A FORMER Wrexham midfielder who grew up in Blacon has become Chester FC’s first signing of the new year.
Levi Mackin yesterday completed the move to his hometown club from Blue Square Premier strugglers Alfreton Town.
The 25-year-old, who made more than 70 appearances for Wrexham between 2004 and 2009, has signed a contract until the end of the season.
Blues boss Neil Young said: “I looked at Levi in the summer but he wanted to stay full-time.
“He’s a local lad so he knows the club. More importantly he’s a good, strong midfielder who’s a good size, who gets around the pitch and puts his foot in.
“At this time of the season good players aren’t easy to get hold of but I think Levi’s got the quality needed to assist us in trying to win the league.”
Chester-born Mackin joined York City after leaving Wrexham. He played for the Minstermen in their 2009 FA Trophy final defeat at Wembley before signing for Alfreton last summer.
Mackin will go straight into Chester’s squad for Saturday’s tricky trip to Rushall Olympic (3pm).
He could yet be joined in the travelling party by club record signing Jamie Rainford.
The Blues have accepted bids for the striker from two Blue Square North clubs after his successful two-month loan at FC Halifax Town ended.
Young said: “Jamie is currently mulling over whether to speak to the clubs but he has also been told if the offers aren’t to his liking, he will be welcomed back into the squad and I would expect him to be fit and firing for Saturday.”
A club record 3,560 crowd watched table-topping Chester have to settle for a frustrating draw at home to neighbours Nantwich Town on Monday.
Young was not disappointed with the performance. He accepts, however, the Blues will need to improve if they are to overcome a Rushall side who have beaten Hednesford Town and Chorley at home this season.
Young, the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League’s Premier Division manager of the month for December, said: “We drew with them on the opening day of the season but we could have won by four or five. But they are a completely different proposition at home and we are going to have to put a performance in.”
Iain Howard and Wes Baynes return on Saturday but Matty McGinn is struggling with a thigh injury.
Loan defender Jack Duggan has returned to Fleetwood Town while Luke Holden has signed for The New Saints.
Young had been unaware of an approach for the winger from the Welsh Premier League full-timers.
But he said yesterday: “It has since been cleared up that TNS had sent seven days notice of intention of approach but it was sent to a defunct email address.”
The Blues will not be appealing against Michael Powell’s controversial sending-off at Northwich Victoria as video evidence of the incident proved inconclusive.
Powell and Baynes, who was dismissed in the same game, have been hit with three-match bans which will kick in after the Rushall clash.