MANCHESTER Phoenix captain Luke Boothroyd and alternate captain James Archer are to return next season after signing for their seventh and fifth campaigns respectively.

‘Stay at home’ style defenceman Boothroyd, 27, has been Phoenix captain for the past five seasons and is just 2 games shy of 300 games played for Manchester.

Boothroyd was selected to play for Great Britain in 2012 at the World Championships whilst he has won two league titles and a playoff crown with Phoenix.

Commenting on returning for his seventh season, Boothroyd said: “It is great to be back to try and retain our championship. Phoenix are a great club to play for and the fans are second to none in the league.

‘It looks like Tony has recruited another formidable squad and I can’t wait for September.”

Meanwhile Sheffield born forward James Archer, 25, returns for his fifth season in Phoenix colours and has been alternate captain for the past three seasons. Last season Archer netted 28 goals and 28 assists for 56 points throughout the league season and the playoffs.

Archer has iced in over 450 league games in the English Premier League and brings a wealth of experience in spite of only being 25 years old.

On returning to Phoenix for a fifth season he said: “I am pleased to be back. To be honest I never considered playing anywhere else. We will have another competitive, entertaining team to step up to the challenge of retaining our title.”

Player coach Tony Hand remarked on both signings: “Luke is a natural leader and he played a major part in our championship winning season last time out. It is great to have him back on board.”

“James’ natural enthusiasm is a real asset to the team. A good “A” who takes his responsibilities very seriously and is superb in the locker room.

‘It is good to have him back in Phoenix colours for the coming season.”