Ebbsfleet boss Liam Daish finds the transfer market tough

Ebbsfleet United manager Liam Daish has admitted he is finding it increasingly difficult to strengthen his depleted squad for next season.

Daish lost strikers Ricky Shakes and Liam Enver Marum this week and has yet to recruit replacements.

"I've had targets," he told BBC Radio Kent. "It's another thing trying to get them to sign for you.

"It's getting tough and it's quite competitive in this area now with Dartford and Dover making a push."

With top scorer Callum Willock joining Dover Athletic, Daish was dealt another blow when Enver Marum, 24, opted to take up a short term deal at League One Stevenage.

Meanwhile, Guyana international Shakes has agreed a move to fellow Blue Square Premier side Kidderminster Harriers.

Daish acknowledged that Ebbsfleet could not compete with the lure of professional football.

"In both cases, it wasn't about financials, it was about them being full-time players," he said.

"Us being part time, he [Shakes] was having to do something in between games, which didn't quite suit him.

"I respect their decisions even though I was a bit frustrated."

Defender Michael West is also believed to be headed for the Stonebridge Road exit door as he considers offers from unnamed clubs

But having finished 14th in their first season back in the highest tier of non-league football, Daish insisted Ebbsfleet would be aiming for more of the same, however tough it may be.

"I've lost key players that are going to be difficult to replace but we'll make every effort to at least emulate what we did last year," he added.