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Town complete signing of Shaun Whalley

Shrewsbury | Sport | Published:

Shrewsbury Town have completed the signing of Luton winger Shaun Whalley on a free transfer.

The 27-year-old, who has been released from Kenilworth Road, has agreed a two-year deal after the club received clearance on his medical.

Former AFC Telford United loan wideman Whalley becomes boss Micky Mellon's fourth summer signing, after left-back Mat Sadler and central midfielders Martin Woods and Abu Ogogo.

Chief executive Matt Williams believes Whalley will help the Town team become more flexible at the higher level.

Williams said: "He's someone Micky has been aware of and he rates him and thinks he can get the most out of him.

"As a winger with real pace and some tricks, he offers us something we haven't got. We need to be more flexible with our formation in League One.

"At times last season in League Two when we played 3-5-2, we didn't have the flexibility to go to 4-3-3, 4-5-1 and 4-4-2, and we need that now.

"Yes, we'd all love to sign Cristiano Ronaldo, but we have to trust the manager with what he's doing.

"Shaun's desperate to impress and he's still at an age where he wants to prove himself and we're going to give him that opportunity.

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"We want players that are determined and have that hunger and so the fact he's 27 doesn't matter to us."

Whalley has been dubbed 'the express train' for his ability to change gear to beat opponents and Williams believes he will add pace to the side.

He said: "When you look at League One, you need pace, particularly in the wide areas and 'up top' which we weren't blessed with so much last season.

"So when Shaun became available, Micky was keen to bring him in. Shaun will add something different to the squad and give Micky the flexibility to switch systems."

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Merseyside-born Whalley started his career at Chester before spells in non-league with Runcorn and Witton Albion, but made his mark in the Football League at Accrington Stanley.

Joining them in 2007 after a loan spell, he made 51 appearances there prior to a move to Wrexham, where he scored four times in 16 Conference Premier outings in 2008-09.

Whalley then notched 15 goals in 32 games for Droylsden in 2009-10, before three in 16 for Hyde the following season.

But it was in a two-year spell at Southport, who he joined in 2011, that he really made a name for himself after scoring 27 times in 101 games, which earned him a switch to Luton.

At Kenilworth Road, Whalley made 34 league appearances over two seasons, including one as substitute in the 0-0 draw at home to Town in January.

And while he was with the Hatters, a loan spell at Telford, where he netted five times in 18 outings, enabled him became the only player to win the Conference North and Premier title-winning medals in one season.

The departure of Ashley Vincent paved the way for Whalley's arrival.

The 30-year-old's exit was confirmed after his contract, which had a year to run, was cancelled by mutual agreement earlier this week.

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