Rebels’ squad is taking shape

Worthing manager Chris White is delighted with the way his squad is shaping up
Worthing manager Chris White is delighted with the way his squad is shaping up

WORTHING Football Club look set to add striker Scott Tipper to their ranks as their squad started to take shape this week – much to the delight of manager Chris White.

The majority of last season’s squad all returned to Rebels’ first pre-season training session on Tuesday evening and prolific County League striker Tipper is set to become the second new face to commit.

Rebels had already secured the return of midfielder Scott Kirkwood two weeks ago, after the departure of Darren Budd and Ryan McBride to Ryman League Division 1 South rivals Burgess Hill.

Tipper, who netted 38 goals for County League Division 1 side Arundel last season, has been on White’s radar for a while and he is delighted to finally land his man.

The majority of last season’s squad signed on Tuesday night, with the rest expected to do so in the next few days. The only players from last season’s squad not at training were

Paul Kennett, Steve Davies and Jamie Brotherton, who were all away.

Youngsters Josh Clack, Harvey Sparks and Bradley Lewis, who White hailed as important parts of the club’s future, have also returned.

On Tipper, White said: “We had a really good meeting last week. He hasn’t played Ryman League football before and he’s 28 now, which is a good age for us and he realised if he didn’t do it now he never would.

“He’s been one of the top scorers every season in Sussex for the last few years. And he scored 38 goals last year in a Arundel side that were battling relegation.

“He’s a player we’ve tried to sign before, so I am delighted he’s coming to us. He’s a great replacement for Ryan. People will say he has never played in this league, but nor had Terry (Dodd) until we brought him in, so I am not worried that he won’t do well.

“Nick Sullvan has signed as well, so we have two really good forwards, along with Steve Davies, also.”

White also entertained a number triallists, young and old, including two Columbian youth internationals.

Former defender Sam Mannings, was also at Worthing’s first pre-season session, after a year out at University.

White added: “Another little bonus is that we have Sam Mannings around this year.

“He looked sharp in training and I am delighted to have him back.

“It was a good start and a good session. We had 18 or so players there and the only ones missing were ones that were away or busy.”

One man who has escaped Worthing’s grasp is former East Preston midfielder Charlie Oatway.

He was set to sign last week, but has received a one-year deal with Brighton & Hove Albion’s development squad after a trial at the end of last season.