Budget key to Chester FC squad improvements


Dennis Wall

NEIL YOUNG has identified the need to strengthen his squad as Chester prepare for the start of the Conference North campaign.

The Blues boss revealed he is keen to add three players before his club kick-off the league season at Oxford City on Saturday, August 18.

But Young is determined to work within his budget and is considering the loan market in a bid to achieve his objectives.

"I know what I need, but it's not worth me going out and getting someone who is too dear, because the football club has a budget and we have to stick to it," Young said.

"I'm sure all the Chester supporters are crying out for a big name centre forward, but the money that is being commanded by centre forwards who we need is a lot of money.

"We're not going to put the club in any jeopardy by over-spending. We'll try and do our business as best as we possibly can.

"I'd like to bring in another left-sided defender, although trialist Daniel Ting has done himself no harm so far. I'd like to bring in another midfield player who can get on the ball and play.

"We've already got Antoni Sarcevic and Levi Mackin who can do it, but it's all about strength in depth and having the confidence because Antoni is only 20 years old and Levi is coming back after a bad injury and not a lot of football under his belt.

"I also think we need another forward, so they are the things I will be trying to progress and we'll see what can be done financially, but we may use the loan market because I have identified players who we can take on loan, but their clubs are wanting to keep hold of them until they have brought players in.

"We have got our eyes on two or three players and we'll see how that plays out, but at the moment I'm very pleased with the attitude and commitment of the players."

Young is currently assessing the progress of four trialists who were part of the Chester squad that were held to a goalless draw at Buckley Town on Thursday, and in yesterday's friendly at AFC Fylde.

Defenders Cliff Moyo, Tom Smith, and Daniel Ting, and striker Stephen Connor have all been training with the Chester squad who entertain Southport tomorrow (7.45pm kick-off).

Young added: "I thought young Daniel at left back had a decent second half at Buckley, and the other lads did themselves no harm, but it is a fairly big step up for a lot of them and we'll give them another couple of weeks.

"I want to give all the trialists an idea of where they are after 10 days with us because if they are not going to be at Chester then they need to go and find themselves another club.

"All four of the lads that are with us have trained and worked hard, but it also shows to me what we require as a football club in terms of additional players.

"Hopefully I'll be able to do something over the next five to six weeks and before the season starts, but at the moment it's all about working with the lads we've got.

"I've got a good group of players who haven't played together before, but I thought we got stronger against Buckley as the game went on.

"Buckley have been training for the last three or four weeks while we've only been in for the last 10 days and we have done a lot of long running, so the lads are a little bit jaded.

"It wasn't spectacular at Buckley, but at this stage of the season it was enough for me. It's not about results in pre-season - it's all about making sure we're ready for our first league match on August 18.”

Young added: "I need to get all the positives I'm looking for from pre-season matches. I've told the players how I want to play and I'm finding out what the players are all about.

"Buckley provided a good friendly for us. They worked hard and they were proud of what they had achieved last season when they finished third, and they had added to that squad with some good lads.

"People have to remember that Buckley will always play with pride and that they see Chester as a scalp, and they'll always be doing their best to turn us over.

"We'll always try and win games, but it is far more important to get the fundamentals right."

See full story in the Chester Leader

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