Lancaster City boss Phil Brown is confident Matty Blinkhorn will not be the only new player to arrive at Giant Axe this summer.
The former Blackpool and Morecambe striker agreed a deal to join the Dolly Blues this week after spending the last six years at AFC Fylde.
And Brown is hopeful there will be more big-name signings to follow in the coming days and weeks. He is currentlydeep in negotiations with a midfielder and a defender.
“There’s been a lot of hard work going on behind the scenes,” Brown said.
“Everybody thinks there’s nothing happening and things are quiet.
“But we have been working really hard; the Matty Blinkhorn signing – that’s not something which gets done over one chat.
“That’s happened over several chats – I have been talking to him for a number of weeks.
“To be fair, I have been speaking to a couple of other players and we will just have to wait and see on that.
“I am hopeful that we will have two more signings by the end of the week and we’ll have to see if we can get them over the line.”
The capture of Blinkhorn – who featured in the Football League early on in his career and then went on to play a prominent role in the Coasters rise up the non-league pyramid in recent years – is a major coup for the club.
“Bringing Matty in is like signing two players,” Brown said.
“It’s not just in terms of his ability and quality as a striker, but also his experience will be really vital to us in supporting some of the other players.
“He will help make sure that when we are on for a point, it’s a good point or if we should be getting three, then we get that too, if that makes sense.
“It’s not just what he does in relation to the ball, but what he brings to the whole group.”
As well as new signings, Brown has also been busy tieing a number of his existing squad to new deals.
Although he has lost the services of Ben Akrigg and Craig Carney – who have departed for pastures new – he has persuaded seven players to sign new deals.
Striker Tom Kilifin and defender Ben Hudson are the latest to commit their immediate futures to the club when they signed on the dotted line on Tuesday.
They follow Ryan Winder, Simon Wills, Paul Dugale and the Bailey brothers – Sam and Charlie – who will all be important members of the Dolly Blues squad next season.
“I am hoping to bring five new players in to add to the existing squad,” said Brown.
“I am not looking to have a massive squad of players this season if I am being honest.
“I want to have a decent nucleus of experience – players who have played at this level.
“I am getting to the point where I am quite happy with the squad I have got at my disposal.
“I am probably looking at bringing in five new players maximum between now and the start of the season.
“Although you never say never – if somebody becomes available who I think will add to us and make us better then I will look to bring him in – that’s part and parcel of football .”
Meanwhile, Brown has announced that City will play a pre-season friendly against Fleetwood Under-23s at Giant Axe on August 4.