Frontman Newman all set for a Diamonds return

Jake Newman, pictured celebrating a goal for Stamford last season, is set to return to AFC Rushden & Diamonds for the new campaign
Jake Newman, pictured celebrating a goal for Stamford last season, is set to return to AFC Rushden & Diamonds for the new campaign

Andy Peaks says he has “shaken hands” on a deal with Jake Newman that will see the frontman return to AFC Rushden & Diamonds for next season.

The striker scored 26 goals in 37 appearances in Diamonds’ first-ever season as a senior club during the 2012-13 United Counties League Division One campaign.

Since then, Newman has played for the likes of Kettering Town, Wellingborough Town, Spalding United and was most recently with Stamford.

But he is now set to rejoin Diamonds as they prepare for the new surroundings of the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Division One South.

Peaks insists the club will not be officially confirming any new additions or names of players who have been retained until they hold their ‘signing day’ on July 2.

But he was happy to clarify the situation after Newman had been linked with a return to Diamonds.

“I have shaken hands on a deal with Jake and, as far as I am concerned, that means it’s done,” Peaks said.

“We agreed the deal and Jake will sign for us, which is great because he is a good player with a proven record of scoring goals.

“I have spoken to a number of players, there are plenty irons in the fire.

“There are some who have chosen to take a different path and that’s their decision.

“I am certainly not panicking about it at all.

“I am sure we will pick up a couple during pre-season but the truth is, we haven’t got a pot of gold like some clubs have.

“I am very confident that, by the time the season starts, we will be competitive.”

Diamonds have seen a number of last season’s squad already depart during the summer.

Striker Jack Bowen has signed for Vanarama National League North club Brackley Town while both Elliot Sandy and Andy Hall have gone to Stamford, who will be in Diamonds’ division next season.

Midfielder James Jepson, meanwhile, will also come up against Peaks in the dugout in the new campaign after he was appointed the new manager of Rugby Town.