Midfielder Chris Lines today signed a new contract to extend his stay with his hometown club.
Since returning to The Mem for his second spell with Rovers, in March 2015, Chris has become an integral member of the side and this season, in particular, has been very influential in the middle of the park.
Manager Darrell Clarke said; “Whilst we still have ten games of the current season remaining, we have to look to the future and begin our planning for the 2017/18 campaign.
“Chris has put in some outstanding performances for us this season and I have been impressed with his consistency levels and his work rate. He is a very intelligent footballer and I am delighted that he has decided to extend his time with the club.”
Chris had this to say after putting pen to paper; “It’s always nice to get your contract sorted out before the end of the season and I honestly say that it’s a great feeling and I’m happy to be staying."
“I signed a new one year contract last season and realised that this was going to be an important one for me. It was important to show I could still play at this level and I think I’ve done that and maybe more. It’s been a great season so far and I can now look forward to next season as well as the final ten games of this campaign.”
Chris has appeared in all but two of our 36 league games this season and the three goals he has scored include a spectacular strike against Cardiff City in the EFL Cup last August, which earned the club a visit to Chelsea in the second round of the competition.
He signed his first pro contract with the club in January 2006 and made his first team debut when going on as a substitute in our 2-1 win against Chester City that month and made his first start, against Macclesfield Town, in the final game of the campaign.
He was used as a substitute in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Final in 2007 and was on the bench for the play off final at Wembley just a few months later.
Chris, who scored his first league goal for the club against Port Vale, on 2nd February 2007, remained at the club until August 2011 when he joined Sheffield Wednesday for a fee of £50,000.
He was at Hillsborough for two years and scored three goals in 47 league games for the Owls, and also spent time on loan with MK Dons between January and April 2013.
July 2013 saw him move on to Port Vale and in almost two years at Vale Park he scored three goals in 61 league appearances.
He appeared in The Conference Promotion Play Off Final in 2015 when he took, and scored, the first penalty in the shootout and was a vital member of the side gained promotion to League One at the end of last season.
To date he has scored 23 goals in 243 league games for the club and has another three goals and 32 appearances to his name in all other competitions.
In line with club policy, the length of Chris’ new contract will not be disclosed.