Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley are set to make a decision on their Chester FC trialists in the coming days.
The Blues bosses have been running the rule over a number of individuals during pre-season, with three forwards handed the chance to impress in the 2-2 draw with Morecambe .
Johnson and Morley know that they are striker light as they head towards the National League North season opener on August 4.
And while they remain on the trail of a striker from a National League side, there may be a chance of a permanent addition from those who have been out to catch the eye in the friendlies.
One of those trialists to impress the bosses is former Oxford United, Oldham Athletic and Plymouth Argyle striker Deane Smalley, brother of Blues full-back Dominic, with the 29-year-old certainly in the thoughts of Johnson and Morley, although no decisions have been made on any trialist as yet.
Said Johnson after the draw with League Two Morecambe: “We are getting to the time now where certain players have proved certain things to us and I think Deane (against Morecambe) was outstanding at getting hold of the ball and winning his flick-ons. But if we are going to play that way with him then you need somebody who is going to do that towards the goal.
“We are getting to that stage now where we have got to start nailing down who we are going to keep and who we will perhaps release.
“We’ve not carried a big squad throughout and we have got a game against Flint (Thursday night) with Calum’s (Calum McIntyre, Academy head coach) lads and we will put a lot of the lads in there to get there minutes up so everyone has had equal time during pre-season. But we will start to nail that down during this week.”
Chester suffered a setback last week when a planned move for a striker looked to have hit the buffers. But the Chronicle understands that deal may have a chance of being resurrected, although the bosses continue to explore a host of options in the striker department.
“We are working hard and it is the same answers that Bernard gives you and the same answers that I give you - they have got to be the right player to come in,” said Johnson.
“There might be a player that becomes available that can score 25 goals but if he doesn’t offer us the workrate that everybody else is doing then the whole pack of cards is going to fall down.
“Providing you have got goals chipping in you don’t really need a 30-goal striker. What we do want is someone who is clinical and ruthless when they are in that position. I believe Matty Hughes is that, I believe one of the trialists is that and did it in the past. He had a great move a couple of years ago and we have been chasing him for a couple of weeks, he just needs that little bit of understanding about we are looking for up top, but he would be great for us.
“The one issue is the same issue we have had for the past four or five weeks, finding that person who can get on the half turn and bang! Put it in the back of the net. We are all looking for the same thing.”