SLOUGH Town joint-manager Jon Underwood has explained that any new signings this summer must tick all the right boxes.

The Rebels won promotion from the Southern Premier Division last season with a team the management believe can compete in National League South.

Underwood expects the squad to remain together at Arbour Park with the exception of Matt Lench, who was not offered a new deal and instead moved to Wealdstone.

And he will not jump at the chance to sign players that have been offered to the club, instead putting his faith in the promotion winners.

Underwood told the Observer: “People go on holiday at this time of year so it’s not all straightforward but we’ve now spoken with all the players from last season either in person or on the phone.

“You can’t always be 100 per-cent but we trust what the lads tell us and I expect they will stay together with the possibility of adding one or two more to that.

“We’ve had a few players pushed our way and of a good standard, they already play in the National League, but we’re not going to jump at them and that tells you what we think of our squad.

Slough Observer:

PHOTO: Matt Lench (left) was not offered a new deal at Slough Town for the new season and has left The Rebels to join Wealdstone.

“We felt that we were a National South team that needed to get out of the Southern League last season.

“It was a real battle for promotion and it’s hard to get out that league. We felt that all the teams that finished in the top five could be playing at step two this season.

“We tried to put a squad together that we felt could compete at the next level up, so to get rid of five or six now makes no sense. That’s not to say that we don’t want to improve and we are looking around, but we will make sure that anyone we bring in ticks all the right boxes.

“Our changing room was fantastic and a great place to be last season, and that showed with the run that we went on.”

On the decision not to offer Lench a new deal, Underwood said: “I can understand that it was a surprise from a supporters point of view because at times last season Matt was one of our stand-out players, but it’s not always as straightforward as what you see on the pitch.

“We know that some people will not agree with our decisions at times, but we make them with the best interests of the club at heart."

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