Martin Carruthers has clinched three big signings for Evo-Stik Northern Premier League First Division South club Basford United with a couple more still in the pipeline.
This is in addition to the re-signing of most of last season’s successful squad to provide a solid platform for the coming season.
With additional strikers identified as priority, the club are delighted to welcome the vastly experienced Rob Duffy from Vanarama National League North side Nuneaton Town and Aaron Hooton from Coalville Town, who won the NPL First Division South play-off final at the end of last season.
Former Rushden & Diamonds and Mansfield Town striker Duffy scored 13 goals last season and top scored with 21 goals in the Northern Premier League Premier Division for Ilkeston FC in 2014/15.
Carruthers said: “We are getting a proven Step 2 and 3 player who has scored plenty of goals and has vast experience to support the younger players in our group.”
Hooton needs little introduction as he returns to the club. Starring for Basford in the East Midlands Counties League, he attracted a lot of attention with his goalscoring feats securing a move Ilkeston FC in 2012/13 where he hit the ground running immediately scoring at the higher level.
A few seasons later and with experience gained in the Northern Premier League, Basford are delighted to be reacquainted with the popular local striker.
Carruthers said: “Aaron can dominate aerially and is a fantastic finisher who the club hope can make a real goal scoring impact this coming season.”
Another major signing sees central midfielder Anthony Howell sign from league rivals and neighbours Carlton Town.
Howell is a powerful and experienced midfield player who has a great desire and presence.
He has Conference experience with Mansfield and Alfreton Town and appeared for the Stags against Liverpool in the FA Cup in 2013.
Carruthers is adamant Howell will add real quality and determination to the midfield area and help support the club`s young talent with his vast experience and leadership qualities.
With understandably a lot of interest in Basford players from last season’s success after the fourth-place finish, Carruthers is delighted to secure the services of the vast majority of last season’s group, including the NPL First Division South goalkeeper of the season Saul Deeney and young up and coming keeper Jake Wood.
Also secured is the defensive unit which includes young player of the season Robbie McNicholas, players` player of the year Rob Darkin, Mason Rowley and Billy Bennett.
Midfielders Fabian Smith, Ash Grayson, Eugen Bopp and Kyle Dixon have all committed as well as pacey attacker Courey Grantham.
With Carruthers and head coach Mark Clifford also putting pen-to-paper on new contracts, things are picking up momentum at Greenwich Avenue in planning for next season.
A clutch of excellent young players from within the club`s education academy are coming through and with a host of talent invited to pre-season, everyone at the club is excited for the new campaign.
Basford will also welcome back striker Ben Hutchinson, who will return to the squad after missing much of last season after knee surgery.