FORMER Wycombe Wanderers and Scunthorpe United striker Paul Hayes has been named director of football at Bowers & Pitsea.

The Isthmian Premier League side are set for a summer of change after long-serving manager Rob Small opted to step down.

And Hayes – who had previously spent two years as sporting director at Chatham Town – is pleased to now be at the Len Salmon Stadium.

“My role is to be that link, that go between,” Hayes told the Bowers website.

“Whether that is player to manager, manager to the board, the youth sides to the senior, the community work that the club is involved in, right down to who’s making the tea.

“It’s all about ensuring that the club can communicate with each other internally to progress.”

Hayes will make sure that happens and believes it will prove to be an important role moving forwards.

“If you look at lots of league clubs like Newport County, Leyton Orient, Forest Green Rovers, Salford City and Cambridge United, they all employed people into these roles while many of them were still non-league football clubs, some even at this Step 3 level that we are at,” said Hayes.

“Now look at them, they are in the Football League.

“It’s about getting the right people in the right positions to help the club achieve its goals.”

Hayes will now be seeking more of the same with Bowers and he was first introduced to the club via his son Noah.

“I had a mutual friend going to run the under 13s at Bowers,” said Hayes.

“At the time Noah was at Charlton, but as a former pro you kind of get the feeling as to whether your child is going to be released from an academy.

“We didn’t want to go back into the academy set up, so the conversation was had about Noah coming here.

“Within several weeks of arriving, the manager left as his boy was picked up by West Ham, so I was asked to come in and steady the ship as it were.”

And that eventually led to Hayes becoming director of football, despite him having an offer from elsewhere.

“I had received an offer from a professional club to take up a similar role, a previous club of mine actually,” said Hayes.

“However due to the geography it just wasn’t a realistic option at the time.

“From there I started a conversation with Nick (Brand, Bowers youth chairman) which led me to Darren Scorey and the rest as they say is history.”

But Hayes will not be easing his way into the role gently and among his first tasks will be helping to pick the next manager.

“It’s important we get the right person in,” said Hayes.

“The previous manager has done a tremendous job here.

“When you look at where the club was when he took over, the promotions, the trophies, making the first round of the FA Cup it is nothing but phenomenal.

“We have a fantastic youth set-up, so getting the right person in to nurture that talent and to combine it with the experienced players that we have, it can be very beneficial for the club.”

“We have already been working hard behind the scenes to make sure this football club can give the new manager and players everything they need to be successful.”