It’s a fresh start for Dromore Amateurs this coming season, with changes in the two top positions at the club.
Dean Brownlee has made the step up from second team assistant to take over first team affairs, while Russell Ward is the new chairman after Malcolm Russell took the difficult decision to step down having been in the role for many years.
Brownlee has been involved with the Amateurs since 2000 as a player, committee member and, last season, as second team coach, supporting Wayne Beggs.
Now he feels the time is right to try his hand at managing the first team in Division 1C of the Northern Amateur Football League.
He said: “After helping out with the seconds last season, and getting such a buzz, I decided to take on the role of first team manager.
“I’m looking forward to the new challenges ahead and hope that both the first and second teams can progress on from last season.”
New boss Brownlee revealed it was the experience of witnessing the emergence of some young and exciting talent coming up through the club that convinced him to take the job.
“As a club, we were delighted with the youth coming through last season and we look to build on this with the help of Dromore Amateurs Youth FC,” he said.
Brownlee is putting the finishing touches to his backroom staff, but has already signed up Ned Walsh and Keith Halliday to run the club’s second string.
Pre-season training has already started, with sessions taking place on Mondays 7-9pm at the Dromore Rugby Club, and Thursdays 7-9pm at the Ferris Park astro-turf pitch.
Chairman Russell Ward gave manager Brownlee his full backing after taking up his own new role at the club.
“He knows the game inside out, and he’ll give the job 100% effort,” he said.
“If the players can match his level of commitment, we should be in for a good season.”
Ward also paid tribute to his predecessor in the chair:
“Malcolm (Russell) was a steady leader of the club for many years and I have a lot to live up to. Thankfully he has decided to stay on the committee, so his valuable experience will still be available.”