North Shields building squad with signings

New North Shields signing Gareth Bainbridge.
New North Shields signing Gareth Bainbridge.

It has been an active week for North Shields management duo Graham Fenton and Andy Bowman as they aim to assemble a promotion chasing squad with the first warm-up game looming.

There’s plenty of summer dealings afoot but the club have expressed delight that a number of influential men have committed to new pacts.

A big boost is the continuity of the midfield two of Adam Forster and Ben Richardson, the former a double winner at the club’s presentation night scooping the supporters’ and players’ awards whilst Richardson picked up the managers’ vote.

Other key players to re-sign include keeper Michael Robinson, the side’s custodian since being handed the gloves by Anthony Woodhouse in 2008 and famed for his three goals against Crook, Pickering and Morpeth and versatile defender Joe Elliott, who topped the appearance charts last season.

Determined central back four man Kevin Hughes, a former players’ player, has been confirmed as the side’s new captain.

Set to freshen up the attack, the Robins have announced three new acquisitions.

Gareth Bainbridge joins from Ashington where he was top goalscorer in the Colliers’ first season at their Woodhorn Lane ground, whilst the experienced ex-Chester-le-Street and Newcastle Benfield man Adam Scope and former Hebburn and Washington player Dean Walker also come in.

Leaving the club are left-back and ex-skipper Dan Patterson who had resisted previous offers to remain loyal but has now been lured to Morpeth Town with player of the year James Harmison and midfielder Michael McKeown rejoining their former clubs Bedlington Terriers and Seaham Red Star respectively.

Set to sample life in the Evo-Stik NPL Premier League will be front runners Dean Holmes and Robbie Nolan who will start the campaign at Blyth Spartans.

One new pre-season match is an ‘away day’ for the Robins at Northern Counties East division one outfit Hemsworth MW on Saturday, August 3, 2pm kick-off.