SAM Foley is relishing his quick return to Newport County AFC, but admits he turned his back on a future with the club with a heavy heart.
The 25-year-old joined League One Yeovil Town this summer, signing off on three-and-a-half seasons with the Exiles at Wembley in County’s 2-0 FA Trophy final defeat to York City.
Foley was a key figure in the Exiles’ promotion season in 2009-10 – scoring the goal that confirmed their Conference South title victory – and also played a vital role in their Conference survival last season, taking over the mantle of ‘main man’ from Danny Rose and producing arguably the best form of his career.
Foley was more than happy to stay with the Exiles – especially with the move to Rodney Parade – but insists he had no choice but to say yes when Yeovil came calling.
“I had absolutely no intention of going anywhere and I certainly didn’t think at the end of the game at Wembley that it would be my last performance for County,” he said.
“I would have stayed on but there was a lot of interest from Yeovil and suddenly I was faced with the chance to move to a League One club.
“Yeovil have spent a decade in the Football League, they are established and it was a great move for me, a chance to prove myself at that level.”
But Foley is thrilled to have a chance to appear on Parade.
“I am a huge rugby fan so the prospect of playing at Rodney Parade is great,” he said. “I’m sure it’s going to mean good things for the club too.
“The atmosphere and pitch should be improved and that will definitely be a big bonus for the boys.”
Foley is looking forward to renewing acquaintances having scored his first goal for the Glovers in their 5-2 win at Llanelli in midweek as part of their Welsh pre-season tour.
Yeovil boss Gary Johnson has made clear he holds Foley in high esteem but the playmaker is still looking forward to his reunion.
“Not many players get to say a proper goodbye like I will and I am relishing it,” he added.
“I’ve got so many friends at the club and had such a great rapport with the fans.
“This game is an absolute bonus for me.
“As soon as it was announced I was buzzing and I am really hoping to get some game time.
“I would have happily stayed with Newport County for the whole of my career if a chance hadn’t arrived to play at a higher level.
“I really do love the club and I want everyone of the fans to know that.”