Fylde sign former Pool star

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FORMER Blackpool striker Keigan Parker has signed for his fourth Fylde coast club and his second inside a week.

AFC Fylde yesterday confirmed the signing of the 29-year-old, just six days after non-league neighbours AFC Blackpool had made a similar announcement.

The Scottish frontman, who ended last season with Fleetwood Town, had been due to make his debut for AFC Blackpool last Saturday, ironically against Fylde in the FA Cup, but instead watched the match from the stands.

The Gazette understands an agreement has been reached between the clubs which has seen fellow striker Ben Waddington return to Blackpool, having switched to Fylde over the summer.

Fylde boss Kelham O’Hanlon said: “At 29 he should be at his peak but has been unfortunate to find himself without a club. We are excited to have a player that has scored goals at a higher level coming in and we are looking forward to working with him.”

Having moved south from St Johnstone to sign for Blackpool in 2004, Parker has since had spells with Oldham, Huddersfield, Bury, Hartlepool and Mansfield. He started this season with Stockport County.

Parker said: “The last few seasons have been a bit stop start for me, so I’m looking forward to joining a club where I already know a few of the lads with Blackpool connections.”

Waddington, a prolific scorer in Blackpool’s title-winning side two divisions below Fylde last season, had been used mainly as a substitute so far this season. O’Hanlon added: “Ben feels playing every week will continue to improve his game and he goes back there with everyone’s best wishes.”

Waddington is the second striker recruited by Fylde over the summer to leave this week.

Dave Swarbrick has cited the problems of travelling from his Barrow base. He too is expected to rejoin his former club, Lancaster City, on recovering from a foot injury.

Parker is expected to make his Fylde debut in the Evo-Stik First Division North tomorrow, when the Warton-based club bid to extend their unbeaten start to the season.

AFC Blackpool, who stretched Fylde to the limit before bowing out of the FA Cup to a stoppage-time winner in Tuesday’s replay, remain in cup mode tomorrow. They are at home to Darwen in the first qualifying round of the FA Vase.

Manager Stuart Parker said: “We are on a bit of a hiding to nothing because we will be expected to win (Darwen are a division below) but motivation won’t be an issue and hopefully we play well and go through.”

Squires Gate are in league action in the North West Counties premier. They have lost four out of five but hope to build on last weekend’s FA Cup win over Atherton Collieries when they visit Ashton Athletic.