BRIDPORT assistant-manager Ryan Dovell is aiming to preserve the foundations that former boss Adam Fricker and number two Paddy Behan laid at St Mary’s Field.

Dovell will join new boss Rich Robson in the dugout next season in a move that heralds a return to the Bees for the former Dorchester Reserves and Balti Sports midfielder.

Under Fricker’s leadership, Bridport reached the third qualifying round of the FA Cup in 2017, narrowly losing 2-1 to National League South side St Albans City.

A year later, Bridport then gave Evo-Stik Southern Premier South side Tiverton Town a scare in the first qualifying round as the Yellows limped to a 1-0 victory over the Bees despite a chasm of two divisions between the teams.

Recognising Fricker’s achievements, Dovell is aware the new management staff has big shoes to fill.

He told the Bridport News: “They’ve done really well, they had a pretty good cup run last year and it’s always quite a tough league.

“Their league position (13th) wasn’t too bad as well. Rich and I are working hard at the moment trying to convince the majority of last season’s squad to stay on.

“Obviously it’s going to be difficult for them because they don’t know who we are and what we’re about.

“We’re just working hard, trying to convince them it’s a good project that me and Rich are trying to put together and constantly trying to recruit a few new faces as well to freshen the squad up.”

At the time of writing, Bridport have brought in Derek Wall and strikers Lewis Clarke from Portland, Joel Hewitt from Dorchester Sports and Robinson Okumu.

However, veteran marksman Mark Salter has called time on his career having scored over 500 goals.