AFC TOTTON have announced that Jimmy Ball has become their third permanent manager of the campaign.

A former Saints youth player, Ball takes over a Stags side sitting fourth in the Southern League Division One South, nine points off league leaders Frome Town with seven games to go.

After the departure of Glenn Howes to Southern League Premier Dorchester earlier on in the season, first team coach Dan Sackman stepped up to take the reigns, initially as interim manager back in October.

By December, Sackman had done enough to earn the permanent role.

Unlike his predecessor, Ball will be full time with the eighth tier club, overseeing Totton’s footballing operations in combination with his first team duties.

Speaking about his appointment, Ball told AFC Totton TV:“I am really excited, mostly about the project, about the future and what we can hopefully build at this club.”

Jimmy became the third generation of the family to manage in the Football League after he was appointed interim manager at Forest Green Rovers in April 2021, taking charge of the side after Mark Cooper was dismissed.

His father, World Cup winner Alan Ball Jr., and grandfather Alan Ball Sr., both managed numerous clubs in the Football League.

After being unable to steer the Gloucestershire side to promotion via the playoffs, Ball reverted back to his academy coaching role at Forest Green, before departing for Stevenage in January 2022 to work as a First Team coach under Paul Tisdale.

Ball’s first game in change will be at home to lowly Bideford this Saturday, with the fixture falling on the same date as Non-League Day, an effort to encourage people to attend their local non-league sides during the international break.

Some hours after announcing the arrival of Ball, Totton confirmed that previous manager Sackman had departed the club.

A club statement read: "Dan Sackman has left AFC Totton following the appointment of Jimmy Ball as the First Team Manager.

"Despite attempts by Ball and the Club’s Board of Directors, Sackman and his Assistant Coach Liam Robinson have decided to depart the Snows Stadium to pursue opportunities elsewhere.

"The Board had hoped that Dan and Liam would have continued the journey to promotion that they had set out on with the Club and had made an enormous contribution to.

"The Club would like to put on record their thanks to the pair and wish them all the best in the future."