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Paul Mitchell Interview: Part 2

4 June 2015

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In the second half of our interview with our head of development/recruitment, Paul Mitchell talks about how he goes about finding players that could become Spireites stars.

The club's scouting network, spearheaded by Mitchell, has unearthered considerable young talents in recent years - with this year's emergence of former non-league defender Charlie Raglan from FC United merely the latest example.

"We've got a lot of players on our database to start with and it's an ongoing procedure," said Mitchelll. "Whether you go a season without needing any players or you need a load of players you've still got to do your research, watch players and get the information on them.

"Whatever Dean says, we'll have an idea of what sort of players are available in those positions and who'd be available to us, who would realistically want to come to us and whether we can afford them. That's all in place already, it's just a case of knowing what Dean is looking for."

Striker Rai Simons, who will join up with the club this summer after his move from Ilkeston, will be trying to make an impression in 2015/16 and Mitchell will be busy looking at the potential of other signings coming in to the club before August.

He said: "While it is still quite a busy time, there is a bit of a lull at the minute because from a player point of view players are still in contracts so no-one's really making any moves as such.

"We've only got three players out of contract - Drew Talbot's re-signed, which is great news for the club - and that just leaves Armand Gnanduillet and Jimmy Ryan out of contract. So we're quite okay really.

"We're quite stable as a club this summer, so there might not be a lot of big changes, it depends on the comings and goings and you can never know which squad you'll have to start with."

Mitchell explained that while the summer transfer window is always a busy time for player movements, this early in pre-season makes transfer dealings difficult to complete.

"You've got to know which players are getting released," he said. "Which is common knowledge anyway. We know before the end of the season whose contracts are expiring, so the data is already all in place.

"A lot of players are now away, and especially a lot are away for half term with their kids and their families. Players are keeping their options open, there's not a lot of movement as you can see around the leagues at the minute.

"It mainly comes at the back end of July when you start to see a lot of movement."

Finally, Mitchell gave his hopes for the coming Spireites season, and was clear in what he feels the club can achieve.

"We want to finish where we finished last season or maybe above," he said. "I'm a big believer and I've said to Dean that if we don't finish in the same position or above then we'll have gone backwards a little bit - so that's the challenge."

The full interview is available to watch now on Spireites Player.

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