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Folkestone Invicta manager Neil Cugley on striker Ade Yusuff's two-year contract and the signings of goalkeeper Bailey Vose and midfielder James Rogers


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Boss Neil Cugley has revealed prolific striker Ade Yusuff signed a two-year contract at Folkestone - after suggesting the deal himself!

Invicta announced Yusuff, who formed a deadly strike partnership with Dave Smith during the 2021/22 season, had penned a contract to remain at the Isthmian Premier club until the summer of 2024 on Saturday as the former Dover and Dagenham hitman opted against pursuing a return to full-time football.

Folkestone striker Ade Yusuff has signed a new two-year contract. Picture: Randolph File
Folkestone striker Ade Yusuff has signed a new two-year contract. Picture: Randolph File

“It was more Ade talking about that really,” revealed Cugley.

“He’s happy with the club - it came out of the blue really. I’m not going to say no! He’s a top player for us.

“I was really chuffed that the club agreed to it, as well.

"It’s a bit of a commitment for them. I’m really pleased.”

The 28-year-old has immediately aimed to chase down Ian Draycott’s all-time scoring record at Cheriton Road and Cugley is thrilled to see Yusuff setting his sights so high having also agreed to retain captain Callum Davies, goalkeeper Connor Collins, Ronnie Dolan, Draycott, Micheal Everitt, Scott Heard, Matt Newman and Josh Vincent.

Cugley said: “You want people to have ambition, otherwise what’s the point?

“He has the ambition to do that which is good. He works hard for the team, as well as [scoring] his goals.

“He got a lot of assists last season. We are pleased to keep him around.”

Folkestone have agreed deals to sign goalkeeper Bailey Vose and experienced midfielder James Rogers, with long-serving keeper Tim Roberts unlikely to be available to regularly play for the club due to his work commitments.

“He might sign on as a bit of cover but he’s a bit busy with work,” said Cugley on Roberts, who first joined the club in 2013.

“He has been great for the club, to be fair. With his work, it’s a bit hard for him to put the commitment in any more.”

James Rogers has signed for Invicta after a spell as Hythe player-boss. Picture: Randolph File
James Rogers has signed for Invicta after a spell as Hythe player-boss. Picture: Randolph File

Vose has played for Billericay, Cray Wanderers and Margate.

Cugley said: “He has got experience in National South. He was at Brighton, he’s a big lad, and he comes highly recommended.”

On Rogers, who was Hythe player-manager at the end of the 2021/22 season, Cugley added: "He is experienced.

"With RJ [Ryan Johnson] going, I felt it was one of those positions that's key.

"Although he's not young, he is very, very fit for his age.

"We have had RJ and Micheal Everitt in that position for the last few years but I'm sure Rodgo will be good there.

"He played really well in that Kent Senior Cup [semi-final] game down there."

But one man yet to agree to stay is top scorer Smith, who is looking to pursue a full-time career this summer.

Cugley, who still wants to sign another five players, revealed: “We have offered him terms.

"We want him to stay - of course we do - but we are talking to others in case we lose him.

“He has only just left college. He wants to be a full-time player but someone would have to pay a fee for him.

“But if he goes, we will just move on. We took him from a lower league, as well, and he has been prolific.

"I think we will know more in the next week or so.”

Cugley also spoke about the departure of full-back Alfie Paxman who signed for rivals Dover in National League South last Friday.

He said: “Obviously, I would have loved to have kept him. But once Dover came in, training three days a week where he can still do his day job around that, it was very difficult to turn down.

“So no problems at all. Dover and Alfie have handled themselves impeccably.

“It’s disappointing but it’s another one taken out of the lower leagues and he was good for us.

“We will try and sign another left-back shortly, but Alfie is a really good player.”

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