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Micky Mellon pre Birmingham City

18 July 2016

Gaffer's thoughts ahead of the pre-season game with Blues

The Town players were back in training this morning as they looked to learn from Saturday's defeat by Cardiff City.  

The work is being put in over the pre-season to get the fitness of the squad up and ready for the start of the season.

Micky Mellon was pleased with the training session this morning and was looking forward to more from his squad this afternoon.

“We’ve been back in and had a full session today to keep building the lads fitness”, said Micky.

“Everyone has had a run out and got 45 minutes in the Wolves and Cardiff games so it’s been good to see that.

“It’s been another tough training session today as we continue to get ready for another training session/practice game on Tuesday night.”

The results of the games are important, but at this time of the season, not as important as the match minutes the players are getting under their belts.

The work on tactics and formations hasn't been worked on much over the previous two games but the focus will now turn to those over the next set of pre-season games.

“Obviously you want to win every game of football that you take part in, and   it is important that you have that mentality”, added the gaffer.

“What we will say is that in the last two games we haven’t really been preparing for games in terms of tactics and formations.

“It’s been about getting the lads prepared fitness wise to be able to take part in a game of football.

“I keep reminding myself that as you want to see your team playing really well and knocking ball around.

“Using our new fancy GPS equipment we can see they covered something like 60-70 kilometres last week in training before the Cardiff game.

“We wouldn’t do anywhere near half that in a normal season so things like this you have to bear in mind.

“We have our eye on making sure we are spot on for the MK Dons game and things that we are trying at the moment are to try and find out about the new group.”

Tuesday night sees the visit of Championship side Birmingham City to the Greenhous Meadow and the next test for Town's next look squad.

“We’ll do bits of things with the back four unit, bits to get the front two working together and will try some zonal marking tomorrow night”, said Micky.

“We’ll find tomorrow if that’s a success when we play Birmingham and that will give us a better indication on where we are.

“We will tweak the shape of the team a little bit to see if certain players fit into their positions and we will learn more.

“When we get nearer to the Hibs game we should know a lot more about the group as we prepare for the MK Dons game.”

Jayson Leutwiler didn't feature in the Cardiff City game and Micky revealed after the game that he had a slight back problem so wasn't risked. Jayson trained today and the manager will be looking for the keeper to get more match minutes under his belt.

“He was only going to play 45 minutes so if he played that would he irritate his back so we decided against playing him.

“He's trained today and he's been fine, we will see how he reacts to that and if all is ok we will try and get him 45 to 60 minutes tomorrow as he needs to up his match minutes to catch everyone up.

“That's the case with any player over pre-season if you don't think it's worth pushing them to play in a game then you don't have to.”

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