Places are up for grabs, says Town boss

Town's Antonio Alcaraz, left, tussles with a Solihull Moors player. Photo: Mark Williamson (F26/17/8298)

CARL ADAMS will be happy to let battle commence between his Stratford Town’s players to fight for a place in the opening game of the season.

While the Town manager has been largely satisfied with the pre-season build-up, he wants more ‘stand-out’ performances from his players to win their shirts for the first game of the Evo-Stik South Premier campaign at Royston Town next Saturday (5th August).

With two pre-season games left – tonight’s home game with Bromsgrove Sporting and then Saturday’s visit by Sutton Coldfield Town – Adams is demanding some more eyecatching displays.

“What I’ve learned most from the pre-season games is that I’ve got a squad of 20 players who are all as good as each other. We’ve got a strong group of strikers, a strong group of midfielders and a strong group of defenders.

“They are all doing well but one is standing out, no-one is claiming a shirt for themselves.”

Consistency remains the key and Adams hopes the strength in numbers will crank up the level of performances in the countdown to the trip to Royston.

Adams has added five signings so far to add to the nucleus of the squad which finished 14th, the highest ever position in the club’s history.

Such depth was apparent on Saturday when Town, despite missing six key players, gave a decent account of themselves against National League Soihull Moors.

“I’m happy with the squad I’ve got but no-one has really claimed a short. There are shirts up for grabs.

“I’m not worried about that because I honestly feel I wouldn’t have any problem putting any of them into the team for the first game of the season.

“Whether it’s Mike Taylor, Edwin Ahenkorah, or Jazz Luckie up-front, or whether it’s Liam Francis, Andy Gallinagh, Loyiso Recci and Emmitt Delfouneso in defence.

“The next two games are crucial if any of them want to be in the starting XI.”

The game against Bromsgrove, who finished last season without a single league defeat in winning the Midland League Division One, will kick off at 7.45pm at the MoodChimp Stadium.