Wingate & Finchley appoint Marc Weatherstone as manager and Ahmet Rifat as director

Ahmet Rifat with Marc Weatherstone

Ahmet Rifat with Marc Weatherstone - Credit: Martin Addison

Wingate & Finchley have announced the appointments of Marc Weatherstone as manager and Ahmet Rifat as director of football.

The two spent over a decade playing together for the club and will now work closely together to guide the club into our new future.

Rifat, who is the Blues record appearance holder, said: “I'm incredibly proud and very excited to take up my new role at the club.

"Anyone that knows me knows how much I love being around the club. I'm especially looking forward to working alongside Marc again, but this time it’ll be off the pitch.

"We endeavour to work hard to ensure we bring success & consistency to the club.” 

Rickie Hayles of Hornchurch and Ahmet Rifat of Wingate during Hornchurch vs Wingate & Finchley, BetV

Rickie Hayles of Hornchurch and Ahmet Rifat of Wingate during Hornchurch vs Wingate & Finchley, BetVictor League Premier Division Football at Hornchurch Stadium on 31st August 2019 - Credit: George Phillipou/TGS Photo

Chairman Aron Sharpe’s involvement in football has always been about development and progression pathways for young players and coaches. 

The appointments of Ahmet Rifat and Marc Weatherstone allow the club to return to that ethos.

“I hope that this brings each and every person at the club great pleasure and is fully supported within the club," Sharpe said.

“We have had success on the lowest of budgets at our level. During my time as Chairman we have had our successes: winning the London Senior cup, promotion to the Isthmian Premier League and the Isthmian League cup treble season. Three seasons ago we reached the play-offs with a mix of youth and experience. 

“I have felt that in the last few years we have drifted as a club and more importantly diluted our identity. 

“We have recently invested heavily in a training facility and refurbishing our historic stadium, although establishing a good infrastructure and facilities hasn’t necessarily reflected on the pitch at first team level.

“In order to achieve what the club desires, cohesion from top to bottom is the primary importance and by appointing two players - who have nearly 1000 first team appearances between them - we hope to go some way towards finding that success once again. 

“I have no doubt the addition of both Ahmet and Marc to our first team set-up will bring only positives.” 

The club are also delighted to confirm that Lee Protheroe will continue as first-team coach.