Frickley Athletic sign former Rotherham United junior
Former Rotherham United junior Joe Stacey is the latest addition to Frickley Athletic's squad ahead of the 2021-22 season.
The wing-back or wide player has arrived from Alfreton and joins a number of exciting signings to commit to Dave Frecklington's team as they look to put a promotion campaign together in the Northern Premier League.
Stacey began with Football League One side Rotherham and has experience with Sheffield FC at U21 and first team level as well as enjoying several years playing and studying in America.
He cannot wait to get stuck in with Frickley and explained how the move came about: "I’d gotten in touch with the skip, Danny Burns as we used to play at Rotherham together and he mentioned how Frickley had got great potential this season and a top set of lads.
"When the gaffer called me after having a few training sessions I was delighted to sign, I’ve enjoyed the short time I’ve had here already with the team and I really think it’s the start of a great season for both myself and the lads.
"Personally, I just want to play. I spent a lot of time watching games last season and it made me realise I just want to be on the pitch playing.
"I feel like I can learn a lot from some of the guys we’ve got this season too, so definitely looking for some personal development along the way.
"As a team I really hope we can get promotion. As cliched as it may sound. I think we’ve got the talent to do so."
Stacey told Frickley fans what they can expect to see from him: "I’m an attacking minded wing back/winger. Very passionate on the pitch, I hate losing. Love to get forward and deliver crosses into the box.
"I started off when I was young playing at Rotherham United up until I was 15, got released and thought that was the end of it. Got myself playing men's football at 16 which toughened me up and went on to play with Sheffield FC U21s.
"Once I turned 18 I decided to pursue a scholarship in America, four years in Virginia at Bluefield College and summer of 2019 in Chattanooga playing USL2 before returning home in 2019 where I had a short stint with Sheffield FC. Joined Alfreton Town last season and now here at Frickley."
On his time in the USA, Stacey added: "I'd heard about the possibility of going to America on a scholarship from a close friend and it sounded like the perfect option for me. I thought that if football wasn’t going to work out I could always have a degree to fall back on.
"Fortunately I had a good four years over there, reaching national tournaments with my college and earning multiple personal awards.
"Away from the football it was the best experience I’ve had. Being away from home made me do some growing up and become more independent. It’s definitely something I can say I don’t regret doing.
"I’d say I missed the physicality of the English game when I was over there. I’d be constantly pulled up about some of the challenges I was putting in when they’d not even be questioned over here. Besides that it has to be the banter. The Americans just didn’t get it half the time.
"I’d say I missed the cold weather the least, It was usually pretty hot and humid over there so it was always nice not having to worry if a game was going to be called off."