CHARLIE Gunson has opted to remain at AFC Totton – despite interest from his old club Andover Town.

Andover, the Sydenhams Premier Division leaders, lodged a seven-day notice of approach for the 20-year-old midfielder last week.

With a talented young squad at his disposal, Stags boss Louis Langdown cannot give Gunson a cast-iron guarantee that he will start every game or that he can accommodate him in his favoured position in ‘the hole’ between midfield and attack.

But what he can give the former England Schools’ under-18 international is invaluable Southern League experience and the chance to grow as a player with the Stags’ rapidly evolving, young squad.

“Andover put in a seven-day approach, it’s gone, it’s passed and Charlie is staying,” said Langdown.

“We had an opportunity to get someone else in if Charlie did go, but we’re more than happy that he’s staying.

“What the approach did do was allow us to talk to Charlie.

“Of course we appreciate that kids want to play games and that Charlie wants to be at the highest level he can and kick on.

“It’s easy to move on but sometimes when you’re not getting what you want, it’s a chance to look at yourself and your own performance. “

"Technically Charlie is a good player and strength-wise he’s a strong boy.

“Hopefully he’ll nail down a spot in his favoured position, but players must also appreciate that if they’re playing in several different roles, that’s a plus to their development not a detriment.

“Charlie must have played about 30 games for us at this level, so it’s not like he’s out of football, but every minute of every game is not always achievable with a squad of similar quality players.

“He wants to play in ‘the hole’ but not many teams have the luxury of playing that way. When you’re in that position, you’re reliant on other players giving you the ball.

“You’ve got to have the right personnel to play that way – and we don’t. We’ve gone with wingers and two up front.”

Given the extent of today's snow, Saturday's home game against Swindon Supermarine (3pm) looks highly unlikely to go ahead.

But Totton, who currently sit tenth in the Evo-Stik South West, have a contingency plan in place.

Defender Stuart Mott has lined up a friendly against The Army on the 4G pitch at Burford.

“We got that one in early because training’s been difficult this week.,” Langdown. explained

“We’ve been in the gym rather than training on a pitch.

“Ideally we want to play Swindon on Saturday but, if we don’t, we’ll have time to get over to Burford for a 1pm kick-off.

“People will be at the club on Friday evening and Saturday morning so we’ll know in good time whether the game is on.”