Central midfielder James Dodd has signed on loan from Exeter City until January and is available for the FA Cup clash with Taunton Town this weekend.
Dodd is a creative, left-footed midfielder who can play as a No.8 in the middle of the park or as a No.10 behind the striker.
On the signing of James, Manager Scott Bartlett said:
We have been after James for some time but we needed to wait until he had completed a full pre-season and earned himself a new contract at Exeter.
“We identified him a long time ago and he comes to us in good shape and at a good age.
“I have no doubt when he leaves us, he will force his way into Matty’s plans as an Exeter regular and we are very fortunate to have him.
“Our midfield boys Jacob, Lloyd and Dayle have been outstanding and James coming in gives us another option as he will compliment them well”.
I’m really looking forward to getting going with Weston, and Scott (Bartlett) outlined to me how good the club is and how he can help me improve.
“I hope to have a positive impact on the team and push up the table as high as possible”.
The midfielder joined the Exeter City Academy at under-9 level, and progressed through the ranks to sign a two-year scholarship deal with the Grecians in the summer of 2017 as he moved up into the under-18s.
He penned a professional contract in 2018 at the age of 17 while still a first-year scholar, being fast-tracked towards the Exeter first-team squad.
He made his Exeter debut in September 2018 as a substitute against West Ham U21s during a Papa Johns Trophy game, while being an unused substitute against Bristol Rovers later on that season in the same competition.
In December 2018, he made a one-month loan move to Southern League Premier Division side Taunton Town, featuring twice and being an unused substitute once.
An injury-hit couple of years halted his progression, however he earnt a new one-year deal at St James’ Park after an impressive 2021 pre-season campaign. He captained the Grecians during the first half vs Weston in July and went on to net against Bath City in a friendly.
The 20-year-old has been a part of the Exeter first-team squad this season, being an unused substitute four times in League Two and playing twice for Matt Taylor’s side in the cup competitions, including being their captain vs Chelsea U21s in the Papa Johns Trophy.
He has also led the Grecians’ U23 side out during their three Premier League Cup games so far this season, indicating the leadership qualities that he possesses.
We are delighted to welcome James to the club and wish him all the best during his loan spell at The Optima.