It is fair to say we might have been in a bit of bother this season had it not been for the manager tapping into the loan market.
Such has been the length of the injury list from August onwards, I doubt we would have been as competitive without the help of the players who have served the club on loan.
It is a two-way thing of course with young, talented players getting, in most cases, their first taste of senior football whilst helping with a player shortage at the clubs they join on a temporary basis.
No fewer than seven players have played for us on loan this term with Kofi Moore, Tyler Bowen and Josh O’Brien all having returned to their parent clubs – Oldham Athletic, Blackpool and Carlisle United respectively.
Dannen Francis has just completed his second month at Borough Park and has returned to Blackpool. He made four starts during his time with us plus a further seven appearances as a substitute, scoring against Marine and Ilkeston Town in the process.
We would like to thank the Bloomfield Road club for their co-operation during Dannen’s spell with us and the player himself for his valuable contribution to the cause.
Kitt Nelson joined us in late September and, as things stand, will remain with us until the end of the season. He quickly adapted to the physical demands of Northern Premier League football and has impressed his new team mates and supporters alike.
He scored on his NPL debut, via the bench, and has since made seventeen further appearances and netted against FC United of Manchester, Gainsborough Trinity, Ashton United and Ilkeston Town.
Sam Hetherington, like Dannen and Kitt, is only small in stature but he too has impressed during his six appearances (three starts and three stints as a substitute) so far. It is hoped to extend his loan from Carlisle United into a second month.
The club have also made contact with Stalybridge Celtic to extend Joe Bunney’s stay beyond the two months he has completed with us so far.
Unlike the other loanees, Joe has brought a wealth of much needed experience to the team, making nine appearances to date and scoring equalising goals in the matches at Whitby Town and Marine.