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MANAGER: Hoping for one or two

Paul Simpson on the January window

13 December 2022

Club News

MANAGER: Hoping for one or two

Paul Simpson on the January window

13 December 2022

We’re almost at the point where we can use the fingers on our hands and leave the socks covering the toes when it comes to working out how many more days it is to go until the January transfer window opens.


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And manager Paul Simpson confirmed this week that work is being done should he find himself in a position to make some moves.

“I’m hoping there will be one or two new faces coming in, but the truth of it is that it all depends on finances,” he said.

“We’re in a situation where I don’t know what we’ve got at the moment. My role and Greg’s role is to give the directors a problem.

“We’ll go to them and tell them what we want and how much it will cost, then it’s up to them. If they say no we won’t stamp our feet, we’ll get on with it.

“I do believe that if we get everybody fit and go with the same group that we’ve got enough to maintain our position, or maybe even improve it.”

“Obviously Duncan Idehen has gone back, and we don’t yet know what the situation will be with Fin Back, so there’s a possibility that we’ll look at defensive cover,” he continued.

“We’re going to assess it. We’ve got Ben Barclay who we hope will be fit for the Christmas programme once he gets the swelling out of his latest setback with the ankle. We’re hopeful he’ll be able to stay with us.

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“It’s the left side that concerns me. We’re a little bit short on the left side. That’s an area we might look at.

“The challenge we’ve got is they’ve got to be better than Jon Mellish and Jack Armer, if they’re going to come in and be part of it. And neither of those two deserve to be left out of the side as it stands at the moment.”

Looking at how far down the line he’s got with potential additions, he commented: “It’s hard to put a gauge on how far down the line we are.

“We’ve certainly got lists of players who we’re interested in, who we’ve spoken about through agents and clubs to see whether there’s an availability, and whether we can afford them.

“Everything’s up in the air at the moment, nobody’s prepared to commit themselves and say yes, he can definitely go out on January 1 and it’s going to cost X. We just don’t know that at the moment.

“We’re doing lots of work to get the information and to collate it all, and hopefully we’re in a position come January to be able to go to the directors and say we’d like to do this, it’s going to cost this amount of money, are we able to do it, and then we can take it from there.”

“Budget wise we don’t budget for an FA Cup run, so whatever budget we have is done at the start of the season,” he added. “If we get an FA Cup run that’s a bonus and we get a bit extra.

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“We haven’t got the bonus of an FA Cup run, or a local derby on Saturday where you get a bigger crowd than a Tuesday night. Those things have to be taken into consideration.

“The honest answer is no, I haven’t been told what I’ve got to go out and spend in January. I think the directors are enjoying where we are in the table, they like the fact we’re up at the top end of the table, and I think they will do whatever we possibly can to make sure we do stay up there without actually selling the crown jewels and putting ourselves in a financially difficult situation. We don’t want to do that. 

“I suppose it’s fair to say I know what I want to bring in, I know what positions I want to cover. If I could bring two in and strengthen in two areas, then I would do. Before you ask I’m not going to tell you which areas they are.

“But there are a couple of areas which I think we need to strengthen and add something a little bit different to what we’ve got.

“That could change, because if a parent club decides they want to take one of the loan players back, there’s nothing I can do about that. They’ve got the window in January when they can do that.

“Also, of course, and this isn’t me saying I’ve had any enquiries, but somebody might want to take one of our players away that opens up a space somewhere else.

“I hope that’s not the case, I hope it’s just a case of we can strengthen and make ourselves better. And that will probably become clearer over the next few weeks. 

“The other way we have some young lads out on loan. We’re having discussions with the clubs as to whether they want to keep them, and to keep them playing football, or whether they’ll return to us.

“Decisions will be made I would imagine over the next few weeks. As it stands there’s not been any enquiries to take anybody else out, so I’d expect the other young players to be here come the start of January.”

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