KEY centre back Jim Rodwell has given hands-on Boro chairman Vic Searle a huge summer boost by hinting that he could continue playing for the club next season.

Rodwell, who was at the centre of a huge contract dispute with former owner Graham Westley last season, is looking to move from his Leicester home to Chiswick, west London and has told Searle that if the move goes through, he will sign for the club at an affordable rate.

Rodwell was a major influence in Boro consolidating their Nationwide Conference status last season and many thought that with the club now working to a shoestring budget, his wage demands would be too big a hurdle to overcome.

But player and chairman have sat down and talked finances, leaving Rodwell happy enough to sign IF his move plans go without hitch.

If Rodwell does sign terms then he will be a major player in Boro's Conference bid next season led by new boss Tommy Taylor.

Taylor and Searle have had an extremely busy week in piecing together a squad to survive in the Conference next season, but things seem to be on the up.

Ken Charlery and keeper Mark Osborn have now been added to the squad list by young Paul Harkness and Tony Taggart, who both signed at the weekend.

Deals have also been offered to striker-cum-defender Joff Vansittart and fans favourite Darren Annon, who are both thinking over their futures, while young striker Danny Potter is also expected to put pen to paper once he and the chairman finalise terms.

Searle and Taylor have spoken to near enough all of the players for next season, and those talks continue. It is thought however, that top striker Rocky Baptiste will move onto pastures new while the Piper brothers of Lenny and Chris are still being linked to both Dagenham & Redbridge and Boro's neighbours Aldershot Town, who have supposedly put in a bid.

Searle said: "We are talking to loads of players and things are looking very healthy at the moment. In fact, Tommy and I are meeting two prospective new players tonight on the M25!

"There is such a big influx of players coming out of the Football League this year and I believe the Conference will be stronger than ever this season.

"But my motto is ‘names don't win games' and I will make sure that we can establish ourselves in this league again and be well-equipped for what lies ahead."

Christian Lee had finally joined Halifax Town as expected, following Garry Butterworth out of the door after his move to Ryman League new boys Kettering.

l Farnborough Town have also finalised two big friendly dates for their pre-season campaign. Division two play-off hopefuls Queens Park Rangers visit Cherrywood Road on July 12, while their west London rivals Brentford make the trip on Saturday August 2 — a week before the big Conference kick-off.

Other home matches have also been agreed with Premiership new-boys Portsmouth and division three side Oxford United, while away days to Basingstoke Town, Bracknell Town and Cove have been arranged with dates to follow.

l The take-over of the club has, at last, officially, been completed, leaving Vic Searle as the club's sole signatory.

Mr Searle is expected to hold a meeting with former shareholders soon so that shares can be distributed to those who can help make the club healthy.