Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Three new signings and two extended deals at Dulwich Hamlet

Wednesday 10 June 2015
After several weeks of quiet at Dulwich Hamlet, the usual close season transfer activity began with a bang in the first week of June. Four players left the club, three arrived, two signed new contracts. We'll cover those who departed in another post. For now, the focus is on the new arrivals.

Confirmed signings

Jacob Erskine
Position: ST/CB
Age: 26
Previous clubs: Croydon Athletic, Dagenham and Redbridge, Wingate and Finchley, Tooting and Mitcham, Maidstone United, Redbridge, Margate, Sutton United, Dorchester Town, Bromley, Gillingham, Bishop's Stortford, Concord Rangers, Forest Green Rovers, Swindon Supermarine, Ebbsfleet United, Hampton and Richmond Borough, Dartford, Whitehawk, Maidenhead United

A powerful target man, Jacob can also play at CB – a role he performed in the promotion-winning Croydon team of 09-10 alongside fellow new signing Danny Waldren. As Danny did, Jacob began his career at Croydon Athletic before a move to league side Dagenham and Redbridge in 2007.

He left Dagenham in the summer of 2009 following loan spells with Wingate and Finchley, Tooting & Mitcham, Maidstone United, Redbridge, Margate, Sutton United and Dorchester Town.

Having spent the 09-10 close season with Bromley, Jacob returned to the Football League with Gillingham. He struggled to hold down a first-team place and signed for Isthmian League Premier Division side Concord Rangers ahead of the 2010-11 season.

Brief spells with Forest Green Rovers, Swindon Supermarine and Hampton and Richmond Borough followed before he joined Dartford in October 2011. Seventeen goals later, he had helped Dartford win promotion to the Conference National for the 12-13 season.

He left the Kent side in the summer of 2013 and, via Whitehawk and a return to Bromley, spent two seasons in the National League South with Maidenhead United before joining Dulwich Hamlet in June 2015.

Although comfortable at CB, we reckon Jacob will provide competition in attack for Harry Ottaway, Dean McDonald and Aspire Academy graduate Shaun McCoulsky.

Mitchell Nelson
Position: RB/CB
Age: 25
Previous clubs: Colchester, Tooting & Mitcham, Bournemouth, Eastbourne, Lincoln City, Eastleigh, Sutton United, Margate

A YTS trainee at Colchester United, Mitchell made 3 appearances for the Essex side during 08-09 before being released in the summer of 2009. He joined Dulwich Hamlet’s local rivals Tooting & Mitcham for the 09-10 Isthmian League Premier Division season.

His performances for Tooting caught the eye of Eddie Howe – in charge at League Two promotion-winners Bournemouth. Mitchell headed for the south coast prior to the 10-11 season but failed to make a first-team appearance under Howe. Loan spells at Eastbourne and Lincoln City followed before a December 2011 move to Eastleigh in the National League South.

Nelson enjoyed a successful 16 months with the Hampshire side, including a heart-breaking play-off semi-final penalty shootout defeat to Dover Athletic at the end of the 11-12 season. He then returned to London and joined league rivals Sutton United for the 13-14 season.

Halfway through 13-14, Terry Brown took Nelson to Margate as they prepared for promotion push in the Isthmian League Premier Division. After settling well on the Kent coast, the right-back unfortunately suffered a serious cruciate ligament injury during a 14-15 pre-season victory over AFC Wimbledon. He missed the entire following season.

After signing for league rivals Dulwich Hamlet in June 2015, he is expected to challenge for the right-back spot currently shared between Michael Abnett and Jordan Hibbert.

Danny Waldren
Position: CM/LM
Age: 26
Previous clubs: Croydon Athletic, Bromley

A left-footed midfielder with a famed work-rate and a lethal shot, Danny made his debut for Croydon aged 16 and was captain by the time of his 100th appearance four years later. He captained the side to promotion from the Isthmian League Division One South in 09-10.

After joining Bromley in June 2011, he went on to make 148 league appearances for the Kent side, scoring 22 goals. He made 25 starts as Bromley secured the National League South title in 14-15, winning promotion to the National League for the first time in their history.

A quick search for Danny on the internet brings up numerous match reports full of long-range goals, man-of-the-match performances, and huge praise for him both as a player and a person.

Danny’s performances in the heart of the midfield for the National League South champions cannot be underestimated – his signing is a huge coup for Dulwich Hamlet.

We expect Danny to challenge Ashley Carew and Jack Dixon for a spot in the centre of Dulwich’s midfield – no doubt a welcome problem to have for Gavin Rose following the departure to Welling United of Aspire Academy graduate Xavier Vidal.

Check out Danny’s goodbye message to Bromley.

We collated a few written accounts of Danny's goals for Bromley and a small selection of the reaction on Twitter to his signing here.

Dulwich Hamlet transfers 2015-16
We've created a transfer 'ins' and 'outs' graphic to ensure you're all kept up-to-date with the latest comings and goings at Champion Hill.

New contracts

Ethan Pinnock
Position: CB
Age: 21
Previous clubs: N/A - Aspire Academy graduate

After winning the players’ player, supporters’ player and manager’s player of the year awards for 14-15, Ethan has signed a new one-year deal.

His performances during the season did not go unnoticed and the elegant midfielder-turned-defender attracted a great deal of attention from clubs higher up the football pyramid.

The club have done well to hang on to a player who was widely regarded as the best CB in the league last season. Another year of Ethan in the heart of the defence is fantastic news for Dulwich Hamlet – a real star in the making.

Nyren Clunis
Position: LM/RM
Age: 23
Previous clubs: N/A - Aspire Academy graduate

Another season full of assists, goals and step-overs in 14-15 had football league scouts scrambling to grab a glimpse of Dulwich’s flying winger.

With over 200 appearances for the club, Nyren is a crucial member of the first-team and key to Gavin Rose’s attacking approach.

A brilliant run and curled finish from the edge of the box against Margate in the play-off semi-final encapsulated everything Nyren is about. Nyren Clunis is Dulwich Hamlet, for one more year at the very least.

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