BRIDPORT have announced Edgar Marcu as the Bees' new first-team manager.

Romanian coach Marcu, who has UEFA qualifications, has been assisting caretaker boss Shaun Annetts since Saturday, February 26.

Marcu has strong links to both Yeovil Town and Paulton Rovers, and helped hold a trial to recruit new players at Huish Park last week.

Balti Sports' Josh Grace this week joined striker Raul Vasile and defender Ollie Buchanan at Bridport since Marcu's arrival.

Marcu has a huge rebuilding job to do, with Bridport relegated from Step 5 following the 8-1 thrashing at Mousehole last time out.

Bridport have lost 29 of 31 games in the Toolstation Western League Premier Division this season, racking up a goal difference of minus 144.

READ MORE: Shaun Annetts lists four major changes needed at Bridport

Bridport chairman Adrian Scadding said: "He's got big ambitions. He wants to see us progress back into the Premier Division.

"He's got a good coaching career, all the badges, and he's really close with Yeovil Town.

"He's quite good at getting players, he's got contacts. That's one of the other things that swayed it.

"What he wants to do is develop a team himself. He wants a clean slate but there are players that he really likes, six or seven he thinks he can coach properly.

"I've been talking to those players and they think he's an amazing coach.

"One of the players I spoke to said: 'I've been here for five years and I've learnt more in two weeks than I have five years' because he's that good a coach.

"As soon as the season's finished he wants to sort the team out, he's going all guns blazing. He doesn't stand back, I'm really pleased he's taken the job."

Marcu is understood to have offered his services to Bridport for the 6-0 Les Phillips Cup loss at Tavistock, with the Bees having no assistant at that time.

The Bridport News understands Annetts will continue in charge for the final five games of the season before handing over the reins to Marcu in the summer.

Bridport have not released details on the length of Marcu's deal, but the Romanian is believed to be in advanced talks to appoint an assistant manager.

Prior to the announcement, numerous names have been strongly linked to the job, left vacant by the departure of Rob Marquis on Thursday, December 23.

However, they have failed to materialise in the position.

And the sudden announcement of Marcu, who has previous experience in management with Radstock Town Reserves, goes against Scadding's prior intention to reveal the new management team at the end of the season.