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Deal Town Football Club appoint former Dover defender Mark Harrop as first team coach

Derek Hares
Derek Hares

By Kevin Redsull

Deal Town manager Derek Hares has boosted his backroom staff for next season with the appointment of Mark Harrop as first team coach.

Harrop has been a well-known figure in east Kent soccer circles for many years, first as a hard-tackling right-back with clubs such as Dover and Margate, and then more recently as first-team coach at Ramsgate where, under manager Jim Ward, he helped guide the Rams to the Kent League and Ryman Division 1 South titles.

He has agreed to take over as first-team coach at the Charles Ground from Paul Murray, who has been forced to quit because of his work commitments with the Deal Town Academy at Castle Community College.

Hares (pictured) had initially hoped that Paul Lamb would succeed Murray, but Lamb has left the club to link up with another former Deal player, Mark Munday, who is now manager of Whitstable Town

Hares said: "With Paul Murray stepping down and ‘Lambie’ going to Whitstable, we are very lucky to have got Mark (Harrop) as a replacement.

"He has been involved in east Kent football for a long time and has got lots of contacts. His input and experience on the coaching side will be invaluable."

Hares is currently meeting with members of last season’s squad to find out their plans, and he is hoping to sign "three or four" new players in the next couple of weeks including a high-profile striker.

Deal’s first pre-season friendly will be a home game on Sunday, July 12 against Needham Market, the Suffolk outfit who reached the semi-finals of the FA Vase last season.

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