The club has appointed a new goalkeeper coach.
The vastly experienced and respected former keeper Tony Norman has already started working at Croft Park.
57 year old Norman played for Hull City between 1983 and 1988 and holds a club record of 226 consecutive appearances out of a total of 372. He was transferred to Sunderland and played for them at Wembley in the FA Cup Final when the Black Cats lost to Liverpool 2-0. He is the only Sunderland keeper to have played at Wembley twice and he turned out for them 198 times.
He left Sunderland in 1995 to play for Huddersfield and retired in 1997 aged 39.
He is also a Welsh international having played for his country five times. He would undoubtedly have played more but for the presence of the legendary Neville Southall.
“I’m delighted to be at Blyth, to be honest,” he said. “It’s a smashing move for me and I was more than happy to join after Tom [Wade] asked me.
“Training with the lads is going really well. Both Fabian and Adam are at a good age to develop well. This is the time they can learn and improve. They are both good keepers but everyone can improve by slight tweaks here and there. But they’re both hungry to get better, they listen and are not afraid of hard work. I told them from the start it would be hard work but enjoyable! When I trained I used to feel invigorated afterwards and I hope the lads will too.”
Tony played against Blyth for Hull City in 1980 in three memorable FA Cup 2nd round games at Hull, then a replay at Croft Park before a deciding replay, which Blyth lost, at Leeds United’s Elland Road.
We will be asking Tony for his recollections of those games in a future Matchday Magazine.
(This article first appeared in the Spartans Matchday Magazine on 12th December)