FORMER England C striker Paul Clayton has become part of the new management team at Guiseley AFC, taking up a role as assistant to new joint managers Russ O’Neill and Marcus Bignot.

The former Barnsley apprentice has plenty of experience of the non-league scene and will be a big asset to the managerial pair. He spent last season with Shaw Lane, having previously scored 110 goals in two spells with Alfreton Town.

Clayton gained a reputation as a hard-working striker, amassing more than 300 appearances for the Derbyshire club, but he is now looking forward to a different perspective on the sport as he takes up a leadership role at Nethermoor.

He said: “It is a different challenge but it is still football and I can’t wait to get started on another side of the game. I have worked under Russ at Alfreton and I got a taste for it there.

“I just want to give it my best shot here, I am relishing the opportunity.”

Speaking of the management team’s vast knowledge of the non-league circuit, Clayton said: “I have seen a lot of players and you need the knowledge of non-league, you need to know what it takes and what players to bring in.

"Marcus, Russ and I will do our best to sign players with a strong mentality.”

Clayton had a message for the beleaguered Guiseley fans following the club’s relegation from the National League, saying: “We need to stabilise the club and consolidate.

"In everybody’s eyes down the years you have looked at Guiseley and seen them in the play-offs or pushing for promotion.”

He added: “We have got to consolidate, strip it right back and instil a mentality about the place and get it buzzing again.

"My message to the Guiseley fans is we want it loud, with them backing us and behind us. It is going to be a tough season but we are going to work really hard to get it back to where it needs to be.

"With the brand of football we are going to bring, trust me you will love it.”