Basingstoke Town manager Jason Bristow excited about six-strong strike force

Chris Flood celebrates his goal against Newport

Chris Flood celebrates his goal against Newport Buy this photo

First published in Sport Basingstoke Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Sports Reporter

BASINGSTOKE Town will not be short of attacking options this season, with manager Jason Bristow hoping to have a total of six strikers in his squad for the forthcoming campaign.

Sam Argent and Lloyd Macklin signed for the club on a non-contract basis on Tuesday night, joining fellow forwards Liam Enver-Marum, Manny Williams and Chris Flood at the Soccer AM Stadium.

Bristow, above, is also hoping to add Julian Owusu to his squad, a signing that would take the number of forwards at his disposal up to six.

Pleasingly, all five strikers signed up have found the back of the net during pre-season. Williams, Macklin and Argent were on target as Town beat Hungerford 3-1 last Thursday, while Flood scored a fine goal to give the hosts an early lead as they drew 1-1 with Newport County at the Soccer AM Stadium on Tuesday.

Basingstoke-born Argent, who is 22, began his career with Southampton and played as a right-back for Hayes and Yeading United in the Conference Premier before becoming a striker, starring for Whitchurch United and Hartley Wintney.

Bristow said: “A lot of people are keen to see Sam do well here, and I am certainly one of them. He has scored for fun at lower levels and we watched him a couple of times last year.

“We have been impressed with his attitude and work-rate, as well as his goals. We are pleased to have him in the squad and hopefully he will continue to get better.”

Macklin, who is also 22, was a highly-rated teenager at Swindon Town. He also played for Torquay United in the Football League, before being released last summer, spending the season with several non-league clubs.

“Lloyd knows he has a lot to prove but has been a real handful throughout pre-season,” Bristow said. “He’s quick and strong on the ball. He’s hungry for success and wants to prove a few people wrong.

“It’s great to have options in attack and we have a strikeforce who are hungry. It will be down to them to force their way into the side, but all of them have got goals in them.”

Former Aldershot, Totton and Gosport midfielder Ryan Scott was the only other triallist to feature against Newport, with Bristow set to make a decision on his future in the coming days.

Town have friendly matches against two Southern League Division One sides in the coming week. They travel to Swindon Supermarine (3pm) on Saturday, before making the short trip to Fleet Town on Tuesday (7.45pm).

Basingstoke players Simon Dunn, Tom Bird and Nathan Smart will be in Festival Place between 12pm and 2pm on Sunday, meeting and signing autographs for supporters.

Town are on the lookout for volunteers who would like to offer their services as matchday stewards, gatemen and tannoy announcers. Anyone interested should email lee.atkins@btfc.co.uk.

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