Poppies boss Thomas hopeful on Eze and Marna

Henry Eze could be back with Kettering Town for the new season
Henry Eze could be back with Kettering Town for the new season

Kettering Town boss Dean Thomas is hopeful of securing the services of two fans’ favourites for the new season.

Thomas has confirmed talks are ongoing with ex-Poppies striker Jean-Paul Marna over a return to the club at which he scored 74 goals in over 200 appearances during a six-year stay between 2006 and 2012.

And the Kettering manager is also hoping to secure the signature of last season’s supporters’ player of the year Henry Eze as preparations for the Southern League Division One Central campaign gather pace.

Thomas currently has 14 players signed up following the arrivals of Dave Deeney, Jake Newman, Louis Hamilton and Phil Green in the last week.

But that number could be set to be boosted again over the next seven days or so.

“We are looking to bring Henry back and I am confident that could be done in the next week,” the Poppies boss said.

“He was a big favourite with the fans during tough times last season and we all saw what he brings to the team.

“I have spoken to Jean-Paul and he says he will be coming back to me about it. He is keen to come back to Kettering but there are other clubs interested as well.

“He has been in France and hasn’t played a great deal of football and he knows full well that the club isn’t the same as it was when he was here before.

“But we will carry on talking. Everyone knows a fit JP would be a huge asset.”

Thomas, meanwhile, insists there is a “positive” feeling around the Poppies at the moment, even though their future remains unclear.

Ritchie Jeune is set to update supporters on various issues including the winding-up petition from HM Revenue & Customs, the prospects of starting the new season at Latimer Park and the ownership of the club at a fans’ forum on Tuesday.

And Thomas added: “Everything that is going on at the moment seems to be quite positive. I think it is an exciting time for the club but I am just concentrating on the football side of things.

“I am looking forward to getting stuck into pre-season and I will be doing all I can to produce a side capable of going out and winning matches.”

The fans’ forum is being held at the Northern Lights Police Club in Church Walk, Kettering on Tuesday night. Doors open at 7.30pm with the forum due to start at 8pm.