Ramsgate appoint Steve Lovell as their full-time manager and targets promotion next season
RAMSGATE have appointed Steve Lovell as their new full-time first team manager yesterday.
The 61-year-old Welshman took interim charge of the Prices Avenue outfit on 4 April following Matt Longhurst’s resignation.
Lovell will continue to be assisted by his son Mark, 38, who played for Ramsgate during the 2010-11 season.
The pair were in charge for four games while in interim charge and Ramsgate lost to both Haywards Heath (0-1) and Ashford United (2-4), before thrashing Whitstable Town 6-1 at home and completed their campaign at the weekend with a 2-0 win at Chichester City.
Ramsgate completed their 38 game Isthmian League South East Division campaign in sixth-place with 65 points, just missing out on the play-off lottery by one point.
“James Lawson and his ambition at the football club and where they’ve come in a year from the start of the season to the end of the season is massive,” Lovell told the club’s social media channels.
“I believe that with a lot of help from me and Mark on the football field we’ll move it forward even more.
“You never know exactly what your squad is going to be until maybe three weeks before the season starts, that’s sometimes the case in League football as well.
“There’s players even ringing me now to see what my situation is and Mark’s situation at the club so there will be loads of players out there who will be interested in coming to us.
“But I’ve really got to look at the squad that we’ve got and we’ve only missed out by one point in getting into the play-offs, so there’s not much wrong.
“The goal initially from now is to get a squad together that me and Mark will be happy with going into the new season.
“There’s not a lot more to be added to the team, perhaps one or two and then it’s getting the fitness levels up. I think they’re quite a fit side but I think they can be fitter. The ability within the squad is good individually but again we’ve got to work on it as a team and put our stamp on it and work hard.
“The goal is to finish off the season a little bit better than what we did this year. If we can get into the play-offs or even get promoted next year it will be great for the football club and that’s something that we’ll be aiming for when we come back to training.
“Obviously the interest we want to build up even more and get people entertained on the football field and win games and hopefully get us up to the next league.”
Steve Lovell's management career has taken him to Sittingbourne, Gravesend & Northfleet, Hastings Town, Sittingbourne, Ashford Town, Gillingham, Bromley (assistant manager), Gillingham, Welling United and Gillingham.
The Isthmian League South East Division Play-Off Final will be contested by Ashford United and Herne Bay at Homelands Stadium on Saturday.
The two sides finished in second-place and in third-place during the league campaign.
Tommy Warrilow’s men beat Cray Valley 1-0, courtesy of Jay May’s tenth goal of the season, while Ben Smith’s Herne Bay played out a six-goal epic at Winch’s Field before beating Haywards Heath Town 6-5 after 14 penalties in the shoot-out.
Herne Bay had substitute winger Eddie Allsopp sent off in the 88th minute before the outstanding Keiron Campbell scored a late third, but Martin Dynan’s side scored two last gasp goals to force extra time.
Punjab United manager Chipie Sian, meanwhile, has added to his management team, after finishing their Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division campaign in fifteenth-place in the table with 41 points from their 38 games.
Jason Powell has left Isthmian League South East Division side VCD Athletic to become assistant manager, while current Punjab United striker Paul Vines has taken up the player-coach role.
Staplehurst Monarchs United have appointed a new management team after Steve Sands announced his departure yesterday, after the club finished in the bottom four in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division on 36 points.
“End of an era. Unfortunately it’s time to retire from the management game and spend more time with the family and on the golf course,” said Sands.
The Jubilee Field outfit have appointed former K Sports manager Paul Atkins and he will be assisted by Lee Wells.
“We thank Steve Sands, Jeffro Warren and Adam Kerry for their hard work and success in reaching and maintaining SCEFL status this season. We wish them every success for their future footballing roles,” said a club statement.
“Paul Atkins and Lee Wells bring with them a wealth of knowledge and experience and great reputation in the SCEFL.”
Meanwhile, the Southern Counties East Football League will be launching a new midweek Development League next season.