SOUTHEND United manager Phil Brown has revealed the Shrimpers have offered Ryan Leonard a new deal and are also looking to complete a transfer which would ‘wow’ the division.

The Shrimpers remain determined to keep hold of Leonard after rejecting offers from Championship duo Millwall and Sheffield United.

And Brown also wants him to be joined at the club by another high class performer.

“I’ve been text by a player, he’s trying to get out of his club and if it happens then I think the whole place will say wow these guys mean business,” said Brown.

“I’m not going to say too much else about him because we don’t want it out in public but things are definitely coming together for us.

“We’ve already brought in Stephen Hendrie and Michael Kightly which was a massive statement of intent and the chairman worked very hard over the signing of another player at the weekend.

“We’re certainly moving closer on our targets and ideally I want to get them in as quickly as we can to integrate them into the group.

“But we’re doing all we can to bring the right people in as we know we still need to bring in a couple more.”

The Shrimpers are close to completing a deal for experienced centre-back Michael Turner, who has been training with the club since the start of pre-season.

However, Brown is also determined to ensure star player Leonard remains at Roots Hall.

“We have now put a new deal Lenny’s way,” said Brown.

“We’re waiting for a reply but he’s working hard in training and he was spot on in the game we had against Partick Thistle on Saturday.

“He hit the post and was also keen to help young Dru Yearwood, who we put in alongside him in midfield.

“We did that elsewhere with Harry Kyprianou next to Anton Ferdinand and Joe Bedford next to Michael Timlin in the second half as we think it’s a good way for the younger players to learn.”

The Shrimpers are therefore likely to stick with more of the same against Ipswich Town.

But Brown is keen to hand more of the club’s under-21 players an opportunity to impress.

“One or two of the youngsters who came to Spain and also played against Partick have done well and are in my thoughts,” said Brown.

“They could be very near the squad on August 5 when we start the new season.”