Weekly News | 19.7.22
Paul Phillips reiterated the need to strengthen his attack again following the 2-0 home defeat to Chesterfield on Saturday
Matlock have scored just the one goal in their four pre season matches so far, although the Gladiators have faced higher league opposition in three of the games in the form of full strength Mansfield Town and Chesterfield sides plus travelling to play current NPL Champions Buxton.
Phillips lost both Liam Hughes who moved to Worksop Town and Ross Hannah who expressed a desire to play closer to home due to family commitments. Jake Day has arrived from Scarborough Athletic while pacy striker Arron Opoku has been brought in from Carlton Town and Reece Webb-Foster is back in contention as he continues his rehabilitation from a knee injury picked up at the end of last season.
Phillips will therefore be continuing to work hard to try and bring in the man or men he wants but says it’s easier said than done.
“I think we’ll have to be patient as things are still happening in the higher leagues with regard to players. As we all know, top strikers means top money, I’ve been after four or five players and thought I’d got two over the line but ended up being blown out of the water by higher offers from elsewhere, one even going abroad. But I’ll keep on working to bring in players I think that can fit the bill.”
The Town chief thought that Matlock ran out of legs in the second half against Chesterfield.
“We held our own and did well in the first half but the hot conditions plus it being our fourth game in such a short space of time took its toll” Phillips admitted.
The unusually hot temperature forecast for Tuesday persuaded Macclesfield and Matlock to call off their friendly.
“You can’t play in that type of heat, you have to consider peoples’ welfare and the advice is not to travel so the decision’s right” added Phillips.
Matlock now head to Alfreton Town on Saturday to continue their preparations for the new season which begins with a visit from Whitby Town on Saturday 13 August. This is followed by a trip to Ramsbottom United on Tuesday with Derby County under 23’s visiting the Proctor Cars Stadium on the following Friday (7.45pm).
Matlock have selection problems for Saturday with Al Byrne and Reece Kendall on holiday while both goalkeepers, Jim Pollard and Sam Ogden were injured against Chesterfield. Defender Ioan Evans missed the game last weekend and also on the injury list is Joe Ferguson and Sean Higgins.
The Chesterfield game attracted a sell out 2300 attendance which would do much to swell the Gladiators’ coffers.
Chairman Jay Beaumont says it was a “super afternoon” for the club.
“It was fantastic to see the ground packed and I’d like to thank the Chesterfield fans for their support, we hope they all enjoyed their day. Thank you to Paul Cook for bringing across a full strength squad and thanks also to the volunteers and everyone behind the scenes for their hard work on the day. We were also delighted to welcome Ernie Moss’ family to present the Ernie Moss Challenge Cup as people could remember a top class player and a lovely man.”