Buxton continue hunt for new centre half

John Reed
John Reed

BUXTON FC manager John Reed is continuing his search for a big centre half after the Bucks lost the battle in the air last Saturday against Macclesfield Town.

The Silkmen scored all three of their goals from headers during the 3-1 win at the Silverlands to retain the Keith Alexander Memorial Trophy.

And afterwards, Reed said: “I though we acquitted ourselves really well. They are always going to be a difficult team to play, but we played some nice football when we were on the ball. Sam Johnson scored a great goal, Chris Ovington played well, and in the second half I felt we were on top, especially with some of our young trialists who did very well.

“The disappointing thing, though, was they won with three headed goals. We know we need a big, strong, powerful centre half. Gregg Anderson’s departure has left a big hole for us to fill and we are still searching for a suitable replacement, not for the lack of trying.”

Reed ran the rule over two potential replacement centre-halves during Tuesday night’s 3-3 draw against Blue Square North side Eastwood Town; trialists Andy Turner from Doncaster Rovers and ex-Sheffield United and Leeds United’s Brandon Cardwell.

While the futures of Josh Wilde and Matt Heywood remain unclear, the boss has managed to maintain the nucleus of last season’s squad, with Michael Towey, Scott Hartley, Grant Black, Steve Ridley, Scott Maxfield, Neil Stevens, Tommy Agus and Kieran Lugsden all re-signing for the 2011/12 season.

Midfielder Martin Pembleton, who Reed has described as having an outstanding pre-season and whom he feels could be a big player for the club this season, has joined winger Chris Ovington in signing non-contract forms, with ex-Matlock Town forward Nathan Benger and Kyle Hadley, formerly of Kidderminster Harriers, expected to follow suit and put pen to paper.

Commenting on Tuesday night’s 3-3 draw against Eastwood, Reed said: “Two massive errors by Agus cost us two goals, but aside from that I took a lot of pluses from a game against a good side from the Blue Square North.

“I thought we did really well to come back from 3-1 down. Our new signing Matt Parry looked really menacing and Johnson scored another good goal, his second in two games.” Johnson is also expected to remain at the Silverlands.