Written by Nairn County FC April 13th 2017

NAIRN County have secured Calum Riddell and Jason Morganti on extended contracts. The Nairn-based duo both joined the club at the start of the season on initial one-year deals and have been rewarded for their efforts this year with fresh terms. Manager Ronnie Sharp said: "Both of these players have stepped up to the Highland League for their first full season at this level and done well." "As I said at the start of the season, it is going to take the players who came in a full season to get to grips with playing in the Highland League with the increased levels of commitment and fitness that are required and the quicker pace of the game." "Calum came in at centre half for us at the start of the season and did well. He then picked up a shoulder injury just as he was beginning to find his feet and that set him back a bit. His preferred position is in the middle of the park but I had him up front for a season at Nairn St Ninian before and he was superb – he has a great spring on him and he has that knack of being able to get himself into good goal-scoring positions in front of goal to get on the end of crosses into the box and that is something we sometimes lack. He is a versatile player and can fill a number of positions for us." He added: "Jason came to us with an injury but since he has settled down, he has been superb. He covers so much ground when he plays out wide and is comfortable on the right on the left. He is a powerful boy and we have played him more centrally in recent weeks and he has done well in there as well. He is the sort of player who will play any position he is asked without any complaints and he is a good guy to have around the dressing room – I think the younger players have really taken to him." Riddell (27) started his career with Nairn before a long spell at Nairn St Ninian. He moved back to Station Park in the summer and has made 21 starts with an additional six substitute appearances so far this season. He has agreed two-year extension with the club until 2019 and he said: "I have enjoyed this season playing in the Highland League for the first time and I feel we have done well over the course of the season considering where we were when we started. "I am delighted to extend my stay with the club and I am looking forward to the next two seasons and helping the club to climb back up the table." Morganti also started out with Nairn before spending time with Nairn St Ninian. The 31-year-old has made 16 starts and eight substitute appearances with one goal to his name and has now signed a one-year extension until 2018. He said: "It has been a good season for me at the club and I have enjoyed playing alongside some of the players I grew up with when I was younger." "Everyone in the squad gets along well with one another and I was happy to extend my stay at the club." "Hopefully, we can improve on the progress we have made this season and we are all looking to overtake some of the clubs who are going to finish just above us this time around when we go into next season." Graeme Macleod

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