Irish international Jones signs for the Wingmakers

Steve Jones

THE Wingmakers have made their first major close season signing with the arrival of experienced former Northern Ireland international, Football League and SPL striker Steve Jones.

The Derry-born 36-year-old, who has spent the last two seasons in the Blue Square Premier with AFC Telford United, was capped 29 times by his country and played in most of Northern Ireland's unsuccessful 2006 World Cup qualifying campaign.

Jones started his career with Blackpool in July 1995 before signing for Bury and then joined Sligo Rovers, where he spent two seasons and won a League of Ireland Cup medal.

After brief spells with Bray Wanderers and Chorley, he joined Leigh RMI and made 82 appearances for the Lancashire outfit before attracting the attention of several clubs.

Crewe Alexandra won the race for his signature in a deal worth £150,000 and he went on to appear 173 times for the Railwaymen, scoring 45 goals.

In 2006, Queens Park Rangers took an interest in signing Jones but were unable to meet Crewe's valuation of £300,000 for him and instead he joined Burnley on a Bosman, signing a three-year deal with the Championship club.

During his time at Turf Moor, Jones was loaned to Crewe, Huddersfield Town and Bradford City, eventually leaving for Walsall, where he made 43 appearances between 2009 and 2011.

After a loan spell in the SPL with Motherwell, he joined the Bucks where he top-scored last season.

"We are delighted to have secured Steve's services, he has proven quality and manager Andy Preece was keen to get him on board in time for our upcoming European debut," says chief operating officer Stewart Roberts.

"I am delighted to welcome Steve and his family to Airbus."