GARSTANG FC have sacked manager Richard Thomas after a dismal run of results that have left the club without a league win this season and rooted to the bottom of the table.
The club have already appointed his successor, bringing in former Morecambe and Lancaster City central defender Michael Stringfellow as player manager.
In a statement a club spokesman said: “It is with regret that Garstang Football Club announce the departure of manager, Richard Thomas and his assistant, Ben Adjei.
“It is unfortunate that the appointment hasn’t worked out to the mutual benefit of Richard and for the club. We are most grateful for Richard and Ben’s input during their time with us and on behalf of the Chairman and the club’s committee they both leave with our best wishes for the future.
“The club felt it necessary to act quickly in view of their precarious position at the bottom of the West Lancs Premier League and are therefore delighted to announce the appointment of 30 year old Michael Stringfellow as Player Manager with immediate effect.’’
Thomas paid the price for Garstang’s poor run of results as they slumped to the foot of the table by the end of August and remained firmly planted there.
Saturday’s draw at home to fellow strugglers Tempest United - when a win won have lifted them above their opponents - proved to be the final straw for the club’s board.
Michael Stringfellow brings a wealth of experience to Garstang, having started his professional career with Morecambe FC. playing over 100 games in six years. In 2006 he moved to Barrow FC where he made a further 35 appearances. A brief spell with Stalybridge Celtic preceded a move to Lancaster City where he skippered the side to a play-off Final in 2009.
Garstang have signed Stringfellow from AFC Fylde where he has been since July 2010. His full-time occupation is as a Community Officer with Morecambe Football Club.
“This is a massive signing and appointment for our club and hopefully sends out a message that our ambitions off the field are matched by our ambitions on the field”, said chairman, Adrian Wilding.
Stringfellow will take charge for his first game when Garstang travel to face Thornton Cleveleys this Saturday, November 26.
* More on this story in next week’s Courier, out on November 30