Colchester United manager Ben Garner is aiming to bolster his squad with “one or two players,” reports the Colchester Gazette.
The U’s have already brought in four new players during the summer transfer window, with Mauro Bandeira, Nico Lawrence and Owen Goodman arriving on loan from various Premier League sides, and Ellis Iandolo has moved to the JobServe Community Stadium from Swindon Town.
However, the 43-year-old coach is hopeful of landing more additions ahead of the League Two opener on Saturday.
Much of the activity in Essex may be reliant on the future of wing-back Junior Tchamadeu, who is linked with a seven-figure move to Championship side Stoke City.
The League Two side are “prepared for all eventualities” amid interest in the 19-year-old, already turning down substantial bids in January and earlier this month.
Since becoming their youngest-ever starting debutant, the teenager has made 90 appearances in all competitions.
There was a huge exodus of players from the side that finished 20th in League Two in 2022/23, as Garner looked to shape his squad for his first full season in charge at the JobServe Community Stadium.
Vastly experienced duo Cole Skuse and Luke Chambers were among 15 first-team and U21 players to be released, which also included captain Tommy Smith, who found himself out of favour since the arrival of the former Crystal Palace coach in March.
Colchester have now completed their pre-season schedule ahead of the big kick-off against Garner’s former side, Swindon, tasting a sole defeat to West Ham United’s U21s on Friday night.
John Akinde, Matt Jay and Will Greenidge all featured in the warm-up fixture played at Maldon and Tiptree’s Wallace Binder Ground.
What’s been said?
On potential incomings, the 43-year-old said: “We’re still looking to add to the group.
“We want that competition both internally, with what we have now and I’d also like to create a little bit more by bringing one or two more players in this week.
“I think it would give us a little lift in certain areas and strengthen certain areas of the team.
“That’s what we need to do but there’s always a lot that goes on in any deal.
“We’re working hard behind the scenes and hopefully, we can get the players in that we want.”
The sooner there is a resolution to the Tchamadeu situation, the better for Colchester and Ben Garner. The U’s are holding out for more money up front as part of a £1 million deal, which could free up some much needed funds to really attack the final portion of the transfer window.
Predominantly operating in the loan market this window, it will be interesting to see whether the additions follow the same vein. As a reminder, regulations state only five loan players can feature in a single matchday squad.