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Matlock makes stunning signing in former Bolton, Rochdale, Blackpool, Northampton player

Matlock Town makes a stunning signing in a former Bolton, Rochdale, Blackpool, Northampton player aged 27, so he’s got plenty left to give still.

The Northern Premier League Premier Division outfit have managed to bring in Joe Bunney, with many fans saying they’re surprised he’s dropped down the leagues for non league football.

The Gladiators gave Bunney his debut in their away game against South Shields at the weekend, and helped Matlock to win 1-0 and send them 4th in the table.

Bunney was incredibly close to scoring on his first game in a Matlock shirt, however he did provide an assist to Alex Byrne in the second half of the game.


Matlock Town manager Paul Phillips says his latest recruit Joe Bunney is a “massive signing” for the Gladiators.

Bunney’s signing was confirmed on Friday afternoon and he will go straight into the Matlock squad for tomorrow’s trip to South Shields.

The 27-year-old, who is over six feet tall, can play in a variety of positions and has considerable Football League experience.

He started out at Lancaster City scoring eleven goals in nineteen appearances before joining Kendal Town scoring three times in only seven games. Moves to Stockport County and Northwich Victoria followed before in 2013 he joined Rochdale on the back of netting nineteen goals in 26 games for the Vics.

He was converted to a defensive position by Dale manager Keith Hill in a five years stay at Spotland spanning 122 games before moving to Northampton Town. He then went on loan to Blackpool and returned to Rochdale on loan before playing at Bolton Wanderers last season, being released in the summer.

“He’s a massive signing for us, when you look at where he’s played he’ll bring professionalism in with him and also add competition for places. He can play as a centre forward where we see him operating for us, or as a left winger or left back. Having played in the league, I know he’s anxious to get back there. He’s recognised what we’re wanting to achieve here he wants to do the best he can for the club and hasn’t come for the money. I’m delighted to have him on board” said Phillips.

With Liam Hughes beginning a three games ban starting at Grantham on Tuesday, Bunney’s signing looks to have come at just the right time for the Gladiators. Ian Richardson, Matlock Match Secretary


2011–2012 – Lancaster City – 19 apps (11 goals)
2012 – Kendal Town – 7 apps (3 goals)
2012 – Stockport County – 1 app (0 goals)
2012–2013 – Northwich Victoria – 26 apps (19 goals)
2013–2018 – Rochdale – 122 apps (16 goals)
2018–2019 – Northampton Town – 16 apps (0 goals)
2018–2019 → Blackpool (loan) – 5 apps (0 goals)
2019 → Rochdale (loan) – 16 apps (0 goals)
2019–2020 – Bolton Wanderers – 2 apps (0 goals)
2020-2021 – Matlock Town – 1 app

Fans gave their reaction as Matlock makes a stunning signing in former Bolton, Rochdale, Blackpool, Northampton player Joe Bunney…

@Jakewoods1993: Unreal piece of business

@Ethan_RUFC: How the fuck

@jack_2831: Some signing that

@SmithJournalist: Hes just been released by Bolton Wanderers. BOLTON.

@Keyob29: Some fucking signing that

@ForeverAYellow: Er, what?! That is some coup for Matlock. Fingers crossed he does well, the Northern Premier League going to be tougher than ever this season (should it finish)

Tim Ogden: Jeez surely he’s still EFL quality right?

James Ahmed: Was just speaking about him, he never really had a chance at bolton, got badly injured in a car crash. Best of luck to him

Steven Kinder: Why would he drop down the leagues so far?

Ian Richardson: Why would Neil Danns sign for Radcliffe, why would Leroy Leta sign for Nuneaton, why would Craig Machail-Smith join Bedford, why would Kilgallon sign for Buxton, it happens in non league football, we might see quite a few players dropping down to non league with this Covid 19 crap about.

Steven Kinder: Ian Richardson they’re all 36-37 at the end of their careers though. This lad is only 27.

Paul Kendall: listen to the interview, he wants it as a stepping stone to get back in to league footy. and if he stays a season and gets us promoted and he moves on both happy

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