Blyth on hunt for players to wear shirt with pride

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SPARTANS manager Paddy Atkinson has revealed in his first week as permanent manager that he and Tom Wade will be looking to bring new faces into the club.

Since the duo took over the helm at Croft Park, former Consett midfielder Jack Stanger and the returning Richie Slaughter have been their only acquisitions and both have impressed in their fleeting appearances so far.

But Atkinson is hopeful of adding more players to his squad in the near future. He said: “The supporters have to know that both myself and Tom are working hard and going to games to see what is about.

“We want a certain kind of player and one who shows a hunger to wear the Spartans shirt with pride.

“We need pace in the side and in particular to give us more options down the flanks and a striker so that’s what we are looking at.

“We have talked to a few lads and there are seven days notice in for some players.”

After the departure of top goalscorer Craig Farrell to Whitby Town last Friday, Atkinson is determined to bring in another forward to challenge for a starting place with former Newcastle United Academy graduates Phil Airey and Ryan McGorrigan.

Both players have found the net in recent weeks, but Atkinson wants competition around the squad to bring the best out of his existing players, adding: “We need a striker to compliment what we already have and obviously to replace Craig.

“We are looking at that situation very very carefully.

“Craig left because of the travelling and we couldn’t have an unhappy player at the club so we had to let him go.

“It’s something me and Tom are working on and we are hopeful of bringing a striker in because we need more options.

“We need competition all over the park and pressure put on everyone to keep the shirt.”

The hunt for new players has not been without it’s frustrations though for the management duo, and they are hopeful that the attitude of one of their new additions can be replicated by potential signings.

Atkinson, who also revealed he was in talks with a couple of professional clubs about potential loan signings, said “We know we have to strengthen and where we have to do that but it’s not easy when you are targeting players who are on very good money and they are asking for money before they even pull on a shirt.

“They have to look at Richie Slaughter who hasn’t asked for a penny and played on Saturday and played very well I might add, however we will get the right players in to help us build a team that this club and the supporters deserve.”