Blues' Dave will be all right on the Knight

New signing: Meet Police man Craig Hughes' return from a broken leg will be like a new signing for the Blues

New signing: Meet Police man Craig Hughes' return from a broken leg will be like a new signing for the Blues

First published in Sport

Met Police striker Dave Knight can fill the shoes of departed loan star Jonte Smith, according to boss Jimmy Cooper.
 

The former Easbourne Borough frontman bagged a brace in the 4-1 Boxing Day win over Kingstonian, but was left frustrated by Carshalton Athletic keeper Nick Hamann in the 1-1 New Year’s Day draw at Colston Avenue.
 

Smith, who scored 24 goals for the Cooper's men in a three-month spell at Imber Court, made his debut as a substitute for Crawley Town in a 3-0 defeat at Bournemouth on Saturday and came off the bench again in the 3-0 new year win over Colchester United.

Knight, 21, arrived at Imber Court prior to Christmas following Smith's return to the League One Red Devils and the Blues are  unbeaten in their past three league games as they bid for the Ryman Premier League play offs in 2013.
 

“We had something like 17 shots on target against Carshalton and I’ve never seen a goalkeeping display like it from their keeper Nick Hamman,” said Cooper.
 

“He was out of this world and stopped them suffering a very heavy defeat. It was two points dropped, but I was delighted with the performance.

“Dave can be very, very quick and, although he had a couple of chances saved against Carshalton, I can see him developing in to a very good goalscorer for us.
 

“His partnership with Allan Tait is in its infancy but I think we have seen it could become a real threat.”
 

The Blues, who bowed out of the League Cup with a 3-2 defeat to Ks before Christmas, are a little light in playing resources leaving Cooper looking to dip into the market for another forward.
 

But the return to fitness of Craig Hughes – after a 15-month injury lay-off having broken his leg in September 2011 – should ease the need for major surgery on his squad.
 

“We are looking a little light at the moment, but Craig’s return is like a massive new signing for us,” he added.
 

“I’m still looking at bringing in another forward and when defender Steve Sutherland returns we should be in a better position.”
 

The Blues are without a league game until they host Harrow Borough on January 12.

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