Wanderers' Under-23s were held to a goalless draw against non-league outfit Clitheroe FC on Wednesday evening.
And speaking following the final whistle, coach David Lee covered the following points...
On another good run-out for the lads…
For the lads who we’ve got here on a full-time basis, it was 90 minutes for some and 60/70 minutes for the rest which is great for them as they build up their fitness.
It’s important to get those levels up without picking up any injuries and coming through ready to hit the ground running.
We’ve also had a number of trialists which we’ve needed to look at too, so it was crucial that they got game time and a chance to show their worth too.
Overall though, I thought it was a good, honest and competitive game and both sides certainly got something out of it.
On the challenge of competing against experienced players…
It will all definitely stand the lads in good stead – it’s all a great learning curve for them. We spoke to them in the dressing room after the game about it and when you’re playing against physically strong players, you’ve still got to do the basics well.
Some of the players who are 18 or 19 years of age haven’t experienced this type of football before – I call it real football and it’s undoubtedly a huge learning curve and something they’ll benefit from in the future.
On keeping a clean sheet…
Although it’s ultimately about fitness at this point in pre-season, the lads always want to win when they’re out there on the field – that’s great because you need that winning mentality instilled into them.
From a goalkeeper’s perspective however, I thought both keepers and the back four did a very good job tonight.
They’re competitive players who want to keep clean sheets which they have managed to do, and the lads who are here full-time pride themselves on solid performances.
If you’ve then got something at the other end in terms of creativity, then you can go and then try to win the game which is great.
From a coach’s perspective though, it’s about getting those minutes in and getting those legs going ready for the start of the new campaign.
And finally, on the importance of pre-season games...
They’re crucial, they really are and you can't underestimate just how much.
You can run around all you like on the training ground, but nothing compares to getting out there in a competitive game.