Decision to sign prolific Williams was a ‘no-brainer’ - Weaver

Aaron Williams has become Harrogate Town's second signing of the close season. Picture: Matt Kirkham
Aaron Williams has become Harrogate Town's second signing of the close season. Picture: Matt Kirkham

Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver said that the decision to sign striker Aaron Williams was a “no-brainer”.

The former Peterborough United frontman netted 33 times last season for Brackley Town, the side whom the men from the CNG Stadium beat in their National League North play-off final to seal promotion to England’s fifth tier.

And his goalscoring exploits did not escape the attention of the Town boss, who wasted no time in snapping up the 24-year-old when he learned of his availability.

“Aaron is really good centre-forward and we’re delighted to have him on board,” Weaver said.

“I didn’t realise that he had only signed a six-month deal when he joined Brackley from Newport County last season, but once I discovered he was available, trying to get him was a no-brainer.

“I was abroad on holiday at the time and he was away on his honeymoon, so the circumstances were quite unusual but I was keen to get the deal done and we’ve got our man.

“His eagerness to get everything sorted even though he was away at the time was good to see and that’s the kind of characteristic that tells me we’ve signed not just a top player, but a great lad.

“He’s the right age for us, he wanted to go back to full-time football and is looking to prove himself in the National League. He ticks all the boxes.”

Williams has scored more than 100 goals in a career that has included spells at Football League sides Walsall, Peterborough and Newport County.

He has been capped at England C level and was part of the Brackley side that won the FA Trophy last term.

The West Bromwich-born forward began his footballing journey at Walsall, during which time he enjoyed loan spells at Redditch United, Romulus and AFC Telford.

After his release by the Saddlers, Williams signed for National League North side Worcester City; making a total of 49 appearances in his first season with the club.

It was at Rushall Olympic where he proved himself as a prolific goalscorer at senior level, netting 38 goals in all competitions and ending the season as NPL Premier Top Scorer.

A move back to the National League North with Nuneaton soon followed, before further impressive form in front of goal caught the attention of League One side Peterborough who captured the striker’s services in January 2016.

A change in manager saw Williams return to Nuneaton the following summer, though it wasn’t long before Town’s newest recruit was back in the Football League as Newport County swooped.

It was from there that Williams moved to his most recent club prior to signing for Town, as Brackley picked up the striker’s signature, initially on a loan deal.

He struck 33 times in all competitions last season, a tally that included more than 20 league goals, and becomes Weaver’s second acquisition of the close-season following the arrival of centre-half Callum Howe from Port Vale.