City's capture of Peter Thorne will send shockwaves through their League Two promotion rivals.

Joint-chairman Julian Rhodes believes that signing a Championship striker has hammered out a real message of intent.

Stuart McCall dived into the transfer market for the first time to snap up the former Cardiff, Stoke and Swindon hitman on Monday alongside new strike partner Barry Conlon.

Rhodes reckons Thorne's arrival mirrors the return of Dean Windass four years ago - and is backing him to make just as big an impact on City's fortunes.

"You do look and think that it is very similar to when Deano came back," said Rhodes.

"Peter is 34, the same age as Dean was at the time, and he's got a great goal-scoring record like him down the years.

"He's had a couple of seasons when it hasn't worked out at Norwich but he's been down the pecking order behind the likes of Dean Ashton and Robert Earnshaw - but he has scored goals everywhere else he has been.

"I don't know too much about him other than looking at his record and what Stuart has told me but he thinks Peter will be a great asset for us and I tend to agree.

"Hopefully he can go on and score as many goals for us as Deano has done in recent seasons."

McCall was delighted to net the double signing after being frustrated over several potential targets. Thorne, who cost Cardiff £1.7million in 2001, has netted 165 goals in his career.

"It's hard for people at the top level to come and play down here so we're really pleased," said the City boss.

"I was the same age as him when I came back and so was Deano and you can play on a lot longer. Peter is in good nick, he has looked after himself and he's ready to go.

"He's had a few niggly injuries but nothing more and he wants to get going again with us. It's the same with big Barry, who will give us the physical attributes you need in this division."

Rhodes added: "There's a lot of work gone in to getting these two lads and Stuart has been looking at a whole list of strikers.

"Stuart is very excited about both of them, in particular Peter Thorne. The capture of Peter might send out a message and show the rest of the division that we mean business."

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