Gary Taylor-Fletcher is the new man in charge at Bangor City – the club’s third permanent manager in less than a year.
The former Blackpool and Huddersfield Town striker returns to Nantporth, just six months after leaving the club upon its relegation from the Welsh Premier League.
He takes over officially from Craig Harrison, who quit as manager after just five months to take up a coaching role with Connah’s Quay Nomads.
Taylor-Fletcher has spent the last few weeks with WPL strugglers Llandudno, scoring three goals in as many appearances. The Maesdu Park club confirmed his departure on Tuesday.
It’s his second spell in charge of City, having taken caretaker charge from March to May 2017. He became right-hand man to Kevin Nicholson last season, leading Bangor to runners-up spot in the top flight – but the FAW’s decision to refuse a domestic licence led to both men resigning last May.
Bangor seemed reluctant to appoint a new manager to replace Harrison. Under caretaker boss Stephen Vaughan Jr – now the club’s former director of football – they’ve scored eighteen goals without conceding and have built up a six-game winning streak in all competition.
But Vaughan Jr’s departure for a coaching role in Malta finally forced City’s hand in appointing a permanent boss. In Taylor Fletcher, they have a seasoned forward whose long harboured managerial ambitions.
After two seasons with Huddersfield – including a famous FA Cup goal against Chelsea – he switched to Blackpool, where he guided the Tangerines to their only season in Premier League football and scored their first top flight goal.
As a Football League journeyman, Taylor Fletcher also spent time at Leyton Orient, Lincoln City, Leicester City, Sheffield Wednesday, Millwall, Tranmere Rovers and Accrington Rovers.
He also scored nine Welsh Premier goals in his first spell at City – and has pledged to return to the field again if duty calls.
His first test as manager couldn’t be a bigger ask. Although both clubs sit in the shadow of HGA leaders Airbus, City travel to old foes Rhyl on Friday night in a derby clash that’s always been highly anticipated.
Taylor Fletcher said: ”I am really looking forward to the challenge and to keep the hard work…over the last month going. The team are on an excellent run of form and we look forward to our trip to Rhyl on Friday.”
”I will be giving it my all once again to ensure that we are prepared as a team for every game and I will also be back on the pitch if and when I am needed.”
In a separate statement via Llandudno FC, he added that a return to City was something he couldn’t turn down – even if meant cutting ties after just three weeks at Tudno: ”24 hours is a long time in football and things can change very quickly.”
”I have really enjoyed my time at Llandudno even though results haven’t been what was needed, the players and fans need to stay positive and I’m certain Iwan (Williams) and the players can pull through and turn this season around.”
Beyond Friday’s clash with the Lillywhites, Taylor Fletcher’s second game in charge – and his first back at Nantporth – will be the Welsh Cup third round derby with HGA strugglers Holyhead Hotspur.
The club announced earlier on Tuesday that the tie will now be played on Friday 7th December – kick off at 7.45pm.