Neal was appointed AFC Wimbledon manager on 10 October 2012 following the departure of Terry Brown the previous month. He joined the Dons from Cardiff City, where as academy manager since 2007 he had played a major role in developing the Bluebirds' highly regarded youth system. In his first season as a manager, one in which several teams' form changed dramatically, he secured the Dons' League Two position on the final day.
Neal had set his sights on a being a manager at the early age of 24, taking his first coaching badges while still a player with Wimbledon FC, and he now holds the prestigious UEFA Pro coaching qualification. The Dons were Neal's first club, and as a winger and occasional right-back he appeared almost 250 times for Wimbledon between 1991 and 2002, when he moved to Watford.
He was capped ten times by England at Under-21 level. After over 100 appearances for the Hornets he spent a season apiece with Cardiff and Millwall, and was made head of the Cardiff Academy when he hung up his boots in 2007.
Neil, who played alongside Neal Ardley at both Watford and Cardiff City, was appointed as assistant manager on 10 October 2012.
As a player, he made over 600 senior appearances, either at right-back or in central defence, starting with his hometown club Scunthorpe United in March 1990. He joined Aston Villa a year later, Middlesbrough in 1994 and Bolton Wanderers in 1997.
Neil moved to Watford in November 1999 and played nearly 250 times for the Hornets in six seasons, becoming team captain. After spells with Cardiff City and Crewe Alexandra he retired from playing in 2008. He was manager of Leek Town in 2010/11.
First Team Coach
First team coach who acted as caretaker manager for a three-week spell in 2012 until the appointment of Neal Ardley.
Formerly a skilful and combative midfielder, he played youth football for Charlton Athletic and Wimbledon FC. In the late 1990s, Simon turned out for Carshalton Athletic, Tooting & Mitcham and Aldershot Town. A serious knee injury sidelined him for 14 months, but he revived his career by joining the newly formed AFC Wimbledon in July 2002.
Two years later, after recurring knee trouble, he was invited by then manager Dave Anderson to be a coach for the Dons reserves, and continued to play occasionally for the second string. Halfway through 2006/07, he became first-team coach.
As well as continuing his coaching role after the change in management in 2012/13, Simon has been instrumental in establishing a first-rate scouting system.
Ashley Bayes became the Club's first full time goalkeeping coach in June 2013.
'Bayzo', who in his first season was registered as a player for the Club, has over a decade of coaching experience, as well as a long playing career at clubs such as Torquay, Stevenage, Leyton Orient and Brentford.
Stuart Douglas joined AFC Wimbledon in July 2013 as the club physiotherapist.
While studying sports science at Roehampton University Jason started working for AFC Wimbledon as first team fitness coach. Jason is responsible for planning and leading the strength and conditioning development of all first team players.