We are delighted to announce that Gary Liddle will become a South Shields player on July 1st.
The experienced defender played almost 40 times in all competitions for League Two side Hartlepool United last season, but opted not to extend his contract with the County Durham-based club.
Liddle has enjoyed a stellar career in the Football League and his arrival – the club’s fourth signing of the summer – is therefore a significant coup for the Mariners.
The 35-year-old has more than 700 senior appearances to his name, having spent all but one-and-a-half years of his 16-year career in the Football League.
He represented Pools for more than half of those games but also had spells with Notts County, Bradford City, Chesterfield, Carlisle United and Walsall.
Liddle has two promotions on his CV from his time at Hartlepool – the most recent of which came in 2020-21 as the club was promoted from the National League via the play-offs.
The Middlesbrough Academy product is hoping to add at least one more during his time in claret and blue.
He said: “I’m thrilled to be here.
“I spoke to the chairman and the manager regarding the ambitions of the club and what it has got planned not just this season but going forward as well, and it’s a really exciting project that I want to get my teeth stuck into.
“It was always going to be a tough decision, because Hartlepool showed they wanted to keep me around next season by offering me a contract.
“I could have had it easy and just stayed at Hartlepool but I want to finish my career being successful and helping another club.
“South Shields is a good and ambitious club with an ambitious owner and ambitious manager, and I’m thrilled to be part of helping them drive to have that success.”
South Shields manager Kevin Phillips said: “Gary is another huge signing for the club.
“The arrivals are coming thick and fast, which is brilliant from my point of view because we want to get our business done as early as possible to give us the best preparation time for next season.
“We’re delighted to have Gary on board and everyone connected with the club should be excited about this addition.
“He brings outstanding leadership qualities and experience from a high level, and comes in off the back of playing almost 40 games for Hartlepool last season.
“This is a huge addition to the dressing room and Gary will only benefit the players around him.
“He will have had offers from clubs higher up the pyramid, but the fact he has joined us demonstrates the ambition of the club and where we’re going.
“We’re very pleased with the four players we’ve brought in so far and with another two or three arrivals, the squad will be looking in really good shape for next season.”
Liddle will become Shields’ fourth signing of the summer after the captures of Mackenzie Heaney, Martin Smith and Michael Woods were also confirmed. You can purchase a season ticket to watch them and their new team-mates in every home league game of the 2022-23 campaign by clicking here.