DORCHESTER Town boss Glenn Howes feels the Magpies’ squad is more to his liking this season and stressed the need for “ruthless” recruitment.

Dorchester have officially signed 14 players this summer, with a selection of triallists aiming to earn a deal by impressing this summer.

They will have their first big chance when Dorchester entertain Bashley in their opening pre-season friendly of the summer tomorrow evening (7.45pm).

But Howes, whose side last week returned to group training, is buoyant after his summer business.

He told Echosport: “I’m really pleased and very thankful to Scott (Symes, chairman), the board and the club for the direction we’ve taken because you’ve all got to be in line with recruitment and the profile of player you’re looking to bring in.

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“James (Wood, assistant), (Steve) Dodge, Churchy (Brian Churchill), the players that have come through the 23s, we’ve got a really good style that’s going to affect us in a positive way.

“We believe we’ve opened the doors. Every time we open that door now I believe it’s getting closer to what I would selfishly like a Dorchester Town team to look like.

“We said we weren’t in a position to make wholesale changes that would take us through the leagues or positions in the table.

“But you look at the players now in the three sessions we’ve had and, for me, that’s getting closer to a Glenn Howes squad, being selfish.”

Asked how big he intends his squad to swell in numbers, Howes said: “I’ve never had big numbers.

“We’ve always had small squads. Sixteen, 18. With the pathway for the 23s and 18s we’re very fortunate to have that here so we can call upon them when we see fit and when it’s deserved.

“So, we have a little bit of flexibility going into the season with a small squad.

“However, we need to be more ruthless at this club in terms of the recruitment side of it and the retaining side of it.

“Although we’ve signed 14 players it doesn’t mean to suggest those 14 players will be here the first game of the season.

“They need to step up and we need to step up as a management team. No-one’s going to be comfortable this season.

“I felt at times that was a little bit of an Achilles heel and I take full responsibility for that. We need to produce week-in, week-out. No-one can relax with their situations.

“Just because those 14 players are fortunate to be able to play for Dorchester, it doesn’t mean they’ll be here first game of the season.

“They have to fight tooth and nail to be part of that team and squad.”

Howes also outlined his wishes in the player market before the new season starts on Saturday, August 5.

“We are short and I would like another three or four (signings) done,” he said.

“We have one or two really interesting triallists that have given a good account of themselves thus far in the last three training sessions.

“The games will start, so it will give them an opportunity to showcase what they can do in a full game.

“There are one or two players we are in negotiations with. Whether that will come to fruition and they’ll end up being a Dorchester Town player I’m unsure.

“But I would like another three or four through the door before the season starts.”