CHESTER could make another dip into the transfer market before next week's deadline.
Manager Mark Wright hinted yesterday he may look for defensive cover following the decision to allow Carl Ruffer to move to Droylsden on loan.
He explained: 'Carl has a bad knee which no longer stands up to the rigours of full-time football. I would like to have kept him until the end of the season, but it was felt this move was best for him under the circumstances and we wish him well. I may have to look at this position before the deadline.'
City take on managerless Barnet on their sloping Underhill pitch tomorrow seeking their seventh successive victory in their quest for the Conference title.
Wright has a fully-fit squad at his disposal and even has a new goal-keeper in Andy Woods, signed from Northwich Vics last weekend following the news that Wayne Brown was ruled out until the end of the season.
Iain Turner is likely to remain first choice tomorrow in what is expected to be the team which beat Morecambe 2-1 at the Deva Stadium last Saturday, but Woods, who has also been at Scarborough, Halifax and Doncaster and has an England National Game XI cap, is almost certain to be included among the substitutes for the run-in.
Barnet parted company with Martin Allen on Wednesday when the former West Ham midfielder accepted the manager's job at Brentford.
The North London club still hopes to be in the play-offs at the end of the season and will be dangerous opponents. They are unbeaten in seven games and have drawn their last three, two of them away from home.
Punters could probably get good odds against a goalless draw - three players expected to be on view have scored 65 goals between them in the league.
Barnet have the Conference's top scorer in all competitions, Giuliano Grazioli, with 25 goals. In league matches alone, he and City's top marksman, Daryl Clare, lead the list with 23 each and Darryn Stamp has hit 19 so far.
Added Wright: 'Who knows how they will react to the departure of their manager? I'm not really bothered. It is up to us to do our jobs.
'Barnet are a well-organised side and keep their shape very well. They are on a good run and still fancy themselves to make the play-offs, so it will be a hard game for us.'
Chester are seeking permission from the local licensing authorities to throw open the visitors' end of the Deva Stadium to home supporters for the remaining games against Aldershot (April 6), Exeter (April 10) - which will be live on Sky Sports (5.35pm) - and Scarborough (April 17).
The few visiting fans expected would be accommodated in the West Stand. City's 1,800 tickets for the final scheduled game of the season at Hereford on April 24, have been sold.
Chester reserves meet Barrow at Flint next Tuesday (7.45pm). This week's scheduled match was postponed because Bradford PA couldn't raise a team.