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The big question on most Town fans’ lips is who will captain the team this season.

That was the poser which caused much debate among supporters – and players – at the club’s Welcome to the Season open day.

Talisman striker James Vaughan and goalkeeper Alex Smithies took the armband in the absence of club captain Peter Clarke last term.

With Clarke having moved on, there is a vacancy. Midfielder Adam Clayton is a candidate along with new signing Lee Peltier, back for his second spell at the club.

Clayton, however, has been subject to a reputed £1.5 million bid from Championship rivals Middlesbrough and may yet leave the club.

Former Town steward and long-time fan Steve Lloyd, of Ravensthorpe, at the open day with grandson Oliver Gomersall, seven, of Mirfield, backs Clayton for skipper “if he is stopping.”

Steve tried to draw Clayton into revealing his future. “I asked if I could have his autograph before he left and he said: ‘Oh, so you’ve decided I’m going have you?’”

Steve added: “I think he’ll stay.”

Steve also reckons a top-half finish for Town. “The bookies make us one of the favourites to go down but we’ll be all right. We just need consistency.”

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Trevor Buckley, 71, with grandson son Jack Doyle, 13, from Marsden, the next Jordan Rhodes apparently, are backing Vaughan.

“If we get a full season out of him he’ll be like a new signing,” said Trevor, who saw Denis Law make his Town debut.

Vaughan, who is fighting fit after specialist treatment in the United States this summer, appeared to rule himself out of the running for captain – or maybe he was just being modest.

“I did it last year and it was an honour,” he said. “But there are bigger personalities who are better qualified such as Jez (Anthony Gerard) – who just happened to be sat next to him – and Pelts (Peltier).

“They’ve got my vote.”

 

Peltier told the Examiner he was just happy to be back at Town and said he would do whatever job he was asked by the manager.

He said he didn’t expect to be predominantly a right-back – where he played in his first spell – and added: “The gaffer is going to play me in different positions depending on the formation.”

Peltier went on: “People say ‘don’t go back’ but that happens all the time. Everyone knows I always followed Town after I left and kept in touch with various people including (chairman) Dean Hoyle and (chief executive) Nigel Clibbens.”

Peltier was amazed to see the changes at Canalside and said: “There are new changing rooms being built round the back including ice baths for the players.

“These are the facilities all the top clubs need these days.”

Peltier said pre-season – and the tour to Portugal – had gone well and fans were predicting good times ahead.

Trevor Buckley said he wanted to see the young players given a chance and added: “Alan Hanson was wrong. You can do well with kids.”

While eight-year-old Elliot Di Napoli, of Lepton, whose favourite player is Nahki Wells, confidently predicted a positive season for Town. “We’ll finish 11th,” he said decisively.

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