Yeovil Town have made a seventh signing of 2019. Although the January transfer window is closed, they are still entitled to bring in free agents under Football League rules. As a result, they have announced that right-back Craig Alcock has been snapped up, shortly after his release from Cheltenham Town last month.
Craig has signed a contract until the end of the 2018-19 season, having done a large loop around the Football League that saw him start his career at Yeovil Town as a product of the club's Under-18s side. He has since played for Peterborough United, Doncaster Rovers, Sheffield United and Cheltenham Town, but the Robins released him from their short term contract last week, and he now returns to a club where he played 121 times, scoring three goals.
Craig was born in Truro, in Cornwall, but by the time he was recruited for Yeovil Town's Under-18s by Stuart Housley, he was living in the Wincanton area and studying at Sexey's School in Bruton. He was part of the Youth Team's title winning 2005-06 side, and was then given a professional contract in the summer of 2006.
Russell Slade gave him his first team debut on the final day of the 2006-07 season's main league matches, and during the following campaign Craig began to challenge Lee Peltier for the right-back slot. When Peltier left for Huddersfield, that left him as the first choice player in that position, and he ultimately became the club's captain by 2010, making 121 appearances, scoring three goals.
In July 2011, he had fallen out of contract at Huish Park, and decided against signing a new deal, heading to Peterborough United to pen a three year deal with them, earning Yeovil an undisclosed training and development fee that was reported as being in the region of £100,000 to £150,000. He made 112 appearances for Posh, including picking up a winners medal in the 2014 Football League Trophy Final.
Alcock then spent the 2014-15 season playing for Sheffield United in League One, but gradually struggled for game time following an injury, making just 37 appearances for the Blades across one-and-a-half seasons. That led to Doncaster Rovers making a move for his services, initially as a loan agreement. At the Keepmoat Stadium he made 73 appearances across three seasons, and was part of their 2016-17 season League Two promotion winning squad, but again struggled for game time once Donny were back in League One. That led to his release in the summer of 2018.
Over the summer of 2018, Darren Way tried to sign Alcock, but at that time he was training with both League One side Luton Town and Championship side Rotherham United. Neither pre-season spell led to a deal, and that led to him signing a half-season deal with Cheltenham Town, who had also been trying to sign him up earlier in the summer. He made eleven appearances for the Robins in all competitions including the final 81 minutes of the 2019 New Year's Day match at Huish Park, with him taking the unusual position of a left-sided centre-back, in their 4-1 win.
Alcock was ultimately released by the Robins due to the need to manage their finances with manager Michael Duff stating that the decision to release Alcock had "been taken out of our hands and finances have dictated". He now heads back to Huish Park as a free agent, seven-and-a-half years after he left the Glovers first time round. Manager Darren Way has said of his return:
"Craig knows the history and values of this football club which is what we need to move forward. I have trust in his determination to push the club forward and his experience and leadership will be valuable assets in part two of the season."
Link: Craig Alcock : Yeovil Town Statistics.
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