Atkinson’s return could lead to new striker at Crawley Town

Crawley v Plymouth. Football. Chris Atkinson. Pic Jack Beard DT4A3144 SUS-160222-170612001
Crawley v Plymouth. Football. Chris Atkinson. Pic Jack Beard DT4A3144 SUS-160222-170612001

Crawley Town midfielder Chris Atkinson’s return to parent club Crewe Alexandra could lead to Reds bringing in a new striker.

Atkinson returned to the League One club today having completed a two-month loan.

Crawley Town V Luton Town - Rhys Murphy celebrates his equaliser (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-151017-171144008

Crawley Town V Luton Town - Rhys Murphy celebrates his equaliser (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-151017-171144008

Atkinson made seven appearances including five starts after making his debut against Notts County on January 16.

A statement on the Crawley Town website said: “The club would like to thank Chris for his efforts at the club and wish him all the best for the future.”

Crawley manager Mark Yates hinted the funds freed up could create space for a new forward.

He said: “Chris Atkinson will go back after today’s game and so there is one slot left for a player.

“We are speaking to a couple of clubs but the one I want, I can’t quite get at the moment. He is too close to their first team.

“We have missed a lot of strikers who have gone elsewhere while we haven’t been able to do a great deal.

“It is obviously a position we are looking for and if we get the right one then I am more than happy to bring him into the fold.”

Yates revealed that Rhys Murphy will not be making a return after an attempt to bring him back fell through during the January transfer window.

Yates revealed: “We can’t (bring Murphy back). We made a massive play on the last day of the transfer window to bring him in but after that we literally can’t.

“He would have been dead keen, I spoke to him agent. His agent has phoned me a couple of times.

“But when you have taken a player for the 93 days, you can’t retake them on a loan. It could only be a window to window deal and we have missed that opportunity.

“We would have loved to have had Rhys around the place, but once February 1 passed then it was never a go-er.”

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