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Wilkinson takes the reins at Southampton Rangers

New surroundings: Wilkinson, right, is Rangers' new coach

Jomar Wilkinson has been given the task of spearheading a revival at First Division Southampton Rangers.

Jason Wade, the Southampton Rangers Sports Club president, confirmed yesterday that the former Dandy Town coach has replaced Dawud Tucker.

Wilkinson, a two-times Bermuda Football Association Coach of the Year, led Town to an eighth Premier Division title in 2015-16.

“We hired Jomar Wilkinson with the intent of being promoted back to the Premier Division,” Wade said. “That’s the plan and we have already signed a few high-quality players and are looking to sign a few more before the season starts.”

Among the new faces are Bermuda midfielder Donte Brangman and winger Quadir Maynard, who helped Young Men’s Social Club gain promotion last season.

Akale Bean has also returned to the club after a brief stint at Somerset Eagles, who were relegated last term.

Wilkinson, who left Town last season, has hit the ground running organising a community-oriented six-a-side tournament to be held from July 7 to 16.

“We are trying to get the community back out and Jomar is organising that,” Wade said.

The club also have plans to re-energise their youth programme that has been non-existent in recent years, with Bermuda coach Andrew Bascome playing a pivotal role in the process.

“The new executive is looking to reinvigorate our football programme, which includes the youth as well,” Wade added.

“That’s why we reached out to Andrew Bascome because we know he’s the best at formulating youth programmes.”

Bascome’s primary role is sharing his wealth of coaching expertise with the club’s staff of youth coaches.

“Andrew has agreed to help guide our youth programme so he’s basically going to train our coaches so that they are certified and well equipped to coach our youth teams,” Wade said. “Jomar has full rein of the senior programme and what Andrew is going to do is train our youth coaches.”

Wade said the club intend to enter three teams at Pee-Wee, under-8 and under-10 levels, with registration to be held on July 8 and 15 at the club from 10am till 2pm.

“We’re going to have our first Rangers youth teams in almost ten years,” Wade said.

“The club approached both coaches because we’re looking to change the perception at Rangers and the new executive is starting with the youth.

“We’re trying to get our football team promoted back to the Premier Division and so we have to put the effort in.”