KEVIN Keehan revealed that he was still in talks with a number of last season's squad of Lewes players with view to keeping them on for next season – but said his number one target was midfielder Simon Wormull.
Keehan said, "I'm still talking to him. It's difficult because we keep missing each other – I ring him and then he rings me back.
"He's just had an ankle operation but he would have been my first choice as player to keep for next year.
"Obviously I would have liked to have kept a few of the players – like Steve Robinson – but if I could have had only one player I could keep from last season, it would be Simon."
Other players that will still be at the Pan next season are Stefan Cox and Steve Elliott.
Keehan said, "I haven't seen Cox play but they tell me he's got great ability and he's going to be training with us at the start of next season."
Of Elliott, he said, "I had a good chat with him and he's very enthusiastic about playing in the conference."
Goalkeeper Stuart Williams will also be with the club next season.
Players still in discussions with Keehan, he revealed, were Anthony Barness, Leon Legge and Jean-Michel Sigere.
Of 'Siggy', he said, "We had a chat and we will be talking again.
"He's very polite and very straight, that was the impression he gave me.
"He said he would consider things and have a look (at staying).
"Most of them want to know what players we're signing. That's understandable. I'd be the same."
Gary Holloway and Paul Booth have joined Ian Simpemba at Havant.
Keehan said, "Paul didn't want to play in the conference – he'd already told Steve King that – because he's doing a degree and couldn't devote the extra time required."
Tom Davis, who was put on the transfer list along with Holloway, had "attracted some interest" but no solid offers as yet, said Keehan yesterday.
He said Jamie Cade had moved to Tonbridge Angels because of personal reasons. Cade's wife is seriously ill and recieving treatment – and the striker felt he could not commit to the extra distances needed to travel in the conference.
"I chatted to him and we had a very positive chat," said Keehan.
"He was very excited at the prospect of playing in the conference.
"But he felt that, with Lewes, he would sometimes be up to eight hours away from home. At Tonbridge, the furthest away he would be is two hours."
Steve Robinson, Jay Conroy, Steve Williams, Dale Binns, Andy Drury and Matt Groves have all also left the club.
Of Conroy, Keehan said, "We had a really good conversation. He just wants to be a full-time footballer and we couldn't match his expectations."
Keehan said skipper Robinson had not returned his call.