Belfast Telegraph

More to come as Linfield boss Feeney grabs his Guy Bates

By Ali Gordon

After signing former Glenavon striker Guy Bates on Saturday, Linfield boss Warren Feeney has already revealed his plans for more new signings.

The former Northern Ireland international has already brought in centre-half Mark Stafford and midfielder David Kee from Ballinamallard United, as well as left-back Danny Wallace from Belfast Telegraph Championship One side Donegal Celtic.

"While I'm really pleased to have clinched this signing, the hard work to try and secure other possible signings will continue, as we build up to the start of the new season," said Feeney.

"Things are shaping up nicely so hopefully we'll get another few signings to build on from last season and hopefully go one better and win the League."

Feeney also revealed that he had been following the progress of Bates throughout the season after he quit the Lurgan Blues last August in favour of Australian outfit Adamstown Rosebud who play in the Northern New South Wales Premier League.

"I've been tracking him for a while now so it was nice to finally get him," said the Blues boss who signed Bates on a two-year contract.

"He's a very good player and he'll be a big asset to us up front alongside Andy Waterworth next season."

"He's a proven, quality striker who knows this league very well and I have no doubt he will make a major contribution to the squad in the coming years.

"I'm really looking forward to working with him when he joins up with the squad and he will wear the number nine shirt in the new season."

Before his move to the southern hemisphere, 29-year-old Bates played a major part in the revival of Glenavon's fortunes in recent years and helped the club lift the Irish Cup in May 2014.

It is believed that Bates had promised player-manager Gary Hamilton that he would play for Glenavon if he ever returned to the Irish League.

The Newcastle-born player made 51 appearances for the club and scored 26 goals in his two years there.

"I feel he has let us all down. He is not a man of is word," Hamilton told the Lurgan Mail on Saturday.

"He obviously put Linfield first and in asking for his release last week it was clear he did not want to come back to Glenavon. There is not much you can do if a player does not want to play for you, so we agreed a fee with Linfield for his release."

Feeney said: "He is delighted to be signing for us and can't wait to get started and I just want to thank our board for their backing with what I believe will be an exciting signing for the club and for our supporters."

Belfast Telegraph


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