ALAN Connell shared his delight to be working for “the club I love in the role that I love”.

Cherries’ under-18 head coach Connell has been in his current position since July 2017, working in tandem with under-21 boss Shaun Cooper.

Connell first became a Cherry 20 years ago, when he joined as a 19-year-old after his release from Ipswich Town.

A second stint followed in 2008, before Connell departed again in 2013.

When the striker returned to the area with non-league Poole Town in 2015, he wound down his playing career by taking up a role in the academy set-up at Poole.

In an interview with the club’s website, Connell stated: “I couldn’t be happier working for the club I love and in a role that I love.

“Our ultimate aim is to try to get players into the first team here.

“But if we can’t do that, we would love to see them have professional careers elsewhere.

“Seeing the boys develop as young people is also very important to us.

“The past 20 years have gone in a flash for me and that’s something I try to drum into the young players – make the most of everything in life because it goes so quickly.

“I have loved every minute of my time playing and working for this club and I am so pleased to see us back in the Premier League.

“The club has given me everything.

“Twenty years ago, I was a boy leaving London, now my life is down here with my family and I’ll be forever grateful to the club I love and the special relationships I’ve built here.”