Attacking talent brewing nicely at Budleigh
- Credit: Budleigh Salterton Football Club
The return to pre-season training under a new management duo at Budleigh Salterton FC has seen the men in charge ‘pleasantly surprised’ by the attacking options at their disposal.
Chris ‘Curly’ Watts and Simon Pearce took over at Greenway Lane at the end of last season and will begin their friendly fixtures on July 17, with the new Devon Football League campaign commencing a month later.
Across a busy schedule of six pre-season games, Watts and Pearce will have the chance to fully assess a very competitive squad at Budleigh, with players naturally desperate to impress.
“We start our friendly programme with a trip to Brixham 2nds on July 17, then Dawlish away on the 24th and Ottery St Mary on the 28th, also away,” said Curly.
“Our first home game is against Axminster on July 31, another home game with Otterton on August 4 and our final pre-season fixture is on August 10 at home to Lyme Regis.
“We have tried to work the programme to provide some big tests for the lads in the middle. The idea at Brixham is to get people as much game-time as possible.
“Dawlish, Ottery and Axminster, on paper, should be really tough fixtures but a great work-out. Otterton are a couple of steps below in the pyramid and then Lyme Regis another hard game, as they would be in our division without some issues with facilities.
“We will use certain games to hopefully get on the front foot because we have been really impressed with the talent at Budleigh Salterton Football Club, particularly in attacking areas.
“We are coming up with many different permutations for our starting 11 and it is changing every week, so pre-season will be really important for the lads to perform.
“There is no second-team at Budleigh this year, so that does add some pressure on the players. It is the nature of local football that players might drift away if they’re not getting regular games.
“The challenge for us is to find the right balance, so that we have a happy group and keep the right people around the club.”