WITHAM Town manager Mark Ashford feels he has placed Liam Whipps in good hands as his young full-back has headed to Halstead Town on a loan spell away from the Village Glass Stadium.

The 20-year-old defender has joined Halstead to see action after not seeing much in recent weeks at Witham and was involved in the Humbugs’ 7-2 win at Wivenhoe Town in their final Thurlow Nunn League division one south outing of 2018.

It appears to be an arrangement that suits both clubs well and Ashford said he had taken care in choosing a suitable club for an up-and-coming young player who he rates highly.

He feels that Halstead are a side with a philosophy similar to his own and likes the way that boss Mark McLean works with players in his care.

Ashford said: “We want to get Liam some game time so I see it as a good move for him at this time.

“We played Halstead in a pre-season friendly and I was really impressed with Mark (McLean) and his team over there.

“It was a really good game of football and I was very impressed with how Mark conducted himself.

“You can see he really looks after his players.

“For me, if I’m going to put a player out on loan, I look at the location of the club in relation to where the player is based and at the type of management and team that they are.

“We have Nathan Cook on loan at Enfield and that fits those criteria and it’s the same for Liam at Halstead.

“Mark wanted him and Liam wanted to go there, which is important.

“He’s an excellent young player; he is only 20 years of age and his attitude to not getting much starting football in recent weeks has been superb.

“He has been there encouraging the team even when he hasn’t been playing and to see that from a young man is so heart-warming.

“He’s a real team player and this move is all about getting him football.

“He works on a Wednesday so can’t play in our under-23s (in the Bostik Development League) and I think this is a great move for everyone.

“We’ve agreed to do it until the end of January for now and we’ll see how things progress.”