. . . in with the new!
A statistical and tactical look at Notts County's new signings, where they came from, what they offer and how Ian Burchnall might be looking to utilise them.
First through the door was defender Kyle Cameron.
Who is Kyle Cameron?
DOB: 15.01.1997 (24)
Position: Centre Back
Nationality: Scotland (was born in England but holds a Scottish passport).
Preferred Foot: Left
Cameron has joined Notts from last season's play-off rivals Torquay United. He spent his early years at Newcastle United during which time he got league experience with York City, Newport County and Queen of the South as well as turning out for Scotland's U21's and U23's.
He made 3 appearances for Newcastle U23's in the EFL Trophy, and made 24 appearances in League Two with York City. During his two seasons with Torquay he made over 60 appearances scoring 6 goals.
Where and how will he be utilised?
A left footed centre back Cameron has also played as a left back, left wing, right wing and even centre forward, but it will most likely be the middle or left sided centre back in a back 3 that we can expect to see him playing under Ian Burchnall.
His left sided bias is further confirmed in his heatmap for all games played for Torquay last season.
What can we expect from Kyle Cameron?
One thing we should expect to see from Cameron is winning defensive duels but also see those duels result in a progressive move, essentially turning defence into attack. This is highlighted in the short video clip below.
Cameron is an imposing figure on the pitch and may well find himself as team captain for the upcoming campaign. Additionally, he spent time with Cal Roberts at Newcastle so he should have no problems finding his feet.
Next up is midfield prospect Frank Vincent.
Who is Frank Vincent
DOB: 23.04.1999 (22)
Position: Centre/Left Midfield
Preferred Foot: Left
Frank Vincent has made the move to Meadow Lane from Bournemouth who bought him as a teenager from Barnet.
At just 22 years old Vincent has actually accumulated a decent amount of experience on loan at both National League and League Two level with Torquay Utd, Scunthorpe United and Walsall.
What can we expect from Frank Vincent?
Vincent is predominantly left footed and can play a holding midfielder role as well as a more advanced central or left midfielder. Additionally he has high energy levels and is comfortable with the ball at his feet which will provide Ian Burchnall with a degree of flexibility and choice when decided which system to play depending on the opposition.
This flexibility is further confirmed by his heatmap and positional maps above where despite being predominantly a left sided midfielder he has the ability to contribute in the middle of the park as well.
Frank spent a season at Torquay with Kyle Cameron which will hopefully help him settle in quickly at Meadow Lane.
The third signing to be revealed during this period was wing back Joel Taylor.
Who is Joel Taylor?
DOB: 24.03.1996 (25)
Position: Left Wing Back
Nationality: Jamaica (born in England but holds a Jamaican passport)
Preferred Foot: Left
Taylor penned a two year deal with the Magpies having spent last season at local rivals Chesterfield where he made 17 National League appearances.
The left footed wing back came through the ranks at Stoke City and has turned out in League One (ok, so just the one substitute appearance) for Rochdale before spending time at Kidderminster Harriers, Chester and then the Spireites.
What can we expect from Joel Taylor
Taylor is a speedy wing back and fills the void left by Calvin Miller.
He has been at his best as a wing back when playing in a more advanced position but with good pace he has also shown signs in the past of providing deep defensive cover when required. The video below is an example of this.
The positional and heat maps below make it very clear where we can expect Taylor to feature under Ian Burchnall this season, something we have already seen in the early pre-season friendlies.
At 25 Taylor still has loads of potential to further develop his game and offer Notts the opportunity of some return on their investment.
Tuesday 20th July saw two big signings for Notts, the first being ex Manchester City graduate Ed Francis.
Who is Ed Francis?
DOB: 11.09.1999 (21)
Position: Left Defensive Midfielder
Preferred Foot: Left
Francis' development at Manchester City along with youth national appearances for England have been well documented but if you dig a bit deeper you can start to appreciate why he would have caught the eye and what a shrewd signing he could be.
Whilst at Manchester City Francis spent time on loan in Holland for Almere City. On his return to Manchester he made a move to Wolves where he spent time on loan at Grasshoppers in Switzerland before making a permanent move to Harrogate Town in December 2020 where he made 20 League Two appearances.
What can we expect from Ed Francis?
Another left footer, another two year contract and another talented youngster who will have the opportunity to step into the shoes of Assistant Coach Michael Doyle.
The 21 year old has lamented the fact he was being played mostly as a left back or left defensive midfielder last season at Harrogate which is highlighted in his heatmap below.
It is clear it is the opportunity to make his mark as a deep lying, ball winning creative central midfielder that has drawn him to Notts and he looked assured in that role in the recent pre-season friendlies at Telford and Boston suggesting he has the attributes to make that midfield anchor position his own.
Next up was Manchester City and Torquay United Speedster Aaron Nemane.
Who is Aaron Nemane?
DOB: 26.06.1997 (24)
Position: Right Wing/Wingback
Nationality: England (born in France but holds English passport)
Preferred Foot: Right
Nemane has followed in Kyle Cameron's footsteps by joining Notts having turned down an extended deal at play off rivals Torquay United.
During his time at Manchester City he had loan spells at Glasgow Rangers, Go Ahead Eagles in Holland and R Union Tubize-Braine in Belgium. On his return from Belgium Nemane was released by Manchester City but was scooped up by Torquay United in December 2019 where he made 30 National League appearances.
What can we expect from Aaron Nemane?
Nemane will mostly be utilised at right wing/right wingback but can also come inside if required. He is not short of pace, will win more one-on-one duels that he will lose and will offer Ian Burchnall more options depending on system played.
The following video highlights what we can expect to see form Nemane.
It's safe to say that with the addition of Taylor on the left and now Nemane on the right opposition full backs will hopefully have plenty to worry themselves about.
Wednesday 21st July saw the signing of experienced midfielder Matt Palmer.
Who is Matt Palmer?
DOB: 27.02.1995 (26)
Position: Centre Midfield
Preferred Foot: Right
Matt Palmer has accumulated over 230 football league appearances including 57 Championship appearances with Burton Albion and Rotherham United.
The box-to-box midfielder has won promotions with Rotherham United, Swindon Town and Burton Albion and it is with Burton that he had his best run of form making 159 appearances and enjoying two promotions from League Two to the Championship.
Last season Palmer was loaned out to Wigan from Swindon in League One before returning to Swindon to see out the season.
What can we expect from Matt Palmer
Palmer is an energetic central midfielder and will most likely fill the role left by Jake Reeves. He has a high pass completion rate and isn't afraid to make a challenge. It was good to hear that Palmer had received offers from EFL clubs but was won over by Ian Burchnall and appears fully invested in the "project" at Meadow Lane.
I know there has been concern from some fans that we are still missing a "get at 'em" centre midfielder who will put a foot in and win their fair share of tackles. I think palmer has the game to do this and judging by his heatmap above he certainly has the energy!
Looking ahead we probably still have a couple of positions to fill. There is of course a requirement for another target man to cover for Kyle Wootton if needed and based on what we have seen in the friendlies so far it wouldn't be out of the question for Notts to offer a contract to Andre Wright.
Of the other trialists Kaba Sherif and William Hondermarck will be hoping to get the chance to further impress Ian Burchnall in the next couple of Friendlies but I would suggest the jury is probably still out on the two youngsters, but then we don't have the luxury of seeing them train on a daily basis.
Myself and Colin Sisson discussed the summer signings in our latest Analysts Bar Podcast where we also cast an eye over recent developments at the club, players missed and potential signings still available to Notts.
You can watch Episode #6 - "On The Radar" here . . .
You can follow Analysts Bar on Twitter - @analystsbar and you can find out more about what the show is all about by visiting the Analysts Bar website.
I should also mention that I will be running a Notts based fantasy league for the coming season. I will share more about this in the coming days.
As always thanks for reading and I'll be back with a season preview in the next week or so.