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Four More Join Iron`s New-Look Squad

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Striker George Sykes has left Canvey Island and joined Vanarama National League South newcomers Braintree Town, becoming one of four more new signings made by Brad Quinton.

Sykes scored 21 goals in 53 games last season, winning all three player of the year awards at the end of the campaign.

He joins new Iron boss Quinton who had expressed an interest in Sykes last season while manager of Enfield Town.

The 6’4″, 22-year old Sykes joined the Barnet youth team as an under-16 and was top scorer in the English under-18 youth system in the 2011/12 season with 24 goals.

He made his senior debut at the age of 17 against Bristol Rovers in August 2012 and signed his first professional contract with the Bees in November 2012.

He won the League Two apprentice of the year award at the Football League Awards in March 2013.

During his three years with Barnet, Sykes had various loan spells before joining Dartford for the 2015/16, making twenty-five appearances.

After a second short loan spell at Canvey Island, Sykes made the move permanent, joining the Ryman League Premier Division side for the 2016/17 season where he scored 21 goals in a difficult season for the club as they were relegated.

Despite losing their top scorer, The Gulls have wished Sykes the very best of luck with his new club and said he deserved an opportunity to shine at a higher level.

Sykes is joined at Cressing Road by Xavier Vidal, Roman Michael-Percil and Jonathan Muleba, who follow the new bosses` four other recruits, Scott Schulton, Samir Bihmoutine, George Craddock and Marc Okoye, who joined earlier this week.

Twenty-two-year-old attacking midfielder Vidal was on the verge of breaking into the professional game while at Dulwich Hamlet, spending time on trial with Birmingham, Bolton, Brentford and Oxford United.

After failing to secure a deal in the Football League, he moved up to then National League Welling United and made twenty-eight appearances in all competitions for the Wings, scoring 4 times.

He also had a loan spell at National League South side Hemel Hempstead Town and most recently he has played Merstham.

Twenyt-two-year-old winger Michael-Percil has previously played for Tottenham Hotspur, Billericay Town, Dulwich Hamlet and most recently Metropolitan Police where he chipped in with 9 goals last season.

The third signing is the highly-rated Jonathan Muleba.

The 21-year old defender joined Chelsea at under-14 level and made his under-18 debut as a 15-year old during the 2011/12 season.

He became a regular in the under-18s defence in his first year as a scholar in 2012/13. His displays earned him late-season recognition at under-21 level, where he made his first appearance in April 2013.

An under-18 ever-present right up until the last game before Christmas in 2013/14, his impressive performances secured him the offer of a professional contract at Chelsea, but rejected the opportunity and joined AFC Bournemouth on a two-and-a-half-year contract in January 2014.

He received a call-up to the Democratic Republic of Congo’s under-20 national team during June 2013 and featured in a friendly against Chile.

He spent time last season in the Enfield Town side that reached the Ryman League play-offs under Quinton.


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