WINCHESTER City are unlikely to move for their former captain Leigh Mills following his release from Eastleigh.

Much as City owner Paul McCarthy admires the man who skippered his side to the Sydenhams Premier title last season, he feels the time is not right for the 24-year-old to return.

For one thing City couldn’t afford the former Spurs and Swindon defender/midfielder.

For another, McCarthy is not convinced ‘luxury’ man Mills is cut out for a Southern One South & West relegation scrap.

“I’ve spoken to Leigh and we all know what a good player he is,” said McCarthy, right.

“But the next few months are going to be a real battle for us and Leigh’s more of a luxury player than the fighter in the trenches we need. “He’s a great lad and when he left us earlier in the season it was for no other reason than that we couldn’t afford to keep him.

“It’s not worked out for Leigh at Eastleigh because he’s got a career in teaching and he couldn’t make daytime training. I wish him all the luck in the world wherever he goes.”

McCarthy has confirmed, however, that his son, Conor – another member of City’s promotion-winning side – is up for the Southern One survival battle.

The powerful central defender recently returned to the club after dual-signing for Brockenhurst.

He is available for tomorrow’s trip to Didcot Town where fourth-to-bottom City hope to replicate their biggest win of the season so far.

They beat the Railwaymen 4-0 at the Denplan City Ground in November thanks to a Ben Penfold hat-trick and a single from Andrew White.

“Conor’s got university commitments but he’s back with us at the moment and (manager) James Taylor is delighted to have him. He left a big hole when he went,” said McCarthy snr.

“Conor needs to keep playing football. Winchester are his priority but, because of his uni work, it may occur that he’ll play for Brock.”