Baker swoops to strengthen his playing squad at Harrison Park

LEEK Town have swooped to strengthen their playing squad for the new season.

Blues boss Neil Baker has also managed to retain the majority of the side that came so close to securing a play-off place in Division One South of the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League at the end of last term.

New signing Lewis Short

Baker has captured the signature of 28-year-old defender Lewis Short who joins the club from Welsh outfit Bala Town.

The former Crewe Alex professional is well-known to Baker while he was part of the management team at the Cheshire club.  

Short moved on to have spells at Northwich Victoria, Airbus UK, Nantwich Town and Connahs Quay where he played in the Europa League.

Baker’s second capture is is 20-year-old prolific striker Tyler Blake.

Tyler is a former professional at Mansfield Town, prior to which he was on schoolboy forms at Nottingham Forest. More recently he has spent time on loan with Corby Town, Mickleover Sports, Frickley Athletic and Carlton Town.

Baker said:” “Lewis is a left-sided player that can play left back or higher up the pitch. It’s a position we have prioritised this summer and delighted he chose to come to Leek despite being sought after by clubs higher up the Pyramid.”

“Tyler is an attacking player who again had many choices of clubs. He can play wide or down the middle and his goal scoring record will add to the firepower already at the club.”

Baker is still looking to further strengthen is squad and is delighted that most of last season’s players have signed for another season, despite interest in all of them from other clubs.

So far terms have been agreed with Ben Chapman, Danny Roberts, Niall Green, Joe Kearns, Matt Bailey, Scott Lycett, Darren Chadwick, Niall Maguire, Marc Grocott, Sam Hall and Tim Grice.

Terms have yet to be finalised with Dan Trickett-Smith, Rob Stevenson and Jordan Johnson, but the Blues boss is hopeful all will agree to sign shortly.

Jordan Lemon has returned to his former club Spalding United while Sam Grimshaw has signed for Ashton United. 

BLUES commence their programme of pre-season friendlies away to North West Counties League outfit Abbey Hulton United tomorrow night (Thursday, July 17).

The Abbey ground is on Birches head Road off the A5009 Leek Road. Kick off 7.30pm.

The annual Chris McMullan Memorial match against Leek CSOB will take place at Harrison Park next Tuesday (July 17), kick off 7.30pm.