EX-CHELSEA goalkeeper Lenny Pidgeley looks set to be Newport County AFC’s number one for the opening match of their 2012/13 Conference campaign.

With first choice stopper Alan Julian still three weeks away from fitness and Pidgeley impressing in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw with a youthful Swansea City side, the 28-year-old is ready to step into the breach.

He expects to agree a short-term deal with Exiles boss Justin Edinburgh this week and is already looking towards the big kick-off at Mansfield Town on August 11. “I had a call from (County assistant manager) Jimmy Dack, who I knew from Woking, and he told me all about the injury to Alan Julian so I said I’d come down and play and we’ll take it from there,” said Pidgeley after the Swansea match.

“Hopefully we can come up with something and I’d like to be here for the first game at Mansfield, I don’t see any reason why not.

“I just want to be playing football and it looks like a good set-up here so I’d like to be a part of it.”

Edinburgh was pleased with Pidgeley’s display and is equally keen to tie up a deal this week.

“I thought Lenny looked assured,” he said. “He had no real chance with either goal with a deflection on the first and an own goal for the second.

“But what he had to do he did well and we’ll have a chat with him and see if we can tie something up on a short-term basis.

“He’s looking for a club and Alan Julian won’t be out for too long so it suits both parties.

“Alan is back with us this week,” he added. “He won’t be ready for the start of the season but he won’t be too long.

“He’s probably three weeks away but we don’t want to rush him back.

“I’m not writing off Joe Perry either but Lenny has that experience and we needed something short term.”

Edinburgh also has Ismail Yakubu fit and ready to face Yeovil Town tomorrow night and, with talk of new investment in the club, he is happy with how his pre-season preparations have gone so far.

“I think the club is going in the right direction on and off the pitch and we’re ready for Mansfield without a doubt,” he said.

“If new investors come in we’d never say no to more money but I’m happy with the squad.

“It’s my group now and they look fit and strong. We’ve conceded a few sloppy goals but we’ve certainly got goals in us up front and there is still more to come from the likes of Aaron O’Connor and Jefferson Louis, we haven’t seen the best of them yet.”