Ambitious Newark Flowserve sent out a strong signal of their intentions to improve the club by making four major signings and launching a reserve side.
Joint managers Steven Venables and Craig Roche first captured the signatures of two Newark Town players — goalkeeper Nathan Burrows and defender Rick Brewer.
Then the management team went to Mansfield to persuade Sherwood Colliery striker Tristan Burrell and former Radford central midfielder Chris Rhodes to join their rebuilding project.
It is expected that further signings will be announced later this week at the Notts Senior League Premier Division club.
Venables said: “We are looking to get the best lads in Newark and we are looking to bring in top players from outside the town. Nathan and Ricky are top players.
“We are aiming to be among the leading six clubs in the division. If by Christmas we were in the top four, we would re-assess.”
The joint managers, confident that last season’s squad will stay, have already retained the likes of Callum Barnes, Ricky North, Lewis Chambers and Ryan Broxholme for the new season.
The strengthening of the squad highlighted the club’s overall plans to move to a new level — a project that includes launching a reserve team next season, which will play in Notts Senior League Division Two.
Venables, in his second spell in charge of Flowserve after returning in January, said the reserve side would give the whole squad the chance for regular football.
“Success for the reserves in the first year would be to consistently have 14 to 16 players each week. So there’s not that much pressure.
“But long-term we would like it to be a development side, perhaps even something like an under-23 side with a couple of experienced lads in there.
“With that in mind, if any younger lads would like to get involved and come along to training, they can get in touch with us via our Twitter page, on Facebook or at our website.”
'A top-quality goalkeeper'
Talking about his new signings, Venables said: “Nathan (Burrows) shows great leadership quality at a young age.
“He is a top-quality goalkeeper who will be a massive presence on and off the pitch.”
Brewer had been high on the management duo’s wanted list for some time.
Venables said: “He has a great footballing brain and is up for a new challenge. That is exactly what we want — someone who is hungry and has experience.
“He leads by example on the pitch and in training. We know him well and he is a massive addition to the team in every area. He is also very versatile and brings bags of quality.”
Brewer played to a high level during a spell travelling around Australia.
The joint managers said Rhodes would bring a wealth of experience energy and quality.
Roche said Burrell was a good striker who scored bags of goals wherever he played.
“I had the pleasure of playing with Tris at Ollerton Town and he is a top lad who will fit into the club perfectly,” he said.
“He will bring energy, pace and quality in front of goal and a huge desire to win.”
On the returning players, Venables said Barnes would be like a new signing after he missed the final quarter of last season with a knee injury.
“Brox (Broxholme) was a key player for us and is versatile and a big team player,” Venables said.
“Ricky North is a big signing. He was brilliant for us last season.
“Lewis (Chambers) is an exciting player who will bring pace, work rate and creativity to the squad.
“He is a popular lad with a winning mentality. He shares our passion and ambition and will bring a lot of qualities on and off the field.
“He is still a young lad and has his best footballing years ahead of him.”