AFC Totton AFC Totton Pitching In - Partners with Southern Football League

New Signing_Declan Rose_Jun2024.jpg

HIGHLY-RATED EX-POOLE TOWN defender Declan Rose has agreed to join AFC Totton ahead of the 2024/25 Southern League Premier Division South campaign.

After being part of AFC Bournemouth’s youth set-up between the ages of 10 and 15 years-old, Rose then came through the ranks at Yeovil Town where he played predominantly as a centre-back, going on to make his senior men’s football debut as a late substitute in The Glovers’ FA Trophy victory over Hampton & Richmond Borough in January 2020.

After joining Poole Town in the summer of 2021, his then-manager Tom Killick had Rose play in every defensive position before he settled into the right-back role.

A composed, hard-working and committed defender who likes to get forward and cross the ball, Rose quickly established himself as a firm fans’ favourite among The Dolphins faithful, going on to make a total of 137 appearances and score four goals across three seasons with the Dorset-based club.

He was an integral part of the Poole sides that lifted the Dorset Senior Cup in 2021/22 and retained the trophy the following year. But persistent rain over the winter and early-spring period left the club in the unenviable position of having to withdraw from the competition at the Semi-Final stage in 2023/24 to protect their Tatnam Ground pitch from further wear-and-tear, preventing the players from making it three-in-a-row county cup successes.

Online newspaper reports state that Rose was offered a new deal at Poole this summer, despite the arrival of fellow right-back Oakley Hangar from newly-appointed Wimborne Town, but the 22-year-old Rose felt the time was right for a new challenge elsewhere.

On Saturday morning, Rose joined other newcomers Harvey Rew, Marcus Daws, Tom Blair and Josh Owers, together with the rest of their new AFC Totton teammates, for the club’s annual Media Day where the players posed for photographs and videos to model their new kits and showcase their well-choreographed goal celebrations (…and some, not so well-choreographed). The defender took some time out from the photoshoot to speak to the AFC Totton Matchday Programme:

“I had three great seasons at Poole Town but once my deal was up in the summer, I thought the time was right to make a move and take on a new challenge. I’ve seen first-hand how good a side AFC Totton have become under Jimmy Ball’s management, and obviously I was aware of the quality of the facilities here by having been a visiting player on a number of occasions.

“Totton is a strong, resilient team that likes to play good football and knows how to get results. It came through loud and clear during our discussions about this move that a very high level of professional is required from all the players and staff at this club, and that suits me down to the ground.

“Hopefully I can settle in quickly and help the team as much as I can to achieve success on the pitch.”

Rose’s new AFC Totton manager Jimmy Ball commented:

“I’m really pleased to bring Declan to the club. He’s a 22-year-old with lots of experience in this league. I first came across him playing for Yeovil Town when I was at Forest Green Rovers, and I was impressed with him then. He’s an excellent defender and an exciting signing for the club. We have signed him on a long-term deal, which we’re delighted with, and I hope he will play a significant role in the next stage of this football club’s progression.”

By Ben Rochey-Adams

Image courtesy of Tom McKenzie

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