National League North leaders Chorley have boosted their promotion push by converting Matty Urwin’s loan spell from Fleetwood Town into a permanent move.
Urwin, 25, joined the Magpies on loan just before the season started.
But after mutually cancelling his contract at the League One club, he has now signed for Chorley.
The keeper has gone on to play a key role in a defence that has conceded just 23 times this term – along with second placed Stockport County, the best record in the league.
And boss Jamie Vermiglio says Urwin, who helped the Magpies to an equally impressive record in last term’s play-off failure, just keeps getting better, as he backed the shot-stopper to keep improving.
Now Urwin – who helped Blackburn Rovers reach the FA Youth Cup Final in 2012 – is preparing for his first game as a permanent fixture when Chorley host Nuneaton Borough on Saturday.
Vermiglio said: “He has been solid, he has been consistent.
“He has been fantastic.
“He has a good attitude, he fits into our mould in terms of how determined, how loyal he is and how he has bought into the team spirit.
“He does not feel like a player who has been in on-loan.
“He is certainly one of the lads.
“He gives the boys confidence that he is behind them.
“He kicks well, he is so strong.
“I think he has improved.
“He improved last season with us and this season too.
“The goals against tally is a lot to do with the team – but don’t get me wrong, he has certainly contributed to that with some fantastic saves.”
It could have been a different story though had Vermiglio not followed his instinct and re-signed the keeper in the summer.
Vermiglio’s predecessor Matt Jansen had brought in Cameron Belford due to League One side Fleetwood Town boss Joey Barton’s wish to see the keeper battle for a first team slot in pre-season.
But just days before the new term started Vermiglio was told Urwin would be made available for a season long loan spell.
Vermiglio made the call to bring Urwin back and the shot-stopper soon usurped Belford who will now return to Victory Park with his new side Nuneaton Borough on Saturday.
Vermiglio said: “We had a difficult start with the goalkeepers.
“Janny signed Cameron Belford because Fleetwood had implied that Matty would be pushing for the first team.
“Then it was just days before the season we found out that there was an opportunity to take him on-loan.
“It was great for us, not great for Cameron Belford but I made quite a strong decision at the beginning to bring Matty in at the expense of Cameron.”