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Club News

MANAGER: Really pleased we got there

Paul Simpson on the deadline day dealings

1 September 2023

Club News

MANAGER: Really pleased we got there

Paul Simpson on the deadline day dealings

1 September 2023

Rotherham striker JJ Kayode rounded off a busy summer transfer window for the Blues tonight as a season-long loan deal was agreed with the Millers for the services of a player who already knows the club well.

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PREVIEW: Shrewsbury

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“He’s a player we like, and this is no word of a lie, we first spoke about him back in June - really early in June, in fact,” manager Paul Simpson explained.

“We were told that he wasn’t going to be fit for them for pre-season at the start of it, and then we were told that he wasn’t going to be available, so we then went to look elsewhere and we had to think about different things.

“There’s been loads of stuff going on, but then over the last few weeks we found out that he then was going to be available again.

“So it’s been a long, long day getting this sorted out and eventually I think it was about 9.55pm when we finally got all the signed paperwork through and we were able to get it lodged with the FA.

“We’re absolutely delighted to get him here, and he's delighted to be here as well. He’s had loads of clubs who have been asking about him and he’s been adamant all along that if he was going out, it had to be here.

“Once we got to the point where we were able to talk he kept repeating that he only wanted to come here, so we’re all really chuffed and I’m looking forward to working with him.”

And with the player having already spent 18-months here, he added: “I think that can only help. He knows what he’s coming to and he’s already spoken to me about the fact that he had a really good relationship with the fans.

“They’ve all seen what he did when he was here last time and he’s a more mature player now. He has a bit more experience under his belt and he’ll be able to utilise that with us.

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“I just feel he’s the right type, he’s the type we wanted, and I’m looking forward to getting him working with us now.”

“He certainly ticks the boxes with the attributes he brings,” he continued. “He has pace, power, he can create and score, he has the long throw, which is something a bit different, and importantly he has a real presence about him.

“I think he’s one who can cause problems at this level. As I’ve said before, we’ve stepped up to this new level and we’re looking to compete.

“The fact that we’ve got somebody who we believe can make an impact in League One will just add to the group we’ve got. Hopefully it will give everyone a bit of a lift.

“We’re at a point where everybody is looking for a spark, be that the staff, the players, the fans, we all want to really start to kick on.

“Obviously it’s been done too late for him to be involved in the Shrewsbury game but it should still lift the place. As with any new arrival it adds to the competition for places and it gives us another forward to add to our group that we have with us through to January.”

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Explaining why the deal took longer than he would have liked to complete, he said: “I think the fact he wasn’t fully fit at the start of the season took a bit of time away.

“Over the day today there was talk of it being maybe a permanent deal, and then that went away and there were other clubs involved as well.

“We then got to the place where we could get a loan agreement, so it seems to have been one thing after another.

“I don’t know whether this is normal or not because this is the first time I’ve been doing this type of thing on a final day.

“All of our business tends to be done early because that’s how we prefer it to be. We’ve stuck at it and in the end we got there. 

“Greg’s been at it all day long. We were out training and he was waiting by the phone to see if we could take the next steps, so it has been a long and drawn out affair.

“Whatever the issues were I’m just delighted that we’ve finally got there.”

With it being deadline day we wondered if there had been any other ins or outs that came close to a conclusion.

“To be totally honest, no,” he said. “We were really focussing on getting this one done and we knew this was going to take a bit of time and effort, and a lot of the budget.

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“I just felt it was really important for us to get this over the line. We considered other areas, but because none of the other players were going to go out – we did have a couple of enquiries for players to go out of the building, which didn’t materialise – so the top and bottom of it was that I didn’t feel as though I wanted to bring more bodies in just for the sake of it.

“We go with what we’ve got now. We’re going to continue to try to improve the squad as we go along, we’ll keep building, and we’ll keep looking to compete every step of the way.

“This is the main window for us, and we’ve obviously got to keep working hard to give ourselves a real fighting chance so that come the January window we’re in a position to keep strengthening.”

“That’s this window done, we know we can’t be bringing anybody else in,” he concluded. “There is still the window open for players to go out to non-league clubs, so that remains a possibility.

“But in terms of any more coming in, forget about that. We’ll be working from now with this group, and in the background with groundwork to do looking ahead to the January window.

“This is the group of players we’ve got. Unless I feel as though we can afford to let someone go, and it won’t affect us, then this is the group that takes us through the first half of the season.

“Let’s hope we all just roll our sleeves up, crack on with the work we need to do, and let’s see the fans coming to support us.

"I hope everybody realises that we’re really trying to give them a group of players they can be proud of.

“We want to give everybody a football club they can be proud of as well, and hopefully this will help to go towards that.”


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