AFC Telford United midfielder Jon Royle has come into his own after fans’ doubts over whether he should have stayed, boss Gavin Cowan believes.

Welshman Royle is the Bucks’ longest-serving current player, having joined them in September 2016.

The 24-year-old failed to nail down a regular starting spot under Rob Smith and Rob Edwards but Cowan, who has previously likened him to a non-league Steven Gerrard, decided to give him another season to impress and feels he has now silenced the doubters.

Royle excellently marshaled the midfield in Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Alfreton and the Telford chief said: “He’s been like that for the last three games.

“I think people were almost expecting me to release him, maybe, at the end of the season.

“He’s been here, he was one of them that looks like he’s got everything but doesn’t ever deliver.”

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