St Francis Rangers lose to Barnet in pre-season opener
St Francis Rangers lost to Barnet Reserves 3-0 as new boss Simon Boddie took charge of his first game for the club.
Boddie used a squad of 15 players who all got at least 45 minutes at Colwell Road.
Although Rangers did not score, Boddie was pleased as the chances created by his new side.
He told Middy Sport: “If I am honest it was a learning experience for myself and the coaching team as over half of the players available we have never seen kick a ball in anger.
“Some of the new lads made me sit up and think and a few of the u21s from last season have shown me that they are going to be an asset as we move forward. One in particular impressed myself and coaching team with a solid performance in the 45 mins he got on the pitch.
“Everyone played a minimum of 45 minutes against a team that is established and without being derogatory have been around the block. I would think our average age was way below that of theirs. I had 9 players whom I am confident will, if not already signed, be signing in the not too distant future. Holiday’s work and yes even injuries made them unavailable, plus there are still some more of last year’s youth to look at.
“The score was a 3-0 loss but we created at least 10 chances, finding the back of the net appeared to be a problem but glass half full, the chances were created and we had a player on the end of every chance. We can work on finishing but I would be worried if we hadn’t created anything.
“So from a squad of 15 I previously knew just five players, what we saw was encouraging but it is working progress. We have time to fine tune before our next friendly which is against very strong opposition - a Woking development squad. We are possibly looking to fit another midweek friendly in on July 19 but I am waiting for confirmation and I am looking for an away fixture on Saturday July 23, so if there is anyone out there who wants a fixture please get in touch.
“So overall we (the coaching team) are reasonably happy. We have loads to work on but we are in a place that we view with a glass half full attitude as the squad is slowly forming into what we are looking to produce for our season opener. I would like also to state that I think the back room staff helping do a multitude of work in and around the club are very hard working and it encourages us to provide a competitive squad to show our support for all their hard work.”
New chairman Doug Benjamin said: “Unfortunately we lost 3-0, but there were encouraging signs.
“It was the first game that they had played together and we were missing a number of first team potential regulars, so there was a mixture of 1st XI, u21 and u18 players involved. We did create a number of chances but didn’t convert them. More work to do on the training field and then the results will start to come.”
St Francis Rangers squad for Saturday was: Jordan Markey, Rhys White, Keith Peppard, Jim Francis, Adrian Spence, Steve Keogh, Dan Newnham, Connor Campbellwood, Dan Taylor, Stuart Goodwin, Tyler Fearnside, Connor Fearnside, Connor Carolan, Charlie Thorpe, Chris Haskell.
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