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Lossiemouth set to unveil brand new strike force for Highland League season

By Craig Christie

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Martin Charlesworth could put retirement on hold to help Lossiemouth continue their progress up the Highland League table next season.

Martin Charlesworth last played for Lossiemouth in 2020. Picture: Becky Saunderson..
Martin Charlesworth last played for Lossiemouth in 2020. Picture: Becky Saunderson..

And Coasters manager Joe Russell hopes to bring in RAF Lossiemouth serviceman Logan Buick, a speedy forward who has bee n impressing in the local welfare league.

Lossie returned to action with a pre-season bounce match with Elgin City at the Gleaner Arena on Tuesday night, where Charlesworth and Buick were both in action.

The Grant Park side have also brought goalkeeper Cammy Farquhar back to the club and are closing in on a deal to sign midfielder Scott Thomson from Dufftown.

Russell reflected on a 6-0 defeat against a strong Elgin, and aims to have his squad ship-shape and ready for the season with some testing friendlies over the coming weeks.

He wants former Caley Thistle, Elgin City, Buckie Thistle, Deveronvale and Huntly front man Charlesworth (34) to be part of his team, adding some much needed experience and goals to the club.

Charlesworth re-signed for Lossie before the pandemic having been dogged by injuries in recent years.

He stepped away from football last season due to family and work commitments but Russell said he has kept fit and looked good as a second half sub against Elgin.

Lossiemouth manager Joe Russell.
Lossiemouth manager Joe Russell.

"Martin has trained a couple of sessions and that was his first game back," Russell said. "It was good to see him along and it’s just about bleeding him in.

"He’s kept himself fit for a couple of years and it’s just about him getting his sharpness back. He linked in well with the other boys and it would definitely be an asset to the team to have Martin back."

The biggest impression of the night was made by jet-heeled striker Buick, who is on trial with the Coasters after topping the goalscoring charts in the Moray welfare league with RAF Lossie.

"I thought he did really well for his first game," Russell said. "He’s doing well at RAF Lossie and we’ve had him in and he’s trained a couple of times alongside us all.

"He is still playing with them so we will see how things go, hopefully we can get him on board once their season is finished."

Midfielder Thomson is expected to sign a deal this week, though his appearances will be restricted due to his offshore job.

Scott Thomson (centre) is set to sign for Lossiemouth from Dufftown. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.
Scott Thomson (centre) is set to sign for Lossiemouth from Dufftown. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.

"Once he settled in he competed well in the middle of the park and gave us something different so I was chuffed to see that," said his new manager.

Keeper Farquhar pulled off a string of good saves as did club coach Darren 'Mini' McConnachie who came on as his replacement.

Last season the Coasters used two keepers in Ross County loan teenager Logan Ross - who they are still keen to bring back for another spell - and Elgin City's Ollie Kelly, who has now been loaned out to Strathspey Thistle.

Lossie have friendlies lined up against Islavale on July 9, Caley Thistle under-18s on July 13 and Cruden Bay on July 16.

Boss Russell wouldn't rule out more transfer moves if players become available that can enhance his team.

"We are always on the sniff for players and there is still space for a couple so we will see how it goes.

"Last season we struggled for goals, that was an issue though we managed to tighten up at the back.

"Losing Dean Stewart is a massive blow for us. Fergie (Fergus Edwards) and big Lew (Lewis McAndrew) have done well but they need some help in there, so we are on the lookout for a centre half.

"If ewe see players and they are better and we can strengthen and work something out with whoever it is then we will do it."

Lossiemouth will also farm out some of their youth development players to Lossiemouth United next season, with the junior side returning to the North Region under the management of ex-Coasters player and manager Fraser Kellas.

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