Exeter City manager Matt Taylor says new signing Nigel Atangana will add good size and stature to the team following his move to the club.
The former Cheltenham Town midfielder signed for the Grecians on a two-year deal ahead of the 2019/20 season, and the City boss is pleased to have secured the signing of the Frenchman.
On his first signing of the summer, Matt said: “He’s someone that we’ve watched and monitored for a number of seasons now. He fits the bill in terms of the profile of that position that we’re after.
“He has a good size and good stature; he’ll sit in the middle of the field and break up opposition play, but also dictate the way we play. He’s not going to be a defensive player all the time because I know he can get box-to-box and he can score goals so I know he can contribute to the team going forward. He’ll be able to do a job for us defensively which will hopefully free up some of our attack-minded midfielders around him, and he’ll give the back four a bit of a platform to work off.”
The 29-year-old picked up a serious achilles injury midway through last season, and having signed a deal which will keep him at St James Park for two years, Matt says there is no need to rush him into first team action as the club look to make sure the midfielder can be an effective acquisition for the Grecians.
Matt continued: “He’s got good references as a player and as a character, obviously he had a serious injury midway through last season so we’re putting a bit of an emphasis on his rehab to start his career at Exeter City.
“He’s signed a two-year deal for a reason so there’s no real importance on a rush back to the first two months of the season or the first couple of weeks of the season. It’s a two-year contract for a reason. We’re getting a good player.”
With the Grecians looking to push towards the top end of League Two next season, Matt believes that with the signing of Nigel, and with some more additions this summer, then his side can get to where they want to be.
“He (Nigel) was up there on our list of targets,” said Matt. "We got him down here and showed him the training ground and the stadium. We gave him an idea of what we want to achieve and where we want to be close to next season. Having come so close this season we feel that if we recruit well, and Nigel will be a part of that, then we’ll give ourselves a chance.”
Having acted quickly following the end of the season in early May, Matt says he is keen to continue adding to his squad but understands that at times they will need to be patient this summer, but if the opportunity arises then the City boss will look to sign players as early as he can.
He continued: “I want to do as much business as I can early, especially in terms of top targets, if they’re available then I’ll move towards those players. Some players will wait, some will want to get their future secured, and in terms of Nigel’s situation that’s one we pushed pretty early.
“We’re going to have to be patient sometimes, and others if a deal is there to be done then we’re going to do it. The work we’ve done in the last four or five months will stand us in good stead, it’s not to say that we’re going to do all of our business in the next couple of weeks, but it will go on throughout the window.
“We’re trying to recruit good players, it’s easier said than done, but if you get them down to the training ground at the moment, and to the stadium, then hopefully they can buy into what we’re trying to do here.”
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