Hopley appointed assistant manager

Tim ChannonFirst Team, General

Rob Hopley has been appointed assistant manager,

Rob Hopley has been appointed assistant manager,

SEAGULLS stalwart Rob Hopley has been appointed assistant manager by new boss Ash Hoskin.
The 30-year-old, who has played over 250 games for the club since making his debut in 2008 under Steve Pope’s short managership, will also continue as a player and is just two away from reaching 100 goals for the club – so that will be an early target for him next season.
Hoskin commented: “Hoppo is Mr Colwyn Bay for me with the service he has given the club over the years and he is very popular in the dressing room so I feel he can do a great job for me as my assistant both on and off the field.”
Hopley said: “I want to carry on playing as long as I can, but I’m also looking forward to being involved in the management side of the club for the first time.
“To be honest the offer came out of the blue, but it is too good an opportunity to turn down. It is a step on the ladder should I decide to go into management eventually and hopefully I will learn a lot in this new role.”
Hoskin has also brought in former Accrington Stanley and Macclesfield Town manager Phil Staley as another assistant in charge of a recruitment.
“I see Phil as a fantastic signing for the club with the player knowledge and contacts that he has both in England and Wales,” said the manager.
The appointments mean Dan Nolan will not be involved with the first team next season, but he hopes to carry on at the club helping the reserves.
“Dan has worked extremely hard for the club, and it was a hard decision. I have been in that position myself when a new manager came in at Burnley and brought in his own backroom team, so I know how it feels, but we don’t really need a fitness coach in the Evostik League. Dan has been superb and I wish him well,” said the manager.
On the playing side, goalkeeper Chris Sanna and defenders Mike Lea and Wes Baynes have so far all agreed to stay on next season.
The new boss has also agreed terms with 21-year-old midfielder Archie Love, who came through the development squad at Burnley and has recently been playing for Market Drayton in the Evostik Division one South, and striker Brandon Zibaka, who turns 20 this week and came through the youth team at Preston North End.
He made his first team debut at 16 as a second half substitute in a 2-0 League Cup win against Charlton Athletic and later joined Chorley where he was a member of their title-winning squad in the Evostik Premier in 2013/14.
“Brandon is a goal scorer who works his socks off up front and is someone I see as another great signing,” added Hoskin.
Sadly financial terms could not be agreed with Rhos-on-Sea based Marc Williams, Prince Haywood and Tom Buckley, who are free to look for new clubs. Chris Noone is keeping his options open for now.
“I tried very hard to keep Marc and the others, but we have a reduced budget next season after being relegated and I just couldn’t meet what they wanted,” added the manager.