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Haverhill Rovers boss Fergus O'Callaghan excited by new-look squad with seven new signings and three re-signings

Fergus O’Callaghan did not beat around the bush when asked what he expects his 10 Haverhill Rovers signings to bring in: ‘lots and lots of wins’.

The newly-installed Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division management team of O’Callaghan and head coach James Bloomfield have announced the signings of seven new players as well as three of last season’s key players in recent weeks.

The latest announcement saw Newmarket Town fringe player Josh Martin move to The New Croft while Henry Hall agreed to join Rovers ona permanent basis, having spent last season on loan from Cambridge City.

The club have already announced the signings of Ryan Gibbs from Walsham-le-Willows, Max Dinnell from lower-league Cornard United, Josh Revell from higher-league Bury Town, neighbour and rival Haverhill Borough’s top scorer Craig Pruden, Colchester United youth product Kieran Michaels, as well as Whitton United’s George Ablitt and the re-signing of Ben Tait, alongside experienced left-back Jemel Fox.

And, with Rovers due to host Isthmian League South Division Central side Hertford Town on Saturday (1.30pm) to kick start their 2019/20 pre-season campaign, O’Callaghan is ‘looking forward’ to seeing how his new-look squad fares against higher-league opposition.

“I want the players to be bringing lots and lots of wins really, that’s why I brought them in,” the former Walsham-le-Willows assistant boss said.

“And obviously I believe they are all capable of it. I know lots are very young but they also have a lot of experience – Max (Dinnell) has 40 appearances in the Thurlow Nunn, for example.

“They have been energetic and competitive in training, which is fantastic. But we will have to wait and see how it goes on Saturday; training is very different to a game.”

“I’m really excited and looking forward to it,” he added.

“Hertford are a couple of steps above which really gives us a chance to play at a very high level and to really challenge us.

“They will technically be very good and that will push us to produce our best as well. What I’m looking for this weekend is signs of cohesion and togetherness. There have been a lot of changes so I know that will be hard; they’ve never played a competitive game together before.

“But if I can see signs of them linking up, I will be very pleased.”

He said he does not expect too much more movement on the transfer market, with just a few more of last season’s squad to decide their futures.

“A few of last season’s squad are still thinking about it,” he explained. “A new manager and new ideas and they’re waiting to see if it’s what they want, I understand that.

“But I’m confident we can get a couple of players over the line very soon. And can’t wait to get out there on Saturday, it’s very exciting.”

* Haverhill Rovers also announced on Wednesday afternoon, after the Haverhill Echo had gone to print, that defender Alfie Carroll had put pen to paper on a new deal with the club.

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