Lyle says new signings will give Peterhead a boost next season

Derek Lyle in action for Peterhead.
Derek Lyle in action for Peterhead.

Derek Lyle has backed Peterhead’s summer signings to shine in League One next season.

The Blue Toon return to Scotland’s third tier next season and manager Jim McInally has been working on strengthening his squad.

The Buchan outfit have already signed defender Scott Hooper, pictured below, from Annan Athletic.

Striker Aidan Smith has also been secured after leaving Annan – but Peterhead will have to pay a development compensation fee, which is believed to have been agreed.

McInally will look to add more to his squad in the weeks ahead, but Lyle is pleased with the additions that have already been made.

The 38-year-old striker, who is staying for a second season at Balmoor, played with both Hooper and Smith at previous club Queen of the South.

Lyle said: “Scott Hooper keeps himself really fit and works really hard.

“He’s a solid defender – he would admit he’s not the most exciting footballer you’ll ever see.

“But he’s a competitor and you need that in defence.

“He’ll go in for every tackle and every header and battle. Aidan stretches the game and is very effective up front.

“I thought he was unfortunate to get let go by Queen of the South because he could have done the job.

“He did well at Annan and Peterhead will get the benefit.

“He just needs things to be channelled in the right way with game knowledge and experience. But he can stretch the game and score goals so him and Scott should be good additions.

“They’re good lads as well and will fit into the dressing room.”

With the bulk of last season’s League Two title-winning squad tied down again for next season as well as the additions of Smith and Hooper, Lyle is looking forward to the new campaign.

He believes Peterhead can hold their own in League 1, despite the presence of full-time sides Falkirk, Raith Rovers and Airdrieonians in the division.

Lyle added: “I don’t want to put a marker down, but I just think we have a really good squad and can compete in that league.

“We’ll need to work hard and be as fit as we can be and the gaffer will have us organised.

“Player for player you can look at anyone in the league and I don’t think we come up short of anyone.

“A good start is important because we don’t want to come straight back down.

“You can be ambitious and aim at the play-offs, but you’re just wanting to win each game and see where that takes you.”

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