Marcus Bignot expects Chester to sign a Football League goalkeeper over the weekend after the ‘surprise’ of losing his number one Sam Hornby.

The on-loan keeper was recalled on Monday by Port Vale which came as a shock to Bignot, but the Blues boss has moved quickly to find a replacement, who will now join Chester ahead of Tuesday’s encounter with Dover Athletic and provide competition for on-loan Liverpool keeper Andy Firth, after tomorrow’s clash with Bromley was postponed due to the severe weather.

“We’ve already found someone, I’m always prepared because we’re used to losing players on a weekly basis,” said Bignot, who confirmed he has had ‘positive’ news regarding possibly keeping hold of midfield duo Gary Roberts and Dominic Vose for the rest of the season.

“Sam was a surprise, I’m not going to lie. We didn’t see that one coming but we’ve moved quickly and we’d have had someone in place for Saturday if the game were going ahead. That may now happen but a little later.

“I’m getting used to it now, it’s part and parcel of it and if we’ve not lost anyone on a Monday morning now, I’m disappointed! It is what it is and I love my work, I enjoy coming in and my personality has hopefully rubbed off on the group because I can’t get caught up in what’s going on off the pitch.

“It was a blow to lose Sam but that’s the problem with loans, they are never yours and you can’t control them. We’ve moved quickly and we’re delighted with the replacement who is coming in. From the financial point of view, it’s great business too because we’re saving money (on Hornby’s wages) and we’ve got a replacement in.

“My phone has gone quiet from all the agents – it’s great! They’ll discuss coming on non-wages but as soon as no expenses is mentioned they quickly limit their client base. There’s not many players who they can get out for no expenses or wages.

“So we’ve not got many to choose from! But by hook or by crook, we’ve managed to beg, steel and borrow and we’ve done it and found them.”

On potentially keeping Roberts and Vose, he added: “I’ve had conversations with the pair of them and from those conversations it’s really positive and there’s no doubt the club will speak to both players. Fingers crossed we’ll have them to the end of the season.”

Bignot expects the majority of non-league matches to be postponed this weekend, admitting Chester’s situation against Bromley would be replicated nationwide, but stressed his side will be ‘chomping at the bit’ ahead of the clash with Dover Athletic on Tuesday night, which should get the go-ahead if the forecast improved temperatures materialise at the start of next week.

“We’ve had ‘the beast from the east’ and now we’ve got Storm Emma coming in haven’t we? So it was probably inevitable it was going to happen and we’re probably in the same boat as pretty much everyone up and down the country this weekend,” he explained.

“Obviously it changes training a little in terms of what you do and next week is a strange one with a midweek game followed by a Sunday morning game so all-in-all it’s a re-jigging of the schedule.

“They told me when I came here that is doesn’t snow in Chester, all I’ve ever seen is snow!

“We’ll prepare for Tuesday. I’m sure with the weather forecasted there is a real good possibility it will be on.

“There was a lot of emotion in the manner we lost but having this week to reflect, there’s a lot of positives to take from it and we’re chomping at the bit now for Tuesday.”