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Hurst on final preparations

Paul Hurst looks back on pre-season and ahead to Saturday's season-opener

1 August 2017

Shrewsbury Town boss Paul Hurst has turned his attention fully to Saturday’s season-opener with Northampton Town.

Town finished off their pre-season campaign with a 1-0 victory over Burton Albion last Saturday.

That game was the final of seven pre-season friendlies, with Town winning five of those, including four against Championship opposition.

Overall, Paul has been pleased with how his players have done over the last six weeks and believes the squad is in good shape.

“Pre-season’s finished now and overall I’ve been very pleased with what I’ve seen”, Hurst told ShrewsWeb.

“The work rate of the players has been good and I think we are in a decent place going into that first game, so the overall view is a happy one.

“We’ve beaten the teams that perhaps we weren’t expected to and then we’ve had a couple of results where it’s been mixed.

“I think the lads have found it tough, as I would expect them too, but at the same time I still think there’s a couple that need a little bit more work to really get to their best levels, so there’s still a bit of work to do with those individuals, but overall everything is in good shape.”

The final week will now see the players prepare fully for the game against Northampton at the Montgomery Waters Meadow on Saturday and Paul is already thinking about who will be in his matchday squad.

“Having given it some thought I now have an 11 in mind for Saturday, but if I see something else this week then that might give me second thoughts”, Paul said.

“There’s the bench as well to consider. Up until now I haven’t had to leave anyone out and suddenly that changes.

“I’ve got a couple of decisions to make and a couple of lads will be disappointed that they have spent the season getting fit and up to speed and now they might not be in the matchday squad.”

“That’s where my job really kicks in because suddenly they have to encounter that disappointment and it’s how they react. I will try and manage that as best I can, but ultimately it’s about the players and the attitudes they show on a day to day basis.”

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