Sullivan returns as new number two

Former Witton Albion and Cammell Laird manager Tony Sullivan is back in the EVO-STIK Northern Premier League as Tommy Lawson's new number two at Skelmersdale United.

Sullivan, pictured, was named on Friday as the successor to Brian Richardson at the EVO-STIK NPL Premier Division club after he stepped down on Thursday after a decade as Lawson's right-hand man to replace Andy Paxton at Prescot Cables in EVO-STIK NPL First Division North following his decision to quit Valerie Park to concentrate on his work commitments.

Sullivan arrives at Stormy Corner with a wealth of experience having made over a 100 appearance in the Football Conference with a number of clubs including Southport, Barrow and Stalybridge Celtic. After moving into management, he guided Lairds for four years before the club voluntarily dropped out of the EVO-STIK NPL. He went on to manage Witton Albion and since then has been coaching for Liam Watson at Stalybridge Celtic before the latter's departure from the National League North outfit in August.

In a statement announcing Sullivan's appointment at The West Lancashire College Stadium, Lawson paid tribute to Richardson and explained why he'd chosen his successor who'll be alongside him on the touchline for first time on Tuesday night when Skem host Widnes in the Liverpool County FA Senior Cup.

Lawson, whose side take on Kendal Town in the FA Trophy on Saturday, said: “I have been aware that Prescot Cables had approached my long-standing assistant Brian Richardson to speak to him about filling the managerial vacancy at Hope Street. This made me think about who I would bring in if Brian left the club. I immediately thought about Tony, he is a man I have got on with for a long time and we talk regularly. I approached Tony last night (Thursday) and I was very pleased when he agreed to join the coaching staff at Skelmersdale as assistant manager.

“Brian has done a magnificent job over the years and is a good friend but I saw it as an opportunity to refresh things within the team management. Tony is an excellent coach and will bring new ideas. He is experienced as both a manager, a coach and a player at this level. Significantly , he is also a very enthusiastic man who will wear his heart on his sleeve and he will bring a fresh perspective on things. I am really looking forward to working with him and he has said he is looking forward to joining Skelmersdale.”

He added: “I wish Brian all the very best in the future and would like to thank him for all the valuable work he has done at the club during his ten years involved. I am sure my old friends at Prescot Cables will benefit greatly from his wisdom as we have at Skelmersdale.”

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