Weir enjoying his return and ready for the big kick-off
THE first game of the season can't come quickly enough for Gloucester City defender Tyler Weir – even it does involve a 360-mile round trip to Humberside.
The 22-year-old Gloucester-born defender returned to the club in the summer, sealing a two-year contract with the Tigers after spending last season with Skrill North rivals Worcester City.
Back home and happy to be so, Weir is already looking forward to the opening-day trip to North Ferriby United on Saturday week.
He said: "My family are all from Gloucester and I've just moved back here to start an apprenticeship at Gloucestershire College, so that was a big part of my decision to leave Worcester and come back.
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"The lads made me feel welcome straightaway.
"We've not had a big defeat yet so the gaffer hasn't lost it with us yet so it's still a very happy dressing room.
"I just can't wait for the first game, even if it is away at North Ferriby."
With a few new faces in the Tigers squad from when Weir spent time on loan with the club before, the former Hereford United professional said he had high hopes for the season ahead.
He said: "The gaffer has brought in Matt Groves and I think we will work well together, he's been one of the best in pre-season.
"Lewis Hogg is a great player, he has great awareness, and it is good to see such strength in the squad.
"The main difference from when I was at Gloucester before is the fact we've got goals in the squad – we've got Scott Wilson who scored lots last season.
"Darren Edwards, you know will get you 15 a season, add in Grovesy, Hoggy and having Darren Mullings back and Will Morford means we have lots of options.
"It's just up to me and the rest of the back four to make sure we get plenty of clean sheets too."
One player Weir was pleased to get reacquainted with is City skipper Matt Coupe.
The pair previously enjoyed fiery exchanges on the pitch and although both have mellowed in the time since they last played alongside each other, Weir doesn't think the arguments will have stopped altogether.
He joked: "I'm still waiting for our first row. The problem is we are too similar.
"We want the best for each other and the team and I understand why he shouts at me sometimes but he does need to understand that he isn't right all of the time!"
After leaving Hereford for Worcester last year Weir admitted he had found Gloucester's brutal pre-season schedule, involving lots of running around the grounds of Hartpury College, tough going.
"It's been hard," he said. "I just want the season to start now, this has been my first full pre-season in non-League and it's easily the hardest I've done.
"I'm not great at long-distance runs so the first few weeks felt even harder for me.
"We've got two games left now and we're getting used to each other as a team.
"The gaffer has told us to play it on the floor more and we've started to do that more consistently.
"The biggest challenge for me has been learning a new position. I played mainly at right-back last season and now I'm getting used to being on the left, even though I'm not naturally left footed."