HEREFORD FC now have a 16-man squad for next season – but only one is on contract.

Player of the year Jimmy Oates signed a deal before the end of last season, which committed his future at the club until the end of the 2016/17 season.

Strikers John Mills and Pablo Haysham both signed contracts during the 2015/16 campaign, but Hereford manager Pete Beadle confirmed that Oates is the only player of the current squad under contract.

Of the 16 players who have penned deals for the new season, five are strikers/wingers.

As well as Mills and Haysham, Mike Symons is also staying, while Beadle has signed striker Lance Smith from Evesham United and versatile forward Keyon Reffell from Merthyr.

The Bulls boss is also in talks with three other players, which includes a left-back and centre-back, as he looks to prepare for life in the Southern Premier League.

Talking about Reffell, who has also played for Kidderminster, Beadle said: "We have dominated lots of games, but Keyon can dictate the tempo of the game.

"He can play anywhere across the midfield and brings a huge amount to the table.

"He is extremely versatile, has a lot of pace and has real drive to go forward.

"He has a huge amount of quality and if you speak to any Merthyr fan, they would be extremely disappointed to see him go because he's been a key figure for them.

"We've now got an extremely strong group of players with the right balance.

"If we get the other three players, that would take us to 19, which will probably be enough."

Smith, meanwhile, was the leading scorer in the Southern League South & West last season before suspensions and injuries disrupted his campaign.

"Myself and Steve [Jenkins] spoke about him a lot during the season and we're delighted to have signed him," said Beadle.

"He is extremely mobile, works really hard and scores lots of goals.

"It was looking like he would get 30 goals until he got suspended just after Christmas and then he picked up a couple of injuries.

"He finished on 25 goals in 29 starts, so had a fantastic season."