Bradford Park Avenue have moved to appoint Mark Bower as their new first team manager.

Bower has spent the last three years in charge at Avenue’s neighbours Guiseley, BradfordPAdefeating all the odds to not only gain promotion to the National League, but also to avoid relegation from non-league’s top flight.

Bower replaces former head coach Alex Meechan, who was relieved of his first team duties on Monday.

The 36-year-old takes over with the club sitting bottom of the Vanarama National League North on just three points, six points from safety.

Born in Bradford, the former centre-back spent the vast majority of his playing days across the city at Valley Parade, making a total of 254 appearances for Bradford City over his 12 years at the club.

He also had spells at York City, playing under Terry Dolan, Luton Town, Darlington, Halifax Town and then Guiseley, where he was appointed manager in 2013.

Taking over the role with Guiseley on just eight points after eight games, Bower steered the Lions to a fifth placed finish, losing in the play-off final to a last-minute Altrincham goal.

Another fifth placed finish followed, Bower’s Guiseley travelling to Chorley for the final this time round. Going in at the break 2-0 down, his side somehow turned it around to win 3-2 and gain promotion to the National League, the club’s highest ever standing.

Bower parted company with the Lions at the start of this season, having lost their first five games in the new National League season.

Amongst the Avenue ranks are Ryan Toulson, Liam Dickinson, Nicky Boshell and Emile Sinclair, all of whom featured under the new manager during his time at Guiseley.

Bower’s first game in charge of Bradford will see him come up against former club FC Halifax Town, who currently sit 10th in the National League North standings, at The Shay this Saturday.

Source: Bradford Park Avenue

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