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New dad and fan favourite Chilaka signs on for new season

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New dad and fan favourite Chilaka signs on for new season

New Dad Chib Chilaka is staying on at Matlock Town.

The 33 years old Nigerian, who joined Matlock from Grantham Town last October has signed on the dotted line as he celebrates the birth of his second child, a baby boy.

A lot of Chilaka’s appearances came from the substitute’s bench but he still netted ten times at an average of a goal in every two and a bit games in a season when Matlock struggled to score.

He memorably got a nap hand in Matlock’s 7-1 demolition of Borrowash Victoria in the Derbyshire Senior Cup.

Matlock boss Paul Phillips is delighted to add Chilaka to the strike force of Sefton Gonzales, Liam Hughes, Braulio Maeico and Kayde Coppin.

“I’ve sent him my congratulations on the birth of his baby boy which has understandably meant he hasn’t been able to do all of the sessions we’ve put on during the past few weeks. We’ve now got good competition for the forward positions, I’ve told him he’s part of a squad battling to get into the matchday sixteen. I liked him at the end of last season, no disrespect to anyone else but I always thought we looked a better side when he was playing. He wasn’t fit enough though, so he knows what he’s got to do and he was working tremendously hard prior to the lockdown. He’s got to work hard again now to catch up with the other lads now in the next five or six weeks. I believe in him, he’s a top quality striker who will increase competition in the striking department.”

Matlock also may have another couple of signings to announce soon and Phillips says Matlock have a 20 year old training with them to challenge Jon Stewart for the goalkeeping position. “We’re hoping Jon has a great season but we have a lad training with us that we could put out on dual registration that can act as cover and also push Jon for the goalkeeping shirt.

The goalkeeping position’s no different, we want people to push each other all over the pitch.” Phillips is pleased with his work in the transfer market during the summer, having brought in a dozen new faces.

He had tweeted over the weekend “Nearly done, what a squad, leaders all the way through. I’m hoping the Gladiators can now start punching their weight.”

Developing these thoughts Phillips added “Nothing’s ever set in stone but I had this same good feeling when we qualified for the play-offs at Ashton United. The lads have set the standard, everyone’s demanding of each other even in the short sessions we’ve had during the Covid outbreak and you get the belief that you can do things in football.

Now we know what’s happening with starting the season, things will step up with Saturday, Tuesday, Thursday sessions.

We’ve got leaders in the squad who won’t settle for second best. If we stay lucky with injuries, we could be in for a really good season.”

Ian Richardson