AKWASI ASANTE’S return to Chester’s first team should inspire others in their push for a starting role, says Anthony Johnson.

Following an injury-hit pre-season, the Dutch striker has already netted six goals in as many appearances this term.

That prolific form has seen him start each of the Blues’ last three games and he looks a certainty to line up for Saturday’s home clash with Guiseley.

Chester’s wealth of attacking options were laid bare in the 3-1 victory at Curzon Ashton on Monday, when Johnson and Bernard Morley made a triple attack-minded substitution midway through the second half.

“How good is it when you can take Asante, Hughes and Dudley off at the same time and not weaken your side?” asked Johnson in his post-match comments.

“We’ve got fantastic players in George Waring, Danny Elliott and Iwan Murray.

“We’ve got senior players here banging the door down at the minute, wondering when they’re going to get a shirt. It’s a fantastic squad, but if we want to do well this season, we’re going to need it.

“At this moment in time some of these players aren’t getting minutes and some are, so it’s going to be about rotation, hopefully keeping players fit and when they get the opportunity they keep the shirt like Akwasi’s done.”

Currently third in the National League North table, the Blues will have to contend with some key absences for the Guiseley clash.

While captain Gary Roberts could return, fellow central midfielder Gary Stopforth faces at least a month out with a medial ligament injury.

Meanwhile central defender Danny Livesey will serve a one-match suspension for his sending off in the defeat at Spennymoor Town.

And Johnson is wary of making significant changes to the line-up who excelled in their victory at Ashton-under-Lyne.

He said: “It’s not too much about the system, it’s more about personnel. At Spennymoor we moved Kevin Roberts in at centre back and he did brilliantly.

“What we’ve got to be careful of is not making too many changes to the back line for one person.

"We’ve got a centre back in on loan (James Jones), who’s come through the last two weeks of training.

"But Danny has to come out, it’s a massive loss for us because of how good he’s been. Between him and Simon Grand we think we’ve got the best centre half pairing in non-league football. That might sound like an exaggeration, but I’ve always said that.

“To lose one half of that partnership hurts us, but to still have the other one there makes it much easier.”

Meanwhile, former Wrexham full-back Roberts hopes scoring can become a habit this season after heading home Chester's third goal on Monday night.

Speaking to the club's website, he said: “I’ve been due a goal for a long time.

“I haven’t been going up for corners for a long time and the gaffers have had faith in me to get up there and do it this year. I did promise them four or five goals this season, so it’s a start.”