I've been after him for seven years! Phil jubilant at landing long-term target Joe Nuttall

Words John Edwards

PHIL Parkinson has moved swiftly to reinforce Altrincham's attacking ranks by signing experienced former Football League striker Joe Nuttall from Oldham Athletic on a season-long loan.

Less than a week on from Chris Conn-Clarke's departure to Peterborough United, the Robins have landed a proven frontrunner who has been on Phil's radar since leaving Aberdeen to join Blackburn Rovers in 2017.

At a height of six foot and as an out-and-out centre-forward, the 27-year old may not be a like-for-like replacement for attacking midfielder Chris, but his arrival adds significantly to the Robins' firepower and the range of options available to Alty's boss.

"Joe is a player I’ve chased since I first came to Altrincham," said Phil. "I met him seven years ago, but I’ve never been able to get him over the line for one reason or another.

"The main reason at the time was that it was Altrincham or Blackburn. I guess I can handle that decision, but now it’s perfect timing for us and him to work together.

"I think it was there for everyone to see that we lacked a little bit of height and physicality at times. He certainly will give us that, but I don’t want people to think he is just a big target man. That would be a misrepresentation of his fantastic attributes on the ball.

"He’s simply a very good footballer, and I’m delighted we’ve managed to get this deal done. I think, with lads we already have here, he will give us a completely different dimension in certain games when we haven’t had that in the past."

Joe's arrival comes shortly before the start of pre-season training, and the timing clearly suited him, as he said: "I’m delighted to get it all done so early and to get going and meet the boys. I’m also looking forward to working with a great manager who’s shown he knows how to win games - hopefully, this year, that leads to promotion."

A product of Manchester City's Academy, Bury-born Joe headed north to Aberdeen as a teenager in the summer of 2015, where he made two first-team appearances and had a successful loan spell with Stranraer before Blackburn handed him a 12-month contract with an option for a further 12 months, following a spectacular trial period at Ewood Park in which he scored a hat-trick and a brace in friendly games.

Goals on his debut in the EFL Trophy against Stoke City under-21s and in the league against Fleetwood Town were followed by another against Barnet in the FA Cup, making it three in four games for Rovers, and after he helped them to promotion back to the Championship the following season, he joined Blackpool for an undisclosed fee in August 2019.

After again underlining his ability to score goals in League One and the EFL Trophy, he signed for Scunthorpe United for an undisclosed fee in January 2022, where he made 16 appearances in a difficult campaign for the Iron that ended in relegation from the Football League.

In all, he scored 11 goals in 36 league outings for them before being snapped up by then-Oldham boss David Unsworth on a three-year deal in December 2022.

Capped by England C, we are delighted to welcome Joe to The J.Davidson Stadium, and everyone at the club wishes him a successful time in Alty colours.

AFC Fleece Scarf

Altrincham FC

AFC Fleece Scarf

£20.00 GBP