Danny Burnell – @danny_burnell92
The tumbleweed continues to roll down Westlands Lane, with incomings at Plainmoor still at least a couple of weeks away. But, Gary says fear not! The new recruits will soon be unveiled to add to the existing few in what will no doubt be another fun-thrilled rollercoaster of a season.
There’s been plenty going on in and around the National League. I take a look at what next season’s Gulls opponents have been up to.
Aldershot had a season to forget last time out. Up until recently, their transfer activity had been on par with United’s, but a speight of new signings, including Josh McQuoid have got Shots fans talking. One high profile outgoing is left back Lewis Kinsella who has previously linked with a move to South Devon. Altrincham’s gaffer Phil Parkinson reportedly turned down a move to division rivals Notts County in favour of staying at Moss Lane. Alty have made plenty of signings, most notably boosting their ranks with the addition of Lewis Baines from Chorley and Josh Lundstrum for Crewe, both for undisclosed fees. Barnet have done plenty of early business, including the addition of former Woking giant, Moussa Diarra. The Bees main focus will no doubt trying to keep hold of the skilful Ephron Mason-Clarke. It’s all quiet on the Boreham Wood front, but notable and perhaps surprising exits for former Gull Scott Boden and the impressive Kane Smith, who will almost certainly be targeting a FL club.
FA Trophy winners Bromley have swooped for Barnet’s top scorer, Adam Marriott. Manager Andy Woodman has also penned a new 3-year contract with the Ravens, much to the delight of their fans. Chesterfield have signed full back Branden Horton from Doncaster, with former Gulls defender Fraser Kerr and Nathan Tyson, amongst others, exiting the club. There’s little to report from Victoria Road as Dagenham are yet to do any kind of business. National League South play-off winners Dorking will be a new ground for many a Yellow Army. Wanderers’ have been busy this summer with a number of signings, including Hungerford’s 27 goal man, Ryan Seager.
Eastleigh’s disappointing campaign may have contributed to the departures of key players such as Sam Smart & Harry Pritchard. The Spitfires have however brought in former loanee Brennan Camp on a permanent deal. Halifax face a difficult summer as manager Pete Wild upped sticks for Barrow, taking with him top scorer Billy Waters. Captain Niall Maher has signed for newly promoted Grimsby, and all things indicate there is a re-build for new manager Chris Millington at the Shay. Gateshead is a team no Devonian wanted to see in the league, with a 800-mile round trip pending. The big news for them is top scorer Macauley Langstaff leaving for Meadow lane. Maidenhead have done some early business, with ex-Yellow frontman Nathan Blissett dropping down a division to join AFC Telford.
NL South winners Maidstone remain fairly quiet so far this summer, but it’s anything but at Meadow Lane. Luke Williams has taken the reigns at Notts County after the departure of Ian Burchnall to FGR. The afore mentioned signing of Langstaff is their biggest bit of business so far this summer. Oldham will taste NL football for the first time in their history, and have concluded some early signings, such as Liam Hogan following his release from Stockport. Equally, Scunthorpe will encounter the raft of the NL for their first ever time, as they look to recover from a truly dreadful season. The Iron have so far announced just the one signing, Andrew Boyce.
Play-off finalists Solihull have the least amount of time to prepare, and several key men look to depart, including 6’9 giant Kyle Hudlin who is being chased by Championship clubs. Southend swooped early for Alty midfielder Dan Mooney, and reportedly remain keen on signing Gulls favourite Ben Wynter. Wealdstone announced a new signing recently, hoping to be a 30 goal striker, it turned out to be the signing of a new kit man! Woking have seen several key players leave, including the consistent Max Kretzschmar.
Wrexham remain silent but will almost certainly be looking to spend after another trophy-less season. The big news at Yeovil are the appointments of Gulls legends Chris Hargreaves and Chris Todd as manager and assistant respectively. And finally, new comers York have got people talking with the introduction of their superb ‘Chocolate and Cream’ stripped shirt. It’s rather delicious!
COYY – Danny
TRANSFER SPECULATION NO.4 by Dom Roman
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