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Tonbridge Angels manager Jay Saunders closing in on further signings

The changes taking place at Tonbridge are helping new boss Jay Saunders in his player negotiations.

Angels are installing a 3G pitch at Longmead ready for next season, a major asset in their growth as a club.

Tonbridge Angels manager Jay Saunders Picture: David Couldridge
Tonbridge Angels manager Jay Saunders Picture: David Couldridge

Transfer targets can see the ambition and that makes Saunders’ life that bit easier.

“People can see what the hopes are for the club, as soon as you speak to them,” said Saunders.

“The club want to kick on and we’re trying to bring in the right players to do that.

“No disrespect to the squad that was here last year, but we’re trying to bring the average age down a bit and get more pace around it in forward areas.

“The market is a bit slow at the moment, unless you’ve got silly money that you’re willing to throw about, and there are some clubs doing that, but the players I’ve been speaking to have been positive.

“We’re close on two or three players who will be really good signings. They’re players who will improve us.”

Ex-Stevenage defender Jamie Fielding has agreed a new deal at Tonbridge.

That means, bar striker Tommy Wood, Saunders has kept everyone he wanted from this season’s squad.

“I’m pleased to keep Jamie,” said Saunders. “He’s a good age and I think he’s got a good chance of kicking back on into the Football League.

“Out of all the lads I wanted to keep, Tommy Wood’s the only one who didn’t stay, so I’m quite pleased with that.

“It’s nice to have that nucleus because it means you can be a bit picky with who you sign.

“Last year, at Margate, I had to sign 16 players and you’re almost taking gambles.”

Among the new recruits is midfielder Tommie Fagg, who scored 11 goals for Ashford in Isthmian South East.

He reminds Saunders of Dan Sweeney, a player he brought to Maidstone from the Isthmian League before selling him to Barnet, then in the Football League.

This season, Sweeney won League 2 with Forest Green, although he is now a free agent.

“Tommie has the ability to play this level and higher,” said Saunders.

“We’ve got to work with him and help him make the grade.

“He’s a great size, he’s mobile, comfortable on the ball, he can nick a goal, he’s a strong lad, he’s got all the attributes of a young Dan Sweeney.”

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