NEWS: Keith – Finner return crucial for me
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Braehead Clan captain Matt Keith says Ryan Finnerty’s return was key to his own move back to the club.
The skipper was announced on Friday as the first confirmed signing of the summer as he extends his association with the Clan to a third season.
But he admits the future of the head coach was the first thing he queried when it came to negotiations.
He said: “The first question I asked was whether or not Finner would be back. I knew he had a contract and didn’t see any reason why they would make a coaching change.
“I’ve enjoyed playing for him these last two years. He’s passionate, intense and very open to working on systems and changing things tactically that I think can help us as we go.
“He’s been a very important part to this success and I was definitely wanted to make sure he would back and I’m pleased that he is.
“Braehead is somewhere that my wife and I are comfortable in and with the fans support there, not to mention the other great people there, it was somewhere we wanted to be.”
Clan finished third in the Elite League and suffered quarter final eliminations in both the Challenge Cup and the play-offs last season.
Keith is naturally keen to do better next time around as the club continue the search for that elusive first major trophy.
And he admits he’s assured about what lies in store following discussions with the coach and the management.
He added: “As our season went along there, I knew I was going to play again. I still had the passion, the desire and the want to keep going.
“I asked questions of whether we were giving ourselves the best chance of being successful, without looking for any names and I was assured we would be.
“Knowing Gareth Chalmers and Finner, there wouldn’t be any other way to do it, especially in looking to build off last year.
“It’s down to the players to take us over that hump in the league, Challenge Cup and getting us to the play-off weekend as well.”