Hawks boss Doswell: New signing Gofrey Poku is at the peak of his powers

Godfrey Poku has become Hawks' second major signing of the summerGodfrey Poku has become Hawks' second major signing of the summer
Godfrey Poku has become Hawks' second major signing of the summer
Hawks boss Paul Doswell has spoken of his delight after landing one of his main summer targets.

Midfielder Godfrey Poku has signed a two-year deal following his departure from National League side Woking.

The 30-year-old arrives with a wealth of experience at National League South level and higher having previously played at Luton, AFC Telford, Mansfield and most recently the Cards.

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But Doswell believes he is going to be working with a player at the peak of his footballing powers.

He revealed Poku, who enjoyed a brief loan spell at Westleigh Park in 2015 - netting a hat-trick on his debut - was sold on the club's project.

Although determined to return to the National League, Doswell is also placing an emphasis on developing young talent next season.

And he sees Poku as the ideal character to help mentor the youngsters within the squad.

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'Godfrey's exactly what you want for this level,' said Doswell.

‘He’s very committed, gives you a lot of energy and character in the dressing room.

‘It’s a good initial signing for us and I’m very pleased to get him.

'He endears himself to the supporters in terms of the way he goes about his work.

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‘He loves getting in people’s faces and loves breaking the play up and passing simply to someone else.

‘Godfrey knows his job, understands what he is as a player and we’re really pleased to get him.

‘At 30 we’ve probably got him at the peak of his powers in terms of his experience and knowledge of the game.

‘He’s a very, very fit boy.

‘It’s a two-year deal and hopefully during that time he’ll help us get the promotion that we’re looking for.

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'We’ve got a project and we spoke to him about the project of bringing the younger kids through.

‘He’s going to be a really good mentor to the younger ones I’m going to bring in.'

Poku is the Hawks' second summer arrival after striker Tommy Wright joined from Sutton.

And now Doswell is keen to ramp up his recruitment drive prior to a training return on August 18.

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The Hawks are set to announce a new striker later this week while they expect an answer from midfielder Josh Taylor as well after tabling him a new one-year contract offer.

Doswell is also looking at bringing in an experienced centre-half and a handful of emerging prospects.

‘We’re hoping to get the majority of our business down before our training return,’ he added.

‘I put Godfrey in as a main target and there’s a centre-half I’ve got as a main target.

‘We’re very happy with what we’ve got.

'The real big one for me was getting Godfrey in.’

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Doswell last week released central defender Dean Beckwith, who is due to celebrate his 37th birthday next month.

He is aiming to plug that gap in his squad with an experienced addition.

‘We’re looking at someone in that 28-30 range with experience but have still got a few years left in them.

‘I think for a centre-half, 28-30 is probably the best age.

‘We’re looking at a centre-half and after that it will be a splattering of four or five younger signings.'

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Poku first signed for Hawks in November 2015, on loan from Woking.

He made his debut in the same game as fellow loanee midfielder Theo Lewis at high-riding Oxford City the same month.

The pair experienced mixed fortunes - while Lewis was sent off, Poku - not noted for his goalscoring abilities at all - plundered a remarkable debut treble in a 3-1 win for Lee Bradbury’s men.

Poku also scored a few games later, in a 3-1 victory against Maidenhead, before returning to Woking.

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The player later signed for Oxford City, spending two years with the club in the South division - winning the player of the year award in 2016/17 - before a year at the same level with Wealdstone.

Never afraid to get stuck in, Poku picked up 10 bookings and a red card in his 19 National League appearances for Woking in 2019/20.

He had previously been sent off twice in the first four games of 2014/15 while playing for AFC Telford. He was red carded later on that season as well, but won an appeal following a review by an FA panel so didn’t have to serve a five-game ban.