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Dean Rance becomes the fifth former Dover Athletic player to sign for Steve Brown at Ebbsfleet United

Dean Rance in action for Dover last season
Dean Rance in action for Dover last season

Ebbsfleet have signed former Gillingham and Dover midfielder Dean Rance.

The 21-year-old is the fifth player to follow Fleet manager Steve Brown from Crabble to Stonebridge Road.

Rance was offered a new deal at Dover but chose instead to join up with his former Whites team-mates Daryl McMahon, Ben May, Billy Bricknell and Shane Huke at Ebbsfleet.

He said: "I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Dover and the fans there were brilliant to me. And of course I was delighted to be chosen as player of the year by my team-mates. But when it became clear that a lot of the players from last year were not being offered terms for this season, I reluctantly had to look at my own situation and because Dover offered me the same money as last season I think that sent me a clear message.

"I believe that Steve Brown has improved me as a player and when he set out his vision and ambition for Ebbsfleet United I wanted to come here despite a number of other offers which were better for me financially. It’s an exciting time to be involved with the Fleet and I can’t wait to play a big part in making their ambition and vision become a reality."

Rance, a product of the Gillingham academy, was sent out on loan to Maidstone United and Bishop's Stortford during his time at Priestfield.

He was then loaned by Dover towards the end of the 2011-12 season and when the Gills released him last May, Nicky Forster brought him to Crabble on a permanent basis.

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