Midfielder Richard Bunting insists he would have been a leader for King’s Lynn Town – even if hadn’t been named as the club’s new captain.

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The 30-year-old caught the eye of Gary Setchell last season as he skippered Long Buckby to the United Counties League title at Lynn’s expense. His performances in a Linnets shirt this summer have continued to impress Setchell, so much so that Lynn’s boss made him his captain this week.

However, while the classy midfielder admits he will be proud to pull on the armband for Lynn this season, he says it will be business as usual as far as he’s concerned.

Bunting said: “It came as a bit of a surprise. I arrived here with the attitude of trying to nail down a place in the side, even if I was captain of the last couple of clubs I’ve been to.

“It doesn’t really change my role to be honest now I am skipper here. I always try and do a captain’s job on the pitch whether I’ve got the armband or not. For a team to be successful you need four, five, six leaders anyway.

“The armband is just something someone wears. I wouldn’t change if I did or didn’t have it on. But it is an honour to wear it because I know how big King’s Lynn are and how important it is to captain a side like this.”

Bunting has worn the armband for Lynn’s last two friendlies and replaces defender Ross Watson as the Linnets on-pitch leader. After being welcomed into the dressing room with open arms by Watson, Bunting admits he was concerned how the 24-year-old may take the news.

Lynn’s captain said: “Ross has been spot on since I came here. He’s been one of the people who has really made an effort to talk to me and he’s been great with all the new lads so it was a bit of a concern for me.

“Obviously it’s out of my hands what the gaffer wants to do and when he did ask me my initial reaction was yes, straight away. But I did want to talk to Ross beforehand and say it’s not a personal thing because I wanted to make sure me and him would still be mates.”

Setchell said Bunting – who has captained Lynn this summer along with Watson and Phil Gulliver – “ticks all the boxes”.

“Bunts has always captained teams, is in his early 30s, and gets his point across without tearing strips off people,” said the Linnets chief.

“He’s got total respect in the dressing room, he’s a winner, he’s a leader, he’s good with the younger players and he plays in the middle of the park. Ross did a good job as captain and is still a very valuable member of the team.

“He was a bit downhearted when I told him of my decision but his behaviour has been impeccable and he’s supported Bunts.”

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