It's not just Dec's goals that have endeared himself to the Gainsborough, but his tireless work rate and desire to put opposition defences under pressure for 90+ minutes, workrate that produces opportunities for those around him. The striker, who has demonstrated a vast array of finishing talent amongst his goals, couldn't hide his delight behind his beaming smile as he declared, "I am buzzing to stay. It has been a really good season personally, and with the team.. the fans have been great with me since I signed, so I am happy to stay!"

Reflecting on how far the side have come this season, and looking ahead to the next campaign, Howe is certainly optimistic about the year ahead for the Holy Blues, "We had a bad start to the season, before I came in, so if we can eliminate that next season, then we can be up there and have ambitions to compete. We're not a million miles away, and if we can strengthen what we've got then we'll be in with a good shout next season."

Making the Kal Group Stadium his home, since arriving from League rivals Ilkeston Town, Howe explained, “I said it when I first came in, I came in to settle, to find somewhere I wanted to stay, somewhere to call a home, and be happy playing. To get 21 goals from the time where I came in, not having a full season, it’s got to be something that people look at and think ‘fair play’,”

Dec went on to heap the praise on Manager, Russ Wilcox, enthusing, "He’s brilliant, I love him. I’ve not got a bad word to say about him, he’s a great gaffer."

And the boss was equally delighted to have secured the services of his talismanic centre forward, "I am absolutely delighted to get Dec tied down for next season. It's a massive boost and hopefully now others will follow suit. Just on Dec, he has been outstanding since he came in. His goal return is amazing. 21 in 30 games speaks for itself. So, to get him on board, and add a few new faces to the group as well. It's looking really positive moving forward."

Declan joins Dayle Southwell, who is already under contract for next season, as the Holy Blues look to tie down the current group of players, ahead of the new season. And looking to put down solid foundations, Trinity can move forward, from a position of strength. One Town. One Team. One Trinity.

Words by Rob Hughes (@AATM_Media)
Photo credit: Yetunde Adegoke