FORMER Forest Green goalkeeper coach Steve Hale has joined Walsall.

The former Swindon and Forest Green Rovers man replaces Neil Cutler who joined West Brom last month.

Hale holds the UEFA Goalkeeping A-Licence, the top licence in Europe, and took his first training session with The Saddlers’ goalkeepers on Tuesday morning.

Steve was part of the Swindon side that made the League One play-off final in 2015, and visited Wembley again as Forest Green beat Tranmere in the National League promotion final last season as they were promoted to the EFL.

“I’m really pleased to join Walsall,” Hale told the club website.

“It was all finalised over the last few days and I was in training on Tuesday with Robbo (Liam Roberts) and Gilly (Mark Gillespie), who are both great guys.

“Now it’s all about getting ready for a massive game on Saturday at home to Blackburn!

“Everyone is talking about Liam at the moment - he’s 23 and in the team having come through the ranks from 14 - while Gilly has got 180 league games under his belt at just 25 and he’s still developing.

“It’s great to have the opportunity to work with two talented keepers at that young age.”

Manager Jon Whitney is delighted to have Hale onboard at the club.

“Steve is experienced and when I’ve spoken to him, that comes across and he can handle himself in the first-team environment,” Whitney said.

“He’s a different voice, which is no bad thing for the goalkeepers.

“I want Steve to keep the keepers enthused, make the session really dynamic. He’s good on his statistics and he’ll be a help from set pieces as well.

“He’s going to add a lot to the run-in and I’d like to welcome him to Walsall Football Club.”