CONCORD boss Adam Flanagan says he his speaking to a central defender about joining the club over the next few days.

The Beachboys kick off their pre-season with a trip to Brightlingsea on July 11 and the club is working to finalise their squad, with 18 players currently signed up or under consideration.

And with the experienced Steve King the only recognised centre half in the ranks, Flanagan admits he needs to find some cover in the heart of his defence.

He said: “It is the one area where we are still light but we are talking to a good centre-half and I hope that deal might be concluded over the next few days.”

Former Grays star Conor Gough will start the National League South campaign as Rangers’ first-choice keeper but young shot stopper Ollie Bowles is likely to go out on loan again.

Ex East Thurrock captain Tom Stephen will be looking to make the left-back spot his own and Concord are still hoping Danny Glozier will commit for another year.

Local favourite Leon Gordon hopes to shake off an ankle injury and resume his career at right-back and Rangers are still hopeful the consistent Jermey Walker will also return this summer to contest that position.

The dynamic Ben Greenhalgh, who has rejoined Concord from Maidstone, and the industrious Sam Collins will provide cover down the left of Concord’s midfield, with new signing from Brentwood, Sam Bantick, and the versatile Joe Gardner offering options on the right.

Former Dartford man Max Cornhill, another new face, will bid to boss things in the middle of the part alongside the formidable James White and creative Steve Cawley.

Former Southend central midfielder Alex Woodyard, who has been on trial at some pro clubs over the summer and trained with Braintree Town, has agreed to return to Concord on Saturday for a pre-season session.

Flanagan said: “Alex did well at Concord last year and is getting the recognition he deserves.

“He is trying to get back into the pro game and leaving his options open but if he does stay in non league we welcome him back here. If he does not return then I am happy with the quality with have got in our midfield.”

Concord captain Tony Stokes and the highly-rated Lewis Taaffe will lead the line for Concord and club favourite Harry Elmes is currently weighing up an offer to rejoin again for the coming campaign.

Flanagan said: “What we have at the moment is a lot of quality and a number of versatile players. the challenge for Jody Brown (new assistant manager) and I now is to find the best way to put them together in a competitive side. And that’s what we will look to do in pre-season.”