Manager Mike Ford admits Banbury United are playing catch-up after losing two key players to Evo-Stik Southern League rivals Didcot Town.
Leigh Bedwell is following Marvin Martin to the Division One South & West outfit and informed Ford of his decision on Monday.
We’ve lost a couple of players to Didcot now and that shows we are a bit behind them and a few other clubs at the momentPuritans boss Mike Ford
Many supporters will be sad to see the departure of Bedwell who picked up the players’-player-of-the-year award this season. The popular shot-stopper joined United initially on-loan from Swindon Town – and quickly became a hit with the fans – before signing for the club last season.
But Ford says he has already had other keepers offer their services and that the position doesn’t duly concern him as he will be able to bring in a young keeper on-loan if he needs to.
Ford said: “I’m obviously disappointed to lose Leigh [Bedwell] and I think he would have stayed if the club was still in the premier division.
“We’ve lost a couple of players to Didcot now and that shows we are a bit behind them and a few other clubs at the moment.
“They missed out on getting into the play-offs last season but maybe this time next year we will be in a similar position to them and I’m sure we can catch up pretty quickly.”
But Ford has managed to get six of last season’s squad to commit to another term at Spencer Stadium although no player can put pen to paper at the moment.
Ford added: “I’ve covered a lot of miles in the car, meeting players face-to-face, because I believe that is the right way to do it. I’ve gone for reliable players in defence and midfield and pace up front.”