SIMON Anderson said he did not have to think twice about returning to Oxford City Stars.

And he is relishing the task to have a largely home-grown squad within five years.

Anderson is back at Oxpens after two seasons coaching in Sweden with Svenstaviks HK.

He was confirmed as the club’s head coach following the unveiling of a new-look board.

He will be assisted at junior level by former club captain Darren Elliott, with the duo already getting to work to prepare for next season.

“It was a very easy decision to return,” he said.

“I really enjoyed my two seasons in Sweden, but I felt this was a good opportunity to help the club build some foundations and try to get it back to where it was in 2018.

“The club is very close to my heart and the players and the fan base are second to none and all deserve the best.”

Stars will compete in National League Division 1 South next season, but Anderson is upbeat about the chances of making their mark.

“It’s going to be a lot of hard work,” he said.

“We’re in a very tough league, but myself and Darren will recruit the best guys we possibly can.

“The Stars will be a fast team, that plays attractive fast and entertaining hockey. Fans want to be entertained and that’s our job as a coaching staff and players to provide that.”

Anderson stressed identifying players with the right character is an important element of recruitment.

He said: “We will look for players, who are really honoured to pull on the Stars’ jersey and play for the club and the badge, and not for just the financial gain.

“Where we can, we will run a younger roster, it’s important for us to develop our youth, for future seasons.”

Anderson is aiming high as part of the club’s five-year plan to create a successful junior development pathway.

“The junior side of the club obviously needs a lot of work and time to develop,” he said.

“The board’s vision is to have graduates from the juniors into the Stars consistently in five years and it’s a brief I relish.”

He added: “My aim is for us to have a predominantly Oxford-based squad within five seasons. This maybe a lofty goal, but it is one we will all strive for.

“I share the board’s view that it’s time for the talking to stop on this subject and action to be taken.

“If that means a little pain then so be it, we must have the philosophy of short-term pain, long term gain to achieve our ultimate goals.

“One thing is for sure; we will not stop working until we get there.”