Greg Abbott is hoping Richard Keogh will sign a new contract at Carlisle United rather than look for a move to Colchester United.
Former Cumbrians boss John Ward recently took up the reins at Colchester and is thought to be interested in signing the defender.
Keogh, who has also been linked with Bristol Rovers, is believed to have initially rejected the offer of a new deal at Carlisle before asking for more time to rethink his decision.
Abbott told the News & Star: "I don't know if Richard would be swayed by John Ward getting the Colchester job. I know he enjoys playing for me.
"I would be disappointed if he took a sideways move. If it was, say, Huddersfield who offered to double his money then I could understand it, but the only thing Colchester have is their location on the map.
"I would have liked an answer earlier, but Richard is well within his rights to keep his cards close to his chest - and he's doing absolutely nothing wrong.
"It's frustrating because I need to know one way or another so I know if I have a good right-back to replace. I can't drag an answer out of him.
"I would hope for Richard's sake that he can get his mind focused on next season. I wouldn't have thought he would want to leave it until the end of June."