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Weekly News - 25/11/20

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Weekly News - 25/11/20

Matlock Town boss Paul Phillips has added to the Gladiators attacking options by bringing in Warrington Town midfielder Craig Carney, subject to FA and NPL approval.

Phillips was hoping to unveil another new recruit at the same time but Stafford Rangers attacker Joe Cuff had a last minute change of heart and decided to stay at Marston Road.

Carney (27) joined Warrington in the close season from FC United of Manchester with Warrington boss Paul Carden describing him as a midfielder who will go beyond the striker, run the channels and go through himself.

He began his career at Southport before later having spells at Marine, Northwich Victoria, Lancaster City, Squires Gate, Bamber Bridge and Kendal Town.

Phillips has no doubt that Carney will do well for the Gladiators.

“He’s got energy, professionalism, experience, flexibility in being able to play in different positions and gets goals from midfield, but has also bought into what we’re trying to do here es during lockdown. He wants to be at the club and that counts for an awful lot. He’s as professional as professional can be.”

Carney won’t be able to play in the Gladiators next game which is at Coleshill Town in the Buildbase FA Trophy on Tuesday 8 December due to him being cup tied. Carney was in the Warrington line up which knocked out Lancaster City in a penalty shoot out in the previous round.

As for Cuff, Phillips thought he had the deal all tied up until things began to go wrong on Monday.

“We’d agreed terms with Joe and we were looking forward to him joining us but he changed his mind at the last minute. He’s a very good player but in my opinion he’s stayed at Stafford for the wrong reasons putting money above trying to win things, choosing money over success. He wouldn’t answer his phone on Monday and he sent me a text saying he wasn’t coming, so he’s not the kind of lad we want at the club.”

Phillips has now “moved on” and on Tuesday night the Gladiators issued a seven days notice of approach for another striker.

With the current Covid lockdown expiring on 2 December, Matlock are busy preparing for a return to action and had hoped to play Coleshill on Saturday 5 December. The 8 December date has not pleased Phillips.

“I’m very disappointed we can’t play the Coleshill tie on the Saturday, we’re behind with our league fixtures and should we get through like I hope we will, we’ll be involved in the Trophy again during the following midweek when we’d probably have had a league match. Playing Coleshill on the Saturday would have let us get a league match in on the following Tuesday. Coleshill say they can’t get their pitch ready but it’s an artificial surface, both sides would have the same preparation time and I find it very puzzling and frustrating”.

The next game at the Proctor Cars Stadium is scheduled for Saturday 12 December against Lancaster City when Carney could make his debut against one of his former clubs.

Ian Richardson