HARROGATE RAILWAY manager Billy Miller has revealed that star striker Nathan Cartman has turned down moves to several rival clubs to stay loyal to the Station View outfit.
The former Harrogate Town, Liversedge and Brighouse marksman, who was on the books of Leeds United as a youngster, is the joint top-scorer in the Evo-Stik First Division North with seven goals, heading into Rail’s derby at Ossett Albion tonight.
Farsley frontman Aiden Savory and Darlington’s Graeme Armstrong have also found the net seven times in the league and despite Rail’s lowly position in the table, Cartman is happy to stay put, according to boss Miller.
Cartman’s fellow Rail forward Rob Youll has also attracted interest, but the pair remain committed to the club, which is music to the ears of Miller.
He said: “Cartman has been on fire for us and is the (joint) leading scorer in the league and has attracted a lot of interest, but has turned a few clubs down to stay with us, which is great.
“He would have been a massive loss if he had gone. He has been with us for four years now, so is extremely loyal.
“Rob Youll is also another who people always ask about. We actually work together and we laugh and joke about it every day of the week. But he’s another great kid with a great attitude and is on a run of form at the moment.
“I think they know we are onto something, although we have a very young side here; including a centre-half who is 18 years old and a lad playing in the middle of the park who is 19. We just need more games to get to where we are going.”
Both Rail and Albion find themselves at the wrong end of the table, but both have made strides this season in an ultra-competitive division, in the considered view of Miller.
The Rail chief certainly is not short of insight on tonight’s derby rivals at Dimple Wells, with Miller locking horns with contemporaries he knows very well.
Miller said: “We know absolutely loads about them.
“Richard (Tracey) has done really, really well there and I am really good friends with Richard and Eric Gilchrist, who is back there. Lee Ashforth, who is my assistant, played for Eric with years.
“But on the night, it is a case of turning up and doing what you have to and shaking hands afterwards. We don’t expect any favours from them whatsoever.
“It will be a tough place to go and Richard has turned it around well.
“We have always said for us, it’s a point a game and after eight games, we have eight points. So we can’t grumble at that.
“Also, you look who we have played who include Scarborough, Droylsden, Farsley and Darlington and it’s been a difficult start to the season.
“As a league, it is as difficult as it has ever been and a lot of teams are going for it. Hopefully, things will pick up for us.
“We have Ossett this week and Kendal who are around us on Saturday.”
Farsley are also in league action tonight at New Mills, while Brighouse host Darlington.
Scarborough visit Spennymoor.
Goole host Rainworth in the First Division South.
Frickley Athletic are in Sheffield and Hallamshire County Cup second-round action at AFC Emley, while Hemsworth MW welcome Houghton Main.
In the NCEL Premier, Garforth play host to Bridlington and in Division One, Knaresborough Town make the long trip to Grimsby Borough.