Cowden’ captain now on board

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ARBROATH fans got some excellent signing news this week with the acquisition of Cowdenbeath’s former captain.

Manager Paul Sheerin has acquired the services of full-back Mark Baxter on a one-year deal.

Baxter has left Central Park after six years with the club, and was briefly linked by fan gossip to St Mirren, before settling with fellow Saints’ team-mate Sheerin.

Paul said: “I played with Mark at St Johnstone, back when we were just young lads, and I thought very highly of him then.”

On Baxter’s coming role at the club, Sheerin said: “I think last season we lacked some pace at the back which sometimes left us exposed.

“Pace, aggression and leadership are things that Mark can bring to the team. He has great recovery and he uses the ball well from that position.

Sheerin hopes that Baxter will be able to inject some pace and aggression into the Lichties’ back line, and will join Darren Hill, Keiran McAnespie and Stuart Malcolm, who have signed up for next season.

According to the boss, Gavin Swankie is still generating interest from clubs, and he told the Arbroath Herald: “It’s unsurprising that clubs are still interested, and after his performance last season that’s deservedly so.”

Swankie is keen to play full-time football next season, and his situation with the club is still up in the air.

Mr Sheerin added: “I understand that Ross County have put in an offer, and Gavin said he would keep me informed of what’s happening.”

And the Gayfield supremo pointed out that if the Victoria Park men presented a good offer, they would be unable to match the Dingwall club’s terms.

There are a few positions that Sheerin would like firmed up this week, but he was understandably reluctant to give too much away at this crucial stage.

All he would say was that the team sheet was coming together “slowly but surely.”

Confirmed friendlies so far are St Johnstone on July 4 and Raith Rovers on July 8. Sheerin said that they were still in the process of organising friendlies as the early start to the SPL next season had scuppered a couple of fixtures.