Lancaster City boss confident he can replace Connerton

Lancaster City celebrate their title win at their end of season presentation on Saturday night.
Lancaster City celebrate their title win at their end of season presentation on Saturday night.

Phil Brown believes Lancaster City can flourish in the Evo-Stik Premier Division without star striker Jordan Connerton.

Having fired the Dolly Blues to the First Division North title with 35 goals the former Crewe front man has opted for second stint out in Australia.

Phil Brown issues instructions to Jordan Connerton earlier in the season.

Phil Brown issues instructions to Jordan Connerton earlier in the season.

The 27-year-old flew out to Melbourne on Monday with his manager already plotting how his side are going to compete come August after sealing a memorable promotion.

“He’s a very good player who does what he does well as a goal scorer,” said Brown.

“He’s going to be difficult to replace but I’m confident we’ll be able to do it.

“We need to bring in a forward or forwards but we can also alter our playing style to allow other players to chip in.

“We’ll have to look at our options but he’s going to be a big miss that’s for sure.”

Another player who won’t be making the step up due to family and work commitments is goalkeeper Mike Hale.

Brown is in the process of discussing next season with his squad and knows that weekly travel to Grantham, Halesowen and Coalville amongst others rather than Kendal, Bamber Bridge and Clitheroe will prove too much for some.

“I’ll be speaking to all the current squad properly to get some initial thoughts on their plans and what commitments they can make,” said Brown.

“Stepping up a level there’s a bit more travel because there’s no north-south divide.

“I need to see who can do it.

“I’ve no doubt they’d like to, it’s just if personal circumstances and jobs allow it.

“As for new players I’m speaking to couple of players in a couple of positions as you do, we’re stepping up a level and need to recruit.

“That will be an on-going process over the summer.

“I wouldn’t say there’s a position where we’re weak but there might be a couple where I need to strengthen.

“I’ll know more once I’ve spoken to all the squad properly.”

Having battled to the end of the season striker Louis Mayers is set for hip surgery.

“We might be without Louis Mayers for a bit because he’s been playing with a bit of a tear in his hip and will need a little bit of surgery on that,” said Brown.

“We don’t know the exact length of the rehab, we don’t think it’s a major problem, but it will put him back a few weeks.

“We’ll have our other strikers, Tom Kilifin and Hannu Tam, but we want strength in depth with Jordan going as well.”