Some media outlets listed Kilmarnock’s signing total on Friday as 11 players, rather than eight.
There’s good reason for this. Kilmarnock sent a press release around earlier in the day, telling the media of six permanent signings and three loan deals. The signings were then announced over the course of the morning and early afternoon. It was expected the three loan signings would follow, and they did, sort of. Instead of the three names on the press release, Kilmarnock instead announced two additional loan signings, Huddersfield duo Will Boyle and Flo Bojaj.
Presumably the club will announce the other three shortly, the BBC even went as far as to name them already, but in the meantime let’s have a closer look at the eight unknowns Kilmarnock signed in one day.
Jamie Cobain - 19 - Right back
It’s difficult to find anything out about the defender who left Newcastle’s reserves to sign for Kilmarnock. He went on loan to Sheffield United last season and played only once before being sent back to Tyneside. The only thing Newcastle fans know about him - obviously not avid followers of their reserve team - is that he once sent a cryptic tweet that was RT’d by a couple of his team-mates and then promptly deleted. Whether that makes him an adequate replacement for Lee Hodson, we’ll have to wait and see.
Souleymane Coulibaly – 21 - Striker
Once dubbed the next Didier Drogba because he’s Ivorian, a striker and was the leading goalscorer at the 2011 under-17 World Cup. He was signed by Spurs but never got close to the first-team and quickly dropped down the football ladder. Signed by Peterborough, he was shipped on loan to Newport County where he was largely used from the bench. It may not sound all that promising, but Killie fans will be hoping he’s a talent who’s yet to find a proper home and may flourish once he gets it. He’s small but fairly quick and capable of ghosting into the right areas inside the penalty box.
Jordan Jones - 21 - Winger
The wide player arrives from Middlesbrough and his only taste of first-team action to this date occurred in a three-month loan spell at Hartlepool at the end of the season before last. He only started one game - which, oddly, was an appearance he drew praise for from his manager, only to be relegated to the bench again for the rest of his stay - making 11 appearances in total. Fans were intrigued with what they saw as he had skill and crossing ability, two highly coveted qualities in a winger. His problem is that he’s yet to refine his game, often going for the wrong ball or lacking any real consistency. Perhaps Lee Clark can shout it into him.
Callum McFadzean – 22 – Left Wing
Kilmarnock have got themselves another Rory McKenzie: a winger who’s not particularly flashy or explosive, but mucks in and does a lot of the dirty work on the flank. He can play at left back or left midfield and has more experience than the rest of the players signed on Friday, having made 21 appearances for Sheffield United and played regularly in two loan spells at Burton Albion. Kilmarnock fans will be pleased to hear he’s a Scotland under-21 international and horrified to know he was once found guilty of assaulting two female friends on a night out.
Martin Smith – 20 – Central Midfielder
It’s often the case that lower league sides will sign a young player from a bigger club purely as cover. That’s what happened to Smith in his two-month stint at Carlisle last season: came off the bench for his debut, started the next match and did well, and then was never seen again. Aside from that he had brief stints with lower league sides before leaving Sunderland to join Kilmarnock.
Joshua Webb – 20 – Right back
Once highly rated, Webb’s career stalled at Villa, leading to his departure this summer. At 16 he was regularly selected ahead of an older youth prospect at Villa for games in the NextGen Series and was picked three times for England under-18s. Since then, however, he hasn’t kicked on in quite the way his club and country would have expected, though first-team opportunities weren’t exactly forthcoming. Due to a lack of loan moves, he’s yet to play a competitive game of football. Maybe his chance with Kilmarnock will see the right back realise his potential.
Flo Bojaj – 20 – Striker
If you’re looking to pick out one player with the most pedigree from Friday’s batch, it’s either McFadzean or Kosovo-born Albanian striker Flo Bojaj for that honour. The 20-year-old may only have played eight league games in his senior career, but they were at the English Championship level and many Huddersfield fans expected him to play a greater role in the first-team next season prior to his move. Similar to McFadzean, Bojaj is a player who relies on his work rate and reading of the game rather than any stand-out physical or technical attributes.
Will Boyle – 20 – Centre Back
Huddersfield fans expected Boyle to be released this summer before the club inked the left-sided centre back to a new one-year deal with a club option of another 12 months. That would indicate it’s Boyle’s last chance to make a career for himself with the English Championship club. He spent a few months last season on loan at York City, and while his performances were hit and miss, he did have the disadvantage of trying to impress on the worst team in the Football League, managed by former Dundee United boss Jackie McNamara.