Gloucester City: Mehew wants to keep on a roll
A PRE-SEASON conundrum is running through the mind of Gloucester City boss Dave Mehew.
Boss Mehew is keen for his side to remain on a roll after the fine form shown in their previous warm-up fixtures – a 3-0 success at Shortwood United and a 4-1 hammering of Cirencester Town .
But the wily City boss is also well aware of the old sporting conundrum that a fine pre-season can often lead to a slow start when the action starts for real.
City are just eight days away from a long trip to North Ferriby and the start of their Skrill Premier campaign and Mehew is trying to get his squad to peak in time for their trip to Humberside.
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And in a bid to do that, the former Bristol Rovers forward has hand-picked the friendly clashes for his side, aware that combative fixtures are as important as showpiece games against League clubs.
City face Evesham and old boy Mark Richards tonight (7.45pm) and Bishop's Cleeve on Monday night (7.45pm) with keenly-contested affairs likely to be the order of the day.
"I wanted a bit of a battle in each of the games, with teams who wanted to prove a point against us and that's how it has proved," he said.
"You want to keep this run going if we can, but at the same time I'm aware that Gainsborough won all nine of their pre-season games last season and we turned them over first game.
"I've got a fair idea of what I want to do in the first game of the season, but I want to keep the lads on their toes at the moment and keep them guessing about what the side will be."
Mehew was especially pleased by his side's performance at the Corinium Stadium on Tuesday night as goals from Darren Mullings, Lewis Hogg, Scott Wilson and Will Morford saw off the Centurions.
The hosts had led at half time courtesy of a penalty from City old boy Steve Davies but it was the second half show that pleased the Tigers boss, as did the return to action and the scoresheet of striker Morford and midfield man Mullings after undergoing respective back and shoulder surgery last term.
"We should have been ahead at half time bearing on how well we had played, but in the second half, flipping heck, we were superb," he said.
"Will Morford will start at Evesham, as Tuesday his first match back after the injury and credit to him and to Charlotte Wigmore our physio, he looked quite sharp.
"We will look to get him out on loan still, because he admits that he needs to get some games under his belt but the signs are good. It's a real credit to the work Charlotte has done with Will, Darren Mullings and Mike Green because I've not seen much of them at training, they've just been doing fitness work."
Mehew confirmed that defender Ryan Batten and youth team graduate Sam Turl have impressed enough to earn City deals as he closes on a completed squad.
He is still keen to finalise a deal for former Arsenal trainee Jamie Edge, but deals for Batten and Turl are more of a formality.
Mehew said: "Sam Turl will stay with the squad for the season and Ryan Batten will be offered a deal.
"I've been pleased with his attitude and there is definitely some potential there."