(Picture: Action Images via Reuters)
SOUTH SHIELDS may turn to a former Premier League ace to provide the piece de resistance to their new Evo-Stik Division One North campaign.
The FA Vase winners are running the rule over former Newcastle United and Portsmouth striker Lomana LuaLua as they prepare for their first season at Step 4.
The 36-year-old frmer DR Congo international has been training with the Mariners and is hoping to impress manager Graham Fenton ahead of the club’s season opener at Trafford on August 12.
It reunites LuaLua with former north-east rival Julio Arca with the pair renouned for locking horns several times in the fierce Newcastle v Sunderland derbies of the early 2000s.
LuaLua began his professional career with Colchester United, making 61 appearances for the U’s before joining Newcastle United in a £2.25m move in 2000.
There, LuaLua went onto become a huge favourite at St James’ Park, starring for the Magpies in their 2002-03 Champions League campaign.
After Alan Shearer and Craig Bellamy had established themselves as the regular front pair, LuaLua joined Portsmouth on a three-month loan deal in February 2004.
That loan move was made permanent three months later and LuaLua went on to make 72 appearances for Pompey before leaving Greek club Olympiakos in 2007.
Since his time in Greece, the striker has gone on to play for clubs in Cyprus and Turkey and also spent the 2011/12 season with Blackpool.
His last club were ?anl?urfaspor but he has been a free agent since leaving the Turkish second tier club last year.
As yet it is unclear whether LuaLua will be part of Fenton’s plans to face Sunderland U23s on Wednesday night or indeed the final pre-season friendly of the summer, at Whitby Town on Saturday.