BLANDFORD United have announced Andy Savage as their new permanent manager.

Savage, a former assistant to Shane Traynor at Poole Town Reserves, will be joined in the dugout by assistant Rob Andre in June.

The Royals have been without a boss since the popular Jamie Haylock stepped away in November due to personal reasons, ending his three-year tenure.

Savage has previous experience with Godolphin Atlantic in the South West Peninsula League, guiding them to fifth in 2015-16 plus a Cornwall Senior Cup final and League Cup final.

Savage also turned out for Godolphin’s reserves as player/coach to achieve a league and cup double.

On his arrival, Savage said: “What do I bring to Blandford United? Just myself as an open, honest and experienced coach and manager.

“There will be a bit of a learning curve as I reacquaint myself with the local football scene in Dorset, but don’t see that taking too long to get over.

“I’m looking forward to getting started at a great community football club, meeting the players and supporters and getting to work on the training ground.”

Blandford chairman, Steve Powell, said: “We look forward to continue the success that the club was having on the field before we all went into lockdown and continue to improve and grow into next season.

“I am really excited, we have a genuinely good team, good management and coaching setup. I am really proud with the work everyone at the club has done over the last few years and I look forward to continued success under our new management team.”

Savage will take charge at the beginning of June for the start pre-season preparations.

He will also attend the Royals’ Dorset Senior Trophy quarter-final against Sturminster Newton at Park Road on Saturday, April 10.

Savage added: “For the last eight years I have been working and living in Newquay, spending most of those years coaching and managing within the local grassroots leagues and the South West Peninsula Premier League.

“Before heading down to Cornwall, I lived in Bournemouth and was involved in Wyvern and Dorset Senior League football either coaching or playing and finished my time in Dorset as assistant manager to Shane Traynor at Poole Town Reserves.”

Savage will be assisted by Andre, a UEFA B coach who has coached and managed throughout the youth section of the club. Ryan Park will join the team as goalkeeping coach.