Stevenage boss Sarll pleased as Gorman signs extension and Loft joins club

Dale Gorman scores with a calm side footed finish.

Dale Gorman scores with a calm side footed finish. - Credit: Archant

Stevenage boss Darren Sarll is delighted midfielder Dale Gorman has signed a new deal with the club and with the loan acquisition of Tottenham Hotspur striker Ryan Loft.

Northern Ireland U21 international Gorman put pen to paper on a new deal which will keep him at the Lamex Stadium until 2019.

Sarll, who brought Gorman to the club’s youth set-up when he was academy manager, said: “It’s great for Dale and great for us.”

The 20-year-old joined the club five years ago with fellow Northern Irishman Ben Kennedy and both are now firm fixtures in the first team.

“It’s Ben Kennedy’s [20th] birthday today [Thursday], it’s nearly five years ago I brought Ben over from Northern Ireland so that would coincide with Dale coming over.


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“Dale has grown, the experience he got last year, helping us fight a relegation battle, was really important to see Dale’s inner strength, his determination and desire as a young player, which we all saw.”

Gorman has made 18 first team appearances this term and scored his first professional goal in the 2-1 win at Barnet in December.

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“This year he has really kicked on and he’s played wide in a midfield four, he’s played at the back a couple of times as well and the last couple of games I’ve deployed him in the middle which is preferred position and he’s done brilliant,” added Sarll.

“The Dale Gormans are the future of the football club and I’m delighted they have put me in a position that I have to play them and I’m really proud to have been part of his development and now as his manager.

“I’m proud of Dale because he has broken through as so many young players sign a professional contract and within a year they are back out the game again.

“Dale has gone through that first year, played some games and this year he’s pretty much been ever present.”

Loft made his first appearance in a Boro shirt as a late substitute in the 3-1 home win over Newport County on Saturday.

Sarll feels the 19-year-old will become a favourite with supporters and players alike with his work ethic.

“Ryan is a type of player we haven’t got, the type of player Ryan is if you go after a 28-29-year-old version of Ryan the likelihood is Stevenage can’t afford him,” he said.

“What we have got in Ryan Loft is, I likened him to a young Duncan Ferguson, he charges around with lots of effort and commitment, very aggressive, still a young player, still lots to do, still doesn’t know how to use his body to the full extent, but he aint half game and the fans and the players will really appreciate the effort he puts in.

“He has some really good quality, but he’s a bit of throwback and I like that, when we used to have a bit of a war and shake hands and get on with it.

“He will add to us because we haven’t got anything of his type in the building.”

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