Bernard Morley admits Chester must now prioritise their search for a striker after their lack of firepower was exposed in a 1-0 defeat against League Two side Bury.

The Blues, who sold striker Jordan Archer to Bury just 10 days ago for an undisclosed fee, lacked a cutting edge in their defeat to Ryan Lowe’s Shakers, Swiss forward Gold Omotayo’s second-half strike separating the two sides.

Hopes of securing a deal for a National League striker who has previously worked with management duo Morley and Anthony Johnson have suffered a blow in the past 48 hours, while an agreement with trialist forward Deane Smalley is yet to be reached.

Morley said: “There’s alarm bells there, but are we concerned? Not yet. We are still leaning to two weeks’ time to Spennymoor, and if that’s still the case, come two weeks’ time, there will be massive alarm bells, but it is something to work on in training, something for the scouts to get out and get us that centre forward.

"There's hundreds of teams that want a centre forward who scores 30 goals, but they're just not there. What we want to do is make sure that the profile of player we bring to this football club the right player. We’ve only Deane (Smalley, trialist) at the moment and we need to add to that.

"We don't want to be making a signing and give them a 12-month deal and then in six weeks’ time, we're thinking we've rushed into that. If we've got to wait into the season, we'll do that.

"There are still two weeks of pre-season which are vital for us. There is a little bit of concern up front and we need to add to that but all in all we were very pleased with what we have seen.”

The loss to Bury came less than 24 hours after joint-bosses Morley and Anthony Johnson had seen a youthful Blues side hammer Welsh Premier League outfit Llandudno FC 4-0, with goals courtesy of Nathan Brown, Alex Downes, Cain Noble and a trialist.

Morley was keen to stress Chester will face far weaker sides than Bury on a weekly-basis in National League North and wasn’t concerned by a lack of creativity, after their side had produced an excellent display to see off Llandudno.

"I thought we did try to overplay it, I think there was chances that we created and we could have got a shot off early doors, but I don't want to be too critical. I don’t creativity is a big issue,” he continued.

"We've held our own and rightly so, and that's what we said to the lads before the game. Let's not go out and think we are beaten. We expect to do well and we expect to win the game, but they were a decent League One side last season and we’ve pushed them all the way.

“We got four goals on Friday night against a good team, but against Bury you can start to identify and say if we can break them down, then surely we break sides down at our level of football.”

Chester completed a deal for experienced centre-back Simon Grand on Friday, and co-boss Morley feels the former Fylde defender’s quality will improve the back line.

"At Runcorn Linnets where we looked defensively really poor, I won't say a shambles but we looked all over the place at times and very disjointed,” he added.

"Simon's comes in and adds experience and communication, telling people where to be, where not to be, when in and out of possession. I thought John Pritchard and (Steve) Howson really stepped up today and Simon's experience is valuable."