CHRIS HARDY: Shane leaves with our best wishes

Chris Hardy's column
Chris Hardy's column

We saw our long-serving goalkeeper Shane Bland depart for Spennymoor last week.

Shane has been a fantastic servant to Whitby Town Football Club during his time here, and he leaves with our best wishes.

Shane Bland has left the club with the best wishes of boss Hardy

Shane Bland has left the club with the best wishes of boss Hardy

Playing at a higher level is something that Shane has always wanted to do and he made no secret of that.

He could have left last season but decided against a move to Blyth, but the chance to make a real step up and play for Spennymoor was one he wanted to take with both hands, and he now has a fresh challenge on his hands.

Shane is a very talented keeper, and I’d put it out there that there aren’t many better than him at the levels we’re operating at.

Having said that, I’ve been impressed with young Ryan Whitley, who has come in on loan for an initial month and did well in what was his senior debut last week.

If he maintains those performance levels and continues to impress, it could be a deal that is extended past a month and benefits us and York City.

Another player who left the club recently was David Carson.

David’s departure was in different circumstances to that of Shane.

He hasn’t featured for a few weeks for reasons that will remain internal at the club.

We had been discussing his future with David and his agent and we mutually agreed that it would be better for him to find a new club.

There has been a lot said about us hopefully replacing these players - but I feel we already have.

Ryan came in for Shane, Connor Smith replaced Carson and we’ve also just brought Junior Mondal into the club on a dual registration with Spennymoor.

One thing I am very keen to emphasise is that no one individual is bigger than Whitby Town, we never have been and never will be a one-man operation.

This is a club with a lot of history, and while we have lost a few key players, that is natural at any level of the game and we will all move on.

That starts with a tough trip to Nantwich on Saturday.

We’ll be without John Campbell, and James Risbrough is also a doubt.