JIM Bentley is the new manager of Morecambe FC.
Bentley has been handed a two-year deal to replace Sammy McIlroy who left the Shrimps on Monday by mutual consent after five years at the helm.
The former club captain, skipper when the Shrimps won promotion to the Football League, was reserve team boss at the Globe Arena last season.
Bentley, who at 34 becomes one of the youngest managers in the Football League, said he was delighted to have been given the job.
He said: “It’s a real honour and a fantastic opportunity for me and I am extremely proud to have been given the chance to take this club forward, one that I love so much forward.
“I have had a wonderful nine years at Morecambe as a player and it is like a second home to me. I can’t wait to get started because I am so excited about the role.
“The Board of Directors has shown great faith in me and I can assure everyone that I will give this job absolutely everything I have and show the same sort of attributes I showed as a player. I have always given 100 per cent and I will expect nothing less than 100 per cent from anyone who puts on a Morecambe shirt.
“I know I am pretty young but that doesn’t worry me. I look at what someone like Eddie Howe, who is younger than me, has achieved in the game and I can take a lot of positives from that.
“I have always had a fantastic relationship with the supporters of this club and I am sure they will be right behind me.”
Chairman Peter McGuigan said: “The board of directors at Morecambe Football Club are delighted to announce the appointment of Jim Bentley as the club’s new manager after he accepted the position that was offered him today.
“Jim has shown in his playing career that he is a natural born leader and I am confident that he will continue to prove his leadership qualities in his first managerial post.
“During my discussions with Jim earlier this week I was very impressed with his vision for the development of the club and I trust that everyone will get behind him in his new role and look forward to him bringing in the appropriate personnel to take the club forward next season.
“We recognise that Jim has very little experience in management but the board are confident that his commitment, passion, drive and understanding of Morecambe Football Club and its fans will make this a very smooth transition.”
Bentley’s first job is to appoint a backroom team with an assistant expected to be announced early next week.