Former Crystal Palace striker Andy Preece has been named as new manager of Vanarama National League club Southport.

Preece, who made twenty Premier League appearances for the Eagles, was named as Steve Burr’s successor on Wednesday morning.

During a near twenty year playing career Preece also played for the likes of Stockport County, Bury and Blackpool, before finishing his professional career with a spell at Carlisle United between 2003 and 2005.

His managerial career actually begun as a player-manager with Bury in 1999, although he departed from the club in 2003.

His exit from Carlisle United, and subsuquent move into non-league football, saw him back in the dugout when he was appointed as player-manager of Worcester City.

Preece led the club to the Second Round of the FA Cup in 2006, although a 1-0 home defeat against Huddersfield Town ended their dreams of a big Third Round tie.

After leaving Worcester in 2007, his next managerial role was with Northwich Victoria.preece vic

He was able to repeat his FA Cup success, taking the Vics to the Second Round of the competition in 2009/10.  A 1-0 home win over former Premier League club Charlton Athletic set up a Second Round tie with Lincoln City, although a 3-1 defeat robbed Preece of the chance to take a team to the Third Round.

Preece resigned from his position with the Vics in January 2012 and took up a role as Director of Football at Welsh Premier League club Airbus UK Broughton, a role he left in August 2016.

His appointment at Southport sees him taking over a club sat one point and one place above the National League relegation zone.

He will see his new side in action on Wednesday night as the Sandgrounders host Blackburn Rovers in the Molson Coors Lancashire Cup, with his first league game coming with a home game against promotion-chasing Dagenham and Redbridge on Saturday.

Speaking to the club’s official website Preece said “I’ve got a fantastic opportunity at a well-run club that I have known for many years. My first match in charge of Worcester was against Southport. I am really looking forward to the challenge.

I’ve been in this situation before taking over a club and I expect to succeed. Yes, lots of hard work ahead on and off the pitch with fifteen games to go. It is a big job. I have no fears and expect us to be moving forward. It is a great opportunity to be the manager of Southport Football Club.”

Article: Mark Carruthers (@marknldaily)
Images: Reuters Media

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