FC Halifax Town: “Everybody’s back in and raring to go” says Wild

Town manager Pete Wild says at least four more new signings should be announced ahead of Saturday’s season-opener against Maidenhead.

Monday, 16th August 2021, 2:43 pm
Halifax Town manager Pete Wild making a point at pre season training in Leeds.

Attacking midfielder Jamie Cooke’s transfer was confirmed on Saturday, taking the number of new faces at Halifax to five, after the signings of Harvey Gilmour, Jordan Slew, Billy Waters and Matt Warburton.

Wild says others are imminent.

“The paperwork’s taken longer than we expected, but there should be another four, at least, to be announced before the weekend,” he said.

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“Jamie (Cooke) has been announced, the others are here training, but the paperwork is going backwards and forwards and, with the greatest respect, we can’t announce anything until all the paperwork’s signed.”

Wild says he is back up to his full squad after the return of the player who tested positive for coronavirus, and those who had to self-isolate.

“They’re all back in today, everybody’s back in and ready to go,” he said.

“Obviously they might take a little bit of time to get back up to speed, but everybody’s back in the building.”

Wild said there were around 21 players currently training at the club.

“Like I’ve said before, we’re probably going to go with a couple more bodies because of Covid, so we’ll still have a couple of slots free for when we get the ones we want,” he said.

“We’re using the money in a different way, which gives us more depth and more lads in the building.

“I don’t normally like having more than 20 but with what’s happened over the last 18 months, we’re going to need a bit more depth in the squad.”

Wild said Jamie Allen has been suffering with a sore hamstring but had returned to training today (Monday).

On his latest recruit Cooke, Wild said: “Gareth McClelland (head of recruitment) was massive on Jamie, and we tried to get him in but we couldn’t afford to bring in him when he was at Colne.

“But we kept in touch with him, we then invited him in pre-season to train with us, we think in the games he’s done excellently well.

“At the moment we see him as the new Kian Spence in terms of one of our players for the future, that’s why we’ve put him on a two-year deal.

“He will be going out on loan this week. We want to create a production line here, and a pathway, for young players that can service this club for the next five to seven years.

“So he’s the next one on the list, and we think we can make him better.”

Wild added: “I think the best thing he’s done, and it’s exactly what Kian did, was that he started playing men’s football, that’s done him the world of good.

“He’s technically very good, drives really well with the ball, brave getting on the ball and works as hard as he can out of possession.

“They’re all traits that you need to have at this football club to play for me.”

Wild says Cooke’s best position is as an attacking midfielder.

“We’ve already got two number ten’s in the building but we didn’t want to miss out on Jamie because he’s such an exciting talent,” Wild said.

Read more from the Halifax manager throughout the week on the Courier website.