Chester FC are set to announce their retained list for next season this week.
Blues boss Jon McCarthy is to hold talks with his players in the next couple of days as he looks to put together a squad early in preparation for the 2017/18 Vanarama National League season.
The Blues rounded off their season in miserable fashion on Saturday with a limp 2-0 loss at home to Boreham Wood , a defeat that means they finish the campaign without a home win since December and with six straight defeats.
Chester, who were as high as seventh before the Christmas period, ended up finishing the season in 19th position, two points above the drop zone, but McCarthy says that getting to 52 points by game 41 means that they have been able to prepare for next season with regards to who is staying, who is going and who is arriving.
“Yes, I know it,” said McCarthy when asked about his retained list for next season.
“People will see that with movement next week. What the situation has, being safe with five games to go, is to allow us to make some decisions and be further on with stuff. There has been a lot of work going on.”
The season ended on a sour note for the Blues as a chorus of boos rang out from some sections of supporters at the Lookers Vauxhall Stadium at the final whistle on Saturday.
McCarthy has come under fire from some fans but defended his maiden season in charge of the football club, citing limited resources and a threadbare squad towards the end of the season for their woeful form in 2017.
He said: “I could really understand it (the frustration from fans) if you were York. Put things into context, it doesn’t excuse us, and I understand the stuff, but I also understand there is a lot of people at this football club that know what we have achieved this year and the manner in which we have done it.”
“All I have done is ask the media to put things in context and at times they have got carried away with each other and it gathered steam.
“Our job was to pick up 52 points and we did it after game 41, we did that. People didn’t give us 52 points and we threw all the others away. We did it right on budget and have developed a couple of players who will make a significant amount of money for this football club.
“The results towards the end of the season we all know about and we are disappointed and hold our hands up but, in terms of resources it was a very difficult time.”
“It’s not to lower ambitions but it is to realise where we are at now. If we can get everybody on board to recognise where we are at as a football club. We are not the Chester City of old. There are five professional leagues in this country now, there are only 126 teams and we are one of them. We want to get into 92 but it is remarkabe what we have achieved for our size.”