AS they get over the disappointment of yet another promotion near-miss, Warrington Town’s focus quickly turns to rebuilding.

In the near future, talks with current squad members around their futures will begin and manager Mark Beesley is hopeful of keeping the majority of his players at Cantilever Park.

Beesley himself is under contract having signed an 18-month deal when replacing the departed Paul Carden, under whom he was assistant manager for five years, last November.

In terms of players, however, only midfielder Jay Harris is confirmed to be contracted to the club for 2022-23 currently.

Monday’s play-off final loss to Scarborough Athletic was the second time in as many completed seasons that Town’s bid to move up to the National League North has fallen at the very last hurdle.

The 2018-19 season saw them lose a one-off ‘super play-off’ to King’s Lynn Town and the two campaigns that followed were cut short by Covid-19.

Having finished fifth in the season just gone, Town memorably beat pre-season title favourites South Shields on penalties in the play-off semi-finals before losing 2-1 in the final to the Seadogs.

“We must be the unluckiest team in this league,” Beesley said.

“The ‘super play-off’ had never been heard of before and will never be heard of again – we won the play-offs that year and didn’t go up.

“Then there was Covid, which hurt everybody as you couldn’t play football.

“We were on a good run when Covid first hit and then the second Covid year was a waste of a season.

“There were great building blocks put in place with Paul and when I took over with Dave (Raven, assistant manager), we changed little bits and have done things our way.

“Once we achieved that target of getting into the play-offs, you give yourself a great chance.

“In my opinion, we deserved to beat South Shields and on Monday, I felt like we’d got over the disappointment of conceding and were on top of the game before the referee intervened.

“We can’t get any closer to going up but we’re proud of the way we’ve been this year. We’ve had some great results and performances and it’s a great group of players.

“They’ll be hurting for most of the summer and it will take a while to get over, but they will be back.

“Hopefully we can keep the majority of them and push on again next year.”