FOOTBALL: LIAM McDonald has wasted little time in preparing for Solihull Moors’ upcoming Vanarama National League campaign by making four signings in the space of days.
McDonald helped guide Moors away from relegation to the second tier of non-league football in the club’s debut year in the top flight.
And now he’s boosted his options at the back, in midfield, and up front with a quartet of signings.
BORN and bred Solihull player Chris Lait has signed up for Moors’ upcoming National League campaign after scoring more than 20 goals for Stourbridge last season.
The 24-year-old starred in Stourbridge’s incredible FA Cup run which lasted until round three when the club lost 2-1 to Wycombe.
Lait was a key member of Moors Under 19s team in 2010/11 and broke into the senior squad the following season.
However a Saturday job clashed with his football, meaning he was transferred to Stratford Town.
He said: “When I realised how much I wanted to play football, I had to start again.
“I am delighted to have signed for Liam McDonald who I am sure will help me improve and develop the consistency needed at this higher level.
“I will do my best to help Moors concrete their position in the league and hopefully rise higher.”
Liam McDonald said: “I have tried to sign Chris before and am pleased that this time it has been successful.
“He is a quick dynamic midfielder who also scores goals.
“He has a strong physical presence and I am really looking forward to working with him.”
LIAM McDonald has snapped up Kalern Thomas from Boston United to boost his defensive options.
Born in Leicester, Kalern had been part of the Corby side that won the Southern League in 2014/15.
Thomas later found himself under the management of Adam Murray.
And he said the former Mansfield boss played a big part in him raising his own game.
McDonald said: “I have kept a close eye on Kalern’s development since I first came across him in my Redditch days.
“He is athletic, quick and physically strong.
“Coupled with his experience in the Southern League and National North, I feel he is now perfectly placed to step up to the top league.
“I see him as the type of player who will blend with the likes of George Carline, Simeon Maye and Kristian Green.”
Thomas featured strongly throughout Boston’s season and can play either right or left back as well.
It is also expected that Thomas will use his pace down the wing to benefit Moors.
TOP goalscorer Luke Benbow has signed for Solihull Moors after hitting 38 goals with Stourbridge last season.
Liam McDonald couldn’t hide his delight at signing the talented striker who admits a step up into the National League will be a test for him.
Luke will team up with former Stourbridge man Chris Lait – the pairing formed a formidable partnership last season.
Benbow came through the Glenn Hoddle Academy before difficult spells at Cheltenham and Burton saw him arrive at Redditch.
From there he had two spells at Stourbridge where Gary Hackett nurtured his talent into the top goal scorer he has become.
McDonald said: “I am absolutely delighted to have signed Luke and am excited at the prospect of working with him.
“He is a natural goal scorer who has attracted many other clubs but he shares our vision of what can be achieved here.
“To my mind he is the best finisher around and will justifiably wear the number nine shirt with pride.
“With Oladapo Afolayan up front with him this is such an exciting prospect.”
OUTGOING Tamworth skipper Paul Green has joined Solihull Moors to re-join ranks with Liam McDonald.
Green previously played with McDonald, and his presence at Moors will allow the Moors boss to play him in either defence or midfield.
The 30-year-old moved on from Aston Villa when a change of management meant his senior squad opportunities would be limited.
He then became an integral part of Lincoln City in their Division Two days before moving to Tamworth and Forest Green Rovers.
Green said: “I am really excited be have joined Solihull Moors.
“I played in the same Tamworth team as Liam McDonald and his vision of the future here is something I would like to part of.
“It is a youthful team full of quality but my experience should help.
“I want to be part of a squad that brings excitement and happiness to the fans – that is what football is all about.
“I cannot wait to get back to work.”
McDonald added: “Paul can play anywhere behind the front men and is versatile in both defence and midfield.
“His experience at this level of football is immense and he is a ‘young’ 30 year old.”