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MANAGER: The work is ongoing

Keith Millen on the January transfer window

3 December 2021

With the January window now just under a month away, manager Keith Millen confirmed that part of the off-field focus in recent weeks has been on recruitment, with players identified as part of that process.

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“I’ve been looking at players, a lot of players,” he said. “Once I’ve done my work with the team here, I’m trying to go to games when I can, a lot of phone calls, spinning plates as people say, and there’s lots of names being bandied around.

“It’s a case of ok, I’ve identified where I think we need to strengthen, that will stay within the conversations we have.

“But we’ve still got six games before the window opens. That’s a lot of games to concentrate on. So it’s sort of on the backburner. But the work’s ongoing.”

“We’ve got a list, and we’ve identified … it’s important we’ve got a profile of the types of players we need. I don’t just want to collect players for the sake of it. We try and identify the types of players we feel would help and strengthen us.

“Then you must come up with a list, because the idea is to have maybe someone at the top of your list who you’ve got to really push for, and then as you go down the list they might become cheaper or easier to come by.

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“We’ve got lists of a certain profile of players you want. It does tend to change as the days go by. You have to have feelers out there.

“You get players put to you by agents and just know there’s no chance they’re going to come here. You have to have a lot of conversations with clubs, players, agents, and try and work out which ones are available, or we could possibly get done.”

Often talked about in the past has been location, as a factor in players making their decision on whether or not to head north.

“I’m told it can be an issue,” he responded. “It’s down to me to try and sell the club and myself with what we’re trying to do, to the player, whether it’s a loan or a signing.

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MATCH UPDATE: Shrewsbury

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“If it’s a loan we’ve got to make sure the parent club understands we’re going to look after the player the right way, coach them properly.

“I think it’s really important we emphasise to clubs that the player, if we’re bringing them in, is a good fit and what they do suits what we’re trying to do. The parent club understands they’re going to come to us and play to their strengths.

“That’s why it’s important you profile the types of player you want. We’ve put together a presentation of what we’re about, the way we try and play, the way we work, the way we train, and that’s available to send to the parent clubs if they want to see that.

“Quite often they ask for that. We’ve got that together and hopefully that can entice. If they don’t want to come, you don’t really want them anyway, do you. Hopefully they’re going to come and play football.”

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