By Nickolas McInally
Head Coach Stuart Taylor believes his Accies squad has achieved a greater balance due to the signings made in the January transfer window.
With Daniel O’Reilly, Steve Lawson, Ellis Brown and Kai Kennedy all joining the club, Taylor believes these signings will improve the squad as a whole.
He said: “It has been a busy window for us, one of the busiest January windows in the club’s history, all of these lads were brought in for a reason. It was important for the club that we had a better balance to our squad while improving the quality within.
“Right-back was a position we looked at, Jamie (Hamilton) has been in there recently and done very well but we need a bit of depth to improve the quality of the squad and I think we achieved that with Steve.
“We play a formation with two wide positions and had Marley and Smithy playing those positions. These guys are extremely important to the club, and we always look to develop them.
“Andy Ryan was another who took on that role and did fantastically well out there. He has scored four out of his six league goals from wider positions which has helped us.
“I think adding Kai and Ellis to the squad give us more competition in wider areas. Ellis, Marley and Smithy are players with a lot of development ahead of them and I think this competition will benefit them.”
The 47-year-old paid tribute to the club’s board of directors for their role in securing the four new signings.
He stated: “I think we need to give a huge thank you to the owners and the board at the football club. The process of bringing a player in is a very difficult one. They gave us a strong platform to sell the club in the best possible way
“Since coming to the club I have asked a lot of the owners and the board and their support has been fantastic. The January window is just another example of that, and I think they deserve a lot of credit.
“We did lose out on a couple there is no shame in that. Naturally, with the level of competition, you aren’t going to win every battle. I am not going to get drawn into who or what position, but I think it’s a credit to our recruitment process showing us we are looking at the right players.”
As the side prepares for the second half of the cinch Championship campaign Taylor believes the atmosphere around the Accies dressing room is the right one.
He said: “When you look at bringing players to this club, we do a lot of checks on them to see how they fit with what we have here. It’s a great dressing room, there is a real good spirit about them. They are demanding more from each other now, but the comradery is really good as well.
“However, I think we all know that there is still a lot of development ahead of us. Every day the lads come in looking to improve as much as we can every single day.”
Despite the window closing a matter of days ago, Taylor revealed focus has already turned to the next window as he looks to lay the groundwork ahead of the summer transfer window.
He said: “As a manager, I think it benefits us to always look two windows ahead. From there we can identify players being prepared to hit the ground running when the window does open. However, before we go to the window the academy will always play a huge role in our decisions on a transfer front.
“If a young player is coming through and fits the bill of what we are trying to do then we will bring them in and develop them. This season we have had Adam McGowan and Chrissy McGinn involved and they are players who we will look to develop in the coming weeks and months and years.
“The club having such a great academy puts us in a very strong position. The right player can be very hard to find but the football experience these guys get coming through can benefit us massively.”
(Image courtesy of Steve Welsh)