Askey’s up­beat on Macc open­ing

Macclesfield Express - - SPORT - SHEL­DAN KEAY

MAC­CLES­FIELD Town man­ager John Askey was happy with his team’s open­ing pre-sea­son match and ex­pects them to make mas­sive im­prove­ments over the com­ing weeks.

The Silk­men drew 0-0 against Kids­grove Ath­letic at the Novus Sta­dium on Satur­day in a match of very few chances for ei­ther side.

De­spite fail­ing to over­come their op­po­nents, Askey was fairly pleased with what he saw and glad to fi­nally get his side back on the pitch.

“I think all of the play­ers did okay and the main thing was ev­ery­one got through it and they all got part of the game,” he said.

“It went as to be ex­pected, we had a lot of play­ers play­ing and we have had a long week train­ing so ob­vi­ously we came into the game tired.

“That prob­a­bly showed a lit­tle bit, but the aim was to get ev­ery­one right for the start of the sea­son.

“It gave us the chance to look at a few tri­al­ists and no one has come off in­jured so it’s helped to con­firm pretty much what I knew al­ready be­fore the game. The play­ers who started the game got used to play­ing again and then af­ter mak­ing changes at half time, those play­ers had to get back into the match’s tempo.

“I didn’t think in ei­ther half there was much dif­fer­ence though and we never re­ally looked like we were go­ing to score or con­cede.

“It’s the first game and we’re hop­ing that, as the games go on, we get the re­sults and some good per­for­mances head­ing into the start of the sea­son.”

One player who fea­tured in the game against Kids­grove on Satur­day was new sign­ing Tony Di­agne.

The French de­fender re­joined Macc on loan from Lin­coln City ahead of the match, and he agreed that the time on the pitch was more im­por­tant than the re­sult.

‘’Matches like those pre­pare you well for the sea­son. I played a full 90 min­utes and it will only help my fit­ness lev­els, that’s the aim for most peo­ple in pre-sea­son,” he said.

“In pre-sea­son you want to get all the play­ers play­ing ba­sic stuff then de­vel- op­ing and play­ing well to­gether.

‘It was nice to be back with Mac­cles­field and we played well in the first half and also in the sec­ond half when some of the trial play­ers came on.

‘’We’re look­ing for­ward to the next game now as it’s another chance to show what we can do and con­tinue to get fit­ter.”

Mac­cles­field’s next friendly match sees them host League One Roch- dale at Moss Rose on Satur­day.

The two teams met in pre-sea­son last year, with Rochdale run­ning out 2-0 win­ners af­ter first-half goals from Rhys Ben­nett and Cal­lum Camps. the new cam­paign with a trip to Fairhurst’s new club.

“His work-rate is fan­tas­tic and he will be a real pos­i­tive in­flu­ence on those play­ers around him,” Gulls boss Paul Cox said.

Mean­while, Macc has re-signed de­fender Tony Di­agne on a sea­son-long loan from Lin­coln City.

The 24-year-old French­man joined the club in 2011, mak­ing 86 ap­pear­naces and scor­ing six goals. He moved on to More­cambe in 2013 and then Lin­coln a year later.

Also com­ing in to the Moss Rose is Neill Byrne, who joined on a per­ma­nent deal from Telford.

The Ir­ish 21-year-old has been capped by his coun­try at un­der 19 level.

‘We’re hop­ing that we get the re­sults and some good per­for­mances go­ing into the new sea­son’

Matt Rat­cliffe

●● Mac­cles­field Town boss John Askey was pleased with his team’s first pre-sea­son run out against Kids­grove on Satur­day

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