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Morpeth Sign Ex-Republic of Ireland International Star

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Ebac Northern League First Division club Morpeth Town have announced the signings of former Republic of Ireland international Stephen Elliott and ex-Whitby Town man David Carson.

The former – who started out at Manchester City – was signed despite interest from a host of clubs and has played at the top level of English football for Sunderland, while also featuring for Wolverhampton Wanderers, Norwich City, Preston North End, Carlisle United and Coventry City among others.

More recently, he has been playing in Ireland for Shelbourne and Drogheda United.

Netting 22 times in eighty-one appearances for the Black Cats, including arguably their greatest Tyne-Wear derby goal, the 33-year-old brings a wealth of experience and quality to an already highly-talented Morpeth squad.

Carson, a former Blackburn Rovers under-21 captain joins from Evo-Stik League Premier Division side Whitby after negotiating a release of his contract.

It’s a move which will delight many and none more so than the Carson clan who will see David play alongside brother Danny once again.

The two deals, done in the same week that Luke Carr left for Newcastle Benfield, have been welcomed by club chairman Ken Beattie.

“It’s a big boost to the club,” Beattie told the club`s official website of striker Elliott, who scored the winner for his country against Cyprus in a 2005 World Cup qualifier as part of nine caps for the Republic.

“He has played in the Premier League, so he brings a lot of experience which the young lads will benefit from. More recently he has been playing in the Republic of Ireland which is a tough physical league.

“He replaces Michael Chilton, who left for Ashington. We did need to add to the squad as we always need to improve. He is a lovely lad, and everyone will get on with him.

“It’s just another stepping stone in the progression of the club. We want to try and have the best team and the best facilities and to try to boost the town and bring on the junior teams which we want to drive the club forward.”

Carson will bring yet more quality distribution in the middle of the park, as well as a no-nonsense approach to protecting the back-four. After captaining the Blackburn Rovers under-21s side, the Boldon-raised midfielder moved to South Shields in 2016 before a January 2017 switch to Whitby.

“He is a superb midfield player,” continued Beattie when discussing Carson, formerly on the books of Jarrow Roofing and Ashington earlier in his career.

“He’s still got ambitions to make it in the professional game and we will always try to help anyone do that and push them on here.

“We’ve brought him in and it is going to be very difficult for the management team to pick the team because of the quality of competition for places.”

As two additions were brought in, Carr has left the club to join Newcastle Benfield.

“We wish Luke all the best. He has been a great servant for us and was instrumental in us winning the FA Vase. He was great in the semi-final and the final. We wish him well and you never know he might come back one day,” added Beattie.

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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