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13:27 Saturday 23 March 2013  Written by Charles Watts

Maidenhead United swoop for former Arsenal star

Maidenhead United boss Johnson Hippolyte has signed former Arsenal star Kerrea Gilbert and Romone Rose.
Maidenhead United boss Johnson Hippolyte has signed former Arsenal star Kerrea Gilbert and Romone Rose.

Maidenhead United FC have signed former Arsenal defender Kerrea Gilbert as well as ex QPR trainee Romone Rose.

The duo put pen to paper after training on Thursday as Magpies boss Johnson Hippolyte looks to ensure his squad is strong enough to ensure they won't be sucked into a relegation battle.

Gilbert, a right back, burst onto the scene as an 18-year-old with Arsenal in November 2005 when he made his debut against Reading at Highbury in the League Cup.

It was the start of an impressive campaign for the youngster who made his Champions League debut against Ajax the following month before making hist first Premier League appearance in January 2006 at Everton.

The full back played in both leg's of Arsenal's League cup semi-final defeat against Wigan, setting up Thierry Henry's goal in the 2-2 draw at Highbury.

Gilbert's run in the side was brought to an end, however, when he picked up an injury against West Ham in February and he didn't play again that season.

For the next three seasons, the defender spent time on loan at Cardiff, Southend United and Leicester City before returning to Arsenal for the 2009/10 campaign.

His appearances were limited for the Gunners although he did play in the Champions League win at Olympics and in the League Cup win against Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium.

In January 2010 he left on loan to join Peterborough and was then released by Arsenal at the end of the season.

Gilbert then agreed to  move to MLS side Portland Timbers but the switch fell through due to visa issues, he has since played for Yeovil and more recently Shamrock Rovers in Ireland.

Maidenhead United's new signing will be joined at York Road by Rose, a winger who came through the ranks with QPR.

The 23-year-old found his chances limited at Loftus Road having made his debut against West Bromwich Albion in 2008.

Over the next three years he spent a lot of time out on loan, playing for the likes of Northampton, Cheltenham and Torquay.

Rose was released by QPR in 2011 and was soon playing for Newport County, he featured in the 2-0 defeat by York City in the FA Trophy final at Wembley.

He has since played for Wealdstone and Hemel Hempstead Town.

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