A NEW era of management has begun at Ewyas Harold after Joe Taylor was appointed as first team boss.

Taylor, who will also carry on coaching a junior side at Pegasus Juniors, hopes to finish his playing career and focus on his first management role.

Malcolm Watkins is stepping down as first team manager after over 10 years in various team management roles with the first and reserve teams at the club.

Watkins along with Dave Hope and Ian Cooke will remain involved in the playing squads at Ewyas Harold and helping Taylor moving forwards.

"Now was the right time for me to step down and provide an opportunity for a new manager to come in early," said Watkins.

"This will enable them to make appropriate plans for the forthcoming pre-season once of course we are permitted to do so safely.

"The highlights of my time in the first team manager's role was our victory over Bartestree in the Charity Bowl in the 2016/17 season and who could possibly forget the memorable night at Edgar Street when we played Hereford FC in the HFA County Cup, there are many more than this and far too many to mention."

Watkins also hopes to focus on his role as director at the club as it moves forward.

Taylor and his family are familiar faces at Ewyas Harold and Joe is looking forward to taking his first step into senior management.

"It's something I've always wanted to do and since being on furlough I've been working really hard and done a lot of online coaching courses," said Taylor.

"Malcolm Watkins, Dave Hope and Ian Cooke have all done a great job over the last few years and I appreciate them giving me a chance to take over."

Taylor is looking for an improved season for Harold next term after they struggled in the bottom half of the Herefordshire Premier before the 2019/20 campaign was classed as null and void.

"It was a bit of an unfair reflection on the squad," said Taylor.

"I don't think Malcolm (Watkins) had the same squad availability week to week for a lot of reasons and we didn't really show what we could do.

"For numerous reasons we had really good performances one week and the next it was the total opposite.

"I want to change that next season. At the moment we're looking at keeping the majority of the lads in the squad from last season and maybe add two or three.

"A lot of them are local lads who would have stayed with Ewyas Harold whoever the manager was.

"They are a lot more capable than they showed last season and in the Herefordshire Premier a lot of teams can take points off each other.

"We have a few good youngsters and a big bulk of the side are aged between 18 and 23.

"That's really exciting to see what they can do with a lot of potential which I want to try and help."

Ewyas Harold are also looking for a manager for their reserve team which play in Division One.

Anybody interested in the vacant role should contact Malcolm Watkins on 07866 479399.