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Hythe Town manager Steve Watt signs title-winning Hastings defender Marcus Goldsmith, while ex-Maidstone team-mate Michael Phillips joins the coaching staff

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Hythe manager Steve Watt didn’t hang about once he heard of defender Marcus Goldsmith’s availability.

Goldsmith has joined the Cannons after winning Isthmian South East with Hastings last season.

Hythe Town manager Steve Watt Picture: Barry Goodwin
Hythe Town manager Steve Watt Picture: Barry Goodwin

He should prove an excellent addition to what’s looking a strong backline at Reachfields.

“Marcus is a player who was highly thought of at Hastings,” said Watt. “He won the league and played quite a bit.

“You’d imagine he would have had options.

“I rang him the day he got released and had a chat.

“Maybe I was one of the first people to speak to him and he came back and said he wanted to come.

“I’m not sure what interest he did have but it doesn’t matter because he’s our player and he’s another good addition.

“I’ve always tried to build from the back and be nice and solid and our defensive options look really strong, with Marcus, Lex Allan, Jack Steventon, Liam Smith, Ollie Gray.”

Midfielder Ross Ibbertson, another player capable of playing in defence, has rejoined Hythe for the new season.

He previously played under Watt before stepping away due to work commitments.

“He’s someone I know well,” said the manager.

“He did well here before but he had to stop due to work. Things have changed and he’s able to come back.

“He had a bit of time out of the game and got back playing at K Sports last year.

"He’s another one who fits the criteria we’re looking for at the club this season.”

Hythe reported back for pre-season training last weekend, a week earlier than other clubs due to their anticipated involvement in the FA Cup extra preliminary round on August 6.

The league season starts the following weekend.

Watt has completed his management team with the appointment of former Maidstone team-mate Michael Phillips.

He joins Nathan Elder, Darren Blackburn and Frannie Collin on the coaching staff.

“I’ve normally done things with the bare minimum, staff-wise, but when I came back I wanted to take advantage of people I know who weren’t in the game and give them an opportunity to come back into it,” said Watt.

“Micky did the 23s at Maidstone last year, I’m in contact with him a lot and I thought he’d be a good fit to come in. Being a midfielder, he gives the management team a good balance.

“We’ve now got all bases covered and everyone’s been successful and part of promotion-winning teams.

“It’s good to have Micky on board and he’s really looking forward to getting back involved.

“He’s a winner, he just wants to win games of football.

"He used to demand a lot from us as team-mates and of him himself and you can’t have enough of that around, particularly when you’ve got a lot of younger players.”

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