Imps sign Herd as McClean deal falls through

Imps boss Chris Sutton has bolstered his threadbare squad with the loan signing of Chris Herd from Aston Villa. | Photo: Lincoln City F.C.
Imps boss Chris Sutton has bolstered his threadbare squad with the loan signing of Chris Herd from Aston Villa. | Photo: Lincoln City F.C.

Lincoln City boss Chris Sutton has bolstered his threadbare squad ahead of the Imps’ FA Cup second-round match at non-league Northwich Victoria with the loan signing of Aston Villa midfielder Chris Herd.

Thursday was the last day that clubs can make short term loan signings until January 1st, and at that day’s press conference Sutton was eager to add a new signing.

“We are actively trying to get someone in today to cover for some of the players. We hope he can play Saturday. He can play a number of positions, which at the moment is important for us as we’re struggling in a number of positions. We’ve got a big injury list and we’re bare so having somebody who can play a number of positions is probably the sensible thing to do at the moment.”

Herd, an Australian Under 20 international will go straight into the squad to face non-league Northwich in the televised FA Cup game on Saturday. The midfielder, who has yet to feature in Villa’s first team, has had experience in the Football League after loan spells with Port Vale and Wycombe Wanderers.

Sutton was dealt a transfer blow last night with the news that Irish winger James McClean has turned down a move to Sincil Bank. The Northern Ireland Under 21 international was set to sign for the Imps from Derry City, who are currently in financial turmoil. However, just days after his agent said signing for Lincoln was a formality, McClean pulled out due to feeling “homesick”.

Sutton was disappointed with McClean’s u-turn, who had spent two day’s training with Lincoln City, and watched the 0-0 derby with Grimsby Town in the stands last Saturday.

“James’s father phoned me yesterday and told us James was homesick and will be returning to Ireland. I thought two days was a little short. He could have given it a week but that’s unfortunate for us as he’s impressed [us] when we’ve seen him.”

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