Beard is named new boss as Cocoracchio is appointed director of football at Loxwood

JPCT 170115 S15020378x Football, County League Division 1: Loxwood v Pagham -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-150113-095327001
JPCT 170115 S15020378x Football, County League Division 1: Loxwood v Pagham -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-150113-095327001

Loxwood have appointed Mark Beard as their new first team manager as Dave Cocoracchio steps up to take the director of football role.

The pair will take up their new positions at the end of the season to help progress the club both on and off the field.

“Continuity and ambition have been the backbone of our success, Dave brings that into this new challenge.”

Barry Hunter

The changes are aimed at pushing the club on to new heights as Cocoracchio, who took over as manager at the end of 2012, will oversee strategy, resource and appointments on the coaching and playing role of the club.

Former professional Beard was Cocoracchio’s first appointment as the club allowed him to pick predecessor as part of his new position.

The ex-Millwall midfielder will continue to run the club’s under-18 academy as well as taking on the first team management role.

Cocoracchio, whose increased work commitments have been a factor in the change, will look after a new junior section at the Plaistow Road club to increase their long-term sustainability, as well as continuing to be involved with the first team on match days

Chairman Barry Hunter, who previously was director of football at the club, said: “Dave is the perfect candidate for this role having long-term junior football club experience and as first team manager, has successfully taken the first team to its most successful season in the clubs history.

“The club is absolutely delighted Dave has accepted the role, which will start at the end of the season.

“What’s is also significant is that Dave understands our club philosophy and has been a great contributor to it in recent seasons.

“Continuity and ambition have been the backbone of our success, Dave brings that into this new challenge.”

A club statement read: “Having secured promotion to Sussex County League Division 1 last season, the club reset its near-term objectives.

“This current season was the first of a new plan to reach new heights and strengthen the club from the roots up. Both our reserves and under-18 academy have had very successful seasons, underpinned by a first team that has surpassed all expectations in its first season in Division 1 at Step 5 of the national pyramid.

“Preparations for next season have started. This will see more teams join our junior section and more progress on and off the pitch to support the progression of our senior football teams.

“Such a task requires strategy and leadership from a director of football and the club recently approached Dave Cocoracchio to see if he would take on this pivotal role, which he has accepted.

“Dave will join the club’s main committee. He will be responsible for all strategy, resource and appointments on the coaching and playing side of the club.

“He will also oversee the development and integration of a junior section into the club, a priority for our long-term sustainability.”

Full story and more reaction, in this week’s paper.