Ace Josh returns to Hastings

Josh Jirbandey (right) in action for Hastings United against Harrogate Town last season. Picture courtesy Gerard Binks
Josh Jirbandey (right) in action for Hastings United against Harrogate Town last season. Picture courtesy Gerard Binks
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Josh Jirbandey is back at Hastings United Football Club.

The popular and accomplished central defender signed for United this week following a short spell with Lewes. Jirbandey is available for the next two months before returning to university in California at the start of April.

The 22-year-old was due to play in the postponed under-21 game last night (Thursday), but could go straight into the first team for the visit of Faversham Town tomorrow if captain Ben Judge fails to shake off a neck problem.

United manager Terry White said: “Obviously getting JJ in is a big boost for the club. It’s not ideal (that he will miss the last month of the campaign), but when you’ve got a player of JJ’s calibre and how fondly he’s thought of at the club, I couldn’t turn it down.”

White is also hoping to bring in a couple of players from Skrill South clubs in time for tomorrow’s game, assuming it beats the weather.

One of them is ballplaying midfielder Tom O’Connor, who caught the eye during five early season appearances for United after dual-registering with Bromley. The 17-year-old is expected to spend the rest of the season at The Pilot Field.

White said: “I’ve watched him play for Bromley reserves and youth team, and I like what I see. He’s got a real bit of quality about him.”

In addition to the two players he is aiming to bring in by tomorrow, White has issued a seven-day approach for a forward who he’s “hopeful” will come on board. The new boss wants to have four good strikers at his disposal.

Off the field, White is probably going to bring Mark Stapley back to the club as part of his backroom staff. Stapley was in the United dugout last season and was caretaker boss with White at the start of this term before being asked to leave the club in September.