SAM Poole admitted it had been a “difficult decision” to leave Dorchester Town to take up the number two role at Portland United.

Poole, along with midfielder Franklyn Clarke, exited the Magpies to form the Blues’ new management team and will play the occasional game at Grove Corner.

The duo’s first job in the hotseat has yielded four points from five games, including an agonisingly late 2-1 defeat against Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division favourites Hamworthy.

Clarke and Poole were regulars in Dorchester’s starting line-up this season before their move, but the offer of taking the reins at Portland proved tough to resist.

He told Echosport: “I’ve got quite a hands-on role and support Frank as much as I can.

“It was definitely the sway for the management piece, rather than the playing piece.

“Obviously I’ve featured quite a bit and I’ll continue to play. Looking forward to the future, we’re bringing on the young lads.

“Louis Hankin’s been superb since I’ve come in and we’ve brought Sam Buckler back, who’s an experienced player at this level.

“He’s played for Portland before and captained the side so it’s been good to have him there too.

“Louis, as an example, is someone I feel I can help and develop and would like to see him go further in the game.”

Poole revealed he was “open-minded” on the move until talks with Portland tempted him to join.

“It was definitely the management side of things that swayed me away from Dorchester, which was a difficult decision,” he said.

“I’m a local boy, it’s my local club and I was quite excited by talking to Leigh (Robinson, Dorchester boss) about what he was looking to do at the start of the season.

“Hopefully (turning) it around from the bad fortunes it’s had and create a feel-good factor.

“I was open-minded at first. I wanted to speak to Portland about their ambitions and I knew a few players – they’ve got some really good people behind the scenes.

“Although this year is probably about consolidation in the league, giving some players game time and opportunities to develop, next year we’ll be looking for top 10 as a target.”