Ryan Astles is hoping to be part of new Chester FC manager Jon McCarthy's plans for next season.
Central defender Astles has impressed since arriving at the Lookers Vauxhall Stadium from Northwich Victoria in January and forged a solid partnership with Ben Heneghan at the heart of the Blues defence during McCarthy's successful caretaker spell, scoring what proved to be the winner in the 2-1 win at Grimsby Town last month, a result that ensured Chester's National League survival.
The 22-year-old is one of a number of Chester players now out of contract but is hoping he has done enough to earn a new deal at the club and continue his development.
“I'm pretty much just waiting by the phone and hoping that I get a new contract as I'd like to think I did well enough to be given another chance,” said the 6ft 5ins Birkenhead-born defender.
“I really want to stay with the club and I have had some contact with the gaffer (McCarthy) who text me to let me know the situation and that our futures will be sorted out as quickly as possible.
“He has come out and said that he wants to keep most of the squad together and I'd like to think I'd be one of those to be kept on.”
Having spent his career so far playing in the Welsh Premier League and Evo-Stik League, Astles has adapted quickly to life in the National League and believes that he has plenty of room for improvement if given a new deal.
“I think I've done well enough and shown up OK,” said Astles, who was with Chester City's academy as a youngster.
“It's a big step up from playing with Northwich but I feel I've handled it and shown that I can do it at this level.
“I was playing a lot and me and Ben (Heneghan) forged a decent partnership, I think. We stayed up and beat some big teams, like Grimsby. Scoring the winner that kept us up against Grimsby was an amazing feeling.”
Despite having been brought to the club by former manager Steve Burr, Astles was full of praise for McCarthy after his caretaker spell secured him the Blues job on a permanent basis.
“Macca was great for us at the end of the season and helped us get some big results to keep us in the league,” said Astles.
“It's good that the manager situation has been sorted and that Macca got it. Hopefully I'll be part of his plans, but it's a case of wait and see at the moment.”