Colchester boss Phil Parkinson is already on the look-out for a new midfielder after resigning himself to the loss of Neil Danns.
The highly-rated midfielder turned down an offer to extend his Layer Road career despite recently helping the club to achieve promotion from League One.
Several Championship clubs, including Coventry, Sunderland and Ipswich, are fighting over Danns' signature, but latecomers Birmingham are favourites to snap him up.
Parkinson has admitted that he was immensely saddened not to be able to keep Danns, but thanked him for his contribution to The U's.
"We have made every effort to keep Neil here and will obviously be disappointed to lose him, both as a player and character around the place," he sighed.
"I will be the first to shake his hand should he leave - he has been fantastic during the time he's been here, but this move could also work in our favour, with me being able to bring in other players as a result."
Parkinson has been scouring the leagues for an ideal replacement, and revealed that he had already entered into talks with some players.
"I've been making contingency plans for this happening and I'm already in talks with players that could replace Neil for next season," he told Colchester's official website.