Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley have moved to strengthen their defensive options with the signing of versatile defender Finn Cousin-Dawson on a season loan from Bradford City.
A Northern Ireland Under-21 international, he is comfortable slotting in at right-back or in the centre of defence and has also operated in a holding role in midfield on occasions in the past.
The highly rated 20-year-old has graduated through the ranks of The Bantams’ Academy and, after starring on loan for Brighouse Town in 2019/20, he was offered a first professional contract.
Cousin-Dawson went on to make his senior debut for City in the EFL Trophy in September 2020 and he remained part of the First Team squad, making a total of 26 appearances in 2020/21.
His performances were also enough to earn him an extended deal at The Utilita Energy Stadium as he put pen to paper on a three-and-a-half-year extension last January.
The defender was once again in and around the First Team during City’s League Two campaign last year, but boss Mark Hughes is now keen for him to get further senior experience out on loan.
“Finn is someone we were aware of last season and who has been in and around the First Team at Bradford,” explained boss Anthony Johnson.
“He’s a Northern Ireland international and he’s versatile in terms of being able to operate anywhere across the back four but it’s striking that at just 20 he’s already played over 30 games at League Two level.
“You can see how highly thought of he is at Bradford and how well he’s done when he’s played so, to be honest, it came as a bit of a shock that we could bring him in – it’s a major coup for us as a club, especially to get him for the season.
“We love having players who can play two or three positions which means you can adapt during games or cope better when you get injuries so we’re really excited to bring him in.
“Bradford have been brilliant; I spoke to Ryan Sparks, and he’s been amazing with us. You always try to build relationships with clubs in higher divisions and hopefully we can go back to them and show we’ve looked after Finn well and they will be open to helping us again in the future.
“It’s all about those relationships and networking at any level of football so we have to offer a massive thank you to Bradford for their help.”
Cousin-Dawson is now expected to play some part in Saturday’s final pre-season friendly against Trafford at The Home Estates Shawe View Stadium.