New era kicks off with four signings for Norwich United

John Edridge, left, and Steve Eastaugh of Norwich United. Picture: Denise Bradley

John Edridge, left, and Steve Eastaugh of Norwich United. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

The new era is already into full swing at Norwich United, with manager Steve Eastaugh bringing in four players shortly after taking over the reins at Plantation Park.

Swaffham Town striker Joe Jackson has joined Norwich United. Picture: Eddie Deane

Swaffham Town striker Joe Jackson has joined Norwich United. Picture: Eddie Deane - Credit: Eddie Deane

Eastaugh has swapped roles with John Edridge, who steered the club home safely last season after Damian Hilton returned to Wroxham in February, ensuring the Planters retained the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division title.

But the swap was announced earlier this week, with Edridge citing personal reasons and work commitments.

The pair are ploughing on with their plans for the Blofield-based club's first season at step four of the non-league pyramid though, as they prepare to join Wroxham and Dereham in Ryman League Division One North.

'If you look at the sides who have done well in the last two years, they've had a really mean defensive record but have managed to score regularly at the other end,' Eastaugh said.

Shaun Wones, right, in action for Spixworth. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Shaun Wones, right, in action for Spixworth. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

'You have to be able to do both but there are certain things you can guarantee and that's organisation and fitness. You're in complete control of that, everything else can be at the mercy of how good your opponents are at times.


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'The brand I'm looking for is winning football, in whatever form that takes. You might have five or six where you get well beaten and five or six where you win well but the rest are more likely to have one goal in it and it's about winning as many of them as you can.'

With star striker Matt Blake stepping up to the Ryman Premier with Leiston, the Planters have moved quickly to sign Swaffham Town striker Joe Jackson, who scored 22 goals in 35 games for the Pedlars last season.

A trio of players from the Anglian Combination have also been added, with all four players signing two-year deals. Shaun Wones joins from Spixworth having scored 19 goals from central midfield last season, as well as central defender Sam Watts from Harleston and striker Liam Jackson from North Walsham, who scored 50 last season.

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Eastaugh, older brother of Planters centre-back Andy, lives in Spixworth so had seen plenty of Wones in action.

'Shaun was first on my list,' the Planters boss said. 'I watched him a few times and he's a strong lad, a good physical presence but he can play as well.

'He's one who fits in the 'older heads' group because he's got good experience and he's a winner.

'That's a very big part of my recruitment. I'm very much looking for the right person as opposed to just a good footballer, as we have an established dressing room and they need to have the right mentality.

'As well as fitting in with the group we already have, they've got to be able to compete for their place in the team because the demands of myself and the staff at the club will be high.'

Pre-season games against Kirkley & Pakefield, Spixworth and Great Yarmouth are now lined up and Eastaugh is relishing the challenge.

He added: 'I had wanted to move into management after six or seven years as assistant to David Batch so when John (Edridge) spoke to us, it gave me an opportunity to take that step.'

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