3rd Dec, 2016

Robins plan move for ex-QPR winger

Evesham Editorial 28th Jul, 2016 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

THE make-up of Evesham United’s squad for the new season will be a lot clearer in the next few days – for good and bad.

The Robins are hopeful of signing former Cardiff City and QPR winger Leon Jeanne, who has figured in the last two friendlies.

They will also find out whether Liam Harding will be ruled out for the season.

The midfielder/defender suffered a knee injury in the warm-up game against Cheltenham Town and he is due to undergo an MRI scan to assess the damage. The Robins, already hit by a series of injuries in pre-season, fear it could be a torn anterior cruciate ligament which would mean a lengthy absence.

Manager Paul Collicutt is looking to add Jeanne to his ranks after the one-time Wales Under-21 international impressed against Kidderminster Harriers and Littleton.

The 35-year-old Jeanne is looking to rebuild his career after off the pitch problems and Collicutt is prepared to offer him the opportunity.

He is set to feature in tomorrow’s (Saturday) friendly at home to Stourbridge before United end their warm-up programme against visitors Malvern Town on Tuesday.

Jeanne is a friend of Evesham midfielder Ashley Williams and both players excelled in a 7-0 win against Midland League Division One neighbours Littleton on Tuesday at the Spiers & Hartwell Jubilee Stadium.

Stand-out player Jeanne had a hand in the opening two goals, while midfield dynamo Williams controlled things in the middle of the park and scored arguably the best goal of the game.

Striker Lance Smith came off the bench in the second half and scored a hat-trick to add to the brace he notched against Forest Green Rovers in United’s opening pre-season friendly.

To their credit, Andy Robbins’ Littleton side put up a brave display but faded in the second half and could not cope with Evesham’s speed and movement.

New signing Sam Pearson spooned an early opportunity before the former Pegasus Juniors frontman made amends on 14 minutes with a smart finish to put away Jeanne’s ring-wing cross.

Littleton stopper Haydn Whitcombe denied Joe Turley with a fingertip save but he was beaten for a second time leading up to half time when Jeanne made a sparkling run down the right to cross and Ben Prictor headed home.

Pearson turned provider two minutes after half time with a measured pass that released Paul Fahy who coolly slotted past Whitcombe to make it 3-0.

United continued to pile men forward and Elliot Kennedy’s header was cleared off the line before Williams made it 4-0 in the 56th minute with a rasping drive.

In rare action at the other end, United keeper Sam Gilder was at full stretch to keep out Kyonn Edwards but then Smith on 79 minutes used his pace to round Whitcombe before rolling home number five.

Two minutes later, Smith arrived at the far post to convert Lewis Binns’ low cross for 6-0 and three minutes from time completed his hat-trick from Kennedy’s driven cross from close range.

Evesham had bowed out of the Worcestershire Senior Cup last Thursday, losing 3-0 at home to Kidderminster in the semi-final.

George Taylor and Jordan Murphy (2) netted for Harriers before the Robins’ Nick Stanley had a late penalty saved.