Carlisle United are closing in on a Championship midfielder with the signs looking good over their next summer signing.

It is believed manager Steven Pressley has received a positive response regarding the target he has been hoping to land ahead of Saturday’s League Two opener against Crawley.

Only “minor details” remain to be finalised with Pressley expecting to have the player on the training ground before this weekend’s big kick-off.

The young player is likely to arrive on a season-long loan to bolster an area of United’s squad that has been in need of reinforcements.

Carlisle had originally been expected to sign Aston Villa teenager Lewis Brunt but a deal for the 18-year-old was not pursued after a training period.

A defensive midfielder has also remained a priority in light of Kelvin Etuhu being on the sidelines for several more weeks and Pressley believes his current target, who has been in his sights for some time, fits the bill.

Pressley said Carlisle had not yet finalised the deal “because the wording has to be right when it comes to drawing up contracts and things like that.”

He added: “There are never any guarantees, but we think it should all be fine with this one.”

Things are looking less imminent, though, on the striker situation as United try to add to their attack ahead of Saturday’s game.

Pressley would like two more frontmen in the building after Monday’s arrival of Scunthorpe loanee Olufela Olomola.

He has admitted Carlisle are still seeking a positive response on a Championship attacker who has been his main summer target, while United are awaiting on other options with the new campaign looming.

Pressley, meanwhile, says United must ensure they do not suffer a repeat of last season when they lost key loan players in January.

Fans have raised concerns in light of the news that there is a new-year recall clause in Olomola’s loan deal.

United suffered for the mid-campaign departures of Jack Sowerby, Jerry Yates and Ashley Nadesan last term.

Manager Pressley said: “Of course, we would have loved it to be a guaranteed year-long loan [with Olomola], but most clubs insert that type of clause.

“What it does [mean] regarding recruitment in January is we can’t stand still.

“We have to be continuously monitoring opportunities between now and January because, if we lose players, we can’t have a situation like last year where we virtually had no strikers for the second part of the season.

“That’s going to be an important factor in the work we have to do between now and January.”

Carlisle hope frontman Hallam Hope will be fit to be involved against Crawley as he returns from a hamstring problem. He could be involved in training tomorrow.

Pressley said: “The initial thought was [that he would train on Monday] and now it looks like it might be Thursday.

“But with these types of injuries, you can never tell. Certainly the scan suggested he should be OK come the weekend.”

United’s boss added: “When you consider what this squad has had to endure, in terms of the size of the squad, the demands we have put on them and the games we have had, I think for us to only have one mentionable injury [apart from Josh Dixon] is testament to the planning of [strength and conditioning coach] Dave Waldie.

“When you only have that one injury concern, that’s good going when you consider the demands.”