Edinburgh in talks with County board over new deal
6:40am Saturday 14th July 2012 in Newport County & Blue Square Premier Table & Results By Michael Pearlman
NEWPORT County boss Justin Edinburgh is in talks over a new deal, but his plans to bring in further signings are a sticking point in negotiations, the Argus can reveal.
Edinburgh made public yesterday that talks have begun over a new deal with the managers’ current contract running only to the end of the season.
Negotiations are under way over an extension of a year with an option on a further season that would see Edinburgh remain at Rodney Parade until at least the end of the 2014/15 season.
Edinburgh took over at the Exiles in October 2011 and led them away from the Conference relegation zone.
Not only that but Edinburgh also took County to an historic first ever appearance at Wembley Stadium in the FA Trophy.
Edinburgh turned down opportunities at two Conference clubs before joining the then Spytty Park side and is keen to commit to Newport and sees his long-term future at Rodney Parade. The Exiles hierarchy is keen to show their support to Edinburgh.
However, a major sticking point remains and that’s over player acquisitions. Edinburgh is keen to make a further three signings but is already close to his budget limit with County cutting back on player wages as a result of poor attendances last season "I'm in talks with the football club about extending my contract by a further year or two," Edinburgh confirmed.
"That shows my commitment and the club's commitment and shows that we are a work in progress.
“Hopefully in the not too far distant future we can return to the Football League. That's got to be everyone's aim but it's got to be steady and it takes time. It's slightly unrealistic for this season. We'll have a brand new team.
“I think the players I've brought to the club will make us stronger.
“What we need to be sure of this year is that we're in the top half of the table. That would be a realistic ambition and a realistic aim.
“Anything else right now would be unrealistic because you can't build championship teams overnight.
“We'll certainly be far more competitive and if we get to Christmas in the top 12 then you will assess it from there and go again.”
Edinburgh’s desire to stay will please County fans but he’s adamant the squad must be strengthened further.
“There's no doubt that we need to bring at least three more players to the football club before the start of the season,” he said. “That's on going and the board and myself are working tirelessly and we're hopeful that we can get things in place that we can strengthen sooner than later.”
It’s on the issue of signings that there is currently conflict at the club. Talks will continue next week between the County board and management team with Edinburgh keen to add a striker, midfielder and goalkeeper.
The Argus has been in contact with one of Edinburgh’s top targets and as of yet, the Exiles haven’t been able to offer him a suitable deal.
If the board fail to back their manager, it increases the likelihood of an impasse in negotiations.
“I don’t want the club to overstretch themselves financially, but three more would make a considerable difference to us,” Edinburgh told the Argus.
Meanwhile, player/coach Wayne Hatswell has left the Exiles after no agreement was reached on extending his contract. He is set to sign for Brackley.
The Exiles have also confirmed their withdrawal from the Gwent Senior Cup in order to ease the fixture congestion at Rodney Parade where the Newport Gwent Dragons and Newport RFC also play.
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