Bognor boss Jack Pearce has confirmed he hopes a host of familiar faces will return to the Nye Camp next year – with last year’s top scorer Jimmy Muitt top of the retention list.
The Rocks supremo has spent the first few weeks of the post-season working with coach Robbie Blake on planning for next season.
After a disappointing 14th place finish in Bostik Premier, the aim is to put Bognor in with a chance of launching a promotion push.
So far, the only confirmed signing is left sided defender James Crane, who re-signed from local rivals Worthing.
But Pearce has confirmed that he has offered deals to a number of last year’s squad.
This includes Harvey Whyte, Muitt, Doug Tuck, Keaton Wood, Chad Field and Calvin Davies.
Young defender Ashton Leigh has also been offered a deal.
Pearce said he expected to hear back from those players in the coming days.
But the veteran manager vowed there would be less than an overhaul and more of a squad rebuild as he pieces together a team to challenge.
He said: “We need a freshening up of players.
“We have offered terms to the players we would like to keep from last year.
“We will start meeting them next week. Once we know where we are with them, then we will know what we need and what we don’t need.”
Of the seven players on the retention list, many fans will hope to see the return of Muitt next season in the white and green of Bognor.
Playing largely in a central role, the former Brighton youngster found form at the turn of the year.
In total, he bagged 26 goals in 40 games and it was his scoring contribution which was a big reason for the Rocks’ challenge for a playoff spot.
But Muitt’s injury and the departure of on-loan Portsmouth striker Dan Smith coincided with Bognor losing form and eventually sliding down the table.
Also key to the Rocks will be captain Whyte, who has indicated he will stay at Nyewood Lane, and Tuck, who is rated as one of the best ball-playing midfielders in the division.
At the back, Field is likely to be nursing an injury at the start of the new season while Pearce will be hoping that Davies, who was out for large periods of the last campaign, is back to his rampaging best on the right.