LOYALTY is a rare commodity in football, but Craig Mahon is happy to be an exception to the rule.

The 29-year-old Chester midfielder is the club's longest-serving current player and recently penned a year-long extension to his contract.

Now entering his seventh season with the Blues, Mahon shunned interest from rival clubs - including promoted Stockport County - to commit himself to Chester.

And the popular Irishman insists there is nowhere he would rather be.

"Everyone knows how I feel about this club and how good my relationship is with the people here", he said.

"It's a special place to me and once I knew the managers wanted me to stay on next season it was a really easy decision to make.

"There had been approaches made by Stockport and Altrincham and obviously you consider a new challenge when it's offered to you.

"But there's just something about this club and the time I've had here that makes me want to stay."

After turning out 229 times for the Blues, Mahon holds Chester FC's all-time appearance record.

Since his switch from Vauxhall Motors in 2013 he has witnessed managers and players come and go, but is delighted to be playing under joint-managers Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley again next term.

He added: "I've got so much respect for both of them.They've got a terrific approach to management and a great will to win.

"It's like they have this 'win at all costs' mentality and it transfers through to the players.

"I've loved playing in their set-up ever since they came in a year ago and hopefully we can go one better for them next season and achieve promotion."

A frustrating 2018/19 National League North campaign saw the Blues finish ninth and five points adrift of the play-offs.

Most of Chester's current 15-man squad have been retained from last season, with recently added full-backs Joel Taylor and Kevin Roberts bolstering their ranks.

Mahon insists that winning silverware with Chester would 'mean the world', and says that last season's disappointments will fuel their ambitions next term.

He said: "I think we had our share of bad luck with injuries and the number of home games we missed early in the season.

"There were a lot of challenges for us but we can't use that as an excuse because the table doesn't lie.

"We want to be up there competing at the top next season and having that stability of keeping players on and strengthening can hep us do that, I'm sure.

"Teams like Chorley and Stockport have retained a core of players previously and built around them. It's brought those clubs success and hopefully it can do the same for us.

"For me personally, winning a trophy here would be massive and if we could do that next season with a challenge for the title - it'd be huge."