08:58 13th September 2013
by Andrew Poole
Accomplished defender puts pen-to-paper...
THE SADDLERS have been given a boost with the news that highly-rated central defender, Paul Downing, has agreed a new deal that secures him to the club until the summer of 2015.
The 21 year-old has developed well since arriving from West Bromwich Albion in August 2012 and is now a key member of the back-line, putting in a string of accomplished performances.
“I’m really pleased that Paul has signed this new deal,” said manager, Dean Smith. “He’s done really well since he broke into the team and has put in some consistent and mature displays.
“With the way he has played and developed since he has been here, he deserves it. It’s important for the club and the direction in which we want to go that players like Paul are signed up on longer deals.
“He’s a hard-working lad who was given an excellent grounding in the game at West Bromwich Albion and has taken the chance that has been presented to him here.
“He had to be patient initially, but he’s grabbed his opportunity and it’s a real boost that he has committed his future to us and what we are trying to achieve here.”
Downing added: “I’m happy that the deal has been done and now I want to concentrate on the rest of the season.
“I’m happy here; I’m a local lad who is really enjoying his football and I am delighted with the progress that I have made since I have been at the club.
“My improvement is a credit to the staff and players and now I want to focus on carrying that on. I’m still young and learning all of the time.”
Saddlers Player subscribers can see an interview with Paul Downing...