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Hollands & Blair newcomer Devonte West scored against Lydd Town and manager Luke Jessup also hopes to give Dover Athletic player Max Woodfine minutes with the first team – Welling Town visit Star Meadow on Saturday in SCEFL Premier Division

Hollands & Blair newcomer Devonte West has caught the eye - and their manager admits he might not be around for long.

Blair boss Luke Jessup is keen to give young talent a chance and West has made an instant impression, the forward scoring his first goal for the club in last weekend’s 2-1 Southern Counties East League defeat at Lydd Town.

Hollands & Blair manager Luke Jessup has been delighted with new signing Devonte West Picture: John Anderson corkyboy@gmail.com
Hollands & Blair manager Luke Jessup has been delighted with new signing Devonte West Picture: John Anderson corkyboy@gmail.com

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“He’s a fantastic talent,” said Jessup. “We are just trying to get the most out of him at the minute and as games go on I have to be honest, I think we will do well to keep him!

“He scored with a great finish and then less than a minute later he has beaten two or three players outside the box and hit a bullet of a shot, hitting where the post meets the crossbar and it’s probably still shaking now. It was like an absolute rocket.

“He had another couple of opportunities and he is a bit of a maverick, he creates things himself and people tend to stand off him.

“He is quite direct, he has all the tricks and the step-overs and people are scared to tackle him. He has left a few defenders red-faced. I think we will do well to keep him. He’s a nice kid, he is destined for higher places and we will just make the most of him for now.”

There could be another new face this Saturday when Blair host Welling Town in a Premier Division fixture. Dover’s Max Woodfine has joined the club on loan and impressed last weekend for the reserves.

“We had glowing reports,” said the manager of the left-sided forward.

“We are looking to get him in this weekend against Welling Town. We are dictated to by his parent club a little bit at the moment but I understand he is available and he’s another hopeful prospect.”

Blair have a mix of youth and experience in their side. Luke Medley has come and gone after the 34-year-old made one appearance for the club as Jessup continues to reshape the squad after being handed the manager’s job.

Defeat last Saturday was their third straight loss as old boss Scott Porter claimed his first win since taking over at Lydd.

Blair conceded twice early on - the opener scored by former player Harvey Welford - before West’s goal early in the second half got them going. He and Tom Walmsley both hit the woodwork and George Williams also went close.

Jessup said: “We made a shaky start but in the second half I was blown away and our supporters there were jumping up and down because they could sense it, we just couldn’t get it in the net.

“Lydd were hanging on at the end and you could tell by how Scott was going at his players! In the second half there was only one team in it.”

Jessup will now be keen to see his team rewarded for some of their efforts against the division’s bottom side.

He said: “We have earmarked this game as one to try and build off with a result.

“We are building for next season and hoping a few players come out of their shell and express themselves. We are now giving them a voice in the changing room and we are getting the youngsters to stand up and give us their thoughts and feelings and where they think we could improve and where they can improve.

“We have been given a great opportunity here, we have a good running start at it for next season and this is a game we target to give a good showing.”

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