The Evo-Stik League Southern
Published 1st August 2012
....fine tune his squad ahead of the big kick-off on August 18th.
Following encouraging showings against Banbury United and Corby Town, the pre-season schedule continues with two more home games against higher level opposition over the coming week, before it rounds off with a trip to Loughborough Dynamo next weekend.
Blue Square Bet North outfits Oxford City and Brackley Town will visit Butlin Road on Saturday and Tuesday respectively to provide further tough tests for Stringer’s men.
Town’s 1-1 draw against a full-strength Corby on Tuesday evening came three days after an equally impressive 4-1 victory over Banbury, and Stringer was an understandably happy man.
“We’re very pleased with the way things are going and with the way we have played in the last few games,” he said.
“It was always going to be difficult to use the early friendlies to assess where we were at, as they were stop-start affairs with lots of trial players being looked at.
“Players have come and gone now, and we’ve pretty much settled on the squad, and we’re starting to show what we are capable of.
“Against Corby, we kept the ball well, showed good movement, shape and work-rate, and really tested their keeper - and but for a number of fine one-on-one saves from him, we would have won comfortably.”
Stringer has released defenders Gary Moran and Craig Milligan over the past week, with Alex Austin and Craig Kelly seemingly his preferred first choice full-back pairing - although Stringer also confirmed the signing of another full-back - Alex Gudger - after the Corby game.
Gudger, 19, was part of Nuneaton’s Conference North promotion-winning squad last season, and he impressed in both of the Butlin Road friendlies over the past week.
Last season’s youth team top scorer Nic Evangelinos has also signed Southern League forms for the club, along with midfielder Josh Ruff - who joins from Midland Alliance side Coventry Sphinx.
Stringer continued: “We may add one more to the squad before the start of the campaign, but if we don’t, we’re happy to go with what we have now.
“We’ve still got Tyrone Fagan to come back in. Rob Foster should be fit for the first league game of the season after his shoulder popped out of its socket against Banbury, and there’s a few other bumps and knocks that we will be working on.”