ASHINGTON Colliers manager David Brown has set his squad what he considers to be a not too difficult a challenge as they prepare to home in on the start of another campaign in the premier division of the Pin Point Recruitment Northern Alliance League.
The Colliers kick-off their new season on Saturday week (August 13) with a game against Walker Central at the Hirst Welfare.
And Brown has asked his side to up their game after he reckons they underperformed last term.
“We’re really looking forward to the start especially with a home game,” he said.
“Our pre-season has gone ok and the fitness levels are a lot better than we thought.
“In our friendlies we beat Stobswood 6-1; Kelso from the East of Scotland League 6-0 and Gateshead Leam Lane 5-3 before losing 2-0 away to Brandon United last Saturday.
“In that match we could have done better with the two goals we conceded but we did match an up and coming team for a lot of the game.”
Brown now expects his side to improve on last season.
“We under-performed and finished in mid-table last season, which was a disappointment, and we will be aiming to pull out all of the stops to improve.”
Brown has added four new players - strikers Wyn Fremlin and Shaun Cowell (both ex-Morpeth) and Jamie Pattinson (ex-Killingworth) as well as midfielder Paul Smith (ex-Stobswood) whilst defensive lynchpin Iain Nickalls has again put pen to paper.
Tony Burgess continues as Brown’s assistant with Ryan Jobson and Ian Davison making up the management team whilst David Lightley has moved to Bedlington.
“I’d like to thank David for his services and wish him all the best for the future,” said Brown.
In the cups, Ashington have home ties against Shankhouse and Whitley Bay ‘A’.