MANAGER Michael Flynn says Wales international Andrew Crofts is in the running to take over as captain of Newport County AFC.

Joss Labadie, who has skippered the side since Flynn took charge in 2017, is currently sidelined with an anterior cruciate ligament injury and is yet to agree a new contract to stay at the club.

Mark O’Brien, Mickey Demetriou, David Pipe and Dan Butler have all deputised for Labadie in the past and Flynn has yet to decide who will be captain for the start of the 2018-2019 season.

But he admits that 34-year-old Crofts, who has previously worn the armband at Gillingham and Brighton & Hove Albion and won 29 caps for Wales, is a strong contender.

“I haven’t made my decision yet but of course he’s a potential captain,” said the Exiles boss. “He’s a leader on and off the pitch and he’s had a great career.

“He’s a fantastic professional so he ticks all the boxes but I honestly haven’t made my mind up yet.”

Flynn and Crofts have known each other since playing together at Gillingham between 2005 and 2007 and have remained close since then.

That relationship was a key factor in Crofts’ decision to move to Rodney Parade last week after being released by League One Scunthorpe United.

“Croftsy is one of my best friends in football,” added Flynn. “We’ve always kept I contact. He’s a gentleman and he’s somebody I trust a lot. So signing him was really a no-brainer.

“He’s taken probably the lowest wage he’s been on since he started at Gillingham but he wanted it to happen.

“He could have hung on and hoped for a bit more money [elsewhere] but he’s shown the appetite that we want and that we need at this football club.”

Also joining the club last week was 22-year-old right wing-back Tyler Forbes and Flynn has high hopes for the former Brighton youngster.

“Tyler’s got great pace and he’s a very good defender,” said the manager. “He’s very good in one v one situations and he’s a very good going forward.

“He started off as a winger and he did very well at Fleetwood to get his move to Brighton.

“It was hard for him there because Brighton have been on the up. They’re a Premier League club now so it’s hard to break in there.

“He went on loan to Accrington and that was tough for him too because they had a pretty settled team week in and week out.

“But he’s got an exciting future as long as he keeps improving.”

Both Crofts and Forbes have promotions on their CV, just like fellow new signings Fraser Franks, Charlie Cooper, Keanu Marsh-Brown and Jamille Matt.

“That’s not by accident,” said Flynn. “I’ve said I need to bring winners to the football club.

“We’re going to have a smaller squad this season but it’s a lot more selective and I’m just hoping that each of them play to their potential because that will give us a really good chance to do well this season.”