Former Curzon Ashton coach Adam Lakeland was unveiled as the new manager of Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Northwich Victoria on Friday night.
Lakeland was named as the successor to Jim Gannon five days after the Stockport County legend left the title-chasing First Division North club on Monday to return to Edgeley Park for a third spell as manager.
Lakeland is not short of experience, ambition or drive. Before teaming up with John Flanagan as his first team coach at the Tameside Stadium back in 2012 and playing an instrumental role in their back-to-back promotions to National League North, the 31-year-old spent five years as a sports development officer at Blackburn Rovers after playing for Accrington Stanley. He later managed the ladies side at the Championship giants for a further four and a half years.
A UEFA A licence holder and boyhood Rovers fan, he returned to Blackburn last summer in a full-time role as U15s academy coach and has also been head of men’s football at Runshaw College for the last five years as well as running his own coaching businesses.
In an online interview, the new Vics manager told the club’s Jamie Dewsbury he was “honoured” to be given the chance to succeed Gannon and inherit a side flying high in second spot and challenging for promotion with five games in hand on leaders Warrington Town.
Lakeland, who takes charge for the first time on Saturday when the Vics head to Ossett Albion hoping to close a nine point gap, said: “I’m absolutely honoured to be the new manager of Northwich Victoria Football Club. I’d like to thank the board for giving me this fantastic opportunity and showing such faith in me.
“We have a fantastic group of players with the potential to improve further and I’m sure we will continue to be a great force for the remainder of the season. Obviously with us being in a great position, “I won’t be looking to change too much, a lot is already set in place for success.”
He added: “This club and its supporters deserve to be much higher than our current standing and I’m sure through hard work and togetherness we can achieve great things. I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone at the club and cannot wait to get started.”
Gannon, 47, took over from Lee Ashcroft in December 2013. In his first season at the helm, he guided the Vics to a ninth place finish before reaching the play-offs last April.
Chief scout Wayner Porter guided the Vics to a 5-1 win at Runcorn Linnets in the first round of the Cheshire Senior Cup on Tuesday night.