Shrewsbury Town boss John Askey: Dean Henderson a tough act to follow
Shrewsbury Town manager John Askey insists signing goalkeepers is a high priority – but acknowledges former loanee Dean Henderson is a very tough act to follow.
Salop are on the lookout for shot-stoppers after Henderson returned to Manchester United and Craig MacGillivray turned down a new contract to join League One rivals Portsmouth.
Third choice Shaun Rowley was released too, so 18-year-old Cameron Gregory – who recently penned professional terms – is their only current goalkeeping option.
“We need to replace the goalkeeper,” said Askey.
“It’s going to be a hard act to follow – I believe (Dean) was as good a keeper as there was last season in the league.
“The priority now is to get a goalkeeper in.”
Henderson was a big fan favourite during his time at the Montgomery Waters Meadow.
The 21-year-old made 48 appearances for Town and, with his contract at Old Trafford expiring, has been linked with moves to Fulham, Stoke City and Bristol City.
MacGillivray played 14 times after joining from Walsall.
Askey can call on the expertise of assistant John Filan and goalkeeping coach Danny Coyne – both former keepers – in the search for replacements.
When asked if the experience of those two will be key, he said: “Yes, that’s it, and the contacts as well. It’s going to be difficult to replace the goalkeeper but it’s a vital position.
“We need to make sure we get it right.
"With Danny and John, I’ve got two who know what it’s like so hopefully they can help me in picking one.”
Meanwhile, Peterborough owner Darragh MacAnthony has confirmed he wanted to take Salop’s new signing Fejiri Okenabirhie to the club.
MacAnthony said on Twitter the former Dagenham & Redbridge striker, who signed at wo-year deal with Town, ‘hit all necessary numbers on our gem machine’ – but boss Steve Evans was not keen.
Reports have also linked Shrewsbury with Posh midfielder Anthony Grant.
The 31-year-old, who began his career at Chelsea, has also played for Southend, Stevenage, Crewe and Port Vale.
But he is not understood to be a target for Town at this time.