AFC Sudbury manager Chris Tracey has revealed he is on the verge of tying up deals for five new players to bolster his promotion-chasing squad.
The unnamed targets have all verbally agreed to be part of his 2012/13 plans and now Ryman League registration forms are out the Sudbury manager expects to get pen to paper in the coming days.
But the Free Press understands the Yellows boss is still sweating on decisions from existing key players James Baker (currently in Norway with his girlfriend) and Michael Shinn about their futures.
Pre-season training gets underway on July 3 with Tracey confident of several fresh faces to help improve on an eighth place finish that saw them miss out on the play-offs by eight points last time out.
“Nobody has put pen to paper yet, but I have five lined up,” he said. “The forms have just come out and it is now a case of sitting down and signing them with the guys.”
He added: “They are people who I think will enjoy playing for Sudbury and it will be very positive for us.
“It is early days getting people to commit as players are waiting for the biggest deal to be put under their noses, and having been a player myself, everyone haggles for that.”
Former Leiston defender Mark Goldfinch will not be Nathan Clarke’s (Needham Market) replacement though, after surprisingly turning down an approach to join up with AFC in pre-season in favour of signing permanently for Eastern Counties Premier Division side Hadleigh United (see page 63).
“He runs his own business and the travelling in our league would not suit him at this time,” explained Tracey, who was quick to point out the only offer on the table was to assess him in training.
Needham Market midfielder Bradley Barber has had no contact with the AFC manager since the Free Press revealed last week he had made a gentleman’s agreement to sign for him, despite his current manager Danny Laws claiming he has signed a new contract with the Marketmen.
Tracey admitted the situation still remains unclear, even to himself, but said he was prepared to wait for Barber, saying there would always be a place for him in his squad though added he did have other targets.
Meanwhile, AFC will travel to Ram Meadow on Saturday, August 11, for a pre-season friendly with Ryman League Premier Division neighbours Bury Town (kick off time to be confirmed).