YOUNG Worcester City striker James Smith is to sign for Bromsgrove Rovers.

Smith trained with the Victoria Ground club this week and is expected to make his Rovers debut at Hemel Hempstead Town tomorrow.

Bromsgrove manager Rod Brown also made a cheeky loan bid for City's Liam McDonald that was refused.

Smith, 20, has been a peripheral figure at St George's Lane and, despite being selected over 30 times as substitute in the past two years. He made only two starts and nine substitute appearances.

The emergence of teenager Troy Wood saw Smith's chances further diminish and he sought regular football with loan moves to Malvern Town and Cadbury Athletic.

Ironically, one of Smith's two competitive starts at senior level came at Bromsgrove last season in the Worcestershire Senior Cup, when he netted the consolation goal in a 3-1 defeat.

Following City's signing of Mark Danks from Forest Green Rovers, player-manager Andy Preece believes Smith's departure is beneficial for club and player.

"His chance of a path to the first-team was being blocked," said Preece.

"We've signed another striker in Mark and Troy Wood has come through, so the move is best for both parties.

"James is a great lad to work with. He worked his socks off here and is a good listener. He is willing to learn, but he's been a bit unlucky with injuries at the wrong time.

"He needs to be playing regularly and this is the best thing for him. Bromsgrove play at a good level and I'm sure he will do well there."

Preece was not prepared to allow 20-year-old McDonald to go to Bromsgrove on loan, insisting the left-sided midfielder is part of his plans.

"Liam has got back in the side in last couple of games and did well in the early part of the season.

"He is part of my long-term plans, although I'm looking for a bit more from him. He has got the ability, there's no doubt about that. He just needs to get mentally right and get a bit of consistency into his game."