IMPROVEMENTS at Court Place Farm have boosted Oxford City’s pulling power in the transfer market, according to manager Mark Jones.

A major overhaul at the ground is under way following a deal with Oxford United to jointly run the site.

Refurbishment of the clubhouse has started, but the bigger attraction for players is the 3G surface.

The rubber ‘shockpad’ layer is being installed ahead of the artificial surface, which is due to be laid next week – almost a year to the day since drainage issues forced City to postpone plans of replacing their notoriously poor grass pitch.

Jones reckons the new surface has been helpful when it has come to building his squad for next season’s Vanarama National League South campaign.

He said: “People can see we are investing in the new pitch.

“It was definitely a negative over the last few seasons, it didn’t help attract new players.

“Everybody is looking forward to having a consistent surface to play on.

“After money, the next thing players look at are the facilities and pitch, so that can put people off.

“The facilities we have as a club for our level are very good.”

Despite there being almost a fortnight until the first pre-season session, Jones (pictured) has most of his side in place already.

The recruitment of strikers Justin Bennett and Matt Paterson, who have scored more than 110 goals between them in the past two seasons, has caught the eye.

But City have also retained the bulk of last season’s group and plan to integrate the pick of their talented teenagers, who reached the FA Youth Cup third round last season.

Jones remains on the hunt for the final pieces of the jigsaw puzzle.

He said: “I still feel we need a wide player or an attacking midfielder and a right back as well.

“We have been in discussions with a couple of people, but nothing’s been agreed yet.

“I think for where we are in the middle of June we are very pleased.

“We pushed the boat out a bit to get some proven strikers in, but we have worked to the budget.

“The last week or two it’s calmed down a bit.

“Sometimes players wait to try to keep their options open, but as you get further into pre-season people who were non-committal before suddenly become available.

“What you don’t want is to completely spend the budget at this point, because if a couple of gems become available you would miss out.”