Croydon Athletic manager Tim O'Shea has admitted his disappointment after former Brentford forward Charlie Ide left the club to join Carshalton Athletic.
The 20-year-old had been playing for the Rams while training with League Two side Aldershot but having failed to earn a deal with the Shots he turned down a longer stay at the KT Stadium in favour of Hayden Bird's Robins.
"I am disappointed," said O'Shea who worked with Ide at Grays Athletic.
"it was a money thing in the end and Carshalton have got a considerable budget, one of the biggest in the league and we couldn't compete with it.
"I have known Charlie for quite a while but he is a young man who needs to look after his finances as well."
O'Shea has moved quickly though to fill the gap by bringing in Northwood winger Michael Gordon and Charlton youngster Ben Godfrey on work experience.
"Michael is a talented winger who has had league experience," said O'Shea.
"Serge Makofo and Tom Bolarinwa are doing fine on the wings but I haven't really got the competition I would like and it's just healthy when there's another lad there who will keep the boys on their toes.
"Ben is a young centre forward who has just turned 18 with a lot of potential."
Meanwhile, the club's reserve team managers Kevin Rayner and Roly Martin have left the club to take over the first team at Guildford City and the Rams have also found themselves reinstated to the London Senior Cup after their conquerors in the last round, Welling United, were thrown out for fielding an ineligible player.
They will now face Kingstonian in the quarter-finals next Tuesday and O'Shea admitted it could be a good chance for silverware this season.
"It gives us something to possibly aim for this season and now the fixtures are a little better I will probably play a stronger side," he said.
"It is always nice if we can do well in the local cups and give everyone a nice day out at the end of the season.
Croydon reached the 40 point mark on Saturday with a convincing 5-1 win over Ashford Town thanks to two Shabazz Baidoo strikes, one from Sam Clayton, an own goal and another from Karl Murray.
Croydon Athletic's next three fixtures: Mar 7 Fleet Town (a), 10 Kingstonian (London Cup, h) 14 Chipstead (h).