City want Coms in defence

James Comley returns to action for the Saints following his World Cup qualifying exploits earlier in

James Comley returns to action for the Saints following his World Cup qualifying exploits earlier in the week. Picture: Leigh Page - Credit: Archant

St Albans City want James Comley to switch to centre-back should he re-sign for the club.

The 24-year-old is yet to commit to the Saints, although joint manager James Gray is ‘confident’ that Comley will sign on the dotted line.

If he does, he could see more time alongside Darren Locke at the heart of the defence. Comley was outstanding at centre-back at the tail end of last season, filling in for Ian Gayle when he returned to Dagenham and Redbridge and Omar Beckles, who missed games following a family tragedy.

Those performances have convinced Gray that Comley’s future lines at centre-back, rather than midfield.

“I’m confident of signing Coms,” Gray told the Herts Ad.

“We’ve got him pegged for a defensive role - I’m hoping we can convince him to be a centre half. I saw enough in those games to know that he can thrive there.

“It’s a great opportunity for him to have a massive career at centre-half. We’ve spoken to him about it and he’s relatively happy. It’s not a foreign position to him – he played there in youth football and at Crystal Palace.”

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He added: “Coms is very adaptable. He can play various positions, which will be vital this year because we will have a slightly smaller squad.”

It has been a productive week for the Saints, with the announcement of eight signings.

Joe Welch, Sam Corcoran, Lee Chappell, Locke, Beckles, Simon Thomas, John Kyriacou and Danny Green have all committed for the upcoming season. So far, none of last season’s squad have left the club.

“No one has said no; they’re buying into the way we want to [manage the team],” said Gray.

“I’m full of confidence [for this season] because of the way we finished. I’ve said I’d be happy with the same squad and that’s still the case. I’m not looking to make wholesale changes.”

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