.

His first season at Field Mill saw the Stags finish third, bettering that in 2013 by being crowned champions as they won 20 of their final 24 matches.

Cox was given an Aston Martin by Stags owner John Radford.

Another successful streak like that would be more than welcome at the Jakemans Community Stadium as the Pilgrims reach the half way point of their league season after today's match.

The result will determine whether or not Cox takes charge of a side inside or outside of the play-off spots for Tuesday's arrival of Farsley Celtic.

But - with a worst case scenario of Boston sniffing around the top seven - a little more Cox magic could see this side hit their stride at the right time of year for a play-off push.

The 50-year-old Cox has no shortage of experience in the dug-out, or tales to tell. While at Mansfield, owner John Radford bought him an Aston Martin - number plate MT51 COX - to celebrate thrashing Barrow 8-1.

Paul Cox. Photo: Peter Short

It may take some amazing results to convince Pilgrims chairman David Newton to even consider handing over the keys to a Chestnut Homes van, but that have-car-will-travel approach enabled Cox to cut his teeth the length of the country and gain the experience which caught his new employer's eye.

After leaving Mansfield, Cox spent three months with Torquay United, resigning and revealing the club had not been paying his salary.

His next job came 350 miles away at none other than Barrow, guiding the club from the Conference drop zone to safety and a seventh-place finish the following season.

A stint at Guiseley followed, joined in the dug-out by newly-departed Boston manager Adam Murray, who had been his number two at Mansfield.

Cox joined Kettering in October 2019, and leaves them a place and a point behind Boston in the table. The battle between these two old rivals for the rest will certainly be an interesting one.

MORE PILGRIMS: Paul Cox is new United manager - news