Hednesford Town boss, Rob Smith, has given his reaction to the news that striker Elliott Durrell, so revered by Pitmen fans at Keys Park for many years, has moved onto a new chapter in his fledgling career, at Wrexham FC.
‘When we re-signed him at the start of the season I promised that if a club from a higher division came in we wouldn’t stand in his way as long as we agreed a reasonable fee. Once that was done there’s no way we could have prevented him from moving to a club like Wrexham.’
On the subject of possible replacements for the player, scorer of over 100 goals in his Hednesford career, Smith was refreshingly honest about the position he is now in, but was keen to assure fans that big players have moved on before and the team’s upward trajectory has not been curtailed.
‘We’ve got to be honest; we’re not going to be able to get another Elliott Durrell. The position he plays and the way he plays makes that very difficult but we will sign further reinforcements. Chris Clements and Cheyenne Dunkley have left us in the past two seasons and we have recovered, so it is far from being doom and gloom. We should be grateful that we have all played a part in Elliott getting a good move but, due to his performances so far this season, we now have an opportunity now to stay in the play-off places and I have every confidence in my squad.’
It is perhaps fitting that, after plundering 35 goals last season and 23 so far this campaign, Durrell’s final act as a Hednesford player was to score an incredible solo goal to win his last match against Bradford Park Avenue and Smith singled out that moment as one to remember.
‘There’s been so many over the years, but that last appearance in a Hednesford shirt against Bradford will stay long in the memory and rightly so. Apart from his record as a player, I like Elliott as a lad as well, we will all miss his infectious attitude and everyone wishes him the very best at his new Club.’