Chris Beech says he has made it clear that Gethin Jones is exactly the type of player he wants to keep working with.

The defender’s Carlisle United future remains unresolved with a short-term deal close to expiring.

Beech, though, said conversations have taken place and the Blues head coach has made little secret of his wish to keep the 24-year-old.

On the prospect of a longer deal, Beech told the News & Star: “We’ve had chats already.

“Of course David [Holdsworth, director or football] is completely aware of the contract situations of everybody. It’s all in good hands.

“You’ve got to get the right thing for everybody. We can only offer what we do.

“I want to improve Gethin, I want him to get to the Championship standards that he has [reached] before, but on his terms, and I want more players doing that.”

It has not been clarified publicly when Jones’ deal runs out, with United only having reported that he had joined “until January” when he signed last September.

That deal was struck on September 13, meaning that, if Jones signed a four-month contract, it would run out after this weekend’s visit of Plymouth.

That would give the Cumbrians a race against time to tie Jones down in time for next Wednesday's FA Cup replay against Cardiff.

Beech has used Jones in both full-back positions so far, while the former Fleetwood man has played every minute of every league game since his move to Cumbria.

Beech has been impressed with his attitude and consistency.

Beech said: “Gethin knows my thoughts on him.

“I’ve known him from being a young player at Everton, and he played for my home town at Fleetwood – I know him very well.

“I’m very pleased with his professionalisms, consistencies, he’s never ill, never injured, he’s adaptable, he’s available, he’s 100 per cent.

“He’ll make mistakes, but he’s right behind trying to be better, they’re the sort of people I want to work with.”

Jones reverted to left-back in Saturday's 2-2 draw at Cardiff, a position in which he has often featured under Beech.

He has also played in his favoured right-back position, and featured on the right of a back three early in his Brunton Park spell under former boss Steven Pressley.

The former Plymouth, Barnsley and Mansfield loan man has made 24 appearances so far this campaign and will face one of his former clubs when Argyle visit Brunton Park this Saturday.

Carlisle, meanwhile, are continuing their efforts to bolster their squad.

It is understood the Cumbrians are speaking to three or four potential signings in different positions.

Striker is one position Beech would like to strengthen. The head coach has not ruled out adding to his squad before Plymouth’s visit and said United are “very active”.