ST NEOTS Town manager Scott Houghton admitted his club captain s departure from the club knocked the stuffing out of him before his side s weekend FA Vase defeat. However, the former Peterborough United man hinted that the club could have some very exc

St Neots manager Scott Houghton

ST NEOTS Town manager Scott Houghton admitted his club captain's departure from the club "knocked the stuffing" out of him before his side's weekend FA Vase defeat.

However, the former Peterborough United man hinted that the club could have some 'very exciting news' later this week.

Saints lost against Soham for the second time this season on Saturday, but had their preparations for the game disrupted by skipper Nathan Buckland.

The club captain sent a text message to Houghton shortly before 1pm on Saturday, informing him he no longer wished to play for the club.

Kevin Ashby was drafted into the line-up but without Buckland, three defensive errors saw St Neots slump to a 3-1 defeat.

Houghton said: "I had no idea that Nathan was planning to quit the club - I didn't see it coming and to be honest, it knocked the stuffing out of me.

"He is an experienced player but you cannot always tell what people are thinking and what their personal circumstances are.

"I can only deal with the players that are at the club and want to play for the club and there can be no excuses for the Soham defeat."

While Houghton refused to confirm he was expecting to announce a big-name signing, the St Neots Town board have shown already this season they are prepared to back their manager regarding the club's wage bill.

Saints include former professional Barrington Belgrave among their ranks and tempted ex-manager Steve Kuhne back to the club in the close season.

Last year, forward Ryan Francis was lured from rivals Huntingdon Town with an increased pay deal.

Last night, as The Hunts Post went to press, Saints were preparing to welcome United Counties League rivals Stotfold to Rowley Park for a crunch meeting.

Meanwhile, work on the club's new stadium at Love's Farm is continuing to progress and a moving-in date of February 2008 is looking likely.