RECENT additions to the Blyth Spartan’s squad does not mean the hard work stops for manager Paddy Atkinson and his assistant Tom Wade to bolster their squad.
In the last week they have finalised permanent deals for Billingham Synthonia striker Andrew Jennings and West Auckland midfielder Craig Hubbard, whilst the loan signings of Newcastle United Under 21 duo Marcus Maddison and Michael Riley were agreed on Wednesday.
The new additions have helped give the squad a healthier look ahead of the busy festive period, but the duo continue to assess their options and are putting in the miles to do so.
Atkinson said: “Myself and Tom have targets in mind but we want to see them play to see if they can cut it in our league so we are watching games on a weekly basis.
“It’s been documented that we have been to games and that will continue, we don’t mind putting in the miles if it means getting the right players for Blyth Spartans.”
Despite relegation from the Blue Square North last season Atkinson revealed there had been serious interest from players wanting to move to Croft Park and that has been at some cost to the Spartans manager.
He added: “Anyone who has seen me over the past month will have seen I’m constantly on the phone and that’s down to players wanting to come and play for us.
“We want players who want to play for the club and show pride in the shirt.
“When we took over Ryan McGorrigan showed that when he signed and recently the likes of Jack Stanger, Richie Slaughter, Craig Hubbard and Andy Jennings have shown that.
“We need more of that.
“It’s been at a cost to myself mind, given that my phone bill has doubled during that time as we try to improve the squad.”
With four new faces added to his squad this week alone Atkinson was keen to stress that there could be more new faces arriving at Croft Park: “We are still working away and know what this squad needs in terms of the type of player and their attributes.
“We have made seven day approaches to a couple of players and we will see what we can do with them.”