Worthing clarify Kwame Poku situation

Worthing have clarified that midfielder Kwame Poku has not joined the club.

Woodside Road. Picture by Stephen Goodger
Woodside Road. Picture by Stephen Goodger

On Thursday, Worthing announced on social media they had signed three players - Poko, along with Billy Barker and Zack Newton, the latter on loan. That came after Will Miles, Sam Rents and Jazz Rance left the club earlier in the day.

While Newton and Barker have joined, there has been some confusion over Poku.

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Worthing believed the midfielder was a free agent but he was signed on at Cray Wanderers and Joe Vines, assistant manager of Cray, said to Kentish Football: “I think it's fair to say there is some noise around some of our younger players due to their exploits this season and we even have Worthing announcing the signing of one of our prospects in Kwame Poku when he is still registered with us!”

Worthing chairman Pete Stone has addressed the situation and said: "We were led to believe by Kwame's representatives that he was a free agent.

"They had been sending him out on trial and he came to us on trial on Thursday. But we haven't signed him.

"When we sign a player, we go through all the correct protocols and wouldn't sign someone without going through the due process.

"We were never in a position to sign Kwame and haven't signed him.

"We've apologised to Cray for our communication over the issue."

Worthing have added to their squad further though as midfielder Eoin Kirwan has joined from Merstham, while young academy star Dylan Jelley will also be in the squad for this afternoon's match at Leatherhead.

Worthing have slipped to eighth in the Bostik League Premier Division after a flying start to the season and Stone has explained the comings and goings at the club over the past week as they build for the future.

He said: "We've been talking a lot since Christmas about next season. This year was always about being competitive and bringing through younger players."That's why we've been refreshing the squad.

"If we have players not getting a lot of game time, it's not fair on them and if there's an opportunity to bring through a young player like Jasper Pattenden or Dylan Jelley, then that's what we should be doing.

"We've got one eye on being as competitive as we can this season but another eye on building for next season and beyond."

Stone added that Worthing's start to the season perhaps raised expectations and said: "It was never our ambition at the start of the season to win the league and win promotion.

"Our objective was always about being competitive and bringing through talented young players.

"We got off to a great start, wobbled a bit recently, but we are still in a great position and will be giving everything to finish as high as we can.

"However we will not bust the budget to do that. We have to keep building for the longer term.

"We want to continue to be competitive this season and still build for the future as we've got a very young squad.

"Of course we would love to find a central midfielder or a 30 goal a season striker who have got significant experience around the National League, but they're not easy to find and they’re expensive.

."With more experience, we believe we could have those players here in the squad already."