Northern Premier League Stafford Rangers are hailing new manager Jody Banim as the man to lead them back to their glory days.
The 42-year-old former Ashton United boss, pictured, was unveiled on Friday morning as the successor to Andy Fearn and Alex Meechan after they stepped down last month following the cancellation of the coronavirus-blighted 2019/20 season.
Veteran Boro defender Matt Hill was named as Banim’s number two at Marston Road after the recruitment process was headed up by Fearn, the NPL Premier Division club’s new director of football since stepping aside in April.
Fearn told the club’s website: “Jody just impressed us from the start with his enthusiasm and knowledge of the game, at our level and above. We believe he is the right man at the right time. He has demonstrated in his management career an ability to rise to challenges and we welcome him on our journey.
— Stafford Rangers FC (@SRFCofficial) May 22, 2020
“We are delighted with the appointments of both Jody and Matt. So many people have worked very hard to make sure we are still here and I ask fans to come together now, get behind the new management team and look forward to an exciting journey together.”
Former striker Banim kicked off his playing career at Manchester United before going on to score goals for a host of clubs including Accrington Stanley, Burton Albion, Flixton, Hyde United, Radcliffe Borough, Rossendale United, Salford City, Shrewsbury Town, Stalybridge Celtic, Torquay United and Trafford.
He also turned out for Real Maryland Monarchs in the United States and as a manager led the Robins to promotion to National League North in 2017/18 before standing down in October 2019.
Banim told fans: “Stafford Rangers are a massive football club and our objective is clear. We want and will bring back the glory days and we are proud to be part of the Boro. We have seen, during lockdown, the passion and the enthusiasm that fans have shown in supporting so magnificently the ‘Stand Together’ campaign and we want to be part of it.
“No matter what budget you have I learned that the balance of the squad has to be right, but it’s a results business and you have to accept that.”
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Images courtesy of The Non-League Paper, ashtonunited.co.uk/YouTube & @SRFCofficial