Thu, 06 Jun 2019
THATCHAM Town manager Danny Robinson has been full of praise for outgoing striker Shane Cooper-Clark, who is leaving the club after four seasons.
The talisman notched in an incredible 121 goals in 149 appearances for the Kingfishers, proving to be a big fan favourite at Waterside Park.
“He has had an unbelievable career at Thatcham and he has to up there with the club’s all-time leading goal scorers,” said Robinson.
Cooper-Clark’s highlight with undoubtedly be scoring the winning penalty in the 2018 FA Vase final at Wembley Stadium against Stockton Town.
“Like all good things, they must come to an end.
“He’ll always be remembered for the goal he scored in the FA Vase final at Wembley and the other 62 goals he scored that season, which is truly remarkable.”
“Everyone knows that a football career is short, so I wish him all the best and I know for a fact that he’ll be the best centre forward wherever he goes,” added Robinson.
The Kingfishers have signed a number of players ahead of the new season, with Alex Fragata (pictured above), Felipe Barcelos and Sam Barden all joining the club.
Barcelos, a striker who has played for Didcot Town, Moneyfields and Stratford Town, is a player that excites Robinson.
“He is a proven goalscorer at Southern League level,” he said. “He is a very exciting player and I think the fans with very much enjoy watching him play.
“The one thing you have got to have is a proven goalscorer at this level and his stats don’t lie.”
Meanwhile Fragata, who has had spells at Hungerford Town and Tadley Calleva re-joins the club having spent time in the youth set-up.
“He started off very well last year when he was playing in the National League south, but it fizzled out in the end.
“I have known him for a few years now and I think if we can get him going he will be exciting and he’ll want to take people on.”
Town have been boosted by a number of first-team players set to stay at the club, including the experienced duo of Tom Melledew and Gareth Thomas.
Robinson is happy to get deals over the line so early into summer.
“It’s nice to get it early and a few of them said after last season that they wanted to give this season a real good go.
“We have built a team that can compete in this league and since Christmas, we have been one of the most in-form sides.”
Now that Robinson and his players have more experience in the league, the Thatcham boss believes they can have a better campaign.
“Last year was a bit of a whirlwind because of the short break we had in summer, but we appeared to find our feet as the season progressed.
“We have nothing to fear, we want to do better than last year if we get a bit of lady luck, who knows what can happen,” added Robinson.