Outgoing Loxwood boss Dave Cocoracchio says he has had an ‘unbelievable’ seven years at the club and will take some ‘wonderful memories’ with him when he leaves at the end of the season.
The Magpies manager has announced he will be stepping down at the end of this season due to personal reasons - and also relinquishing his role as director of football.
He will be replaced as manager by Gareth Neathey, who has been the assistant manager to both the first team and under-18s this season.
Cocoracchio first joined the club as manager as the end of 2012 and went on to oversee the most successful period in their history. During that time they won their first-ever senior trophy and were promoted to the top flight of the Southern Combination League, then Sussex County Football League, for the first time.
At the end of the 2014-15 season, Cocoracchio moved away from the sidelines and became director of football as Mark Beard took over as first team manager.
But when former Millwall player Beard left the club in March 2017, Cocoracchio resumed managerial duties.
The former Forest boss, however, has now decided step away after their final game of the season on Saturday - at home to Saltdean United.
Cocoracchio said: “I have had seven unbelievable years at Loxwood FC both as the 1st team manager and the director of football. In that time we have achieved so much both on-and-off the pitch and I have wonderful memories of my time at the club.
“Loxwood FC is lucky to have such a wonderful committee and during that time I would like to thank them all for their unwavering support and commitment to the cause.
“I would also like to thank all of the players that have played under me in that time as well as my management team. I have been lucky to work with wonderful people all of who have had great values, ethics and dedication to what we have tried to achieve.
“I can honestly say that we have come such a long way in the seven years I have been at the club and I am very proud to be able to say that the club is in a far better place now than it was then and I leave the club in a very strong position.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank not only the committee, players, coaching staff and supporters for their support and kindness over the seven years, but I also want to thank my wife and my family for fully supporting me in the role and for allowing the seven memorable years to be possible. I will continue to support the club whenever I can and look forward to coming back to The Nest as often as possible to watch the Magpies in action.”
Barry Hunter, the club’s outgoing chairman, commented: “The club has nothing but praise and appreciation for the contribution Dave has made to the club both on-and-off the park during his seven-year tenure.
“On a personal level, I want to thank Dave for his leadership, competitiveness and achievements he has delivered as our 1st team manager. Dave took the club to new horizons, firstly by winning our first senior trophy as Division 2 Cup winners in 2013/14 before leading us to promotion the following season, into the Premier Division of Sussex County football, for the first time in our history, where we have regularly finished top eight.
“As director of football Dave has also overseen the development and integration of the junior and youth side of the club, including the 2014/15 double winning under-18s.
“During his tenure, Dave also took the club to the semi-finals of the Sussex Senior Cup. Off the park, Dave has been central to a lot of the drive and energy that has given the club the momentum it has needed to compete as a Step 5 club.”