Boat slips Sutton moorings to pursue trial options

Sutton United boss Paul Doswell has told defender Michael Boateng he will leave space for him in his squad for the coming campaign.

The former Bristol Rovers full back quit pre-season training at Surrey Sports Park this week to pursue trial opportunities with two League Two clubs and one from the Blue Square Premier.

Boateng made 26 starts for United after switching to Gander Green Lane from the Pirates in December, but still harbours ambitions to return to the full-time ranks.

And Doswell, who believes the club’s new playing and budget structure is designed to get young players their chance in the Football League, insisted the defender goes with his blessing.

“Michael has got an opportunity and we have encouraged him to take it,” he said.

“I’m keeping a space open for him if it doesn’t work out, but we have options if it does.

“Because of the way we are set up now we are giving young players the chance to secure that dream move and that is what Sutton has always been about.

“We have experienced players on good money and for the youngsters the reward is the chance to play on a stage where they can realistically further their careers.

“We are using the same budget we have used for the last two seasons, we have just structured the spending of it differently.”

Doswell has confirmed the capture of left-back Gareth Gwillim, midfielder Sam Rents, former Leyton Orient goalkeeper Tom Lovelock, centre back Jamie Stuart and forward Kezie Ibe this summer, with Gwillim, Lovelock and Ibe sealing their deals last week.

United kick-off pre-season preparations against League One Leyton Orient on Wednesday night and the Sutton boss is expecting big things.

“We have made five stellar signing this summer and it is obvious we have strengthened. Gareth was the best left-back in League Two last year,” he said.

“We will field the strongest squad we can and Leyton Orient will have their full League One squad with them as it is their first game.

“With all due respect to the likes of Chelsea and Tottenham’s development squads this summer, Orient will be a better for us.”

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