Published: 06:00, 23 July 2019
| Updated: 06:18, 23 July 2019
Hythe Town are working on a deal for ex-Gillingham full-back Aaron Simpson.
The 20-year-old spent time on loan at Margate the season before last and turned down a new contract at Priestfield this summer.
Simpson played for Hythe against Folkestone on Saturday and boss Sam Denly hopes they'll be seeing more of him.
"What a player he is," said Denly. "He was excellent and that's a deal I want to get done but we'll have to see.
"Negotiations are ongoing with the club and with him and if we can get his services secured, that'll be an outstanding signing.
"Aaron was on trial at Aldershot, looking to get a deal there. In pre-season you get players who are maybe a league or two above us on trial and things don't work out so they become available.
"You can always get some good signings towards the latter stages of pre-season.
"I like to get things done as early as I can because you want to know what squad you've got but there's always going to be little gems that come up and you've got to be open to those.
"When these players become available, quite often your budget's done so you've got to be a little bit flexible but I'm happy with where we are."
Ryan Johnson rejoined Hythe this week having also played in the 3-2 win over Folkestone.
"It's great news," Denly said. "I've been speaking to RJ for a while, trying to get things agreed.
"It's a big plus to get him over the line. He brings a lot of experience and makes the spine of the team that much stronger.
"I spoke to RJ at the end of last season. There was pretty much a deal agreed with Hastings but that fell through for whatever reason.
"It wasn't a done deal by any stretch because I've got a strong squad anyway but we've been having conversations and he did well on Saturday.
"Players like RJ are few and far between now. He was outstanding when I first came to the club.
"He can almost talk people through a game and he's an old-fashioned centre-half who knows how to defend. He's an organiser, a leader and he reads the game superbly well.
"He's a very well-liked lad as well, a bit of a fans favourite for his performances on the pitch and the way he conducts himself off the pitch.
"He's a really good lad, RJ, and all the people around the club are really to see him back.
"It's a really good signing for football reasons but also off the pitch he's a great lad and great with the youngsters so we're really pleased to secure his services again."
There could be more new signings on the way too.
Denly said: "Things are very tight now but I am in negotiations with one more.I want to get a few more lads agreed over the next week or so."
Hythe are at home to Aveley on Saturday.
More by this authorSteve Tervet