Full reaction as United start pre-season with a win
New Head Coach Michael Appleton was pleased to see his side win their first pre-season game with a 2-1 win at Farnborough on Saturday. Appleton gave as many players as possible a chance to get game time and afterwards he told Yellow Player:
“I think it’s always a bit of a risk when you play two sides, one in each half, that it could affect your performance but it is the right thing to do. Everyone getting 45 minutes was the most important thing. The first and last thing I asked when them was not to get injured and to stay unscathed and we got that and then winning the game was a bonus.”
The goals came from impressive young duo James Roberts and Josh Ashby while United’s only blemish was a goal conceded from a shot from half way immediately after the restart from the second goal.
“Apart from a freak goal and a free kick late in the second half I thought we looked quite comfortable defensively” Michael said . “Young Robbo has scored goals for fun in the youth side and took his goal well, and Josh Ashby has fantastic technique, sees a pass and is a good footballer. We will continue to develop him and hopefully we will see a lot more of him.”
There was a youthful look to The U’s as Jon Meades, David Hunt and new signing Danny Hylton sat the game out along with Callum O’Dowda, although all four are expected to feature in games this week.
“There were just a few niggles, as you get every pre-season” Michael explained. “The biggest thing you ask the players to do is to manage themselves in pre-season: if you have a bit of a niggle, deal with it early so it doesn’t turn into a situation where you are out for two or three weeks. If you deal with it early then you get them back in two or three days instead. It was more precautionary than anything and I’d expect them to be playing either at Oxford City of Didcot this week.”
The victory ended a busy week for the new boss who expects to add anew faces to the squad this week:
“The first week has been fantastic” he smiled.” I’ve not had time to do anything else but work with the players and keep working to bring new players into the group. I will continue to do that and we are confident that we can get that done early this week.”
See the full interview and a special On The Road report in Yellow Player