As the clock ticked towards 5pm on transfer deadline day, Lincoln City faced a race against time before confirming the signing of striker Joan Luque from Heybridge Swifts.
The striker, who found the net 30 times in the league for Heybridge during the last campaign, has put pen to paper on an initial six-month deal with the Imps.
Luque has had a distinguished career, having come through the youth system at Barcelona before trying his luck in England by joining Heybridge last summer.
The 26-year-old attracted plenty of Football League interest last season and was named in the Bostik League Team of the Year.
Speaking to the club’s official website, the new Lincoln signing said, “It’s actually a dream come true because I’ve spent 21 years playing football trying to achieve being a professional.
“I’ve sacrificed many things to become a proessional like being away from family. This will be the fifth year im away from my family, and having to sacrifice a lot makes it sweeter now that I have achieved it.
“I am so excited to be playing in front of 10,000 fans here at Lincoln City, it’ll be the biggest crowd I’ve ever played in front of and can’t wait to get started.”
Meanwhile, Heybrudge boss Jody Brown expressed his pride at seeing his former striker move up the footballing pyramid.
The Swifts boss said, “There was interest in Luque from multiple clubs but I’m absolutely delighted he has eventually signed for a League Two promotion candidate.
“It appears late in the day but this has been on the cards for a long time and it was just a case of Luque being happy with the personal terms.
“Luque and myself had a very close relationship, so seeing him leave is quite sad for me. But the most dominant feeling is one of enormous pride.
“I have so much belief in his technical ability. And knowing Danny Cowley’s principles like I do, it suggests he has also shown athleticism, endurance, heart and desire – but I knew he had that already.
“He’s a great team player and a willing learner and he will go far given the opportunity.
“He came here from Barcelona with two pairs of boots, a ruck sack, nowhere to live, no money, and a huge language barrier.
“I took a punt and offered him £35 a week, but promised to give him all I could in terms of coaching and support.
“He took the offer and completely committed to the club, the supporters, and his own development.
“It wasn’t always easy and he took time to settle and adapt his game, but his personality shone through, and he fast became a fans’ favourite and popular with his team-mates.
“He went on to play a huge part in what was probably the club’s greatest ever season given the previous periods of adversity, and scored some unbelievable goals. It would make a great chapter in a biography.”