18th Sep, 2019

Bees fighting to keep Palmer

Redditch Editorial 14th Feb, 2019 Updated: 14th Feb, 2019

STUDLEY face a battle to keep hold of highly-rated defender Shay Palmer after Highgate United became the latest club to target their players.

Joint-manager John Edwards admitted he is getting fed up with rival clubs targeting the Bees players once they start to impress.

They have faced regular interest in goal-getter Sean Brain, who has pledged his future to the Midland League Division One club for the rest of the season.

However, now Palmer, who has been with Edwards and Wayne Bunn at previous clubs Black Horse and Littleton, is the subject of a seven-day approach from Midland Premier side Highgate.

“We’ve been getting seven-day approaches left, right and centre,” said Edwards. “It’s been getting beyond a joke.

“It’s difficult when you’ve got other clubs sniffing around your players. I had a good chat with the chairman and the president and they said that’s a sign we’ve got good players, but it’s frustrating when you work hard with players, improve them and then other clubs try to sign them.”

While Studley continue to push for the top six in Midland League Division One, they do not have the resources to hold off interest by putting players on contract, so Edwards accepts money will have a bearing.

“I’m hopeful Shay will stay but it could go either way,” said the Bees boss. “Since he came back into the team after injury, he has probably been our best player so I suppose interest is not unexpected.”

Studley chalked up back-to-back wins last weekend after securing an impressive 3-1 win at Chelmsley Town, thanks to two goals from Jamie Clarke and one from fellow striker Brain.

Two goals in the opening half an hour set up the victory which left the Bees in sixth place before they entertain Rocester on Saturday. Then next weekend they meet fourth-placed Atherstone Town in a rearranged game at the Beehive.

After a stop-start run, Edwards says it will be important for the Bees to build some continuity to end the season with a flourish.

“Continuity is the key. We’ve been training twice a week but Saturday was only our second league game since the first week of January,” he added. “There’s no substitute for playing matches.

“If we get everybody fit and available we are a match for anybody in the league.”

Last weekend’s match against Chelmsley at Pack Meadow marked a debut for latest recruit Anthony Miller in defence, while winger Sean Cook made his first start after a three-month absence with an ankle injury.

“After the first 20 minutes or so bedding into the team, Anthony looked very assured,” added Edwards. “It was a good start for him and a good performance overall.

“We took our chances and both strikers scored – both Jamie and Sean – and they were a constant menace.”

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