No deal yet for star man

Marcus Crawley reports George Boyd remains a Stevenage Boro player – for the time being at least. The 21-year-old s sparkling form this season has attracted a number of scouts from League clubs to Broadhall Way and now the offers are coming in. League Two

Marcus Crawley reports

George Boyd remains a Stevenage Boro player - for the time being at least.

The 21-year-old's sparkling form this season has attracted a number of scouts from League clubs to Broadhall Way and now the offers are coming in.

League Two Peterborough - who have already signed Dagenham's ex-Arlesey pair Craig Mackail-Smith and Shane Blackett - have had an offer refused.

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Boro boss Mark Stimson is understandably keen to keep his prize asset.

Stimson said: "George has raised his own levels since the Wrexham game.

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"He was outstanding in that spell after half-time on Saturday.

"Of course I want to keep him. With him in the team, we've finally got something we've been working really hard for.

"George is a big part of our plans for this season. We'll have to see what happens after Christmas."

Midfield dynamo Brad Johnson was recalled by League One strugglers Northampton this week.

Stimson added: "Brad has got the potential to be a very good player.

"Again we will see what happens. We've helped each other out and we will monitor his situation."

Three games inside a week could help determine the course of the rest of Boro's season.

After their Boxing Day trip to St Albans (1pm kick-off), Boro travel down to Weymouth on December 30 and host Aldershot just 48 hours later on New Year's Day.

Stimson said: "The two away games are tough ones for different ones. One is a local derby which has its own problems and Weymouth are high up in the league and will want to beat us after our victory earlier in the season.

"Aldershot were by far the best team we've played this season so far on the night. We need to get three points off them to even things up. Our players are a lot more confident now."

Boro are now 10th in the Conference ahead of the festive programme.

Stimson continued: "Tenth is good after the start we had.

"The team is playing well and with the fitness levels right, we should be in for a good New Year."

Boro's reward for their seven-goal rout of Merthyr Tydfil in the FA Trophy on Saturday is another home tie in the second round.

They will host Nationwide North strugglers Leigh RMI on Saturday, January 13, after they beat divisional rivals Harrogate in a replay on Tuesday night.

Stimson added: "It's a good draw because we're at home.

"Again it will be a tough game but if we approach it in the right way, it's one we should be looking forward to.

"Before then, we've got a lot of league points to play for."

St Albans manager Colin Lippiatt is planning changes for the derby game against Boro.

Woeful defending at Bishop's Stortford cost a place in the next round of the FA Trophy and Lippiatt is also concerned by a record that has seen his team concede 46 goals in 23 league games.

Lippiatt said: "On Boxing Day changes will be afoot. This is not a knee jerk reaction.

"I will see whether or not I can bring one or two players before the game because they have got to be non-contract. There are some options and I have got a couple of players in mind."

Lippiatt continued: "Stevenage are turning the corner now. I see it as a very difficult game.

"It is a local derby, that is one thing. It is also a competitive Nationwide Conference game and we need points on the board.

"Stimmo has gone in there and taken a bit of time to get his identity on the team but now they are in a very rich vein of form."

Forgotten man Tony Thorpe was on the scoresheet as Boro's reserves shared four goals with Colchester's second string at Layer Road on Monday afternoon.

Craig Dobson also scored for Boro who included St Albans striker Paul Hakim who may be in opposition ranks in the Boxing Day derby.

Hakim, with eight goals for Saints in the Conference, has had an outing as a substitute for Brighton reserves as well as playing a full game for Boro's reserves.

The striker is likely to be in the City squad again on Tuesday along with Elliot Benyon who should recover from a bout of sickness.

Lippiatt added: "Paul is our player and I still feel at the moment I do not see anything to change that. Unless something happens I see him being here to April."

Defender Dave Theobald could be a doubt for the derby match as he has gone down with flu.

Former Aldershot man Magnus Okuonghae may come in to the defence but could possibly feature in the midfield holding role he occupied as a substitute in the Trophy.

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