New scout for Town’s big summer

Fleetwood Town v Wrexham. Pictured is Micky Mellon.
Fleetwood Town v Wrexham. Pictured is Micky Mellon.
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Micky Mellon is convinced his current Fleetwood Town squad is more than capable of holding its own in League Two next season – but that won’t prevent the manager bringing in the reinforcements.

Chairman Andy Pilley will support him in that squad strengthening and has appointed a new chief scout in former Preston North End talent spy Jim McCluskey.

As Town’s players return to training today for their last two games as a Conference club after two days celebrating their promotion as champions, Mellon and Pilley are already hard at work on plans to strengthen for Town’s eagerly awaited big step up.

Mellon told The Gazette: “These players are capable of competing in the Football League. They have proved it by beating two League One teams this season (Wycombe and Yeovil in the FA Cup). But we will need additons. We are already looking at players for next season to make sure we are ready. We will not be scratching around.”

Pilley says McCluskey will have a vital role to play in Town’s summer recruitment.

Still on cloud nine after a fifth promotion in eight seasons, the chairman said: “Jim will be very important to us in identifying players.

“There are contracts to be discussed with current players and we will sit down in the very near future to sort these out.

“But we are eternally grateful to all the lads who have helped us achieve this promotion. With only one automatic place, this is a very difficult division to get out of.”

The process of planning a squad for next season has become less difficult now Town are certain which division they will ply their trade in.

Mellon added: “We are always a club that works ahead of oursleves, and I’d be lying if I said we had not been in the process of preparing for both eventualities this season (winning the league or having to compete in the play-offs). Now we know we are in League Two and I’m told there is not a lot of difference between that league and the Conference.”

Recent history marks this out: 2009-10 Conference winners Stevenage clinched promotion from League Two at the first attempt, and last year’s non-league champions Crawley Town have every chance of doing likewise.

That’s why Mellon doesn’t sound over-confident when he says: “We are not going up to League Two with a lot of fear.

“We still have to agree contracts with some current players and see if some want to sign new one, because we can’t be certain at the minute that people want to continue the journey with us.”