Thursday 10th June 2021

PAUL PATON has his reasons for wanting to come to Dumbarton.

They may even boil right down to the Erskine Bridge.

The experienced midfielder was sold on a move to Sons by what manager Stevie Farrell and his assistant Frank McKeown had to say over recent days and weeks.

It also offers him a return to the senior arena, which he was reminded of by his loan spell to Airdrieonians from East Kilbride last season.

But sometimes it comes down to the simple things as well. For the Paisley man, access to training and games is set to be easy from here.

Speaking to www.dumbartonfootballclub.com, Paul said: “I’m looking forward to it. When (assistant manager) Frank McKeown called me I was interested straight away.

“I’ve been in negotiations with a few different teams, but I’m coming to Dumbarton for all sorts of reasons – footballing and personal.

“It even comes down to things like travelling to training and games. I’m from Paisley, so it’s just over the water.

“I played in the playoff semi-finals for Airdrieonians to get promoted to the Championship. I had a small hamstring injury, which meant I missed the final, but that’s sorted now.

“I’m looking to put it behind me and looking forward to getting back playing football.

“It was a strange time last year. East Kilbride offered me a good deal at difficult times with Covid and nobody knowing what was going to happen.

“I felt that the time was right to go part-time. I had offers higher up, but due to the virus they couldn’t match East Kilbride.

“When I went to Airdrie, I enjoyed being senior again. I’m on 498 senior games, so I’m determined to get to 500.

“Hopefully I will reach that during the Premier Sports Cup fixtures.”

Paul is now the fifth player to finish last season playing for either Airdrieonians or Dumbarton, and start the next one playing for the other.

He’s had high standards all through his career, which has seen him win promotion twice, with Queen’s Park and Partick Thistle.

And it’s not something he intends to stop now.

He added: “I’ve been paying close attention to League One and it’s been a bit strange how it’s all been happening.

“Myself and Eoghan Stokes have been going from Airdrie to Dumbarton and a few Sons players have been going there.

“It’s a bit of a strange transfer market, but obviously the manager is putting a good squad together and hopefully we can finish higher than last season.

“I’m not coming here to finish ninth. I’m coming here to join a good group of players. I’m not going to start seeing targets but I’m sure the manager’s vision isn’t to finish ninth or tenth.

“Once we get the boys together, the manager will tell us what he wants from us. We might keep targets within the squad, we might not.

“I’ve not had much time off, but it will be good to meet the boys and staff and start planning for next season.

“Right from the word go we’ll be setting good standards, both for the staff and the players, and we’ll hope to build on that.”

Andy Galloway

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