Progress and Professionalism Please Craddock

Finn Lockett training

Matt Craddock was pleased with the professionalism his young side showed as the B Team continued its impressive start to pre-season.

The Whites were praised for their approach when beating Longridge Town 5-2 in mid-week and repeated the dose in a sterner test against Northern Premier League outfit Atherton Collieries.

The Colls hadn’t been beaten in pre-season but were 3-0 down at half-time before the Whites added two more after the break to match the margin of their Longridge win.

“It was really encouraging,” said Craddock. “We’ve been trying to make sure this is the step between the first team and the Academy and we need to make sure we’re professional and Saturday was.

“It was demanding but they were really together, worked hard and were really disciplined out of possession.

“I’ve always said they’ve got quality and if they do the other things right the quality comes out and you could see in the goals there were some really good passages of play and patterns and we looked really dangerous.”

Wanderers led through one of their trialists following a neat build-up between Ben Andreucci and Finn Lockett (pictured).

Andreucci then notched his second goal of the warm-up campaign as he ran onto a fine through-ball from Max Conway before calmly finishing.

Lockett also doubled his tally when he pounced on a mistake to fire home before substitutes Leo Graham – from long range after collecting the goalkeeper’s clearance - and Wes Frimpong both also produced impressive finishes in the second half.

The result at the Skuna Stadium ended the Colls’ unbeaten run in pre-season while the B Team made it two wins and a draw before going into a couple of fixtures against Academy sides from the Premier League and Championship.

“I’m pleased the first three games have gone well for the lads and the tests will be different now,” added Craddock.

“It will be very tactical and technical as well as physical. We’ve got some tough games but I’m confident in the lads. They’ve got real quality and I think if they continue the professionalism and hard work, they’ll be able to compete.”

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