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12:00 25th February 2016

by Dale Moon

Bournemouth midfielder joins on loan until the end of the season…

WALSALL Football Club can today confirm the loan signing of AFC Bournemouth midfielder Josh Wakefield until the end of the season, with a view to a permanent deal in the summer.

The 22-year old has been training with the Saddlers for a number of weeks having also featured in a development squad fixture against Wigan Athletic earlier this month.

Wakefield signed for the Cherries at the age of 12 when current Saddlers boss Sean O’Driscoll was in charge. He turned professional in April 2012 and has since made four substitute appearances for the senior side.

The Surrey-born midfielder continued his development away from Dean Court, enjoying loan spells with non-league Welling United, Torquay United and most recently Yeovil Town, where he appeared five times for the League Two outfit.

"Bournemouth have been really good in allowing Josh to come here initially for a month and at no cost with a view to making the move permanent," said O'Driscoll. “With so many players out of contract this summer, as well as focusing on our current task in hand, we also have to have one eye on the future, and look to bring players in that fit into this club’s philosophy and financial structure for the long term.

“Josh is well thought of at Bournemouth. He's technically good with an excellent attitude and has integrated well with the group since he has been with us.

"We’re looking forward to working with him in the coming months.”

Wakefield has been handed the number 11 shirt and is eligible to feature in Saturday's League One clash at Burton Albion, subject to Football League and Premier League clearance.

“I’m really pleased it’s gone through,” said Wakefield. “I’ve been at the club for about three weeks now so I’ve got used to the place and the players.

“Everyone has been great. They’re a really nice bunch of lads and have made me feel really welcome.

“I’ve obviously been on loan at a lot of clubs so I know what to expect and I’m just going to work hard and try to hit the ground running.

“I’ve been involved in the last few weeks of training and you notice straight away that the lads have got a lot of quality so it’s no wonder why the club is up there near the top of the league.

“I’m not going to set myself any personal targets. I just want to take every training session as it comes and help the side achieve what they want to this season.

“I’ve been at Bournemouth since I was twelve so I’ve seen the club nearly going into administration and now flying high in the Premier League so a lot has changed.

“It’s a fantastic club to be at for a young player but I’m here now and I want to try and impress the Manager.

“The only thing that’ll take some getting used to is moving further north because it feels a lot colder up here!”

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