Under 20s loan update.

Whilst it seemed a fairly quiet deadline day at Shielfield Park yesterday with manager Robbie Horn adding only one player to his squad, there was plenty of movement in the Under 20s squad. The coaching staff worked tirelessly throughout the day, completing a total of seven development loans.

Gary Dolan (centre) celebrates scoring v Alloa Athletic. Photo courtesy of David Glencross.

First up, Gary Dolan heads to Perth to join up with teammates Macaulay Jarrett and Scott Sutherland at Kinnoull Juniors FC. Dolan will be hoping for another successful season, having netted three times during last season’s SPFL Development League campaign.

Grant Rose has joined Lowland League side Gala Fairydean Rovers. Rovers currently sit mid-table with two wins, two draws and two loses so far this season. Also heading to the Lowland League is Ciaran McKenzie, who joins Bradley Barrett at Whitehill Welfare.

Preston Athletic have secured Jack Murray and Kieran Jack to bolster their squad. They currently sit 4th in the highly competitive East of Scotland League.

Lastly, two more players have signed with McBookie East Premier League sides. Youngsters Jack Gillan and Ross Aitchison have joined Haddington Athletic and Arniston Rangers respectively. Gillan will of course pair up with Jamie Chapman who headed to Haddington last month. Following his earlier move, we caught up with Chapman to discuss the loan:

“During my time at Haddington I hope to be playing as much football as I can to get games under my belt and better myself. Hopefully I can impress and get the call up [to Horn’s squad] sooner rather than later.”

Development loans play a key role in the progression of young players, allowing them to play during the week and at weekends. The importance of getting game time was also recognised by the Under 20s coaching staff. Coach Daniel McKenzie also spoke to the website:

“It’s important for the Under 20 players to be out playing 20-30 games against men and preparing themselves for senior football. When we look at loan deals we have to look at what is best for the player, best for Berwick Rangers and best for the borrowing club. It’s all about getting game time but at the same time ensuring they can hold their own at that level as well.”

Once again all loans run until January and the club would like to thank all other clubs and their secretaries for their hard work in getting the deals finalised. The Under 20s begin their 2017/18 SPFL Development League East season on Wednesday when they travel to Kelty to face Cowdenbeath. Kick-off is 19:30 at New Central Park.