Hawks make double swoop

Dan Thomas was recently released by Bournemouth
Dan Thomas was recently released by Bournemouth
Brett Poate

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Shaun Gale believes the addition of a different dimension could provide the catalyst to relegation survival for the Hawks.

The Westleigh Park boss completed a double swoop yesterday, with rookie goalkeeper Dan Thomas – just released by Bournemouth – joining up to provide competition and cover to Lyall Beazley.

But it is pacy winger Christian Nanetti, who has been signed from AFC Wimbledon for an undisclosed fee, who could provide the spark that Gale’s side so desperately needs to arrest their slide towards relegation from Blue Square Bet South.

Former Queens Park Rangers youth player Nanetti recently scored twice against the Hawks for The Dons in a friendly at Westleigh Park and proved a real handful for the home defence.

He joins fellow new recruits Joe Dolan and Eddie Hutchinson in the squad for today’s trip to Dartford.

Gale said: ‘Christian Nanetti is a player we have been tracking for a while and almost got him a month ago.

‘He is a fantastic prospect and will give us a different dimension.

‘We face a massive challenge but have been able to bolster the squad in important areas.

‘Joe Dolan and Eddie Hutchinson can provide the extra bit of experience we need and we needed to get another goalkeeper in before the signing deadline.

‘If anything had happened to Lyall Beazley in the last 10 games then we could have found ourselves stuck.’

While Gale has been busy bolstering his ranks, he could yet face a battle to hang on to striker Ollie Palmer who has reportedly been attracting interest.

Swindon Town, Wycombe Wanderers, Charlton Athletic, Brighton and Derby are believed to be tracking his progress.

Meanwhile, Premier League giants Chelsea are also rumoured to be keeping a close eye on him.

‘Clubs are always sniffing around, there’s always talk of them watching,’ said Palmer.

‘I had two calls to say Chelsea were at the recent Sutton United game watching me which is a bit exciting, but hard to believe being such a massive club.

‘There’s been talk about it. A few weeks ago it was said they were watching a game but whether that’s true or not I don’t know, but I’ve had calls about that.’

Gale, meanwhile, will be hoping his new boys can gel quickly and put an end to their recent freefall.

And after today’s trip to Dartford, another tough away game awaits them on Tuesday night when they travel to fellow-strugglers Bromley.