Rotherham United’s recruitment drive is to gather pace under new boss Alan Stubbs after the capture of flying winger Anthony Forde.
The 22-year-old has completed a three-year deal to become the first Millers arrival since Stubbs was appointed four weeks ago.
And there will be more to come as the transfer market moves up a gear and Stubbs puts together his squad for next season’s Championship campaign.
“Everyone is starting to come back for pre-season training. That means things will speed up as clubs will be in a position to make more firm decisions,” the manager said.
Rotherham have paid Walsall an undisclosed fee for Republic of Ireland under-21 international Forde. Stubbs wanted to sign the youngster when he was in charge at Hibernian last year but the Edinburgh outfit couldn’t afford to act.
“I’m shopping in a different market now,” the 44-year-old said. “Anthony is a young, exciting player. He’s fast, technically good and will chip in with goals.
“He gives us a few options. He can operate at the top of a diamond or play left or right. He’s comfortable on either flank.
“He’s very attacking. He likes to run at defenders, which is what we want. But he’s also a hard worker. He’s a team player.”
Stubbs is looking for a mix of long-term loan deals, free transfers and permanent signings from other clubs.
Forde wasn’t the only new face at the Millers’ Roundwood base today as pre-season training got under way and Stubbs met his players collectively for the first time.
Andy Holden, who was part of Stubb’s backroom staff at Hibs, has been brought in as first-team coach. Holden, aged 53, coached Stubbs when the Liverpudlian was a player with Everton.
“We have a long history together,” Stubbs said. “He’s great to work with and a good man to bounce ideas off.”
Millwall striker Lee Gregory and Walsall centre-forward Tom Bradshaw are thought to be on Rotherham’s list of possible targets. Their clubs are asking for big money.
Stubbs said: “I don’t like to comment on speculation about individual players.”