Joe Monks has been appointed as the club’s Football Operations Manager.

Monks will have a wide-ranging remit, overseeing aspects including recruitment, analysis, strength and conditioning and general operations, supporting manager Kevin Phillips and his backroom team.

He has a strong reputation in the game and was most recently head of senior recruitment at League Two club Colchester United, where he spent four years.

Monks previously had two years at Wolverhampton Wanderers as head of academy recruitment, where he played an instrumental role in signing players including Max Kilman – now a regular in the Premier League.

His experience also includes a period as head of recruitment at Barnet during the club’s time in League Two and stints at Norwich City, Southampton and Brentford, where he honed his skills and developed a strong contact base across the UK.

Monks said: “The project here is massive and I’m hugely excited to be a part of it.

“The chairman has very clear ambitions for where he wants the club to go, and everyone involved wants to help the club build towards reaching a higher standard.

“The training ground is excellent and the plans for the development of that, alongside the stadium, will make them EFL standard when required.

“It’s a brilliant time to get involved and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”

The club’s summer recruitment drive is now set to be stepped up as the squad for 2022-23 takes shape.

Monks added: “Immediately, my main focus will be on recruitment and ensuring Kevin has the squad he needs to give us the best possible chance of winning promotion next season.

“There is a clear strategy for recruitment this summer and we know exactly what positions we need to strengthen and the type of players we need to add to the group.

“My initial conversations with Kevin, Lee Picton and Wess Brown have been very productive and hopefully the fans will see signings that show we mean business this coming season.

“Recruitment isn’t my sole focus, and as the players come through the door we will build everything off the field to make sure we are full-time in every aspect of what we do.

“It’s essential Kevin has the right support staff off the field to give us the best chance of success on it, and that’s what my primary responsibility is.”

South Shields Sporting Director Lee Picton said: “Joe has accumulated a lot of experience over the last 10 years, particularly in the recruitment of players, and he is a brilliant addition to the club.

“He has worked at several high-profile clubs and I’m sure he’s going to bring some fantastic qualities to help us achieve our objectives over the coming years.

“I’m sure everyone will join me in warmly welcoming Joe to the club.”