Wally Downes has been appointed AFC Wimbledon manager, the club have announced.

Downes succeeds Neal Ardley who left the club last month.

Former Dons midfielder Downes had been the front runner for the role sine Ardley's departure.

With over 200 appearances for the club during Wimbledon's "Crazy Gang" era in the 1980's, Downes was a central figure with the club before it's move to Milton Keynes.

He then spent several years working as an assistant to manager Steve Coppell at Crystal Palace, Brentford and Reading and spent two years as Bees manager in his own right after Coppell left the club. He has also coached at Southampton, West Ham and Indian side Jamshedpur.

Downes told the Dons' website: "I am very proud to be appointed as manager of a club I love dearly.

"I am now looking forward to working flat out to help to keep the club in League One."

The appointment was not without controversy, with the club's announcement referencing social media posts by Downes that are "not consistent with our values".

The statement added: "We have talked at length with Wally about this (and) we are satisfied that these do not represent Wally's views. We have agreed a series of actions with Wally that we believe will demonstrate his commitment to the club's values."

Downes added: "I apologise for my previous use of social media - my comments were meant to be humorous but on reflection they were a mistake.

"I am very aware of my responsibilities as Wimbledon's manager and immensely proud to have been appointed."