Sam Ricketts gives on update on pre-season and looks ahead to Aston Villa
Town are back in action for the first time this season at the Montgomery Waters Meadow as they take on Premier League side Aston Villa in their next pre-season friendly.
Sam Ricketts spoke to the press this morning and provided an update going into Sunday's game where Villa are expected to bring a strong squad. The game is also approaching a sell-out.
"There were no injuries picked up on Wednesday against Newport, which is really good," said Sam. "That's the main thing when you're coming through pre-season. You don't want to pick up injuries.
"The game was a good work out, it showed where we're at. This is pre-season, there is still plenty to work on, plenty to improve on but that's what pre-season is all about.
"We're trying to integrate lots of new players into a slightly different way of playing so there's a long way to go but there are some really encouraging signs."
Wednesday night saw the majority of Sam Ricketts' squad get some game time under their belt. Sam expects more of the same on Sunday afternoon.
"We're just looking at increasing everyone's minutes at the moment. The game on Sunday is quickly followed by a game on Tuesday so we're trying to get everyone up to a decent amount of minutes across the two games.
"Fitness really comes into it now whilst trying to implement our style of play."
Sam expects new loan signing Luke McCormick to get some game time on Sunday.
"Hopefully he'll be able to, we'll see how he gets on this morning. He's played quite a bit of game time already this season with Chelsea so it will be an opportunity to see him and take it from there."
Sam spoke about what will please him from his side's performance on Sunday.
"I will be looking to see how they implement our game. The foundations are there, it's now taking it to the next level in and out of possession.
"The game is going to be different from what we're going to face in the season. Villa are a Premier League side, they've spent 83 million already this Summer so we're going to be facing challenges that we're not going to be facing too much in the league but it's another really good opportunity to implement our ideas."
Sam revealed some great news for his side as he confirmed Dave Edwards has fully recovered from his injury.
"Dave is now back in full training which is really good, fitness-wise he's been able to do a lot of running so we'll just assess him over the next few days to see when he can step back into match action.
"Scott Golbourne also isn't a million miles away. Fitness-wise he's looking very good, we're just waiting for the all-clear."