Keeper call is key for Shrewsbury Town – Bernard McNally
Shrewsbury legend Bernard McNally insists it is ‘absolutely vital’ Sam Ricketts finds the right player to fill the goalkeeping void at Town.
Salop are on the hunt for at least one new shot-stopper after Steve Arnold’s departure for Northampton Town.
And McNally – who made 279 appearances for the club between 1980 and 1989 – says his replacement could be the one to change Town’s fortunes for the better.
“It is absolutely vital because if there’s someone too young or inexperienced, it can lead to a lot of problems,” he said.
“I was very lucky as we had some very good goalkeepers when I played for the club in Ken Mulhearn, Bob Wardle and Steve Ogrizovic.
“It’s vital. Your goalkeeper has got to be up to the task. You see it with a team like Liverpool, the difference that getting in a top shot-stopper in Alisson has made. It can really change a team.”
Arnold left Town last week to join the Cobblers on a two-year deal for a fee believed to be £5,000.
The 29-year-old opted to move closer to his family home after one season at Salop, where he played 32 times.
It leaves Ricketts light between the sticks with no senior keepers currently on the books. A contract offer to Reice Charles-Cook is on the table.
Ricketts is understood to be on the lookout for two goalies, with Charles-Cook as the third choice if he pens fresh terms.
Arnold, Joel Coleman and Jonathan Mitchell all played in League One last term, after Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson impressed greatly in the 2017/18 campaign.
“We were very lucky when we had Dean Henderson a couple of seasons ago, so Sam may be looking down the loan route,” added McNally.
“But Dean was almost an exception to the rule in that he did not at all look like a young, inexperienced keeper.
“Either way, they will be looking for someone to really add something to the side, to fill everyone with confidence.”
Shrewsbury Town appoint former Stoke City and Sunderland midfielder Dean Whitehead as first-team coach