U’s in talks with two strikers

COLCHESTER United are in talks with not one – but two – strikers, owner Robbie Cowling has revealed.

One of the U’s biggest failings in League One last season was a shortage of goals, especially away, with only two sides outside of the top 15 scoring less than their 57.

Since then 14-goal top-scorer David Mooney has seen his loan from Championship club Reading expire, leaving manager John Ward with just two senior strikers in Steven Gillespie and Kayode Odejayi.

“We do need a couple of strikers and we currently have a couple of offers in to players that we would like to sign,” said Cowling, who has already closed deals for defenders Michael Rose (Swindon, free) and Tom Eastman (Ipswich, free) this summer and is in talks with David Perkins and Ian Henderson regarding contract extensions.

“And if we don’t get those targets then we’ll move down to the next people on our list. We’re working quickly to get things done and I think we’re well ahead of the game in comparison to previous years.”

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Cowling has revealed that Ward will be provided with a playing budget of just over �3.5million for next season. The owner will subsidise almost 40 per cent of that (�1.4m) but has informed fans that he will be decreasing the amount of money he puts into the playing budget by �300,000 every season until it eventually reaches zero in 2016.

Instead he will redirect his cash into the development of a new training ground (which could open as early as next January) and a Centre of Excellence at Thurstable School in Tiptree (which starts in September).

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