Former Bristol Rovers defender completes move to league rivals Walsall - could play Gas at end of the month

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He was reunited with manager Matt Taylor for a second time after previously working together at Swindon Town

Bristol Rovers’ League Two rivals Walsall have completed the permanent signing of former Gas defender Rollin Menayese.

The 24-year-old was on loan at the Midlands club from Mansfield Town but has now committed his long-term future to the Saddlers.

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Menayese made 19 appearances in the league this season, missing just three of their matches.

He could make a return to the Memorial Stadium with his new club when Bristol Rovers entertain Walsall on January 29.

"I am delighted to finally get it over the line," Menayese said to Walsall’s official club website.

"As soon as the manager talked about it, I was really happy and it was something that I really wanted to do.

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"Overall, I think Walsall is a really good club. We have good fans, we have a good team with a good manager, good facilities and I feel like it is a good place for me to be at right now.

"I am enjoying my football and I want to carry on doing that.

"As soon as I got my opportunity to play, I have felt comfortable at the back and I want to carry on what I have been doing previously between now and the end of the season.”

Menayese who hails from the DR Congo, began his career with Cardiff City but was released without making a senior appearance and joined Weston-super-Mare as his first senior club. He played one season in the National League South.

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His performances for the Seagulls did enough to persuade the interest of Bristol Rovers who signed him in the summer. Initially linking up with the Under-23’s squad, he made four appearances for the first team in the 2017/18 season before being shipped out on loan to Swindon. He was loaned out to Aldershot Town the season after, making just one appearance for Rovers, but then found his breakthrough.

He began the 2019/20 campaign as one of the first choice centre-backs and played a total of 23 times before the season was curtailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rather than build on making the most appearances made for the club, he was sold to Mansfield Town, reuniting with former Gas boss Graham Coughlan.

He would make ten appearances but after the departure of Coughlan, he was loaned out to Grimsby Town, where he was part of the Mariners side relegated to the non-league. After not being fancied by Stags boss Nigel Clough, he was loaned out to Walsall at the start of the season and now has a fourth permanent club.

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