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Lewis Alessandra signs for South Shields

Striker Lewis Alessandra is to bring his vast experience to South Shields after becoming the Mariners’ eighth summer signing.

Alessandra, who departed Carlisle United in the summer, has spent his entire 15-year career to date in the Football League, making over 400 appearances in the competition.

The 33-year-old is now bringing his talents to 1st Cloud Arena after spells with Oldham Athletic, Morecambe, Plymouth Argyle, Rochdale, York City, Hartlepool United, Notts County and Carlisle.

He said: “South Shields is definitely a club on the up and going places with big aspirations, so I’m delighted to be part of it.

“They made me feel very wanted, which was a big factor in my decision, and I can’t wait to get started.

“I knew a few of the lads here already and they said everything I wanted to hear in terms of the set-up and the way the club goes about things.

“I had a chat with the manager, who has great pedigree as a forward himself, and it will be great to get the chance to learn from him, even at my age.

“He explained what he was looking for in a forward, which suits the way I play, and everything I’ve heard and seen regarding the way the team likes to play has been positive.

“Now I have to prove my worth and try to get into the starting 11 and make the position my own.”

A versatile forward, Alessandra’s best work is usually through the middle, but he is also capable of playing in wide positions.

He is in no doubt as to the Mariners’ target for 2022-23.

Alessandra added: “We must aim to be right at the top of the league.

“It doesn’t always just happen the way you expect and that’s why being professional and setting high standards every day is so important.

“As a full-time squad we have to be as fit as possible and our target has to be promotion.”

South Shields manager Kevin Phillips said: “Lewis is another fantastic signing for the club.

“He is someone who has only ever played league football, so to attract a player of his calibre is a massive coup.

“We’re naturally delighted to have him as he brings added competition to the squad and excellent quality, alongside the players we already have in that position.

“He brings brilliant pedigree, experience and leadership qualities, and fits well with the players we have signed this summer and those who were already here.

“I’m very pleased with the balance of the squad and this will be our last addition for the foreseeable future.”

You can purchase a season ticket to watch Alessandra and his new team-mates by clicking here.

Alessandra is not expected to be available to make his debut in Saturday’s pre-season friendly against Dunston.

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