Mark Yates is relishing the chance to take on his old boss and mentor Steve Cotterill as Cheltenham Town host League One leaders Bristol City in the second round of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy on Wednesday night.
game, Cotterill's Notts County enjoyed a 5-0 win on the day they secured the League Two title in 2010.competitiveThe last time the two managers did battle on the touch line in a
become a key figure in the club's remarkable rise, succeeding Chris Banks as Cotterill's captain.
Yates was brought to Cotterill as a player from Kidderminster Harriers midway through the Robins' Conference title winning season. He went on to
"I knew a bit about Steve when he signed me and I knew he was a young manager, who had ideas and was always going to do well for himself," Yates said.
"I can remember getting a phone call from Steve and him coming round to my house, sitting in the kitchen for an hour telling me how he wanted me to fit into the group that he already had.
"It snowballed from there and I probably enjoyed it even more than I thought I would. He was clearly a manager going places and I believed in what he was telling me."
Yates admits he has based some of his approach to management on 50-year-old Cotterill, who has also spent time at Stoke City, Burnley, Portsmouth and Nottingham Forest.
He got the best out of me and I have certainly used certain aspects from him, but we all have to be ourselves and I am certainly that, but certain things are etched in my mind.said. ""There are definitely things I've taken from Steve into my own managerial style," Yates
"I am trying to do the best I can here and I am pleased with the effort I am getting from my players."
Bristol City enjoyed a 4-1 win at Whaddon Road in pre-season, but Yates is looking forward to taking on Cotterill's unbeaten team in a competitive clash in front of the Sky TV cameras.
"We played Bristol City in pre-season and it’s going to be a big test," he said. "I thought we were really good for an hour in that match, but they then put some big hitters on and stepped things up.
"We were disappointed with some of the goals we conceded, but you could tell they were a very good side.
"They are now unbeaten after 11 games and top of League One by four points, which shows the quality they have.
"They play a way, quite similar to us in terms of formation, but they have better players and we are aspiring to be as close to them as we can. It will be a good test and a good one to see and learn from as well.
"Against Oxford in the previous round we played very well and this is one we want to win. It’s live on TV and we want to do ourselves justice.
"Being on a Wednesday night is different, but we are lucky enough to be on Sky and we have arranged our week around it.
"We will look at one or two for Saturday’s match at Shrewsbury, which is a bit more important for us at the moment, but we want to go out and win the game.
"They are a division above us, but that’s all it is and on the day, who knows?"