Once a Spartan…

Over the summer we will be keeping track of former Blyth Spartans players who are in the news. Whether it be finding new clubs or taking managerial jobs we will keep track of what is going on for the players and managers who have featured at Croft Park.

One of last season’s FA Cup heroes Nathan Buddle (above) departed for SkyBet League Two side Carlisle United in January and the news broke this week that the centre back has been offered a new six month deal by the Cumbrian outfit.

Another member of last season’s squad, Joel Dixon, has completed a move to Scarborough Athletic. The versatile Yorkshireman finished last season with EBAC Northern League club Consett but has chosen to move up the league pyramid with the ambitious Seadogs.

And in the Evo-Stik NPL First Division North Dixon will meet two former Croft Park favourites who have joined Spennymoor Town recently. Striker Glen Taylor left Ashington to try his luck at Brewery Field and he will be joined by keeper Dan Lowson, who moves from West Auckland Town.

There has been plenty of movement in the Northern League with former Spartans. Most notably Chris Emms has left Shildon and moved to league champions Marske United.

One of the heroes of the 2009 FA Cup run, goalkeeper Mark Bell, has left Darlington to move to Bishop Auckland and winger Wayne Phillips has made a move to a revitalised South Shields after leaving Jarrow Roofing.

Phillips will also find Lee Scroggins at Filtrona Park, or Mariners Park as it will be known, after he moved from Shildon.

Former loanee Alex Francis has left West Auckland Town to join Dunston UTS and another player leaving the County Durham outfit, Matty Moffat has joined Newton Aycliffe.

Also in the Northern League former Spartans midfielder Andy Ferrell has moved into management after taking over at Bedlington Terriers.

Former striker Paul Brayson, now of Newcastle Benfield, was named Northern League Player of the Year at the League awards on Friday evening, with another former Croft Park favourite, Graham Fenton, walking off with the Manager of the Year award after a fantastic season with FA Vase winners North Shields.

However the news wasn’t as positive for defender Darren Craddock, as his club, Shildon, revealed that he would miss the start of the new season with a damaged cruciate knee ligament injury.

And finally a massive congratulations from everyone at Croft Park to former midfielder Lewis Horner(below), who became a Scottish FA Cup winner with Inverness Caledonian Thistle at the weekend after they beat Falkirk in the Hampden Park final.

Posted by Mark