Blyth Spartans midfielder Craig Hubbard has left the club to join Northern League side Whitley Bay.
And the player’s decision has left Blyth manager Tom Wade disappointed.
He said: “I’m surprised and disappointed that Craig has chosen to go, especially at this time of the season when we are challenging for a play-off place.
“He’s been getting playing time and would have started for us at Ilkeston tomorrow.
“Perhaps with having a new baby he wants to play more locally.
“If a player doesn’t want to play for Blyth Spartans we won’t stand in his way. We wish him all the best.”
The 28-year-old becomes Whitley Bay manager Leon Ryan’s second signing since taking over last month.
He described Hubbard as “a box to box midfielder who will add leadership, composure and a real physical element to our midfield”.
He added: “He is a player I know very well off my Spennymoor days.
“He fits in with the structure and model we are looking to work to, ambitious, comfortable on the ball and hungry to play for Whitley Bay.
“It again shows the quality players we are attracting here and the sign of the ambition we are showing.”
Hubbard played in the 2-2 draw at Ashington in the Northumberland Senior Cup semi-final.