Dorchester Town have raided crisis-club Truro City and swooped for defender Arran Pugh.
The towering figure can operate anywhere along the back four but a hand injury is likely to prevent him making his county town debut in tomorrow’s FA Cup tie with Wootton Bassett Town (3pm).
Manager Phil Simkin said: “People may question why we have signed another defender but the bottom line is that it would have been a travesty not to.
“Players like Arran do not become available very often. He can play anywhere across the back four and he is 6ft 5in.
“We work hard on our set-pieces, at both ends of the pitch, and he will be a massive piece of armoury.
“He also meets the criteria in that he is a top lad and will fit in really well.
“All the paperwork should go through in time but I very much doubt he will play tomorrow as he is still recovering from a broken hand.
“You are allowed seven substitutes in FA Cup matches though, so he will most likely be in the squad.”
The Magpies will be out to avoid a giantkilling tomorrow when they lock horns with lower-league Bass-ett.
The Hellenic League Division One West outfit travel to the Greene King IPA Community Stadium for what is being described as the biggest game in the club’s history.
The Wiltshire side, who lie four tiers below Dorchester, will be making their first-ever appearance in the second qualifying round and Simkin is determined to bring their historic run to an end and prevent a huge upset on home turf.
He added: “It’s going to be their cup final and it’s up to us to be totally professional about it and make sure there are no slip-ups.
“We will prepare properly, we will show them the respect they are due and hopefully we will get the result we are after.
“We desperately want a cup run so it’s a big game for us as well.”
Asked if he was considering resting one or two players for tomorrow’s clash, Simkin replied: “There is no way we are taking this game lightly and we will be putting out our strongest possible line-up.”
Jamie Symes has recovered from a recent groin injury but skipper Mark Jermyn (thigh) is a major doubt.
Simkin said: “Jamie trained on Tuesday night and will quite possibly be involved tomorrow but I’m not sure about Jem. We may leave it to the last minute before making a decision.”
Recent acquisition Jon Garcia, who was expected to be in action for the reserves last night, could make his home debut tomorrow after impressing in a late cameo at AFC Hornchurch last weekend.
The Magpies’ chief added: “Jon will be in the squad and by all accounts he was very impressive in training on Tuesday night. He could be pushing for a start tomorrow but we will look at the situation.”
Ticket prices for tomorrow’s match, which is all-pay and sees the winner pocket £4,500, are as follows: Adults £11/£10, concessions £7.50/£6.50, 12 to 16-year-olds £5, under-12s £3.
Magpies (from): Matthews, Jermyn, Bell, Martin, Clough, Walker, Pugh, Gleeson, Nicholls, Morgan, Crittenden, Malsom, Ward, Symes, Gosling, Garcia, Reid, Watson.