Alloa Athletic’s Greig Spence says he sees a lot of Alex Neil in current manager Jack Ross and has tipped the Wasps boss for the top.
Spence is back at Recreation Park for his third spell with the club after being persuaded to sign by Ross.
And the start of the season couldn’t have gone any better for Athletic, winning all eight games played in the League Cup and Ladbrokes League 1 so far.
Ross has got Alloa playing an exciting brand of football too – one that’s brought 22 goals already in those opening eight fixtures, and they’ve set up a dream cup quarter-final clash with Celtic.
But it’s no surprise to Spence as the 24-year-old striker believes new boss Ross has already shown that he’s cut out to manage at a higher level.
Spence even compared his new gaffer to former Hamilton man Neil, who has since led Accies and Norwich to promotions after their short spell as team-mates at New Douglas Park.
Asked about the impression Ross has made, Spence exclusively told Ladbrokes News: “I’m not just saying this because he’s our manager, but I think he’s night and day compared to anyone I’ve ever worked with.”
“It’s his first competitive job and I’d be very surprised if he was at Alloa for long. He’ll get a top job and he’ll do well at a top job,” the 24-year-old added.
“He reminds me a lot of Alex Neil, who I played under at Hamilton.”
Spence explained: “But he (Ross) is the best I’ve worked under. He understands players, he’s got the tactical side and his man management with players is excellent and he just demands respect constantly from us.”
It’s not just Ross who Spence believes can go on to bigger things, but the club too.
The striker started his career at Alloa before going on to join Celtic’s youth team as a big money signing.
Things didn’t work out at Parkhead and he’s since made his way back to Clackmannanshire via stints at Accies, Raith Rovers, Cowdenbeath.
But Spence insists Alloa are being organised and run so well, that the part-timers work like a full-time club.
He said: “I was at Alloa when I was at 16 and it’s moved on so much from being a club that’s run-down a little bit, and Mike Mulraney has done wonders with the ground and astroturf.
“It’s like a full-time set-up now – probably better run as a club than some of the full-time clubs I’ve been at.”
“Everything is in place to have a successful team on the pitch,” Spence told us.
“You’re looked after as a player and I’ve been at other part-time clubs where you’re only in two nights a week and you don’t have much of a connection with the club.”
“Whereas at Alloa they look after you in every way possible. So the set-up from start to finish is different class.”
Spence’s faith in his manager and club are seemingly reflected in the odds too, with SPFL sponsors Ladbrokes placing Alloa as evens favourites for League 1 glory this season.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.