Phil Parkinson has rounded off his summer signing spree in the same spectacular style he started it by landing FC United of Manchester skipper Jerome Wright and Nantwich Town striker Tom Peers.
Alty’s recently-appointed manager made a statement of intent, after taking over from Matt Doughty, by signing highly-regarded Salford winger John Johnston and following up with the prized capture of talented forward James Poole and in-demand Nantwich centre-back Ben Harrison.
Now he has put the finishing touches to a new-look Alty squad with the addition of experienced winger Wright, one of the most accomplished left-sided attackers in the Vanarama National League North last season, and forceful frontrunner Peers.
Wright’s pace and trickery, allied to a keen eye for goal, made him the scourge of defenders throughout his FC United career, and it comes as little surprise that his game is based entirely on a lifetime admiration for former Manchester United legend Ryan Giggs.
‘I used to idolise him when I was a kid,’ he said, in an interview during his FC United days. ‘I would get the same boots as him every time he got new ones, and I even copied all his haircuts. Watching him was the reason I wanted to play out wide. Ryan has always had flair and skill, and I wanted to follow in his footsteps.’
The same capacity for taking the ball up to a full-back before jinking past him made him a firm favourite with FC United fans and helped him become the club’s record appearance-maker. He played over 400 games for them, scored more than 80 goals and was skipper for the past two seasons.
Parkinson has once more returned to his old club to capture a player he knows and trusts, in 21-year old centre-forward Peers.
The Warrington-born target man had spells with Chester, Hednesford and Telford before answering a call from Parkinson to bolster Nantwich’s push for promption from the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League, a campaign that only faltered late on, with a defeat in the play-offs.
Speaking at the time, Parkinson said: ‘Tom is someone I have had my eye on for a while now. He is someone we feel can help our promotion ambitions. He is a proven scorer at this level, and we are confident he will be an excellent addition up front for us.'”