Ex-Sunderland and Hartlepool United midfielder agrees one-year deal at Gateshead

Former Sunderland academy midfielder Connor Oliver has become the latest player to join Gateshead.

Thursday, 13th June 2019, 6:10 pm
Updated Thursday, 13th June 2019, 8:10 pm
Ex-Sunderland midfielder Connor Oliver has joined Gateshead

The 25-year-old put pen-to-paper on a one-year deal at the International Stadium on Thursday lunchtime to become Mike Williamson’s second new addition since he took over as Heed manager.

Oliver revealed that the former Newcastle United defender was a big part of his decision to join the club and believes that Williamson will have instant respect from the new look Gateshead squad.

He told the Echo “The biggest challenge is getting the squad together to challenge, but the main reason I have joined Gateshead is because I believe Mike (Williamson) and Ian (Watson) can do that.

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“Ian is a good people person and he will get people onside.

“Mike will get people wanting to play for him and everyone will want to fight for him because of the way he comes across as a person.

“You get instant respect for him because of where he has been during his playing career.

“You already respect him because of what he has done and that is why people will want to play for him.”

Williamson has a tough task on his hands as he looks to try and lead the club back to non-league’s top tier at the first time of asking.

He will have the full support of the club’s supporters – who are now in control of the club after a fan-led takeover was completed last week.

Oliver believes that the bond between the Heed Army and the players must remain strong if they are to succeed this season.

“It’s special,” explained the former Blyth Spartans midfielder.

“One of the good things is that it brings the fans further into the club and hopefully they will be on our side from the start.

“We all have to be singing from the same hymn sheet this season if we are to challenge and I am sure now they are so involved we will be.

“That can only be a good thing.”