New boss Jimmy McDonnell wants to build Bourne Town’s reputation as the right club for nurturing young talent.
The Wakes made a big impact last season by claiming fifth place in the ChromaSport & Trophies United Counties League’s Division One final table.
Manager Steve Wilson’s move to Premier Division side Peterborough Northern Star – rejoining ex-Bourne boss Raffa Mazzarella – opened the door for McDonnell to take charge next term at Abbey Lawn.
And he is already making big plans on and off the pitch to help the club progress again.
McDonnell said: “As a Bourne lad it means a lot to me – this is a great honour.
“I’ve always been here as a player but those days have now come to an end so this is the right move for me.
As a Bourne lad it means a lot to me – this is a great honour.Jimmy McDonnell
“I worked with Steve last season when we had an honest bunch of lads who are loyal.
“They have all committed to staying here next season.
“They are in the same age group who have come through the ranks.
“If we can make them even better and push them into the UCL Premier Division or clubs like Stamford, Lincoln United and Spalding United in the next few years that’s the way we want to go.
“These boys can develop by doing the right things here.
“We’ve got a good reputation as a local side which promotes youth players.
“There has been interest in a couple of players but we’ve had a chat about that.
“Sometimes the next move is not the right one.
“If players can work here on certain areas of the game, they can improve and take the next step again.
“There would be no point in going now to a side who will struggle in the UCL Premier Division.
“We might need to bring in a couple of players but we don’t want to change too much.
“Off the field we can be so much more professional just by introducing minor details which don’t cost a lot of money.
“I want to set certain standards around the club. It’s about being organised.
“We’ll have five weeks for pre-season which will include youth players and reserves all together with the first team.
“We want to be playing pre-season games where we have to work extremely hard off the ball and then look after it against better quality opposition.”
The pre-season programme starts against Peterborough Sports on Saturday, July 2, and another home game on the following Wednesday against Northern Star.
There is a double-header with Holbeach United at Abbey Lawn on Saturday, July 9, with a first-team friendly (2pm) and reserve game (5pm).
The Division One campaign kicks off on Sunday, July 31, as part of the Groundhop weekend with a trip to Bugbrooke St Michaels (10.30am kick-off).
McDonnell’s coaching team will feature ex-Bourne players Lee Wood and Chris Good plus Pete Burnett who has moved to the area, having previously worked with Sutton United in the Conference.
The Wakes are looking for a reserve-team manager and first-team physiotherapist. If you are interested, email firstname.lastname@example.org