EASTWOOD Town manager John Ramshaw says he is keen to begin recruiting new players as the Badgers continue preparing for life in the Evo-Stik Premier Division.
Until now, Ramshaw’s hands have been tied with regard to making new signings as he has been unaware of the budget available to him.
But owner Steve Lynch was due to meet Ramshaw and his assistant Richard Cooper this week to reveal just how much money is available, something the Badgers boss has been aching to discover.
He said: “It’s been very frustrating because although I’ve been able to take up options on the contracts of some existing players, that obviously takes care of a certain percentage of whatever the budget will be.
“So the worst case scenario is that the budget is hardly increased at all and that I have to then let one or two of those players go.
“But I’m confident we’ll have something workable. I’ve got two or three good players lined up to bring in when I get the go-ahead and there are a number of other irons in the fire too.
“We also have to hope that whatever budget we get doesn’t have to keep altering as it did last year, otherwise there’s the danger of having to drastically reduce the squad again.”
Meanwhile, Ramshaw has been busy arranging pre-season friendlies to take place ahead of the new season which starts on Saturday, August 18.
Players report back for training on June 16, with the opening friendly currently scheduled to be at Clifton All Whites on July 14 where the Badgers’ reserves will also play in a double-header.
Eastwood will then travel to Ramshaw’s previous club Shepshed Dynamo on Tuesday, July 17, before Conference Premier side Lincoln City come to Coronation Park on Saturday, July 21.
An away game at Coalville Town follows on July 24, Scarborough Athletic visit on July 26 and then Bedworth United will be the hosts two days later.
Former Badgers boss Paul Cox will then bring a side to Coronation Park on Tuesday, July 31.
Dates remain subject to change and more games are still to be arranged for the following weeks, but Ramshaw says he is currently pleased with the line-up.
He said: “There will be some good tests in there and it’ll give us a chance to run the rule over various players which is often one of the main purposes of pre-season games.
“There may be scope for one or two bigger clubs to visit Coronation Park at some point, but I don’t want to fill the schedule with too many of those games.
“They’re not a great deal of use if you’re not going to have too much of the ball when playing quality sides, which is why I’ve tried to arrange games against teams more from our kind of level.
“But I’m aware that a big game can draw some fans in and subsequently good revenue so there may be something along those lines arranged in due course depending on who is available.”