We are delighted to announce that Gary’s first signing is former Walton Casuals striker James Ewington.
He has had a prolific goal scoring record for a number of clubs, including Harpenden Town, London Colney, Colney Heath and last season at the Casuals, where he scored 39 goals in 38 games. During the season, he joined St Albans City last February but returned to Walton later in March.
Speaking today, Gary said “We tried to sign James last season but were beaten to it by St Albans. However, their style of play didn’t suit him and he returned to Walton Casuals late in the season to score the goals which kept them in the Southern League Premier. We have a good idea of how to get the best out of him and I think he could become a real crowd favourite here.”
In a move mentioned by the player in his own Twitter account last week, defender Tom Jelley has returned to the Jezzards Beveree. Tom left the Bev in the 2017-18 season, after making over 100 appearances in the red & blue following his signing for the club in 2014-15, scoring 14 goals.
Gary said “We had looked at Tom last season but couldn’t make our budget stretch far enough, with so many others in contention. He then played a significant part in Hayes and Yeading’s dominant season, but he does not want the travelling in the Southern League.”
In the third signing of the day, Shaun McAuley has re-signed for the club, after being part of the Kingstonian setup last season. Shaun (pictured) made 48 appearances for the Beavers in the 2017-18 season, which was his second stint at the Jezzards Beveree. He was originally part of the Hampton squad that earned playoff appearances under Alan Devonshire back in the late 2000s.
Gary said, “We spoke with Shaun at the start of last season, when I first arrived, but we couldn’t get the deal over the line and he went to Kingstonian. He will bring some real authority to the midfield and I know he had a stellar season when he was last here.”
Gary welcomed the experience that McAuley and Jelley will bring to the squad and the goals that Ewington can provide.
He says he is still aiming at putting together a hungry squad, but with a backbone of experience he thinks will be crucial.
“We should be in a position to announce more signings before the weekend,” he added. “Some will be familiar faces but others may be new names to supporters. In addition, I’ve invited to pre-season training a number of players who come highly recommended by people I know and have been watched by the management team. I’m keen to see how they perform.
“We shall also be using the loan market next season and I have four separate deals that we hope to confirm next month.
“I’ve spoken with many, many players since the end of the season. It can be frustrating at times, so it’s good to see the squad starting to come together now. Patience will prove to be a virtue, I’m sure.”
Welcome back Tom and Shaun and welcome to the Jezzards Beveree, James!