Ritchie Jones could be forgiven for feeling like the last man standing at Valley Parade.

As Phil Parkinson plots his squad overhaul, Jones is the sole first-team survivor from last summer’s recruits.

But the former Oldham midfielder, who played 38 times after being signed by Peter Jackson, had no problem adjusting to the change of manager. He said: “It happens in football all the time so it wasn’t that hard for me.

“I kept playing as I had been and I get on well with the manager. I’ve played a lot of games for him.

“It was a strange season, especially when you get signed by one manager and then a new one comes in quite quickly. But I think we picked up as a team.”

City are under instruction to stick to fitness schedules during the break but Jones is already ticking off the days until pre-season begins again.

“I’m really excited thinking about next season,” he added. “I think we’ve got a good chance to be up there.

“We showed some positive performances towards the end and hopefully we can take that into the future.

“You look at the way we matched Swindon and they were the best team in the league. We need to have that same mentality every week, approaching every game the same way.

“It’s just really important that we start well. Last time we didn’t do that and we were chasing all the time.

“I don’t want to be in the bottom half (of the table) again and this club doesn’t deserve that.

“This is a massive club in the wrong league but we have to prove that. A lot of talking can be done but you have to produce it on the pitch with good, strong performances.

“If we want to get promotion, we need to be on it from the first game. It’s about getting off to a fast start and being very positive.”