Coasters boss Dave Challinor was pleased by his side’s 1-0 win over League One Oldham Athletic at Kellamergh Park yesterday but insists there is still work to be done ahead of the upcoming season.
“Again it was a good workout for us, I think we’ve improved from friendly to friendly but I think there’s still things to work on to be fair. We know there’s still some improvement to come from us with the ball but I thought we looked solid today and worked hard for the win. It’s encouraging as coaches to see that the hard work you’ve put in has been rewarded and has been taken on board and that showed today as we beat a strong side in Oldham.
“It was obviously pleasing to get a first clean sheet of pre-season, our success the year before last was built on the fact that we were very good defensively and that came from having continuity in the back four we had in place and that’s going to be the same this season. We’re still obviously looking at goalkeepers and also fullbacks that can give us more options and more cover in those areas.
“It’s still a work in process, there’s still opportunities, still places up for grabs and it’s now about getting the right people in and working on getting that understanding even better than it was today.
Summer signing Steve Williams impressed at the back for the Coasters and Challinor believes the former Barrow and Macclesfield centre back can be a big part of the Coasters future.
“I think he’s someone that has a bit of everything, I watched him a couple of years ago and unfortunately the last couple of years he’s not had the best of luck and not played as many games as he probably would have liked but if we can keep him fit he’ll be a big asset for us. We knew we’d have to replace Tom (Hannigan) this summer and I’ve been pleased with what I’ve seen so far. He has leadership qualities, maybe not in a noisy way but he’s experienced and leads by example and that showed today.
“He’s playing in a slightly unfamiliar role with him playing on the left hand side and Josh on the right but he’s done well, he’s a proper professional, he looks after himself and if we can keep him away from those niggling injuries he’s had then like I said he’ll be a real asset.
Fylde have made three permanent signings this summer and Challinor insists that any further signings made will be for the right reasons.
“I think it’s important we bring the right players in. We’ve been patient, there have been more players become available and it was key we brought the right ones in and not just sign players for the sake of signing players. The lads who have come in on trial today have done themselves no harm.
“A lot of players are still trying to get a contract with football league clubs and with us now being a professional side we’re bottom of the pecking order in a way. Like I said we’ve been patient and we’re going to bring in those who want to play for us and help us progress and hopefully by this time next week we’ll be further along in our preparations.”