DERRY’S GOT ROBERTS IN THE GROOVE AT COUNTY

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Luke Mur­ray

DEAD­LINE-DAY sign­ing Gareth Roberts ad­mits he was in dire straits at Bury un­til Notts County boss Shaun Derry came to his res­cue.

The left back was made cap­tain at the JD Sta­dium in the sum­mer – but it did not take long be­fore the sit­u­a­tion started to turn sour.

Ac­cord­ing to the 35-year-old his wages went un­paid amid fi­nan­cial un­cer­tainty at the club and, af­ter play­ing just twice in three months, he was look­ing for a way out.

His lifeboat came in the form of Derry’s Notts County and the vet­eran in­sists he still has the legs for a League One dog­fight af­ter be­ing frozen out of first­team foot­ball.

“I al­ways had the con­fi­dence I could play in League One still, and I was glad that the gaffer came in and gave me the op­por­tu­nity to come back to this level,” said Roberts, who had a seven-year spell at Tran­mere be­fore moves to Don­caster and Derby.

“I was train­ing on my own and got the phonecall, there were 16 or 17 games to go at that time and I thought ‘yeah, I’d love that chal­lenge’.

“The main thing was to start en­joy­ing foot­ball again as I’d lost a bit of love for it re­ally.

“The sit­u­a­tion at Bury was dif­fi­cult, they weren’t pay­ing me and they weren’t go­ing to play me be­cause of my wages.

“It was get­ting tough, I spent a lot of time at home and hav­ing too many days off, trav­el­ling a long time just to go train­ing for a few hours.

“The train­ing fa­cil­i­ties were ter­ri­ble so in the end I was glad to get out of there and to get the op­por­tu­nity here is fan­tas­tic and I want to play my part.

“I’d had a long time off play­ing but I try to look af­ter my­self as best as I can, and I was run­ning on adren­a­line for the first game.”

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