Sampson disappointed at Gulliver exit

Steelmen boss Ian Sampson
Steelmen boss Ian Sampson

Ian Sampson has admitted he is “disappointed” with Phil Gulliver’s decision to leave Corby Town and join King’s Lynn Town.

The former captain had signed a non-contract deal with the Steelmen earlier this summer but has made the move to the Evo-Stik Northern League Division One side after they made a seven-day approach for the centre-half.

And Sampson conceded he is beginning to find out how the non-League game operates after the loss of Gulliver.

“He did sign up here on a non-contract form and, as I am now finding out, there isn’t a great deal you can do if someone comes in with a seven-day approach and then dangles a big carrot in front of a player,” Sampson said.

“I am a bit disappointed because Phil was a part of our plans but, to be fair to him, when he signed up again he did so having taken a reasonable pay cut.

“So there was always a chance something like this could happen and King’s Lynn have come in and offered him more money.

“There is nothing we can do about that and Phil leaves with our best wishes. He has been a good player for Corby over the past few years.

“We are trying hard to pin down a squad for the new season and now we have a big hole to fill. The task of doing that has already started.”

Linnets manager Gary Setchell, meanwhile, was delighted to clinch Gulliver’s signature.

He said: “It’s a huge signing. This lad could go and play in the Conference now, no doubt about it. He was captain of Corby last year in the Conference North. He’s not in his 30s yet, he’s a 100pc winner and he’s got a lot of experience at a lot of good football clubs.

“It’s been hard work to get him and I’ve had to pull on my Rushden contacts to do it because he joined them as I left but we had a lot of mutual friends. When Sam Gaughran left I knew I had to raise the bar really and there was a slim chance of getting Phil. I’m delighted.”